September 10, 2014

Councilman Jim Kenney Breaks Down Pot Bill On Lawrence O’Donnell Alongside Cool 4:20-Friendly Videos

We’ve all been reading and listening and watching as the word of decriminalization of marijuana possession and public use in Philly spreads across the country and turns everyone green with… envy. For those of you who still have questions about the specifics, Councilman Jim Kenney gives you all the answers in the video above. Those of you who just want to revisit Dark Side of the Moon and watch a bunch of joints and bowls go up in smoke can also watch the video above.

September 9, 2014

The 1840s Were The Golden Age Of Philly Brothel Culture

3-1-8 am1849guide-65997-d-t

The Vault, the history blog of, has an indispensable piece up on a curiosity called A Guide To The Stranger, Or Pocket Companion For The Fancy, Containing A List Of The Gay Houses And Ladies Of Pleasure In The City Of Brotherly Love And Sisterly Affection. If that Victorian English confuses you, it’s basically a Zagat Survey of brothels. The Library Company of Philadelphia has a digitized version of the full text. According to the piece, the 1840s, when this “guide” was published, was a Renaissance of rakes, or in contemporary layman’s terms, guys who like to fuck and fight and party and don’t give a shit about what anyone else thinks or feels. So a book like the Guide would have been in high demand. And with exclusive tips like this one, how could it not be?:

This woman has been long enough at the accommodation of single gentlemen and their wives, that she has grown bald and toothless in the service. Beware of this house, stranger, as you would the sting of a viper.

We at Philebrity are always excited to further explore Philadelphia’s proud history of great culture writing.

State GOP Vs. Tom Wolf’s Dad: Where The Gov. Campaign Money Is Coming From

ABC27 released a report on Sunday breaking down the top-level donors to Governor Tom Corbett‘s and Democratic candidate Tom Wolf‘s gubernatorial campaigns. The findings, while surprising and amusing in one or two places, are ultimately not exactly game-changing. Corbett has a lot of support from state republicans, as well as unaffiliated lawyers and companies, while Wolf, a high-powered business executive, has put up most of the money himself (although he did apparently have to borrow a few bucks from his dad). The report also notes that these top-level donors account for most of the campaign funding for both candidates. You probably weren’t expecting that either candidate was relying predominantly on grassroots support, but it’s good to have these kinds of specifics moving around for all eyes to see. There is nothing in the report about Corbett making the biggest comeback in modern gubernatorial election history, but as soon as we hear something, you’ll hear something.


Coming Soon To Old City: The Hive, A Coworking Space For Women

Technically Philly reports that Melissa Alam, a 26-year old owner of both a consulting firm and a media outlet with a female focus called Femme And Fortune, is opening a coworking space for female entrepreneurs in Old City. The Hive will be a space for these female entrepreneurs to mentor one another and discuss issues specific to women in business. 900 square feet and two stories all told, the space will be pretty small, aiming to host about ten members at a time. The monthly fee of $300 for full-time members will also exceed that of a lot of the city’s other popular coworking spaces. But maybe it’s better that Old City’s new home for entrepreneurial women will be a space that’s actually comfortably inhabitable instead of an imperious office building with six floors of sweaty deskworkers at cluttered desks.

PSA: Artists, Your Lifelong Dream Of Turning A PHL Airport Bathroom Into An Art Project Is This Close To Reality

Philadelphia, you are a goddamned weirdo.


The Way We Live Now: Citizens Of Camden Awake To Find Something Called A “Pop-Up Park”

“The only downfall is you have a (methadone) clinic right across the street, so a lot of the bad element might come over here and the good people won’t be able to enjoy it.” Oh Camden. Come here. Let me give you a hug. The way you try is beautiful. (more…)

“Tour Bingo” From The Band Literature Is Pretty Much All You Need To Know About Being On Tour In An Indie Band

It’s all right there, isn’t it? (Also: We love these guys. Perfect for this English weather we’re having.)

