Monday, April 24, 2017

Full Disclosure

Gomez: “It's called Full Disclosure!”
Morticia: “Everybody sips from the sacred family chalice and confesses     something they never told anyone.”
Gomez: “Loosely based on the inquisition.”
         From “The Addams Family Musical”
photos by Angela Lane

Over the weekend, grandson James starred as Uncle Fester in the Portage H.S. production of “The Addams Family Musical.”  He had several tremendous musical numbers, one while playing the fiddle, and scooted around stage in character with a maniacal grin on his face.  I was so proud of him, tears came to my eyes.  At the beginning of act two, addressing the audience, he stated rhetorically: “So will love triumph or will everyone go home vaguely depressed?”  In the Playbill’s “About the cast” section James noted that “his hobbies include playing the piano, surfing the web, playing video games, and memeing with his younger sister.”  I had to look up what memeing meant and am still not clear on how it works.
popular memes
 photo by Shellie Untch Kramer

I recognized many cast members from the fall play “E/R,” including Iris Talley (Gomez Addams) and Alyson Ponda (Alice Beineke).  Mary Yong wore four-inch heals as befits Morticia, and Isabelle Minard as grandma Addams had some of the funniest lines, including “when I break wind, it can start windmills in an old Dutch painting” and “call me cougar, but I betcha there’s a couple 90-year-old hotties out there ready to take their teeth out and chow down on a Grandma sandwich.”  On Friday night, when James entered MacDonald’s for an after-party, cast members gave him a well-deserved ovation.  In the audience were Michiganders Phil, Delia, Alissa, and Miranda, and Alissa’s mom Beth Satkoski from Carmel. 
above, great-grandparents Tom and Vera Kalberer; below, Miranda Lane selfie

Robert and Dani Migoski

"Big Jim" Migoski (on left) and family

Jim Migoski drove from western Pennsylvania and joined us Sunday, a day after we went with him to his grandson Robert’s wedding at the South Haven Legion Hall.  Flying in from California was Jim’s daughter Suzanne with husband Kris and their three kids in tow.  I’ve known Suzanne since she was a classmate of Dave’s.  When the reception broke up early, she exclaimed, “Where’s the after-party?”  The Migoskis went to Ivy’s Bohemian House in Chesterton, managed by Wayne Thornton, ironically known in high school as “tough guy” because he was so thin.  Now he’s bearded and a big bear of a man.  She’s still blond and beautiful, but he didn’t recognize her until she declared in exasperation, “You took me to the prom!”  “Suzanne!” he finally said.
After Sunday’s show eight of us were at Applebee’s (above) when director Kevin Giese came to our table with daughter Valerie, who played Wednesday Addams, and complimented James for his unflappable stage presence.  Valerie plans to attend IUN as a Performing Arts major in the Fall.  At a nearby table, Toni spotted student director Andrea Vance with Logan Muñoz, who played Lucas Beineke’s grey-haired father Malcolm, and without fanfare paid for their meal.
 Lauren DeLand

"Stella" by Louise Jopling

I attended an IUN Arts and Sciences student research conference session on “Art Across Time and Space” sponsored by Fine Arts professor Lauren DeLand.  Focusing primarily on murals, Alyssa Humphrey’s presentation, “The Purpose of Art in the Streets,” analyzed political and cultural expressions of various types of street art. Jayme Miller discussed nineteenth-century English portraiture artist Louise Jopling (1843-1933), who painted wealthy men and exotic actresses.  Jopling was friends with Oscar Wilde and James McNeill Whistler and was a model for several artists, including Whistler.
Guillermo Vargas and exhibited dog

The most controversial student presentation, Haley Olenik’s “How Far Is Too Far in the Name of Art,” criticized Costa Rican artist Guillermo Vargas, who exhibited an emaciated dog in a Nicaraguan gallery exhibit in order, he claimed, to draw attention to the plight of stray dogs in Central America. On the wall were the words “Eres Lo Qu Lees (“You are what you eat”) written with dog food.  Internet photos of the so-called starving dog produced outrage, but gallery director Juanita Bermudez stated later that the dog was fed regularly and only tied up for three hours before it escaped.  Vargas noted that nobody who witnessed the exhibit tried to help the animal or give it food.
 Christopher Dillard; NWI Times photo by Bob Kasarda

