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Archives for 07/10/2005 - 07/16/2005

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Horse Active, Man Passive

posted by on July 16 at 6:45 AM

I have to admit that I DID NOT think “how’d that happen” after hearing about the man who died after having sex with a horse. The dead man is a 45 year-old resident of Seattle. The horse is a resident of a farm in Enumclaw that appears to have been some sort of bestiality brothel.

When I heard that a man died after having sex with a horse, I assumed that the horse in question had kicked the man for attempting to mount and penetrate said horse. I assumed the horse was female. This was not the case. The man died, according to a report in today’s Seattle Times, of a perforated colon.

Oh… my… God…

The Seattle Times refrains from drawing any pictures for their delicate readers, but we’re made of tougher stuff here on SLOG: a perforated colon can mean only one thing. The man was passive, the horse was active. The dead man was getting fucked in the ass by a big ol’ horse cock when something went terribly, terribly wrong.

The Times does hint at what went, er, down (up?):

“We couldn’t believe what we were seeing,” said Sortland. “In the rare, rare case this happens, it’s the person doing the animal. I think that has led to the astonishment of all of the entities involved.”

This story just keeps getting better: When Officer Sorland says he can’t believe what he was seeing he’s referring to the the videotape of this fatal encounter. One would think getting fucked in the ass by a horse would be plenty memorable, and that you wouldn’t need to videotape the encounter to recall it, but not our dead 45 year-old hero. So there’s a video. Should there be a criminal trial, which seems likely (even though bestiality is legal in Washington State, someone is going to jail for this), the video may be introduced as evidence and some poor jury is going to be forced to watch it. It may even be released to the public or, more likely, leaked - this kind of evidence leaks like, well, like a perforated colon.

One final thought: A single man, 45 years-old, lives in Seattle, likes taking itthe biggest it you can possibly findup the butt. I’m guessing he’s a gay-identified horse fuckee. Which makes me wonder… is there a specific hanky color for this?

Friday, July 15, 2005

Dear Hollywood…

posted by on July 15 at 5:18 PM

I can forgive you for many things. I can even forgive you for Michael Bay. What I can’t forgive you for, however, is a sequel to Road House. Must you destroy everything we hold dear?

US District Court Strikes Down Top-Two Primary

posted by on July 15 at 4:46 PM

We told you to vote no on I-872, but did you listen? No. Everybody wanted to vote for whomever they wanted to, whenever they wanted to, and they wanted it so badly that they paid no attention to the fact that the top-two primary was dumb, not to mention unconstitutional. I’m not-so-secretly thrilled by this ruling.


posted by on July 15 at 4:34 PM

Megan, Megan, Megan… Thanks to your little outburst here on the Slog, you will now be watching/reviewing the new Kurt Russell superhero movie Sky High.

Well it IS too Paris Hilton!

posted by on July 15 at 4:30 PM

I would just like to point out, that not only would I never get a spray tan on my own, but I would certainly NEVER get a spray tan at the demand of one Mr. Bradley Steinbacher, who, no more than 20 minutes before requesting I partake in such an uncessary and ridiculous act, pulled the hood of my hooded sweatshirt over my head and shut it in my desk drawer. He’s just a big dumb bully with far too much time on his hands.

Perhaps if I had a little more respect around the office I’d be more open to certain co-workers’ (stupid) ideas!

“It’s just too Paris Hilton.”

posted by on July 15 at 4:11 PM

Bradley Steinbacher offered Megan Seling a chance to get a spray tan this weekend (uh, long story). She turned it down, citing her straight-edge personality. “I have morals!” she says.

We love Megan. Morals and all. The spray tan went, of course, to a male homosexual staffer, who from now on shall be referred to as Ms. Hilton.

Decibel Fest 2005 Preview

posted by on July 15 at 4:10 PM

Decibelone of Seattle’s and America’s best electronic-music festivalshas announced a sneak preview of many of the acts who’ll be performing at its second edition Sept 22-25. Decibel’s first year was phenomenal, if not unscathed by the typical flaws of a fledgling event. 2005 is shaping up to be another essential bombardment of the senses.

A partial list of participants:
Isolee, Akufen, Thomas Fehlmann, Fennesz, Deadbeat, Tim Hecker, Lusine, Caro, Bruno Pronsato, Jerry Abstract, Jeff Samuel, Aeroc, Jacob London

This is outstanding curatorship, and more excellent coups are sure to come. Watch this space.

I do it because it makes people laugh and makes me smile under the mask

posted by on July 15 at 4:08 PM

In the months since I wrote about the two “Masked Marauders” of Ballardtwo buddies who call themselves The Insurgents, and spend evenings ambling around Market Street and Ballard Ave, entertaining the masses with guitar riffs, while riding motercycles and wearing “Scream” and skeleton masks, respectivelyI’ve heard bits and pieces about what they’re up to. I hear “Guitar Doug,” as he likes to be called, is diligently protesting the war in Iraq. I also heard, sadly, that his sidekick Ed was beaten up pretty badly by some folks who apparently take offense to their noisy, but ultimately harmless, schtick. (Masks on, the guys get very wrapped up into their act, and love hamming it up for the ladiesmost of whom eat it up and demand photos. However, guys who run into themnot to mention some Ballard bar and club ownerstend to get annoyed or even irate.)

Today, Guitar Doug sent me an email himself, with an update on their adventures, and some first-hand insight into why they do what they do. I had pegged it as a clever way to pick up girls, but Guitar Doug clarified: he’s just out there having fun, and enjoying his free speech rights. (Also, Ed seems to be okay.)

Continue reading "I do it because it makes people laugh and makes me smile under the mask" »

New Idiot Pilot Video

posted by on July 15 at 4:03 PM

Local boys Idiot Pilot have filmed and posted a video for the song “Day in the Life of a Poolshark” off their major label re-release Strange We Should Meet Here.

If you’re a fan of the band, you’ll like watching the video for obvious reasons. And if you hate `em, well you should check it out anyways, because the two boys spend the four minutes kicking the living shit out of each other.

You can see it here (Windows Media).

Or here (Quicktime).

The band opens for Team Sleep (featuring Chino Moreno of the Deftones) on July 24 at El Corazon.

In non-burlesque performance news…

posted by on July 15 at 2:47 PM

Please come see the 14/48 tonight and tomorrow at the Broadway Performance Hall. As mentioned in Stranger Suggests, it’s the first time in years the finest theater festival in town has a new home since the sad dissolution of Consolidated Works (which, by the way, can fuck right off). There’s never been a better time to come out and support the 14/48, if you’re a supporter, and even if you’re not, it’s almost always a great show. Come early, come often.

re: here comes the naked and angry mob

posted by on July 15 at 2:37 PM

I’d pay a lot of these burlesque dancers to put on more clothes.

Why Madrid?

posted by on July 15 at 1:57 PM

I think it will be clear to any readers of this blog why I sought an outside writer to do the Burlesque piece - there’s a definate anti-B. bias at the Stranger.


posted by on July 15 at 1:41 PM

I like burlesque and have seen burlesque that was fun, professional, funny, and very sexy (all at the same time). Dita Von Teese is AMAZING. Miss Indigo Blue (pictured in our feature) is rockin’ onstage. And Wade Madsen did a breathtaking striptease at the Moisture Festival (I know, ewwww) this year. I’m not willing to write off that entire genre of performance as inconsequential. Done well, it’s HOT. Skeptics should come out to the Fenix with me on Thursday, Aug 11.

Horrible News

posted by on July 15 at 1:36 PM

Apparently, Michael Dahlquist, former Seattleite and (brilliant) drummer for longtime Seattle band Silkworm, has been killed in a car accident in Chicago. Dahlquist’s bandmate Tim Midgett posted this to the SKWM website message board:

Continue reading "Horrible News" »

Confidential to Joel Connelly

posted by on July 15 at 1:35 PM

Joel Connelly, of the Seattle PI, says he caught me dreaming at Wednesday night’s City Council candidate forum in West Seattle. In his column today, he quotes from the SLOG item I posted yesteday morning about the event, in which I said the crowd had cheered a feisty pro-monorail speech by Paige Miller. Connelly wrote:

“The crowd was stunned, and then broke into applause,” Josh Feit of The (fanatically pro-monorail) Stranger wrote in a blog yesterday.

