A SIFF union: According to a press release from the Seattle International Film Festival's year-round cinema staff, workers unanimously opted to file for unionization. Workers are calling for "living wages, stable hours and scheduling, just-cause protections, and greater input into SIFF’s long term sustainability as an organization."

Last year, at the film festival, seven SIFF staffers at The Egyptian theater staged a walkout because of transparency issues over the theater's future and the future of their jobs. The press release about the unionization effort stated that communication from SIFF's administrators "has remained less than ideal, and recent unexpected disciplinary actions have strengthened our resolve toward the necessity of this effort." 

SIFF's statement on the effort: "We respect the rights of these workers to engage in this process and SIFF will strive to engage in good faith, in accordance with our community’s values, at all times. Whatever outcome regarding the potential formation of a new union, we support the rights of SIFF employees to consider this option just as we value their everyday contributions to SIFF’s operations and mission."

Are you ready for the CHOP play? Playwright Nikki Yeboah, assistant professor of playwriting at the University of Washington School of Drama, spent last summer interviewing 29 community members about their perspective of the events of the Capitol Hill Organized Protest, or CHOP, during June 2020. She made a play out of it. The play, called "11th & Pine," will feature "six composite characters who reconvene years after CHOP to discuss its aftermath." No word on if the play will feature Stranger staffers getting teargassed in our old office. It will run at the Erickson Theater from March 17-19

Inmate dead from fentanyl overdose: A Thurston County Jail inmate died Monday from a fentanyl overdose. The jail reported five other inmates have overdosed on fentanyl this month. Four were revived in the jail. One inmate is in the hospital in critical condition.

Nobody panic: But we could experience a 60-degree day in Seattle this week. 

[Imagine I'm putting a finger to my ear] Oh, I'm getting word that Ashley is here with some news about lawyer salaries. Over to you, Ashley.

A thumb on the pay scales of justice: The Seattle City Council voted unanimously on Tuesday to boost salaries for assistant city prosecutors by 20%, increasing the department’s budget by just shy of a million dollars. Assistant prosecutors will now start out at $100,000. In the last two years, the office lost 12 attorneys, and Seattle City Attorney Ann Davison said she struggled to recruit lawyers due to the department’s relatively low salaries. Meanwhile, the starting salary listed for a King County Public Defender job is a little more than $73,000. King County Public Defenders handle the defense for indigent clients prosecuted by the Seattle City Attorney’s office.

Now, back to our regularly scheduled program. 

The World Baseball Classic is happening: It's like the World Cup but for baseball. The Italian team has an espresso machine in their dugout. Coach Mike Piazza doesn't understand why everybody's making a big deal about the machine. He said drinking coffee was like drinking water for Italians. Unfortunately, the team has to drink the espresso (from a Nespresso machine, gasp) out of paper cups. "Maybe next time we’ll bring the metallic machine with the copper eagle on the top and someone in there knocking espressos out," Piazza said. 

Here's a headline for the history books: "SVB collapse was driven by the 'first Twitter-fueled bank run"

Global markets take a tumble: The fallout from the Silicon Valley Bank collapse spread anxieties about banking systems globally. In Europe, the bank hardest hit by investor fears was "mistake-prone" Credit Suisse, which has "struggled for years to turn around its fortunes," the New York Times writes. Its shares dropped more than 20 percent this week. Back on US soil, after markets opened the Dow dropped more than 1.5%, or more than 500 points.

A Jan 6 time-lapse: Keep an eye out for what happens after Trump tweeted "Mike Pence didn't have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution..." at 2:24 pm.

Praying Bremerton football whacko gets his job back: Thanks to our silly Supreme Court, Joe Kennedy, the former assistant football coach at Bremerton High School who prayed with students on the field and then lost his job because of it, will get that job back this year

Waterlogged California gets more rain: My family in California is gobsmacked by the month of rain. It's miserable, they say. Where is our sun? Your sun has drowned in the atmospheric river. If you want to see it again, you will have to withstand flood warnings across Southern California, high winds buffeting San Francisco, and the possibility of a levee breaking in Oceano. No, but seriously, California's seeing some shit right now. Floods are a very real possibility across the state. In the mountains, snow keeps falling and residents fear roofs will collapse under the weight. 

Minnesota Republican says he's "never met a hungry person" in Minnesota: State Sen. Steve Drazkowski opposed a bill to provide free breakfast and lunch to school children in the state by disputing what the definition of "hunger" was. He said, "I had a cereal bar for breakfast, I guess I’m ‘hungry’ now." Seems like supporting feeding hungry children would be an easy win as a politician. What do Republicans even stand for?

He's running: Tiger King star Joe Exotic (legally Joseph Maldonado-Passage) said he's running for president in 2024. Exotic is currently serving a 21-year federal sentence after being convicted on two counts of murder-for-hire and 19 additional counts of wildlife charges. He won't let that little detail stop him. "Yes, I know I am in Federal Prison and you might think this is a joke but it’s not. It is my Constitutional right to do this even from here,” reads the statement on his campaign site

Happy Ides of March! Have you located someone to stab in the back? Or, perhaps, are you the mark? Hmm. Food for thought.

Fun fact: The place where Julius Caesar met his bloody, gruesome demise is now home to a cat sanctuary.