Slog News & Arts

Line Out

Music & Nightlife

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz Category Archive

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Also Not Election-Related

posted by on October 28 at 4:55 PM

Ignore the world around you and watch this live stream of a cute pile of puppies--they snuggle and sleep and make baby dog noises. And that's all they do. And I love them.

(Thanks to Brian G. for the tip.)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Too Beautiful to Live

posted by on October 22 at 5:25 PM

I'll be on the radio tonight at 9 pm—on Luke Burbank's new show, Too Beautiful to Live—talking about the 10 Things article. (150 comments and counting. Favorite so far: "Your articles are worthless, pretentious, uninformed, completely masturbatory and damaging to the arts community.")

It won't be nearly as fun as Luke's recent interview with baseball Hall-of-Famer George Brett, who told him all about shitting his pants the other night: "I'm good for that about twice a year."

But Burbank and producer Jen Andrews are lovely, funny people. Too Beautiful to Live is, obviously, the best thing about KIRO.

Monday, October 20, 2008

"Time for a nice cozy nap after all that skipping about."

posted by on October 20 at 1:39 PM

I was never really that into Cute Overload! :). Too much baby talk. Too many hamsters.

But ZooBorns I can get behind--"the newest and cutest exotic animal babies from zoos and aquariums around the world."


It's like cute stuff meets David Attenborough! Oh, and what's this? "Tiny Ocelot Kittens Born at the Woodland Park Zoo"? If I enjoy your kitten photographs, ZooBorns, maybe I will just go down to my neighborhood zoo and HANG OUT WITH THOSE TINY OCELOTS IN PERSON!!! Get back to me when you can personally invite me to that guinea pig's birthday party, Cute Overload.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Janky Eyeball Watch 2008!

posted by on October 17 at 6:55 PM

Big thanks to everyone who participated in yesterday's Great Fucked-Up Red Eyeball Diagnose-Off. Without your help, I might never have known that I have eyeball AIDS, and eye cancer, and I got cum in there (so that's where I left it!). I decided to go with the "put a really hot washcloth on it and go to sleep" treatment regimen, which, I think, did my rogue eyeball a world of good. It is not nearly so rogue today. Photographic updates after the jump because they are kind of gross and boring.

Continue reading "Janky Eyeball Watch 2008!" »

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Does My Eyeball Look Fucked Up to You Guys?

posted by on October 16 at 5:29 PM

Dudes, I think something's up with my right eyeball:


Doesn't it look red? Eli Sanders says I'm being ridiculous. To compare, here's my perfectly normal left eyeball:


The more I think about it, the more I feel a slight burning coming on. But is it all just in my mind? Or do I seriously have a fucked-up red eyeball!?

Thursday, October 9, 2008

How to Make a Tiny, Fake Orange

posted by on October 9 at 1:30 PM


Look at this tiny, fake orange!

Wouldn't you like to know how to make this tiny, fake orange?

Well you're in luck! There's a step-by-step photo tutorial on how to make this tiny, fake orange right here at the "Weird and Funny Stuff Around the World" blog. I'm sure it's not, but the process looks really easy. If you can roll dough in to a ball and use and X-Xcto knife, then you can make a tiny, fake orange. Why you would want to, I'm not sure, but I have the sudden urge to get some Sculpey after SLOG HAPPY tonight and make a whole bowl full of these things.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

From the Press Release of the... Well, Not the Day, Excatly. Maybe of the Hour—Press Release of the Hour.

posted by on October 8 at 11:01 AM


10 Years, Two Tents in Two Cities and 125,000 Gallons of Soup Later Teatro ZinZanni Gets Ready to Serve Patron Numbers 1,000,000 and 1,000,001.


Thursday, September 11, 2008

A Dream About Barack Obama

posted by on September 11 at 9:31 AM

Last night I had a dream. Steve Martin had just given a former professor of mine a half-dozen brightly patterned neckties, and I dearly wanted to ask to have one. (I am a fan of Martin's early work.) Instead, I found myself saying I was moving to California, as there were no jobs in Seattle.

