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Grumpy Old Man 

Dick Feagler hasn't changed -- you have.

Dick Feagler has a problem with .  .  . well, lots of things. And he's gonna tell you all about it this week.
  • Dick Feagler has a problem with . . . well, lots of things. And he's gonna tell you all about it this week.
THU 11/3

Dick Feagler isn't a grump. He just plays one on TV, in print, and at public forums. "I'm really a pussycat," he says. "But I'm a pussycat with a [funny] voice and a curmudgeonly face. Generally speaking, I think I'm getting mellower."

In fact, when it came time to compile four years' worth of Plain Dealer columns -- many of them speaking out against the war -- for his latest book, Is It Just Me?, Feagler was the one who insisted on downplaying his cantankerous side. "Everybody's saying, 'You've changed, you've changed, you've changed,'" he says. "I don't feel like I've changed at all. [Current] events overtook me. I'm just reacting to them the way I feel about them."

Still, don't get him started -- particularly on post-9-11 matters. "I see a lot more parallels than I see dissimilarities" between Iraq and Vietnam, he says. "We went in on the basis of a lie. I recognize that we're getting our foot in the shit again." Feagler hosts a discussion and fields questions at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at John Carroll University's Dolan Center for Science and Technology, 20700 North Park Boulevard. Admission is free. Call 216-397-1886 for more info. -- Michael Gallucci

Scenes From a Marriage
Red stirs up some discord.

SAT 11/4

Living In Mahler's Shadow in the early 1900s, Alma Mahler gave in to the demands of her composer-husband Gustav, who wanted her to scrap her own songwriting aspirations and be a stay-at-home wife. The story unfolds in Jonathan Sheffer's original two-hour concert performed by Red {an orchestra} on Saturday. It starts with a mood-setting Johann Strauss waltz, followed by a 15-minute mini-play, in which six of Alma's songs are performed. After intermission, the orchestra performs a Claude Debussy piece before launching into a rendition of Gustav's seminal Songs of a Wayfarer, about the eventual collapse of the marriage. Says Sheffer, the orchestra's artistic director: "[Alma] passed through a crisis that was coming to terms of who she was and what it meant to be married to Mahler." In Mahler's Shadow will be performed at 8 p.m. at the Masonic Auditorium, 3615 Euclid Avenue. Tickets range from $15 to $110, available by calling 440-519-1733. -- Cris Glaser

Sex & Cancer
Robert Schimmel's had at least one, and you're gonna hear about it.

11/4 - 11/5

Robert Schimmel has survived more than 25 years in the cutthroat world of stand-up comedy. More inspiring, he survived cancer, which overtook him in 2000, going into remission three years later. Now, he has a whole new arsenal of jokes to keep his sex-fueled act alive. "The doctor said, 'You have a lot of open sores in your mouth right now, and it's really important to stay away from any kind of oral-anal contact.' Does everyone get this lecture?" Schimmel performs at the Improv (2000 Sycamore Street) at 8 and 10:15 p.m. Friday and 7:15, 9:30, and 11 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $21, available by calling 216-696-4677. -- P.F. Wilson

Cover Boy

FRI 11/4

On his second solo album, You're Only Lonely, Mavericks frontman Raul Malo wraps his velvety pipes around a set of cover songs that could make you forget the originals. Willie Nelson, Randy Newman, and Ron Sexsmith -- you've been served! The CD arrives in January, but get a preview at 8 p.m. Friday, when Malo stops at the Beachland Ballroom, 15711 Waterloo Road. Tickets are $22; call 216-383-1124. -- Michael Gallucci

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