Why Are Rush Limbaugh Supporters Verbally Abusing Local Author Merritt Tierce?

Categories: Books

via Merritt Tierce
Local author Merritt Tierce is quite the media darling these days. After publishing her debut novel Love Me Back, Tierce has made the rounds on TV, been compared to Joan Didion by one critic, and perhaps most famously, told the Dallas Morning News about the time she donated Rush Limbaugh's extravagant tips to an abortion fund. After the DMN published the story, it quickly went viral, and was picked up by outlets like Gawker, Newsweek, and Cosmopolitan.

Soon after her revelation, fans of Limbaugh came after Tierce with a vengance. Her personal and public Facebook pages were inundated with hate mail, much of which was extremely violent. "You do realize that once a body as a beating heart, it's called murder right?" wrote one gramatically-challenged commenter. "Better yet, someone should just murder you. I mean shit seriously." According to Tierce, Facebook refused to remove the post because it didn't violate their list of community standards, which supposedly exist to protect the platform's users against threats of violence.

"I suppose I should have seen it coming," says Tierce. "[Rush Limbaugh's] fans are legion, and they are people who are exceptionally responsive to the fomenting of ​hate." And the hate was certainly fomented. Moving beyond Facebook, Limbaugh fans took to Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble's website to spit their vitriol in the form of "reviews" of Love Me Back.

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More Shakespeare and More Beer, Please!

Categories: Theater

Happy, drunken Shakespeare.

This morning, KERA's Jerome Weeks commented on my Facebook check-in at Shakespeare in the Bar last night with a link to a New Yorker article about Drunk Shakespeare, pointing out that New York did it first. I squinted at the screen, rubbed my aching head and thought, damn it, it's only Tuesday.

Sure, it's not technically a new thing. But when was the last time you were hungover after a night of Shakespeare? In spite of the ubiquitous high school English teacher assuring all of her students that The Globe theater was a rowdy, crowded place where the audience talked during the performance, threw garbage at the performers and drank to their heart's delight, very few American experiences with the Bard see this sort of revelry.

Even the casual, often dumbed-down Shakespeare in the Park productions are watched in sober silence (unless you've learned to plan ahead with numerous bottles of wine, like this woman). Last night, on the patio of Wild Detectives, something wonderful happened when a group of actors staged the first Dallas version (in recent memory) of Shakespeare in the Bar.

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The Modern's Urban Theater Is a Must See Exhibition This Fall

Categories: Visual Art

Keith Haring

Much of the art on display in The Modern's newest exhibition doesn't belong in a museum. The very title, Urban Theater: New York Art in the 1980s, implies the art's original presence in the streets. Even today, after decades of moving the risky stuff off the streets and onto the white walls, the juxtaposition between some of the art and the expansive, pristine space it occupies seems disconcerting. And it's for just that reason that this is one of the best exhibitions you'll see this fall.

In the New York of the 1980s, before the sanitization of Times Square and Chelsea, artists weren't striving to be art stars or hoping for their big break with a commercial gallery. No, these artists were taking over abandoned warehouses, painting over subway advertisements, and using their art as social activism. It was rough, rebellious and raw.

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Looking for Monday Night Plans? Try Shakespeare in the Bar

Categories: Theater


Some rebellious theater kids take over The Wild Detectives tonight for the first-ever rendition Shakespeare in a Bar. Well, we're pretty sure we've heard some drunken actors (maybe even some of these guys) reciting lines of iambic pentameter over a double whisky on the rocks. Now it's just a bit more premeditated and slightly less slurred.

At 7:30 p.m. tonight they'll post up on the back patio at the Oak Cliff bookstore/coffee shop/ bar to recite a loosely rehearsed version of Twelfth Night (you know, the one with the cross dressing and the love triangles... OK, OK so that's a lot of Shakespeare's plots).

It's the perfect night to grab a brewski, take in some theater and heckle a few actors -- just like Shakespeare would've wanted.

Texas Theatre Screens Advanced Style, Which Teaches Us Fashion Has No Age Limits

Categories: Film and TV

Texas Theatre

First, we had Scott Schuman and his collection of photographs, The Sartorialist. Then came the onslaught of fashion, DIY, and lifestyle blogs. We loved it. We still love it. Don't tell you don't check Refinery29 every morning (or that you're not following them on Facebook and Instagram), or that you don't secretly love Cupcakes and Cashmere, or WhoWhatWear, or Lauren Conrad's takeover of all things Pinterest worthy. Yet, those blogs cater to a particular crowd and a particular age group, and as we get older--and fingers crossed--we still stay as stylish as we currently are (or wish we were), we're going to start looking for an outlet that tells us what's in and what's out.

