Wednesday, November 30, 2011

A.V. Club Ann Arbor is closing

Michigan Radio is reporting that after just 3 short months, A.V. Club Ann Arbor is closing. This explains why my RSS feed from them has been suspiciously empty. Dang, this is a real bummer. I felt like the publication was starting to pick up steam. I guess print is really dead.

Via: The Ann Arbor Chronicle

Last minute: Lawnmower playing at Woodruff's in Ypsi TONIGHT

Lawnmower is one of my favorite new bands from the last year! Check 'em out tonight at Woodruff's in Ypsi. Show starts at 9, $5 cover.

Even if you don't make it out tonight, listen to Franchise Wings here:

Baker's Nook

Who knew Saline was such a bastion of progressive wedding cake toppers? This picture comes from Sandy Bledsoe, who has begun to doubt the cake toppers were made by Baker's Nook:
The more I think about it, the more I start to wonder: what's more likely? That 4 middle-aged ladies in Saline deliberately set up a gay interracial cake topper? Or that someone like me came in and saw them on the shelf and subverted the original (heteronormative) display. I think the latter is easier to believe, but still, it was definitely refreshing to see.

Personally, I want to believe.

Violence against snowmen

As I was walking home last night I came across the headless corpse of this snowman. The snow had not even stopped falling when this snowman was heinously murdered. I can't believe how unsafe Ann Arbor has become in recent years. I remember when a snowman could last all winter in this city without being decapitated.

The sad end to Pangea's mural

A few weeks ago, I wrote about Pangea Piercing's epic mural being vandalized. In the latest edition of their web series you can see how their graffiti saga ends. The video is NSFWish--there are lots of naught words so if your coworkers are prudes, use headphones. The vandalism part starts at about 3:26, but the whole video is pretty cool, unless you are squeamish.

Tragic isn't it? It's gotta be really hard to be forced to paint over a life-size picture of yourself. Pangea's web series is pretty slick.

Pangea vandalized

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


The Huron River is swelling. The intermittent precipitation the area has received since Sunday has caused the mighty Huron to surge within 40 cm (1.25 ft) of flood stage. The river is forecast to crest at 5 m (16.30 ft) at 7:00 pm tomorrow. That's a whole 10 cm (0.30 ft) above flood stage. As you can see on the map below, many of the rivers in the area have discharges that are currently above the 90th percentile

Calling all artists

Jwgriffin submitted this to our tumblr over the weekend, and I thought I'd pass this along to you. 30x30 sounds like a pretty fun event. I kind of wish I were more artistically inclined.

The Bar at 327 Braun Court part II

Mr. Connor Barrie and I went to the Bar at 327 Braun Court last week for its soft open. Despite the torrential downpour, it was packed, but we managed to get a table in the corner. We've filed our report below: keep it in mind, as the bar is now open Tuesday through Saturday nights.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Lightning Love news: New songs!

Damn Arbor favorites Lightning Love have a new EP coming out January 31 titled Girls Who Look Like Me. Get a taste over at Quite Scientific Records.

"When You Sleep" is shaping up to be good. Can't wait!

Lightning Love Wins!
Vote for Ypsi's Lightning Love in Billboard's Battle of the Bands

Midnight Madness and Kindle Fest this Friday

This Friday, shops in down town and Kerrytown will be open late as the holiday gift buying frenzy shifts into full gear. Not that I'm a sucker for holiday gimmicks, but there is a rumor that Santa Claus and Miss Washtenaw County will be roaming Main Street from 7-9 pm. Last year, after checking out Main street some friends and I ended the night at a wonderful wine tasting in Kerrytown at Everyday Wines. There is something great about seeing down town all lit up and seeing so many people out enjoying themselves in the cold. It was a really fun evening.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Invaded by snowmen

Perhaps that title should be invaded by snowpeople. Regardless, storefronts throughout the city have been invaded by these cartoon snowpeople. Is there one artist that paints these in Ann Arbor, or several artists that all paint the same style of snowperson?

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Pre-gaming with Pat, the Final Episode

Looks like Pat Stansik is filming his last episode of Pre-gaming with Pat today.

