NEWS This week finds The Stranger in fine form. And by fine I mean hitting its debauchery trifecta—marijuana, booze, boobies—in a single edition. In the news section, ERICA C. BARNETT crows about new zoning regulations for strip clubs, a move sure to cause the property values to plummet. ALSO: THOMAS FRANCIS, a new hire, hammers the final nails into his résumé's usefulness by filing his first real story for the section. Its subject: a local bar. PLUS: CounterIntel, In Other News, In Other Neighborhoods, In the Hall, and Police Beat FEATURE After I-75And now the marijuana: ELI SANDERS, whose talents often jerk mercilessly from adequate to laughable—like most obvious potheads—showers praise upon Seattle's obscenely lax laws regarding what filthy hippies refer to as "the kind weed." Next week's follow-up: "Bathing Is Overrated."

PULLOUT Strangercrombie 2005 It's that time of year again. Can you smell it in the air? Can you see it in the rosy faces of The Stranger's advertisers? For those blissfully unaware as to what the annual holiday miscarriage known as Strangercrombie is, here's a quick rundown: Every year, the editors of this paper attempt a gaudy parade of virtuousness that both demonstrates the paper's cronyism among local notables and conveniently features the wonderful offerings of the paper's advertisers. The proceeds from this "holiday auction" are sent to charity, an act of generosity that does little to ease the harm inflicted upon the city by this paper every other issue of the year.

GENERAL COMMENTS It is a surprise on the order of a Christmas miracle to see Emily Hall, who sagely fled this sinking ship for New York City, back in the paper. Her tenure as arts editor at The Stranger was, in retrospect, compared to present times, a golden era.