Here's your CHEAT SHEET for the general election

Slog PM: The Geneva Consensus Declaration, One More Debate, Tell Bezos to Give His Employees PTO So They Can VOTE

The fate of Democracy appears to depend on this star of the Silent Generation.
The fate of Democracy appears to depend on this star of the Silent Generation. PHOTO BY DREW ANGERER/GETTY IMAGES

You know what time it is: It's almost presidential debate time. It starts in one hour, at 6 pm Seattle-time. We'll have more on it in the AM. Watch it here:

There will be no plexiglass: What did it even do?

Trump released a video of his interview with journalist Leslie Stahl for 60 Minutes: That contentious interview, which Trump walked out of, is expected to drop on Sunday. CNN previously reported that "Trump walked out of the interview because he was frustrated with Stahl's line of questioning, one source said. Another person said the bulk of the interview was focused on coronavirus." When dropping this video this morning, Trump posted: "Look at the bias, hatred and rudeness on behalf of 60 Minutes and CBS." And added: "Tonight’s [presidential debate] anchor, Kristen Welker, is far worse!"

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The Main Stream: How to Play Spades

Gather at the figurative table this Friday night for a few rounds with four women who have a thing or two to teach you.
Gather at the figurative table this Friday night for a few rounds with four women who have a thing or two to teach you. Janae Johnson

The first time I saw Amber Flame perform she was wearing a corset, brandishing a punisher of some kind, and seducing a crowd of people to the tune of Rihanna’s “S&M.” That’s not to say that tomorrow night’s event, How to Play Spades, will include a repeat performance; I just want you, dear reader, to know the energy that Flame brings to the table every time.

For this event, Flame will gather with three queer Black women of multi-disciplinary creative and academic backgrounds to school us all in a little game they call Spades. This game is what bonded the four together during an artist residency in Vermont, and it’s what continues to provide for them, and now for us as viewers, a space to talk out what’s going on in their lives and feel all these haggard 2020 feelings. Tune in to find out what makes them tick, laugh, cry, and deal around this table built for compassionate community service.

The women leading the game will be Amber Flame (Seattle, WA), Victoria Newton Ford (Washington, D.C.), Emily Leach (Madison, WI), and Nafis White (Providence, RI). I don’t know shit about cards but I do know these women have things to teach me, so I’ll be tuning in and listening hard.


Judge Doug North a Proponent of Diverting Non-Violent First-Time Offenders into Treatment Programs is Endorsed by The Stranger.

According to his fellow King County Superior Court Judge Veronica Alicea-Galvan, “Judge North always acts in everyone’s best interest. He tries to give people a second chance by diverting non-violent first-time offenders into treatment programs and keep them out of jail.”

Click here to see what others are saying about Judge North.

Paid for by Committee to Reelect Judge North, P.O. Box 27113, Seattle, WA 98165


Seeing the Death of Toxic Masculinity in Joe's and Hunter's Intimate Embrace

Dan Callister / GETTY

About a month after my brother's death, I stepped out of a shower, entered my bedroom, and told my music robot to play the late South African pop singer, Brenda Fassie. For some reason, I was in the mood for the her Kwaito period.

Robot began its playlist with what I rate as Fassie's richest and most accomplished work, "Monate." It had some jive in it, a bit of the church in it, and a sweet confusion of calls that put you in the middle of a township. Suddenly, I burst out in tears. I shocked myself. I had never cried before—or I had no memory of crying. And the sobbing would not stop no matter how hard I tried. As the fit was entering what seemed like forever, but was in fact its fifth minute, my mind finally gripped my emotions and turned off this never-before-seen tap of tears.

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How to Look at Louise Bourgeois's Eye Benches I, II, and III

I wanna live in one of those smooth folds.
I wanna live in one of those smooth folds. Courtesy of SAM/C.E. Mitchell
There are thousands of ways to look at things. This is just how I do it. Twice a week, we'll look at art that comes from Seattle, the world, and the past.

