Tuesday Funk : Debriefings : Page 3

November debriefing


IMG_20151106_082835.jpgNot to brag, but Tuesday Funk #87 was another stellar show! First up, Nick DiSabato told us why we should buy six-packs for the kitchen staff and waxed humorous on his ambivalence about camping. Then Kyle Thiessen made his Tuesday Funk debut with a story about people running from zombies... who board themselves up in a haunted house. Then co-host Eden Robins read a microessay about baseball and failure, and then Sarah Hollenbeck brought the house down with an essay about disability, invisibility, and the decision to have children.

We took a break for Jason and his drinks.

After the half, Elaine Hegwood Bowen read two essays from her collection Old School Adventures From Englewood-South Side of Chicago about buying cars and life in Englewood in the 1960s. And finally, former co-host William Shunn stunned us with an excerpt from his memoir The Accidental Terrorist (out November 10!) about his days as a reluctant Mormon missionary.

And, of course, we're doing it all again next month! Join us on December 1 for Tuesday Funk #88, featuring Clayton Smith, Gint Aras, James Gordon, Bill Savage, and Britt Julious!

September debriefing


IMG_20150904_104947.jpgJust like we mourn the passing of summer, so we will mourn the moving of our bartender Mark... to the Twin Cities. Tuesday Funk #85 was his last show with us, so in honor of his tenure, we drank extra hard. We also had some stellar readers!

Brian Heath started us off with a heartbreaking story about the passing of his father, and then David Daskal shared a dark excerpt from his novel about a teenaged girl who cuts herself. In a change of tone, Amanda Claire Buckley gave us a warm and humorous retelling of the Virgin Mary's story, set in present-day New York.

We drowned our sorrows in our final beers from Mark.

After intermission, cohost Andrew Huff enlightened us on current events in haiku form, and then Paul Dailing told a story about the annoyances and benefits of being colorblind. Finally, Jill Howe treated us to BOTH entries from her high school diary and a song about The Crucible, sung to the tune of Alanis Morrissette's "Ironic" and played on a ukulele.

Oh what a night. Won't you join us next month? Tuesday Funk #86 on October 6 will feature Jen Masengarb, Coya Paz, Lori Rader-Day, Carly Oishi, and Tom Haley!

August debriefing


IMG_20150808_170654.jpgAnother amazing show on the books... this must be starting to sound like hyperbole, but I assure you, friend, it is not.

The night started off strong with Robert McDonald and his swan obsession - manifested a series of fairytale retellings both funny and thoughtful. Next up was Tuesday Funk newbie Henri Harps, who read a quiet, absorbing short story about a man recovering from the death of a loved one. Co-host Andrew Huff deployed his signature haiku, and then Ryan DiGiorgi closed out the half with an insanely funny story told from the point of view of a man trapped in Brigadoon for a thousand years.

We wiped tears of hilarity from our eyes and drank some beer, delivered, as always, by our favorite Mark.

After the half, co-host Eden Robins read a microessay about being unfriended on Facebook because of a discussion on white privilege, and then former co-host Hallie Paladino read a thought-provoking essay about city kids' experience of the night sky, or lack thereof. Finally, Daniel Kraus read from his YA novel Trollhunters (co-authored by Guillermo del Toro), where we all learned about where trolls come from.

It was an eclectic and awesome night, best encapsulated by Daniel Kraus who said of Tuesday Funk "I've read here before... it was okay." We'll take it!

Join us next month for another great show - on Tuesday, September 1st we've got Brian Heath, Amanda Buckley, Jill Howe, Paul Dailing, and David Daskal!

July Debriefing


Lily.jpgWow, what a show. Not much more to say than that. Seeya next month!

I kid, I kid.

The night started off strong with Lily Be's telling of how our stories - particularly those of people of color - can be taken from us and twisted in sometimes catastrophic ways. Norman Doucet followed with an essay exploring his own prejudices and where they came from. And co-host Eden Robins finished up the half with an excerpt from her novel about golems and race in the age of the AIDS epidemic.

We all pretty much needed a drink after that.

The second half featured Erin Watson, who delighted us with her poems and essay. And then Fred Sasaki ended the night by reading a series of hilarious emails he wrote to a literary convention, pretending to be an indignant author expecting an invite.

We explored all reaches of human emotion on Tuesday, and you know what? We're going to do it again! So join us on Tuesday, August 4 for our next round of fabulous readers: Henri Harps, Robert McDonald, Ryan DiGiorgi, Hallie Paladino, and Daniel Kraus!

June debriefing


hannah1.jpgIt was a star-studded cast at this month's Tuesday Funk, and we tried to restrain ourselves from asking for autographs. Emily Nordling set the scene with an excerpt from her historical novel about a mysterious photograph. Next up, Mary Lorenz made us laugh about her various medical misfortunes. Co-host Andrew Huff read some seasonal haiku (as well as one about Mad Max that came with several different endings), and then Christa Desir closed out the half with a compelling excerpt from her YA novel about an alcoholic girl boxer.

Fittingly, we spent our intermission with alcohol from Mark.

Co-host Eden Robins read a microessay about the lonely art of the selfie, and then it was K.B. Jensen's turn to read a story from her collection about a beloved, decrepit house. And finally, Hannah Gamble regaled us with several poems about life, love, and loss.

By now you know the drill, right? We'll be back on Tuesday, July 7th for more! Come see Erin Watson, Fred Sasaki, Norman Doucet, Lily Be, and co-host Eden Robins... or live with the foul taste of regret.

