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Days of the Week



Friday 4/3 - Thursday 4/9


By Cara Jepsen

3 FRIDAY In all the coverage of Indonesia's faltering economy, there's been little mention of that country's brutal 22-year occupation of East Timor. But a network of activists is working to end the U.S.-sanctioned takeover. The group's current goal is to convince Congress to vote down or add human rights conditions to a bill that would give $18 billion to the International Monetary Fund, which is bailing out Indonesia to the tune of $40 billion. Constancio Pinto, former leader of the underground resistance in East Timor, and journalist Allan Nairn will participate in a free discussion about the situation tonight at 7 in room 122 of Northwestern's University Hall, at Chicago and Sheridan in Evanston. Call 773-561-5131.

What is that quality that makes some people the center of attention--and how can we get some? Author and screenwriter Elinor Glyn called it "that strange magnetism which attracts both sexes." In her screenplay for the movie It, a department store owner (Antonio Moreno) becomes infatuated with his "pert and unabashed" employee, played by Clara Bow, who catapulted to stardom as "the It Girl." It will be shown tonight at 8 at the Gateway Theatre, 5216 W. Lawrence; organist Jay Warren will accompany the silent film. Tickets are $9, or $8 in advance. (Glyn, by the way, appears in the film as herself to explain "it" to Moreno). Call 773-777-9438.

4 SATURDAY In the latest work by the Swiss experimental dance troupe Compagnie Philippe Saire, the dancers perform a strange series of movements back and forth--appropriate in a dance titled Le palindrome. The company will perform tonight at 8 as part of "EuroContempo: A Festival of European Contemporary Dance" (there are also performances Friday at 8 and Sunday at 3) at the theater of the Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 E. Chicago. Tickets are $20; call 773-989-3310.

5 SUNDAY "We're doing this to let women know we should all come together, tear down the walls of partition, celebrate who we are, and have a dialogue about what we need to do," says Selena Derry, organizer of this weekend's Ibeji Festival of the Arts. The two-day free fest includes panels on holistic health, a fashion show for children, African films, musical performances, and a "global marketplace." The festival starts at 10 and goes until 3 today (it also runs from 9 to 6 Saturday) at the Washington Park field house, 5531 S. King Drive. Some of the segments are for women only; call 312-409-9536 for more.

6 MONDAY Some of the things found in Henry Darger's one-room apartment at Webster and Halsted when he died in 1973 include a 5,084-page handwritten autobiography; collections of twine, eyeglasses, toys, records, shoes, and Pepto-Bismol bottles; and a 15-volume epic called "The Story of the Vivian Girls, in What Is Known as the Realms of the Unreal, of the Glandeco-Angelinnian War Storm, Caused by the Child Slave Rebellion." When Darger's landlord, artist and Institute of Design professor Nathan Lerner, went through his things, he also discovered 300 meticulously executed paintings, many of them depicting nude little girls with male genitalia. Lerner first exhibited the work in 1977, and since then Darger has become one of the most important figures in the contemporary outsider art movement. Tonight Darger expert John M. MacGregor and actress Leigh Armor will give a special lecture and theatrical presentation in conjunction with the exhibit Henry Darger: The Unreality of Being, which is at the Chicago Cultural Center through May 31. MacGregor and Armor's presentation begins at 5:30 at the Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington; admission is $12. The exhibit is free. Call 773-929-7122 for information about the lecture, 312-744-6630 for news about the exhibit.

Speaking of the unusual: David Wilson is the founder and creator of Los Angeles's Museum of Jurassic Technology, a storefront dedicated to the extraordinary, inexplicable, and unverifiable. The museum became the subject of writer Lawrence Weschler's 1995 book, Mr. Wilson's Cabinet of Wonder. Wilson will discuss his collection of oddities tonight at 6 in the auditorium of the School of the Art Institute, Columbus and Jackson; admission is $5, $3 for seniors. Call 312-443-3711.

7 TUESDAY Working for a year at minimum wage will net you an annual income of $10,920. But a "living wage" of $7.60 per hour comes to a somewhat less pitiful $15,808 per year--enough to lift a family of four just over the poverty level. "It's not great, but it's a place to start," admits Ellyn Harris of the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless. Her group and ACORN are working to get Chicago to join Los Angeles and New York in making a living wage de rigueur for any business awarded a city contract. Tonight the two groups will host a fund-raiser at the premiere of Michael Moore's new documentary, The Big One, in which the zaftig shlump searches for "just one" CEO who can explain why downsizing is necessary when corporate profits are up. Moore and Studs Terkel, who appears in the film, will take questions after the screening. It's at 7:30 at the Music Box, 3733 N. Southport. Tickets are $20 and must be bought in advance; call 312-435-4548.

8 WEDNESDAY When Kate Winslet flipped the bird to the bad guys in Titanic, I thought it was yet another anachronistic fuckup. But that particular moment of comic relief can claim an ancient heritage: "In many of the classical Greek plays, flipping the 'dactylos' was one of the easiest ways to get a laugh onstage," says Charles Panati, author of Sexy Origins and Intimate Things: The Rites and Rituals of Straights, Gays, Bi's, Drags, Trans, Virgins, and Others. Panati also reveals the origin of the word "faggot," whether or not animals have orgasms, the names of three gay popes, and more. The public can test his knowledge tonight at 7:30 at Barbara's Bookstore, 1350 N. Wells. It's free. Call 773-642-5044.

9 THURSDAY University of Chicago seniors Renato Mariotti and Rohit Khanna have spent the last two years chasing down intellectuals and policy makers like former Haitian president Jean-Bertrand Aristide and controversial law professor Catherine MacKinnon to participate in the university's three-day conference, The Challenge of Modern Democracy. But the RSVP that excited them the most was that of CNN anchor Bernard Shaw, who said he'd be "a derelict citizen of the world" if he didn't attend. "I was jumping up and down when I read his letter of acceptance," says Mariotti. Registration for the event starts at 9; today's sessions run from 9:30 AM to 10 PM. The conference runs through Saturday at the Max Palevsky Cinema at Ida Noyes Hall, 1212 E. 59th. Registration is required; it's $50, or free if you're a student. Call 773-753-0054.

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