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Livelong Days 

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16 Thursday

I didn't graduate high school; still don't have my G.E.D. I dropped out (well, was thrown out) in the tenth grade and spent the summer lying on the roof of my barn reading Steinbeck. It was the best thing I ever did for myself. But being a derelict, juvie, parental dropout nightmare isn't for everyone, and studies show that most people actually benefit from a 12th grade education.

Well, with spring comes new life, and it's this transformative season that will no doubt be the basis for valedictorian speeches at this year's round of high-school graduations. The kids who stuck it out have just that last hurdle to jump, and then they're free, man, free.

I'm going. I missed mine, but I still want to see what happens when you let a bunch of repressed teenagers loose on the world. Sierra and Harrison both graduate today, at 2 and 7:30 p.m., respectively, and Mesa Ridge does the deed at 7:30 p.m. on Monday. Doherty graduates at 9 a.m. (one last punishment), Palmer at 2 p.m. and Mitchell at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, and Coronado at 9 a.m. and Wasson at 2 p.m. on Wednesday. All of these graduation ceremonies happen at the World Arena ... Call 471-2121. And hey -- don't go changin'. Stay sweet and cool, always remember homeroom, and call me this summer! T.T.F.N.... B.F.F.

17 Friday

Last week, I forgot to tell you about the new play at Encore! Theater (10 Old Man's Trail). They're presenting a new dinner theater production called Party of One, a musical comedy by Morris Bobrow about being single. The play runs Friday and Saturday nights at 7:30 p.m. Call 471-PLAY for reservations.

Also playing this week is The Hold-Up, the new comedia ridiculosa coming to you live from the Star Bar Players. The performance opens tonight at 8 p.m. at the Lon Chaney Theater, on the east side of the City Auditorium at 221 E. Kiowa Ave. For ticket information, call 573-7411. The Hold-Up runs through June 2.

Why pay high prices for your folkrock? Don't get scammed -- catch Amy Speace and Jenny Bruce live at the Acoustic Coffee Lounge, 5152 Centennial Blvd. tonight absolutely free. The songstresses perform at 8:30 p.m.

For years, Max the Crystal Skull was taking a magical nappy-nap deep in some ruins in Guatemala, until someone came and woke him up in the 1920s. For years he was shuffled around from Guatemala to Mexico and back, until he ended up with the Park family in Texas, around 1987. Max took a liking to JoAnn Parks, and through her he decided it was time to deliver his words of peace and respect to the world.

click to enlarge Separated at birth  Amy Speace and Jenny Bruce
  • Separated at birth Amy Speace and Jenny Bruce

In his own words: "With JoAnn's help, I am no longer an old rock head hanging around inside the closet. I am now a Rock Star, presenting my message of unity around the world."

Old Maxy's also got some wicked strong telepathic healing energy to spare, and you can gitcha some while he visits Spirit Walkers Metaphysical Shop, 617 1/2 N. Murray Blvd. today through Sunday. For details on presentations and consultations, call 638-8370.

The Colorado Blues Society hopes to earn some bucks and, more importantly, new members by luring them in with some of the best blues bands in town, namely Metro Blues, Up to No Good, Magic Dave & the New Mules and The Farce. The Paint the Town Blue mini blues festival begins at the Business of Art Center, 515 Manitou Ave. Admission is $2 to $4. Call 685-1861. The show starts at 7:30 p.m.

Hearty, homegrown, you-can't-kill-me plants can be had from the Horticultural Arts Society Gigantic Annual Spring Plant Sale this weekend. Flowers, trees, shrubs, vegetables, ground cover and anything else you can possibly grow (well, maybe not anything) will be up for sale in the Demonstration Gardens in Monument Valley Park today and tomorrow from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Call 475-0250 for details.

18 Saturday

There is possibly nothing cooler than watching a group of World War II-era birds flying directly overhead in formation. Unless it's checking out a flying car -- yes, a car that flies! -- or an aerobatic helicopter. Or seeing the Air Force Academy Wings of Blue parachute team landing steps away from where you are standing.

This weekend's air show at the Old Colorado Springs Airport honors Armed Forces Day and features more than 100 experimental aircraft displays, airplane rides and flight simulators. Cost is $8 for adults, $5 for kids 5 and older. The event will be held today from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., and again tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Call 635-8803 for more info.


21 Tuesday

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In the "For Those of You Who Care" file: Twiztid plays at the Colorado Music Hall tonight at 8 p.m. with Blaze, Dog Fashion Disco, DJ Platinum & Mac Lethal. Tickets are $14. Call 800/965-4827.

