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MONDAY, JULY 24, 2017

An indie company, selling via Amazon’s “Marketplace” program, ran “bot” software to scour the Internet for “found images” (copyright be darned), to be printed onto smartphone cases. 

As with the outfit that offered T-shirts with auto-generated slogans a few years back, the products would not be made until someone ordered them. The products’ Amazon sales pages were also auto-generated, perhaps without any human seeing them before they went online.

And as with that earlier incident, the results are hilarious when they’re not just plain sad. 

Unless, of course, there turns out to be a market for “vaginal discomfort cell phone cover” or “adult diaper worn by an old man with a crutch cell phone cover.”

WEATHER

As legendery KOMO weatherperson Ray Ramsey used to say, “M.O.S.! More Of the Same!”

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FLAGGING

The ArtXchange gallery’s group exhibit "What Would Betsy Ross Do? The New American Flag Project" raises the question: “Could a new flag bring divided America back together?” Probably not, alas. (Laila Kazmi, Crosscut)

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HEADLINE OF THE DAY

“Tacoma is swelling from Seattle’s real estate boom.” Maybe Tacoma needs to put its feet up and apply an ice pack. (KIRO-FM)

FIRES

Two separate fires broke out near the Seattle waterfront. The first was a brush fire, in or near an unauthorized tent encampment under the Viaduct. (One man was arrested on arson charges.) The other fire started when a minivan, parked on Western Avenue, exploded. (KING) (KCPQ)

The Agua Verde restaurant on NE Boat Street quickly reopened over the weekend, following a roof fire. (KING)

CITY HALL FOLLIES

A former State Supreme Court Chief Justice says Seattle’s “high earner” income tax could face a legal “uphill battle.” But you already knew that.(KUOW)

THE WALKING ED

Another ex-City Council candidate, Tammy Morales, joins those calling for Ed Murray to resign, saying he “needs to be held accountable for his moral turpitude.” (Crosscut)

ROLIE POLIE OLY

The head of the state Dept. of Natural Resources says Washington’s forests are “in danger” with the lack of a cpital-budget deal in the Legislature. (AP) (Weekly)

ECO

Steelhead runs this season are “at worrisome lows,” thanks to previous droughts and rising water temperatures. (Yakima Herald-Republic)

YOU KNOW, FOR KIDS

You heard about the out-of-state boy who was recuited for Garfield HS’s football team, then unceremoniously expelled at the end of football season. He’s apparently not alone; several homeless students have been recruited to Seattle schools by sports managers, then often “cast aside when the season’s over.” (SeaTimes)

The Bellevue School District told parents of a 10-year-old autistic boy that there was no proper spot for him in local schools. The district suggested the parents ship the boy off to an out-of-state boarding school. (KIRO-TV)

SCARE OF THE WEEK

Yep, the “Big One” earthquake could strike any time this minute or this century. And there are three different, adjoining “subduction zones” where it could originate. (KING)

O GIVE ME A HOME

Some Magnolia neighbors want Tent City 5, about to lose its Interbay location, to stick around, at its current site or one nearby. (Are they being helpful, or just trying to prevent it from moving closer to them?) (Weekly)

A Spokane TV station referred to a homeless encampment as “a full-blown country club.” A public backlash quickly ensued against the station, which scrubbed the story from its website. (Inlander)

NEWS FROM MEDICINE

The clinics of Seattle-King County Public Health are out to reassure immigrants they can come there with privacy and safety. (KUOW)

VANISHING BALLARD

The Ballard Avenue bar boom hasn’t helped the 17-year-old People’s Pub, which will shut down as of Aug. 12. (My Ballard)

TEK TALK

Nintendo’s new “hybrid” gaming system, Switch, may replace both its console and handheld lines. (Bloomberg)

UPDATES

Spud Fish & Chips’ Green Lake building is being demolished for luxury apartments; but the restaurant has been promised a storefront in the new building. (Seattle mag)

Elsewhere on (in) Green Lake, some lads waded out to Duck Island and hand-built a little skateboarding bowl, as an entry in a Nike video contest. The city, which treats the island as a wildlife preserve, was not amused. The mini skate park will be removed; a local attorney’s offered to represent the skaters in any city lawsuit. (SeaTimes)

SPORTS

The West (including Storm players Sue Bird and Breanna Stewart) won the WNBA All-Star Game at KeyArena Saturday, 130-121. The Storm returns to action Tuesday in LA.

Sounders FC beat San Jose 3-0. At LA Galaxy Saturday.

The Mariners lost three of four games vs. the Yankees, falling Sunday 6-4. Three home games vs. the Red Sox start tonight.

A year or two back, I suggested cities without NBA teams (such as Seattle) form their own men’s pro basketball league. Now someone’s doing just that, and it’ll have a Seattle franchise. Said team has no name yet, but it does have Toronto-based owners who want local partners. (KIRO-TV)

“Distance swimmer” Andrew Malinak attempted a 53-mile, 26-hour swim from Olympia to Seattle’s Olympic Sculpture Park Saturday night. He had to quit less than seven hours into the ordeal. (West Seattle Blog)

TODAY

Medicare for All march. (Federal Building, 11 am)

TONIGHT

“Ankle Deep: A Water Ballet” by Briar Rose Bate. (Volunteer Park)

“How Can Seattle ‘Grow’ More Public Outdoor Spaces?” panel. (Central Library)

Wild Powwers, Kinski, Charms. (Cafe Pettirosso)

Waxahatchee, Cayetana, Snail Mail. (Neptune)

Seattle Chamber Music Society Summer Festival. (Benaroya Hall)

“Sound healing” artists Rupert Sheldrake and Jill Purce. (Fremont Abbey)

African American Writers Alliance group reading. (Third Place Books Seward Park)

Mondegreens, TV Heads, Girls Named Tomorrow. (Sunset)

Le Grotto, Altons, Drench Fries. (Vera Project)

“Varsity Punks: The Movie” by Anthony Solorzano. (Varsity Theater, thru Tues)

Uneasy Chairs, Kole Galbraith, PTRKLLR. (Royal Room)

“The Principles Behind Flotation” author Maria Hummel. (Elliott Bay Book Co.)

Bruno Mars. (Tacoma Dome)

QUOTE-O-THE-DAY

(Marshall McLuhan):

"A point of view can be a dangerous luxury when substituted for insight and understanding."

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