Spoken word artists will compete in a poetry slam tonight at Night Life Comedy Club and Lounge at 5504 Durham-Chapel Hill Boulevard for a $100 prize.
What's interesting about this event is the topic, the 2010 Census. The census has been controversial this year for several reasons, including doubts about its accuracy, efforts to reach undercounted groups and notably, the inclusion of "Negro" as a race category.
The even begins at 8:30 p.m. and admission is $1. The slam is sponsored by Best Kept Spoken, a project of Black Poetry Theatre, and the prize money was donated by the Southern Coalition for Social Justice.
UNC police have identified third-year law student Eric James Bryant as the person found dead at Odum Village on Wednesday morning.
Investigators suspect suicide, though the case remains open.
Jack Boger, dean of the law school, shared the news in a letter to law school students, faculty and staff.
"This has been a sad season at Carolina Law, and we share in your grief," he wrote. "If there is anything we can do to assist you, please do let us know."
Bryant attended UNC as an undergraduate, earning his degree in 2007. He went on to study law at Ohio State for one year, before transferring back to Chapel Hill.
Is it really true what all those people say, that life is too short to drink bad wine? The more I think about it, the less I believe it. Most people don't drink wine at all—-so they're not drinking bad wine—-but to those who do, it isn't worth spending much time worrying about whether the wine they're drinking is good or bad, or what it is at all. Even professionals often advocate some sort of variation on that insouciance, including the Indy's own wine writer.
And why not? If you can be happy walking into any old wine shop—-be it a funky, idiosyncratic little place like Parker & Otis or a corporate strip-mall big-box like Total Wine—-buying a cheap bottle with with a salesperson's help or picking one out on your own by finding a cute label, then I'm all for it. Is discrimination when it comes to intoxicants all that important? Most smokers choose mass-produced cigarettes. The good tobacco waits patiently in specialty shops, where aficionados go for select hand-rolled leaf. But that doesn't mean we should talk trash about Marlboros. Marlboros are trash; they can be left alone, or occasionally, guiltily indulged in. But it isn't worth carping.
What's worth doing, if you like good wine, is drinking good wine. The pursuit and embrace of goodness is the perfect antidote to settling for badness and cheapness. Whether life is too short to drink bad wine, or listen to bad punk rock, or fail to save wildlife, or parent poorly or write like a hack—-whatever that thing is, that can save you.
So when Lent ended, it was time to renew a commitment. And we started with a devotional bottle.
The UNC community knows but a few alarming facts: someone was found dead Tuesday at Odum Village, on-campus apartment near UNC Hospitals.
Campus police are yet to release the name or gender of the victim or the apartment number, but " have no reason to believe there is any ongoing threat to the campus community," according to information posted at Alert Carolina.
UNC Department of Public Safety Spokesman Randy Young wouldn't elaborate on how officers made that determination.
Asked if the incident was being investigated as a crime or an accidental death, he responded, "It's being investigated thoroughly."
Odum Village is home to 452 undergraduate and graduate students, according to UNC's housing Web site. They live in fully furnished, all inclusive one- or two-bedroom units located near Hibbard Drive and Mason Farm Road.
Young said he's not operating on a timeline and doesn't know when new information will be released.
Thirteen horses died in a Chapel Hill fire early this morning when a blaze swept through a barn at 2006 Marions Ford Road and into the woods, destroying "multiple acres," Orange County Spokesman David Hunt said.
Nine horses were rescued from an adjacent barn.
Firefighters were dispatched at 3:37 a.m. and remain on the scene.
"Six hours later, and they are still working it," Hunt said. "I wouldn't exactly call it fighting at this point. They are doing their overhaul, soaking down hot spots."
Fire marshals won't be able to begin determining the cause of the blaze or assessing the damage until that work is complete.
The address is the home of Foxwood Farms, a boarding stable, owned by Layton and Mary Wheeler. They also offer riding lessons and rent single-family homes at the property, according to the farm Web site, abundant with photos of horses peaking their heads through fences, nestling, grazing and riding in competition.
The Bingham Facility is an animal research facility in rural Orange County that studies hemophilia and muscular dystrophy in dogs and pigs. The grant provides funding to build two buildings, to be completed by 2013, to house animals and support the infrastructure of the facility, according to a press release issued by the university this afternoon.
In addition, UNC will fund and construct a building to house veterinary services, laboratories and offices. This work will take place alongside the construction sponsored by the federal government.
The Indy has written several issues on the structural failures and chemical contamination at the facility, including the most recent story last week.
I did a double take yesterday when my cell phone rang and I was greeted with, "This is Mayor Bill Bell..." In fact it was Bill Bell, and for a second, I thought he was actually on the line. No such luck—just an automated message sent out via the county's reverse 911 system to persuade Durham residents to fill out their 2010 Census forms.
We ran a story this week on efforts in Durham to urge more census participation, as well as the fact that while many don't participate because they lack awareness, others just choose not to because they don't trust the way the government will use the information, or were offended by the word "Negro" in the race question. (In related news, see the video of Robert Groves, director of the U.S. Census Bureau, apologizing for the use of the word "Negro. At this Web site, Color of Change is leading a campaign to retire the word from the form.)
Kevin Davis of Bull City Rising also weighed in today on the use of the emergency alert system to deliver a robo-call about the U.S. Census.
For more interesting reading on the U.S. Census, visit a recent study by the Brookings Institution on the role census counts play in federal funding, and see the Institute for Southern Studies' research, released this week, on the challenges our recession poses in an accurate count.
UPDATE: The jokester apparently has sent flowers to City Hall to apologize.
An apparent April Fool's Day jokester distributed an e-mail this morning made to look like a press release from the City of Durham. And apparently, it wasn't well received by the city.
The message, originally sent to about 30 people, indicated that because of the successful installation of a traffic circle on Woodcroft Parkway, eight more would be built in a project funded by a No Child Left Behind grant (a federal education program).
The e-mail was made to look like it came from Amy Blahlock, a spin on the name of real-life city spokeswoman Amy Blalock, who frequently sends out real news releases on real city projects.
As you may know by now, in his bid to bring Google's newest project to his town, the mayor of Topeka, Kan., renamed his city Google for the month of March. (Read the recent Indy cover story about Google Fiber.)
Today, as an April Fool's Day joke, Google is calling itself Topeka. Read an explanation from the Official Google Blog.