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Mar 2004 / it's all happening :: email this story to a friend

What Are Ides, Anyway?
By Amanda E. Doyle and Brian H. Marston

February events

Tuesday, March 2
Arch City Chronicle Launch Party
The Commonspace, 615 N. Grand in Grand Center, one block north of the Fox Theatre
Free, all ages, 5:30-7 p.m., 314-865-4573,,

The Arch City Chronicle, your source for the inside scoop on St. Louis politics, is reinventing itself as a 12-page, ad-supported newspaper. Come celebrate with the publisher (and new Business Journal columnist) Dave Drebes. (BHM)

Wednesday, March 3
Lecture: Ann Coulter
Graham Chapel at Washington University
Free, 11 a.m., 314-935-5285

She's either the savvy, hot, conservative chick you love or the shrill, bitchy blonde you love to hate, but either way, you should know who Ann Coulter is. The author of books including "Treason" and "Slander" is bound to offer plenty of bumper-sticker-worthy soundbites; for fun, take along your talking Ann Coulter doll and shake it in the air when you (dis)agree. (AED)

Wednesday, March 3
Green Wednesday: "Arsenal of Hypocrisy: The Space Program and the Military Industrial Complex"
Genesis House, 6018 Delmar Blvd.
Free, all ages, 7 p.m., 314-727-8554

And now for an event of the complete opposite stripe...join the Gateway Green Alliance and Universal African Peoples' Organization for a viewing of a video that features interviews and film of Noam Chomsky, Dwight Eisenhower, and Apollo 14 astronaut Edgar Mitchell, all documenting the danger of shifting the arms race into space. Stick around for the post-video discussion. (AED)

Thursday, March 4 (continuing through March 27)
"The Nervous Set"
New Line Theatre at the Art Loft Theatre, 1529 Washington Ave.
$12-$18, 8 p.m., 314-534-1111,

It ain't just every day that we get the chance to see a production of the hometown-written/hometown-proud jazz musical that was first produced in venerable (and now vanished) Gaslight Square. But now, kids, is the time for just that, as New Line resurrects the Jay/Fran Landesman-Tommy Wolf play; when it opened on Broadway in the 1950s, it caused a stir with its onstage jazz quartet and brittle wit, typical of the Beat generation it sought to portray. Can you dig it? (AED)

Saturday, March 6
Tour: Explore East St. Louis — Then and Now
FOCUS St. Louis, 1910 Pine, Suite 200
$75, all ages, 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., 314-622-1250, ext. 101

A comprehensive look at our sister city to the east, as Andrew Theising (author of "Made in the USA — East St. Louis") and Debra Moore, director of the Institute for Urban Research at SIUE, lead a bus tour and discussion of the various factors affecting the historical development and current conditions there. Breakfast, the tour, a signed copy of the book and time to chat with ESL city officials is included. (AED)

Tuesday, March 9
Concert: Symphony Tuesdays
Piper Palm House in Tower Grove Park, Magnolia and Tower Grove
Free, all ages, 7 p.m., 314-286-4432,

The SLSO will soon be advancing its bid to be included in the goodies from the Zoo-Museum taxing district, in part based on their tradition of service to the giving free concerts for folks like you and me. Tonight, the program is "Music for Strings," and features everyone's favorite spunky girrrl violinist Amy Oshiro. This is a popular series, so you'd be well advised to show up early for a seat. (AED)

Friday, March 12
Art Opening: "The Esatezza Series," by Cbabi Bayoc
The Commonspace, 615 N. Grand in Grand Center, one block north of the Fox Theatre
Free, all ages, 7-10 p.m., 314-531-1707,, postcard

This show features the new line of 13 giclee prints by Cbabi Bayoc. Bayoc is well-known as the artist whose art graced the cover of the recent Prince album "The Rainbow Chidren." He also designed and painted this year's Metro Art Bus in conjunction with Arts in Transit and Celebrate 2004. DJ Trackstar will be behind the turntables to get your groove on at the opening reception. (AED)

Saturday, March 13
Lecture/signing: "Road to Ruin," by Dom Nozzi
The Commonspace, 615 N. Grand in Grand Center, one block north of the Fox Theatre
Free, all ages, 1 p.m.,