Previously: Noontime Nuggetz: Literature, “Kites”

The Adults Is Even More Awesome Than We Knew It Would Be

unnamed-1 As we predicted over and over again in the run-up to the opening of the 2014 FringeArts Festival, now in full swing all over the city, The Adults was going to be one of the undisputed highlights of the program. It definitely is. Because New Paradise Laboratories did so well to keep us in suspense, the show stunned and surprised us with full effect when we caught its opening night performance last Friday. Killer joke after killer sound cue after killer blocking choice after killer slapstick featuring inexplicable frozen fish (which we hear was a real fish), this play goes hard and hits hard. We knew there would be multimedia elements. We knew there would be immersive elements. We knew there would be “adults, behaving badly.” We had no idea there would be highly physical moment work that provokes a rapturous discomfort from way deep in your gut. We did not imagine onstage happenings so astonishing they attain the level of hallucination or illusion. We definitely weren’t expecting free tequila. If you get the opportunity — fuck that, make the opportunity. Don’t read this pathetic excuse for a review (seriously, is there even a single editor working at that sausage factory?). Go see The Adults. There might not be any more free tequila, but you don’t need a buzz to enjoy a show this weird and enthralling and beautiful.

“Dude It’s Rude” Campaign Reinforces Transit Etiquette Because SEPTA Is Just Like SO Popular!


Increased ridership on SEPTA is a good thing because more people are discovering that public transit is a convenient, cost effective way to travel. But being popular also means a lot more people are sharing the same bus, trolley, subway, regional vehicle, platform, or boarding area. This can create quality of travel issues if people don’t recognize that they are not alone, which means a little common courtesy is in order.

Thus opens the press release SEPTA issued today regarding their new “Dude It’s Rude” ad campaign. Much like the “woman flipping hair” emoji, SEPTA has been feeling extra popular these days. That’s why SEPTA has had to implement a new ad campaign promoting their etiquette policy. Because it’s hard to be popular, as such films as Clueless and Mean Girls have taught us so well. In light of these revelations, the “Dude It’s Rude” campaign has been reminding the positively astronomical influx of new SEPTA riders as of late to make sure they don’t take up extra seats with their bags or talk too loudly on their cellphones. Because, as Dirk Diggler of Boogie Nights fame tells us, “What can you expect when you’re on top? You know? It’s like Napoleon. When he was the king, you know, people were just constantly trying to conquer him, you know, in the Roman Empire. So, it’s history repeating itself all over again.” We applaud SEPTA for handling their newfound popularity so well.

Smoke Finally Clears For Nutter, Thickens (In The Good Way) Everywhere Else

Since this story blew up like a bottle rocket (blanked on a weed pun there) as soon as it broke yesterday, we probably don’t have to rehash (there it is) it for you, but in case you’ve been asleep, the facts are these: according to an announcement from Mayor Michael Nutter, possession of up to an ounce of marijuana will now be punished with a $25 fine, the paying of which will remove the possession charge from any criminal record, and smoking marijuana in public will now be punished with a $100 fine that can be waived after equivalent community service is performed. In other words: hey hey hey, smoke weed everyday.

For good reason, the national media is showing this story some love, allowing the rest of the country to catch up on the serial political thriller that’s held our attention in recent months better than season 2 of House of Cards. Compared to this HuffPo writeup, which reads like a seventh grade social studies paper, the Mic writeup is pretty in-depth, but most of what they have to say, we’ve been saying for quite a while: criminalization has been creating nearly insurmountable obstacles for the city’s black populations for too long for no good reason, and Nutter’s assertions otherwise were baseless and weirdly childish. To see him come to his senses is kind of like seeing a man come out of a coma.

While all are in agreement that this is pretty good news, there will still always be idealism to be met with skepticism. Mic also tells us that “To this end, Philadelphia is the largest city in America to take arrests entirely out of the law enforcement equation regarding small amounts of marijuana.” What this means is that in a perfect Philadelphia the police will play by the rules and everyone will smoke their weed and pay their fines in peace. PhillyNORML declare in their statement in response to the announcement from the Mayor’s office that they “will continue to monitor the volume of citations and ethnicity of those cited under the new policy” and that they “hope the new procedures will be implemented as soon as possible and that they will alleviate some of the racial disparities in prohibition enforcement.” Here’s hoping.

September 8, 2014

This Evening: Seun Jawn

>>> As we noted recently in our post on (the amazing and great music resource) Okay Africa, Seun Kuti is at Union Transfer tonight. Does that surname sound familiar to you? It oughta. Listen above and rave on.

>>> At National Mechanics’ Science On Tap series, the Wagner Free Institute of Science presents Phil Forsyth of the Philadelphia Orchard Project. He’s there to talk about a TREES, doncha know.

>>> And over at Underground Arts, a big two-fer: The Hold Steady, followed by the Fringe cabaret edition of Jay Davidson’s Drunk Piano.

