In “Screw Age,” poet Lorri Jackson writes, “Dear mom, this weekend / I ended / up in another state / at this party with these black / biker dudes, a club / called the wheels / of soul. for a half / gram I pissed / in this old guy’s mouth.” Jackson, who does a one-night-only show tonight at the Hothouse, 1569 N. Milwaukee, writes mostly about drugs and sex. For the rock ‘n’ roll portion of the evening, stick around: rocker/performer/screecher Lydia Lunch–who has collaborated with punkers like Teenage Jesus and the Jerks, Sonic Youth, and Henry Rollins–will share the bill. All hell will break loose at 8 PM. It’s $10; 235-4520.
At tonight’s simulated four-car drunk driving accident, the North Lake County Emergency Medical Services System, Victory Memorial Hospital, and the Newport Volunteer Fire Department hope to scare anybody who’s ever thought about drinking and driving. The organizers have hired actors to reenact a violent accident on a rural road in Wadsworth, Illinois. They’ve scripted in multiple casualties and near-death injuries. Real-life cops, paramedics, and other personnel will respond. All orders will be given through loudspeakers so that the audience, which will be standing in darkness just off the “accident scene,” can hear. They’ll see everything from the arrival of the cops and the removal of trapped victims to emergency on-the-scene medical care and the transportation of victims to nearby hospitals. It’s free; to see it, meet at 8 PM at the East Good Luck parking lot at Tempel Farms, 17000 Wadsworth Road in Wadsworth. Buses will take you from there to the simulation. Call 708-360-4179.
Eight houses and four gardens make up today’s 11th annual Austin Historic Homes Tour. One of the stops on the westside trek is the Warner House, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright rival Frederick R. Schock and built in 1869. Its ornate woodwork was done in black walnut as opposed to the golden oak that was more typical of the era, and the house is topped with a cupola from which–according to local legend–the original owner watched the Chicago Fire. The homes are open from 10 to 4 today. Tickets are $10 from the Austin Schock Neighborhood Association, which will set up shop at the cul-de-sac at Midway Park and Waller Street. For details, call 921-6860.
In 1975, Catherine Roma founded the Anna Crusis Women’s Choir, laying the groundwork for the Womens Choral Movement, now a national network of more than 40 women’s choruses. The group she brings here tonight, the Cincinnati Women’s Choir, MUSE, is one of the network’s stars, with 60 members of varying racial, sexual, political, and musical backgrounds. MUSE–whose previous bookings include an antiapartheid rally attended by South African archbishop Desmond Tutu–will join the Windy City Gay Chorus in concert tonight. The program, which starts at 8:07, features music by Bach, Mozart, Holly Near, and Berniece Johnson Reagon, among others. Tickets for the show at Orchestra Hall, 220 S. Michigan, are $12.50-$16. Call 404-9242.
Even the American Library Association now recognizes gay and lesbian literature as a distinct genre, but in Mexico, writing positively about gay life is still pioneering work. Rosamaria Roffiel, author of the first Mexican lesbian novel published by a mainstream house, will read from the recently published Amora at the Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum, 1852 W. 19th St. The program, sponsored by Lesbianas Latinas en Nuestro Ambiente, also features brief readings by five local Latin lesbian writers. It begins at 4:45 PM, and a reception follows. Admission is free. Some of the readings will be in Spanish, others in English; 227-3881.
The debut LP by Bela Fleck and the Flecktones, an instrumental group spotlighting the banjo, has hit the jazz, country, and new-age charts, and their video is scaling the VH-1 charts too–a combination of feats never before equaled. The New Orleans-based band, which includes Chicagoan Howard Levy on harmonica, will give a free concert at 5 PM at Navy Pier, 600 E. Grand. Also on the bill are local guitar whiz Fareed Haque and his band; 761-7784.
From Stock Yards to Stock Markets, today’s seminar on how to turn a buck through politically correct-investments, is being sponsored by the Social Investment Forum, the South Shore Bank, and Midwest Bridges: A Social Investment Network. SIF and Midwest Bridges are experts at recommending stocks that don’t support nuclear weapons or apartheid or harm the environment; the bank is well known for financing loans in previously redlined neighborhoods such as South Shore. The seminar, which runs from 8:30 to 4 at the South Shore Cultural Center, 7059 S. South Shore Drive, includes presentations on stocks and loans and a bus tour of the South Shore neighborhood’s revitalization. Admission is $40, which includes breakfast and lunch. The seminar will be followed at 5 by a wine-and-cheese reception and an evening program on environmental investments at a Loop location. Tickets for that are $10, $15 if you didn’t attend the daytime program. Call 753-5635.
Flamenco may look like a highly stylized and precise dance form, but much of it is based on improvisation. In Spain, where Gypsies originated the dance, groups gather around the dancers to applaud and cheer and keep their spirits up. Flamenco classes with Karen Stelling, formerly with the Ensemble Espanol, begin at 6:15 tonight and run through August 13 at the Tracy Vonder Haar School of Dance and Performing Arts, 1 E. Oak. Tuition is $76.50 for nine weeks or $9 for one class. Call 266-6009.
Thousands of dollars will be at stake at this afternoon’s Park District Board of Commissioners meeting. The planning committee is scheduled to make its recommendations for consultant contracts regarding the Lincoln Park master plan–that’s dollars for everything from trees to traffic organizing to recreation programming. The meeting starts at 3:30 in the administration building boardroom at 425 E. McFetridge. It’s free. Call 294-4610.
Four years ago George Baldwin, a former pastor and professor at the Saint Paul School of Theology in Kansas City, Missouri, gave up his ordination and his post, gave away everything he owned, and went to work with the poor in Nicaragua. While there he met Montserrat Fernandez, a teacher from Spain doing volunteer work through Christian agencies. We Are Two; We Want Peace, their global mission sponsored by the United Methodist Board of Church and Society, brings them to Chicago for one week to talk about their work. Admission to the talks is free. Tonight’s presentation begins at 7:30 at the Euclid Avenue United Methodist Church, 405 S. Euclid in Oak Park. More are scheduled for noon tomorrow at the Second Unitarian Church, 656 W. Barry; 7 PM tomorrow at the United Church of Rogers Park, 1545 W. Morse; 4:30 PM Thursday at the Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, 2121 Sheridan Road in Evanston; 7:30 PM Thursday at the First United Methodist Church, 1630 Hinman Ave. in Evanston; and 5:30 PM next Friday, June 22, at the Chicago Peace and Music Fest, Montrose Harbor, 4600 N. Lake Shore Drive. Details at 276-5626.
You can compare South African and zydeco styles of accordion at tonight’s double bill at the Vic: Soweto’s Mahlathini and the Mahotella Queens and the Lawtell Playboys, a dance-music group from Mamou, Louisiana. Show time is 7:30 at 3145 N. Sheffield. Tickets are $16, $10 for kids and seniors, and $13 for members of the Old Town School of Folk Music, which is sponsoring the show. Call 525-7793.
Wally Kennedy, a member of England’s Labor Party newly elected to the London city council, is looking to tap into Chicago’s antitax fever when he comes to town to talk about the mass movement against the English Poll tax. According to press reports, more than seven million Brits are refusing to pay up. Kennedy will discuss the situation at 7 tonight at the Resurrection Church, 1050 W. School. It’s free. Call 235-5257.