Wednesday, October 26, 2016

For Buckmaster Show Listeners (and Others), My TUSD Board Picks, Once Again

Posted By on Wed, Oct 26, 2016 at 11:20 AM

  • Courtesy of PhotoSpin
I'll be on the Buckmaster Show today (Wednesday) at 12:30 p.m., talking with Bill about education. Bill and I decided not to talk about the TUSD board race, which is getting uglier by the minute, with one exception. I'll be stating my picks for the board, and I'll be telling listeners if they want to learn why I made those choices, they can check here.

So, here's a link to the post where I discussed my three picks: Cam Juarez, Kristel Foster and Betts Putnam-Hidalgo.

The Buckmaster Show starts at noon on KVOI, AM 1030.

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Quick Bites: Eat No Evil

Posted By on Wed, Oct 26, 2016 at 9:00 AM

You may have plans for Halloween—Mon., Oct. 31—and for the Friday or Saturday before Halloween (or even all three nights!). But what about the night before Halloween, traditionally known as a night for mischief and often called “Devils’ Night”?

Well, Hotel Congress’s hasn’t forgotten about this “holiday.” The folks at Cup Café have some mischief (the good kind) in store for anyone who wants to celebrate gastronomically: The Devil’s Night Dinner, a fancy four-course meal with a Halloween theme, entertainment and even a dress code—wear black!

The three dinner courses are all cleverly planned around the theme of the three wise (and creepy) monkeys. First, sit down to a “See No Evil” course featuring crudo of Spanish mackerel (we do think raw fish looks kinda gross) with a blood-orange-and-ginger glaze; then just try to “hear no evil” during the second course, including dishes with “sizzling mushrooms” and “crispy duck skin.” Of course the “Speak No Evil” course includes tongue. But after that diners are rewarded with the Devil’s Dessert: “pumpkin trifle and pumpkin ice cream with marshmallow sauce and shaved chocolate (plus “squid ink crumble,” whatever that is). And all four courses are paired with fancy Halloween-themed cocktails.

Despite all that talk of evil, we promise the food and drink will be good.

The dinner takes place outside in the dark, on the Hotel Congress Plaza, and the entertainment is dark, too—dark magic, that is, performed by Tucson’s own Magic Kenny Bang Bang.

The Devil’s Night Dinner starts at 7 p.m., Sun., Oct. 30, at the Cup Café, 311 E. Congress St., and costs $65. Get more information and make reservations at

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Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

Posted By on Tue, Oct 25, 2016 at 3:46 PM

  • Courtesy of PhotoSpin
If you're looking for TUSD board candidates who support closing more schools, they're out there, but they're not Cam Juarez and Kristel Foster. Two, maybe two-and-a-half candidates have said they think closing more schools is a strong possibility, even a good idea. One, maybe one-and-a-half of them are supported by the independent expenditure campaign, TUSD Kids First. But Cam and Kristel have both said in no uncertain terms, they don't plan to vote for closing any more schools.

So why are we seeing yellow roadway signs paid for by TKF that say, "Foster + Juarez = Closed Schools," signs whose purpose is to lead voters to think if they vote for Foster and Juarez, they're likely to see more school closures? The answer is, TKF wants to confuse and confound voters by using a time tested, cynical disinformation strategy. If you or some of your chosen candidates are accused of wanting to close schools and the accusation has some validity, throw it back at your opponents. "I don't want to close more schools. You want to close more schools!" Voters don't know who to believe, so the issue, which could be a problem at the polls, is nullified.

Let me try to set the record straight on who is for closing more schools and who is not, using the candidates' own words to decide where they stand. Here's the breakdown:

• For More School Closures:
Brett Rustand, Rachel Sedgwick
• Against More School Closures: Kristel Foster, Cam Juarez, Betts Putnam-Hidalgo, Lori Riegel
• Both For and Against More School Closures: Mark Stegeman

As for TUSD Kids First, the evidence suggests strongly that its donors are in favor of more closures.

