Most Read
  • You can wear Detroit’s blight on your face

    There is no easy answer to the question regarding what should be done with Detroit’s abandoned homes. However, an Eastern Market company has a solution that could reflect Detroit’s possibly bright future. Homes Eyewear has set out to make the city a little more stylish, and do their part in cleaning it up by repurposing select woods from neglected homes for sunglasses. All of the wood that Homes uses is harvested from vacant houses with the assistance of Reclaim Detroit. A lot of work goes into prepping the wood to be cut and shaped into frames. Homes goes through each piece to remove nails, paint or anything else detrimental to their production (it’s a bit strange to think that your wooden sunglasses could have had family portraits nailed to them). In order to produce more durable eyewear, they salvage only hardwoods like maple or beech, which are difficult to come by as most of the blighted homes were built with softer woods like Douglas fir and pine. If you’re worried about looking goofy, or shudder at the thought of salvaged wood resting on your nose, you can rest easy. Homes currently offers frames in the popular wayfarer style and are developing their unique spin on the classic aviators. For as […]

    The post You can wear Detroit’s blight on your face appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Lily Tomlin coming to Ann Arbor

    Detroit home-girl Lily Tomlin will perform at the Hill Auditorium in Ann Arbor on Saturday, June 14. A press release reads, “Get together with Lily Tomlin for an unforgettable night of fun and sidesplitting laughter. “Tomlin is amazing” The NY Times and “as always a revelation.” The New Yorker This unique comic artist takes her audience on what the Washington Post calls a “wise and howlingly funny” trip with more than a dozen of her timeless characters—from Ernestine to Mrs. Beasley to Edith Ann.” “With astounding skill and energy, Tomlin zaps through the channels like a human remote control. Using a fantastic range of voices, gestures and movements, she conjures up the cast of characters with all the apparent ease of a magician pulling a whole menagerie of animals from a single hat.” NY Daily News “Her gentle touch is as comforting as it is edifying.” NY Time Out She has “made the one-person show the daring, irreverent art form it is today.” Newsweek Her long list of awards includes: a Grammy; two Tonys; six Emmys; an Oscar nomination; two Peabodys; and the prestigious Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. Find more info here. Follow @City_Slang

    The post Lily Tomlin coming to Ann Arbor appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Welcome Valerie Vande Panne, the new Detroit Metro Times editor

    The Detroit Metro Times, Detroit’s award-winning alternative weekly media company, is proud to announce the recent hire of Valerie Vande Panne as Editor-in-Chief. An award-winning independent journalist and Michigan native, Vande Panne’s work has appeared in Crain’s Detroit Business, The Daily Beast, and Salon, among other publications. Previously, Vande Panne attended Harvard University and was a regular contributor to The Boston Phoenix, and a news editor of High Times magazine. She has spent years covering drug policy among other subjects, including the environment, culture, lifestyle, extreme sports, and academia. “Valerie understands our business and what we expect to accomplish in Detroit. She has an excellent sense for stories that will move our readers, as well as experience with balancing print and digital content. I’m excited to have her at the paper and trust her leadership as we move forward,” said Detroit Metro Times publisher Chris Keating.

    The post Welcome Valerie Vande Panne, the new Detroit Metro Times editor appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Joumana Kayrouz to cover ‘Metro Times’

    She welcomes you when you enter Detroit, from every direction, with the one word that might just be Detroit’s biggest philosophical question: Injured? Joumana Kayrouz is deeper than the inflated image watching over Detroit, peddling justice to the poor and broken of the city. This Wednesday, Drew Philp takes us behind the billboard and into the heart of the Kayrouz quest. (And all of Brian Rozman’s photos of Kayrouz have not been retouched.) Check out MT‘s cover story, on newsstands Wednesday!

    The post Joumana Kayrouz to cover ‘Metro Times’ appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Fire at PJ’s Lager House, no people hurt

    There was a fire in an upstairs apartment at PJ’s Lager House on Monday evening. No people were hurt, although three cats belonging to the tenants died after CPR. The fire broke out around 10:30 p.m. during a show featuring Zombie Jesus & the Chocolate Sunshine Band, Curtin, and Jeffrey Jablonsky. “We just smelled smoke and someone yelled everyone has to get out,” 33-year-old Nick Leu told MLive. On the Lager House Facebook page in the early hours of the morning, a post said, “We at PJ’s lager House would like to thank everyone for their care and concern. Also, a very big THANK YOU to all who stepped up to do what they could this evening. The fire was contained to the upstairs but due to water damage in the bar, we will be closed until it can be assessed. Everyone is safe and we will keep you updated.” A later update read, “Update from the big boss. Since there was no damage to the stage side of the bar, the show will go on tomorrow! You may have to enter through the back door and there may not be a large selection of booze but we are going […]

    The post Fire at PJ’s Lager House, no people hurt appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: Music review roundup

    Send CDs, vinyl, cassettes, demos and 8-tracks to Brett Callwood, Metro Times, 1200 Woodward Heights, Ferndale MI 48220. Email MP3s and streaming links to The Sugar Clouds’ Partners Don’t Do That (They Watch and be Amazed) (Wax Splat) is a nostalgic look at the psychedelic days of ’60s grooviness. Even the album cover looks like a lava lamp. The male-female vocals have a sort of Jefferson Airplane feel, and the songs are blessed with both sugary sweet pop melodies and a garage-y earthiness. The story of the band’s formation is rather interesting; the two vocalists, Greg and Melissa Host, are a divorced couple who wrote the songs in their living room. The band is still together, so this divorce was a hell of a lot more civil than any we’ve ever known of. Steffanie Christi’an has friends in fairly high places. Her new Way Too Much mini-album is being put out by Nadir Omowale’s Distorted Soul label, and she is also a regular feature on Jessica Care Moore’s Black Women Rock revue. Maybe the choice of cover image isn’t the best – she looks a bit like a Tina Turner tribute act here. But that can and should be […]

    The post City Slang: Music review roundup appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.



