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e your own boss — that’s the big promise of the GIG ECONOMY. Got a car? Well, drive for Lyft or Uber in your free time. Got a laptop? Use Wi-Fi at a coffee shop and work for clients around the world. Got an extra room? Rent it out for cash. Oh, how technology has set us free to be entrepreneurs! These “alternative work arrangements” are on the rise — growing at a faster rate than conventional jobs — but while they work out for some, what happens to the middle class and the safety net that has protected it? Who’s going to pay for health care, for job-related injuries or retirement plans? For this week’s cover story (page 20), we profile various local people who are discovering the exciting and at times scary aspects of this new economy. Also this week: music editor Nathan Weinbender talks with Marshall McLean about his latest album (page 39), and news reporter Wilson Criscione digs into a small-town scandal swirling around the city of Millwood (page 18). — JACOB H. FRIES, Editor

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Identity Crisis Spokane needs to find its own North Star to unite behind BY TOM SIMPSON



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he word maverick derives its origin from a cattle rancher from Texas named Samuel A. Maverick, who refused to brand his cattle with a hot iron. As a result, not having a brand became his brand. I sometimes feel this way about Spokane. Our excellent city has failed to establish a compelling brand. Branding serves many valuable purposes. Internally it provides a “North Star” by which employees or citizens can align their objectives. Externally, a brand enables consumers to make decisions that most closely match their purchasing criteria. Leading organizations devote meaningful resources to cultivating a brand to capture a targeted market or segment. Correctly developed, brands become a key competitive advantage and an asset with significant, tangible value. A tennis shoe emboldened with a swoosh is worth substantially more than one without a logo.


rands can imply many different, concise attributes. What do you think of when you hear Tiffany, Nordstrom, Starbucks or Honda? To me, respectively, the phrases premium quality, outstanding customer service, unparalleled consistency and exceptional reliability come to mind. While these words may not be the exact ones you might use, I expect there is general consensus around the underlying themes. What words do Spokanites, and those outside our region, think of when they hear “Spokane?” Near Nature, Near Perfect? Home of the Zags? Lilacs? A cheap place to do business? I expect a poll would prompt a wide variety of favorable, as well as unflattering, responses. This is a real problem if we want to grow and prosper as a city. How can we align our actions if we don’t have a common sense of who we are? How can we target and attract emerging businesses if we can’t clearly describe what we offer? Austin, Texas, is a city known for innovation. Austin advertises itself as “the live music capital of the world.” A perusal of Greater Spokane Incorporated’s “Advantage Spokane” website reveals a lot of spaghetti being thrown at the wall: Spokane offers a low cost of doing business, is home to 76,000 college students and is the “6th safest region from Natural Disasters.” Really? That’s about the least compelling stat I have ever heard. My guess is not one single person has visited Spokane based on this. Meanwhile, with its simple, distinctive branding, Austin has been incredibly successful in attracting entrepreneurial businesses, retaining a large number of its college graduates and having the reputation for being a cool place to live. Spokane needs to embark upon a process to identify, establish and build a differentiated brand for itself. This effort should be led by a

select group of innovative representatives from Spokane-based businesses, academics and government. I would not pay a hefty sum to a third party to design a brand for the city, particularly from an agency based out of town. An outside firm will never be able to fully comprehend Spokane’s uniqueness, as well as identify those who are passionately involved in our community. Moreover, they will be gone once their assignment is over. This exercise is not overly complicated and can be completed in short order (three to six months) and at nominal cost ($25,000-$50,000). Phil Knight, founder of Nike, paid just $35 for the swoosh logo.


n establishing a brand for Spokane, I would shy away from deploying any words or images that characterize Spokane as an inexpensive place to live or do business. Alternatively, I would evaluate attributes that highlight the high

What words do Spokanites, and those outside our region, think of when they hear “Spokane?” Near Nature, Near Perfect? Home of the Zags? Lilacs?


W W W. K O O T E N A I U R G E N T C A R E . C O M


quality of life available in Spokane. A high quality of life “North Star” would foster decisions that enhance lifestyles, whether they be in education, housing, health care, recreation or the arts. Additionally, it would serve to attract successful, growing, profitable companies offering highpaying jobs, instead of those businesses that are merely seeking to save money. Entities competing for the best talent can differentiate themselves by not only offering attractive compensation, but also a high quality of life and a balanced lifestyle. These attributes are coming at a premium today, since they are declining in many large cities. The percentage of children living in San Francisco, for example, declined from 22 percent in 1970 to just 13 percent in 2010. Families are looking for new solutions, and quality-of-life concerns are high on their wish lists. Samuel Maverick chose to not have a brand. That strategy will not work for Spokane. n Tom Simpson is an entrepreneur, angel investor and advisor to startups and other businesses in the Spokane region. His column appears the first Thursday of every month; you can reach him at


Knitting for Shelter Pets The Coeur d’Alene Library’s Well-Knit Tale Knitting Club members are knitting and crocheting blankets for the shelter animals at the Kootenai Humane Society during March. All levels are welcome to join; bring your own supplies. Tue, March 7 and 21 from 2:30-4 pm. Coeur d’Alene Public Library, 702 E. Front Ave. (208-769-2315)


Learn more about current volunteer opportunities and the impact the Red Cross has in our communities. Current volunteers are on-hand to talk about their experiences and answer questions. Sat, March 4 from 10 am-2 pm. American Red Cross, 315 W. Nora (326-3330)


The Washington State University and Eastern Washington University Spokane multicultural and diversity clubs host a night of food, fashion, and performances representing cultures from around the world. Sat, March 4 from 6-8 pm. $5. EWU Spokane, 668 N. Riverpoint Blvd. (290-7061)


MOSAIC presents a session covering the ethnic and gender wage gap experienced by minority women compared to white community members. Students learn about job titles, their functions and salary ranges as they relate to preparing for their major in post-secondary education. Tue, March 7 from 11:30 am-12:30 pm. Free. Spokane Falls Community College, 3410 W. Fort George Wright Dr. (533-3546)


Help Transitions break the intergenerational cycle of homelessness. From now until March 8, the nonprofit is collecting items commonly given to moms-to-be at baby showers. An on-site party then delivers 16 care packages to local families, with treats from the New Leaf Bakery Café and stories from program staff and participants. Party on Wed, March 8 from noon-1 pm. Shopping list at (328-6702) n Tell us about your event or other opportunities to get involved. Submit events at or email JEN SORENSON CARTOON


COMMENT | HEALTH CARE The unprecedented public outcry is making a mark. Congressman Dave Reichert — a former King County sheriff who never fails to mention that he singlehandedly caught the Green River killer — is afraid to talk to a constituent in Wenatchee about the Medicaid services he is willing to take away. At the same time, the 8th District representative briefed members of his party on how to hire extra security, find escape doors and run from conditions that would create a “YouTube moment.” That’s what this is all about: Of course, lawmakers and staff should be safe, but this isn’t about safety — it’s about not getting called out in a room full of people begging to not have their health care taken away. Looking like a monster isn’t a good look. One Texas Republican, Rep. Louie Gohmert, used the shooting of former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords during a 2011 public appearance to provide cover for his absence. Giffords wasn’t having it. “To the politicians who have abandoned their civic obligations, I say this,” she continued. “Have some courage. Face your constituents. Hold town halls.” The delay in repealing the ACA and this tiptoeing around the political minefield is a hopeful sign that a long-term movement for health care access has taken root. Idaho Congressman Raul Labrador didn’t hold any public meetings, but spoke to the Boise Metro Chamber of Commerce during the recess, explaining that “I just get to decide when I do town halls, not the media or anybody else.” Regardless, protesters were in full force outside. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers has also shrugged off the “Where’s Cathy?” posters and advertisements, even though her district covering Eastern Washington would, in particular, be hit hard by the loss of the ACA. Her few days in town during the recess didn’t provide answers for those concerned. You needed to apply for her telephone “town hall,” and when a caller demonstrated that the uninsured rate in Washington was down 60 percent thanks to the ACA, she said, “I disagree with your facts.” Then came a “Coffee With Cathy” event for pre-screened guests, so constituents held a “Coffee Without Cathy” outside her office. But inside, the meeting was telling: She referred to recipients of Medicaid expansion as “deadbeats” who take from the poor and disabled. These tightly controlled events indicated that the congresswoman doesn’t know how the ACA really works. We must keep fighting to get through. Where was Cathy in the middle of the congressional recess? On the first flight back to the other Washington, hiding from the truth like so many others. 


Running Scared

The real reason that GOP leaders avoided town halls and meeting with actual constituents BY PAUL DILLON backlash they know will occur. A draft bill was leaked on Friday, apparently receiving an unfavorable analysis from the Congressional Budget Office, the official scorekeepers regarding the cost and coverage implications of legislation. One thing was clear in the text: The Medicaid program — our country’s primary health care safety net — would be completely overhauled. Such drastic shifts should require tough questions, but the members of Congress aren’t having it. This is not some leftist version of the Tea Party protests in 2010. These are not paid volunteers. These are real people who will suffer the consequences and want to have a civil dialogue. And yet around the country, citizens were often forced to hold town halls on their own, with cardboard cutouts of leaders who refused to attend.

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hen I worked as a legislative staffer, town halls were the best time for representatives to connect with their constituents. Everybody was welcome — not just the constituents who agreed with the elected official. That was one of the most important parts of the job: To listen. Now, with an impending congressional vote to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, millions of Americans understandably have a lot to say. But instead of hearing their voices, last week’s congressional recess proved that the Republican leaders are cowards. Behind closed doors, these same lawmakers are moving forward on repeal plans in light of the widespread

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Connie Kerbs, a longtime former foster parent, with some of her children.

KIDS’ COURT read your article (“In Their Best Interest,” 2/23/17) and agree that children


of all ages need to be represented by an attorney. I am a juvenile dependency attorney in Stockton, California. I represent both children of all ages and parents. I have since 2006. I am moving to Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, and looked into practicing juvenile dependency in Spokane. I was shocked that children are not appointed attorneys until they are 12. Adding attorneys LETTERS does not complicate anything. CASAs Send comments to are great, but they are not ing the child’s rights. Case in point: Tomorrow, Sunday, I visit a sibling group. There is a fight between the paternal relatives, CPS and the mom. I am the kid’s voice. And I will fight for what they want AND what is in their best interest. A CASA is their buddy but cannot argue the way that I can. Anyway, I hope that Washington is able to appoint attorneys for children at all stages. And once I move, I’ll do it if need be! SHANNON MURPHY GOMEZ Stockton, California

Readers respond to Mitch Ryals’ blog post about the Spokane Police Department replacing detailed reports on internal affairs investigations into police misconduct from its website with less-detailed case summaries:

KATIE WILCOX: Is this to keep the public from developing a distrust of law enforcement or to protect the police officers who snapped from being vilified for life? Does the public have enough trust in the system to believe that they are filtering out the psychos who become cops? JOHN PHILLIPS: I agree with this. An innocent LEO [law enforcement officer] under investigation will be found guilty in the media. The officer’s name will be permanently associated with his false accusation by the time the investigation finds no evidence of wrongdoing. Wake me if the SPD begins hiding the results of internal investigations. JUSTIN DANE ROBINSON: Spokane Police have a history with corruption and misconduct that goes back for decades. Same stuff, just a different generation. 



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Drone Zone

Drones can be used for much more than cool aerial video.

While many imagine what drones could be used for, Inland Northwest businesses are already putting them to work BY SAMANTHA WOHLFEIL


magine you’re a farmer with hundreds of acres of land. There are areas where water collects, areas that are dry, others in the shade. Maybe there’s a clay knob your family has never been able to get to produce. With an aerial map produced with GPS data collected by a drone, you could choose exactly where to water more or less, where to plant more seeds or fewer seeds, where to use fertilizer or not, says Brad Ward, president of Empire Unmanned, which is helping to pioneer uses for unmanned aircraft in the Inland Northwest. A lot of the hype around drones in the Pacific Northwest has centered on ideas from companies like Seattlebased Amazon, which, in the interest of using drones to deliver its products, continues to get patents for things like a futuristic-sounding blimp warehouse that could deploy drones from the sky, with items to order within minutes. Less known is that North Idaho and Eastern Washington are home to several businesses that got into the industry early on and already are using drones for everything from mine surveying to agriculture and inspection work.

The early adopters, such as Hayden, Idaho-based Empire Unmanned and Spokane-based Rees Aerials, were able to get into the industry ahead of others partly because initial regulations essentially required commercial users to be pilots. The people behind each company have years of experience flying aircraft, which made it easier to get exemptions from the Federal Aviation Administration. Recently, the FAA loosened requirements, releasing new rules in August 2016 that will allow many more people to use drones. “The new rules allow quite a bit of industry and commercial work,” Ward says. “I think you’ll find most people would agree they make a lot of sense.”


As a retired Air Force helicopter pilot and seasoned “technology nerd,” when Rees Aerials founder Robert Rees got interested in drones he wanted to make sure he followed the rules to a T. While he was well aware of the constant vigilance needed when flying in uncontrolled airspace — where helicopters and civilian drones fly — he wanted to make

sure he got his exemption from the government and knew exactly where and when he could put his drone in the air. “I was constantly in touch with the FAA,” Rees says. “It wasn’t just my ability to fly drones that I would lose if I did something wrong — I could lose my pilot’s license, which is a whole lot more valuable to me.” That led to an invite to volunteer with the local FAA office’s safety team, where he helps with outreach and education for those who aren’t as vigilant about following the rules. “It’s trying to educate the public how to use these things and how to use them safely,” he says. Though people may look at the FAA as an entity out to overregulate them, “it couldn’t be further from the truth,” Rees says. “They have one goal, which is the safe operation of aircraft in airspace,” he says. In general, Rees says he’d caution anybody who wants to hire someone to fly a drone, for any reason, to do their homework. ...continued on next page



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Robert Rees, founder of Rees Aerials, preps to fly a drone last fall.


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“Because with somebody flying a 5-pound machine at several hundred feet, doing damage is an enormous liability,” Rees says. “I would absolutely verify insurance on anybody that I would hire.” For fliers, he recommends learning more than the required basics about aviation. “Aviation is an extremely information-intensive arena. Just because the FAA says these are the only things you need to know doesn’t mean you shouldn’t expand your scope of knowledge,” Rees says. “If you have that general awareness of what others are doing and how what you’re doing impacts that, it makes you a better pilot, whether on the aircraft or on the ground.”


Since January 2015, Empire Unmanned has used drones to inspect paper mill tanks, give an overhead view of wildfires to firefighters on the ground, and create comprehensive maps for mines and agricultural purposes like the example mentioned earlier. “Most new equipment a farmer would buy has integrated GPS,” Ward says. “They can program sprayers on when to spray, what rate, and can manage their field by zone.” That, in turn, can save a lot of money, Ward says, especially when it comes to fertilizer and chemical costs. Using drones may also reduce safety risks in scenarios where inspections would usually take someone with a harness scaling a structure, and in some cases it can keep equipment working that would otherwise have to stop, Ward says. For example, at mines, which have strict requirements to report exactly how much material is moved, survey work done with people on the ground can mean halting giant machinery. “A lot of big Caterpillar bulldozers idling isn’t making the company any money,” Ward says. “It’s worth a lot of money to keep that equipment moving.” Empire has also gotten creative to serve its clients. When a quadcopter-style drone was hard to keep steady inside of massive tanks used in the papermaking process, the company created a blimp system, which made for a smoother inspection video and allowed them to focus more on looking for defects than on trying not to crash into the side of the tank. “You’d be surprised; they could be used in ways we haven’t even discovered yet,” Ward says. Much of Rees’ work has involved taking high-definition video. In 2016 he helped inspect the smokestacks down-


HOME DRONE Later this month the Spokane Association of Realtors will host Home Drone, a daylong conference and exposition on using drones and new technology for business, featuring manufacturers, operators, and hobbyists. If you go, plan to hear about the vision for the future use of drones, the rules as they are and what changes might be next, and some ideas on entrepreneurship and building a sustainable business, says Tom McArthur, public affairs director for the association. So why would a realtors association be hosting a conference on drones? “Realtors are, as a bunch, very protechnology. Most people now start their search for a home online,” McArthur says. To stay relevant, drones are a piece of technology that realtors have started to embrace, and the association wants to help its members learn tools for how to safely and legally use them. “I met with local fliers, and I got to be scared, frankly, of the content I was hearing,” McArthur says. “I heard people saying, ‘I’ll just fly as a hobbyist and no one can catch me.’ I was like, ‘Wait, wait, wait, this is not the behavior we should be encouraging.’” That said, McArthur wants people to know that the conference is not about “finger-wagging and condemnation.” “It’s not to criticize what people might have done wrong, or force confessions,” he says. “It’s hey, how do we do this right? How do we do this properly and model good behavior, so those who come after us will have the chance to go forward positively?” The event is scheduled to run from 9 am to 6 pm on Tuesday, March 21, at the Spokane Convention Center. More information on the day’s events and ticket prices can be found at Realtors and students of all ages will be offered a 50 percent discount. — SAMANTHA WOHLFEIL

UPGRADE YOUR GIFT GAME. One of Robert Rees’ drones, pictured here, is a DJI Inspire 1 Pro. town, which are owned by Avista, in significantly less time than previous efforts. He was also hired by NOVA to help shoot video for a documentary about the massive flood that shaped Dry Falls and much of this area. “I’ve been doing photography and video editing for years; I kind of fall back on the being-a-nerd thing,” Rees says. “Being a nerd when I was in school was a bad thing. Now it’s the technology people really driving the economy; it’s kind of a badge of honor now.”

“It’s the technology people really driving the economy; it’s kind of a badge of honor now.” This year, Rees says he plans to focus on capturing stock footage that can be licensed out for people who want to attract others to this region. Rees says he also eventually hopes to get into incredibly accurate aerial mapping done through technology known as LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging), which bounces light off of objects to create data that can be turned into a map more detailed than what a camera could capture. “A camera can’t see through solid objects or refract light around them,” Rees says. “What I am hoping to do is get a machine that does exactly that.”


Regional businesses aren’t the only ones paying attention to what might be next for drones. The Washington State Department of Transportation is keeping a close eye on the industry and what it might need in the future. If larger drones are put to use, they might need a “droneport” — similar to an airport or heliport — to fly in and out of and get serviced. For now, that’s still just a concept, says Rob Hodgman, senior aviation planner with WSDOT. “We want to try to stay ahead of what’s going on in the industry,” he says. “It’s hard to keep up with how fast this industry is evolving.” Depending on how things move forward, droneports might be key for safety in urban areas, but those decisions will need to be driven by the FAA, Hodgman says. “Who knows when and what the catalyst is going to be to make that happen?” Hodgman asks. “If at some point this emerges, we want to be ready to support that.” n

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DEVELOPMENT Tiny cottages (pictured), RV hook-ups, kid-friendly options and new places to shop and eat are the latest additions announced by the Kalispel Tribe for its Northern Quest Resort & Casino. The $20 MILLION EXPANSION draws on new partnerships — one with noted RV resort guru Bud Surles of Idaho; another with childcare provider Kids Quest, which works with casino resorts across the nation. “We’ve worked very hard the past 17 years,” says Tribal Chairman Glen Nenema. “Throughout it all, our intent has been to diversify and build on our dream of creating a fun place for the whole family.” Planners aim for a spring 2018 opening. (TED S. McGREGOR JR.)


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LAWSUITS It’s been months since the city of Spokane won the lawsuit filed by former police CHIEF FRANK STRAUB. The U.S. District Court judge quickly tossed the case out in summary judgment, concluding that since Straub (pictured) signed a resignation letter, he wasn’t fired, so he could not file a due process claim for being fired. But the story — and the money the city has spent on attorneys — isn’t over yet. Straub’s attorney, Mary Schultz, has taken the case to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. She argues that Straub wasn’t given an option to keep his job and that the “resignation” letter was only signed two weeks after he’d already been effectively fired. Schultz says it could be months — at minimum — before the case is resolved. (DANIEL WALTERS)

EDUCATION Last week, Donald Trump rolled back federal guidelines released by the Obama administration for TRANSGENDER STUDENTS that required schools to let those students use the bathrooms of their choice. Trump’s move leaves it up to the states to make decisions regarding transgender students; in Washington and Idaho, those decisions may look much different. Chris Reykdal, Washington’s superintendent of public instruction, says that state law will continue to protect transgender students, with or without federal guidance. But Obama’s guidelines were opposed by state leaders in Idaho, where the words “gender identity” and “sexual orientation” are not included in the state’s human rights law. (WILSON CRISCIONE)


Scrubbed! SPD stops putting internal investigations reports online; plus, will a lawsuit stop Rocket Market’s summer music series? TRANSPARENCY TROUNCED

A major effort to increase transparency regarding OFFICER MISCONDUCT in Spokane has been quietly dismantled. In the spring of 2016, Spokane police scrubbed its website of all the internal affairs investigations reports dating back several years. Recently, some of those reports were replaced with watered-down summaries. “They did this without coming to council, without coming to the community,” City Councilman Breean Beggs says. “They just did it. I’m trying to figure out what the best policy is, and I think generally, more transparency is better.” Beggs raised the issue during a recent Public Safety Committee meeting. Assistant Chief Justin Lundgren explained that the department had received complaints from officers and citizens that the investigations formerly posted to the website contained personal information. “We essentially wanted to move away from having names on the website,” Lundgren said. “Sometimes the names, under law, aren’t allowed to be redacted,” Lundgren said. “So unless there’s some sort of specific concern ... there’s very narrow legal justification that we have to redact names.”

