Keep your associates close and your longtime associates closer.
Keep your associates close and your longtime associates closer. ULYSSES CURRY

Politics as usual: Mayor Jenny Durkan has granted a “longtime associate” a $720,000 no-bid contract to serve as Seattle’s “single point of contact for the third segment of light rail,” reports the Seattle Times. The longtime associate also happens to be married to one of Mayor Durkan’s deputy mayors. Four other candidates were interviewed for the gig, but we are left to assume that those candidates just didn’t have the same je ne sais quoi that her longtime associate did. The Time’s article indicates that this news was first reported by Erica C. Barnett.

Here's a runnel, there's a runnel, everywhere's a bike runnel: Well, not everywhere. But now there is one in Interlaken! The new staircase and bike runnel are set for their grand opening this Saturday, and Capitol Hill Seattle Blog has the scoop on the ribbon cutting event. It looks like the pathway up the steep slope was quite the feat to engineer. CHB also points out that there will be a public meeting regarding a new Environmental Education Center in the Washington Park Arboretum.

Stop taking selfies by earthquake shattered roads: If you live in Alaska that is. While the images of the destroyed road-ways are visually stunning, the cracked and mangled roads are dangerous to play on. They are, however, attracting people to show up to take selfie-photo-shoots among the wreckage. The state kindly asks that you do not do so.

Nerd out with SDOT: Growing, moving, getting safer… isn’t that a Kanye song?

What do Republicans do when they lose a game? Change the game. Play another game. Whatever. In Wisconsin, the state Senate has approved a bill to strip power from the incoming Democratic Governor. Not only is this a testament to Republican's political savagery, but also the power which state legislatures hold, and an example of just why it is so important to vote in every election, and not just the "big ones." From the New York Times:

The measures limit early voting, require lawmaker approval for the attorney general to settle certain lawsuits, and give lawmakers, not the governor, the majority of appointments on an economic development board.

17-year old killed in shooting: Late last night, a 17-year old boy was shot in the 3600 block of Marine View Drive in Tacoma. He was pronounced dead shortly after arriving at St. Francis Hospital in Federal Way. An investigation and interviews are underway.

Enjoy the sun while it lasts: Because everything good must eventually come to an end. Luckily we love the grey overcast skies too.

NW Seattle holiday market: Trying to get your holiday market on? Live near Crown Hill? Ballard blog My Ballard has the scoop on the Crown Hill holiday market which runs tonight from 4pm-8pm. There will be live music, free wine and hot chocolate!

Dear drivers, please don’t do this: Someone contact the Mayor’s office. Who knew people weren’t always properly trained to control fast-moving, 3,000 pound machines?

Wu-Tang Clan Tiny Desk Concert: There is no better way to start your day than this new NPR Tiny Desk Concert, take it from me, I'm blasting it right now. Seeing Wu-Tang at the Bumbershoot in 2007 was one of the great privileges of my life.

Wallingford Walkaround: Wallingford has little quirky art projects strewn around all over. In the Southeast part of Wallingford, aka the area by the North Transfer Station (the dump), there is a series of little birdhouses atop parking signs. I love shit like this. Kudos to whoever does this.

Michael Bell

This one isn’t a birdhouse. It’s a wooden duck. Less practical, but goofier.

Michael Bell

I found 6 or 7 of these, but while I was documenting them, I ran into something for which I reserve artistic judgement.

Michael Bell

It’s my understanding that most of Wallingford is zoned for single-family birds, but this one seems to be a duplex at least, shared among multiple families. The balcony seems to be inhabited by a miniature elephant and dog. And on the other side?

Michael Bell

My wife instantly recognized these to be The California Raisins. As Wikipedia puts it, they were “a fictional rhythm and blues animated musical group as well as advertising and merchandising characters composed of anthropomorphized raisins. Lead vocals were sung by musician Buddy Miles.” So the question remains, what are they doing up in Seattle?

Tonight's best Seattle entertainment options include: Creamy, sexy R&B with JSMN, the first night of Bon Iver & TU Dance: Come Through, and a Shout Your Abortion Book Release Bash with Amelia Bonow, Emily Nokes, Angela Garbes, and others.