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March 11, 2010

Vol 8 • No 9

Who loves the sun?

After a long, icy winter, cabin-feverish Arkansans can look forward to a spring bloom of live bands. Here, we note shows on Little Rock's club scene worth plugging into your planner and preview the season's festival lineups.

Who loves the sun?

After a long, icy winter, cabin-feverish Arkansans can look forward to a spring bloom of live bands. Here, we note shows on Little Rock's club scene worth plugging into your planner and preview the season's festival lineups.

Film fixin's

Cajun music documentaries by Les Blank and four films on Southern food culture lead the bill at the 2010 Ozark Foothills Filmfest, set for March 24-28 in Batesville. The Little Rock Film Festival follows in June, and will announce its lineup in May.

Film fixin's

Cajun music documentaries by Les Blank and four films on Southern food culture lead the bill at the 2010 Ozark Foothills Filmfest, set for March 24-28 in Batesville. The Little Rock Film Festival follows in June, and will announce its lineup in May.

Spring slate

The fall season for Arkansas theater was dominated by crowd pleasers: lots of big cast musicals with recognizable titles. The spring and summer of 2010 isn't as predictable, which makes for a more interesting time all the way around for theater fiends.

Spring slate

The fall season for Arkansas theater was dominated by crowd pleasers: lots of big cast musicals with recognizable titles. The spring and summer of 2010 isn't as predictable, which makes for a more interesting time all the way around for theater fiends.

Who loves the sun?

After a long, icy winter, cabin-feverish Arkansans can look forward to a spring bloom of live bands. Here, we note shows on Little Rock's club scene worth plugging into your planner and preview the season's festival lineups.

Spring Arts Calendar, 2010

Highlights of the best Events, Music, Comedy, Sports and Theater that Arkansas has to offer this Spring.

Heady metal

That Rwake enjoys international acclaim yet remains largely unknown in Arkansas is a consequence of its scene. The band works within the sprawling world of underground metal, an arcane and stratified umbrella genre of blistering guitars, crashing drums, roaring vocals and taboo-flaunting lyrics.

The morning grump

Slow day so far. So I'll grumble about an item in the D-G (sub.

Beebe responds on Conway action

Gov. Mike Beebe spoke to reporters at length today about the surprise Justice Department action yesterday to enjoin further admissions of young people to the Conway Human Development Center, which cares for more than 500 people with severe retardation.

Operation Evil Eye

U.S. Attorney Jane Duke today announced the indictment of 31 people in a two-year investigation of meth and pot dealing in Prairie and Lonoke counties.

Take it away

The midweek line is open. Oh, but by the way, Sen. Blanche Lincoln has joined a handful of Democratic senators standing in the way of student college lending reform. The bill they're blocking would expand student aid, but also end millions in government subsidies to private lenders

Lay on, Governor

Theres a time to talk sweetly to members of the opposing party, and a time, when sweetness has failed, to slap them smartly across the face. President Obama has not yet learned this important lesson, to the detriment of his presidency and the nation. Gov. Mike Beebe, a more experienced lawmaker, has it down.

Blame Arkansas

If the last chance for health-insurance reform in this generation perishes, our little state and its quailing delegation in Washington will take a large measure of the blame — or the credit, if you think the 481,000 uninsured Arkansawyers and the insurance industry deserve mutually to be left alone.

The pipeline cometh

Construction began this week on a 185-mile natural gas pipeline that will originate in Conway County, travel through White County and terminate in Mississippi.

In Brief, March 12-13

DJs Risky Biz, IKE and g-force conduct the dancing masses at Star Bar for the monthly “Spectrum” dance party, 10 p.m., $5. Down the street, DJ (poet, and soon to be Delawarean sheep farmer) Michael Inscoe spins at White Water Tavern, 10 p.m.

Orval

Smart Talk, March 11

One of our favorite volunteer groups passed a significant milestone last weekend. Tree Streets, an urban forestry project, planted its 1,000th tree in the central part of Little Rock. More than 150 blocks have trees thanks to the privately funded group.

Between talent and desire

New York heiress Florence Foster Jenkins (1868-1944) believed she could sing. She compared herself to the opera greats of her time and dismissed the laughter of crowds who gathered to hear her as “professional jealousy.”

They're off

Contested Republican primaries for every federal office are barometers of the Tea Party spirit and that niche’s perception of a weakness in anti-Obama Arkansas on the part of anyone labeled Democratic. Even Rep. Mike Ross drew two would-be Republican challengers.

