It is absolutely no one's fault that Go Dog, Go has been lately unavailable in the St. Louis County Library system. Well, actually, that's not true. It seems Mr. Night checked that book out months ago and has yet to return it. He owes a boodle in fines, and once again he shall bend the rules to his advantage to cheat the Library Police of the punishment he so richly deserves. Monday through Sunday, April 11 through April 17, is Food for Fines Week at all St. Louis County libraries; simply donate canned goods of food at any library (check out www.slcl.org for a list, and admire the snazzy new Web site while you do), and you shall be shrieved of $1 in fines per can. A hunchback in a slouch cap and black ultrasuede jumper shall be dropping off fourteen cans of minestrone; avert your eyes, for he is Mr. Night, and he has fought the law and won yet again!
Thursday, April 14
It was a sad, sad day when he died. All of Night & Day Global was in mourning; our black clothes actually meant something for once (or meant something other than our regular grouchiness). We just couldn't believe that it was all over. Sure, we understood that sainthood was a possibility, but even still, it just wouldn't be the same without him.
So where were you when you found out that Jerry Orbach died? Pay tribute to him/Detective Lennie Briscoe today from 6:45 to 9 p.m. at the meeting of the Greater St. Louis Chapter of Sisters in Crime. This month, the group brings in Lieutenant George Hodak: He's not a detective in NYC, but he's the former commander of the Creve Coeur Police Department's investigations division, and he gives a free talk on "Processing a Crime Scene" at the St. Louis County Library Headquarters (1640 South Lindbergh Boulevard, Ladue; 314-994-3300). And for those who don't know, Sisters in Crime is an international organization that promotes all manner of mystery and suspense writing. For more information about the group or its monthly meetings, call 636-938-7163.
Friday, April 15
So we already know that death and taxes are inevitable, but what's a life without love? Without sex? Shouldn't these things be undeniable pleasures? Regardless of what your life is actually devoid of, today you feel like an empty black pit inside -- who knew that writing such a big check to the government could take such a big chunk of your sunshine away? Gain some happy feelings by checking out the Broadway Center of Arts production of Love, Sex and the IRS. During this comedy -- which is about two people trying to cheat the government by being married only on paper -- your spirits will rise, and your check-writing hand-cramp will subside. The play is performed at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and at 2 p.m. on Sunday (April 15 through 24) at 124-126 East Main Street in Belleville, Illinois. Tickets cost $8 to $10; call 618-233-0431 or visit www.broadwaycenterofarts.org for more information.
Oh, and if you'd rather just drink your taxing sorrows away (ha!), drop by J. Buck's Restaurant (101 South Hanley Road, Clayton) from 6 to 8 p.m.; that's where Covenant House Missouri's Young Professionals Group is hosting a free After-Taxes Networking Party. Call 314-533-2241 for more details.
Saturday, April 16
Steve Miller. Right now you're humming "Take the Money and Run" or "Time Keeps On Slippin'." You're probably not humming "Abracadabra," because honestly, that video full of cheap effects and cheaper magic tricks just about hammered the lid shut on Miller's career. The moral? Leave the magic to the magicians, Steve. The International Brotherhood of Magicians, Local Ring One, are professionals, so you can trust them to put on a better show (prestidigitationally speaking, of course). At 1:30 and 7 p.m., magicians from across the Midwest descend on the Kirkwood Community Theatre (111 South Geyer Road, Kirkwood) for the Spring Parade of Magic. You'll be dazzled and flabbergasted by these quick-fingered showmen and -women, and even more so when you learn that proceeds are headed toward the Shriners Hospital. Tickets are $6 to $8 for each show, and all the acts are family-friendly.
Sunday, April 17
Tulips really are flowers to tiptoe through -- you don't want to be the dude or lady who tramples the sweet harbingers of spring! And what are you doing walking through flower beds anyway? You better not do that when you go to the free Tulip Festival at the Jewel Box (314-531-0080) in Forest Park. This pretty, pretty event runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., and during that time, you'll not only view 26,000 tulips outside the Jewel Box but also listen to jazz (at 11 a.m.) and watch a hat parade (at 1 p.m.)! Plus, inside the Art Deco greenhouse, the annual lily show is on view from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. ($1) -- and please don't flatten these flowers, either.
Monday, April 18
Let's see, what have we got? Nation-dividing, overseas military operation? Check. Raging culture war pitting the government against the entertainment industry? Check. Massive amounts of fear and paranoia paralyzing the populace? Check. Yeah, it feels like the '60s again, so what we need right now is a madcap spy movie that blends the best features of the right wing (patriotism, machismo and covert military operations) with the best the left has to offer (sexual promiscuousness, irreverence and a host of scantily clad women). A double feature of Our Man Flint and In Like Flint fits that bill nicely. James Coburn, tough guy, stars as Derek Flint, that libidinous rogue who rights wrongs and wrongs women. Fluffy, swinging good fun. Both films screen at Frederick's Music Lounge (4454 Chippewa Street; 314-351-5711) at 5 and 6:45 p.m., then again at 8:45 and 10:30 p.m. Admission is free, and watch out for anti-American eagles.
Tuesday, April 19
How excited are we about Ben & Jerry's 27th Annual Free Cone Day? Um, only about a zillion scoops' worth! Ben & Jerry's Scoops in the Loop (6380 Delmar Boulevard, University City; 314-721-8887) actually only doles out one free scoop of ice cream per customer on this momentous occasion, but come on: free ice cream. One scoop (cone or cup) of any flavor? Free? Who can complain about that? Once you're suffused with the waves of happiness that often accompany ice cream consumption, perhaps you'll feel inclined to donate a little cash to a certain charity -- in this case, the Center of Creative Arts. COCA staff will be the scoopers for the 3 to 8 p.m. shift, but the free ice cream begins flowing at noon. Plenty of time to make a trip to the Loop; it's for charity, after all, and a good deed cancels out any calories.