Suddenly in Los Angeles, I walked across an unevenly paved bridge over a highway. On the other side: nowhere, just abandoned buildings and a sense of doom. I was afraid. Up ahead, Barack Obama appeared, carrying a large golden trophy. I watched myself catch up to him, then as the two of us were attacked by street people—homeless people and meth-doers and gang members and assorted stereotypically terrifying characters. Most were minorities. From afar, I watched as I was dragged away to some nefarious place, some awful end. Barack Obama eventually escaped the attack and walked on, still holding his golden trophy. I woke up, shaken, at 5:30 this morning.

I think I need a prescription to get through this election.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Headline of the Year

posted by on September 10 at 10:00 AM

"Burglar Wakes Men with Spice Rub, Sausage Attack"

The victims told deputies they awoke Saturday morning to the stranger applying spices to one of them and striking the other with an 8-inch sausage.

Burrimond said money allegedly stolen in the burglary was recovered. The sausage was tossed away by the fleeing suspect and eaten by a dog.

More details in tomorrow's Last Days.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

How We Got This Week's Issue to the Printer

posted by on August 20 at 12:46 PM

Tuesday is the busiest day in The Stranger's production cycle--the day the paper goes to the printer. Yesterday afternoon, in the middle of the usual stress, our phones went blank and some of the lights in our offices went out. A second later, Dan Savage looked up from his computer and said, "Why can't I get on Slog?"

A transformer across the street had just blown. In addition to the power we'd lost--some departments had it, some didn't (the phone system had lost power)--we'd lost internet and email access. This posed a special problem: Without the internet, we couldn't get pages to the printer. Our solution? Senior ad designer Mary Traverse took a computer to Grey Gallery & Lounge across the street from our offices, because they have free wi-fi, and uploaded one page (the one that was ready at that moment) to the printer's FTP site from there. Meanwhile, we were still finishing up and proofreading pages on the few computers in the production department that still had power.

Eventually, big orange trucks from Seattle City Light showed up.


There was a white truck too--according to our tech support guy Brian Geoghagan, the white truck is always the supervisor's truck--and Geoghagan took it upon himself to march up to the white truck and ask the man inside when the power was going to come back. The man in the white truck informed him that, actually, the power was about to go out. All of it. The whole block. More than the whole block. The City Light guys needed all the power out in the area to solve whatever the problem was.

Continue reading "How We Got This Week's Issue to the Printer" »

Saturday, August 9, 2008

The Stay Up Late Show!

posted by on August 9 at 3:08 PM

Due mostly to my long and celebrated history of totally attracting bat-shit crazy people to me like some sort of bat-shit-crazy people super-magnet, I am slightly afraid to announce that I will be appearing live as a guest on the chatty and very late Stay Up Late Show with Rebecca Davis tonight at the Balagan Theatre. What’s the damn Balagan Theatre? What’s the damn Stay Up Late Show? Who the hell is Rebecca Davis? Let’s find out together. The show begins tonight at 11:00 PM (Late! LATE!), and Balagan Theatre is at 12th and Pike, across from Satellite, by Boom Noodle.


Tuesday, August 5, 2008

My Everything Is Sweating

posted by on August 5 at 9:44 PM

Crikey. Anyone else get home to find their house is like a furnace? It's nice outside, but opening the windows barely helps. I want to leave to get a drink--preferably some place with air conditioning. Or just drink coolers in the yard.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Brad Steinbacher Still Frightens Me

posted by on July 11 at 4:35 PM

Without Brad, I wouldn't be writing. Mr. Steinbacher was my first editor, ever. I'm trained as a computer and biomedical engineer, not exactly professions known for their communication skills.

He was responsible for introducing me to the very basics: What in the hell is a byline? What do I do with a semicolon, other than terminate a statement in C? Do I get paid? Are all writers temperamental? Should I contribute to slog? All of this was right when he was attempting to pull together the massive SIFF guide. I'm forever indebted.

