Big news: Seattle City Council President Debora Juarez will not be running for reelection next year. The news came during yesterday's council briefing when Juarez mentioned that 2023 would be her "last year," reports the Seattle Times. Juarez and CM Lisa Herbold not returning to the council means we're in for an extremely consequential—and likely very spicy—election season next fall. The Stranger Election Control Board will have their work cut out for them.
This means that two council seats are wide open. Herbold occupies sort of the middle of the council's political spectrum (good on renters stuff, conservative on cops) and Juarez often votes with conservatives Pedersen and Nelson, though not always.— Hannah Krieg (@hannahkrieg) December 13, 2022
Hours-long standoff at the Snohomish County Superior Courthouse in Everett yesterday: A 32-year-old armed Woodinville man walked into the courthouse with "at least two guns" yesterday, forcing the complex into lockdown, reports The Herald. No one was injured and police managed to arrest him after three hours of negotiation. The man's motives remain unclear.
I'm so happy I could cry: Legend Janet Jackson is coming through Seattle's Climate Pledge Arena in June 2023 as the last stop on her Together Again Tour celebrating the 25th anniversary of her album, The Velvet Rope. Ludacris will open. This will be the show of a lifetime... tickets are on sale this Friday at 11 am.
FTX founder/swindler/former crypto billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried has been arrested in the Bahamas: His arrest comes after the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York gave Bahamian authorities a sealed indictment, and before he was supposed to virtually testify in front of the House Financial Services Committee, reports CNBC News. This morning, the Securities and Exchange Commission charged Bankman-Fried with "orchestrating a scheme to defraud investors," accusing him of using customer money as his "personal piggy bank." Yikes!
Golden Globes nominations dropped yesterday: Martin McDonagh's The Banshees of Inisherin and the Daniels' Everything Everywhere All at Once led the pack with eight and six nominations respectively. Historically, GG nominations have been a big deal, but since the founding organization, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, came under fire in 2021 for being anti-Black and engaging in deeply unethical practices, enthusiasm over next year's ceremony is relatively muted.
Weather update: Yesterday was likely the warmest day of the week, as we have some sub-freezing temperatures, low clouds, and fog to coming our way, reports the Seattle Times. Though we can look forward to dryness and sunshine to temper the cold-ass weather.
Temperatures are in the 20s and 30s this morning with sub-freezing temps around the interior, especially areas north and east of Seattle. Use caution during the morning commute with slick/icy roads possible #wawx pic.twitter.com/IYrOEWksHz— NWS Seattle (@NWSSeattle) December 13, 2022
Biden's signin' the Respect for Marriage Act sometime today, the bill that federally recognizes the right for gay and interracial marriage. This moment comes ten years after Biden, as Obama's vice president, came out in support of gay marriage before his boss had the chance to. We love a gay gaffe!
The J and K orca pods had a little group hang near Point Robinson on Friday: As endangered species, they've gotta stick together. KOMO has some pictures and video from the orcas' playdate, which looked like a lot of fun.
Forever chemicals? In MY water? More likely than you'd think: Here I was, thinking that Washington had some of the finest water on tap in the entire country. But I was wrong! Gallons from two water district wells in the state now have to "be flushed through six enormous tanks... to remove contaminants" like the so-called forever chemicals a.k.a. PFAS, reports the Seattle Times. Lakewood's public water system has PFAS levels above what the state has defined as "suitable for long-term consumption" and it costs a fuck-ton to filter it to drinkable levels. The Times has the rest of the story.
In inflation news: The new Consumer Price Index numbers are out and those nerds discovered that there was a 7.1% increase in prices in November over last year, reports Yahoo! Finance. That's technically "better" than the 7.3% economists had predicted for the month, though prices for essential items like groceries remain stupid high.
A historic breakthrough in clean energy: The National Ignition Facility at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory—for the first time EVER—"successfully produced a nuclear fusion reaction resulting in a net energy gain," reports CNN. For the non-nuclear proficient, this discovery would mean a "massive step in a decades-long quest to unleash an infinite source of clean energy" that could stop our dependence on fossil fuels, mimicking processes that power the sun. Exciting, but also sounds like a Batman villain origin story?
Boo: Colorado's Rep. Lauren Boebert officially won her district's recount by the hairs on her chinny chin chin.
Mark your calendars: Grand Illusion Cinema is showing Kathryn Bigelow's fantastic NYE cyperpunk thriller Strange Days, starring Ralph Fiennes and Angela Bassett. In 35 mm!! It's one of the best films I've ever watched for Unstreamable, and it remains off streaming services and only on (kinda shitty) DVD. It's a great and rare opportunity to watch this film in theaters. Kick off your 2023 the right way.
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Exciting news, Seattle drag fans!!! Our own Irene "The Alien" DuBois has been announced as part of the 15th season of RuPaul's Drag Race! This group of girls is the largest ever—16!!—with a huge grand prize of $200,000. The glamorous extraterrestrial Seattle-via-Texas drag queen has been a huge part of Seattle's drag scene, winning R Place's So You Think You Can Drag competition in 2018 and hosting Mothership at Queer Bar. Congrats to Irene and can't wait to see her compete next month.
For your listening pleasure: Janet Jackson's "Got 'Til It's Gone."