In other words, part of SPD’s gripe is that they’re not allowed to redact information that used to be easy to access on their website. The summaries currently available online only cover 2016. Chief Craig Meidl, in a later interview with the Inlander, says there are no plans to post summaries for investigations formerly on the site. “Right now, our level of transparency is limited by staffing,” he says. Beggs says if that we’re demanding transparency, “then we should staff it.” (MITCH RYALS)


Last Friday, the city’s stretch of silence about what exactly was going on in the STREET DEPARTMENT was finally broken. At a press conference featuring interim Street Director Gary Kaesemeyer, Public Works & Utilities Division Director Scott Simmons, Mayor David Condon and Councilwoman Amber Waldref, the city laid out a recent flurry of ideas to address the gaping potholes that have cropped up on our streets. That includes trying out new materials — such as polymer bridge-decking material — to fill troublesome potholes; testing out a machine that blows water and debris out of the pothole before filling it with an emulsifier mix; and paying Inland Asphalt to start up their asphalt plant early this year, allowing the city to fill potholes with a more effective “hot mix.” Meanwhile, at Monday’s Public Works Committee meeting, Waldref introduced a resolution requesting that the council and city work together to re-examine the city’s snowplowing strategy, including reducing the amount of time it takes to plow the entire city, and making it a priority to plow key areas — like schools, the downtown and medical facilities. If necessary, Waldref says, the council would consider increasing street depart-

ment funding to improve snowplowing. Finally, with the mystery of why the city ousted Street Director Mark Serbousek on Feb. 2 still unanswered, Simmons announced that the city was planning on creating a bridge engineer position, with the intention of Serbousek applying to fill it. “I think he will do a great job in that position,” Simmons says. (DANIEL WALTERS)


Neighbors are rallying to help the owners of ROCKET MARKET defend their outdoor summer concert series after a group of people who live nearby filed a lawsuit to silence the music. Just days after the owners of the market, on Spokane’s South Hill, learned about the suit to stop the twice-weekly summer concerts, supporters started a GoFundMe page to offset the market’s legal fees. The people behind the suit claim that the market inflicts emotional distress on them, want to ban the business from hosting events that interfere with the use of their properties, and seek payment for “psychological treatment,” the Spokesman-Review reports. As of Tuesday morning, the GoFundMe page had raised more than $6,000 of a $15,000 goal from more than 120 donors. Kate Rau, who started the campaign, lives three doors down from Rocket Market and says she loves to take friends to the concerts when they’re in town. Rau says she can’t hear the concerts when she’s in her house. “It’s a mixed-use neighborhood, and I tell you what, the traffic is so much louder,” Rau says. “Sometimes the music gets drowned out by the traffic. They don’t use amplification. That’s just part of living in an urban area, it’s never going to be completely quiet.” (SAMANTHA WOHLFEIL)



Broken Rules A Millwood councilwoman has resigned, but one question remains: Did the city break the law in appointing her in the first place? BY WILSON CRISCIONE


onnie Smith hadn’t even served as a Millwood city councilwoman for three months when she decided to resign. The issues that would lead to her resignation, however, began before she ever started. The city of Millwood, sitting south of the Spokane River and northwest of Spokane Valley, has fewer than 2,000 people. Following the death of Councilman Richard Schoen in August 2016, the city council took months to find a replacement. So long, in fact, that by the time the council chose Smith to take the position, the city no longer had the authority to do so. Smith resigned last month as her appointment to city council was called into question. She cited ongoing harassment, threats and vandalism to her home. Millwood Mayor Kevin Freeman announced her resignation Feb. 14. “It is unusual, in the city of Millwood, that we would have that happen with the council position,” Freeman said. The council position will be left vacant until the next election. “That is done,” Freeman said, moving on to the

next item. But the questions about the process by which the city appointed Smith don’t appear to be going away. Not only did the city violate state law while appointing Smith to the council, emails obtained by the Inlander also suggest that the city tried to avoid a potential conflict of interest by waiting to appoint her until the city finalized a deal for a piece of property she was selling as a realtor. The same emails leave questions about whether the city also violated the state’s open meetings law.


Once the council had a vacancy, Millwood had 90 days to appoint a replacement before its authority ended and it became Spokane County’s duty to appoint a replacement, according to state law. The cutoff for Millwood was Oct. 16. Smith was the only person to apply for the position. A month before that cutoff, on Sept. 13, the mayor suggested that the council vote on Smith’s appointment in its next meeting. On Sept. 14, City Clerk Tom Richardson emailed Smith, congratulating her, prematurely, for

being “selected” to fill the vacancy, according to email records provided to the Inlander by Spencer Harrington, a Millwood resident and an attorney. But the council had not yet voted to appoint her. The nonprofit Center for Justice, which advocates for open government in the Spokane region, is reviewing records — including that email from Richardson — to determine if Millwood violated the state’s open meetings law, says Executive Director Rick Eichstaedt. “If a decision regarding an appointment of a replacement city council member has to be made in an open public meeting, and an email says you’re going to be appointed at this meeting, it does seem as though a decision has been made,” Eichstaedt says. More emails show City Attorney Brian Werst recommending that the council be “careful about appearances” regarding the acquisition of property of which Smith was the real estate agent. The Millwood Mayor property is two half-acre lots on Kevin Freeman E. South Riverway that border the Spokane River, and the city intends to use the land to build a park. For that reason, Werst says, the council did not vote to appoint her until Nov. 8. She was sworn in on Nov. 29. Yet by November, only the Spokane County Board of Commissioners, not the city, had the authority to appoint Smith. “In all candor and hindsight, I should have advised the city to petition the Board of County Commissioners,” Werst says. Bid on over


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During the Nov. 8 meeting, the city also authorized Mayor Freeman to purchase the Riverway property. Werst maintains that Smith did not communicate with the city council about the real estate acquisition in the months leading up to the purchase. That line between council business and the land acquisiLETTERS tion, though, seems to have Send comments to been thin. In a Sept. 2 email from Richardson, the city clerk, to Mayor Freeman and City Attorney Werst, Richardson said he had an appointment with Smith for a walk-through on the property for sale “after she meets with the mayor at 10:00 to talk about the council.”


Harrington, the Millwood resident and attorney who opposes the land acquisition that is near his house, requested that the Washington Attorney General’s Office look into the purchase. In a letter dated Jan. 5, 2017, the AG office denied the request, pending further information. But the AG office did not look into the timing of Smith’s appointment; that it occurred after the cutoff date. Harrington then wrote a letter to Millwood City Council, dated Feb. 13 — the day before Smith resigned — asking that Smith be removed from the council because it had no authority to appoint or vote her in. Mayor Freeman did not respond to Inlander requests for comment. Smith tells the Inlander that she had no idea she was appointed past the 90-day deadline. She says she had been harassed by a small group of people who opposed the city’s acquisition of the land she facilitated the sale of. “I’m so new to politics, I thought, ‘I’m going to join the council. I love my city,’” she says. “Now it’s completely backfired.” 

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BUMPY RIDES Services like Uber and Lyft have rapidly outpaced taxi services — but the impact on their drivers is a little more complicated. YOUNG KWAK PHOTO

The gig economy promised independence and flexibility for workers who use apps like Uber to get by — but the reality has been more challenging



he gig economy rests upon a simple yet powerful concept: connection. An art teacher logs on to and connects with someone who pays her to take care of his dog while he’s out of town. A retired couple connects with a budgetconscious traveler and rents her their son’s old room for a night on Airbnb. A fashion maven spots a beautiful vintage dress at a thrift shop and knows he can turn a tidy profit by connecting with a buyer on eBay. A stay-at-home mom flips on her Uber app while the kids are at school, and connects with a steady stream of passengers who need to hitch a ride. The gig economy has eliminated most of the obstacles preventing that connection — licensure boards, capital costs, union regulations and bureaucratic busywork — clearing the way for the marketplace in its purest form: You need something, and I have the time or resources to help you. It’s one reason why, between 2005 and 2015, statistics show that the number of alternative work arrangements in the United States — which includes jobs from app-based services as well as contract and temp work — soared by more than 50 percent. It’s even more dramatic for young people overseas, where over 41 percent of Europeans from the age 15 to 24 in 2015 were stuck in temporary jobs. But when you strip away all the barriers in an industry, you also strip away many of the protections that make it possible for professionals to make a decent living. The gig economy hands workers the flexibility to work whenever they want — crucial for those who need to piece together multiple jobs to make enough money to pay the bills. But at the same time, many of these employers consider their workers “independent contractors” instead of “employees,” and don’t offer sick leave, health insurance, matched retirement contributions, or even a guaranteed minimum-wage salary. This is the paradox of the gig economy: When everybody can make a little bit of money doing the same thing, very few are able to make a living doing it.


For Bonnie Masoner, a 47-year-old saleswoman of prepaid

cremation services, ride-sharing was a backup. Her cremation sales job is job entirely commission-based, her pay susceptible to the whims of the market. “When my sales are down, I need to pick up the slack by driving Uber and Lyft,” Masoner says. After an unprofitable day at work, she’d hit the streets, spending a few hours making money taking drunks home from bars. When Dan Gorey, 28, started driving for Uber, he was in a miserable, low-paid call center job. Even when he got a better job, the appeal of brief interactions with a stranger has kept him coming back. “It doesn’t matter if it’s a 5-minute ride or a 30-minute ride to the airport,” Gorey says. “There’s a connection made between driver and rider.” And Len Wallace? The 76-year-old was once a multimillionaire owner of a 1,800-acre elk ranch in Montana. Then came the series of lawsuits and bad investments and bankruptcy filings. His $2.5 million riverfront mansion in Post Falls — named the Queen of the River — was facing foreclosure when it burned down in 2012. Today, he says he shares a “rathole apartment” with a buddy in Airway Heights. “I’m 76,” Wallace says. “I could manage any goddamn business in this city. But people think you’re going to drop dead the next day.” So for money, he drives Uber and Lyft. These jobs give him flexibility. He says he uses his brief off hours to tinker away, trying to make a more efficient bicycle, or working as his own attorney to appeal one of his lawsuits. But here’s the thing — every longtime Uber or Lyft driver we spoke with in Spokane says that the gig isn’t what it once was. In just a few years, basic principles of economics have come to bear on ride sharing in Spokane. There’s a low barrier to entry. Almost anyone with a newer car who can pass a background check can drive Uber. And so the market has been flooded with ride-share drivers. That’s great for passengers. They can find rides quickly whenever they need to. That’s great for Uber and Lyft, too. They can slash fares, attracting more users to their apps, further undercutting the taxi industry. But for the drivers? It sucks. ...continued on next page



Len Wallace, 76, went from being a millionaire to an Uber driver — and now says he has to drive 70-90 hours a week to make money. YOUNG KWAK PHOTOS


Masoner says when she started driving about a year ago, as soon as she dropped off one passenger, there would be another waiting almost immediately. But these days, with so many drivers out there, business has slowed. “Right now I find, to be worth my time, I only come out for special events,” Masoner says. “Valentine’s Day. Sporting events, Zag games.” She reads the event listings in the Inlander to try to figure out exactly when to drive. But she knows that, at times, she doesn’t have a lot of alternatives if she needs the money. “If it comes down to sitting downtown and having the long waits in between calls, that’s what I have to do,” Masoner says. More experienced drivers have tricks to generate a steady stream of customers. They know to avoid downtown, where they have to compete with too many other drivers, and find more obscure spots. Still, they, too, cringe as they see ads recruiting Uber drivers or hear Sean Hannity proclaim the wonders of driving Uber in sponsored spots on his talk-radio show. As Uber and Lyft have locked in fierce competition, with plenty of drivers available, the fares for both services have plummeted. “It’s at the point where they’re not even competing with the taxis anymore,” Jacob Boileau, a 28-year-old ride-share driver with two other jobs, says about Uber and Lyft. “They’re competing with one another.” And lower fares mean that drivers get paid at a lower rate. “When I started it was $1.35 per mile and 17 cents per minute. Not terrible,” Gorey says about Uber. “I could see some income even after the wear and tear on the vehicle. Now it’s gone to $1 a mile and 10 cents a minute.” A lot of drivers don’t realize how severely gas and vehicular attrition can eat into their salary. John Thaemert, a 57-year-old full-time Uber driver, knows what it’s like to work long hours. “Sometimes I would work from 4:30 am, up until the sun went down,” he says. Still, Thaemert says that this past year he only made $24,000 driving for Uber and Lyft. When he deducts fuel and the depreciation of his vehicle, he’s realized that, for all his work, he’s actually taking a loss. That’s not all. The city of Spokane has passed a mandatory sick-leave policy, but it doesn’t matter for ride-share drivers: They don’t get sick leave. If their car breaks down, they suddenly don’t have a job. Last month, two Uber drivers — Nancy Sonduck and Raheel Khan — were featured in news stories describing how they had to cut back on their hours because Spokane’s pothole-pocked roads exacerbated existing injuries. Washington state’s minimum wage also doesn’t matter for ride-share drivers. A ride to Sandpoint or Coeur d’Alene, Wallace says, will net drivers around $7 an hour after expenses and depreciation. And trips in Spokane? Total losers, he says. About $3 an hour. But Wallace, if nothing else, is tenacious.

So while many drivers dropped out or cut back because of the low rates of pay, Wallace keeps driving. And driving, and driving. “For now, I need to survive,” Wallace says. “The rates are so low, and you make so little, you have to put in a shitload of hours to have a number at the end of the week.” He sends over photos of paperwork to prove he spent more than 70 hours driving for Uber alone two weeks ago. And that, he says, was comparatively light — he took Sunday off because he was too tired. Some weeks, he says he works 90-plus hours, driving 1,700 miles on behalf of the two companies. He says he manages to make about $600 to $700 a week. That’s enough, at least, to live on. The “brutally low” rates, Wallace says, “prove people that are desperate will work for very little.”


Three years ago, the Seattle City Council unanimously voted to cap the number of Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar ride-share drivers at only 150 each. But the backlash was fierce and immediate, as a coalition of supporters quickly began gathering signatures for a referendum. In less than a month, the council relented under the pressure, lifting the cap. And when Seattle was the first city in the nation to pass a law allowing ride-share drivers to unionize, Uber ran ads warning that unionization would lead to disaster and filed a lawsuit to try to stop it. The two companies straight up left Austin, Texas, when the city began requiring fingerprint background checks for drivers. Uber has scrambled to settle lawsuits in states like California and Massachusetts to ensure that their drivers are considered “contractors” and not “employees.” With the “employee” label would come a whole heap of new regulations: State and federal rules around minimum wage, sick leave, and unemployment benefits would apply to Uber drivers — shaking the foundations of Uber’s business model. Despite all this, Uber is not exactly getting rich. In the third quarter of 2016, Uber lost $800 million. According to the automobile news site Jalopnik, Uber’s fares only cover about 40 percent of its expenses, with the rest coming from venture capitalists. So now, in the distance, Uber is looking at the ultimate disrupter, one that would make every one of their contracted employees as obsolete as the taxi services: Driverless cars. The first fleet arrived in Pittsburgh in August. Someday, drivers like Wallace and Masoner and Gorey may be irrelevant to companies like Uber. This, in turn, touches on a whole new set of fears and anxiety for workers: What happens to the gig economy when robots and computers take all the gigs? What happens to society? For now, for all of his frustrations, Wallace is happy to be behind the wheel. “I am eternally grateful to Uber and Lyft for the opportunity to make some money and survive,” he says. n

FREE RANGE TECH Local tech freelancers rely on coworking businesses like Fellow (pictured) for convenient work space and collaboration.


Coders and web developers are dialing into the hive mind of local coworking spaces


an Siddoway turns everywhere he goes into his own office. Laptop in tow, you can often find him typing web code in a booth at Thomas Hammer Coffee or designing a website at an Iron Goat Brewery table. Anywhere that has electrical outlets and a decent internet connection can temporarily transform into a corner cubicle. And if the weather’s nice enough and his computer is charged, Siddoway says he’ll even work in a secluded area of Manito Park. It’s the sort of solitude Thoreau could never have dreamed of. “I always bring my computer to the bar now. It’s kind of ridiculous,” Siddoway says. People who’ve had a few too many drinks sometimes disruptively inquire about his work, ignoring the noise-canceling headphones. “But they’re starting to get used to it,” he says. “I’m not the only one with my computer out anymore.” This has been the typical work schedule for the 32-year-old Spokane coder and web developer, who abandoned a full-time office job at Rainmaker Creative and now relies on one-off gigs and freelance projects. It might sound like something of a nomadic existence, hunkering down in whatever location is most convenient at any given moment. But a lot of freelancers are starting to rely on coworking spaces, a more reliable and comfortable environment than your average Starbucks. Siddoway frequents Level Up, the downtown public library’s free coworking space. He’s also paid for a mem-

BY NATHAN WEINBENDER bership at Fellow Coworking, located on the second floor of the Washington Cracker Co. Building. Spaces like Fellow allow those who rely on the gig economy to experience the advantages of a bustling office environment while still benefiting from the freedom of freelancing. Started in 2013 by Luke Baumgarten, a co-founder of the arts group Terrain, Fellow currently hosts around 70 regular members, boasting talents ranging from mechanical engineering to IT security, fiction writing to ecotourism. Baumgarten (a former Inlander staffer) and his Fellow partner Benji Wade, a web developer and former producer at North by Northwest Productions, recently started a small creative firm called Treatment. It’s located in a small office at the back of Fellow, and its staff includes folks who still work as part-time freelancers. “Treatment was born in Fellow and couldn’t exist, for a lot of reasons, without it,” Baumgarten says. “The gig economy is fueling Treatment because of these super-creative dudes who are choosing to spend a sizable amount of time following their passion.” Both Baumgarten and Wade say that they’ve seen a noticeable uptick in coders, web designers and other online creatives leaving secure jobs at large agencies to subsist solely on freelance gigs. Wade and two of his Treatment coworkers, game designer Nick Barr and photographer and videographer Tobias Hendrickson, previously worked at North by Northwest together and

say they now have more time to focus on passion projects alongside their for-hire gigs. They’ve also observed that the coworking environment actually encourages impromptu collaboration. Wade points to a recent video project he was working on that was presenting obstacles. He was able to outsource color-correction duties to a videographer who was a regular at Fellow, and they’ve since worked together on several other projects. “That whole gig-economy thing happens a lot here,” Wade says. “There are a lot of things at Treatment that aren’t within the interests we have, so we’ll refer it out to somebody else.” Siddoway says his own well-being has improved since he’s started creating his own work schedule. He works for a few hours in the morning — he’s currently designing a website for a Danish beer company and developing software for a startup — and takes a break in the afternoon to either work out at the YMCA or chip away at some online courses he’s enrolled in. He’ll pick up work again in the late afternoon or early evening, sometimes over dinner or a beer. This is still, he admits, an unorthodox way of making a living, especially in a country that still clings to the concept of a 40-hour workweek. “But I think there are real benefits to this kind of freedom,” he says. “I think people are starting to value the flexibility of it.” n



MY HOUSE IS YOUR HOUSE Caitlin Richardson and her husband, John McCormack, use money from Airbnb to pay down the mortgage on their new house.


Spokane residents rent out their space on sites like Airbnb, but few follow city rules BY SAMANTHA WOHLFEIL


hether it’s contortionists on the way to their next tour stop, or parents visiting a daughter in hospice care, at the end of the day visitors need a place to rest and recharge that doesn’t break the bank. That’s why many turn to hosts who post their guest room, their basement or their apartment on rental sites like VRBO and Airbnb. “We’ve had people come in for all sorts of things. Weddings, baby showers, hospital stays,” says Caitlin Richardson, who with her husband John McCormack has rented out a guest room in their Downriver neighborhood home for about a year now through Airbnb. “We see people dealing with great things and hard things, and we get to be with them on their journey.” For Richardson, her first stay in an Airbnb early in 2016 convinced her it might be a good idea to look into hosting. She was in Seattle for her sister’s wedding, and found a posting that was not only closer to her family, it also cost about half what hotels were charging farther away, and had its own kitchen, making for more affordable meals. Now as hosts, the Spokane couple is able to rent out their often otherwise unused guest room multiple nights a week. The site adjusts the price within a range the couple is comfortable with depending on demand. During busier times, such as Hoopfest, the price is closer to $50 a night, and during slower times such as the middle of winter, it’s


closer to $25 a night. “We thought we might meet some interesting people and make some extra cash,” Richardson says. “We just bought our house two years ago, so any extra money helps pay down the mortgage.” While short-term rentals have made it easier for people to earn money on the side, they’ve also run into legal gray areas as government agencies try to keep pace regulating the emerging industry, hotels denounce lax oversight of their new competitors, and listing sites push back against new rules.


