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  • Detroit group Feral Ground is out to prove hip-hop is alive and well

    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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Slam bam

Should I tell my boyfriend about playing strip poker?

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Q: I’m a bi-woman in my mid-20s and in a great monogamish relationship with my straight boyfriend. We occasionally invite other women into our sex life, which is really enjoyable for both of us since other women don’t threaten him — only other men — which isn’t an issue since I’m not interested in any other men.

So, on the occasions when we find a lady we’re both into, who’s also into us, anything goes — and it’s awesome. We’ve hooked up with both friends and strangers, but always as a couple because it makes us both feel safe. That’s all lovely.

Enter the problem: I was visiting some friends of ours I used to live with before my boyfriend and I moved in together. After going out for drinks, we were playing an alcohol-fueled card game that turned into an alcohol-fueled strip card game. This is in my former home where I am very comfortable, feel safe and was frequently in various states of undress while I was a housemate.

One friend soon had her lovely breasts out and made a few comments that were direct and inviting — and turned me on a little. I touched her boobs and sucked on her nipples, but that’s as far as things went. Her boyfriend witnessed this but wasn’t involved. It was a fun, playful moment and soon after I went to bed — alone.

It wasn’t anything my boyfriend would’ve objected to had he been there, but he wasn’t there. Should I tell him about it, or is this a case where he has the right not to know as I’m not interested in pursuing anything further with this friend. —Non-Intentional Playful Partying Lady Experiences Situation

A: This experience would seem to fall in the “right not to know” column, NIPPLES, but “right not to know” always has to be weighed against “likelihood of finding out.”

You indicate that this couple — the girl with the lovely, direct and inviting breasts (LDIBs), and the boy who witnessed the touching and sucking of said LDIBs — aren’t just friends of yours, NIPPLES, but friends of “ours.” If either of them makes a reference to this game of strip cribbage — or strip Uno or strip poker or strip Schnapsen — the next time the four of you hang out, your boyfriend could be blindsided. And it’s not clear whether there were other witnesses to your drunken touch-and-suck. But if there were others there, and if you socialize with these other witnesses IRL or online, the chances that your boyfriend will find out increase exponentially.

You know your boyfriend better than I do, NIPPLES, so you’ll have to ask yourself if his finding out about the incident at a party or via a snarky Facebook post would leave him feeling twice as upset — because then we’re talking about a crime and a cover-up, as learning about the LDIBs incident in a manner (from a friend, in front of other people) that leaves him feeling humiliated.

Q: My boyfriend (of nearly a year) and I live together and are planning to move across the country in about a month. We have never fought and get along swimmingly. We have amazing sex, we see eye to eye on almost everything, and we are planning a future together. The only thing is, we have never said, “I love you,” to each other. Is this normal? I know we love each other, but being in a serious, committed relationship of almost a year and not saying those words? Could it be possible that he doesn’t love me? —Hopefully Not Unlovable

A: Even if your boyfriend had said, “I love you,” a hundred-thousand-times over the last year, HNU, it would still be possible that he didn’t love you. People have been known to lie about this shit. But I don’t think a guy would move across the country or plan a future with a woman for whom he felt nothing. Either he already loves you but hasn’t found the right moment to say so, or he’s sensible enough to realize that you can’t be certain that you’re in love with someone until after you’ve had at least one fight.

That said, HNU, if you’re ready to say it to him, go ahead and say it. Just don’t have a meltdown if he’s not ready — yet — to say it to you.

Q: Say you’ve always wanted to peg a guy, but your otherwise GGG hot husband isn’t into receiving anal — for good reason (he’s had health problems back there) — but he jokingly suggests he would be fine with you pegging his equally hot gay little brother. Should you ask his gay little brother if you can peg him? —Wanting It For Evah

A: No.

Q: How stupid would it be to sleep with my boss’ gorgeous 18-year-old son? My boss has become a mentor to me. He and his wife have welcomed me into their home, which includes their aforementioned son, a high-school senior. I am a 23-year-old woman. Normally, I wouldn’t sleep with anyone younger than 20. But besides being very attractive, my boss’ son is funny, kind and sweet. He’s also incredibly horny and has some serious unexplored kinks that most girls his age have no interest in. I want to spend the next few months fucking my boss’ son — bearing in mind and honoring, of course, your campsite rule. Here are the two problems as I see them: 1) Fucking around with your boss’ kid seems a surefire way to seriously wreck your relationship with your boss. 2) He’s still in high school. —Sex Or Not


A: 1) Fucking your boss’ kid seems like a surefire way to get your ass fired, SON, and depending on what field you’re in — and how important good recommendations and work histories are in your field — fucking the boss’ son could seriously derail your career. If, you know, you manage to get caught. But if you do decide to fuck the shit out of a gorgeous, funny, sweet and kinky adult who happens to be your boss’ son, well, you wouldn’t be the first person in human history to risk everything for sex.

2) He is an adult — who is still in high school. You are not that far out of high school. Math is hard for me, SON, but according to my calculations, you’re not that far apart in age. You might be sabotaging your career, but you wouldn’t be robbing the cradle.

3) The campsite rule for new readers: The older or more experienced person in a sexual relationship with a large age or experience gap is obligated to leave their younger or less experienced partner in better shape than when they found them. That means no sexually transmitted infections, no fertilized eggs, no unnecessary drama and no unnecessary trauma. 

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