Boise Weekly's Josh Gross is on Viacom/CBS' shit list. Not only did our intrepid New Media Czar audition for the network's long-running reality smutfest Big Brother and chronicle the entire experience on BW's blog--down to the NASCAR jackets, baseball cap-wearing murderphiles and sparkly muffin tops--he did it despite the vague threat of a $5 million lawsuit. And shortly thereafter, Gross also courted the ire of another Viacom program, The Daily Show with John Stewart, when he trailed comedian Aasif Mandvi and a small camera crew around downtown. Gross found out that the subject of the forthcoming piece is the freaky two-headed fish discovered in Eastern Idaho in February. Though the on-site producer refused to comment on the record, he told Gross that the air date for a piece is usually four to six weeks after it is shot.
Moving from two-headed fish to drinking like a fish, sample hounds packed The Riverside Hotel on May 12 for the local boozefest Taste 208. After throwing back small pours of local wines, dry ciders and tart beers, attendees then had to pay additional cash on top of the $25 entry fee for a more sizeable glass of hooch. As the evening wore on, the crowd thinned out and some sauced samplers clustered around the 44 North booth for additional tastes of huckleberry vodka.
While some BWers were manning a booth at Taste 208, others gathered to watch our fearless leader, Publisher Sally Freeman, glide across the Boise Centre stage for the local version of Dancing with the Stars. Freeman and partner Joel Hunter of Heirloom Dance Studio cut a rug to the Scissor Sisters' "I Don't Feel Like Dancin'" in bedazzled white disco get-ups. The evening was a benefit for the Muscular Dystrophy Association of Idaho.
At the opposite end of the musical spectrum from sugary disco was the Boise Creative and Improvised Music Festival, which oozed free jazz, noise and atmospheric anti-pop at Visual Arts Collective May 11-12. According to Gross, "Festival organizers took a different approach this year, and combined the festival with a new play--Me and My Shadow--from local writer Heidi Kraay."
Though Gross said the play was "a lush and engaging production," he also noted that it struggled under the weight of an underdeveloped script. A healthy discourse on the event is brewing in the review's online comment section at boiseweekly.com.
Gross closed out the week on May 14 as the host with the most at Story Story Late Night, the anything-goes Story Story Night offshoot on the topic "crime." Gross warmed the crowd up with a sordid story of Glade-huffing, banana hammocks and a near-hate crime before story slammers glugged some liquid courage and told their tales fighting the law. Topics ranged from cheating on driving exams to rescuing possibly rabid dogs to getting busted for chronic, and each slammer walked away with a sweet crime-themed prize. The next Story Story Late Night will take place Monday, July 9, on the theme "bodily emissions."