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In the lineup of Marvel movies, Thor: Ragnarok deserves a lot of superlatives. Best, funniest, most comic-booky; prettiest, smartest, most sincere.

In the same movie, we get the gold-lamé clad Grandmaster (Jeff Goldblum), who could’ve stepped out of an old comic book, and the breathtaking, painterly image of the god of thunder descending on a pile of undead soldiers who look like ambulatory old pennies, their armor a moldy green. 

It’s here. The first, the original, The Best of Eugene. 

You voted. (Some of you voted again and again. But we screened you out if you did that.) And here are the results — the things you, the voters in our annual Readers Poll, like best of all about this town and this area. While we call it the Best of Eugene, we bring in a little Lane County and Oregon-wide love, too. Because right now, in this political climate, we could use a little more love. 

And maybe a superhero or two to save the day.

Best Body Modification

1. High Priestess 210 W. 6th Ave. 541-342-6585; 525 E. 13th Ave. 541-343-3311. highpriestess.com.

2. Northwest Tattoo 142 E. 13th Ave.  541-393-6570. nwtattoo.com.

3. Parlour Tattoo 1097 Willamette St.  541-345-6465. theparlourtattoo.com.

 

Best Photographer

1. Athena Delene athenadelene.com.

2. (Tie) Josh Latham  sandratphotography.com

2. (Tie) Wind Home Photography windhomephotography.com.

3. Tracy Sydor digitallatte.com.

Best Burger

1. Killer Burger 50 W. Broadway. 541-636-4731. killerburger.biz.

2. Cornucopia 295 W. 17th Ave. 541-485-2300; 207 E. 5th Ave. 541-485-2300. cornucopiaeugene.com.

3. Little Big Burger 1404 Orchard St. 541-357-4771. littlebigburger.com.

 

Best Vegetarian/Vegan 

Best Local Politician

1. Congressman Peter DeFazio

2. Mayor Lucy Vinis

3. Former Mayor Kitty Piercy

Photo: Todd Cooper

 

Best Local World-Changer

1. Congressman Peter DeFazio

2. Mark Frohnmayer Arcimoto

3. Kelsey Cascadia Rose Juliana plaintiff with the Our Children’s Trust climate lawsuit

A grassroots group of citizens and land use advocates continues to fight a quarry planned for a butte just on the edges of Oakridge. Save TV Butte is up against Ed King of King Estate Winery, who is an investor in the Old Hazeldell Quarry project.

Save TV Butte and one of its members, Kathy Pokorny, have filed a petition for review with Oregon’s Land Use Board of Appeals.

There is nothing like three days of hard rain to signal the proper end of summer and the beginning of the rainy season, aka our winter. We celebrate rain and cloudy skies for at least the next month or so. By February, many will tire of mist and drizzle, but for now we are happy to walk in the wet. The forest fires that have ravaged the nearby hills have been quenched. Deep pockets of coals will yet burn a while but the serious threat is over.

With the help of a few volunteers and support from the city, one community member started a biweekly trash cleanup project at Alton Baker Park.

“I’ve said it many times, I’m not a protester or an activist,” project organizer Kathy Walker says. But she has made significant efforts to start a dialogue between the city and its unprotected, unhoused citizens.

Chad Anderson was tired of being the victim of break-ins. He moved from Eugene, where his property was broken into five times, to Springfield, where it hasn’t happened once. 

“If you call the police in Eugene, they aren’t going to come unless it’s life threatening,” Anderson says. “The Eugene police are underfunded, so they are stretched too thin.”

• The welcome news this week is that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into the Trump Administration’s corrupt ties to Russia has borne its first fruit with three indictments. The headlines were all about money-laundering charges against Paul Manafort and Rick Gates, but the real news was the secret guilty plea by former campaign adviser George Papadopoulos, who made a deal to rat out Trump and his cronies.

A recent University of Oregon grad, now teaching in Indiana, Krause just wrote a string quartet inspired by views of Oregon’s Cascade mountains (Jefferson, the Sisters, lava fields, lonely trees, etc.) from the Dee Wright Observatory. The terrain and the feelings evoked by the Cascades are audible in Krause’s music, commissioned and performed by Eugene’s Delgani String Quartet this Sunday (Nov. 5) afternoon and Tuesday (Nov. 7) night at United Lutheran Church, 2230 Washington Street.

