Week of November 10, 2005

Night & Day Events 

Week of November 10, 2005

Thursday, November 10
When the Pitch gave River City Books (108 Missouri, in the River Market, 816-283-8344) the Best New Used Bookstore award in 2003, the writer compared its likelihood for long-term success to the likelihood of a three-legged thoroughbred dominating the dog tracks: damned fun to cheer on, but if you're a bettin' man, keep your wallet in your pocket. Sadly, the writer was right. (From what we hear, though, the place isn't closing because business was bad.) Owners Carrie and Todd Pacey can't afford to reopen elsewhere, so those books lying around — all 12,000 of them — have gotta go. Now. Through November 15, everything in the store is 25 percent to 50 percent off. Cheapskates willing to sacrifice selection can wait until after that, when prices drop again — in some cases, by a whopping 75 percent. Score some kick-ass Christmas gifts at a cut rate before November 30, when we say goodbye to River City Books forever.

Friday, November 11
On November 6, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (4525 Oak, 816-561-4000) quietly debuted its New Media Projects, a series of electronic exhibitions. I'igo Manglano-Ovalle's Vanishing Sky, a computer-generated projection of space, kicked things off — and it sounds a whole lot like science in art's clothing. After all, the projection the audience sees (on three adjoining screens) is actually just a digital rendering of mathematical data. "Every 15 minutes, a universe is created and simultaneously extinguished, star by star," says the artist. Discuss the implications of just how insignificant our world is in the grander scheme of things from 7 to 8 tonight in Gallery 133 as part of the Nelson's "The Curator Is In" program; Leesa Fanning, assistant curator of modern and contemporary art, moderates.

Saturday, November 12
What do Leonardo DiCaprio, Bill Gates and Whoopi Goldberg have in common? They're all Scorpios — the zodiac sign known for its control-freak ways and an intense interest in sex. Is it any wonder that one of the words used to describe the sign — along with intense, determined, magnetic, bold and powerful — is penetrating? We wonder what the founder of Microsoft thinks about all of this. The founder of Late Night Theatre, Ron Megee, thinks it's cause for celebration. Hence, the LNT gang salutes the sign at tonight's Scorpio Party, an astrological throw-down featuring a floor show and dance party for $10 at 1317 Union Street (second floor). The party starts at 10 p.m. And just so you know, scorpions' claws are called chelae. Call 816-474-4568 for more information.

Sunday, November 13
In 1983, Hope House was a single shelter for 15 women and children; today, it's Missouri's largest domestic-violence shelter, with locations in Independence and Lee's Summit, and its hotline and programs help more than 15,000 battered women and children each year. Today's Mouse for the House is a benefit blues concert at the Trouser Mouse Bar and Grill (625 Northwest Mock Avenue in Blue Springs, 816-220-1222). There's a tiny voice inside our head that wants to make a snide comment about how it seems odd to be raising funds for protecting women and children at a place that's named after a synonym for, um, pocket pinball, but we'll let this good deed go unpunished. The music starts at noon; acts include Levee Town, Danielle Schnebelen, Cotton Candy, So Many Men, TUFF, Connie and the Choir Boys, and Shannon and the Rhythm Kings. Admission is $6 — a small price to pay for women's safety.

Monday, November 14
Everyone always talks about how evil Wal-Mart is, but have those haters seen the new ads? First, the megastore's marketing gurus dropped a wad of cash in Vogue, the fashion bible, presumably in a bid to compete with Target's line of affordable trends. A deal with Garth Brooks was inked, and now Destiny's Child giggles all the way through the holiday promotions. We caught a commercial boasting a whole crew of smiley Rowlands — and noticed that the unfortunate-looking baby plopped in the middle of them looked really white. We think that says a lot about Wal-Mart's commitment to diversity. Robert Greenwald, on the other hand, isn't as seduced as we are by attractive and glamorous advertising. He wonders why the corporation spends so much money trying to convince its audience that it cares about family, community and its own employees. Just maybe, he thinks ... Wal-Mart is hiding something. Find out what it is tonight at a sneak preview of his film Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price at 7 p.m. at Screenland (1656 Washington, 816-421-2900). Admission is $5.

Tuesday, November 15
God bless John McClain. Don't get us wrong — we still love Bob Jones and cherish the covered-button boots we scored there — but the Crossroads has a new shoe store, thanks to McClain and his wife, Kristen. And this new shoe store plans to carry brands such as Farylrobin, Camper and Royal Elastics as well as a smattering of denim and T-shirt choices. The man loves shoes. For that, we love the man. Habitat (1800 Baltimore, 816-421-5444) is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday; Thursday nights, the store stays open until 8.

Wednesday, November 16
We have nothing against Oopsy Daisy's (6301 Main, 816-363-9400), Brookside's large pink-and-green temple to all things girly. However, the fact that the store is now holding classes under the too-cute name "Daisy University" troubles us just a tad. Today's offering, "How to Buy Gifts for Guys" promises attendees that it will solve the age-old question "What do men really want?" (The answer, according to our research: new video games and new tires.) We can't imagine that anything Oopsy Daisy's carries would possibly be of interest to any man out there, but just the same, the store will give a $10 gift certificate to ladies who pay $20 to take the 7 p.m. class.

Your man doesn't want a pair of chandelier earrings? What about a book from the category our dad refers to as "Lifetime for Men"? Tonight, Jack Klugman reads from and signs his memoir Tony and Me: A Story of Friendship, which tells all about The Odd Couple stars' off-screen friendship. Klugman reads at 7:30 at Borders (12055 Metcalf Avenue in Overland Park, 913-663-2356).

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