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FEBRUARY 19-25, 2014 I VOLUME 39 I NUMBER 8

SEATTLEWEEKLY.COM I FREE

WHO WILL STOP THE SCOURGE OF RISING RENTS? PAGE 5 | STAGE: S&M AT ACT! PAGE 21


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SEATTLE WEEKLY • FEBRUARY 19 — 25, 2014


inside»   February 19–25, 2014 VOLUME 39 | NUMBER 8

» SEATTLEWEEKLY.COM

»9

»17

news&comment 5

SHOCK OF THE BAY

EDITORIAL

BY KELTON SEARS | Affordable-

Senior Editor Nina Shapiro

housing advocates take steps to avoid becoming like San Francisco.

Food Editor Nicole Sprinkle

5 | SEATTLELAND 7 | SPORTSBALL

8

Editor-in-Chief Mark Baumgarten

THE $15 QUESTION BY NINA SHAPIRO | What it’s like to

try to survive on Washington’s current minimum wage: Hear the stories behind the debate.

food&drink 15 BEYOND FRENCH’S

BY PATRICK HUTCHISON | Meet Seattle’s pioneers of artisanal mustard. 15 | FOOD NEWS/TEMP CHECK 16 | THE BAR CODE

arts&culture 17 MIRÓ IN AUTUMN

BY BRIAN MILLER | A SAM survey of

the Spanish artist’s later work. 18 | PICK LIST 21 | OPENING NIGHTS | Pedophile

priests, an apocalyptic quest, and an S&M tango.

25 FILM

OPENING THIS WEEK | Will Forte goes to Ireland, Elizabeth Olsen as a killer in 19th-century France, and the last of Hayao Miyazaki. 27 | FILM CALENDAR

29 MUSIC

Ani DiFranco pays tribute to a folkie forebear. Also: Mark Kozelek gets nostalgic for Ohio and a contemporary Christian rapper goes maverick. 29 | SEVEN NIGHTS

odds&ends

34 | THE GEEKLY REPORT 35 | CLASSIFIEDS

»cover credits

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Editorial Operations Manager Gavin Borchert Staff Writers Ellis E. Conklin, Matt Driscoll, Kelton Sears Editorial Interns Margery Cercado, Colleen Fontana, Imana Gunawan Contributing Writers Rick Anderson, Sean Axmaker, James Ballinger, Michael Berry, Sara Billups, Steve Elliott, Margaret Friedman, Zach Geballe, Dusty Henry, Megan Hill, Robert Horton, Patrick Hutchison, Sara D. Jones, Seth Kolloen, Sandra Kurtz, Dave Lake, John Longenbaugh, Jessie McKenna, Terra Clarke Olsen, Kevin Phinney, Keegan Prosser, Mark Rahner, Michael Stusser, Jacob Uitti PRODUCTION Production Manager Christopher Dollar Art Director Karen Steichen Graphic Designers Jennifer Lesinski, Sharon Adjiri Photo Interns Joshua Bessex, Kyu Han ADVERTISING Advertising and Marketing Director Jen Larson Advertising Sales Manager, Arts Carol Cummins Senior Account Executives Krickette Wozniak Account Executives Peter Muller, Sam Borgen Classifieds Account Executive Matt Silvie DISTRIBUTION Distibution Manager Jay Kraus OPERATIONS Administrative Coordinator Amy Niedrich PUBLISHER Wendy Geldien COPYRIGHT © 2014 BY SOUND PUBLISHING, INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. REPRODUCTION IN WHOLE OR IN PART WITHOUT PERMISSION IS PROHIBITED. ISSN 0898 0845 / USPS 306730 • SEATTLE WEEKLY IS PUBLISHED WEEKLY BY SOUND PUBLISHING, INC., 307 THIRD AVE. S., SEATTLE, WA 98104 SEATTLE WEEKLY® IS A REGISTERED TRADEMARK. PERIODICALS POSTAGE PAID AT SEATTLE, WA POSTMASTER: SEND ADDRESS CHANGES TO SEATTLE WEEKLY, 307 THIRD AVE. S., SEATTLE, WA 98104 • FOUNDED 1976. MAIN SWITCHBOARD: 206-623-050 0 CLASSIFIED ADVERTISING: 206-623-6231 RETAIL AND ONLINE ADVERTISING: 206-467-4341

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news&comment As high-income tech workers flood Seattle, can we preserve affordable housing?

BY KELTON SEARS

O

BEN HORAK

average to be $1,279. While that number might look a lot nicer than $2,713, it’s still not very affordable—and becomes increasingly frightening when paired with a 2013 study that designated Seattle as the #1 city in the nation for rent hikes, with an average six percent increase per year. To the masked protesters’ credit, experts at the forum unanimously agreed that the record rent hike was due to job growth in the region—jobs from companies like Amazon and Microsoft. Developers in turn have produced new high-density condos and apartments that have changed the face of neighborhoods like Capitol Hill and Ballard, where construction cranes now loom overhead year-round. But those protesters might

affordable housing as more and more highpaying techies flock to our city.? On February 13, just three days later, an Expert Advisory Team created by the Seattle City Council to look into the state of the city’s affordable housing programs attempted to answer those questions during a day-long public Workforce Housing Forum. The answers to both questions seemed to be yes. Comprising consultants from Otak and Cornerstone Partnership, two affordable housing firms, the panel seemed hopeful that as Seattle grows, it can also avoid skyrocketing rents. “I think there are important similarities between Seattle and San Francisco—there’s sort of an underlying common dynamic,” says Rick Jacobus, the director of Cornerstone Partnership. But, he adds, “Seattle’s at a much earlier stage in the process, and the good news is that you have a much better chance at avoiding what’s happening in San Francisco—especially the gentrification. San Francisco’s population economically has just changed really dramatically. The city more or less responded to that change after it was over. Seattle is now in the middle of that sort of change, so you have a much better chance at preserving affordability for working people.” Right now, the monthly rent for a onebedroom unit in San Francisco averages $2,713. In Seattle, the Expert Advisory Team found the

be heartened by the news that in May the city council will begin revising our current affordable-housing programs. One major revision might be to expand the narrow swath of the city currently targeted by the incentive zoning program, which rewards developers for building affordable units. There is also a suggestion to get rid of parking requirements in the zoning code, which reduces the number of units developers can build and thus lowers supply and increases rent. Another potential solution came from the concerned citizens and local housing experts that made up the public forum’s audience: Change the definition of “workforce housing.” Currently, “workforce housing,” which is what the council is looking to create more of in the upcoming revision to the housing resolution, is defined as housing for people earning 60 to 80 percent of the average median income in Seattle. What the council should be focusing on, according to many at the forum, is the 50 to 60 percent average median income range. That idea, said Kurt Creager of Otak, will indeed make its way into the Expert Advisory Team’s final recommendations to the council in May. In the end, the biggest hope for Seattle in avoiding its seemingly imminent San Francisco fate is its citizens—though they might do more good in the seats at City Hall than in the streets with banners sprawled. E ksears@seattleweekly.com

THE WEEKLY BRIEFING | What’s going on at seattleweekly.com: Washington’s most conservative congressman,

a

Doc Hastings, is calling it a career. He says he wants to spend more time with his family. No word on how his family feels about the The Streamline Tavern in Lower Queen Anne is on the way out to make room for the Korean Consulate. Ex-Prisons Direcdecision. tor Dick Morgan explained why he turned against the death penalty: It’s a waste of money and governments shouldn’t be killing people.

Y

ou might have heard about the AllAmerica football player who made headlines declaring he’s gay. He had struggled with family and religious conflicts, but decided he could no longer live a closeted life. He chose to come out in a prearranged media interview that stunned some friends and fellow athletes. The ensuing chorus of cheers and boos included BY RICK ANDERSON remarks from players expressing shame at having nakedly shared a locker room with him. What would it have been like if they’d had Twitter and Facebook back then? I asked 71-yearold Dave Kopay on the telephone last week. “I probably would have heard a lot worse than I did,” said the former University of Washington running back and the first professional athlete to openly declare, after his playing days, that he was homosexual. “Obviously, before the Internet, there weren’t as many media outlets. I did just one major interview, with David Susskind. It was great. I never felt more at peace in that big, dark TV studio.” That was in 1975, three years after the 6-foot, 220-pound ex-Husky ball carrier had retired from nine seasons in the NFL. He contacted Lynn Rosellini, then a journalist at the since-folded Washington Star (and the daughter of Gov. Al Rosellini), who did the reveal: The respected pro who ran the ball Dave Kopay at Seattle’s and returned Pride Parade in 2010. kicks for five teams including the 49ers, Packers, and Redskins (where his lover was teammate Jerry Smith) announced he is, was, and always will be gay. He followed up with the publication of his tell-all best-seller, The David Kopay Story, describing a struggle to play it straight in a queer body. He underwent psychotherapy and hypnosis in hopes of finding a cure, then realized he wasn’t sick. When he let the nation know his secret, he told me, he was overwhelmed by the acceptance he received from former teammates and coaches. “I’m a lot older and more emotional today,” said Kopay from his home in Los Angeles, which he plans, upon his death, to donate to the UW as part of his $1 million pledge in cash and holdings to the university’s Q Center, a help haven for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender students and staff. “And when I think of the support I’ve gotten”—he pauses—“I tear up. Sorry.”

SEATTLELAND

SE ATTLE WEEKLY • FE BRUARY 19 — 25, 2014

n February 10, as the workday was getting under way, masked protesters walked into the busy Capitol Hill intersection of Bellevue Avenue and Pine Street. They unfurled a banner reading GENTRIFICATION STOPS HERE and stood, blocking commuters in cars and Metro buses, for 45 minutes—all casualties of war in an effort to stall their intended targets, the Microsoft Connector buses. These corporate buses transport Microsoft employees living in Seattle to the tech giant’s campus in Redmond—something the protesters didn’t like very much, according to the flyers they handed out at the scene: “We’re trying to prevent the tech companies like Microsoft from sucking out what’s left of Seattle’s soul. The Microsoft Connector bus is an active agent in the hyper-gentrification of Capitol Hill and other rapidly transforming Seattle Neighborhoods . . . Well-paid tech industry employees have flooded Seattle’s neighborhoods, driving up the cost of living.” Facebook and Reddit lit up after the Capitol Hill protest. A cascade of Seattleites weighed in, almost evenly split between people who claimed the protesters had a point, those who thought they were complete idiots, and those who thought the protesters had a point and were complete idiots. What everyone could agree on was that the masked traffic-blockers were clearly riffing on the Google Bus protests in San Francisco, a city that’s indisputably succumbed to an insane influx of tech workers and a subsequent steep housing price hike. Over the past three months, protests of the Google Bus in San Francisco have become increasingly tense, with citizens decrying Google’s private use of public bus stops. The larger issue in the Google Bus protest is the gentrification that has accompanied the shuttles— rent next to Google Bus stops has increased 20 percent since the routes began. Unlike the Google Bus, Microsoft Connector buses don’t use Metro bus stops at all, and are completely city-approved. The complaint San Franciscans have about Google Buses backing up public-transit traffic is also absent from the Seattle conversation; the protesters blocked traffic longer than a Microsoft Connector ever has. But the questions remain: Is Seattle on its way to becoming San Francisco? Can we preserve

Dave Kopay Blocks for Michael Sam

JIM SIMANDL

The Curse of San Francisco

» CONTINUED ON PAGE 7 5


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news&comment Kopay » FROM PAGE 5 The uproar from Kopay’s sexual declaration almost 40 years ago is the forerunner of the ongoing ruckus over Michael Sam’s similar announcement. If the University of Missouri defensive lineman becomes, as expected, a middle-round pick in the May NFL draft, he’d be the league’s first openly gay active player. Like Kopay, he’s an All-American, announced his homosexuality through media interviews, and had to deal with family prejudices. (Sam’s father told a reporter, “I’m old-school. I’m a man-anda-woman type of guy,” later claiming he was misquoted.) Likewise, New Orleans linebacker Jonathan Vilma said what some players said when Kopay came out: “Imagine if he’s the guy next to me and, you know, I get dressed, naked, taking a shower, the whole nine, and it just so happens he looks at me. How am I supposed to respond?” Kopay laughed at that one. “What rock has he been living under? There were other gays in the NFL when I played, they’ve been there since, they’re there today. Respond like you always have. They’re your teammates.” Raised in a Catholic family in Chicago and

“There were other gays in the NFL when I played, they’ve been there since, they’re there today.”

randerson@seattleweekly.com

Journalist and author Rick Anderson writes about crime, money, and politics, which tend to be the same thing.

L

ost in the justifiable Seahawks hype was some of the best off-field sports news of the year: Reign FC will play its home games at Seattle Center’s 12,000-capacity Memorial Stadium this summer. The Reign—Seattle’s franchise in the National Women’s Soccer BY SETH KOLLOEN League— employs some of the best-known female athletes in America. Like Hope Solo, who I believe is the only active Seattle athlete who’s written an autobiography. Megan Rapinoe and Sydney Leroux will also be familiar names if you followed the 2011 World Cup or the 2012 Olympics. Each took home a gold medal from London as part of the U.S. women’s national team, each scored a goal along the way, and each will start for the Reign. Last year the Reign played at Starfire Sports Complex. If you don’t know where that is, you aren’t alone—barely 2,000 people made their way to the average Reign game in 2013. For the record, Starfire is in the outskirts of Tukwila, along the Green River, next to that trendy hot spot, the “Family Fun Center & Bullwinkle’s Restaurant.” Starfire is a terrific location if you like to pre-funk by ruminating on serial murder or playing Skee-Ball. But most soccer fans—especially young ones who can be reliably expected to show up and make noise—prefer to hang out in bars and drink. Lower Queen Anne provides many agreeable options. “Being a Seattle team, it’s ideal to be in Seattle,” Reign owner Bill Predmore told the indispensable local soccer blog Sounder at Heart, and it’s hard to argue. Of course, nothing’s perfect, and questions must be asked: 1) Will suburban family types brave the parking challenges of Queen Anne? 2) Will Memorial Stadium’s archaic bathroom facilities discourage return visits? 3) Will the lack of beer—since the Seattle School District owns it, Memorial is bonedry—keep fans away? 4) When, on the night of June 28, Cher plays KeyArena and the Reign hosts New Jersey’s Sky Blue FC, how will I choose? Season tickets are on sale now, starting at $14 per match. (High rollers can snag a $200/ match VIP table for four.) Had I not already sprung for Storm tickets—which I’m regretting now that all-World forward Lauren Jackson is out for the season . . . again—the Reign would already have my credit card on file. As it stands, I’m sure I’ll make it to a few games, especially among the five July and August home dates. Queen Anne bar-hopping followed by worldclass soccer? What better way to spend a long, sunny Seattle summer evening? And if the Reign don’t end up doubling their attendance in 2013, I’ll eat Christmas dinner at Bullwinkle’s. E

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SE ATTLE WEEKLY • FE BRUARY 19 — 25, 2014

then L.A., Kopay had been attracted to males as a teen and secretly dated men throughout his college days. It was a persistent charade that required he also date women. He remembers a great week before the 1964 Rose Bowl, when, as Husky co-captain, he escorted the Rose Queen around Los Angeles while he was dating a UW fraternity brother. (The love of his life, as Kopay called him, was later killed in Vietnam.) In Kopay’s view, San Francisco and Seattle would be the more receptive teams and cities for Mizzou’s gay lineman. Malcolm Smith, the Seahawks Super Bowl MVP, has already sent a welcoming tweet, saying to those who might object, “There is no room for bigotry in American sports.” Seattle fullback Michael Robinson seems wary, however. “If a guy sees you hanging with a guy like that, I mean, I don’t know,” he told NFL.com. “It’s different. I feel like this is just a game-changer.” Kopay says he didn’t expect to change the world in 1975, but feels gay rights and acceptance have leaped forward in the last decade. Attitudes like Robinson’s are “just ignorance,” he says. Seattle Coach “Pete Carroll’s influence and power and the way he’s managed that team, I think, suggest he’d quickly deal with that nonsense.” As for Sam, whom Kopay met at an L.A. dinner party last week, he should just be himself, Kopay wrote in an open letter on OutSports. com. But “when it comes to the NFL Combine and then training camp: You need to bring it like you have never brought it before.” In other words, if you’re going to be a trailblazing player everyone will be watching, be sure you make the freakin’ team. E

Reign Forecast for Seattle Center

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SEATTLE WEEKLY • FEBRUARY 19 — 25, 2014

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the idea that low-wage earners are just teenagers has been widely debunked. So who exactly are the least-paid among us? BY NINA SHAPIRO A checked flannel jacket thrown over

Jason Harvey

his Burger King uniform and scrunched-up shopping bags under his arm, Jason Harvey clocks off work at 3 o’clock one drizzly January afternoon and sets out to get groceries for the week. His destination: the Ballard Food Bank. Using shortcuts he’s learned over the years, it takes Harvey 10 minutes to walk to the food bank from his Market Street workplace, where he earns the minimum wage, which rose slightly in the new year to $9.32 an hour. He finds that neither his salary nor the $120 a month he receives in food stamps is enough to feed himself. Hence his trip to the food bank. He’s prepared for a longer wait than usual today. “It’s annual paperwork time,” says the earnest, mustachioed 42-year-old. The food bank has asked its clients to bring identification and proof of residence—in Harvey’s case, a rent statement from the Seattle Housing Authority, which provides him with a subsidized studio in a hulking Queen Anne complex. Even on normal days, the wait sometimes runs a couple of hours. When he arrives, however, the facility’s brightly painted lobby is only about half full, and a cluster of cheerful staffers quickly processes Harvey’s documentation. “Thank you for your patience,” a lanky young man behind the counter says nonetheless. Harvey is given a number and settles into the lobby to wait to go through the food line. “There is no better food bank I’ve ever been in,” he says. Not only is the environment pleasant, but the groceries ample and various. When Harvey’s turn comes a half-hour later, he makes his way to a large back room that does its best to approximate a grocery store. There are carts, baggers, and sections devoted to different types of goods: meat, dairy, produce, baked goods, even flowers. Harvey, who lives alone and says he struggles with depression, skips the flowers. “I don’t have anyone to give them to,” he says. He picks out a bag of flour, ground beef, chicken, cottage cheese, a prepared watercress salad, a cilantro-and-chive yogurt dip, a bag of tomatoes, organic milk, and a couple of packages of cupcakes decorated for the holidays just past with brightly colored frosting. He leaves with three heavy bags of groceries, all of them free. He is both grateful and irritated. “It’s like a slap in the face to rely on charity,” he says. He asserts that such assistance is not meant for people like him, who are not only willing and able to work but in fact holding down a job. The conclusion he takes from his situation—which involves quite a lot of public and nonprofit aid, including the food bank, food stamps, subsidized housing, and also, because he is a veteran, health care through the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs—is that his job simply does not pay enough. His income, in fact, is just a little more than half of the $22,400 he would need to meet his basic needs in Seattle, according to a “self-sufficiency calculator” developed by the University of Washington’s School of Social Work. Harvey quotes

KYU HAN

NATION

W O L E G WA

In the battle over the minimum wage,


dinner & show

mainstage WED/FEBRUARY 19 • 7:30PM

sweet honey in the rock NINA SHAPIRO

THU/FEBRUARY 20 • 8PM

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Jason Harvey visits the Ballard Food Bank.

