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MISCmedia MAIL for 9/8/16: STILL RE-BARRING
Sep 7th, 2016 by Clark Humphrey

We note a quarter century of a pioneering pan-genre, pan-gender performance/dance space (and the site of a memorable Cobain hissyfit). Also of note today: a famous 9/11 flag found in Everett (probably); a specialty clinic for trans teens; a drop in local greenhouse gases (that still isn’t enough); a call for a lot more bus service; and the loss of a legendary Capitol Hill pizza hawker.

MISCmedia MAIL for 8/23/16: A DIP IN THE MONEY POOL
Aug 22nd, 2016 by Clark Humphrey

Global speculators, having been made less than welcome in Vancouver, are already driving Seattle real estate even higher. In other Tuesday topix: wildfires are back; airlines (and Sea-Tac) boom while Boeing struggles; Councilmember Herbold wants a replacement for the despised old business “head tax”; and Town Hall’s selling off its parking lots for two towers.

MISCmedia MAIL for 8/18/16: DON’T BE AFRAID OF THE DORK
Aug 18th, 2016 by Clark Humphrey

We’ve got a graphic example of how to avoid looking grotesquely “fake hip,” by visually celebrating your geek. Plus: how not to headline a story about a white supremacist’s violent crime; Seattle’s “most dangerous street” gets a little less so; a trans singer-songwriter tries to find his voice again (literally); and the heat’s gonna be brutal.

MISCmedia MAIL for 8/11/16: THE SOUND OF SCHMOOZE-IC
Aug 11th, 2016 by Clark Humphrey

Paul Allen’s next big local spectacular will be a music festival and industry confab, coming to Pioneer Square in May. And we also look at another Black Lives Matter march; a fish-processing plant proposed for the soon-to-be-ex Weyerhaeuser campus; feudin’ whales; and an ex-governor’s questionable real-estate sale.

MISCmedia MAIL for 7/21/16: THE MOST SCENIC GROUND ZERO
Jul 20th, 2016 by Clark Humphrey

What activists in the ’70s couldn’t stop is still with us, a nuclear-sub base on the Sound. Also with us: gentrification in the CD marches on; a river’s being moved away from a highway; YouTube’s trans stars; and a (different) retro video game inspires a new micro-park.

IS SOLSTICE IN ITS AUTUMN?
Jun 19th, 2016 by Clark Humphrey

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Once again, the Fremont Solstice parade has arrived and left.

This year, the threat of rain may have kept the audience smaller than previously.

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Not in short supply were the body-paint bicyclists (and more-or-less clothed bicyclists, and just plain nude bicyclists, and walkers, and skateboarders).

Much as the Seafair hydro races have become, to many fans, the sideshow to their own intermission act (the Blue Angels), the Solstice Parade has become, to many, merely the footnote to its unofficial and unorganized prelude.

purple prince boat

As the annual corps of paint people and their pals has grown, the parade itself has shrank. This year’s edition barely ran 45 minutes.

There were the usual ethnic and pseudo-ethnic dance troupes.

There were the usual floats and dancers celebrating summer, environmentalism, nature, and wholesome “quirkiness.”

There was a tribute to Prince with a purple-boat float.

'no sweeps' 2 copy

'no sweeps' 1

The main “political” statement at the parade was made by homeless advocates. They depicted Mayor Ed Murray with a broom, trying to literally “sweep” away a bunch of street people and car-dwellers; while marchers carried signs (conforming to the parade’s traditional rule against written words) exhorting people to call Murray to support housing and denounce sweeps of encampments.

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I’d hoped to, but didn’t, see anything in the parade expressing solidarity with the Orlando victims and families, and forthrightly expressing LGBTQ solidarity. Apparently that happened too soon for parade volunteers to build moving artwork and costumes.

The bike brigade did include several folk proudly sporting rainbow-flag paint. These two held barbells labeled LOVE.

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While other “alt” gatherings around town, such as Pride and Hempfest, remain big, Solstice this year seemed to be in decline.

Is it that Seattle’s finally getting done, after all these decades, with the cultural aesthetic of baby-boomer mellow? Or is it that Solstice has no specific, single “cause” behind it?

