Brunch with Babes @ The Winchester

This Sunday! Join me and a bunch of feminist babes for a casual dialogue about feminism over brunch at The Winchester, Chicago. Ticket info below.

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Purchase ticket here.

Facebook invite here.

The Winchester is here.

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PopGoesAlicia LIVE! 8/14: Talking Points

PopGoesAlicia LIVE! is back for another fun-filled evening of drinks, food and hilarious dialogue about the intersections of gender, feminism and current pop-cultural events live from The High-Hat Club.

Guests this month are comic Ashley Huck, comic Mikey Manker and host of Grown Folks Stories, Cara Brigandi. Ashley and Mikey will warm us up with short sets and I’ll chat for a bit with Cara about Chicago culture and curating her long running storytelling show before all 3 launch into a fast-paced panel. Come out and join the conversation!

Here’s a preview of some of the topics we’ll be popping off at the mouth about. Click the link to read the original article.

The Vocal Fry Debate. How do we feel about well-known feminist, Naomi Wolf, criticizing girls for the way they talk? NOT COOL. But these critical responses sure are. The Frisky’s Caitlin White argues it’s not Vocal Fry but basic misogyny that is holding women back while, the always on point, Amanda Marcotte, for The Daily Dot, argues that policing the way women speak is just code for telling them to shutup. Where do you stand?

Why It’s Not Cool to Criticize a Female Musician For Not Being ‘Ladylike’” – Great article by friend of the show & Chicago Huffington Post Editor, Joe Erbentraut. The title says it all.

RONDA ROUSEY: Feminist role model or not? The Boston Globe’s Joan Vennochi has some thoughts…What are yours?

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Inspiration Station

Today marks the end of an event filled week that began last Tuesday with the arrival of my cousin, Janna. Her first visit to the Windy City, the California girl may have been the reason for the unusually warm weather. We celebrated by thrifting in Wicker Park which led to extra early happy hour at Big Star. It has been confirmed by the California native – their margaritas are really, really, really good. Also, best guacamole in the city. 

Janna was in town for the 2012 Association of Writers and Writing Programs Conference (AWP) to promote her literary journal, Under the Gum Tree.

I was crashing. First order of unofficial business: attend the keynote presentation by Margaret Atwood. I read The Handmaid’s Tale in my very first Women’s Studies class so this was a really big deal to me. Hosted in the historical Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University, Ms. Atwood gave a delightfully inspiring, albeit brief, talk about the difference between “Art” and “Craft.” Giggling at her own jokes and poking fun at her own mortality (“Isn’t she dead?”), Atwood suggested that craft is the tool. Her analogy “If you want to slit someone’s throat you have to sharpen your knife.” Yeah. She’s awesome.

Friday, I was lucky enough to sneak into a panel: Memory Without A Net, and OHMAGOD – my friend, idol, and all around swell gal Kelsie Huff was a presenter! After jumping up and down, hollering and doing some crazy hula-hoop dance inspired by my last name (in the Grand Ballroom of The Palmer House, mind you), I sat down with Janna to enjoy the panel. Holy amazing. There are some kick ass storytellers in this city and they are making shit happen all around town. Kelsie performed a piece from her critically acclaimed solo show, Bruiser: Tales from a Traumatized Tomboy.

The rest of the panel included stories by Dana Norris, Shannon Cason, Kevin Gladish, and Scott Whitehair plus and extended, and very valuable, Q&A. For a list of storytelling events around Chicago go here.
Next, we hit the book fair to promote UTGT and do some shameless self-promotion (so what if I only gave my card to the cute boys.)

For real though, I discovered the local publisher Haymarket Books (not just because he had a beard)and bought a copy of IraqiGirl: {Diary of a Teenage Girl in Iraq}. 

Look for my review coming very soon at Love YA Lit.

Saturday we continued our support of live performance and I introduced Janna to one of my favorite Chicago discoveries: Paper Machete – a live magazine presented 3pm every Saturday at The Horseshoe Bar. IT’S FREE!!! We ended out evening at The Laugh Factory (boo!) compliments of Ms. Ever Mainard (YAY EVER!). I met Ever through the FemCom community and have been continually impressed and inspired by her work. That night she blew off her entire set to riff on a “wolfpack” of fellas spanning the front row. Hilarious.

Lately, Ever has received a lot of attention for the following bit, which I love.

Sunday = Brunch at The Fountainhead because they are the only bar to carry our new favorite beer: New Belgium’s Cocoa Mole. Seriously y’all, this beer will change your life. And, I am not even a beer drinker. Do it.

It was a great visit with my cousin and a great opportunity for finding inspiration and building community. Please follow the links if you want to know more and feel free to reach out to me or Janna or any of the other people/places mentioned in this post. We love to hear from our audience!