May Debriefing


IMG_20150505_195045740.jpgWe may not have had margaritas, but we had great writers, and isn't that really what Cinco de Mayo is all about? Maggie Kast started off the night with an essay about making fudge and an excerpt from her newest novel. Jenny Drai followed it up with passages from her humorous novella about relationships and death. Co-host Andrew Huff read a few seasonally-themed haiku, and then Jack Silverstein wrapped up the half with a love/hate letter about living in Chicago.

Cameron plied us all with cervezas, and then we were refreshed for the second half.

Melissa Franic read part of her memoir about family, memory, and Croatia, and then Wesley Chu finished strong with a scene from his new novel, the sequel to Time Salvagers.

Did you miss it? Don't worry! We'll be back at it next month on June 2nd - same time, same place - with readers Emily Nordling, Hannah Gamble, Christa Desir, Mary Lorenz, and Kirsten Jensen!

April Debriefing


mary anne.JPGWhat a show! We had a packed crowd - standing room only - for Tuesday Funk #80 last night.

Former TF co-host Sara Ross Witt started off the night with a heartbreaking story of a family in wartime, dealing with unspeakable loss. Mary Anne Mohanraj shared the introduction of her novel-in-progress, a science fiction story of aliens and war and university life modeled after the events of the Sri Lankan civil war. Co-host Andrew Huff entertained us with his current events haiku, and Christian Picciolini ended the half with a difficult story of how being bullied in school led to his involvement in the white power movement.

A powerful half, and needless to say, we all needed some booze. Mark obliged.

The awesomeness didn't end there! Co-host Eden Robins read a microessay about identifying a little too closely with her celebrity doppelgangers, and then Parker Molloy told an intimate story of transition and self-reinvention. Finally, Mikki Kendall read us a short story of a black southern woman with the power to mold minds and events with her cooking skills.

It was a Tuesday Funk for the ages. Won't you join us at our next awesome event? Tuesday Funk #81 will be on Tuesday, May 5 at 7:30pm, featuring Wesley Chu, Melissa Franic, Jenny Drai, Jack Silverstein, and Maggie Kast!

March Debriefing


Thumbnail image for TF.jpgThe fluffy white snow has transitioned to hard black lumps, which means... it's almost spring! We rang in the new season with an evening of awesome readers!

Genevieve Waller warmed up the crowd with four linked essays about living with nature in the city. Danielle Susi followed that up with a series of poems from her new manuscript, and then co-host Andrew Huff got in on the poetry game with his patented seasonal haiku. Tom Underberg finished up the first half with an excerpt from his Chicago-based ghost story.

Cameron was playing the part of Mark this week, and did us proud.

After the half, co-host Eden Robins read a microessay about feeling old at a rock show, and then Mare Swallow spoke about feeling invisible as a child-free woman. Finally, Keidra Chaney made us all ravenous with her story of cooking and family legacies.

We left everyone hungry for more... and luckily there is more! Join us on Tuesday, April 7 at 7:30pm for readings by Christian Picciolini, Mikki Kendall, Sara Ross Witt, Mary Anne Mohanraj, and Parker Molloy.

February Debriefing


IMG_20150205_092001.jpgBlizzards will not keep Chicago down! Even though the weather was awful, our beloved room at Hopleaf was packed, our beer was plentiful, and our readers top-notch.

Alan DeNiro started the night off right with an alternately dark and amusing allegorical tale from his collection Tyrannia. Cameron McGill followed with a series of his signature rich, lyrical poems, and Patty Templeton treated us to an excerpt from her novel There Is No Lovely End, an Old West story about ghosts and snake oil peddlers.

We took a break, chatted with old friends over beers that Mark so lovingly poured.

After the break H. Melt read an essay and a poem about the ups and downs of queer life in Chicago. And Jasmine Davila finished us off with an essay about travel and the thrill of Priority boarding privileges.

We laughed, we thought about crying, we listened intently. This show was the epitome of our mission to curate an eclectic mix of writers and writing. Won't you join us for the next one? March 3, 2015 at 7:30pm - we've got Keidra Chaney, Mare Swallow, Genevieve Waller, Danielle Nicole Susi, and Tom Underberg!

February debriefing


IMG_20150106_194050.jpgWith only our collective body heat (and the Hopleaf HVAC system) to warm us, we embarked on a wintry evening of literary delights at Tuesday Funk #77!

Kelly Swails left us wanting more with a tense story about trying to undue the tragedies of the past with that mercurial tool - time travel. John Rich followed that up with a fascinating essay about the nature of happiness... and Lauren Bacall. Co-host Andrew Huff read a conceptual series of related haiku - about memory and the nature of existence. And James Kennedy finished up the half with an excerpt from his new novel about a boy who controls tornadoes.

Mark showed us his talents with bottle and glass at intermission, and we drank his masterpieces.

Co-host Eden Robins read a personal essay about the mystery of what happened to her childhood cat, and then Christopher Sweet kicked off the second half with an essay about the many flavors of anxiety, from childhood to adulthood. And Erin Shea ended the night with a bittersweet essay about shoplifting, lying, and motherhood.

Almost before it had begun, the evening was over. But don't worry! As ever, we will be back again next month with Tuesday Funk #78! Come see Alan DeNiro, Cameron McGill, Patty Templeton, Christa Desir, and H.Melt on Tuesday, February 3. Same time, same place!

Tuesday Funk

About Us

Tuesday Funk is an eclectic Chicago reading series, hosted by Andrew Huff and Eden Robins, showcasing a monthly mix of fiction, poetry, essays and performance. Join us next on Tuesday, October 3, 7:30 p.m. at Hopleaf, 5148 N. Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60640. Admission is free.

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