Saturday is Choose Kind Day in Austin. Here’s what’s happening

You can never have enough kindness, right?

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Austinites are encouraged to choose kindness on Saturday. Martin do Nascimento/AMERICAN-STATESMAN

Mayor Steve Adler has declared Saturday, Nov. 11 Choose Kind Day in Austin, a day when Austinites are encouraged to participate in random acts of kindness and volunteer with their favorite nonprofits while using the hashtag #ChooseKindAustin to spread the word.

In honor of Choose Kind Day and in conjunction with the movie “Wonder,” which opens on Nov. 17, a variety of events are being held across the city on Saturday and into next week. Here’s a sample.

  • Austin Pets Alive! mural: Snap a photo next to the new kindness-themed mural at the Austin Pets Alive! thrift store and receive 20 percent off anything in the store on Saturday.
  • Adelphi Acre Gardens Work Day: Generation Serve has coordinated a work day at these gardens, where volunteers will tend to the butterfly gardens and weed, mulch, harvest and plant in the donation garden beds. Produce collected from the harvest will be donated to a local food pantry.
  • Ronald McDonald House meal prep: Generation Serve has also coordinated this opportunity, which will include preparing a meal for families staying at the Ronald McDonald House while they have a family member at the hospital.

Learn more about volunteer opportunities for all ages in the Austin area at generationserve.org.

This couple got engaged at Alamo Drafthouse’s ‘C4GED’ and Nicolas Cage gave them his blessing

You probably know by now that Nicolas Cage himself popped up at the Alamo Drafthouse’s fourth annual marathon of Cage films to celebrate the actor’s birthday, aptly named “C4GED,” on Sunday.

But that day was extra special for two Nicolas Cage fans, who got engaged at the showing.

photo via Ben Ben Binh / Facebook
photo via Ben Ben Binh / Facebook

Facebook user Ben Ben Binh posted a photo in an Alamo Drafthouse fan group on Facebook, writing, “I want to thank you Drafthouse and all you guys at #C4GED last night, you guys really made the proposal to my girlfriend Jennifer Hedges perfect in every way. This community has been warm and eccentric in Austin and I’m glad to have it a part of my life events. Oh yeah, that’s totally Nicolas Cage giving us his blessings.”

We’re so glad Cage seems to approve of the union. Read more about the event and watch Cage read Edgar Allen Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart” here.

Austin brewery hosts Harry Potter-inspired yoga classes

Divination, Transfiguration, Defense Against the Dark Arts, Potions and…yoga?

OK, yoga wasn’t exactly a part of the Hogwarts curriculum, but let’s be real, Harry Potter and his pals got themselves in some pretty hairy situations, and they could have used some serious stress relief. Well, one Austin brewery is combining three of the world’s greatest things — the wizarding world, yoga and beer — for a magical Sunday offering that’s making national headlines.

Image courtesy Circle Brewing Company
Image courtesy Circle Brewing Company

Circle Brewing Company hosted a “Harry Potter-Inspired Yoga for Halloween Class” on Sunday to “Celebrate the life of Lily and James Potter, on the eve of their passing, through a series of magical asanas turned yoga poses” (in the Harry Potter books, Harry’s parents were killed by Lord Voldemort on Oct. 31). It’s a special version of the brewery’s regular “Pints & Poses” class, normally held every Sunday. Not only was the brewery decorated for Halloween, but every yogi in attendance received a free wand.

RELATED: We almost got an Elijah Wood vs. Daniel Radcliffe fight at Fantastic Fest

According to Cosmopolitan, the class consisted of classic yoga poses with a Harry Potter twist.  “There were also cat and cow transfigurations, some Slytherin cobra action, and wand-wielding backbends to summon a Patronus and cast off Dementors,” Cosmo reports.

There was even a papier-mâché sorting hat.

I don’t know about you, but I’ve got some serious FOMO. The good news? Since the first class was so successful, Circle Brewing is hosting Harry Potter Inspired Beer Yoga 2.0 – Pints & Poses on Nov. 20, the same weekend that “Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them” premieres in theaters across the country. For $20, witches, wizards, Squibs and even Muggles can take part in an hour of hatha yoga practice (wand included!), followed by a pint of Harry Potter-inspired beer (not butterbeer, sorry) in the tasting room.

