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The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is accepting comments on the proposed cleanup plan for the McAyeal’s Wardrobe Cleaners site through 5 pm on Tuesday, March 31. The site is located between the downtown Eugene Public Library and Kiva. The cleaners operated at that location starting in 1972, leaving behind soil and groundwater contaminated with dry-cleaning solvents. Contaminated groundwater that would otherwise occupy the library basement is currently diverted to a treatment system before being discharged to the city’s storm sewer system.

• The May 19 4J School Board election got hotter last week as several new candidates squeaked in on the filing deadline. Incumbent Jim Torrey is facing off against two opponents: Oregon Democratic Party Regional Director Kevin Cronin (also EW’s “Best Local Hellraiser”) and Whiteaker Community Council member David Nickles. Torrey has served on the board since 2007 and is currently chair.

We hear Cousin Jack’s Pasty Co. was invited to provide meat pie food props for the Eugene Opera production of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street. “To [General Director] Mark Beudert and the cast and crew of the Eugene Opera, I say bravo for a fantastic performance and a big thank you for allowing us to participate,” says David Clark, who owns the local business with his wife, Kim Clark. “Like the arts, our small business is constantly pressured with ever increasing costs.

City Club of Eugene topic this week is “Perspectives on Alternative Approaches to Forest Management” with Marc Barnes of Integrative Resource Management and Matt Fehrenbacher of Trout Mountain Forestry. Noon Friday, March 27, at the Downtown Athletic Club, 999 Willamette St. $5 for nonmembers. See cityclubofeuegene.org to get on the email list.

Alright, already! Enough about federal politics; we already know the outcome of the 2016 presidential primaries: Elizabeth Warren versus Ted Cruz. According to U.S. Rep. Greg Walden, Hillary Clinton was last seen dumping her personal email server in the Deschutes County dump. Thinking she was actually serious about running, I had already switched parties and sent Texas Senator Cruz my contribution. He’s perfect for me, as a former Democrat. He has endorsed outsider Tea Party candidates against sitting U.S. senators, even while serving as vice chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, the organization tasked with electing — and reelecting — GOP senators! You da Man! And who could ever forget his Green Eggs and Ham filibuster speech to ward off that socialist Obamacare stuff? 

Pop quiz: What do Joseph Campbell, Blade Runner and Trent Reznor have in common? Answer: The L.A. synth-pop quartet LEX

No one has a voice quite like Iris DeMent — an aching, soulful twang reminiscent of a bygone era. “She’s the best singer I’ve ever heard,” Merle Haggard has said of the Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter. Via email, EW caught up with DeMent, who plays March 29 at Cozmic, to chat about music collaborations,  her music roots and her latest project.

String quartets might be the most common classical music chamber ensemble, but it’s hard to find a quartet that performs regularly hereabouts and thereby develops the kind of chemistry that can really make the music sing. That hole in Eugene’s musical tapestry will be repaired at 7:30 pm Tuesday, April 7, at United Lutheran Church (2230 Washington), when the new Eugene-based Delgani String Quartet takes it opening bow.

Would you like a gin and tonic with that guitar riff? How about a rum and Coke with that rhyme?

“In Eugene, you’ll see a bartender onstage everywhere you go. We all play music,” says Casey Lynch, Level Up Arcade manager and bartender.

Geographer exists somewhere between the emotive synth pop arias of Depeche Mode and the earnest coffeehouse-meets-arena-rock of fellow Bay Area acts Train and Counting Crows. 

RADAR MEN JIGGLE, TOO

The Eugene Water and Electric Board (EWEB) met Feb. 17 and dutifully accepted public testimony addressing the main agenda item quietly described in an internal memo and low-profiled to the public: “Management has negotiated contracts with two providers of essential Advanced Metering Infrastructure services, hardware and software (Harris and Sensus). Management seeks approval of these two contracts to allow for the AMI project to proceed into the initial implementation phase during 2015.” 

I found this in an online sex ad: “Straight guy with an addiction to massive cocks in my ass.” This “straight guy” went on to mention his girlfriend. Can a person really identify as straight while wanting to be fucked by men? I understand that straight guys can like ass play too, but it’s not like he wants to be pegged by his girlfriend or use a dildo on himself. He’s straight-up (heh-heh) looking for hung dudes to fuck his ass.

