Kicking off what we hope will be a series of direct actions, three dozen activists converged at the Harbor Island headquarters of Stevedoring Services of America (SSA) at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, April 15. The group was protesting the company's $4.8 million contract to oversee operations at the Iraqi port Umm Qasr.
Posing as employees of "ASS," or American Superiority Services (motto: "where profits are always more important than people"), the activists blocked the front door with red hazard tape, covered up SSA's sign with their own, and set up a small desk. Then, activists parodied SSA: Some faked conference calls to Donald Rumsfeld, while others hired Iraqi workers and pledged to pay them nothing. AMY JENNIGES
Neighbors foiled a city plan to run a new Magnolia bridge along the shoreline, through a greenbelt, and into Magnolia Village.
The route, "Alignment B," interested the city because it was possibly cheaper than a new elevated bridge.
On April 15, Mayor Greg Nickels announced he was taking Alignment B off the table. "He wants to protect the shoreline," spokesperson Marianne Bichsel says. "[And] we've heard from 1,700 residents." AMY JENNIGES
Olchefske Deathwatch Part 2
Seattle Schools Superintendent Joseph Olchefske resigned on April 14. His last day at work will be October 15. NANCY DREW
Those who attended last week's Teatro ZinZanni first-anniversary performance of Dinner & Dreams enjoyed more than dinner and circus-inspired acts. Seattle City Council Members Peter Steinbrueck, Heidi Wills, and Nick Licata were seated at VIP tables on April 9, as the show's emcee Kevin Kent targeted certain audience members with good-natured teasing and ball-breaking. Kent marched over and tied up Steinbrueck with thick black tape, and, as the audience laughed, slapped a piece of tape over the council prez's mouth. MIN LIAO
Check Your Sources
Seattle Times columnist Joni Balter hosted a city council candidate forum on Tuesday, April 15. Judging from a few of the questions she threw at the contenders, it was clear she had boned up for the event--a Greater Seattle Chamber of Commerce breakfast--by reading this here rag. Unfortunately, Balter didn't have the courtesy to cite us by name. "According to one of this town's weeklies," she said at one point, after quoting us verbatim--actually, it was the second time she quoted us verbatim. We're called The Stranger, Joni--it says so right there on the cover of the paper you've been reading so closely. JOSH FEIT