FRI/FEBRUARY 21 • 8PM from Proverbs: “The laborer is worthy of his hire.” So when organizers from the labor-advocacy group Working Washington went to Burger King last spring looking for workers to join the movement pressing for a $15-an-hour minimum wage, Harvey signed on. He has marched in two fast-food workers’ strikes and spoken about his life at various events. The movement he has become a part of has now reached a fever pitch. Along with those strikes, the past year has seen the passage of SeaTac’s Proposition 1, which sets a $15 minimum wage for certain workers serving the international airport, and the election of socialist City Councilmember Kshama Sawant, who ran on a $15-wage platform. In January, new Seattle Mayor Ed Murray announced an executive order raising the lowest wage of all city employees to $15—an action echoed on a national stage last week when President Obama said he would sign an executive order raising the minimum wage of new federal contract employees, albeit to a more modest $10.10 an hour. Murray has also set up an advisory committee charged with making recommendations about a wage increase for all workers in Seattle. The committee’s deadline is April, at which time the mayor has pledged to submit a proposal to the city council. If he doesn’t, or if the proposal is deemed inadequate by Sawant and her charged-up allies, they stand ready to move on an initiative that would put the $15 question to voters. The mayor’s advisory committee is now hurriedly trying to gather as much information as it can. One of the questions it most wants answered is who exactly low-wage workers are. “There’s a lot of hunger for that data,” says committee co-chair David Rolf, president of the Service Employees International Union 775. That’s especially true of data specific to Seattle, of which there is none. An economic impact study on raising the minimum wage, recently funded by the city council, is expected to provide that. Are they teenagers flipping burgers after school for iTunes money? Or are they adults trying to support

themselves and maybe a family too? Are they relying on their parents for their basic needs—or on the government? The answers are crucial to weighing whether or not to implement what would be, should the $15 figure prevail, one of the most dramatic minimum-wage hikes in the country. At stake is a sizable sector of the economy. To be sure, the number of local workers earning precisely the minimum wage is probably tiny. Despite the absence of city data, figures for King County, compiled by the state Employment Security Department, are illuminating: They show that, in 2012, only 1.5 percent of all jobs paid at the absolute bottom of the pay scale. Yet looking solely at minimum-wage statistics is misleading because it discounts workers who earn only a dime more than the lowest pay, points out economist Ken Jacobs, chair of the Center for Labor Research and Education at the University of California at Berkeley. An analysis by Employment Security prepared for Seattle Weekly shows that 11 percent of all jobs in the county pay less than $12 an hour. A full 20 percent pay less than $15. Interviews over the past two months with roughly a dozen low-wage workers, many of them earning the minimum wage or close to it, reveal no one type of person. Some workers are young, ambitious, and clearly headed for better things. Others seem stuck. They’ve been in the work force for a decade or more. They have adult lives and responsibilities. Yet they’re still earning as much as if they were getting their very first job.

Some m r s se e e k r o e w ey hav yet h T . k s, stuc i bi l i t i e s n o p re s i ng a s n r a ad u l t e e s t ill y were they’r e h t f i as much ir ver y e h t g g et t i n b. first jo

Harvey had a plan when he joined the Navy shortly

after graduating from high school in Medford, Oregon. First of all, he would get the heck out of town. He needed to, because his life in Medford until then had been horrific. He had been physically and sexually abused by his stepdad, at one point being hogtied with rope and left on the floor as punishment for stepping on a kitten. His stepdad, who also abused Harvey’s sister, was eventually convicted

» CONTINUED ON PAGE 10

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» FROM PAGE 9 of two counts of rape, according to court records. The children went to foster homes. The Navy also promised vocational training—Harvey would study electronics for six months and learn how to work the communications and navigation systems on ships. That plan played out, and Harvey earned a spot fixing equipment on the U.S.S. Conquest based in Seattle, Navy records confirm. But Harvey’s past caught up with him. Troubled by emotional problems, not fitting in well among his peers, he would sometimes find his way to the far corners of his ship, by the engines, to be alone and cry. Two and a half years into his service, he broke down completely after what he says was a sexual assault he suffered while off-duty and heading home from a Seattle nightclub. In the days following, he took acid and ended up in a Navy psychiatric ward. “That was basically a suicide attempt,” he says. Navy records say he was discharged due to “misconduct-drug abuse”; Harvey says the Navy took the circumstances into account and afforded him an “honorable” separation. His future was uncertain. The Navy training, it turned out, was not enough to qualify him as an electrician in the civilian world. He didn’t have the wherewithal to go back to school. He spent some time homeless, living for a while at the Union

Gospel Mission in Pioneer Square. He got a start on a new profession in the food-services industry by participating in the training program for the disadvantaged now known as FareStart (then run out of Belltown’s Josephinium Hotel). But the jobs he stepped into afterward never paid much more than the minimum wage. His best one was at Dick’s Drive-In, where he handled the cash register among other duties. “Dick’s took care of us pretty good,” he says. He earned a couple of dollars above the minimum wage and had medical and dental insurance as well as a 401K. He indulged in some luxuries without worrying about it. He spent $50 on a Ride the Ducks excursion. He bought video games for his Sony Playstation. He went to one of the fancier restaurants near his Queen Anne apartment for a special duck dish that he had to order 24 hours in advance. He lost the Dick’s job after four years, however. He says he got into a bad habit of failing to follow the double-check protocol that Dick’s requires of cashiers putting money into the till. He landed at Burger King, where he has worked for the last eight years stocking supplies, taking customers’ orders, and doing whatever else needs to be done. He seems to like the job fine. “I’m not doing the greatest work,” he says. “But at least I’m doing my best to participate in society, to actively be part of the world that I’m living in.” When he says things like this, speaking over

lunch at the V.A. cafeteria one December afternoon, he seems self-aware and astute. At other times, his acuity seems clouded by the damage he has suffered and the resulting depression. Another day, I ask him how old he is. He gives his birthday instead of a direct answer. “I’m not very good at math right now,” he says. In his current job, the days of occasional luxuries are gone, as are employer-provided health and dental insurance. A few years ago he was at the Millionair Club, a nonprofit that provides day-labor jobs and other services for the poor, when he ran into a social worker who told him that he qualified for medical care at the V.A. He has become well acquainted with the facility on Beacon Hill, where he takes a weekly meditation class. He does not qualify for V.A. dental care, though, and so he does without. His three front teeth are but stubs. Why, after all these years at Burger King, does Harvey still earn the minimum wage? You might think that he would have received some raises along the line. According to SEIU’s Rolf, raises aren’t so common in the fast-food industry. “We’ve heard that a lot,” he says. “A lot.” “They’re getting a raise every year,” counters Mark Escamilla, managing owner of FOR Northwest, a Burger King franchise that encompasses 37 regional locations, including the Ballard restaurant. He’s referring to minimum-wage workers who receive the annual cost-of-living adjustment built into state

of “Ha l f rs anage vel m r u o ntr y-le e s a d star te ees. They’re y r caree e m p lo e h t p re gu movin d taking ca r an ilies.” ladd e m a f r i of the

law. In January, that raise amounted to 13 cents an hour. Beyond that, he says his franchise regularly hands out raises—and promotions—according to performance.“Half of our restaurant managers started as entry-level employees,” he says. “They’re moving up the career ladder and taking care of their families in ways they didn’t know existed.” But Harvey’s career has gone the other direction. While his hourly wage has not gone down, his hours have, dramatically—from nearly 40 a week to 28, due to cuts implemented throughout the franchise early last year. Harvey says he was told at the time that the reason was a looming provision in the Affordable Care Act that requires employers to provide health insurance for staffers working at least 30 hours. Escamilla, however, maintains that the cuts derived not from Obamacare but from a change in ownership that moved the franchise toward a part-time model. (Escamilla was part of the old ownership group as well.) “It gives us flexibility,” he says. During busy periods, restaurants can tap into a pool of part-timers, whereas under the old fulltime model, staffers would have to work overtime, according to Escamilla. His franchise is not alone. Part-time staffing has become pervasive throughout the fast-food industry, and is one reason why workers’ incomes are so low, according to Jacobs, the U.C. Berkeley economist. Escamilla, however, suggests that many of his workers don’t mind the scant hours. “A lot of people work part-time for many different reasons,” he says. “Some are students. Some are housewives.” Being neither, Harvey has over the years tried several strategies to boost his income. Watching television one day, he saw an advertisement for booklets that would teach him how to invest in real estate. He

Musi Music usic c Matters9

Dave Nauber President Classé

A Special Evening of Presentations Devoted Exclusively to the Reproduction of Music

Please join us for Music Matters 9, our annual special event devoted exclusively to the reproduction of music. Regardless of your favorite artists, your music library, or the way you listen - if music is important to you - you will want to attend Music Matters 9.

Peter McGrath Director of Sales Wilson Audio

Thursday, February 27th, 5-9pm

SEATTLE WEEKLY • FEBRUARY 19 — 25, 2014

Definitive Audio Seattle Showroom | 6206 Roosevelt Way NE

10

During our ninth celebration of Music Matters, you will have the opportunity to see and hear the absolute finest in 2-channel systems in six calibrated sound rooms - presented by the manufacturers. Many of the products at Music Matters 9 are making their public debut. Highlights include the Audio Research SP20 preamplifier and CD6 Player/ Transport, Wilson Audio Sasha 2 loudspeaker, Linn Klimax Exakt 350 loudspeaker and Exakt DSM, Meridian DSP5200 SE loudspeaker, Vienna Acoustics Liszt loudspeaker, Classe´ Sigma SSP preamplifier and Sigma Amp 2, D’Agostino Momentum Integrated amplifier and the Wisdom Audio LS4 reference loudspeaker system.

Dave Gordon Managing Dir. of Sales Audio Research

Gilad Tieffenbrun Managing Director Linn Products

20-minute presentations will be made throughout the evening by the following: AMG Classé McIntosh Transparent

Audio Research D'Agostino Meridian Vienna Acoustics

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Bowers & Wilkins Linn Rotel Wisdom Audio

Dan D'Agostino President D'Agostino

Seating is limited, please RSVP to 206-524-6633 or online at definitive.com Light hors d'oeuvres & refreshments will be served. No dealers please.

Seattle Showroom - February 27th from 5:00 - 9:00 pm

Doug Henderson President B&W Group


Donna Pak thinks a $15 wage might be “a little too high.”

As the “income inequality” movement has taken

a 3.9 GPA and was accepted into the University of Washington. She is now majoring in biology there, with hopes of becoming a dentist. Not entirely familiar with the complex American college admissions process, she didn’t realize that she could apply for financial aid. Her parents were having some financial difficulties, and she worried about all the money they were sending her. So she looked around for a part-time job. She landed one at a sushi stand in the food court of downtown’s Century Square. It paid the minimum wage, plus tips. She took on a 20-hour workload at first, heading downtown after her morning classes to serve sushi, work the till, and clean up. She would return to campus in time for two more hours of classes. Eventually, though, she decided to take a couple of quarters off so she could work more, save money, and give her parents a break from supporting her. When I meet her, shortly before Christmas, she is working 26 hours and living solely off her income. “I’ve changed a lot,” she says after work one day. “I learned it is really hard to earn money on my own.” Before, when her parents supported her, she said she would spend freely. Now, she says, “I think three times before I buy something.” This winter, a $300 coat caught her eye. It was brown and plain but finely cut, the kind of high-quality clothing she had always wanted. ”I just fell in love,” she says. She thought about it not just three times but constantly. She let it go. Pak talks about her newfound frugality in positive terms, although it has not been easy. She says she can make her wages last if she pays for little more than her $110 monthly cell-phone bill and her $500 rent. She shares a one-bedroom apartment in the University District and pays slightly less than her roommate by sleeping in the living room, her bed pushed against big windows overlooking University Village. Occasionally she’ll trek down the hill to the shopping center for a Trophy cupcake or some other treat. But she eats mainly the complimentary food provided at work; the rice, eggs, and Spam she buys at the store; and the food her grandparents always press upon her when she visits. “It feels really great to do things with my own money,” she says. “I feel pretty independent.” That’s not to say she wouldn’t appreciate a raise. “I’d love it,” she says when asked about a possible $15 minimum wage. Yet she muses that maybe “it’s a little too high” for some businesses to afford. Her outlook could be tied to her age and bright future. It’s worth noting, though, that even among her peers, some feel their minimum-wage jobs to be oppressive.

» CONTINUED ON PAGE 12

SE ATTLE WEEKLY • FE BRUARY 19 — 25, 2014

hold, labor economists and union organizers have taken pains to show that the stereotype of minimum-wage workers as teenagers no longer holds true. A website called Raise the Minimum Wage, a project of the National Employment Law Project, points out that according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, “threequarters of minimum-wage earners are 20 or older.” When you look more broadly at workers who earn just a little over minimum wage, teens make up an even smaller part of the picture. The Center for Economic and Policy Research, a liberal think tank in Washington, D.C., analyzed statistics for those making $10 an hour. The think tank found that, as of 2011, teens constituted only 12 percent of such workers—a big drop from 1979, when 26 percent of workers in that pay bracket, adjusting wages for inflation, were teens. Economists speculate that a range of factors have driven teens out of the low-wage pool, including an influx of older, bettereducated workers as higher-paid manufacturing jobs disappeared and the recession hit. Nevertheless, if you delve more deeply into the detailed minimum-wage statistics that exist on a federal level, you see that a big chunk of workers, while adults, are still quite young. Half are under 25. That doesn’t mean that earning a pittance is no big deal, since many young adults have left home and are fending for themselves. “The point is that most are relying on this [income] as their primary source of funding,” says Arindrajit Dube, a University of Massachusetts at Amherst economist who has done leading research on the minimum wage. But it does indicate that some workers are still at the beginning of their work life, with time to move up the pay scale, perhaps far up. Donna Pak came to the U.S. from Korea six years ago when she was a high-school freshman. With her was her sister, then in fifth grade, but not her parents. They had lived a middle-class life in Incheon, near Seoul. Her father worked on technology systems for local government. Her mother owned a nail salon. Still, the family felt that the U.S. would offer an easier path for the girls. “In Korea, it’s really hard to be successful,” says Pak, now a 20-year-old with long, reddish-brown hair and only a slight accent. “People are so competitive. You have to spend a lot of money for private tutoring.” The sisters arrived to live with their grandparents, who had immigrated long before and tended a small farm in Shelton on the Kitsap Peninsula. The rural locale was a shock. Pak was dreaming of New York– style big-city life. But she found the people friendly and lacking in the racism she feared. She did well at school, both in Shelton and in Tacoma, where the family moved her senior year. She graduated with

NINA SHAPIRO

sent $350 for the materials. “I didn’t really understand the information, so like a knucklehead I opted for the coaching. That put me two or three thousand in debt.” The telephone-based coaching did not alleviate his confusion. Another scheme had him going to a Bellevue hotel for a three-day class in stock investing, at a cost of $2,000 that he charged to his credit card. “It was really informative,” he says. In the end, though, he realized he didn’t have enough money to do anything with the information.

11


» FROM PAGE 11

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SEATTLE WEEKLY • FEBRUARY 19 — 25, 2014

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In a downtown drugstore, I meet a 22-year-old who attends night classes at Seattle Vocational Institute to become a health-care technician. She knows she’ll earn $19 an hour when she graduates, precisely double the $9.50 an hour she makes now, and she’s already mapped out a way to get even further ahead. She reckons a state job will offer her a chance to get more schooling for free. For the time being, though, she says she works a grueling 60 hours a week to pay for school and help support a family, from Sudan, that includes a remarkable 21 siblings. Her dad has passed away. Her mother, whom she says “doesn’t speak a lick of English,” is on welfare. “The less you make, the more hours you got to work,” says the woman, who asks that her name not be used for fear of antagonizing her boss. That’s why she says she’s all for raising the minimum wage. Still, it’s not people like this Sudanese go-getter that one tends to worry about the most. It’s workers like Harvey, with little prospects for the future. Remember, half of minimum-wage workers nationally are under 25, which means that half are 25 or older. (Take note: Those figures refer to the federal minimum wage, $7.25 an hour, so they’re only a guideline to what might be happening here.) Such longtime, low-wage workers feed into what economist Jacobs calls “a big concern about economic mobility.” Studies show that a big chunk of the working poor stay poor over time, and their children often follow in their footsteps. The reasons are debated. Liberals tend to focus on stagnant wages; conservatives on workers’ low skills, lack of education, and sometimes dysfunctional backgrounds. Regardless of why, such workers often can’t make it without government assistance. Last fall, Jacobs co-authored a study of fast-food workers that found that more than half receive food stamps or some other public benefit. Jacobs says that “the thing that stood out the most” is that this was true even among full-timers. If it’s a frustrating situation for a single, unattached person like Harvey, imagine what it’s like with a child in the mix. This is how single mom Kourtney Washington

describes a typical day in late December: She’ll work her $9.50-an-hour job at a downtown 7-Eleven from 2 to 10 p.m. Like many low-wage workers, she has no car, so she’ll then walk to the bus tunnel to catch a bus to Rainier Valley. She’ll get home around 11, at which point she’ll tidy up her house, maybe do some laundry, and fix the next night’s dinner for her 9-year-old daughter, which will be served by a babysitter. She’ll fall asleep close to 3 and wake up with little time to spare before catching a bus to take her back to work. “I feel like I work to do nothing,” says the 29-yearold, taking a break outside the store, located at the hectic junction of Third Avenue and Pine Street. A large woman whose dark hair is tucked into a black cap, she’s talkative and warm when she smiles, as she does to a co-worker who passes by. She’s not in the best of moods, though, having just popped out of the 7-Eleven to complain to a couple of beat cops about a drugged-up customer who threatened to throw coffee in her face. It’s not an unusual occurrence, she says.


