Peel Rubber

SAT, 11/19

Winter is a despondent time for motorcyclists. As the weather turns cold and the roads get icy and unsafe, they unenthusiastically nestle their cycles and motorbikes into a warm, safe space for ninety days or more of hibernation. And though those motorcycles totally have it made, the owners get pretty down and dejected. You've seen them out in front of their homes mid-January, running in circles and making "vroom, vroom" sounds amid tears and hiccups. It's downright depressing for the rest of us to watch.

This snow season, riders can save their temper tantrums for Christmas at the in-laws and instead head to the Longmont Museum and Cultural Center for the Rubber Side Down: Motorcycles in American Culture exhibit running today through February 26, at 400 Quail Road in Longmont. From working bikes to custom choppers, recreation to racing, the 22 installations represent the evolution of the motorcycle from transportation tool to fashion statement.

"Motorcycles don't really say 'museum' in quite the way that paintings might," says Erik Mason, the museum's curator of research and a motorcycle enthusiast. "We wanted to bring in people that don't usually come to museums. And it's a good time, because a lot of the bikes aren't being ridden."

Admission to the exhibit is free; get more information at museum/index.htm or by calling 303-651-8374. -- Drew Bixby

Book Smarts
DPL has holiday gifts covered with its DIY classes.
SUN, 11/20

That time of year is approaching when shoppers seek the perfect gift. But sometimes it's the imperfect gift that really makes an impact, as proven by all those macaroni necklaces and lanyard wallets from childhood. The exclamation of disbelief and joy -- "You made this for me?!" -- as Mom opened her gift proved that it really is the thought that counts.

This month and next, the Denver Public Library's Fresh City Life program is offering DIY gift workshops that will help even the most craft-impaired impress their pickiest relative. Whip up bath and body gifts or revamp that old purse. Today, creating handmade books is on the schedule. From 2 to 4 p.m., local artist Judith Cassel-Mamet shows how to make a scrapbook, an album of favorite photos or a journal to be filled up by the lucky recipient. This is one craft project that will be loved for the thought -- and the gift itself.

For more information or to register for the free class at the Central Library, 10 West 14th Avenue Parkway, call 720-865-1206 or visit www.denver -- Michelle Baldwin

THURS, 11/17

Out in the field, military officers motivate soldiers by yelling "Stand at attention! "Fight with honor!" and "Tally-ho!" Here at home, military recruiters motivate students to join up by putting on a dog-and-pony show about scholarships, career opportunities -- and, of course, sweet hairdos. To save America's youth from war and misleading recruiting tactics, the Quaker American Friends Service Committee is encouraging students to yell back at today's Youth Mobilization Against Militarization, part of the "Not Your Soldier" National Day of Action. Interested activists should be ready to march on the west steps of the State Capitol building at 3:30 p.m. Get more information at or by calling 303-623-3464. -- Drew Bixby

Shout It Out
Movieoke puts actors' skills to the test.
SUN, 11/20

Even the most die-hard karaoke fiends have a moment when they'd rather do anything than belt out another butchered version of "Yesterday." The remedy? Act instead of sing tonight at the Walnut Room, 3131 Walnut Street, at the monthly Movieoke night. "In a lot of ways, it's more humorous and unpredictable than singing songs," says Movieoke promoter Doug Bohm.

Participants act out scenes from their favorite movies, discovering who can hit the angst and regret found in Clueless or the deadpan humor of a Woody Allen flick. The scene is projected behind the actors -- so they appear to be in the midst of the drama -- as well as displayed on a smaller screen with subtitles, to help out those who are unexpectedly paralyzed by stage fright. Bringing your own DVD and coming in costume is highly encouraged. In fact, hosts Erin Rollman and Brian Colonna of Buntport Theater are known to mock those who don't succumb to the full spirit of the night.

Movieoke starts at 8 p.m. and usually takes place the second Tuesday of each month; tonight is a special post-Denver International Film Festival edition. For more information, call 303-292-1700. -- Amber Taufen

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Michelle Baldwin
Drew Bixby
Amber Taufen has been writing about people, places and things in Denver since 2005. She works as an editor, writer, and production and process guru out of her home office in the foothills.
Contact: Amber Taufen