Friday 28

Tattoos–Not Just for Bikers and How to Strip for Your Man aren’t classes at the Discovery Center. They’re workshops at this weekend’s “HalloweeM” convention, a gathering where Chicago-area members of Mensa, the high-IQ society, will supposedly “party heartily with others in the intellectual fast lane.” Judging from the number of singles events, they’ll also be looking for mates: every year there are allegedly dozens of Mensa weddings. Prospective members are welcome to attend. Festivities start at 3 on Friday and run through 6 on Sunday at the Clarion Quality Inn, 6810 N. Mannheim Road in Rosemont. Admission is $20 Friday and Saturday, and $10 Sunday. Saturday afternoon at 1 the Mensa entrance exam will be given; daily admission is included in the $25 test fee. Call 730-4800.

Light and Time–a two-day multimedia event touted as “a sort of virtual be-in for technological artists on a scale unprecedented in Chicago”–started yesterday and continues tonight at Filmmakers, 1543 W. Division. At 5 there’s a reception featuring “kinetic, robotic, filmic and computer installations” by an array of local artists; it’s followed at 7 with a screening of works from more than a dozen other film and video makers, a sample of random animation downloaded from the Internet, and an “electronic transmission” event that will include a live “telepoetics” session. Poets from Los Angeles and Cambridge, Massachusetts, will participate via videophones. Admission is $5, $2.50 for Chicago Filmmakers members. Call 384-5533 for details.

Old space, new management plan: Tony Fitzpatrick reopens his World Tattoo Gallery tonight with a show called The Real Deal. At a free reception at 7 at the gallery, 1255 S. Wabash, Fitzpatrick, Ed Paschke, and Wesley Kimler will be on hand to display new works. The Waco Brothers, a country-and-western outfit that features sometime Mekon and fellow artist Jon Langford, go on at 10. The exhibit remains up through December 3. Call 362-0608 for more.

Lots of Halloween stuff this weekend, no surprise. The Copernicus Cultural and Civic Center presents Rupert Julian’s original 1925 silent version of The Phantom of the Opera, featuring Lon Chaney’s best and most memorable performance and an unusual Technicolor dance sequence. Organist Jay Warren provides accompaniment. It’s $6, at 8 tonight at the Gateway Theatre, 5216 W. Lawrence. Call 777-7785 for details. After that, you can scamper down to Wicker Park for Halloweenie, a night of music, poetry, and performance art with Reader contributor Cheryl Trykv, Paula Killen, Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind’s David Kodeski, Red Red Meat’s Tim Rutili, and many others. It starts at 10 at HotHouse, 1565 N. Milwaukee. It’s $7; call 235-2459.

Saturday 29

The Association of Personal Computer Users describes its guest speaker Larry Wos as a stand-up comedian and a high-stakes gambler, but his official title is senior mathematician at Argonne National Laboratory. At 9:30 this morning at the University of Chicago’s Stuart Hall, 59th and University, he’ll discuss how computers can be programmed to reason deductively like Mr. Spock or Sherlock Holmes and solve problems involving everything from electric circuits to logic puzzles. Things start off with a general Q & A for computer users. It’s free. Call 708-491-0208.

Frances Black, the lead singer of Arcady, a collaborator of Kieran Goss, and a member of Ireland’s famous Black family, is in town tonight for two shows at the Old Town School of Folk Music, 909 W. Armitage. Liz Carroll, currently the all-Ireland fiddle champion, shares the bill. The shows are at 7 and 10; tickets are $11 to $15. Call 525-7793 for more.

Sunday 30

Northwestern’s music department just named William Warfield–the baritone best known for singing “Old Man River” in the 1951 film version of Show Boat–to its faculty. To celebrate his appointment he’s giving a recital, “Old American Songs and Spirituals,” tonight at 7:30 at Northwestern’s Pick-Staiger Concert Hall, 1977 South Campus Drive in Evanston. Tix are $15, $12 for students and seniors. Call 708-467-4000 for details.

Monday 31

Mystery Writers of America recently named Lawrence Block a “grand master” of the form. Tonight at 7:30 at 57th Street Books, 1301 E. 57th, he’ll read from and sign copies of A Long Line of Dead Men, the 12th installment in his Matt Scudder series. It’s free. Call 684-1300 for details.


Tuesday 1

At Cooks by the Books, a benefit for the Chicago Fund on Aging and Disability, chefs from 12 local catering companies will prepare recipes from cookbooks including Charlie Trotter’s eponymous tome, Mary Abbott Hess’s Healthy Gourmet Cookbook, and Julia della Croce’s The Vegetarian Table: Italy. The $50 ticket ($45 in advance) gets you the party, samplings of the dishes, music from five local big bands, a chance to meet the authors and buy the books at a discount, and some nice floral displays, too. It’s at 6 tonight at the Hotel Inter-Continental, 505 N. Michigan. Call 744-2120 for details.

The Howard Brown Health Center and Test Positive Aware Network present a free seminar on HIV wasting syndrome, characterized by appetite loss and subsequent weight loss, and the general importance of nutrition for those who are HIV positive tonight at 7 at the Marriott, 540 N. Michigan. Call 472-6397.

Wednesday 2

The University of Chicago Business School’s new Downtown Center, just north of the river at 450 N. Cityfront Plaza, is doing its part to contribute to the cultural vitality of its new neighborhood with a couple of lunchtime talks. At noon today Elizabeth Alexander, an assistant English prof, will talk about poetry, including her own, and black women’s issues; next Wednesday, November 9, also at noon, business professor Marvin Zonis talks about how political catastrophes affect the economy. You get a box lunch with the $15 admission. Call 702-8374 for details.

Thursday 3

The Up Down Tobacco Shop fights the good fight against “the shortsighted and ill-conceived efforts of politicians to stamp out smoking in Chicago” with their Fifth Annual Free Three-Day Cigar Party, which happens from 2 to 6 today, tomorrow, and Saturday at the shop, 1550 N. Wells. Master cigar makers will demonstrate hand rolling, and all comers over 21 are invited to participate in the festival’s ongoing “Shortest Butt Contest,” which should technically be called the longest ash contest. Call 337-8025 for more.

From a storefront near the intersection of Lincoln and Paulina the Gerber/Hart Gay and Lesbian Library and Archives documents the history of the gay and lesbian community and counters misinformation about it. From 6 to 9 tonight at the Preston Bradley Hall of the Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington, the library holds its annual benefit, featuring jazz singer Patricia Barber and comedy from the Boys in the Bathroom. Tix are $100 and $35. At $5 per ticket, they’re raffling off four impressive prize packages, including Angels in America tickets, a $250 gift certificate from People Like Us Books, and two nights at the Palmer House; you don’t have to be present to win. Call 883-3003 for more.

In the 1700s Goree Island, off Senegal in West Africa, served as a slave entrepot, a transfer point where kidnapped Africans were put into ships for the so-called New World. Tonight the DuSable Museum presents the short film Goree: Door of No Return, along with commentary from University of Illinois historian Stan Rose. Also on the bill: another short film, Black Sugar, in which an old African man tells his grandson about the slavery years. It starts at 7 and costs $5, $3 for members and students, at the museum, 740 E. 56th Place in Washington Park. Call 947-0600.