David Pintor, director of the Southside Ignoramus Quartet is singing the praises of:
The People's Stage Karaoke I'm not a great singer, or even a good one, by any means, but when I feel like belching out some of my favorite tunes I gravitate toward Pablo Serrano's the People's Stage Karaoke. Apart from being a really sweet guy, Pablo is an amazing Pilsen-based artist who absolutely loves his karaoke—so much so that he hosts it at four different spots each week! He creates a space where people from all kinds of backgrounds join in song to build bridges and become the producers of a new kind of karaoke awesomeness. Any social tensions that may exist between hipsters and nonhipsters, businessmen and the proletariat, ugly people and not-so-ugly people are forgotten. Instead, in Pablo's karaoke we share and appreciate each other's differences. My favorite spots to catch this karaoke gem are Caminos de Michoacan on Fridays [except June 16] and Simone's Bar on Sundays.
XTreme Bugs at Brookfield Zoo Although Lincoln Park Zoo is located right on the lake, and just about the best free zoo you'll ever attend, the fact of that matter is this: sometimes your kids just want to be blown away by the size of a full-grown alligator. The Brookfield Zoo is a bigger zoo, located near the city, and this month they start their Xtreme Bugs exhibit, complete with giant animatronic insects, spiderwebs you can climb, and even staged battles between larger-than-life insects. As the father of two boys, I spend most of my weekends answering what would happen if bees were as big as our house. It's as if this exhibit was crafted from the wishes of my sons,
who which, by the way, are the nightmares of females over the age of four. Think of it as a thinking man's monster truck rally. Or don't think—just scream "Yes!!!" and start pretending to sting everything around you. That's what my boys do.
That Mitchell and Webb Look With the weather being so pleasant and livable, and summer here in full effect, the conditions are absolutely perfect for watching TV inside with the air cranked up. Netflix has been serving up hearty doses of the BBC sketch show That Mitchell and Webb Look. David Mitchell and Robert Webb present a completely brilliant showing of character bits like Sir Digby Chicken Caeser (in their words, a "drink- and drug-addled down and out") and professional pool commentators Ted and Peter. My favorite is "Numberwang," a game show that moves so fast and makes so little sense that it feels like someone is tickling your brain. I don't know if it was really hip and big and I missed it, or if we forgot to pay attention when it first aired, but it has my sides aching like I did sit-ups and is saving me from the dreary beauty of the sunny outdoors.