Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

Posts made in: October, 2013 (73) Currently Viewing: 31 - 40 of 73

October 13, 2013 at 9:22am

5 Things To Do Today: "Arsenic & Old Lace," Ted Brown memorial, "A Late Quartet" and more ...

Lakewood Playhouse's "Arsenic" is tasty: Jacob Tice and Chris Cantrell on stage. Photo credit: Kate Lick

SUNDAY, OCT. 13 2013 >>>

1. The central joke in the '40s comedy Arsenic and Old Lace concerns spinster sisters Abby and Martha Brewster, who are pillars of the local church, much loved in their community, and always happy to provide soup for the sick and hospitality to the lonely. They live with their nephew, Teddy, an amiable loon who thinks he's Teddy Roosevelt. But the sisters have a secret: Using arsenic-laced elderberry wine, they kill lonely old men - but only with the best of motives: to bring the old gentlemen peace. Several recipients of their benevolence are buried in the basement, and when the play opens at 2 p.m. in the Lakewood Playhouse for the last time, a twelfth is in the window seat, awaiting disposal. Read Christian Carvajal's full review of Arsenic and Old Lace in the Music and Culture section.

2. The Swiss has stepped up their Sunday Seahawks parties this year. Yeah, yeah, they have 12 TVs. Who doesn't. Do those 12 TVs come with a 9:30 a.m. opening, four breakfast specials before noon, pool tables, shuffleboard and happy hour all day in a historic building? Our favorite combo is the meat breakfast burrito paired with a Manmosa (shot of raspberry vodka) and a Jermaine Kearse diving catch touchdown.

3. That big collective groan you may have heard or felt reverberating throughout Tacoma was for the loss of preeminent music promoter Ted Brown who passed away Sept. 25. He was 61. Ted's inextinguishable enthusiasm and zest for music made him instantly familiar with everyone he met. A memorial will be held at 2 p.m. in the Immanuel Presbyterian Church. A Blues Vespers show will be held in conjunction, which is how Ted would have wanted it.

4. A Late Quartet tells the story of a beloved cellist of a world-renowned string quartet who receives a life changing diagnosis, the group's future suddenly hangs in the balance: suppressed emotions, competing egos, and uncontrollable passions threaten to derail years of friendship and collaboration. As they are about to play their 25th anniversary concert, quite possibly their last, only their intimate bond and the power of music can preserve their legacy. Inspired by and structured around Beethoven's Opus 131 String Quartet in C-sharp minor, the film pays homage to chamber music and the cultural world of New York. The films screens at 3 p.m. in the Theatre on the Square. Tickets are $49 as it includes admission to the world-famous Brentano String Quartet concert Nov. 8 at The Rialto.

5. Portland-based saxophonist Patrick Lamb returns to Jazz LIVE at Marine View for an encore performance at 5 p.m. Lamb is one of those extraordinary performers who combine raw talent and energy with a singular ability to captivate an audience with his charm, sincerity and pure magnetism.

LINK: Sunday, Oct. 13 arts and entertainment events in the greater TAcoma and Olympia area

October 14, 2013 at 7:24am

5 Things To Do Today: Live looming, wildlife photography, jazz jam and more ...

Priscilla Dobler's textile art can be seen at priscilladobler.com.

MONDAY, OCT. 14 2013 >>>

1. Priscilla Dobler will be creating artwork for the Woolworth Windows installation ... live. You may peer at her through the window, day and night, as she takes textiles fromwhite and minimal to lively and colorful with her floor loom and colorful cotton threads. Dobler will be performing in the window Oct. 14 -18. The woven pieces she creates during this performance will be given away to the homeless, available for sale to passersby, or left in the window for the remainder of the exhibition. 

2. Friends of the Gig Harbor Library wildlife photographer Paul Bannick at 7:30 p.m. Bannick specializes in the natural history of North America, with a focus on birds and habitat. He creates images that foster intimacy between viewer and subject, inspiring education and conservation.

3. In the same way that sharks must keep swimming to keep breathing, it seems guitarist Rafael Tranquilino must fuse genres across various musical projects in order to stay afloat. His arrangements incorporate blues, funk, rock, funk, ska, metal, reggae, Latin and jazz-fusion. As accomplished as he is varied, Tranquilino can be seen every Monday night at 8 p.m. as host of Stonegate Pizza's rockin' blues, if not experimental, jam.

4. Pianist Nate D., bassist Cameron and drummer Peter T. have launch the city's newest jazz jam inviting talent to sit in as the house trio explores straight ahead, funk and space. Not all gigs qualify as a hang, but this one has the precise alchemy that could draw the area's best players: a high level of musicianship, a relaxed atmosphere and a sympathetic intergenerational crowd. Ask any working jazz musician, and the hang is what it's all about.Hang at 8 p.m. in The New Frontier Lounge.