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His Eminence

Garchen Rinpoche

� “I feel like I work to do nothing,” says Kourtney Washington.

NINA SHAPIRO

only at the gas station, but at a charitable fundraising company for which she did a short stint in the fall. If she doesn’t clear up the matter immediately, she will lose her food stamps. Her job search, for the moment, will have to wait.

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Harvey’s big release is karaoke. He likes to sing

and dance and hear people applaud for him. He likes taking on the persona of different singers. “This is about being who I want to be,” he says, gearing up for a night at Hula Hula, a tiki bar at the bottom of Queen Anne. “This is about being free.” He’d like to go once a week, but he can usually only afford to go once or twice a month. On this January Tuesday, he’s saved enough money for drinks by cooking for himself over the past week instead of grabbing food on the run, which he does when he can’t face washing the dishes that frequently clutter his kitchen. To prevent spending too much money at the bar, he’s gotten a head start at home, downing whiskey and root beers. As on most nights he goes, he sets out for the club early. He likes to be the first to sing, saying it makes him feel like he’s getting his “fair share” of singing spots. The place is practically empty when he arrives and sidles over to the bar. “Long Island Iced Tea?” the bartender asks, knowing what this regular likes. Harvey takes his drink and heads to the table closest to the stage. “This is kind of a high-class neighborhood,” he says as he waits. “I don’t completely fit in, but it’s near where I live. Whether they like me or not, it’s a night to have fun.” And he does. When the singing starts shortly after 9, he’s the first from the crowd to follow the D.J.’s opener. He makes his voice sound eerily highpitched to belt out Prince’s “Kiss.” When it’s his turn again, he goes the opposite direction with a rasping rendition of “Enter Sandman” by Metallica. When he’s not singing, he’s encouraging others. “Bring it!” he yells. “You got this!” The last song I hear him sing is Lee Greenwood’s “God Bless the U.SA.,” a patriotic song that matches his U.S.A.–emblazoned bomber jacket. “It matches my life too,” he says when I comment on the fact, reminding me that he served in the Navy. “I believe America should be the land of opportunity. It always has been and it always will be.” E

hec k c e n “O ls . . .  l i b y ll m pays a ut money Ip d, Af ter ca car r O y on m about e v a h I f t.” $10 le

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Washington is luckier than some. She lives in a house that was left to her by her mother, who recently passed away. And Washington’s babysitter, a 20-year-old from the neighborhood, tells Washington to pay her what she can. The young woman is apparently content to eat Washington’s food and watch her cable TV. Still, Washington says the money from her bimonthly checks quickly evaporates. “One check pays all my bills. With the second check, I put $150 on my daughter’s school lunch account. After I put money on my Orca card, I have about $10 left.” Christmas, a week ahead, offers neither a chance to splurge nor a respite from her monotonous schedule. She is scheduled to work, meaning that her daughter will spend much of the day with the babysitter. Washington has bought a couple of outfits for the girl, but frets that’s not enough. Her daughter is obsessed with Monster High dolls, a freakish twist on the Barbie, and Washington really wants to get some for her. She figures that’ll probably have to wait until the January sales. A few weeks later, when she walks into a Starbucks to meet me, declining coffee in favor of the Red Bull in her hand, there’s no sign of her warm smile, and her manner seems flattened. She tells me that she was able to get the dolls for Christmas due to some money sent by a half-brother. Otherwise, things have not been good. She says she was fired by 7-Eleven. She claims it was because she refused to work New Year’s Eve, wanting instead to attend a special all-night church session. A manager at the store—who gives only her first name, Frey—says that account is inaccurate, but declines to elaborate on what she says were “a lot of reasons” for Washington’s dismissal. In any case, Washington says she quickly found work as a cashier at a Renton gas station, which pays a similar hourly rate. But her bus commute is even longer and more complicated, getting her home close to midnight. A bigger problem is that she’s getting only 25 hours a week. The drop in pay has put her on food stamps, so she’s looking for something else. But even her job search is a logistical challenge, as it is for many of the working poor who can’t afford a critical tool for the task: a computer. As she notes, even minimum-wage jobs these days require you to apply online. Consequently, on this January day, Washington is headed to the downtown library to use a computer there. First she stops at a Belltown office of the state Department of Social and Health Services to get a record of her food-stamp benefits, which she needs to get help from a nonprofit that might contribute toward her utility bills. When she’s called to the DSHS desk in the grimly utilitarian office, she’s told that there’s some confusion about how many jobs she holds. Her record still has her working not

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food&drink Condiment Pioneers

The tiny tale of Mustard and Co., the city’s newest—and only—artisan mustard company. BY PATRICK HUTCHISON

BY SARA BILLUPS

Ethan and Angela Stowell’s Red Cow officially opened its doors in Madrona in the space most recently occupied by Restaurant Bea. The 1,800-square-foot room seats 35 in the dining area and 20 at the zinc-topped bar. In addition to frites and six cuts of beef, Red Cow serves lighter fare, including butter lettuce with haricots verts and champagne dressing and salt cod on toast with watercress salad. Dinner hours are 5–10 p.m. Sun.–Thurs., 5–11 p.m. Fri.–Sat.

J

PHOTOGRAPHY BY CHRISTINE COX

Josh Henderson will launch sports bar/eatery Quality Athletics in the Stadium Place building in Pioneer Square. He wants the new space to appeal to sports nuts as well as to the rest of us. Look for the 3,500-square-foot space to open as early as August. GROG, the permanent pop-up bar connected to Ballard Annex Oyster House, just refreshed its menu. After offering eats from the tropical South, GROG turns its focus to Asia, featuring bibimbap sandwiches, General Tso’s chip butty, and hamachi deviled eggs. Hours are 5 p.m–close Thurs.–Sun.

in their own location and new equipment, so they made do—their managers offered the use of Molly’s kitchen after hours. Beyond that, with some simple equipment—buckets and bottle fillers—they were ready to get started.

Chef Angie Roberts is now heading up the culinary crew at Marination. A Pacific Northwest native, she cut her teeth at various Seattle eateries including Flying Fish and BOKA, working most recently with Josh Henderson’s Huxley Wallace Collective. As executive chef, she’ll oversee the kitchens of Marination Ma Kai, Marination Station, and Marination Mobile, and diversify the catering menu.

Since its inception, Hoffman’s recipe has been

tinkered with, but largely remains close to the original. One major change was the switch from his trusty Krups coffee grinder to a hideously outdated, yellowed-with-age, could-be-in-a-Jack LaLanne-museum Green Life juicer. Before the trend of cold-pressed juice and our fascination with the idea that heat can and will destroy everything that is good and holy and nutritious in foods, Hoffman realized that he got much better flavor using the juicer, because (unlike commercial mustard grinders) the grinding process didn’t transfer nearly as much heat to the mustard seed, preserving its natural oils. For Hoffman, this innovation, born of convenience, ultimately accounted for his condiment’s signature taste. To a brown organic mustard seed from PNW Farms, Hoffman and Mitchiner add olive oil, curry seasoning, and of course balsamic vinegar. The resulting mustard is warm and deep, lacking the powerful tang common in most store-bought mustard, with a texture similar to most stoneground versions. Hoffman tells me that one of the reasons he prizes his retro juicer for grinding is that it doesn’t do a perfect job: “Some of the seeds get through whole, some are pulverized, others are merely broken in half, but that gives the mustard a better range of textures.” The process is deceptively easy, and the two condiment-concocters quickly walk me through the steps. The seed is ground and added to the wet ingredients in a five-gallon bucket, then an immersion blender so large it looks like it could be a prop from the latest RoboCop mixes them. After that, it’s as simple as throwing it in a bottle and slapping on a label. Mitchiner tells me, “The acidity is high enough that we don’t really need to add preservatives or treat the bottles in some way.” Grind, mix, bottle, boom. Mustard company. I

Top left: Mitchiner and Hoffman. Above: The “secret” sauce.

can’t believe there aren’t lots of other people doing the same thing. After all, Washington’s no stranger to the mustard plant. The wild version you see, radiating nuclear yellow by the side of the freeway, is perceived by most as a noxious weed. Garlic mustard, another wild variety, is loved by urban foragers who crave its savory green leaves. And many of our state’s farmers depend on the plant as an environmentally friendly alternative to potentially harmful chemicals and artificial fertilizers—plowing young mustard plants into soil imparts key nutrients. Hoffman and Mitchiner hope to capitalize on all this potential, and have already toured Tilth’s gardens to investigate a possible partnership for acquiring local seeds. “We’re in the beginning stages of all of this, but sourcing many of our ingredients locally is an obvious priority,” says Hoffman. Other priorities include expanding distribution; the mustard is still delivered by Hoffman and Mitchiner in their free time. Mitchiner even confesses to hand-delivering single orders of the stuff to homes. “We like to have that face-to-face with people, to make an impression on them.” he tells me. And make an impression they do: The company adds grocery stores, delis, and residences to its client list by the week. But for now, the duo is content, beholden to no one—just making some mustard and seeing who’s up for a sandwich. E

food@seattleweekly.com

Eastlake’s Cicchetti is launching a holiday brunch series. The Mediterranean spot behind Serafina will serve special menus from 11 a.m.–3 p.m. on holidays including President’s Day, Easter, Mother’s Day, and Memorial Day. Visit Cicchetti’s website or call 3230807 for more info and reservations. E food@seattleweekly.com

Temperature Check FROM KELLY GADDIS,

CHEF DE CUISINE AT MILLER’S GUILD

Grains like freekah; Peruvian food; Jewish food.

Sriracha sauce; your mom’s food truck, or your brother’s, or your cousin’s.

Housemade . . . if it’s on your menu, then you should have made it.

SE ATTLE WEEKLY • FE BRUARY 19 — 25, 2014

ustin Hoffman starts the story with his moment of inspiration: “I was waiting for a reuben in this little sandwich shop. I picked up a bottle of fancy honey mustard, and started reading the ingredients for some reason. I thought it was odd that a high-end mustard would have such a cheap, uninspired ingredient as white vinegar for its main ingredient.” Though the 30-year-old Wisconsin native had never been a mustard fan, Hoffman was intrigued. The curiosity stayed with him long enough to investigate other mustards, and find that lackluster ingredients were exceptionally common. “I just sort of wondered what it would taste like with a more refined substitute.” So he decided to make his own, using balsamic vinegar. Six years later, he’s now the co-founder of what looks to be Seattle’s first artisan mustard company, Mustard and Co., and his mustard is popping up at specialty shops in the area, including Macrina Bakery. After that moment, it took about 15 minutes of intense Googling for Hoffman to become an “expert” in mustard-making. He got some seeds, spices, and balsamic vinegar, and went about making his first batch. After an hour of work, Hoffman had himself a product. For the next few years he continued to make his curiously dark mustard, using simple equipment, like an old Krups coffee grinder, to pulverize the mustard seeds into powder. The results were given to friends and family as gifts. It was a hobby—until he decided to move to Seattle. Hoffman got a job at Molly’s, a small delicatessen that makes sandwiches and salads in a kitchen at the Seattle Design Center and sells them out of a case near the kitchen and in the UW Student Union building. At Molly’s he met Bryan Mitchiner, a recent UW graduate in urban planning. Mitchiner remembers, “Everyone at Molly’s would also talk about Justin’s mustard, and finally he brought some into work so I could try it. It was amazing.” What followed was a classic (kind of ) tale: Boy meets boy, boy tastes mustard, boys start business. And it’s these humble origins—not just their mustard, which is very good—that makes Mustard and Co. so great. Nearly every week, I’m sent a new Kickstarter campaign invitation: Help us fund this game! This bar! This album! This restaurant! Don’t get me wrong, Kickstarter is fantastic; it’s helped thousands of amazing projects get off the ground when otherwise they would have fizzled. But Mustard and Co. has a start-up story that sounds like it could have happened a hundred years ago purely because of its simplicity—just a few pieces of basic equipment, a single product, and a couple bucks for ingredients. Ultimately it was Mitchiner who motivated Hoffman to do what he’d wanted to for a long time: make mustard professionally. “I had asked Justin if he ever considered selling it. When I found out it was something he was interested in, I started coming up with ideas of how we could do it.” But neither had the time or capital to invest

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hat happens when you cross wine grapes with a brewery? No, that’s not the setup for a joke—it’s a question I’ve been intrigued by in recent years, as beer/wine hybrids have quietly become a small part of the microbrew scene, both globally and here in Seattle. Combining quality wine grapes with beer-making techniques allows a brewer to BY ZACH GEBALLE expand the palette of flavors he or she has to work with, and can create a truly delicious beverage that brings together the strengths of both. Or, like any other bold venture, it can fail spectacularly. The most ambitious venture on the horizon is a partnership between Epic Ales and Long Shadows Winery. Long Shadows provides the grapes and the inspiration, while Epic Ales’ master brewer Cody Morris is providing the know-how. Traci McFarlane, the hospitality manager at Long Shadows, was the impetus behind the project. “I had read quite a bit about Epic and it appeared as though Cody was getting a lot of positive press, so I arranged a meeting with him and tasted through his lineup,” McFarlane tells me. “I was particularly fond of his ‘Party Time’ sour, and was intrigued how he used that base and added a variety of other things: fruit, oyster liquor, lime, salt, etc. So I asked him if he would make some beers for us using our juice. We reached an agreement, and so during harvest I brought him some fresh-pressed riesling, sangiovese, and syrah [grapes] to make three different styles of beer.” Epic sold those beers at the brewery and its adjoining restaurant, Gastropod, but Long Shadows also purchased kegs, which it’s getting installed in its Woodinville Library Tasting Room, offering visitors an expression of Long Shadows’ grapes they’ve probably never encountered before. As for Morris, working with wine grapes was a chance to expand the already vast boundaries of what Epic Ales is doing with beer. “I hadn’t done a project like that before,” Morris says. “I have in the past gotten used wine barrels, which I use for barrel-aged sours.” But this was clearly a different sort of undertaking, as wine grapes would be one of the main flavoring agents in the beer. Morris had to carefully select which styles of beer to pair with each grape. “I wanted to do a super-floral white for the sour blonde [which ended up being riesling]. For the old ale, I wanted something earthy [the sangiovese], plus I thought the acidity of the grapes would add that classic vinous flavor found in old ales. For the Belgian, I wanted something fruity and spicy. It would’ve been fun with a zinfandel, but I think the syrah worked well.” Due to their unusual nature and expensive ingredients, beer/wine hybrids are still mostly a novelty, a way for brewers and winemakers to experiment. For now, most breweries that want to add a wine-like flavor to their beer will stick with aging their beers in used wine barrels, but if partnerships like the one between Long Shadows and Epic Ales take off, more and more of Washington’s wine grapes might find their way into Washington’s beers. E

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arts&culture Miró in Autumn Old artists never retire, they just gradually paint away. BY BRIAN MILLER

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are familiar: Miró’s large canvases in a few primary colors, hinting at natural forms (women, birds, constellations). These aren’t wholly abstract or purely expressive paintings, and their titles are strictly referential. The big dark blob of his 1977 Head, Bird may not suggest a bird on wing, but there’s the hint of a beak and a jittery, avian energy—like a bird on the ground, scampering for seeds. The contours are there, if not the exact shape, and that’s how Miró depicts women, too. There’s hardly Above: Miró in his a straight line in island studio. any of his paintings, Below: his 1974 because the organic Women and Bird always meanders, like in the Night. a sparrow’s flight or a tree’s branch or a woman’s hips. (However, his putting a bird on everything does inevitably remind you of Portlandia.) You see all those tokens in an early key work like The Farm (not on view here) from the ’20s, famously purchased by Hemingway, which includes all of creation in a simple barnyard vista—animals, women, earth, sun, and sky. In that scene, there’s a transcendence from the mundane and material; a half-century later, Miró keeps refining and abstracting the natural world into the spiritual (though not Christian) realm. The tree that anchors The Farm, with is branches grasping ever upward, reminds me of Miró’s later line-work—rounded, unbalanced, somehow teetering—that you’ll also see in Woman, Bird and Star (Homage to Picasso),

the large image that dominates this show’s first gallery. “Movements have no end,” says Miró on one wall card, and his brushstrokes have that kind of expansiveness, as if reaching beyond the picture frame. If anything, Miró was maybe too well absorbed into the postwar art vernacular—meaning not just Calder but illustrators like Jim Flora, with their cheerfully bright-colored pendants and doodles and squiggles (most, however, ceasing to reference our known world). It’s no slight to say that most of Miró’s paintings would look great as rugs. They have a welcoming, homey kind of abstraction. The shock of the “primitive” has faded after a century. New to me, and I suspect to most visitors, are the cast-bronze sculptures Miró made from found objects he gleaned on the beach and elsewhere on Majorca. They’re totemic, tabletop-sized objects that incorporate nails, baskets, an oven door, rakes, spoons, metal knobs, barrel hoops, and other detritus. They correspond to Miró’s 1941 memo to himself to create “a truly phantasmagoric world of living monsters.” Now Picasso knew something about monsters (i.e., women, as he often rendered them), and these are not monsters—they’re too friendly and apprehensible for that. Again, they bear figurative names and vaguely suggest natural forms, but they don’t compare to the paintings here. They’re an odd little footnote, a cul de sac gathering of strange small assemblages that seem sprung by the artist’s caprice—look what I can make out of random objects! Still, as with the paintings, there’s an impressive vitality for an artist working to the age of 90. You’ll see that energy here in a 25-minute video interview with Miró, filmed in 1974. “I never dream,” he quips. “But when I am awake, I am always dreaming.” This modest selection of work makes you want to see more of those dreams, the whole of his career—but one would have to visit Madrid for that. E

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ablo Picasso made the cover of Time several times, along with that of Life and just about every other major postwar periodical. But his fellowtraveler and countryman Joan Miró? Not so much. Both men established their reputations in prewar Paris, exhibited at major American museums and galleries, and lived a very long time, producing an enormous amount of art of varying quality. Yet three decades after his death, why has Miró (1893–1983) receded more in popular memory? Lacking the grand personality of Picasso (the art world’s first international celebrity), Miró somewhat controversially returned to Franco’s Spain following its Civil War, and made himself still more remote—if not quite a recluse—by moving to the island of Majorca in the mid-’50s. Though he had shows at the MoMA in 1941 and the Guggenheim in 1972, and though he visited the States a few times, Miró kept close to his studio during the last two decades of his life; and that period provides the 50-plus works in the Seattle Art Museum’s traveling show Miró: The Experience of Seeing, launched from Madrid’s Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía. Miró, such an influence on Alexander Calder, was once part of the mainstream art lexicon. Do you remember those folk-musicloving academics who sheltered the hero of Inside Llewyn Davis, they with their bookand art-filled Upper West Side apartment? They would’ve had Miró prints on their walls, reproductions of his signature works from the ’20s and ’30s. Back then, Miró mixed with the Surrealists, but broke with them; there are also elements of cubism in his whimsically organic and abstract early paintings; and those lineages persist in the canvases we see here. Still, these aren’t the works that defined him, that made his reputation. Miró was recently granted a big retrospective at the Tate (in London), which traveled to our National Gallery (in D.C.) to much acclaim. But that assessment went back to his roots, while the Madrid curators seem determined to say, Look! There’s more to Miró than his early years! I’m not sure that’s true, though Majorca is certainly a nice place to visit.

