'No Lawyers' drums up a new message on maleness

June 18, 1994|By Mary Corey | Mary Corey,Sun Staff Writer

He's earnest, uptight, confused. He's got a conscience, a portfolio, a prescription for Rogaine. He's a company man and a dutiful father. What will do him in, he wonders. Crime? The ozone? His prostate? Meet the American male, circa 1994.

Tonight some 20 local poets, musicians and artists will celebrate that mythical and tortured fellow at "No Lawyers in Loincloths," a benefit at Saturday's Cafe in Waverly.

On the eve of Fathers' Day, these men will analyze different aspects of their lives. Comedian Andre Browne plans to lambaste male-to-male affection; drummer Steve Gartman is scheduled to perform an African folk song. And writer David Beaudouin will explore male inhibitions through a poem about men in a public restroom.

"It's terrific to have an opportunity to show the masculine perspective in a range of ways, not just the predictable Iron-John-sitting-around-the-tom-tom thing," says Mr. Beaudouin, 43, a poet and manager at CSX Intermodal, a national transportation company.

Event organizer Linda Richard son, who developed a similar evening for women in March, decided to follow up with the male equivalent after several men demanded equal time.

Poet David Franks signed on as host after learning that the event would benefit Christopher Place, a homeless shelter for men in East Baltimore.

"Most of us have become dangerously numb," says Mr. Franks, 46. "This appeals to me because it calls attention to deep issues like substance abuse, mental illness and literacy."

What about the catchy title?

lampoons the confusing identity crisis that a lot of men are going through: Should I be a lawyer or wear a loincloth?" says Mr. Beaudouin, 43, who has a 4-year-old son, Will.

"Basically the message is you can be a regular guy who likes to drink beer, play softball and still write poems."

"No Lawyers in Loincloths" takes place tonight at 8 p.m. at Saturday's Cafe, 426 E. 31st St. Admission is $2 or two

nonperishable food items. Call (410) 783-1448.

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