With our partners in crime, Left Bank Books, we're thrilled to present Dom Nozzi, a city planner from Gainesville, FL, who will discuss and sign his new book "Road to Ruin: An Introduction to Sprawl and How to Cure It." Mr. Nozzi speaks out against urban design that values cars over people. His book is useful to both practicing planners and citizens concerned about the future of their communities. We'll have copies for sale, conveniently; stop by early to eat lunch at People's Coffee. (BHM)

Saturday, March 13
Beyond Binary
Art Coop, 1620 Lucas
$7-$15, all ages, 7 p.m.-3 a.m., 314-359-2505,

Those wacky folks at the STL Indy Media Center have cooked up another inventive "fun/raiser," this one focused on breaking down gender perception, power and privilege. Musicians including Anna Roland and DJ Alexis and writers like Colleen McKee and Zaire "Mama Blue" Imani will perform, and crazy art, lotsa dancin', a geodesic dome and interactive art stuff will round out the evening. Hey, if nothing else, it's your perfect opportunity to wear those crazy "where will I ever wear this?" clothes you've got stuffed in your closet. (AED)

Sunday, March 14
"Under Milk Wood"
Etc. Senior Theatre Company of UMSL, J.C. Penney Auditorium, 8001 Natural Bridge Rd.
Free, all ages, 3 p.m., 314-352-7980,

How can you not like this? UMSL has a troupe of actors and actresses ranging from 50-80 years old, and a abbreviated version of this classic by Dylan Thomas (you remember him, right? He wrote "A Child's Christmas in Wales," among other things) is their seventh production since they started up last summer. When it was first produced, "Under Milk Wood" was hailed as "a dazzling combination of poetic fireworks and music-hall humor" by the New York Times. The New York Times, people!! So, you should go. (AED)

Friday, March 19
Reading: Itinerant Tales
Soulard Coffee Garden, 910 Geyer
Free, all ages, 7 p.m., 314-753-2669

Remember Little House on the Prairie-type stories of itinerant preachers, who would rove far and wide to share the gospel, save souls and generally connect the outposts of civilization? Okay, so this is like that, only the itinerants are MFA candidates at UMSL, and their shared gospel might include things like an ode to "Sex and the City" or musings on trailer-park life. Talented writers like Colleen McKee (that's her second mention this month; a prize to the first person to e-mail me at with the date of each Colleen McKee-related calendar entry this month), Jason Rizos and Emily Lowery share their writings in this monthly series. Support your local writers! (AED)

Friday, March 19
Dances of Universal Peace
Unity Christ Church, 33 N. Skinker (at Forsyth)
All ages, 7:30 p.m., 314-865-0671,

If you're into one or more of the following — dance, movement, prayer, music, peace — check out this group which meets monthly to perform simple movements and songs/chants from traditions including Christian, Jewish, Sufi, Buddhist, Native American and others. Anything that brings more peace is okay in my book. (AED)

Saturday, March 20
Lecture: "Moving in from the Outskirts: The Citizens Liberty League of St. Louis, 1910," Dr. Debra Green
Missouri History Museum in Forest Park
Free (breakfast is $8.50), breakfast 9 a.m./lecture 10 a.m., 314-361-9017,

The Citizens League of St. Louis existed at the turn of the 20th century, and was formed to help initiate African-American leadership in the political and civic life of the city. Dr. Green will explain its role and legacy, as part of the African-American history series at the museum. (AED)

Saturday, March 20
Breakin' at The Commonspace
The Commonspace, 615 N. Grand in Grand Center, one block north of the Fox Theatre
Free, all ages, 2-4 p.m.,

It's the third Saturday of the month, and you know what that means: it's time to roll out the linoleum, set up the turntables and bust it at The Commonspace. Check out these videos from last month's session. (BHM)

Saturday, March 20
Reading: "Duck for President," by Doreen Cronin
Schlafly branch of St. Louis Public Library, 225 N. Euclid
Free, all ages, 7 p.m., 314-367-4120

The masterwork of children's literature in the last few years, for my money, was Cronin's previous book "Click, Clack, Moo," followed up by the equally brilliant "Diary of a Worm," that anyone, of any age, who's ever felt a little, shall we say, downtrodden can relate to. Now, she's gracing our fair city in an election year to share her new book, the story of a charismatic duck who started life in a humble pond and has worked his way into contention for the highest office in the land. Probably as qualified as some of the folks on the ballot. Bring the little constituents in your household. (AED)

