One million things...

I have returned to the real world after almost a week of deathly illness. Seriously, black-plague-level health status. So there are lots of completely unrelated items banging around in my head and in my Inbox. Here are some of the more compelling ones:

-- So that we can continue to marvel at what a clusterfuck the Maine State Pier planning process is / has been, the city will host a series of public meetings to get input on what people want to see down on that chunk of Portland's waterfront (Really? We haven't done this already? Either we have, and these meetings are redundant, or we haven't, which was an absurd oversight the first time around. Either way, wtf?) The first meeting will take place this WEDNESDAY, MARCH 11, at the Ocean Gateway Terminal from 7-8:30 pm. (BTW, Ocean Properties, the once-shunned company that was in the running to develop the pier and then said thanks-but-no-thanks, is now planning a $12 million hotel in Bar Harbor.)

-- The Maine Marijuana Policy Initiative (MMPI) celebrated last week; the organization gathered enough signatures to ensure that its medical marijuana ballot question will be on the November 2009 ballot. Now the organization will ramp up its public education/outreach, while still celebrating (I mean, come on, we're talking about pot advocates here) with benefit concerts and the like throughout the spring and summer. If you're curious about learning more about the organizational history and philosophy of the medical marijuana movement, consider attending USM prof Wendy Chapkis' talk at the Glickman Library on Wednesday, March 18 at 7 pm. Chapkis' Dying to Get High, which I wrote about a little ways back, is a good, smart primer on this issue. 

-- My Restaurant Week meal at the Pepperclub was solid (and then I got sick, which severely hampered my hopes of food-blogging up a storm). So many great options for meat-lovers and vegetarians alike (and even a vegan)! The mussels were obviously the winner, appetizer-wise, both in terms of portion-size and taste. Everyone's entrees were delish -- stuffed shells atop white beans, mushroom "koftas" (cake-, not pocket-, like entities), lamb, crabmeat-stuffed haddock, etc. And the dessert that almost all of us chose -- dark chocolate cheesecake -- was outrageous. Some other people who didn't have TB wrote about R-Week here and here

--  Local boy makes Times

-- Is it me or is burlesque the new black? (Not that I'm complaining!) There's a "neo-burlesque revue" scheduled to take place at One Longfellow on THURSDAY night. One show's at 7 pm, the other's at 9. Kings of the Hill, Bunny Wonderland, Atomic Trash, and Whistlebait Burlesque (seriously, how can I join this group??) will all take the stage. Speaking of rocking, sexy, performance-art, did anyone make it to the Femme Show last week? My polio prevented my attendence, but I heard it was fantastic. Als speaking of this type of thing, I just feel the need to share with the world that in my latest thespianistic adventure -- Cabaret, at Lyric Music Theater, opening at the end of April -- I will be performing on stripper poles, mounted to the stage and ceiling. Um. 

--Apparently there's a new coffee shop going in on Middle Street, down the road from the Nick and diagonally across from Starbucks?

-- Neko Case rulz. Also, speaking of music, rulz too, for listening-to-music-at-work purposes. 

-- The Pokemon PR ppl REALLY want me to tell you that the "Pokémon® Trading Card Game (TCG)" Maine State Championships will take place on March 21 at the Wyndham Hotel in South Portland. So, there, I've told you. As someone who was briefly, strangely, into the Magic the Gathering Trading Card Game, I can't scoff too much, I guess. But I will anyway. 

-- Voila, that's all for now.

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