In case you missed it, here is the most recent episode:

Friday, November 25, 2011

Big Ten Network filming at Ray's Red Hots

I thought I'd pass this along to you, gentle reader. There is a rumor that the Big Ten Network will be filming at Ray's Red Hots today.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Place that photo: Gobble!!!

Who's that turkey in my teepee? It's me! It's me! Uh huh, uh huh. Uh huh uh huh uh huh.

Today is the Thanksgiving edition of Place! That! Photo! If you can guess where this party fowl was snapped up, we'll damn you on our Twitter feed. Please leave your Twitter handle below with your guess so that we can damn you, or else we'll just damn your damn name.

Alright, I'm well aware that this is not actually a turkey. I'm going to go ahead and guess that this is a hybrid between a wyandotte and a dominique heritage chicken, although the comb throws me off a bit. Either way, he seeeees you.

What are you thankful for in Ann Arbor?

There is a great post up on Motown to Tree Town today. Here is what he is thankful for:
Tree Town: Mary Morgan & Dave Askins, founders of the Ann Arbor Chronicle, who’ve labored for many years to build an alternative local news source. The greenbelt millage; the strong (for a metro its size) transit system; the generally tolerant citizenry; the tremendous support for the arts; the natural beauty of the area.

I think we really have a lot to be thankful for here. The natural beauty, the strong economy and a great spirit of creativity.

So gentle readers, what are you thankful for in Ann Arbor, or your city?

Michigan apple

From the New Yorker article on the invention of SweeTango, a new brand of apple:
Bedford (the inventor of SweeTango) attended Wheaton College in Illinois, where, as a biology major, he became interested in plant breeding, and where he tasted a really good apple for the first time. Another student had brought a bushel back from Michigan. "I said, 'Oh, my gosh, this is what I've been missing.' It was the beginning of my awakening."
We can all be thankful on this holiday to be eating Michigan food. Happy Thanksgiving!

Unbiased journalism from Fox 2

Tower Defense and Aerospace Factory Workers Party at Lunch:

Watch out! Black factory workers in Detroit are hurting our troops! I really can't believe this video. A blunt easier to roll than a joint? Why I never.

Via Jezebel

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Flint Crepe Company

From a two-flavor stand to a full-service storefront, the Flint Crepe Company opened this week in downtown Flint. Reuben sandwich in the form of a crepe? Yes, please.

Dirty Wolverine @ Van Boven Shoes

Some sweet U of M caps

Looking for a 1997 National Champions shirt to rub it in after U of M's victory over Nebraska on Saturday? Look no farther than the Dirty Wolverine. I stopped by the pop-up store's second event last night and found Van Boven Shoes full to the brim with people checking out Ashlee's (the proprietor) extensive collection of high quality vintage U of M and Detroit sports team swag. The prices seemed pretty reasonable--$10 for a sweatshirt--and every item came with a red Dirty Wolverine button. Not that Damn Arbor is in the business of endorsing rabid consumerism, or religious holidays, but if you are looking for a gift for that special someone, and they happen to be a style conscious U of M/Sports fan, you might consider shopping at the Dirty Wolverine. Hopefully this store will be popping up again before too long.

The scene inside Van Boven last night

Check out this sweet Red Wings sweatshirt

The Brides Project

A small sea of white whisked past the front window of Old Town last Saturday afternoon; wedding dresses are meant to be worn many at once, I decided.

These not-exactly-brides were spreading awareness about The Brides Project, a nonprofit organization providing brides with a socially conscious, budget- and eco-friendly option for purchasing a bridal gown. Thanks to the generosity of brides and bridal salons, The Brides Project boasts a range of designers, including Vera Wang, Justina McCaffrey and Badgley Mischka (the not-brides were quick to explain that they were wearing dresses from the tackier end of the spectrum). Proceeds from the sales of these gowns benefit the Cancer Support Community of Ann Arbor.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Happy Turkey/Sports Week: Turning of the Tide for Sports in SE Michigan

Well ladies and gents, it's the annual sports gauntlet. While my sympathies go out to those counting on the NBA season ramping up by this time, there are still a variety of sports teams in the Ann Arbor-Detroit area that have big games this week. I'll do this in chronological order after the break

Things that wouldn't go bad quickly

Witherbee's, the grocery store across the street from my apartment in Flint, closed recently. Check out the essay I wrote about it for the Detroit Huffington Post.

