A Massive Wave of Evictions

Checking in on The Stranger

Were moving on out! The Stranger is packing up and headed to our new location in the Chinatown-International District next week. In 28 years, no month in our office has been as important as last month.
We're moving on out! The Stranger is packing up and headed to our new location in the Chinatown-International District next week. In 28 years, no month in our office has been as important as last month. Our coverage of it couldn't have happened without your support. Chase Burns

Hello, Sloggers.

It's been a bit since we've had a check-in. Let's get a quick temperature check.

Yes, like a real one. It's a pandemic out there! I'm feeling around 97 degrees. I hope you are, too.

Strange to think this was less than a month ago.
Strange to think this was less than a month ago. CB

Last time we checked in, we were still figuring out what life might look like at The Stranger after COVID-19's nearly fatal first blow. It's now been over three months since coronavirus hit Seattle, and over three months since Friday the 13, the terrible day when we had to lay off many Stranger staffers after coronavirus-related closures cut ninety percent of our revenue basically overnight. It’s been fucking hard, to say the least. But now, thanks to continued contributions from our readers, we've stabilized. Actually, more than stabilized. If you look back on our past month of coverage, I'd say we're thriving.

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True Lies Is Unstreamable

Jamie Lee Curtis deserves an award for doing so many stunts in a short, revealing dress.
Jamie Lee Curtis deserves an award for doing so many stunts in a short, revealing dress. Courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox
Unstreamable is a weekly column that finds films and TV shows you can't watch on major streaming services in the United States. This week: Cameronian excess in True Lies, mortal mistakes in Hugo Pool, Rekha is a poetess and dancer in Umrao Jaan, and three men just can't stop runnin' in DANGAN Runner.

If you're thinking: "Unstreamable? In this pandemic?" Scarecrow Video offers DVD takeout and a great rental-by-mail service so you can safely rent rare DVDs during self-isolation. Click here to learn more about their program.

TRUE LIES
USA, 1994, 141 minutes, Dir. James Cameron
The former governor of California!
The former governor of California! JK
True Lies has some things going for it. OK, really one thing and that thing is the scene of Jamie Lee Curtis as a once meek housewife stripping for someone she thinks is an arms dealer—but turns out to be her secret super spy husband played by Arnold Schwarzenegger testing his wife’s fidelity—in a way that is sexy but also really goofy. OK, OK—there are actually two things and that second thing is Tia Carrere playing a hot and evil antiques dealer that (spoiler) dies in a fiery explosion. The rest? A Cameronian slog of epic proportions featuring a lot of complicated action scenes, bombs, and racist portrayals of people from the Middle East, all led by Schwarzenegger whose charm dulled with the new millennium.

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Secret Weapon for Small Businesses Struggling Through Pandemic: Seattle Public Library

Librarian Jay Lyman, in bookier times.
Librarian Jay Lyman, in bookier times. Courtesy of Jay Lyman

“As a 125-year-old institution, we may be the oldest economic development institution in town,” librarian Jay Lyman says with no shortage of pride in his voice.

Lyman helps run the SPL’s Library to Business program, which is basically like a business advisor program available to local entrepreneurs, for free. The service includes classes, legal advice, market research, and now in the age of coronavirus, help navigating stimulus funds and loans. It’s been formally in place since 2014, but it’s taken on new urgency in the last few months.

“All of that work was positioning us where when COVID happened,” Lyman says. “It was like, ‘Oh that’s what that was for. We’ve been preparing all this time so we can be ready for this.’”

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The 35 Best Things to Do in Seattle This Weekend: July 3-5, 2020

Catch the premiere of Hannibal Buresss new comedy special Miami Nights on YouTube this Friday.
Catch the premiere of Hannibal Buress's new comedy special Miami Nights on YouTube this Friday. Mathieu Bitton/REX/Shutterstock

Whether or not you're celebrating the Fourth of July this weekend, there's plenty to do to round out your (hopefully) long weekend. We've compiled our top picks for social distancing-friendly happenings below, from 4 the Culture: A Celebration of All Black Lives in Jefferson Park to a Seattle Symphony rebroadcast of selections from Gustav Holst's The Planets. For even more options, check out our complete streaming events and protests & resistance calendars, as well as our guides to the best movies to stream at home this weekend, things to do for the Fourth of July, and anti-racism resources and events.