Don’t Freak Out, You’re Totally Allowed To Hyperlapse In The New Dilworth Park

It just took a gaggle of Temple students to be the clarification guinea pigs is all. So unless you’re doing a commercial shoot, have at it. And if perchance a Philly cop enters the frame, well, you’re within your rights to capture him or her, too. (They may, however, act like you’re not.)

This Is The Poster For The Last Time Bob Dylan Played A Center City Theater — In 1963


This morning, tickets went on sale for Bob Dylan’s three-night stint at the Academy Of Music in November. Among Dylan heads, this is notable for a few reasons — for one, let’s say that a hockey arena especially does not lead to the ultimate Dylan concert experience; for another, the three-night run here in Philly is unique among the last few decades of his Neverending Tour; but most of all, this is Dylan’s first gig in a sit-down theater in downtown Philly in a very long time indeed. (Some of you may recall a gig at The Troc in the mid-90s, but hey, no seats!) The last time? 1963, when he played at Town Hall(?), at 150 N. Broad Street, which is, um, not there anymore, sadly. Was it ever? The above flyer, as you can see, is a mock-up. Details on the show are scant, but we can say that it’s likely that Bob was easier to understand back then, on that night. Maybe.

[Image: GottaHaveRocknRoll]

The Week Ahead In Comedy: Flip, Flip, Flip, Flipadelphia!


Thursday, it’s that flippin’ time again. Temple’s favorite super sophomore, Alex Grubard, returns to PhilaMOCA for another game of Curses! This month’s contestants are Pat House, Ali Wadsworth, and Jake Young, competing in a series of profane challenges that will have them cursing like sailors, and testing their knowledge of all things uncouth. After hearing the term for the first time at last month’s show, I had to look up “Hot Lunch” on Urban Dictionary, and wow, it’s disgusting. Who knows what education lies ahead? Thursday, 8pm. $5.

Friday night, I want to take you to a gay bar! Camac St. watering hole and entertainment mini-plex Venture Inn is letting me (Me! Me!) host a third installment of “The Cutie Pie Comedy Club,” a stand-up show featuring Kate Banford, Caitlin Feeney, Alex Pearlman, Sidney Gantt, and Matt McCusker. Come say in person how tacky it is that I plugged my own thing in these listings. Friday, 10pm. No cover. Two-item minimum.

Elsewhere Friday, DTF: The Darryl and Timaree Fun Hour will titillate at the PHIT with guests Mike Rainey (host of Helium Comedy Club’s “Dirty Dozen”) and Rachel Fogletto (host of monthly show Comedy-Gasm). Friday, 10:30pm. Tickets available online.

Saturday at the PHIT, the written word will come alive and then wing it, at “Dynamite Series @PHIT Presents: Page One.” Curated by PHIT’s Artistic Director, this series is intended to showcase original, boundary-pushing approaches to comedy. For “Page One,” that means a cast of improvisors will take on the opening page to a newly written script, and create an otherwise-unscripted one-act play from it. Saturday’s cast will be working off the words of Jeremy Gable, Core Playwright at InterAct. See what happens when everyone forgets their lines at page two. Saturday, 7:30pm. Tickets available online.

– Alejandro Morales

Alejandro Morales is one of the six rotating hosts of the award-winning (and later, award-losing) Laughs on Fairmount open mic, every Monday at 8pm at Urban Saloon. See his webseries at and follow him on twitter @AlleyHandRow.

Noontime Nuggetz: Mo’ne Davis Pitches Against Jimmy Fallon

ICYMI, here’s Mo’ne and Taney Dragons catcher Scott Bandura goofing around with Fallon last week. Love.

Apparently Intelligent, Presumably Decent Human Being Announces Desire To Be Mayor Of Philadelphia

terrygillenIf you’re not keeping this link handy already please do so now: Wikipedia: Philadelphia mayoral election, 2015. Among the list of potential candidates, you’ll notice something we’ve already remarked on ad nauseam — that the playing field for 2015 has looked dismal indeed, populated by a series of the-devil-you-know type faces, the architects, if you will, of our present doom. This morning, though, brings a fresh face who’s also the first candidate to actually — hey, a bold move! — actually declare that they’re running: former Director of Federal Affairs for the City of Philadelphia and former Executive Director of Philadelphia’s Redevelopment Authority (RDA) Terry Gillen. And like, that, we’re off!

