Category Archives: Lecture

An Evening With Terry Gross @ MICA’s Brown Center Tonight

Well, just when we thought we had learned our lesson about buying tickets for things in advance, we completely failed to secure tickets for tonight’s appearance by Terry Gross at MICA’s Brown Center. This is pretty disgraceful, since we’ve known about this for several months now. We even put it on our calendar and everything, but didn’t bother to look into buying tickets until it was well sold out. (Maybe just as well though; $50 is not a cheap ticket for a public radio host.)

Gross is, of course, the host of NPR’s Fresh Air, a daily arts and culture interview program which is easily one of the best things on radio and one of the most popular podcasts on iTunes.

Terry Gross appears at a sold-out Brown Center tonight.

Even though we’re not going tonight, it gives us a good excuse to relate an anecdote which we found funny at the time.

We were in a smallish German city on our trip to Europe earlier this year, where we found a tiny little record shop on a corner near the edge of downtown. There were some good vinyl and posters on display in the windows, but the first few times we went by there the shop was locked up tight.

Eventually we found it open one afternoon, and although we don’t mess around with vinyl records, we thought we might find some European exclusives as a souvenir for Roommate or even some eBay gold for our own benefit. We gave a nod to the proprietor who was busy with his macbook and started browsing the stacks. Instead of playing music we were listening to some old man go on about something or other over the speakers in English for several minutes. When he finally wound up his monologue, Terry Gross’ voice came over the air.

“Oh!” We say “You’re listening to Fresh Air! I didn’t realize you had that in Germany.”

When we said this to the guy behind the counter, his face lit up as brightly as a Christmas tree. It turns out that they do not have Fresh Air in Germany, but that he was listening via iTunes. When we mentioned that we regularly listen on the radio, and live sort of near Philadelphia (people abroad do not know where Maryland is), his perfect English became very excited. We recounted some of our favorite episodes, including the infamous Gene Simmons interview which was one of the most awkward broadcasts in the history of radio.

As it turned out, this record store guy was a huge and rabid fan of Fresh Air, and was trying to work his way through the entire archives of the show. Once he found out that we’d been listening for years, there was no shortage of questions, most of which we had no answers for.

There was one earnest question he did ask though, which we could answer with certainty:

“So, in your country, Terry Gross is a big star? Like Oprah?”

Not quite…


If you’ve never heard the Gene Simmons Fresh Air interview, we strongly encourage you to click through and listen to it. It is not available in the NPR Archives, and it’s a solid hour of Simmons insulting Gross and NPR and making a series of very inappropriate and sexist remarks while making himself out to be a primal filthy rich sex god. In our opinion, Gene Simmons is a fucking clown, and Terry Gross is one of the greatest interviewers working anywhere today.

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Adam Stab Lectures on the Baltimore Graffiti Scene @ Goucher Tonight

One of the best things about living in a city like Baltimore is that you can give yourself a free education. We’re not talking about any “school-of-hard-knocks, streetwise bullshit.” No. Anyone in this town who loves learning for learning’s sake is lucky enough to be able to put together an actual curriculum and pursue just about any field of study as a hobby.

Not only does Baltimore have a wealth of resources dedicated Full Time to giving you a free education, like Book Thing, Baltimore Free School, and the Village Learning Place; we’ve also got one of the Nation’s best libraries, to say nothing of the other museums and cultural institutions in our backyard.

As if that weren’t enough, every Baltimorean has access to top-notch colleges and universities, which most people don’t realize are willing to teach you for free. We already tipped you off to Daniel Shea at MICA, and tonight we can’t stress enough that you should come up to Goucher to see Adam Stab.

Adam Stab tells the history of Baltimore graffiti and stylewriting at Goucher College tonight. 7 pm.

We shouldn’t have to tell you who Stab is. Like any successful writer, his reputation precedes him. He’s Baltimore’s version of the Easter Bunny… hops around all night and leaves beautiful, colorful things wherever he’s been. You’ve never actually seen him, but you’re glad whenever he leaves you something.

Speaking of free educations, there may be no better example than Stab himself. With very little traditional schooling and no college degree, Adam Stab has been able to do for two decades what many classically trained artists never do: Make a living making the art that he loves. Having moved quietly up the ladder from bus stop benches to studio work and even corporate commissions, Stab is uniquely qualified to explain not only the stylewriting sub-culture, but Baltimore’s place in it as well.

Listen closely Baltimore: Chances like this don’t come around often. Graffiti is still very much a product of the night and of the fringes, and the chance to have it explained point by point amounts to nothing less than cracking the new urban Da Vinci code. If you miss this tonight, it goes back underground.

Available at a bench, mailbox, road sign, or lamppost near you.

Street Art: A Lecture on the Baltimore Graffiti Scene will take place in the Pinkard Community Service Center in the Athanaeum of Goucher College. (number 2 on this PDF map). Tonight’s lecture is a part of the ongoing Baltimore City Forum series.

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Practicing as a Professional @ MICA Today

Continuing on with last night’s theme, today is all about another friend who’s forsaken Baltimore for supposedly greener pastures. In this case, its our buddy Daniel Shea, who is lecturing at his alma mater MICA tonight on the subject of Practicing As a Professional, along with fellow alumni Rose Cromwell and Jennifer Grimyser at 4:30 today in the Brown Center’s Falvey Hall.

Cheshire, Ohio from the Plume series, by Daniel Shea

While we have to give Daniel a pass for moving back to Chi to teach and work, since he’s a Chicago native and only ever planned to be here for college, he’s certainly the type of working artist and good friend we can always use more of here in Baltimore.

The Chop knows for a fact that he’s been working his ass off non-stop since graduation, and today he’ll be good enough to share the knowledge he’s accrued with you; and if you listen closely, you might just figure out how to avoid the trap of being the kind of photographer who shoots corny weddings and maudlin photos of peoples’ fucking pets.

Instead, Daniel’s chosen to do things that are actually interesting, like being a founding member of the Dreamboats Collective, and working on his Plume series. He’s also built his own website at, in addition to being on just about every social media website out there in the cloud.

So yeah, sneak out of work early today and learn how to stack up some paper for yourself.

If you can’t make it today, you can also see Daniel solo tomorrow in MICA’s Bunting Hall, room#110, where he’ll be disussing his Plume and Removing Mountains series’. Check it out.

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