Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Atlanta police and LGBT leadership to participate in community forum

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 10:45 PM

Nearly three weeks after the controversial police raid on local gay bar the Eagle, a protest or two, a press conference, and calls for resignations and outrage throughout the gay and straight communities alike, the Atlanta Police Department and the Atlanta community are going to church.

The forum came together as a result of a collaboration between openly gay mayoral candidate Kyle Keyser and LGBT community liaison Officer Dani Lee Harris, with help from Atlanta City Council Post 1 at-large candidate Adam Brackman.  The forum, which is free and open to the public, starts at at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 5,  at Virginia-Highland Church. It's co-sponsored by grassroots group Atlantans Together Against Crime, of which Keyser is a founder.

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Ga. Supreme Court won't hear Longleaf coal plant case

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 10:23 PM

The Georgia Supreme Court yesterday declined to hear arguments in the controversial case of Plant Longleaf, a coal power plant proposed in Southwest Georgia's Early County.

Tom Crawford of Capitol Impact reports:

The justices voted 6-0 this week not to consider the appeal, in effect upholding a July decision by the Georgia Court of Appeals that will allow the Environmental Protection Division (EPD) to issue a permit for the Longleaf Energy Station.

The case involves a $2 billion, 1,200-megawatt power plant that was originally proposed by two energy companies, Dynegy of Houston, Tex., and New Jersey-based LS Power Associates. It would be the first coal-fired facility in Georgia in 20 years.

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Aurora Theatre opens new play series with a boom

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 10:00 PM

THE LIFE AQUATIC: Jules (Topher Payne, from left), Barbara (Shelly McCook) and Jo (Eve Krueger)
  • THE LIFE AQUATIC: Jules (Topher Payne, from left), Barbara (Shelly McCook) and Jo (Eve Krueger)

Aurora Theatre’s comedy boom gives new meaning to the expression “I wouldn’t go out with you if you were the last person Earth.” Directed by Joe Gfaller, boom begins with an unimaginably lousy date that somehow manages only to get worse.

Jo (Eve Krueger), a young journalism student, responds to a Craigslist ad promising a no-strings-attached hookup. Meek marine biologist Jules (Topher Payne), who placed the ad, shies away from Jo’s sexual aggressiveness, and eventually reveals that he’s both gay and a virgin. When Jo asks how he knows he’s gay if he’s never been with anyone, Jules replies, “The non-randomness of the erections.”

Nodding to the aquarium in his underground lab, Jules explains that his examination of fish behavior patterns has convinced him that a cataclysmic event is nigh. He and Jo could end up as the last two people on Earth, although Jo accuses him of engineering a “Cormac McCarthy meets Road Warrior meets 'Survivor'” fantasy. Krueger and Payne prove well-cast as the mismatched couple, but the comedic action doesn’t quite crackle in the play’s initial section, which unfolds like a “Kids in the Hall” sketch.

Continue reading "Aurora Theatre opens new play series with a boom"

(Photo courtesy Aurora Theatre)

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Hanover West and Lincoln Homes, after the flood

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 9:03 PM

WASHED AWAY: Strong rains turned Peachtree Creek behind Paisley Boney's Hanover West home into a literal river
  • WASHED AWAY: Strong rains turned Peachtree Creek behind Paisley Boney's Hanover West home into a literal river

It's Wednesday evening in the Hanover West neighborhood near Buckhead, and the clean-up from the unprecedented storms and floods that whacked metro Atlanta on Sept. 21 and 22 has winded down for the evening. Concerned neighbors mill from house to house, deliver pizzas and supplies, and nurse well-earned beers next to Dumpsters filled with water-logged dry wall and insulation.

Less than four miles away in the historically black Lincoln Homes subdivision, efforts to make sense of the destruction have only just begun. Homeowners stack soggy possessions in front yards and mop up bathrooms covered in pungent mud left from the deluge. Residents toiling into the night tell neighbors leaving to bunk with family members that they'll look after their homes. Compared to Hanover West, where the flood was met with a well-organized communal response, the mood in Lincoln Homes is rife with uncertainty and laden with apprehension as to when things could get back to normal.

Continue reading "After the flood."

(Photo by Liza McLain)

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Buckhead Coalition makes its favorites known

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 8:07 PM

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Have you been wondering which city candidates were most likely to be anointed by powerful northside CEOs? Well, wonder no more, because the Buckhead Coalition has spoken — by putting a not-inconsiderable sum of money where its mouth is.

Like the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, the Coalition doesn't do direct endorsements. Unlike the Chamber's questionnaire process, the Coalition makes its picks known with sizable campaign contributions through a PAC.

