Friday, September 30, 2011

Finally, a yard sale for green-thumbed Atlantans

Posted By on Fri, Sep 30, 2011 at 6:04 PM

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Trees Atlanta is holding its 12th annual tree sale fundraiser Oct. 8 at its headquarters in Reynoldstown. But this year's event won't just be a basic tree sale. No, sir. In addition to offering more than 1,000 dogwood, elms, bald cypress, crape myrtles, yellow flowering magnolias, an American wisteria called 'Amethyst Falls', American hazelnut, dwarf tulip-poplar, five varieties of silver bells, and 19 varieties of oak … um, what was I talking about? Oh, yeah — in addition to selling a buttload of trees, the good folks at Trees Atlanta will also be throwing a wingding of sorts:

From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., there will be music by Smokey's Farmhouse Band, beverages from Honest Tea, tree care demonstrations, speakers, a small petting zoo of sheep by Ewe-niversally Green, and much more, including opportunities to learn about the components of a LEED-certified building.

That's right, people: much more! Actually, if you've never checked out TA's Kendeda Center offices, it's worth a visit — if only to see a nonprofit organization where the employees don't have to use cardboard boxes for desks, write on paper salvaged from recycling bins and work by candlelight.

Anyway, the location is 225 Chester Ave., off Memorial Drive and just west of the Beltline.

NOTE: An earlier version of this post contained a major brain fart that named the wrong date.

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Judge John Hodgman and other old-school podcasters

Posted By on Fri, Sep 30, 2011 at 3:46 PM

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  • JUDGE JOHN HODGMAN
Today's the deadline for voting in the PodCast Awards, through Sep. 30. (Do they call them the Poddies? Please tell me they call them the Poddies.) The Seventh Annual award recognizes excellence in 22 different podcasting categories, from "Best Podcast" to such categories as Business, Entertainment, Comedy, GLBT and "Mature." Most of my votes in relevant will go to the bad movie podcast The Flop House, a bad movie podcast hosted by two "Daily Show" writers. which I've discussed earlier. Ahead of the vote I've been listening to many podcasts lately, so I thought I'd shout out to some of my favorites (feel free to mention others in the comments):

Judge John Hodgman: The author, character actor and formr "resident expert" of "The Daily Show" takes a page from Judge Wapner in this "People's Court"-style broadcast. Exaggerating his tweedy hauteur, Hodgman mediates personal disputes that can involve hilariously arcane subjects like whether or not machine guns qualify as robots, or if a couple should remove a pair of Mulder and Scully action figures from their original packaging. The latest installment involves the outcome of a game of "Beard Chicken:" "Bilder accumulated the most days unshaven, but McElroy claims he is the winner, with the most consecutive bearded days." Hodgman not only draws out the maximum amount of whimsy from the "court cases," he often reaches genuinely wise rulings.

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Shooting at Chinese Buddha in Midtown proves confusing

Posted By on Fri, Sep 30, 2011 at 2:13 PM

Read this AJC article about a shooting in Midtown. Then let's discuss ...

Atlanta police are looking for a rude gift-giver who allegedly shot a man for refusing to return part of the birthday present.

Around 3:20 a.m., police were called to the Chinese Buddha restaurant at 100 10th Street when the shooting was reported.

The victim was celebrating his birthday with friends on the restaurant patio when the gunman pulled up in a black Nissan Altima and offered the victim $10 as a gift, police say.

The man returned shortly and asked for $4 back. When the birthday celebrant refused, the man went for a handgun. As the armed man returned to the patio, several party-goers tackled him. But the gun went off, hitting the birthday victim once in the abdomen, police said.

The birthday victim was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. The gunman got in his car and drove away.

A few things ...
$10 is a terrible birthday gift. Unless the giver of said gift is your grandma.

If someone you suspect to be carrying a gun asks you for $4, g'head and give it to him. I can't even begin to wrap my head around why someone would give a person $10, leave, and then return a little while later to ask for some of that money back. Frankly, this story sounds made-up. I'm dubious. If it is true, how fun it'll be to find out what the $4 was for. Something really important, I bet.

It's weird that Chinese Buddha is open at 3:20 a.m. Know what's more weird? They're actually open until 6 a.m., according to Yelp. Who eats Chinese food at 5 a.m.? Besides Chinese people.

Society has really dragged its feet on coming up with a non-horrifyingly-racist term for people who give gifts then take them back.

