Monday, November 25, 2013

Holiday Week Picks: Motorcycle Flicks. Holiday Classics, and a Snipe Hunt

Kick off your holidays with...a bunch of crazy clips from motorcycle movies at Horror Remix on Tuesday. Why not?  Full details on the flicks here via Horror Remix.  An excerpt from the Nightmare Beach synopsis:

"Bikini clad bitches are getting electrocuted by a mysterious (not to mention stylish) biker dude and everyone is pissed. Even the mayor!" 

And here's a Thanksgiving-related horror treat for you.  Eli Roth's Thanksgiving trailer from Grindhouse:


Liberty Hall serves up a more traditional holiday treat on Wednesday: John Hughes' Planes, Trains and Automobiles.  Will everyone drunkenly shout "Those aren't pillows!!"  Probably.


And Final Friday doesn't take a holiday break.  Our pick this month is the "Snipe Hunt" exhibit at the Percolator:

"SNIPE HUNT is an acronym for Society of the Never-ending Inquest to Prove Existence and Hopefully Uncover Non-typical Terrestrials. Lawrence-based artists Kent Smith and Matthew Lord created SNIPE HUNT to function as a community-sourced art project exploring the numerous reports of the many mysterious creatures around the world and the cryptic phenomena that surround them."

They've been soliciting tales of local creature-sightings for awhile, and we're hoping that someone has reported chupacabras sightings in NoLaw.

Visit the FB event page here

Thursday, November 21, 2013

One More Round of Loaded For Bear Plus Weekend Music and Movie Picks

Our friends at Loaded For Bear finish up their week-long residency here at the LC with their best column yet, a moving reverie about an LFK man who is wearing two pairs of pants.  See Loaded for Bear on Friday and/or Saturday at 8:30 at LAC.  Tickets available via

By Two Pants, Your Experimental Lover

NOTE: “Two Pants” is not affiliated with Loaded for Bear 4 in any way. He’s just a guy we saw hanging out at the Quick Shop at 19th and Mass. He was wearing two pairs of pants.

Picture a man in your mind. Not just any man, a specific man. He possesses all the qualities of a man: hair in body and face, the idea that the line between empathy and punching is razor thin, and a penis rather than a vagina. Don't picture his penis, though. Okay, fine, picture it for a moment... Done yet? Okay, thanks. A man: virile, hairy, enpenised, vibrating with the confused internal aggression which is a byproduct of modernity.

Also, this man wears two pairs of pants.

I know, the virility of this man in your mind has now increased a thousandfold. Feel free to salivate. Nobody is watching you. Even if they appear to be, it is a blank stare. Their internal machinery is too busy whirring away at the outcome of last night's sports or new episode of Cop Doctors.

Feel no shame, and allow the image of Two-Pants to envelope you like a blanket of bubblewrap, both comforting and exhilarating. He's like a tiger, with the sensuality of sinew and a strength born as much of agility as strength. And then he commandingly places his hand upon your knee and says,
"What's up, girl. Two-Pants. That's two for one. Put your tongue on my elbow."

And you realize with utter clarity that even though we exist in a world where sometimes you get a voicemail without the phone ever ringing, our bodies are made of the detritus of stars, and our souls are made of light, and Two-Pants's elbow tastes like Cheetos.

Now open your eyes and realize that the moments of true happiness in your life are fleeting, and if you want to make them last even a fraction longer then you'd better go see Loaded for Bear 4: Ad Astra per Ursa at the Lawrence Arts Center. This Friday and Saturday at 8:30pm

And remember that Two-Pants loves you.


Past interview subjects are popping up all over LFK this weekend so let's dish out some a couple of old links for you.

Chicago's ShowYouSuck hits the Replay on Friday for a major hip-hop show along with many others including LFK-favorite Approach.  Reread our interview with ShowYouSuck here, in which we talk about girls and pizza.

Our old pals Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band are back in town and at the Bottleneck on Friday.  Reread our 2012 interview here, in which we talk about fried potatoes and going fishing on the Warped Tour.


Now for the movie scene.