Who says you can't be sartorially cool when you're 60 plus?

Street photographer Ari Seth Cohen has just the answer with his blog, book, and now documentary, Advanced Style, that gives us glimpse into the lives of the gorgeous and elegant older women he spots on the sidewalks of New York City. With the help of first-time director Lina Plioplyte, Cohen's subjects take center stage showing us what we have to look forward in our golden years, as these women challenge our notion of what it means to get older, and how to do it with panache. And The Texas Theatre screens the flick at 8 p.m. Saturday.

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25 Signs It's (Sort of) Fall in Dallas

Categories: Lists

Pumpkins = Fall

You noticed. Something about last week felt different. That's cause it's fall, you dummy. Here are 25 signs of the new season.

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Rick Steves on Israel, Palestine, and Smoking Pot


By Monica Hinman
"People used to say 'Bon Voyage", comments Rick Steves at the beginning of our phone conversation. It was a way to express excitement and adventure, instead of "Have a safe trip," which suggests fear and danger. Why such an ominous farewell?

Travel is safer than ever but when was the last time anyone wished you "Bon Voyage"? Has technology changed the way we think about travel and our world? To Steves' mind, the answer is yes. He suggests that today a sensationalist news industry capitalizes on crises and presents 'caricatures' rather than human beings, contributing to a sense that the world is a dangerous place. In his latest television special, The Holy Land: Israelis and Palestinians Today, Steves introduces the viewer to "average citizens, not radicals," attempting "to bring empathy for the people of this complex and confusing place."

And he'll be at the Winspear Opera House at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday to talk about his latest adventures.

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Five Random Arty Things That (Maybe) Deserve Best Ofs

Categories: Best of Dallas

Jason Acton
Our Best of Dallas 2014 issue rolls out this week. While we can modestly say it's the greatest, most comprehensive city guide ever created, Dallas is a pretty big place that's filled to the brim with best-ness. To cover all the good stuff we might have left out, Mixmaster will offer some tips about the other best things in Dallas.
It's not that we forgot about these things. No, forgetting is not what happened. Assigning the right superlative was just difficult. Sometimes the language required for Best Ofs can be limiting. Certainly these things aren't the "best" things in the art world, but they are a meaningful part of the city's artistic growth and, we believe, an integral part of the future of Dallas art, in one way or another.

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With Its Dallas Debut, Spectrum Dance Theater Proves that Dance Can Be Manly

Categories: Dance

Nate Watters
Couples Yoga or Spectrum Dance Theater?

Donald Byrd has a dance career to would make anyone envious. For more than four decades, he has been living his dream of creating, performing, and educating. Oh, and he cut his teeth working for Twyla Tharp. His impressive career started in 1978 and includes prestigious credits like The Joffrey Ballet, and Alvin Ailey, to name a few.

But when he took over Seattle-based Spectrum Dance Theater in 2002, heads turned and jaws dropped. He had been known as one of the world's leading contemporary choreographers, but with this new position, he had the chance to breathe new life into a company entering a brand-new stage themselves, one that found them with the responsibility bringing awareness to dance in a city that didn't know about the gem in their own backyard. With Byrd's leadership, Spectrum Dance Theater has embarked on a transformation that has attracted world-class dancers and produced some of the most avant-garde works in contemporary dance. And they're bringing that magic to Dallas for the first time at 8 p.m. Saturday, with a performance at the Winspear Opera House, thanks to TITAS.

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100 Dallas Creatives: No. 54 Performance Pioneer Katherine Owens

Categories: 100 Creatives

Undermain Theatre
Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order. Know an artistic mind who deserves a little bit of blog love? Email lauren.smart@dallasobserver.com with the whos and whys.

Katherine Owens has made her mark on Dallas as founder and artistic director of the critically acclaimed Undermain Theatre in Deep Ellum, the culmination of a lifelong passion for the arts. This passion began when Owens was a girl growing up in Odessa, Texas, where her father encouraged her creatively.

"My father was a big reader and lover of painting and music, particularly opera," she says. "Where I grew up, that was a little bit unusual. At first I wanted to be a painter. He tutored me and helped me to recognize the styles and names of the paintings. I always drew. It was something that you could do in a private world of your own, which seemed logical in Odessa."

However, by the time she was twelve, her interest in the arts had drifted to the stage. Owens saw Life with Father at the The Permian Playhouse and her dedication to a life in the theater began.

"It was so captivating to me," she says. "The theater just seemed like the only place to be." Soon after, she started working at Odessa's very own replica of the Globe Theatre. "If you could catch a ride down there, they'd put you to work," she says. "I started working there as a spear carrier, dresser and assistant director."

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