5. Every Monday Jazzbones is packed to the brim with college kids. Party types. The type that wear tight shirts and trucker hats. Throngs of Chad Fratguys and Sarah Sororitysisters swarm the bar, line up for the bathroom and dance to the Rockaraoke - live band karaoke. The Rockaraoke band is skilled, too. Expect $2 PBR drafts, $3 Sinfire shots, $4 Smirnoff flavor vodka bombs. It all goes down at 9 p.m.

LINK: Monday, Oct. 14 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

Filed under: 5 Things To Do, Arts, Tacoma, Music,

October 14, 2013 at 10:18am

Hurry! Five-dollar lunches ending soon

Triple Play Sports Bar's calzone is worth way more than $5. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

Going to a sports bar usually means having some dude standing on your feet while you crane your neck and try to watch a TV because it's too loud to make any conversation. Triple Play Sports Bar on Tacoma's Sixth Avenue, on the other hand, never seems to get too crowded. Even when it is, there are three rooms - not counting the private karaoke lounge  - so it never becomes claustrophobic. Nine TVs are strategically placed, and a 10-foot projection screen blankets what was the original Hell's Kitchen's main music room.

Want to enjoy this entire splendor on the cheap?

Here's what you do: Burst through the doors like you own the place. Give bartender Jeanette Sullivan one of those cool hand shooters motions with a wink. Head to the black couch below the widescreen. When Sullivan approaches, ask her for the lunch menu then order a Long Island Iced Tea. From the couch you can watch her pour four bottles of booze in one shot. When she returns, pretend you are not shocked that all seven items on the lunch menu are $5 each. Even though you intend to order the delicious calzone with amazing dough made from 7 Seas Brewing beer, inquire about the $5 top sirloin burger, $5 grilled ham and cheese, $5 personal chef's salad, $5 turkey sandwich, two beef hot dogs for $5 and the $5 fish ‘n' chips. She's going to ask you if you'd like to add a side for $1. That's your call.

Kick back on the couch and enjoy.


Filed under: Food & Drink, Sports, Screens, Tacoma,

October 14, 2013 at 12:17pm

Words & Photos: Harmon Brewer's Dinner and 2015 U.S. Open update

The view from Chambers Bay Grill Friday, Oct. 11 / photo credit: Kim Thompson

You'd expect a brewer's dinner to be all about the beer, right? Well, the Harmon Brewer's Dinner at Chambers Bay Grill Friday, Oct. 11 did feature tasty beer (and it flowed beautifully), but this dinner was so much more, such as knock-your-socks-off food pairings, great guest speakers, lively conversation and the Holy Grail of sunsets, which punctuated the event.

The dinner was indeed a celebration of many things: the launch of Harmon Brewing's Fearless Exploration Imperial Rye IPA, a collaboration of the brewery with the Tacoma Regional Convention + Visitor Bureau (TRCVB); the culinary magic of Chamber's Bay Grill chef Joshua Corcoran; the magnificent Chambers Bay Golf Course and upcoming mega-watt golf championship, the 2015 U.S. Open; and finally, where we live is totally awesome and we know it.

Top things I learned:

I (HEART) the Harmon Brewery, and the Chambers Bay Grill is a foodie's dream.

Let's start with the menu:

First course: shrimp ceviche, cucumbers, lemon and avocado paired with Harmon T-Town Blonde - A Summer Shandy.


October 15, 2013 at 7:21am

5 Things To Do Today: Erik Hanberg book release, "Still Mine," Hanna Rosin, new house music night and more ...

Mary and Erik Hanberg dismount the cats tonight to celebrate Erik's book, "The Lead Cloak," at King's Books. Photo courtesy of erikhanberg.com/ghprimemedia.com

TUESDAY, OCT. 15 2013 >>>

1. Tacoma's Head Bookworm Erik Hanberg is everywhere. If he's not helping old ladies across the street, or building little houses for squirrels at every park in Tacoma, or designing a marketing program with his wife, or ballroom dancing to raise money for charities, or giving local dignitaries a ride on a 12-person bike, or building a shrine out of cocktail swizzle sticks for Tacoma author Frank Herbert, he's releasing a new book. Old ladies, squirrels, dance partners, city councilmembers and cocktails will be on hold tonight as Hanberg releases yet another book, The Lead Cloak, with a book launch party at 7 p.m. in King's Books. The book, his first science fiction adventure, is set in 2081 when "The Lattice" enables anyone to re-live any moment of his or her life. According to pre-event hype, "Most people love (The Lattice). Some want to destroy it. Colonel Byron Shaw has just saved the Lattice from the most dangerous attack in its history." It's best to arrive at King's early as the Stadium District bookstore will, no doubt, be full of old ladies, squirrels, dancers, Tacoma City Councilmembers, drinkers and his wife, Mary.

