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February 2, 2006

Vol 4 • No 3

Most populist

A Democratic primary between two well-financed gubernatorial candidates comes first, but events last week suggested an intriguing outline for a general election contest.

The week that was Jan. 25-31

IT WAS A GOOD WEEK FOR … SENS. MARK PRYOR and BLANCHE LINCOLN. They opposed the confirmation of Samuel Alito to the U.S. Supreme Court. A filibuster would have been better. He will move the court to the reactionary right, a Federalist Society dream co

Orval Feb. 2

Words Feb. 2

An advertisement for “Say What You Mean! A Troubleshooter’s Guide to English Style and Usage” by R.L. Trask included this example from the book: “EXCEPTION THAT PROVES THE RULE, THE —

Weasel world

I know this is just another geezer hankering to break out and romanticize yesteryear, but I’ve just been thinking how life used to be a lot more interesting than it is now. Best I can tell, it’s got progressively less interesting by decade since 1952, whe

Senators do their duty

By the time Arkansas’s two senators, Blanche Lincoln and Mark Pryor, announced their opposition to Samuel Alito last week, it had become apparent that Alito would be confirmed for a seat on the Supreme Court. They were losers, in a sense.

Drug companies cash in

Like most old retired people, I have to buy a lot of medicines, and the costs have gotten so high that I can’t believe them. I’m supposed to use a nose spray every day, and the bottle lasts only a month and costs $79. One pill really seems to make me

Testing flunks

Delicious irony is a trite expression but it describes perfectly the circumstance when privately financed university research unwittingly turns the tables on its sponsors.

The young competents

At a time when government is experiencing one failure after another — from FEMA’s response to Hurricane Katrina to the recent crisis surrounding the Medicare prescription drug benefit — mere competence is a welcome virtue.

Editorial cartoon Feb. 2

The Observer Feb. 2

The Observer, Caucasian as hell, had a hankering to delve into the somewhat exotic (for us): a taste of soul food. We’ve had soul-fried chicken, greens, beans, ham hocks and the like … but never chitterlings. Being more curious than hungry for them, we’d

Smart Talk Feb. 2

This week's topics: Wal_Mart 'stars' in a musical and finds itself otherwise up in lights; UAMS gets set for a big bang.

School backer

I applaud Max Brantley’s recent column entitled “Schools — by the numbers.” I couldn’t agree with him more.


Teachers in the Little Rock School District are buzzing about Superintendent Roy Brooks’ plan to expand so-called merit pay.

This Modern World Feb. 2

Leadership training grounds

Thanks to both good news and bad, Philander Smith College has gotten no shortage of ink over the past few years: a high-profile but polarizing president, an aggressive building program, financial difficulties and controversial firings, then a change of le

Next four seek Showcase finals spot

The Monks, Josh the Devil and the Sinners, the Kings of New England and Sao Paulo will line up Thursday, Feb. 2, at Sticky Fingerz in the second Arkansas Times Musicians Showcase semifinal to try and join Riverbilly in the March 3 final.

Top 10 bestsellers, Feb. 2

NOMA here, Benini there

Do not fear that the African art exhibit at the Arkansas Arts Center will be too strange (or cliched) to enjoy. Thanks to Picasso and Leger and their Cubist friends and Henry Moore, our eye traces the angles and spheres and sees indigenous modernity.

‘McPhee’ a dreamboat

I really found myself enjoying “Nanny McPhee.” A day-glow dreamboat of a movie on its face, “McPhee” struggles with dark themes at its heart. With two of the best in the business on board — Colin Firth and Emma Thompson (though her over-the-top dental app

What’s Happening in February

Events at area bookstores.

What’s cooking-short reviews, Feb. 2

What’s cooking: American Pie Pizza, Boscos. New: SO. Update: Pizza D’Action.

Get your ‘skank’ on

The Tour de Skank finds outlets for cupless bras, crotchless panties and Naughty Nurse outfits.

SO simple, SO good

It took what seemed an inordinate time for new operators to make over the former Living Room on Kavanaugh for SO Restaurant-Bar, which opened in mid-January. Turns out they were simply doing it right. We haven’t been this upbeat about a new restaurant in

TV highlights, Feb. 2-8

SECRETS OF LOST EMPIRES: ROMAN BATH 5 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 4 AETN (Comcast Ch. 3, Broadcast Ch. 2) GRIZZLY MAN (2005) 7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 4 The Discovery Channel (Comcast Ch. 53) MADE IN AMERICA 6 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 7 The Travel Cha

Opera at Wildwood

Opera fans will want to check out Wildwood Park’s After-Dinner Opera Series program of “The Music Theatre of Gian-Carlo Menotti” on Friday, Feb. 3, beginning at 8 p.m. at the park, located on Denny Road in West Little Rock. Also: "Towns Facing Railroa

Brave Combo: Something for everyone

It might sound cliched, but there’s something for everybody — from those who mourn the demise of “The Lawrence Welk Show” and the polka songs to a younger generation of rockers, punks and Latin rhythm lovers — in the music of Brave Combo, which will perfo

Here’s Lucie, Hamlisch and Klein

Composer extraordinaire Marvin Hamlisch will lead the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra and special guests Lucie Arnaz and Robert Klein will appear in the Acxiom Superpops show “They’re Playing Our Song” on Friday, Feb. 3, at Robinson Center Music Hall.

Wives seek husbands' seats

Supporters of legislative term limits argue that the limits result in more women legislators and more black legislators. Term limits haven’t really worked that way in Arkansas, where it’s been mostly white males succeeding white males, but the next regula

Doubling up pays at UCA’s Reynolds

It’s getting where Guy Couch doesn’t have enough tickets for these trendy shows the UCA Public Appearances series brings in to the 1,200-seat Reynolds Performance Hall in Conway.

Misled and crying

ASO Family Series: ‘Carnival of the Animals’ Robinson Center Jan. 29

Echoes of ‘Stone Songs’

What Pat Musick did — haul oak timbers and steel bars and hefty Arkansas rocks to 23 spots on the Trail of Tears — was remarkable in both idea and execution. Now a book about what could be described as performance art adds another layer to what initially


If the story Virgil Miller tells wasn’t so tragic, it might be funny. An executive at Metropolitan National Bank with an office up where the birds fly, Miller is the kind of man so handsome and perpetually groomed that you immediately start tugging at

What we're reading, Feb. 2

Top 10 bestsellers from local bookstores.

Hats off to ‘Crowns’

‘Crowns’ Arkansas Repertory Theatre Jan. 29 ‘Our Town’ Community Theatre of Little Rock Jan. 28

This Modern World Feb. 9