This Weeks Day-By-Day Picks 

Thursday, October 2, 2003

In the new venue called the Stray Cat (1319 Grand, 816-283-3338), the kids from Your Face present a noise band called Lightning Bolt. As usual, this collective of arty music lovers has brought us something fairly obscure that's superhot in dark corners of bigger cities. À la Found Magazine, Your Face coordinators claim to have discovered a note sent from one high school girl to another about the show. The note's supposed author, Louise, calls Lightning Bolt "the best noise rock duo in the world" and warns her friend to prepare for "a lethal dose of ridiculousity" before adding a postscript: "That algebra test was bull*#$!" The show starts at 7:30 p.m. on the nose. Sure, it's a school night. You can do it, sport.

Friday, October 3, 2003

Perhaps you've noticed the amazing lineup of authors making appearances in town this week. Al Franken, Jonathan Lethem and David Sedaris form an intimidating triumvirate for any fledgling writer. But some of the topics covered in the Maple Woods Annual Writers' Conference will be of interest to writers and nonwriters alike. Take, for example, today's seminar on "The Art of Shameless Self Promotion." We're pretty sure we've met nonwriters schooled in that arena. Maple Woods Community College is located at 2601 Northeast Barry Road. Enrollment in the conference costs $150, but there's a special student rate of $100. To get a detailed schedule of events, see kcmetro.edu/maplewoods/writeconf or call 816-437-3007.

The city may just be your slimy oyster tonight. There are many things to do downtown, in particular, but because recent outings have taught us that she who goes to many shows goes to no shows, we're narrowing it to one carefully selected adventure for your convenience. Try the Fahrenheit Gallery (1717 West Ninth Street) in the West Bottoms. There, a graffiti show with the usual suspects (Gear and Scribe), the American Murakami (Dalek) and a handful of slightly less notorious but nonetheless talented artists present their work. The opening, called Depth/Funnel, lasts from 7 to 11 p.m. For information, call 816-304-5477.

Saturday, October 4, 2003

We are sharing this secret only because we don't think many of you will respond accordingly. The art galleries that hosted the First Friday Gallery Crawl last night are open again today. The day after the openings is our favorite time to visit the galleries, because there are no people. No, we're not misanthropes. But we do hope you forget about this suggestion shortly after reading it. That said, here are recommended gallery shows to check out today: David Ford's collection of Mayan art at the Pearl Gallery (1818 McGee, 816-471-5989) and the Personal Universe show with works by the design-influenced Bernal Koehrsen and the creepily beautiful, big-eyed-lady paintings of Rachel Stuart-Haas at the Blue Gallery (7 West 19th Street, 816-527-0823). But we would by no means discourage you from going to all the galleries.

Sunday, October 5, 2003

Nothing says gay pride like a great set of bagpipes. At today's Out in Westport event, performer Brandon Ward brings this necessary rally ingredient to Westport Road between Wyandotte and Central streets. Ward is one of many performers, including Late Night Theater's Ron Megee, actress Missy Koonce, the cast of Eubank Productions' Rocky Horror Show, Kristie Stremel, SoundsGood and a vocalist who goes by "Cowboy Steve." It's actually quite a long list of performers, all of them hardworking locals who deserve at least a little of your attention for once. It's free, and you might even walk away with something from the raffle. For information, call 816-931-4420.

Monday, October 6, 2003

Hey there, Hollywood blockbuster lovers! Forrest Gump author Winston Groom -- who recently wrote another book called A Storm in Flanders -- speaks at Park University's McCoy Meetin' House. (We are not just being cute with that spelling; it really is called the Meetin' House.) Meet there at 7 p.m. to get your Gump on. For directions or information, call 816-584-6355.

Tuesday, October 7, 2003

We never celebrate our classicists, and it's a damn shame. Maybe it's because they're holed up at universities, making it hard to meet and appreciate them. So, although they aren't around to say this on their own behalf, we'll go ahead and say it for them: Expertise in dead languages can simply not be overrated. If you have never attempted to learn ancient Greek, take it from us that it is impossible. Classicist = badass. And black post-Civil War classicists are waaaay badass. The University of Missouri-Columbia is showing a collection of historic photographs portraying twelve African-American teachers of Greek and Latin who paved the way for generations of African-American colleges. Without these people, there would have been no Hillman College on the Cosby Show spinoff A Different World. Michele Valerie Ronnick, who created the exhibit, makes the bold statement that "all who study language and literature in the U.S., be it Italian, Swahili, Sanskrit, English or Arabic, trace the origin of the disciplines to the men and women featured in this photo installment" -- if she does say so herself. The exhibit opens today at the Gaines/Oldham Black Culture Center at MU in Columbia between 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Ronnick will be available to discuss the work then. For information, call 573-882-3346.

Wednesday, October 8, 2003

Everybody needs a superhero. Why not you, wayward tango lover? Sure, Fedora's has closed and your awesome Wednesday-night tango dances are in the process of relocating. Help is just around the corner. Is it a bird? Is it a plane? It's ... Amigoman, the Latin Avenger! He's the only bilingual comic-book hero in the area (and possibly the only death-avenging vigilante who hopes to go to law school when his work is done). Creator Anthony Oropeza speaks at Argentine Library (2800 Metropolitan in KCK) from 2 to 3 p.m. For information, call 913-722-7400. Free treats will be served.

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