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arts&culture»

ThisWeek’s PickList WEDNESDAY, FEB. 19

Though the Mommy Lit—and even the Adoption Mommy Lit—category is a crowded one, Antonetta’s new memoir, Make Me a Mother (Norton, $18.90), manages to stake a solid place on the shelves. The Bellingham writer’s account of adopting a Korean baby boy is filled with the anxieties, setbacks, and joys common to this kind of story, yet is remarkable in its erudite examination of the word “adoption” itself. She also explores the rich history—from the Romans to the early American West—behind the practice of caring for a child not biologically your own. Also unique to the book: her bucking of the assumption that parents who adopt do so largely because of the inability to conceive. As Antonetta and her husband go from loving Jin to being in love with him, she gets immersed in her own eccentric family history—and finds herself becoming a mother to not just her adopted child, but to the aging parents with whom she’s had a deeply conflicted relationship. Make Me a Mother is an unflinching, deeply honest, and impeccably researched read that should appeal to all parents. University Book Store, 4326 University Way N.E., 634-3400, bookstore.washington.edu. Free. 7 p.m. NICOLE SPRINKLE THURSDAY, FEB. 20

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This coming Sunday marks the Cascade Bicycle Club’s 40th Chilly Hilly ride on Bainbridge Island; given such a generally mild winter thus far, some are packing away the Völkls and bringing out the Cervélos to ride. And should you need a little extra motivation if the forecast is freezing rain, tonight’s benefit screening of Rising From Ashes, a recent documentary about the riders of Team Rwanda, will put things in perspective. Produced and narrated by Forest Whitaker, this powerful film unfolds over six years from the time when mountain-bike industry pioneer Tom Ritchey first visited Rwanda. A dozen years had passed since the Hutus’ 1994 genocide against the minority Tutsi, and the country was still in a fragile rebuilding stage. Bicycles, used mainly for transport, were also being raced; and Ritchey brought along his friend and former pro racer Jock Boyer. An 18-year-old trounced the middle-

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Rising From Ashes

Niyonshuti on a training ride.

DAMIAN VINES

Susanne Antonetta

Antonetta also teaches at WWU.

aged pair—and everyone else—in one such race; from that, the idea of a national team was hatched. His life back home a shambles, Boyer stayed behind to coach the squad. His athletes, to put it mildly, are not complainers. His most talented rider, Adrien Niyonshuti, lost six of his brothers and 60 members of his mother’s clan during the genocide; the film follows Niyonshuti’s unlikely path to the London Olympics. All ticket proceeds tonight benefit the Rising From Ashes Foundation, which supports Rwandan cyclists, and CBC’s own Major Taylor Project, which promotes riding among minority youths. Film producer Peb Jackson will also attend a prescreening reception. SIFF Cinema Uptown, 511

Queen Anne Ave. N., 324-9996, siff.net, cascade. org. $10–$12 ($50 for early show’s VIP reception). 6:45 & 9:30 p.m. BRIAN MILLER

Vikesh Kapoor

Those seeking a balm after the recent passing of Pete Seeger will find it in Portland’s Kapoor, who opens for Eleni Mandell tonight. Kapoor burst onto the Northwest folk scene last year with a collection of original songs titled The Ballad of Willie Robbins. His songs are steeped in the folk tradition that Seeger carried from the prewar era into ’60s counterculture, but Kapoor isn’t as direct a musical descendant of the famed banjo-picking civil-rights activist as is, say, Ani DiFranco, who plays the Moore on Saturday (see page 29). In fact, until just a couple of years ago, the slight 28-year-old Pennsylvania native most likely didn’t even know who Seeger was. Kapoor came to folk music through a Johnny Cash LP he bought at a garage sale as a joke; and his styling is so eerily reminiscent of Bob Dylan’s denim years that it would come off as a little naive if his songs weren’t so vivid, his poetry so lucid. Like Cash, Dylan, and DiFranco before him, Kapoor carries the spirit of Seeger, which is really just the act of playing songs about the people for the people. Tractor Tavern, 5213 Ballard Ave. N.W., 789-3599, tractortavern.com. $12. 8 p.m.

MARK BAUMGARTEN » CONTINUED ON PAGE 20


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A Ballerina’s Journey

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arts&culture» » FROM PAGE 18 FRIDAY, FEB. 21

For such a fragrantly enchanting musical, this 1973 Tony winner displays a near-Schoenbergian attention to subcutaneous structure; the sophistication of Stephen Sondheim’s music and lyrics acts as a bittersweet metaphor for game-playing artifice in matters of the heart. The dramatic personae form a neatly interlocking pattern of romantic triangles, which resolve at a Swedish country estate during the long, long twilight of Midsummer’s Night, and the score is a dance suite of variations on triple time: waltz, gigue, mazurka, sarabande, polonaise, even the rippling harp triplets underlying the show’s most popular number, “Send In the Clowns.” This last is sung by Desirée Armfeldt, one of musical theater’s greatest roles for actresses past ingenue age—and she even gets the hero at the end. (Through March 9.) SecondStory Repertory, 16587 N.E.

74th St. (Redmond), 425-881-6777, second storyrep.org. $27. 8 p.m. GAVIN BORCHERT

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In the long run, we’ll all be dead. That’s just one of the takeaways from Kolbert’s latest ecodisaster tome, mostly adapted from her reporting in The New Yorker, where she’s assigned to what I call the-Earth-is-going-to-hell beat. And yet she’ll find a receptive, well-scienced Seattle audience for The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History (Henry Holt, $28), no creationists or climate-change deniers in the crowd. The double appeal to her globe-trotting dispatches—in which she follows field scientists from Iceland to Peru—allows us both the vicarious pleasure of traveling with her and the grim confirmation that, yes, we’re heating up the planet enough to ensure our own future demise. None of us will personally be here to experience it, of course, only the heirs to our selfish genome. Extinction, Kolbert reports, is cyclical: Species diversity has peaked and crashed five times before, according to the fossil record, with causes including ice ages and meteor strikes. Our present peril is man-made, of course, as Kolbert also explored in her 2006 Field Notes From a Catastrophe. (Again: She, and we, just can’t get enough of the disaster stuff.) Whether human civilization finally ends with a bang or a whimper ultimately doesn’t matter so much as the diagnosis here. What makes Kolbert’s latest book—and its recent companions, like Guns, Germs, and Steel and The

Hootenanny! Saturday, March 1 at Noon an all-ages sing-along

Tribute to Pete Seeger FREE for kids. $5 for adults.

Tammy Sundquist Grading in Nemec’s Ferrari Dino Girl.

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Elizabeth Kolbert

NICHOLAS WHITMAN

A Little Night Music

Kolbert was recently featured on the Colbert Report.

World Without Us—so fascinating to us morbid rationalists isn’t exactly schadenfreude; it’s more like attending our own funerals. This is how it will all end, says Kolbert, as we clever humans systematically engineer our own erasure—along with most other species—and leave the Earth in the capable paws of rats, ants, fungi, and other more-deserving survivors. Town Hall, 1119 Eighth

Ave., 652-4255, townhallseattle.org. $5. 7:30 p.m. BRIAN MILLER

Independent of Reality

One of the pioneers of the Czechoslovak New Wave, Jan Němec’s reputation fell in the shadow of the more internationally celebrated Milos Forman, Ivan Passer, Věra Chytilová, and Jiří Menzel. His poetic, impressionistic style defied the state dictates of social realism, and his 1966 satire A Report on the Party and the Guests—not in this six-film series but available on DVD— incurred the wrath of the authorities. Forbidden from making films, Němec went into a 15-year exile that ended only after the Iron Curtain fell. This retrospective begins tonight with his debut feature, Diamonds of the Night (1964), a Holocaust drama about the nightmarish ordeal of two young men who escape a transport train en route to a concentration camp. His contribution to the 1966 anthology film Pearls of the Deep (7 p.m. Sun.), a showcase for young Czechoslovak filmmakers, is gentler, a bittersweet portrait of old age and the harmless lies of an adventurous life. The series also includes his 2009 Ferrari Dino Girl (7 p.m. Tues.), which incorporates documentary footage of the 1968 Soviet invasion that Němec shot at great personal risk, then smuggled out of the country; 40 years later, he returned to retrace his escape route, interpolating old and new footage of that perilous journey. (Through Wed.) Northwest Film Forum, 1515 12th Ave.,

267-5380, nwfilmforum.org. $6–$11. 7 & 9 p.m. SEAN AXMAKER E


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Opening Nights PDoubt STONE SOUP THEATRE, 4035 STONE WAY N.E., STONESOUPTHEATRE.COM. $14–$25. 8 P.M. THURS.–SAT., 4 P.M. SUN. ENDS MARCH 1.

Shanley earned Pulitzer and Tony Awards for Doubt. SW FILE PHOTO

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Marisol SATORI LAB AT INSCAPE, 815 SEATTLE BLVD. S., COLLISIONTHEATER.ORG. $20–$25 ($10 MON.). 8 P.M. THURS.–SAT. & MON. ENDS FEB. 22.

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reaches beneath the birthing gown worn by her pregnant, lunatic stalker, any magic that might enlighten the scene has left the building. To be fair, this is a tough script for a brandnew company to pull off, an absurdist allegory that is intentionally difficult to digest. But before it gets too weird, Rivera’s play—directed by Ryan Higgins—does begin in a recognizable world, though one that is quickly warping. It’s the turn of the millennium, and the apocalypse appears nigh: Apples have become extinct; a war on children rages; milk is polluted with salt; and the moon has gone missing. Despite this, as the world goes to shit around her, the devoutly Catholic copy editor Marisol is trying to keep it together. It helps that she’s protected by a guardian angel (black-clad badass Shermona Mitchell) with magical powers. When the angel appears in the middle of the night, Marisol believes it’ll be a moment of holy conception. Monroe is at her best in this scene, and the play shows real promise. There’s a genuine connection, even love, between the naive Marisol and her woeful protector. But the relationship ends abruptly when the angel abandons her to join a war against the “senile” God who’s causing all the chaos. As Act 2 begins, it’s clear that war in heaven isn’t going well. Down on the forsaken Earth, Marisol moves further into the fantastic. In a bizarre sort of Wizard of Oz scenario, the now-homeless and wandering Marisol meets a fur-clad aristocrat who’s been beaten for going over her credit limit; a wheelchair-bound burn victim in search of his skin; the neo-Nazi responsible for setting him on fire; and the pregnant Lenny (Ben D. McFadden). She’s actually searching for her friend June (Libby Barnard), but it’s difficult to understand why. The script calls for a tight, even romantic, bond between the two, but in the hands of these performers it doesn’t take. Their reunion, like Lenny’s delivery, has no life to it. Maybe that was the point of this particular staging, but it makes for disappointing theater. As Rivera’s script argues, life is cruel and meaningless, but it would be nice to care a bit more about his characters. MARK BAUMGARTEN

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A complicated rehearsal: Tisdale and Williams.

PVenus in Fur SEATTLE REPERTORY THEATRE, 155 MERCER ST. (SEATTLE CENTER), 443-2222, SEATTLEREP.ORG. $12–$80. 7:30 P.M. WED.–SUN. PLUS MATINEES. ENDS MARCH 9.

Playwright Thomas, one of two characters in David Ives’ ingeniously twisty 2011 comedy, is nostalgic for the old days when theater (and life) was about outsized, “operatic” passions—to which end he has adapted Leopold von Sacher-

CHRIS BENNION

It takes one hell of a production to pull off a scene in which a man gives birth. Unfortunately, this is not one of those productions. By the time The Collision Project’s staging of José Rivera’s 1993 Obie award winner arrives at that natal moment, the air has gone out of Marisol. As our eponymous heroine (Carolyn Marie Monroe)

Our heroine (Monroe) with her angel (Mitchell) at left.

Masoch’s 1870 novel Venus in Fur about the dominance/submission dynamic in relationships. (From Sacher-Masoch’s own proclivities comes the term masochism.) But alas, after a full day’s cattle call, director Thomas can find no actress woman-y enough to play the reluctant dominatrix Vanda. Enter the scampish bimbo caricature Vanda (yes, the same name as the role she is reading for), with a leather S&M suit, one boot, and yuks like “You don’t have to tell me about sadomasochism, I’m in the theater.” In the spellbinding 100 minutes that follow, Thomas (Michael Tisdale) and his unexpectedly promising leading lady (Gillian Williams) tread through the minefields of Thomas’ earnest adaptation, exploding cultural gender bombs left and right. Much humor and tension comes from the constant shifting from elevated text discussion to small talk to the deeply personal. Indeed, it becomes part of Vanda’s crazy-making mystique that she eludes capture within any of those realms; she refuses to be cornered on Sibyl Wickersheimer’s gritty, bare-bones loft set. Who’s really in control here: the dominator or the subjugated? Chaser or chased? Hammer or anvil? The actors, both from New York, are wonderful to look at and listen to. Williams pivots readily from Lucille Ball shtick to haute thespian mode, and her lithe, dancer-esque poses are just as controlled. Tisdale’s emphatic straight man is a slightly harder read behind his lunettes, yet his corrugated neck muscles and torso speak as articulately as his impressive chops about his state of agitation. Because the Rep has booked this proven property—an intimate two-hander— on its largest stage, it can be hard to observe fine facial expressions; the shifts between Thomas’ text and Ives’ aren’t always clear. Visiting director Shana Cooper seems to favor a high quotient of ambiguity here—a reasonable choice, given the play’s suspenseful withholding and subsequent revelations. Still, in the idea-rich fracas of Ives’ clever script, I found myself hungering for clearer directorial valences. Ives offers us a rich ambrosia of power dynamics, politics, and paraphilia. This worthy production, replete with smart performances, sadistic lighting by Geoff Korf, and sexy costuming by Harmony Arnold, compels us to kiss its stiletto heel. MARGARET FRIEDMAN E

On stage: March 20 - April 27 Box Office: (425) 392-2202 www.VillageTheatre.org

SE ATTLE WEEKLY • FE BRUARY 19 — 25, 2014

The only negative here is the limited set “design.” On a larger proscenium stage, the three locations called for in the script can be accomplished seamlessly. Yet this small, three-quarter arena forces sloppy scene changes more chaotic than careening carts at Fred Meyer. Kyle Handziak’s fussy yet unfinished-looking scenery further compounds this problem. Why is the pulpit—complete with wood splinters—made of untreated lauan and plywood? There’s a table adorned with flowers, a candy dish— or communion plate?—and a candelabra; it looks less like an altar than a dining-room table (though sans menorah, it must be noted). Luckily, lighting designer Chris Scofield’s stained-glass window effects informed me this was a sanctuary, not some TEDx thrift store. Wailing and waste aside, every time I see this play, thoughts fire at a rapid pace. In this thrifty production, Shanley’s script is the star.

F IL M CASEY BROADWATER

John Patrick Shanley’s Doubt looks back to 1964, when pedophilia allegations were simply swept under the rug by the Catholic church and football programs. In this 2004 masterpiece, Sister Aloysius (Maureen Miko) becomes convinced that Father Flynn ( Jaryl Draper) “interfered with” an altar boy. She encourages conflicted Sister James (Reagan Dickey) to align with her fight for his removal, a battle that culminates in a tearful meeting with the student’s mom (Eva Abram). While the play creates questions about faith and transgression, one can be sure that Stone Soup’s show serves some stupendous performances. Draper’s fourth-wall-smashing sermonizing felt like mass. Miko’s nuanced and wry delivery induced snickers. That said, in such an intimate space, actors must be aware that their cries can be construed as contrived keening; director Maureen Hawkins might’ve turned down the volume a bit.

W W W. S E AT T L E W E E K LY. C O M / S I G N U P PR OM O T IONS EV ENT S

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Gillian Williams and Michael Tisdale in Venus in Fur, photo by Chris Bennion.