 

RELATED: Johnny Depp joins ‘Fantastic Beasts’ sequel

RELATED: You can now use Android phones to cast spells from Harry Potter

 

 

 

This is the ‘Star Wars’/Pink Floyd mash-up you’re looking for

J.J. Abrams, you sly dog.

The “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” director and all-around nerd culture savior is known for putting Easter Eggs into his films, but this is just creepy.

Some Redditors discovered that if you play Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon” record right as the intro credits stop in “The Force Awakens,” some pretty eerie similarities pop up.

Promotional hand out photo of the cover of musical group Pink Floyd's album Dark Side of the Moon, released 1973. CREDIT: Capitol Records. Received 03/25/11 for OpEd.
Promotional hand out photo of the cover of musical group Pink Floyd’s album Dark Side of the Moon, released 1973. CREDIT: Capitol Records.

The running time of the film is 2 hours and 15 minutes, meaning the 42-minute album can be played a total of three times before the film ends. And some of the dialogue and musical cues sync up perfectly. (Some spoilers ahead, obviously).

For instance:

-In “Breathe (In the Air),” the line “Don’t leave me” syncs up perfectly with BB-8 running to attach himself to Poe Dameron’s ship

-The disorienting opening to “On the Run” matches Finn’s growing uncertainty in the middle of the film’s opening battle;

-The “Live for today, gone tomorrow” lyric is heard right before Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) swings his lightsaber to kill Lor San Tekka (Max von Sydow) in the opening action sequence; and

-Some evil cackling from the same song can be heard as Stormtroopers start to torch a village.

And those are just from the first eight minutes. Other examples, as listed by Consequence of Sound, include “I never said I was afraid of dying” being heard as the camera focuses on Han Solo in his final scene and “Brain Damage” seemingly matching the entire final scene where Rey meets Luke Skywalker.

This isn’t the first time a film has matched up with the breakthrough Pink Floyd album. “The Wizard of Oz” is well known for syncing with the album, forming “Dark Side of the Rainbow.” What could the titles be for this mash-up? “Dark Side of the Force Awakens”? “The Force Awakens the Dark Side of the Moon”? “The Dark Side of the Force”? It’s a match made in movie heaven.

While it’s a stretch to imagine Abrams did this on purpose or it’s just a happy coincidence, it’s a fun watch all the same. Check out the first eight minutes on Vimeo below, before it gets taken down. Then fire up the record and film for yourself, and see if there are any more similarities.

 

This superhero-themed Alamo Drafthouse menu will be your kryptonite

“Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice” finally arrives in theaters this weekend. DC Comics’ first big response to Marvel’s “Avengers” franchise will no doubt divide fans—some will root for The Dark Knight while others will support the Man of Steel. However, both factions will be eating off of the same superhero-themed menu at Alamo Drafthouse.

Photo Credit: Heather Kennedy
Photo Credit: Heather Kennedy

Austin chef and self-proclaimed “avid Batman fan” Brad Sorenson created the exclusive menu for the movie theater chain, which will be available for a limited time only.

The menu, according to a news release, has something for everyone, in the tradition of Alamo Drafthouse’s previous film-themed foods.

There’s the Versus Wings, which feature aspects of both characters on the same plate.

“Both Gotham and Metropolis are located in the North East and have a heavy Italian influence, as you can see in their respective comics,” Sorenson wrote in the news release. “This led me to using Italian flavors as the inspiration for these fried chicken wings. Batman’s is a deep dark reduction of balsamic to represent the Dark Knight. For Superman, I liked the term “Heat Vision” and so i approached it as an Italian influenced spicy sauce with a base of roasted red peppers and tomato. Black Vs Red. Dark Vs Light.”

For more of a down-home feel, Superman fans can try Ma Kent’s Meatloaf Sandwich, which features corn and potatoes and a family recipe chili glaze.

If you’re seeing the film for its supervillain, don’t worry! Sorenson didn’t forget about you. The menu also features the Doomsday Pizza, with a blue cheese base, mushrooms, torn potatoes and arugula.

And for dessert? Kryptonite Cheesecake is what you want. “The color green made me lean towards a mint dessert before I came up with scooping balls of free form cheesecake and dusting it with dark cookie crumbs to give it a more rugged real feel,” Sorenson said.

Oh, and drinks? Viewers can chose from Batman’s Utility Belt beer or the Superman’s Punch cocktail. (We think Alfred would approve.)

Forget about Batman or Superman. The real winner here is the viewer.