Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Beasties in Brooklyn (and Empire in a Bar)

A book of DIY plush monster toys and puppets called Beasties has its release party tomorrow night (Thur., Aug. 5) at DUMBO’s hip and spatially-odd book-and-arts venue PowerHouse Arena, on 37 Main Street (corner of Water St.), close to the Brooklyn end of the Brooklyn Bridge and the York St. F stop, as I discovered the very first time I walked all the way across the Brooklyn Bridge, mere months ago. (PowerHouse has striking stairs/bleachers, not so unlike the swell new façade of the northern Lincoln Center block, which my architect friend Dave Whitney tells me has been much praised, so I am not alone in admiring it.) What better borough for the Beasties than Brooklyn, after all?

There will be drinks, snacks, and lovely music by members of the Debutante Hour. I’m going.

The Beasties author is the talented and whimsical artist Diana Schoenbrun, who we were lucky enough to have lead a puppet show prior to one of our Debates at Lolita Bar. I jokingly — but sincerely — likened the performance to the Muppets at the time, and I have always thought all good-hearted, open-minded people can appreciate good things — like The Muppet Movie — across “age appropriate” divisions, without feeling any more anxiety about whether they “ought” to than about whether they are being sufficiently hip, another pointless anxiety. We’re all in the quest for good things together, from the purchaser of well-crafted G.I. Joe figures to the collector of the works of Macaulay.

And if you’d like to be part of our proud debate tradition yourself, without necessarily using puppets, please e-mail me today (per the address on my About/CONTACT page) and volunteer to argue “no” on the question “Can There Be Benign Imperialism?” (our topic next week, Thur., August 12, 8pm, amidst this blog’s “Month of Imperialism”).

I will add an “UPDATE” note to this very blog entry tonight or tomorrow revealing whether we have our volunteer.  [UPDATE: Not yet!  Watch for an all-new entry with the official announcement Monday, I promise.]

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