Cheap Thrills

CONTRA-DICTION: Recent presidential balloting in Nicaragua saw the apparent victory of conservative Arnoldo Aleman, former mayor of Managua, over Daniel Ortega, one-time guerrilla leader and former head of state.

But it seems nothing could be quite so simple as an election in Central America, and Ortega is contesting the October 20 election, alongside claims of fraud from a broad contingent of opposition parties.

And the former leader has plenty at stake: Many observers considered this Ortega's last chance to reassert any major influence over that country's politics.

No matter who comes out on top, October's election represents the first time in Nicaragua that one democratically installed government has handed over the reins to another, and Aleman has strongly hinted for reconciliation, saying, "There are no conquerors or conquered. Only the people have won."

Time will tell whether that's actually the case. Luckily for us, John Brentlinger was there as an official election observer. Brentlinger, author of The Best of What We Are: Reflections of the Nicaraguan Revolution, will discuss his recent experience in that troubled land, and the current Nicaraguan situation, from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Thursday, November 7, in the UA Modern Languages Building, Room 311. The lecture is free. For information, call 622-4002.

ALL HUNG UP: Local writer and historian L.D. Clark will sign copies of his latest book, Civil War Recollections of James Lemuel Clark, at the Haunted Bookshop. Succinctly subtitled The Great Hanging at Gainesville, Texas, in October 1862, this tome tells the story of a Union-sympathizing Lone Star family who suffered more at the hands of their peers than from any warring factions. The narrator is James Lemuel, who was only 18 years old when the war broke out.

The signing runs from 2 to 3:30 p.m. Sunday, November 10, at the bookshop, 7211 N. Northern Ave. Call 297-4843 for information.

FLOSSED: Nineteenth-century scribe George Eliot, best known for Silas Marner and Middlemarch, digs into the tough little life of Maggie Tulliver as she struggles towards an education in Mill on the Floss, presented by the PCC Community Theater Department.

The play concerns "a time in British history in which community responsibility and individualism were being more fully examined in science, politics and religious life," says theater department spokesman Barclay Goldsmith.

See timeless social relevance brought home with 8 p.m. performances November 8 and 9. Production continues November 14 through 16, at the PCC Proscenium Theater, 2202 W. Anklam Road. General admission is $7, $4 for students, and tickets can be obtained one hour before show time. Call 882-7406 for more information. TW

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