In your dreams!

I definitely get a little carried away in my dreamy support of the monorail, but about half the crowd broke out into applause (and I counted two yelps of shout-out support) after Miller said her piece. I’ll admit to being a little sleepy after listening to Richard Conlin’s circuitous defense of his legislation to siphon bus hours away from Metro for Paul Allen’s trolley (you looked a little drowsy yourself, Joel), but I’m pretty sure I was conscious during Miller’s monorail pitch.

re: here comes the naked and angry mob

posted by on July 15 at 1:01 PM

Um, does anyone in Seattle even care about burlesque (outside of the women who do it and their friends that is?).

If Only They Were Actually Naked

posted by on July 15 at 12:57 PM


My friend in the burlesque world just called to tell me how pissed local performers are about this week’s burlesque feature (they’re saying it’s insulting, it’s poorly researched, it doesn’t portray an accurate picture of the Seattle scene).

Maybe they’ll incorporate some of that anger into their dancing. It’d be nice if something interesting were included. Of course, they’re right to feel insulted by the piece, it’s totally insulting. That doesn’t mean it’s not accurate. It reveals the burlesque trend for what it is, a burlesque (see definition 2) of eros.

Which, I hear, is the proposed title for Christopher Frizzelle’s novella.

here comes the naked and angry mob

posted by on July 15 at 12:16 PM

My friend in the burlesque world just called to tell me how pissed local performers are about this week’s burlesque feature (they’re saying it’s insulting, it’s poorly researched, it doesn’t portray an accurate picture of the Seattle scene). I think we’re going to see an avalanche of letters and a hot forum thread.

Or Perhaps: Seattle Man Fucked To Death By Horse

posted by on July 15 at 12:15 PM

So a thorough reading of the deadly man/horse love story suggests that, rather than my original wishful-thinking scenario with the man fucking the horse and dying (perhaps from a kick sustained during the horse-rape), the horse fucked the man, and the man died.

So much worse…except for the horse, I guess.

Seattle Man Fucks Horse, Dies

posted by on July 15 at 11:40 AM

How can love go so wrong?

“[T]here’s really nothing more to add to what we’ve already said.”

posted by on July 15 at 11:29 AM

McClellan did gaggle on the plane yesterday, as Eli noted below. Of course, he didn’t say anything. An excerpt, with all Rove-relevant content posted behind the link:

Q How long is [Rove] going to stay on the staff?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, I think I expressed the President’s views yesterday, when it comes to Karl.

Q Remind me, how long is he going to stay on the staff?

MR. McCLELLAN: That’s a nice try to keep bringing up questions relating to media reports about an ongoing investigation. As the President indicated yesterday, we are not going to prejudge an ongoing investigation based on media reports. The President directed the White House to cooperate fully, and that’s what we’ve been working to do. And we will be more than happy to talk about the investigation after it is completed.

But the President — I again made clear yesterday that when it comes to the President’s confidence in Karl and his support for him, I made clear our views.

Sure you did, Scott.

Continue reading ""[T]here's really nothing more to add to what we've already said."" »

Seattle Music Fest Trouble

posted by on July 15 at 10:38 AM

The Seattle Music Fest (the annual music-filled weekend on Alki Beach) is having some funding trouble this year. If they don’t raise enough money through donations and sponsors, they’ll have to cancel the whole thing. The line-up is pretty good this year too, featuring headliners They Might Be Giants and United State of Electronica. Plus, a bunch of local bands are scheduled to play, including Post Stardom Depression, Key Note Speaker, Ms. Led, and the Femurs.

Adam Sheridan, Executive Director, suggests a few ways you can help save the Music Fest…

Continue reading "Seattle Music Fest Trouble" »

Props To 50 Cent

posted by on July 15 at 10:29 AM

I must give props to 50 Cent for the new remix of “Outta Control,” which features the original gun clappers Mobb Deep. What makes the song great is its beat. It is slow, spaced widely, with a spare piano loop and guitar lick. I heard it for the first time two nights ago at the Bada Lounge. The DJ closed his set with it, and everyone cleared the dance floor because “Outta Control” is not a dance song. As I have said many times before, real hiphop is not dance music. It is music for, at the very most, nodding your head. And this is hiphop’s the great achievement. Its beatwhich is hard, gritty, and spaced like city blocksmade dancing look ridiculous, and this ridiculousness liberated men from the tedium (and pressure) of, when in clubs, having to ask girls to dance. Before the invention of the hiphop beat, men had to walk around the club asking girls if they would dance with them because men couldn’t dance by themselves without ridicule. After the invention of the hiphop beat, men could finally dance by themselves, beer in hand, head nodding somewhat somberly. Indeed, it is this liberation that, in the late 90s, caused the music industry to inject hiphop with heavy doses of R&B (The Neptunes, for example), so that men would be forced to ask women to dance again and again and again (finally one says yes, and then you get aroused, and then she leaves you in that state when the song is overwhat a waste of bloody time and energy). 50 Cent’s “Outta Control” is an admirable attempt to restore the proper hiphop order of the dance-liberated dance floor.

Stat Quo injured

posted by on July 15 at 10:25 AM

Tamara Palmer, who wrote about Stat Quo for us this week, sent this link about her boy. I have to ask, who drives a fucking tour bus at 90mph?

A reminder, a fuckup, and a recommendation

posted by on July 15 at 10:24 AM

If your weekend plans involve music, a couple things to keep in mind…. One, I fucked up the Up & Comings this week and the Noise for the Needy Benefit shows listed in the Up & Comings (in the paper) on Friday were actually last night. Oops. (Sorry about that.) Two, I spaced on recommending DJ Colby B’s birthday party at Chop Suey. Colby has been spinning all over town forever (including as one of the ladies of Comeback) and to celebrate her big day she pulled together a ton of great local DJs for a free party at Chop Suey Saturday night. And three, for anyone curious as to what the Diamond Nights, the band I gushed over this week, sounds like, you can listen to one of their tracks here. They play the Crocodile Sunday.

Not So Fast

posted by on July 15 at 10:19 AM

My hopes for a fiesty White House press briefing today have been dashed by the insanely thorough political blog The Note, which tells me there is no scheduled press briefing today. Sigh.

So, when might the White House have an opportunity to address the latest news on Karl Rove’s conversation with Novak?

The White House schedule doesn’t include a gaggle or briefing, but it didn’t yesterday either and McClellan gaggled on the plane… so stay tuned.

I wonder if the person who leaked today’s scoops, which serve mainly to put Rove in a slightly more favorable light than he was in yesterday (hmm, who could that leaker be?) — I wonder if that leaker knew that there would be no briefing today, which keeps the spotlight on the new Rove-image-improving scoops, rather than shifting it back to McClellan’s stonewalling and past false statements to reporters.

Text Message from Belgium

posted by on July 15 at 10:18 AM

The Belgium countryside is ridiculously cute. Cows, windmills, radio towers, hay. And the people of Brussels have the funniest ways of saving energy, like escalators that don’t go until you step on them, so you think you’re out of luck until just before your foot lands on them, and then… magic.

I smell. It’s hot. The Infernal Noise Brigade is loud. They did a show at an art space called FOAM last night and the cops came. It was pretty clear who had better uniforms.

Future Required Reading

posted by on July 15 at 8:30 AM

The new CIA-leak-gate scoops that I’ve posted below are sure to drive today’s White House briefing to new heights of contentiousness. Already this week we’ve seen some pretty off-the-charts exchanges between pissed off reporters and the White House spokesman, Scott McClellan, who seems clearly to have misled reporters and the public on this story for two years.

I take this paragraph, from today’s NYT scoop, as a warning directly from the NYT to McClellan to get ready for more of the same, if not worse, at today’s press briefing:

The Rove-Novak exchange also leaves Mr. McClellan, the White House spokesman, in an increasingly awkward situation. Two years ago he repeatedly assured reporters that neither Mr. Rove nor several other administration officials were responsible for the leak.