Placed at one of the Olympic Sculpture Park's main entrances are Louise Bourgeois's Eye Benches I, II, and III. The three sets of two "eyes" vary in style and space for seating, yet are all composed of the same Black Zimbabwe granite and forged by Italian stonemasons. The smooth pupils and heavy folds of the lids seem intimately anatomical and betray a world-weariness that feels magnetic.

I remember lounging on them during a non-pandemic summer, lulled by the warmth radiating off the stone on a sunny day. It's a dreamy experience to sit on the back of an eye. A surreal proposition that makes your observations of people, sky, park, and mountain so literal.

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Get Tickets Now For A Virtual Bicycle Film Festival, Northwest Edition: October 23-25!

This is the 20th anniversary of the Bicycle Film Fest. Congratulations! Could you tell us how and where the festival started?

As a lifelong cyclist I wanted to share with people how wonderful, practical and beautiful cycling is. How do I do this? Why not show them films about cycling? I spoke with the legendary Jonas Mekas and he loved the idea. Mekas and his staff generously offered to host the inaugural BFF at Anthology Film Archives. It gained momentum from just a film program to an art exhibition, parties, dinner, bikes rides all in the first year. I was pretty stunned when we sold out screenings our first year. There was a lot of enthusiasm and the crowds were cheering and screaming at the screen. Twenty years later we have been to 100 cities and had over one million attendees. Passionate cyclists, environmental groups, media companies, ad agencies, bike messengers all joined in the fun from around the world. We have had the most incredible people make this happen in Tokyo, Mexico City, Milano, Seoul, Istanbul, London, Helsinki, to Portland and Seattle and many more.

How did the pandemic affect BFF’s 20th anniversary planning?

We have been preparing for the Bicycle Film Festival's twentieth anniversary in New York in June since summer of 2019. We had sponsors locked in. Blonde Redhead our favorite band in the world was going to play to a montage of twenty years of bicycle films. We had our venues booked. People had bought flights for New York to attend BFF from all over the world. In late February I started getting daily calls about Covid-19 from my family and friends in Italy. Internally our team discussed the possibility that we would need to postpone BFF. After South By South West canceled in early March we realized that this was serious. This festival was a reunion for our teams and friends from around the world. It was a celebration of the work we have put in for the last twenty years. Two months into lock down it became clear that we may never do Bicycle Film Festival again. Then I started to get calls of support from all over the world. I thought that we should try to figure how to do it online.

We were approached by The Stranger in June. We decided to work together to launch the BFF virtual tour in the Northwest. We have plans to offer localized programming worldwide over the next 6 months. This has been a positive experience. I have a lot of reverence for the challenges people are experiencing right now. I have found a lot of optimism from this experience. Many people are coming together to see this happen.

What can you tell us about the BFF NW screenings happening this weekend?

We have selected films for three programs of short films from the past years. In New York and all over the country bicycle protests began to pop up. We have programmed two short films about two of these protest rides. Ride To DC directed by Mandy Weiss is a look at the 300 mile one hundred person ride lead by Hilena Tibebe from New York to Washington DC on the anniversary of the March on Washington. Zane Simon directed a short about the Ride For Black Lives ride in New York. Get Off is a film by Teymour Ghaderi featuring the challenges of a young woman riding a bike in Iran. We are hosting two panel discussions Women In Cycling about the Internationelles who are fighting for equal pay and representation in womens bike racing. Bicycle, A Tool for Social Change hosts the leaders of four different cycling groups who are using the bike as a way to express the imperative need for justice and equality for Black People in the United States.

The program has a little bit for everyone. The programs include works by first time filmmakers along with Cannes and Oscar winning filmmakers.

I hope people can share this with their families, loved ones, roommates and maybe their cats and dogs. The bicycle explosion around the world is the most positive news in a tumultuous year. Hope we can be a venue for some respite.

Get tickets here!

