Rachel Cline's mom sold her Psychedelic Furs and Bananarama records when she left home. Just as Denny Roman's emotionally frigid mom does in What to Keep, Cline's debut novel. "Hasn't everybody gone through that?" she laughs.
But there are differences between the fortysomething writer and the 37-year-old actress-and-playwright protagonist of this coming-of-age story, which documents three critical moments, from three different decades of the heroine's life. "Neither of my parents were doctors," Cline clarifies. "And I never had a significant black baby-sitter who got me through my middle years. It's not in any linear way my life. But all of the characters are me, sort of."
Cline was raised in Brooklyn, graduated from Oberlin College, spent some time in Hollywood as a screenwriter (she has a few episodes of Knots Landing on her résumé), and now lives in New York. A similar urge to relocate wafts throughout What to Keep. "I had these delusions that I could make it in the movie business," Cline says. "And I got the shit beat out of me." Cline discusses and signs What to Keep at 7 p.m. at Joseph-Beth Booksellers, 13217 Shaker Square. Admission is free. Call 216-751-3300 for more information. -- Michael Gallucci
Fruits of the Loom
It's a jockey jubilee in Akron.
Adam Santoya is a boxers man; Vince Reigler is into briefs. And the longtime companions will check everything but their skivvies at the door for Friday's Underwear Party: Boxers & Briefs at gay club Metro. "Underwear should be a celebration of your sexuality," says Santoya, who admits to forking over as much as 16 bucks for a single pair of Calvin Klein boxer shorts. "And never, never, never wear a pair for more than a year." Reigler is the thriftier of the couple, buying his Hanes Classics in packages of three when they're on sale. "Look, you can bleach them only so many times before they start to fall apart," Reigler says. "If and when it ever comes to that, that's when I won't wear any at all." The party starts at 9 p.m. at Metro Nite Club, 820 West Market Street in Akron. Admission is free; call 330-252-9000. -- Cris Glaser
All Eyes on Walleye
Reeling in good eats (and Al Roker) in Port Clinton.
Mention "Wiley Walleye" in Port Clinton, and devout fishermen practically bow their heads in reverence. The worshiping continues this weekend at the 24th annual Walleye Festival, which honors the fictional fish with live music, games, and food. Wiley's even caught the attention of Today weatherman Al Roker, who'll tape a segment at this year's festival for an upcoming Food Network special. "Port Clinton is the walleye capital of the world," says spokesperson De Anna Kuzma. "Everyone has a 'one-that-got-away' story." The fest starts at 5 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 11 a.m. Saturday through Monday at Water Works Park on Perry Street (State Route 163) in Port Clinton. Admission is free; call 419-732-2864. -- Cris Glaser
Queering the Museum isn't a Fab Five makeover of painting- and sculpture-filled halls. Rather, it's a multi-artist survey of sexuality, race, and gender in contemporary works. It's on view at Oberlin College's Allen Memorial Art Museum (87 North Main Street in Oberlin) through June 6. It's open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is free; call 440-775-8665. -- Michael Gallucci