Continue reading »

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Get Your Spooks On for a Halloweekend at Hotel Congress

Posted By on Tue, Oct 25, 2016 at 11:00 AM

There's still plenty of time to throw some yarn on your head and call it a costume. - DON HANKINS/FLICKR
  • Don Hankins/Flickr
  • There's still plenty of time to throw some yarn on your head and call it a costume.
It's almost that time of the year again: A time where it's appropriate for adults to play dress-up and scare kids.

Halloween is in our midst and you don't to be the one person with nothing to do on the scariest day of the year—or worse, be the only person out without a costume. If you're still trying to figure out what you're up to on Oct. 31 and the days leading up, fear not (actually, be very afraid), because Hotel Congress, 311 E. Congress St., has got your back with a Hallo-weekend of things to do. 

This weekend of spooks starts on Saturday, Oct. 29 at the historic hotel with Nightmare on Congress St. This 21 and over event will feature music from seven bands, a DJ and, of course, a costume contest with the chance to win some serious swag. The cover charge is $6 in advance or $8 the day of.  

On Oct. 29, get groovy with Yeasayer at Club Congress starting at 7 p.m. Anyone 16 and over is welcome to rock out with this Brooklyn-based band. This event will cost you $26 but if you want to go to free a CD release, Belinda Esquer will be doing just that in the Congress plaza at 7 p.m.

Congress will still be going strong on the Sunday before Halloween. Celebrate Hallow's Eve at Congress's Devil's Night Concert with the Supersuckers, Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band and Jesse Dayton to get you spooked up for Monday night's frights. The doors will open at 7:30 p.m. for this 21+ event and tickets range from $8 to $10.

On the night that everyone has been waiting for, Congress has got a rad dance party planned for your night out. Come in costume on Halloween night to be entered into a drawing to win $500 among other rad swag. This spooky evening is 21 and up and will kick off at 8 p.m. Make sure to register for $8 or pay $10 at the door.

For more information on Halloweekend at Hotel Congress, check out this here link.

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Cinema Clips: A Man Called Ove

Posted By on Tue, Oct 25, 2016 at 10:00 AM

Rolf Lassgard is astonishingly good in this sweet and funny film about an old man giving up on life shortly before he gets some reasons to recharge his battery.

Ove (Lassgard) lives in a community where he acts as the enforcer of the rules, and he takes it seriously (Don’t you dare throw a cigarette butt on the ground when he is in eyeshot). Having lost his wife Sonja (Ida Engvoll), who we see in flashbacks, Ove has developed a cantankerous reputation that has most seeing him as an old coot.

A new couple moves in next door, a cat takes residence in his house, and the couple’s children become his friends, thus delaying his attempts to take his own life.

Director and screenwriter Hannes Holm does a great job letting us know, little by little through the flashbacks, the events that have led to Ove being the man he is. By the time the flashbacks have played out, it’s hard to blame Ove for being a little grumpy.

Lassgard is thoroughly enjoyable in the movie, managing to make the character somebody likeable, even when he’s screwing up.

Even though the movie takes place in one little community and basically focuses on the life of one man, it has an epic feel to it. Holm has made a special movie with this one.

In the Flesh: Howe Gelb's 60th B-day Bash at the Rialto Theater

Posted By on Tue, Oct 25, 2016 at 9:00 AM

Nino’s Steakhouse once sat on a sad stretch of North First Avenue. “Not just for Cowboys ...” read their logo’s tagline. Yet there were plenty of pointy-toed cowboy boots on feet of regulars and barflys, but most of those never once walked anywhere near cow dung pastures or stepped into a saddle stirrup. 

Howe Gelb's 60th birthday party at The Rialto Theatre. - XAVIER OMAR OTERO
  • Xavier Omar Otero
  • Howe Gelb's 60th birthday party at The Rialto Theatre.
This steakhouse was a spawning ground for the post-punk Tucson music scene in the early ’80s, and probably the birthplace of post-punk’s petulant bastard child “desert rock.” Here, in this restaurant by day, sweaty music incubator by night, I saw singer-songwriter/producer Howe Gelb performing with the Giant Sandworms for the first time.