Over at Alamo Drafthouse KC, a weekly "movie interruption" event is kicking into high gear on Sunday.  If you're unfamiliar, this means that comedians (in this case Doug Benson and Chris Cubas and pals) will sit in the front row and heckle some old flicks.  It's one of the few occasions where (certain) people can talk in a Drafthouse chain without fear of permanent banishment (as in the recent case of poor Madonna... guess she should have been more polite during 12 Years a Slave).  Watch these funny fuckers give Halle Berry's ghost flick Gothica the business on Sunday at 7:30.  Details here via Alamo KC and watch the trailer for the "interruption" via Vimeo.

Banner: Gothika

Sure, most people will be seeing the new Hunger Games flick this weekend (though personally we're waiting for David O. Russell's upcoming American Hustle to get our Jennifer Lawrence fix, since it has a a much higher chance of some nekkid J-Law action).

But what's on the indie circuit this weekend?

Over at the Glenwood theaters, catch Harry Potter playing Allen Ginsberg (and David Cross playing Ginsberg's dad) in Kill Your Darlings.

Or you can check out Dallas Buyers Club.  Matthew McConaughey lost a shitload of weight for this film and, as we all know, this usually adds up to instant Oscar.  Jared Leto is also supposed to be awesome, so let the Leto cult assemble.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Theater Picks: Staged Reading at the Percolator; Expressionistic Musicals at KU; and Loaded For Bear At LAC

Readers, we bitch a lot about Theatre Lawrence and the safe theatrical fare that tends to dominate the Lied and KU, but it's actually a pretty good week for indie and experimental theater in LFK.  And, since we know you all love theater (!!), we're offering a few more picks in addition to those scamps in Loaded for Bear, who appear down below with a list of their favorite bear attacks in advance of their weekend shows at the LAC.

We haven't seen a play at the Percolator before, but Thursday night might change that.  A staged reading of "The Power of Duff" stars LFK's favorite late-night talk show host Mr. Mike Anderson.  Here's a summary from the FB event page

"When burnt-out local TV newscaster Charlie Duff suddenly begins offering a prayer at the end of his nightly broadcasts, he instantly becomes a popular and controversial figure to an expanding audience. But even as his prayers inspire millions, Charlie struggles with his own beliefs and his inability to connect with his estranged son."

Is there a charge for this? We can't seem to spot it.  Perhaps someone will step in and clarify.


KU's University Theatre gets edgy and high-tech with a production of Adding Machine:  A Musical, based on Elmer Rice's great, weird Expressionistic play.  It was sold out all last weekend in the tiny black box, and we expect the same this time too.  So jump on tickets pretty quick if this is your kind of thing.


And, of course, there is Loaded For Bear 4, which will certainly be the drunkest of this week's theater picks (both cast and audience).  Below is their message for the day.

Loaded for Bear 4: Ad Astra Per Ursa – November 22 and 23, Lawrence Arts Center, 8:30 p.m. $9. Tickets available at the box office, or at

By the Loaded for Bear Unpaid Interns

In the spirit of lists - something the Internet loves more than videos of cats, videos of people doin' it, and videos of cats forcing people to 'do it' at knifepoint - Loaded for Bear presents a not-all-derived-from-Buzzfeed-type-stuff list of the world's CRAZIEST BEAR ATTACKS THAT WE JUST MADE UP.

3) California, 1849 - At the height of the Gold Rush, prospector Josef Muller (who didn't see you come in there, by the way) nearly died after, you guessed it, a bear attack in the woods south of that place they found gold at that one time. The bear, being an Irish, was only spurred to attack when Muller found its pot of gold. Whilst attempting to protect its gold, the bear got drunk instead and then started a shouting match/fistfight with Muller that ended with the bear crying about the guilt it had for not being there when its mother died. CRAZY FACTOR: 1 1/2 maulings

2) Siberia, 1962 - 2 Russian cosmonauts suffered major arterial trauma after Svetlana, the first bear Russians shot into space (and they shot lots of bears into space - that was kind of their thing) soft-landed at their Siberian training grounds. Angered that the Russian space agency had zero plans to actually ensure her return to Earth or pay into her 401(k), Svetlana took her frustration out on the poor saps already trying not to die under Communism. CRAZY FACTOR: 3 shits in the woods.

