Swinging at Bush

On August 29, Randolph Sill headed to a Mariners game with a homemade sign decked out with slogans written in Japanese kanji, along with the number of Sill's favorite player, Ichiro Suzuki. Whenever Ichiro came up to bat, Sill would hold his sign high. Sill, who's spent time in Japan, knows Japanese television regularly broadcasts Mariners games and spotlights signs for its native son Ichiro.

Here's what Sill's sign said: On one side, the kanji read, "President Bush is a monkey's butt." On the other: "Americans are ashamed of our corrupt president." Sill, who hoped his sign would be broadcast on TV here and in Japan, says many Japanese fans at Safeco Field smiled and winked when they read his sign.

Mariners security staff, however, were not amused. When they caught on during the seventh inning, a cop escorted Sill and his sign to the security office, and seized the sign. "I haven't heard, yet, if the sign was broadcast to all of Japan," Sill says. AMY JENNIGES

Freeing the Fremont Fair

Almost a year after the Sound Mind and Body gym in Fremont launched a lawsuit against the Fremont Sunday Market--a weekly open-air antiques, crafts, and food fair on North 34th Street--a King County Superior Court judge threw the suit out (part of the lawsuit was tossed in February). In the October 2002 suit, the gym contended that the market infringed on Sound Mind and Body's ability to do business, because it closed off part of the street, blocking access to the gym, and eliminated some on-street parking ["Squash!," Amy Jenniges, April 4, 2002].

But there was a lack of evidence to support the gym's claims, according to Jon Hegeman, the market's proprietor. "It looks like we're in the clear," Hegeman says. The gym's attorney, Don Running, declined to comment. AMY JENNIGES

Protecting Elvis

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer recently reported that local cabbie and Elvis impersonator Dave Groh was forced to shed his rhinestones and white bellbottoms for more conventional gear, due to municipal codes. But one city council member, Richard Conlin, vowed to keep the King alive, proposing an ordinance to allow Seattle taxi drivers to wear costumes on the job. No dice, fuzzy or otherwise. Council prez Peter Steinbrueck--a Deep Purple fan--squelched the measure. Come on, Peter--we know you're testy and arrogant, but don't be cruel. MAHRYA DRAHEIM

Still Reading Jean Godden

Jean Godden's weekly column, spiked by the Seattle Times when the veteran columnist announced she was running for Judy Nicastro's city council seat, lives on at Godden's campaign website, www.electgodden.com. Godden still gets her kicks watching for wacky license plates. Recently, Godden spotted a license frame in Belltown that read, "Put the fun back in funeral." ERICA C. BARNETT