Friday 11/12 – Thursday 11/18


By Cara Jepsen

12 FRIDAY New and old buildings can coexist in Chicago, says Albert Friedman, who’s both a developer and the acting chair of the Landmarks Commission. Maybe he can suggest what to do with the threatened Tree Studios when he talks about The Future of Chicago today at noon at the Chicago Historical Society, Clark at North. Admission to this event, part of the Chicago Humanities Festival, is $5. Call 312-661-1028 for more.

“Jerry’s kids are people in wheelchairs on television raising money to find a way to prevent their ever having been born,” NBC correspondent John Hockenberry has written. “When crips watch the telethon, the words ‘bravery’ and ‘courage’ and ‘heroism’ do not come to mind.” Tonight Hockenberry, who as a student at the University of Chicago was in a car accident that left him with an irreversible spinal cord injury, will show a video of his 1996 one-man play, Spoke Man, which was based on a book he wrote about being wheelchair-bound. A reception runs from 5 to 6 and the video screening and a discussion are from 6 to 9 in room 605 of the University of Illinois at Chicago’s Chicago Circle Center, 750 S. Halsted. Tickets are $15. Call 312-355-0551.

When Israel became a state in 1948, 750,000 Palestinians were forced out of their homes and villages, a time survivors refer to as al-nakbah, the catastrophe. Like the researchers in this week’s cover story, Robert Hostetter interviewed those displaced for an oral history project. His work turned into a play, The Longing. It will be performed on five stages tonight and tomorrow night at 8 in North Park University’s multipurpose room, 3225 W. Foster. Tickets are $8, $4 for students; call 773-244-4890.

13 SATURDAY The high-IQ group Mensa hopes to swell its ranks by inviting people from all walks of life to have a shot at their standardized intelligence test. Those who pass muster can plop down $48 a year to join the likes of Marilyn Vos Savant and Geena Davis in being a certified smarty-pants. The test itself will set you back $30 and will be given from 1 to 2:30 today in room 5091 of UIC’s Chicago Circle Center, 750 S. Halsted, and at the Georgetown West Improvement Association, 301 S. Prospect in Wood Dale. Reservations are recommended (847-526-6744).

Why watch pay-per-view when you can see local talent box up close and personal? Tonight Chicago Golden Gloves boxers will take on their New York counterparts for the first time in 17 years. Our top guys include one of this year’s champs, Eckhart Park’s 147-pounder Jimmy Gonzalez, and 156-pound runner-up Rudy Cisneros, who hails from the far north side. The ten bouts start at 7:30 at Saint Andrew’s Gym, 1658 W. Addison. Tickets are $12 to $32. Call 773-921-4000.

In her novel Sor Juana’s Second Dream, UCLA professor Alicia Gaspar de Alba mixes the poetry of 17th-century Mexican intellectual Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz with historical facts and fictional journal entries, such as “For once, it isn’t meaning that I seek, just the memory of it, and of her, ripening under my tongue.” Gaspar de Alba will read from her book and discuss her take on Sor Juana tonight at 7 at the Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum, 1852 W. 19th (312-738-1503); it’s part of the museum’s Sor Juana Festival, which ends November 19. Admission is $6.

This weekend fans of personal freedom have their choice of two conferences. The Chicago Committee to Defend the Bill of Rights will hold a one-day congress called U.S. Repression 2000: A Conference on Civil Rights and Wrongs. Topics to be discussed include special targets of repression in this country (such as Arab-Americans and Puerto Rican independence activists) and local police brutality. Civil rights attorney and author Dave Cole is the keynote speaker. It runs from 9 to 5 in room 8005 of the DePaul Center, 1 E. Jackson. Admission is $10 or pay what you can. Registration is recommended; call 312-939-0675. Also today the University of Chicago Law School wraps up a free three-day interdisciplinary conference called 1984: Orwell and Our Future, in honor of the 50th anniversary of the classic novel. Novelist Margaret Drabble will discuss Orwell’s beliefs about human and animal natures and Harvard University professor Elaine Scarry will address Orwellian thought and torture. Sessions are from 9:30 to 5 at the U. of C. Law School, 1111 E. 60th. Call 773-702-9486 for more information.

14 SUNDAY Tonight HotHouse pairs poet Amiri Baraka with Malachi Thompson’s Free Bop Band. Baraka begins at 8 at HotHouse, 31 E. Balbo (312-362-9707). Tickets are $12 for Baraka only, $15 for Thompson or for both shows.

15 MONDAY Black and Blue, Loverboy, Congregate, and Afterglow are not new drugs but the names of controversial “circuit parties,” a mix of sex, drugs, and fund-raising for AIDS organizations that only the buffest of gay men are invited to attend. They’re the subject of Jose Torrealba’s new documentary Got 2b There, which screens tonight at 9 as part of the Chicago Lesbian & Gay International Film Festival. Afterward Torrealba will lead a question-and-answer session. Both events are at the Village Theatre, 1548 N. Clark. Admission is $7. For more information on the festival, call 312-409-4919, or check out the critical guide in Section Two.

16 TUESDAY As part of its continuing ten-year-anniversary celebration, the Guild Complex has published an anthology, Power Lines:

A Decade of Poetry from Chicago’s Guild Complex, and tonight contributors Gwendolyn Brooks, Sterling Plumpp, Reginald Gibbons, Tony Fitzpatrick, and many others will participate in a reading. The benefit, hosted by Quraysh Ali Lansana, also serves as a bon voyage to founding executive director Michael Warr. It’s from 6 to 9 at the Chicago Historical Society, Clark at North. Tickets start at $35 and include a buffet. Call 773-296-1108, ext. 18.

Two women riding in a glass elevator discuss whether to lift their skirts as they pass a busy office in one vignette from tonight’s Actors Scene Showcase, sponsored by the Women’s Theatre Alliance. Nine other five-minute scenes have been chosen by a panel of alliance theater directors. It starts at 7 at the Theatre Building, 1225 W. Belmont. The $7 admission includes a champagne reception. Call 312-408-9910 for details.

17 WEDNESDAY You have to like a meditation expert who says that becoming one with the universe is as easy as slowing down, being quiet, and doing less. Tonight Steven Harrison will explain how to simplify when he reads from his new book, Getting to Where You Are: The Life of Meditation. It’s at 7 at Transitions Bookplace, 1000 W. North, and it’s free. Harrison will also lead a $35 workshop tomorrow from 7 to 9:30 at Transitions Learning Center, 1750 N. Kingsbury. Call 312-951-7323.

18 THURSDAY Richard Stacewicz, author of Winter Soldiers: An Oral History of the Vietnam Veterans Against the War, will discuss the history of the antiwar and civil rights movements at 6:30 tonight at the Lincoln Park branch of the Chicago Public Library, 1150 W. Fullerton (312-744-5295); it’s free.