Archive for July, 2008

in other blogs: geniuses, evil and otherwise

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photo by taylor hain [flickr] via our group pool [#]
  • Jason Fortuny, of horrible craigslist “experiment” infamy, winds up in the New York Times Sunday Magazine’s story about trolls and internet “culture”. [nyt via waxy]
  • Rainier Valley, loves or hates Seafair. [rainiervalleypost]
  • This kid, who will “jump for stuff” is going to put everyone else asking for change on his block out of business. [seattledailyphoto]
  • the Stranger crowns its latest crop of geniuses with cake and cash; a party for the rest of us follows on 13 September. Huge congratulations to Paul Mullin, Implied Violence, Wynne Greenwood, Sherman Alexie, and Lynn Shelton; and kudos to the paper for doing this every year. [slog]

Not all festivals this weekend involve jets

Bainbridge Island is just about one of the nicest places to be outdoors during the summer and this weekend it is made even nicer by Farmstock, a festival of art and music to raise awareness of historic farmland on Bainbridge Island. Hop on the ferry and head on over to the island on Saturday or Sunday for the free art and music expo that opens at 10 am and closes at 5 pm. There will be live music, art demonstrations and workshops, and a special invitational art exhibit with works by several talent artists. Also there will be excellent food from breakfast through dinner. In the evening time, there are a series of special concerts with ticket prices from $12 to $28 that includes Experience Music Sound Off Competition winners Army Corp of Architects and well known local jazz act Pearl Django. Tickets are available at the gate or online in advance. A weekend pass will cost you only $40.00 [tickets]

Stay on this side of the water and make your way to Judkins Park in Seattle for the Umojafest, the Northwest’s largest and oldest black community festival which runs from August 1st through the 3rd featuring a children’s day with over twenty fun activities for kids, a Hip Hop Youth Empowerment Rally and Talent Showcase, an African American day Parade, a basketball tourney, a gospel fest, all sorts of vendors and booths, an extremely excellent food court and much more. The festival has been happening for over 50 years and is always high quality fun.

Magnolia gets in on the action with their Magnolia Summerfest and Art Show. Neighborhood celebrations are always special because they’re inevitably a little quirky, tied to the unique qualities of their neighborhood. People in Magnolia apparently really love their art because the Magnolia Art Show is the main focus of their summer festival. If you head down the Magnolia Playfield this weekend, you’ll get a chance to check out the entrants and winners in the Adult and Youth Juried Art competitions as well as their poster contest.

the national and menomena love farmers, co-ops, and you

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the national, at sasquatch this summer

The National were far and away one of my favorite sets at Sasquatch this summer, probably because I didn’t believe that their whiskey-drenched epics could actually sound great outside. Thanks to low hanging clouds, a broken down van, and sunset I was proven insufficiently imaginative. They’ll be back in Seattle in September. Ywith Menomena (who sometimes travel with a big choir, other times with a giant saxophone to fill-in the laptop collages from their records) in support of midwest farmers whose crops were damaged by massive floods this summer. There’s a presale for the 19 September show running now [ticketmaster]; the password, “coopsrock” refers to the Cooperative Disaster Relief Fund, but in general, co-ops do rock.

Another thing that rocks: the t-shirt tie-in fundraiser for the Obama campaign referencing their “Mr. November”. [#]

520 bridge prepares for Botox injections to minimize signs of aging

uwcanoe
Photo by Piranesia

WSDOT has concluded that the aging 520 bridge is in good condition (all things considered) but found multiple small cracks throughout it’s surface. As long as the damn thing doesn’t sink while I’m on it, I can deal with some signs of aging.

Robin Williams Movie Filming in Sunset Hill – UPDATED

There’s a lot of activity going on in Sunset Hill today. Just got back from a run and they’ve closed two streets to parking and there are trailers and workmen everywhere. MyBallard reported a few weeks ago that they would be filming in the area and it looks like today’s the day. I’ll be checking back periodically to see what’s up, but here’s a shot of the setup work.

Updated: Yes, it appears to be the Robin Williams movie and there are a few more pictures after the jump.
(more…)

UW researchers think T. rex flesh = sludge

We (ok, I) love paleontology gossip [mb], and today the science blogs are full of it. A couple of years ago paleontologists in North Carolina found what they thought might have been soft tissue in some T. rex bones [sciam]. But now a team of researchers led by the UW’s Thomas Kaye are reporting that they think the soft tissue is actually a bacterial colony that mimics the properties of flesh [sciam].

“Kaye and other researchers first used a scanning electron microscope to probe the inner, cave-like chambers in dinosaur bone samples and noted striking similarities to the biofilms they reared and reaped from a bucket of pond water. The original dinosaur flesh-finders relied on a different approach, namely bone-dissolving acids that left behind bits of pliable material later characterized as soft tissue remnants. Kaye’s team duplicated this technique as well, and found that iron deposits, thought to be from prehistoric blood cells, were instead natural mineral formations called framboids.”

