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Friday, April 29, 2011

The First Sign That You're Engaged to One of These Schemers Is When She Insists You Move Out of Your Parents' Home

Posted By on 04.29.11 at 08:30 AM

Remember, Mother's Day is right around the corner...

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A Son is a Son Till He Gets a Wife

How Toxic Daughters-in-Law Destroy Families

Most women fear the Monster-in-Law.

The TV stereotype is always the mother-in-law, for whom no woman will ever be as good to him as she is. Doris Roberts on Everybody Loves Raymond embodied that image for 8 years on TV — the grasping, sweet-to-your-face, rude-behind-your-back mother-in-law who only wants her son to be happy, as long as she’s the one behind it.

But what if things were the other way around? What happens when it’s the wife, and not the mother-in-law, that tries to drive a wedge between a man and his mother? That’s what happened to Anne Killinger, author of A Son Is a Son Till He Gets a Wife: How Toxic Daughters-in-Law Destroy Families (

“In a world where mothers-in-law are frequently made the butt of bad jokes, many people assume that they are the ones that make life unbearable for their daughters-in-law,” Killinger said. “I contend that it is often the other way around, that many daughters-in-law today are selfish, possessive, and narcissistic, and will not rest until they have divorced their husbands from the parents who raised them. It’s a deceptively gradual process, and half the time, you don’t even realize it has happened until it’s too late. It starts with her taking phone calls for the family, or the canceling of trips to visit family. Soon, phone calls go unreturned, and finally you realize that your son is no longer your son. He’s just some other woman’s husband.”

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Thursday, April 28, 2011

Invasion of the Rusty Crayfish

Posted By on 04.28.11 at 04:03 PM

I’ve never seen so many claws.

They’re all over Chicago beaches, scattered amid other refuse that’s washed up—blue or red-tinted claws that range from half an inch to three or more inches long.

I mean, some of them aren’t tiny. Some of them appear capable of tapping me on the shoulder and asking for a bite of my sandwich. Those pincers could fit around one’s toes, or fingers, or—well, anyway, they’re bigger than anything most of us would expect to encounter in Lake Michigan.


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Jazz: A Revived Label Does Right by Late Trumpeter Bill Dixon

Posted By on 04.28.11 at 03:00 PM

A couple weeks ago a meticulously produced and packaged CD reissue of Intents and Purposes, a classic and incredibly rare 1967 album by trumpeter Bill Dixon, began turning up in record shops. International Phonograph, the Chicago label behind it, isn't exactly new, but its only other release is an album by reedist pianist Richie Beirach and bassist George Mraz that came out in 1981, when the imprint was based in Los Angeles. Label owner Jonathan Horwich, a Chicago native, returned here in 2006 after living for four decades in the LA area, where he cofounded and ran Revelation Records—a jazz indie that released great music by the John Carter-Bobby Bradford Quartet, reedists Warne Marsh and Anthony Ortega, and big-band leader and arranger Clare Fischer.

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What Iliana Regan Can Do With Garlic Mustard Greens

Posted By on 04.28.11 at 02:50 PM

  • Jennifer Moran
  • Garlic mustard sponge

This week in Omnivorous I wrote about the culinary applications of the invasive weed known as garlic mustard. Almost two weeks ago I collected about ten pounds of the stuff, which I used to make salads, pesto, fritattas, and Rick Bayless's pipian. I've barely put a dent in it, leading me to conclude that there's just no way that eating it is going to come close to eradicating it. Still, it's fun to play with, as the estimable Mike Ryan discovered in our new drinks feature Cocktail Challenge.

Forager, gardener, and chef Iliana Reagan likes to play around with it too. She makes a garlic mustard and gelatin based "sponge" almost exactly like the sunflower stem-arugula one pictured above. (That's plated, by the way, with goat milk and sunflower stem sorbets, lavender honey, and saffron-lemon gel). Regan was good enough to send along the recipe, as well as one for garlic mustard compound butter for fish and steak and braised garlic mustard with roasted garlic, which can be applied to bruschetta or pierogies. Check them out after the jump.

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A Very Special Week in Reader Music

Posted By on 04.28.11 at 01:32 PM

So you may have heard already, but the Reader's new redesign hits the streets today. The biggest change is obviously the move to a more magazine-like look, which is sure to please those people who are still grumbling that the Reader sold out when we started printing in color. The other biggest change has to do with our music section, which now gets its own cover, more space, and a new name: the B Side.

We'll be using this added space to bring you guys new regular features. For Artist to Artist we look for an interesting pairing of a Chicago musician and an out-of-towner, then put the local in the interviewer's seat for an anything-goes Q&A. This week we got Chicago Afrobeat Project keyboardist Kevin Ford talking to Femi Kuti, eldest son of Fela and an Afrobeat star in his own right.

