Sunday, February 28, 2010

Boise's Newest Lube: Wud Polish

Posted By on Sun, Feb 28, 2010 at 7:13 PM

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I have received an offer to consider. There is a relatively new Boise-based, independent company manufacturing a personal lubricant called Wud Polish. Here is the information from their Web site:

Wud Polish™ is the ultimate luxury in personal lubrication.
Lubricates and moisturizes with just a few drops.
Latex and condom safe.
Non-tacky super slick formula.
Made in U.S.A.

You can buy 2 ounces for $12.95 or 4 ounces for $24.95.

I am not impressed with the Web site. But to be fair, I am not sure what the Web site quality has to do with the quality of the lubricant.

I have been offered samples for the BW staff, but I'm not sure what to do. Do I get the samples and, in our Friday morning staff meeting, make a casual announcement that I have a sample of lubricant for everyone?

And perhaps we have overlooked an important category in our annual Best of Boise: Best Local Personal Lubricant.

Ah, it's just another day at Boise Weekly.

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Saturday, February 27, 2010

A Conversation With Comedian Vicki Barbolak

Posted By on Sat, Feb 27, 2010 at 3:16 PM

After her first night in Boise, Southern California-based comedian Vicki Barbolak sat down with me to talk about becoming a comedian, writing for Roseanne, what is off limits (very little) and how tough it is to be a funny woman.

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Friday, February 26, 2010

Free Flow of Important Info at Liquid

Posted By on Fri, Feb 26, 2010 at 6:01 PM

Blaze and Kelly
  • Blaze and Kelly
On the first Wednesday of each month, Liquid hosts the Liquid Forum, an opportunity to showcase and learn more about an area non-profit organization while enjoying tunes by a local musician or band.

On Wednesday, March 3, members of the National Association of Social Workers will speak about their organization and the work it does followed by an hour of music by Blaze and Kelly.

The event is FREE and runs from 5-7:30 p.m. For more information, contact Adrienne Evans, director of United Vision for Idaho, driennesevans@gmail.com, 208-861-8907.

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Free Seed-Starting Class Tomorrow

Posted By on Fri, Feb 26, 2010 at 5:47 PM

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If last year’s crop of garden peppers lacked a little pep, this year, make sure you take the time to prep. On Saturday, Feb. 27, FarWest Garden Center will offer a free seed-starting class for folks who want to give their seedlings time to grow tall and strong before shoving them in the cold, unforgiving ground.

Starting at 10 a.m., Doreen Guenther from Sisters of the Soil will offer free tips on successful seed starting, hardening and transplanting.

So, dust off those grow lights you got in college and get ready to put them to a more, ahem, productive use.

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He's Doug Stanhope and That's Why He Drinks

Posted By on Fri, Feb 26, 2010 at 5:09 PM

(L-R) Stanhope and Neighbor Dave at a Superbowl party. Wonder whats in Neighbor Dave's glass?
  • (L-R) Stanhope and Neighbor Dave at a Superbowl party. Wonder what's in Neighbor Dave's glass?

In the early '90s, caustic comic Doug Stanhope left telemarketing for comedy. He said it feels like his telemarketing career belongs to someone else. It's surreal to think that he sat behind a desk trying to sell people things they didn't really need. Part of that, though, is the booze.

"And when you've been drinking for 28 years, all your past seems like a dream. 'I had a weird dream: I was a telemarketer for five years,'" Stanhope said, laughing.

If you only know Stanhope from his short stint on The Man Show (2004) or his sentence with Girls Gone Wild (2005), he'd rather you fuck off.

"The only two things people have to point out, 'Oh, he's the guy from that,'" Stanhope said sarcastically. "Like I've never done anything high-profile that was good? The Man Show I had to do for the money and I'd do it again for the money. Three months work for almost half-a-million dollars," he added with a laugh.

Even at the young age of 42, Stanhope comes off as a curmudgeon—especially when he's asked about those stupid shows—but he's quick to laugh and skilled at getting anyone listening to join in. He's also not a complete asshole. When I asked him if he ever looks at the comments people leave under his videos on YouTube, the answer was a quick "No, no. Not any more."

"I'm too soft," he said. "I have such a growing self-hatred, that any second opinion on the Internet just verifies everything I think about myself. Usually, I'll get hammered and look because I can black it out. But it's funny, you can black out everything else from the night but 'You fuckin' suck' sticks in your head. It's the one thing you remember. I don't know what house I'm in, but I know I fuckin' suck on Myspace."

