By Cara Jepsen
British author and Socialist Workers Party member Chris Harman is one of the featured speakers this weekend at the International Socialist Organization’s “summer school”; he’ll talk about his book The Economics of the Madhouse. Sessions run from 10 to 9 today and include the presentations “Clinton and the Politics of Lesser Evilism” and “The Struggle for Palestine.” Harman speaks at 7:30 tonight in the Illinois Room of UIC’s Circle Center, 750 S. Halsted. Saturday sessions run from 10 to 9:30, Sunday sessions from 10 to 2:30. Admission is $4 per session or $15 a day Friday and Saturday, $10 Sunday. A three-day pass is $35. Call 665-7337.
V.Vale, creator of the now-defunct zine Search and Destroy and former copublisher of RE/Search, has launched a new venture, V/Search, which recently released its first publication, Zines. The 200-page book features scams, pranks, tips on creating a zine, and a directory of 900 zines. Vale will sign copies tonight from 6 to 8 at Quimby’s Queer Store, 1328 N. Damen. It’s free; call 342-0910.
From the tiniest hole in the wall to the biggest Borders, more than 150 booksellers display new, rare, and antiquarian books at this year’s Printers Row Book Fair. The fair includes book signings, group readings, live entertainment, panel discussions, and a writer’s resource bazaar as well as several special-interest seminars. It’s from 10 to 6 today and tomorrow on Dearborn between Congress and Polk. It’s free; call 987-1980 for more.
Amenities on today’s Dog Days of Summer Cruise include water, dog treats, and a special newspaper-lined restroom. Fire hydrants, grassy areas, and tree-lined locations as well as the usual architectural marvels will be pointed out to dog lovers during the 90-minute cruise. The event is a fund-raiser for Chenny Troupe Incorporated, an organization that uses animals to augment rehabilitative therapy for the emotionally and physically challenged. Dogs must be leashed and accompanied by an adult. Tickets are $11 per adult, $5.50 per child, $5 per dog. It’s from 11:30 to 1. Meet at the Mercury Cruises ticket office at the southwest corner of the Michigan Avenue bridge, lower level. Call 332-1353 for more.
“I was attracted to the sprinkles on ice cream cones and to the sound of wetness–I like waterfalls, piss, vaginal fluid, sweat, cum–anything wet. So the name “Annie Sprinkle’ seemed perfect,” porn-star-cum-pleasure-activist Annie Sprinkle told Andrea Juno in a 1991 interview in RE/Search’s Angry Women. A performance artist and photographer, Sprinkle also sometimes stars in HBO’s Real Sex documentaries. Her latest venture, “Post-Modern Pin-Ups Pleasure Activist Playing Cards,” consists of a booklet and set of oversize playing cards, each featuring Sprinkle’s photo of a different woman. The deck includes such bad girls as Lydia Lunch, Susie Bright, and Candida Royalle. Sprinkle will sign copies of her cards today from 3 to 5 at Quimby’s Queer Store, 1328 N. Damen. It’s free; call 342-0910 for more.
Long before Public Enemy there were the Last Poets, an African-American trio that performed revolutionary, often shocking lyrics over drums. The group was formed in 1968 at a birthday party for Malcolm X and has been influencing musicians ever since. They’ll play a stripped-down set tonight to promote the upcoming book On a Mission: Selected Poems and a History of the Last Poets. It’s at 9 at the Elbo Room, 2871 N. Lincoln. Tickets are $10. Call 549-5549.
Former Black Flag front man Henry Rollins has signed several interesting writers to his publishing company, 2.13.61 Publications. Some of them–including former X singer and poet Exene Cervenkova (formerly Cervenka), Swans leader and author Michael Gira, and writer/actor Don Bajema–will perform with Rollins tonight when he headlines an evening of spoken word performance. The eight o’clock show takes place at the Vic, 3145 N. Sheffield. Tickets are $18.50. Call 472-0366.
Linda Mack Ross got $2,000 in free calls from her long-distance company and saved $400 a year on insurance just by being assertive. In her book The Smart Consumer’s Book of Questions she outlines how to avoid bad consumer experiences and gives insider information on nursing homes, schools, libraries, camps, government offices, apartment rentals, and more. She’ll discuss her book and sign copies tonight at 7:30 at Barnes & Noble, 659 W. Diversey. It’s free; call 871-9004.
If you are flying out of the country any time in the next year, you can view photographer Peter Menzel’s “Material World: A Global Family Portrait” at O’Hare’s international terminal. The exhibit features photos of 30 “statistically average” families from around the world, posing in front of their dwellings surrounded by their possessions (some of the photos have been published in the Utne Reader). Not too surprisingly, a wide-angle lens was used for the Americans. The free exhibit opens today at 10, will run for at least a year, and can be seen only by airport employees and passengers. Call 686-3555 for more.
Puppeteer Marilyn Price performs food-related stories at various Chicago Public Library branches this month. Her repertoire, which is for all ages, includes Stone Soup, The Gingerbread Man, and Pasta With Strega Nona. Price gives free shows today at 2 at the Lincoln Park branch, 1150 W. Fullerton, and at 7 at the Austin-Irving branch, 6110 W. Irving Park. For more information call 747-4780.
In Jean-Pierre Melville’s 1967 film Le samourai Alain Delon plays a cool, confident hit man. But when he’s interrupted while murdering a nightclub owner, he breaks his code and allows the witness to live–a move that of course brings about his own downfall. His end is played to the hilt and epitomizes Melville’s obsession with the themes of loyalty, honor, and betrayal. It shows tonight at 6 at the Film Center at the School of the Art Institute, Columbus Drive and Jackson, as part of a tribute to Melville. Tickets are $6. Call 443-3737.
Lippizan horses, known for their gymnastic ability, are born black and fuzzy. They turn grey when they’re about four and go white between the ages of seven and ten. Adult stallions are trained to dance the quadrille and perform leaps and lifts. Tempel Farms imported 20 of the horses from Austria in 1982 and has been staging public performances ever since. The Tempel Lippizan stallions begin their performance season, which runs through August 28, today at 10:30 at Tempel Farms, 17000 Wadsworth Road, in Wadsworth. It’s $14 for adults, $12 for seniors, $5 for children. Audience members are invited to tour the farm after the performance. Call 847-623-7272 for directions.
Martha Roth’s new book Goodness centers on a close-knit group of feminists and peaceniks in Minneapolis who have been friends since their activist days in the 1960s. They find themselves facing a 1980s reality that includes disease, middle age, and cynicism. The story alternates between the 1980s and the 1960s and is told from the point of view of several characters, including a nun, a draft resister, a “free spirit,” and a woman with breast cancer. Roth, who coedited Mother Journeys: Feminists Write About Mothering and Transforming a Rape Culture, will read from her latest book tonight at 7 at 57th Street Books, 1301 E. 57th. It’s free; call 752-4381.
Two women are shown in a wood canoe, wearing wide-brimmed straw hats. Between them sit two blue-and-white steel boxes and a bright red can of Ovaltine. The photo is one of the beautiful images in Chicago lawyer Mitchell Rieger’s photographic diary of his days navigating a Navy warship back from Asia via the Suez Canal and the Mediterranean after World War II. The exhibit Ovaltine in Bangkok: Asia at War’s End 1945-46 documents a region in transition. It opens today, 5:30 to 7:30, at Orca Aart Gallery, 300 W. Grand. It’s free; call 245-5245.