But yes. As a deeply shy person myself, Brad scares me. He always did and still does, despite his always being kind and welcoming to me. I've always felt like I'm sitting at the wrong table in middle school when in the room with him--a person as much as any who made the Stranger, a paper I truly and honestly respect.

Brad, take this as the ultimate victory: At the conclusion of my General Exam (for my PhD), my committee members turned to me and said, "your writing for the Stranger is vastly better than your science writing." Ouch.

Thanks Brad.

I Suppose I Should Say Something Nice About Brad

posted by on July 11 at 3:50 PM

But I know Brad pretty well, seeing as we've shared an office for ten years or whatever now, and seeing as how, besides Terry, Brad is the probably the one man in Seattle that I've been naked behind the most. I know that Brad is hating these testimonials. He's a modest man with much to be modest about. And we are going to miss him anyway.

(Hey, Brad: I'm on the road, no wifi. Could you toss this up on Slog for me? Clean up spelling and grammar, find a pic to post with it, etc. Thanks.)

Sent from my iPhone


There you go, Savage. Your last final fuck you to me up on Slog, along with the pic. Unlike the daily threat of your aging, distended sack on the back of my neck all these years, I hope you enjoy it.

As for the rest of you, I'm touched, really, but for the love of God let's stop this. Aren't there any pitbull maulings to report? Shouldn't Charles be waxing incomprehensible about Star Wars or something? Quick, ECB! Put something up about Obama and abortion!

You Up?

posted by on July 11 at 2:26 AM

It's late. What are you doing at the computer?

Monday, July 7, 2008

Salon of Shame + Theater Off Jackson: A Slog Love Story

posted by on July 7 at 2:45 PM

Two months ago, we announced that the Capitol Hill Arts Center was moving from 12th Ave, perhaps against its will, perhaps never to open again.

That Slog post was the first time some CHAC tenants—including the well-loved Salon of Shame—heard about their prospective homelessness. (Good old CHAC, always looking out for its pals and associates.)

Comment #27 on the original post, by SoS leader Ariel Meadow Stallings:

Fuck. Anyone know of a nice 120-person theater with a bar? Sounds like the Salon of Shame will soon be homeless, and going back to the Jewelbox ain't gonna work...

I'm going to go quietly freak out now.

Posted by Ariel | May 12, 2008 6:26 PM

Comment #32 on the original post, by Theater Off Jackson board member Amanda Slepski:

Ariel @ 27, if you are indeed in need of space, Theatre Off Jackson seats 140 and we have a bar.

Posted by Amanda | May 12, 2008 10:04 PM

After this online introduction, SoS and ToJ met, wooed, and fell in sweet, sweet love. Tomorrow is their big coming-out party: 7 pm, Theater Off Jackson, $8.

(May I suggest you have dinner at Green Leaf beforehand to celebrate?)

Slog: Bringing people together—when it's not tearing them apart—since 2005.™

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Apropos of Sunday Afternoon

posted by on July 6 at 4:35 PM

Sure is something when you're listening to all the loudest, saddest songs your iPod knows, and you end up on a certain song you sometimes sing around the office to be funny but never actually lie back and listen to--a loud, sad song that's about things much more horrible than whatever it is you're going through, that had an incantatory and commercially viable four-word chorus, and that was marketed to the TV-watching public of 1994 with a video involving dirty children, people painted gold, a cross, machine guns, cement buildings covered in political graffiti, and blood-red trees on a soundstage--and you open your eyes to see a man and a woman and a dog who weren't here in this park before, and the dog is running after a frisbee and the clouds have just parted and the man is standing with his arms outstretched to the sun.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Ban Kittens

posted by on July 3 at 10:24 PM


Via Gawker.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

The Rest of Your Life: For Charles

posted by on June 26 at 5:00 PM

A bit of end-stage capitalist culture rhetoric from the Master™ 2-Hole Paper Punch:

Master Hole Punches have been in the industry for many years earning their sterling reputation. Ever-faithful, and committed to high-quality standards, these punches are highly coveted items in any office. Put a paper punch in your desk drawer that you know you can count on. MASTER.