2. Based on true events and laced with wry humor, Still Mine is a heartfelt love story about an 89-year-old New Brunswicker who comes up against the system when he sets out to build a more suitable house for his wife whose memory is starting to go. The Grand Cinema screens the flick at 2:10 and 6:40 p.m.

3. Women vs. men. Make all your jokes about remote controls and refusing to ask for directions, but we all know it's way more complicated than that. The complexities are ripe for the examining, precisely what Hanna Rosin, senior editor at The Atlantic, editor and founder of Slate's women's section DoubleX, and author of a new book, will do at 7 p.m. in William W. Philip Hall on the UW Tacoma campus. Rosin will explain her reasons for believing that, although men currently seem unwilling to adjust to new realities that are changing their roles in society, they "may become more flexible as the world around them continues to change." 

4. Sinatra-esque crooner Chris Anderson takes his show to the Red Wind Casino at 6:30 p.m., hitting all the notes and making the ladies swoon in the process. Anderson has repeatedly proven to offer a throwback good time.

5. The 1230 Room probably has you at "free taco bar," but you also may be interested in the downtown Olympia club's new Tuesday deep, tech and progressive house night "The Deep End." It launches tonight with drink specials, no cover and resident DJs Alex Bosi, Evan Mould and Chris Paro.

LINK: Tuesday, Oct. 15 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

October 15, 2013 at 10:06am

Eat This Now: Over the Moon Cafe mac and cheese

At Over the Moon Cafe, the kitchen takes mac and cheese seriously.

Over the Moon Cafe is one of those establishments that one refers to as a "hidden gem." Located in Opera Alley, this charming Tacoma dining establishment is easily bypassed but worth a visit.

Inside you'll find black table linens, cozy colorful chairs and lighting that set the mood perfect for date night or conversation over a glass of wine. A small lamp adorns your table alongside a collection of vintage hardback books, combined with the lighting and velvety seating you're enveloped in a gypsy-esque ambiance. Open for lunch and dinner, the menu is spattered with colorful salad options and tasty sandwiches during lunch that transition to artful fine dining worthy plates in the evening.

There's a clear favorite on Over the Moon Café's lunch menu: mac and cheese ($13). This isn't your average mac and cheese; this is a "classy, I'm an adult" version that still delivers the comfort hug of the quintessential childhood dish. The base is penne pasta tossed in a delightful cream sauce. Folded into the dish are fresh Roma tomatoes, marinated artichoke hearts and sliced Portobello mushrooms, which lend a lovely earthiness. As if that wasn't enough, the Moon tops it with Parmesan and Gruyere cheeses. Housemade croutons add just a touch of texture.

The end result is gooey cheesy goodness ... for grown-ups.

OVER THE MOON CAFÉ, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 709 Court C "Opera Alley," Tacoma, 253.284.3722

Filed under: Food & Drink, Tacoma,

October 15, 2013 at 11:00am

Nerd Alert!: Not-so-sexy vampires and Halloween mayhem

Rev. Colin is armed with vampire flicks Sunday night at the Acme Grub Cage.


The Tacoma Cult Movie Club has been raging on for several years at the Acme Grub Cage. It's a home for misfit lovers of films, good and bad alike. Rev. Colin organizes the event, and it brings around curious drunkards to take in cinematic question marks. These are films that range in genre from b-movie prison erotica to stop-motion creature features to apocalyptic excursions into the mouths of madness.

Of course, the quality of films is bound to vary, but the binding element is always this sense of wild-eyed enthusiasm of "Fuck, let's go make a movie!" Whether or not these movies end up being what they were intended is just lost in the addled wonder of creating.

It's October, so there can be no avoiding the necessity to take in some shitty horror movies. Tacoma Cult Movie Club is naturally the first place to turn when it comes to plumbing the extraordinary depths of forgotten horror relics. This Sunday, the theme of the evening will be "vampires." It doesn't really need to be reiterated how much the culture has devalued vampires as a terrifying commodity. They're a trope that's been reduced to abs with teeth, with a good deal of moping mixed in between.

