The Library Is Good Because We Are Good: The Library Journal gave the The Seattle Public Library a five-star rating for the eighth year in a row. The rating is based on "in-person library visits, materials checked out, program attendance and public internet computer use," according to the press release. Last year over 11.4 million people visited SPL locations, over 11.6 million "books and materials" were checked out, and "more than 360,000 children, teens and adults attended nearly 11,000 education classes, workshops, and author programs." We're apparently "one of only five similarly-sized libraries in the nation that received a five-star rating."
Beloved Local Actor, G. Valmont Thomas, Dies at 58: With the death of G. Val on Monday, the PNW lost one of its greatest Shakespearean actors, one of its most hilarious comedic actors, and one of its most knowledgable mentors.
Industrial Revelation Ruled Last Night: If you missed last night's Industrial Revelation show at Neptune Theater, then you might have missed the best show of the year. That's what everyone is saying on Facebook. The jazz quartet (and 2014 Stranger Genius Award winners for music) performed Bjork's masterpiece of '90s pop Homogenic. From the first track ("Hunter") to the last ("All Is Full Love"), IR joined by guest singers exploited all of the album's melodic riches. Expect people to talk about this show for a very long time. Minds were blown.
Chris Cornell's Spirit Turns into Scholarships for Law Students: Late Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell’s widow, Vicky Cornell, has established a fund of more than $1 million to endow student scholarships at UCLA School of Law. The Chris Cornell Scholarship reflects the late singer-guitarist’s devotion to justice, human rights, and empathy for the needy. This impulse also surfaced in Cornell’s “The Promise,” the title song of a 2017 film about the Armenian genocide. The money made from that movie went toward human rights causes, while Cornell—who committed suicide in May—channeled his earnings from the song to the International Rescue Committee. In a press release, Vicky Cornell said, "My husband and I agreed that given the opportunity of education, people have the power to change the world. UCLA School of Law is an institution known for its academic excellence and we are proud the Chris Cornell Scholarship will provide funding for future students and future leaders of the world."
Cash Cat: Kristen Roupenian, author of "Cat Person," a perfectly fine short story about a young woman having bad sex, scored a seven-figure two-book deal with Scout Press, according to the New York Times. Good for her. Short stories never go viral. Also rare: a short story collection and an untitled novel fetching this much money. Writers used to pay their rent with short stories, now they can't even pay the interest on their student loan debts with them.
The Stranger Reviews Movies: Sean Nelson says Call Me By Your Name is great, but the lead sucks. Mudede says that movie about Churchill, Darkest Hour, has a #MeToo problem. Vince Mancini says that movie about mini-Matt Damon, Downsizing, is surprisingly good if you downsize your expectations.
The Stranger Thinks You Should Listen To These Podcasts: Our list of the top 20 pods includes Trust Issues, Crimetown, The Washington State Indivisible Podcast, Here Be Monsters, Switched on Pop, and Savage Lovecast (sorry, but it's true).
Oh, and, ICYMI:
.@TheStranger likes books from @morganapple / @sarahschulman3 / @rgay / @tricialockwood / @EileenMyles / @FranklinFoer / @MsThiBui / @jamiattenberg / and other people who are not on twitter https://t.co/4P6sQq9qZm
— Rich Smith 🥀 (@richsssmith) December 12, 2017