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Sunday, November 30, 2008

B.B. King is here

Posted by on Sun, Nov 30, 2008 at 3:14 PM

B.B. King has arrived for his DPAC show tonight
  • B.B. King has arrived for his DPAC show tonight
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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Funeral for capitalism crushed by pigs!

Posted by on Wed, Nov 26, 2008 at 10:51 AM

You have to dig deep in The N&O for this one, but it seems that last Friday night in Chapel Hill, there was a dust-up between the Chapel Hill po-po and revelers at a party organized by Internationalist Books.

Approximately 50 people were gathered to bury capitalism, a ritual that was to culminate with the placing of a mannequin labeled "Capitalism" into a coffin that had been doused with kerosene. But before the effigy could be set ablaze, Chapel Hill's finest intervened and an altercation ensued.

Witnesses said they saw police use pepper spray and batons. Some complained about excessive force to break up what they thought was a dance party.

"They were very peaceful until the cop pushed one of the protesters down," said UNC-Chapel Hill freshman Ariana Lucido, who witnessed the clash.

Police Chief Brian Curran said his officers dealt with the situation appropriately. He said police do not condone dancing in the street and had not issued a permit for the protest.

"Once you're out there trying to get stuff out of the street, and people start physically manhandling you, you've got to defend yourself," Curran said. "Usually when we have protests in Chapel Hill, people are at least civil to the point where they don't attack you. I don't think I can say that for this crowd."

Given that it seems to have been two cops versus 50 demonstrators—and the law won—Chapel Hill's young radicals aren't quite in the same weight class as the Wobblies and the Spartacists.

Only one person, Internationalist manager Nick Shepard, was arrested—for assaulting a police officer. Shepard declined comment to The N&O.

(Note to N&O: It's "Internationalist Books," not "International Books." Big difference.)

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Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Poet Jaki Shelton Green is first Piedmont Laureate

Posted by on Tue, Nov 25, 2008 at 1:37 PM


Jaki Shelton Green
  • Jaki Shelton Green

The Orange County poetess is recognized by arts groups in Raleigh and Wake, Durham and Orange counties. Why? 

In his letter of support for Ms. Green’s application, Joseph Bathanti, professor of creative writing at Appalachian State University, wrote: “ I’ve had the pleasure of seeing Jaki in action (the operative word for her dynamism)....  Her readings are electrifying.  She is a presence at the podium, a meld of panache and humility that embraces every audience… She is North Carolina poetry’s Billie Holiday…”

Three years ago in the Indy, Howard Craft likened her to His Airness, Michael Jordan.

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Stan Norwalk to be sworn in, and sworn at -- ???

Posted by on Tue, Nov 25, 2008 at 12:36 PM

Mark your calendars for Monday, December 1, 2 pm. The newly elected Stan Norwalk will take the oath of office as a Wake County Commissioner, giving the Commissioners a 4-3 Democratic majority. He's pro-schools. As you can see from this entry on conservative Joey Stansbury's interesting -- if slanted :) -- Wake Community Network blog, some who attend on Monday may not be so pro- as Stan. They'll be in red. Dems wear blue?

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Lakewood Y saved, houses Montessori Middle

Posted by on Tue, Nov 25, 2008 at 12:08 PM

Most of the Lakewood YMCA in Durham will be the new home of a Montessori middle school, after the Durham County Commissioners agreed to purchase the property at its meeting last night. 

Last year, the Indy published a series of stories on the plight of the inner city Y, one of the most beloved and integrated places in Durham: June 13, 2007June 20, 2007; Sept. 26, 2007; Nov. 7, 2007; April 29, 2008.

Continue reading…

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Who is Cassandra Q. Butts?

Posted by on Tue, Nov 25, 2008 at 11:15 AM

As the president-elect's transition team continues its vetting, the good folks over at the New York Times are running thumbnail profiles of all of the prospective members of the new administration, this one a longtime Tar Heel.

The abbreviated story on Ms. Butts:

-She's being considered for a position in the White House Counsel's office.

-She's a graduate of the University of North Carolina and Harvard Law School.

-Her first post-undergrad job was at a Durham YMCA.

-She at one time worked for Dick Gephardt.

-According to the NYT, she has an affinity for "hot" cars.

Well, alrighty then.