The Upper Deck in downtown Chesterton was the scene of the brutal murder of 24-year-old bartender Nicole Gland, stabbed two dozen times after she left work at 2:51 a.m. last Wednesday.  Bouncer Christopher Dillard, 50, was arrested the following day.  Chesterton Tribune correspondent Kevin Nevers wrote:
Gland’s body was found in her silver Ford SUV at 9:10 a.m. Wednesday by a Chesterton Tribune employee arriving at work. She was slumped over in the front seat of her vehicle, which had come to rest against a dumpster and an old sofa located behind the Tribune building on Lois Lane. 
While police initially speculated that the motive was robbery, unconfirmed rumors are circulating that Gland discovered Dillard was dealing drugs and killed in order to silence her.  Dillard admitted to the Chesterton police that he killed Gland after “partying rough” and in a hazy state and egregiously portrayed his victim as a druggie. Nonetheless, he entered a plea of not guilty.
 NWI Times photo by Marc Chase

Last Saturday morning, meanwhile, Portage shot 39-year-old William Spates after a traffic stop, who died of multiple gunshot wounds to the head and torso.  Spates allegedly tried to run over the officer.  NWI Times reporter Marc Chase interviewed neighborhood resident Roger Dunn, who heard gunshots and noticed a blue jeep in a nearby driveway with the driver’s door open and a person motionless on the ground.  Chase wrote: “In the early afternoon hours, Dunn and his wife watched as the blue jeep Liberty – sealed off with orange crime-scene evidence stickers – was towed away with visible bullet holes in the front windshield.”  County and state police are investigating.

Paul Kern wrote: I really enjoy getting reconnected with the Region once a year through Steel Shavings. I thought this was a particularly good issue.”   Paul commented on former students Sami Jadallah (“I ignorantly used the term Mohammedans in my western civ class until he told me that Moslems considered that an insult. Thank heavens for Sami. I might have gone on using that term for years if not for him”) and Terrance Durousseau (“He was working as a security guard and then got a job at the assessor’s office in Crown Point, passed a series of certification exams culminating in a week-long course in Phoenix and is now a fully certified assessor. Something of a workaholic, Terrance is still a security guard on weekends”).  Paul wrote: “I had a student who audited a few of my courses and I'm wondering if it was Pat Conley. He had retired from R.R. Donnely and gave me a couple of books that Donnely had printed and given as gifts to their employees. One was The Americanization of Edward Bok.”  Looking up Conley’s obit, I found that, indeed, he worked for a printing company.  Paul noted that over the years several folks audited his class, but Conley was the only one to pay for the privilege. Reacting to my memories of embarrassing school experiences, Paul wrote:
      When we moved to Burnet, Texas, on the first day at recess, the children all played a game of pick-up softball. Two boys, the best athletes in the third grade, stood the entire rest of the class. As I stood uncertainly on the sideline, one of them motioned me to be on their side. In that moment of grace, I became part of the in-crowd. That boy's name was Larry A. He went on to become a star quarterback for Burnet High School and the best childhood friend I ever had. We are still in touch.
    At my eighth-grade graduation, Doris Parks read the class will. At the rehearsal, the microphone was too high for her so I volunteered to step forward and lower it when her big moment came. The next night, before a packed house, when I stepped forward to lower the microphone I was unable to loosen the mechanism, either because of lack of strength or lack of understanding how it worked, and had to beat a humiliating retreat, leaving Doris to stand on tiptoes while she read the class will.

In the New Yorker is a cartoon of the Founding Fathers sitting around a table, and one says, “But what if a tyrant comes to power and no one’s able to stop him because the whole thing’s kind of funny?”  The Trump phenomenon gained media momentum when the Republican outsider began ridiculing mainstream rivals as “low energy,” “lyin’,” “little” people and then continued with outrageous statements guaranteed to generate publicity and, for cable news stations, ratings.  Well, the whole thing has stopped being funny, as Trump seems to have no intention of transitioning from candidate to chief of state.

Ray Smock commented sarcastically:
            Yeah, it sure is kind of funny, isn't it? Trump wants to be a tyrant but lacks the ability to pull it off. So, I see him more as a wrecking ball than a tyrant. He fucks things up. He is dumb as a fence post. He is nuts. The only question is how much can he be contained and how much can his manic excesses and bad ideas be minimized, and then there is the problem of how much trust in government suffers while he is in office lying to us every damn day. And when he isn't lying he is embarrassing the United States.

Samuel A. Love posted a photo of a Miller traffic jam on Lake Street caused a CSS train conductor who went to buy a pizza.  Dave posted a photo of the E.C. Central tennis team after the young women defeated Griffith, 5-0, to up their record to 6-1.

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