Jaded And Wondering, Dude’s Really On Pussy?

Sitting on the carpet of the Hult Center lobby on a misty February evening, a group of artists strain to look up at the towering ceiling with its jumble of M.C. Escher-like angles, balconies and staircases. They toss around terms like scrim and pulley and trapeze. 

Local artist Erik Roggeveen picked up a paintbrush for the first time only two-and-a-half years ago. Today, you can see his 112-square-foot hand-painted mural — his first ever — on the east-facing wall of The Cannery at 11th and Mill Alley. 

In his groundbreaking 1996 movie Scream, director Wes Craven — with help from Kevin Williamson’s cheeky postmodern screenplay — peeled back the mask on modern horror, revealing a set of previously unspoken rules governing the mayhem in teen slasher flicks. Among those rules to avoiding murder (“Don’t do drugs!”), perhaps the most resonant for a generation living under the specter of AIDS was this: No premarital hanky-panky. In other words, when it comes to surviving a horror movie, always remember that sex equals death.

We are first and foremost a nation of consumers, and marijuana — which begins its fitful journey into recreational legality in Oregon on July 1 — might be the ultimate consumer product. Like opium and sugar in the early history of this country, marijuana is an addictive, renewable and flexible resource whose uses seem endlessly adaptable to the contingencies of capitalism, where the trick is not to sell the product to the consumer but the consumer to the product.

Slowly but surely, the idea of legal weed is being sold to the American public. But legalization is not decriminalization — not by a long shot. Decriminalizing weed would put it on the same status as potatoes, of which you can grow and eat and trade as many as you like without anyone really batting an eye.

On Thanksgiving Day 2014, a truck from California came to Bartels Packing west of Eugene carrying 35 organic cattle. Kandi Bartels, executive vice president of Bartels, which produces grass-fed natural and organic beef, says the paperwork from the driver stated there were two bulls and 33 cows in the shipment. 

The Youth Mental Health Protection Act (HB 2307) would ban licensed mental health providers and psychologists in Oregon from providing “conversion therapy” to minors. Conversion therapy is a largely discredited practice that attempts to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity. HB 2307 passed in the Oregon House 41 to 18 on March 17 and now heads to the Senate.

The problems with the DOT-111 tank railcars that exploded and killed 47 and destroyed the downtown core of the Canadian town of Lac-Mégantic have been known since 1991, according to Congressman Peter DeFazio, yet the federal government still hasn’t pushed to fix them.

• Union Pacific plans to spray railroad tracks running through Eugene this week.

• Oregon Department of Transportation is currently spraying roadsides. Call Tony Kilmer at ODOT District 5 at 744-8080 or call 1-888-996-8080 for herbicide application information. Highways I-5 and 99 through Eugene were sprayed recently.

What’s the environmental impact of your bud? 

A March 6 Public Interest Environmental Law Conference panel at the UO law school explored illegal marijuana grows in Northern California, home to the Redwoods and Mt. Shasta, and their negative impacts on water and wildlife, including coho salmon and Pacific fishers.

Panelist Thomas Wheeler, program and legal coordinator for the Environmental Protection Information Center (EPIC), explained that trespass grows in California’s Humboldt County often consist of thousands of plants on private or national forest land. 

• We left the City Club of Eugene’s excellent debate on March 13 about manmade microwave radiation’s impact on human health undecided. Dr. Davison Soper, UO physics professor, and Dr. Paul Dart, MD, left us thinking that the science is not there on either side, although both expressed strong views. Soper was not concerned about wifi, cell towers and smart meters impacting human health. Dart definitely was. More science, please.

If you were in Lane County in the mid-‘60s and mid-‘70s and actively opposing the war on Vietnam during those years, Community Alliance of Lane County (CALC) wants to hear from you. As Vietnam-related anniversaries approach, including the 40th anniversary of the April 30 end of the war, CALC — which began as Clergy and Laymen Concerned About Vietnam — is planning a series of activities. Email at vietnampeaceCALC@gmail.com for more info.