The nerds partnered up with the Lied Center and the "It Gets Better" project to bring us an unusually moving evening of nerdery. As best as we could tell, no nerds were bullied at all during this event. Some highlights:
Bill Bowersock's "How Gay Men’s Choruses Helped Shape the Gay Rights Movement (1978-Today)" led us from the formative years of gay choruses (in SF around the time of the assassination of Harvey Milk), through the AIDS crisis (where such choruses served as the "emotional heart of the gay community," a compassionate counterbalance to the ACT UP protests) to their work in high-schools today. If you didn't cry a little during the video clip of the Gay Men's Chorus of Los Angeles singing Cyndi Lauper's "True Colors" you're probably some sort of monster. Watch it here .
In "Reparative Therapy: A Nerdy Perspective on a Hot Social Issue," Ruth Ann Atchley showed how the scientific community arrived at today's "homosexuality is NOT a pathology" mindset by examining the earlier years of problematic, biased scientific research, as well as continuing efforts such as "reparative therapy" to "cure" homosexuality. Prior to Atchley's presentation, "It Gets Better" cast member Drew Tablak provided an excellent, personal experience introduction involving such therapy.
Best line: "For therapists, a 27% 'success' rate is not that bad."
Finally, Liesel Reinhart's "Galileo's Finger and the Diffusion of Innovations" began with the promise that we WOULD see Galileo's finger during the presentation (and we did). We learned that some ideas won't diffuse (like that pesky metric system) while others (the Earth is not flat; Iphones are awesome; acceptance of homosexuality) operate on a spectrum from "innovators" and "early adapters" on one end to "laggards" on the other. Also, the word "laggards" made us giggle every time.
Best line: "It's not always that laggards won't innovate, it's just that they die first."
The "It Gets Better" touring project has its performance at the Lied on Saturday at 7:30. Details here .
Chip: "Not to be a bully, but could they please move it to 10:00 pm, right after the KU/Texas game?"
Kick off your Friday evening with a matinee of EXTRAordinary and NEVA at the Replay. NEVA is our friend Michael Buck's rock project and his first time playing with a full band in quite some time. Go rock with them.
Then stick around, because Dry Bonnet has a 7" release show at the Replay on Friday, along with Pale Hearts. Question: why's the Replay firing all our favorite scenesters these days? Check out the FB event page here.
Across the street, Iowa's Har di Har is at the Jackpot. (Re)read our interview with them from earlier in the week right here. Also on the bill is Something and the Whatevers, and we asked that band's Quinton McPanda to send us a little blurb about the show. He offered this fun little rejoinder to the Har di Har interview:
"We're really excited to play this show, mostly because of
Har-di-Har's adamant avoidance of 'loops, samples and programming.'
Something And The Whatevers believe robots are the future, and we will
probably have to challenge the Har-di's to a drum battle, which will
consist of Ben manning the iPod while Quinton and Travis try to start
an actual battle. So come get drunk and dance and help us punch the
other bands in their stupid organic faces! Robot rock forever!"
Film Church is back at Liberty Hall on Sunday with PT Anderson's Punch Drunk Love. We're going to eat so much pudding!
Chip: "I hear there will also be pudding-wrestling afterward!"
Visit the FB event page here.
Great promo material from Liberty Hall:
And later on Sunday, our friends at Free Borders (Lawrence Public Library) are presenting an author reading in the Sandbar from 4:00-5:00. This should be a perfect locale for Florida crime novelist Tim Dorsey:
"If you take a little Dave Barry, throw in some Carl Hiassen, mix in a bit of John D. MacDonald, add a pinch of Dexter, and bake it in the Florida sun, you’ll end up with Dorsey’s series featuring Serge Storms."
You had us at John D. MacDonald! Also, why aren't all readings in bars? Get the full scoop from LPL here.