All events are online unless otherwise noted. Don't forget to wear a mask to all in-person events!

BLACK LIVES MATTER

COMMUNITY
4 the Culture: A Celebration of All Black Lives
Join Eastside 4 Black Lives in Jefferson Park (with your picnic blankets and masks in tow) for a day of performances celebrating Black lives by artists like KB Tha Genius, Alpha Patron, Nësträ, Northwest Tap Connection, and others. 
Saturday (Beacon Hill)

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Disability Groups Say They Didn't Get the Heads-Up About Sidewalk Cafe Legislation

Accessibility as an after thought? I dont fuck with that.
Worst case scenario, I say we put restaurants in the streets. Tom Werner/Getty Images

Last week, Mayor Jenny Durkan and Councilmembers Dan Strauss and Alex Pedersen announced that the city was working on legislation to waive sidewalk permit fees for restaurants as a way to allow people to dine safely outside where COVID-19 transmission is lower.

The solution makes sense—there should be more sidewalk and curbside cafe and overall more outdoor spaces for people. Especially during a pandemic where indoor dining increases the risk of spreading COVID-19. Except, for a lot of people, adding a cafe to the public right of way can be disruptive.

The city didn't proactively check with disability groups before they announced the legislation.

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In July, Expect the Economy to Crash Right Back to March

This is what the job market is on...
This is what the job market is on... PeopleImages/gettyimages.com

Today, July 2, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics' job report showed the economy added 4.8 million jobs in June. Experts thought it would be around 3 million. Last month, the report also surprised experts with an impressive 2.5 million jobs. On both occasions, Trump wasted no time holding a press conference and praising himself. The economy was roaring back. And it must roar back because he has nothing else going for him but the economy, which crashed in February and, over two months, lost 20 million jobs.

The markets transformed the good news from the Bureau of Labor Statistics into modest gains. But, as always, the markets are dreaming. Today's report is already dated. It only covers the first two weeks of June. This is around the time COVID-19 cases were rebounding after remaining mostly flat in May. Yesterday, the US recorded 50,000 cases, a figure that easily raced past the peak of the first surge, 43,000, on March 6. The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Anthony Fauci, recently warned that the US could see 100,000 cases a day in the near future, if tougher anti-market and anti-election-winning measures are not imposed soon.

All of this means the economy is going to grind to a halt again. Already Arizona has closed business, as well as Texas. Florida, however, has decided to play with fire and keep things open. This will only delay its economic recovery and kill lots of people. Ron DeSantis, the governor of the Sunshine State, is fighting a losing battle.

My point: The stock markets are still in June, when new cases hovered between 14,000 cases and 24,000. We do not live in that economy anymore. We live in the one that tanked the economy in March.

There is more bad economic news.

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The Best Movies to Stream This Weekend in Seattle: July 2-5, 2020

Lin-Manuel Mirandas Pulitzer Prize-winning musical Hamilton is hitting the digital screen, baby! Reflect on the history of the Fourth of July while you stream it on Disney+ starting July 3.
Lin-Manuel Miranda's Pulitzer Prize-winning musical Hamilton is hitting the digital screen, baby! Reflect on the history of the Fourth of July while you stream it on Disney+ starting July 3. Disney

As you tuck into potato salad and corn on the cob this Fourth of July, why not brush up on our nation's history? Our picks for this weekend's best movies to stream at home include an award-winning tale of one of America's Founding Fathers (Lin-Manuel Miranda's Hamilton, streaming through Disney+) and a documentary about an influential civil rights leader (Dawn Porter's John Lewis: Good Trouble, streaming through Ark Lodge, SIFF, and the Northwest Film Forum). We've rounded up those and more excellent options—including Crystal Moselle's Skate Kitchen—below. Longing for the big(ger) screen? Check out our guide to drive-in movie theaters in the Seattle area.

