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    By LeeAnn Brown Some people say that hip-hop is dead. Local ban Fderal Ground is proving that is not the case. The seven-member band, consisting of three lead vocalists, a DJ, bass, drums and guitar, plays what they call “living hip-hop.” Their music, peppered with multiple styles, covers all aspects of life from growing up in the D to playing with fire despite knowing you will likely get burned. Their undeniable chemistry and raw lyrics compose a music that is living, breathing, and connecting to their listeners. It has been nearly 11 years since Vinny Mendez and Michael Powers conjured up the basement idea that has flowered into the Detroit funk-hop band Feral Ground. Throughout high school the two wrote and rapped consistently, playing shows here and there. In those years they matched their rap stanzas with the animated, dynamic voice of Ginger Nastase and saw an instant connection. The now trio backed their lyrics with DJ Aldo’s beats on and off for years, making him a permanent member within the last year, along with Andy DaFunk (bass), Joseph Waldecker (drums), and newest member, Craig Ericson (guitar). We sat down with Feral Ground and their manager, Miguel Mira, in their […]

    The post Detroit group Feral Ground is out to prove hip-hop is alive and well appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Yale professor talks Plato, James Madison and Detroit’s emergency manager law

    Much has been made about Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr’s decision this week to transfer authority of the city’s water department to Mayor Mike Duggan. In what is the most interesting read on the situation, Jason Stanley, professor of philosophy at Yale, pens an analysis on Michigan’s novel emergency manager law on the New York Times Opinionator blog. Stanley deconstructs Michigan’s grand experiment in governance by addressing two questions: Has the EM law resulted in policy that maximally serves the public good? And, is the law consistent with basic principles of democracy? Stanley ties in examples of Plato, James Madison’s Federalist Papers, and Nazi political theorist Carl Schmitt. A short excerpt: Plato was a harsh critic of democracy, a position that derived from the fact that his chief value for a society was social efficiency. In Plato’s view, most people are not capable of employing their autonomy to make the right choices, that is, choices that maximize overall efficiency. Michigan is following Plato’s recommendation to handle the problems raised by elections. Though there are many different senses of “liberty” and “autonomy,” none mean the same thing as “efficiency.” Singapore is a state that values efficiency above all. But by no stretch of […]

    The post Yale professor talks Plato, James Madison and Detroit’s emergency manager law appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Where to meet a baby dinosaur this week

    Walking with Dinosaurs, a magnificent stage show that features life-sized animatronic creatures from the Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous periods, will be in town next week. But to preview the show’s run at the Palace, a baby T-Rex will be making an appearance at four area malls to the delight and wonderment of shoppers. Baby T-Rex, as the creature is being affectionately referred to, is seven-feet-tall and 14-feet-long. He’ll only be at each mall for about 15 minutes, so while there will be photo opportunities, they’ll be short. The dino will be at Fairlane Town Center Center Court at 18900 Michigan Ave. in Detroit from 2-2:15 p.m. today, July 30; The Mall at Partridge Creek at 17420 Hall Rd. in Clinton Township from 5-5:15 p.m. today, July 30; Twelve Oaks Mall at the Lord & Taylor Court at 27500 Novi Rd., Novi tomorrow, Thursday July 31 from 1:30-1:45 p.m.; and Great Lakes Crossing Food Court at 4000 Baldwin Rd., Auburn Hills from 5-5:15 p.m., tomorrow Thursday, July 31.  

    The post Where to meet a baby dinosaur this week appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Detroit website offers stats, updates on city operations

    Interested in reading about what Detroit accomplishes on a week-to-week basis that’s produced by the city itself? Great. You can do that now, here, at the Detroit Dashboard. Every Thursday morning, the city will publish an update to the dashboard because Mayor Mike Duggan loves metrics, even if the data might be hard to come by. According to Duggan’s office, the dashboard will provide data on how many LED street lights were installed, how many vacant lots were mowed, how much blight was removed, and more. This week, the city says it has sold 13 site lots through BuildingDetroit.com, removed 570 tons of illegal dumping, and filed 57 lawsuits against abandoned property owners.  

    The post Detroit website offers stats, updates on city operations appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Long John Silver’s makes nod to Nancy Whiskey in YouTube commercial

    We don’t know about you, but usually Nancy Whiskey and Long John Silver’s aren’t two concepts we’d place in the same sentence. However, the international fast food fish fry conglomerate made a nod to the Detroit dive in their latest YouTube commercial. LJS is offering free fish fries on Saturday, August 2, which is the promotion the commercial is attempting to deliver. But, we think we’ll just go to Nancy Whiskey instead.

    The post Long John Silver’s makes nod to Nancy Whiskey in YouTube commercial appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Michigan’s women-only music fest still shuns trans women

    We came across an interesting item this week: Apparently, a music festival with the name “Michfest” is quietly oriented as a “Women-Only Festival Exclusively for ‘Women Born Women.’” It seems a strange decision to us. If you wanted to have a women-only music festival, why not simply proclaim loud and clear that it is for all sorts of women? But if you really wanted to become a lightning rod for criticisms about transphobia, organizers have found the perfect way to present their festival. Now, we know that defenders of non-cisgender folks have it tough. The strides made by gays and lesbians (and bisexuals) in the last 20 years have been decisive and dramatic. But the people who put the ‘T’ in LGBT have reason to be especially defensive, facing a hostile culture and even some disdain from people who should be their natural allies. That said, sometimes that defensiveness can cause some activists to go overboard; when we interviewed Dan Savage a couple years ago, he recalled his “glitter bombing” and said it was due to the “the narcissism of small differences,” adding that “if you’re playing the game of who is the most victimized, attacking your real enemies doesn’t prove you’re most victimized, claiming you […]