Search thousands of events in our database.


Search hundreds of restaurants in our database.


Search hundreds of clubs in our database.

MT on Twitter
MT on Facebook

Print Email

Stir It Up

Full plate of Detroit

Finding the spirit of the city — in vanity tags

Photo: , License: N/A

Photo: , License: N/A

Mulenga Harangua was so excited, he was practically dancing in his seat as we drove across town. I was helping him move some furniture that one of his relatives gave him. We were eastbound on West Grand Boulevard with a couch, a table and a couple of chairs in the back of a borrowed pickup truck. I had a cold ice tea perched between my thighs as I maneuvered through rush hour traffic. I felt the condensation moistening my pants and thought about years back when my dad would have had a beer warming between his thighs as we cruised around the neighborhood. 

"I got some good furniture now," Mulenga said as he gazed smiling at some of the gigantic houses that line the boulevard. "That sofa folds out into a bed. It's probably better than that piece of foam rubber I've been sleeping on. No sense pretending I need living room furniture for the guests. We can just take that straight into the bedroom."

"That's simple enough," I said as I eased onto the brake at a red light. 

"Hey look at that license plate," Mulenga pointed at a SUV turning the corner. Its license plate read BLAKISBU.

"Hey, that's slick," I said. "Black is beautiful. They get the message out in just eight letters. It's more economical than Twitter or even a haiku."

"That's what I like about you," Mulenga said. "One minute we're sweating getting furniture onto a truck, the next minute you're talking about Japanese poetry. Hmmm ... what could I say on a license plate? How about BAD MF?"

"So you think you're Shaft? They wouldn't let you do that. I checked it out one time when I was thinking about putting my name on a plate. One of the rules is that selections 'cannot be offensive to good taste or decency' as judged by the state. I don't think the folks in Lansing will go for the MF."

"I don't think BAD MF is offensive."

"What you think isn't even close to the way most people see things," I said as I maneuvered one of the boulevard's big, sweeping curves.

"Hey, sometimes I agree with others," Mulenga demurred. "Like with Krystal Crittendon — I agreed with her suit against the state about the consent agreement. She ain't taking that laying down, not like some folks around here."

"Well, I knew that wasn't going anywhere, especially when we didn't even have a united front right here with our city government. A divided city has little hope in this atmosphere."

"Hey, look at that license plate," Mulenga said, pointing at one that read 4EVR313. "Forever 313. See, Crittendon has the 313 in her heart. Mayor Bing doesn't. He was living in Franklin before he moved downtown because the business guys around here wanted him to be mayor."

"Business people got behind Kwame Kilpatrick. They got behind Dennis Archer too. Looks like they might be getting behind Mike Duggan now."

"He's another carpetbagger, moving into Palmer Woods from Livonia so he can run for mayor."

Another car passed us as we trundled slowly along. The license plate ALLBLAK seemed to wave at us as the car sped away.

"That's what I mean," Mulenga said. "We need an all-black government here. Duggan is white, there's no way Detroit is going to elect him mayor."

"I don't know. I used to think Maryann Mahaffey could have run for mayor and won. She used to get more votes than anyone on city council."

"Well, she was all right. I think that, deep inside, Mahaffey was a soul sister."

"Oh, now you gonna decide who is black and who is not based on whether you like them or not?"

"I like that," Mulenga said, pointing to a license plate that read BLUENILE. "We ought to follow that and get some of that Ethiopian food. I love that stuff."

"Maybe we should follow that one if you're hungry." I pointed to a little coupe with 1HOTDOG on its plate. Advertising on the side of the vehicle showed it to be from some kind of hot dog shop. Then I spotted another plate that read MHTYGOD. "That's the one you need Mulenga. You need the power of the man upstairs."

"The whole city could use that. But I don't think God is taking sides here. We got free will and we've got to use it."

"Speaking of your free will, who do you like for mayor next year? We got Duggan out there making inquiries. Charles Pugh and Gary Brown have been mentioned as possible candidates. Benny Napoleon wants the hot seat too. And Bing is talking about making another run."

"I think I'm gonna support Tom Barrow," Mulenga said with a grin.

"You're just trying to start something. Barrow isn't even on the list."

"Barrow has run so many times he doesn't even have to plan ahead. He can just push a button and the whole thing goes on automatic." We were almost cut off by a car with the GO GET license plate. Mulenga pointed it out. "See that should be Barrow's slogan. He's gonna go get something for Detroit."

"Maybe he should use that one," I pointed to a plate that read GOOD2ME. "He wants Detroiters to be good to him. Maybe that should have been Crittendon's plea to the court. It may yet be her plea to Bing in order to keep her job."

We welcome user discussion on our site, under the following guidelines:

To comment you must first create a profile and sign-in with a verified DISQUS account or social network ID. Sign up here.

Comments in violation of the rules will be denied, and repeat violators will be banned. Please help police the community by flagging offensive comments for our moderators to review. By posting a comment, you agree to our full terms and conditions. Click here to read terms and conditions.
comments powered by Disqus