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  • Detroit’s grand bargain still needs Lansing’s approval

    In this week’s Metro Times we took a look at the state legislature’s role in Detroit’s ongoing bankruptcy — in particular, how it must approve a $350 million pledge for the so-called “grand bargain” to remain intact. And, with last night’s announcement of a significant deal between the city and Detroit’s pension boards and retiree groups, the ball is Lansing’s court now. The new deal, first reported by the Freep, would cut general employees monthly pension checks by 4.5 percent and eliminate their cost-of-living increases. Police and fire retirees would see no cuts to monthly checks, while their cost-of-living increases would be reduced from 2.25 percent to 1 percent. Under the original offer, police and fire retirees cuts were as high as 14 percent, with general retirees as high as 34 percent, that is, if the groups rejected the “grand bargain,” an $816 million proposal funded by foundations, the state, and the DIA to shore up pensions. The sweeter deal for pensions, though, it must be noted, entirely relies on the state legislature approving $350 million for Detroit’s bankruptcy.  And while this broke after Metro Times went to press, that was the focal point of this week’s News Hits column — so, it’s worth repeating: The […]

    The post Detroit’s grand bargain still needs Lansing’s approval appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: Local releases for Record Store Day on Saturday

    This Saturday, April 19, is Record Store Day, and there is plenty going on in metro Detroit and Michigan. Of special interest to us is Chiodos’ 7” single “R2ME2/Let Me Get You A Towel,” Mayer Hawthorne & Shintaro Skamoto’s 7” “Wine Glass Woman/In a Phantom,” Chuck Inglish & Action Bronson’s 7” “Game Time,” Chuck Inglish & Chance the Rapper’s 7” “Glam,” Chuck Inglish & Chromeo’s 7” “Legs,” Chuck Inglish, Mac Miller & Ab-Soul’s 7” “Easily,” James Williamson’s 7” “Open Up and Bleed/Gimme Some Skin,” Black Milk’s 12” “Glitches in the Break,” Mayer Hawthorne’s 10” “Jaded Inc.,” Wayne Kramer & the Lexington Arts Ensemble’s 12” “Lexington,” and best of all, Ray Parker Jr.’s 10” “Ghostbusters.” We wrote about James Williamson’s release this week. Go shop. Follow @City_Slang

    The post City Slang: Local releases for Record Store Day on Saturday appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: Margaret Doll Rod to play EP release show in May

    Margaret Doll Rod will celebrate the release of her new EP, Margaret, with a show at PJ’s Lager House on Saturday, May 10. A statement reads, “The EP contains 3 new original songs and one Chrome Cranks cover with Italian actress Asia Argento singing background vocals. Margaret moved to Italy after the end of the Demolition Doll Rods where she still lives touring and performing festivals in Europe. The Dollrods were a Garage Rock force for over 20 years, opening for Iggy, Jon Spencer, The Scientist, The Monks and The Cramps. Margaret was the front person and principal songwriter for The Dollrods. Her chief musical foil was Danny Kroha, who joined the Demolition Doll Rods after the now legendary Gories called it quits. Margaret’s sister, Christine, on drums, rounded out the legendary trio. Margaret will do a special performance in the round that night with a 360 degree revolving stage and special guest DJ Adam Stanfel.” The bill will also feature the Stomp Rockets and the Volcanos. Follow @City_Slang

    The post City Slang: Margaret Doll Rod to play EP release show in May 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 bcallwood@metrotimes.com. Ricky Rat’s Tokyo Pop/Glitter People (New Fortune) 7” single highlights all that’s great about the Trash Brats guitarist, but also his limitations. The man can write a bubblegum rock ’n’ roll song to match anyone in the city and most beyond. He’s also a killer guitarist, ripping out one throwaway riff after another with reckless abandon. He’s a machine. On his own though, without Trash Brats frontman Brian McCarty, his voice doesn’t have enough strength to do the songs justice. Not that you need to have the greatest voice in the world to sing this stuff – you don’t need to be able to perform vocal gymnastics – but you do have to be able to wail the tunes out. Both of the songs on this single are great, but you can’t help but wonder how much better they would sound with McCarty or somebody similar talking the mic. Still, as they are the songs are great fun. We’re just being picky. The Paper Sound’s Trajectories is a dense, atypically dark Americana-tinged album, unrelenting and […]

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

  • Detroit launches website to auction city-owned homes

    “Neighbors wanted.” That’s the message on the homepage of buildingdetroit.org, a new website launched by the City of Detroit today to auction off city-owned homes to prospective buyers who pledge to fix them up and move in. “We are moving aggressively to take these abandoned homes and get families living in them again,” Mayor Mike Duggan said in a statement today. “There are a lot of people who would love to move into many of our neighborhoods. Knowing that other people are going to be buying and fixing up the other vacant homes at the same time will make it a lot easier for them to make that commitment.” The website to facilitate the auctions went live this afternoon. The first auction is scheduled to take place Monday, May 5. Officials said in a news release that one home will be auctioned per day, Monday through Friday. Fifteen homes are available for sale on the site, a dozen of which are in the East English Village neighborhood. Any Michigan resident, company, or organization that can do business in the state can bid, according to the website. Properties will be for sale for only one day, with bidding taking place from 8 […]

    The post Detroit launches website to auction city-owned homes appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Tickets for Steven Spielberg, John Williams summer concert sell out in 15 minutes

