New Media, Old News

February 5, 2009 at 5:09 pm | Posted in Chris Maue, Etcetra, restaurant, Review | 2 Comments
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Soup Man

I noticed a post on an stl blog about an ad for the Soup Man Kitchen, expressing surprise that a relic from the Seinfeld era of celebrity has set up shop in town… the only thing I can say is, having eaten at this place over a year ago, I can vouch that it’s at least that old, if not more… come on blogosphere keep up with the meatspace news!

For those of you who haven’t tried it out, It’s a pretty good place, with decent options (including Vegetarian and Vegan friendly options), and it doesn’t cost too much (the same as any quick lunch downtown). Check it out if you’re in the neighborhood (although I’ll still stick to Sen Thai, or the sandwiches at City Grocers).

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Mad Art

December 12, 2008 at 6:02 pm | Posted in Art Show, Chris Maue, exhibition, Mad Art | 1 Comment
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While we’re on the subject of last minute events,   

The Mad Art Gallery is having an exhibition/auction tonight, put on by the Barnes-Jewish College Student Government and Student Nurses Association.  Titled “To Kenya With Love,” the auction will raise money to fund the newborn ward at Kenyatta National Hospital in Nairobi, Kenya.   

The event begins at 7pm, ends at 11, and is free to the public.

Discover America Tonight at SLSO

December 12, 2008 at 5:53 pm | Posted in Chris Maue, Concert, music, SLSO | 1 Comment
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cdbigThis is a little bit last minute, but if anyone’s looking for something interesting and fun to do tonight, SLSO is continuing their ongoing Classical Detours series at Powell Hall, with tonight’s theme – Discover America.    Enjoy several pieces by American composers Bernstein, Copland, Rodgers, and even John Williams.      In SLSO’s own words: 

“No “Jingle Bells.” No “Rudolph.” The SLSO offers holiday relief.”

 

And, as always, the performance is prefaced with free beer sampling courtesy of Schlafly. 

 

— FREE TICKET INFORMATION —

 

Although it may be too late to use this info tonight, RFT vetran and current SLSO blogger Eddie Silva sent me this info on how to get FREE TICKETS to SLSO shows.    Read on:

 

50 Free Ticket Program:

The Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra offers 50 free tickets to the public for all of its regular Orchestral concerts (except Coffee Concerts). To receive your free ticket you must have a 50 Free Membership Card. To get your card simply stop by the Saint Louis Symphony Box Office and sign up for your free card. The card entitles you to a free ticket to six  orchestral concerts per season. To redeem for your ticket, present your card and a valid picture ID at the Box Office window 2 hours before a valid concert.  Tickets will be handed out for 30 minutes or until all 50 tickets have been distributed.  Cards will be punched each time you receive a ticket. Tickets are given to valid free ticket card holders on a first come basis. One free ticket card per person per season.

News About Other Films, and Human Rights

December 8, 2008 at 2:54 am | Posted in activism, Chris Maue, film, stl, Theater | 2 Comments
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In keeping with the constant stream of film review posts that Brian has been faithfully putting up for the last few days, I’ve got a few events you might want to keep your eye on as well –

Doerr Center for Social Justice Education is sponsoring a showing of Morgan Spurlock’s documentary “What Would Jesus Buy.”  The event is at 1:30 in the Carlo Auditorium of Tegler Hall, 3550 Lindell Blvd.  The Showing is free, and open to the public.

Also, don’t miss Amnesty International’s Sponsored Showing of “Invisible Children.”  at  Lafayette High School from 6pm until 8pm, on Thursday the 11th.  If you haven’t seen this film yet, make a point to – it’s a real eye opener.

December 10th is International Human Rights Day, as well as A Day Without Gay – a day to protest discrimination based on sexual orientation, by not showing up to work and calling in ‘Gay’.

There are some pretty cool events going on in town, including a Day Without Gay Teach-in hosted on December 10th at the Tivoli Theater in the Loop.  The event starts at 9am, and Concludes around 4pm, with a free screening of “Milk.”  More details can be found at http://showmenohate.blogspot.com/

Finally, The Webster Film Series will be showing “Christmastime On Mars,” the psychadelic freak out Christmas feature, made over the course of six years by the Flaming Lips.   The film features amazing performances by the band, especially Wayne Coyne as the alien superbeing that saves Christmas.   The film shows December 12th, and 13th at 9pm, and the 14th at  7pm.  General admission is $6.