Airbnb has sued New York City and San Francisco, among other cities, over regulations that threaten fines over illegal listings. Some cities worry that the rentals may make it even harder to find affordable housing. The Oregonian reported in September that Portland had lost 1,000 affordable homes because they’d been converted to short-term rentals. For nearly two years, Spokane has required people who rent out their space for less than 30 days at a time to register with the city. Part of the thinking behind the new rule was to ensure that people are paying their taxes and to deal with complaints that the hotel-like rentals weren’t allowed in some city zones. The city permit, required for rentals in residential

areas, has an initial cost of $150, then $100 for every year after that. Twenty-one months into the program, only 18 locations have registered. That’s a far cry from the actual number — a quick search on Airbnb showed anywhere from 20 to 120 places to stay on a given day of the week in Spokane. At least a dozen sites were available on VRBO. Richardson says that she and her husband were the third to register and make sure their listing is aboveboard with the city. That means keeping city and state business licenses up to date and paying taxes. “Airbnb has made it so simple for us to be hosts,” Richardson says. “They, in Washington state, will collect and remit on our behalf our tax due to the Washington State Department of Revenue.” They still need to deal with some added work on their taxes, but Richardson works in finance, and says the process didn’t seem daunting to her. That said, she understands how it might give others pause. “I know my husband, when he first looked at it, it seemed like an insurmountable amount of paperwork,” she says. “To me, it seemed like three forms and we’re done.” One Spokane woman who uses Airbnb, and asked not to be named as she isn’t registered, says she plans to stop hosting soon, partly because a surplus of listings has created competitive pricing that makes it difficult to turn a profit. She was one of only a few places in the area on the site when she signed up, but now competes with so many others that between lowering prices to get more bookings and paying taxes, the amount of work it takes isn’t going to pencil out. However, plenty of people like Richardson and McCormack find that renting their room pays off. “Airbnb helps Spokane residents turn one of their greatest expenses — their homes — into a way to make ends meet,” Airbnb spokeswoman Laura Rillos says in an email. “The typical host in Spokane earns $5,500 per year, which is meaningful income that helps many pay their bills.” Hosts keep 97 percent of what they charge, Rillos says, and guests tend to stay longer and spend more at local businesses when they stay with Airbnb, “so this can generate significant revenue for the local community.” Richardson and her husband point people locally whenever they can. “One thing we particularly like to do is direct people to local businesses,” she says. “Restaurants, shops, the museum, parks, so they can kind of fall in love with Spokane. We’re not from Spokane originally. … It took a few years before we found these great restaurants and places you need to know by word of mouth, and we try to offer that to give them a glimpse.”


Enforcement against those who aren’t following city rules has been complaint-based, says Donna deBit, assistant planner for Spokane. “We’re not really in the business of head-hunting, getting on Airbnb and writing up everyone who does have one listed,” deBit says. However, it’d be a good idea for everyone to get on board, deBit says. Not only could they face fines from the city if they’re found out, but if something were to go wrong, they might not be covered by some insurance policies due to not following local codes. “They’re only doing themselves a disservice if something bad happens, and someone finds out there was a process in place in city limits for them to have a license,” deBit says. n


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THE GIG ECONOMY Gianna Caputo models and captures all of the vintage items featured on her Etsy shop with a tripod and remote. GIANNA CAPUTO PHOTO

TREASURE HUNTERS The business of buying and reselling thrifted stuff online continues to be a lucrative moneymaker for some



ou know the saying: One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. And for the many secondhand goods resellers in the Spokane/Coeur d’Alene area, this familiar adage literally describes what these folks do; some full time and others as a way to pad their day-job income. Online options to resell high-end or collectible modern goods, as well as sought-after vintage and antique items, are still widely popular, with the longtime auction behemoth eBay still holding steady in the buy/sell market. Its younger online marketplace sibling Etsy (launched 10 years after eBay, in 2005) has grown up fast, too, becoming a massive outlet for crafty folks to find buyers of home décor pieces, jewelry, fine art and more. Beyond its focus on handmade goods, Etsy is also a timecrunched vintage shopper’s dream. Gianna Caputo has been reselling on Etsy for almost six years, through her online storefront BluePeaShop that specializes in listing trendy-again vintage clothing, shoes, accessories and home décor pieces she finds at Spokane-area thrift stores. “I started [the shop] because I was thrifting and finding way too much to keep for myself, but that I knew I could probably sell,” Caputo explains. “It’s not that hard to find good stuff. If you have an idea of what you’re looking for, you can find it, and once you know what a quality item looks like, you can just get in and out really quick,” she says of her thrifting technique. Caputo estimates she spends around 15 hours a month scouring racks, laundering, photographing and listing her goods on Etsy — 1970s Bohemian-style bags, chunky ’80s sweaters, and once, a poncho she paid $5 for and sold the same day online for $75. Finds like these can bring in as much as $500 a month in supplemental income for the 35-year-old pharmaceutical sales rep. Reaching a worldwide audience on Etsy, including those who’d rather not spend their own time digging through racks, Caputo is able to sell the pieces in her curated online collection for at least five times more than what she got them for at a thrift store or estate sale. (This pricing factors in the time it takes Caputo to find, prep and list an item, as well as Etsy’s seller fees.) And while the extra money is nice — supplementing her full-time job’s income — running her online vintage shop, more important-


ly, serves as a creative outlet for Caputo. “You have to love that hunt of finding things,” she explains. “And when you do find it, you feel like you scored so big, and someone is going to love you for it.” While current fashion and décor trends — paired with an increased appreciation for oldtimey craftsmanship — has propelled thrifting, or “picking,” as it’s also known, to the forefront of the retail scene, Caputo doesn’t worry that Spokane’s good finds will be depleted for resellers like her anytime soon. “As long as you keep up with the trends, you can usually find something,” she says. “If this was a full-time job, I might feel differently — if I was out there every day.” And there are people out there every day, like Coeur d’Alene resident Kelly Fee. To keep his eBay store and auctions amply stocked with all sorts of stuff, Fee scours thrift shops, garage sales and the like as a full-time “picker.” With more than a decade of experience as an eBay seller, Fee says he’s able to support himself, his wife, and their four children entirely with the money he brings in from eBay. (He declines to say how much, but says it’s enough that they’re living comfortably, and not on a shoestring.) As he takes a short break from digging through bins and racks at a local thrift store — albeit alongside about 10 other local “pickers” he knows, including his brother — Fee says he started on eBay about 17 years ago, auctioning off expensive graphing calculators he’d find secondhand. He’d list them around the late summer back-to-school rush for well below new retail price, using that early income to fund family vacations. Eventually, Fee’s knack for finding items he knew he could get a buyer for on eBay allowed him to quit his job as a restaurant server. “You have to look at things you wouldn’t normally look at,” he says. Now that he’s got years of experience doing this for a living, Fee is able to sometimes spend only a few hours a day out looking for goods to list. His advice to anyone looking to make some extra cash, or even make the move he did to “pick” full time: “Start out slow. Don’t start out big. Start with something you know, that you can put your teeth into.” n


Lauren Andresen says she can make more money as a private tutor than she would as a teacher.

Tutoring apps can supplement a teacher’s income, or in some cases become a full-time job BY WILSON CRISCIONE


auren Andresen considers herself a teacher, but she doesn’t have a classroom. She teaches from coffee shops, but her students can be thousands of miles away. Andresen is a private tutor. She gives lessons in person and sometimes on Skype, to students ages 5 to 75. Students find her using online tutoring apps or websites like Wyzant, University Tutor or Varsity Tutors. The services are often used by teachers wanting extra money on top of their full-time job. But for people like Andresen, tutoring is the full-time job. “If a person can handle a classroom, I almost 100 percent recommend that the teacher work at a school, if they feel like they can make the most effective change in a student’s life in that learning environment,” she says. “But a lot goes into that, and not every educator wants to do that.” There are drawbacks to being a private tutor. There’s less certainty. The availability of clients depends on the season. And Andresen says the business can change depending on where you live. Still, Andresen makes more money per hour than she would as a public school teacher. Her schedule is more

flexible, and she can choose how much time and energy to put into it. She’s able to gain clients by having a high rating, based on feedback from students. Tutors can gain credibility by having a four- or five-star rating, much like how apps like Uber and Lyft work for drivers. So can full-time private tutors make a decent living? “Oh yeah,” she says. “Ohh yeah.”


ndresen wanted to be a teacher since she was a teenager. She’s been in education for more than a decade since graduating from college, taking on nontraditional teaching jobs, mostly private tutoring. She tutors about 40 percent of her clients exclusively online, she says. She moved to Spokane about six months ago from California, yet she still occasionally works with clients from California via Skype. “It really has changed the face of private education,” she says. “Twenty, 30 years ago, you basically had to find a retired teacher to come help your student, or students had to stay after school and meet with his or her own teacher.” Instead, many of those full-time teachers use tutoring apps to make extra money.


Jared Rand founded an online tutoring service called The Knowledge Roundtable in 2012, in part to help gain more clients for himself as a private tutor. Now, he says there are more than 28,000 tutors registered. “It’s absolutely, mostly people doing it as a side gig. It’s people with a full-time job looking for extra money — a fair amount are teachers,” Rand says. The flurry of online tutoring services has changed how students look for tutors. Before, students would have to rely on someone else to refer them to a tutor, Rand says. Online services make it easier for everyone to find a tutor. Immigrants, especially, are more likely to use networks like Knowledge Roundtable for help with English. Andresen says she’s seen full-time teachers switch over to doing private tutoring as their only job. Usually, she says, it’s because they need more flexibility with their time. “A lot of times it’s, ‘I just had a kid and need to be able to work from home, and need to do online tutoring,’” Andresen says. “Or they’re done working in an actual school, but they need income, or don’t want to just drop all of their activity.” While online services allow for more mobility, Andresen says that if tutors want to make a lot of money, they need to move to a big city. She says she had more clients in San Francisco than she does now in Spokane. Even though she can still tutor clients from California, many prefer the sessions to be done in person. The business of online tutoring is seasonal, which can make it a more unstable source of income, she says. And the time that private tutors spend preparing lessons or gathering materials doesn’t factor into what they’re paid. This isn’t the kind of teaching Andresen envisioned as a teen, but she says the goal is the same. “It boils down to the same thing,” she says. “My goal is to see students succeed in academic efforts and personal efforts.” n


LEFT: “A Gift from God” by Nicholas Sironka RIGHT: Sironka instructs student Lynn Lovato on applying wax to fabric to make a batik.



‘Resist’ and Persist Maasai artist Nicholas Sironka’s chosen medium is wax and dye, but he hopes that he’s creating understanding as well BY RAVEN HAYNES


n 2000, artist Nicholas Sironka and his wife moved to America for opportunity, like the many millions of immigrants who came before them. They traveled more than 8,800 miles from a small, hot town just south of Nairobi, Kenya, to Spokane, sending money home to their young children staying with family, fueled by high hopes and little to fall back on if things didn’t pan out. But for all the elements of the “stereotypical” American dream in Sironka’s story, his goal didn’t stop with earning enough money to send his kids to school or becoming a successful artist to support his family. This opportunity was something bigger, something he couldn’t give up on: his best chance on one of the biggest stages in the world — America — to finally paint a truer picture of the 400,000 Maasai people in Kenya than the misrepresentations he’d seen all his life. “I remember walking down the streets [of Nairobi] to buy [art] materials and going past the curio shops,” Sironka, 49, says. “And I would see images of Maasai men and women kissing or holding hands, and American tourists buying them or stopping to look at them.” That made no sense, Sironka says, because Maasai marriages are often arranged, and there isn’t much courtship or public display of intimacy. For a recent example, he points to Mindy Budgor, a white Jewish American woman, who in 2013 claimed to be the “first female Maasai warrior,” which is not possible within authentic Maasai culture (and whom many Africans, like Maasai


woman Esianoi Pashile, subsequently schooled in several articles). “Then I thought to myself that instead of complaining, I should correct this and tell the true story,” Sironka says. “I was always fascinated by the beauty of my culture, but I didn’t have an inclination of how I could represent it to the world, but I would always sketch things.”


hough he didn’t grow up in a traditional Maasai village — instead, privileged to get a good education in the city and learn English because of his German stepfather’s financial support — his mother raised him and his siblings to speak Maa, the language of the Maasai (which means “people who speak Maa”). Learning his ethnic language gave Sironka an allaccess pass to study the songs and literature of his people. Growing up, he’d always visit his grandmother’s village during school breaks, when he’d interview elders about Maasai myths and have the cultural experiences that color his canvas today. By the late ’90s, Sironka had become a prolific, dedicated artist and cultural representative painting vivid scenes of Maasai life using a nontraditional art form, batik — a time-consuming technique thought to originate in Indonesia, in which hot wax is applied to portions of the painting so that the canvas “resists” the dyes added later on. That passion and hard work made Sironka’s home a

can’t-miss stop for more than 100 study-abroad students from the U.S. who did homestays in his and other homes in the village, including Molly Erb, a Whitworth University student who later invited Sironka to Spokane (and America, for the first time) for her wedding in 1999. “My wife said, ‘This is your opportunity!’” Sironka says. “She said, ‘I know Molly will introduce you to other artists and professors at Whitworth.’ I was scared I wouldn’t get my visa — I didn’t have a big sum of money to show that I was secure and would actually come back home.” But Sironka got more than a visa — he became Whitworth’s first Fulbright scholar-in-residence, lecturing on Maasai culture and leading batik workshops in the 2000-01 school year through the efforts of Lynn Noland, director of Sponsored Programs, and art professor (and now close friend) Gordon Wilson. “The scholar-in-residence program is usually for individuals with Ph.D.’s,” Wilson says. “But we made a strong case for his cultural knowledge and his own personal research. And he received that scholarship as a result of what he can bring to our culture — it wouldn’t be possible for me to go to Kenya and bring back what he does.”


ironka wasted no time. He became a permanent resident and started leading hundreds of batik and culture workshops at schools and universities across the U.S. In 2001, he returned to Kenya to form a traditional dancing and singing troupe with people in his village, bringing more than 80 dancers to tour America over the next eight years, and raising money for the dancers to build new homes and send their siblings and children to school. The dancers usually stay with kind homeowners in the city they visit, forming easy friendships and inspiring many people to give, like one woman who sold her car and sent the money home with the villagers during their 2005 stop in Maryland. In 2001, Sironka also began a group called Plant A Tree and Change A Life, which raises money for 16-yearold Maasai girls — who would otherwise typically become

young wives — to go to high school, and has since found sponsorships for more than 60 girls. He’s also worked as an art therapist with children at Sacred Heart Medical Center. Wilson, the art professor and his friend, says that what makes Sironka such a valuable cultural ambassador is his charisma and personality. He still remembers the first few times he’d call Sironka on the job just to remind him of something, and Sironka would start to laugh. “I asked what was funny, and he said, ‘Well, the first thing you do in our culture is ask how the goats are,’” Wilson says. “So usually when I call him and talk to him now, I ask him how the goats are first. It’s not just about business with Sironka, it’s about human interaction. He’s always working to do good, and assist people when he can… it’s hard not to want to be a part of it.”


ironka has embraced life and the people in America, but his wife Seleina’s sudden passing in late 2013 shook him. He hasn’t been to Kenya since her funeral, and grief sent him adrift for a few years — still working, but questioning his mission, and the strain it may have put on his wife living abroad. Seleina was the architect of his move to the U.S., however, so he knew she’d want him to continue. “I remember filling out the ‘widowed’ box for the first time on some documents, how difficult it was,” Sironka says. “But we say in my culture, ‘Prosperity comes as one climbing O N D I S P L AY a mountain.’ It means you Beginning in late March, have to struggle to succeed; Pottery Place Plus (on life doesn’t come just so the main floor of Auntie’s easy.” Bookstore) will dedicate a Lately, that’s been espewall to Sironka’s for-purchase cially true. A batik workshop prints and artwork. Until then, he opened in North Spokane you can reach him through his in mid-December is already website,, closing due to financial or find him at the Hatch. struggles, and his teaching engagements have slowed. Now he’s trying to reconcile the angry, fearful anti-immigration voices of the America he resides in today with the land of immigrants he was first welcomed to in 1999. Even so, his work continues to open minds and start conversations. At his most recent exhibition (Feb. 23–March 27) at Eastern Washington University, Dianne Stradling Denenny and Charlotte Vandekamp, who had never heard of the Maasai or batik, read the stories beside Sironka’s paintings and peered into the rich colors, emotions and ideas for just a few minutes before immediately sharing their reaction. “Wow,” Denneny says. “Cheney needs this. We need to see more of this — you know, the world. We’ve decided what we like the most about these [images] is the peace and the respect.” “You get so caught up,” Vandekamp adds. “But then you see this — look at that baby [in Sironka’s painting, “A Gift from God”], how cherished it is.” Now, Sironka is packing up his shop to return as artist-inresidence at the Hatch, a workspace for creatives in Spokane, and offer classes (often with a cup of Kenyan chai) at Spokane Arts Supply. He’s working with a publisher on a book of his illustrations, and he’s always got his eye on the next opportunity — this work is too important to stop. “They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting the same result. I am not insane,” he deadpans, then laughs. “I will try new things, and keep working hard. Giving up has no time frame.”  You can sign up for a batik workshop with Sironka (at under “Adult Education” or “Calendar”) taking place on Sat, March 4 at the Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture. Teens and tweens can also sign up for a two-part (attend either or both) batik quilt workshop at Spokane Valley Public Library (at under “Upcoming Events”) on Sat, March 11 & 18.


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TV Stories about space travel / the future / aliens / interplanetary colonization are super-hot right now. So get on the bandwagon, if you haven’t already, with Syfy’s outstanding original show THE EXPANSE. Currently in the middle of its second season (Wed at 10 pm), The Expanse is based on a six-book space opera series set in a near future in which humans have colonized most of our solar system, including Mars and the asteroid belt. Conflict heats up this season between Mars, Earth, the “Belters” and a scheming biotech company experimenting with an intelligent, evolving life form called the protomolecule. Excellent casting, worldbuilding and a sensible story arc puts The Expanse in league with genre greats like Firefly and even Star Trek. VIDEO GAME The funloving minds at game design studio The Behemoth — known for the beloved titles Castle Crashers, BattleBlock Theater and Alien Hominid — are finally back with their long-awaited fourth game, PIT PEOPLE. The turn-based strategy, team combat game, available now in early access for Xbox One and for PC via Steam, gloriously reunites longtime fans with the Behemoth’s signature goofy art, narration, story and in-game character items (an oversized popsicle stick as a heavy club; meme-inspired headgear) that have made its other games stand out in the pack. Online and local co-op modes — along with options to complete story quests or just bash on AI baddies in the “pit” — offer play styles to suit all types.

There may not be such a thing as a “good loss,” but the Zags head to Vegas with new motivation.


onzaga lost its last regular-season game to BYU at home for the second time in the past three years. The 79-71 defeat in the Kennel on Saturday night might seem disastrous, given that the Zags were 29-0 and vying to remain atop the college basketball polls heading into the West Coast Conference Tournament. Here’s the thing, though: The loss might actually serve Mark Few’s crew as the team turns toward the postseason. There might not be any such thing as a “good loss” — coaches hate that kind of talk —


but now, instead of worrying about being undefeated, the Bulldogs can focus on winning the WCC Tournament. If they do that, chances are still good that the Zags will earn one of the four No. 1 regional seeds in March Madness — a huge step in their goal of reaching the Final Four for the first time in school history. That journey starts Saturday at 7 pm in Las Vegas, where Gonzaga will play the winner of Friday’s Pepperdine vs. Pacific matchup. The game will air on ESPN2. (DAN NAILEN)

MUSIC Need some new tracks to help your mind slow down and chill out? We all do these days, so check out the latest record from British Columbia-based indie pop/ rock artist Jamison Isaak, who creates under the moniker Teen Daze. The creation of his sixth album, THEMES FOR DYING EARTH, served as an introspective outlet for Isaak to process his stress and deep anxieties caused by both world and personal events. With a mix of soft synths, gentle guitar (even some pedal steel) and soothing vocals — though some tracks are all-instrumental — Themes for Dying Earth serves as a calming aural escape for the listener, too. 

Learn about debt-free living, creating a budget, and more money-management topics at STCU’s free financial workshops ― open to all! To sign up, go to



Fresh Look Spring is coming; take your mind off the wait until then with a new slate of local art to enjoy for March’s First Friday showcase STOP WORRYING ABOUT THE FUTURE It’s human nature to worry about the future; its infinite possible outcomes, the struggles and triumphs that have yet to be decided by us or for us. And though, regardless of personal, religious or spiritual beliefs, we just can’t know an outcome until it happens, we still seek whatever reassurance with the whims of fate we can find. As part of an artist-in-residency project with the Spokane interactive arts nonprofit Laboratory, L.A.-based artist Rae Lavande Pellerin explores these concepts of destiny and predetermination. Pellerin’s video, sound and sculptural installation “Stop Worrying About the Future” revolves around familiar elements of our prophesy-

ing rituals, like fortune cookies, that are mass-marketed under the guise of soothing that primal urge to change or see what’s yet to come. And as we face a future that looms heavy with the potential for foreboding outcomes in national and international politics, climate change and economic stability, the narrative surrounding Pellerin’s work gets close to the issues that deeply matter to so many of the younger generations. — CHEY SCOTT Opening reception March 3, from 5-8 pm; show runs through March 27 • Richmond Art Collective • 228 W. Sprague •


MORE FIRST FRIDAY EVENTS RECEPTIONS ON FRIDAY, MARCH 3, FROM 5-8 PM, UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED. FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION, VISIT DOWNTOWNSPOKANE.ORG OR INLANDER.COM/FIRSTFRIDAY. 1900 Inc., 114 W. Pacific “Mnemonic Proxy” features mixed-media robots by James Barrett, photography by Mia Barrett and paintings and sculptures by Chad Brazil. March 3, 5-8 pm and March 4, 11 am-5 pm. Avenue West Gallery, 907 W. Boone “Flora” is a solo exhibition featuring the artwork of celebrated Spokane artist Melissa Cole. Barrister Winery, 1213 W. Railroad Ave. Award-winning local painter Kay O’Rourke showcases her work. Reception from 5-10 pm. Bistango, 108 N. Post Music by Echo Elysium, 6-9 pm. Bloem, 808 W. Main Local artist Debbie McCulley displays new works of art. Boutique Bleu, 1184 W. Summit Pkwy. Watercolor art by Jeannine Frucci, from 5-9 pm. Bozzi Gallery, 221 N. Wall Three Feather Studios is featured for this month’s show, including portraits by Navajo artist Jeremy Salazar. Chosen Vintage, 7 W. Main See photos by Bink Olney and mixed-media art by Jason Bagge. Coeur Coffeehouse, 701 N. Monroe “Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea” features new works by local artist Jessica Klier. Core Pilates and Wellness, 1230 W. Summit Pkwy.

