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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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Savage Love

Sexy time-outs

When horny couples need to take a break

Q: I am a bi woman happily married to a straight man, and we both "participate" in hot sexy times with other women during threesomes. It's hard to find hot 30ish bi girls where we live, but the encounters we've had were for the most part excellent. Everything was great until three weeks ago, when we had a miscarriage. We'd been trying for almost two years, so the recovery is not just physical but emotional for both of us.

We were only recently given the go-ahead to have sex again. We have a well-rounded sex life — kink, BDSM, toys — and both of us have said that, just for right now, we're not looking for anything more than just us.

I went to the computer this morning to find that my husband had left his e-mail open. His inbox was filled with replies to recent queries sent to girls looking for couples to hook up with. His e-mails to these girls ask what gets them hot and when and where we can all hook up, and they state that his wife is really excited about f-ing her. I'm probably overreacting due to all the extra hormones, but he's lying to them, and I'm not sure what he's doing to me. —Confused & Hormonal

A: I'm so sorry for your loss, C&H. A miscarriage when you're trying to conceive is an utterly heartbreaking experience. My heart goes out to you — both of you.

Two things in your letter leaped out at me: "It's hard to find hot 30ish bi girls where we live" and "Both of us have said that, just for right now, we're not looking for anything more than just us." And one thing that isn't in your letter leaped out at me: You found no evidence that your husband was planning to meet up with any of these girls alone. He isn't cheating and wasn't planning to. He was making very tentative, vague plans for the three of you to get together at some point in the future. And that isn't gonna happen — that can't happen — until you're ready, right?

So here's what your husband is guilty of: He is looking forward — too soon and too eagerly — to the time when you're ready to start having threesomes again. And it looks like he was trying to dig up one of those "hard to find" hot 30ish bi girls so that when you were ready for "more than just us," a hot 30ish bi girl would be all lined up.

Was that a shitty thing for him to do? Perhaps. But again, C&H, all you discovered was evidence that your husband was making plans for sexy times at some indefinite point in the future. And are you sure he understands that just looking is out-of-bounds? Perhaps when you said, "We're not looking for anyone else right now," he heard, "We're not sleeping with anyone else right now."

As upsetting as it was to find those e-mails, I think your husband deserves some credit for being ... considerate. Your miscarriage was no doubt upsetting for him, too, C&H, but it didn't impact his sexual interests or needs the way it impacted yours. But he didn't push the issue. He didn't put any pressure on you — he didn't even bring the subject up. All he did was put some feelers out and do a little online flirting and planning. Half the fun is to plan the plan, as Mrs. Lovett once said, so he probably enjoyed those e-mail exchanges. But he didn't tell you about them because there was no way to talk about them without making you feel pressured.

So let's pretend that you never ran across those e-mails, C&H. Let's imagine that six months or a year from now, you're starting to feel the urge to have some sexy times with a hot 30ish bi girl. And you go to your husband, who has been patient and understanding, and you say, "I think I'm ready to have a threesome again." And your loving, kinky, considerate husband replies, "Hey, that's great. I've been chatting with a few hot 30ish bi girls online I thought you might like. You wanna see their pictures?"

You probably wouldn't have said, "You asshole! You weren't even supposed to be looking until I said so!" I'm thinking it's much more likely that you would've said something like "My husband is the best."


Q:
I'm about to move in with my boyfriend of four years. He's still very attracted to me, but my attraction to him has faded. I think the anxiety of finally moving in together caused something to snap. I went out for innocent drinks with a colleague and ended up back at his place. I love my boyfriend, but I'm still giddy from the hot sex with my colleague. I'm confused! Especially because I don't feel guilty — I feel great! I have no plans to tell the BF, a man I love very much and don't want to hurt. What do I do now? —Girl Hot Tin Roof

A: Unless you're planning to put your boyfriend painlessly to sleep in the very near future, GHTR, there's no way to avoid hurting him. You're not really in love with him, you're not attracted to him, and the longer you drag this relationship out, GHTR, the greater the hurt will be once you finally screw up the courage to dump him, or more likely, once he discovers the truth on his own. I would tell you to DTMFA, but you're the MF in this scenario, not him. End it.


The choicer challenge:
Last week, the leader of British Columbia's Conservative Party, John Cummins, told a radio interviewer that gay people shouldn't be covered by the BC Human Rights Act because being gay is "a conscious choice."

Like truthers (9/11 was an inside job!), birthers (Barack Obama was born in Kenya!) and deathers (Osama bin Laden is alive and well and living in West Hollywood!), choicers would appear to be just another group of deranged conspiracy theorists who can't be dissuaded by science or evidence or facts. And John Cummins isn't the only choicer out there. We have lots of choicers right here in the United States (Tony Perkins, Rick Santorum, Stephen Colbert, et al.).

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