1) Washington, DC, 1997 - After a particularly vicious mauling in the Oval Office, President Bear-ton went on national television to claim "I did not have violent relations with that hiker."  Yep, that's all I got. You try making bear puns about the Lewinsky scandal - it's not as easy as it seems. Uh, im-bear-ment trial - see what I mean.  Like President Bear-ton wasn't a stretch from the get-go. We're done here. CRAZY FACTOR: 4 1/2 scalps torn off by bears.

Welp, there you have it. Maybe next time there'll be gifs. But if you can't wait 'til next time, and/or prefer to see motion unfold linearly in time and space rather than repeated in a continuous closed loop, come see Loaded for Bear 4: Ad Astra Per Ursa, a new comedy show at the Lawrence Arts Center, November 22 and 23 at 8:30 PM. No bear puns – we promise.  Fingers still crossed on the whole “clean” thing though.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Tuesday Scenester Pick: Little Howlin' Wolf at the Replay / More Hijinks From Loaded For Bear

It's another Wiggins Day in LFK!  But what else might be of interest?

 Little Howlin' Wolf hits the Replay tonight.  Our first guess was that Little Howlin' Wolf is a child blues prodigy.  But we guessed wrong. Apparently Little Howlin' Wolf is a...

"Polish fellow from the South Side of Chicago whose past activities have included being a bounty hunter, secret agent, diving instructor, and kids' pirate entertainer. As a street musician, he also has created a body of free-flowing music from another planet ranging from demented voodoo-blues, junkyard calypso, fractured free-gospel and other uncategorizable sound forms that call to mind the greatest moments of Abner Jay, Albert Ayler, and Don Van Vliet."

Well, sure.  This has got to be the pick of the night, right?

Here's Little Howlin' Wolf.  Learn more and hear some tunes here.  The first tune we clicked, "Astral Blue," begins with a bunch of noises that sounds like a rhino stampede.


The Loaded for Bear gang is back with us today for two more attempts to get you to attend their show this weekend.  The first is written by Matt Gaus's baby and the next is a written by a handout.  And stick around for the very strange new flyer below.

Loaded for Bear 4: Ad Astra Per Ursa – November 22 and 23, Lawrence Arts Center, 8:30 p.m. $9. Tickets available at the box office, or at

Why You Should See Loaded for Bear 4
by Max Lowrance-Gaus, Age 1

I’ll just say it: you should go see Loaded for Bear 4, the comedy show co-produced by my parents. “But Max,” you’re saying. “You’re one years old. That’s only one more than zero years old. Why should I give a crap what you think?” Let me explain.

So I’m at daycare the other day, and this kid Rafael comes up to me and says “My daddy’s a biomedical researcher at KU Med. He’s close to a breakthrough that will lead to a cure for Parkinson’s disease. What does your dad do?” “He dresses up like a cowboy , delivers “fictional” monologues about an unhealthy sexual obsession with Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and calls it satire.”

Jesus Christ.

My mom’s not any better. Last night she’s hunched over her editing console, and I’m like “Hey mommy, could you read me Goodnight Moon?” “Not now, Max. Mommy’s almost figured out how to make lasers shoot out of Josef Stalin’s crudely animated eyeballs.” Yeah, mom, that’ll win you an Oscar. “Leave your mama alone and come eat dinner,” Dad said. “We’re having Doritos and Red Bull again.”

So why should you see Loaded for Bear 4? Because thirty years from now, when I’m getting fired from the car wash for stealing change out of your center console, or arrested for urinating on your air conditioning unit, you might not be able to forgive, but you might be able to understand.

Why You Should Go See Loaded for Bear 4: Ad Astra Per Ursa
By An HR Handout on Proper Lifting

I love Loaded for Bear! It’s great comedy and you should totes go see it on November 22nd and 23rd at the Lawrence Arts Center!  But there’s another reason I really love Loaded for Bear, and I’ll let you in on it: it’s because they really get loads! In my line of work, that’s incredibly important! I’m a handout that details how to lift things properly, so I know about loads. “Stand close to the load,” “Firmly grip the load,” “Use your legs to lift the load.” And Loaded for Bear brings the loads along with what I’m told is comedy.  

