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• We left the May 19 meeting of the City Club of Eugene fairly confident that our dams, rivers and reservoirs are safe despite the anticipated big earthquake. Erik Peterson, operations project manager of the Willamette Valley for Portland district of the U. S.

The first time I ever smoked pot was two weeks out of high school at a rock festival in the Atchafalaya Basin about an hour north of New Orleans. June 21, 1971. The sun was just above the western horizon on a 105-degree day. A surfer dude convinced me to give it a try.

When a trope or metaphor gets popularly misappropriated due to cultural transference, problems ensue. 

Two examples often used in mainstream Western culture are “low man on the totem pole” and the “pawn in the game.” Neither of these artifacts originally comes from Western civilization — that civilization in which cultural historical amnesia is a given norm and assimilation is a goal, thereby dooming those who buy into the concept to repeating preventable mistakes, like déjà vu all over again. 

It looks like the school garden concept is getting some serious respect from the 4J school district. 

Just look at the spanking new Howard Elementary School where, in a first for 4J, a raised bed garden was incorporated in the school’s landscape design right from the start, and it shows. Next to the garden there’s a big, beautiful water collection tower, one of several cool features at this school relating to rain water.

“People who need stuff seem to fall in my path,” says Magnolia Rainbow, known to her friends as a champion of the underdog, who takes care of wayward teenagers and animals. “And I find a way to help them.” Her small house in Springfield currently shelters 11 people, including her sons Tanner and Mac, ages 21 and 15, and three dogs, including Paddy and Bernie, on the porch in the photo. “My parents were hippies,” says Rainbow, who was born in a school bus and spent her elementary and middle school years in Ashland.

Veronica Cruz, vocalist and guitarist with Long Beach punk act Rats in the Louvre, says her band takes its name from an article she read about rats plaguing the art museum in Paris. “A lot of tourists were spotting them while eating lunch in the garden,” Cruz explains. “I thought it was funny and ironic. Sort of like low-class culture invading the high class.” 

San Francisco’s dark country and blues-rockers Dead Country Gentlemen has played the Eugene area only once before. Guitarist and vocalist Cameron Ray says last time through, his band stayed with some friends around Pleasant Hill. “It was the highlight of my trip,” Ray recalls.

FOR THE BIRDS

While the theme for EW’s latest Outdoors Issue was welcome (May 18), I’m disappointed that, alone of the pursuits covered, birding was treated as a joke rather than the positive pastime so many find it to be.

Even now, several days after seeing it, digesting it and churning it all over in my mind, I find I’m having a mixed response to Oregon Contemporary Theatre’s current production of Venus in Fur, David Ives’ two-person play-within-a-play based on Leopold von Sacher-Masoch’s 1870 novel of the same name.

When I last checked in with Brian Haimbach, writer, actor, and head of the theater program at Lane Community College, it was February 2016, and he was about to premiere his one-man show, How to Be a Sissy.

I have two female sex partners who want to be breath-play dominated. I know the practice is dangerous, and I employ the rules of consent and communication a pro-Dom escort friend taught me. But is there a legal release document we could sign that protects consenting adults in the event of an accident or death?

Ruminating About Consensual Kinks


Ponderous, pornographic and unforgivably dull, Alien: Covenant proves once and for all that Ridley Scott is the single biggest hack in contemporary Hollywood — a director of such ignominious bad faith that, faced with the morally bankrupt option of playing pimp or whore to his own reputation, he simply chooses both.

I once told my ex-fiancé that I was a vegetarian because I ate only what I could personally kill. He promptly bought me a shotgun and taught me how to shoot it. However, he was unable get me to kill anything more mobile than a poorly tossed clay target. He tried — unsuccessfully — to persuade me of the joys of shooting, killing and butchering my own meals, but the closest I got to deadly force was blowing up a bottle of Coke (and then carefully cleaning up the sugary-drink-covered remains, because leave-no-trace principles apply to recreational shooting, too). Finally, a couple years ago, an avid truffle hunter explained to me how he had left the excitement of hunting animals for the more-obsessive joys of hunting elusive fungi.

I’m in a church parking lot just north of 13th Avenue in Eugene, staring at my phone, circling around the lot, looking at a little dot on my screen and wondering why I can’t find what I’m looking for.

Two of my nephews, ages 6 and 9, are wondering if what we’re looking for might be the trash in the bushes. The 2-year-old has a can to play drums on and couldn’t care less.

Birding — also known as “birdwatching” and, across the Pond, “twitching” — began as a lethal contact sport. When John James Audubon traveled the countryside in the early 1800s to paint the 435 watercolors that would later turn up in The Birds of America, he didn’t sit his subjects down in a studio and ask them to pose.

He shot them.

If Eugene’s City Council passes the new transportation system plan (TSP), newer, safer bike paths could be built across the city. To add to Eugene’s bike-ability, plans are already in motion to install a bike-share program in Eugene.

Robert Wilson has been homeless off and on for 25 years, with none but a small dog to keep him company and keep away the demons of PTSD and anxiety that haunt him.

A veteran who served in the Army in the ’80s, Wilson, 54, is a short man with bright, worried eyes and a friendly, if nervous, demeanor. “I couldn’t be outside or talk to strangers without her,” he says of his Chihuahua, Chica. The dog is dressed as a cowboy, shivering slightly inside his coat.

The nonprofit Eugene Police Foundation has been under development for the past year, says John Brown, a Eugene commercial real estate appraiser who is EPF’s board president. The foundation makes its official start Thursday, May 18.

Jessica Campbell of the Rural Organizing Project spoke to a packed room at Temple Beth Israel on Saturday, May 15, about the many layers of white supremacy and the rise and resistance of white nationalist movements in Oregon. 

On that same day a white nationalist group passed out fliers around Eugene advertising for a website called True Cascadia. 

Artesia Hubbard, a University of Oregon student from Colorado, has always been a steward of the land. “I was a river baby. I was always running around in the outdoors,” she says. When Hubbard arrived at UO for her freshman year, her older sister on campus told her to join the school’s Geology Club. 

If you’ve never battled your way through wet Oregon undergrowth for hours and hours, hoping to collect two to four ounces of mushrooms to take home, then this is the story for you. 

As someone who has successfully found chanterelles and porcini mushrooms on about four trips out of 30 in the past four years, you should take all of my advice. 

Peter Kingzett, 541-686-4917, plans to spray 36.0 acres near Territorial and Hamm roads with Element 4 and MSO Concentrate as part of Oak restoration project. A waiver of the normal 15-day waiting period was requested and partially granted. See ODF notification 2017-781-05763, call Brian Peterson at 541-935-2283 with questions.

Please don’t fire Sean Spicer, Mr. Trump. If he fades into (among?) the bushes, Melissa McCarthy and Saturday Night Live can’t make us laugh with her wonderful impersonations, even rolling down 58th street in NYC on her Spicey podium. We deserve that every Saturday night.

 

Ballet Fantastique’s Aladdin takes the company’s storytelling style on a new adventure, combining an ancient tale from the Arabian Nights with indelible music by Queen, played live by Satin Love Orchestra.