More info on many of these events, as well as other happenings this week in St. Louis, can be found at the Show Me Progress Blog

Links With Your Coffee

November 23, 2008 at 1:00 pm | Posted in Chris Maue, Coffee links | 3 Comments
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For this week’s tasty snack to go with that peppermint mocha frappacino, (or peppermint schnapps and folgers, we don’t judge here)   we’ve localed it up for those of you who might not have known about, or might have forgotten, all the blogs based right here out of STL.

Riverfront Times has their A to Z music blog…

of course Euclid Records has their own, smaller scale blog

Patrick Vacek reviews all the shows (and old records) he can fit in a day

His brother Brian Vacek reviews every film ever

Dividing by Zero adds it’s own 2 cents on the music scene here

Saint Louis Magazine takes on the arts in STL

and of course Lo-Fi STL is always a great thing to watch.

and as always, hours can be spent following the links in the KDHX collective.

Of course, there’s always something wonderful on boingboing, wired, and viceland as well.

Bloggers Night with the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra

November 18, 2008 at 2:10 am | Posted in Chris Maue, comics, Concert | 10 Comments
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Last night was Blogger’s Night at Powell Hall, and I found myself among the esteemed guests. I asked my friend, and music review blogger, Patrick Vacek, to come with, which lead to interesting results. As one that doesn’t particularly frequent the symphony, I was worried that Patrick and I (emphasis on the I) would stick out like the unwashed hipster bums that we are.

So when Pat and I showed up, under dressed, and just as excited about the prospect of free drinks as seeing the performance, we hadn’t considered exactly who the regular attendees of the symphony are – old eccentrics & academic bums. One of my favorite moments was when an older woman sitting next to me turned and cheerfully asked if Pat and I were college professors, and why we were taking notes. After explaining to her that we wrote for a blog, and having her ask me “what is ablog? ” Patrick and I felt like some sort of undercover agents from the culture wars, in the den of high class, until later that night when a crazy old man jokingly berated us about how scandalous the performance that night had been. Afterward, we went out for drinks down the street with other bloggers, and it hit us that we actually had a niche, and a culture we fit into – that people on the other side of the screen actually exist, and blogging isn’t all just shouting into the aether. I’ve posted a comic about it here. All in all, it was a pretty awesome night.

— Concert review —

When I initially heard about bloggers night at Powell Hall, it was in connection with the SLSO Guitar Festival, so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect – unwashed nerds lining up for something like Metallica’s S&M? Well dressed journalists coming out to see an orchestra composed entirely of Fender Telecasters, Gibson hollow bodies, and Flying V’s? A pit full of violinists wailing on power chords? I mean, what is a symphony guitar festival? Dare I hope, a rock opera? It turns out the answer wasn’t anything that cool.

The first song – Mark-Anthony Turnage’s A Prayer Out of Stillness – was the guitar – related piece of the evening.

The song had four movements, and featured a cello Bass/electric bass soloist, in front of the string section – the wind instruments, and some percussion (including piano) were conspicuously absent.  The song began with the strings playing tense chords, while the soloist quietly plinked around by himself, seemingly playing a different song, unaware of the orchestra behind him, and not caring if anyone heard.  This went on for a while, until something unexpected happened.

Everything went dead quiet, and the orchestra paused while an electric bass was brought out, and exchanged for the cello Bass.

The question I kept asking myself after that point was, if every other rock band ever can handle  a roadie walking up and trading guitars with a performer, often mid-song, why does the symphony have to stop everything while someone hands them a bass?   If that wasn’t enough to take my attention out of the performance, they repeated this ritual 3 more times, between every movement – a habit which really sealed shut what was a strangely arranged, and uninteresting piece.

If the constant stop – and – switches weren’t enough, the second movement made the bass part seem even less connected to what the rest of the orchestra was playing, culminating in the third movement, where both cello bass and electric bass soloed while the rest of the orchestra just took a break.

The fourth movement tied everything back together, but not in a tension – and – relief sort of way… it seemed more like the composer hadn’t figured out what they wanted to do until the fourth movement.  Not in a coherent way, anyhow.

The second song – Steven Mackey’s Beautiful Passing –   was much more interesting, with a violin soloist front and center for the entire piece, making things very interesting.  Not only was the soloist incredibly talented, but the wild way that she jerked around, like a woman possessed, as she played, made violin seem dangerous and sexy.

