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Slog PM: Experts Agree Seattle's City Flag Sucks, Bleach Doesn't Cure Autism, What Are You Doing for Donald Trump's Birthday?

Did you know this is our city flag?
Did you know this is our city flag? City of Seattle

What do you see when you see the City of Seattle's flag?: I see sperm fertilizing an egg. So does Nathalie Graham, former Slog AM/PM writer (who will be resuming her position as Slog AM writer starting on Monday—but more on that at the bottom of this post). Seattle's official flag, created in 1990, when the city was about to host the "Goodwill Games," is turquoise and white "with swirling currents flowing around the city's seal," writes the Seattle Times. But a Portland flag expert has concluded that the Seattle flag is heinous and breaks 2 of the key flag rules, determined by the North American Vexillological Association (NAVA):

5 key elements of good flag design
1. Keep it simple. The flag should be so simple that a child can draw it from memory.
2. Use meaningful symbolism. The flag’s images, colors or patterns should relate to what it symbolizes.
3. Use two or three basic colors. Limit the number of colors on the flag to three that contrast well and come from the standard color set.
4. No lettering or seals. Never use writing of any kind or an organization’s seals.
5. Be distinctive or be related. Avoid duplicating other flags, but use similarities to show connections.

Which rules do we break? Read the Seattle Times piece. It's funny, and I agree that our flag is weird, but you know what? It's Pride month. Leave our flag alone. Cummies for everyone. UPDATE: Upon further review, I've decided our flag is ugly. Your weekend assignment is to design a new flag. Email it to Mayor Durkan or me.


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Last-Minute Plans: 104 Free, Cheap & Easy Things To Do in Seattle This Weekend: June 14-16, 2019

Snag scoops from vendors like Puffle Up (pictured) at the South Lake Union Saturday Markets Ice Cream Social Pop-Up.
Snag scoops from vendors like Puffle Up (pictured) at the South Lake Union Saturday Market's Ice Cream Social Pop-Up. Ice Cream Social Pop-Up via Facebook

Panicking because you don’t know what to do this weekend and you're short on cash? Don't worry—below, find all of your options for last-minute entertainment that won't cost more than $10, ranging from Freeway Park in Bloom to the Chase the Light Pop-up Exhibition, and from the Pride edition of Mama's Thirsty: A Queer Lady Hangout to Black Arts Fest. For even more options, check out our complete Things To Do calendar and our list of cheap & easy things to do in Seattle all year long. Plus, check out our list of last-minute and afforable Father's Day events for this weekend.

Found something you like and don't want to forget about it later? Click "Save Event" on any of the linked events below to add it to your own private list.



  1. Bring Back the '90s
    Bandit Theater will present a night of improv dedicated to the glory days of TRL and frosted tips.
    (Ballard, $10)

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Sawant's Getting Lots of Money from Non-Seattleites, Twitter Dispatches, and More City Council Election News

Lester Black

Alright, what's up, how was your week? You forgot there was a Seattle City Council election going on—what? Haven't you been stopped by canvassers outside your local Trader Joe's like the rest of us?! Don't worry. I'm going to get you up to speed. Lester Black, who usually does this thing is OUT and by OUT I mean he's in ITALY, and I'm upset about it! Enough of that. Let's talk council news.

Candidates capitalize on Democracy Voucher program: Democracy Vouchers are magic. You just pick a candidate, sign your name, and you can send up to $100 in voucher money (which is real actual money you paid for with taxes!!) to whomever tickles your fancy in a fun I-believe-in-this-politician way (a saucy, almost unheard of kink). Most candidates are jumping at the chance to get that sweet, sweet voucher cash. Some, like Kshama Sawant (D3), aren't. And Sawant's financials aren't hurting—more on that later. But, candidates featured in this Seattle Times article like Ami Nguyen (D3), Logan Bowers (D3), and Shaun Scott (D4) are working the DV angle and working it well. Their campaign coffers are lined with voter-funded money, and it's making all the difference.

