Weekly Rochester Events #288: The New Haven at New Haven

Thursday, July 15, 2004

This week is pretty much 100% political so be warned. If this is the kind of stuff that makes your blood boil, you might even want to just skip ahead to what's going on this week which isn't particularly political at all.

I got to see Fahrenheit 9/11 last weekend. Actually, I laid it on thick as a "political agitator" and might even have done enough to get on some kind of government list. Before the movie, I spent the afternoon privy to a discussion about the most efficient terrorist act which would result in mass rioting across the entire United States. (My opinion is that there isn't a way to accomplish this as most people have become acclimated to the news reports and need firsthand evidence before they'd go really crazy; something which would be very difficult to do across the entire country.) To continue the trend of suspicious behavior, I went to the film in my Green Party T-shirt.

I thought it was a good movie. It gets mislabeled as a documentary but it's more of an essay—a Michael Moore opinion piece whose thesis is (or, more correctly, theses are) proved through supporting evidence.

His first and central point is that George W. Bush is a lousy president. The man was barely elected, he spent (according to Moore) over 40% of his first 9 months in office on vacation, and then when the attacks of September 11 transpired, he calmly stayed seated reading with elementary school students for nearly 10 minutes. Fuck—even I got up and sent an e-mail to my office mates after the first plane hit to let them know something was going on—but our leader did nothing? As a friend of mine put it, he should have got up immediately, and said, "Sorry kids, I have to go be President." That's what a leader would have done.

Second, Moore opposes the war in Iraq on grounds that the rationale for the war was fabricated. If we should be at war with anyone, it should be Saudi Arabia, but that would be destructive to our economy, so instead we picked someone we could beat. He pieces together a number of facts that came to light over the past few years in a manner that suggests the true nature of our motives as a country: it's all about the oil. (See also, point one: George W. Bush, former shareholder in oil and energy interests.)

Fahrenheit 9/11 ticket
No, really. I did see the movie.

Third, Moore reveals that our soldiers are conflicted and confused. Every negative review I've seen demands that he either show our soldiers as bloodthirsty or as confused kids. I claim his stance is proper: he shows them as being conflicted. They need their adrenaline to stay alert and keep from dying, but during any time to think, they're left wondering what the hell we're doing there. To be clear, he selects a small group of soldiers who demonstrate these sentiments but fails to reveal how large a percentage that is. Despite this, there is validity in his point: shouldn't all our soldiers have a clear objective and a clear conscience that they are doing the right thing? (See also, point one: George W. Bush, lousy leader who's unable to rally the troops.)

One of the things that I keep seeing in reviews is that Moore uses only the facts that support his argument. To this I have two responses: of course he did—it's an opinionated argument; and at least he used facts to present his argument—case in point: WMDs.

Reviews also mention that he exaggerates numbers to his advantage, especially when speaking of the investment Saudi Arabia has in America. The hard number given is around US$500 billion which is then estimated to be more accurately US$850 billion, and Moore begins using the figure US$1 trillion. It was foolish to do so because it gives reason to nitpick, but in my mind, overblown exaggeration only occurs when as the figures approach a change in the order of magnitude—as long as you fall short of ten-times more or don't reduce to one-tenth as much, it's valid to speculate about it. The 2002 Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for the United States was about US$10.2 trillion dollars, so even the US$500 billion figure represents nearly 5% of our entire GDP: that's a fucking lot of money, which was Moore's point.

Anyway, I considered taking a stance that I believe everything in the movie and refuse to hear arguments to the contrary. However, I realized that would make me a "conservative" in the sense that a "liberal" will always question his beliefs, but a "conservative" knows he's always right. (I opted to put the political terms in quotes in a futile attempt to save them from further abuse through doublespeak.) Regardless, I think it's great that the people who believe our country could be much better than it is now have a shorthand: "Fahrenheit 9/11." Sure the movie has its faults, but at least we can all start from a common point in discussion and don't have to swim around in the muck of the details so much anymore.

As I was saying about getting onto some list of suspicious agitators, I left the theater and talked with one of the guys selling the "Socialist Worker" newspaper, then I went to Java's (16 Gibb St.) and hung out with some guy I barely know and a group of his friends and acquaintances who decided to smoke tobacco from their hookahs (which, although perfectly legal, just looked suspicious.) While I was there I signed a petition to get a Libertarian candidate on the ballot for the national election. Oh, and of course, I rode my bike the whole time instead of driving a car like a Good American™—pardon me: driving the largest SUV available like a Good American™.