The third song – Stravinsky’s The Right of Spring – was amazing.  The song was epic in a way that one expects an intense orchestral piece to be, full of polyphonic tension and resolution, highs and lows that make your mind wander so scenes of beauty and violence.  The music was accompanied occasionally by words projected behind the orchestra, describing youths frolicking in a field, until holy men come and sacrifice a young woman to the god of spring.

The thing that struck me the most about this last piece, was that my mind kept wandering to things like Loony Tunes, and Star Wars.  Maybe I’m just a pop culture junkie raised on cartoons and fantasy, but when I hear classical music, these are the things that come to mind.

All in all, the concert was pretty awesome, and although the first song left me thinking dreading the next two, and thinking that the composers had a screw loose and didn’t know what they were doing, the second two performances were awesome and well worth the price of an actual ticket.

Although according to SLSO’s resident blogger, Eddie Silva, the symphony offers 50 free tickets for every performance, all you have to do is show up early and ask for ’em.    I guess I’ll be going back sooner than later.

–Correction–

As noted by user bassplayerKat, John Patitucci was playing a BASS. not a CELLO.  As one with limited knowledge of orchestral instruments, I didn’t really know the difference.  Corrections have been made.

Upscale Bowling Downtown

May 17, 2008 at 11:10 am | Posted in Chris Maue, Etcetra, Review | Comments Off on Upscale Bowling Downtown
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Matt and I went out to the Pink Flamingo Bowl on Washington Ave. last week, and were pretty impressed with what we found:

The place is pretty cool inside, with pink flamingos of various shapes and sizes adorning the walls, the bar, and several other places throughout the place – but somehow, Joe Edwards has managed to cover his new venture with pink flamingos – the very symbol of kitsch, and at the same time avoid a kitschy environment. The place is kind of classy, but relaxed feeling, and definitely aimed at the loft residents, people working downtown, and those with the common sense to avoid the overpriced bars closer to the stadium.

There’s 12 lanes of bowling with projection tvs (usually watching cartoon network when I pass by on my way to work) and surprisingly, the price of a game is about the same as any other bowling alley in town. Of course, you can rent out the lanes for an hour at a time as well (which on the weekend, wouldn’t be a bad idea, this place is usually PACKED Friday and Saturday).


Instead of the usual bowling alley fare, they have a pretty nice selection of sandwiches, appetizers, and pizza (at a fraction of the usual grease) and a well stocked (if upscale priced) bar. In addition to a pretty nice, moderately priced beer selection, they have an ever-changing selection of cocktails, and a list of aged rums as well. Of course, for me the crowning jewel at the bar was that they carry Lucid brand Absinthe (yes, real absinthe. Yes, it’s legal now. Yes, it’s actually real, google it if you don’t believe me), served in the french style at $9 a pop – now that’s a drink I don’t mind shoveling out some change for.

In all, it’s a pretty nice place if your downtown, and don’t mind spending a bit of money (but if you don’t want to lay down too much cash, they’ve got decent prices on pitchers of all your favorite st. louis beers as well). And as much as I’m downtown, I have a feeling this is going to become a new favorite spot of mine. (Hey, if it’s too pricey, they’ve also opened a new location of The Tin Can just down the street on Locust, and who can argue with that place?)

Webbies Watch ’08

April 7, 2008 at 2:55 pm | Posted in Chris Maue, Editorial, Webster University | 3 Comments
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*post Updated with corrections

Webbies sign, wrong day

 

For those of you unfamiliar with the controversy brewing at Webster University, tomorrow tonight will be the 19th annual Media Excellence Awards ceremony, affectionately termed ‘The Webbies’ by the students at Webster (not to be confused with the annual award honoring well made websites). The controversy arises from changes made to the student run awards show, and the classes that had previously run things – in years past students had come together to recognize the best work of the year, and after the first few years, the event garnered the attention of those in charge of the School of Communications – the event became a large annual production, run by two classes, striving each year to outdo the class that came before – as a soon-to-be graduate of the SOC at Webster, I can say that the Webbies production class was one of the best courses, and most beneficial experiences of my education in media.

