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  • Get ready for National Tequila Day!

    Thursday, July 24th marks National Tequila Day, and forget everything you know about the beverage. Those nasty old “tequilas” of yesterday were find for doing body shots, but tequila has become something of a luxury spirit while few were paying attention. Have you tried all the varieties of tequila? Can you tell the difference between blanco, joven, reposed, añejo and extra añejo?  If your local bar doesn’t have the stuff that will help you celebrate this important holiday, there are several bars that cater just to the tequila fan. There’s Aqua Rum and Tequila Bar in the MGM Grand Detroit Casino in Detroit, as well as Rojo Mexican Bistro in Novi, which offers more than 100 kinds of tequila, and Taqo Detroit, a new spot serving American-friendly Mexican fare and serving an astonishing variety of tequilas, more than 200 in all. Been waiting for a reason to drink up this south-of-the-border nectar? You got it. Guzzle responsibly.    

    The post Get ready for National Tequila Day! appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • DWSD to host water fair in wake of 15 day moratorium on Detroit water shutoffs

    In light of worldwide attention on its efforts to cut water service for thousands of Detroit residents, the Detroit Water & Sewerage Department said today it would host a Water Affordability Fair on August 2nd to explain options available to those facing financial hardship. DWSD officials said in a news release today the fair will be take place from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the department’s Eastside Customer Service Center at 13303 E. McNichols. The move came on the heels of growing pressure from opponents of the initiative and criticism from the U.S. bankruptcy judge overseeing Detroit’s Chapter 9 case. “Every customer that has come to DWSD with a legitimate financial hardship has not had their water service terminated,” said Darryl Latimer, DWSD deputy director, in a statement. “In cases where the water has been shut off, it’s been restored. We keep hearing at DWSD that there are poor people who are not receiving the assistance that they need, so we want to help them and we want to make it as easy as possible for the to receive that help. That’s why we created the Water Affordability Fair – ease of access and ease of assistance. We are here to […]

    The post DWSD to host water fair in wake of 15 day moratorium on Detroit water shutoffs appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Thrillist Names Detroit’s Motz’s Burgers Among Best in Nation

    The folks at Thrillist have again compiled their annual list of the nation’s best burgers, and Southeast Michigan, it seems, is well represented. Ranking alongside joints in major cities such as New York and L.A., is Detroit’s own Motz’s Burgers, hailed specifically for its Double Cheeseburger Slider. Via Thrillist: There’s nothing remarkable about the façade of this SW diner… it’s just a diner, like the hundreds of others in the D. The staff’s been there for years… and so have the regulars, who can’t get enough of Motz’s legendary smashed burgers. The formula’s nothing revolutionary: smashed, griddled patties with oozy cheese and onions that melt into the burger itself as it cooks. But it’s that unmistakable flavor of a well-seasoned griddle — which has also been here for years — that makes the difference. You can score big burgers with accoutrements, but this isn’t really a place to say things like “accoutrements”. Grab the old-school slider (the double cheeseburger one), and prepare for three perfect bites of Detroit’s finest. Flint’s Torch Bar and Grill also made the cut, most notably for its Deluxe Torch Burger with Bacon. Tucked away in an alley beyond the brick streets that used to mark […]

    The post Thrillist Names Detroit’s Motz’s Burgers Among Best in Nation appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • In what weird ways are you paying for school? MT wants to know!

    The Metro Times is looking for college students or graduates of Michigan colleges that used atypical means to pay for their schooling (i.e. sugar baby, selling underwear, military enrollment purely for school help, etc.). We are looking for personal anecdotes about the lengths you went to help pay for school, what came of it, your monetary situation, if the resource worked to get you through college and more. If you have utilized any one of these avenues, or know someone who has, please drop us a line at college@metrotimes.com.

    The post In what weird ways are you paying for school? MT wants to know! appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Kid Rock ordered to produce dildo in ICP sexual harassment lawsuit

    File under “WTF” — attorneys representing former Psychopathic Records publicist Andrea Pellegrini announced Monday that they have subpoenaed Kid Rock to produce a glass dildo as part of Pellegrini’s sexual harassment lawsuit against the Insane Clown Posse’s record label. Pellegrini claims the glass dildo was given to her by Psychopathic Records employee “Dirty Dan” Diamond as part of a larger culture of constant harassment in which she was called “bitch,” made the target of explicit sexual advances by Diamond and other co-workers, asked to procure automatic weapons for a photo shoot, and even encouraged to “deceive government investigators from the US Department of Labor.” On Friday, Diamond admitted under oath that he told Pellegrini that he had “a fat cock” and that he would “fuck the shit out of her.” The dildo, though, was “a work of art,” according to Diamond, and should not be considered sexual harassment. Why is Kid Rock involved? Diamond says when Pellegrini declined his dildo, he gave it to Kid Rock instead (presumably as a “work of art” and not a sexual advance). So now, according to court orders, Rock has 14 days to produce the glass dildo so the court can better determine if it is art or, well, a dildo. We will […]

    The post Kid Rock ordered to produce dildo in ICP sexual harassment lawsuit appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Henry Cavill and Amy Adams spotted at Pig & Whiskey

    Fans of the latest Superman franchise got a treat at Pig & Whiskey this weekend. Actors Henry Cavill and Amy Adams were spotted amid the crowds of the festival that took place in downtown Ferndale as well as a local restaurant. Cavill, who plays the man of steel in the upcoming Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, stopped to chat with fans, take pictures, and sign autographs on Saturday afternoon and evening. He was wearing an inconspicuous black polo shirt as well as a signature Superman-style ‘do. Other fans spotted Amy Adams at Ferndale’s Imperial on Saturday night, some were even seated next to her at the restaurant’s communal benches. Adams reportedly was slightly annoyed that patrons continuously asked for her photo, but she smiled while cell phones snapped images nonetheless. The Zach Snyder film the two are starring in together is currently filming in Birmingham. Ben Affleck, who plays Batman, has been spotted around town with his wife Jennifer Garner recently as well. The closed movie set is under intense security and Brett Callwood attempted to infiltrate the filming last month, but was forced to give up his camera’s memory card, lest he make off with telling photos.