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high-school students vie for cash prizes and a trip to NYC. Seattle Repertory Theatre, Seattle Center, seattlerep.org. Free. 7:30 p.m. Tues., Feb. 25. FAMILY AFFAIR Jennifer Jasper’s “sick, hilarious, and ultimately relatable” monthly cabaret on the theme of family. JewelBox/Rendezvous, 2322 Second Ave., jenniferjasper performs.com. $10. 7:30 p.m. Wed. Feb. 19. A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC SEE THE PICK LIST, PAGE 20. NOISES OFF In Michael Frayn’s comedy, we see a touring theater troupe from two points of view—first at rehearsal, then from backstage during a performance. Burien Little Theater, 242-5180, burienlittletheatre.org. N.B.: performed at 14907 Fourth Ave. S.W. in Burien. $7–$20. Opens Feb. 21. 8 p.m. Fri.–Sat., 2 p.m. Sun. Ends March 23. ODYSSEO The dancing horse show from traveling circus troupe Cavalia performs under a giant tent. Marymoor Park, 6046 W. Lake Sammamish Parkway N.E., Redmond. $34.50–$149.50 ($154.50–$229.50 w/dinner). Opens Feb. 19. Runs Tues.–Sun.; see cavalia.net for exact schedule. Ends March 9. SEATTLE FESTIVAL OF IMPROV THEATER 22 troupes from across North America perform. See seattleimprov. com for full schedule and venue info. $15–$18 (festival pass $50). 8 & 10:30 p.m. Wed., Feb. 19–Sun., Feb. 23. TEN DAYS TO HAPPINESS Donna Rae Davidson’s solo show about her experiences at a Buddhist meditation retreat. Amazing Grace Spiritual Center, 2007 N.W. 61st St., 10daystohappiness.com. $15–$20. Opens 8 p.m. Thurs., Feb. 20. 8 p.m. Fri.–Sat., plus 2 p.m. Sat., March 8 & 15. Ends March 15.

• 

CURRENT RUNS

BLACK LIKE US Local playwright Rachel Atkins’ new

drama posits that for blacks who could “pass” for white, embracing one’s black heritage once hinged on whether you might get a better offer elsewhere. In 1958 Seattle, we meet sisters Florence (Chelsea Binta), a budding civil-rights activist, and Maxine (Dior Davenport), who can pass. Several decades later, Florence’s grandkids range from the hesitant Amy (McKenna Turner) to the more contemplative Michelle (Lindsay Evans) and the bull-in-a-china-shop Sandra (Alyson Scadron Branner), who sets up a meeting with Maxine’s descendants: Tanya (Marquicia Dominguez) and Denise (Kia Pierce). Their encounter is explosive, awkward, and funnily, scarily credible. Director Jose Amador has his hands full keeping Atkins’ often unwieldy go-cart of a play in steady forward motion. She favors raw emotion over finesse (the phrase “keeping it real” comes to mind), when a more practiced playwright might accomplish both. KEVIN PHINNEY Annex Theatre, 1100 E. Pike St., 728-0933, annextheatre. org. $5–$20. 8 p.m. Thurs.–Sat. Ends March 1. BOEING, BOEING Marc Camoletti’s jet-age farce about a playboy and his three stewardess girlfriends. Renton Civic Theater, 507 S. Third St., Renton, 425-226-5529, renton civictheater.org. $17–$21. 7:30 p.m. Thurs., 8 p.m. Fri.–Sat., 2 p.m. Sun. Ends March 1. CORNISH WINTER NEW WORKS FESTIVAL Staged readings of brand-new plays by Cornish senior Xochitl Portillo-Moody. Cornish Playhouse at Seattle Center, 2691901, cornish.edu. Free. 8 p.m. Fri., Feb. 21–Sat. Feb. 22. DOUBT SEE REVIEW, PAGE 21. ED, DOWNLOADED More a sketch than a fully realized play, with some Bertha-sized credibility gaps. Terminally ill geologist Ed (Noah Benezra) will have his mind stored in a box, and after his death it’ll relive a loop of 10 favorite memories—courtesy of his controlling girlfriend Selene (Gin Hammond), who works for a biotech company. Problem is, Ed’s been falling for the pixie-like Ruby (Adria LaMorticella). So which of his memories should be preserved—those of Ruby or Selene? Playwright Michael Mitnick sets up a clash of heroines, then shrinks from its resolution. KEVIN PHINNEY Washington Ensemble Theatre, 608 19th Ave. E., 325-5105, washingtonensemble. org. $15–$20. 7:30 p.m. Thurs.–Mon. Ends Feb. 24. THE FOREIGNER A waste of a reliably risible text and a capable cast. In Larry Shue’s 1984 comedy, meek Britisher Charlie pretends not to speak English while vacationing in Georgia, then wacky complications ensue among the red-staters. Brian Yorkey’s half-dozen players are directed at less-than-farcical speed; the prolonged, stagy silences Send events to stage@seattleweekly.com, dance@seattleweekly.com, or classical@seattleweekly.com See seattleweekly.com for full listings. = Recommended

are more suited to Pinter. ALYSSA DYKSTERHOUSE Village Theatre, 303 Front St. N., Issaquah, 425-392-2202, villagetheatre.org. $34–$65. 7:30 p.m. Wed.–Thurs. (plus some Tues.); 8 p.m. Fri.; 2 & 8 p.m. Sat.; 2 & 7 p.m. Sun. Ends March 2. (Plays in Everett March 7–30.)

FRANKENSTEIN; OR, THE MODERN PROMETHEUS

David Quicksall’s new stage version of Mary Shelley’s classic. Center House Theatre, Seattle Center, 216-0833. Runs Wed.–Sun.; see book–it.org for exact schedule. Ends March 9. I HATE CHILDREN Paul Nathan’s ironically titled family magic show. Hale’s Palladium, 4301 Leary Way N.W., strangertickets.com. $15–$35. 1:30 & 3 p.m. Sat., 1 p.m. Sun. Ends Feb. 23. THE ICELANDIC ILLUMINATION RANGERS To find the missing Aurora Borealis, the Rangers must “navigate the Reykjavik synth-pop scene, and learn what it really means to be friends.” (An adults-only performance is 10:30 p.m. Feb. 21.) WET, 608 19th Ave. E., 325-5105, washington ensemble.org. $5–$10. 10 a.m. Sat.–Sun. Ends Feb. 23. LITTLE RED RIDING HOOD Stan Gill and Cindy Bright’s musical adaptation. Second Story Repertory Theatre, 16587 N.E. 74th St., Redmond, 425-881-6777, secondstory rep.org. $10. Runs 1 & 3 p.m. Sat.–Sun. Ends March 2. MARISOL SEE REVIEW, PAGE 21. MR. PIM PASSES BY In this 1919 drawing-room comedy by A.A. Milne, Dinah (Allie Pratt) wants to marry Brian (Daniel Stoltenberg) but cannot without the approval of her uncle and guardian, George (Ryan Childers), though they have the approval of her aunt Olivia (April Poland). This is complicated further when befuddled Mr. Pim (Chris Ensweiler) enters, creating confusion and mayhem with his questions about true love. All this happens under the critical eye of Lady Marden (Kim Morris). These stock characters do teeter on the brink of absurd typicality; fortunately, the cast finds the balance to make them completely believable. As the ingénue, Pratt brings just enough flair for annoying teenage self-expression to avoid caricature. While Olivia could descend into conniving and emasculation (a perforated line is all that separates her from shrewishness), Poland adds love and playfulness to the part. Director Karen Lund’s awkward single-plane blocking forces much unmotivated movement; it’s like watching my cat and dog play—a mishmash of motion with no reason behind it. ALYSSA DYKSTERHOUSE Taproot Theatre, 204 N. 85th St., 781-9707, taproottheatre. org. $20–$40. 7:30 p.m. Wed.–Thurs., 8 p.m. Fri., 2 & 8 p.m. Sat. Ends March 1. FRANK OLIVIER His Valentine-themed “Twisted Cabaret” includes “a ballet performed entirely on a unicycle” and more. Hale’s Palladium, 4301 Leary Way N.W., twisted cabaret.com. $17–$60. 7:30 p.m. Thurs.–Sat. plus 10:30 p.m. Fri. & 3 p.m. Sun. Ends Feb. 23. PRIVATE EYES Twelfth Night Productions’ thriller about tangled relationships. Youngstown Cultural Arts Center, 4408 Delridge Way S.W., 800-838-3006, brownpapertickets. com. $15–$18. 7:30 p.m. Fri.–Sat. Ends Feb. 22. SPAMALOT The 2005 musical’s verbatim lifts from the Monty Python source film are hilarious; the heaps of surrounding material are tirelessly razzmatazzy but scattershot. (The “Knights of the Round Table” number, for example, loses more than it gains from being expanded from the perfect, immortal 90 seconds of the film into a full-dress Vegas sendup.) The show’s problems, minor but nagging, are the usual screen-to-stage conversion issues (cf. Young Frankenstein): Jokes that work when underplayed onscreen don’t necessarily when overplayed onstage, and one-liners can’t always sustain entire production numbers. Most remarkable among a cast that is just about the best local musical theater has to offer are Laura Griffith as the Lady of the Lake, who gets to show off an immense range, both vocally and comedically, and Dane Stokinger, an absolutely protean performer who disappears into each of a sizable list of character parts. GAVIN BORCHERT 5th Avenue Theatre, 1308 Fifth Ave., 625-1900. $39 and up. Runs Tues.–Sun.; see 5thavenue.org for exact schedule. Ends March 2. STORY & SONG Bret Fetzer’s fairy tales get choral backing. Annex Theatre, 1100 E. Pike St., 728-0933, annex theatre.org. $5–$10. 8 p.m. Tues.–Wed. Ends Feb. 26. TEATRO ZINZANNI: ON THE AIR Their new radiothemed show features the return of emcee Kevin Kent. Teatro ZinZanni, 222 Mercer St., 802-0015. $108 and up. Runs Wed.–Sun.; see dreams.zinzanni.org for exact schedule. Ends June 1. THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE The little musical that could, about an unlikely sub-

ject. Seattle Musical Theatre, 7400 Sand Point Way N.E. # 101N, 800-838-3006, seattlemusicaltheatre.org. $24–$40. 7:30 p.m. Fri.–Sat., 2 p.m. Sun., plus 7:30 p.m. Thurs., Feb. 20. Ends Feb. 23. VENUS IN FUR SEE REVIEW, PAGE 21. WICKED WIZ OF OZ A 45-minute mashup of Oz musicals, part of the “Mimosas With Mama” drag brunch. Narwhal, 1118 E. Pike St., strangertickets.com, mimosaswithmama. com. $15–$20. 1:30 p.m. Sun.


Dance ROYAL OPERA BALLET AT THE MOVIES From London,

Swan Lake. See fathomevents.com for participating theaters. 7 p.m. Thurs., Feb. 20. DANCE THEATER Donald Byrd’s provoca• SPECTRUM tive The Minstrel Show. Cornish Playhouse at Seattle Center, 325-4161, spectrumdance.org. $20–$40. 8 p.m. Thurs., Feb. 20–Sat., Feb. 22. KHAMBATTA DANCE COMPANY If you’re into dance, cello, and moral or ethical dilemmas, KDC’s Vice and Virtue might be just the show for you. Kirkland Performance Center, 350 Kirkland Ave., Kirkland, 425-8939900, kpcenter.org, phffft.org. 7:30 p.m. Fri., Feb. 21. DANTE’S INFERNO: THE BALLET Ronald Tice and Jennifer Porter’s new dance based on the medieval tale. Meydenbauer Center, 11100 N.E. Sixth St., Bellevue, 800838-3006, dantesinfernoballet.com. $20–$30. 8 p.m. Fri., Feb. 21, 2 & 8 p.m. Sat., Feb. 22, 2 p.m. Sun., Feb. 23. CARMONA FLAMENCO Traditional music and dance.Cafe Solstice, 4116 University Way N.E., 932-4067, carmona2@ comcast.net. $15–$20. 8 & 9:30 p.m. Sat., Feb. 22.

Classical, Etc.

JOYCE YANG The pianist makes her Seattle debut with

Bartok, Schumann, and Rachmaninoff. Meany Hall, UW campus, 543-4880, uwworldseries.org. $39–$44. 7:30 p.m. Wed., Feb. 19. UW JAZZ INNOVATIONS Progressive jazz from student ensembles. Brechemin Auditorium, School of Music, UW campus, 685-8384, music.washington.edu. $5. 7:30 p.m. Wed., Feb. 19–Thurs., Feb. 20. ROYAL OPERA HOUSE AT THE MOVIES From London, Puccini’s La boheme. See screenvision.com for participating theaters and exact times, Thurs., Feb. 20 and Sun., Feb. 23. SEATTLE MODERN ORCHESTRA Two nights (and two separate programs) with guest cellist Séverine Ballon. At PONCHO Concert Hall, Cornish College of the Arts, 710 E. Roy St., 8 p.m. Thurs., Feb. 20; and Chapel Performance Space, 4649 Sunnyside Ave. N., 8 p.m. Fri., Feb. 21. $10–$20. seattlemodernorchestra.com. LAKE UNION CIVIC ORCHESTRA An all-Russian program, including Scriabin’s Second Symphony. Town Hall, 1119 Eighth Ave., luco.org. $13–$18. 7:30 p.m. Fri., Feb. 21. SEATTLE SYMPHONY SEE EAR SUPPLY, BELOW. BAINBRIDGE SYMPHONY Respighi, Schubert, Schumann, and a new work by Erich Stern. Bainbridge Performing Arts, 200 Madison Ave. N., Bainbridge Island, 842-8569, bainbridgeperformingarts.org. $16–$19. 7:30 p.m. Sat., Feb. 22, 3 p.m. Sun., Feb. 23.

• 

• 

• ANN CUMMINGS In another of her “Inside the Music”

piano recitals, Cummings plays her own works plus Liszt, Sibelius, and more. Stage7 Pianos, 511 Sixth St. S., Kirkland, insidethemusic.com. $5–$15. 7 p.m. Sat., Feb. 22. GALLERY CONCERTS Chamber music by C.P.E. Bach, including works written for the flute-playing Frederick the Great. Queen Anne Christian Church, 1316 Third Ave. W., 726-6088, galleryconcerts.org. $20–$35. 7:30 p.m. Sat., Feb. 22, 3 p.m. Sun., Feb. 23. OCTAVA CHAMBER ORCHESTRA Mozart, Rossini, and more. First United Methodist Church of Bellevue, 1934 108th Ave. N.E., Bellevue, 425-743-2288, octavachamber orchestra.com. $5–$15. 7:30 p.m. Sat., Feb. 22. BERTA ROJAS Spanish and Spanish-flavored music from this classical guitarist. Benaroya Recital Hall, Third Ave. and Union St., 297-8788. $28–$38. 7:30 p.m. Sat., Feb. 22. SEATTLE OPERA The Consul, Gian-Carlo Menotti’s timely 1950 drama about life in an Orwellian totalitarian state. McCaw Hall, Seattle Center, 389-7676, seattleopera. org. $25 and up. Opens Feb. 22. 7:30 p.m. Wed., Fri., & Sat., plus 2 p.m. Sun., Feb. 23. Ends March 7. SEATTLE WIND SYMPHONY Respighi’s Pines of Rome and more. First Free Methodist Church, 3200 Third Ave. W., 800-838-3006, seattlewindsymphony.org. $5–$20. 7:30 p.m. Sat., Feb. 22. CONCORDIA CHOIR 79 voices, from Minnesota, where they know about choirs. Benaroya Hall, 200 University St., 215-4747, benaroyahall.org. 3 p.m. Sun., Feb. 23. MOSTLY NORDIC CHAMBER MUSIC SERIES Music from the five Scandinavian nations, opening with violin and piano music from Denmark. Nordic Heritage Museum, 3014 N.W. 67th St., 789-5707, nordicmuseum.org, $22–$27 ($47–$55 w/smorgasbord). 4 p.m. Sun., Feb. 23. ST. PETERSBURG STRING QUARTET Music by Borodin, Glazunov, and Glinka. Benaroya Recital Hall, Third Ave. and Union St., 425-829-1345, russianchambermusic.org. 5 p.m. Sun., Feb. 23. ERIC ZUBER A Beethoven sonata and shorter works by Schumann and Leon Kirchner from this pianist. Brechemin Auditorium, School of Music, UW campus, 685-8384, music.washington.edu. $15. 2 p.m. Sun., Feb. 23. ANDRE RICHARD This Swiss composer, in residence at UW, presents a concert of his works and those of his teacher Luigi Nono. Meany Hall, UW campus, 543-4880, music.washington.edu. $12–$20. 7:30 p.m. Tues., Feb. 25. UW BAROQUE ENSEMBLE Buxtehude, Telemann, and more. Brechemin Auditorium, School of Music, UW campus, 685-8384, music.washington.edu. $5. 7:30 p.m. Tues., Feb. 25. UW PERCUSSION ENSEMBLE Cage, Stockhausen, and much more. Meany Hall, UW campus, 543-4880, music. washington.edu. $10–$15. 7:30 p.m. Wed., Feb. 26.

• 

• 

Death and Transfiguration

EARSUPPLY

within to without the drama, resemble nothing so much as a skillfully edited film. And perhaps that’s why Bach never bothered with opera: The constricting stage conventions of his time offered no scope for anything this sophisticated. As a musical dramatist, he was already far beyond that. The Seattle Symphony performs the St. Matthew this weekend, under Ludovic Morlot; with the same solo singers, Stephen Stubbs conducts Bach’s 1724 St. John Passion with Pacific MusicWorks on March 1 and 2. Benaroya Hall, Third Ave. & Union St., 215-4747, seattlesymphony.org. $19–$76. 8 p.m. Fri., Feb. 21–Sat., Feb. 22.

SE ATTLE WEEKLY • FE BRUARY 19 — 25, 2014

Though Johann Sebastian Bach never wrote an opera, many hear his two settings of the Passion, the tale of Christ’s last days, as evidence that he would have mastered opera just as he did every other genre. In the St. Matthew Passion, from 1727, he stageBY GAVIN BORCHERT managed a complex array of forces for maximum impact. The action of the story is furthered through recitative—by a narrator, called the Evangelist, who describes it in the third person, and by the first-person characters within the story (Judas, Pilate, Peter, etc.). The words of Jesus himself are accompanied by ethereal sustained strings, as if his voice is throwing off a kind of sonic glow. Ornate solo arias stand outside the action and present emotional commentary on it. The chorus plays two roles: one dramatic, representing disciples, angry mobs, and other groups (even splitting in two for question-and-answer dialogue); the other reflective, singing hymnlike chorales on homiletic texts (in which the congregation may have joined). The shifts among all these points of view, and from

23


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arts&culture» Film

Opening ThisWeek

Oscar-Nominated Short Films: The Documentaries RUNS FRI., FEB. 21–THURS., FEB. 27 AT SUNDANCE CINEMAS. NOT RATED. 167 MINUTES.