Stanhope gets those comments because he doesn't take the popular view on polarizing issues like child porn, medicinal marijuana or fear in the media. If it irritates him, he doesn't avoid it—he scratches at it until everybody's bleeding.

I asked him if anything is off limits or taboo. It must be a question he gets a lot, because he prefaced it with a low, slightly irritated, "My standard response is, I draw the line at anything I think has a chance of resulting in immediate physical violence ... I wouldn't tell a fucking 9/11 joke in a room full of fucking New York firefighters."

The geniuses on Myspace might think Stanhope sucks, but his neighbor Dave likes him. Stanhope refers to Dave as "straight" as in a non-comic.

"They make the best neighbors and friends," Stanhope said.

Dave, who drives a truck for Frito-Lay, was over at Stanhope's house when I called. When Stanhope handed the phone over to him, I could see right away why he likes the straight guy. And the feeling is clearly mutual.

Dave knew Stanhope's upcoming show schedule, probably because Dave's wife watches Stanhope's dogs—and teaches them tricks—when he's out of town. Stanhope and Dave have known each other a few years, but it was only recently that Dave caught one of his shows.

"He kind of, like, put me into his act. Being Doug, it didn't take very long before people were turning around and saying to me, 'You're his best friend and you've never been to one of his shows?'" Dave said, chuckling. "It was hilarious."

If you know Stanhope, you're already going to his show at Neurolux tonight. If you don't and were thinking about going but aren't sure, there are four things you should know about Stanhope: He loves the Neurolux, he's happy he can smoke there, he might piss you off and he's incredibly funny.

Tonight, 9 p.m., $19 (!). Neurolux, 111 N. 11th St., neurolux.com. Tickets available at the door or through brownpapertickets.com.

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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Russia Set to Welcome World in 2014

Posted By on Thu, Feb 25, 2010 at 7:53 PM

Russia's Sochi House is the "it" place in Vancouver. Ok. One of them. The line Wednesday snaked around the building. Some 75,000 visitors have already wandered through this blue domed building that's right on Vancouver's waterfront.

Sochi House on Vancouvers waterfront.
  • Sadie Babits
  • Sochi House on Vancouver's waterfront.

Everyone comes to sip Vodka, listen to traditional singers and mingle with Russian athletes who've made Sochi house their home away from home. If they're lucky they'll spot Russia's team mascot Cheburashka - a fictional character that's been around in the country since the mid 1960s.

Cheburashka poses with a visitor to Sochi House.
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  • Cheburashka poses with a visitor to Sochi House.

But mostly people want to find out where Sochi is. It's Russia's southernmost city with some 400,000 people. It's right by the Black Sea. So it's warmer than Vancouver. You can ski year round on mountains that are just thirty minutes away. Experts say snow won't be an issue because the mountains are much higher than Vancouver's coastal range. Vancouver had to truck snow in because much of it had melted ahead of the games.

Visitors also come to Sochi House to find out what Russia's vision is for the next Winter Games in 2014.
The answer lies in a three dimensional model of Sochi and the surrounding area. Press one of the buttons on the model and the Olympic Village lights up. Another button shows you where the curling rink will be or the international airport. Sochi will build everything from the ground up spending around twelve-billion dollars over the next five years.

Some of the venues will be portable. The curling rink, for example, will be taken apart after the 2014 games and sent around the country. That excites Russia's curling team. The group hasn't had an actual curling rink to practice or play on in Russia, ever.

So on Sunday, the 21st Winter Games come to an end. Vancouver will hand over the Olympic flag to Sochi - passing on an Olympic tradition.

Outside Sochi House Russian techno blasts from speakers.
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  • Outside Sochi House Russian techno blasts from speakers.

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Shakin' it Out and Stirrin' it Up

Posted By on Thu, Feb 25, 2010 at 3:48 PM

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Excellence in any field—whether mixing cocktails behind a bar or composing original music—demands hours of committed practice. However, in the case of local band Shakin’ Not Stirred, talent compensates for divided attention, as all four musicians have full-time careers and consider musical performance their “playtime."

Amazingly, they’ve managed to launch their first CD, which includes mostly original arrangements and comes across as effortless. While it is evident from their album cover photographs that this group of guys and gals fits the baby-boomer demographic, their sound is equally '60s-era folk.