We’ve been posting juicy bits of the briefings all week, and will bring you your required dose of briefing bitterness today as well… Stand by.

Required Rove Reading

posted by on July 15 at 8:02 AM

These two articles will be required reading today for those following the increasingly intricate case of: Who leaked the name of that CIA agent?

1) The New York Times fronts what appears to be a huge scoop, revealing that Karl Rove spoke with conservative columnist Robert Novack six days before Novack published the now infamous column that made him the first in the media to out the CIA agent. Looks as if Rove was one of the two anonymous administration sources Novack cited in his column as confirming the agent’s identity, though probably not the primary source.

2) Meanwhile, The Washington Post does some quick catch-up work and fronts its own story in which a lawyer familiar with the case confirms the NYT report and “elaborates” on it. Most interesting elaboration:

Sources who have reviewed some of the testimony before the grand jury say there is significant evidence that reporters were in some cases alerting officials about Plame’s identity and relationship to Wilson — not the other way around.

Bottom lines: Evidence grows that White House spokesman Scott McClellan should never have told the press that Rove had nothing to do with this leak. Rove obviously played a role in confirming the CIA agent’s identity to both Time and Novack. Evidence also grows that the President, if he had asked, and if Rove had been truthful, would have known about this. And finally, it’s beginning to look as if Rove might not have been the primary source for the leak, and that maybe the leak originated, in a roundabout way, with reporters who knew the agent’s identity and called to confirm it, but whether that gets Rove out of any criminal liability is still unclear. (And I actually doubt the origin is, in the end, with reporters. I think that’s the red herring du jour — the reporters had to hear it from someone.)

In Praise of the Mayor of London

posted by on July 15 at 8:00 AM

Between the influence of Merchant-Ivory and Morrissey/Marr, no art-lover of my generationthe “now I know how Joan of Arc felt” generationescaped the 1980s without a mild case of Anglophilia. But last night my love for the Brits blossomed exponentially with the address given yesterday by London Mayor Ken Livingstone at a memorial gathering for the victims of last Thursday’s suicide bombings.

Continue reading "In Praise of the Mayor of London" »

I’m on vacation…

posted by on July 15 at 7:02 AM

Chris may be Slogging (Sloging? SLOGing?) while he’s on vacation, but I’m going to be a bit lazier than that. I’m off to Scotland, and while I’ll be reading, I won’t be blogging. Ah, two Gs then in Slogging, yes?

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Their Slide Rule Weighs a Ton

posted by on July 14 at 4:38 PM

It’s extremely rare when a math-rock band blows my mind these days. Seattle drum/guitar duo Girth is such a band. Investigate posthaste if you have any interest at all in heavy, complex rock that’s ideal to contemplate infinity to while banging your head.

You can check out Girth at Chop Suey Monday July 25; they open for Ruins Alone.

Re: Charles Know it All

posted by on July 14 at 4:25 PM

I will begin by pointing out that handing a school teacher an apple is the same as saying this: I want to fuck you. I have no idea what a student is saying when they hand a teacher a pomegranate. I have even less of an idea what a naked woman is saying when she hands a naked man a pomegranate. It has to be an apple, Annie.

As for my Bible College in Pennsylvania, I’m upset that you brought up that period of my life and made it public, Josh. And besides, it wasn’t a Bible College as such but a school with a lot of people (white people—sorry to bring race into all of this but I couldn’t help it) who believed in the Bible. And it was at this Bible crazy school that I discovered Hegel and Marx and not Jesus and Paul. So there.

Charles Know it All

posted by on July 14 at 4:15 PM

Charles, didn’t you go to Bible College in Pennsylvania?
Why do you know more about Hegel (co-founder of Godless Dialectical Materialism) than the Bible?

I Have Been With the Senator…

posted by on July 14 at 3:37 PM

Robert Traynham, Director of Communications for United States Senator Rick Santorum, is gay !!!!

Re: Corr’s Problem

posted by on July 14 at 3:28 PM

I think Corr’s problem is the public perception that he’s Nickels’s boy.

See, I wonder if it really is a problem. Does the publicthe average voterreally know, or care, that Corr is Nickels’s boy? I understand the intellectual arguments fueling the council candidate’s dash away from the mayor, but is it ultimately worth the trouble?

Fruity Verse

posted by on July 14 at 3:24 PM

Annie may know how to rip the poetry out of the bible, but Aesop put the fable back into it.

The Pomegranate and Apple Tree disputed as to which was the most beautiful. When their strife was at its height, a Bramble from the neighboring hedge lifted up its voice, and said in a boastful tone: “Pray, my dear friends, in my presence at least cease from such vain disputings.”

Re: Annie Know It All

posted by on July 14 at 3:12 PM

Well, the Bible says “fruit.” Is that poetic enough for you? Apples are pedestrian, not romantic. They’re what you give your schoolteacher.

Annie Know it All

posted by on July 14 at 2:49 PM

Annie Wagner has just informed me that Eve tempted Adam with a pomegranate and not, as I was taught in bible school, an apple (“they are not native to that region of the world”). Annie knows how to rip the poetry out of the bible.

So Yesterday…

posted by on July 14 at 2:46 PM

….but as a final word on the Whom wars, I just want to point out it could have much, much worse.

A few years ago, I was writing cover text for the issue featuring endorsements by the Stranger Election Clog Squad or whatever it was that year. At some point, it was proposed that the grammatically correct version of my cover text was this:


Ow. It never happened.
But it’s a priceless dodged bullet.

I’ll tell you where Fox Island is…

posted by on July 14 at 2:41 PM

I’ve never heard of Fox Island. Anyone have any clue where it is?
Fox Island is where I live when I close my eyes. Everyone who lives there is a total fox. Even me. In my dreams.

Ah, Fox Island…

Corr’s Problem

posted by on July 14 at 2:33 PM

Amy, I think Corr’s problem is the public perception that he’s Nickels’s boy. The point, regardless of the merits of (or the faults with) Nickels’s agenda, is: Do voters think Casey is independent or do they think he’s just Nickels’s Manchurian Candidate? That gets at the more substantive issue Erica brought up re: the legislative branch as a check on the mayor. Analogy: You dig Savage’s agenda for our paper, but you don’t want me simply parroting Savage’s agenda when we put the news section together.


posted by on July 14 at 2:22 PM

Whenever I use Metro’s handy trip planner to plot my next adventure away from the office, the program asks me which 1535 11th Avenue I’ll be leaving from. “1535 11th Avenue (in SEATTLE)”as Metro’s site phrases itground zero for The Stranger? Or, “1535 11th Avenue (in FOX ISLAND)”?

I’ve never heard of Fox Island. Anyone have any clue where it is? It’s got to be in King County.

One of these days, I’m going to plan a Metro trip from one 1535 11th Avenue to the other, to solve this mystery.

(Edit: Looks like I won’t be heading to Fox Island, wherever it is. Metro won’t get me there: “Error #20004—No stops within walking distance of destination.” That’s too bad.)

The Way We Were

posted by on July 14 at 1:53 PM

Last year, I was thinking we were living in historic timesand so, I played this game called “Zeitgeist Magazine” where I would go to the magazine shop every Monday and pick out the magazine that I thought best captured the events at hand for that week. (I even had a little song I sang as I looked over that week’s covers: “ZeeetGeeest Maga-Ziiine!”)
Anyhow, I saved all 52. I just checked to see what the “Zeitgeist Magazine” was for this week last year. How depressing.

Why City Council Candidates Need to Distance Themselves From the Mayor: A Primer

posted by on July 14 at 1:24 PM

In response to Amy Jenniges’ question: If Mayor Greg Nickels is so popular, and if his agenda is so smart, why do city council candidates like ex-Nickels spokesman Casey Corr need to distance themselves from him politically?

A couple of reasons: First, there’s the principal of separation of powers. The executive and legislative branches are supposed to act as a check on one another. If a member of the legislative branch is in the mayor’s pocket, he or she isn’t as likely to stand up to the mayor and question his agenda.