David Pacheco, vocalist and guitarist with Thee Commons, discovered cumbia back in the 1980s, when the style took Los Angeles by storm.

“Cumbia music originated from Colombia,” Pacheco explains, “from areas of less affluence.” The kind of places where, a little like food, you can find world’s best music.

Portland indie act Reptaliens contains a lot of contradictions. The band’s central songwriting team, husband and wife Cole and Bambi Browning, share a love story. They came together because of music, and Bambi says she finds marriage not unlike being in a band.

SHAMING IS UNHELPFUL

Katherine, creator of the Friendly Anarchism podcast, advocates “shaming people for their fascist beliefs” in the Oct. 19 EW cover story, “Antifa.”

Publicly shaming those who engage in hateful acts and live by hateful ideologies does precisely nothing to convert ignorance and hatred into understanding and trust. Only real human connection does that.

If you want to feel hope for the future, I recommend interviewing South Eugene High School theater students.

Emma Mowry and Jakobi Luke, both seniors, have been active in theater throughout high school, and are working to bring two shows to the stage this weekend, The Laramie Project, and its sequel, The Laramie Project: Ten Years Later. 

I am a pretty handsome gay (I have been told) and I am dating a gorgeous man. I am 34, and he is 31. I am bottom only, and he is top only — so it’s a good match. He seems sincerely interested in me and we are talking about being together. But here is the thing: He noticed that I have a rather small penis. I am under the average, and his dick is quite big and long. Since he discovered this, he fancies about “humiliating” me about my “small pee-pee.” He would even like me to show it to his friends.

There’s one scene in particular that perfectly captures the generous, heartbreaking humanity animating The Florida Project, director Sean Baker’s tragicomic ode to the tattered residents of a flea-bitten motel in the heart of Florida’s commercialized wasteland of strip malls and amusement parks.

In the scene, the motel’s long-suffering manager, Bobby (Willem Dafoe), addresses a gangly herd of sandhill cranes that has wandered into the driveway outside the main office. Like some middle-aged Christ, weary and sun-scorched but infinitely patient, Bobby explains to the "fellas" that he’s already warned them about the threat of getting run over, so maybe they’d best just move along. The birds look at him quizzically.

Illustrations by Craig Winzer for Eugene Weekly

You thought you hated all those political posts. You’ve unfriended or unfollowed all your liberal friends on Facebook. But Halloween is drawing near, and now is the time to embrace being horrified and terrified. 

President Donald Trump and those who love him: Welcome to the House of Horrors, where all your liberal nightmares come to life.

 

Eugene charter amendment: Yes

20-274 Eugene Amends Charter: Election to fill vacant Mayor or Councilor position

This amendment cleans up confusing language. Go for it. We like clarity in government.

Eugene street bond: Yes

20-275 Eugene Bonds to Fix Streets, Fund Bicycle and Pedestrian Projects

You know what voters hate? Potholes. You know what we like? Bicycles. Vote yes. 

Creswell weed measure: No

The last of seven public meetings to discuss Eugene’s search for a new police chief will be held 6 pm Oct. 26 at the University of Oregon’s Ford Alumni Center. The city is seeking community input and says it will use feedback to finalize the job description and to make a hiring decision.

The new chief will replace Police Chief Pete Kerns, who has announced he will retire from the department at the end of the year and go to work at St. Vincent de Paul Society of Lane County.

What is it about our fascination with those abandoned places known as ghost towns? Are we hoping to find some long lost treasures? Are we bearing witness to the impermanence of humanity and the overwhelming, timeless power of Mother Earth? Or, is it that deep down we are hoping to see an actual ghost? My toddler was rooting for this last option: the slimier (a la Ghostbusters), the better.

Our trip was inspired by a ghost town road-trip map on the website “That Oregon Life” that we were pretty sure no one else had actually driven. 

Suspended high in the canopy over the Willamette National Forest on a platform, an activist sits, putting his life on the line. The rope holding him in the air is connected to an anchor — a box full of concrete and two vehicles that form a blockade on the timber road.

If any part of this intricate set-up is moved, the activist could plummet to his death.

Meerah Powell's Picks:

REQUIEM FOR A DREAM (2000)