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For some musicians, performing is just stepping onto a stage, singing into a mic, playing a guitar, hitting a few drums — or whatever else — and walking off. That’s not the case for singer Siri Vik.

Colorado musician Gregory Alan Isakov is used to fronting rock bands — or singing alone with just his guitar. So he has to reach to describe the experience of performing his music backed by an entire symphony orchestra.

Portland roots-harmony sister trio Joseph take their name from the northeastern Oregon town of Joseph. Band member Allison Closner says she and her sisters spent their summers as children in Joseph visiting their grandfather. “Initially it was the town that inspired us,” Closner explains. “We’d go out there every summer — swimming in the lake and camping and going up in the mountains. It felt like a piece of us.”

EW FAILS TO SAVE PLANET

Earth Day has become something of a joke, an ineffective gesture now pretty much forgotten. But nobody told Eugene Weekly.

Last week’s “Sustainabilty Issue” (4/20) is about consumer choices and an overall acceptance of environmental disaster – really nothing at all in terms of stopping it. Tiny moves like collecting rainwater and a new fiber-optic internet system for downtown.

It’s not every day that an established playwright and screenwriter passes on an opportunity to create an updated Broadway show, but that’s just what Douglas Carter Beane (To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar) initially did. 

Some people look forward to retirement. They plan for the time when they can stop working and do nothing but take it easy and relax.

Artists aren’t usually among those people. Take Picasso, for example: He lived to 91 and famously worked through his later years. Or consider Georgia O’Keeffe, who lived to be almost 100 years old. When her eyesight failed, she switched from painting to sculpture so she could keep working. 

I’m a 31-year-old gay male. I’ve been with my fiancé for three years, and we are getting married in the fall. I’ve got a question about initiating sex in my sleep—I read somewhere that “sexsomnia” is the “medical” term, but maybe the internet invented that? According to my fiancé, I have initiated or performed some kind of sex act in the middle of the night and then gone right back to sleep. The next day, I don’t remember anything.

A carousing alcoholic with a tendency toward blackout, Gloria (the excellent Anne Hathaway) saunters home at sunrise one morning to find that her boyfriend, Tim (Dan Stevens), has packed her bags. Game over: It’s time for this girl — and her lies, lame excuses and generally bad behavior — to go. Goodbye New York, farewell failed writing career and hello Midwest hometown, where Gloria, tail between her legs, shacks up in a vacant rental owned by her conspicuously absent parents.

The stereotype of a disaster prepper is that of a man alone in the woods, hoarding cans of baked beans and bullets to fend off neighbors after the apocalypse. Few may know, however, that the best chances a community has for survival come from working together and looking after each other.

This information is particularly compelling with the knowledge that severe weather patterns are more likely as rising global temperatures ravage our normal ecology and shift local weather patterns. Hot, dry summers increase the risk of wildfires, and unpredictable, wet winters can lead to floods, landslides and severe winter storms. 

There are a number of considerable environmental hazards to prepare for in Lane County, not to mention the coming Cascadia subduction zone earthquake that involves many similar preparations.

Going green can be achieved by making changes big or small. Three main contributors to greenhouse gases are transportation, what types of food you buy — i.e. where it comes from and how it’s packaged — and how you heat and cool your home, according to Linda Kelly with 350 Eugene. 

“One of the main things to think about is our personal habits that can really affect our carbon footprint,” she says. 

Little changes that people can make at home begin by taking shorter showers, washing clothes in cold water and putting on a sweater instead of turning up the heat. 

Virtually no protections are in place to safeguard watersheds and streams — both sources of drinking water in Oregon — from being contaminated by herbicides, says Jason Gonzales of Oregon Wild. This is just one of the pressing issues that environmental protection bills in Oregon’s 2017 Legislative session aim to address. 

Imagine internet so fast you could download nine hours of audio in less than a second, or a two-hour movie in less than 10. That fantasy is about to become a reality in downtown Eugene.