Second: Let’s not forget, the mayor’s agenda isn’t perfect. To address the examples Amy brought up:

• Density. Increasing density and building heights downtown will undoubtedly bring more residents and nightlife to the area. It’s also better for the environment when people can walk to work instead of driving from the suburbs. But there are good arguments against increasing density without requiring affordable housing or attractive design. Council members such as Peter Steinbrueck have raised these and other important questions.

• The “24/7 City.” Revitalizing neighborhood business districts is a good idea. But some neighborhood residents feel the mayor’s proposal, which would decrease parking requirements for new developments citywide and allow housing at sidewalk level, needs tweaking. The council - again, led by Steinbrueck - is listening to what they have to say.

• Transit. Spending money on a streetcar to serve Paul Allen’s fiefdom in South Lake Union instead of focusing the city’s energy and transit funds on underserved neighborhoods like Ballard is a questionable use of the city’s transportation funds. Again, the critical questions on the mayor’s South Lake Union streetcar have come from the council.

And remember, incumbent mayors are always popular. In the last half-century, only a single incumbent Seattle mayor - Paul Schell - has been defeated. That may be an argument for term limits, but it isn’t an argument for capitulating to the mayor’s agenda.

The Best Letter to the Editor

posted by on July 14 at 12:37 PM

We received a mountain of mail about Andrew Sullivan’s “The War You’ve Got” article from last week’s issue. In a very little while, they’ll all be available to read on the website. The most eloquent of them came from former Stranger Books Editor and contributor Matthew Stadler, who is one of my favorite writers anyway. I thought I would post it here, both to give you a taste of what happens when smart people write smart letters, but also because we received it too late to run in the paper and we would have.

Continue reading "The Best Letter to the Editor" »

Re: “The Opposite of What She Said”

posted by on July 14 at 12:36 PM

Erica C. Barnett wrote:

After four years crafting Nickels’ agenda, [Casey Corr] needs to distance himself from the mayor if he wants voters to take him seriously.

Why? You’re much more in tune to council races and the council-mayor dynamic than I am, and I’d love to get your take on why Corr has to run away from the mayor to have a shot at winning a council seat. A relationship to Nickelseither because you worked for the guy or share a lot of his viewsseems largely irrelevant to me.

Mayor Nickels is pretty damn popular at the moment, and his agenda, for the most part, is admirable. (24/7 city? Cool. Mass transit? Check. Density downtown? Right on.) Moreover, no one has the balls to run against himthat’s surely a sign that Nickels is onto something, right? It seems a hell of a lot smarter to align yourself with him, than flip-flop and flounder to manufacture distance from the executive.

Sure, the council is ideally supposed to function as a check on the mayor, so it’d be nice if the members had their own brains. But that doesn’t seem to be the ultimate message Corr’s striving for. He’s just coming across looking like an idiot.

Enlighten me, please.

McClellan v. Reporters

posted by on July 14 at 12:15 PM

“We’ve secretly replaced the White House Press Corps with REAL REPORTERS. Let’s see if Mr. McClellan notices…”

That’s Jon Stewart of the Daily Show, precisely summing up with a snappy one-liner, this week’s trio of crazy White House news briefings. Each day, spokesperson Scott McClellan is being bombarded with real questions related to Plame-gate and Karl Rove, each of which he refuses to answer. I can’t wait to see what today’s briefing brings.

From Tuesday’s DS episode, courtesy of a friend in NYC who passed it along.

“The Opposite of What She Said.”

posted by on July 14 at 10:40 AM

Casey Corr defies the mayor? I don’t buy it.

At last night’s candidates’ forum in West Seattle (which my colleague Josh Feit also writes about below), the former Greg Nickels spokesman answered every question by defiantly refuting whatever Jan Drago said. Jan’s for the monorail? Casey hates it. Jan wants to spend the city’s Metro dollars on the South Lake Union streetcar? Casey “agrees with Nick” Licata, who says Metro bus hours shouldn’t be siphoned off to serve a single neighborhood.

Asked whether the city should transfer Metro hours that currently serve other parts of the city to the South Lake Union streetcar, Corr responded: “The council was wrong. The mayor was wrong. When I’m on the council, I will not pit neighborhoods against each other. … I agree with Nick.”

Politically, Corr is in a bind. After four years crafting Nickels’ agenda, he needs to distance himself from the mayor if he wants voters to take him seriously. He also needs to make a strong case against Drago, whose race he just jumped into early this week.

But for a guy who, one month ago, was unable to come up with a single issue on which he differed with Nickels, Corr’s sudden turnabout seems politically expedient and unconvincing.

New favorite description

posted by on July 14 at 10:35 AM

I’m a little late getting through it, but the “Rainy Day” issue of Vice is one of their funniest in a long time. Along with such pertinent articles as “10 Things to Do with a Dead Rat” and “Show Us a Funny Face and Tell Us About Your Lonliest Moment” they’ve invented the slang Grover body for a skinny hipster dude with a beer belly. That’s dead on.

Copycat Roadkill

posted by on July 14 at 10:21 AM

I’ve heard of copycat suicides, but this is ridiculous!

(FYI: This was sent in by a reader. No, it’s nowhere near as impressive as Megan’s fish. Yes, it is the last “cute kitty” pic I’ll ever post on here.)

Defending Wonka

posted by on July 14 at 10:13 AM

I must protest Sean’s comment in his review of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory that the original 1971 film features “shitty songs.” Au contraire, composers Leslie Bricusse and Anthony Newley garnered three Academy Award nominations for damn good reasons. “Pure Imagination” remains a wistful, captivating ballad (and if you don’t like the original, check out the recent cover by LA soul-jazz ensemble Build An Ark), and Veruca Salt’s eleventh-hour turn, “I Want It Now,” should be in every karaoke book on Capitol Hill. Sure, “The Candy Man” is one of the most insidious pop songs ever, but it still whips the pants off anything in the bloated canon of Danny Elfman (with the possible exception of Oingo Boingo’s “Weird Science”).

Dark Thoughts on Righteous Retards

posted by on July 14 at 9:35 AM

Yesterday Brad wrote a post about Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum, charting Santorum’s blessedly embattled bid for reelection and a few of the loonier moves that have proven the conservative Catholic senator to be a righteous retard of the first order. (Among the delights: Santorum’s insistence that Boston’s civic liberalism inspired the Catholic clergy to molest children; Santorum’s enthusiasm for cuddling dead babies.)

Contemplating Santorum’s righteous retardation reminded me of the recent Saturday I spent in an auditorium packed with righteous retards, at the gay-conversion conference Love Won Out thrown by James Dobson and Focus on the Family. Sitting in the start-of-the-art Worship Hall of Bothell’s Northshore church, surrounded by Bible-thumping strangers come together to discuss how to cure the blight of homosexuality (a process supported by the same sort of self-serving tautology displayed by Santorum’s clergy abuse theories), I realized two things.

1. These people are so scared of having their belief systems revealed to be fallible, they’ll make themselves retarded with faith before they’ll take one step forward.

2. In the battle between religious fundamentalists and the rest of us (secular humanists, non-secular humanists, believers whose personal faith doesn’t obliterate the legitimacy of others’ beliefs), we will never win.

Continue reading "Dark Thoughts on Righteous Retards" »

Rove a Hero?

posted by on July 14 at 8:04 AM

A Stranger reader sent me this Wall Street Journal editorial in an effort to re-educate me. Welcome to the alternate conservative universe in which Rove is a heroic whistle-blower…

Democrats and most of the Beltway press corps are baying for Karl Rove’s head over his role in exposing a case of CIA nepotism involving Joe Wilson and his wife, Valerie Plame. On the contrary, we’d say the White House political guru deserves a prize—perhaps the next iteration of the “Truth-Telling” award that The Nation magazine bestowed upon Mr. Wilson before the Senate Intelligence Committee exposed him as a fraud.

