Archive for February, 2009

Readings, signings, and other events vaguely literary for Sunday, March 1, 2009

2:00 PM – Gary White: Hall Brothers Shipbuilders
Abraxus Books
The author will discuss what it’s like to research a book for 35 years. 35 years! Can you believe that?

4:00 PM – Yu Hua: Brothers
Elliott Bay Book Co.
“Yu’s unflinching narrative, by turns tragic and hilarious, shows ordinary lives being broken down and built up again. Whether Baldy Li is peddling scraps or using Sun Tzu’s war tactics to court the village beauty, Hua weaves the common thread of humanity through all his actions and desires. By the last page, the novel has imparted a whole world of histories and personalities that are difficult to forget.” Publisher’s Weekly 01/09
6:00 PM – Holly M. Barker: Consequential Damages of Nuclear War: The Rongelap Report
Mockingbird Books
Barker is the former senior advisor to the Republic of the Marshall Islands Ambassador to the United States, and now teaches in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Washington. She’s also written Bravo for the Marshallese: Regaining Control in a Post-Nuclear, Post-Colonial World. In other words, she’s not only a wonk, she’s an activist. Woo!

7:00 PM – Red Sky Poetry Reunion
Richard Hugo House, Cabaret, $5.00
A tribute to the late Irene Drennan, with Esther Helfgott, Priscilla Long, Denise Calvetti-Michaels, Anne Sweet and Diane Westergaard.

Scene Around Seattle

Sunset Elliot Bay
[by G Stonebraker via our Flickr Pool]

in other blogs: some late agenda items and some getting-to-know-yous

photo by kate [flickr] via our group pool [#].
  • belated agenda: David Schmader’s conversion comedy, Straight, is playing on Friday and Saturday night at the Annex theater [bpt] before he takes the show on the road to Dallas. [seattlegayscene]
  • belated agenda: the poster for tonight’s Kinski + AFCGT show at the Comet tonight is every bit as trippy and fuzzed out as the bands will sound. [subsonic]
  • glass vs. plastic, choose your side in the battle of the chandeliers. [arttogo]
  • Moxie is closing this weekend. It’s being reborn as a fancy Vietnamese place and run by one of the guys from the Capitol Hill Baguette Box (or so I heard while picking up a sandwich last week). [dailyweekly]
  • Is this even a contest? Twilight versus Harry Potter at the Central Library? The debate goes down on 21 March. [citizenrain]
  • the story of the Loveless Building revealed! More importantly, the fact that there’s a one bedroom for rent. [capitolhillseattle]
  • Meet the current crop of Sound Off semi-finalists through the power of internet filmmaking. [lineout]

Readings, signings, and other events vaguely literary for Saturday, February 28, 2009

cape-disappointment12:00 PM – Earl Emerson: Cape Disappointment
Seattle Mystery Bookshop
After a 10 year hiatus, Seattle private eye Thomas Black is back… sort of. Recuperating in the hospital after being severely injured in an explosion which may or may not have killed his wife, Black suffers from flashbacks and hallucinations, in this disturbing addition to the series.

2:00 PM – Bruce Barcott: The Last Flight of the Scarlet Macaw: One Woman’s Fight to Save the World’s Most Beautiful Bird
SPL Central Branch, Level 1, Microsoft Auditorium
Sharon Matola dedicated her life to caring for orphaned animals at the Belize Zoo. When local government and developers conspired to build a dam that threatened the Scarlet Macaw’s only nesting grounds in that country, Matola risked her life to save this magnificent bird. Barcott’s book tells the story.

2:00 PM – Flint Whitlock: Turbulence Before Takeoff
Museum of Flight
William M. Allen Theater
US airlines refused to hire African-American pilots until the mid-60s, when Marlon DeWitt Green challenged segregation in the industry. Set within the larger American civil rights battle, this is a fascinating glimpse into one man’s struggle for equality and justice.

2:00 PM – Stephen Mitchell: The Second Book of the Tao
Elliott Bay Book Co.
The poet, writer, and translator will discuss and sign his new book. Mitchell is married to self-help guru Byron Katie.

2:00 PM – Workshop w/ Robert J. Ray, Ph.D: The Weekend Novelist Keeps Going!
SPL, Greenwood Branch
Dr. Ray presents a workshop for novelists who have stalled out at the 50-100 page point. Ray is a published writer and has taught literature at the college level.