So here's who got the cash:

  • In Council races where an incumbent faces opposition, the Coalition gave the incumbent the $2,400 maximum contribution.
  • In contested races without an incumbent, the $2,400 max went to Yolanda Adrean for District 8, Michael Bond for at-large Post 1 and Ceasar Mitchell for President. For reasons not made clear, the Coalition made no contributions in the races for District 6, District 11 and at-large Post 2.
  • The Coalition split its donations in the mayor's race, giving Mary Norwood $1,344 (56%), Kasim Reed $528 (22%), and Lisa Borders $528 (22%).

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Profile: Freddy O, celebrity photographer

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 8:01 PM

Volume 38 Issue 22 Profile
Whatever you do, don’t call Freddy O the paparazzi. Though he’s had run-ins with celebs from Kanye to Beyonce, Freddy says he merely captures images and subjects that are relevant to the times.

How did you get started?

I worked for V-103 for about two years. During that time, I was also a producer for Jermaine Dupri. And I’m an artist, so I would have arts shows and worked with the National Blacks Arts Festival and other events around Atlanta. I was trying to figure out a way to make more money, and I’m not a very focused person, per se, so I decided to just go buy a camera. I started taking pictures around the radio station, and then one day 50 Cent came into the station. It was during the time he and Kanye West were having their fake beef, and he had a teddy bear with him that he was calling Kanye. I took a picture of him with the bear, and soon all the blogs were requesting my photo because they had seen it online. It pretty much started from there.

Have you ever had a negative run-in with a celebrity?

Oh my God, yes. In this business, especially now that I have my own blog, celebrities immediately recognize me by face. I had a run-in with Kanye West a little before his mother passed away. He was at a bowling alley here in Atlanta. I didn’t even know he was going to be there, but when I saw him I took out my camera to take my three pictures. As I was walking out, Kanye ran up to my car and was saying, “Don’t disrespect me.” The funny thing about it was, later that night he took a whole lot of pictures at the Velvet Room.

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Shirley Franklin supporters unite tonight

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 6:38 PM

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With Mayor Shirley Franklin closing in on her final three months in office, community tributes celebrating her tenure have begun. The first is an event tonight launching the "Shirley Franklin Legacy Fund," which boasts high-powered co-chairs in ex-Mayor Andy Young and Falcons owner Arthur Blank.

The minimum donation to attend tonight's event is $100, with the money going to "support efforts to address homelessness" and to advance quality education, according to the invitation. The fund is being administered by the Community Foundation of Greater Atlanta.

The invitation, which came from the "Friends of Shirley Franklin," is extended to those who wish to "thank her for 8 years of making us proud," which, you may recall, was Franklin's campaign promise.

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Time and Place: Take the pecan stains

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 12:00 PM


This car was parked on Alta Ave. NE when a tree fell on it at 5:45 p.m. on Sept. 26. The car was Billy Eiselstein’s. All week Billy had purposely parked his car in the front of his house because two big pecan trees in the back of his house had been staining his car with falling pecans. “I been parking in the front of my house all week to avoid pecan stains,” he said. "I didn't know how bad it was 'til they removed the tree."

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(Photos by Joeff Davis)

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Whip It's good humor skates past sports cliches

Posted By on Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 12:00 PM

WHEELS OF FORTUNE: Drew Barrymore (from left), Ellen Page and Kristen Wiig
  • WHEELS OF FORTUNE: Drew Barrymore (from left), Ellen Page and Kristen Wiig

Drew Barrymore usually radiates high spirits and good cheer on screen, so it makes sense that her directorial debut, Whip It, would display the same virtues. In fact, Barrymore’s film shows more skill and subtlety than she often reveals in her acting, which comes as a particular surprise in a coming-of-age tale full of roller derby players with names such as Iron Maven and Maggie Mayhem.

Juno’s Ellen Page plays Bliss, a meek high schooler in a small Texas town who's forced by her mother to compete in social events like the Blue Bonnet Pageant. Bliss finds herself beguiled when she sees three bohemian chicks on roller skates glide into a vintage clothing shop and hand out fliers for a roller derby match. Thrilled by the sight of uninhibited women brawling and working the crowd, Bliss tries out for and joins the Hurl Scouts. She's soon skating alongside supportive tough cookies played by Kristen Wiig, singer Eve, and stuntwoman-turned actress Zoe Bell. Barrymore gives herself the comic relief role as sketchily drawn dum-dum Smashley Simpson.

Continue reading "Whip It's good humor skates past sports cliches"

(Image by Darren Michaels)

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