Any employee has to last a lifetime in their career, why shouldn't their office equipment?


Master Model #3275B, 40-sheet capacity, 9/32" punch head diameter, replacement parts available

Friday, June 20, 2008

First I'd like to say that it's an honor...

posted by on June 20 at 2:57 PM

...just to be cited as a cultural reference point with these illustrious women. From a theater review in today's NYT:

All advice givers and etiquette experts—from Emily Post to Ann Landers, Miss Manners to Dan Savage—can probably agree on at least one admonition, namely that reading someone else’s diary is a no-no.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

There Are No Bad Dogs

posted by on June 17 at 11:27 AM

Only bad dog owners—right? A mauling caught on tape:

This particular dog owner seems remarkably nonchalant, doesn't she? And can anyone tell us what breed of dog that is?

Thanks to Slog tipper Andy.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

He Blogged, She Blogged

posted by on May 29 at 9:25 AM


Yesterday Dan deigned to sully the Slog with indirect acknowledgment of Emily Gould, the former Gawker blogger responsible for the ten-page kiss-and-tell-and-then-have-a-panic-attack-on-the-bathroom-floor cover story of last week's New York Times Magazine.

As the comments to Dan's post show, Gould got a lot of (deserved) shit for her monumental overshare. But for what it's worth, he kinda started it—he being Gawker alum Joshua David Stein, who dissected his relationship and breakup with Emily Gould for Page Six Magazine the week before Emily Gould dissected her relationship and breakup with Josh Stein in The New York Times Magazine.

Page Six versus the Times? Clearly she's the winner. However, she's also responsible for this:

I hereby promise never to mention her or him ever again, unless one or both of them commits suicide or attempts to assassinate a public figure.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The Critic Vanishes

posted by on May 28 at 12:06 PM

Joe Adcock, theater critic at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer for 26 years, has retired. And nobody much seems to care. (The Slog post announcing his departure got just one sad, single comment.)

Critics aren’t anybody’s favorite people. Last weekend, standing outside a theater during intermission, I mentioned Adcock’s departure to a prominent local artistic director. He replied in song: “Ding-dong, the witch is dead!

Then I told him the P-I hadn’t just lost Adcock: They’d also eliminated his job, and won’t hire another full-time theater critic, due to a hiring freeze. The artistic director’s face fell: “Oh. That’s terrible.”

In just a few years, Seattle has gone from four full-time theater critics (one for each of the dailies and each of the weeklies) to two: Misha Berson at the Seattle Times and me. “Does that mean theater in Seattle is shriveling up and dying?” my editor asked when I told him about Adcock.

Um, no. It’s a sign that newspapers are shriveling up and dying. Seattle still has its Tony Awards, its growing reputation as the best place to premiere pre-Broadway musicals, and its habit of hemorrhaging talent to other cities (congratulations, by the way, to former Seattle actress Heidi Schreck, who moved to New York and just won an Obie Award).

But the newspapers—with their hiring freezes, layoffs, and forced early retirements—are fucked. If Berson were to retire next week, would the Times replace her? “I expect so, but it’s really hard to say,” said Times managing editor David Boardman.

Eventually, you all may have nobody but me.

Just a few papers that have axed or split longstanding criticism jobs in the past year: New York Times (dance), the Village Voice (dance), Los Angeles Times (dance), Chicago Tribune (theater), Minneapolis Star-Tribune (theater), Atlanta Journal-Constitution (lots of its critics), Philadelphia Inquirer (theater), Charlotte Observer (theater), and the Baltimore Sun (theater). In Seattle, the Times, the P-I, and Seattle Weekly have all cut jobs in arts criticism.

So newspapers have to lean on freelancers, who are great and all, but I’ll let my friend Wendy Rosenfield, a freelance critic at the Philadelphia Inquirer, say it: “We’re not just itinerant, we’re mercenaries. My schedule is dictated by my needs, not the needs of the paper. It lends itself to way too much turnover and uneven arts coverage.” (Philadelphia, by the way, has three times as many people as Seattle, and only one full-time theater critic.)

