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In the midst of an election, despicable disenfranchisement reigns supreme. It is tempting to give up altogether, pack our bags and move to an island so remote that silence becomes the new governing body. For many Americans, casting a vote on Nov. 8 will feel pointless, like screaming into a fucking vacuum. 

Thankfully, legendary punk-rock powerhouse Bad Religion is coming to town, and wants to remind you that your voice matters.

Back in my CD-slinging days (remember CDs?) a new release would arrive pre-stickered “For fans of,” a bald-faced marketing ploy to hitch a new artist to the sound or musician du jour. 

I can imagine California songwriter Margaret Glaspy’s latest release, Emotions And Math, arriving affixed with: “For fans of Norah Jones” or “As heard on NPR.” Perhaps you know Glaspy from her recent Tiny Desk Concert. 

The brilliant banter between Beatrice and Benedict in Shakespeare’s comedy Much Ado About Nothing, one of theater’s most entertaining duets, seems ideal for a musical setting. Sure enough, French Romantic composer Hector Berlioz, who created the trailblazing Fantastic Symphony and other colorful orchestral works, wrote one (including the libretto, which adds some characters and subplots and jettisons others) in 1862. 

MENTAL HEALTH PROGRESS

Waiting to pay for my groceries at the market this evening, this guy, stinking of booze, says to my 9-year-old daughter, “Sweetheart, can you put the divider thing there for me?” First, why is some leering grown man calling my child “sweetheart”? He then thumps two huge bottles of vodka down on the belt. I move closer to my daughter; he then reaches his hand over me and wraps his hand around her arm, saying, “Now, you be nice to your Mommy, sweetie.” I pluck his hand off. “Do not touch my child,” I say.

Denial

In a dark corner of Cordley Hall on the edge of Oregon State University campus, an unsorted knot of dead ants floats preserved in a clear solution. For all anyone knows, the thumb-sized vial could hold an undiscovered species or a clue to some future entomological breakthrough.

As curator of OSU’s arthropod collection, Chris Marshall is in charge of almost three million dead bugs, as well as some spiders and mollusks.

Unless you solely rely on your dusty elementary school education to shape your worldview, or you live beneath a social-media rock, you ought to have a broadened understanding of colonization (just in time for Thanksgiving, y’all). European colonizers came, they saw and then stole the land we now recognize as the United States from its indigenous people. 

The University of Oregon has opened its gates to the world, and as you read this, freshmen with guitars and amps are swapping numbers, meeting up and starting their musical journeys. It’s hard to say what the music scene around campus will look like by graduation, but right now, there are still plenty of students and recent graduates kicking around the scene. Here are a few bands not to miss when they inevitably play around the campus area this year. 

Each year, tuition and fees have increased at the University of Oregon.

Meanwhile, student loan debt has reached $1 trillion nationally, “becoming the second-largest consumer obligation after mortgages,” according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Cherríe Moraga, a Chicana playwright, feminist activist, poet and essayist, will deliver a lecture at the University of Oregon Oct. 13 about the working class, both past and present.

Once upon a time in the way back when, the role of higher education was not to prepare you for the treadmill by clipping you into a human coupon but, rather, to help you seek your better self through a spirit of open inquiry into the civilization in which fate had somehow plunked you. Sure, it’s an ideal, and that’s the point. College is supposed to be formative, not formulaic — revelatory, not rote. It’s supposed to make you a better person instead of a better cog.

The University of Oregon hosts a number of traditional campus critters — crows, squirrels and freshmen, to name a few. 

But hidden away in neuroscientist Terry Takahashi’s lab is a parliament of 10 barn owls that helps Takahashi and his team of researchers understand the complexity of hearing in both birds and mammals. The owls have even led the scientist’s team to discoveries that could improve the lives of human beings.

The problem isn’t Donald Trump, the problem is Trumpism,” Reza Aslan tells EW.

Known for his book Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth, as well as for his long, patient interview with a Fox News reporter who could not understand how a Muslim could write a book about Jesus, Aslan comes to the University of Oregon Oct. 18 to present “An Evening with Reza Aslan: Religion, Identity and the Future of America.”

With EWEB talking about selling off its riverfront headquarters and City Hall in flux, many wonder why Eugene City Council continues to steer the conversation away from EWEB.

Things started to go sideways again for the tangled City Hall project this summer when construction bids came in $10 million higher than expected, sending the city back to the drawing board to determine where best to put its new building and what exactly it should look like. More complications arose as the city tried wangling some portion of the 8th and Oak “butterfly lot” from the county.

Weyerhaeuser Company, 746-2511, plans to aerially apply urea fertilizer to 684.1 acres south of Vida and the McKenzie River near West Fork Deer Creek and tributaries and to East Fork Deer Creek tributaries. See ODF notification 2016-771-11891, call Brian Dally at 541-726-3588 with questions.

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) fined Dorena Hydro $11,400 Sept. 26 for various Clean Water Act violations associated with reduced dissolved oxygen levels in the Row River caused by the operation of Dorena Dam Hydroelectric Project. The violations occurred in April, when the Row River is designated as an active salmon and steelhead spawning area.

• The David Minor Theater celebrates its 8th anniversary with a special viewing event “Beer and Beyond” 6:45 pm and 9:15 pm Saturday, Oct 22. The theater says, “An evening of celebrations including discounted movie tickets and a special back-to-back screening of the new Star Trek Beyond epic are planned.” Tickets are $4. For more info, go to davidminortheater.com.

• How do we keep public spaces like the Park Blocks and Kesey Square active, vital places where everyone wants to be any day of the year? The city of Eugene has started a Places for People project, in partnership with Project for Public Spaces, and will be asking the community for input at upcoming events and workshops in October. Events include: “Transforming Public Spaces: Talk and Open House with Fred Kent,” 7:30 pm Thursday, Oct. 13, at the LCC Downtown Campus. At 10 am Saturday, Oct. 15, at the Atrium Lobby, 99 W.

In January 2013, I was roofied and raped at a fraternity while I was a student at the University of Oregon. The Sunday before the first day of my last winter term at the UO, I woke up naked with a man I had never wanted to be naked with, the night flooding back to me as I tried to find my clothes and leave. 

Sooner or later it happens. You write or say something and then you have to come clean and admit that you just got it wrong. In “The $7 million giveaway” I argued that our local officials got little or nothing in return for extending the enterprise zone benefits for Broadcom an additional two years.

Though he was born in Eugene, Charles Denson moved to Silver City, Nevada, with his parents when he was 6. “We came back to visit family in the summer and for weddings,” he says. “I moved back in 2006 after high school and got started at Lane Community College.” He began to volunteer with campus groups addressing environmental and social justice issues, and he traveled to Copenhagen in 2009 with a group of young people to lobby U.S. delegates to the United Nations negotiations on climate change.

Two things happen in Oregon in even-numbered years. We hold a general election, and invasive alien biennial weed species (Lawnsignicus obnoxicus) appear in the Willamette Valley. These weeds first blossomed near Creswell on a local site known as Idiot Hill, for some reason. Suddenly there they were, crowded into their limited ecological niche, a dairy farm. They apparently thrive in cow poop. Four signs of the time: Trump/Pierce/Robinson/Richardson all held up by the same wooden stakes. Birds of a feather flock together.

There’s a ghost-like quality to Marissa Nadler’s 2016 release Bury Your Name that’s perfect for fall and winter in Eugene. Throughout the record, the strings of her acoustic guitar are like brittle icicles while the sound of violins envelops the music like breath on a cold morning. And Nadler’s murmuring voice, trapped in an echo box, quivers and quakes.