See, I’m just a crude series of diagrams that show people lifting a box together, so I don’t really get most forms of humor. But when I see everyone else laughing and having a great time, I have to assume that Loaded for Bear, in addition to being great with loads, is also really funny!  So go see Loaded for Bear, because which would you rather do – watch Loaded for Bear 4: Ad Astra Per Ursa or face a lifetime of back pain?

Monday, November 18, 2013

It's Guest Column Week With Loaded For Bear! First Up: Matt Gaus Tell You What's What

Those scoundrels from Loaded For Bear are back at the Lawrence Arts Center this weekend for their fourth installment of sketches, films, and general mayhem.  In case your PBR-addled brains have forgotten, these are a bunch of folks from the late, great Victor Continental show.

We're turning over the blog to them this week (at least partly) for a series of short pieces and promotions, kicking off today with Matt Gaus giving you the rundown on what to expect this weekend.  

Get tickets at the LAC Box Office or via the LAC calendar page here.

Here's Matt!

Loaded For Bear 4: A Primer
By Matt Gaus, Co-Producer, Loaded For Bear 4: Ad Astra Per Ursa

We’ve done three of these already  – more than enough for your average Lawrence scenester to bitch about how the show was better two years ago, and how they were there, man, before it got ruined by all those posers who only showed up later for the eye candy and the Stalin impersonations. But what if you want to be one of those scenesters? Here are the whats, the whys, and the hows of Loaded For Bear 4: Ad Astra Per Ursa. By the end of this post, you’ll be indistinguishable from the bitchiest comedy groupie in all of northeast Kansas, an accomplishment which you can totally put on a resume.

What is Loaded For Bear 4? It’s the fourth in a planned seventeen-part series of comedic hootenannies brought to you by Card Table Productions (“The Victor Continental Show”). Two dozen live sketches, a dozen short films, no breaks, and no goddamned improv. The world of Loaded for Bear is a world of violent sandwiches, pretentious French artists, and adult undergarments, all available to you, for a limited time, for less than the price of a movie ticket. It features five of Lawrence’s Funniest People™, as arbitrarily determined by Lawrence magazine (Google it – that’s a real thing). Plus, it’s at the Lawrence Arts Center, so, you know, classy. Check us out on Facebook or YouTube for a taste.

Why should I see Loaded for Bear 4? You mean besides the opportunity to see such Lawrence comedy veterans as TV’s Andy Morton, ham radio’s Chris Nelson, local favorite Jerry Mitchell, local “favorite” Will Averill, local local Monica Greenwood, two-time Dancing With The Stars viewer Imagene Harris, eight-time Mother, May I Sleep With Danger? viewer Jacqueline Grunau, local street tough Kitty Steffens, professional juggler Hilary Morton, and part-time genius Emily Lowrance-Floyd? How about the opportunity to support local theater, or to support the growing local comedy scene? How about to support such local businesses as Ad Astra Acupuncture, Conroy’s Pub, Frank’s North Star Tavern, Liberty Hall Video and Pawsh Wash? How about those plugs?

How do I see Loaded for Bear 4? Well, that’s the easy part. For the low, low price of $9 American (plus possible online fees), you purchase a ticket at the Lawrence Arts Center box office (940 New Hampshire) or online here. Then you just show up prior to the 8:30 p.m starting time this Friday and Saturday, November 22nd and 23rd and bang – the best damn comedy you ever saw this week!

What’s the beef between you and David Schwimmer? That’s between me and Schwimmer. He knows what he did. Let’s just say snitches get stitches and leave it at that.

See you there!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Nerd Nite 22: It Started With Carny Pig Latin and Ended With a Battle / Plus: Weekend Picks

Nerds are generally peaceful types but this month's Nerd Nite presentations were all about fighting, with the evening building inexorably toward an epic (foam) battle.