The store had the feeling, stubbornly, of a party. There was generically cheerful music playing more loudly than you'd expect over the speakers -- "Sweet Caroline," maybe some Stevie Wonder, I don't really remember -- and the narrow aisles of Witherbee's, the self-proclaimed first downtown Flint grocery store in over 30 years, faltered under the strain of the shoppers who had descended like vultures upon its discounted corpse.

The return of the Dirty Wolverine

The Dirty Wolverine Vintage Pop-up Boutique Pt. II from The Dirty Wolverine on Vimeo.

The Dirty Wolverine is back today from 7-10 at Van Boven. Looks like a great opportunity to get some vintage U of M gear.

Circle Power

The Economist has a short piece on roundabouts and how they are safer, faster, and slightly more confusing for Americans to use. In Ann Arbor, we have a few roundabouts. Off the top of my head, I know there's a couple near M-14 and N. Maple, and three or so near US-23 and Geddes Road. I really like them, although sometimes I get a little flummoxed while driving. Unfortunately, I don't think they're likely to be built up in the downtown area. Readers: Are there other roundabouts in the area that seem to be working well?

Monday, November 21, 2011

Entrepreneurism in Ann Arbor

U of M grad and venture capitalist Jason Mendelson had this to say about his recent visit to the city:
I’ve always thought that Ann Arbor has all of the raw materials to become a hot bed for startup activity. The University of Michigan is a great anchor tenant university, there are excellent students, professors and researchers and it’s a place where people want to live. To date, I have been unpleasantly surprised with the general process, outside of some notable wins in the biotech and medical industry. But that all might be changing.

Read the rest here.

H/T @dugsong

Water Cops and Absolute Beginners at Woodruff's in Ypsi Tuesday night

If you're not planning on getting smooshed in the mosh pit at Thee Oh Sees and Total Control show in Detroit Tuesday night, stick closer to home and see semi-locals Water Cops playing a show at Woodruff's in Ypsi during Absolute Beginners. Water Cops are pretty new, here's a video from one of their first shows back in August:

Sounds post-punky and good to me!

Tuesday, November 22 from 10 PM to 2 AM; no cover though donations are encouraged. RSVP and invite your friends.

Update: Tim piped up in the comments to clarify that Absolute Beginners is a DJ night at which Water Cops are playing. Thanks!!

Frita Batidos Happy Hour

Frita Batidos has announced that it will begin two happy hour periods starting today: every day from 4-6, and then during the last hour of service, with a $4 happy hour menu featuring house wines, bottled beer, and a special snack size appetizer menu. I'm sure it'll be perfect for those of you wandering home from a late show at the Blind Pig.


Someone shot this great little video of Angelo's over the weekend. It's incredible to see how quickly Steve works with the bread dough.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

The Bar at 327 Braun Court

Last week, @andyfowler tweeted us this question:

Well Andy, we've done some research and here are the "deets." The bar will have a "soft open" this Tuesday. In terms of ambiance their Facebook page says you can expect an upscale dive bar experience. No word on experimental films.

It's always exciting when new bars open.

Image courtesy of The Bar at 327 Braun Court

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Live and Raw from Detroit

Alejandra O'Leary tweeted us her new album cover:

Looks pretty slick. You can buy/preview the Kickstarter funded EP on Bandcamp.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Student art show. The School of Art and Design is having their end of semester show tonight at the Work Gallery, 306 State. The art looks great and the free food is delicious.

Charlie Slick album release party tonight

The amazing Charlie Slick is having an album release party tonight at Woodruff's. The album, A Farout Indian, is awesome. You can tell the band put a ton of work into recording and producing it. Preview it on Bandcamp or buy it on multicolor vinyl for just $10.

Check out this awesome video for Nomads on the plains of time, the second track on the album:

Anyway, I have no doubt the show will be awesome. Cover is $5 and the show starts at 9. A.V. Club Ann Arbor just ran a great interview with Charlie that you should read in preparation for the show.