The Best Movies to Stream & Watch in Seattle Theaters This Weekend

The 90s Halloween classic Hocus Pocus reigns supreme this weekend with in-person showings at West Seattles Admiral Theater, the Burien Drive-In, and elsewhere.
The '90s Halloween classic Hocus Pocus reigns supreme this weekend with in-person showings at West Seattle's Admiral Theater, the Burien Drive-In, and elsewhere. You can also stream it on Disney+! Buena Vista Pictures

EverOut is The Stranger's new website devoted to things to do in Seattle and across the Pacific Northwest. It has all the same things you're used to seeing from Stranger EverOut and Stranger Things To Do, just in a new spot!

Movie theaters are entering their second week of serving mask-wearing, social distancing-abiding guests with limited-capacity and private screenings, from David Prior's supernatural horror The Empty Man to the classic Halloween kids' movie Hocus Pocus. While other local theaters are hanging back for now, they're continuing to put out great stuff to stream at home, like Tyler Taormina’s Ham on Rye, streaming through Grand Illusion, and the Northwest Film Forum's youth-focused film festival NFFTY. Plus, The Stranger's new horror film fest SLAY is coming to the On the Boards Drive-In, and The Witches comes to HBO Max, starring Anne Hathaway and Octavia Butler. F
or more options, check out our guide to drive-in movie theaters in the Seattle area this week, or our calendar of on-demand movies streaming through local theaters, and our fall guide to online film festivals

The Addams Family (1991)
Reunite with your favorite creepy, kooky, altogether spooky family as they defend their fortune, their ghostly mansion, and their gothic stoicism against a fraudulent man who claims to be their long-lost relative. 
Vasa Park Resort (Friday) and Wheel-In Port Townsend (through Sunday); also streaming on Netflix

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New Poll Shows Long Still Statistically Tied with Rep. Herrera Beutler in Flippable District

Rep. Herrera Beutler leads Long by two points in the latest poll.
Rep. Herrera Beutler leads Long by two points in the latest poll. ILLUSTRATIONS BY CHELCIE BLACKMUN

The race to flip Washington's 3rd Congressional District blue remains pretty tight as voters continue returning ballots in record numbers across the state.

A new poll from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee conducted earlier this week shows Carolyn Long in a statistical tie with Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler. Long trails the incumbent by two points in a survey of 425 "likely general election voters." The poll has a 4.9% margin of error.

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Track Your Ballot in Case of Fire, Poo, or Generalized Anxiety

My ballot matches my kitschy kitchen rug of three Italian chefs and I think thats beautiful.
My ballot matches my kitschy kitchen rug of three Italian chefs, and I think that's beautiful. Nathalie Graham

Someone set a ballot box in Los Angeles County on fire earlier this week. Firefighters extinguished the flames. Inside was a soggy mess of ballots. Local election officials salvaged what they could and attempted to track down the voters whose ballots were compromised. They urged anyone who placed their ballots in that box after the last ballot collection to check the local ballot tracker.

In King County, a potential vote-threatening incident occurred over the weekend. It was, um, slightly different than the LA County one. Halei Watkins, a spokesperson for King County Elections, said her team was alerted on Twitter by the West Seattle Blog about an incident at the Alaska Junction dropbox. Someone had tried to jam shit into it. Like, shit shit.

Two members of the elite dropbox team went to check it out. Yep, someone tried to shove poo-coated cardboard into the ballot box. The dropbox team cleaned everything up and checked to make sure the ballots weren't affected. They weren't. But, if they had been, or if someone had lit them all on fire, voters could check to make sure their votes were okay by tracking their ballot.

If you're one of the over 460,000 King County voters who already returned their ballots, it's time to stop using your Ring camera to spy on your mail carrier and start making the ballot tracker your homepage.

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Seattle Will Create “Trick or Street” Car-Free Blocks for Halloween

Remember to keep your distance from each other if you dont want to end up like these ghosts
Remember to keep your distance from each other if you don't want to end up like these ghosts. Seattle Department of Transportation

When I was a kid they used to drill tons of rules into us about not getting hit by a car on Halloween: Don’t wear a mask that blocks your vision; wear something reflective; hold someone’s hand at all times; don’t cross the street.