Last February, at an NEA-sponsored theater critics’ seminar in Los Angeles, I met Judy Rousuck, a deadpan, corvine-haired, and deeply intelligent woman who had just left the Baltimore Sun. She had been the theater critic for 23 years, but nobody told her she’d be taking her job with her when she left: “I don’t know if I would have had the heart—or nerve—to leave if I’d known I wouldn’t be replaced.”

So, Misha, now it's just you and me. So don’t take any buyouts. Or candy from strangers. And look both ways when you cross the street.

Correction: The NYT hasn't axed a dance-writing position— Jennifer Dunning retired from the paper some weeks ago, but the Times intends to replace her. We regret the error.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Now, This Is Just God Damn Re-diculous.

posted by on April 30 at 3:44 PM

I have two great loves: Getting stoned as a biblical whore, and taking so-called “perception tests”. I also enjoy crushing any and all annoying, annoying bicyclists beneath the wheels of my car*. And yay for me, these are three great tastes that go great together. Of course, I am put at cross-hairs, as it were, over the following so-called "perception test" that I just got stoned maybe and stumbled upon (thanks, tipper “Matt”), which is nothing, as I'm sure you'll notice, but filthy pro-biker propaganda. But since ECB will probably appreciate that fact (and because her hellish power, which I for one am terrified of, is growing by the moment), I present it below for your consideration.

Now wasn't that fun? And clever? And strangely pro-biker? Of course it was.

And I don’t give a tap-dancing monkey turd if you’ve seen this before, so save it, haters. The Internet is a race, yes, but I’m no fucking racist**.

* Just kidding. I don't have a car. I shoot bicyclists in the neck with homemade blow darts.

** Just kidding. I'm totally racist.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Store Policy

posted by on March 29 at 10:02 AM


Friday, March 28, 2008

Internal Monologue on Where to Eat Lunch

posted by on March 28 at 1:33 PM

Boom Noodle sounds tempting, but I'm always a little disappointed when I eat the food and a little mad when I get the check.

I wish we had a Samurai Ramen up here.

I guess I could go to Ballet again. But I don't know if I can face another goddamned chicken curry. Maybe I should dine and dash, just so I get 86'd and never have to argue with myself about whether to eat lunch there ever again.

[Eats a stale almond from desk drawer. Fade to black.]

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

It's a Photoshop Miracle!

posted by on March 26 at 10:16 AM


Wednesday, March 19, 2008

"She also loves fish."

posted by on March 19 at 3:53 PM

"10 Things You Don't Know About My Mom" by Meghan McCain.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

A discussion

posted by on March 18 at 1:41 PM

Aaah, memories...


Monday, March 17, 2008

Howto: Financial Meltdown!

posted by on March 17 at 2:18 PM

Kenneth Rogoff, the former chief economist at the IMF and now a professor at Harvard University, said the greenback may drop another 12 percent on a trade-weighted basis.``This recession will be long and deep and when we get out of it, we'll have inflation,''

How did this happen? This stick-figure cartoons sorts it out for you. The short of it? "Really smart guys" at financial services companies figured out a legal (but ethically dubious) means of recycling crappy mortgages into something resembling actual investments. How did they get it past the audits, the financial controls, the rating agencies? Well, it's easier when they're all the same few companies, each profiting from the bigger lie.

Why is this legal? It didn't use to be. In the aftermath of the Great Depression, regulations were written into law specifically to prevent this sort of Ponzi scheme from occurring again, like the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933. It worked, until the laws were written out of existence in the late 90's. In a great triumph of conservative economic theory, the laws, protections and regulations were evaporated, leading to an orgy of mergers resulting in the flailing financial service monsters of today.

Not every economist was happy about this turn of events.