While I'm talking politically, I had a peculiar thought the other day. It's related to the fact that the thing I fear most in the world today is my own government (and this government is supposed to subservient to the will of the people.) So I came upon the idea that I seem to be able to use the phrases "terrorist enemy" and "current administration" pretty much interchangeably. Here's some examples:

  • "The [terrorist enemy | current administration] is trying to weaken our will."
  • "The [terrorist enemy | current administration] exploits the vulnerabilities of this country to their advantage."
  • "The actions of the [terrorist enemy | current administration] is to keep Americans frightened, intimidated, and passive."
  • "The [terrorist enemy | current administration] hates the Bill of Rights and all it stands for."
  • "The [terrorist enemy | current administration] is trying to intimidate the free world."
  • "The [terrorist enemy | current administration] hates America."
  • "If we are afraid to travel, then the [terrorist enemy | current administration] has won."
  • "The [terrorist enemy | current administration] is attempting to derail the democratic process."

Naturally some things don't make sense, like "the [terrorist enemy | current administration] want to ensure that George W. Bush is not elected again" or "the [terrorist enemy | current administration] feels that money is more important than people."

Speaking of capitalism run amok, the upcoming Bands on the Bricks shows at the The Rochester Public Market (280 Union St. N.) have banned food and drink brought in from outside except for "one sealed bottle of water per person." It's obvious they want to make a profit at the events, so by creating an event in the middle of summer that's "free," encouraging people to dance around, then demanding they pay $3 for 12 ounces of water so they don't dehydrate, they achieve their goal handily. I would much rather see them just charge people at the gate instead.

Of course, that has its own problems. Take, for example, the recent East End Fests (East Ave., near Scio and Richmond St. near Main St.) for which they now charge people a dollar. Ordinarily I don't have any problem with this kind of thing except that these are public streets. My tax dollars pay for them, and I'll be damned if anybody gets to make money on them: every penny should come back to the taxpayers. If you want to have it on private land, charge whatever you want, but if it's public land, that's another story.

We'll see if I can't do anything about that.

Anyway, last Saturday I had a fine (but very different) time at O'Bagelo's (165 State Street.) As I expected, nobody else from the regular group showed up. So I just read a book and dined. I spent almost four hours just sitting around watching people go by and eating one course an hour, starting with a bagel and cream cheese, a cup of soup, a sandwich, and a cookie. It was friggin' great.

I even had a pleasant debate with an army recruiter who's a friend of John's. The first point of debate was that the intelligence information the United States releases concerning the terrorists being (essentially) "irrational haters of America." This does no good at all. If you watch their behaviors, most of them are against the Middle East being financially manipulated by the west, and the way western religions and culture are designed to run roughshod over anyone else's. The targets they choose are not to kill as many Americans as possible, but to attempt to disrupt the western capitalist machinery in place that causes the problems they see.

He cited that the terrorists wish to kill "100,000 American children," but I believe that stems from the attacks in Iraq when they said they would kill "1,000 American child for every Iraqi child killed," which is very different. However, based on the flat 100,000 quote, U.S. intelligence is assuming that terrorists will try to attack schools and day-care centers. If this were true, how can you explain their pattern of attack in Iraq? Wouldn't they seek out the sites where western children congregate in Iraq (such as schools and day-care centers there) and kill them?

Essentially there is no way to be rational with a soulless, pure-evil enemy. The intelligence community is successfully making a case that terrorists are soulless monsters, and that is why we must kill them all. I concede that we are far from any form of agreement, but it is foolish and self-defeating to refuse to understand your enemy. The argument that they are trying to kill our children just underscores a lack of understanding, a condemnation as incurable psychopaths, and ultimately, downright deception that's designed to keep us afraid.

Unfortunately the guy had to take off, but I wanted to also address with him the flaws of using traditional military might to fight an enemy who does not fight on those terms since all our arguments against terrorism are mirrored in our own past: it is what the British said about us when we would use guerilla tactics to defeat their "civil" armies.