It takes years for a worthy artist to find and develop their voice. And Gelb is unequivocally a tenacious artist. He started humbly, playing the low-ceilinged backroom at Nino’s to a handful of people.

It’d be egregiously remiss to not acknowledge and commend Gelb’s musical evolution and prolific output—one could easily stay up for a couple of days straight, fueled by caffeine, and still not have listened to all of the songs that Gelb has written and recorded or played on—that spans a three-decade long career. Dude’s insanely accomplished. His is staggering body of work, and it’s easy to lose count; some 50 albums, which include critically acclaimed records such as 1998’s Hisser, 2000’s Chore of Enchantment, 2006’s Sno’ Angel Like You, 2008’s ProVisions and 2013’s The Coincidentalist.

Gelb performing with daughter Patsy. - XAVIER OMAR OTERO
  • Xavier Omar Otero
  • Gelb performing with daughter Patsy.
Gelb has also been featured in numerous films: Drunken Bees (1996), Looking for a Thrill: An Anthology of Inspiration (2005), High and Dry: Where the Desert Meets Rock and Roll (2006), This Band Has No Members (2006) and Ingenious (2009).

There is a tree of life whose fruit-heavy branches span far and wide with Gelb comprising the roots and trunk: Giant Sandworms, Giant Sand, The Band of Blacky Ranchette, Rainer & Das Combo, Friends of Dean Martinez, John Convertino, Joey Burns, Arizona Amp and Alternator, OP8, Calexico, Brian Lopez, Gabriel Sullivan are but some of the fruit.  

In addition, Gelb has twisted lots of knobs, even co-produced Scottish singer/songwriter KT Tunstall’s fifth studio album Invisible Empire // Crescent Moon (2013) on which he also co-wrote and sang on several songs. Gelb produced Sylvie the great 2014 debut album by Sylvie Simmons esteemed writer, former editor at Mojo and biographer who penned I'm Your Man: The Life of Leonard Cohen (published by Ecco in 2012). He did John Doe’s latest.

Continue reading »

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Monday, October 24, 2016

There's a New I.E. in the TUSD Board Race

Posted By on Mon, Oct 24, 2016 at 1:00 PM

  • Courtesy of PhotoSpin
The new signs on the roadways say "Stop Stegeman Now." They just showed up recently, and you'll only find a few of them scattered among the yellow "Change the Board" signs, which, based on my recent drive through town, make up about half the signage out there—not half the TUSD board race signs, half the signs, period.

The anti-Stegeman signs are paid for by a new independent expenditure committee, Protect Our Schools TUSD, which filed its papers with Pima County last week. We don't know anything about its finances since it didn't exist during the last reporting period, but if the amount of signage it's put up is any indication, it doesn't have anything like the $35,000 amassed by TUSD Kids First, which is responsible for the yellow signs blanketing the city. We'll get a better idea of its funding by the number of signs that go up before the election and by its sponsored presence on social media.

Protect Our Schools TUSD has two goals: to get rid of Mark Stegeman and to reelect Kristel Foster and Cam Juarez. The group's website explains the reasons for its choices in bold letters on the home page, but for some reason, it hides its "Want to learn more?" link way down at the bottom of the page rather than creating the usual navigation bar near the top.

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Stella Needs a Home

Posted By on Mon, Oct 24, 2016 at 12:00 PM


Hi, I'm Stella!

I'm a beautiful 5-year-old girl and I need a new home! I was transferred to the Humane Society of Southern Arizona from a different shelter so they don't know a lot about my past, but they do know that I love being pet and I know how to sit for treats.

I would make the perfect dog for a family that is looking for a medium energy pet that loves to snuggle! If you have current dogs or kiddos bring them over to HSSA Main Campus at 3450 N. Kelvin Blvd. to do a doggy meet and greet!

Lots of love,
Stella (833538)

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Popular Content

  1. For Buckmaster Show Listeners (and Others), My TUSD Board Picks, Once Again (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  2. In the Flesh: Howe Gelb's 60th B-day Bash at the Rialto Theater (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  3. Quick Bites: Eat No Evil (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  4. Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools? (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  5. Cinema Clips: A Man Called Ove (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)

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