George Strait -Reba McEntire, Verizon Arena, March 6

George Strait couldn't pack all his hits all into his concert Saturday night at Verizon Arena, but in a 30-song set that ran past 11:30, he gave it his best shot.

What's Cookin', March 11

Chocolatier Carmen Portillo has closed her Cocoa Belle retail shop in the River Market’s Ottenheimer Hall to focus on a direct-order business. Her website is cbchocolat.com.

The Insider, March 11.

The Observer has special powers, such as the ability to be in two places at once. So count us among the short-pantsed who plod-ded around Little Rock on a refreshingly brisk Sunday morning.

Following ‘Paper Trails’

Bailin’s earliest works in the show are 8-by-14 foot drawings (on unwaxed milk carton paper) inspired by Biblical tales. It is both funny and terrible, a trademark of Bailin’s agile and high-energy mind.

The Week That Was, March 3-9

IT WAS A GOOD WEEK FOR … LITTLE ROCK. The Little Rock Marathon drew thousands of runners and thousands more spectators who luxuriated in cool, sunny weather and the good vibes of a well-run event.

Pastoral

First sign of spring weather, I went out to bust up my back 40. That’s where for several years now I’ve planted my cotton, soybeans, and rice, harvesting several bales of each, as my own small tribute to the traditional Big Three of Arkansas agriculture.

Words, March 11

The American Prospect is a very serious political journal, so I was surprised to find in it a column containing some playful new terminology.

The Observer, March 11

The Observer found last Sunday that the men’s and women’s finals of the Division II Gulf South Conference were being televised from Southaven, Miss., and that Arkansas Tech was playing in both games. Thrillers they were, too.

Friends of Mike

Arkansas members of Congress, especially Rep. Mike Ross, continue to benefit from fund-raisers where corporate lobbyists are either the hosts or main guests, illustrating one of the many sides of the lawmaker-lobbyist relationship that the public knows little about.

Eye on Arkansas, March 11

Alice in video game land

Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland,” the second Disney rendition of the old Lewis Carroll classic, paints a dazzling Wonderland 13 years after Alice first discovers it, though with the bulk of its wonders bled to hues of dun and ash.

This Modern World

The To-Do List, March 11-15

Mad Mojo Showdown, Found Footage Festival,'Porgy and Bess,' Dave Raymond and Present Company, Heypenny, How I Became the Bomb, 88 Keys, Kidz in the Hall, 'Lord of the Dance,' Those Darlins.

Park in a park

What is it about the city of Little Rock government that can’t leave a good thing alone ? As I write this they are cutting trees at historic War Memorial golf course. Apparently some idiot thought a playground would be a good thing to place in the middle of the golf course.

It's Valentina's day

“Real Mexican Food” is what La Valentina touts, but much of the menu is Tex-Mex with touches of authenticity, so the menu will be familiar to anyone who’s eaten in a Mexican restaurant, real or unreal, hereabout: fajitas, combination platters, specials of tacos and enchiladas, etc., with rice and beans on the side.

Can Blanche go home again?

The New York Times dispatched a reporter last week to Helena-West Helena, the hometown of U.S. Sen. Blanche Lincoln, where the local white people might offer a pretty good gauge of broader attitudes by our state’s decisive rural conservatives.

Philander president on line

Dr. Walter Kimbrough, president of Philander Smith College, has been busy blogging about historically black colleges this week on a New York Times education blog.

Senate chairs at risk

Interesting item on the Huffington Post. Democrats plan to elect Senate committee chairs, rather than let seniority dictate.

Looking for a home

John Brummett examines the residency of three leading Democratic candidates for 1st District Congress, none of whom has been actually living in the district day-to-day in recent months.

Secession -- now!

Please, let Texas -- and its history rewriting Board of Education -- go.

And speaking of education

It will be hotly controversial -- and potentially embarrassing in many states once in place -- but I think I like this recommendation forming for a single national standard on what children should be learning in math and English.

Mayor Hays' real estate deals

Argenta News turns a jaundiced eye to Mayor Pat Hays' recent wheeling and dealing in real estate.

Thursday To-Do: Bad Mojo Showdown

Real life zombies: Ace Spade and the Whores of Babylon. BAD MOJO SHOWDOWN9 p.m., Juanita's.

Braving Rep. Ryan

I've been following fair-haired Republican budget guru Rep. Paul Ryan because I think he's been peddling snake oil.