Continue reading "Rove a Hero?" »

Last Night’s City Council Candidate Forum

posted by on July 14 at 4:09 AM

I Just got home from the 34th District Democrats City Council candidate forum in West Seattle. I know it’d be way more interesting to report on the post-forum drinks I had with Richard Conlin and Jan Drago, but I promised to keep that session on “double super secret background.” If you’re nerd enough, though, I did write up some highlights from the forum:

Continue reading "Last Night's City Council Candidate Forum" »

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Re: American Sex Appeal

posted by on July 13 at 8:10 PM

Let me state for the record, I am not what one would call a fashion plate. But I kinda like American Apparel clothes. Their small t-shirt is actually small, and the cotton they use is super-soft. Also these are the best shorts to wear to bed, ever. (They also look pretty good on the Atomic Bombshells.)

HOWEVER, I do have a bone to pick with American Apparel. It’s their advertising. I’m fine with the sexy girls, and the sweaty boys, and yay for sweatshop-freeness. But “brand-free”? Please. You cannot run a heavy advertising campaign featuring the aforementioned instantly recognizable sexy girls and sweaty boys and expect to remain brandless. Maybe when I bought that band t-shirt several years ago, and it said “Classic Girl” and I had no idea that a company called American Apparel made it… Maybe they were brand-free then. But now, no way.

In Defense of Our Copy Dept.

posted by on July 13 at 4:52 PM

Just wanted to make clear that this grammatical temptest in a teacup was not designed to be any sort of slap at The Stranger’s copy chieftess. She very carefully alerted me to the grammatically correct switch, and I decided not to change it. And now I’m questioning that decision (and agree with Sean’s analysis..)

To Quote Savage, “Ahem”

posted by on July 13 at 4:46 PM

Sean writes:

With Savage and Frizzelle on vacation, it looks like The Stranger’s heterosexual male cabal might actually be poised to make a stand around here! Mudede! Steinbacher! Feit! Unite!

Unite with whom?

Don’t make me bring out the photos of your gay lover, Mr. Flagpole Sitta.

our gay agenda

posted by on July 13 at 4:43 PM

I changed that who to whom per Stranger style. I presumed Dave would rewrite it to avoid the issue or change it back, but, miraculously, he did neither. I don’t regret that it went to press as is. And I am not gay though I sometimes wish I were.

Comrade Segal!

posted by on July 13 at 4:41 PM

With Savage and Frizzelle on vacation, it looks like The Stranger’s heterosexual male cabal might actually be poised to make a stand around here! Mudede! Steinbacher! Feit! Unite!

In Defense of Whom

posted by on July 13 at 4:38 PM

Allow me to clarify: In no way was I designating any and all usage of “whom” to be gay.

But in the context of the cover, in that Pow! arrow, with the “watch what you say!” gist of the text, that “whom” is so, so gay. Gay like a well-groomed poodle, or a stack of magazines perfectly fanned out on a coffee table.

The Gayness of Whom?

posted by on July 13 at 4:32 PM

The word whom.

For the record, I’m the one who approved this grammatically correct bit of fagginess. But I never dreamed it would turn out like this…

I know Dave is exaggerating for humorous effect and all, but at the risk of coming off obtuse, how is this usage “faggy”? I use whom all the time and am hetero, but maybe my grammatical correctness betrays a dormant gayness. Maybe I should write a letter to Savage Love…

For the record

posted by on July 13 at 4:21 PM

I feel it is incumbent on me, given my run of language-snobby posts around here lately, and the fact that the “whom” in question was a teaser for my li’l news section piece, to say that this “whom,” while technically correct, feels all wrong. Grammar has to bend to usagethough not “literally,” I don’t mind mentioning. You don’t have to know all the rules; you just have to know when something sounds right. It reminds me of something I once saw during my brief stint as an employee of a local publication called Seattle Weekly

Continue reading "For the record" »

I Thought I’d Seen It All

posted by on July 13 at 3:53 PM

So, The Stranger’s never been shy about smearing its pages with a whole lotta gay, from the thrice-annual Queer Issue to “Hey, Faggot!” to those incriminating photographs of Brad and you-know-who. (And, of course, the force of nature known as Adrian Ryan.)

However, this week’s issue features the gayest thing ever to appear in The Stranger.

On the cover.
In the upper-right corner, in the arrow.
Eight rows down.
The word whom.

For the record, I’m the one who approved this grammatically correct bit of fagginess. But I never dreamed it would turn out like this…

“We can continue to go round and round on all these…”

posted by on July 13 at 3:31 PM

Scott McClellen gets ripped apart by reporters, for the third day in a row. The press pool is getting clever - starting out with something about Laura Bush in Africa, and ending it with Rove, Rove, Rove.

This exchange pretty much sums it up:

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, this is a creative way to come out to the same kind of questions.

Q You’re right, it is, and I want an answer.

I’ve condensed the official transcript into the Roverific parts. Which is most of it.

Continue reading ""We can continue to go round and round on all these..."" »

American Sex Appeal 2

posted by on July 13 at 2:37 PM

I just got this reply from the Sacramento News & Review’s Jeffrey M. Barker about my earlier post on American Apparel:

“Um, hello! American Apparel’s appeal is that the clothes are American made, non-sweatshop goods. Sure, there’s no style or flare, just like at the Gap. But the Gap stuff is all made overseas by people getting paid too little and working in poor conditions and yadda yadda all that anti-sweatshop jazz. They’re not overpriced. That’s how much clothes should cost. We’ve just gotten so used to artificial WalMart pricing.”

Jeffrey I’ll give you that one: Non-sweatshop goods is a good thing. And I’ll also give the company that when bands use their shirts for merch, that’s a good thing too. But I’m still not sold on the products themselves.

Negative Tacoma

posted by on July 13 at 2:12 PM

Tacoma is in the news again. In 2002, serial killer John Allen Muhammad caused the national spotlight to fall on the military city by the bay. In 2003, it was the doing of Tacoma’s police chief David Brame, who shot dead his wife and then himself in a popular parking lot. 2004 was unexpectedly quite; it seemed things were improving. But then midway through this year a sex offender named Joseph Edward Duncan, who is charged with the murder of four innocent country people, has brought national attention back to The City of Destiny—where he is from and where his mother presently lives. Poor Tacoma. When will she get positive press?

NewsFlash: Casey Corr to Run Against Casey Corr

posted by on July 13 at 1:58 PM

Last January, when Casey Corr announced he was running against Richard Conlin, he called Conlin the “Duke of Dither” referring to Conlin’s famed obstructionism against everything from the Mayor’s development agenda to the monorail. Here’s what Corr told the Seattle Times on January 12, 2005:

“Corr said transportation, building the new monorail, public safety and education would be his priorities. Corr said Conlin, chairman of the Transportation Committee, has been inconsistent, ineffective and a monorail critic.”

BUT NOW that Casey has jumped out of the Conlin race and into the Jan Drago race, he’s lambasting Jan Drago for pushing the monorail. Here’s what he says to the Seattle Times on July 12, 2005:

“Corr, a former journalist and aide to Mayor Greg Nickels, cited Drago’s support for Seattle’s embattled monorail project as the main reason for his change.”

So, which is it Casey? You say you don’t want an obstructionist and you say you don’t want an advocate. Since your own quotes contradict each other, maybe you should consider running against yourself.

Commerical rock radio woes

posted by on July 13 at 1:31 PM

There’s a lengthy, lively discussion about the music industry going down in the music forums (under the Capitol Hill Block Party header). I wanted to draw attention to both that and a great article in the new issue of Blender magazine (the one with Family Guy??? on the cover….what does that have to do with music again? More than the Killers at this point I guess) about the sad state of commercial radio. The piece by Ben Sisario touches on commercial radio flip-flopping formats on a dime, the effects of beer advertisers holding all the cash cards, and that many listeners are simply turning off commercial radio completely, looking instead to iPods, webcasts, and satellite radio—all promising trends when it comes to pushing independent music.

Gregoire Is #41!

posted by on July 13 at 12:06 PM

Survey USA has ranked the nation’s governors according to their approval ratings. Our own Christine Gregoire currently resides way down at #41, in a four-way tie with the govs of Oregon, Texas, and Illinois.