Parade organizers do plan to do something about it, starting next year.

They want the bicyclists to register as official participants, subject to official event rules.  They don’t specifically say they’ll order the bikers to cover up, but they’ll assert the right to make such decrees.

If Solstice does have a “cause,” it’s celebrating an extended family, a virtual “tribe,” built around creativity, joy, and personal freedom.

If its leaders try to rein in the event’s most basic (and most popular) expression of such freedom, its decline could get worse.

POSTSCRIPT: The Fremont Solstice Fair is much larger than the parade itself. There’s the big street fair. There’s the HONK! Fest West, a festival of alternative “street bands.” There’s the display of art cars. And there’s the live music, which this year was even more impressive than in past years. Even if the parade declines in interest, the rest of the fair still goes strong.

MISCmedia MAIL for 6/13/16
Jun 12th, 2016 by Clark Humphrey

Making sense of the senseless: I can’t even try. But I try anyway. I also look at the paucity of women on local corporate boards; more trouble for Western State Hospital; a worker walkout at a strawberry farm; and an attack of “Diarrhetic Shellfish Poison.”

MISCmedia MAIL for 5/30/16
May 29th, 2016 by Clark Humphrey

In your Monday missive: The Mariners lose at home again; Central Washington’s wildfire season’s underway already, as seen by Sasquatch! festival-goers; Seattle’s black community’s increasingly a diaspora; a local high-school shooting becomes a streaming-TV-drama subplot; and who really sends the most anti-woman Tweets® and does it matter?

MISCmedia MAIL for 5/16/16
May 15th, 2016 by Clark Humphrey

We’re all still Mariners fans after this past weekend, right? Also under review: High-school students take charge of trans-bathroom activism; oil protesters arrested on train tracks; how the KPLU/KUOW deal really went down; a new site for the Punk Rock Flea Market (replacing the previous new site); and Amazon’s threat to every mall and clothing store.

MISCmedia MAIL for 5/13/16
May 12th, 2016 by Clark Humphrey

Our Friday the 13th topics include the full-on start of local wildfire season; an attempt to adopt an income tax in (at least part of) Washington; school dress codes and their discontents; the death of a great Northwest novelist; and the decaying bones of drive-in theaters past.

MISCmedia MAIL for 5/6/16
May 5th, 2016 by Clark Humphrey

Sheila E. won’t let personal tragedy interfere with work for Seattle’s young musicians. Also noteworthy today: Big tech fails in SR520 tolling; coal and oil export-terminal plans proceed despite industry upheavals; tacky, potentially racist Cinco de Mayo apparel; Seattle (er, Kent) is posed for a hockey championship; and Paul Allen’s new twist on “cross-marketing synergy.”

MISCmedia MAIL for 5/5/16
May 4th, 2016 by Clark Humphrey

It’s (a potentially four-day) Cinco de Mayo, just as America’s most prominent Hispanophobe inches closer to the highest office in the land. In other subjects, sales of a tech-office staple take a dive; the Lynnwood lawyer with the sexist Tweets® against the City Council is already in trouble; the City contracts out homeless-removal to a private company; and Seattle’s biggest obsolete piece of office equipment’s moving.

MISCmedia MAIL for 4/29/16
Apr 29th, 2016 by Clark Humphrey

Welcome to Viageddon! And to another potential May Day of window-bustin! We also view a City attempt to keep snooping into garbage; a potential partial breakthrough in the Sodo arena fracas; drones maybe getting too close to whales; and the usual gazillion weekend activities including Indie Bookstore Day.

MISCmedia MAIL for 4/26/16
Apr 25th, 2016 by Clark Humphrey

The Mariners won at home! And we also peer at more folk who want more light rail and they don’t mean decades from now; the eco-cost of the new Arboretum trail; a Seattle/Mexico joint theater project; local delivery trucks with out-of-state plates; and the business case for a $15/hr. wage.

MISCmedia MAIL for 4/19/16
Apr 18th, 2016 by Clark Humphrey

In the heat-O-the-night, we observe a West Seattle landmark restored; an important GLBTQ institution threatened; a Hanford waste tank leaking; car-share service in the south end lacking; and Nordstrom’s Seattle office staff shrinking.

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