Q&A: Nick Prueher of Found Footage Festival

Heavy metal home video. Think “The Soup” meets “Mystery Science Theater 3000” meets FOUND magazine meets all the insane pre-digital ephemera people exhume and stick on YouTube and you're on your way to the Found Footage Festival.

Robbery suspect nabbed

The LRPD says it arrested Christopher Gable, 28, of Bauxite early Thursday at the Love's Station on I-40 inNorth Little Rock  and charged him in the robbery earlier in the week of a Summit Bank branch in the Heights.

In the gas patch

The Arkansas Supreme Court made it clear today that a "gathering" pipeline, which transports gas from a few wells to an interstate pipeline, is a common carrier and carries the right to acquire right of way through eminent domain.

Danzig forever

This is awesome. From local filmmaker Matthew Rowe, who's done several other, much shaggier (but charmingly so) shorts as well as a short documentary on Dogpatch U.S.A., which you can watch, in an early form, on Vimeo.

Music festival biz

On Cherry St. at the Arkansas Blues and Heritage Fest. Photo by Brian Chilson.

For healthier kids UPDATE

Golfer Annika Sorenstam joined Gov. Mike Beebe, something of a golfer himself, for a ceremony today awarding grants to schools for physical education programs.

You're doing slime, Oklahoma

Oklahoma not only hates immigrants, it hates gay people, too. The latest is legislation for the state to obstruct the federal hate crimes law on acts against homosexuals.

Who you gonna trust?

Last week, a spokesman for Sen. Blanche Lincoln disputed opponent Bill Halter's claim that he'd received an endorsement from state Rep. Otis Davis of Earle.

Thursday: Juke Joint Duo, Mandy and Bonnie, Kingsdown, 'Glorious!'

Malcolm and Cedric. Photo by Jerry Colburn.

Keet on Conway

Republican candidate Jim Keet weighs in on filings in a federal lawsuit alleging shortcomings in care at the Conway Human Development Center, particularly in use of medication and restraints.

Berry quacks on health

Lame-duck Congressman Marion "Good Riddance" Berry proudly unveiled his own health reform bill today. It's a stripped-down bill with some insurance reform and, among others, language tough enough on abortion funding that you have to wonder if it wouldn't inspire insurance companies working with government plans to get out of the abortion coverage business altogether.

Jim Powell service

Memorial service for James O. Powell, the former editorial page editor of the Arkansas Gazette, who died Wednesday afternoon, will be at 1 p.m.

Human rights in Mississippi

The ACLU has sued the Mississippi school district that cancelled a high school prom rather than allow a lesbian to attend with her girlfriend (and wear a tuxedo).

Let's debate

2nd District Democratic congressional candidates are talking debates today. David Boling wants a series of debates throughout the district.

Tune In: Sparklehorse tribute tonight on KABF

Pedals! PLUG: The dude Red Chuck is paying tribute to the late Mark Linkous tonight on "The Plague," 10 p.m to midnight, KABF 88.3 FM.

Racial profiling in Pulaski County

UALR Chancellor Joel Anderson has vowed that the urban university will have a role in seeking solutions to problems in race relations.

Testing, testing

Sounds like the mic is open. LATE NEWS: The mayor of Alexander (the less said about the racial-profiling town the better) tried today to put a proposal on the primary election ballot to de-annex part of the city.

A Big Deal

Come Friday, Pulaski Technical College's Arkansas Culinary School joins the ranks of the top culinary schools in America, receiving accreditation from the American Culinary Federation Education Foundation’s Accrediting Commission (ACFEF) and the Accreditation Commission for Programs in Hospitality Administration (ACPHA).  Pretty impressive.  The release on the jump.

Irish Dinner

UALR's Alumni Association will host Taste of Ireland, a benefit to raise money to help students with the rising cost of educational expenses, will be held Thursday the 18th from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Bailey Alumni Center on campus.

The Rep next season

The Arkansas Repertory Theatre announced its 2010-11 season tonight, shows ranging from Hamlet to Hairspray.

No charge against senator

Helena-West Helena Mayor James Valley's blog relates a local prosecutor's e-mail that says no charge will be filed against Sen. Jack Crumbly, the Earle school superintendent, as a result of an indecent exposure complaint made against him by a former substitute teacher.

The winner

Like last year and the year before, I’m proud — and confident — to say that this year’s winner of the Musicians Showcase is doing something utterly singular in Arkansas music. Start getting used to this unwieldy name: Brother Andy & His Big Damn Mouth.

