Local crime lord makes swift getaway on new bike path.
Local crime lord makes swift getaway on new bike path. Aaron McCoy / Getty Images

Microsoft may begrudgingly allow you to fix your junk. Various tech companies including Tesla, Amazon, and T-Mobile are opposed to Washington’s proposed “right to repair” bill, which would allow consumers to repair devices rather than force them to throw them away and buy new ones. (Microsoft, which has been opposed in the past, is now neutral on the bill.) There’s still time to voice your support for the legislation — call your Olympia critter and tell them to say yes to HB 1810.

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New grocery store! PCC Community Markets’ new store in Rainier Square opened this week, after looooong delays. Membership is $60.

Watch out for waves. A new study shows just how much damage an earthquake and tsunami would do to Washington’s coast. This study focuses on cities facing the ocean like Callam Bay and Port Angeles, but you can also see what would happen to areas further in along Puget Sound here.

Meet the robot grabbing your apples. This handsome device is currently being tested in Washington apple groves. It can reach out with a long arm, grasp a ripe apple, and then twist it to pull it from the tree and drop it in a bin. Seems like an idyllic life, honestly.

Let’s put that 94% figure to rest for good. The fallout continues from our interview with Senator Marko Liias, in which he said that the vast majority of traffic crashes are caused by human error. The latest: Now the head of the National Traffic Safety Board is pressuring the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to stop using the figure, which is misleading for reasons explained here, and to focus on a “safe systems” approach by designing safer streets, rather than hoping humans will magically stop making mistakes.

Cars kill. At around the same time that I was interviewing Councilmember Tammy Morales yesterday about (among other things) safer streets, a driver hit a person walking at Pine and 9th, across from the new convention center. Still waiting for confirmation of the victim’s condition, but it looks bad. Pedestrian foot traffic is going to be pretty heavy there once the convention center opens.

More surprise-sweeps today. Stop the Sweeps Seattle, which monitors the city's efforts to push people from one temporary encampment to another, reports that there's a sweep unfolding today at Olive and Melrose, and another at 3rd and Cherry. According to the organization, there were no offers of housing or services at a Westlake sweep, which was done with less than 24 hours' notice.

I found it, the stupidest fight on the internet. Boba Fett’s ship was originally called Slave I, because Boba was a bad guy. Now he’s a good guy and it’s been renamed to Firespray Gunship (its class). A lot of people are telling on themselves by getting upset that their hero isn’t associated with slavery. I mean if you really want to get technical, it’s not even HIS ship — his dad stole it from Oovo IV.

Help! I’m in a nutshell! Resourceful students at Washington State University are working on a way to turn hazelnut shells into paneling for various types of furniture. Hazelnut shells are notoriously difficult to work with and slow to compost, and are generally treated as industrial waste.

Meet your local developer. Here’s a great interview with Jaebadiah Gardner, who’s working on developing various projects in the Central District. Fun fact: He is also the owner of the gumball machine by the gum wall in Pike Place Market. This is a nice turnaround from two years ago, when Gardner was thinking about leaving Seattle.

Go ride a bike up into the mountains. A new bike/ped trail opened in Bellevue yesterday, filling a gap in the mountains-to-sound trail from Seattle through the Microsoft flats into Issaquah and Preston. Significant chunks further east are still unfinished, but this milestone means it’s easier to bike all the way from downtown to the east side and nearly to Lake Sammamish.

A bit of action in sleepy West Seattle. If you heard a helicopter overhead last night, it was because someone stole a pickup truck and then crashed it into some shrubs along a sidewalk.

Seattle hockley team merch is still yours for the taking! Over five hundred (!) of you have bought this silly thing, created to celebrate the failure of local NFT. All proceeds from January will be donated to the Washington Environmental Council. (Fun sidenote: I am STILL getting emails from dorks who think I am interested in turning this into whatever the hell an actual NFT is.)

Voting rights / filibuster reform fail: In the face of a GOP-led anti-democratic crackdown, last night Senate Democrats finally put their voting rights expansion bills on the floor. Though they hold a slim majority in the chamber, predictably they failed. The Dems then tried to change Senate rules to get around the filibuster. But, predictably, that effort failed, too. Turns out Manchin, Sinema, and the Republicans are who they say they are.

What's up with that? The Washington Post's Perry Bacon Jr. says it clearly: "An anti-Black backlash — with no end in sight."

Please enjoy this joke. As one of my friends commented, “on top of everything else, Betty was a great audience.”