What’s notable about Gillen, then? Oh, lots: She’s not currently holding a City Council seat, which frankly puts her one up from the get-go. She’s a woman, and God wouldn’t it be great to have a lady running this place, right? And, praise be, she’s apparently familiar with the entire political landscape of the city she’s running in, as opposed to choosing between one version of that, or another. From PhillyClout:

Gillen casts her candidacy as a battle between “old Philadelphia and new Philadelphia,” hoping to build a coalition of longtime residents tired of the city’s politics and newer residents with different notions of leadership. She also rejects the “old way of thinking” that ranks the potential of candidates by their race, neighborhood and the ability to attract support of key party leaders.

“I think that whole notion of how one gets elected in Philly is going away,” Gillen said. “It’s changing. I think Mayor Nutter’s election was the beginning of that. And I think we’re really on the verge of reshaping Philadelphia politics in a fundamental way.”

It’s going to be a long race, to be sure, so don’t mind if we hold off on an endorsement just yet. But it can’t be lost on anyone that so far, the only person in town who’s had the balls to announce a real run for mayor (sorry, Milton, your shit is not real) is, in fact, a woman. That Wikipedia page just became ever-so-slightly less an object of dread.

The Way We Were: The Jam At Plastic Fantastic In 1978

If you are, like us, still pretty obsessed by “college rock” of the 1980s — a broad cross-section that includes so much music as to be all but meaningless in every regard except the era in which it was made — you may already be well aware of Slicing Up Eyeballs, the self-appointed news/etc. outlet for what we can call The “120 Minutes” Era. It’s a great website. This morning, they posted the above photograph of The Jam outside Ardmore’s dearly departed Plastic Fantastic which was, in its prime, the single greatest record store ever to grace the Main Line (unless you count Repo Records for about 18 months in the mid-’80s, when it was just by the Wayne R5 station). In any case, this brought back a flood of memories and made us want to do nothing so much as fuck off from school for the rest of the day and go record shopping… in 1978.

Use #openinPHLwithNOFOOTBALL To Help Us Form The Definitive List Of Bars Worth Going To This Fall

Ah, fall: That time of year when one can curl up with a nice pint and a book in bar and let the mind drift until… AW FUCK, THERE’S A BUNCH OF BROS AND LADYBROS IN HERE HOAGIEMOUTHING UP THE PLACE WITH THEIR STUPID UNEXAMINED LIVES! For alas, it is true that the Eagles of Football make this town completely unbearable for days at a time each season, so this year, we’re putting together our definitive #openinPHLwithNOFOOTBALL list, because it’s not just the Eagles that fucking suck: It’s fucking football that fucking sucks. So if you know of a place that is #openinPHLwithNOFOOTBALL this fall/winter, tell us about it on Twitter. All verified bars that are indeed #openinPHLwithNOFOOTBALL will be included on the list and receive shout-outs on Twitter on the weekends, which is when this info will really come in handy.

David Lynch Said To Meet People Who Coined The Term “Eraserhood” But So Far, Neither Of Those Philebrity Readers Has Heard From Him

As part of this month’s festivities, where the City of Philadelphia practices for a papal visit next year by honoring David Lynch this way, that way and the other way, Lynch talked with the Inquirer over the weekend for a (pretty informative) early/Philly-career overview. In the piece, Lynch says that he “has agreed to meet with the folks who rechristened his old stomping ground around 13th and Wood the ‘Eraserhood.’”

But we’re pretty sure whoever he’s meeting with are not actually the folks who did such a thing — or at least, they were not the first to do so. That honor is the subject of a spat that’s been running for years now here on Philebrity. In one corner, we have commenter Timo, aka Tim McCloskey, who swears he was the guy who first came up with “Eraserhood,” and provides historical context for his argument; in the other corner, we’ve got Shawn Kilroy, filmmaker and lead singer in the band Weird Hot, whose short film above is, as far as we can tell, the first document aligning forever the neighborhood around 13th and Callowhill with Lynch’s landmark and iconic film Eraserhead. (Kilroy is notably also the person who years ago intuited the now-omnipresent #whyilovephilly trope.)

Hilariously, we heard from both Kilroy and McCloskey within moments of one another this morning. Kilroy told us, “I would love to get in touch with [Lynch]‘s handlers and make it clear that I am the originator of this recent wave of interest.” McCloskey expressed a similar sentiment. On our end, it feels like one question is begged by the entire situation: If Lynch isn’t speaking with either of these guys, who the hell is he talking to?

Previously: Your Handy Guide To All Things David Lynch In Philly This Month

Newspaper Guild Begins Monday Morning The Way Everyone Does: Wishing For New Bosses

Ahaha, good luck with that guys.