Film finds

Think “The Soup” meets “Mystery Science Theater 3000” meets FOUND magazine meets all the insane pre-digital ephemera people exhume and stick on YouTube and you're on your way to the Found Footage Festival, which comes to Market Street Cinema tonight.

Huckabee: Money talks

It has always been about money with Mike Huckabee. From a talk he made to college Republicans in New York:

Huckabee: Money talks

It has always been about money with Mike Huckabee. From a talk he made to college Republicans in New York:

Annals of gun nuttery

Noted: Some of the people now pushing for an "open carry" weapons law in Arkansas went bonkers over the release of names of people with concealed carry permits.

How bad is Clarence Thomas?

Read Linda Greenhouse and decide. The justice, who once claimed empathy with the incarcerated, continues to push for protection for prison officials who beat up prisoners.

Health watch: Berry bill MIA

Final negotiations on health legislation appear to include no consideration for Rep. Marion "Good Riddance" Berry's self-indulgent substitute proposal yesterday or for the idea he shares to essentially make insurance coverage of abortion impossible in the United States.

Friday To-Do: Found Footage Festival

FOUND FOOTAGE FESTIVAL9 p.m., Market Street Cinema. $10.Think “The Soup” meets “Mystery Science Theater 3000” meets FOUND magazine meets all the insane pre-digital ephemera people exhume and stick on YouTube and you're on your way to the Found Footage Festival.

Friday and Saturday To-Do: 'Porgy and Bess'

‘PORGY AND BESS'8 p.m., Robinson Center Music Hall. $20-$72.This weekend, for the first time ever, the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra presents Gershwin's “Porgy and Bess.” There'll be no costumes or staging, but otherwise the folk opera gets the full treatment, with four decorated guest vocalists, the UAPB Vesper Choir, the Philander Smith College Choir and, of course, the full symphony.

Naked came the Mormons

The recent Arkansas legislative session was sure dull compared to this. Kevin Garn, the Republican House majority leader in Utah, closed that state's legislative session by admitting he'd once frolicked in a hot tub with a nude 15-year-old and paid the woman $150,000 in hush money.

Friday To-Do: 'Paper Trails'

David Bailin's "Bone (Noah)" via arkansasartnotes. 'PAPER TRAILS'5 p.m., Arkansas Studies Institute.

Local Joint

I posted this picture a few days ago on Twitpic and asked people to identify it.

The cost of electricity

Robert Johnston, a former state legislator and former chairman of the Arkansas Public Service Commission, offers commentary on newspaper reporting and comment on Entergy electric rates in Arkansas and the wisdom of more use of nuclear power generation (the expense that hung Arkansas in the first place with subsidizing Louisiana and Mississippi.)

Weekend To-Do: 'Glorious'

Patricia Kilgarriff stars as Florence Foster Jenkins in 'Glorious' at the Rep. 'GLORIOUS'8 p.m., Arkansas Repertory Theatre.

The Weekend: Randy Rogers Band, Spectrum, The O.D., Arkansas Diamonds, North Mississippi Allstars

North Mississippi Allstars. FRIDAY 3/12Hard touring Texas country act the Randy Rogers Band is rolling into a summer release of a new album, "Burning the Day," with a head full of steam.

Rock Candy 500 returns

Last year's crop. Photo by Patrick Jones.

Southern food: Good, bad and ugly

The current issue of Oxford American is all about food. I've been enjoying some on-line extras related to the subject this morning.

Epiphany drops 'Respect' part two

The latest in Conduit leader Epiphany's theme-by-theme multi-part mixtape finds him speaking on the ladies.

Saline plea in assault case

Perhaps because the defendant, Joshua Paul Hanke, is the son of a sitting public official, Saline JP Kim Hanke, the Saline County prosecutor has distributed a news release about a plea entered in circuit court this morning in the case of a man accused of kidnapping and sexually assaulting his estranged wife.

Arkansas Bo is the Rich Little of Southern rap

There are definitely going to be aliens in part two. More from Conduit.

Ross wants trailer hearing

U.S. Rep. Mike Ross wants a congressional hearing on the decision to sell all the FEMA trailers stored at the Hope airport to one bidder.

Arkansas, let's eat

It's a slow news day, it's Friday and it's lunch time. So, a diversion.

Look for the union label

Here's the news on the first round of "independent expenditure" ad against Sen. Blanche Lincoln.

'A Time to Kill' headed to the stage

Cheap books for sale

At the Main Library's FOCAL sale. Probably 30% of my books have come from these sales over the year.