Michigan Mitten Gift Tags

Check out these awesome Michigan Mitten Gift Tags from Dang Argyle. Pretty Crafty.

H/T: Erin Milbeck Wilcox

Thursday, November 17, 2011

HuffPo Detroit

A Detroit arm of the Huffington Post launched today, a venue for local voices to be heard about the woes and wonders of Detroit. I'm assuming this is HuffPo's attempt to make up for the ruin porn fiasco last May.

Happy Labbit

@DragonMgmt submitted this picture of two Frank Kozik inspired Labbits in the bathroom of Mason Hall.

Place that photo: Okay, I get it. I missed your birthday.

As was reported last week, Pangea Piercing was tagged with the above quote, covering their mural on the side of the building. Pangea wasn't the only place to get hit with this V for Vendetta quote. My guess would be that there may be at least one other one lurking around town.

Gentle readers, have any of you come across another one of these tags around town? And more importantly, do you know where this one is? If you do, or even if you think you do, or you think you had a dream about this, please post it down below in the comments. Whoever locates this thang first will be damned on our Twitter account, so please leave your Twitter handle along with your guess. Otherwise, we'll just damn your damn name.

Ten Years of Bang

Our friends at the AV Club have a great interview with Jeremy Wheeler of The Bang!, which celebrates its tenth anniversary this Saturday at the Blind Pig. Doors are at 9:30, and make sure to "dress fancy."

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Babo pre-opening today

Babo, the new market by Sava's proprietor Sava, pre-opens today on the first floor of the 411 Lofts. What exactly goes on at a market's pre-opening party anyway? Musical guests The Greatest Hits will be playing from 7-8.


UMMA After Dark

The University of Michigan Museum of Art has a special event on Wednesday from 7 to 11 PM - UMMA After Dark. Harkening back to their wildly successful 24-hour opening night back in March 2009, UMMA After Dark will feature a jazz concert at 8 PM, special features on the current exhibitions, and curators in conversation with visitors.

The Dirty Wolverine II

TDW Vintage Pop-Up Boutique 11.22.11 from The Dirty Wolverine on Vimeo.

The Dirty Wolverine, Ann Arbor's pop-up vintage boutique will be returning next week.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Washtenaw Community Members and Students Host Social Forum & Teach-In on Occupy Movements and Rebuilding Power

The Washtenaw Community Action Team (WCAT) (part of the We Are the People Michigan coalition), Occupy Ann Arbor and Occupy UM will jointly hold a pair of events this week that address the Occupy movements and how local labor, students and community members can get involved to rebuild political power for working people.

Social Forum on Working People’s Power - Kalamazoo Room of Michigan League - Tuesday, 7:00-9:00pm

The forum is the culmination of a two-month, two part film series The Power of Working People held at 4 locations in Ypsilanti and Ann Arbor.

Invited speakers will explore different aspects of the following question - how can working people can build a movement capable of strengthening worker rights, social justice and genuine equality of opportunity for all?

Each speaker will provide recommendations for how to go forward in Washtenaw County and reflect on the significance of the Occupy movements.

Tom Weisskopf is emeritus Professor of Economics at the University of Michigan.

Maureen Taylor is the Chair of the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization and Occupy Detroit participant.

Jane Slaughter is Chief Editor and Director of

Occupying Ann Arbor since 1892

Saw some students with the U of M College Republicans putting these signs up today on my walk to campus. I wonder what the intent of their message is.