Last year politics and censorship tore the Webbies apart, and this year the event is being run without the students at the helm. To those who argue that the Public Relations class still exists, I can only say this – the work they have done is lacking, and the SOC’s own personal spin doctor, has been behind most of the goings-on this year. But I digress – my thoughts on this matter have already been made a matter of public record. I don’t want to turn this blog into my own personal rant space (at least not for this issue, as it does no good and my energy is drained on this subject) but Matt and I couldn’t resist posting these pics –

These posters were foamcore written on with markers, put up – in the rain – less than a week before the Webbies (and they were only the second advertisements we’ve seen for the Webbies this year at all). Please note that the Webbies are taking place tomorrow tonight, April 8th 7th .

 

 

Maue out

Update: Contrary what was originally posted, the Media Excellence Awards is taking place on Monday, April 7th instead of Tuesday.  It might just be an editorial oversight, or it might be further indicative of the confusion organizing this event as this article details and as visually connoted in the pictures accompanying the article. – Edited by Matthew Hurst

 

Pyramid Schemes of the Future

February 26, 2008 at 1:40 am | Posted in Chris Maue, Editorial | Comments Off on Pyramid Schemes of the Future
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Pyramid SchemeI’ve been on Facebook for a few years now, but I just recently realized that all this time, I wasn’t part of the St. Louis, MO network – only the Webster University one.  I figured that since I’m about to graduate in May, I should probably join the St. Louis group – although perhaps in spirit, I will not be staying at Webster University come this May.

In any case, after browsing the main page for St. Louis, I came across something odd.“Yuwie – ‘Social Networking with a Twist” was posted by someone on the city’s wall. And after a terribly made, low quality video explaining how you might in some unlikely case make 50 cents a month by signing up everyone you’ve ever met (and anyone within your range online), I was LMAO.   If the url http://2url.us/2594  doesn’t seem sketchy enough, the terrible video of a guy explaining how to get 50 cents for every 1,000 page views (with income like that, Highway 61 couldn’t afford to park downtown for more than an hour) was too much. 

Sort of like running headlong into a brick wall, with a sign hung on it that says ‘break this for a penny!’  In any case, it’s sort of reassuring to know that even in this day and age, some of the people out to steal your time and money (or in this case, probably just sell your information to advertisers)  are willing to be so obvious about it, that you’re basically asking for it if you fall for the pitch.

CALLING ALL ARTISTS – Live Nude(s and) Corpses!

February 14, 2008 at 2:17 am | Posted in Art Show, Chris Maue, Events, exhibition, Review | 6 Comments
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Tonight, I had the pleasure of seeing Body Worlds 3 at the Science Center for the second time. After my first visit, during which I awkwardly tried to sketch some of the pieces (do I even refer to them as that? I guess it’s better than calling them corpses) I agreed with many of my friends in one respect – as interesting as it was, I probably wasn’t going to come back.

The first time I went, the place was crowded, photography wasn’t allowed, and although the people monitoring the exhibit repeatedly told people that they were free to move about, and that they weren’t in a line, I nonetheless received several dirty looks from people in the crowd who seemed to think that they were. On top of all that, the frat-boy idiots who entered ahead of me seemed more interested in giggling and pointing at the genitals of each person (loudly at that) than in actually looking at anything.

Why would I possibly want a second round at that? Well tonight, the Science Center hosted a special event – Body Worlds Artists Night! The admission was reduced, there were far less people meandering about the exhibit, and the good people at the Science Center encouraged all mediums to be brought and used – As I sat down (in the optional chairs they provided) to sketch out one of my favorites, the star warrior (a winking corpse with alternating bands of skin, exposed muscles, and bones) I found myself in the company of people using charcoal, pens, pencils, and even some setting up portable easels and painting. Live nude models patrolled the grounds as well, stopping and posing near the sculptures for 25 minute intervals, allowing people to compare the inner, and outer structure of the human body – not to mention the surreal spectacle of a bunch of naked people striking bizarre poses next to skinless corpses.

The best part is, that due to the success of the exhibit, the Science Center will be hosting a second Artists Night, on Tuesday February 19 from 7pm until 9pm. Tonight, I just walked in (and thanks to my art teacher, got in free) but if you want to reserve tickets ahead of time, you can here. Whether you’re a seasoned artist, a beginner, an amateur, or just someone looking for something different to do on a Tuesday night, this was a great time – although, as the last of us filed out of the building, I couldn’t help but notice how creepy that display is at night.

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