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Kishi Bashi's New Album Glitters with Hope Despite Its Bleak Inspiration

Kishi Bashi playing at one of the former internment camp sites for his album and film ‘Omoiyari.’
Kishi Bashi playing at one of the former internment camp sites for his album and film Omoiyari. If you missed out on tickets for this Sunday's show, he'll be back in October... MAX RITTER

The fourth and latest album from Kaoru Ishibashi (professionally known as Kishi Bashi) is bright, poignant, heartfelt, and infused with a sense of hope, even during its more melancholy moments. From the breezy, acoustic-guitar-picked opening of "Penny Rabbit and Summer Bear" with its Harry Nilsson "Everybody's Talkin'" feel, to the sweeping symphonics and forlorn beauty of "Summer of '42," to the twangy fiddle-rousing banjo-plucked closer "Annie, Heart Thief of the Sea," Omoiyari is a stunner that remains uplifting despite its bleak inspiration: the WWII internment of Japanese Americans.

Omoiyari is a bit of a departure from Kishi Bashi's previous efforts, folkier while conversely more finely composed and orchestrated. Instead of mostly producing the entire album himself, the Berklee-trained musician (who sings and plays violin primarily, but also guitar and keys) brought on a band (including frequent collaborator Tall Tall Trees on bass and banjo) and some chamber players to back him up. It's also more political, though the parallels between what happened then versus what's happening now are examined more deeply and thoroughly in accompanying documentary Omoiyari: A Songfilm by Kishi Bashi, due out sometime next year.

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Deadpan Undead in Jim Jarmusch’s The Dead Don’t Die


Jim Jarmusch has been on a streak lately. Only Lovers Left Alive (2013) was one of the best films in the 66-year-old writer/director’s astonishingly rich oeuvre. Three years later, Paterson was just as good. And after that, he headed into documentary territory, sharply profiling Iggy Pop and the Stooges for Gimme Danger.

Iggy is back in Jarmusch’s latest, The Dead Don’t Die, as is Paterson star Adam Driver—but aside from that, Jarmusch’s zombie comedy comes hard out of left field. It’s goofy, gory, and great, and it’s exactly the kind of rambling, lighthearted movie that should never be discussed using obnoxious phrases like “astonishingly rich oeuvre.”

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Furry Conventions Are Not Sexy Sex Things Where Havers of Sex Do Sex!


Recent Savage Love Letter of the Day: She's been blowing her husband for 25 years but something's suddenly off, manipulative rich guy shouldn't get his balls busted for free, twenty years ago his wife announced she wouldn't be blowing or kissing him anymore... and did talkative tenants involve their property manager in their kink? And, as always, last week's column and Savage Lovecast.

Up first, gang bangs:

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Online Trolls Hurl Anti-Semitic Invective at Seattle City Council Candidate Ari Hoffman

Stop doing death threats, 8channers!
Stop doing death threats, 8channers! Getty Images
According to KIRO, some dingus on 8chan, a public forum known to be populated by trolls, hurled threats and anti-Semitic slurs at Ari Hoffman, a city council candidate running in District 2.

On Monday the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) published screenshots of an anonymously written post on the forum. The original post read, "This fucker is running for Seattle city council [The individual] lives on my street, and has an isreali flag hanging out front. What is the move?"

One of the commenters replied with a death threat: "Kill [the individual]. Literally kill [the individual]."

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A New Hot Pot Spot and More Seattle Food News You Can Use: June 14, 2019 Edition

The Sichuanese restaurant Chengu Memory is the latest hot pot restaurant to hit the International District.
The Sichuanese restaurant Chengu Memory is the latest hot pot restaurant to hit the International District. Chengdu Memory

This week, a new option for Sichunaese hot pot hits the International District, a natural wine and seafood destination arrives in Belltown, and a creperie from a famous French chef opens in West Seattle. Read our weekly dining dispatch for that and more of the latest food updates, like the next Little Big Burger location, a new vegan bakery and ice cream shop, and an upcoming doughnut shop from the founder of Top Pot, plus events for your weekend, like the Washington Brewers Festival. For more ideas, check out our Father's Day calendar, our list of Seattle food and drink specials to try this June, and our full food and drink calendar.

Chengdu Memory
On the heels of the recent opening of the Sichuan-style dry pot restaurant Chuan on Capitol, this elegant new Sichuanese restaurant serving hot pots opened in the former space of Chinese-Korean eatery Red Lantern on Wednesday, June 12. Guests can choose from among five soup bases (a spicy broth with beef oil, a base made with pork bones, a mushroom base, a tomato base, or a numbing Szechuan pepper base with pickled cabbage) and customize it further with a selection of add-ons like deep fried pork, spicy braised beef, cumin lamb, short ribs, pork belly, and more.
Chinatown-International District

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Seattle Crows Siding with the Homeless Hating Mayor?