    In case you haven’t heard, two of the biggest names in film, Steven Spielberg and John Williams, are collaborating to put on a benefit concert for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra this summer. In case you wanted to go- well, you’re too damn late. The DSO says tickets to the June 14 concert were snapped up in a record-breaking 15 minutes after they went on sale at 9 a.m. today. The DSO has since released this statement to fans who didn’t snag seats: Our apologies to everyone who was unable to buy tickets this morning for our historic benefit concert featuring John Williams and Steven Spielberg. Despite increasing our phone and internet system capacity for the day, a surge of hundreds of ticket buyers purchased tickets in a matter of minutes, filling the phone lines and temporarily maxing out our web servers. After a one-hour pre-sale made available to donors and subscribers at 8am, we released additional seats at 9am to the general public, including seats available for as low as $30. All seats sold out immediately. The concert program seems nothing short of top notch: Williams will conduct the orchestra as it performs some of his most iconic tunes, such […]

    The post Tickets for Steven Spielberg, John Williams summer concert sell out in 15 minutes appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

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Savage Love

Coming out kinky in the Ivy League

He realizes he’s a sub. Who does he have to tell?

Q:

 I was recently advised to begin reading your column by my therapist. I am a 21-year-old male and a senior at an Ivy League school. Despite my academic success, I've battled a lot of stuff in the past few years: anxiety, depression, substance abuse and porn addiction. It's quite a load of shit to try to wade through, but I honestly feel I'm getting better.

About sex: Before I even knew what I was really doing, my fantasies involved being subjected to the erotic whims of a powerful female. I've tried to hide my interest in "submission" from everyone, including potential and sometimes briefly sexual partners. Only recently have I begun to address this directly. I feel it is, broadly, an issue of sexual orientation that requires something like a "coming out" process. But while there are resources out there for gay people who are coming out, I have no road map. I have told a few friends but don't think it's necessary to reveal all this to my family.

I cannot have a fulfilling sexual experience unless my desire to have a tilted power dynamic is understood and indulged, and I don't think romantic love is possible for me without this part of me being accepted and appreciated. What I would like to do is seek out sexual partners who would be compatible. But when do I bring it up? I have this dread of that moment on a date, perhaps a first kiss, or whatever, when things are becoming unambiguously physical. WTF do I say? Should I try to get involved in a BDSM "scene"? Date "normal" people? Online personals? I don't want to try to have sex again without it being known or understood. It feels like pretending and it sucks. —Seeks Understanding Baba

 

A:

 Generally, SUB, if it's something that gay, straight, or bisexual people can all do — such as erotic power exchange (bondage, D/s, BDSM, etc.) — then I consider it a sexual activity, not a sexual orientation.

Which is not to say that submission and BDSM can't be hugely important to an individual, SUB, as much about self-conception as it is about sexual expression. But you don't have to come out to friends and family about being submissive — you don't have to tell them about the stuff that turns you on — in order to fully accept yourself, get out there and date and find a nice girl who wants to subject you to her erotic whims.

Now, I'm not saying you can't or shouldn't tell people other than the women you date that you're submissive. You can be as open as you wanna be — say, with friends you feel comfortable telling everything — but the only people who absolutely, positively need to know about your desires, SUB, are your sex partners.

So how do you find a partner? Date vanilla girls? Trawl online personals? Get involved in the BDSM scene in your area? Yes, yes, and yes. Get involved in the BDSM scene and take out a kinky personal ad, and maybe you'll meet a nice, dominant girl who wants a sexually submissive — and Ivy League-educated — boyfriend. At the same time, SUB, date girls you meet during the normal course of your daily life, like any other single guy. After she gets a chance to know you, but before she's too invested or smitten, discuss your kinks with her. This is not a tearful confession, SUB. Your kinks are a selling point; they're something that makes you a more interesting sex partner. If you open up to a vanilla girl after a few weeks — and some good vanilla sex — and she runs screaming, she wasn't the right girl for you. (And if she blabs to her friends about you, SUB, you may get a call from a friend of your ex who is the right girl for you.)

Don't marry the first dominant woman you play with, SUB, or bail on the first strictly vanilla girl you hit it off with. A dominant woman you don't enjoy spending time with outside the bedroom isn't someone you can realistically spend the rest of your life with; a vanilla girl who really likes you may get there — she may discover that she gets off on being in charge — if you're patient and attentive to her sexual interests.

Finally, SUB, if you do want to come out to friends and family about being kinky, here's a great short video on the subject: tinyurl.com/comingoutkinky.

 

Q:

 I am a 21-year-old gay male. For the past six months, I have been having an affair with a man in his mid-40s. After our first hookup, he told me he was married and had three children. I was shocked at this. However, we continued to meet up for sex. I have come to the conclusion that I am fine with this man keeping me a secret. I have fallen for him and he has fallen for me, but I have no desire to break up his family. His wife was his high-school sweetheart, and he says she is his best friend. He also tells me that if I were to quit our sexcapades, which happen to be the best sex I have ever had, he would find another man, or other men, because he is attracted to men. We hook up every week in discreet locations where he would never get caught. I don't plan on telling anyone. I am torn, because we both acknowledge that, if the situation were different, we would make excellent life partners. I am deeply in love with this guy and want more out of our relationship, however I do respect him and would never out him. I just want to know if I should continue our relationship. —His Secret Love

 

A:

 No.

 

 

Q: I usually love your advice and first wanna say thanks for supporting the monogamish. I'm one of the many who is happier with a little freedom — and the occasional threesome or foursome — but who also values ground rules, respect and honesty. Bummer some guys seem to think deceit is the only way to play. So thanks for so many years of great advice. But ... wow!

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