As a final note for a little amusement, if I were to program a jukebox to ensure it made lots of money, I would have it carefully select the songs it would play between purchased tracks. It would specifically choose songs that are entered in the last hour before the bar closes and that are not played any other time. Those are the songs that are so intolerable that people would pay not to listen to them.

Now that you know, please never implement that kind of jukebox logic.

  • Before Sunset (at The Little) - This man and woman meet in Venice and have this great time and they meet again years later to find they still have a great time together. Apparently a sequel to Before Sunrise.
  • The Clearing (at The Little) - A couple's marriage improves when the husband is kidnapped.
  • A Cinderella Story - A modern retelling of the classic story for those who find the original confusingly mired in archaic language.
  • I, Robot - A movie based on the three laws of Hollywood moviemaking: 1. A movie may never harm its viewer or force them to think; 2. A movie must perform any action expected by its viewer unless that action violates the first law; and 3. A movie must make at least twice as much money as it cost to make, but only by never violating the first and second laws.

Fleet Party in the Park will be at High Falls Festival Site (Browns Race and Commercial St.) tonight starting at 5:30 p.m. featuring Donna the Buffalo with Railroad Earth. [source: City Hall press release]

The Monroe County Fair continues through July 18. Some of the tonight's highlights include Wild Animals of NY State in Entertainment Alley at 6:30 p.m., and Charlie Belknap Hollywood Stunt Show at the Grandstand at 8:00 p.m. [source: Monroe County Fair website]

JayceLand Pick Tonight at The Bug Jar (219 Monroe Ave.) is standard rock from Joe Sorriero, Tiger Cried Beef, and excellent airy acoustic soloist Kelli Hicks starting around 8:30 p.m. [source: Bug Jar calendar]

JayceLand Pick Tonight starting at 7 p.m. at St. Anne Church (1600 Mt. Hope Ave.) is a meeting to explain the sale of the New York State-owned Rochester Psychiatric Center (1111 Elmwood Ave.) hosted by New York State Assemblymember Susan John (of the 131st Assembly District). [source: Upper Mount Hope Neighborhood Association e-mail]

Remember that the last days of The Hill Cumorah Pageant (Hill Cumorah, Palmyra, N.Y.) are today, tomorrow, and Saturday starting at 9 p.m. [source: Hill Cumorah website]

Tonight at Monty's Krown (875 Monroe Ave.) is blues-influenced 1960's-style rock-and-roll from The Ferndocks starting around 10:30 p.m. [source: Monty's Krown calendar]

Blues-charged rock-and-roll/groove-rock from Buford and the Smoking Section will be at Dinosaur Bar-B-Que (99 Court St.) starting around 10 p.m. [source: Dinosaur Bar-B-Que calendar]

Tonight at Downstairs Cabaret (172 West Main St.) is the opening of Two Grandmas From Brooklyn at 7:30 p.m. Since it's a musical performed by the titular duo, I imagine it's not as bad as the typical stereotype-driven comedy.

Tonight at Element (123 Liberty Pole Way, formerly Star Bar, Tilt, and Velocity) is the random every-style band The Peachy Neachys starting around 10 p.m. [source: WBER calendar]

Pure Kona Poetry Open Mic Night is at Daily Perks (389 Gregory St.) tonight starting at 7:30. [source: Daily Perks calendar]

Over at Montage Grille (50 Chestnut St.) starting around 9 p.m. is Dave Rivello's 12-Piece Jazz Ensemble [source: Montage e-mail]

Over at The Rochester Public Market (280 Union St. N.) is a Bands on the Bricks performance featuring Marshall Tucker Band with Frostbite Blue starting at 6 p.m. Note that although the event is listed as free, you can't bring any food or drinks onto the site and instead must pay whatever astronomical prices for thimblefuls of water to stay alive. Our Capitalist Masters have graciously allowed that we may bring one sealed bottle of water per person—it is imperative that you bring purchased bottled water. [source: City Hall press release]

The Club at Water Street (204 N. Water St.) will be hosting an Unlimited Music Presentation of Aranka Fabian starting around 8 p.m. [source: Water Street calendar]

Over at The Bop Shop (274 N. Goodman St., in Village Gate Square) starting around 8 p.m. is Nowthen featuring Matthew D. Guarnere and Justin Roeland. [source: Bop Shop calendar]