Paintings by Ukrainian-born artist Oksana Tepp; reception from 4:30-8:30 pm. Craftsman Cellars, 1194 W. Summit Pkwy. Fiber and textile wall hangings by Michele Mokrey for the show “Fiber Frenzy.” Reception from 2-9 pm, with music by Dave McRae from 6:30-8:30.

Saranac Art Projects Dodson’s Jewelers, 516 W. Riverside “Nature’s Frolic” features animalthemed watercolor on fabric by Walla Walla artists Kathy Wildermuth and Margaret Jamison. Express Employment Professionals, 331 W. Main Members of the Inland Northwest Peace Corps Association share their experiences from around the world through art as part of the Peace Corps’ 56th anniversary. Free People, 865 W. Main Floral arrangements by Emma Jeanne Floral Design. Hills’ Restaurant & Lounge, 401 W. Main

Music by the Front Porch Trio, from 6-9 pm. Kolva-Sullivan Gallery, 115 S. Adams A contemporary solo exhibition by Andrea Van Voorhis. LeftBank Wine Bar, 108 N. Washington Paintings by Joel Stehr in a show titled “Isaac.” Liberty Building, 203 N. Washington A reception originally planned for last month recognizes artists currently displaying their work in the historic building: Carl Richardson, Nicholas Sironka, James Frye, Priscilla Barnett, Joe Flores, Christina Deubel and others. Liberty Ciderworks, 164 S. Washington Local photographer Frank Knapp shows his black-and-white images of the Palouse. Lucky Leaf Co., 1111 W. First A group show featuring art by past and present students of Spokane Falls Community College. Marmot Art Space, 1206 W. Summit Pkwy. The gallery celebrates its second anniversary and displays metal sculptures by Rick Davis. Reception from 4:30-8:30 pm. Missing Piece Tattoo, 410 W. Sprague Art by Laura Novak. Nectar Catering and Events, 120 N. Stevens Paintings by finger-painter Natalie Hoebing; reception features music by Dan Conrad, from 5-10 pm.

New Moon Art Gallery, 1326 E. Sprague Art by Sam White, who paints abstract and figurative forms, and Mike Buck, who creates functional, hand-glazed and painted pottery. Numerica Credit Union, 502 W. Riverside Enjoy live music by Belliardo and the Luke Stuivenga Band during a launch party for the 2017 Riverkeeper IPA from River City Brewing. Events from 5:30-8 pm. Object Space, 1818½ E. Sprague New works by Spokane artists Neicy Frey and Tiffany Patterson in a “a place made home.”

Trackside Studio Ceramic Gallery Overbluff Cellars, 304 W. Pacific Artist Anne Marie King paints with acrylics on canvas and wood. The Observatory, 15 S. Howard A continuation of the Spokane Falls Community College past/ present art student group show, featuring various artists. Patit Creek Cellars, 822 W. Sprague The Spokane Falls Community College reunion exhibition showcases work by students, alumni and

instructors of SFCC. Pottery Place Plus, 203 N. Washington A guest showcase featuring the work of celebrated local potter Shirley Johnson. River City Brewing Co., 121 S. Cedar Fine art and photographs by Moscow artist Heather Woolery are on display. Rocket Bakery, 157 S. Howard Local artist and muralist Ashley Moss shows her work. Saranac Art Projects, 25 W. Main “Scorched Earth” is a collaborative installation by twin sisters Julie and Kristen Gautier-Downes exploring the sisters’ shared trauma. Spokane Public Library, 906 W. Main Celtic music by Broken Whistle with performances by local dancers, from 6:30-8 pm. T’s Lounge, 703 N. Monroe Live DJing by Benny Blanko, art by Ryan Stocks and Sara Jean. Trackside Studio Ceramic Gallery, 115 S. Adams “The Trailing Vine” features the work of gallery member Gina Freuen. Weathers & Associates Consulting, 105 S. Madison Live jazz music by Jesse Tinsley and his sons, Colby and Rogan. William Grant Gallery and Framing, 1188 W. Summit Pkwy. Floral collages by artist Linda Noel Schierman are on display. n


Palouse Heritage farm co-owner Don Scheuerman, center, and Palouse Pint’s Joel Williamson, right, chat with attendees at the Purple Egyptian Barley Project’s first week.


For Purple Waves of Grain A local grain farmer, malter, baker and beermaker are joining forces to showcase an ancient and unique strain of Egyptian barley BY CHRIS LOZIER


hen people think about beer, hops typically get the most attention. But an ongoing local collaboration is celebrating beer’s main ingredient — malted barley — for a seven-week event dubbed the Purple Egyptian Barley Project. Named for its dark, purplish hue, Purple Egyptian barley is virtually never grown in the United States, but each Thursday through the first week of April, a new bread and beer made with this distinctive grain will be presented at Bellwether Brewing Co.’s Monroe Street tasting room. The Project is a collaboration between four friends who represent the entire supply chain: Don Scheuerman


of Palouse Heritage Farm grew the barley with other farmers on the banks of the Palouse River; Joel Williamson of Spokane Valley’s LINC Foods Palouse Pint malthouse malted the grain so it could be turned into beer; Thomas Croskrey of Bellwether made seven different beers with the malt; and Shaun Thompson Duffy of Culture Breads is making seven varieties of bread to pair with those beers. People who attend at least six of the seven tastings can earn a prize package and a commemorative pint glass bearing each business’ logo. They can also vote for their favorite beer during week seven, and Bellwether plans to brew a full-size batch of the winner for Spokane Craft

Beer Week in May. Purple Egyptian barley is a centuries-old landrace variety, which means that unlike modern grains, it originated by chance rather than through selective breeding, and naturally adapts to its growing environment. “It was originally sourced in what’s called Upper Egypt, and actually in the Old World it was called Abyssinia, and now it’s in the mountains of Ethiopia,” explains Scheuerman of Palouse Heritage. Working in conjunction with Washington State University, Scheuerman and his brother Richard were able to source a small amount of Purple Egyptian seed from a seed bank, and they have planted and multiplied it over

FOOD | RESTAURANT WEEK several years. While a few other similar varieties are grown on a small scale in the U.S., Scheuerman says he’s not aware of anyone else growing this strain. As a landrace, Purple Egyptian presents some unique opportunities and challenges for everyone involved. On one hand, its ability to adapt to its growing region — actually changing its genetics to thrive — gives it a sense of terroir, which means it is influenced by the soil, sunlight and climate where it’s planted. On the other hand, it’s tough to grow and malt. Malting is the process of turning complex starches inside a grain into simple sugars that yeast can eat and turn into alcohol and carbon dioxide (beer). Grain is tricked into sprouting, allowed to germinate, then the process is halted with heat and air. Modern malting barleys behave in a uniform manner, making the malting process more predictable, but Palouse Pint’s Williamson says that wasn’t the case with Purple Egyptian.

“That Purple really has some outof-this-world flavors that you could probably only get from putting fruit in your beer or some kind of a hop.” Due to what is thought to be a survival mechanism, individual grain berries of landraces often germinate at different rates. “You wouldn’t really want that for malting, but it is what it is, and it has other beneficial characteristics like the color and the flavor and the story,” Williamson explains. Bellwether’s Croskrey says that the malt’s distinguishable flavor definitely comes across in the beer. “It has that touch of nuttiness and fruitiness on it that I’ve never had in any other malt,” he shares. “It’s just like a big mixed fruit bowl.” All seven of Bellwether’s beers will be made with at least 75 percent Purple Egyptian malt, and one — made with malt that Scheuerman smoked himself — will be 100 percent Purple, with added pine resin. Another, a brown porter, features malt that Williamson and Duffy roasted in Duffy’s wood-fired bread oven. Duffy, who plans to pair each of his breads to the beer of the week, is using several forms of Purple Egyptian barley. He stone-milled some raw barley flour, he’s reusing spent grain from Bellwether’s beers, and for at least one bread, he’s going to add rehydrated malt for a raisin-like flavor and texture. While it doesn’t make purple beer, Purple Egyptian does lend a purple hue to the bread. It also offers some complex flavors that Duffy enjoys. “The Purple barley flour is definitely earthy, and there are some honey notes in there, so it’s a little sweet,” shares Duffy. “It definitely has a little bit of a tang to it, almost like a citrus pithiness.” Scheuerman is growing other landrace grains at Palouse Heritage which they may malt in the future, and Williamson says that Palouse Pint has also malted some other unusual grains, like spelt, triticale, and Baronesse barley. He says each one offers unique stories and flavors, and the Purple Egyptian is no exception. “That Purple really has some out-of-this-world flavors that you could probably only get from putting fruit in your beer or some kind of a hop,” Williamson says. “To get it right from the barley is pretty cool.” n The Purple Egyptian Barley Project • Thursdays through April 5; check Bellwether’s Facebook page for hours • Free admission • Bellwether Brewing Co. • 2019 N. Monroe • • 328-0428

Melanie Weigand, left, and her mother Diane Weigand sampled Inland Pacific Kitchen’s three-course options for Inlander Restaurant Week. YOUNG KWAK PHOTO

The Tastiest Ten The fifth annual Inlander Restaurant Week satiates appetites during its first days, and continues through March 4 BY CHEY SCOTT


ull up the hashtag #IRWRaveReviews on any of your respective social media channels — Facebook, Twitter, Instagram — and your mouth may instantly begin to water. Food lovers of all types have been out in full force the past several days trying new dining spots and patronizing their longtime faves, all the while documenting their delicious Inlander Restaurant Week adventures online, both for posterity’s sake and to help support a good cause. For each publicly visible post that includes the tag #IRWRaveReviews, Restaurant Week partner Sysco will donate five meals to Second Harvest. (As of this writing, on Feb. 27, those reviews brought in 955 meals.) So what are diners loving so far? With 101 threecourse menus to choose from, a lot of things: the olive oil carrot cake at Masselow’s Steakhouse, 1898 Public House’s grilled Atlantic salmon, the white barbecue chicken at Casper Fry, Table 13’s wild mushroom empanada, the pistachio-crusted halibut at Dockside in Coeur d’Alene and much, much more. Naturally, those 101 Inlander Restaurant Week participants are also loving the chance to open diners’ eyes to their creative specials and menu staples, like The Fedora pub in Coeur d’Alene. “We’re up 30 percent over last week already,” says Fedora’s executive chef, Brad Case. “We’re looking at a new customer base coming in for the first time, or people revisiting after not coming in for a while. People are really happy with it.” Case says some of the appetizer items created especially for Fedora’s $19 Restaurant Week menu —

pulled-pork potato skins and ahi nachos made with wonton chips — have been so popular he may just make them menu mainstays. In North Spokane, Restaurant Week has been so unexpectedly busy at first-time participant Prohibition Gastropub that chef-owner John Leonetti closed the eatery for lunch on Monday in order to focus on dinner prep. He acknowledges that during those first few of of Restaurant Week’s 10 days, some customers have been upset upon arriving to discover a lengthy table wait time. Prohibition does, however, take reservations, Leonetti says. “It’s definitely been a learning experience knowing how busy it was, but it’s definitely boosted our business,” he adds. Remedy on the South Hill is also participating in Restaurant Week for the first time this year, having debuted as a new eatery last summer. While on the smaller side and therefore unable to take reservations, the cozy gastropub’s $29 menu has been a hit with customers, who’ve been stopping in later in the evening to get a table and sample popular dishes like Remedy’s chile verde, poke tartare and crab mac ’n’ cheese, says assistant manager Ashley Ching. “We’re really enjoying it and having a good time, and all the guests coming in are having a good time,” Ching says. n Inlander Restaurant Week 2017 continues through Sat, March 4; find all 101 menus online at


Meditations on a Mutant

new depths of empathy on our part. The physical deterioration that goes along with possessing superpowers takes on a new poignancy when we consider that Jackman is playing a character who has not, previously, been subject to aging. He’s been Wolverine for 15 years now (since 2000’s X-Men), and while he is still extremely robust — the most dramatic FX here may be the hair and makeup job that makes Logan look way more beat-up than Jackman actually is — he is nearing 50. He wasn’t going to be able to play an ageless badass like Wolverine for much longer. (In fact, Jackman has said this will be his last outing in the role.) There is action here, though it’s closer in style to a Something is very wrong with Logan, too. He’s covered one-last-stand Western like Unforgiven than typical comic in scars and walks with a limp. His mutant super-healing book fights. The violence (of which there is plenty) is isn’t working. He looks like hell. gory and pulpy and fleshy, which is surely what it would Something is wrong in the larger world, really be like in a world in which superas well: No new mutants have been born for LOGAN humans regularly beat the shit out of one 25 years. Except, out of nowhere, little Laura Rated R another. Logan is not bloodlessly cartoon(Dafne Keen) appears. She’s around 8 years Directed by James Mangold ish in the way that even really great comic old, she has mutant powers like Logan’s, and Starring Hugh Jackman, book movies have been, where entire city she needs to get somewhere safe, away from Patrick Stewart, Boyd Holbrook neighborhoods can be razed without a hint the mysterious and menacing Pierce (Boyd of the human carnage that would naturally Holbrook), who is pursuing her for reasons that will later accompany such a nightmare. The scale is small here, but become clear. Will Logan please drive her to a place in the human toll is tremendous. North Dakota called Eden, allegedly a refuge for young This third film in the Wolverine trilogy — after 2009’s mutants (others also exist!)? Logan doubts such a place is X-Men Origins: Wolverine and 2013’s The Wolverine — is by real, but his reluctant heroism has been engaged… far the best of the bunch, and probably the best X-Men Everything that is shocking and dark and upsetting movie yet. Logan exists on its own plane of darkness, of and surprising here — of which there is much — is all the willingness to be bold and definitive, of commitment more so because Logan is not an action flick, but a perto the human authenticity of its characters. I hope I’m sonal drama set in a parallel reality where mutants exist. wrong about this, but I suspect we shall not see its like Jackman has always given Logan an appealing emotional again. It’s almost too legitimately harsh to be escapist. I vulnerability under a gruff exterior, but here that engages felt nearly as worn out as Logan by the end. 

Logan, the third stand-alone Wolverine film, is one of the best comic book movies ever made BY MARYANN JOHANSON


he X-Men stories have always been perhaps the most grounded of the superhero universes, exploring what it means to be “super” in a world where “super” is feared and hated. The mutants of X-Men are just ordinary people trying to come to terms with their unusual talents. But even this series has never seen a film like Logan before: raw, rageful, tormented, human. There’s almost no FX here — lots of practical car chases and stunt work, yes, but none of the sci-fi whiz-bang we’ve come to expect from the genre. Hell, there’s barely much color: Director James Mangold and cinematographer John Mathieson’s muted palette of desert browns and industrial grays mirrors the grim mindset of down-on-his-luck Logan, aka Wolverine, and the emotional and physical depletion he’s running on these days. “These days” is 2029, and Logan (Hugh Jackman) is hiding out along the Mexican border with ninetysomething Charles Xavier (Patrick Stewart), keeping the elderly mutant mostly doped up because he’s having telepathic seizures that conk out everyone in the vicinity.


Wolverine as you’ve never seen him before: R-rated.



High school’s almost over, and popular kid Samantha (Zoey Deutch) and her equally popular friends are ready to party it up. But then there’s a car accident, and Sam finds herself in a Groundhog Day scenario, reliving the day of the crash over and over again. Perhaps there’s a lesson to be learned? Based on the bestselling YA novel by Lauren Oliver. (NW) Rated PG-13


This third film in the stand-alone Wolverine trilogy is by far the best of the bunch and probably the best X-Men movie yet. Set in 2029, 25 years after the last known mutant was born, a haggard Logan (Hugh Jackman) has retreated into the desert to care for the ailing Charles Xavier (Patrick Stewart). The existence of a little girl with uncanny powers soon becomes known, and Logan agrees to transport her to a faraway mutant refuge known as Eden. Bloody, bold and badass, this is one of the finest comic book movies ever made. (MJ) Rated R


While on a camping trip, a little girl is abducted and murdered, leaving her family emotionally shattered. But don’t let that gruesome premise fool you: This is an inspirational film for Christian audiences, and pretty soon

the girl’s father (Sam Worthington) is receiving cryptic messages that seem to be coming from on high. Co-starring Octavia Spencer, Radha Mitchell and Tim McGraw. (NW) Rated PG-13


Anna Kendrick stars as a woman who’s dumped twice — first as the maid of honor in her BFF’s wedding, and again by her boyfriend (the best man in said wedding). But she goes to the reception anyway and, horror of horrors, finds herself assigned to a table in the nosebleed section of the ballroom, seated with a cast of comic ringers that includes Lisa Kudrow, Craig Robinson, Stephen Merchant, June Squibb and The Grand Budapest Hotel’s Tony Revolori. Spoiler alert: These weirdos turn out to be unexpected founts of wisdom. (NW) Rated PG-13


The true story of Seretse Khama (David Oyelowo), a Botswanan prince (and later, president) who aided in securing his country’s independence while married to a woman (Rosamund Pike) who was both European and white. During the late 1940s, their marriage was initially met with resistance from both the British and South African people, though they came to be generally beloved political figures. (NW) Rated PG-13


While this Gore Verbinski film is occasionally fascinating — or, at the very least, lurid fun — A Cure for Wellness is also frustrating in part because of what it promises, yet doesn’t deliver. Initially, the film promises to use its solve-the-mystery structure to explore the contemporary “disease” of power-mad careerism, but it turns out to be more complicated than that, and unpleasantly so. (SR) Rated R


Things didn’t start out great for this “feel good” comedy/drama about golden retriever Bailey (voiced by Josh Gad) who is reborn again and again as another dog after the end of his previous life. The day before its L.A. premiere (which was subsequently canceled), footage surfaced showing one of the canine cast members in apparent distress during a scene; an investigation into the incident is ongoing. So let that influence your decision to see this film, also starring Dennis Quaid, if you will. (CS) Rated PG


The second installment in the blockbuster film series inspired by E.L. James’ erotic bestsellers is another epic snooze, save for a few moments of fleeting suspense. Anastasia Steele is once again seduced by her BDSM-

obsessed ex, the brooding billionaire Christian Grey, and glossily photographed kinkiness abounds. Unfortunately, nothing ever feels alive in this film. Rubberneckers looking for a cheap thrill? Nothing to see here. (JK) Rated R


Fist Fight frustratingly fails to make worthwhile use of a cast of typically funny people. Seemingly left to their own devices (I’m assuming there was a lot of improvisation), straight man Charlie Day, seething Ice Cube and a large array of side characters played by Tracy Morgan, Dean Norris, Christina Hendricks and Kumail Nanjiani sputter their way through endless unfunny scenes until we get to the violent parking lot showdown. Jillian Bell as an inappropriate school psychologist is the only saving grace, but the most laughworthy aspect of Fist Fight is its toolate effort to teach us something about the value of teachers. (DN) Rated R

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Written and directed by Jordan Peele, this psychological thriller tackles the same issues of race and masculinity that were regularly explored on his Comedy Central series Key and Peele. Daniel Kaluuya (Sicario) and Allison Williams (Girls) play an interracial couple who visit her family’s country estate, which he discovers has a curi...continued on next page

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FILM | SHORTS ous history with its African American staff. A clever, consistently funny racial satire and horror film that mocks white liberal cluelessness and finds humor in (without dismissing) black people’s fears. (ES) Rated R


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Running Start

You’ve probably never heard of Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson, who were pioneers in — respectively — mathematics, computer programming and engineering at NASA, without whom it’s astronauts would never have flown. The three black women helped the space agency through its first manned space flight, as documented in this historical drama. (MJ) Rated PG


With novels like Go Tell It on the Mountain and several blistering essay collections, James Baldwin is rightfully remembered as one of the most vocal chroniclers of the black experience in mid-20th-century America. This Oscarnominated documentary uses the late writer’s words (through both recordings of his many TV appearances and narration provided by Samuel L. Jackson) to examine how his philosophies are now as meaningful as ever. (NW) Rated PG-13


Information Night High school sophomores, juniors and their families are invited.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017 | 6:30 p.m. Patterson Hall Room 126, EWU Campus, Cheney Free parking after 5 p.m. Running Start provides an opportunity for academically motivated and qualified students in Washington’s public high schools to enroll in courses for free at Eastern Washington University. The program is available to high school juniors and seniors as they work towards fulfilling high school graduation requirements and general university requirements. For more information contact: EWU Running Start Office 509.359.6155 | Look for us on Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat


