Chi chi chi chi changes

By RUDY CHEEKS  |  March 30, 2011

Author: "He's right around the corner there at the bus stop but he's not paying attention to the time. He won't start until that #11 Broad Street bus shows up. That's the signal. That's how they do it. They're in no hurry."

Woman: "I just want to get home."

The #11 passes by on the other side of the street and, as soon as it gets to the turnaround, the #1 pulls out and arrives at our stop. The bus is empty except for the driver. The woman gets on. The author gets on. Both take a seat.

Woman: "Hey, it smells like weed in here."

Author: "Maybe we're on one of them traveling compassion centers."

Woman: "Smells like weed in here."

Driver: "I wish it was."

Author: "Why don't you apply for a license and make this bus a traveling compassion center?"

Driver: "Nah, you've got to be connected. Gotta be a police chief or politician. You've got to have a lot of money for that."

Woman: "Smells like weed in here."

Silence ensues for the next 10 minutes as we make our way down Eddy Street toward downtown.


If you read David Brussat's weekly musings on architecture in the BeloJo, whether you agree or disagree with his unstinting traditionalist/classical bent, one large part of his message is absolutely true: architecture is, perhaps, the most important expression of public art we, as a people, have. Think about the drab, monotonous grey boxes that became the face of public art in the old Soviet diaspora and you know you're looking at a doomed culture.

From April 5-27, CCRI's Knight Campus Art Gallery will present "We Talk about Architecture, Architecture Talks Back: A chance to interpret a building; An opportunity to dialogue with a style." The exhibition, timed to the 40th anniversary of CCRI's Warwick campus, will focus on the Brutalist-style megastructure at its heart. There will be art in various media inspired by the building. But the centerpiece is a panel discussion with prominent architects, art and architectural educators, and experts on April 14 from 4 to 6 pm in Room 4090. Marc Levitt, longtime host of the AS220-produced "Action Speaks" discussion series, will be the moderator. More importantly, the panel will feature a very old friend of mine, Dr. Kate Dunnigan, professor of history, esteemed chair of CCRI's Department of Social Services and a veritable Goddess of Truth & Wisdom.

Following the discussion there will be an opening reception for the exhibition from 6 to 8 pm. The whole shebang is under the aegis of estimable gallery director Viera Levitt (yes, married to you-know-who). Find out more at


Just about all the tributes to the great Elizabeth Taylor, who passed away last week, described here as larger-than-life — and that she was. Her brilliant career and intimate involvement in so many humanitarian causes makes her worthy of such tributes.

But also last week, there were a couple of marvelous artists who passed away largely under the radar (caught, though, by the crack obit team at the New York Times).

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