Final Cut: Ladies and Gentlemen

In Secret OPENS FRI., FEB. 21 AT MERIDIAN, SEVEN GABLES, AND OAK TREE. RATED R. 101 MINUTES.

Within the pages of an 1867 Emile Zola novel lie the seeds of film noir. The hothouse cravings and bloody deeds of Thérèse Raquin travel in a

In Secret’s Olsen as French killer.

straight line to James M. Cain’s Double Indemnity and The Postman Always Rings Twice, books that became a poisoned wellspring for the tawdry postwar American cinema known as noir. Zola gives you the skeleton of the form, fleshed out with a bored married woman, a handsome artist, sexual combustion, and murder. This corker has been newly filmed, in its original period setting, as In Secret—an unfortunately stolid version of Zola’s story. Rising star Elizabeth Olsen (Martha Marcy May Marlene) plays the central role. Thérèse has been raised by her fearsome aunt ( Jessica Lange, almost but not quite breaking through to something formidable), whose own son Camille (Tom Felton) has been a sickly nearbrother to Thérèse during childhood. She’s forced to marry Camille as a practical matter when the family moves to Paris, a move that puts her in proximity to Camille’s work friend Laurent (Oscar Isaac, from Inside Llewyn Davis). Laurent fancies himself a painter, but Isaac has the eyes of a born sensualist, and one imagines Laurent has spent more time chasing other men’s wives than perfecting his brushstrokes. He and Thérèse ignite; murder occurs; the descent into anxiety and guilt commences. But maybe guilt is the wrong word—there’s the sense that Thérèse and Laurent are mostly bored again and disgusted by what they’ve done. Without the thrill of adultery, even their bodies don’t interest them much. We killed a guy for this? Based on Neal Bell’s 1991 play, In Secret is the feature debut of director Charlie Stratton, who does low-rent atmosphere just fine but flattens the action into a steady, dreary slog. His best decision is casting Olsen, whose quick responses show us how Thérèse’s ennui mutates into desire with uncontrollable force. And by the way, Harry Potter fans, Felton (aka Draco Malfoy) is much more spirited in adult form than he ever was at Hogwarts; his Camille is pasty-faced, sincere, and none too bright. Yet these sparks aren’t enough to slap In Secret into shape. This is a story that needs the relentless motion of a whirlpool, but it dribbles away well before the end. ROBERT HORTON

The Rocket OPENS FRI., FEB. 21 AT VARSITY. NOT RATED. 96 MINUTES.

Written and directed by an Australian, Kim Mordaunt, this familiar little drama is set in a very unfamiliar place: Laos, a footnote to the Vietnam War, a country long isolated and impoverished by its rulers, far from the tourist beaches of Southeast Asia. Mordaunt filmed a 2006 documentary in Laos, Bomb Harvest, about Australians removing dangerous old war ordnance; now he returns to make this first feature with an indigenous cast. The Rocket is a case of ethnography prevailing over rudimentary story (almost a fable, really): You’ve seen this film before, only not here. In a prologue we learn that newborn Ahlo is considered cursed because he’s delivered with a twin brother. Drown them, the very traditional grandmother (Bunsri Yindi) commands; but

Run & Jump RUNS FRI., FEB. 21–THURS., FEB. 27 AT NORTHWEST FILM FORUM. NOT RATED. 105 MINUTES.

The stink of MacGruber had pretty well cleared by the time Will Forte began racking up praise, all of it deserved, for his supporting role in Nebraska. Who knew the guy could act? Well, credit Irish writer/director Steph Green for making at least part of the discovery before Alexander Payne. Forte plays fish-out-of-water American neurologist Ted, who’s staying with a rural Irish family to study its stroke-damaged patriarch, woodworker Conor (Edward MacLiam). After a coma and months in rehab, Conor returns as a sullen, withdrawn presence in the cheerfully disordered cottage also inhabited by a cute little daughter, a teenage son, and his overtaxed wife Vanetia (Maxine Peake). Vanetia can barely keep command over this unruly household, and has little patience for the rather clinical Dr. Ted and his constant videotaping. It’s like having a spy in their home. Conor has no interest in sex, while the vivacious, flame-haired Vanetia has plenty of life in her, so the romantic tension to this seriocom is fairly clear. However, Green is rather too shy about carrying things through to their logical conclusion. Her script (with Ailbhe Keogan) and direction tend to hang back, rather like Dr. Ted—observing more than stirring things up. Ted and Vanetia may kiss and share a toke, but Green doesn’t want to destroy this happy home. Meanwhile, Conor’s cranial confusion only results in predictable outbursts; his recovery—if even possible—ought to be of more dramatic

SE ATTLE WEEKLY • FE BRUARY 19 — 25, 2014

With this compilation film, György Pálfi pays tribute to the precious moments of movie history: It’s a feature-length mosaic weaving 400-ish clips into a single story. This film buff ’s salmagundi is therefore fun to watch, but Pálfi is also slyly teasing the sameness of so many movie plots. It always comes down to Boy Meets Girl, Boy Loses Girl, Boy Gets Girl Back Again. And so a coherent Every-narrative can be spliced together from movies as different as The Sound of Music, Stalker, Star Trek—The Motion Picture, and Stranger Than Paradise, to pick one alphabetical run (the film’s website lists all the sources). Pálfi is a Hungarian filmmaker of prodigious imagination; his lovable 2002 comedy Hukkle brought him to international attention, and his unlovable (but really kind of brilliant) 2006 satire Taxidermia established his talent for extremes. Final Cut came about after Hungary canceled a government subsidy for movie projects, leaving Pálfi stranded. In lieu of shooting something new, he turned to stitching together pieces of old movies. Final Cut walks through every step of the classic romance: the chance meeting, first date, kiss, wedding, disenchantment, reconciliation. It should be noted that this arc includes sex, and a few moments of explicit coupling are included from porno features. (This citizens’ advisory is included in case you were thinking of taking your kids to see an example of ye olde movie magic only to realize that Deep Throat is submerged in the montage.) The result would be cacophonous if each moment had its original soundtrack, so Pálfi uses movie music to carry us through scenes, as well as bursts of dialogue. The film is full of ingenious cuts that seem to join Joan Crawford flirting with Tom Hanks or Humphrey Bogart surveying Sharon Stone. It’s impossible not to delight in the series of couples riding in the same two-shot during uneasy car rides, as “Runaway” rambles in your ear. The selections are skewed through Pálfi’s mindset, which gives us a lot of Hungarian films and a strange emphasis on ’80s and ’90s Hollywood cinema (his youth, having been born in 1974). On a more bothersome level, one might wonder at how few black actors are included in the cascade of images. Final Cut occupies an accessible place between Christian Marclay’s The Clock (24 hours of clips relating to time in movies) and Chuck Workman’s Precious Images (eight minutes of exquisitely chosen flashes of Hollywood history). This movie lasts just long enough to make its clever point and let you marvel at the stunt, before it walks off into the sunset. It’s unlikely ever to be a DVD—rights issues would prevent that—so if you’re into the idea, this is your shot. ROBERT HORTON

PHIL BRAY/ROADSIDE ATTRACTIONS

RUNS FRI., FEB. 21–THURS., FEB. 27 AT SIFF CINEMA UPTOWN. NOT RATED. 84 MINUTES.

Among the five titles included here, four of which I’ve seen, most deal with emphatically Big Topics: prison reform, the Holocaust, the Arab Spring, and queer bashing. (The fifth, an outlier, is about an eccentric New Mexico artist.) It’s hard enough to finance a feature-length documentary, so these shorts skew toward the important—meaning PBS and HBO will take note. (The one I missed, Prison Terminal, will air on HBO next month.) The Lady in Number 6 is a polished English profile of a 109-year-old pianist and Holocaust survivor; bless her heart for that. Karama Has No Walls, filmed by two extraordinarily brave young cameramen while government forces were shooting at them and fellow protestors, is a bloody news dispatch from Yemen, close cousin to the Oscar-nominated Tahrir Square doc The Square. Cavedigger, the outlier, is a sad/amusing portrait of a guy who creates cathedral-like sandstone caves; but it’s also like every Seattle homeowner’s horror story about the contractor who won’t finish a remodel on any terms but his. Don’t hire this artist, in other words. The film I predict will take home the Oscar next Sunday is Jason Cohen’s Facing Fear, a Los Angeles crime tale that takes over 25 years to unfold. In 1981, a 15-year-old street hustler and a 17-year-old skinhead meet in the parking lot of a hot-dog stand. It’s an angry mob against one, and the scared gay teen—cast out by his fundamentalist mother—is kicked and beaten unconscious on the pavement. During the ride home to the suburbs, Tim Zaal later recalls, he and his boisterous, drunken buddies got uncomfortably quiet: Did they actually kill that little faggot? Flash-forward to the present day. Matthew Boger, scars conspicuous on his face, is a soft-spoken manager at L.A.’s Museum of Tolerance, established in 1993, where he coordinates school groups and lecturers from those previously on both sides of the hate divide. Tim and Matthew are going to meet again, and I’ll leave the particulars there. How do you forgive your would-be killer? And how can that violent felon ever atone for his assault? I’ll leave those questions for Facing Fear to answer. (Damn, is it getting dusty in here? There’s something in my eye . . . ) BRIAN MILLER

Ahlo’s twin is stillborn, so he’s spared. Ten years later, cheerful Ahlo (Sitthiphon Disamoe, a former street urchin) is taken by father Toma (Sumrit Warin) to visit a giant, Western-backed hydroelectric dam, which also has a twin and bears a curse. That new dam will displace Ahlo’s family and village, so the government simply trucks the villagers down to the lowlands, without compensation or new housing. Among the new refugees Ahlo encounters are cute 9-year-old Kia (Loungnam Kaosainam) and her eccentric, drunken uncle (Thep Phongam), who worships James Brown—right down to the purple suit and pompadour. Kia and her uncle squat in an unfinished building, surrounded by people with electricity, cell phones, and scooters. Yet society has no interest in these dispossessed peasants, so like the Okies in The Grapes of Wrath. There will be tragedy and triumph for Ahlo’s family, and the plot hinges on an unlikely (but real) homemade rocket competition, a kind of pagan rain festival that suggests a culture far older than the rusting U.S. bombs that Ahlo and company carefully scavenge for rocket propellant. (Yes, it’s as dangerous as it sounds.) When Ahlo swims in the dammed river, he sees an ancient, drowned temple, its Buddhist idols forgotten yet serene. Collecting bat guano in a cave (again, for his rocket), he encounters an old woman who might well be a witch—like his grandmother, for that matter, who gradually sells the beads stitched to her hat to feed the family. There are low-paying factory jobs in the city, but Ahlo’s father resists: Land is still sacred to these wanderers, and his family refuses to sunder its roots to the soil. BRIAN MILLER

» CONTINUED ON PAGE 26 25


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arts&culture» Film » FROM PAGE 25 interest here. Then there’s the matter of son Lenny (Brendan Morris) being bullied, for just the reasons you’d expect. Rather too genial for its own good, Run & Jump treats all its characters fairly, never letting them drive into the ditch or do anything selfdestructive. Recall the moment in Nebraska when Forte’s put-upon son starts walking out the bar where Stacy Keach’s character has just humiliated his father (Bruce Dern): Forte pauses, thinks about it, then turns around to sock that mean old SOB in the face. No equivalent punches are thrown in Run & Jump. BRIAN MILLER

P7 Boxes RUNS FRI., FEB. 21–THURS., FEB. 27 AT SIFF CINEMA UPTOWN. NOT RATED. 105 MINUTES.

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The Wind Rises OPENS FRI., FEB. 21 AT CINERAMA AND OTHER THEATERS. RATED PG-13. 126 MINUTES.

Beloved animator Hayao Miyazaki has announced this as his final feature, which means The Wind Rises ought to be arriving on a parade float of acclaim, buoyed by pastel clouds

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This is the story of a seemingly unremarkable teen named Victor (Celso Franco) who wants to rise above his station in life, which happens to be as a delivery boy in a Paraguayan market. The first step toward fame and fortune, he believes, is acquiring an expensive cameraphone so he can make movies. The only problem is that Victor is poor—then circumstance puts a $100 payday within his reach. All he has to do is wheel the titular cargo around the marketplace. It is, of course, not that simple. Victor soon finds himself fleeing angry thugs and avoiding capture by the police. He proves elusive, inventive, and, to the film’s benefit, quite likable. Comparisons to Slumdog Millionaire are unavoidable, but 7 Boxes is much more gritty and believable than Danny Boyle’s tale of class jumping in India. The chase scenes are sometimes more gripping, too—even though most involve a wheelbarrow. Directors Juan Carlos Maneglia and Tana Schémbori succeed in creating a thriller that doesn’t need a big budget or Hollywood flash to create suspense. Will Victor get his money? And what’s in those boxes anyway? You’ll stick around to see.

Victor (Franco) chases his mysterious cargo in 7 Boxes.

and pulled by a collection of amazing imaginary creatures. And yes, the movie’s snagged an Oscar nomination for Best Animated Feature (Miyazaki won for 2001’s Spirited Away) and good reviews. But the valedictory lap has been slowed a bit by puzzled rumblings about the film’s subject, which—while loose enough to allow for fantastical sequences—is rooted in historical reality. On the one hand, a biographical study of engineer and airplane designer Jiro Horikoshi sounds like a great match for Miyazaki’s wistful style: It allows for beautiful flying sequences and perhaps some self-portraiture in its study of a detail-minded dreamer who assembles his creations from a combination of math-based design and pure imagination. The problem? Horikoshi’s masterpiece was the Zero, Japan’s lethally efficient World War II fighter plane. Now, The Wind Rises is an antiwar film, and Miyazaki takes some pains to criticize the inter-war Japanese mindset. Still, I have to admit there’s something head-in-the-clouds about this movie’s soft treatment of its central character. The film is so full of dream sequences and wistful humor and regret about a lost love that it doesn’t begin to suggest a deep internal conflict in Horikoshi’s work on the machinery of death, if indeed he felt any. If the movie does have a head-in-the-clouds spaciness, well—what clouds! And what fields, and flying machines, and cityscapes. Miyazaki mounts one spectacular early sequence around the catastrophic Japanese earthquake of 1923, a stunning vision of fire and fear. The title, referred to more than once, comes from a line from a Paul Valéry poem: “The wind is rising! We must try to live!” That soulful stirring defines the film more than its curious treatment of a fighter-plane designer. Miyazaki is the rare film artist who appreciates the natural world; for him the wind is more than an idea—it’s a physical and spiritual force. That fact that he draws his visions rather than just photographing them makes his achievement all the more singular. One technical note: I saw The Wind Rises in its Japanese-language, subtitled form. Its U.S. release—it’s been a huge hit in Japan—will have both subtitled and dubbed-into-English prints, depending on the theater. The dubbing cast is led by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Emily Blunt, and Stanley Tucci. ROBERT HORTON E film@seattleweekly.com


arts&culture» Film BY BRIAN MILLER

Local & Repertory BASTARDS SIFF concludes its Monday night “Recent

THE SPROCKET SOCIETY’S SATURDAY SECRET MATINEES The 1949 serial Batman & Robin will be

screened in weekly installments. (NR) Grand Illusion, $5-$8 individual, $35-$56 pass, Saturdays, 2 p.m. Through March 29. THE TELEPHONE BOOK In this 1971 porno, a hippie chick falls in love (or something) with an obscene phone caller. So naturally she tries to find him; various sex-capades ensue. (NR) Grand Illusion, $5-$8, Opens Feb. 21, Fri., Sat., 10 p.m. Through March 1. WOODY ALLEN IN THE ‘80S Running FridaySunday, 1989’s Crimes and Misdemeanors came out a few years before the Mia Farrrow split and scandal. Allen’s reputation was still sterling, and the drama’s

• 

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dark themes of jealousy and violence actually anticipate much of his work over the next 20 years. (Match Point being the most obvious example.) Anjelica Huston is the inconvenient mistress who needs killing, and Martin Landau the upright doctor who organizes the crime. Meanwhile, Allen is a poor schmuck working for a TV star (Alan Alda), with Farrow the romantic prize between them. Morality, or its absence, is the subject of this dark but occasionally comic picture. Bad deeds go unpunished, while nice guys finish last to arrogant buffoons. Alda explains his commercially successful formula to Allen thusly: “If it bends, it’s funny. If it breaks, it isn’t.” What Crimes illustrates conversely is that morality can more arbitrary and flexible than the rabbis tells us. Sometimes it only bends without consequence, and that can be tragic. (Allen’s 1988 drama Another Woman, with Farrow and Gena Rowlands, runs Sunday-Wednesday; see grandillusioncinema.org for showtimes.) BRIAN MILLER Grand Illusion, $5–$8, Through March 5.