Saturday To-Do: Heypenny

HEYPENNY 9 p.m., ACAC Arkansas, $7.When bands intentionally piece together so many undiluted and disparate components of pop music with no regard to subtlety, it's like diluting cotton candy with syrup or concocting a cocktail out of the strongest liquors (and cleaning solvents) you happen upon in your kitchen.

Saturday To-Do: Dave Raymond and Present Company

Dave Raymond, Burt Taggart, Geoff Curran and Josh Bentley. DAVE RAYMOND AND PRESENT COMPANY9:30 p.m., White Water Tavern.

Saturday To-Do: Rwake

L-R: Kiffin, B., Gravy, CT, Alan and Jeff. Photo by Brian Chilson.

Sunday To-Do: 88 Keys - Kidz in the Hall

Kidz in the Hall. 88-KEYS / KIDZ IN THE HALL8 p.m., Revolution, $10.If you're not familiar with 88-Keys, it's okay.

Sunday To-Do: 'Lord of the Dance'

‘LORD OF THE DANCE'7 p.m., Robinson Center Music Hall, $27.95-$58.25.Right in time for St. Patrick's Day, the iconic Irish musical featuring traditional — and loud — step-dance comes to Robinson Center Music Hall.

Clean air, dirty hands

Environmental groups gathered outside Sen. Lincoln's office this morning to urge action on climate change legislation.

Daily Digest: Duke does dudes dukin', Grisham on stage, Hicks doc

Glenwood native and Hollywood dork du jour Clark Duke will join Rob Corddry and others from "Hot Tub Time Machine" the day after Wrestlemania XXVI to host WWE Monday Night Raw on March 29.

Republicans: Don't lick chops yet

The Washington Post's Chris Cillizza has made national Republican mouthpieces' day by proclaiming Arkansas's 2nd District one of the most likely Republican pickups this year.

Double-dip watch

A number of high state officials who "retired" long enough to be rehired in the same positions so that they could both draw retirement benefits and regular pay never let go of some pricey perks, legislators heard today.

UCA high on ex-Hogs

You probably know by now that Corliss Williamson, who needs no introduction, is going to coach the UCA men's basketball team and that he's mentioned that Scotty Thurman may join him as an assistant.

Cat's away

Y'all play.

Liar, liar

The Lincoln-Halter match has turned into a donnybrook. In response to the Lincoln campaign bashing of Halter for independent union-backed expenditures, the Halter campaign has pretty well called Lincoln a liar and hypocrite.

Rwake, live tonight

That Rwake enjoys international acclaim yet remains largely unknown in Arkansas is a consequence of its scene. The band works within the sprawling world of underground metal, an arcane and stratified umbrella genre of blistering guitars, crashing drums, roaring vocals and taboo-flaunting lyrics.

Lincoln's farm subsidies

Paul Barton in Washington does a little more digging into criticism raised about Sen. Blanche Lincoln's key role in federal agriculture subsidies and her family's receipt of such benefits.

Lobby in good hands with Ross

Another note from Paul Barton in Washington this morning: Rep. Mike Ross earlier this month received a citation from the Independent Insurance Agents of America, “the Big ‘I’.” Ross, who has doggedly opposed the Obama administration on health care reform, received the award at the group’s legislative convention in Washington.

The gospel according to Beck

Brummett roughs up Fox's Glenn Beck for calling on viewers to abandon churches that preach social justice.

Tax justice

This never would have happened under the Bush administration, which preferred to use the IRS as a weapon against poor people.

Politics: good news-bad news

I call it good news for Democratic political fortune that Newt Gingrich is enjoying a resurgence of popularity on the right.

Political poison

Add a couple of racists to the fall election ballot, one as a write-in for Arkansas governor.

A good funeral

Friends bid farewell to Jim Powell at a memorial service this afternoon at Second Baptist Church.

A good funeral

Friends bid farewell to Jim Powell at a memorial service this afternoon at Second Baptist Church.

Open line

Here you go.

Roll call

If you're not familiar with 88 Keys, it's okay. He was part of the massive mid-'00s exodus of producers that followed Kanye (88's shopping buddy) from the mixing board to the microphones. Tonight, he, Kids in the Hall, Izza Kizza and more come to Rev.

McClellan...Fulbright....Lincoln?

Andrew DeMillo considers Halter-Lincoln and the fall Senate contest in the context of two earlier famous challenges of sitting Arkansas senators.