New & Noteworthy: Supporting Seattle Businesses

All I Can Say
Blind Melon frontman Shannon Hoon recorded himself on his Hi8 video camera for the better half of the '90s, all the way up to the hours preceding his death at the age of 28. The hundreds of hours of footage show everything from his creative process to the birth of his daughter to his struggles with addiction to the rising power of the internet. This film, released in 2019, compiles key moments of that footage into a video diary.
Available via Scarecrow Video and Northwest Film Forum

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Quarantunes: Michael Flatley's Tribute to Ireland and Yankee Doodle

Well, fiddle dee dee.
Well, fiddle dee dee. The Shows Must Go On

As Big Gay Al once said, “the whole world’s gone to hell. But how are you?”

Between the pandemic, the police, and a dead iguana found in a pizza restaurant’s freezer, 2020 has been rough. It sure would be nice to have something weird to laugh about, and that’s why I’m delighted that Andrew Lloyd Webber has chosen to surprise us by making a completely bonkers Irish dance show available to watch this weekend.

It’s part of his “The Shows Must Go On” series of stage-to-screen adaptations, a different show screened every weekend to raise money for charity. This weekend’s selection is the show Celtic Tiger, featuring Michael Flatley (the Lord of the Dance guy) and it is absolutely bonkers.

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Slog AM: Ghislaine Maxwell Arrested by FBI, Unemployment Drops to 11.1%, Police Arrest Protestors Outside CHOP

President Donald Trump speaking to the press about the latest jobs report earlier this morning.
President Donald Trump speaking to the press about the latest jobs report earlier this morning. Chip Somodevilla/Getty
A seaplane crashed into Lake Washington near Leschi last night around 9 p.m.: Both passengers escaped with no injuries, reports Q13.

The Washington State Fair is not canceled?: Instead they will be hosting "drive-in" concerts, says Seattle P.I. There will be 10 feet in between each parking spot to allow for social distancing, concertgoers must wear masks and remain in their vehicles at all times except to get concessions or go to the bathroom, and only service animals are allowed in. Is this the future? I think I'd definitely go see Gaga this way.

4.8 million workers were taken back last month by employers in the U.S.: Dropping the unemployment rate to 11.1% from an initial estimate of 13.3% in May, reports The Guardian. These figures come from the second week in June when many state economies were cautiously reopening after shutdown due to COVID-19. In the weeks since, many states began to close certain industries again, as an uptick in coronavirus cases threatens to undo progress made. Additionally, 1.4 million Americans filed new claims for unemployment last week.

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A Message to the City from Betsey Brock

Betsey Brock is the executive director of On the Boards.
Betsey Brock is the executive director of On the Boards. Courtesy of Betsey Brock

It's Thursday, July 2, and FYI, mark your calendars, this column is taking tomorrow off, in honor of the national fiction that July 4, 1776 is this country's birthday (its actual birthday is August 1619).

Today we turn to someone who's a total connector in the world of culture, Betsey Brock. She knows art people (she helped lead the Henry for almost a decade), film people (worked at Reel Girls, served on the board of Northwest Film Forum), dance people (advisory board member of Velocity), performance art people (she's now the executive director of On the Boards)—the list goes on.

"I've been thinking a lot about my position as a leader of an arts organization in this city," she says, "and I've been phone-banking, and donating money, and marching, and contacting my elected officials, and really connecting with with my community in a different way—but that doesn't change the fact that I'm doing it from a position of privilege, as a white woman, a product of white-supremacy culture, in an organization and a field that is inherently part of a systematic history of exclusion."

She has more to say along those lines. But first, here is some beautiful footage of Lake Washington.

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Slog PM: CHOP Clearing Continues, City Council Advances Big Business Tax, Kanye and Elon Both Wear Orange

This morning Seattle Department of Transportation, Seattle Parks and Recreation, and Seattle Police Deparment removed all protestors from CHOP in order to dismantle tents, barricades, and art.
This morning Seattle Department of Transportation, Seattle Parks and Recreation, and Seattle Police Deparment removed all protestors from CHOP in order to dismantle tents, barricades, and art. David Ryder/ Getty
Bite of Seattle and Taste of Tacoma are canceled this year: I thought the cancellation of these foodie festivals were a foregone conclusion, but it was confirmed today.

Judi Dench insists she’d be dead if it weren’t for TikTok: The platform, "saved her life," reports Vulture. Same, Judi, same.

Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda's "JumpStart Seattle" tax advances out of budget committee to a final full council vote set for Monday: The proposal would raise more than $200 million a year, targeting companies with many highly paid employees, reports the Seattle Times. Mosqueda has proposed using this tax to "underwrite $86 million in coronavirus relief this year, to buttress city services as Seattle emerges from the pandemic in 2021 and to fund affordable housing, business assistance and community development in the long term."