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MARTA fares increase on Sunday, add cash to your Breeze cards today

Posted By on Fri, Sep 30, 2011 at 11:56 AM

The fare hikes MARTA's board approved many, many months ago take effect on Sunday.

A one-way ride on MARTA buses and trains will increase to $2.50. A monthly pass will cost $90. Here's MARTA's rundown of all the new fares.

Fill up your Breeze card today or tomorrow at your nearest MARTA station and save some cash. Not taking transit today? You can now add rides or cash amounts to your cards online.

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Weekend Arts Agenda: Flux

Posted By on Fri, Sep 30, 2011 at 11:05 AM

Monica Cooks Volley will be part of Flux 2011

Flux 2011 arrives in Castleberry Hill, Ponce Crush returns, and more. Details after the jump.

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The Televangelist: ATLwood Weekly Rundown

Posted By on Fri, Sep 30, 2011 at 10:06 AM

The 3 Musketeers?

— A ton of celebrity sightings this week! Keifer Sutherland and Kate Hudson on the set of their new film, Lady Gaga at the Clermont, even more Kate Hudson, this time on her own in Piedmont Park plus Ben Stiller and Lady Gaga getting hamburgers. And yet I still haven't seen a single one of them myself!

— Our own Debbie Michaud shared this fantastic tweet that features Jonah Hill, Ben Stiller and T.I. hanging out together in our very own #ATLwood.

— Belieb it: Justin Bieber and his sister Jazzy get silly at a local Waffle House, and share some pics.

— Local Talent Alert: Decatur High student Morgan Saylor takes the lead in the Showtime series "Homeland."

— Speaking of Decatur, Anna Kendrick has been filming “What to Expect” in my 'burb as of yesterday.

— Extras, Extras read all about it! Extras are needed for filming in Newton County starting next month for ‘Flight’, starring Denzel Washington. "The movie follows Denzel’s character, Whip, a commercial airline pilot with a drug problem, who pulls off the heroic feat of landing a plane after its engine fails, saving 98 people. The movie will shoot a key scene at Green Valley Farms on U.S. Highway 278 in Newton County, GA on Oct. 11. The scene will involve the plane knocking off a church steeple, which the crew will begin filming soon on site at Green Valley Farms."

— But wait, there's more! Tyler Perry's "House of Payne" is seeking extras for its sixth season.

— "The Game" is filming its fifth season in Atlanta, and the cast shares some behind-the-scenes photos.

Have any tips? Sightings? Encounters? Filming news? Drop me a line: ATLwood@cln.com or send me a tweet @FlossyAlli on Twitter (don't forget to use the hashtag #ATLwood)!

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Ga State asks for OK to build more 'decorative' crosswalks, install blinking lights to protect pedestrians from speed demons

Posted By on Fri, Sep 30, 2011 at 9:48 AM

The days of playing live-action Frogger on downtown Atlanta's streets might soon be over. Georgia State University is looking to build new and improved crosswalks and install warning-light systems around the campus to safeguard students from speed demons.

The plan, which university officials say is needed after GSU opened additional student housing, calls for up to 25 beefed-up, "decorative" crosswalks at eight different downtown intersections and in-road warning lights at two intersections within the campus' footprint. (The two intersections are Piedmont Avenue and Ellis Street and John Wesley Dobbs Avenue and Pryor Street for those keeping tabs.)

The new crosswalks would be brick with the familiar GSU logo, similar to those already in place. Embedded street lights warning motorists would flash when activated by pedestrians. The project has no timeline and, according to GSU's university letter to city officials asking for support, would be built as the school's budget allows. (We asked GSU for more details about the improvements, including the project's cost, but have yet to hear back.)

According to a July GSU press release about campus construction, the new crosswalks and light systems are part of a larger streetscape project that includes tree plantings and widened sidewalks along busy Piedmont Avenue, which city and university officials deemed unsafe for pedestrians.

Sally Flocks of PEDS, a local pedestrian advocacy group, says the new crosswalks and in-road warning lights will "help people understand that they're in a campus." The embedded lighting, she says, will be especially useful at night to alert drivers.

The Atlanta City Council Transportation Committee gave its blessing on Wednesday to legislation authorizing GSU to begin the work; a full Council vote is expected on Monday.