Twenty-five years ago, when most economists were extolling the virtues of financial deregulation and innovation, a maverick named Hyman P. Minsky maintained a more negative view of Wall Street; in fact, he noted that bankers, traders, and other financiers periodically played the role of arsonists, setting the entire economy ablaze. Wall Street encouraged businesses and individuals to take on too much risk, he believed, generating ruinous boom-and-bust cycles. The only way to break this pattern was for the government to step in and regulate the moneymen.
You might think that the best solution is to prevent manias from developing at all, but that requires vigilance. Since the nineteen-eighties, Congress and the executive branch have been conspiring to weaken federal supervision of Wall Street. Perhaps the most fateful step came when, during the Clinton Administration, Greenspan and Robert Rubin, then the Treasury Secretary, championed the abolition of the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933, which was meant to prevent a recurrence of the rampant speculation that preceded the Depression.

As pleasant as it would be to lay the current financial crisis entirely at Bush's feet, a significant amount of the blame should go to Rubin and Clinton. Signing the (now clearly disastrous) Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act in November of 1999--dismantling most of the Depression-era protections--was a classic bit of Clintonian triangularization, a gigantic sop to Wall street firms at the expense of Bill's base of liberal and working class supporters. What could they do? Who could the people hurt by this act vote for? Nader? Let the checks from the financial services industry roll in!

Some might call this experience that matters.

Memo To The Person Who Owns The Car I Walk Past Nearly Every Day

posted by on March 17 at 10:25 AM

Dear Person Who Etc.,

You have a bumper sticker that reads:


I just wanted you to know that owning a car is not Living Simply So Others May Simply Live. It is in fact the exact opposite.

Thank you for your kind attention,
Paul Bobby

Sunday, March 16, 2008

As in Zen

posted by on March 16 at 3:16 PM

On this slow Slog day, a moment of Zen.

When being questioned about the passage of a law which will penalize drivers who endanger cyclists, Mayor Richard M. Daley of Chicago was questioned about the perhaps-not-so-considerate behavior of various and sundry bike messengers, who are (mostly falsely) used as an argument against any laws making motorists acknowledge that the road is everyone's. Daley came up with a line that is almost the equal of some of his father's famous dicta, which include:

"Together, we will reach new platitudes of success."

"I deny the allegations and the allegators."

"The police are not there to create disorder, the police are there to preserve disorder."

Mayor Richard M. Daley, about cyclists who take chances:

"You have to be careful if you are reckless."

A pure Zen koan, the sound of one politician clapping.

Friday, March 14, 2008

" fucked you do not even know what is coming..."

posted by on March 14 at 8:40 PM

After today's financial meltdown "[y]ou have to go back to the banking crisis of the Great Depression to find a moment when the financial system as a whole seemed so close to the precipice."

A bit of commentary from the Exile, an alt-weekly for American ex-pats in Russia:

Everything about Bear Stearns collapse and bailout is a deja vu of collapse of Yeltsin-era banking system ...

In Russia under Yeltsin, when a bank was close to collapse they always assured the public that everything was fine and they blamed "rumors" for causing problems; this week, the CEO of Bear Stearns and all the American journalists on Bear Stearns payroll blamed "rumors" and "irrational psychology" for causing a run on Bear Stearns' money during the week. The purpose of these lies is that it allows the insiders to cash out their money while the rest of the trusting American fools keep their money in, only to lose it later. Then after the insiders cash out, comes the supposed "panic" and "sudden" collapse, best to take place on a Friday of course. The "sudden collapse" and "panic" gives cover for the next even bigger transaction: the connected Bear Stearns banker calls the Central Bank Chief Bernanke, just as Khodorkovsky would call Dubinin or whoever was Central Bank chief then, and naturally Bernanke gives to Bear Stearns as many billions as the CEO asks for, and everyone thinks it's okay because the billions were necessary in this atmosphere of alleged "sudden panic," as if Bear Stearns and Bernanke had not been speaking to each other like phone sex addicts every day 24/7 the entire week.