    The post Michigan’s women-only music fest still shuns trans women appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

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Savage Love

Sail Away

boob-grabby, don’t date jerks

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Q:

 I’m a cute, mostly straight, twentysomething, single and (safely) sexually active woman. This happens to me pretty often: I hook up with a guy, we start fooling around, and we’re both really into it. I reach down, and he’s full sail. Things progress — clothes come off, etc. — and, as is generally the polite order of things, the lady comes first. (This isn’t the problem.) I’m not aggressive, but I’m not shy. I tell a partner what I like and how to do it. They are always happy to oblige. The thing is, after I get off, a lot of times, the guy is limp. (This is the problem.) They usually express frustration and indicate that they’re very much turned on but it’s just not working. Generally after a few times, they will stop having this problem, and we will end up having lots of fun. So I don’t think I’m doing anything “wrong” to kill the boners. I think maybe I’m just intimidating. In fact, I’ve been told so. Why does this happen and how can I reduce the awkwardness? Should I talk about it or just ignore it? And should I keep trying to make him hard? Or will that just make his dick panic worse?

—Fragile Ego Males

P.S. The more a guy likes me, the more this seems to happen.

A:

 So  you go to bed with a guy, he’s at full sail, and then you inform him that you, the lady of the hookup, will be coming first. You instruct him in the art of What I Like & How You Should Do It, and by the time he’s done — by the time he gets you off — that dick has sailed. Or his dick sails are empty. Or something.

Why does this happen? I have three theories …

Theory One: Lots of straight guys make it into their mid-20s without ever having encountered a sexually assertive woman, FEM. A woman who advocates for herself in the sack, who knows what she likes and isn’t too shy to ask for (or insist on) it, can come as a shock to a sheltered, indulged or entitled boy’s dicksystems. And while some deeply insecure guys (guys you wouldn’t wanna waste your time and your twat on anyway) may find your assertiveness off-putting (or sail-emptying or dick-limpening or whatever), it may be the case that even the more secure guys you go to bed with (guys you would wanna lavish your time and twattention on) could be thrown by their first encounter with a sexually assertive woman.

Theory Two: Guys who throw themselves into making it happen for you could be losing their erections because they’re focusing on pleasing you and getting you off. Theory Three: If you’re going home with some guy at 3 a.m. after a night of boozing, and he spends the first 45 minutes eating your pussy, he may be spent by the time you get off.

Q:

 I’ve been in a relationship with my boyfriend for two years, and we’ve been living together for one. Several times a day, in passing, he reaches his hand inside my shirt and quickly grabs a boob, and then continues on his way. I could be cooking or studying or brushing my teeth, and he just digs in there out of the blue and doesn’t usually even acknowledge me before or after. In bed, he is very considerate and giving, GGG and all that — no complaints. I’ve tried to bring it up two or three times, but he gets offended, so I drop it. Do I have a right to prefer an offhand kiss on the forehead or something more affectionate and less boob-grabby? Is this typical for LTRs? Am I a selfish prude? —Groped Too Fucking Often

A:

 Before we talk about your boobs and what you can do about your asshole boyfriend — pepper spray? — can we talk about my husband’s ass for a second?

It’s a spectacular ass, and I love to grab it. But my husband doesn’t like to be grabbed in certain ways, in certain places, or at certain times. So I don’t grab his ass in those ways, in those places, or at those times — despite how much I like to grab his ass. Because that spectacular ass of his? It’s his ass, not my ass, and he gets to decide when, where, and how it gets grabbed, touched, fingered, fucked, spanked, etc. And I respect his limits because I respect him. Because he’s my partner, not my possession.

Those boobs of yours? They’re yours, GTFO, and you need to communicate to your boyfriend that there are times when you want him to grab your boobs and times when you don’t want him to grab your boobs. Don’t make the mistake of framing this conversation around his feelings. You are not “bringing it up” to see how to come to some sort of understanding or compromise. You’re bringing it up to set a limit. And once that limit is set, GTFO, don’t put up with the boob grabbing. If he leans in to grab your boob, move away, slap his hand, blast him with pepper spray — whatever it takes, in other words, to communicate your displeasure in an unambiguous manner. If he gets offended, let him. If he stays offended, leave him.

Q:

 I’m a 46-year-old homo who’s fairly content most days living the single life. Since coming out when I was 20, I’ve been in a series of failed relationships and single for the last 10 years. I’m convinced I never really learned how to flirt. I get all tripped up when I see a PYT who I want to talk to. Add to the mix that I was diagnosed in ’91 as poz. I’m so afraid of rejection that I don’t even try anymore. I’m good-looking, outdoorsy, adventurous and free-spirited. I’m not afraid of exploring caves or rappelling off cliffs, but I’m a total wimp when it comes to interacting with a potential mate. I know there are younger guys who are attracted to older guys like myself. I’d love some advice on how to increase my mojo regarding flirting and dating. —Doing It Really Trepidatiously

A:

 Nothing will boost your dating mojo like getting laid, DIRT, and that won’t happen if you don’t force yourself to take risks and talk to the next PYT — pretty young thing — who catches your eye. And remember: Lots of twentysomething and thirtysomething PYTs are poz themselves, DIRT, and lots of negative guys are willing to date poz guys. Putting yourself out there may result in some unpleasant rejection from jerks who are freaked out by your HIV status — but you don’t want to date jerks, right?

Find Dan Savage’s weekly podcast every Tuesday at thestranger.com/savage. Reach him at mail@savagelove.net or @fakedansavage on Twitter.

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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.
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