The Winning Films of the 15th Annual HUMP! Film Festival

Slog PM: Biden Calls Iowa Farmer "Fat," Sawant Calls for Winter Moratorium on Evictions, Inslee Gets New Hip

Biden challenges Iowa man to a foot race because he is determined to lose the Democratic nomination.
Biden challenges Iowa man to a foot race because he is determined to lose the Democratic nomination. JOSHUA LOTT/GETTY IMAGES

Uber reports sexual assault numbers: Today the ride hailing company reported over 3,000 claims of sexual assaults, 9 murders, and 58 dead in crashes during rides in a one year. NPR says the number is 6,000 claims of sexual assault over two years. "Many ride-hailing companies initially allowed almost anyone with a car to become a driver without the screening and licenses required in the taxi industry. Reports of sexual assault and murders from ride-hailing trips have since become a regular occurrence," reports the New York Times. Now do Lyft.

Biden challenges Iowa farmer to push-up contest, foot race, IQ test: At a campaign stop on his "No Malarkey" tour in Iowa, an old farmer and self-described Warren supporter got on the mic and criticized Biden's son. Because he is a bad candidate, the former Vice President punched back (and he kept punching and punching and punching), calling the guy "fat" and challenging him to various feats of strength and speed. On Twitter, his comms person, Symone D. Sanders, said Biden said "fact" instead of fat. Viewers may judge for themselves. The New York Times has the highest quality video.

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Check Out These 35 Beer Events and Releases in Seattle During the 2019 Holiday Drinking Season

North Carolinas popular Burial Beer Co., known for its quirkily named beers like the When You Lay in Your Grave DIPA (pictured), will be featured at both the Pine Box and Brouwers Cafe this month.
North Carolina's popular Burial Beer Co., known for its quirkily named beers like the "When You Lay in Your Grave" DIPA (pictured), will be featured at both the Pine Box and Brouwer's Cafe this month. Burial Beer Co.

Seattle's thriving craft beer scene is busy year-round, but bustling December seems particularly packed with beer-related happenings, including highly anticipated releases (like this year's variants of Fremont Brewing's barrel-aged "B-Bomb"), events showcasing dark beers and winter warmers, and tap takeovers from guest breweries like North Carolina's popular Burial Beer Co. We've rounded them up here so you can maximize your beer-drinking in between holiday parties. For more ideas, check out our list of places to try boozy winter drinks, our winter holidays calendar, and our food and drink calendar.

Ben Paris Pilsner Repeal Day Release
The downtown restaurant Ben Paris is named after a Seattle sportsman and entrepreneur, who used to run Ben Paris Cigars, Lunch & Cards in the same space in the early 20th century and who fought for the legalization of selling beer on Sundays. For Repeal Day, which commemorates the end of Prohibition in the United States, they'll honor his memory with the release of a new pilsner brewed in collaboration with Old Stove Brewing Company, plus happy hour pricing on beers and daiquiris from Batch 206 Distillery and free swag.

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Experience the first annual Seattle Wine & Film Festival

Two days of award-winning films with excellent local wine & food presented at Old Rainier Brewery in SoDo. Dress to impress at the formal gala, 7pm, Saturday Jan 18. You'll enjoy the U.S. Premiere of the captivating Japanese film Star Sand with the director’s comments as well as a classical music concert by world-class guitarist Matt Palmer. Tickets available NOW.

SassyBlack’s Ancient Mahogany Gold Is Natural Therapy for the Independent Soul

See SassyBlack on Saturday, December 7, at the Clock-Out Lounge.
SassyBlack performs on Saturday, December 7, at the Clock-Out Lounge. TEXAS ISAIAH

Ever since starting out as a music/arts/culture writer, the Afrofuturist artist Catherine Harris-White, aka SassyBlack, has long been on my radar as someone I sought to cover and, eventually, interview. Harris-White’s musical alter ego makes space-age electronic soul that’s a breeding ground for radical self-love.

The unapologetically Black and queer artist who studied jazz vocals and graduated from Cornish College of the Arts works the same vein as Lizzo’s self-care-focused Coconut Oil. On Ancient Mahogany Gold, Harris-White’s new LP as SassyBlack, she sometimes flirts with the idea of having a partner, but the object of her affection and protection is usually herself. 

