In John Updike novels, the characters never go to anyplace real like McDonald’s or Circuit City; they always go to made-up places like “Burger Land” or “World o’ TVs.” That disconnect creates a kind of fictitious fantasy world, like Middle Earth with basketball and suburbs. It’s kind of like putting ironic quote marks around real life, and then adding a bunch of golf and adultery, which is how John Updike books are written.
For the purposes of my argument, Sammy Hagar’s current lineup is kind of like a fictitious John Updike version of an '80s rock band. Hagar is 60 years old, so he’s an excellent stand-in for Updike, a man clinging to past glories and newly obsessed with his mortality and waning libido.
Reinforcing the idea of Sammy Hagar's band as a literary pastiche of 1980s rock bands, former Van Halen bass player Michael Anthony joins Hagar on the tour, and presumably, his distinctive Van Halen backup vocals create enough cognitive dissonance to, like, remind you of an '80s band that you can't quite put your finger on. They play tonight at 8 at the Uptown Theater (3700 Broadway, 816-753-8665).
Also, I am irresistibly compelled to point out that I saw this band on TV singing an excellent song called "Viva Viagra." It goes, "At the end of the day, I'm not a guy to stray, because she's my heart's desire." But they always hold that one for the encore, so totally do not exit the theater when the band leaves the stage.
Bo Lings in the City Market (20 East Fifth Street, 816-423-8036) has a full bar, exhibiting what I have to say is impressively deep insight into the character of the neighborhood which will serve the restaurant very, very well when next year's summer concert series starts up. At any rate, it's a really great upscale, sort of design-ery looking environment. And it's Bo Lings, so you know the food is good. Every Friday at 6 p.m., they have Kung Fu night, which includes drink and noodle specials while Kung Fu movies are screened on the bar's televisions.
Earlier this year, scientists developed a controversial apparatus nicknamed "The God Helmet." The helmet, which magnetically stimulates the brain's right-hemispherical parietal and temporal lobes, induced reportedly mystical or otherworldly feelings in 80 percent of test subjects, similar to deep religious experiences. Thanks, science! That frees up a lot of real estate and solves the "going to church" problem so definitively that Praise Circuit musicians will have to start performing at secular venues, such as the Clear Channel/St. Pauli Girl/Doritos Fun Jam or distributorships of God Helmets.
On the other hand, the God Helmet also threatens the already rare traditional sweat lodge ceremony of the Lakota people. Saturday's 6 p.m. sweat lodge ceremony at the Light Center (1542 Woodson) is a great opportunity to experience an ancient ceremonial tradition in a country that doesn't actually have a whole lot of them. Cheesy local news-style segue, you are cleared for landing on runway 3:
Speaking of ancient ceremonial traditions, were you aware of the retardedly large number of Sunday karaoke events in the metro? Me, neither. Rather than test your patience and mine with a mini-essay about amateur singing, why not just take the Maeby Fünke in your life to any of the following locations for a little "Afternoon Delight":
Trouser Mouse, 9 p.m.
625 N.W. Mock Ave.
Blue Springs, MO 64014
Outabounds Sports Bar & Grill, 10 p.m.
Kansas City, MO 64111
JR's Place, 9 p.m.
20238 W. 151st
Olathe, KS 66061
The Fox, 8:30 p.m.
7520 Shawnee Mission Pkwy.
Shawnee, KS 66203
John's Big Deck, 8 p.m.
Kansas City, MO 64105
The Red Balloon, 8 p.m.
10325 W. 75th St.
Overland Park, KS 66214
702 S.E. Blue Pkwy.
Lee's Summit, MO 64063
-- Chris Packham