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David O. Russell is full of big roundhouse swings and juicy performances: It’s a fictionalized take on the Abscam scandal of the late 1970s, in which the FBI teamed with a second-rate con man (here called Irving Rosenfeld, played by Christian Bale) in a wacko sting operation involving a bogus Arab sheik and bribes to U.S. congressmen. Along with the FBI coercing him into its scheme, Irving is caught between his hottie moll Sydney (Amy Adams) and neglected wife Rosalyn (Jennifer Lawrence). Even more complicated for Irving is that one of the targets of the undercover operation, a genially corrupt yet idealistic Jersey politico (Jeremy Renner), turns out to be a soulmate. Equally unhappy is the presiding FBI agent (Bradley Cooper, his permed hair and his sexual urge equally curled in maddening knots). Russell encourages his actors to go for it, and man, do they go for it. (R) R.H. Lincoln Square, Sundance, others DALLAS BUYERS CLUB Making a straight white Texas homophobe the hero of a film about the ’80s AIDS crisis doesn’t seem right. It’s inappropriate, exceptional, possibly even crass. All those qualities are reflected in Matthew McConaughey’s ornery, emaciated portrayal of Ron Woodroof, a rodeo rider and rough liver who contracted HIV in 1985. Fond of strippers, regularly swigging from his pocket flask, doing lines of coke when he can afford them, betting on the bulls he rides, Ron has tons of Texas-sized character. Directed by Jean-Marc Vallée, the unruly Dallas Buyers Club goes easy on the sinner-to-saint conversion story. As Ron desperately bribes and steals a path to off-label meds, his allies and adversaries do read like fictional composites. Best among them is the transvestite Rayon, who becomes Ron’s right-hand woman (Jared Leto). (R) B.R.M. Sundance, Lincoln Square, others GLORIA In this Chilean character study, Paulina García—a veteran of Chilean television—plays the title role, and she builds a small masterpiece out of Gloria’s behavioral tics. García understands this woman from the heels up. She’s divorced, nearing 60, with grown kids who are kind but aloof. Gloria has a couple of purely sexual encounters during the film (the movie is admirably nonchalant about suggesting that people over 50 might enjoy a fling or two, and unembarrassed about depicting such flings), but her main romantic interest is a recently divorced ex-Navy retiree, Rodolfo (Sergio Hernández). Director Sebastián Lelio and García have created a character so richly imperfect and fully inhabited that her trajectory remains engaging despite the occasional overstatement. (R) R.H. Sundance THE GREAT BEAUTY Paolo Sorrentino’s fantastic account of an aging playboy journalist in Rome casts its eye back to La Dolce Vita. Yet this movie looks even further back, from the capsized Costa Concordia to the ruins and reproachful marble statues of antiquity. “I feel old,” says Jep (the sublime Toni Servillo) soon after the debauch of his 65th birthday party. He’s been coasting on the success of his first and only novel, content with his goal to be king of Rome’s high life. Jep is a dandy with thinning hair brushed back and a girdle beneath his silk shirt. False appearances are all that count, but it takes intelligence to deceive. Disgust—and then perhaps self-disgust—begins to color his perception of a Botox party, the food obsessions of a prominent cardinal, and the whole “debauched country.” Jep is a guy living parallel lives in hectic ballrooms and in his head. His wry glances are both mocking and wincing, appropriate for a movie that’s simultaneously bursting with life and regret. (NR) B.R.M. Crest, SIFF Cinema Uptown

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Raves!” series with Claire Denis’ recent French crime tale. Her cryptic approach only adds to the film’s creeping sense of unease, as a man commits suicide on a rainy night, and his brother-in-law Marco (Vincent Lindon) quits his job as a ship’s captain in order to come home and sort things out for his deeply damaged sister (Julie Bataille) and niece (Lola Créton). Marco moves into a huge, empty apartment across the hall from a prominent businessman (Michel Subor), who lives with trophy mistress Raphaëlle (Chiara Mastroianni) and their young son. The hints that emerge about this world grow darker as the movie goes on—and are, in fact, about as dark as a family nightmare can get. For a movie obsessed with how difficult it is to see the truth (and how reluctant people are to acknowledge it), it is fitting that surveillance cameras and other recording devices are an almost-unnoticed fact of life—culminating in the last, terrible sequence. (NR) ROBERT HORTON SIFF Cinema Uptown, 511 Queen Anne Ave. N., 324-9996, siff.net, $6-$11, 8 p.m. Mon., Feb. 24. BUILDING CHARACTER Local film gadfly Warren Etheredge will lead discussions after each title in this five-night series. First up is the Henry James update What Maise Knew, with Julianne Moore, Steve Coogan, and Alexander Skarsgard. Following are Valentine Road, Smashed, Ain’t Them Bodies Saints, and Mud. West of Lenin, 203 N. 36th St., 352-1777, thewarrenreport.com, $7-$10 ($25-$35 series), Feb. 25-March 1, 7 p.m. DIRTY DANCING Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey star in this favorite rom-com from 1987. (PG-13) Central Cinema, 1411 21st Ave., 686-6684, central-cinema. com, $6-$8, Fri., Feb. 21, 7 p.m.; Sat., Feb. 22, 3 & 7 p.m.; Mon., Feb. 24, 7 p.m. DREAMLAND This recent doc examines Iceland’s power industry and debt, which caused a national crisis. (NR) Keystone Congregational Church, 5019 Keystone Place N., 632-6021, keystoneseattle.org, Free, Fri., Feb. 21, 7 p.m. GETTING BACK TO ABNORMAL Paul Stekler, one of four co-directors behind this new doc, talks about following an eccentric New Orleans politician around the city in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. (NR) Northwest Film Forum, 1515 12th Ave., 829-7863, nwfilmforum. org, $6-$11, Sun., Feb. 23, 7 p.m. THE GOLDEN AGE OF ITALIAN CINEMA From 1963, The Organizer stars Marcello Mastroianni as an idealistic professor sent to organize oppressed textile-factory workers in Turin. (NR) Seattle Art Museum, 1300 First Ave., 654-3100, seattleartmuseum.org, $63-$68 (series), Thursdays, 7:30 p.m. Through March 13. HAROLD AND MAUDE Hal Ashby’s 1972 countercultural touchstone may now seem somewhat adrift, since that dominant, Nixon-era culture has disappeared. Suicidal Bud Cort falls for lively Ruth Gordon, each of them learning life lessons along the course of their, ahem, romance. One indication of how times have changed is the score by Cat Stevens, as he was then known. Another is how Cort could almost pass for a Williamsburg hipster today. (PG) B.R.M. Central Cinema, $6-$8, Feb. 21-26, 9:30 p.m. THE LAST BATH Made in Seattle in 1973 by a collective associated with the old Apple Theater, this is evidently a home-brewed porno unavailable on video. (NR) Grand Illusion, 1403 N.E. 50th St., 523-3935, grandillusioncinema.org, $5-$8, Thu., Feb. 20, 8 p.m. NESHOBA: THE PRICE OF FREEDOM This doc relates the story of how Civil Rights activists James Chaney, Andrew Goodman, and Michael Schwerner were slain in 1964 Mississippi. (NR) New Freeway Hall, 5018 Rainier Ave. S., 722-2453, $2, Fri., Feb. 21, 7 p.m.

SEAT TLE 4500 9TH AVE. NE • 206-633-0059

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dinner & show

mainstage WED/FEBRUARY 19 • 7:30PM

sweet honey in the rock THU/FEBRUARY 20 • 8PM

hot tuna (acoustic) w/ david lindley FRI/FEBRUARY 21 • 8PM

tony furtado w/ lydia ramsey SUN/FEBRUARY 23 • 7:30PM

david wilcox w/ justin farren MON/FEBRUARY 24 • 7:30PM

jon mclaughlin w/ dwayne shivers WED/FEBRUARY 26 • 7:30PM

throwing muses

El Corazon www.elcorazonseattle.com

109 Eastlake Ave East • Seattle, WA 98109 Booking and Info: 206.262.0482

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 19

THU/FEBRUARY 27 • 7:30PM

mason jennings w/ rebecca pidgeon

LYNCH MOB (FEAT. GEORGE LYNCH

KGRG (89.9 FM) & Take Warning Present:

Doors at 7:30 / Show at 8PM 21+. $18 ADV / $20 DOS / $75 VIP

Home Team and Jumping Fences Lounge Show. Doors at 7 / Show at 7:30PM ALL AGES/BAR W/ID. $10 ADV / $12 DOS

OF DOKKEN) with Zero Down and AntiHero

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 20

SEATTLE WEEKLY • FEBRUARY 19 — 25, 2014

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happy hour every day • 2/19 the joe montgomery project • 2/20 warren g hardings • 2/21 ranger and the “re-arrangers” / jd hobson • 2/22 tangerine and dj hojo • 2/23 hwy 99 blues presents: the true romans • 2/24 crossrhythm session•2/25closedforaprivateeventuntil9pm•2/26dannygodinez TO ENSURE THE BEST EXPERIENCE · PLEASE ARRIVE EARLY DOORS OPEN 1.5 HOURS PRIOR TO FIRST SHOW · ALL-AGES (BEFORE 9:30PM)

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MAJOR LEAGUE with Have Mercy, Seaway, Better Off, The SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 23

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RINGO DEATHSTARR with Purple, Kingdom Of The Holy Sun and

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 21

TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 25

AVOID THE VOID with Galaxy, plus guests

DAVE HAUSE with Northcote and Jefferson Death Star

Mike Thrasher Presents:

next • 2/28 the united states of football (film) • 3/1 nicki bluhm & the gramblers (at neumos) • 3/3 korby lenker w/ carrie clark • 3/4 benjamin verdoes • 3/6 sea wolf w/ kevin long • 3/8 john gorka w/ antje duvekot • 3/9 tayla lynn w/ jessica lynne • 3/12 - 3/16 house of thee unholy • 3/18 nils frahm w/ douglas dare • 3/19 paula cole • 3/20 soundtrack for the future benefit • 3/21 massy ferguson w/ sassparilla • 3/23 carrie rodriguez w/ honey noble • 3/25 wanting w/ dawen wang

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 22

with Nothington, Great Apes and Success! Doors at 7 / Show at 7:30PM ALL AGES/BAR W/ID. $15 ADV / $18 DOS

Lounge Show. Doors at 7:30 / Show at 8PM ALL AGES/BAR W/ID. $8 ADV / $10 DOS

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 22

The Spider Ferns Lounge Show. Doors at 7 / Show at 7:30PM ALL AGES/BAR W/ID. $10 ADV / $12 DOS

Lounge Show. Doors at 8 / Show at 8:30PM 21+. $10 ADV / $12 DOS

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 26

KISW (99.9 FM) Metal Shop & El Corazon Present:

El Corazon & Mike Thrasher Present:

Kings Destroy, Lesbian and Ancient Warlocks Doors at 7:30 / Show at 8PM ALL AGES/BAR W/ID. $22 ADV / $25 DOS

with Death Angel, TYR and Kill Closet Doors at 7 / Show at 8PM ALL AGES/BAR W/ID. $23 ADV / $25 DOS

PENTAGRAM with Radio Moscow,

CHILDREN OF BODOM

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arts&culture» Music

SevenNights

Picking Sides

E D I T E D B Y G W E N D O LY N E L L I O T T

Wednesday, Feb. 19

Ani DiFranco aligns with Pete Seeger. BY GWENDOLYN ELLIOTT

Over the past 20 years, Canadian anarcho-punk band PROPAGANDHI has evolved more than most of its peers. It still plays at blistering speeds and espouses lefty politics and veganism, but its melodic skate-punk has been replaced by complicated metal-leaning songs and structures, as evidenced by the addition of a second guitarist and 2012’s Failed States, 37 minutes of sheer face-pummeling bliss. With Flatliners, War on Women. Neumos, 925 E. Pike St., 709-9951, neumos. com. 7 p.m. $18. DAVE LAKE

U

Thursday, Feb. 20

SHERVIN LAINEZ

Seattle’s BIG TRUGHK should be atop your list of bands to check out if you haven’t yet. Released late last summer, the band’s first recording, Too Drughnk to Fughk, is a sludgy, Jesus Lizard–inspired blast, recorded by Tad Doyle (Tad, Brothers of the Sonic Cloth) at his Witch Ape Studio. With Deadkill, Blood Drugs, Ratza. Barboza, 925 E. Pike St., 709-9442, thebarboza.com. 8 p.m. $8 adv. 21 and over. JAMES BALLINGER Formally known as Dog Shredder, Bellingham’s WILD THRONE is one of those jaw-dropping bands that leaves you breathless after a show. Chaotic as ever, the band is set to release its new EP, Blood Maker, recorded by producer Ross Robinson (Glassjaw, At the Drive-In, Slipknot). With Gaytheist, Drunk Dad, The Great Goddamn. Chop Suey, 1325 E. Madison St., 3248005, chopsuey.com. 8 p.m. $7 adv./$10 DOS. 21 and over. JB It took Chicago’s LAWRENCE ARMS eight years to release Metropole, but its members have been busy: Chris McCaughan with Sundowner, Brendan Kelly with Wandering Birds, and drummer Neil Hennessy with Smoking Popes. Though this album doesn’t reach the highs of previous outings, it’s by no means off the mark. Neither will be the live show. With Nothington, Great Apes, Success! El Corazon, 109 Eastlake Ave. E., 262-0482, elcorazon.com. 7:30 p.m. $15 adv./$18 DOS. DL Send events to music@seattleweekly.com. See seattleweekly.com for full listings.

Friday, Feb. 21

It’s been 20 years since the release of KEB’ MO’s selftitled debut. In that time, the Compton native has toured the world and kept the dwindling embers of Delta blues alive. With a new record due in April, Mo’ clearly doesn’t intend for the fire to go out on his watch. Edmonds Center for the Arts, 410 Fourth Ave. N., Edmonds, 425-275-4485. edmondscenterforthearts. org. 7:30 p.m. $42–$52. CR Electro-rock quintet FURNITURE GIRLS is kicking off the year in a big way with the release of two six-song EPs: Dreams, being released at this show, and Chaos. From the in-your-face “Drool” to the almost bluesy “Killbabykill,” Dreams is a grab bag, with themes of love, lust, Jack the Ripper, and . . . the zombie apocalypse. With Thrivealike, Aaron Daniel, The Yev. High

NIC SHONFELD

We Were Promised Jetpacks

SE ATTLE WEEKLY • FE BRUARY 19 — 25, 2014

ntil he passed away on January 27, Pete Seeger was a tireless advocate for civil and environmental justice. Alt-folk singer/songwriter Ani DiFranco knows this firsthand. In a piece for The Wall Street Journal called “Things Pete Seeger Taught Me,” she wrote that after she contacted him to appear on her new record, “he called me back the same day. In fact, he called me back twice and sent one letter my way before I even got a chance to get back to him!” Released in 2012, that album’s Inspired by Pete title track, “Which Side Are Seeger, DiFranco You On?”, featuring the legendsoldiers on. ary lefty on banjo, is a slightly altered version of the union anthem Seeger helped popularize in the ’50s. To record it, the two met at the The example is not lost on DiFranco. Her Walkabout Clearwater Sloop Club—the hub new album tests “deeper waters with the politiof Seeger’s Hudson River cleanup activism cal songs,” she says. And a recent professional for decades—and he recorded his part in one hurdle—a fiercely negative backlash prompted take. “Good thing, too, because immediately her to cancel an artist’s retreat at a former slave in walked a children’s singing group to use the plantation—was handled with the contemplative space for rehearsal,” DiFranco wrote. “Pete repose of a figurehead long used to crossfire and started holding court and teaching the kids the the lessons it yields. history of that song. We ended up recording “You were right,” she wrote to fans and critics everyone singing together.” on the Righteous Babe site after she canceled the It must have been something to watch Seeger, event. “We can’t in good conscience go to that then in his early 90s, utilize the moment to place and support it or look past for one moment engage young people and share his love for folk what it deeply represents. I needed a wake-up music. So it went with the songwriter and pacicall and you gave it to me.” fist, who co-opted every moment to promote the In his later years, Seeger similarly came to power and unity of song (as he famously did dur- rethink his early support of communism (in an ing the McCarthy era, when he was subpoenaed interview with The New York Times Magazine, he to testify before the House Un-American Activi- apologized for “following the party line so slavties Committee in 1955, and dodged questions ishly, for not seeing that Stalin was a supremely by offering to play his banjo). cruel misleader”). Yet for radical thinkers and DiFranco began performing at open mikes as doers, the personal is the political and vice versa, a teenager in Buffalo, N.Y., and not long after and those lines can get blurry. The takeaway, gained visibility for her highly personal songs DiFranco wrote, is that “Pete taught me that it is tackling such topics as reproductive rights, not enough to do good work. You have to do it sexuality, and personal identity. Now 43, she with the right spirit or it is no good at all.” is a feminist icon, having garnered Grammy But now what?—now that Seeger is gone, and nominations (including one win) and countless Bob Dylan, whose early work he championed, is other awards, all while self-releasing albums on shilling for Chrysler? her own Righteous Babe record label (alongside DiFranco is back in the studio, of course. work by Andrew Bird, Anaïs Mitchell, and oth“Pete was a great comrade to me and I tried to ers) and advocating for everything from aborbe a good comrade in return, to come when he tion rights to nuclear disarmament through her called,” she wrote. “[He] taught me that to be a Righteous Babe Foundation. good activist, you have to do it yourself and you Seeger fought incessantly, and at his own have to do it now.” E expense, for similar issues. He was blacklisted gelliott@seattleweekly.com for refusing to name his associates before the HUAC, and an outspoken opponent of the ANI DIFRANCO Vietnam war. Through songs like “My Dirty With Jenny Schienman. Stream (The Hudson River Song),” his efforts The Moore, 1932 Second Ave., 467-5510, to clean up the Hudson earned him extraordistgpresents.org/moore. $35 adv./$40 DOS. nary praise from the EPA. 7:30 p.m. Sat., Feb. 22.