#1? That would be North Dakota’s John Hoeven, whose menace I exposed two years ago in these very pages.


posted by on July 13 at 12:01 PM

I don’t think I’m mentally back from vacation yet. (I spent a week in MN for my sister’s wedding. While there, I rode the new light rail line, marveled at all of the cool development happening along the line and throughout the city, and drank way too much with all of my old friends. Finding cheap beer in the Twin Cities is way too easy.) Anyway, now that I’m back, everything I think to Slog about strikes me as dumb the second I start typing it. MN’s 95-degree, humid summer days appear to have melted my brain.

But what the hell? Here’s a collection of some of the dumb things I’ve second-guessed for the past few days. Behind the cut, to spare you.

Continue reading "Bleh." »

American Sex Apparel

posted by on July 13 at 11:44 AM

I’ve always wondered what the appeal of American Apparel is, other than their ads—which look ripped right out of a Terry Richardson book. They sell overpriced, plain, Gap-like clothing using sexy (and I’ll give them that, they use some hot models) photo shoots of hipster kids. It was interesting to read in the New York Times last Sunday, then, that the owner thinks of himself as something of a sexual icon. Dude, you’re selling sweatshirts.

R.I.P. Toad

posted by on July 13 at 11:42 AM

So. Last week I was on vacation in Belize. It was incredible and I have thousands of stories I could share, but Annie insists that I share this one. During a morning fishing trip, I caught a fish. An 80+ pound grouper, actually. Leave it up to the vegetarian on the boat to hook the bastard.

And here he is. I named him Toad. He was the ugliest motherfucker I’ve ever seen.


(Forgive the goofy hat… we were in the sun all day with no shade!)

Wonkette Speaks the Truth

posted by on July 13 at 11:24 AM

One of my favorite political blogs, wonkette, says exactly what we’ve been saying around the office. Only better.

Okay, we admit it, we were overthinking the whole Rove-Plame thing. In speculating that this wouldn’t destroy him or the White House, we had been hung up on how he didn’t break the law. What we realize now is that liberals finally have an issue where the headline hurts Republicans more than it hurts them: “White House Aide Identified Undercover CIA Agent.” Now, shut up. Shhh. Zip it. ZZZip. No, really, quiet. Repress natural urge to pedantry. For once, allow Americans’ short attention span work for you. And whatever happens, do not let Michael Moore make a movie about it. Let the Republicans shoulder the responsibility of having to explain how Karl didn’t do anything illegal, or how when he identified the agent it was in a context that wasn’t so bad, or that it’s Matt Cooper’s fault, or why this is all just a massive smear campaign. Soon, they’ll be debating the definition of “is” and you can start rumors about Laura being a lesbian. Fun!

too dumb to drive

posted by on July 13 at 11:06 AM

This latest cellphone/driving study (hands-free blabbing doesn’t seem to be less risky for divers) makes me wonder: What’s different about talking on the phone and talking to someone present in your vehicle? Is there a different set of brain processes at work during phone convos? Can the average brain really not handle simultaneous tasks? Will someone soon recommend no talking at all while driving? What about singing along to Bjork off key?

Get Your War (Room) On

posted by on July 13 at 10:52 AM

For a fairly new club, The War Room has been stirring up some seriously good shit in Seattle. Tonight they present an event by a group that’s been recommended to me, Skullicorns, that encompasses art, free mixtapes, t-shirts, DJs (Fourcolorzack, Sean C, FITS), and more. Sign up for their mailing list and the door prizes have even better benefits. I can’t get the stupid HTML to work today for some reason, so I’ll send you to their site the old school way:

What Novak Said

posted by on July 13 at 10:42 AM

One of the biggest lingering mysteries in the burgeoning scandal over the leaking of a CIA agent’s identity has been what Robert Novak, who first outed the agent in his syndicated column, has done to keep himself out of jail (à la Judith Miller of the NYT). Novak refuses to tell, but the assumption has been that he struck some sort of deal with prosecutors, or told them all he knows long ago. Now, from deep within the blogosphere, Murray Waas has what looks to be a good scoop on what Novak has told prosecutors so far.

Here it is.

posted by on July 13 at 10:23 AM

Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA) is combusting and it’s a beautiful thing to watch. For one, there’s the poll numbers for his re-election bid, which certainly ain’t pretty. For two, he’s declared war on Boston, essentially stating (or re-stating) that the city’s liberal nature led to the Catholic priest sex abuse scandal.

If all goes well, this time next year the good Senator will be forced to cuddle dead fetuses with his family while looking for work.

life beyond “Low Life”

posted by on July 13 at 9:52 AM

If our current Get Off Your Ass Already feature prompted you to check out DJ Curtis at Low Life (or if you’re already a LL regular), and you dug the grooves you heard, you may also enjoy this weekly Internet radio show, a mish-mash of Euro-disco, ’80s rarities, and other esoterica, hosted by New York clubland stalwart Andy Reynolds (a k a Andyman). Disco haters need not apply… Josh.


posted by on July 13 at 9:23 AM

Last night I went to Sh!tstorm at the Rendezvous. The place was packed and hot as hell. I left early after fanning myself like a Southern woman in church for nearly two hours. But the turn out is a good indication that this is sorely needed and I think with a bigger venue it will only grow more popular. It was billed as “a no-holds-barred discussion on the state of Seattle culture (such as it is). ” As incendiary as the press release and the bone of contention was”all arts organizations in Seattle must be allowed to die with dignity” the discussion that took place was actually really constructive. It definitely fulfilled its goal of being spirited and giving people a place where they could speak their minds. The Oath of No Attribution, which we all had to swear to at the beginning of the night, meant that nothing said there could be quoted with a name attached. Beforehand I thought it was an incredibly annoying contrivance, but once things got rolling I realized that several people who have expressed their frustration and disappointment with the Seattle arts scene in private actually spoke up last night. i think that was a direct result of the Oath. I was disappointed that many of the most bitter complainers who spoke to me last week didn’t show up and say their piece. But maybe bitterness is their true art form.

Vive Le France!

posted by on July 13 at 8:00 AM

On Monday, the municipal assembly of Paris approved a resolution “never to welcome Tom Cruise,” preemptively rescinding offers of honorary citizenship for the embattled actor.

The reason for the diss has nothing to with Cruise’s soiling of the city’s most beloved landmark for his latest marriage proposal, and everything to do with his status as a militant Scientologist.

Those French, they can make even religious intolerance look stylish.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Know Your Enemy

posted by on July 12 at 3:33 PM

The Bush administration may be staying mum about Rove-Gate right now, but that doesn’t mean the conservative troops are keeping quiet. The folks at the National Review have been pooh-poohing the Rove story all week. If you want an early glimpse of how the Bushies might try to spin this (“a liberal New York judge,” crafty liberal reporters, and, I kid you not, “Palestinian Terrorists”) check out the theory linked below from NR’s blog.

Continue reading "Know Your Enemy" »

Scary Kiddie Pics

posted by on July 12 at 2:47 PM

Some people were offended when The Stranger ran photos of a little kid dressed up for Halloween as an Abu Ghraib prisoner.

But this is five million times more disturbing.

(This site seems to have been taken down or moved. But once upon a time, it showed a page of photographs of little, little girls gussied up like Nagel prints.)


posted by on July 12 at 2:40 PM

Speaking of chaps assless, pantsless or otherwise my dad just left after a two-week visit. Since he retired he has bought a Harley and all the requisite gear, including chaps. He rode here across Canada from Wisconsin and is now taking a big Southern arc on the the way home. I discovered after he left Saturday that he forgot his chaps. He called later while I was riding the bus to tell me where he was and that his trip was going well. I then proceeeded to say something I never thought I would, especially on a bus, “Would you like me to mail you your chaps?” It was only after I hung up that I realized people were looking askance. I wanted to defend myself and explain, but somehow “That was my dad” seemed like a bad idea.

Precious Moments

posted by on July 12 at 10:36 AM

Next time you’re at Re-Bar, I suggest paying attention to the walls. More specifically, to the walls across from the bar, where Tara Thomas’s latest installment of ugly made….um…odd hangs in a series of paintings. The local artist, also known for painting pictures of pop culture icons as Sloth from Goonies, has a new crop of paintings of crazy looking ladies reclining and staring dazed from their bedrooms. The opening last night, in true Tara style, was a mixture of trash to treasure comedy and low-brow fun. Her new “band” stars Connie Merlot (aka a softer side of Ursula Android’s human form, Marcus Wilson) and Ross from the Cripples. It’s pure cover song comedy…look for them again under the name Connie Merlot’s Precious Moments.