The city has begun a project to connect up to 120 downtown buildings with fiber-optic internet services, meaning businesses will soon have access to much faster internet at much lower prices. The glass cables used in fiber enable significantly faster data transfer than their copper counterparts, including download speeds of one gigabit — or 125 megabytes — per second for around $100 a month.

Did you catch Eugene Symphony’s performance of The Damnation of Faust the other evening? It was, I can’t resist saying, one Hell of a show, and if you weren’t there you should have been.

Walk into a Eugene dispensary to purchase one of their house-rolled joints and ask the clerk what brand of rolling paper they used. More likely than not, your joint will have been spun up using RAW brand rolling papers. 

If you’ve ever talked about capturing and using the plentiful rainwater here in Oregon, someone has probably told you that it’s illegal. 

That would be wrong. It’s perfectly legal, providing you catch the rainwater off of an artificial, impervious surface, according to Michael Mattick, the Oregon Water Resources Department’s watermaster for district 2, which includes Lane County.  

An April 17 public hearing on a proposed 20-year transportation plan for Eugene drew a crowd of more than 50 citizens concerned about problems ranging from a dangerous highway interchange to carbon emissions. 

Getting into the marijuana business shouldn’t be just about making a quick buck, according to legendary punk rocker and entertainer Henry Rollins. He says getting into the legal weed economy should be instead about bucking a system of racial injustice.

The Black Flag and Rollins Band frontman is coming to Eugene as the keynote speaker for the fourth annual Oregon Marijuana Business Conference (OMBC) on April 28.

The idea of using found objects in art goes back to the beginning of the modern era, more than a hundred years ago, when Marcel Duchamp entered a porcelain urinal signed “R.Mutt” to be exhibited at the Grand Central Palace in New York City.

• Mike McGinn just announced that he is running again to be mayor of Seattle. A former staffer for Congressman Jim Weaver of Eugene, McGinn came out of the environmental movement to be elected mayor for one term, only to lose when he ran for a second. His first priority: “We must house the homeless.”


The Eugene 4J School District is preparing to issue a bond measure to fund building construction. Voters in either the November 2018 or May 2019 election would determine passage of the bond.

While the list of projects isn’t finalized, if the bond is approved, funds may be used to replace North Eugene High School and Edison Elementary School and to build additions on McCornack and Gilham elementary schools, among others. As a community, we are looking at investing tens or hundreds of millions of dollars in replacing and upgrading school buildings. We should take this opportunity to make sure our investments last.

Don’t miss a golden opportunity to pick up some locally sourced native plants while supporting the efforts of the Friends of Buford Park and Mount Pisgah: From 9 am to 1 pm on May 6, the Friends will hold their annual fundraising sale at the Buford Park Native Plant Nursery. I have had great success with plants I purchased at this sale in years past. 

“I got my first camera at the age of 13,” says Walt O’Brien, who joined the camera club at Stephen F. Austin Junior High in Amarillo, Texas. “Our darkroom was in the janitor’s closet.” O’Brien built a darkroom in the attic at home while in high school and another in the basement of his frat house at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri. He spent one five-month summer season working at Yellowstone National Park while in college and three more summers there after graduating with a degree in German. “I had only one day a week off,” he says.

Dear reader, I think I got off on the wrong foot with the congressman from eastern Oregon. May need your help.

As you remember, I was inspired by my congressman, Peter DeFazio, to take action and resist the Republican/Trumpistanis! I reasonably assumed that the most important Republican in Oregon today is Congressman Walden from the 5th congressional district. I found his website, on which he assured me that email was “the quickest and easiest way to get in touch” with him.

This month offers opportunities to explore music’s ancient past and promising future — and how the two interact. Folk music especially relies on older musical forms to seed or even evolve into new compositions. The veteran Swedish power-folk trio Väsen, performing this Thursday, April 20, at The Shedd, deploys traditional instruments in music that blends old and new folk traditions into a rich, danceable modern mix that fans of Celtic and bluegrass music will also enjoy.