Neon Sigh affiliates JETMAN JET TEAM harken back to bands like My Bloody Valentine and Slowdive in their fuzzy, swooning heyday: Dreamy melodies glisten above booming waves of guitar distortion, and the tones are simultaneously harsh and lovely. With Blackstone Rangers, Soft Shadows, Golden Gardens. Lo-Fi Performance Gallery, 429 Eastlake Ave., 254-2824, thelofi.net. 9 p.m. $7. 21 and over. DUSTY HENRY New Orleans jazz trumpeter, bandleader, and film composer Terence Blanchard is constantly looking to break new ground. The maestro has led, co-led, and scored over 40 albums, and the TERENCE BLANCHARD SEXTET will showcase his proclivity for improvisation as well as explore hard bop and other lively jazz formats. Jazz Alley, 2033 Sixth Ave., 441-9729, jazzalley. com. 7:30 & 9:30 p.m. Thurs.–Sat., 7:30 p.m. Sun. $24.50. All ages. BRIAN PALMER Since winning season 3 of NBC’s The Voice, a cappella quintet PENTATONIX has released three Billboard Top 15 albums, including November’s PTX, Vol. II. Whether covering Daft Punk and Lorde or creating groovy originals like the swelling dance number “Love Again,” Pentatonix bowls you over with its impeccable melodies. The Paramount, 911 Pine St., 682-1414, stgpresents.org/paramount. 8:30 p.m. $25–$30. All ages. BP HOT TUNA Formerly of Jefferson Airplane, bassist Jack Casady and guitarist Jorma Kaukonen have earned regard the world over for their unique brand of blues. With the addition of eclectic multi-instrumentalist David Lindley and an adherence to a strict acousticonly format, this should make for a interesting evening indeed. The Triple Door, 216 Union St., 838-4333, triple door.net. 8 p.m. $59.50. CORBIN REIFF

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2033 6th Avenue (206) 441-9729 jazzalley.com

JAZZ ALLEY IS A SUPPER CLUB

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Feb. 20 @ high dive

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Five-time Grammy winning trumpeter and renowned film-score and soundtrack composer

10TH ANNUAL SEATTLE-KOBE FEMALE JAZZ VOCALIST AUDITION MON, FEB 24 BUSTER WILLIAMS, CINDY BLACKMAN-SANTANA, GEORGE COLLIAN, BENNIE MAUPIN AND JULIAN PRIESTER TUES, FEB. 25- WEDS, FEB 26 Jazz without boundaries

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Friday Feb. 28Th @ el corazon

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21+ onLY - 9:30 pm *JusT announced* Friday, apr. 11 @ The sunseT

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arts&culture»Music Dive, 513 N. 36th St., 632-0212, highdiveseattle.com. 9 p.m. $8. 21 and over. AZARIA C. PODPLESKY Merging the shadowy tones of Interpol with twee pop instrumentation, Portland’s AND AND AND creates frantic, melodic indie tracks. The band’s self-description, “wild basement pop,” seems accurate. Everything sounds like it could break down at any moment, and the jangly lo-fi sounds create an image of a band embracing the beaten path. With Detective Agency. Neumos. 8 p.m. $8 adv. 21 and over. DH Folk-rock favorites THE HEAD AND THE HEART have come a long way since those open-mike nights at Conor Byrne in Ballard, but the band has continued to stay loyal to its soil, as evidenced by this two-night stop. The six-piece is sure to deliver several tracks from its recent sophomore release, Let’s Be Still, as well as old favorites, and probably some tears. Through Saturday. Friday with Rose Windows, La Luz; Saturday with the Moondoggies, Mikey and Matty. The Paramount. $31.25. 8 p.m. All ages. KEEGAN PROSSER THE ENGLISH BEAT’s danceable fusion of reggae, pop, and soul was perfectly suited for the early ’80s’ burgeoning new wave movement, which helped the band define the 2 Tone genre and establish its place in ska history in the process. Founding members Dave Wakeling and Ranking Roger eventually parted ways; Wakeling leads this version while Roger tours as The Beat. With Georgetown Orbits. The Showbox, 1426 First Ave., 628-3151, showboxpresents.com. 9 p.m. $20 adv./$25 DOS. 21 and over. DL

Saturday, Feb. 22 DJ SPOOKY The electronic persona of Paul D. Miller is

renowned for his “trip hop” and “illbient” sounds. In recognition of Black History Month, he’ll screen Rebirth of a Nation, his reimagined look at D. W. Griffith’s Birth of a Nation, tomorrow at the Moore. Tonight, just expect some sick, clever beats. Barboza. 8 p.m. $20 adv. 21 and over. GWENDOLYN ELLIOTT For many heavy-music fans, PENTAGRAM is the metal band that should have been as big as Black Sabbath, yet for a number of reasons went unnoticed for decades. As documented in the film Last Days Here (streaming now on Netflix), the remarkable thing is the band’s 43-year-plus staying power, influencing a niche of musicians and bands while failing to earn widespread recognition as true pioneers in the doom genre (or making much of a living, for that matter). What’s even more incredible is the group’s comeback—a relevant one at that, as fame has finally come via a new generation of younger fans. As things finally move forward for Pentagram, they do the same for frontman Bobby Liebling—now sober, married, and readying a new record this year as well as a tour (that’s expected to visit the West Coast later this year) with longtime guitarist Victor Griffin. But first: Pentagram, in all its sludgy, metal glory. With Radio Moscow, Kings Destroy, Ancient Warlocks. El Corazon. 8 p.m. $22 adv./$25 DOS. All ages. JAMES BALLINGER

Sun Kil Moon Friday, February 21

F

COURTESY OF THE ARTIST

Ben Gibbard perform with The Postal Service at the Greek Theater. Yet even with collaborators like Will Oldham and Sonic Youth’s Steve Shelly, Kozelek’s stark stream-of-consciousness lyricism is the real standout here. Take, for example, “I Watched the Film the Song Remains the Same.” In a rattle of lyrics, Kozelek recalls being mesmerized by the classic Led Zeppelin film, then remembers the deaths of his grandmother and friends, then the time he punched a kid, and so on. It all seems disjointed, this weaving of seemingly unrelated memories. Yet somehow it reveals a subtle portrait that defines the genesis of Benji ’s overarching melancholia. That it’s delivered in Kozelek’s gentle, likable croon makes it all the more digestible. The album is a bold jump for the songwriter into the present. As he embarks on tour to support it, there’s a strong sense he won’t be playing too much of his old stuff. “Old songs are for artists who don’t have new ones. It’s sad when I see artists do that. [It’s] like they have no new perspective, like their growth is stunted,” he says. “I have so much new inspiration in my life, so there’s no reason to sing old songs. Not a ton of them, anyhow.” The Neptune, 1303 N.E. 45th St., 877-784-4849, stgpresents.com/neptune. 9 p.m. $20 adv./$23 DOS. All ages. DUSTY HENRY

SE ATTLE WEEKLY • FE BRUARY 19 — 25, 2014

rom the onset, Benji, the latest record from Mark Kozelek as Sun Kil Moon, is marked with darkness. In his familiar baritone voice, it opens with “Carissa,” an account of the death of a relative from a freak aerosol-can explosion. Underlying the narrative is Kozelek’s personal history and a longing for his home state. “Losing my second cousin in a fire accident sort of spun me out,” Kozelek wrote recently in an e-mail to Seattle Weekly. “It brought me back to Ohio under very sad circumstances, and . . . I don’t know. It might not be the most flattering portrait of Ohio, but it is the Ohio I grew up in, the Ohio I know now, a beautiful, inspiring place.” Full of such autobiographical reflections, Benji is a marked departure from his typical songwriting style, one listeners came to know with his recordings as a solo artist and with the Red House Painters. Where once he might have tried to force symbolism, his lyrics—not to mention song titles like “I Can’t Live Without My Mother’s Love” and “I Love My Dad”—are now noticeably stripped-down and blunt, often following meandering themes. Lately he has taken to recording songs as quickly as possible after writing them. “I used to spend so much time [writing],” Kozelek explains. “But I don’t care for metaphors anymore, or trying to impress anyone. I write quickly.” He elaborates on this thought in a recent interview with Pitchfork. “Things get heavier as you get older. At 47, I can’t write from the perspective of a 25-year-old anymore. My life has just changed too much, and my environment around me.” As he did the rest of his prolific catalog, Kozelek self-produced Benji. Many tracks still feature his trademark somber finger-picked guitar, though in a few he leads his band in genrecrossing adventures. In “Ben’s My Friend,” he plays a jazzy guitar line and recalls watching

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The inside scoop on VIP events, free tickets, and event photos.


arts&culture»Music Mukilteo’s FALL OF TROY pushed its proggy post-hardcore from 2002 to 2010, landing it a slot on the Warped Tour and getting “F.C.P.R.E.M.I.X.” in as a playable track in Guitar Hero III. After a brief breakup, the band has reunited for this “all DIY” tour, leading to what they say will be a new, completely free album due out sometime this year. With Tacos!, Sailor Mouth. The Showbox. 8 p.m. $13 adv./$15 DOS. All ages. KELTON SEARS

Monday, Feb. 24

Singer/songwriter JON MCLAUGHLIN has been delivering sweet songs with a pop-rock sensibility since 2007, when he released his breakout debut, Indiana. Seven years and nearly as many albums later, his blue eyes, dreamy vocals, and heart-wrenching lyrics are still proving a “Beautiful Disaster.” #Swoon. With Dwayne Shivers. The Triple Door. 7:30 p.m. $17 adv./$20 DOS. All ages. KP

Tuesday, Feb. 25

Canada’s First Nations trio, A TRIBE CALLED RED, fuses electronic club and contemporary indigenous music into something it calls “powwow step.” Nation II Nation, the band’s second full-length album, dropped last spring and earned, among other praise, sold-out shows and a feature spot on Diplo and Friends, the DJ/ producer’s music program on BBC1. Red’s sound— aboriginal drumbeats and vocals layered with the thumping of electro bass and clap tracks—elevates electronic music to the next level, marrying the traditional and the modern. This has made the group unofficial spokespersons on current issues affecting the indigenous community: land rights, decolonization, cultural appropriation. (The latter issue has seeped into Red’s live show; adoring concertgoers donning war paint and headdresses have roused ATCR member DJ NDN’s indignation. In an interview for Huffington Post Canada, he called such acts “redface” and asked

TobyMac

Saturday, February 22

T

NASCAR, and MLB, among others. Some in the CCM world object to his music’s appearance in so-called “secular” media, but the artist sees such placements as opportunity. “I want my music to go everywhere it can,” says McKeehan, even if it’s a—gasp—R-rated movie. “I believe in what’s in my songs, so I want

NTw.RlitYtlereMdhUenS.coICm LIVE COUww THURS FEBRUARY 20TH

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it to be there.” Marching to the beat of his own drum as he does, it comes as no surprise that one trend in CCM—recording classic worship songs, as artists like Newsboys and Michael W. Smith have done—holds no interest for him. “I think I define worship more loosely than most do,” he says. “I don’t think it has to be U2/ Coldplay chords and a lyric that sounds like it came from the Psalms. Worship is broader than that.” With Matthew West, Brandon Heath, Mandisa, Matt Maher. KeyArena, 305 Harrison St., 684-7200, keyarena.com. 7 p.m. $38 and up. All ages. BRIAN PALMER

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COURTESY OF THE ARTIST

oby McKeehan, aka TobyMac, is something of a maverick in the contemporary Christian music (CCM) world. In a typically play-it-safe culture that often replicates (Christianizes?) what is popular in “secular” music, TobyMac has spent the past 25 years—first as a member of Christian rap group dc Talk and now as a solo artist—going against the grain. He has embraced rock, hiphop, rap, pop, funk, and R&B, and his most recent album, 2012’s Eye on It—which debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Top 200 chart—features a heavy dose of dance music. For TobyMac, such a broad musical palette is completely natural. “[I grew] up listening to Run DMC, Bob Marley, The Police, Hall & Oates,” McKeehan says. “I’ve never felt like any of it was out of bounds. I’ve always felt like I’ve had a passport into all these styles.” Utilizing this melting pot of sounds has led to mainstream success that most artists, Christian or otherwise, would envy. The Grammy and 18-time Dove award (CCM’s version of the Grammys) winner and co-founder of Gotee Records (which has represented the likes of Relient K, Jennifer Knapp, and Family Force 5) has had music featured in action films, video games, and in ads for the NBA Finals, the Super Bowl,

1303 NE 45TH ST

fans to “Please stop.”) The beatmakers, in town on the Turtle Island Tour, are sure to put on a pulsating show; just please leave the face paint and feathers at home. With Tang & Toast. Barboza. 8 p.m. $13 adv. 21 and over. MARGERY CERCADO New Jersey–based producer Seth Haley, better known as COM TRUISE, channels Tangerine Dream and the Drive soundtrack on his latest, In Decay, a rarities and B-sides compilation (already?) that pays tribute to the ’80s via analog synths and song titles like “84’ Dreamin’ ” and “Video Arkade.” With Phantoms, Zoolab. Chop Suey. 8 p.m. $15. 21 and over. DL Like many punk frontmen, DAVE HAUSE has made a foray into singer/songwriter territory as a solo act— though in his case, he’s built a following that outstrips his work with the Loved Ones. His second LP, Devour, is working-class rock, Springsteen via The Gaslight Anthem, and features appearances by members of Social Distortion, My Morning Jacket, and Frightened Rabbit. With Northcote, Jefferson Death Star. El Corazon. 8:30 p.m. $10 adv./$8 DOS. 21 and over. DL Scottish alt-pop quartet WE WERE PROMISED JETPACKS has been quiet of late, but that’s all about to change. The band just released E Rey (Live in Philadelphia), a live album with an accompanying film recorded during its 2012 tour. E Rey also includes a new song, a hazy jam called “Peace Sign,” which should hold fans over until WWPJ’s next album, slated for a fall release. With Honeyblood. Neumos. 8 p.m. $18 adv. 21 and over. ACP LANGHORNE SLIM has a gospel singer’s soul mixed with folk-rock tendencies. The singer/songwriter keeps company with fellow country-influenced artists like the Avett Brothers, but Slim favors the raucous parts of the genre over the slow and somber. His shows are about the celebration, not the grieving. With Mike Giacolino. Sunset Tavern, 5433 Ballard Ave. N.W., 784-4880, sunsettavern.com. 9 p.m. $12. 21 and over. DH

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arts&culture»

Join us in the Trophy Room for Happy Hour: Thursday Bartender Special 8-Close Fridays: 5-8pm RESERVE THE TROPHY ROOM FOR YOUR NEXT EVENT!

Augustines, Augustines (out now, Oxcart Records, weareaugustines.com) Originally based in Brooklyn, the Augustines (formerly We Are Augustines) relocated to Seattle last year; after months in the studio, it recently produced this sophomore album. This time, the changes in name and home base aren’t the only things different about the group, who spent the majority of the fall touring with emotive indie rockers Frightened Rabbit (and whose knack for emphatic anthems is definitely heard here). While the soft, indie-rock vibes so many fell in love with on 2011’s Rise Ye Sunken Ships remain (see “Weary Eyes”), Augustines reveals a fuller, more rock-influenced sound. You’ll hear it best on tracks like “Cruel City” and “Now You Are Free,” both of which could work seamlessly as arena-ready sing-alongs. The band has found a way to package Ships’ raw and muted moments with a new kinetic energy that drills the feeling home. KEEGAN PROSSER Cahalen Morrison & Eli West, I’ll Swing My

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Hammer With Both Hands (out now, self released, cahalenandeli. com) From its rustic woodcut cover art—a pair of workhardened hands revealing a wild landscape—to its title, this is a working person’s record. For their third release, this songwriting pair didn’t shy away from hard work (Morrison plays banjo, mandolin, bouzouki, and dobro; West takes up guitar and bouzouki; and both sing, of course), bringing 14 full songs—mostly originals save for a few traditional covers (Alice Gerrard’s “Voices of Evening” and the Louvin Brothers’ “Lorene”). What’s more, the duo anchors that hardworking line to the Pacific Northwest. Like its namesake green perennial, opening track “Fiddlehead Fern” sets a course firmly rooted here, with close, gentle harmonies that sing of nature’s ever-steady rhythms: “Pipers run the ever lapping salt sea/The path is wrote, only to be washed clean.” Subsequent tracks unfurl at their own pace—a variety of waltzes, reels, and sea chanteys like the well-spun, roving “Off the Chama” and the wonderfully tender “Down in the Lonesome Draw,” reminiscent of a Gillian Welch/David Rawling collaboration in its deep and twangy string interplay. What makes this Morrison and West’s finest recording yet is the pair’s effortless, lived-in style; both musicians bring very different strengths here, but there’s no struggle for dominance, and track after track settles into a easy resonance. Any hard worker knows finishing a job is no race, and it’s that unrushed, unhurried approach that makes Hammer such a wellexecuted effort. GWENDOLYN ELLIOTT

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Black, Nerdy, and Proud

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frican-American nerds are often marginalized in geek culture, but only a fool would not recognize the importance and breadth of their contributions to our proud history. In honor of Black History Month, here are four of my favorite African-American geeks. Benjamin Banneker (1731–1806) Nerds are known for their intellect and obsessions. Hobbies are not just hobbies, they’re a lifestyle. Banneker is, withBY TERRA CLARKE OLSEN out doubt, one of America’s earliest nerds: not only a skilled clockmaker (the wooden clock he built was remarkably accurate and ran for 50 years—and he built it just by looking at a neighbor’s clock) but a successful self-taught astronomer. His observations soon enabled him to predict, accurately, solar and lunar eclipses. He eventually made an ephemeris (an astronomical almanac) that became widely used. To round off his all-American geek resume, Banneker assisted in calculating the boundaries for what is now Washington, D.C.

GEEKLYREPORT

Dr. Herbert C. Smitherman (1937–2010)

If you ever wondered who invented one of the products that make life way more convenient, the answer is probably Smitherman. Seriously, this man invented everything. Working for Procter and Gamble, Smitherman (who had a Ph.D in physical organic chemistry) invented Crest toothpaste, Bounce fabric softener, Crush soda, and Folgers coffee, among other things. Think about that: You could spend your whole day using items created by one man. But his passion for science went beyond inventing; he also founded Cincinnati’s Western Hills Design Technology High School, aimed at African-American students who excel in science and math. Smitherman is a legend—yet, tragically, does not have a Wikipedia entry. We owe our clean teeth and soft clothes to Dr. Smitherman. Any readers want to create his page? Jackie Ormes (1911–1985) The comic-book industry is a man’s world, but Ormes defied all odds to become the first African-American woman cartoonist—the creator of Torchy Brown, Patty-Jo ’n’ Ginger, and other comics, which appeared in newspapers like the Pittsburgh Courier and The Chicago Defender. Ormes’ beloved comics covered everything from fashion to politics to pollution; Patty-Jo even became a doll. Her example still inspires African-American cartoonists and comic writers today; the Ormes Society, founded by comic-book creator Cheryl Lynn Eaton, is an organization that aims to promote black female comic-book creators and the inclusion of black women in the industry. Mae Jemison, M.D. (1956– ) Mae Jemison is a badass—the first black woman to travel in space, she also holds nine honorary doctorates in addition to her B.S. from Stanford and M.D. from Cornell. She is a dancer, too. But to really top off her nerd cred . . . She appeared on Star Trek: The Next Generation; she is a huge Trekkie and was actually inspired by Lieutenant Uhura. E

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UPHOLSTERY SHOP Closed. Everything On Sale! Sewing Machine, Tools, Fabric, Air Compressor and More. $4,500 Takes All! 206660-7770 Auto Events/ Auctions Abandoned Vehicle Auction City Wide Towing 14045 Midvale Ave. N. Seattle, WA 98133 February 24th, 2014 10AM Preview 1 Hour Before 2003 Honda Civic (206) 364-7070

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Seattle Weekly, February 19, 2014  

February 19, 2014 edition of the Seattle Weekly