2:00 PM – Tony Wolk: Lincoln’s Daughter
SPL, Montlake Branch
The Portland writer returns to discuss the final novel in his trilogy about a time-traveling Abe Lincoln. Copies will be available for purchase and signing.
4:30 PM – Xinran: China Witness: Voices from a Silent Generation
Elliott Bay Book Co.
EBB Co. works a theme with Chinese-born, London-based author Xinran. China Witness provides an account of the rise of communism from the perspectives of the people who lived it, as well as modern reformers.

7:00 PM – African-American Writers Alliance: Group Reading
Elliott Bay Book Co.
Join Elliott Bay Books to wrap up African-American History Month with their annual group reading by Seattle’s African-American Writers’ Alliance.

7:30 PM – Rose Alley Press: Poetry Reading
Richard Hugo House, Alice Room
Robinson Bolkum, Nancy Dahlberg, Karen Finneyfrock and Robert Lashley read.

weekend agenda : musical suggestions

I’ve been waiting for months for an excuse to use one of these Throw Me The Statue Photos by Tae Rhee [flickr], via the band. [myspace]

  • Friday is the last night for King Cobra. Say goodbye with a show featuring eleven loud fast rock bands: Neon Nights, All Bets On Death, the Altar Boys, Flexx Bronco, the Pranks, the Valkyries, the Greatest Hits, Hypatia Lake, Blue Ribbon Boys, the Wrecked Chords, Pain Cocktail. It all starts at 5pm and is free. [threeimaginarygirls]


  • Even if the headliner was someone less compelling than Antony & the Johnsons, I think I’d probably still recommend that you fork over the $30 price of admission to see Throw Me The Statue in the opening spot. But with the otherworldly spectacle of Antony [stereogum] following the infectious pop hooks of one of my favorite band of locals it’s all the more worthwhile. [themoore]
  • Alternately, save some money and let the increasingly buzzworthy Pica Beats “stir your loins” at the Comet [soundonthesound] or watch the latest batch of up-and-coming underage contenders battle it out at the EMP’s SoundOff competition to find out who among Cyrus Fell Down, Kids Get Hit by Buses, Razpy & the Vigilantes, or SOL will be heading to next week’s big finale to face-off against Dyno Jamz, Makeup Monsters. [empsfm]

Weekend Film Agenda February 27

One of my favorite films of last year’s SIFF was Ben X, the visually stimulating, emotionally engaging story of a teenaged boy with Asperger’s Syndrome and his struggles with life around him, particularly the bullies who make his every school day a burden. How long can he bear this weight before he snaps and what happens when he does? Director Nic Balthazar’s provocative film plays this week at SIFF Cinema and I highly recommend seeing it. (For some additional background on the movie, check out the story I wrote after speaking with Balthazar.)

NWFF continues their tribute to the creative spirit of filmmaking in 1969 with They Shoot Horses, Don’t They, starring Jane Fonda and Michael Sarrazin as a pair of Depression-era drifters struggling to keep their feet during an extended dance marathon and Midnight Cowboy, one of the best and yet also the bleakest stories of male bonding ever put to film with brilliant performances by Jon Voight and Dustin Hoffman as two unlikely pals united in a struggle for survival in seedy NYC.

Also at NWFF: an extension of Medicine for Melancholy, a thoughtful character driven study on class, race and place played out as a just-met pair get to know each other while they walk through San Francisco.

Midnight at the Egyptian: quirky, glossy sci fi actioner Starship Troopers, tarted up from a book by Robert Heinlein by noted AND notorious director Paul Voerhoven.

Another week, another Akira Kurosawa classic at the Grand Illusion. This time it’s Yojimbo, a gripping tale of a samurai who exploits a war between rival clans for his own advantage.

At Central Cinema: three very different women stuck in varying ruts are linked together by the gym steamroom they all share and the need to find a way out of their go-nowhere lives.

Upcoming: Metro Cinemas brings back their Wednesday night classics series March 4 with The Maltese Falcon; following weeks bring Barbarella, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, My Own Private Idaho, Forbidden Planet, Kiss Me Kate, A Fistful of Dollars, The Fly (the 1986 version), and Pennies from Heaven.

The Metro also presents a special preview screening on Thursday March 5th of The Watchmen, one of the most highly anticipated and hyped films in recent memory. At this point there’s probably no middle ground left for this adaptation of Alan Moore’s classic comic miniseries about an alternate earth where costumed superheroes are just another part of ordinary life and a disturbing conspiracy threatens the lives of everyone on the planet–it is either going to be a smash sucesss or a big bust. If you don’t already have tickets, you’re not getting in Thursday (and probably not on official opening day March 6, either), but you could always swing by to gauge the existing audience’s reactions.