Turns out, there’s a far simpler solution than deputizing sugar-crazed seven-year-olds to be their own personal traffic wardens: Just get rid of the goddamn cars, which is what Seattle will do this year thanks to a speedy application process for residents who want to designate car-free blocks. The city is also, unexpectedly, recommending that you watch the films Carrie, Coco, and Get Out.

So! Is your street going to get barricaded for a few hours on October 31? Well, that depends entirely on you and your neighbors.

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It's a Battle for South Seattle!

Next Monday, a bunch of foul-mouthed Stranger reporters will dress up like maniacs and run these two through a gauntlet of tough questions. Reserve your spot here
Next Monday, a bunch of foul-mouthed Stranger reporters will dress up like maniacs and run these two through a gauntlet of tough questions. Reserve your spot here. Anthony Keo

The battle to fill this open seat in South Seattle pits Seattle Parks engagement manager Chukundi Salisbury against NARAL Pro-Choice Washington executive director Kirsten Harris-Talley.

You might remember Harris-Talley for her role in resuscitating the head tax as an interim Seattle City Council Member, and you might remember Salisbury for his role as the DJ of a party you might not remember, or, less wholesomely, for constantly promoting entrepreneurship among the youths in the district.

Either way, you should know that Salisbury promises to prioritize increasing government contracting with minority-owned businesses, fight for criminal justice reform, and hire more black and brown teachers. Harris-Talley is going all-in with plenty of specifics for righting our upside down tax code, finally fully funding public education, and securing climate justice.

Harris-Talley has been cheesing around the district since she took home over 51% of the vote share in the August primaries, but this race is far from over as both candidates continue banking endorsements and spamming their social media feeds with heart-warming campaign photos.

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Seattle Restaurant Week Is Back! Here's Our Guide to the Fall 2020 Edition

Ethan Stowells recently launched pop-up Pinchy Bois, which serves fresh Maine lobster and lobster rolls inside Bramling Cross, is participating in Seattle Restaurant Week this year.
Ethan Stowell's recently launched pop-up Pinchy Bois, which serves fresh Maine lobster and lobster rolls inside Bramling Cross, is participating in Seattle Restaurant Week this year. Ethan Stowell Restaurants

EverOut is The Stranger's new website devoted to things to do in Seattle and across the Pacific Northwest. It has all the same things you're used to seeing from Stranger EverOut and Stranger Things To Do, just in a new spot!

This year's spring Seattle Restaurant Week, originally scheduled to start March 29, was one of the first events to be canceled due to COVID-19. For the fall edition, though, it's back and bigger than ever: To give the restaurant industry a much-needed boost, Seattle Restaurant Week is featuring more dining options and is extending the event to last an entire month (Oct 25–Nov 21). Like usual, restaurants will create a variety of special meal offerings as $20 lunches and/or $35 dinners, but this time, those will take the form of make-at-home meal kits, food and cocktail takeout packages, in-house three-course meals, and more. It's a great opportunity to both support local restaurants and break out of your Postmates rut, as well as to try places that might normally be out of your price range. SRW will also be partnering with Plate of Nations this time around, an event run by the MLK Business Association to highlight southeast Seattle businesses. So far, there are nearly 150 restaurants participating, but if you're overwhelmed by the long list, don't worry: We've rounded up our suggestions below, including great choices for takeout and delivery, indoor dining, and outdoor dining, as well as restaurants that have received raves from Stranger staffers and contributors. For more inspiration, check out our food and drink guide.

These restaurants are available for takeout and/or delivery and would make for a great at-home dining experience.

