Get to know the M.A.D. Linguist


I'd like to suggest that you get acquainted with the M.A.D. Linguist (M.A.D. as in the McCormick Arts District). If you cherish the linguistic arts (writing, poetry, spoken word, lyrics, etc.) or value interesting conversation with extraordinary people, or forward-thinking causes of all sorts, this is your place.


The Linguist is a licensed 501C non-profit organization. It resides in the big pink building at 111 N. McCormick St., just a couple doors off of Gurley, though sometimes events are put on elsewhere as well. We try not to think of the Linguist as just what goes on in this building; it's a community organization. I say "we" because I'm on the board. No, I'm not a paid member of the board. On the contrary, those involved are all contributors of both time and money.


So what goes on there? Well it's more than just a venue, it's a catalyst. A place where all sorts of language artists (poets, playwrights, song writers) and social activists and like minded souls mingle, perform, breed ideas, and support each other. Where the newcomers engage the more polished, where novices and the timid find a welcome place to participate.


Regular and periodic events include poetry slams, play readings, open microphone time, discussion groups, music, social action group meetings, writers' critique groups, Spanish night, traveling poets and singers from across the country who've come to know the Linguist's reputation as a great place to stop. Frequently people approach the Linguist with an event they want to put on. That's part of what makes it a community organization.


When events aren't happening, there are often people just hanging out, reading a book, or talking over a cup of coffee.


The Linguist has an overlapping relationship with several organizations. PAPA (Prescott Area Poets Association) has some of its events there. The M.A.D. Women Poets, a subset of PAPA, is a group of eight poets of a wide range of ages who put on performances there and elsewhere around central Arizona. A Health and Wellness group, who put on a very successful celebration of health a few months back, works through the Linguist. There are local song writers and play writes who try out new material there.


But what goes on between the lines, so to speak, is just as important. Any of these events could happen on their own. Musicians play in coffee houses; groups gather in meeting rooms at the library and elsewhere. But when some of these events and people overlap in one place something extra happens. Like a well in a desert, it becomes a place where people cross paths, where groups overlap and germinate ideas, and support each other in seeing through their art or their cause. Then it's not just a place where things happen, but a fertile place where new things grow. That is the unique asset it brings to the community.


To continue its goal of community building through the linguistic arts it needs to widen its circle of supporters and participants. Not sure if you can get down there yourself? Call us. We'll come make a presentation to your group and give a taste of what goes on there. Or write or email us and we'll send some information, or put you on the email list for event updates if you like (themadlinguist@yahoo.com).


And save up your shopping before Wednesday March 17th. New Frontiers grocery will be giving a portion of proceeds that day to benefit the Linguist.