For the uninitiated, it’s natural to assume that modern nerd culture — comic books, video games, TV, anime, etc. — is dominated by superheroes, Jedi Knights, angry dragon queens, and misfit robots. But dig deeper into these massive canons and you’ll find a common, slightly cooler thread: musical superstars. Yes, some of the most beloved fictional properties feature kickass rock bands, super-slick rappers, and cutesy pop singers. Sure, these characters may also attempt to save the world from, say, evil magic zombies, but it’s their artistry that imbues these franchises with a sense of depth and hipness. Here, then, are seven such artists, those acts cooler even than Jon Snow flying the Millennium Falcon into battle against Reavers.The BeetsDoug’s titular awkward teen hero, a hippy commune-meets-art school collective amalgamation of The Beatles and Talking Heads, with a dash of The Grateful Dead for extra flavor. Within a show featuring quail-based … [Read more...] about Dork and Roll: The 7 Coolest Musical Acts in Nerd Culture
At times, the Valley gets slammed as the land of the laminated menu, but that doesn’t mean some good food can’t come from a place with a wipeable list of lunch specials. Case in point — Zeta’s Grill in Avondale.The family restaurant is located in a strip mall across the street from Estrella Mountain Community College. You're impressed upon entry with the attentive staff and standard-but-clean dining room. But afterward, in the vast parking lot, you’ll still be thinking of pillowy pitas and tender kabob meat.Zeta’s menu covers Mediterranean and Lebanese fare. The eatery promises never-frozen hot and cold entrees, but before you can really take in the multi-page menu, if you’re lucky, someone has brought pitas for the table.This is where the low-carbers are pitied. This is a basket of warm, three-dimensional pita rounds. They’re puffed up, like hot air might whoosh out if handled without care. The thin, spongy bread begs for the dish of … [Read more...] about Hidden Gem: Daydreaming of Kabobs After Zeta’s Grill in Avondale
Want to hit the road over Memorial Day weekend? The Colorado Scenic and Historic Byways Program is celebrating its thirtieth anniversary in 2019. The first five byways were dedicated in 1989; 21 more have been added since then, and they cover every corner of the state. “Over the span of three decades, some byway names have become legendary, such as the San Juan Skyway, Alpine Loop and the Highway of Legends,” says Lenore Bates, program manager for the Colorado Department of Transportation. “The initial byways roster envisioned between fifteen and twenty routes, but the Scenic Byways Commission settled in with 26 of them. They are truly the best of Colorado.” The most recent byway, added in 2014, is “Tracks Across Borders,” which follows the creation and development of the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad — the state’s first, and ultimately the nation’s largest, narrow-gauge railroad system — and links two of Colorado’s … [Read more...] about Hitting the Road This Weekend? Make Your Trip Scenic!
At 9 a.m. today in Douglas County court, a hearing is scheduled to re-sentence Erik Jensen, who was condemned to life without parole for a murder he witnessed but didn't commit in August 1999, when he was seventeen. But his father, Curt Jensen, isn't letting his hopes get too high. He's had more downs than ups in his two decades-plus fight to free his son, and he understands the toll crushed expectations can take."We've learned to do what the inmates do when they have parole hearings," Curt reveals. "They walk in and say, 'I don't know which direction it's going to go, and I don't care.' Because if they get really happy and believe something good is going to happen and it doesn't, that's when they kill themselves. We've known several people inside that's happened to. So Erik and the family have learned the same hard lesson about going too far down the glass-is-half-full road."There are plenty of reasons why leniency should be seriously considered in Jensen's case. For one thing, Nathan … [Read more...] about Erik Jensen’s Real-Life Horror Story Could Get a New Chapter
One oft-heard allegation during the campaign for Denver mayor is that the platforms of incumbent Michael Ha ncock and opponent Jamie Giellis are more similar than either would care to admit.Since both rebuff this theory, we asked them to prove it by highlighting four major areas where they differ. Each agreed to take on this task.JAMIE GIELLISDisagreement 1: “First and foremost, I look at the planning and zoning piece, and how the mayor’s administration has empowered developers so they have the right to rezone and rezone and rezone, directing the buildout of our city from their perspective rather than ours. The zoning code needs to be amended, and we need to stop the practice of one-off rezonings every single Monday night at city council. We need to direct strategically how our city builds out, with neighborhoods being protected in certain ways, mostly because they weren’t built for extreme density. We don’t have all the infrastructure or utilities or … [Read more...] about How Different Are Hancock and Giellis’s Policies? We Asked Them