Running Start

In the first movie, ex-hitman John Wick (Keanu Reeves) comes out of retirement to hunt down the lowlifes who killed his dog and beat him up in a carjacking attempt, and action-movie fans rejoiced. The follow-up finds Wick again dragged from a life of leisure to help a friend face down some of the world’s deadliest assassins. (DN) Rated R


When jazz pianist Sebastian (Ryan Gosling) and aspiring actress Mia (Emma Stone) first see each other, their attraction is more than magnetic — it can bend time and space. The leads help the musical construction make sense; these two are so head over heels for each other that of course everything stops for a song-and-dance number now and again. (PC) Rated PG-13


The improbably delightful original LEGO Movie found a brilliant game plan for turning a toy into a story: combining a child’s anarchic sense of play with a savvy adult’s perspective on how goofy yet inspired that play can look from a distance. The LEGO Batman Movie adds another level of self-awareness about the entire recent history of comic-book movies, making for a wonderfully en-




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I Am Not Your Negro


Manchester by the Sea


La La Land


Get Out


The LEGO Batman Movie


Hidden Figures



One thing you know you’re going to get from Chinese director Zhang Yimou (Hero, House of Flying Daggers) is a visual feast of bright colors and eyepopping effects. In The Great Wall, his first English-language feature, Yimou calls on Matt Damon, playing a European mercenary, to help an army of Chinese defend the wall and all of humanity against an invading legion of monstrous lizards (yes, you read that correctly). (DN) Rated PG-13




gaging mix of action spectacle and genre parody. (SR) Rated PG


This multiple Oscar nominee is based on a memoir by Saroo Brierley, who was separated from his mother in Calcutta as a child, adopted by an Australian couple and later used Google Earth to locate the tiny Indian village he left behind. Although the film’s middle section drags considerably, this is an undeniably powerful true story, and Dev Patel, Nicole Kidman and 8-year-old Sunny Pawar deliver standout performances. (NW) Rated PG-13


Lee Chandler (Oscar winner Casey Affleck) is a handyman in several Bostonarea apartment buildings, who gets news from his coastal Massachusetts hometown of Manchester-by-the-Sea that his brother has died. What he does not expect upon his return — to a place filled with ghosts, and where everyone speaks his name like he’s a local boogeyman — is that Joe has named Lee as the guardian for Joe’s 16-yearold son Patrick (Lucas Hedges), forcing Lee to confront a past that has left him broken. (SR) Rated R


One of the most deserving Best Picture winners of recent years, Barry Jenkins’ achingly beautiful sophomore feature is the kind of subtle, introspective work that’s typically denied Oscar gold. The movie, inspired by Tarell Alvin McCraney’s autobiographical play, focuses on three distinct phases in the life of Chiron, who’s black and gay and growing up in poverty in Miami. To describe Moonlight as an examination of race, masculinity and sexuality makes it sound too pat; this is a deeply moving, transportative coming-of-age story that’s absorbing from beginning to end. (NW) Rated R


This program of five short docs, each running 25-40 minutes, is especially timely, with three of the films (including the winner, The White Helmets) focusing on refugees and first responders in Syria; the other two involve, respectively, a violin with ties to the Holocaust and palliative medical care. At the Magic Lantern. (NW) Not rated




A lovingly drawn animated fable about a man stranded on a deserted island after a massive sea turtle deliberately destroys his raft. Told without dialogue, the film was co-produced by Japan’s Studio Ghibli. (NW) Rated PG


In this animated feature, a beaniewearing Tibetan Mastiff leaves his peaceful mountain village to chase musical stardom in the big city. Featuring the voices of Luke Wilson, J.K. Simmons, Lewis Black, Matt Dillon and Sam Elliott, who plays a character called (so help us) Fleetwood Yak. (NW) Rated PG


Set before A New Hope, Rogue One follows Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones), the daughter of Galen Erso (Mads Mikkelsen). When Rebel intelligence soldier Cassian Andor (Diego Luna) rescues Jyn from prison, she becomes part of the mission to find out if there is any way to stop the new project that her father designed — the Death Star. (SS) Rated PG-13


As they’re preparing to appear in a production of Death of a Salesman, a husband and wife living in Tehran are shaken following a violent assault. An observant character study that unfolds with the propulsive nature of a thriller, this recent Oscar winner for Best Foreign Language Film also functions as an insightful, sometimes harrowing portrait of life in modern-day Iran. Writer-director Asghar Farhadi (A Separation) further cements his reputation as one of the best filmmakers currently working in any country. At the Magic Lantern. (NW) Rated PG-13


M. Night Shyamalan’s latest mindbender stars James McAvoy as a man with 24 different personalities who kidnaps three teenage girls for some kind of violent ritual. Declarations of Shyamalan’s artistic comeback are perhaps a bit overblown: This is little more than a polished (and overlong) B-movie, anchored by McAvoy’s frighteningly untethered performance. As for the trademark Shyamalan twist ending, don’t expect one here, though maybe that’s a good thing. (NW) Rated PG-13 


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The more things change, the more they stay the same.

The Book of James The documentary I Am Not Your Negro uses the writings of James Baldwin to grapple with racism in America BY NATHAN WEINBENDER


n Stanley Kramer’s 1958 drama The Defiant and Martin Luther King, Jr. “I want these lives Ones, Tony Curtis and Sidney Poitier play to bang against and reveal each other,” Baldwin prisoners who escape from a chain gang, still wrote to his literary agent. He died in 1987, leavshackled together. They despise one another, ing behind a 30-page manuscript. but they have to work together if they want to The passages we hear from Remember This survive. At one point in the film, they’re running House are unsurprisingly powerful, as is the after a moving train; Poitier hops on, Curtis is footage we see from Baldwin’s many talk show still on the ground and is falling behind. Poitier appearances and public speaking engagements. eventually jumps off, sacrificing himself for the Peck is especially canny in the way he utilizes good of both of them. these clips: Notice how, during one of Baldwin’s According to the late author and civil rights fiery speeches, he switches from black-and-white activist James Baldwin, white audiences interpret to color, revealing not a single African American this scene as a plea for racial harmony. Black auface in the rapt audience. diences, on the other hand, see right through its I Am Not Your Negro turns out to be as much a platitudes. What white viewers in the ’50s didn’t portrait of racism in America as it is of Baldwin understand, Baldwin argues, is that their hatred himself. We learn that he renounced Christianof black men was rooted in fear. Black ity as vocally as he did the NAACP people’s hatred of whites, meanwhile, and the Black Panthers. He personally I AM was rooted in anger. witnessed the respective ideologies NOT YOUR NEGRO of King and Malcolm X, publicly at We see this footage — and hear Rated PG-13 Baldwin’s words — in the stunning, odds with one another for so long, Academy Award-nominated documen- Directed by Raoul Peck converge in the months before the tary I Am Not Your Negro, which weaves latter was killed in 1965. He came to together old film clips, historical photos, archival realize that even the most well-intentioned white news footage and vintage advertisements to liberals don’t truly understand their institutional contextualize Baldwin’s cogent points about the privileges. We get only a glimpse into Baldwin’s black experience in America. There are no talkpersonal life; Peck allows the author’s wisdom to ing heads, no statistics or explanatory graphics define him. on the screen. It’s merely Baldwin’s prose, read Like Baldwin’s best writing, I Am Not Your both by the man himself and, in a masterful vocal Negro is angry and impassioned and intelligent, performance, by Samuel L. Jackson. Think of it an appeal for unity that nonetheless recognizes, as a visual essay, and a profound one at that. with stark clarity, how little has changed since Director Raoul Peck constructs his film Baldwin was at his most vocal. “The story of around an unfinished Baldwin book titled Rememthe Negro in America is the story of America,” ber This House, which was to have focused on the Jackson-as-Baldwin intones near the end of the author’s close friendships with three assassinated film. “It’s not a pretty story.” And that’s a bitter civil rights activists — Medgar Evers, Malcolm X pill to swallow. n


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Second Coming On his sophomore LP, Marshall McLean contemplates fame, family and growing up BY NATHAN WEINBENDER


t’s a Monday morning in late February, and Marshall McLean is a bit bleary-eyed. And understandably so: He became a dad again just last night. A week after the birth of his second child — his oldest is now 9 — the local singer-songwriter will be releasing his second album of original material, and while it’s obviously not as momentous an occasion, it’s one that’s been more than three years in the making. Over a cup of black coffee, McLean, 31, explains the gap between releases. He put out his solo debut, Glossolalia, in late 2013, and started writing a new batch of songs immediately after it was completed. The plan was to have the second record finished by the beginning of 2016. That didn’t happen. “I think I’m coming to peace with the fact that that’s the kind of writer I am,” McLean says of his unhurried songwriting methods. “When that’s your approach, you’re at the mercy of your own story. And I thought the story would come to me quicker, I guess.” That sophomore album is now finished, and its release will be celebrated on Friday night at the Bartlett. The record is called SoDak, a colloquial abbreviation of South Dakota, where McLean was born. The title was inspired, McLean says, by his earliest memory: His grandfather, a former long-haul truck driver, playfully calling him a “SoDak,” apparently CB radio parlance for a person from that state. McLean admits that he started writing SoDak with his grandfather as a protagonist of sorts. But as the writing process went on, the songs became more and more autobiographical. “I’ve gotten my hands messy with this whole idea of autobiography,” McLean says. “You might start to write another person’s story, but there’s always a point where it flows into your own.” ...continued on next page JESSICA MORGAN PHOTO




t might be a cliché to describe a location as another character in someone’s fiction, but Spokane always seems to be breathing down the neck of McLean’s songwriting. He’s been playing music here for a decade, both as a solo artist and in bands, and he acknowledges that his sound is defined by his environment. He even name-drops specific Spokane locations in his lyrics, which he says other local artists seem reticent to do. “Spokane has inspired me to reinvent myself several times, and maybe gave me the freedom to do that. We are in a city that gives artists more space, room to grow and change,” McLean says. “This is where I live and these are the streets I see. It’s the backdrop to my story, and I wanted to write some honest songs. I think you have to include your geography in that.” Half of the songs on SoDak were recorded live at the local studio Lead Pencil Records; the rest were self-produced with the band’s own equipment in one another’s houses. It’s a more musically confident LP than its predecessor, but features the same trio of backing musicians: Justin Landis on bass, Jamie Frost on pedal steel, Jesse MacDonald on drums. It also explores some of the same themes as Glossolalia — the fear of creative idleness, letting your mind drift on a long stretch of highway, being dragged kicking and screaming into responsible adulthood.

“Spokane has inspired me to reinvent myself several times. ... We are in a city that gives artists more space, room to grow and change.” You can sense that trepidation from the album’s opening track, “On a Roll” — “When will what I need ever be enough?” McLean wonders — and it continues to resurface throughout the next 11 songs. “I’m just spinnin’ my wheels,” McLean observes on “Level Out,” “killin’ time until I feel the time is right.” By the time he’s reached “The Slowly Rising Tide,” SoDak’s penultimate track, McLean admits, “I’ve given up the wanderin’ / To find where the song ends … There’s nothing wrong with getting old or being young.” But this is hardly an example of an artist bemoaning the drudgery of everyday life. If anything, it’s a document of a writer coming to terms with normalcy and domesticity and fully embracing it. SoDak is a more honest collection of songs, McLean says, than Glossolalia, more “grown-up.” “I see more of myself in this record,” McLean says. “I think we spend so much time when we’re younger trying to create imagery to validate who we are, or trying to sound like something we’re not. And everyone does it; I still do it, to some extent. But the more the stories become your own, you’re not reaching to craft something that isn’t there. I think maturity is the product of that.” And despite the wayward feelings that SoDak explores, McLean knows he can’t just leave town on a whim like he used to, driving through the night for a $100 gig somewhere in Idaho. He’s got a mortgage. He works part time as a graphic designer for Union Gospel Mission. Now he has another mouth to feed. And he’s content with all of that. “Having a family has forced me to quit running from things that aren’t working,” McLean says. “It’s affected everything that I am. Childbirth is a rite of passage for anyone involved. There’s a doorway you have to pass through, and it changes you. There’s a version of yourself that you have to leave at the door. … It’s really redefined my idea of what success is, especially in a culture that defines success in the arts as fame and fortune.” n Marshall McLean album release show, with Bart Budwig and Jeffrey Martin • Fri, March 3 at 8 pm • $20 • The Bartlett • 228 W. Sprague • • 747-2174



Break with Tradition

San Francisco quintet the Brothers Comatose fuse rock, country and bluegrass in unexpected ways.

The bluegrassy Brothers Comatose aren’t beholden to old-timey sounds BY DAN NAILEN


ike young artists in any genre, bluegrass-tinged quintet the Brothers Comatose are learning that to navigate the music biz in 2017, they have to be increasingly creative and light on their collective feet. That means recording and releasing new songs as they’re written, rather than gathering them for months for a traditional album release. That means creating impromptu concerts in unexpected places, as captured in their “Elevator Series” of videos, in which they cram into mall lifts and jam for unsuspecting shoppers. And it means touring in places like the Pacific Northwest, where bluegrass isn’t necessarily as common as it is in the Deep South or Colorado’s acoustic-obsessed Front Range. Singer/guitarist Ben Morrison, who formed the Bay Area band along with his banjo-picking brother Alex, is quick to note, though, that the Brothers Comatose have had some memorable gigs, if not necessarily traditional bluegrass hoedowns, in Spokane. When the Brothers

Comatose first came through town a few years back, their friends in the Devil Makes Three steered them to Neato Burrito. “It was the most punk-rock show we’ve ever played,” Morrison says. “Just people sweating, dancing, in your face, just screaming at you. So cool.” Later shows at the Bartlett were just as fun, if a little less mosh-happy, Morrison adds. “People come out and rally and party in that town.” This time around, the party is in part to celebrate the band’s new EP of covers, the cleverly named The Covers, Vol. 2. Like other aspects of the Brothers’ career trajectory, the set includes predictable pleasures as well as surprising successes. The predictable: stellar covers of Ryan Adams’ “To Be Young (Is to Be Sad, Is to Be High)” and Hank Williams’ “My Bucket’s Got a Hole in It.” The surprises? A high-energy version of Cake’s “Stickshifts and Safetybelts” and, bizarrely, a sparse, almost bluesy take


on Huey Lewis and the News’ “I Want a New Drug.” “I loved Huey Lewis when I was younger. I had a Huey Lewis tape that was the first tape I ever bought,” Morrison explains. “It’s such a funny idea for a song, and we thought musically it would translate well.” It certainly makes an impression, and through some hometown connections — Lewis lives part-time in the Bay Area — Morrison was able to get a copy of WEEKEND the Brothers Comatose C O U N T D OW N version to the man Get the scoop on this himself. weekend’s events with “He responded our newsletter. Sign up at within, like, two hours, saying something like, ‘I love the cover, I’m sending it to all the guys in the band,’” Morrison says. “And then they ended up posting it on their Facebook page and tweeting about it. It was like, dude, my childhood dreams coming true right there.” Not your typical dream for a bluegrass-picking frontman, but pretty normal for the unusual mode of the Brothers Comatose. n The Brothers Comatose with Rainbow Girls • Sun, March 5 at 8 pm • $12/$15 day of • All-ages • The Bartlett • 228 W. Sprague • • 747-2174





ased strictly on their lyrics, the members of Tacocat love their hometown of Seattle, hate weekends, idolize Dana Scully of The X-Files and want to crush mansplainers under their heels like so many stray cigarette butts. They’ve also constructed punchy pop-punk gems around the subjects of menstruation, the Plan B “morning-after” pill and breaking up with your shitty boyfriend before he can dump you first. The quartet’s most recent album, 2016’s Lost Time, is filled with fiercely feminist, disarmingly funny and effortlessly catchy songs; think Bikini Kill by way of the Go-Go’s, filtered through the disaffected sensibilities of the characters in Ghost World. — NATHAN WEINBENDER Tacocat and Daddy Issues • Sat, March 4 at 8 pm • $10 • All-ages • The Bartlett • 228 W. Sprague • • 747-2174


Thursday, 03/2

BARLOWS AT LIBERTY LAKE, Sunny Nights Duo J J THE BARTLETT, The Octopus Project, Sound of Ceres BEEROCRACY, Open Mic BOOMERS CLASSIC ROCK BAR & GRILL, Randy Campbell acoustic show BOOTS BAKERY & LOUNGE, The Song Project J BUCER’S COFFEEHOUSE PUB, Open Jazz Jam with Erik Bowen J CHAPS, Spare Parts COEUR D’ALENE CASINO, PJ Destiny CRAVE, DJ Freaky Fred CRUISERS, Open Mic Jam Slam hosted by Perfect Destruction and J.W. Scattergun FEDORA PUB & GRILLE, KOSH JOHN’S ALLEY, Bart Budwig’s Amperband, Marshall McLean, Jeffrey Martin J MONARCH MOUNTAIN COFFEE, Open Mic hosted by Scott Reid THE OBSERVATORY, Vinyl Meltdown J THE PALOMINO, Open Mic POST FALLS BREWING COMPANY, Echo Elysium THE RESERVE, Liquid with DJ Dave THE ROCK BAR & LOUNGE, Spokane River Band TIMBER GASTRO PUB, Devon Wade ZOLA, Blake Braley

Friday, 03/3

315 MARTINIS & TAPAS, Truck Mills ARBOR CREST WINE CELLARS, Son of Brad BABY BAR, Preening, The Poids, Mechdrum BABY BAR, Preening, the Poids J J THE BARTLETT, Marshall McLean album release (see story on page 39) feat. Bart Budwig, Jeffrey Martin




pokane’s Itchy Kitty specializes in songs that are short, fast, loud and sometimes about cats. Fronted by cousins Ami Elston and Naomi Eisenbrey, the band has been a staple of the local scene for a few years, developing a cult following with their felineand-leather aesthetic. Their debut album, gloriously titled Careless Whisker, is being distributed on cassette (because all thrash punk sounds better that way) by local label Resurrection Records; buy a copy at the Dipper this weekend and mosh like it’s 1991 again. — NATHAN WEINBENDER Itchy Kitty cassette release show with Deadones USA and the Finger Guns • Sat, March 4 at 7:30 pm • $5/$7 day of • All-ages • The Big Dipper • 171 S. Washington • bigdipperevents. com • 863-8098

BEVERLY’S, Robert Vaughn J THE BIG DIPPER, Down North, Puff Puff Beer, Fat Lady, The Naturalystics BIGFOOT PUB, Usual Suspects BOLO’S, FM BULL HEAD TAVERN, Bobby Patterson Band CD Release Party COEUR D’ALENE CASINO, Karma’s Circle CRAFTSMAN CELLARS, Dave McRae CURLEY’S, Dangerous Type FEDORA PUB & GRILLE, Echo Elysium HILLS’ RESTAURANT & LOUNGE, Front Porch Trio HOGFISH, Scatterbox, Brah, Itchy Kitty IRON HORSE BAR, Phoenix JOHN’S ALLEY, Pert’ Near Sandstone J KNITTING FACTORY, Skillet, Sick Puppies, Devour the Day, THE LOCAL DELI, The Powers MAX AT MIRABEAU, Laughing Bones MICKDUFF’S BEER HALL, First Fridays Live Music w/Devon Wade

MOOSE LOUNGE, Chris Rieser and the Nerve MULLIGAN’S BAR & GRILLE, Wyatt Wood NORTHERN QUEST CASINO, DJ Patrick NYNE, DJ Joey Roxville THE PALOMINO, Walking Corpse Syndrome, The Convalescence Dysfunktynal Kaos ProjectX, TK PEND D’OREILLE WINERY, Ron Keiper Trio PEND OREILLE PLAYHOUSE, Open Mic THE RESERVE, Smash Hit Carnival THE RIDLER PIANO BAR, Dueling Pianos feat. Christan Raxter & Steve Ridler RIVELLE’S RIVER GRILL, Pamela Benton SILVER FOX, Steve Livingston and Triple Shot SILVER MOUNTAIN SKI RESORT, Darin Hilderbrand SPOKANE VALLEY EAGLES, Stage-

coach West THE PIN!, Squinto, feat. AyZiM, BrainFunk, DJ Felon, Drip THE ROADHOUSE, Bryan Warhall CD Release VICTORY SPORTS HALL, KOSH J J WSU COMPTON UNION BUILDING, iHeartPullman Benefit Concert feat. Allen Stone, Tyrone Wells, Tommy Simmons ZOLA, UpperCut

Saturday, 03/4

12 TRIBES RESORT CASINO, Hair Nation 219 LOUNGE, Truck Mills and Friends ARBOR CREST WINE CELLARS, Son of Brad J J THE BARTLETT, Tacocat (see above), Daddy Issues BEVERLY’S, Robert Vaughn J J THE BIG DIPPER, Itchy Kitty Cassette Release Party (see above), with Deadones USA, the

Finger Guns BIGFOOT PUB, Usual Suspects BOLO’S, FM BULL HEAD TAVERN, Bobby Patterson Band CD Release Party J CALVARY CHAPEL OF SPOKANE, Phil Wickham, Evan Egerer COEUR D’ALENE CASINO, Karma’s Circle CRUISERS, Dysfunktynal Kaos, RagBone, Icarus, Jason McKinney CURLEY’S, Dangerous Type FEDORA PUB & GRILLE, Kyle Swaffard FLAME & CORK, Sam Leyde J GARAGELAND, Daddy Issues in-store GARLAND PUB & GRILL, Steve Livingston and Triple Shot IRON HORSE BAR, Phoenix THE JACKSON ST., DJ Dave JOHN’S ALLEY, Moscow Mardi Gras w/ Puff Puff Beer J KNITTING FACTORY, Young Dubliners, Buffalo Jones, Dawn of Life

