Take Your Coat Off

THU 2/26

Ours is a fascinating postfeminist age. Hot on the heels of the burlesque revival and the reclaiming of pornography by icons such as Camille Paglia comes another unlikely champion in the form of actress, dancer and now author Sheila Kelley. What’s she reclaiming on our behalf? Stripping — and not “striptease” of the Lilly St. Cyr grindhouse variety. Kelley is here to put you in touch with your feminine power and boost your self-esteem through pole dancing, cat crawls and the hallowed art of the lap dance. It may sound absurd, but women all over the West Coast are installing poles in their spare rooms and flocking to Kelley’s S Factor studio in hordes. What’s the appeal? Maybe it’s third-wave feminism. Or maybe it’s simply a whole lot more fun to writhe around in hot pants than it is to lash your inner thighs to a Pilates machine. According to Kelley, the results are about the same. Decide for yourself: Kelley will sign copies of her book, The S Factor: Strip Workouts for Every Woman, give a demonstration and answer audience questions at 7 p.m. Thursday at Unity Temple on the Plaza, 707 West 47th Street. Call Rainy Day Books at 913-384-3126 for tickets.— Kelly Sue DeConnick

Tea Time

Tea is the new coffee.

MON 3/1

Bars are depressing, and market saturation combined with corporate culture has managed to leach all joy from what used to be a relatively fun little spot — the coffee shop. So what’s a parched modern urbanite to do? Drink tea. Duh.

To facilitate the great 21st-century beverage shift, independent tea houses are popping up all over the country — from Teany in New York to the Samovar Tea Lounge in San Francisco. Kansas City joins the movement with Tea Drops. Located in Westport at 4111 Pennsylvania, Tea Drops offers more than fifty varieties of traditional teas, available by the cup, the pot or dry by the ounce. Don’t have a teapot? Tea Drops can hook you up with anything from a Japanese ceremony set to an array of the German Jenaer Glas wares used in the store. As the temperature rises, eschew ordinary iced tea in favor of the iced bubble teas of Taiwan. What could be more fun than a beverage that doubles as a projectile? (No shooting tapioca balls inside, please.) If you require entertainment with your tisane, take heart: Every Monday night from 7 to 9, Tea Drops hosts an informal acoustic jam.

When you go, be sure to order the oolong tea “Iron Goddess of Mercy,” because it’s just as silly sounding as “grande half-decaf soy latte, no foam,” but it won’t cost you your soul.— DeConnick

Fans in Black

Everybody loves Johnny Cash.

THU 2/26

There’s more to covering a song than just getting all the words right. Anyone who’s been subjected to an overly creative or just plain bad cover realizes this. Another important factor is the material being covered — specifically, whose material. One must consider whether the audience would kick your ass if dissatisfied with your interpretation. Given most fans’ devotion to Johnny Cash, the bands paying tribute at the Johnny Cash tribute must know what they’re getting themselves into. If you’re interested in seeing Honeywagen, the Slicks, and Jon Stubblefield walk the (fine) line, head down to Bender’s (1118 McGee) at 10 p.m. Thursday. For information, call 816-221-7722.— Sarah Steele

It’s Backward Day

2/26-3/27

Sculptor Beniah Leuschke uses an unusual combination of materials. Steel. Tires. Pennzoil canisters. Words. Leuschke can bend heavy metals into smooth curves, but even more impressive is his uncanny ability to write sentence-long palindromes. Meanwhile, all we can come up with is race car — let that blow your minds. Catch Leuschke’s Dumb Mobs Bomb Mud exhibit at the Telephone Booth (3319 Troost, 816-582-9812) from noon to 6 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays. Call ahead.— Gina Kaufmann

Categories: News