Writing Commercials Is Hard

posted by on July 12 at 9:33 AM

About six weeks ago, The Stranger started running ads on Air America Radio.

Designed to hype the content of each week’s new issue, the text of these ads is written by Savage and me, then recorded by Air America professionals. This sounds simple, but as the early ads made clear, writing text to be delivered by someone else is sometimes freakishly hard, and opens up a whole treacherous world of misunderstood ‘jokes’ and delivery-specific wit.

For example, last month we ran an ad hyping the annual Queer Issue. The original ad text included the word “homos,” which the Air America folk said was off-limits, so we changed it to the allowable “homosexuals.” The result was one of the creepiest radio ads in history, with our queer-soaked text falling from a foreign tongue, whose pronunciation of the word “homosexuals” makes me feel so dirty I want to bash myself. Listen for yourself here.

But thing soon got better, as we figured out what kind of words would sound the least weird coming from this professional mouth. (Hint: If the voice sounds like a barker for a monster truck rally, arrange text accordingly.)

There’s nothing frivolous about helping Beth Ditto

posted by on July 12 at 9:11 AM

As mentioned last week, The Gossip’s Beth Ditto underwent gall bladder surgery recently, without the help of health insurance to defray the costs. If you know her band, you know how much they’ve supported and uplifted the NW DIY music scene. Now your chance to help support her is coming up…but on a different date then was previously announced. The new Beth Ditto benefit show (with Pretty Girls, Tracy and the Plastics, and guests) is Sunday, July 31 at Neumo’s.

There’s Nothing Frivolous About Assless Chaps

posted by on July 12 at 8:00 AM

Sean Nelson beings up a logical point about assless chaps.

However, there’s nothing logical about assless chaps, and the same goes for the admittedly weird descriptive construction Sean takes to task.

Of course what people mean by “assless chaps” is chaps with no pants on underneath, which makes a big fleshy virtue (some would call it a hate crime) out of chaps’ inherent asslessness.

Chaps without pants underneath is a high-octane image. Unfortunately, the phrase “chaps without pants underneath” doesn’t capture a fraction of the power of assless chaps.

And so grammar must suffer.

Sorry if this seems frivolous…

posted by on July 12 at 7:55 AM

And even more sorry to be the self-appointed word cop (is there any other kind?) up in this piece, but there it is: So there I was, editing a story by Eli Sanders for the forthcoming issue… Don’t worry, I’m not going to spoil it for you (but certain parades I could name had better watch their backs). Anyway, this otherwise trenchant analysis by my estimable colleague contained a construction that has been making me crazy for a while now. I’m willing to stipulate that the fact that I work for The Stranger might give me an unusually high exposure to this phrase, but can we all come together for a moment on the question of “assless chaps”? Though I am no expert (nor by any means a cowboy), I feel pretty strongly that all chaps are by definition assless, inasmuch as their very asslessness is what makes them chaps. Assless pants? Yes, please. Assless chaps? The answer’s in the question.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Double Super-Secret Background

posted by on July 11 at 3:46 PM

Newsweek reporter Michael Isikoff was on CNN’s Inside Politics today. The full transcript of the show is here, with just Isikoff’s segment provided after the jump.

Continue reading "Double Super-Secret Background" »

Just In Time

posted by on July 11 at 3:12 PM

“[The Pentagon is] hopeful that the 135,000-strong U.S. force could be cut by as much as 50 percent by mid-2006.” Mid-2006! Just before the elections! Clearly, the Republicans are freaking out about the worsening war on their hands. But I can’t imagine how leaving 66000 Americans in the middle of hostile Iraq will protect vulnerable red seats in the Senate and Congress.

Shameless Lawyer, Stunning Ad

posted by on July 11 at 2:30 PM

My ridiculous ability to be outraged by television commercials shows no sign of abating, as evidenced by the new ad from local lawyer J. Michael Gallagher. (A cynical TV commercial? From a lawyer? I KNOW!)

In his latest ad, Gallagherwhose key legal focus is post-divorce Family Lawstands on the steps of the downtown Seattle federal courthouse, recently the site where permanently disgruntled divorced father Perry Manley was shot dead by Seattle police after marching around the courthouse brandishing a dud grenade.

I can’t quote verbatim, but the unequivocal gist of Gallagher’s speech is don’t let what happened to Perry Manley happen to you, with Gallagher offering his skills at child-support negotiation as a tonic to getting shot by cops.

Unfortunately, this new ad is not one of the many available on J. Michael Gallagher’s website. But if you’d like a taste of Gallagher’s amazing schitck, go here and watch the ad “Gallagher’s GalsPart Deux”.

For the record, Gallagher does seem devoted to helping divorced dads navigate the sometimes treacherous world of Washington State child support. But do you really want a Family Law attorney who’s also the author of the (self-published) book, She Is Not Your FriendA Man’s Guide To Understanding Women? Or airs commercials like these?

“No, you’re not finishing — you’re not saying anything”

posted by on July 11 at 1:48 PM

Today’s White House press breifing is amazing. Thanks to Brad for posting a link, below. Here’s another link, to the full official transcript and, the site says, video, coming shortly. The media smells blood.

Q Scott, can I ask you this; did Karl Rove commit a crime?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, David, this is a question relating to an ongoing investigation, and you have my response related to the investigation. And I don’t think you should read anything into it other than we’re going to continue not to comment on it while it’s ongoing.

Continue reading ""No, you're not finishing -- you're not saying anything"" »

The US At A Standstill

posted by on July 11 at 12:11 PM

This was just released by Reuters:

“U.S, Iraq sign pact to boost trade, investment ties.
The United States and the U.S.-backed government in Iraq have signed a formal agreement aimed at boosting economic ties between the two countries, the U.S. Trade Representative’s office said on Monday.”

The US signs a “pact” with the US-backed government to increase investment? This is a pure circle. Money going out and then returning to the very point from which it began. Politics/economics in the age of Reagan age was defined by the infinity sign (the will to the nothingness of nuclear annihilation, the eternal threat of the Evil Empire, the billions poured into Star Wars). In the age of Bush, half of the infinity sign has been chopped off and what remains is a perfecting circlethe present sign of post 9-11 politics and economics. It is not a matter of moving ahead, or moving toward oblivion, but circulating. The circle is movement without movement.

Corr V. Drago

posted by on July 11 at 12:01 PM

As I predicted here last week Casey Corr thinks he can translate the bad monorail news into a win over Jan Drago. Casey announced this morning that he’s jumping out of the Conlin race and into the Drago race.

Decision crystallized by Drago’s mishandling of Monorail

SeattleCasey Corr, candidate for the Seattle City Council, announced today he would file against Council President Jan Drago, the council’s longest-serving member.

“We need change,” said Casey. “After 12 years in office, Jan Drago has become unresponsive, remote and ineffective. She is not the leader we need.” He said that problem came into sharp focus with her mishandling of the Monorail.

My Secret Shame

posted by on July 11 at 11:52 AM

This weekend I slept through a chance to go see My Summer of Love and instead opted later to rent Prozac Nation, the film based on the book by everyone’s favorite privileged whiner Elizabeth Wurtzel. It was a straight-to-video (or DVD) howler starring Christina Ricci, who was once a voluptuous sexpot, playing the tortured and torturously pained narcissist. In the movie, she looks underfed and her acting, which when she’s not in deadpan mode is never that good, is particularly wretched. Jessica Lange channeling Maggie the Cat plays her mother in a performance so bad it wiped away my fond memories of Frances. The best though was Anne Heche as her psychiatrist (maybe Tom Cruise is on to something). I kept expecting her to strip and talk about UFOs and messiahs but no such luck. But it was awful in just the way I had hoped.