It is sad to see Americans imitating the very worst Russians 10 years late, what incredible fucking losers you are! And meanwhile the American masses have no fucking idea, free press or no free press, they just stand around like retarded jackasses with a sign on their backs that reads "ASS-FUCK ME", because they trust their leaders. Americans don't know anything about Iraq anymore except that they're winning, they don't know hundreds of billions being stolen in front of their fat stupid faces, they don't know anything except where to find a bargain on hamburger buns. I almost cannot blame Bush and the bankers for stealing from American fools, it's just too easy! Let the bloodthirsty corrupt elite steal from the bloodthirsty retarded masses, it will hasten the final collapse of this cruel and shameful empire called "America."

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Is It Just Me...

posted by on March 5 at 9:11 PM



Ya know?

Friday, January 25, 2008

Too Much (False) Information

posted by on January 25 at 6:21 PM

Kidding aside, Seattle Weekly's "reporting" about Thomas Street Bistro is riddled with false and misleading information. I'm sure most of our readers don't care, but for those who do--and for all those journalism-ethics sites out there linking to Seattle Weekly's blog--here are the facts.

Seattle Weekly reports that Thomas Street Bistro "started running" ads two weeks after Chris McCann wrote a negative review of Thomas Street Bistro for the January 3 issue of The Stranger. That's not true. Thomas Street Bistro started running ads in The Stranger in the December 6 issue. Then Thomas Street Bistro ran a second ad ran in the December 13 issue. Then The Stranger published a negative review of Thomas Street Bistro.

Before that review came out the owner of Thomas Street Bistro had decided to stop advertising because, as he told an ad rep (we've got the email), he was unhappy with the print quality of his ads. Sure enough, some of the text in those ads was unreadable. (If you have a copy of the December 7 or the December 13 issue sitting around--and I bet you do, Aimee--check out those Thomas Street Bistro ads and see if you can read Thomas Street Bistro's web address. You can't.)

So The Stranger extended Thomas Street Bistro's Adam Freeman an offer that's not uncommon--two "make good" ads at a larger size to make up for the two ads that were unreadable. In addition to the "make good" bump-ups for these ads, Freeman paid extra--in fact, double what he'd paid for December 6 and December 13 ads--to up the size of the make-up ads. That's how Thomas Street Bistro ended up with quarter-page ads in the January 17 and January 23 issues of The Stranger after a negative review had appeared in our pages. Seattle Weekly reports that "the restaurant was given free advertising." That's not true. We have four cleared checks for the four ads Thomas Street Bistro has published in The Stranger, Aimee, if you would like to see them.

Why did we take down the review? Because the Thomas Street Bistro piece sparked a debate in the editorial department about when is too soon to review a brand-new restaurant. Nowhere in his review did McCann mention that the restaurant was only a few weeks old. Once upon a time The Stranger's custom was to wait around three months before publishing full-length formal reviews of new restaurants, but that has softened into a general rule of thumb that we've broken countless times in order to keep readers informed about new restaurants.

I decided that the right thing to do was to take McCann's review down and send another anonymous reviewer in a couple months. It was a decision I made independent of advertising considerations; if we allowed sales to dictate editorial decisions, we wouldn't have published a negative review of that advertiser's business in the first place. I was trying to be fair. But if fairness was the goal, we'd have to remove all other reviews of restaurants that we've published within a restaurant's first three months. Which is why the review is back up on our website with a note that says:

This is a review of a restaurant that just opened. We'll probably send a reviewer back after it's been open a while, as things often change in a new restaurant's first months.

We'll put that on all reviews of brand-new restaurants from now on.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

The Boringest Video Game of All Time

posted by on January 17 at 11:05 AM


In which players must sort books according to the Library of Congress classification or some shit.


Friday, December 28, 2007

"The Spirit Moved Them"

posted by on December 28 at 9:24 AM


It must be kind of hard to meditate in your living room while a photographer from the New York Times snaps pictures of you.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Project Runway Live Blogging

posted by on December 19 at 5:15 PM


Yeah, kids, we're not really feelin' it either. But we're going to be LiveBlogging your asses anyway. Try and make it worth our while.

Project Runway. 10 PM. Take your laptop to bed with yours truly.

UPDATE: Never mind--no new episodes of PR until January 2. So no liveblogging tonight. No nothing. Carry on.