Sunday, March 21
Kangaku Book Club
The Commonspace, 615 N. Grand in Grand Center, one block north of the Fox Theatre
Free, all ages, 3-5 p.m., 314-795-2663,,

March's book is "Normal: Transsexual CEOs, Crossdressing Cops, and Hermaphrodites with Attitude," by Amy Bloom. The Kangaku Book Club encourages learning to promote social justice. Its goal is to create a community of learning in the search for justice and truth. The group seeks to learn about local, national and international issues through books and through each other. Each month, they will choose a book related to various themes such as globalization, poverty, politics, education equity, the death penalty, women's issues, indigenous rights and struggle, etc. We, of course, encourage you to get your copy at the library or Left Bank Books.

Sunday, March 21
Free Candy, with Amanda & Julia
The Commonspace, 615 N. Grand in Grand Center, one block north of the Fox Theatre
Free, 7 p.m.,

Last month's debut was a smash — everyone's talking about the living-room/non-broadcast/breakin'-down-the-fourth-wall talk show sensation conveniently shorthanded as "Free Candy!" (And yes, you cynical doubters...there was free candy. Sugar Daddies, to be exact, a none-too-subtle homage to our rockin' house band.) The pilot's been picked up and the fun rolls on this month with more interesting and notable guests on our couch, more music from the Sugar Daddies (we've had to talk their big heads down ever since the fans went wild for 'em), more quirky conversation and more chances for you, the studio audience, to interact with St. Louis' movers and shakers. Fun is guaranteed, and if you miss it, there's no "tape it at 3"; you'll just miss out. And no one wants that to happen. (AED)

Monday, March 22
Reading: "Unveiled: The Hidden Life of Nuns," by Cheryl Reed
Left Bank Books, 399 N. Euclid
Free, all ages, 7 p.m., 314-367-6731

Oh, c'mon — you know you want to know. What's going on under that habit? What do nuns really think about sex, life, feminism, motherhood and the modern world? Reed, an award-winning journalist, set out to find the answers by interviewing more than 300 nuns from a wide variety of faith traditions and orders. She even lived with some of them for a time, and her new book chronicles what she found behind the doors of an often closed world. (AED)

Wednesday, March 24
Conversation Café: Jeanette Mott Oxford
The Commonspace, 615 N. Grand in Grand Center, one block north of the Fox Theatre
Free (except the cost of lunch; reservations required), all ages, noon,

So much of modern life is hearsay and sound bite, but your friends at The Commonspace want you to be in direct contact with St. Louis' movers and shakers. Today's Conversation Café is the latest in a series of occasional, informal lunch conversations that will give you a chance to ask those burning questions and express your own thoughts. Jeanette Mott Oxford is the Grassroots Coordinator for the Missouri Partnership on Smoking or Health. She has been an advocate, educator, writer, and organizer for social and economic justice for more than 20 years. From 1991 to 2000, Mott Oxford was the director of a statewide anti-poverty organization, led by persons of low income. She is a frequent facilitator for the Dismantling Racism Institute of the National Conference for Community and Justice and has won numerous awards for her work including "The Burning Bush Award" from Christians for Justice Action, and the "Shalom Award" from Eden Theological Seminary. Mott Oxford holds a Master of Divinity degree from Eden Theological Seminary. Please come a few minutes early to order lunch from People's Coffee. (AED)

Thursday, March 25
Independent Musicians Workshop
The Commonspace, 615 N. Grand in Grand Center, one block north of the Fox Theatre
Free, all ages, 7:30-10 p.m., please contact to reserve space

Join other local solo or small-group musicians to share ideas, skills, or services. Perhaps you need another keen ear to critique your works in progress, or suggestions on how to beef up your beats? Maybe you don't have time for a band, but are looking for collaborators who share your artistic vision? Want to trade riffs for beats, or see how someone else might add another melody to your piece? Come on down, meet your otherwise invisible peers, and network to bring everyone's art to the next level. Open to musicians of all kinds, from singer/songwriter types to ambient/noise projects.

