Phillipe and Jorge are quite disappointed to see that the Rhode Island School of Design Museum will be closing for the month of August, largely due to its endowment being down due to the economic recession — a forgotten element of our lives which must be put on the back burner while the nation turns its lonely eyes to the ghoulish postmortem of Michael Jackson, perhaps the most notorious freak and odious alleged child molester we will see in our lifetimes, with relatives that make the Addams Family look like Ward and June Cleaver's clan. And way to go down in flames, Al Sharpton — who we already realize knows no shame — and Cornel West, who should simply be appalled at his defense of Wacko Jacko.
RISD's jarring decision comes on the heels of an upsurge in attendance and membership at the Museum in the past year. Friends of P+J's who have been employed at RISD's keystone have been either cashiered or taken retirement buyouts, but we aren't here to defend their honor, however painful their departures may have been.
What your superior corres-pondents believe is that this is a very short-sighted move by RISD's honchos, as the Museum is a predominant public face of the school and is not only a tourist attraction, but highlights all the best of what RISD represents to an already thriving arts community in Little Rhody. Perhaps RISD's new Boy Wonder president, John Maeda, should consider donating a bit of what we are sure is his not out-at-the-elbows salary to maintain a staff capable of keeping the Museum open in August, with some short-term appeals to the many generous benefactors who have made the site a go-to spot for locals and visitors for decades. We're sure that given the attention that the school attracted to RISD grad Dale Chihuly's recent exhibit and his future endeavors might make him a likely campaign fundraising chair for the 31-day effort. P+J will actually offer to give our own donation from our exorbitant Phoenix financial compensation to push Messrs. Maedle and Chihuly to do the right thing. But we won't hold our breath.
C STREET HOUSE
MSNBC's Rachel Maddow recently aired a report on a very bizarre Washington, DC, enclave — religious and Republican to a frightening degree — called the C Street House. Recently disgraced cuckold merchants, South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford and US Senator John Ensign, along with other GOP pols, not only like to inhabit this well-hidden den of weirdness, but also participate in their Bible study classes. At least that's what they call them.
It is too involved an intrigue that points out the more hypocritical elements of the free-falling national Republican Party (hi, Sarah!), so go to this Web site via AlterNet and you can get all you need to know about behavior that makes the Michael Jackson tribe look downright wholesome.
Don't say we didn't warn you.
'BLAST FROM THE PAST'
That's the title of an enjoyable little photography exhibit currently hanging at the Little Falls Bakery in Pawtuxet Village. The photographer is Jonathan Stevens, a sometimes key advisor to former Senator Linc Chafee, longtime presence in Biggest Little political circles, and Head Ramrod at Preserve Rhode Island, the historical preservation and land conservation non-profit. Jon is also one of the "good guys" who has served his state in a variety of low key roles.
So Jonathan knows Vo Dilun and proves it with some classic images from 20 to 30 years ago. Vinny Paz, Susan Farmer, Ed DiPrete and, shockingly, your superior correspondents are among the subject matter for J. Stevens, artiste. You should definitely make a date to go to Little Falls, catch the photographs and, not coincidentally, have a cup of coffee or tea with a muffin or bagel. Little Falls is a Pawtuxet institution and one of the friendliest, most comfortable hangouts in the Village — it's in the Cranston part, right in the middle of the Village, across the street from the gas station on Broad Street.
SO LONG, JEN
Our good pal (and frequent Phoenix contributor) Mary Ann Sorrentino tells us there's a big benefit being planned for October 22, a sendoff for Brown University political science professor Jen Lawless, who is leaving town to take over as the new director of the Women & Politics Institute in Washington, DC.
Ms. Lawless, who was the co-author (with Richard L. Fox) of the book It Takes a Candidate: Why Women Don't Run for Office, proved that her passion for the subject of women in politics was not just theoretical when she challenged incumbent US Representative James Langevin for the 2nd District seat in 2006 in a spirited campaign. The event will be benefit the Women's Fund of Rhode Island. We'll let you know more about the bash, which is still in the planning stages (we believe that it will be at the Radisson, but that is not yet confirmed), in a few weeks.