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Monday, November 24, 2008

Nazi comics, Civil War song sheets, Soviet photographs, oh my!

Posted by on Mon, Nov 24, 2008 at 4:28 PM

What do Nazi comic books, Civil War-era song sheets, and portraits from a pioneering African-American photography studio in Charleston, S.C., have in common? They're all new additions to the Duke Digital Collections, Duke University's free archive of historical texts and images. (The collection's About page notes: "In addition to providing easier access to these materials, digital collections aid in the preservation of materials by reducing the need for handling the originals.") Indeed, the presentation online is remarkable--and, for the song sheet collection, there's even a tag cloud containing terms like "love," "flag," "cause" and "traitor."

Other recently digitized collections include photographs taken by two Americans living in a nascent Soviet Union, and a Union soldier's private collection of cartes-de-visites of "Officers of Army and Navy and Notorious Characters of the So-called 'Confederate States.'" Here's an excerpt from the intro for "Americans in the Land of Lenin: Documentary Photographs of Early Soviet Russia, 1919-1930." Trust us, though, the images are even better:

Both men left unique photos of their encounter with ordinary individuals of the self-proclaimed first socialist country in the world. Their images of life in the Soviet provinces between the World Wars reveal an agrarian, multi-ethnic country, still reeling under the impact of the revolutionary forces unleashed at the beginning of the 20th-century.

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Fuzzy math for DPAC: Durham continues to tout '$44 million theater'

Posted by on Mon, Nov 24, 2008 at 3:16 PM

From a Friday press release issued by the City of Durham, announcing new details for a Dec. 1 "community open house and ribbon-cutting ceremony" at the Durham Performing Arts Center:

The Durham Performing Arts Center is a $44 million, state-of-the-art performing arts venue under construction at the corner of Mangum and Vivian Streets in downtown Durham.

In fact, as the Indy reported in November 2007, the theater is budgeted at $46.8 million. In that story, we rounded down to $46, but explained the exact figure in a sidebar. (Read this week's cover package on DPAC, for which the City refused to provide an up-to-date budget that would explain actual costs.)

The City's press release, authored by Public Affairs Director Beverly Thompson, might explain why The News & Observer also used the incorrect figure of $44 million in a Friday blog post about the opening ceremony. In a Sunday print story, the N&O used the correct figure of $46.8 million. (A clip search reveals that, over the past year, the N&O has alternated, erroneously, between $44 and $45.8 million -finally getting it right in September 2008). Meanwhile, the Herald-Sun has stayed away from dollar signs altogether when mentioning DPAC (except to quote a vague "economic impact" estimate provided by Alan DeLisle, the assistant city manager for Economic Workforce and Development). In fact, despite mentioning the theater in 46 articles, news briefs and opinion columns over the past nine months, the last time the paper cited DPAC's budget was in February 2008. That number, according to the H-S? $44 million.

In other words, the H-S has never told its readers exactly what DPAC will cost. The City's PR department has done a better job, give or take a few million dollars.

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Herald-Sun tries to blog, or something

Posted by on Mon, Nov 24, 2008 at 10:20 AM

Michael Bacon, a Durham blogger at The Bull in Full, saw the banner ad atop The Herald-Sun's web site inviting him to "Go ahead. Tell us what you really think," and decided to give it a go.


But it's unclear whether it worked, and what exactly the concept/idea/point of H-S's new blog is.

Bacon's post complaining about "the abundantly useless" columnist John McCann appears here to registered users. But H-S's blog home page says "no blogs have been posted yet."

"Maybe they're still ironing out the kinks," Bacon said on his own site, "and maybe their lack of web editor means that it's going to take a while before anything works right. At this point, though, the review that pops into mind is something along the lines of, 'Newzpapir blogz -- ur doing it rong.'"

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B.H. Hudson gets her due at NCCU

Posted by on Mon, Nov 24, 2008 at 9:48 AM

The popular longtime host of "Morning Jazz" on WNCU 90.7 FM, B.H. Hudson, has been promoted to program director of North Carolina Central University's radio station, The Herald-Sun reports (reg. required). She has worked at the station for 13 years, and in public radio for 30. (For more about Hudson, see this Indy profile from 2003.)

Hudson's promotion comes just as former program director and station manager Edith Thorpe has been moved to "special projects".

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