Friday, July 22
The women of KC Jazz Rugby work hard for the money. In order to raise traveling funds for their upcoming season, they've gotta mud-wrestle anybody who's willing to pay $20 -- in, it appears, as little clothing as possible. We must admit, that's commitment. The girls get down and dirty at 9 p.m. at Westport Beach Club (4050 Pennsylvania, 816-931-2224). Admission is $5; buckets of Corona are $10.
Saturday, July 23
As much as we like to imagine what would've happened if we'd been brought up by wolves or pursued our dreams of a tap-dancing career, we're generally cool with our lives. We're not the women who will be showing up for today's casting call for Starting Over, a reality show that claims to offer participants a "second chance at life." The gals gather under one roof -- as they so often do on these shows -- while attempting to change not just their hair or their kids' behavior but everything. Thankfully, the show provides the cast with life coaches. Either this is a truly inspiring idea for a TV program or the apocalypse is just around the corner. Find out who shows up at the Sheraton Suites Country Club Plaza (770 West 47th Street). Call the casting call hotline for more information at 888-633-8149.
Sunday, July 24
Sports Illustrated once published an article that said "America has a four-legged problem called the American pit bull terrier. And the pit bull has a two-legged problem called Man." It went on about how the breed's tenacity would be admirable in an athlete. But mauling small children and senior citizens on sunny days in California, it's ... well, it's just not. That's exactly the nasty reputation that Missouri Pit Bull Rescue has to overcome all the time. Folks from the organization select dogs from shelters (which they call "death row") based on first impressions -- friendly demeanors, attractive personalities, good looks, etc. -- then give them basic evaluations (with "zero tolerance for any signs of people-aggression") and all sorts of shots and tests before arranging their adoptions. If you trust the group's judgment, check out the meet-and-greet today -- no same-day adoptions -- from noon to 3 p.m. at the Olathe Petsmart (15255 West 119th Street, 913-393-4111). From what MPR tells us, come "prepared to fall in love." Or be mauled. Ha.
Monday, July 25
Enough with the camera phones already. Every concert we've been to in the past year has come under siege by hordes of amateur photogs who, in some attempt to capture touring rock stars such as foxy Spoon frontman Britt Daniels, hold their Samsungs high above their heads. But don't let us discourage you from taking photographs as they were meant to be taken -- with film. Today is the last day to enter the Kansas City Zoo's Zootography Photo Contest, and the judges aren't accepting anything that's not an 8-by-10 print. That means no transparencies, picture disks, CDs or cell phones. If you've taken a picture at the zoo (perhaps one with the very cute -- and very hyped -- white tiger) after the first of this year, send it on over to: Kansas City Zoo, Zootography Photo Contest, 6800 Zoo Drive, Kansas City, MO 64132. The contest has two age divisions: children (ages 3-11) and adult (ages 12 and older); categories are animals, nature and plants, and black-and-white. Be sure to include your name and address as well as phone number, age and category on the back of each photo -- zoo merch and IMAX tickets are in store for runners-up.
Tuesday, July 26
Our mother's a thrifty one. Whenever she sees attractive sale items that would make suitable presents, she quickly snatches them up and stows them in the Gift Drawer. Jewelry, scarves, books ... if it's cheap -- sorry, Mom, inexpensive -- one of our dad's four sisters is probably going to end up owning it. Her collection has served us well; dipping into Mom's drawer for birthdays and anniversaries gives the impression that we've inherited her good taste and saves us money. But now that we're all grown up, it's probably time to start a Gift Drawer of our own, and our first stop is the Nelson-Atkins garage sale. We don't always love the selection at the museum shop, but with promises of up to 70 percent off the original prices, surely we can find something. (Members receive an extra 10 percent discount and free parking.) The sale started July 22 and runs through July 31. Catch it today from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the garage of the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (4525 Oak, 816-751-1278).
Wednesday, July 27
What else could Alafair Burke do for a living but write mystery novels? We're talking about a name that just oozes Excuse me, I'm figuring out how my serial killer offs his victims. And then there's the small matter of Burke's dad, acclaimed crime writer James Lee Burke. It's always good to impress Dad with one's career choice. So Burke became a Portland, Oregon, prosecutor before inventing the character (or perhaps alter ego) of Portland deputy district attorney Samantha Kincaid. Burke's newest, Close Case, finds Kincaid searching for the murderer of an investigative reporter. The cops, including her live-in lovah, are no help. Find out how much Burke and Kincaid have in common when she speaks tonight at Rainy Day Books (2706 West 53rd Street in Fairway, 913-384-3126). Tickets come only with purchase of the book, which is $22, from the store.