Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Saturday, October 30, 2021

Yep, Guavaween be tonight.

Not sure if I’ll go. I haven’t in years; I’ve usually been too burned out by the end of October to gather the strength for it. That’s not the case this time, but other things are causing me to struggle to find the motivation today.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 10/30/2004 06:54pm
Category: Florida Livin'
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straight up
It’s far from comprehensive, but tbt* has a little roundup of notable martini offerings in Bay area nightspots.

Some of these “specialty” drinks… I mean, come on: Strawberry Shortcake martini, with ice cream and pureed berries? You don’t belong in a bar if you’re drinking that, you belong at the nearest Ben & Jerry’s, spiking your sundae with shots from your smuggled-in fifth of Jack.

I don’t mind downing a kooky chocolate-laced concoction on occasion, but generally, I stick with the traditional gin or vodka (gin 80 percent of the time), hint of vermouth and speared garnish. Any variations can come from standard bar ingredients.

Actually, one of my favorite martini options used to be available at The Rare Olive in Ybor. It was actually just a particular choice of garnish: Instead of the staid olives or cocktail onions, they offered a pickled baby octopus for soaking in your gin/vodka. Tasty! And damned chewy. More importantly, it was quite the conversation-starter. Sadly, the last time I tried to order it, a couple of years ago, they no longer had it.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 10/30/2004 06:45pm
Category: Florida Livin', Food
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Beating the rush by waiting in line: Thousands of voters in the Tampa Bay area are enduring long delays to get in their early votes.

I can attest to this. I dropped off my absentee ballot yesterday in downtown St. Pete (I’m not going anywhere on Election Day; I just figured it would be easier this way). The line of people looking to get to the early-voting booths snaked around the corner; it looked like a 30-minute wait, easily. Luckily, I didn’t have to wait — I just dropped my ballot off, and I was gone.

The motivation for jumping the electoral gun? For most, it’s likely a wistful attempt at insulating oneself from the current poli-ad maelstrom:

“It’s almost like they can bring closure to this whole thing,” said Kurt Browning, the elections supervisor in Pasco County. “They can say, “I don’t need to read another piece of mail, or listen to another political advertisement. I’m done, leave me alone!’ “

I know the feeling. But instead of changing my answering machine’s outgoing message, I’ve simply turned it off until November 3rd. Anyone who really needs to get ahold of me until then knows how to, anyway.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 10/30/2004 06:18pm
Category: Politics
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The things you learn while checking out the local theater action. The one and only Russell Simmons’ Def Poetry Jam will be in Tampa next Saturday.

Might be worth a look.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 10/30/2004 06:04pm
Category: Florida Livin', Media
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it's live
I don’t go see live theater very much. I could go at length about why not, about the differences between mainstream spectacle productions and more intimate theater, the scattered venues in the Tampa Bay area, and so on. I won’t. I’ll just leave it at saying that, typically, seeing a show is usually, at best, fourth or fifth on my options list for a night out; as a result, in the 15 years I’ve lived here, I’ve been gone to see three or four plays, total.

I am tempted, though, by Jobsite Theater’s production of “Playing With Fire: After Frankenstein” at the TBPAC’s Shimberg Playhouse. Why? Because it ain’t your daddy’s Frankenstein:

Playing With Fire, commissioned in the mid 1990s by the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, picks up where the Shelley novel ends, with Dr. Frankenstein and his creature in the Arctic. From there it moves backward and forward in time, providing the backstory by revisiting scenes from the novel. Two sets of actors play the doctor and the creature, one set in the play’s present and one in the past.

If audiences come expecting the Frankenstein of B movies, they’re likely to be disappointed, [Jobsite artistic director David] Jenkins said.

“This isn’t a Boris Karloff Frankenstein, with a square head and green greasepaint and bolts in the neck,” he said. “There isn’t a lot of blood and gore at all.”

Instead Playing With Fire is meant as a serious examination of the human condition, a look at the relationship between the creator (with or without a capital C) and the creation, a study of existential isolation.

Mary Shelley’s novel is a rich vein to tap, and I’m most intrigued by an asynchronous sequel that expands upon its themes.

(Not that the monster movie deserves to be dissed. It is a classic, and its iconic nature is woven into popular culture. It’s also, I think, the only horror movie that ever actually gave me nightmares as a kid.)

What are the chances of Jobsite tossing me a couple of comp tickets to a performance of “Playing With Fire”, even for a matinee showing? Eh, I won’t beg. And I’ll probably go see it anyway.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 10/30/2004 05:42pm
Category: Florida Livin', Media
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