I recently fulfilled my destiny and spent some time on the phone with Harris-White, discussing her evolution, her creative process, and the many opportunities she’s seized on her journey to becoming a successful, self-made independent artist, starting with her time as one-half of the hip-hop/soul duo THEESatisfaction.

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Government Cuts $5.5 Billion from Food Stamps Over Five Years, but Gives Banks $300 Billion in Only Three Months

Get it? The pig is the Federal Reserve Bank.
The pig is the Federal Reserve Bank. You dig? twinsterphoto/

The Federal Reserve is quietly pumping big money into the banking system by way of the market for repurchase agreements (the repo market). In September, this sector—which connects institutions with cash to institutions in need of quick cash (short term loans)—went suddenly dry, and interest rates on short term debts spiked from around 2 percent to 10 percent. To normalize interest rates, the Fed began pumping cash into market by purchasing stagnant paper (treasury bills and other securities). Since then, a staggering $300 billion (the feds pumped another $70 billion into the repo markets this month), has been spent to keep the repo market going.

Jerome Powell, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, claimed that this massive operation was not quantitative easing (QE)—the $4 trillion Fed program that re-inflated the insolvent stock market after the crash of 2008—because the government is now only purchasing short term debts. QE was about long term debts. But this distinction is meaningless for one simple reason: the repo operation is, like QE, expanding the Fed's balance sheet. Meaning, the cost of saving this financial market is, once again, being transferred to the public.

Ivan Martchev, an investment strategist, put it this way in Market Watch:

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41 Movies Worth Watching in Seattle This Weekend: Dec 5–8, 2019

Holiday movie or not holiday movie? Who cares! See Die Hard .
Holiday movie or not holiday movie? Who cares! See Die Hard . 20th Century Fox

You have many new and classic options for moviegoing this weekend, like the beloved Muppet Christmas Carol, the cyberpunk series Paranoid Data: Pre-Millennium Tension in Film, or the brutal, wintry epic Market Lazarová. And don't neglect to celebrate the season with explosions and one-liners in Die Hard! See all of our film critics’ picks below, and, if you're looking for even more options, check out our film events calendar and complete movie times listings.

Note: Movies play Thursday–Sunday unless otherwise noted

The Aeronauts
Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones (The Theory of Everything) re-team for a tale of a 19th-century meteorologist and a daring pilot who set out to break the French altitude record in a hot-air balloon.
Varsity Theatre

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My Favorite Happy Hour Special: Suika's Ten-Bero Set

Suika's ten-bero set comes with a pint of Sapporo and your choice of either sake or a Moscow Mule. It will
Suika's ten-bero set comes with a pint of Sapporo and your choice of either sake or a Moscow Mule. It will "make you bero bero (=drunk)," as the Happy Hour menu reads. CB

As a gay, I assumed the best part of living in Capitol Hill would be the "gayborhood." That's mostly true—having a handful, or, perhaps, a fistful of gay bars in a two-block radius is a perk—but my favorite part of living and working on the Hill is, without a doubt, the neighborhood's great izakayas. If or when I move, these Japanese pubs will be what I miss the most.

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118 Major Events to Know About in the Seattle Area This Weekend: Dec 6-8, 2019

Dozens of caroling teams will gather in Westlake Center on Friday for the annual Great Figgy Pudding Caroling Competition.
Dozens of caroling teams will gather in Westlake Center on Friday for the annual Great Figgy Pudding Caroling Competition. COURTESY OF THE PIKE MARKET SENIOR CENTER & FOOD BANK

This weekend is shaping up to be a busy one. As the holiday season approaches ever faster, communities across the region are celebrating with tree lightings and parades, and holiday markets and craft fairs are beginning to pop up in full force, not to mention Seattle's regularly busy schedule of arts and music events. So, to help you sort through everything, we've compiled a list of the highlights. Below, you'll find the biggest events you need to know about in every genre, from Ravenna's Candy Cane Lane Holiday Lights Festival to the Winter Beer Fest to Ahamefule J. Oluo's Susan. For a deeper dive, check out our complete EverOut Things To Do calendar, where you'll find guides to everything from this week's best concerts to where to get your own Christmas tree.