Im feeling you, Mayor Durkan.
"I'm feeling you, Mayor Durkan." La_Corivo/

As I rose on a working and steep escalator in the cavernous 3rd Avenue and Yelser Way section of Pioneer Square Station, I heard the mad screaming of crows. What was this commotion about? It sounded like the sky was falling. When I reached the top of the "urban canyon," as the artist Laura Sindell named it back in 1990, and which is covered by a glass and steel structure that resembles the shopping centers of early 19th century Paris (called arcades), I saw the black birds panicking in the air and hating on a poor black woman who was walking toward Second Avenue. She was in her mid-40s, average height, average American weight, and clad in dark-blue pants and a light-brown t-shirt. Her hair was very natural looking. Crow after crow dive-bombed her head.

When she crossed Yesler, the still-screaming birds followed her. What did this woman do to make them so angry? And it appeared to be all of the crows on the block. In this and that tree or street lamp or while flying, they were all screaming: SHES'S THE ONE! THAT'S HER! THE ONE! The black woman finally entered the safety of a tent near Second and Main. The crows were attacking a homeless person.

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15 Last-Minute and Affordable Father's Day 2019 Events in Seattle: June 14-16, 2019

Check out 40 pre-WWII yachts with your favorite nautical dads at the Bell Harbor Classic Weekend.
Check out 40 pre-WWII yachts with your favorite nautical dads at the Bell Harbor Classic Weekend. CLASSIC WEEKEND VIA FACEBOOK

If Father's Day (Sun June 16) snuck up on you and you haven't yet made plans, your dad doesn't have to know. Below, we've compiled all the last-minute ways to spend time with your favorite father figures for $15 and under, from a KEXP Father's Day Kids Dance Party to the Bell Harbor Classic Weekend. Check out even more options on our complete Father's Day calendar. For more things to do this weekend, check out our regular cheap & easy roundup.



  1. Bell Harbor Classic Weekend
    Gather your favorite dads and check out over 40 pre-WWII yachts—including several Blanchard Stock Cruisers "dreamboats," a 72-foot schooner and a 100-foot fantail motor yacht—to inspire your nautical adventures.
    (Downtown, free)

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RIP Ex-Seattle Musician and Art Director of Medical Records Label, Tyler Jacobsen

Roladex keyboardist/vocalist Jacobsen played a crucial role in shaping respected Seattle label Medical Records aesthetic.
Roladex keyboardist/vocalist Jacobsen played a crucial role in shaping respected Seattle label Medical Records' aesthetic. COURTESY OF TROY WADSWORTH

Medical Records* owner Dr. Troy Wadsworth related the bad news on June 12 that the great Seattle label's art director and publicist, Tyler Jacobsen, had passed away in Nashville, Tennessee, where he was an adjunct professor at Watkins College of Art. Jacobsen lived in Seattle for many years in the 2010s and during his time here had worked in a similar role at Cornish College of the Arts, in addition to playing keyboards and singing in the synthwave duo Roladex with vocalist/keyboardist Elyssa Dianne. In 2014, they released Anthems for the Micro-Age, a very good, subtly melancholic album informed by John Carpenter, OMD, and Magnetic Fields.

In a Facebook post, long-time friend Wadsworth, who attended high school with Jacobsen in Wichita Falls, Texas, wrote a moving eulogy:

The world will never fully comprehend the glowing star that was tragically extinguished yesterday. It is with the heaviest heart that I have lost my best friend, comrade, confidant, Medical Records designer, comedian and all around unique individual, Tyler Jacobsen. I’ve known this incessant joker since I was a teenager. From the day I played him Mercury Rev tapes, I knew we would bond. We spent our formative years pontificating life, art, music, food, philosophy, technology and every aspect of our personal lives. Not only an incomparably talented producer with his many incredible projects and collaborations (OMD20/20, Denim & Diamonds and Roladex), Tyler was most of all a brilliant artist.

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Illegal Dispensaries Flourish in Los Angeles

Rex_Wholster/Getty Images
I visit LA regularly, but I struggle to adequately explain the differences that city's cannabis scene has with Oregon's, or even the Bay Area. In October 2017, I wrote a column about shopping at LA dispensaries shortly before California instituted their legalized recreational program. Even then, I wasn't able to get across just how many dispensaries I had to choose, even taking into account the sprawl that is Los Angeles.

