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Jeff Tweedy was an integral member of Uncle Tupelo and is now the frontman of Wilco — putting him at the forefront of two of the most acclaimed American rock bands of the past 25 years. In 2012, Tweedy produced the Mavis Staples record One True Vine. Tweedy asked his teenaged son Spencer to play drums in the studio, and from these recordings came the father-son project Tweedy

Jacob Franklin, 28, dubbed by voters as “the Ginja Ninja,” says bartending is “a passion I’ve had for a long time.” Franklin has called Eugene home for a decade now, but his first job slinging drinks was at a country bar in his hometown of Chicago. 

Jonna Threlkeld, 28, first came to Eugene from Red Bluff, California, to play sax in the UO marching band. She has since ditched green and yellow for black, keeping bar at the Starlight Lounge for the past three and a half years. Threlkeld is honored to win “Sexiest Bartender,” especially because she has a “crush” on all the “beautiful and talented” women who bartend downtown. In addition to voters deeming her “freaky sexy, quirky and original,” she’s active in Eugene’s music scene, playing guitar and singing for the “new-timey, old-timey” band Butterchuck — a quality patrons appreciate or, as one voter put it, “She’s also a talented musician and her booty don’t quit.” 

THOSE NAKED BONES 

As I stand grieving, again, before the ever-so-sad spectacle of the naked bones of the City Hall building, I have to agree with Otto Poticha’s memorializing statement in his March 5 Viewpoint, “Standing Naked,” urging “everyone to go and view the City Hall frame, give it a second look and imagine what we could or still can achieve. Please join me in seeking management and decision makers with a deeper and more profound vision the next time we go to the polls.”

Distilling hard alcohol without a distillery license is illegal in Oregon and the U.S. From herein, any discussion of homemade spirits is purely theoretical. I may know a man who makes the most incredibly smooth scotch, icy clear vodka, flavorful limoncello and Drambuie, creamy gin, authentic rum. Since I can’t refer to him by name, because he may not exist, I will simply call him “The Provider.”

The building has stood empty for about a decade. Over the years, the spot has housed a variety of well-known drinking holes, notably Harvey’s and most recently Rascal’s — in fact, the signage still faintly reads “Rascal’s.” However, the interior has been transformed into the Whit’s newest nightlife destination — Old Nick’s Rock Pub, located at the corner of 2nd and Washington across from the WJ Skatepark + Urban Plaza.

There’s a burgeoning trend throughout Oregon for food and drinks that are locally sourced and handcrafted, and since 2011, Corvallis-based Vivacity Spirits has been sating consumers’ desire for organic non-GMO small-batch gins, vodka, rum and liqueur. Owned and operated by Caitlin Prueitt and her partner and spouse, Chris Neumann, Vivacity is not only the first woman-owned distillery in Oregon, but also one of only a handful nationwide. 

When I was 15, I had a three-month-long sexual relationship with a 32-year-old woman. She was a friend of the family, and my parents were going through a divorce. I stayed with her for the summer, and she initiated a sexual relationship. Looking back, I can see that she had been grooming me. We used to have conversations online and via e-mail that were very inappropriate considering our age difference. The relationship ended when I went home, but she remained flirty. As a 15-year-old, I had a hard time sorting out my feelings for her, but we remained in contact.

We March into spring with a twice-told tale: Last month, we revisited merlot, great wine brought low by shabby winemaking and shifty marketing, then revived at its nadir, to become, again, yummy quaff. This month, the white side, same tale: Riesling is one of the world’s great grapes. The white wines made from Riesling grapes vary widely, from bone dry to heavenly sweet, yielding wines adaptable to dinner courses from aperitifs to desserts. Rieslings are usually vinified to be low-alcohol/high-acid wines, matching fish or fowl, even salads, but especially friendly to spicy Asian dishes, stir-fries, curries and vegan fare.

Vampires: They’re just like us! They have terrible housemates who don’t do the dishes. They worry about looking good when they go out at night, even if the clubs they’re going to are dead and boring. They get twitchy when the cops come by. And they hate it when their roommates bring home uncool new friends.

Some people dream of sparkling granite countertops, spacious pantries and glossy whirlpool tubs set next to enormous showers tricked out with the latest technology.