Rev. Colin will not deliver the shabby vampires of new. Although he can't reveal what films will be screened, he did have a statement to make: "As if Sunday nights don't suck enough, the Tacoma Cult Movie Club will be showing vampire films Sunday night. There are so many good-bad options that I am still figuring out the best route to achieve total viewing euphoria for those who love movies that suck."

On a personal note, please do yourself a favor for Halloween and watch either the simultaneously hilarious and moving Nosferatu meta-biopic Shadow of the Vampire or Werner Herzog's gorgeous Nosferatu the Vampyre.

TACOMA CULT MOVIE CLUB, 7 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 20, Acme Grub Cage, 1310 Tacoma Ave S., Tacoma, no cover, 253.272.1892]


Speaking of Halloween, TheWrap.com reports that of a reunion between Step Brothers duo John C. Reilly and Will Ferrell in a movie called Devil's Night, the release date of which is still uncertain. Naturally, the film is said to take place on Oct. 30, the titular "Devil's Night," where all true mayhem and absurdity run amok before the amateurs come out on the 31st.

Anyone who saw Step Brothers can attest that Reilly and Ferrell have a certain obnoxious chemistry together - Reilly, finally pushing to the fore that hint of comedy that always lurked underneath his performances in movies like Boogie Nights, and Ferrell, persisting in being the goddamn oaf that refuses to do another movie like the great Stranger Than Fiction.

Early descriptions of the plot describe Devil's Night as a movie about two childhood friends who grow apart and then, 15 years later, "put their differences aside and reunite to save their neighborhood from utter destruction," which sounds uncomfortably similar to the recent Edgar Wright joint, The World's End.

Needless to say, there's likely to be a whole lot more improvisational grab-assing between Reilly and Ferrell than there was with Nick Frost and Simon Pegg. I'll leave that to you whether that's a plus or a minus.

LINK: Past Nerd Alert columns

Filed under: Nerd Alert!, Screens, Tacoma,

October 16, 2013 at 7:12am

5 Things To Do Today: 3 Inches of Blood, Middle Floor Merchants, History Night with Bill Baarsma and more ...

Get ready for galloping, epic Iron Maiden-style prog metal with more Dungeons & Dragons imagery than you can throw a handful of 20-sided dice at.

WEDNESDAY, OCT. 16 2013 >>>

1. 3 Inches of Blood divorced themselves from the cheesier of their metal ancestors.  This Vancouver, B.C., sextet, sporting two singers - Cam Pipes belting out death metal screams while guitarist Justin Hagberg has replaced Jamie Hopper's vocal duties - spews classic metal swagger, and that's why we dig them. They remind us of the '70s metal past - the vocal assault of Rob Halford, epic guitars of Iron Maiden and Metallica. Loud and raucous, 3 Inches of Blood will rock Jazzbones at 8 p.m. with screaming-for-vengeance vocals, medieval tales of pillaging unsuspecting victims and fair maidens, razor sharp guitar riffs and thunderous drumming. Witchburn and Deathbed Confessions will set the tone.

2. Little antique stores have their appeal, but sometimes it's nice to take a giant approach to antique shopping - that is, you stop at one big place and find everything. Sanford and Son Antiques stocks all sorts of old knickknacks and goodies in a three-floor maze of awesomeness. Griswold cast-iron pans, oak library tables, antique Royal typewriters, old cameras, antique lighters, dishes, silver, that Six Million Dollar Man action figure you had as a child - you'll find it all here under one roof at reasonable prices. In 2005, Sanford and Son owners Alan and Cheryl Gorsuch converted its middle floor into a shopping bazaar of 20 local businesses called the Middle Floor Merchants. From noon to 6 p.m., a celebration for new merchants will be held, including Magic Card gaming, a drum circle, entertainment, youth crafting, door prizes and refreshments. Check out the magic card shop, fashion accessories, photography studio, model train shop, a home-style diner and coffee shop, dog boutique, vintage and decor shops and other shops.

3. Artist David Roholt transforms the familiar. His paintings balance the abstract and the representational, creating dimension through contrasting color and surface texture. Roholt's paintings will be on display at Pacific Lutheran University's University Gallery through Nov. 13. A wine and cheese reception will be held from 5-7 p.m.

4. You can hear it in his voice. It’s quiet and not the least bit nervous. As he describes his conversion from staunch Republican to old-fashioned populist Democrat; as he revisits days as a White House intern; as he recalls his tenure as student advisor to the University of Puget Sound’s Black Student Union and participation in antiwar protest marches; and decades later, as he laments the presence of a private prison for immigrants on the Tacoma Tideflats one thing becomes clear — many of us never knew the real Bill Baarsma. Maybe you'll get to know the former Tacoma mayor better when he hosts History Night at 6:30 p.m. in The Swiss. The theme is sports in Tacoma.