    The post Henry Cavill and Amy Adams spotted at Pig & Whiskey appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

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Stir It Up

Boys in the hoodies

The merits of the case aside, what do we tell our black children?

Photo: N/A, License: N/A


I'm obsessed with the Trayvon Martin case. Maybe it's the innocent aura that seems to project from his photos. He looks absolutely cherubic in the one where he's wearing a hoodie — the garment that may have helped seal his doom.

In case you've been in a coma these past few weeks, Trayvon Martin was an unarmed 17-year-old African-American boy gunned down in a gated community in Sanford, Fla., near Orlando, on Feb. 26 by self-appointed neighborhood watch vigilante George Zimmerman. Martin was walking to his father's girlfriend's house after going to the store to buy Skittles candy and iced tea. Zimmerman — white father, Peruvian mother — was subsequently released by police with little investigation. His freedom has put Florida's "Stand Your Ground" gun law in the spotlight, engendered a national uproar and brought probes from a state grand jury and the U.S. Justice Department. The law gives anyone, anywhere, the right to use deadly force if they feel their life or safety is in danger.

However, there is no way Zimmerman should have felt in danger as he cruised around in his truck carrying a loaded 9 mm pistol. When he spotted the 140-pound Martin, Zimmerman called 911. The operator told him, "We don't need you" to follow him. 

The case raises so many questions in my mind that I pore over every tiny piece of information trying to understand how it happened and how police could handle it so badly. Maybe some of my concern is rooted in the fact that my 14-year-old daughter will be vacationing in Florida in a couple of weeks with a friend and her family. I'm wondering if I should add more to the usual parental admonitions about safety. Should I talk to her about not getting into situations where someone could claim they feel threatened? Should I underscore her race and tell her that she could be in danger because of it?

These are the kinds of conversations black parents and their children have been having in America for decades if not longer. In the wake of the Trayvon tragedy, one news commentator talked about how, when his family moved to an upscale neighborhood, his father told him not to run because police would find a black kid running through the neighborhood suspicious — and certainly don't run while carrying something.

Is it just black boys who need that admonition? I spoke to a friend who raised a boy and a girl as a single mother. She told me that she gave her son more warnings about how to behave safely around police and white people than her daughter. She talked to him about always keeping your hands in view when pulled over for a traffic stop. She told him to avoid driving around with a car full of his friends, which is a magnet for people who think young black men are suspicious. 

I spoke to another friend who says he didn't have the conversation directly with his two sons, but they had pretty much picked up on the message through their friends.

I remember hearing a commentary once about Arthur Ashe, the great tennis pro and civil rights activist. One of the points made in the commentary was that Ashe was such an outstanding person ... well, who knows what he could have accomplished if he hadn't had to spend so much of his time worrying about racial issues. With that in mind, I've tried to not overburden my daughter about race. She knows she's black and what that means in America, and as issues come up that involve race I give her my perspective. But unlike my father, who told me I have to be three times as good as the white guy to get recognition for something, I don't lay that one on her.

Maybe it's more of a guy thing. In the Higher Ground column I also write for Metro Times, I recently wrote about Michelle Alexander's book, The New Jim Crow, which argues that drug laws, disproportionately used to prosecute young African-American men, have created a permanent underclass with the stigma of a felony drug record. The offender who tries to go straight can't find work, is ineligible for federal housing or education funds and often ends up in a revolving door in and out of prison. These young men may be guilty of using drugs, but their white peers who are just as likely to get high don't get arrested for it at nearly the same rates as blacks.

Trayvon Martin is another reminder of how young black males are scapegoated, feared, devalued and attacked. How they are guilty until proven innocent, and in the case of Martin, apparently executed. Zimmerman made a statement to police that he felt threatened and defended himself – one report Monday said that Martin attacked first. Maybe he was just standing his ground. Another report said the teenager had been suspended from school for possessing a bag with marijuana residue in it. This thing is going to go through major contortions – including attempts to discredit Martin.

It seems to me that when someone invokes the "stand your ground" law, there should be an investigation to ascertain whether they were justified, rather than the cops just taking the shooter's words — as seems to be the case with Zimmerman. I'm pretty sure that if Martin had somehow successfully defended himself, gone upside Zimmerman's head with his can of ice tea and killed him, there would have been an investigation. There would have been questions as to whether he was truly threatened. He would have been drug-tested. And Zimmerman's family would have been notified immediately.

It's clear from the transcript of the 911 tape that Zimmerman had a profile in mind when he saw Martin. He told the operator Martin was wearing a hoodie and added: "This guy looks like he's up to no good, or he's on drugs or something. It's raining and he's just walking around, looking about."

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