There was also a very distinct raised-middle-finger attitude, as well as clear suggestions that regulators and enforcement agencies were welcome to consume oversized portions of male reproductive organs in relation to non-compliant (AKA illegal) cannabis sale activities. I still recall trying to explain to one such dispensary owner the strict adherence by virtually all Oregon dispensaries to OLCC dictates, and her bafflement as to why. But a recent story illustrates both these matters nicely.

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NPR Spotlighted 15 Bands Redefining Seattle's Music Scene, and the Black Tones Made the Cut

The incredible Walker twins, Cedric and Eva, are the beating heart of the Black Tones
The incredible Walker twins, Cedric and Eva: the banging heart of the Black Tones. Danny Denial

I realize we write about howling grungy blues-punk/crunchy Hendrixian rock torch-bearers the Black Tones a lot. We recommended them as a must-see at last year's Capitol Hill Block Party. That was followed by a CHBP post-op on a set that surpassed even our high expectations. And then, most recently, a feature about their imminent rise to superstardom that preceded the release of their debut full-length, Cobain and Cornbread, which was produced by none other than the legendary Jack Endino (Soundgarden, Nirvana, etc.).

Of course, we wouldn't be gushing about them so much had we not been fans. This is a big city, after all, and there are loads of great bands operating here. But some, like the Black Tones, feel more special, more ready to break out, more compelling and engaging, more powerful and fiery, than others, which makes it hard not to give them extra ink.

And we aren't the only ones who've taken notice.

Proof of this lies in their sold-out April 11 album release show (video after the jump), and the national buzz they've been generating: Just this week, NPR shined the spotlight on 15 Seattle musicians “redefining” our city’s music “beyond grunge,” and the Black Tones were listed among several other groups that have gotten ink in The Stranger, too (Chong the Nomad, Knife Knights, Tres Leches, Gifted Gab, and a handful of other locals who are actually noteworthy).

Here's what Martin Douglas wrote for NPR:

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Seattle Symphony Music Director Ludovic Morlot Says Bye, and Talks About His Dream Orchestra

Ludos finally taking a vacation. Kind of.
Ludo's bowing out. But before he goes, I made him talk to me about dream orchestras, taking vacations, and the Seattle music scene. Brandon Patoc

This weekend and next Ludovic Morlot will conduct his last two programs as the music director for the largest arts organization in the state. The passionate French conductor is going out with a bang and a celebration of the colorful music he's championed, all while highlighting the Seattle Chorale, the Northwest Boy’s Choir, and the symphony’s own oboe principal, Mary Lynch, as a soloist. “I wanted the whole family to be onstage,” he said in his exit interview with the Stranger.

During his eight-year tenure the symphony pulled in five Grammy Awards (s/o to recording engineer Dmitriy Lipay, who played a major role in the process), won orchestra of the year 2018, increased their engagement with issues affecting Washington (such as homelessness and Trump's Muslim ban), generally livened things up after years of complacency under former music director Gerard Schwartz, and, not to be overlooked, "created more positions in the winds." The orchestra started with three chairs on each wind instrument, and now they have four on each, all of which you'll hear in action over the next two weekends.

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Bassist James Alexander Gives the Lowdown on Newly Reissued, Iconic Blaxploitation Film Soundtrack Shaft

We knew that we had something unique, but didn’t realize how unique it was until later on.
"We knew that we had something unique, but didn’t realize how unique it was until later on." Craft Recordings

Today Craft Recordings is reissuing an expanded edition of Isaac Hayes's groundbreaking soundtrack to the 1971 blaxploitation film Shaft. (You can read Wm.™ Steven Humphrey's scathing review of the remake—starring Samuel L. Jackson and Richard Roundtree—here.) I've not seen the original version of the movie, but I've listened to the soundtrack many times, and it's justifiably entered the canon as one of the greatest in its field, up there with Curtis Mayfield's Super Fly, Marvin Gaye's Trouble Man, James Brown's Black Caesar, Roy Ayers's Coffey, and Earth, Wind & Fire's Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song.

On Shaft, Hayes excelled as a crafter of lush melodies, tender meditations, muscle-clenching suspense, and with "Theme from Shaft," a cosmos-sweeping paragon of vertiginous, orchestral funk that not only topped the charts, but also served as bumper music for the Detroit Red Wings hockey team's TV broadcasts in the early '70s—an unbelievable paradox for the ages.

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