MUSIC | VENUES LA ROSA CLUB, Open Jam MAX AT MIRABEAU, Laughing Bones MOOSE LOUNGE, Chris Rieser MULLIGAN’S BAR & GRILLE, Echo Elysium NORTHERN QUEST CASINO, DJ Patrick NYNE, DJ Joey Roxville POST FALLS BREWING COMPANY, Wyatt Wood RED ROOM LOUNGE, Sessionz Smooth Jazz, Kalaj THE RESERVE, AlgoRhythms RICO’S, Odd Bird Blues THE RIDLER PIANO BAR, Dueling Pianos feat. Christan Raxter & Steve Ridler THE ROCK BAR & LOUNGE, DJ Steve Baker J SEASONS OF COEUR D’ALENE, Hanna Rebecca J THE PIN!, Mayday, Diz Dean, KC, Aubrey Major, Virginia Slim, the White Lion, the Wanderers THE ROADHOUSE, Blues Cats for Kids feat. The Dog House Boys, Spokane Dan & the Blues Blazers, The Dynamites, Nick Vigarino’s Back Porch Stomp THE THIRSTY DOG, DJ Dave ZOLA, UpperCut


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Sunday, 03/5

J J THE BARTLETT, The Brothers Comatose (see story on page 41), Rainbow Girls J THE BIG DIPPER, Marbin, The Larsen Group, JSQ Jazz, Flannel Math Animal DALEY’S CHEAP SHOTS, Jam Night with VooDoo Church J KNITTING FACTORY, I Prevail, Wage War, Assuming We Survive, Free The Jester LINGER LONGER LOUNGE, Open jam O’DOHERTY’S IRISH GRILLE, Live Irish Music THE OBSERVATORY, The DopestMatrix J J SPOKANE ARENA, Elton John and His Band J THE PIN!, Angelmaker, Falsifier, Extortionist, Filth

Monday, 03/6

J CALYPSOS COFFEE & CREAMERY, Open Mic EICHARDT’S, Monday Night Jam with Truck Mills RED ROOM LOUNGE, Open Mic with Lucas Brookbank Brown ZOLA, Perfect Mess

Tuesday, 03/7

J BABY BAR, JonEmery, Sweet Rebel D, Stella Jones J THE BARTLETT, Bartlett Open Mic

J THE BIG DIPPER, Ragtag Romantics, Deschamp, Skunktopus BRAVO SWAXX CONCERT HOUSE, T.A.S.T.Y with DJs Freaky Fred, Beauflexx THE JACKSON ST., DJ Dave JOHN’S ALLEY, The Sextones LEFTBANK WINE BAR, Turntable Tuesday MIK’S, DJ Brentano THE RIDLER PIANO BAR, Open Mic/ Jam Night ZOLA, Dueling Cronkites

Wednesday, 03/8 GENO’S TRADITIONAL FOOD & ALES, Open Mic with Host Travis Goulding LEFTBANK WINE BAR, Carey Brazil LUCKY’S IRISH PUB, DJ D3VIN3 THE OBSERVATORY, The Sextones, Fat Lady RIVELLE’S RIVER GRILL, Jam Night: Truck Mills and guests THE PIN!, DJ Freaky Fred THE ROADHOUSE, Open mic with Johnny Qlueless THE THIRSTY DOG, DJ Dave ZOLA, Champagne Jam


CRAFT Cocktails

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Coming Up ...

J THE PIN!, He Is Legend, Strange Faces, the Hallows, Wayward West, Ghost Heart, March 9 J KNITTING FACTORY, Adelitas Way, Letters from the Fire, March 9 J THE BIG DIPPER, the Rub, One Louder, Sweet Rebel D, March 10 CHATEAU RIVE, Adrian Legg, March 10 J THE BARTLETT, Shelby Earl, Planes on Paper, March 10 J KNITTING FACTORY, Datsik, Crizzly, Virtual Riot, March 10 NASHVILLE NORTH, Jeremy McComb, the Luke Jaxon Band, March 10 J THE PIN!, Sam Lachow, Dave B, March 10 JOHN’S ALLEY, Deschamp, March 10 J THE PALOMINO, Bluegrass in the City, feat. Brown’s Mountain Boys, Lucas Brookbank Brown, No Going Back Band, March 11 J THE BIG DIPPER, KYRS Spring Fund Drive, feat. Loomer. South Hill, Griffey, March 11 J THE PIN!, Wrvth, Name, Rot Monger, Infrablaster, Honey March 11 THE ROADHOUSE, The Bobby Bremer Band, March 11 NASHVILLE NORTH, Whiskey Myers, March 12 THE PALOMINO, Nogunaso with Rusted Hand, Method of Conflict, March 12 THE OBSERVATORY, Local Pavlov Tape Release, with Toner, Blue Smiley, March 14 THE OBSERVATORY, Dry and Dusty Tour Kick-off and Album Release, with Jenny Anne Mannan and Ripe Mangos, March 15 J KNITTING FACTORY, Joseph, Windoe, March 15 J THE PIN!, Red Fang, Six State Bender, Snakes/Sermons, March 15




315 MARTINIS & TAPAS • 315 E. Wallace, CdA • 208-667-9660 ARBOR CREST WINE CELLARS • 4705 N. Fruit Hill Rd. • 927-9463 BABY BAR • 827 W. First Ave. • 847-1234 BARLOWS • 1428 N. Liberty Lake Rd. • 924-1446 THE BARTLETT • 228 W. Sprague Ave. • 747-2174 BEEROCRACY • 911 W. Garland Ave. THE BIG DIPPER • 171 S. Washington • 863-8098 BIGFOOT PUB • 9115 N. Division St. • 467-9638 BING CROSBY THEATER • 901 W. Sprague Ave. • 227-7638 BLACK DIAMOND • 9614 E. Sprague • 891-8357 BOLO’S • 116 S. Best Rd. • 891-8995 BOOMERS • 18219 E. Appleway Ave. • 755-7486 BOOTS BAKERY & LOUNGE • 24 W. Main Ave. • 703-7223 BRAVO SWAXX CONCERT HOUSE • 25 E. Lincoln Rd. • 703-7474 BUCER’S COFFEEHOUSE PUB • 201 S. Main, Moscow • 208-882-5216 CALYPSOS COFFEE & CREAMERY • 116 E. Lakeside Ave., CdA • 208-665-0591 CHAPS • 4237 Cheney-Spokane Rd. • 624-4182 CHATEAU RIVE • 621 W. Mallon Ave. • 795-2030 CHECKERBOARD BAR • 1716 E. Sprague Ave. • 535-4007 COEUR D’ALENE CASINO • 37914 S. Nukwalqw Rd., Worley, Idaho • 800-523-2464 COEUR D’ALENE CELLARS • 3890 N. Schreiber Way, CdA • 208-664-2336 CRAFTED TAP HOUSE • 523 Sherman Ave., CdA • 208-292-4813 CRAVE• 401 W. Riverside • 321-7480 CRUISERS • 6105 W Seltice Way, Post Falls • 208-773-4706 CURLEY’S • 26433 W. Hwy. 53 • 208-773-5816 DALEY’S CHEAP SHOTS • 6412 E. Trent • 5359309 DIAMS DEN • 412 W. Sprague • 934-3640 EICHARDT’S PUB • 212 Cedar St., Sandpoint • 208-263-4005 THE FEDORA • 1726 W. Kathleen, CdA • 208765-8888 FIZZIE MULLIGANS • 331 W. Hastings • 466-5354 FOX THEATER • 1001 W. Sprague • 624-1200 HOGFISH • 1920 E. Sherman, CdA • 208-667-1896 HOTEL RL BY RED LION AT THE PARK • 303 W. North River Dr. • 326-8000 IRON HORSE • 407 E. Sherman Ave., CdA • 208-667-7314 JACKSON ST. BAR & GRILL • 2436 N. Astor St. • 315-8497 JOHN’S ALLEY • 114 E. Sixth St., Moscow • 208883-7662 KNITTING FACTORY • 911 W. Sprague Ave. • 244-3279 LAGUNA CAFÉ • 2013 E. 29th Ave. • 448-0887 THE LANTERN TAP HOUSE • 1004 S. Perry St. • 315-9531 THE LARIAT • 11820 N. Market St. • 466-9918 LA ROSA CLUB • 105 S. First Ave., Sandpoint • 208-255-2100 LEFTBANK WINE BAR • 108 N. Washington • 315-8623 LUCKY’S IRISH PUB • 408 W. Sprague • 747-2605 MAX AT MIRABEAU • 1100 N. Sullivan • 924-9000 MICKDUFF’S • 312 N. First Ave., Sandpoint • 208)-255-4351 MONARCH MOUNTAIN COFFEE • 208 N 4th Ave, Sandpoint • 208-265-9382 MOOSE LOUNGE • 401 E. Sherman • 208-6647901 MOOTSY’S • 406 W. Sprague • 838-1570 MULLIGAN’S • 506 Appleway Ave., CdA • 208765-3200 ext. 310 NASHVILLE NORTH • 6361 W. Seltice Way, Post Falls • 208-457-9128 NECTAR CATERING & EVENTS • 120 N. Stevens St. • 869-1572 NORTHERN QUEST RESORT • 100 N. Hayford Rd., Airway Heights • 242-7000 NYNE • 232 W. Sprague Ave. • 474-1621 THE OBSERVATORY • 15 S. Howard • 598-8933 O’SHAY’S • 313 E. CdA Lake Dr. • 208-667-4666 THE PALOMINO • 6425 N. Lidgerwood St. • 242-8907 PEND D’OREILLE WINERY • 301 Cedar St., Sandpoint • 208-265-8545 THE PIN! • 412 W. Sprague • 368-4077 RED LION RIVER INN • 700 N. Division • 326-5577 RED ROOM LOUNGE • 521 W. Sprague • 838-7613 REPUBLIC BREWING • 26 Clark Ave. • 775-2700 THE RESERVE • 120 N. Wall • 598-8783 THE RIDLER PIANO BAR • 718 W. Riverside • 822-7938 RIVELLE’S • 2360 N Old Mill Loop, CdA • 208930-0381 THE ROADHOUSE • 20 N. Raymond • 413-1894 SEASONS OF COEUR D’ALENE • 209 E. Lakeside Ave. • 208-664-8008 THE SHOP • 924 S. Perry St. • 534-1647 SOULFUL SOUPS & SPIRITS • 117 N. Howard St. • 459-1190 SPOKANE ARENA • 720 W. Mallon • 279-7000 THE THIRSTY DOG • 3027 E. Liberty Ave. • 487-3000 TIMBER GASTRO PUB •1610 E Schneidmiller, Post Falls • 208-262-9593 ZOLA • 22 W. Main Ave. • 624-2416



Elton John must be quite smitten with Spokane: This Sunday marks the third time that the bedazzled piano man has performed at the Arena in the past seven years. The singer, songwriter, Broadway composer and sometime actor last performed here three years ago, celebrating the 40th anniversary of his landmark album Goodbye Yellow Brick Road. This time, John is touring behind his 32nd (!) studio album Wonderful Crazy Night, produced by the great T Bone Burnett. At 69, Sir Elton isn’t showing signs of slowing down — he recently announced he’s writing tunes for a Devil Wears Prada stage musical — but if you’ve never seen him live, don’t miss him this time. — NATHAN WEINBENDER Elton John and His Band • Sun, March 5 at 8 pm • $49-$159 • All-ages • Spokane Arena • 720 W. Mallon • spokanearena. com




Brian Posehn • Thu, March 2 at 8 pm • $15 • Fri-Sat, March 3-4 at 8 pm and 10:30 pm • $20 • 21+ • Spokane Comedy Club • 315 W. Sprague • • 318-9998

Northwest Bach Festival: Tales of Hemingway • Fri, March 3 from 7:30-9 pm • $50 • Holy Names Music Center • 3910 W. Custer Dr. •

Casual observers will recognize Brian Posehn from his wide range of acting roles in sitcoms and sketch shows like Just Shoot Me and Mr. Show, but among comedy fans he’s revered as one of the so-called “Comedians of Comedy” alongside Patton Oswalt, Maria Bamford and Zach Galifianakis. Mining fatherhood, geek culture and heavy metal music for laughs, the towering comic is simply one of the best in the stand-up business, a comedian definitely worth throwing up your devil horns for. — DAN NAILEN

Don’t miss your chance to see recently honored Grammy recipient Zuill Bailey perform selections from the victorious record, Tales of Hemingway. After Bailey’s big win, the Thursday night Hemingway concert and dinner sold out early, so Bach Festival organizers added a second program this Friday night. The master cellist is joined by pianist Elizabeth DeMio; Bailey also is set to perform the Cello Concerto by Camille Saint-Saëns. Two more Bach Festival concerts follow, on Saturday and Sunday. — CHEY SCOTT


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The huge turnout at the Women’s March on Spokane (and across the world) was a sign of the times for many — not only can feminism survive in the modern era, it can thrive. But for there to be a third- and fourth-wave feminism, there had to be a first. In Emma, historian and playwright Howard Zinn explores the life of one of the foremothers herself, anarchist and feminist Emma Goldman, whose lectures included some radical one-liners like “marriage has nothing to do with love” and “a woman should decide for herself” on birth control in the late 1800s. — RAVEN HAYNES Emma • March 3-19: Fri-Sat at 7:30 pm; Sun at 2 pm • $10 • Stage Left Theater • 108 W. Third • • 838-9727


The momentum of the past few months continues, and women around the country and the world are standing up against oppression and injustice with renewed energy, including here in Spokane for the community’s celebration of International Women’s Day (officially observed on March 8). Throughout this weekend’s event, local nonprofits and organizations host informational tables for attendees to stop by and chat. Three workshops, including a Bollywood Dance session, follow a keynote presentation by Oakland-based artist, activist and cultural organizer Favianna Rodriguez (pictured), who has used her art to speak out on a range of social issues, including immigration. Rodriguez caps off the day with her own workshop “Reproduce and Revolt,” emphasizing her message on the power of art to influence social change. Come be inspired and empowered. — CHEY SCOTT International Women’s Day Spokane • Sat, March 4 from 12:30-5 pm • Free to attend; kid-friendly • Spokane Woman’s Club • 1428 W. Ninth • • 464-9875






I SAW YOU FAIRY TALES DO COME TRUE they say fairy tales are not true but i believe they do we have been friends for so many years and to finely have you as my love is the greats thing i could ever had I can’t believe its been over a year we have a so many great times. I know it was very hard on you when i hit the median and almost killed my self it was a very hard time. But you stayed with me through it all. I have never been so loved. and taken care of you stayed with me at home on your birthday when you could have had a great day. Thank you for beong my best friend and my lover. You make me a better man by being so strong by my side i love you nicci you are the greats lady on the planet and i am the luckiest man in The world. We don’t have a lot of time left by i will do every thing in my power to make what we have yet be the best time of your life RE: DEAR NEW ME “Hurts people when it comes to love?” Or, you’re hurt by his rejection of you? Why don’t you be a strong enough person, with your own sense of individualism, to not have to rely on others? If “he” is such a bad person, why don’t the people around him see that? Cool people don’t have to be told they’re cool. What makes people cool in the first place? Jumping a shark? The people they LOVE and the people that return that LOVE, already know they’re cool, within social circles. You obviously aren’t that good at reading people / are

really naive / or really gullible.

you they are doing something right!

POST FALLS GOODWILL You. Bobtail beautiful brunette in white leggings. Me. Could not keep my eyes off you, Black coat, blue jeans, shopping with my mom. I’d like to know you better.

TO JACOB, FOR BEING THERE FOR ME. Friday was one of those days where I just needed to hear kind words and see a friendly face and warm smile. You were there to give me all three. You were there when I needed those three things the most. It might have been something

YOUR NAME IS JOHNNY? I think she called you Johnny when she told you to have the boys back by 6. You were picking them up at Grocery Outlet on 3rd. I know some of what you must be feeling. We do the best we can. You’re handsome. I was grubby in a black & white sweater, but I clean up nice, smile a lot and I empathize. Do you need a charming friend? Would you like to talk over coffee or a cider? doe_eyed_doll@ DEAR FORMER ME I am so glad you wrote me when you did. I needed to guidance from someone who’d survived that. I let him wreck me. I only wish I’d known about your experience sooner. You’re right. He will keep gaslighting people, probably for the rest of his life. I kept making excuses for him. No-one can say that many stupid things by accident can they? I see now, he needed to tear down a woman like me because he’s broken inside. Powerless over what happened to him before. I know I wasn’t the first, and I agree that I won’t be the last. I thought I was so lucky when I found him. He was the one who was lucky. I realize now that he never would’ve made himself vulnerable enough to feel for me, and that’s sad for me, but I’ve recovered quite well. He may never get right, and that is tragic--for him and for his littles. I agree that he has some sick relationships with the women around him, and that those women SHOULD know better given their chosen profession! He never really was my friend, was he?

CHEERS JAKE AT JOHN’S AUTO SALES I had a flat tire due to a pothole, you were so kind and you pulled over and put my spare on for me in the dark. you were quite possibly the nicest person I have come across in a long time. I will forever remember your kindness and cheers John’s auto sales because if they hire someone like

Heights Starbucks drive through. Thank you! It brightened my day and changed my whole outlook on what I had to get done. But before smiling with every sip, I paid it forward by paying for the order of the people behind me. Thank you for that lovely treat. May life smile on your kind heart.

drenched you all. I heard you shriek as I went past and I just feel terrible. A thousand apologies! LANTERN TAVERN RUNNING CLUB Please stop running down the middle of icy/slushy arterials and side streets during the evening commute. It’s dangerous enough driving in the dark without hav-

Until the roads improve, I’d recommend going straight to the beer. For the diehards, try running in place while you drink.

simplistic and small, but it brightened my day. A heartfelt ‘Thank You’ to you. On another note, forgive me for sounding so ‘motherly’. You are young and it’s easy for you to get away with only four hours of sleep. However, that will eventually catch up to you. I want you to be healthy. So please take care of yourself and get enough sleep. I don’t know if something’s going on with you that is causing you to have so little sleep. If there is, I hope things get worked out for the best. You are in my prayers. And once again, thanks for being there for me. You’re a sweetheart. (And know I will always be there for you,too) COMEDY HOMEWORK T. Green vs. “Gaslight” (1944): last year as some of you may know Tom Green visited Spokane to spread charm & cheer. It wasn’t as packed as he would have liked no doubt... November. Last night, I watched a Hollywood classic: ‘Gaslight’. Think “Murder He Wrote.” So, which was better? Tom Green Tom Green Tom Green! (There was no ha-ha humor in ‘Gaslight’.) Was there? Personal Conclusion: Green’s show was better than ~ The Matrix I, of 1944. PAYING IT FORWARD Thursday the 23rd you paid for my coffee at the Airway

SHANEESE I’ve allowed this unrequited love far too long. I said I would never give up, and I won’t, but it’s in your hands now. I’ve made my feelings and intentions known. I love you and wish I had a chance to show you rather than tell you, but you won’t even give me that. I wish you the best, but we both know you already had it :) Enjoy that 16oz white chocolate americano, 8 shots-4 white, 4 dark with hemp milk. Hope its not too bitter. SHARI’S LUNCH TAB Sunday 2/26 @ Wandermere Shari’s — To the gentleman who picked up our lunch tab, thank you! Without any prior interaction, it was surprising and very, very kind of you. Bless you.


LOOK BEFORE YOU LEAP I live north of Spokane and drive into the Valley for work every day. Jeers to those folks who don’t even look at traffic when getting onto Highway 395 northbound at Hatch Road and when coming onto 395 southbound from the north end of the City. I should not have to pull over into another lane because you are getting on the road. I will if I can, but if I can’t, we are both going to be screwed. It seems people can get onto I-90 just fine without trying to drive me off the road, so I am flabbergasted as to why it consistently happens at these two places. 

JEERS TO ME FOR SPRAYING YOU Me: driving south on Monroe about 5:305:45 PM on a really rainy, melty gross day last week. You: walking in a group, alongside the Knitting Factory with your umbrellas. I AM SO SORRY. I didn’t realize how deep the puddle was and when I drove through it I created a tsunamiscale spray of water that your umbrellas were no match for, and I’m certain I






SOUND OFF 1. Visit by 3 pm Monday. 2. Pick a category (I Saw You, You Saw Me, Cheers or Jeers). 3. Provide basic info: your name and email (so we know you’re real). 4. To connect via I Saw You, provide a non-identifying email to be included with your submission — like “,” not “”




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ing to dodge some Winter Prefontaine darting in front of my car. Until the roads improve, I’d recommend going straight to the beer. For the diehards, try running in place while you drink. Jeers!

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March 3, 4, 10, 11, 17 18 at 7 p.m. March 5, 12 and 19 at 2 p.m.