Up first, local funnyman (and new Nerd Nite co-boss) Peter Lyrene identified himself as a pacifist while relating his fondness for 80's/90's wrestling: "I grew up in the South, so I had to love it."  Focusing on the fascinating world of wrestling's supporting characters: the "jobbers" and the "ham-and-eggers" and the "handlers" whose job is corralling these often "feral" types.  Growing up in the South ourselves, many of these names are imprinted in our own consciousness (the Wild Samoans!) but our favorite name that we had never heard (or maybe forgotten) was probably "Battle Kat Brady Boone."  Here he is:

 File:Dean Peters.jpg

Somehow Peter didn't manage to incorporate NRBQ's great song "Captain Lou" so we'll include it here via Youtube in tribute to the late great Captain Lou Albano.  Please listen.

Most potentially useful thing we learned about: "Carny Pig Latin."  (Chip: "We try to always obey the principles of "kayfabe" here at the LC.").

Paul Dietz, up next, convinced us that it was urgent to save the prairie chicken.  Did you know there are people on the plains removing miles and miles of man-made barriers and cutting down stray trees so that raptors can't perch nearby and snatch up these poor little prairie chickens?  We didn't.  But kudos to them!  Prior to this presentation, Courtbelle walked by and said to us: "I bet you fuckers don't even know what a prairie chicken is."  She was (mostly) correct.

Best moment:  videos of prairie chickens fighting and mating (Chip: "Surprisingly erotic!").


Finally, Elwood Schaad took us deep inside the wild world of Dagorhir, massive foam-fighting competitions that re-enact epic fantasy battles.  Don't laugh:  it's a sport (they insist it's a sport) whose origins stretch back to 1977 when Tolkien-nerds decided to recreate some of their favorite battle scenes.   Is Dagorhir a form of LARP-ing?  Well, yes, but many participants distance themselves from it a bit since the focus, as Elwood explained, is often ultimately less about playing a fantasy character than it is about beating the hell out of people with DIY foam swords and spears and such ("I never knew how much I needed this," said Elwood).  The local branch of Dagorhir is called Emberfeld and they meet on Thursdays.  Holy shit, that's tonight.  Look them up on Facebook here and join.  Based on the fighting demonstration that ended the evening, it does indeed look "incredibly fulfilling," as Elwood insisted.

Most rousing moment:  a performance of the local battle-cry.

The nerds are vacationing in December and returning in January with all new co-bosses.

Special shout out to Travis and Becky and all the folks that have made it awesome from the beginning!


The Pedaljets are still around.   The Pedaljets are still good.  Catch them at the Bottleneck on Friday with the Dead Girls.


LFK's "premiere slime-rock trio" Witch Jail is at the Replay.   Looks like Count Blastov has made another bad-ass flyer! That guy sure loves VHS horror movies. 

On Saturday Truckstop Honeymoon hits the Bottleneck.  We caught them playing an 11:00 am set (yep!) at Mass. Street Music's 30th anniversary bash last weekend and noted to ourselves (as we have noted many times before) that they still write the best songs in Lawrence.  Don't argue.  


Wells the Traveler opens the night, with Truckstop's Mike doing double-duty in that band as well.  If you haven't seen Wells yet, you're missing out.  FB event page here.


And there's a pretty good hoedown at Frank's on Sunday, though we're not sure anyone has yet realized that this show is scheduled during the epic Chiefs/Broncos game.   Will it be cancelled?  Or moved down to the cockfighting ring?  Who knows?

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Deeper Into Movies: Three Hour French Lesbian Films, Yakuza, Dinosaurs, and Frances Ha

Serious movie season is upon us and the Oscar race is kicking into high gear.  Yet these days the multiplexes aren't much different than the summer months: they are full of Thors, and Hunger Games, and Hobbits.

What's a true film buff to do?

Well, head over to the Tivoli or the Glenwood to see the much-buzzed about Cannes sensation and Palme d'Or winner Blue is the Warmest Color, which has become better known as "the three hour French lesbian film."

Chip:  "As excited as I am to see this, I do suspect that much of it will be tedious and pretentious, as most French things are.  Can someone just make a Youtube mash-up of the extra-hot scenes for me?"

We hear that Liberty Hall will eventually open the film as well, so look for Chip in the back row at various screenings once he figures out when the hot parts occur.  Also, in Idaho, this film cannot be shown at a certain theater because of a law that prevents sexually explicit films from being shown where alcohol is served (seriously). Hopefully this rule doesn't apply to Kansas!