Sky lantern sighting

On Saturday we received this comment on our UFO sightings in Ann Arbor article:
Last night [Nov. 11] at 11:11 pm I wanted to commemorate the day, as it only comes once, and as I approached the observatory in the nights' sky a fiery ember began to glow across the horizon. One by one, these celestial bodies traveled from a local origin to an exact destination; however, they followed along a similar trajectory but at different times which parallels with concepts of flight patterns. I've seen them before in the area, but this was the closest they had ever appeared. They don't seem to be ufo's but the way they move and glow would have me believe they are not of the ordinary, almost like how the media interprets a ghost. They can make any turns and can soar at amazing speeds. I'm no expert, but what I saw last night confirmed their existance and was quite wonderous to experience. I've seen them fly in uniform with several other witnesses just outside of Liberty Park. Right out in the open air in the metropolitan cityscape these orbs have been visiting and re-visiting our town, but why? I have noticed a corrolary variable that might hold some worth. Currently, in Ann Arbor's sky one can see a lightshow of beacon lights tied to buildings and cranes. There's alot of building going on and the large scale machinery is peppered with ominous blinking red lights. No idea what kind of pattern, but I wonder if the abundance is attracting the attention of others looking down from above. Hmmm. Just a thought. Keep your heads up and your eyes peeled!

Normally I would have agreed with the anonymous commentor that celestial orbs are visiting Ann Arbor because we have lots of cranes. As luck would have it, I found the remains of a Chinese lantern/sky lantern near Washington Heights on Saturday Morning. This leeds me to conclude that what the commentor reported seeing was in fact a series of sky lanterns.

Was this part of some celebration? Do Ann Arborites regularly launch these burning paper hot air balloons? That seems a little dangerous.

Monday, November 14, 2011

The Moth Returns

The next installment of The Moth: Ann Arbor will take place on Tuesday at Circus: doors at 6, with stories beginning at 7:30. I'd go but sadly have band practice, but I'm hoping one of these days to make it over.

Maple Pancake Sausage Roller

I wonder if there is some top secret laboratory at 7-Eleven Corporate HQ where an elite team of stoners works late nights to come up with new and improved snack technology.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

A guide to roller derby

How to roll with the Ann Arbor derby girls from Michigan Daily on Vimeo.

I've never really understood roller derby. I'm glad the Michigan Daily took time to put together this nice little video.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

AMCULT 315: Rick’s vs. Skeeps

Looks like there is a new U of M course this winter. From the syllabus:
Course Description
This course will take you on a journey of two of Ann Arbor’s most popular nightclubs:Rick’s American Cafe and Scorekeepers Bar and Grill. As we learn about bothestablishments you will have an opportunity to appreciate their history and come tounderstand why so many University of Michigan students choose to spend their time and parent’s money here. By comparing such drastically different places you will have anopportunity to determine which one suits your nighttime binge drinking habits best whilehopefully gaining a new perspective on the important historical events and traditions thatmake Rick’s and Skeeps prime spots for blacking out and being seen.
Course Requirements
In order to take this class you must be over 21 or have a really solid fake ID. No exceptions.Any students with reputable morals or a religious upbringing need instructor permission.

You know, I've never actually been to Skeeps.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Art Excursions

I was insanely privileged to attend a high school with an art museum, and I'm pleased to report that it's reopened after a multi-year renovation. The Cranbrook Art Museum, located just under an hour from A2, will reopen today with an exhibit called "No Object Is an Island", featuring works from the permanent collection paired with those of fifty contemporary artists. You can visit the museum's website for more information, and be sure to bring a camera when you go - the grounds are beautiful.

Turn Signals

Most cars have them. Use them. Please. It drives me nuts when you don't.

Thank you.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Repealing the pedestrian safety ordinance

UPDATE: @Homeless Dave (see comment number 3) has informed us that the latest draft text is somewhat different:
The draft added today to the agenda, reads in relevant part: "stop before entering a crosswalk and yield the right-of-way if a pedestrian is stopped at the curb or ramp leading to a crosswalk and to every pedestrian approaching or within a crosswalk, without regard to which portion of the roadway the pedestrian is using."

This sounds a lot better. It removes much of the ambiguity present in the original law.

Pangea vandalized

Pangea Piercing's alley mural has been vandalized. Originally their mural was covered with white spray paint. The most recent addition is this V for Vendetta quote:

There were several good responses written on the wall. I tried to take a picture of this one, but it didn't turn out that great:

The response reads:
All hail the new king of a-hole tots... Kief! This genius quotes Warner Bros. films on the walls of small businesses... Meanwhile - Google, Starbucks, and the banks remain untouched! What a brave guy! You're like the next Banksy, Bra. I wish Exit Through the Gift Shop never came out.