Readings, signings, and other events vaguely literary for Friday, February 27, 2009

cream-puff-murder12:00 PM – Joanne Fluke: Cream Puff Murder
Seattle Mystery Bookshop
The 11th Hannah Swenson cookery cozy, in which our baking heroine finds a fitness instructor dead in the water. Ja, sure, you betcha!

5:30 PM – Richard Seireeni: The Gort Cloud: How Ecopreneuers and Their Customers are Building Brands for the Age of Sustainability
Elliott Bay Book Co.
Seireeni is a brand consultant and “creative executive” who proposes to teach readers how to take advantage of a green(er) economy. I have a serious issue with authors (or in this case, brand consultants that write books) who coin words. Gort Cloud, Ecopreneurs, Greenwashing… Give me strength.

7:00 PM – Joni Sensel: The Farwalker’s Quest
Secret Garden Bookshop
The Secret Garden really knows how to celebrate a book launch! With food, beverages, and a reflexologist/masseuse on hand, the Secret Garden throws a lovely party for Sensel’s latest teen fantasy novel.
7:30 PM – Azadeh Moaveni: Honeymoon in Tehran: Two Years of Love and Danger in Iran
Elliott Bay Book Co.
Moaveni returns to Elliott Bay Books with her new memoir, which covers her return to Iran in the hopes of making Tehran her home. Moaveni is a US-born Iranian-American journalist, and now lives in London.

7:30 PM – Quincy Jones: The Complete Quincy Jones: My Journey & Passions: Photos, Letters, Memories & More from Q’s Personal Collection
Quincy Jones Performance Center
Garfield High School
Garfield alum and American icon, Quincy Jones, visits his alma mater to discuss The Complete Quincy Jones with Carver Gayton. Sponsored by Garfield High, the NW African-American Museum, and Elliott Bay Books, this is a terrific opportunity for fans, but a spectacular opportunity for students. In other words, if you are over 18, don’t hog the good seats.

Jones Soda to introduce new drink: Jones Gaba

Who: Jones Soda

What: To demonstrate the focus and clarity achieved from drinking Jones GABA, Jones Soda will be on-site with “mindball,” a game where players use brainwave activity to move a ball.

When: Friday, February 27, 2009

11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Best photo op between 12 – 1 p.m.

Where: Metropolitan Market: Uptown (Lower Queen Anne)

100 Mercer St.
Seattle, WA 98109
(206) 213-0778

International Teachers Teaching with Technology conference

Washington recently scored a C on its focus on math, science, and engineering, and also scored a C on its ability to prepare students for college, work, and life, according to the Citizens’ Report Card from the League of Education Voters Foundation. There are many key factors that contributed to this issue. It’s time to propose solutions. State teachers are joining together with teachers from all over the nation to discuss utilizing technology to close the gap, to increase the state’s grade, to help students in the future.

(press release after the jump)

Hockey Challenge 2009 this Saturday at the Showare Center

Seattle’s Acolatse and Portland’s Jordan drop the gloves on Valentine’s Day
Originally uploaded by Zee Grega.

Way back in 1998, the US and Canadian Microsoft Exchange workgroups decided to have a hockey game to build morale and turned it into a fundraiser to support their charitable giving. They had such a good time with their competition that they turned it into an annual tradition in association with the Seattle Thunderbirds and other supporters. The Seattle Ronald McDonald House is the grateful recepient of their munificence – last year alone they raised over $110K and have raised more than $3.6 million over the years.

This year’s Seattle hockey challenge is on Saturday, February 28 at the ShoWare Center in Kent. The first of six games between Hockey Challenge teams begins early in the day at 9 am with games continuing throughout the day until the Thunderbirds step on the ice to take on long-time rival Portland Winterhawks in what will inevitably be, as all Seattle/Portland games are–an exciting match-up. Knocked out of the playoffs yet again, the Hawks are playing for pride while the TBirds are jockeying for position in the upcoming playoff slotting, amping up the thrills on the ice as the two teams battle for the win.

Following that game is the special Hockey Challenge All-Star game featuring Michael Rosenbaum, best known for his role on TV’s “Smallville”, Jason Thompson from “General Hospital”, Cameron Bancroft (“24: Day 4”, “Hockeyville”), “Adam @ Home” and “Red and Rover” cartoonist Brian Basset, 2006 US Women’s Hockey Olympic medalist Kelly Tysland (nee Stephens), KCPQ news anchor Bill Wixey, and KJR radio host Ian Furness, as well as former Thunderbirds Jamie Huscroft, Al Kinisky, Regan Mueller, Blake Knox, Troy Hyatt, Lloyd Shaw, and Danny Lorenz.

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