Cafe Munir
Naomi Tomky once wrote, "Tucked away in a residential corner of Ballard, this Lebanese restaurant makes diners rethink ordinary ingredients. Hummus takes a star turn with the addition of lamb sizzled in butter, pears grab attention when mixed with tahini, pomegranate, and parsley, and simply grilled chicken skewers are the signature dish (though partial credit goes to the debaucherously garlicky sauce that comes with it). The lengthy menu of mezzes—small plates—highlights local, in-season vegetables with Middle Eastern flavors like baby onions preserved in Lebanese wine and honey with fresh cheese, and winter greens with Aleppo chili. And almost everything goes well with the traditional Lebanese spirit, arak, available plentifully here."
Locally sourced, gluten-free options, vegetarian options

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The Stranger Endorses Mike Pellicciotti for State Treasurer

Back in 2016, the SECB held our noses and endorsed current Washington State Treasurer and fucking Republican Duane Davidson to avoid getting stuck with another candidate we described as "the evil human version of the Geico Gecko." It was a dark time, and we were in a dark place. But we're in a much better place now that we can support former Democratic Washington State House Rep. Mike Pellicciotti, who we'll describe as "the law school version of Death Cab for Cutie frontman Ben Gibbard."

Though Pellicciotti did try to strip money from Sound Transit in a misguided attempt to route Tim Eyman's idiotic $30 car tab initiative, his refusal to take corporate PAC money and his career-long emphasis on transparency make up for that. In the Legislature, he stood out as one of the few Democratic lawmakers to oppose a bill designed to hide public records, and he's led the way on good campaign finance bills. Before that he prosecuted Medicare fraud in the Attorney General's office.

As Treasurer, Pellicciotti plans to bring more transparency to the office, maintain the state's good credit rating, and, unlike the incumbent, work closely with lawmakers without the aid of an expensive corporate lobbyist. Though we'd prefer a Treasurer who supports establishing a state bank, Pellicciotti is at least "open to a study" of the issue, whereas Davidson is over here calling it Socialism.

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Next Thursday: We've Got One Final Debate Between Rep. Frank Chopp and Sherae Lascelles!

Next Thursday, a bunch of foul-mouthed Stranger reporters will dress up like maniacs and run these two through a gauntlet of tough questions. Reserve your spot here.
Next Thursday, a bunch of foul-mouthed Stranger reporters will dress up like maniacs and run these two through a gauntlet of tough questions. Reserve your spot here. Anthony Keo

At next Thursday's Stranger Debate, you’ll see a bonafide member of the Democratic Establishment face off against a star of the Seattle Peoples Party for the honor and glory of consistently disappointing the gayborhood in Olympia.

It’s hard to imagine anyone knocking Rep. Frank Chopp out of the seat he’s held since before recorded time, but he didn’t quite clear 50% in the August primary, which means he might be particularly vulnerable this year, especially with record high turnout and an electorate hungry for change.

If there’s anybody prepared to replace him, it’s Sherae Lascelles. Though Chopp has a long list of accomplishments as the longest-serving House Speaker in Washington state history, he also struggles with a reputation for blocking or watering down progressive legislation. Expect Lascelles to make the case for change as they point to their own recent accomplishments as an advocate for sex workers and an organizer of mutual aid efforts.

To help facilitate that conversation, next week a bunch of foul-mouthed Stranger reporters dressed up like maniacs will run these candidates through a gantlet of tough questions, policy battles, fantasy character-building exercises, and a totally low-rent Zoom talent show. After all that, The Stranger will poll the audience and announce a winner.

Debate starts at 8 p.m. and ends at 9:30 p.m. Reserve your spot HERE.

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NewsPoliticsScienceNerdRobotsSeahawksSlog AM/PM

Slog AM: Amy Coney Barrett's Nomination Is Imminent, COVID Cases Keep Climbing, Scientists Operate Tiny Butthole Robot

Thatll probably happen *checks watch* 8 days before the election.
That'll probably happen *checks watch* 8 days before the election. ERIN SCHAFF-POOL/GETTY IMAGE

City of geeks: Seattle officially has the biggest population of geeks in the country. I know what you're thinking: Is that measurable in some way other than how many bland Hinge profiles you swipe through? Yes. The Seattle Times' FYI Guy ran the numbers on how many Seattle residents work in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields. The answer: around 89,700. Put another way, that's 19% of Seattle's workforce.