Looks like someone suspects local tagger, Kief, of the crime.

Yo, Is This Racist?

Yo, Is This Racist? Is the hot new tumblr meme. For those of you unfamiliar with the site, it allows anonymous people to ask if they or their friends behavior is racist. Ann Arbor's Jerusalem Garden was recently featured on the site:

Much props to Ann Arbor, MI indeed.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Covert ops against OSU - Operation: Hail

What happens when a crack team of Wolverines travel into the heart of enemy territory to sing the greatest fight song ever written? See for yourself:

There is something wonderfully old-timey about this sort of "prank."

Punk pen pals

Via Ann Arbor's Missed Connections:
ann arbor punx - w4m - 25

y'all seem so fun! i live in florida and am really into the idea of having a secret long distance pen pal. my friends are lazy letter writers and i've been meaning to get some more use outta this old typewriter i have. i like jokes, bogus traveling and boozing on rooftops. wanna exchange mixtapes and get inundated with doodles of my cat? let's not "trade pics" or be weirdos!

This is really what what Craigslist was made for, facilitating the long distance exchange of cat doodles.

Lorax sightings

Lorax posters have been popping up in alleys around town. These pictures were sent in by @DragonMgmt who takes pretty cool pictures of stuff around town.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Which way to the blood drive?

Am I the only one that thinks this is a little fishy? Maybe they are trying to say Mary Markley is behind you. Anyway, there is a blood drive today folks so after you are done voting, you can drop off a pint for the 30th Blood Battle against OSU.

The Love Confection

Friend of Damn Arbor Camela Logan is the brilliant mind behind The Love Confection, the newest addition to the Wednesday edition of the A2 Farmer's Market. Each week Camela brings two flavors of macarons for sale from 7 to 3 for the absurdly low price of $2. What macarons, you ask? Well, they are definitely not coconut based - those are macaroons. Rather, macarons are a classic French pastry - two almond meringue cookies with a creamy or jammy filling. Having made macarons once in my life, I know that they're both delicious and labor-intensive. Wanting to know more about how she supplies A2 with a small bit of Paris each week, I spoke with Camela about her work.

Happy election day citizens!

It's the moment you've been waiting for all fall: election day! YAY! Time to vote. Here is a link to the city's polling place map. Good hunting!

Check out the Chronicle's ongoing coverage of election day here.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Mayer Hawthorne > Nickelback

Until now, Damn Arbor has stayed out of the "Nickelback is scheduled to play at the Detroit Lions Thanksgiving Game Halftime Show" controversy. Now that news is out about Mayer Hawthorne announcing his candidacy for the Halftime Show, we have no choice but to throw our vote behind this hometown hero.

Keeping crosswalks in perspective

If you've been following the comments on the Com regarding the city's pedestrian crossing ordinance, it may seem like Ann Arbor is suffering form a plague of rear-end collisions due to said ordinance. It's refreshing to read Albert McWilliams' post on the controversy, Smart folks in Ann Arbor crash their cars into stuff, blame City Council. As a very infrequent driver and frequent walker, I like the ordinance. It has made my daily crossing of Observatory at Washington Heights slightly less treacherous. It will be interesting to see how this issue plays out in tomorrow's city council election.

H/T Ann Arbor Chronicle

Open Palm Print

I just got an email from a friend undergrad letting me know about Open Palm Print, a new Michigan-based literary magazine. It looks pretty cool, as far as print media goes. They are currently accepting submissions for their upcoming winter edition.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Abuse of bike lanes

Via Aseek, who says:

I'd hate to see what that driver does to a sharrow.


Just came across this cool time lapse video of the moon setting over the U of M Hospital. Enjoy.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Girl on road bike - m4w - 20 (East U/Hill)

Oh Snap! That's pretty snarky. Maybe not the best way to get a date.

Via Missed Connections

A guide to burritos

The Food and Wine Hedonist is a local food blogger. For one of their projects, they are attempting to quantitatively and qualitatively evaluate burritos. That's right, all burritos. Pretty dangerous water if you ask me; emotions tend to run high around burritos. Gentle readers, do you agree with the Headonist that BTB has the best burritos in the area?