Each week In Rotation gives a different Reader regular room to gush about three current musical obsessions; then that writer picks someone else to gush over three things; and then that second person picks a third. If that sounds a little confusing, read the picks from assistant music editor Kevin Warwick, then the three from Whistler and Whistler Records co-owner Billy Helmkamp, then the three from Erik Hall of Nomo and In Tall Buildings. You'll get the picture.

We're also keeping some familiar features around. This week's Gossip Wolf dishes news on the recently re-formed English Softhearts and the recently split-up Race, as well as speculation on what Will Butler was really up to on his trip to Poetry magazine's headquarters. This week's music feature, by music editor Philip Montoro, digs deep into the rousing, nerdy metal of Slough Feg, who play tonight at Quenchers. And the Soundboard, formerly known as the List, big-ups shows by Ghe20 Goth1k, David Grubbs, Fielded, Hunx & His Punx, Shannon & the Clams, Grails, Battles, the Dead Milkmen, and more. And though there isn't one this week (long story), my column will still be running regularly, just like before.

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Hiding From Pretend Earthquakes

Posted By on 04.28.11 at 01:03 PM

Today was the "Great Central U.S. ShakeOut," a safety drill organized by some people in Memphis who are concerned about all the earthquakes that could happen at any time, anywhere—even in Illinois, though probably not. "[D]ozens of schools, businesses and other institutions will take a moment to prepare for a catastrophe some scientists believe is extremely unlikely to happen here," our local paper of record reported earlier today. "At 10:15 a.m., more than 200,000 people in Illinois are expected to pretend that the earth is trembling. They'll duck under their desks and grab on to its legs to protect themselves from falling objects."

So, did you do this thing? How did it go? I did it and feel really prepared now—not just for potential earthquakes but also potential imaginary ones. All kinds of calamities, really. The Reader has never experienced an earthquake per se, but a lot of things are changing around here and you just never know.

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World Music: A Shady Grove on Java

Posted By on 04.28.11 at 01:00 PM

On Sunday evening Friends of the Gamelan, Chicago's only ensemble dedicated to the traditional Indonesian percussion music, will premiere a new composition by ensemble member and local experimental composer Patrick Liddell. It'll be the first time in four years that the 31-year-old group will debut an original work by one of its own.

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Wanted: Miracle

Posted By on 04.28.11 at 12:45 PM

According to the Catholic church, which has made thousands such distinctions in its history, one miracle is required for beatification, two for sainthood. This Sunday more than 300,000 Catholics are expected in Rome for a ceremony beatifying Pope John Paul II, declaring the late pontiff "blessed" based on his first miracle: a French nun with Parkinson's disease wrote his name on a piece of paper before going to bed one night, and woke up the next morning cured.

So the search for the next miracle is on, and the Chicago area has a nominee—Mary Kern, of Lockport, says that prayers to John Paul healed her of a neurological condition that restricted her vision. She's petitioned the Vatican with her story.

In fact, the midwest is ripe with the possibility of miracle. Last year a small shrine in Champion, Wisconsin, claimed the very rare honor of an officially verified Virgin Mary sighting, the first in the U.S.—this one happened in 1859.

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Metal: Brand-new Bones, Live Superchrist, and Evil-powered Beer

Posted By on 04.28.11 at 12:00 PM

It pleases me to launch this column on Chicago metal with news of an especially Chicagoan album: the self-titled debut from Bones, due May 2 on Planet Metal, the label of Dawnbringer mastermind Chris Black. Bassist and vocalist Jon "Necromancer" Woodring (who briefly played in Nachtmystium a few years back), guitarist "Carcass" Chris Svoboda (who used to have a solo project called Eternal Hatred), and drummer Joe "Warlord" Schaeffer have been friends for more than two decades, says Black. Woodring and Schaeffer helped found Usurper in 1993, and all three played in the band for several years in the aughts.

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Four Things You Should Buy From Your Neighbors

Posted By on 04.28.11 at 11:30 AM


To kick off our new column that features the best stuff you can buy from Chicago's artists, artisans, and crafters, we've got a triple whammy. For its 20th birthday, Quimby's Books commissioned a blueprint of the Quimby's sign that hangs in front of the store from comics ace Chris Ware. Plus, the prints were done by Skokie screen-printing outfit The Bird Machine, so you're supporting three different Chicago institutions at once. Get 'em while you can; only 500 were printed. $50, $100 for a print signed by Ware, 1854 W. North,

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