Idaho needs to outsource COVID-19 cases: Kootenai Health hospital in Coeur D'Alene, Idaho is at 99% capacity for patients as of Wednesday. The hospital is looking at sending COVID-19 patients to Seattle or Portland since other Idaho counties are experiencing similar virus surges.

Judge Amy Coney Barrett's nomination to the Supreme Court voted out of committee: Welp, Trump's third SCOTUS pick will almost inevitably be confirmed by the full Senate on Monday, eight days ahead of the election. This morning, the Republicans of the Senate Judiciary Committee voted unanimously to move Barrett's nomination out of the committee. Democrats boycotted the meeting in a last-ditch effort to oppose the appointment. In their vacant chairs, the Democratic committee members placed blown-up portraits of people who depend on the Affordable Care Act, something Barrett could make a decision on in a Nov. 10 case on its constitutionality. Republicans dismissed the Democrats' boycott as theatrics.

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Slog PM: A Budget Season Check-in, Iran Sent the Proud Boy "Spoof" Emails, Quibi Lasted About 18 Scaramuccis

We need your help. The economic fallout of the coronavirus crisis is threatening our ability to keep producing the stories you've come to love. If you’re able, please consider making a monthly contribution to The Stranger.

Tis the season. Budget season.
'Tis the season. Budget season. Lester Black

The FBI held a surprise press conference this evening to let the people know that "Iran and Russia have taken specific actions to influence public opinion related to our elections," said Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe. Iran is reportedly sending "spoof emails designed to intimidate voters, incite unrest and damage President" Trump. Russia has also "obtained" American voter information, which is a little vague. Some of those "spoof emails" relate to the "Vote for Trump or else!" emails that first appeared to be sent by the Proud Boys. The Department of Homeland Security has now concluded those emails were a deceptive campaign sent by the Iranian government. Tehran impersonating Proud Boys is not the move I was expecting this month, but then again, I have no idea what I was expecting. This story is developing.

I guess I have to watch the new Borat movie: Sacha Baron Cohen’s humor has curdled for me, but I'm probably in the minority with that opinion. His Borat sequel, available on Prime Video, is making headlines for many reasons, but especially for this reason, via The Guardian:

In the film, released on Friday, [Rudy Giuliani] is seen reaching into his trousers and apparently touching his genitals while reclining on a bed in the presence of the actor playing Borat’s daughter, who is posing as a TV journalist.

Following an obsequious interview for a fake conservative news programme, the pair retreat at her suggestion for a drink to the bedroom of a hotel suite, which is rigged with concealed cameras.

After she removes his microphone, Giuliani, 76, can be seen lying back on the bed, fiddling with his untucked shirt and reaching into his trousers. They are then interrupted by Borat who runs in and says: “She’s 15. She’s too old for you.”

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Are Landlords Trying to Kill Small Businesses on the Ave?

Will the Ave as we know it survive the pandemic?
Will the Ave as we know it survive the pandemic? Charles Mudede

After meeting and talking with a number of business owners and urban advocates, I've come to the conclusion that landlords with deep pockets are trying to choke the life out of one of Seattle's most famous streets, the Ave.

I will present my evidence for this conclusion in a moment, but first I want my position on urban matters not to be confused with the knee-jerk anti-density types. I'm an urbanist, though not a market-oriented one. I strongly believe that there is no future for humans if most of us are not soon concentrated into areas that are very small. Density is energy efficient, and so is public transportation.

This is why the bad news is not that the University District was upzoned, and is soon to be connected to a light rail system that will run from Northgate to the Sea-Tac area, and from downtown Seattle to downtown Bellevue. The problem is these developments will be structured in a context that always benefits those at the top.

That said, let's have a look at the Ave.

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