Lead-singer Michelle Coleman’s buttery voice holds its own against the energetic strings of acoustic guitar, bass and mandolin, but leaves plenty of room for the gestalt effect of her bandmates’ three-part harmonies. The vocal collaboration in “Hang Tough” will make anyone wish they could carry a tune as well, while “Set Your Sails “ begs for a sing-along.

Though double-oh-seven famously uttered the words in all seriousness, Shakin’ Not Stirred keeps solemnity to a minimum. With upbeat, sometimes humorous lyrics and occasional end-of-song giggles, they’re not quite A Mighty Wind material, but they know folk is fun. Expect a lot of life in their live performance when they celebrate their self-titled debut. Take the whole family to meet the artists at the Linen Building at 7 p.m. on Saturday, February 27. A mere $7 will get you in, and there's a full bar (ID required) in case you need a martini that's, uh, shaken—not stirred.

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Urban Foraging Map

Posted By on Thu, Feb 25, 2010 at 3:45 PM

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If you feel a nugget of righteous pride every time you pick up your CSA box from a local farmer, imagine how great you’ll feel carting home armloads of fresh fruit for free. No, we’re not talking dumpster diving, we’re talking urban foraging.

Following in the vein of Portland’s Urban Edibles or Los Angeles’ Fallen Fruit, Boise now has its own urban foods Google map. Want to know where to root out rosemary? Or where you can fill your basket with blackberries? Check the map. Or do you own a peach tree that produces enough fruit to feed the entire neighborhood? Put it on the map and help out your fellow foragers.

Though urban foraging is technically a free-for-all, according to Urban Edibles, there are a few common sense ground rules: Always ask permission before picking, only take what you will eat, be careful not to damage the plant and watch for chemical contamination.

This could turn out to be one inexpensively tasty summer.

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No sex on my iPhone

Posted By on Thu, Feb 25, 2010 at 7:52 AM

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Update re: iPhone explicit content

Just days after my original post, an explicit category option was added by Apple yesterday hinting that they might be finding a solution for the recent ban of all overtly sexual content on iPhones. But this morning the option has been removed according to huffingtonpost.com. Seems like the powers that be at Apple may not be all on the same page on this issue.

Update re: Apple on 2/20/2010

We have an Apple store coming to Boise in September at Boise Town Square. Boise is one of of the lucky few cities in the United States according to Apple.

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I am a fairly recent iPhone convert. I held out along time due to the price tag and syncing compatibility issues. I like my iPhone. But I am not happy about the recent news at techcrunch.com to restricting "overtly sexual content." I vehemently defend our First Amendment. Iphone apps are examples of creative expression. Come on. What is the definition of "overtly sexual." If I caved on my principles over every complaint that I got over content then there might not be a Boise Weekly to read every week. Iphone users download applications by choice. This ban implies that we cannot make our own decisions and need supervision by the iPhone police. If you don't want to see content that offends you then don't download it. Pretty simple. I don't appreciate the hollier than thou position that Apple is taking on this and I might have to rethink my iPhone. And I thought Apple was a progressive company and I am sad to find out that they are pussies. The power and politics seem to be impacting their judgment. Too bad. And yikes! Check out the examples of apps at huffingtonpost.com that have been banned.

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Rick Schroeder Benefit on Sunday, Feb. 28

Posted By on Thu, Feb 25, 2010 at 6:00 AM

The Hoochie Coochie Men hoping to bridge the gap.
  • The Hoochie Coochie Men are hoping to bridge the gap.

Regardless of what you think of local music, you can't argue with one hard fact: The music folks around here are inordinately generous, especially when it comes to one of their own.

Rick Schroeder, a well-respected sound engineer, is having some medical issues and his musician friends want to help. So on Sunday, Feb. 28, a whole passel of them are getting together and for an evening of music. Acts include Schroeder himself, the Americana Jazz Saxophone Quartet, Jimmy Lloyd Rea and Rockin' Ron Carnes, Gerry and the Dreambenders, Less Batteries, Hoochie Coochie Men, Cosmic Family Band, Bell Curve, Americana Jazz Saxophone Quartet, Sonic Minstrel, Darian Renee and Jordan Fife, Carmel Crock and Ken Harris, Russ Pfeifer Question, Underachievers Overachieving and more.

Yes, more.

This all-ages shindig goes down on Sunday, Feb. 28, 2-9 p.m. at the Rose Room. They're asking for a $5 suggested donation and questions can be directed to organizer Ken Harris at 208-440-4590.

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