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DINE OUT TO FEED SPOKANE As part of National Nutrition Month in March, the Greater Spokane Dietetic Association is help to raise operating funds for the local nonprofit food rescue agency Feed Spokane. A percentage of sales at participating restaurants is donated to help fight hunger. (See link for restaurant list.) Donations collected March 1-31. (324-2939) GLOBAL NEIGHBORHOOD BARBECUE & FUNDRAISER A community gathering and silent auction celebrating the local nonprofit’s progress and vision for employing, educating and empowering former refugees in our city. March 4, 5:30-7:30 pm. $10. Central United Methodist Church, 518 W. Third. (838-1431) NORTH WALL CHILDREN’S FASHION SHOW Includes a dinner and auction. March 4, 4-7 pm. $25. The Palomino, 6425 N. Lidgerwood St. (242-8907) WINE, STEIN & DINE This 21st annual Post Falls Education Foundation event includes more than 85 vendors providing microbrews and hard ciders, regional wine, and an array of hot and cold appetizers and desserts from local restaurants. Includes live music by Bill Bosly, a wine tree raffle, photo booth and silent auction. Ages 21+. March 4, 7-10 pm. $45. Greyhound Park & Event Center, 5100 Riverbend Ave. RYPIEN FOUNDATION WINEMAKERS’ DINNER The five-course gourmet dinner paired with Washington wines also includes silent/live auctions, with all proceeds supporting the Rypien Foundations work to aid families battling childhood cancer. March 11, 5:30 pm. Northern Quest Casino, 100 N. Hayford Rd. (509-242-7000) WILD REFUGE FUNDRAISER DINNER & AUCTION Since 1997, Friends of Turnbull has been a major sponsor of the environmental education program, outreach activities, habitat restoration and other projects at Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge. March 11, 5:30 pm. $45. Wren Pierson Community Center, 615 Fourth St., Cheney.


2.0PEN MIC Local comedy night hosted by Ken McComb. Thursdays, from 8-10 pm. Free. The District Bar, 916 W. First Ave. BRIAN POSEHN Live shows by the comedian known for “Just Shoot Me” and “Mr. Show.” March 2-4 at 8 pm, March 3-4 at 10 pm. $15-$20. Spokane Comedy Club, 315 W. Sprague. (509-318-9998) GUFFAW YOURSELF! Open mic comedy night hosted by Casey Strain; Thursdays at 10 pm. Free. Neato Burrito, 827 W. First Ave. (847-1234) AFTER DARK An adult-rated version of the Blue Door’s monthly, Friday show; on the first and last Friday of the month, at 10 pm. $7. Blue Door Theatre, 815 W. Garland. (747-7045) CRIME SHOW The BDT Players offer a comedic take on TV’s staple “who-dunit.” Rated for general audiences. Fridays, at 8 pm, through March 24. $7. Blue Door Theatre, 815 W. Garland Ave. (747-7045) STAND-UP COMEDY Live comedy featuring established and up-and-coming local comedians. Fridays at 8 pm. No

SCENE: 122 cover. Red Dragon Chinese, 1406 W. Third Ave. IMPROV NIGHT An evening of comedy with the Fire Brigade, Ignite’s very own improv troupe, using audience suggestions to perform on the spot. Family friendly. March 4, 7 pm. $5. Ignite! Community Theatre, 10814 E. Broadway Ave. (509-795-0004) SAFARI The Blue Door’s fast-paced, short-form improv show. The gamebased format relies on audience suggestions to fuel each scene. Rated for mature audiences. Saturdays at 8 pm. $7. Blue Door Theatre, 815 W. Garland Ave. (747-7045) OPEN MIC XL Live comedy, Tuesdays at 9 pm. The Observatory, 15 S. Howard. (509-598-8933) OPEN MIC A free open mic night every Wednesday, starting at 8 pm. Doors open at 7 pm. Free. Spokane Comedy Club, 315 W. Sprague. JOSH WOLF See the bestselling author, TV writer and standup performer. March 9-11 at 8 pm, March 11 at 10:30 pm. Spokane Comedy Club, 315 W. Sprague. (509-318-9998) MICROBIOGRAPHY V Entrepreneurs Annie Grieve (Salon Illuminate) and Mark Camp (The Cracker Bldg. and Overbluff Cellars) tell stories from their real lives, then the Freedom Association (Mara Baldwin, Mark Robbins, Pat Thomas) improvise scenes inspired by their stories. Ages 17+. March 11, 8 pm. $12. The Bartlett, 228 W. Sprague Ave.

— Your neverending story —



ARE VACCINES EVERYBODY’S BUSINESS? At a time when a mumps outbreak is present in Spokane, health experts are more aware of tension between personal choice and public health. Join SRHD to unpack the concerns of diverse stakeholders on this matter. March 2, 5:45-7:45 pm. $5. O’Doherty’s Irish Grille, 525 W. Spokane Falls Blvd. COMMUNITY OPEN DANCE An all-ages dance, offering all types of music and styles od dance. Thursdays, at 7 pm. $5. Western Dance Center, 1901 N. Sullivan Rd. (979-2607) MAMMOTHS & MASTODONS: TITANS OF THE ICE AGE The highly-interactive touring exhibit from the Field Museum in Chicago features hands-on activities, hundreds of fossil specimens from around the world, full-size models of Ice Age megafauna. Through May 7; open Tue-Sat, 10 am-5 pm (to 8 pm on Wed; half-price admission on Tue). Admission includes an additional up-charge of $5 per ticket. $10-$15. The MAC, 2316 W. First. (456-3931) CUSTERS SPRING ARTS & CRAFT SHOW The 40th annual spring show features more than 300 artists and craftspeople from across the U.S., offering jewelry, furniture, fine art, clothing, body care items and more. March 3, 10 am-8 pm; March 4, 10 am-6 pm; March 5, 10 am-4 pm. $7 weekend admission. Spokane County Fair & Expo Center, 404 N. Havana St. (509-477-1766) FAMILY DANCE & POTLUCK Easy-tolearn line, circle, contra, and folk dances are taught, accompanied by live music. No partners or experience required. Potluck at 6:30 pm with dance starting at 7. March 3, 6:30-8 pm. Free, donations accepted. St. John’s Cathedral, 127 E. 12th Ave. (533-9955)

Join us for First Friday on March 3rd, and enjoy the creations of Spokane’s talented artists. (Of course, you’ll also enjoy hors d’oeuvres, drinks, and the chance to mingle with fellow artists and art lovers.) See all participating venues at

Don’t miss the next First Friday: April 7th, 2017

For event listings visit: Most venues open 5-8pm


Holy Smokes Marijuana as religious sacrament in Hinduism’s holiest celebration BY CONNOR DINNISON

Cannabis is considered a gift from Shiva.


ast Friday thousands of naked, dreadlocked yogishamans, called Naga Babas, descended on India and Nepal’s holiest temples to celebrate Mahashivaratri, literally the “greatest night of devotion” to the Hindu god Shiva (one of three divine manifestations, along with Brahma and Vishnu). They smeared their faces and limbs with the cremated ashes of animals and nameless people, chanted bhajans (holy songs) and fasted. Some danced in ecstatic procession to shrines laden with tokens, flowers and the sacred (but poisonously hallucinogenic) Datura fruit. Bonfires were lit and stoked by devotees through the moonless night, to bring Shiva warmth and hasten the close of winter. And local police turned a blind eye when many of the Shaivites shared an offering of cannabis, the prasad, with their god and fellow pilgrims. “We smoke to please the lord and nobody can stop us,” explained one such yogi, Baba Kripashankar, to The Kathmandu Post during last year’s festival. “It’s a prasad [offering] of Lord Shiva. Even he smokes it.”

Despite being outlawed in India, cannabis is considered a gift from Shiva, who on the night of Mahashivaratri reveals his Tandava, a primordial dance of conception, preservation and destruction. Worshipers consume the plant (ganja is smoked from a chillum, or clay pipe; charas, or hashish, is a resin extract that is also smoked; and bhang is a sort of marijuana-infused milkshake) in communion with the deity and enter into a meditative state of prayer and contemplation. For the monastic Naga Babas and other ascetics, it is a night of stillness and possibility within, a night to, like Shiva purportedly did after centuries of meditation, “become like a mountain.” (Mount Kailash in the Himalaya is Shiva’s spiritual dwelling in the Hindu tradition.) The cannabis helps carve out interior space for such an experience. “The way normal people need food, we need this to concentrate on Shiva,” says a devout Shaivite in a National Geographic film about the Lord of Bhang, as Shiva is sometimes referred to. “Problematic feelings like lust, greed and anger all vanish,” says another. “You become

cool and calm. You only concentrate on god.” Some Christians in America have made the same discovery, only without renouncing the world (and their clothes) as many of their Hindu brothers and sisters have. Deb Button, a conservative Colorado soccer mom, grew disillusioned with a judgmental LETTERS church and, after an Send comments to illuminating stoned bike ride, founded the Stoner Jesus Bible Study in 2015. It turns out that marijuana and Scripture are complementary vehicles for exploration of the divine within. “When people are accepting cannabis use and spirituality, they’re not going to want to go sit in a megachurch and follow traditional worship,” Button says in an episode of the documentary TV series Weediquette. “They’re going to want to have a more meaningful experience. I think the brick-and-mortar church is gonna be going away.” n




MON - SAT: 9A - 10P SUN: 9A - 9P This product has intoxicating effects and may be habit forming. Marijuana can impair concentration, coordination, and judgment. Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the influence of this drug.There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product.For use only by adults twenty-one and older. Keep out of the reach of children.



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Warning: This product has intoxicating effects and may be habit forming. Smoking is hazardous to your health. There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product. Should not be used by women that are pregnant or breast feeding. For USE only by adults 21 and older. Marijuana can impair concentration, coordination and judgement. Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the influence of this drug.



213 E Sprague Ave • Spokane, WA • 509.315.9262 OFFERS AVAILABLE WHILE SUPPLIES LAST

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BE AWARE: Marijuana is legal for adults 21 and older under Washington State law (e.g., RCW 69.50, RCW 69.51A, HB0001 Initiative 502 and Senate Bill 5052). State law does not preempt federal law; possessing, using, distributing and selling marijuana remains illegal under federal law. In Washington state, consuming marijuana in public, driving while under the influence of marijuana and transporting marijuana across state lines are all illegal. Marijuana has intoxicating effects; there may be health risks associated with its consumption, and it may be habit-forming. It can also impair concentration, coordination and judgment. Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the influence of this drug. Keep out of reach of children. For more information, consult the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board at











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HOURS: MON-SAT 8-9 SUN 9-9 WARNING: This product has intoxicating affects and may be habit forming. Smoking is hazardous to your health. There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product. Should not be used by women that are pregnant or breast feeding. For USE only by adults 21 and older. Marijuana can impair concentration, coordination and judgement. Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the influence of this drug.




(509) 244-8728 Warning: This product has intoxicating effects and may be habit forming. Smoking is hazardous to your health. There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product. Should not be used by women that are pregnant or breast feeding. For USE only by adults 21 and older. Marijuana can impair concentration, coordination and judgement. Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the influence of this drug.

March 16-18

Marijuana use increases the risk of lower grades and dropping out of school. Talk with your kids.






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1305 S Hayford Rd, Airway Heights, WA 99001 | 509.474.1050 “AT THE CORNER OF HAYFORD RD AND HWY 2, ATTACHED TO EXXON STATION” This product has intoxicating effects and may be habit forming. Marijuana can impair concentration, coordination and judgement.  Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the influence of this drug. There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product.  For use only by adults 21 and older. Keep out of reach of children.

EVENTS | CALENDAR SPOKATHON HACKATHON The inaugural high school hackathon, for groups of students in grades 8-12 to create a game based on their own idea. March 3, 4-11:45 pm. $20. Fellow Coworking, 304 W. Pacific. SECOND ANNUAL WOMEN’S EVENT An event for local women to eat, drink, shop from local vendors and visit with others in the community. March 4, 6-9 pm. $30. Reardan Community Center, N. Lake St. Reardan. (796-2036) EVERGREEN RR MODELERS OPEN HOUSE See the region’s largest model railroad layout at the spring open house. Model trains run through painstakingly recreated towns, hills, and tunnels. March 4, 5-9 pm. Free. Evergreen Model Railroad Club, 18213 E. Appleway. (939-5845) INLAND NW PERMACULTURE GUILD SEED SWAP The guild encourages attendees to bring seeds to try; only openpollinated, heirloom seeds that you grew or collected yourself. Tables are optionally available ($10 suggested donation) for participants to display their goods. March 4, 12-4 pm. Community Building, 35 W. Main. INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY IN SPOKANE International Women’s Day (March 8) is a global celebration of people from every background and all walks of life. Spokane’s event seeks to foster community among women and to share knowledge and resources focused on the advancement and empowerment of women. See link for complete details. March 4, 12:30 pm. Free and open to the public. Woman’s Club of Spokane, 1428 W. Ninth. PARADE OF NATIONS The WSU/EWU Spokane multicultural club and diversity club host a night of food, fashion, and performances representing cultures from around the world. March 4, 6-8 pm. $5. EWU Riverpoint Campus, 668 N. Riverpoint Blvd. (290-7061) RED CROSS VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITY FAIR Learn more about current volunteer opportunities and the local impact of the Red Cross. Current volunteers are on-hand to talk about their experiences and answer questions. March 4, 10 am-2 pm. Free. American Red Cross, 315 W. Nora Ave. (326-3330) FIRST MONDAY NETWORK A networking event held the first Monday of the month (5:30-7:15 pm), hosting sponsors and speakers who can help business owners and entrepreneurs in taking their business to the next level. $10. Mirabeau Park Hotel, 1100 N. Sullivan Rd. (208-640-1331) MCCLEARY 101 A learning session hosted by the League of Education Voters and parents from Spokane International Academy and PRIDE Prep. Learn how education funding in Washington impacts families directly, what’s currently being done and what they can do to make sure our state does its paramount duty to fully fund education. Childcare and refreshments will provided. March 6, 6-7:30 pm. Free. PRIDE Prep, 811 W. Sprague. (425-879-8212) KNITTING FOR SHELTER PETS The CdA Library’s Well-Knit Tale Knitting Club members are knitting/crocheting blankets for the shelter animals at the Kootenai Humane Society during March. Anyone is welcome to join on March 7 and 21, from 2:30-4 pm. Bring your own supplies. Coeur d’Alene Public Library, 702 E. Front Ave. (208-769-2315) THE SIGNIFICANCE OF PICKING A JOB MOSAIC introduces the ethnic and

gender wage gap of minority women compared to their white community members. Students learn about job titles, their functions and salary ranges as it relates preparing for his/her major in post-secondary education. March 7, 11:30 am-12:30 pm. Free. SFCC, 3410 W. Fort George Wright Dr. SILENT WRITING PARTY Writers of all stripes and inclinations, get ready for two hours of nonstop writing. Matt Mitchell of Folkinception will be your muse. March 7, 7-9 pm. Free. Spark Central, 1214 W. Summit Pkwy. (279-0299) EMERSON GARFIELD NEIGHBORHOOD COUNCIL Anyone who lives, works or owns property in Emerson-Garfield is encouraged to attend. There are no dues or fees for membership. Meets the second Wednesday of the month, from 6-7:30 pm. Free. Corbin Senior Center, 827 W. Cleveland Ave. (509-327-1584) ORGANIZE YOUR FINANCES This STCU workshop examines the benefits of getting organized, how to develop an efficient bill-paying system, what records to keep, where, and for how long, and more. March 8, noon. Free. Coeur d’Alene Public Library, 702 E. Front Ave. SPOKANE ANGEL ALLIANCE MEETING Presenters are Steve Tabacek, co-founder of RickLens software company, and Erik Hayton, founder and CEO of Wedding Nook, a wedding planning service. RSVP to March 8, 11:30 am. Davenport Hotel, 10 S. Post St. (800-899-1482) SPOKANE CONTRA DANCE Spokane Folklore Society weekly dance, with the band Crooked Kilt playing and Caller Karen Wilson-Bell. This is a community dance; no experience is necessary. Beginner workshop at 7:15 pm. March 8, 7:309:30 pm. $5/$7. Women’s Club, 1428 W. Ninth Ave. TRANSITIONS’ BABY SHOWER From now until March 8, the nonprofit is collecting items moms-to-be commonly receive at baby showers. An on-site party will deliver 16 care packages to local families, with treats from the New Leaf Bakery Cafe and stories from program staff and participants. Shopping list at March 8, 12-1 pm. Free. Transitional Living Center, 3128 N. Hemlock. (328-6702) GENEALOGY WORKSHOP Join members of the Eastern Washington Genealogical Society to learn about Ancestry. com as a tool for family history research. March 9, noon. Free. Shadle Library, 2111 W. Wellesley St. (509-444-5390) RESUME & COVER LETTER WORKSHOP Learn how to cater your resume or cover letter towards your specific industry. March 10, 12-12:30 pm. Free. Spokane Falls Community College, 3410 W. Fort George Wright Dr. HGTV DESIGN STAR JENNIFER BERTRAND The Spokane Home Builders Association welcome HGTV Design Star Jennifer Bertrand as the featured speaker at the upcoming Spokane Home & Garden Show. Jennifer presents on March 10 and 11. Spokane Convention Center, 334 W. Spokane Falls Blvd. (279-7000) SPRING HAS SPRUNG BARN SALE Shoppers can find rocking chairs, desks, vanities, dressers, home decor of all types, signs, primitives, linens and more. March 10-11, from 10 am to 4 pm. Free admission. Past Blessings Farm, 8521 N. Orchard Prairie.

RASPBERRY PI RACE CAR HACKATHON Team up with a pro to build a racecar fueled by Raspberry Pi, a credit card-sized computer. Show off your invention at Pi Day on March 14, and race it against other teams’ cars. March 11, 10 am-noon. $10. Spark Central, 1214 W. Summit Pkwy. (279-0299) SEED SWAP Participants can bring seeds to swap and take home new varieties, learn about seed saving, and learn about the seed-sharing program at the library, You don’t need seeds to swap to participate. (Event rescheduled from Feb. 4.) March 11, 1 pm. Free. Coeur d’Alene Public Library, 702 E. Front Ave.


LUNAFEST WOMEN’S FILM FESTIVAL The U Idaho Women’s Center again hosts the national touring festival of short films by, for and about women. This year’s films address topics including women in labor, intimate relationships and personal identity. March 2, 6:30 pm. $3-$6. The Kenworthy, 508 S. Main, Moscow. (208-882-4127) SPOKANE GOES TO THE MOVIES In this second of four lectures based on the theme “Spokane Scandals and Controversies,” Spokane author and scholar Richard Sola shares how Spokane businessman, Eric A. Johnston, detective Dashiell Hammett and Poet Vachel Lindsay changed American films forever. March 5, 2-5 pm. $10 suggested donation. The MAC, 2316 W. First. (456-3931) VICTORIA FINALE SCREENING PARTY Watch the season’s final episode of “Victoria” with KSPS. Wear your tiara; fine Victorian attire is encouraged, but not required. March 5, 6:30-8:30 pm. $10. Lincoln Center, 1316 N. Lincoln.