Matthew Cross will be at Daily Perks (389 Gregory St.) starting around 8 p.m. [source: Daily Perks calendar]

Today's The Monroe County Fair highlights include the SONY Playstation Tournament at the Dome from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. and a KRUDCO Skateboard Team Demo in the Dome at 1:30 p.m., 3:30 p.m., and 8:30 p.m. [source: Monroe County Fair website]

JayceLand Pick The Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) will be showing Au hasard Balthazar starting at 8 p.m. Just the story of a suffering girl and a mistreated donkey. [source: Eastman House calendar]

JayceLand Pick Monty's Krown (875 Monroe Ave.) will be hosting surf-rock influenced punk-rock from The PriestsGarageBand link, St. Phillip's Escalator, and The Dovers starting around 10 p.m. [source: the proverbial grapevine]

Over at Montage Grille (50 Chestnut St.) starting around 10 p.m. is Los Mocosos. [source: Montage calendar]

Today from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. and tomorrow and Sunday from noon to 10 p.m. is The Rochester MusicFest at Genesee Valley Park (Hawthorn Dr.) Check the website for details. [source: Freetime]

Tonight at The Jam Room (3873 Buffalo Rd., formerly the Buffalo Roadhouse) is Puddle, and Burning Snella starting around 10 p.m. [source: band e-mail]

JayceLand Pick O'Bagelo's, 165 State Street, noon.

This afternoon at Mt. Hope Cemetery (North Gate, 791 Mt. Hope Ave.) is a Theme Tour: Institutions of Change from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. [source: Freetime]

Actor and photographer Jeff Bridges' images will be on display at the Entrance Gallery at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) through September 19. [source: Eastman House calendar]

The Streets of Pride Parade will run along East Avenue starting near The Strathallan (550 East Ave.) to Manhattan Square Park (130 Chestnut St.) starting around 5 p.m. [source: Freetime]

Today's The Monroe County Fair highlight includes Mini Horses on Parade at noon in the Horse Arena. [source: Monroe County Fair website]

Updated: Today and tomorrow is the Rochester Air Show at The Greater Rochester International Airport (1200 Brooks Ave.) from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. [source: Freetime]

JayceLand Pick The Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) will be showing The Hebrew Hammer starting at 7 p.m. and again at 10 p.m. Yep ... that's right: on film. Just the kind of Jewsploitation film the world was begging for. (Also, it's part of The Rochester Jewish Film Festival this year.) [source: Eastman House calendar]

JayceLand Pick The Bug Jar (219 Monroe Ave.) will be hosting grinding punkish surf-rock from Simon and the Bar Sinisters, solid, simple rockabilly from Diesel Daddy, female sexuality-driven rock-and-roll from Your Mom, and decent punk-rock from The EmersonsGarageBand link starting around 10:45 p.m. [source: Bug Jar calendar]

Monty's Krown (875 Monroe Ave.) will be hosting very good but exactly-as-expected bluegrass band The String Theory Bluegrass Band starting around 10:45 p.m. [source: Monty's Krown calendar]

Tonight at The All-Purpose Room (#8 in the Public Market, off N. Union St.) is D.J. group The Neighborhood Konspiracy starting around midnight. [source: All-Purpose Room calendar]

Tonight at Starry Nites (696 University Ave., formerly Moonbeans) is Free Air starting around 9 p.m. [source: Rochester Music Coalition calendar]

Over at Alexander Street Pub (291 Alexander St.) starting around 10 p.m. is modern rock and covers from Uncle PlumGarageBand link [source: Freetime]

Updated: Tonight at Spy Bar and Grill (139 State St.) starting around 11:30 p.m. will be a showing of the video by Kenny Luby apparently titled I'm $#©@ing Done! containing "mass random footage of the KRUDCO. (83 Howell St.) team and friends shot in 2002" (at least according to the flyer.) [source: flyer found at Monty's Krown]

JayceLand Pick The The New York Museum of Transportation and Rochester and Genesee Valley Railroad Museum (6393 East River Rd., West Henrietta) will be hosting a show titled Worlds in Miniature from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. [source: Freetime]

JayceLand Pick Tonight at The Little (240 East Ave.) at 4 p.m. is Henry's Story: A Teenager Survives about Henry Silberstern's story of surviving the Holocaust. [source: Rochester Jewish Film Festival]