Friday, March 26
Hipster Hop!
The Commonspace, 615 N. Grand in Grand Center, one block north of the Fox Theatre
Free, all ages, 8-11 p.m.,,

Hey kids, put on your dancing shoes! This dance party and hipster gathering will feature an end-all, be-all set list including tunes from Fischerspooner, The Postal Service, The Rapture and many more. Don't know who they are? Come anyway! There will be plenty of funky visuals to get you in the mood to cut loose. (BHM)

Saturday, March 27
One-Woman Show: "The Accidental Activist," starring Kathryn Blume
Hydeware Theatre at the Soulard Theatre, 1921 S. 9th St.
$8-$10, 8 p.m., 314-368-7306,

Okay, you knew I couldn't just let Ann Coulter (see March 3) sneak in this month without a good liberal counterpart... "The Accidental Activist" is Blume's own story of her project — a bit ambitious, aiming only to save the world — to encourage thousands of groups around the globe to participate in "The Lysistrata Project," a mass reading of the classic, Greek anti-war comedy. Ultimately, 1,049 such readings took place, and an activist was accidentally born. Blume will share her wit, optimism and "caffeine-induced madness" with a St. Louis audience for one night only. (AED)

Saturday, March 27
Satire Night Live
The Commonspace, 615 N. Grand in Grand Center, one block north of the Fox Theatre
$5/free for Friends of The Commonspace, 9-10 p.m., 314-283-2498

Sure, you could sit at home and watch another episode of "Saturday Night Live." Or, you could come to The Commonspace and experience the electricity of live theater at "Satire Night Live," a hilarious half hour of theme-based skit comedy presented by OXCA (Open Xpression thru Community Arts). Last month's show had people falling off the couches with laughter. For the second half of the evening, the mic will be opened up to anyone with a talent to share. Baby, you're a star! (BHM)

Sunday, March 28
5th Annual Big BIG Tour and Home Fair
Starts at Central Reform Congregation, 5020 Waterman Blvd, corner of Kingshighway and Waterman
Free, all ages, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., flyer (Adobe Acrobat), 314-368-6373,

This city-wide open house and celebration of urban living features a wide range of properties for sale, including fixer-uppers, completely renovated homes, lofts, single families, multi-families, commercial/living spaces and new construction. Prices range from $30,000 to $700,000. Come see all that the city has to offer!

The self-guided tour gives prospective homebuyers an enjoyable and non-pressured way to explore neighborhoods throughout the city. Homes are mapped out in the program guide.

The Home Fair at the starting point features more than 30 neighborhood organizations, mortgage companies and real-estate-related businesses with booths chock full of information about city living and home buying.

We're expecting about 1,000 people to participate in the tour. Listing an open house for sale in the program guide is free. If you'd like to list a home, advertise in the program, reserve a booth space or sponsor the event, fill out an application (Adobe Acrobat) and mail or fax it in. Proceeds benefit The Commonspace and Beyond Housing / Neighborhood Housing Services.

Monday, March 29
Lecture: "Big Muddy Blues: Will Politics Prevent Reconciliation on Lewis and Clark's River?" with Bill Lambrecht
229 J.C. Penney Conference Center at UMSL, 8001 Natural Bridge Rd.
Free, 12:15 p.m., 314-516-5699

Part of the Monday Noon Cultural Series, today's talk by the veteran Washington bureau report for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch will address the opportunities that exist along the Missouri River for reconciliation, with the river itself and among Native American and upstream communities that share the river. Lambrecht is the author of several books on the politics of water, something that's no longer just the stuff of futuristic Kevin Costner movies. (AED)

Tuesday, March 30
Reading/Signing: "Mississippi Solo: A River Quest," by Eddy Harris
Julia Davis branch of St. Louis Public Library, 4415 Natural Bridge
Free, all ages, 7 p.m., 314-539-0348

The official selection of this year's statewide ReadMOre program is this book by St. Louis native Eddy Harris (also the author of "Still Life in Harlem" and "South of Haunted Dreams"), who at age 30 decided to canoe alone along the length of the Mississippi River. His encounters with the land and its people make for a fascinating narrative, which should make it an excellent choice to appeal to Missourians. Books will be available for purchase at the event. (AED)

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