Alamo Drafthouse brings some selections from Austin's popular Fantastic Fest to KC.  Our pick has the great title of Why Don't You Play in Hell? and it's directed by Sion Sono, who made 2009's four hour Love Exposure, which remains the craziest fucking thing we've seen in the last few years.

 Here's a brief excerpt from the summary of the new film:

"Enter The Fuck Bombers, an eager but untalented group of wannabe filmmakers whose dreams of making movies have come crashing down after ten years. Circumstances have brought them to this fateful moment where they’ll be able to film the climactic battle between yakuzas in an epic, over-the-top ending for the ages."

Details here via Alamo KC.



If you're in the mood for some nostalgia, KU Natural History Museum continues their "Myths and Mayhem" series with a screening of Jurassic Park on Thursday at 6:30.  Details here.  Here's the cool poster outside the museum.

Hold on to your butts! (if you catch our reference.


Or just stay home and watch and re-watch Noah Baumbach's glorious black-and-white Frances Ha, just released on Criterion this week.  We wrote a piece about it this summer over here at PBR Book Club because we love it very much.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Tuesday Night Meet-Ups: Wiggins Meets Duke and #QR1863 Meets #KSNUT1861 (For Those Who Speak Hashtag)

Sorry, scenesters, sometimes you just can't avoid basketball in LFK.  Tonight is the first big game of the season and, by most accounts, Duke is poised to give KU a royal thrashing (despite the presence of the great and mighty Wiggins).  We recommend watching at Liberty to check out the new cinema upgrades.

And return to Liberty again over the weekend if you can stomach further whippings, because intrepid new cinema manager Maggie has booked 12 Years a Slave, somehow kidnapping the film right out from under Regal Southwind 12.  Having seen it in KC a few weeks ago, we think it's safe to say that it will win Best Picture for sure.   (unfortunately, a lot of people will probably put off seeing it until the nominations arrive...don't be one of those people...go see it at Liberty Hall).


We had so much fun participating in the #QR1863 live-tweet of Quantrill's Raid over the summer that we want to give a special shout-out to a panel discussion tonight at the LAC that's being called "#QR1863 Meets #KSNUT1861."  The latter hashtag refers to LFK's 9th annual (and ever-changing) production of A Kansas Nutcracker at Lawrence Arts Center, which incorporates Kansas historical figures into the beloved play.  This year's version will bring a few #QR1863 characters into the mix (sadly, the tweeting horse doesn't seem to be one of them).  Among tonight's panelists:  Christine Metz (the Queen of #QR1863) and omnipresent KU historian Jonathan Earle.

 Read Sarah Shepherd's piece on tonight's event here.  And see full details and cool links on this year's production via the LAC site.

The meeting starts at 7:00 and will be over long, long before KU's late game.


Monday, November 11, 2013

Nerd Nite 22 Preview: Let's Wrestle! / Plus, LFK Crime Story of the Week: Jimboy at Munchers

The nerds are back on Wednesday and this time it's all about fighting!

There is a presentation on wrestling by local funnyman Peter Lyrene. Chip is pretty hyped.  We're hoping Peter tells some classic wrestling jokes like this one:

Q: Why do rednecks like to do it doggie-style?  
A: That way they can both watch wrestling.

There's also a presentation about the fight to save prairie chickens and one about Dagorhir (which is something nerdy involving foam fighting, we think).

Visit the Facebook event page here


We are connoisseurs of unusual LFK crime stories and last week brought an especially good one when local scoundrel Jimboy was caught mysteriously crawling around the ceilings at Munchers Bakery and claiming he was attempting to escape from a locked restroom even though the restrooms at Munchers (apparently) don't have locks.   It's a weird tale. Read it here via LJ-World.  Sadly, the non-anonymous talkbacks aren't as fun as they used to be, and most of the comments seem to have been removed for various reasons.

Chip:  "I'm certain that Jimboy was planning to lower himself into the bakery on a wire for a stunning Mission Impossible-style cream cheese doughnut heist made even more impressive by the fact that the place is open 24 hours."