33rd Annual Dickens Fair
The 33rd annual Dickens Fair promises all the old-fashioned holiday merriment of 1800s England—including craft vendors and live music—with none of the measles, mumps, or ghosts.
Saturday, 12309 22nd St NE (Lake Stevens)

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Inbox Jukebox Track of the Day: The Post-Punk Anti-Anthem "Fade Out the World" by Respected Seattle Producer Ian Kurtis Crist's New Project, Béret

Seattle DIY-scene catalyst Crist has a brilliant new album.
Seattle DIY-scene catalyst Crist has a brilliant new album. Gordon De Los Santos

Béret, "Fade Out the World" (Born Yesterday)

Ian Kurtis Crist used to front the Seattle band Health Problems, about whom Brittnie Fuller wrote in a 2012 Underage column: "Vocalist Ian Kurtis Crist channels demonic frontmen like David Yow and Iggy Pop, howling and contorting, climbing on monitors, simulating sexual intercourse with the stage, undressing himself, and pretend-crying in corners. The band's drug-tinged, stumbling abandon is also very tight in the way that a band like the Jesus Lizard balance their intoxicating noise stupor with rhythmic concrete." That sounds amazing, but if Crist's newest project Béret is any indication, he's mellowed considerably. Not that I'm complaining.

Crist's third album under this handle, Jesus White, is a modern-day reclamation of post-punk that slyly scathes and prettily broods in varying shades of brilliant gray. It's one of those slow growers that'll really hook you on the third listen. Fans of the Fall (pre-Brix), Protomartyr, Tyvek, and their ilk should dig it.

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How Come He Keeps Finding Himself Jerking Off When He Could Be Fucking the Fiancée?

I'm a straight male and I love my fiancée. But while I am physically attracted to her, I find myself masturbating rather than having sex with her. She knows, but we don't talk about it—we can't—and recently she walked in on me, and it was very awkward. I put it away and she pretended she didn't see. At first I assumed I was masturbating because I was prone to romantic "dry spells" and was used to taking care of things. But at this point, she's sleeping in the other room and I'm quietly jerking it, knowing that I could have her.

Right Handed Man

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Get Ready for Light Rail Nightmares, Seattle

Expect big delays and a whole lot of traffic.
Expect big delays and a whole lot of traffic. COURTESY OF SOUND TRANSIT

Light rail users should prepare themselves for a massive clusterfuck coming at the beginning of 2020, when construction to connect the forthcoming East Link line to the existing light rail tracks in the tunnel downtown will commence, as Seattle Bike Blog reports.

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A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Korean Genius

At 15 years old, E.J. Koh was left in the United States when her parents moved to South Korea.
EJ Koh reads from and signs copies of The Magical Language of Others at Elliot Bay Book Company on January 7. JENNY JIMENEZ

This story is part of The Stranger's Art + Performance Quarterly, Winter Edition, which is on stands now.

"There is a Korean belief that you are born the parent of the one you hurt most," E.J. Koh writes in her new memoir, The Magical Language of Others. "I was revenge when I was born in 1988 at O'Connor Hospital in San Jose, California."

This is the logic that drives Koh's narrative, a cinematic and multigenerational saga about the hard work of repairing past transgressions through present action so that the future can be, hopefully, maybe—so long as we keep working at it—more joyful.

At 15 years old, Koh and her brother were left in the United States when Koh's father took a lucrative, high-powered job in South Korea, and her mom went with him. The parents moved Koh and her 19-year old brother, along with a husky dog and a parakeet named Mieko, into a small house in Davis, California, where they more or less raised each other. At a recent reading from the memoir, someone approached Koh and quipped, "It's like you wrote A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Korean Genius"—riffing on the title of Dave Eggers's 2000 memoir about a couple of siblings basically raising each other.

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The Top 10 New Pioneer Square Art Shows to Check Out at First Thursday Tonight

See Marco Diazs exuberant acrylics, like Mother and Daughter, at ArtXchanges A Circle Around the Sun.
See Marco Diaz's exuberant acrylics, like Mother and Daughter, at ArtXchange's A Circle Around the Sun.