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Mayor Orders Cops to Sweep CHOP, Protesters Vow to Keep Marching

Theyre back!
They're back! RS

At the direction of Mayor Jenny Durkan, "hundreds" of cops cleared the Capitol Hill Organized Protest area starting around 5:00 a.m. Wednesday morning.

The officers, many of whom wore "mourning bands" but not state-mandated face coverings, booted homeless people from their tents in Cal Anderson Park and arrested over three dozen people.

Malcolm, who has led several protests in the last few weeks and who said he was near the East Precinct when the cops pushed through, called the police action "messed up."

"They were throwing people out of their tents, pulling them out of their tents, slashing [the tents], throwing the tents everywhere...people have their life savings in those tents," he said.

Throughout the morning, city crews dumped tents into garbage trucks, washed graffiti off buildings, and dismantled (and promised to preserve) plywood art wrapped around cement barricades, bringing an end to the protest camps that had clustered around the precinct since the Seattle Police Department abandoned it on June 8. Protesters worked to protect the building from destruction throughout June, responding quickly to an arson attempt, a window-smashing, and an attempted occupation as SPD limited their response to emergencies within the area.

In a statement, Attorney General Bill Barr commended Seattle Police Department Chief Carmen Best for "restoring the rule of law in Seattle."

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Latest Coronavirus Stats for King County: Still Not Great!

1583444416-cdc-w9keokhajkw-unsplash.jpg
UNSPLASH/ CDC

Welp, King County has released new stats on COVID-19 transmission, and you might not want to hear this but ohhhh boy it’s not looking great. After a dip in transmission throughout May, the virus has bounced back with nearly double the rate of positive tests, and significantly higher reproductive rate.

But the good news is that deaths are down, so … yay?

And in totally unrelated news, American Airlines has decided that now is a great time to start flying planes into Sea-Tac. What could go wrong?

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CHOP Made Seattle Look Like a Real City

Memories of Utopia...
Memories of Utopia... Charles Mudede

At around 4:00 p.m. on June 28, here I am walking down the stretch of 13th Avenue between Pike and Pine. My destination is around the corner. My thoughts are completely disconnected from my surroundings. I'm thinking about Hannah Arendt. About how she blamed the rise of totalitarianism in Germany and Soviet Union on the failure of European social democracy to become as global as capitalism. I read Arendt that morning because of the Seattle Democratic Socialists of America demonstration that occurred at Magnuson Park the day before. The event climaxed outside of Mayor Jenny Durkan's home. She was not there. But her gate was defaced.

As I walk down 13th, I'm trying to figure out what in Arendt's idea works and what doesn't. Suddenly, something pulls my thoughts out of the self inside of me and throws them onto the street around me. I stop. Hannah Arendt and social democracy dissolve. The street says: I have been here before, but not here in Seattle. It's another city that I visited either in a dream or in the real world.

It takes a moment or two for me to realize it's Berlin.

I was there in 2014 for two weeks, and I stayed in a hotel in the Mitte, Hotel Motel One. The breakfast was cold boiled eggs and cold cuts and cold tomatoes. But that's not what transports me to the capital of Germany. It's instead all of the graffiti on the walls next to me. There is almost nothing like it in most of Seattle; but many of the streets in Berlin are covered almost completely with graffiti. Before it was cleaned up and gentrified, New York City was once like this. The same goes for London. Berlin, however, never cleaned up, never became respectable. It kept alive what makes a city feel like a city. The democracy of its surfaces.

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Sticker Patrol: Stranger World Headquarters Edition

sticker_patrol_header.jpg
Jess Stein

This is our last official week in our Capitol Hill location. In this special edition of Sticker Patrol, I snapped pictures of stickers around the office to pay tribute to office.

"COCK"
Nice.
Nice. JK
Spotted on a clipboard! Assuming it was for HUMP!

"Caution: Don't Hit Your Head"
Spotted on the side of a desk.
Spotted on the side of a desk. JK
There are several chairs in the office that I do NOT trust and often envisioned this happening to me as I love to lean back and THINK before writing my posts.

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