Image via The Food and Wine Hedonist

Friday, November 4, 2011

Occupy Ann Arbor to March on Chase Tomorrow

The Occupy Ann Arbor is marching on Chase Bank tomorrow morning at 10am in solidarity with the National Bank Transfer Day.
Meet at Liberty Plaza and march to Chase Bank (Main St.). Read OAA's description below:

"For our first trip to the bank, Occupy Ann Arbor has chosen to visit Chase Bank. JP Morgan Chase is no friend of the 99%, and instead bribes our government, turned our huge bailouts into huge executive bonuses, and forecloses on our homes. This bank is responsible for the NYPD's brutal treatment of peaceful Occupy Wall Street protesters:

In solidarity with 99%ers all over, we will have our first bank trip on Bank Transfer Day. Here is our scheduley:

10:00 meet at Liberty Plaza, make signs and chants
10:30 slow, chanting march up Liberty, turn right on Main, head to Chase Bank
10:45-12:00 some will move their money, the rest of us will march at Chase Bank. Let's make sure to be around for Main Street's brunch crowd.

This is a peaceful protest. Musical instruments, signs, and cameras are welcome. If you are able to download and print out copies of the Occupy Ann Arbor flyers (or Occupy Wall Street flyers), it would be very helpful so we can distribute them to curious passersby. We will also need some people to volunteer as rally marshalls.

About Bank Transfer Day (from the Bank Transfer Day page):

Together we can ensure that these banking institutions will always remember the 5th of November. If we shift our funds from the for-profit banking institutions in favor of not-for-profit credit unions before this date, we will send a clear message that conscious consumers won't support companies with unethical business practices. It's time to invest in local community growth!

• Research your local credit union options
• Open an account with the one that best suits your needs
• Cancel all automatic withdrawals & deposits
• Transfer your funds to the new account
• Follow your bank's procedures to close your account before 11/05


Bone marrow donor drive TODAY on the Diag

Don't forget to swab for Amit this afternoon: 2 to 8 PM on the Diag! Especially those of you who are of South Asian descent.

Purple Rain

Purple Rain is Saturday's Midnight Movie at the State. In honor of the occasion A.V. Club Ann Arbor has put together an analysis of Prince's greatest outfits.

Part Two of WCAT Film Series Starts This Weekend At Cafe Ambrosia

Part one of the WCAT film series The Power of Working People finished last week at the Student Center Auditorium at Eastern Michigan University with the final screening of With Babies and Banners: The Story of the Women’s Emergency Brigade. The event turned out about 50 students and community members that had the opportunity to discuss the film, and the labor and Occupy movements with Dr. Greg Barak (Professor of Criminology and Sociology), Dr. Mehmet Yaya (Professor of Labor Economics), and Dr. Howard Bunsis (President of the AAUP Collective Bargaining Congress).

This month the WCAT will screen Charles Ferguson’s Inside Job (2010) – a documentary about ”the systemic corruption of the United States by the financial services industry and the consequences of that systemic corruption.” The first screening will take place this Sunday at Cafe Ambrosia - 326 Maynard St., Ann Arbor from 3:00-5:30. UM Political Economist Tom Weisskopf will facilitate discussion following the film.

This will be followed by a screening at Ypsilanti District Library – Whittaker from 6:30-9:00 on Monday, November 7th featuring UM Political Economist Frank Thompson (FB RSVP) and again at Mason Hall (Room 3411 at UM Campus) from 7:00-9:30 featuring Lecturer in Sociology Ian Robinson (FB RSVP).

Check out for directions and screening times.

Ignite Ann Arbor

Ignite Ann Arbor 6 is this Sunday, November 6th. Registration is free. There will even be a presentation about Stirling engines. The event looks really cool:
Ignite 6 will be 7pm Nov 6th, 2011 at Blau Auditorium! If you had five minutes on stage what would you say? What if you only got 20 slides and they rotated automatically after 15 seconds? Around the world geeks have been putting together Ignite nights to show their answers. We consider geekery to equal passion, so we're looking for food geeks, tech geeks, business geeks, music geeks, art geeks, history geeks, etc to come and share their stories.