The original research team, at North Carolina State University, is having none of this bacterial sludge nonsense, pointing out that the UW’s study doesn’t address the recent genetic analyses of the goop that say that the T. rex’s closest living relative is the chicken. (Which, maybe they didn’t point that out because it’s a little embarrassing for the dinosaurs…)

In any case, it looks like this is shaping up to be an east coast vs. west coast paleontological throwdown. If only questions of science could be settled via dance-off.

In Case You Missed It – Seattle Metblogs Meetup Recap [Six Arms]

Last night was the Seattle Metblogs monthly meetup. This month we were at Six Arms in Capitol Hill. We had a huge turnout this month and were only missing 3 active authors from the site. We also met a few new friends and a potential new author (Hi JP!).

We had lots of tasty food, my favorite being the tots! We also apparently drank them out of their IPA and Wheat brews.

The shot above was just about the best one I could get in the dark upper section of the place. Initially a shot to show just how wide the fisheye is, I think it captures the meetup pretty well.

Don’t forget, our birthday party is coming up next month on the 14th. More details will be coming soon, so keep an eye out for that!

in other blogs: airplanes, adbusters, and damned statistics

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photo by viv | seattlebonvivant [flickr] via our group pool [#]
  • CHS founder to whine on the radio about the Blue Angels. [chs]
  • I often miss internet humor entirely, but this suggestion for how to improve the air show is awesome and funny and I really LOLed. Maybe jseattle can incorporate it into his interview. [seattlest]
  • Blaynelicious is back, pulling shots at Hotwire, while we wait to find out if he won Project Runway. [westseattleblog]
  • Too many errors of inference to refute; probably easier if Knute Berger just vows to step away from the statistics. [crosscut]
  • Adbusters really hates hipsters even though they must be a big slice of their readerbase. [adbusters, via fimoculous]

There’s no need to take sides

Over the weekend, there was a situation between cyclists and a driver that resulted in many citizens taking sides, making unreasonable demands, and multiple misunderstandings. From 300 miles away, I could see the tensions rising through blog posts, editorials, and biased articles in the daily papers. This situation will not go away overnight, but will linger for months it not longer. I spoke with a few folks in Eugene, OR on my visit there and they expressed shock and amazement that such an incident happened. Eugene demonstrates how cyclists and drivers can work together to make the road safe for almost everyone.

This morning, I rode my bicycle down the backside of Capitol Hill to the UW. Traveling at 30mph (the speed limit down the hill), I need to focus ahead to ensure that I don’t jam my tire into a rut or misalignment in the pavement while also keeping an eye on cross-traffic and pedestrians. A driver traveling in the left lane rolled down his window and screamed at me “GET OFF THE STREET B***H!” without provocation. I was shocked. Did this stem from the Critical Mass situation?

Regardless of which side you choose, bicycles and driver will have to continue to share the road. There are a few things that we as a whole can do to make this easier for everyone. The main one is to be considerate of others.

Cyclists: ride as predictable as possible. Use hand signals, don’t swerve between cars, pull to the side if you’re holding up traffic, and stop blowing through red lights. Sidewalk riding is legal, but yield to pedestrians and ride at a low level of speed (3-7mph is usually what I ride at).

Drivers: cyclists are aware that you are right next to them so act predictable. Don’t blow your horn or yell, it could cause an accident. If the bicycle is moving slower than the flow of traffic, pass when it is safe to do so. There is no need to punch the gas pedal, race ahead, then slam on the brakes to prove a point.

My rule of thumb has been the same for the 2 1/2 years that I have been biking around Seattle: bikes vs cars in an accident results in the car winning almost every time. It’s not worth my life. It’s also not worth aggravation/impatience/high blood pressure when a car or a bicycle delays my trip for a few minutes. If everyone cooperated together, respected each other, and became aware of one another, these kinds of incidents wouldn’t happen nearly as often. I am not taking sides here, I am making a stand to continue sharing the road whether I am the driver or riding my bicycle.

Wow, that place is strict.

Blatz beer, by flickr user slightlynorth
photo by our own slightlynorth [flickr]

I’ve heard of bars that were careful about underage drinking, but this is ridiculous. Down in Olympia, Gov. Chris Gregoire tried to head into a bar called Hannahs with her staff, but got turned away. Turns out she didn’t have her ID with her to prove her age.

Somebody tried to point out to the bouncer that Gregoire was the governor of Washington, but that didn’t get her in.

Which got me to thinking: How old do you have to be to be governor? Could we legally have an eighteen year old governor of the state, old enough to vote but not old enough to drink?

I took a look at the state constitution, and as far as I can tell, there’s no age rule in place. So, maybe the bouncer had a legitimate complaint. Sort of. If you closed your eyes and squinted real hard. Maybe having a beer would help.

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