The lying liars

Can there be too many reminders of the dishonesty and underhanded tactics of the Bush administration and chief puppeteer Karl Rove (mentor of Tim Griffin, who hopes to bring Rovian politics to Arkansas's 2nd Congressional District)?

Apple Blossom

The owner of Rachel Alexandra today backed out (for the second time) of a head-to-head match-up against Zenyatta at Oaklawn on April 9.

Sunday slacking

Sorry. I have family obligations.

Darlins

It's easy to say Those Darlins are Tennessee's response to the Olympia, Wash., grrrl scene. The Darlin girls, Kelley, Jessi and Nikki, have catchy, rock chops like their older genre cousins and certainly retained a healthy chunk of their forbears' attitude.

Self-loathing insiders

How can you claim to be a Washington outsider while bragging about the pork you've hauled home for your constituents and spending campaign millions raised from special interest lobbyists?

Debating charter schools

The New York Times has assembled four expert viewpoints on charter schools. They include committed advocates for charters, but also some push-back to the notion that if its name is charter it automatically must be good.

Baby, it's warm outside

Somebody call Rush Limbaugh or Mike Masterson. Some so-called experts at the University of Arkansas apparently haven't gotten the message that climate change is a liberal hoax.

Monday To-Do: Those Darlins

THOSE DARLINS9 p.m., White Water Tavern.It's easy to say Those Darlins are Tennessee's response to the Olympia, Wash., grrrl scene.

Keet goes national UPDATE

Republican gubernatorial candidate Jim Keet won't wait to start the fall campaign until after the primary election.

Gilbert's got game

So you tell me what to make of Sen. Gilbert Baker's website to follow the NCAA basketball tournament.

As Wal-Mart goes ....

A very interesting article in Arkansas Business by Mark Friedman rounds up organizational changes at Wal-Mart that could portend a decline in jobs in Northwest Arkansas -- both at Wal-Mart and its vendors -- unrelated to the economic downturn.

Stimulus at one household

Gov. Mike Beebe has appointed Ray Scott to oversee spending of $15 million the state has received in federal stimulus money for health information technology.

Free Candy: Elton and Betty White's 'Sex Beyond the Door'

Score. Uncovered over the weekend thanks to the Elton and Betty White Facebook page: 46 mp3 tracks from the ribald Little Rock duo's "Sex Beyond the Door" on WFMU's Beware of the Blog.

Portis to accept Oxford American prize

The Oxford American is giving Charles Portis its Lifetime Achievement in Southern Literature award, a prize the Conway-based magazine previously gave to Donald Harington.

Beebe moves at Alexander

Another shoe drops on the state's Human Development Centers, this time the Alexander Center, which houses 110 adult males with severe to profound retardation and other health problems.

Monday: Jet, Jenny Owens Young, Two Cow Garage

Jet. SXSW starts this weekend in Austin, so get ready not to sleep much if you want to catch bands that, in a lot of cases, probably wouldn't otherwise be here.Australian rock revivalists Jet head up a bill at the Village that includes The Crash Kings and Kingsdown, 8 p.m., $22.Indie pop trio The Spring Standards rotate male and female vocals in their earnest, but still airy relationship songs.

Call it their golden anniversary

Registered lobbyists of my acquaintance have been receiving invitations to help celebrate Shane and Debbie Broadway's wedding anniversary with a party March 30 at the Next Level Events.

Review: 'Glorious!'

Darren Dunstan (as Cosme) and Patricia Kilgarriff (as Florence Foster Jenkins) star in ‘Glorious!’ at the Rep. ‘Glorious!’March 14, Arkansas Repertory TheatreHow do you get to Carnegie Hall?

Advanced placement political invective

Sarah Palin jabbed U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson on a trip to Florida. You decide who won.

Boozman on the teat

Other duties have interfered with my blogging today and among my omissions was some comment on U.S. Rep. John Boozman's extravagant travel on the public teat, as detailed in the morning D-G.

Maybe David Gordon Green isn't remaking 'Adventures in Babysitting'

Because at SXSW over the weekend, he described "The Sitter," the comedy he's scheduled to begin shooting in the fall as, "Jonah Hill as a babysitter taking three kids on a coke run."I see the poster.He also talked a lot of other projects he's been associated with and still others he'd like to do.

Over to you

The Monday line commences.

A little help from the judge

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas' wife has started a nonprofit that will aim to influence thinking about congressmen with teabagger-friendly politics.

OPENING DOWN UNDER

  Never one to call attention to myself, I’ve mentioned my national tour of a few years ago in “Split Ends: The Tammy Wynette Story” only once before, here.