On the first Thursday of every month, Seattleites flock to the streets of Pioneer Square for the city's central and oldest art walk, which offers opportunities to stroll, sip on wine, and attend as many gallery openings as possible. But, in most cases, the shows are up for longer than just one night, and the historic neighborhood is a great place to check out art any day of the year. So, below, we've compiled the most promising exhibits that are having opening receptions on December 5—complete with a Google map at the bottom. You can also find more options on our First Thursday calendar, including second receptions for shows like Paul Rucker: Forever and shorter-term events like the one-night A.Oei Fashion Show or Communal Apposition: Works from within PCNW. For art in other neighborhoods, check out our complete visual art calendar.

Ann Marie Perkins-Rosenberg: The Great Return (To the Source)
This local, nature-influenced artist creates mixed-media works incorporating ethical taxidermy and pen-and-ink drawings in earthy, symbolic, mystical designs, like an ouroboros figure made with a real snakeskin.
Mortlake and Co.

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This Seattle Bus Driver Has Seen Some Shit


Nathan Vass has seen some shit. Literally.

In "Fecal and Philosophical Matters," one of the many poignant pieces in The Lines That Make Us: Stories from Nathan's Bus, a collection of photos and essays chronicling Vass's 12 years driving the night shift on the 7/49 bus route, Vass tells the tale of a panhandler in a wheelchair who got hit by a bag of shit tossed from the window of a BMW.

When Vass pulled his bus up to the stop on Eastlake and Harvard, the panhandler asked if he could catch a ride to the Urban Rest Stop downtown to get cleaned up. Vass obliged and wheeled him onto the bus himself. The thankful passenger wept with shame and gratitude, telling Vass that four other drivers had turned him away. Vass doesn't blame the other drivers for passing on the man in his condition. He understands that taking on such a passenger could pose a risk. But Vass is just the kind of guy who will take that risk to help the powerless every time.

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John Waters Interview: Mr. Know-It-All Talks Tarnished Wisdom and Why He Stopped Making Films

See John Waters on Thursday, December 5, at the Neptune Theatre.
See John Waters on Thursday, December 5, at the Neptune Theatre. GREG GORMAN

John Waters doesn’t plan on making a new movie anytime soon, even if it’s been 15 years since his last feature, 2004’s A Dirty Shame. If the stories the 73-year-old cult filmmaker recounts in his latest book, Mr. Know-It-All: The Tarnished Wisdom of a Filth Elder, are to be believed, Waters was fine with giving up negotiations with studios and producers.

While the back half of Waters’s memoir imparts that promised “tarnished wisdom” (music recommendations, how to deal with air travel and public speaking, drugs, etc.), the early chapters describe time spent making movies within the Hollywood system—after he scored a modest hit in 1988 with the surprisingly adaptable Hairspray—and watching his last three directorial efforts die at the box office. It’s dishy fun with plenty of behind-the-camera gossip and tales of screen legends like Tab Hunter, Traci Lords, Patricia Hearst, and Sam Waterston.

Waters has zero regrets. He’s made the campy, trashy films he wanted to make. He now makes a tidy living from his regular one-man shows. The biggest success on that front is his annual A John Waters Christmas, where he offers acerbic and naughty commentary on the holiday season.

In advance of his upcoming appearance at the Neptune Theatre on Thursday, December 5, Waters spoke with me about his tour, his new book, and staying influential into your 70s.

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It's Day 5 of 25 Days of Giveaways—Enter Now!


Each day this month until Christmas, we're giving away new and exciting prizes from local Seattle businesses as part of 25 Days of Giveaways. Everything from event tickets to restaurant and retail gift cards to unique experiences is up for grabs.

Today's prizes are:

  • The World is Fun: Tickets to Cocktail District (Sat March 7 at Bell Harbor International Conference Center)
  • Port Townsend School of the Arts: $200 gift certificate towards any class or workshop
  • Moo-Young: $75 gift certificate

    Head over to our contest page to enter. You can also check out our full list of prizes to see what's coming up, or visit our winter holidays calendar for festive events happening in Seattle.

    Happy holidays!