Rhonda would just like a bathroom, and Emerald Village Eugene (EVE), a new proposed village of tiny houses, could give her that along with the stability she and others need to get back on their feet. Currently, she lives in Opportunity Village Eugene, but because subsidized, low-income housing is difficult to find, she and her husband need another transitional step — which is where EVE comes in.

It will cost New York almost $20 billion to prepare the city for the impacts of climate change coming our way, according to Peter Frumhoff, director of science and policy at the Union of Concerned Scientists. “Right now, the default is the taxpayer,” he says. “Why should only taxpayers pick up the cost for increasing climate change damages? What is the responsibility of companies making dangerous products?”

Sniffing out what you shouldn’t miss in the arts this week.

Sen. Floyd Prozanski is quick to explain that he is not working on gun control legislation. He is working on “gun safety” legislation. As a gun owner himself, Prozanski says he is confident the law he is proposing will benefit all Oregonians.

The gray whale cows and their calves are migrating north in good numbers this month. I finally visited the most fabulous place to watch whales: the shelter at the top of the Saint Perpetua Trail. The hike is very steep but a road allows one to drive up. Go early in the day, as the parking lot at the top is small. There are often volunteers with spotting scopes at the Cape Perpetua Visitor Center. They have information on how many whales are passing that day.

These days, you can grow apples without the hard work, responsibilities or space required by full-size apple trees.Cute and amazingly compact, columnar apple trees can grow up to 10 feet tall or higher while remaining barely 2 feet wide, and they can be spaced as close as 2 feet apart. The trees need minimal to no pruning, because the few side branches they produce grow vertically and can be removed, shortened or left to increase the crop. 

It’s Garden Love Month here in Lane County, a time to show your affection for rosy radishes and leafy greens. And there’s hardly a better way to share your love for all things vegetable than to volunteer for the School Garden Project, a local nonprofit dedicated to bringing the joy of gardening to kids in 16 schools spread through the Eugene 4J, Bethel, Springfield and Crow-Applegate-Lorane school districts. 

The iconic space-age cartoon The Jetsons features a technologically advanced home, complete with a robot housekeeper and a home full of futuristic gadgets. The show first aired in 1962, and while houses still don’t brush your teeth for you or make breakfast with the press of a button, technology now enables us to do some advanced home control, like dimming your living room lights from miles away. 

Warm summer days picking apples for homemade applesauce and canning with Grandma in a hot kitchen are memories Annika Parrott cherishes — ones she hopes to pass on to her daughters. Parrott is one of the many people living in Eugene who has turned back the clocks 100 years and started urban homesteading. 

Eugene’s six community garden sites, from Amazon Park to the Whit, brighten local neighborhoods with colorful bursts of tomatoes and chard. It takes a network of volunteers, nonprofits and city staff to keep the garden plots up and running. 

Last year, however, the city of Eugene reorganized its staffing and cut the staff time of the community gardens manager in half, from .5 full-time equivalent (FTE) to .25 FTE.

• Weyerhaeuser, 744-4600, plans to ground and aerial spray 6 acres located 1 mile southeast of Cottage Grove near Taylor Butte with Accord Concentrate, Atrazine 4L, Weedone LV6 EC, Velpar DF, Oust XP, Oust Extra, DMA4 IVM, Transline and/or Sulfomet XP. See ODF notification 2015-771-03472, call Tim Meehan at 726-3588 with questions.

Pacific Recycling has been fined yet again for environmental violations, this time involving asbestos. (For a listing of past appearances in this space go to goo.gl/fNr376.) The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) assessed a civil penalty of $32,000 against Eugene-based Pacific Recycling on February 3 for asbestos violations associated with an abatement project at a facility in Independence, Oregon, owned by CPM Development Corporation. DEQ assessed a separate penalty of $10,400 against CPM.

“I’ve gotten better and better in the role of watchdog,” says Commissioner Pete Sorenson of his decision to run again for his long-time South Eugene seat on Lane County’s Board of Commissioners in the May 2016 primary. 

The election might be more than a year away, but Sorenson has already begun lining up endorsements, from local politicians — Mayor Kitty Piercy — to legislators in Salem — Rep. Phil Barnhart. 

An amazing cross-section of this community has come together to buy “the dirt,” 10.2 acres in the center of Eugene. This is the first and most difficult step in building a fieldhouse for kids, restoring a historic wooden stadium and installing a playing field for soccer and fun, adding a pocket park and a walking/biking path. What a lift in a world that seems to be coming apart more than coming together!