-- Kristen Sherwood

Beam Me Up, Scotty
It's only a 32-minute whoopee-cushion gag

Here's what the "critics" are saying about Star Warp'd: "Outrageously funny and visually appealing! One of the best parodies I've seen! You don't need to be a Star Wars fan to fully appreciate this film," raves Eric Stein of CinemaNow. What is Star Warp'd?, you ask. Star Warp'd is a Claymation/ computer-animated parody that pokes fun at all your favorite sci-fi movie characters.

Now, don't get your Captain Kirklimited edition thong in a twist; the film makers don't do a good job of it. No, instead of mocking the tenants of an often-ridiculous genre, director/writer, John Schuermann instead uses fart jokes and half-baked sight gags to grasp for laughs.

The plot is of little consequence, but in the interest of journalistic integrity, I will encapsulate it for you. The monolith from 2001: A Space Odyssey has torn a rift in the cosmos, which is causing universes to collide. The movie's villain, Darth Vapor is out to use the monolith to perpetuate the, ahem, dark smell.

As for heroes you have the obligatory Star Trek spoof caricatures of Captain Kwirk and Mr. Spuck. Now, get this: Darth Vapor sends emissaries of evil from other galaxies (i.e., science-fiction film characters) to retrieve the monolith. What ensues is a battle royale between evil sci-fi characters and good sci-fi characters. The pice de rsistance of these matches is the fight between the Schwartzenator and Robofuzz wherein Robofuzz declares his prime directives to be upholding the law and, you'll never see this one coming, eating donuts. Whoo, the only thing that could make that scene better would be if Robofuzz got a pole stuck up his robobottom and radioed for a proctologist. Wait a minute; that joke's also in there.

Now ponder this: Which movie lampoon's antics could make this film even better? If your answer was Austin Powers, you'd be right. And it's in there, in the form of the amalgamation of Mini-Me and Darth Maul by the name of, you guessed it, Mini-Mall. Wow, a parody of a parody that's constantly imitated. Genius.

To call Star Warp'd a parody is not quite accurate. You see, the people involved in making this thing are too in love with the characters they're trying to spoof, so in lieu of pointing out any real foibles with them they turn the movie into a 32-minute whoopee-cushion gag. No, I'm afraid if you're looking for a parody of science fiction you'll need to look elsewhere. May I suggest Star Wars: Episode II?

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-- Brandon Laney

capsule

Star Warp'd: The Fandom Menace
a parody by local filmmakers,
premiering at Centennial Hall, 200 S. Cascade Ave.
Sat., May 18, 7 p.m.
Free. Call 495-1364 for more.

Enduring Grace
Van Briggle Pottery keeps on keeping on

Surprisingly enough, while working on this story, several acquaintances expressed their dislike for Van Briggle pottery.

"They're still making the same [junk] they made for the 1904 World's Fair," said one.

Yeah, well, of course Van Briggle is still churning out the same old pottery. It's radiant and beautiful, resonant in color and life, and delicate but stable and functional. It's this pottery that first legitimized Little London here as any sort of art haven, and the practices, molds and colors flowing out of the old roundhouse on 21st Street add as much to the current arts scene as any giant sunflower or spouting Uncle Will.

Artus and Anne Van Briggle's eyes for understated beauty created a company that has been in almost continual production since 1901. Erratic activity during the Depression and World Wars, however, plus the 1935 flood that destroyed numerous casts and records, have made it nearly impossible to determine how many pieces Van Briggle actually produced, and how many were nearly envisioned.

The Pioneers Museum, which possesses one of the largest public collections of Van Briggle pottery, has created a retrospective of this massive body of work in their latest exhibition, 100 Years of Van Briggle Pottery. Not included in the actual exhibit (for logistical reasons) are two amazing pieces that can't be missed -- one is Artus Van Briggle's death mask, and the other a lovely cast, made shortly after Anne and Artus were married, of Anne's hand holding a Van Briggle vase, while Artus' hand lovingly touches her arm. Both pieces are in the museum's permanent Van Briggle exhibition room.

The exhibition opens Saturday and runs through July 6.

-- Kristen Sherwood

capsule

100 Years of Van Briggle Pottery
Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum, 215 S. Tejon St.
On exhibit May 18 through July 6.
Open Tues.-Sat., 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Free. Call 385-5990 for more.

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