PURPLE EGYPTIAN BARLEY PROJECT The weekly series showcases a collaboration between Palouse Pint, Palouse Heritage farm, Bellwether and Culture Bread, highlighting beers and breads made from the landrace grain known as Egyptian Purple Barley. Thursdays, through April 7 (check Bellwether FB for start times each week). Bellwether Brewing Co., 2019 N. Monroe. (509-280-8345) SCOTCH & CIGARS Select a flight of whiskey, scotch or bourbon paired with a recommended cigar from Cigar Train during an event on the outdoor patio. Thursdays, 6-10 pm. $15-$25. Prohibition Gastropub, 1914 N. Monroe. (474-9040) TASTYTHURSDAYS Wine tastings are hosted every Thursday evening, from 5-7, sampling something new each week. $5/ person; fee waived if you find a bottle you love and buy. Live music and light appetizers offered. Uva Trattoria, 309 E. Lakeside Ave, CdA. (208-930-0573) THURSDAY WINE SOCIAL The weekly complimentary wine tasting event features different wine themes and samples of the shop’s gourmet goods. Thursdays, from 4-6 pm. Free. Gourmet Way, 8222 N. Government Way. (208-762-1333) HEMINGWAY FESTIVAL SOCIAL MIXER Includes complimentary appetizers and Hemingway mojitos and daiquiris available for purchase at the no-host bar. Event is included with the purchase of Literary Evening ticket. March 4, 5:30 pm. $20-$30. University Inn Best Western,

1516 Pullman Road, Moscow. class/hemingway/ (208-885-6156) 75TH ANNUAL KOSHER DINNER Share in Jewish traditions and culture through food and entertainment, including a kosher dinner of beef brisket, potato knishes, appetizers, sides and dessert. (Take-out meals available.) Also includes live Jewish music and entertainment, a baked goods sale and more. March 5, 11 am-5 pm. $15-$17/adults; $10/kids. Temple Beth Shalom, 1322 E. 30th Ave. UNIONTOWN SAUSAGE FEED The 64th annual event at the Uniontown Community Center includes an all-you-caneat meal of sausage made from a secret recipe by community members, with mashed potatoes, sauerkraut, green beans, applesauce, rolls, pie and beverage. Includes a beer garden for ages 21+. March 5, 10 am-5 pm. $2/$8$/12. Uniontown, Wash. (229-3805) KEEPING URBAN CHICKENS You don’t need a certificate to keep chickens in the City of Spokane, but it helps to know how to keep them properly. March 7, 6-9 pm. $20. Spokane Community College, 1810 N. Greene. event/keeping-urban-chickens/ CHATEAU STE MICHELLE ESTATES WINE TASTING Hosted by Jennifer Haun, Assistant Wine Maker and Enologist for Chateau Ste Michelle, guests can sample five wines, including a rare 95 point offering. March 8, 6 pm. $25. Pints Alehouse, 10111 N. Newport Hwy. SPOKANE-NISHINOMIYA SISTER CITY SOCIETY ANNUAL DINNER The annual dinner offers traditional Japanese food and talks by last year’s Spokane-based exchange students about their home stay experiences in Japan. March 10, 5:308:30 pm. $20. Mukogawa Institute, 4000 W. Randolph Rd. THE IRISH DRINKING TEAM 12TH ANNUAL PUB CRAWL Join the Irish Drinking Team on St. Patty’s Parade Day for an all day pub crawl filled with prizes, giveaways, and shenanigans. March 11, 7-1 am. $20-$30. nYne, 232 W. Sprague Ave. (329-6615)


JAKE SHIMABUKURO Concert by the ukulele virtuoso, who broke onto the scene with a YouTube cover of George Harrison’s “While My Guitar Gently Weeps.” March 2, 7:30 pm. $47-$57. Bing Crosby Theater, 901 W. Sprague Ave. (227-7404) NORTHWEST BACH FEST: AN EVENING WITH HEMINGWAY The Festival celebrates Zuill Bailey’s 2017 Grammy Nomination with a Parisian-inspired buffet called a “Moveable Feast.” Bailey also performs selections from composer Michael Daugherty’s Grammy-winning record “Tales of Hemingway.”Pianist Elizabeth DeMio accompanies. March 2, 6-9 pm. $85 [SOLD OUT]. Barrister Winery, 1213 W. Railroad Ave. NW BACH FESTIVAL: BACH’S LUNCH Featuring duo-cello selections performed by Zuill Bailey and John Marshall. March 2, from noon-1 pm. Free. Kress Gallery, 808 W. Main. NW BACH FEST ENCORE: TALES OF HEMINGWAY A second concert featuring NW Bach Fest director Zuill Bailey, performing selections from the Grammywinning album “Tales of Hemingway,” on which he is a featured soloist. March 3, 7:30 pm. $50. Holy Names Music Center, 3910 W. Custer Dr. brownpapertickets.

com/event/2891394 (326-9516) V. J. MANZO LECTURE AND RECITAL A lecture/recital exploring the use of algorithmic composition techniques from the time of Mozart through his own work with interactive computer systems. In the Cowles Music Center Recital Hall. March 3, 8-9:30 pm. Free and open to the public. Whitworth University, 300 W. Hawthorne Rd. (777-4590) SPOKANE SYMPHONY SUPERPOPS 5: ALTAN Ranging from the most sensitive and touching old Irish ballads to hard-hitting reels and jigs, Altan delivers a heartwarming, dynamic live performance in concert with the power of the Spokane Symphony. March 4, 8-10 pm. $28-$65. Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox, 1001 W. Sprague. (624-1200) DILWORTH CHORAL FESTIVAL CONCERT Hosted for the fourth year by the Crescendo Community Chorus, and directed by guest Martha Shaw. The day’s activities culminate in a concert for the community. March 4, 4:30-5:30 pm. Donations appreciated. Mead High School, 302 W. Hastings Rd. (714-0555) KPBX KIDS’ CONCERT: CELTIC DANCE PARTY Kids of all ages can dance the winter blues away at the next free concert featuring high-energy Celtic tunes from Floating Crowbar. March 4, 1 pm. Free. Riverside Place, 1108 W. Riverside Ave. NW BACH FEST: SATURDAY NIGHT AT BARRISTER A festival classics concert featuring Metropolitan Opera soprano Danielle Talamantes with pianist Ivana Cojbasic, performing selections from Debussy, de Falla, Ellington and more. March 4, 7:30-9:30 pm. $40 ($18/students). Barrister Winery, 1213 W. Railroad Ave. (326-4942) JAM FOR BREAD Villa Blues and Jazz featuring Heather Villa, Spokane Area Youth Choirs and Angus Scott Pipe Band perform to raise money for Crosswalk, Volunteers of America’s teen shelter in downtown Spokane. March 5, 3 pm. $8$12. Westminster UCC, 411 S. Washington St. (533-3721) NW BACH FEST CELEBRATION The festival finale celebration to close Bach ’17 with a buffet dinner from Fery’s Catering, Barrister wines, music by Zuill Bailey, an art sale, loud auction items and 20 culinary-themed silent auction items. March 5, 5:30-8 pm. $48. Barrister Winery, 1213 W. Railroad. (326-4942) NORTHWEST BACH FESTIVAL FINALE The Festival Orchestra, under the direction of guest conductor Piotr Gajewski, and featuring soloist Danielle Talamantes perform works by Mozart, Bach, Elgar, and more. Artistic Director Zuill Bailey closes with a tribute performance of Tchaikovsky’s Andante Cantabile for Cello and String Orchestra. March 5, 3-5 pm. $45 ($23/students). St. John’s Cathedral, 127 E. 12th. (326-4942) SPOKANE STRING QUARTET The Spokane String Quartet presents works by Mozart, Hovhaness and Beethoven that celebrate the fugue. March 5, 3 pm. $12$20. Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox, 1001 W. Sprague. GONZAGA SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Conducted by Kevin Hekmatpanah, the orchestra performs works by Spohr, Mozart and Rachmaninoff. Featuring Young Artists’ Concerto Competition winners. March 6, 7:30-9 pm. $10-$14. Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox, 1001 W. Sprague.




A year ago, the woman who pet-sits for me began inviting herself over for dinner. We started going out about three times a week. I always paid for dinner. She never introduced me to her friends, wouldn’t let me pick her up at her apartment, and wouldn’t let me touch her. Even a genial “thank you” touch on the arm got a grim response. Her reason: She didn’t want a relationship. I kept hoping this would change. Recently, I went on Facebook and saw AMY ALKON that she’s been in a relationship with another man. Her response? “Well, I’m not sleeping with him, so I can see whomever I want.” After a long, demoralizing year, I ended things. Did I do right by getting out? —Not A Game Player Having regular dinners with somebody doesn’t mean you’re dating. I have dinner with my TV several nights a week, but that doesn’t mean I should get “Samsung forever!” tattooed on my special place. Consciously or subconsciously, this woman deceived you into thinking a relationship was possible — but she had help. Yours. To understand how you got tripped up, let’s take a look at self-deception — through an evolutionary lens. Evolutionary researchers William von Hippel and Robert Trivers describe self-deception as a “failure to tell the self the whole truth” by excluding the parts that go poorly with our goals and our preferred view of ourselves. We do this through “information-processing biases that give priority to welcome over unwelcome information” — or, in plain English: What we ignore the hell out of can’t hurt us. Seems crazy, huh — that we would have evolved to have a faulty view of reality? However, von Hippel and Trivers contend that the ability to self-deceive evolved to help us be better at deceiving others — keeping us from giving off the cues we do when we know we’re putting out a big fibby. As Trivers explains in “The Folly of Fools”: “We hide reality from our conscious minds the better to hide it from onlookers.” Knowing that we do this can help us remember to ask the right questions — the ego-gnawing kind — and drag the facts upstairs to consciousness and give them a long look. Nice as it is to glimpse the proverbial “light at the end of the tunnel,” it’s wise to make sure it isn’t just the one on the tip of the colonoscope.


I feel that my boyfriend brings out my best self: loving, sweet, productive. In my failed marriage, my ex seemed to bring out my worst self: unstable, selfish, lazy. It’s almost as if I’m a different person with my boyfriend. But how different can I be? —In A Better Place Okay, so you sometimes daydreamed about your naked ex and the things you’d like to do to him — like painting him all over with maple syrup and throwing him into a pit of starving fire ants. To understand what’s different with your current boyfriend, consider that the relationship is an environment — one that influences your behavior just like a physical environment. (Alaska in January calls for a snowsuit, not a bikini and your rainbow unicorn water wings.) There’s a term for the sort of relationship dynamics that bring out your best self — the “Michelangelo phenomenon” — coined by social psychologist Caryl Rusbult and her colleagues. The name was inspired by the Italian Renaissance artist Michelangelo’s belief that there’s an ideal figure hidden within each block of stone and that it’s the sculptor’s job to chip away the pieces around it until it’s revealed. They find that in a relationship, two things foster your bringing out the best in each other. One is that your partner “affirms” your values — meaning that your partner is aligned (enough) with what you care most about. (This doesn’t mean they want exactly what you do; they just need to respect you for going for it.) Second, they engage in behaviors that encourage you to move toward your “ideal self.” This might mean urging you to acquire new skills or, at a cocktail party, asking you about the dog-walking drone you invented while you’re standing next to that trustafarian with the tech-funding hobby. Rusbult and her colleagues observe that when individuals in a relationship improve and grow — especially through their partner’s encouragement — it makes for a better relationship and happier partners. Conversely, when their partner is unhelpfully critical, controlling, and at odds with who they are and what they want, the relationship suffers, as do those in it. Ultimately, if you say “I barely recognize who I am with this person,” it should be a good thing — not one that leads to TV news clips of your bewildered neighbor: “We’re all just shocked. She seemed so nice, so normal. I guess she just…snapped.”n ©2017, Amy Alkon, all rights reserved. • Got a problem? Write Amy Alkon, 171 Pier Ave, #280, Santa Monica, CA 90405 or email (


EVENTS | CALENDAR SFCC MUSIC CONCERT SERIES The winter quarter music series features the concert band (March 6), orchestra + world drumming (March 13), the choir (March 14) and the jazz ensemble (March 15). Free to CCS staff, students. $2-$5 general admission. Spokane Falls Community College, 3410 W. Fort George Wright Dr. (533-3720) SPOKANE SYMPHONY: BEETHOVEN & BREWS A concert highlighting the composer’s hits, with a special $3 beer from No-Li, comedy bits by the Blue Door Theatre and an appearance by the Spokane Civic Theatre’s Lenny Bart at Beethoven. March 10, 6 pm. $13.50-$43. Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox, 1001 W. Sprague.


KLUNKERZ Two Wheel Transit and The Bike Hub host a premiere for the film about mountain bike history. Proceeds support building and maintenance of trail networks at Camp Sekani/Beacon Hill and Mt. Spokane. March 3, 6:30 pm. $10-$15. Two Wheel Transit, 817 S. Perry St. SPOKANE CHIEFS The final regular season matches are set for March 8, 10, 11, 15 and 18, and the puck drops at 7:05 pm. $10-$23. Spokane Arena, 720 W. Mallon. (279-7000) A WILDLY FUNNY SHOW (KICKING & SCREAMING) The Boy Scouts Of America Inland Northwest Council host a viewing party with local reality show contestant Terry L. Fossum. Thursdays, from 9-10 pm, through May 4. Max at Mirabeau, 1100 N. Sullivan Rd. (924-9000)


DEAD MAN’S CELL PHONE This play by Sarah Ruhl explores family dynamics and the dichotomy between technology and human connection. March 3-4 at 7:30 pm, March 5 at 2 pm. $10 public. The Forge Theater, 404 Sweet Ave. KINKY BOOTS With songs by pop icon Cyndi Lauper, this joyous musical celebration is about the friendships we discover, and the belief that you can change the world when you change your mind. Through March 4; show times vary. $32.50-$77.50. INB Performing Arts Center, 334 W. Spokane Falls Blvd. LEGALLY BLONDE, JR. THE MUSICAL A production based on the awardwinning Broadway musical and hit motion picture. Through March 5; Fri-Sat at 7:30 pm; Sat at 3 pm; Sun at 2 pm. $8-$10. Theater Arts for Children, 2114 N. Pines. (995-6718) A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC Sondheim’s romantic waltz explores the tangled web of affairs centered around a traveling actress and the men who love her. Through March 5, Thu-Sat at 7:30, Sun at 2 pm. $22-$30. Spokane Civic Theatre, 1020 N. Howard. (325-2507) THE MISANTHROPE The 17th century verse comedy explores human relationships and hypocrisy of the aristocracy. March 2-12; Thu-Sat at 7:30 pm, Sun at 2 pm. $10. Spartan Theater at SFCC, 3410 W. Fort George Wright Dr. (533-3592) THE MUSIC MAN The award-winning LC Tiger Drama Presents the beloved

musical. Feb. 23-March 4; Thu-Sat at 7 pm. $10. Lewis and Clark High School, 521 W. Fourth Ave. PARALLEL LIVES The audience is whisked to the outrageous universe of men and women struggling with common rituals of modern life. Starring Kathie Doyle-Lipe and Melody Deatherage; directed by Troy Nickerson. March 2-12; Thu-Fri, 7:30 pm and Sun, 2 pm. $21-27. Lake City Playhouse, 1320 E. Garden Ave. CYT: JOSEPH & THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT The Biblical saga of Joseph and his coat of many colors comes to life in this musical parable. Through March 5; Fri-Sat at 7 pm, Sat-Sun at 3 pm. $12-$16. Bing Crosby Theater, 901 W. Sprague. EMMA Historian and playwright Howard Zinn dramatized the life of Emma Goldman, the anarchist, feminist, and free-spirited thinker who was exiled from the U.S. because of her outspoken views. March 3-19; Fri-Sat at 7:30 pm, Sun at 2 pm. $10. Stage Left Theater, 108 W. Third Ave. ESCANABA IN DA MOONLIGHT This hunting story to beat all hunting stories spins a hilarious tale of humor, horror and heart. March 3-19; Fri-Sat at 7 pm, Sun at 2 pm. $13/students, seniors; $15/ adults. Sixth Street Theater, 212 Sixth St., Wallace. EWU THEATRE: AVENUE Q This award-winning, laugh-out-loud musical tells the timeless story of a recent college grad who moves into a shabby New York apartment. March 3-11; Fri-Sat at 7:30 pm, Sun at 2 pm; also March 9 at 2 pm. $10. Eastern Washington University, 526 Fifth St. (359-6390) ONE ACT PLAY FEST The Theatre’s first One Act Festival showcases several, short plays written by members of the community. March 3-11; Thu-Sat at 7 pm; also Sat at 2 pm. $12. Liberty Lake Community Theatre, 22910 E. Appleway Ave., Ste. 1. (342-2055) SCHOOLHOUSE ROCK LIVE! A fastpaced music based on 1970s cartoon that teaches math, science, grammar, and more with clever, catchy tunes. Through March 5; Fri-Sat at 7 pm and Sat-Sun at 3 pm. $9-$15. Kroc Center, 1765 W. Golf Course Rd.


FIRST FRIDAY Art galleries and businesses across downtown Spokane and beyond host monthly receptions to showcase new displays of art. Receptions March 3, from 5-8 pm. Free. Details on page 31, and at FirstFriday and LIFE WITH LINDA The exhibit features works from Linda Pall’s personal art collection and autobiographical comments. March 3-April 5; opening reception March 3, from 5-7 pm. Third Street Gallery, City Hall, 206 E. Third, Moscow. (208-883-7036) IN PASSING Experience Laboratory artist-in-residence a.m. darke’s upcoming virtual reality work, which explores what it’s like to navigate public space based on one’s intersecting identities. March 4, 5-8 pm. Community Building, 35 W. Main. (232-1950) PHOTOGRAPHER CHARLIE WHEELER An exhibit of wildlife photography, featuring Northwest birds and mammals printed on canvas, metal and paper. March 5-26; opening reception March 5,

1-3 pm. Gallery open Thu-Sun, 10 am-6 pm. Dahmen Barn, 419 N. Park Way, Uniontown. ARTIST NICHOLAS SIRONKA The artist presents on Hotel RL’s Living Stage about Maasai cultural values, attitudes and beliefs, and offers an overview of the process of batik painting. March 8, 7 pm. Free. Hotel RL by Red Lion at the Park, 201 W. North River Dr. redlion. com/park-spokane (509-326-8000)


AUTHOR SUE ELLER The Spokane sci-fi author talks about writing the “Emily Trace” science fiction mystery series with “To Boldly Go Where I Have Gone Before” at the March meeting of Spokane Authors and Self-Publishers. Members and guests purchase lunch to enter. March 2, 2:30-4 pm. Golden Corral Buffet, 7117 N. Division. (863-5536) CISCOE MORRIS: SEPARATE BEDS Seattle’s favorite gardening couple, Ciscoe and Mary Morris, share the pros and cons of dividing the garden into “his” and “her” beds in this talk hosted by The Inland Empire Gardeners. March 2, 6:30-9 pm. Free. CenterPlace Regional Event Center, 2426 N. Discovery Place Dr. (535-8434) IRELAND: TWO LECTURES On March 2, Gonzaga philosophy professor Douglas Kries discusses “What Tocqueville Saw in Ireland in 1835: Photographs from his Footsteps.” GU news service editor Peter Tormey’s March 9 lecture is titled, “Irish American Identity: Perspectives of an Immigrant’s Son.” Both begin at 7:30 pm. Free and open to the public. Gonzaga University Jepson Center, 502 E. Boone Ave. (313-6132) 3 MINUTE MIC FEAT. TAYLOR WEECH Auntie’s first Friday poetry open mic with “Remember the Word” featured reader Taylor Weech. Open mic readers can share up to 3 minutes’ worth of poetry. March 3, 8-9:30 pm. Free. Auntie’s Bookstore, 402 W. Main. (838-0206) HEMINGWAY FESTIVAL The University of Idaho’s annual celebration recognizes the winner of the Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award; 2016’s recipient is Ottessa Moshfegh. Events include readings by visiting authors, workshops, and the Hemingway Cocktail Hour and Moveable Feast. March 3-4. University of Idaho. RICK STEVES: EUROPEAN TRAVEL The leading authority on European travel speaks on topics ranging from travel skills to travel as a political act. March 3, 7-8:30 pm. $10-$15. CenterPlace Regional Event Center, 2426 N. Discovery Place Dr. EWU VISTING WRITER SERIES: MEGAN KRUSE The Olympia-based author’s work has appeared widely in journals and anthologies, and her debut novel, “Call Me Home,” was released from Hawthorne Books in March 2015. March 9, 7 pm. Free. Auntie’s Bookstore, 402 W. Main. HOLOCAUST SURVIVOR SPEECH Dr. Jacob Eisenbach is a 93 year old holocaust survivor from Poland. Hear him talk about his life while in the grip of Hitler’s Third Reich for 5 years, and how hatred, discrimination and intolerance led directly to the Jewish holocaust. March 9, 7-9 pm. $15. Davenport Hotel, 10 S. Post St. (990-7878) n

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That’s the Ticket A new book takes readers on a lighthearted photographic tour of Expo ’74 BY RAVEN HAYNES


hirteen-year-old Bill Cotter writes his birthday — “1-27-1952” — on a card and watches in wonder as it’s sucked into the “optical character reader” at the IBM Pavilion at the 1964-65 New York World’s Fair. Moments later, the IBM 1460 computer system pops out the same card, now with the New York Times headline from that date. It may have been “Taft Asserts Foreign Policy Puts Our Survival ‘in Doubt’” or “All Egypt Placed Under Martial Law As Anti-Foreign Riots Sweep Cairo”; Cotter, now 65, doesn’t remember. What Cotter does remember is that moment when he fell in love with world’s fairs and computers. Since then, he’s made it his mission (and serious hobby) to photograph and collect pictures of these magical mini cities. Though Cotter didn’t have the funds to go to Expo ’74 at the time, he’s spent 10 years collecting enough photos — from a combination of sites like eBay, online forums and world’s fairs conventions — to transport readers to the fair to celebrate “Tomorrow’s Fresh New Environment”


themselves in his new book Spokane’s Expo ’74. “I could go to a company like, say, Ford, to get photos,” Cotter says. “But I try not to use pre-published or publicity photos. I like to use those candid shots, those 10 or 12 pictures it was worth taking to somebody there lugging that film around.” That New York fair more than 50 years ago also inspired a career in computer technology; Cotter has worked at both Disney parks designing rides and their computer systems, so he knows the challenges (and joys) that come with creating a world’s fair experience. “In a theme park, we’re trying to figure out how to isolate people from the outside world,” Cotter says. “We want them to be happy and transported, so that’s what I try to do with my books.” And Spokane, of course, had a huge challenge — an “armpit” of a railroad yard and river to clean up, not to mention being the smallest city to ever host a world’s fair. “People said it would never work out, but it did,”

Some of the images from Spokane’s Expo ’74. Cotter says. Cotter always likes to begin his world’s fairs books with an admission ticket, recreating an experience that fewer and fewer Americans know, since the most recent world’s fair in the U.S. was in 1984 in New Orleans. But he manages to find more than 170 unique photos of past and present Spokane — from the iconic U.S. Pavilion in past and present day at Riverfront Park, to dreamy shots of the SkyRide over the falls and twirling South Korean performers — and guides readers from the fair’s foundations in ’74 to its remaining markers today. His captions and anecdotes are often as candid and lighthearted as the photos. He jokes about “dull” exhibits and fireworks that didn’t go off on cue, and shares stories like that of a religious-oriented exhibit that defended its place at the environmentally themed fair by claiming it was fighting “spiritual pollution.” With the advent of digital cameras and smartphones that can take endless photos, it’s easy to forget how difficult it was to take a few quality snapshots in the ’70s (and to find enough people that held onto their pictures), but it’s a labor of love. “Books are a way to share what I’ve found,” Cotter laughs, “so [these photos] aren’t just stacked up in crates in my garage for my kids to dig through once I’m gone. I want people to come and enjoy [them], be 12 years old again.” n Find Spokane’s Expo ’74 at Auntie’s Bookstore, Barnes & Noble, or through Amazon, Nook, iBooks, the Google Play store and other online retailers.



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