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5 things today: Flux, Still Flyin'

Posted By on Fri, Sep 30, 2011 at 8:00 AM

gloATLs Livers will premiere during Flux 2011

1. Flux 2011 lights up in Castleberry Hill
2. Still Flyin' plays The Earl
3. Atlanta Bar-B-Q Festival kicks off at Atlantic Station
4. Skrillex plays the Tabernacle
5. Hotlanta Salsa Congress kicks off at the Hyatt Regency

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5 things today: Flux, Still Flyin'

Posted By on Fri, Sep 30, 2011 at 8:00 AM

gloATLs Livers will premiere during Flux 2011

1. Flux 2011 lights up in Castleberry Hill
2. Still Flyin' plays the Earl
3. Atlanta Bar-B-Q Festival kicks off at Atlantic Station
4. Skrillex plays the Tabernacle
5. Hotlanta Salsa Congress kicks off at the Hyatt Regency

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Film Clips: What's Your Number? 50/50?

Posted By on Fri, Sep 30, 2011 at 7:20 AM

Anna Faris will look anywhere for love in Whats Your Number?

OPENING FRIDAY
BRIGHTON ROCK (NR) In England of the early 1960s, a sociopathic young gangleader (Sam Riley) marries a young woman (Andrea Riseborough) who saw him murder a rival. This adaptation of the Graham Greene novel features Helen Mirren, John Hurt and Andy Serkis.

BUNRAKU (NR) This martial arts-based action film stars Josh Hartnett and the Japanese actor/singer Gackt as mysterious strangers who take on Ron Perlman’s crimelord.

COURAGEOUS (PG-13) Four law enforcement officers struggle with family and faith issues after a tragedy strikes in this drama from the makers of the Christian film Fireproof.

DREAM HOUSE (PG-13) When Will Atenton (Daniel Craig) and his family find out that their new home is the site of an unsolved murder, Will joins forces with neighbor Anne Paterson (Naomi Watts), to uncover the truth. Rachel Weisz co-stars as Libby, Will's wife and mother of their two daughers.

50/50 3 stars (R ) Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays a self-effacing, 27-year-old radio producer who struggles with a cancer diagnosis with the dubious support of his freaked-out girlfriend (Bryce Dallas Howard) and his horndog pal (Seth Rogen). JGL’s understated performance movingly captures his role’s personal crisis, but as with 500 Days of Summer, his acting doesn’t redeem the tame, familiar film that surrounds him. Anna Kendrick and Anjelica Huston co-star. — Holman

MACHINE GUN PREACHER
(R ) Gerard Butler plays an ex-con/biker who experiences a religious conversion and becomes the gun-toting defender of orphans in Sudan. Quantum of Solace director Marc Forster helms this biopic of a real guy.

WHAT’S YOUR NUMBER? (R ) Anna Faris flips her Rolodex back twenty ex-boyfriends in this comedy about what can happen when you take love advice from a magazine article.

DULY NOTED

FOR THE LOVE OF YOU (NR) In this local film, a career woman looking for marriage and her musician boyfriend find their relationship at a crossroads. Fri., Sept. 30, 7 p.m. Cinefest Film Theatre, Georgia State University, 66 Courtland St., Suite 240. 404-413-1798. www2.gsu.edu/~wwwcft.

KIDNAPPED (NR) A middle-aged couple and their teen daughter face a home invasion from a gang of masked hoodlums. Oct. 3-9. Cinefest Film Theatre, Georgia State University, 66 Courtland St., Suite 240. 404-413-1798. www2.gsu.edu/~wwwcft.

NIGHT OF THE COMET
(1984) (PG-13) After a comet wipes out most of the human life on Earth, a pair of Valley Girls (Catherine Mary Stewart, Kelli Maroney) kill zombies and have adventures, even though they just want to have fun. Tue., Oct. 4, and Sat., Oct. 7, 9:30 p.m. $8. Plaza Theatre, 1049 Ponce de Leon Ave. 404-873-1939. www.plazaatlanta.com.

PULP FICTION(1994) 4 stars (R ) Quentin Tarantino’s smart, twisty deconstruction of film noir tropes concerns a pair of hit men (John Travolta and Samuel L. Jackson), a conflicted boxer (Bruce Willis), a mobster’s girlfriend (Uma Thurman) and other quirky characters. Enjoy the snappy dialogue, clever structure and surf guitar music, and try not to think about all of the film’s imitators. Dark Streets and Dangerous Dames: Film Noir. Wed., Oct. 5, 7:30 p.m. Emory Cinematheque. 205 White Hall, 301 Dowman Drive, Emory University. Free. filmstudies.emory.edu/home/events/film-series/emory-cinematheque.html

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