It's Valentina's day

La Valentina is so tidy and stylish and professional it looks like a chain restaurant. But it's home-grown, in Benton, the new business of Rosa Rasburry and Maria Martinez. It's taken the place of Dizzy's on Ferguson Road and, judging by the lunch crowd the other day, it's taking a place in the locals' hearts.

You asked for it

Sorry Toyota didn't land in Arkansas? Bob Herbert's column on the automaker's screwing of California, which had poured hundreds of millions in corporate welfare into the company, might make you rethink.

The morning headlines

Short takes: Pine Bluff will have a "national search" for a police chief to succeed John Howell, fired by the mayor.

Keet reveals assets

Arkansas law on financial disclosure by public officials and candidates isn't nearly stringent enough. But Republican gubernatorial candidate Jim Keet, based on his statement of financial interest filed yesterday, would seem well-fixed.  It remains to be seen if he'll devote a significant amount of his holdings to his race, as Bill Halter did in 2006.

Would you trust Entergy?

Former PSC Chairman Robert Johnston wouldn't, not when it comes to Entergy promises about holding Arkansas harmless on future nuclear plant construction.

The company Womack keeps

The City Wire in Fort Smith reviews the shady history of one of Rogers Mayor Steve Womack's lead political consultants, Lance Cargill, a disgraced Oklahoma politician with a history as a tax deadbeat and ethics scofflaw.

Ken Smith leaving Audubon

Too bad. Ken Smith, one of the state's leading environmentalists (or is conservationist considered the more politically correct word?), is stepping down as director of Audubon Arkansas.

Maddow in town

MSNBC's Rachel Maddow will visit Little Rock and speak at the Clinton School of Public Service at 9 a.m.

Tim Griffin's cherry picking

Tim Griffin's campaign has all the honesty of a Hollywood studio advertising its movies. Today, for example, the campaign sent this quote from Pat Lynch's column Monday:

Rehab center draws fire

Developer Ted Upshaw promises a neighborhood protest at tonight's Little Rock Board of Directors meeting over city planners' approval of a drug and alcohol rehabilitation center on the grounds of the former Oasis Renewal Center on Cooper Orbit Road, just outside the western city limits but within the city's planning jurisdiction.

No execution tonight

The scheduled execution tonight of Jack Harold Jones Jr. will not occur. A statement from Gov. Mike Beebe's office:

Very Fine Dining

My "beat" as it were tends to take me to a lot of diners and mom-and-pop restaurants here and there.  It's a real treat for me to be able to share a finer dining experience.  And in recent memory, there has been none finer than the repast shared with my husband at The Crystal Dining Room at the 1886 Crescent Hotel in Eureka Springs.  More than just dinner, it was an affair to remember.  Details at Tie Dye Travels. 

Protest on AIDS funding

The Arkansas AIDS Foundation, which has received state money to provide services to AIDS and HIV cases for more than 20 years, continues to protest a state decision to shift money from the AIDS Foundation to the White River Rural Health organization.

'Get equal'

"Lack of equality for some is lack of equality for all." That about says it.

Simplify taxes

Sensible policy proposals don't seem much in fashion this season of teabaggers and other tantrums. But John Adams, Democratic candidate for 2nd District Congress, has one on tax returns.

Go Trojans, beat Ga. Tech

How about this? UALR has two of the five teams in the national finals of the Microsoft Corp.'s Imagine Software Design Competition.

Funny times in the 1st

I don't recall ever receiving news of an endorsement from the spouse of an outgoing member of Congress, but 1st District Democratic congressional candidate Chad Causey claims one here from Carolyn Berry, wife of Rep. Marion "Good Riddance" Berry.

Two years in triple drowning

From our news partner Fox 16: A plea deal was announced today in the case of Amber Turley (pictured), the Plumerville woman whose three children drowned after she drove into a lake near her home.

Where's John Boozman? Munich?

Globe-trotting U.S. Rep. John Boozman can find a way for taxpayers to send him and his wife to Germany with $900-a-day unitemized pocket money, but he apparently can't find a way to join the Magnificent Seven other candidates in the Republican senatorial primary for the first big debate of the season tonight.

Last Night: Those Darlins

Not at White Water. Those DarlinsMarch 15, White Water Tavern.Those Darlins, the fearsome girl trio hailing from Murfreesboro, Tennessee, opened their set last night with a smirk, as lead guitarist Kelly Darlin pranced around the stage with the sexual composure of Jeannie C. Riley making a television appearance.