Place that photo: Too soon for holly jolly.

As my cousin Tje Dohm would say, these people are early... or really late.

It's been well documented that I am a firm believer in saving Christmas for Christmas, which explains why these windows irk me every time I see them. There's a good reason for why this nonsense is already up, but it still makes me want to get out a handkerchief, spit on the end and wipe that crap off its cheeks.

If you can place where this monstrosity is, we'll damn you on our Twitter feed (which I've admittedly been bad about lately). So please leave your Twitter handle along with your guess - otherwise, we'll just damn your damn name.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Circling the Wagons

Mark's Carts will be closing for the season next Saturday, November 12. I know I speak for many when I say that the Carts will be sorely missed through the winter months - but I'm really looking forward to the spring (and, perhaps, new carts?). Make sure not to forget to grab a breakfast burrito or steamed bun before the courtyard closes for winter.

Alejandra O'Leary music video

Alejandra O'Leary from gbs detroit on Vimeo.

Check out this awesome music video Alejandra O'Leary sent us. Pretty sweet.

Immigration reform rally

Saw this poster last night. Looks like Social Work Allies for Immigrant Rights is having a rally for immigration reform tomorrow at 5 pm at Liberty Plaza. Via the Community Wall:
5:00-5:20-Face Painting, Arriving.
5:30-5:35- Introduction and Welcome
5:35-5:45-Lourdes Speaks
5:45-5:46-Moment of silence
5:46-6:30 Collect petition signatures, Call to Action: Attend Lourdes’ Vigil.

Clearly this wins the competition for best protest artwork.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

A year of Damn Arbor

Today is the one year anniversary of Damn Arbor's official launch. Happy Damn Arbor Day! Rather than dumping a bunch of data from our Analytics on you, I thought I would share some of our favorite articles from the last year with you:
Ben Houston says, "I like our inaugural post: Much Ado About Stuffing. It was topical, edgy, and spoke to the kids." Weren't those the days, pre-porch couch ban?

Quinn said she really liked EJ's post on sexual harassment No, sir, my 'panties' are not for sale

Personally, I really liked EJ's interview with local cartoonist Dave Coverly.

Writing for Damn Arbor has given me some great opportunities over the last year. I got to review albums from local musicians including Alejandra O'Leary and Match by Match. I was invited to an awesome dinner at Wolverine State Brewing Co. And I ran into the Chronicle's Homeless Dave and Mary Morgan at a Charlie Slick concert. I've also met some pretty cool local bloggers.

Writing about Ann Arbor and Michigan has been a great way for me to get reacquainted with my home as an adult. Thank you to everyone who has written for us, commented on our articles, forwarded tips to us and read our articles. You all have made this an incredible and rewarding endeavour.

Amit Gupta needs you!: Bone marrow registry drive FRIDAY in Ann Arbor

Full disclosure: Amit Gupta is a very dear friend (and roommate) of mine in San Francisco. He was recently and suddenly diagnosed with acute leukemia and is looking for a bone marrow donor, who he needs to find within a month or so:
"I got a call from my doctor, who I’d gone to see the day before because I’d been feeling worn out and was losing weight, and wasn’t sure why. He was brief:
'Amit, you’ve got Acute Leukemia. You need to enter treatment right away.'
"I was terrified. I packed a backpack full of clothes, went to the hospital as he’d instructed, and had transfusions through the night to allow me to take a flight home at 7am the next day. I Googled acute leukemia as I lay in my hospital bed, learning that if it hadn’t been caught, I’d have died within weeks.
"I have a couple more months of chemo to go, then the next step is a bone marrow transplant. South Asians are severely under-represented in the bone marrow pool, and I need help."
What does this have to do with Ann Arbor? There's a bone marrow donation registry drive coming up on Friday, November 4, from 2 to 8 PM on the Diag.

Clearly I am writing this because I want my friend to live. But keep in mind that you're helping anyone who needs a bone marrow transplant. Learn more about all of this, from Amit to the donation process, by visiting Amit Gupta Needs You!