In an essay we want the process of thinking, not the result. The writer’s job is not to be right, but to be interesting even while being wrong.
SWIMMING TO CAMBODIA *** (A must-see) Written by Spalding Gray Directed by Jonathan Demme With Spalding Gray. In Plato’s republic Spalding Gray would be among the first asked to pack his bags. The old Greek could not abide poets, whose art he saw as an imitation of a reality that was already a faint shadow […]
Acting Playwright When we first encountered Neil Gray Giuntoli last October, he was portraying a murderous scumbag named T.J. Rael in a storefront theater on Clybourn Avenue a few doors up from the old headquarters of the Hell’s Henchmen. He played the part to a fare-thee-well. He was amazing. “A performance of gripping intensity,” said […]
To you they might look like weeds and fungi. To forager Wes Wagar, they’re dinner.
To the editors: I was intrigued by Cecil Adams’s answer to the person inquiring about stegosaurus who was thought to have a brain up its butt [The Straight Dope, February 20]. Actually, the species lives today. Its habitat is vast. It lives without shame among us, and can usually be recognized by its excessive vocalism, […]
Color-blind casting?. Oh, the point’s obvious enough. You’re a director and you want to use this terrific black actor, and you don’t want to do Othello. Presto! He’s Richard III. Color-blind casting. But what about the term itself. Isn’t there a bit of wishful thinking there? Could we watch a black Richard III, for instance, […]
To the editors: In David Whiteis’s article on Transcendental Meditation [March 6], Marc Kincaid describes the positive effects if 1 percent of the population practices TM, and states that he expects the “same effect by just the square root of 1 percent.” Evidently, Marc Kincaid thinks the square root of 1 percent is smaller than […]
RECONSTRUCTING (THE TEMPLE) FROM MEMORY at the Organic Theater CANDYLAND: THE SAGA OF HELEN BRACH AND HER PET POODLE SUGAR at the Organic Theater Reconstructing (the Temple) From Memory is an enormously generous performance piece, yet paradoxically, its generosity doesn’t come cheap. The piece is generous because of the wealth of extraordinary moments it offers; […]
To the editors: I’ve read the Jean Peterman story in the January 23rd Reader [“A Woman’s Choice”]. I am not only convinced this battler is essentially right but that the American people are overdue terminating this distressing war over the issue of abortion. Basketball isn’t my game but the term “full court press” suits something […]
“It reminds me of being in Canada and going swimming in the middle of the night,” the young man was saying. He was good looking, tousle haired, and had a motorcycle helmet in his hand. His friend–taller, almost spindly–nodded amusement. “That’s true, man, that’s really true.” They were standing in the main room of Feature […]
To the editors: Thank you for your very comprehensive report on our Q-TV prompting system (The Straight Dope — March 6). Even after so many years in service, we are still impressed by the attention it attracts when its operation is viewed by nonprofessionals and professionals alike. To update your story, the system is now […]
UNFINISHED BUSINESS: THE AIDS SHOW at Bailiwick Repertory It’s impossible to fault the good intentions that fuel Unfinished Business: The AIDS Show. The cast and production team are working for free; the entire budget has been underwritten by donations from various foundations and individuals; and all box-office proceeds are going to the AIDS Foundation of […]
To the editors: Re: “Mr. Clean, Mr. Machine” [April 3] — ten pages of it was a waste of time, valuable space, and a lot of baloney. And as a matter of fact all your lead stories of ten pages or more are boring — and few are interesting — why not reduce the limit […]
Are or are not cats and dogs really color-blind? How do they know? –Jim Logan, Chicago You ever see a cat who could pick out a tie? Believe me, cats’ll wear things you wouldn’t put on a dog. But enough with the anecdotal evidence. Scientists usually test animal color sensitivity by trying to link color […]
To the editors: The article on the April 7 Test Ban Referendum by Ben Joravsky in the March 27th issue was most welcome since the Chicago media has for the most part chosen to ignore the issue. I was, however, disturbed by the tone of the interview with Mike Kelly, associate director of the Illinois […]