Tuesday: Patrick Sweany, Two Cow Garage, Tigercity

Patrick Sweany. Patrick Sweany, arguably the finest blue-eyed bluesman around, returns to White Water Tavern to play with Two Cow Garage, 10 p.m.At Sticky Fingerz, New York synth-pop act Tigercity returns with Wave Machines and These Silent Years, 8:30 p.m., $8.

One tough lady

I'm hearing a lot of positive response to this ad. It's tough.

Break in Salvation Army case?

Fox 16 reports a 4 p.m. news conference by North Little Rock police on a major development in the Christmas Eve slaying of Salvation Army Maj. Philip Wise.

ZOMG! Justin Bieber to Verizon

The Canadian superduperstar comes to Verizon on July 29 with Sean Kingston. Tickets, which range from $31.50 to $51.50, go on-sale Saturday, March 27 at 10 a.m. via all Ticketmaster outlets.

Arrest in Salvation Army major's killing

Cindy Wise talks to reporters after today's press conference. North Little Rock police have arrested Laquan Javaris Fitzpatrick, 19, in the Christmas Eve shooting death of Salvation Army Maj. Philip Wise.

School choice suit dismissed

Big decision in federal court today, perhaps to be appealed, in the lawsuit in which plaintiffs attempted to strike down the Arkansas school choice law for allowing race to be considered in attempts to transfer into or out of school districts.

Birds of a feather

Both Tim Griffin and Blanche Lincoln are taking great pains to oppose a procedure (used often before, more often by Republicans) that is being discussed -- but not yet decided -- for House passage of the Senate health bill. This no-longer-so-strange bed fellowship tells you just about all you need to know about both of them.

Stick a fork in me

I'm done. You're up.

Child porn in Ark. v. TV producer

All I know is what I know. A federal child pornography sentencing of a well-known TV producer who now lives in Arkansas.

This Modern World

Spring slate

The fall season for Arkansas theater was dominated by crowd pleasers. The spring and summer of 2010 isn't as predictable -- oh sure, there will be a few known commodities on the schedule - -and that makes for a more interesting time all the way around for theater fiends.

Orval

The voice of democracy

Good video of a health legislation demonstration -- pro and con -- in Columbus, Ohio.

Orval, Bull and Justice Jim

Their ghosts must be smiling as a surge of states rights fervor sweeps the land.

Beware the social networks

You leave fingerprints. Interesting article on privacy and the Internet.

Halter gets some more coaching

I dunno. Maybe enough with the old coach?

Follow the money

A number of contested judicial races this year, including two for the state Supreme Court, will bear watching this year.

Pub to open in Market Tower UPDATE

Don Dugan, owner of the Markham Street Grill and Pub, will open Dugan's Pub on the ground floor of the River Market Tower at Third and Rock Streets (the tall building on right in illustration).

Daytrottin' Denny

If you're going to have a blog on your jock, one could do a whole lot worse than Daytrotter, the internet generation's update of the Peel Sessions.

Where is John Boozman?

U.S. Rep. John Boozman, running an incumbent-style campaign for U.S. Senate, claimed he couldn't make the Republican debate yesterday because he was busy fighting health care.

More money to watch

I mentioned the interest in following judicial candidate campaign contributions earlier. Here's another one to watch.

More judges, more money

Money and judges aren't soon parted. While poring over state judicial campaign contributions, I happened to hear from one of the members of the black legal community who thinks blacks have been getting the short end of the stick on federal appointments from Democratic Sens. Blanche Lincoln and Mark Pryor.

Found Footage of 'Little Marines'

So everyone that missed the Found Footage Festival over the weekend blew it. The idea, you'll remember, is that age of VHS produced an almost endless cache of bizarre hilarity that’s just waiting to be rescued from thrift stores, truck stops and trashcans across the country.

Broyles set at Mosaic Templars

Frank Broyles' will talk about 40 years of integration of University of Arkansas athletics at noon March 30 at the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center.

Health bill gains ground

Previously reluctant Democrats are signing on the health bill, including Dennis Kucinich and Rep. Dale Kildee, who once studied to be a priest. Kildee said:

St. Patrick's 2010

To me, it look like a leprechaun to me.   Alright.

6th Annual Valley of the Vapors: Night One

plus horns this time. So tonight's the night!

Willard Proctor files UPDATE

Willard Proctor, removed from the circuit court bench and barred by law from running again, has nonetheless decided to try to run again.
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