Finding the movie was no easy feat. It was checked out everywhere. I went to three different places where I ran into two artists, a curator, and a collector all looking for it and acting embarrassed (well, okay, one of them did have a porn in their stash and it wasn’t Bruce LaBruce or Richard Kern. It was Dirk Yates.) Apparently Christina Ricci is big with the art crowdfor not blowing Vincent Gallo? Or maybe we are all in love with failures.

“You’re Not Saying Anything”

posted by on July 11 at 11:42 AM

Here’s a Rove-specific excerpt from today’s White House press briefing.

When you get tired of the sound of your own voice

posted by on July 11 at 11:27 AM

Why not let Michael Jackson say it for you?

For Those Just Tuning In

posted by on July 11 at 8:25 AM

Welcome to Monday, and welcome to a front-page story in The Washington Post that will catch you up on the issue we were blogging a blue streak about over the weekend: A juicy new Newsweek report, complete with leaked email, that further illuminates Karl Rove’s actions in the days leading up to the illegal outing of a CIA operative.

People keep asking me why this story is a big deal, other than the joy it would bring Democrats if Rove ended up being led out of the White House in handcuffs. The big picture is this: The Bush administration used flawed justifications for going to war with Iraq, and when a credible critic of one of those flawed justifications came forward, sources within the administration moved to punish him by outing his undercover-CIA-agent wife, whose career as an undercover agent was then ruined. Blowing a CIA agent’s cover is a federal crime, and many people now believe one of the vengeful administration sources who blew her cover was Rove, though there are a lot of legal semantics involved in this story and he is denying it, sort of, as The Washington Post notes.

My dad keeps asking me where he can find the blogs that have been parsing all the nuances and legalese involved here. The best ones that I know about are,, and, and between the three of them they can generally be relied on to link to any other blog that has a good bead on the story on any particular day.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Hey, You Got Your Gnat Shit in My Pepper!

posted by on July 10 at 10:56 PM


This source is literally calling bullshit on both the media and Karl Rove.

I’m sorry to do this, but someone’s got to stand up in defense of the word “literally” around here, at least figuratively, and it’s going to be me.

Re: Eli’s Tortured Gymnastics

posted by on July 10 at 6:56 PM

Enough with the tortured analogies, Eli. I’m not making an analogy. The significance of the source being at Time (rather than coming from inside the government) just highlights what I’ve been saying all along: The media was complicit in the government wrong doing (the retaliation against Wilson). Therefore, it’s fitting that the whistle blower is a member of the media. There really was no difference between the W.H. and the Media on this all along. Time was doing Bush’s bidding, and now, someone at Time is doing the right thing by giving the evidence to Newsweek to expose that collaboration. At least somebody still understands the role of the media: Exposing government corruption, not aiding and abetting it. No analogies. This source is literally calling bullshit on both the media and karl Rove.


posted by on July 10 at 5:00 PM

Not that the Karl Rove story isn’t important (I predict a wrist slap), but let me please be the second Stranger person to mention Rize, the new documentary by David La Chappelle (a photographer whose work I have always secretly hated) about the overlapping cultures of krumping and clown dancing in the nether regions of Central Los Angeles. As Eli Sanders’s review eloquently states, the film trots out some pretty tired redemption tropes, but the dancing is astonishing. The masterfully edited battle sequence is alone worth five times the price of admission, and is one of the most exhilarating scenes I’ve ever seen in a movie. It’s enough to distinguish the filmmaker’s otherwise predictable, Boyz ‘N The Hood-ian (right down to the randomly murdered little girl) socioeconomic perspective on the rise (if not rize) of these incredible new art forms. I’ve never been much of a believer in the art of dance

Continue reading "Krumptastic" »

Smart Post

posted by on July 10 at 3:39 PM

Smart post on what Rove has wrought, at the blog :

Dirty Plot Or Accidental Genius?

If Karl Rove planned this — which I doubt — he really is a genius:
1.) He leaks to Time’s Matt Cooper in such a way that he avoids the law’s intent requirement for criminal liability (today’s Newsweek notes that Cooper’s email shows nothing indicating Rove knew or revealed that Valerie Plame was an undercover agent, only that she worked at the CIA).
2.) The ensuing grand jury investigation dramatically weakens the news media and future leakers, as reporters must decide whether to testify or go to jail, and even turns Rove’s foes in the public against the reporters involved because they are seen as protecting him.

ELI SANDERS adds: For example of such foes, see FEIT, JOSH.

In other words, by making himself a protected source who loses that protection, Rove makes it easier for the government to use federal courts to target all leakers. This would give Machiavelli a migraine.

Hold On, Josh

posted by on July 10 at 3:18 PM

I agree that Newseek’s scoop is huge, so huge that it’s worth linking to again, here. And I think it’s also worth noting that the writer of the Newseek piece, Michael Isikoff, is the famous investigative journalist who first uncovered the impeachment-inducing relationship between Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky. Now Isikoff is busy uncovering the relationship between Presidential right-hand-man Karl Rove and the illegal outing of a CIA agent. Perhaps Isikoff senses he’s onto something equally huge, something “Worse Than Watergate,” as Frank Rich writes in today’s New York Times.

But I think Josh gets the significance of Isikoff’s source wrong. Isikoff’s source seems clearly to be someone in the editorial department at Time Magazine someone who is upset at Time Inc.’s decision to hand over the notes of Time writer Matthew Cooper (and by extension, Cooper’s source) to the special prosecutor investigating the CIA agent outing. Now that the upsetting deed has been done by Time Inc., the Time editorial source is giving a big scoop on the story to Time’s main competitor, Newsweek the ultimate act of journalistic vengeance.

This is analagous to a disgruntled Seattle Weekly employee leaking documents to The Stranger in protest of some upsetting decision by the Weekly’s parent company, Village Voice Media. Or a leak by someone at The Seattle Times to the Seattle P-I for similar reasons, or by someone at the NYT to The Washington Post. It’s taking a moderate risk by using your arch rival to embarrass and piss off your parent company. (If caught, the leaker at Time might lose his or her job, but I doubt jail time would be involved, and given the percieved righteousness of the Time leaker, I’m sure another job in journalism would be waiting for him or her.)

So Josh, I don’t think the situation is analagous to that of a government source who needs to commit an illegal act in order to get an important truth published a source who then faces a lost job plus jail time if his or her identity is revealed by a reporter who has promised the source anonymity.

Who’s Afraid of Judith Miller?

posted by on July 10 at 11:25 AM

Rove was Cooper’s source. Ironically, Newsweek is breaking this huge story today thanks to “a source intimately familiar with Time’s editorial handling of the Wilson story, but who has asked not to be identified because of the magazine’s corporate decision not to disclose its contents.” Looks like super secret sources who can help uncover malfeasance by government officials (to use the NYT’s words) haven’t been deterred by the Miller precedent.

Knowledgeable Screed

posted by on July 10 at 12:03 AM

Re: Sub-Zero and the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
Do I feel completely chastened for Slogging (and for endlessly pontificating to my office mates) that Judith Miller should reveal the W.H. attack dog rather than protect her “source” ?
Not exactly. I am feeling slightly less strident about it, though. The news out of Cleveland is stunning and troubling. Here’s the deal, however: Cleveland’s Plain Dealer didn’t have to pull its stories. The Supreme Court made it clear in the Pentagon Papers case that newspapers can run with stories based on illegally obtained documents. While that doesn’t necessarily protect the source, there was another precedent established in the landmark Pentagon Papers case. The source, Daniel Ellsburg, was not punished. In the aftermath of the case, the court found that the Nixon Plumbers (Howard Hunt, G.Gordon Liddy et al) went after Ellsburg in a fit of retaliation. (Gross Governmental misconduct, the Court said.) It strikes me that if the Plain Dealer stories are as important as the paper’s editors have indicated, whistle blower protections would go a long way to inoculate the source. In the final convoluted act of Miller’s hall-of-mirrors defense: Just imagine Rove trying to claim “whistle blower” status.
Meanwhile, dig the latest on Rove from David Corn.

p.s. Yes, I know about the Cincinnati Enquirer/Chiquita Banana fiasco from the late ’90s. However, that case did not result in a ruling, but rather a settlement. No precedent.