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  • Metro Times seeking stories of college sexual assault

    The Metro Times is looking to hear your experiences will sexual assault on a Michigan college campus — from anything to how many sexual assault prevention programs, rape kits or crisis centers you may have had access to, to how the administration or local law enforcement handled your experience. If you, or anyone you know might be interested in talking to a reporter at the Metro Times, please email us at

    The post Metro Times seeking stories of college sexual assault appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • 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

    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.



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Politics & Prejudices

Hero for our planet

Don't know of inventor Stanford Ovshinsky? You should.

They laughed at Stan Ovshinsky years ago, all the professional scientists did, when they bothered to pay attention to him at all. They had doctorates from places like Yale and Harvard. He was a high school dropout from Akron who worked in a machine shop, the son of an immigrant scrap-metal dealer.

Later, after he invented a better high-speed lathe, he began dabbling in science and then moved to Detroit. Before long, he was crazy enough to tell the scientists some of their basic assumptions about electronics were totally wrong.

Forget trying to use rigid structures to conduct electricity, he argued. A random, amorphous collection of atoms would be much more powerful semiconductors. The experts rolled their eyes. "It was like a bag lady telling Queen Elizabeth she had spit on her chin," journalist Tom Henderson said.

Nobody took him seriously at first. You've heard of alternative media? Ovshinsky was an alternative scientist, who challenged basic assumptions without the least of degrees. The scientific establishment sneered with contempt.

Stan and his wife Iris Ovshinsky pooled their savings and opened a storefront business called Energy Conversion Devices.

That was back in 1960. He told the media flat-screen technology was coming that would produce TVs you could hang on the wall. He predicted electric cars and hydrogen-powered cars and solar cell heat. Eyes rolled. Nobody took him seriously.

Finally, a highly respected physicist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology was reluctantly pushed into testing Ovshinsky's amorphous switch.

Stunned, he proclaimed it a major breakthrough. Dr. Helmut Fritzsche, chair of the physics department at the University of Chicago, came to check out the work of this rude, uneducated upstart. He was blown away.  

Before long, he was a vice president of Energy Conversion Devices, or ECD.  I met him Labor Day weekend. "I've met a lot of Nobel Prize winners. Stan Ovshinsky is the only true genius I ever met," Dr. Fritzsche said at a celebration of the man's 90th birthday.

Stan Ovshinsky didn't listen to the establishment. He just did science, piling up 400 U.S. patents, and twice as many overseas. His nickel-metal-hydride battery was widely used to power laptops and cell phones. His inventions also led to the thin-film solar cells people put their roofs. Not to mention rewritable CDs, compact discs, rewritable optical discs, and various kinds of electronic memory. Most of all, he believed in alternative energy.

Half a century ago, he was worrying about climate change. He was a pioneer in electric car technology, but that's not where he saw the future. "Well, the [Chevy] Volt is nice, and will sell a few thousand cars and get people thinking," he told me two years ago. "But the real answer is hydrogen."

A few years ago, he drove me around Auburn Hills in a hydrogen-powered car. This is the future, he told me. This is a fuel that doesn't pollute, and we will never run out of, he told me. All that remained was to make it affordable.

Energy Conversion Devices went on to hire hundreds of engineers and other employees, all fiercely devoted to the dream. Sometimes, the firm made money. More often, it didn't.

Ovshinsky treated all his employees like colleagues. Few knew that, back in his youth, he had risked his life as a union organizer. Eventually, he became a millionaire from the royalties from his patents. Once, long after he was wealthy, I asked him who was his biggest hero. I expected Albert Einstein, or maybe the inventor Thomas Edison, with whom he was often compared. I wasn't even close. He answered instantly:

"Eugene V. Debs," the greatest leader of the American Socialist Party. He pulled a book off a shelf in his home, and showed me the famous quote, which I already knew by heart.

"While there is a lower class, I am in it, and while there is a criminal element I am of it, and while there is a soul in prison, I am not free." Debs wanted, a century ago, to free the wage slaves toiling without hope, wanted a better life for all.

Stan Ovshinsky never stopped trying to free mankind from dependence on fossil fuel, and to make our lives better. Impatient for more profits, the Energy Conversion Devices board five years ago ousted him from the company he founded.

They turned things over to a slick former helicopter pilot who wanted to can the science and just try to make money off one or two of Stan's inventions. The flyboy quickly ran it into the ground. ECD filed for bankruptcy and disappeared.

Ovshinsky was then 85. Anybody else would have retired and maybe written memoirs. He founded a new company, poured his own millions in, and set out to make solar cells efficient enough to compete with electricity generated by coal.

He might have gotten there, but cancer got him first. He was awarded three new patents, and almost to the last, was fighting to persuade investors to help make his new companies, Ovshinsky Innovation and Ovshinsky Solar, viable.

On Labor Day weekend, scientists from all over the world flew to Bloomfield Hills for an early 90th birthday party.

"I have to beat this. There are still things I want to do," he whispered to me. Ovshinsky lost that battle last week. He had an amazingly diverse mind. The last conversation I had with him was about the English historian Tony Judt, another man taken before his time, and what was wrong with our nation.

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