5. San Francisco poet and artist Beau Beausoleil is the founder of the Al-Mutanabbi Street Coalition and co-curator of the Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here book exhibit, which is on display at the Collins Memorial Library on the campus of the University of Puget Sound. Beausoleil will be at the library from 7-8 p.m. to discuss the exhibit and discuss the al-Mutanabbi Street in Baghdad as a place that has long offered sanctuary to diverse Iraqi voices, and a place where the roots of democracy took hold hundreds of years ago.

LINK: Wednesday, Oct. 16 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

October 16, 2013 at 11:15am

Future Things Are Coming: Comedian Ian Harris

Ian Harris is on a promotional tour for his first hour-long television special, "Ian Harris: Critical & Thinking," which airs in Jan 2014.

Shockingly, the Weekly Volcano's Nerd Alert column didn't mention the upcoming CFI Skeptics Summit conference. Seriously? The event crams critical thinkers, humanists and skeptics into one of Hotel Murano's conference rooms to debate and collaborate. Not even Bill Nye's appearance nudged a mention.

Also overlooked in this week's nerd column is the Tacoma appearance of comedian Ian Harris.

Harris has undoubtedly been invited to attend the CFI Skeptics Summit for his ability to "skewer commonly held beliefs, taking aim at such topics as Religion, Ghosts, The Paranormal, Comforting Notions, Astrology, Pop-Mysticism, Alternative Medicine, Racism and Apocalyptic Claims," as his hype reads.

But Harris's humor isn't just for nerds, it's a bit punk rock, edgy and irreverent - a cocktail of comedy just right for the Grit City Comedy Club, where he will bust out jokes such as, "I saw a book in the bookstore the other day called Christianity for Dummies and I thought, ‘Oh the irony.'"

Harris is on a promotional tour for his first hour-long television special, Ian Harris: Critical & Thinking, which airs in Jan 2014. The special is already being called "the most original and brilliant comedy special in years," according to those who hype specials.

As part of his tour, Harris will be performing for three nights in Tacoma - as part of the CSICON (CFI Skeptic's Summit) Thursday, Oct 24 and then at Grit City Comedy Friday and Saturday.

I guess the Nerd Alert boys can redeem themselves in next week's column.

IAN HARRIS, 8:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25, 8:30 and 10:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 26, Grit City Comedy Club, 100 S, Ninth St., Tacoma, $15, 253.961.4262

October 16, 2013 at 4:16pm

Judging by the Trailer: "Escape Plan"

Sylvester Stallone and Ahnald Schwarzenegger disrupt a rehearsal of the Black Man Group.

"It was almost too easy," thought aloud the shadowy President of Hollywood, as a gloved hand emerged from behind a leather chair to reach for a rock glass of brandy. No one had ever seen his face, but his influence was felt in all corners of the world.

"Soon," hissed the mysterious figure. "Soon, my master plan will come to fruition. The golden age of '80s and '90s sci-fi action madness will run wild over a placid movie-going public. And, to think, all I had to do was bring two septuagenarian, plastic-faced men out of retirement and force them to star together in a futuristic prison-break vehicle."

Over on the dimly lit wall of the President's office hung a poster embossed with bold lettering, all studded steel and crude red underlines, but what stood out most were two names: Stallone. Schwarzenegger.

Off in the corner, a hairless cat hissed in recoil at the sight of Escape Plan. It is said that animals sense evil more viscerally than humans, and what this cat could see was what no one else would come to realize until it was far too late: in addition to Escape Plan being a return to the kind of dumbshit macho popcorn fare of Stallone and Schwarzenegger's early career, it would also be the thing to bring about the end of days.

"The Expendables triptych and Schwarzenegger's shrug of a comeback with The Last Stand - those were just the beginning," cackled the President of Hollywood. "Wait until the unwashed masses feast their eyes on the story of Breslin, the professional prison-break artist, as portrayed by marble-mouthed Sly Stallone. Wait until they see him enter the high-tech super prison and form a shaky alliance with Schwarzenegger's Rottmayer, and bond over jokes about vegetarians. Watch them gasp at the sight of Vincent D'Onofrio and 50 Cent with whatever they're doing. Mwa-ha-ha-ha!"

The hairless cat vomited in the corner. The evil was just too much.

After another sip of brandy, the President of Hollywood called out to his assistant, "Get me John McTiernan and Walter Hill. The end, it is nigh!"

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News and entertainment from Joint Base Lewis-McChord’s most awesome weekly newspapers - The Ranger, Northwest Airlifter and Weekly Volcano.

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