This afternoon from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. is a Corn Hill Stroll sponsored by (and starting at) The Landmark Society of Western New York (133 S. Fitzhugh St.) [source: Landmark Society e-mail]

Today's The Monroe County Fair highlights include an Intergalactic Reception at Spaceport USA (a.k.a. the Dome) at 1:30 p.m. then an Alien Fashion Show at 2 p.m. on the Dome Stage. Later at 7 p.m. is the JM Productions Demolition Derby at the Grandstand. [source: Monroe County Fair website]

The The Rochester Jewish Film Festival concludes tonight. [source: Rochester Jewish Film Festival]

Over at The Bug Jar (219 Monroe Ave.) starting around 10:45 p.m. is The Night Time Dealers, and Arcade. [source: Bug Jar calendar]

JayceLand Pick This evening at 8 p.m. outdoors at The Rochester Visual Studies Workshop (31 Prince St.) will be a screening of Out-Foxed about the way FOX News manipulates public opinion. [source: MoveOn.org website]

Open Mic Night at On the Rocks (1551 Mount Hope Ave., formerly Michael's and before that Trios.) [source: Freetime]

JayceLand Pick The Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) will be showing the video documentary July '64 starting at 8 p.m. It's about the racially-sparked riots that took place in Rochester this month 20 years ago. Director Carvin Eison and producer Christine Christopher will be on hand to introduce their film and answer questions. [source: Eastman House calendar]

Excellent experimental jazz band TatYana will be playing tonight at Alexandria Mediterranean Cuisine (120 East Ave., formerly Aria) starting at 10. [source: the proverbial grapevine]

Tonight is a Tuesday Nature Nights—"Trees In Our Neighborhoods" Walks starting at 6:15 p.m. starting at Meigs St. and East Ave.. [source: City Hall press release]

JayceLand Pick The Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) will be showing Privilege starting at 8 p.m. Part of the series of films that are not available on video, this one explores the notion of manipulating the public using mass-media. [source: Eastman House calendar]

Bamboozle will be at The Bug Jar (219 Monroe Ave.) starting around 10:45 p.m. [source: Bug Jar calendar]

Not ready for mainstream Daily Perks (389 Gregory St.) is hosting an Acoustic Open Mic from 8 to 10. For this one, there's no microphones and it's pretty open ended. [source: Daily Perks calendar]

JayceLand Pick The Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) will be showing Toute une nuit (All Night Long) starting at 8 p.m. A whole slew of short stories of love set in the common backdrop of one night in Brussels. [source: Eastman House calendar]

Poor People United meets tonight and every Wednesday at 7 at St. Joseph's House of Hospitality (402 South Ave.) [source: the proverbial grapevine]

Not ready for mainstream Tonight from 8 to 10 is an Open-Mic Comedy Night at Daily Perks (389 Gregory St.) While once it was a workshop type of environment, it's now more-or-less a regular open mic ... by default it's still a place to try out new stuff. [source: Daily Perks calendar]

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Movie links courtesy The Internet Movie Database. Map links courtesy MapsOnUs. Some movie synopses courtesy UpcomingMovies.com

About the title ... New Haven, Connecticut is the home of Yale University since it moved there permanently 288 years ago in 1716.

This page is Jason Olshefsky's list of things to do in Rochester, NY and the surrounding region (including Monroe County and occasionally the Western New York region) from Thursday, July 15, 2004 thru Wednesday, July 21, 2004. It is updated every week with daily listings for entertainment, activities, performances, movies, music, bands, comedy, improv, poetry, storytelling, theater, plays, and generally fun things to do. The musical styles listed can include punk, emo, ska, swing, rock, rock-and-roll, alternative, metal, jazz, blues, noise band, experimental music, folk, acoustic, and "world-beat." Events listed take place during the day, in the evenings, or as part of the city's nightlife as listed.

JayceLand Pick indicates an event that's a preferred pick of the day ... probably something worth checking out.

IUMA link links to a band's page on IUMA.com which offers reviews and information about bands.

GarageBand link links to a band's page on GarageBand.com which offers reviews and information about bands.

Not ready for mainstream. is an event that is "non-entertainment" for the masses such as practice sessions, open jams, etc.

Fly the flag today. is a day when you should fly the flag according to the Veterans of Foreign Wars calendar.

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