The Best Things to Do This Week, According to Our Editors: July 12

“Beyond Van Gogh” opens at the Wisconsin Center, a fan-favorite Bucks player writes to Milwaukee and more in this week’s editor picks.

1. Check Out “Beyond Van Gogh” 


I got to check out the “Beyond Van Gogh” exhibit that just opened at the Wisconsin Center. The show has clearly been created with the selfie era in mind. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t entertaining as all get-out to see Vincent Van Gogh’s paintings projected across the floors and walls and ceiling of a giant auditorium, blending together or exploding outward in bursts of color and sound. I’d encourage you to buy your tickets now if you want them, though; they’re selling fast. 

2. Read Every Last Word of Bobby Portis’ Article in The Player Tribune


Milwaukee is obsessed with Bobby Portis, and for good reason. He’s a great player with a good energy and a tremendous work ethic. He stepped up in a big way during the Eastern Conference Finals, and has been all-around fun to watch throughout the playoffs. If you’ve been to Fiserv Forum or the Deer District, you’ve heard the chants: Bob-by! Bob-by! Bob-by!! And the fun thing is, he’s heard them too. In an essay published in The Player’s Tribune, Portis wrote about what it’s like to get such support from the fans, his background and what he expected going into Game 3 of the NBA Finals down 0-2. His main point: “Milwaukee, PULL UP. WE NEED Y’ALL ENERGY.” Milwaukee did show up on Sunday and the Bucks won Game 3. 

“But we sacrificed a lot to get here, man. Every dude in that locker room. So we not leaving NOTHING in the tank, you feel me? We gotta empty it out. But that’s cool with us, because this is a team that loves to grind. This is a group of guys who took the long way to this moment.” 

– Bobby Portis



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3. Check Out The Explorium’s Newest Location


The last hand I shook before the pandemic was that of Mike Doble, owner of The Explorium, as he walked me through the raw space in the Pritzlaff Building that was to become his second brewpub location. Ten months after it opened, I finally made it in this weekend, and the historic space, food and beer did not disappoint. The outdoor breezeway-type space where we were seated is perfect for outdoor dining and imbibing. Two ends are open to the elements, with original Cream City brick walls in between a roof providing cover from the sun and any rain. The Saturday early evening crowd was lively, with lots of folks dressed for weddings stopping in for a beer or two. I’m looking forward to my next visit.

The new Explorium Brewpub is located in the Third Ward’s historic Pritzlaff Building. Photo courtesy The Explorium Brewpub

4. Get Lost in a Mystery


I’ve already written about my fascination with mystery novels in these Editor’s Picks. (I blame it on reading a lot of Agatha Christie as a teenager.) The “woman as victim” is a played-out theme, but the author Megan Miranda gives it a twist in her books, starting with All the Missing Girls, which is what I’m reading right now. I had to put the brakes on it because I’m plowing through it and am not ready for it to end. Yes, it’s about missing girls but the storytelling – in reverse chronology – gives it depth. Plus, the characters are really well-shaped. To distract myself from finishing, I’ve picked up, well, another mystery novel.   

5. Make Eggs in Purgatory


I know how to make one food. Eggs. Fry them, scramble them, poach them – I’m all about it. I eat four eggs every morning without fail. And when you want to get fancy with the eggs, this is the go-to dish, passed down generations from my Italian ancestors. I can still remember my great-great uncle Vittorio teaching me to cook it. “Archie, you cook like garbage. You been ruined with the French Canadian genes. Disgrazia!” You can just Google ‘eggs in purgatory’ for fancier recipes, but mine is simple. Olive oil that pan. Get a little clove in there. Salt and pepper. Then fill your pan with a can of tomato sauce and heat it up until you get a little bubbling going on. Then open up a space in the sauce with a serving spoon, crack an egg, and slip it in. Put as many eggs in as you want. Cook them to whichever degree of yolkiness you prefer, and then serve. It’s great.

Photo by Getty Images