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November 28, 2012 05:45 PM

Local car dealer Ridley's Rides is getting some attention from Ad Week and elsewhere  for its eBay listings that supposedly use the owner's daughter to sell cars, sexy-style. I notice that they don't use sexy pics for the station wagons. 

Local TV station KVAL jumped on the story and revealed that nope, it's not a daughter, merely a "longtime friend." This sort of begs the questions as to why he said it was his daughter in the first place, but I will just leave that to your speculation.

November 20, 2012 11:27 PM

Just because EW had early Tofurky Day deadlines does not mean you don't need to hear more about the Lane County Board of County Commissioners meeting today. They didn't just talk turkey and pilgrims, they talked animals and air.

Animals

Animal advocates having been coming to commission meetings and speaking up. As a result, the commission voted to retain the animal advisory committee, look into changes in its contract with Greenhill and to fill open positions on the committee. Looks like from this web update that the R-G will have a full story Nov. 21, so I will move on to air.

Air

Commish Jay Bozievich helpfully fowarded an email about a 1:30 pm Nov. 27 work session at Harris Hall on the Lane Regional Air Protection Agency (LRAPA).

Two of the topics which will be discussed at this work session are:

What would the community lose without LRAPA?

What costs would local governments incur without LRAPA?

Merlyn Hough, LRAPA executive director, wrote up a briefing report on the agency (see below). Some praise LRAPA for its air quality monitoring and programs for improving air quality, like the one that replaces wood stoves with cleaner-burning stoves. Other say LRAPA rubber-stamps industry permits, like the Seneca biomass-burning plant. Either way, if you care about LRAPA you should show up for the work session. Worked for the animal folks.

November 20, 2012 06:43 PM

God (and capitalism) is good; God (and capitalism) is great. Thank God (and capitalism )for the food we eat. 

It's the new conservative Thanksgiving grace. 

Ok I made that up.

Some people celebrate Thanksgiving as a family event, others as a day to mourn what's happened to America's indignous peoples, still more go for the Chinese food and movie option. And of course a whole sh*t ton of people see Thanksgving as the day before they go on a crazy shopping spree. But according to some sources, that shopping spree is probably the idea way to celebrate Turkey Day because that's what it's really about. Capitalism. 

Capitalism was the lesson of the day from Commissioner Jay Boziviech (West Lane) at the Lane County Board of Commissioners meeting On Nov. 20. During the Commissioners Remonstrance Boziviech took the opportunity to tell the "real" story of Thanksgiving, which in this version (which seems to be taken directly from Rush Limbaugh's book and the story he repeats each year on his show), basically: Thanksgiving is the celebration of a pilgrimic triumph over communism and a celebration of capitalism. 

Here's what he said:

I kind of want to remind people about the real story of Thanksgiving. There’s been a lot of myths around it: You know the Pilgrims and the Indians and the Indians taught the Pilgrims how to grow food and that’s what they were celebrating. That’s not the real story.

The Pilgrims, on the way across the ocean, developed a societal system that was basically a commune, long before Lenin was ever alive, they came to America, started this communal system of common property where everybody’s food that they grew was thrown in a common storehouse and taken out at will. And you know what? Over the first couple winters they starved because people had no incentive to produce and there was a lot of corruption and theft from the warehouse. So they finally decided to let people have ownership over a plot of land and keep the goods that they grew.

And you know what? That the following year they had a tremendous bounty they and held a celebration and that was the first Thanksgiving. Basically what you are celebrating in Thanksgiving is private property rights and being able to hang on to the fruits of your own labor. … Please remember why we celebrate it and that’s because it was about private property rights and capitalism. 

America: We kicked communism's ass before communism was even born.

You can watch it on video here. The turkey talk starts about 42 minutes in.

Google Pilgrim communists and you will get a lot of conservative and Tea Party website hits.The Christian Science Monitor did a nice historical look at Thanksiving that talks about how the Pilgrims' journals discussed the whole Pilgrims and Native Americans thing.

In a letter to a friend, dated December 1621, Edward Winslow wrote: "Our harvest being gotten in, our Governor sent four men on fowling, that so we might after a more special manner rejoice together, after we had gathered the fruit of our labors; they four in one day killed as much fowl as, with a little help beside, served the Company almost a week, at which time, among other Recreations, we exercised our Arms, many of the Indians coming amongst us, and among the rest their greatest King Massasoit, with some 90 men, whom for three days we entertained and feasted and they went out and killed five Deer, which they brought to the Plantation and bestowed on our Governor, and upon the Captain and others."

I figured the whole communism gets smashed thing had to come from somewhere. In fact, the Pilgrims came to the New (to white folks) World as a joint-stock venture, funded by London businessmen looking to make a profit. Joint-stock ventures were precursors to modern corporations. The Pilgrims did at first govern themselves under the Mayflower Compact, which called for a communal system. They did indeed switch to small individually owned plots of land. And the "communist" Mayflower Compact … was a founding document of the Constitution. The mind boggles. 

I'm not entirely sure what the take-away lesson is here, but I'm going to suggest you not honor capitalism by becoming a human sacrifice when some Walmart opens its doors at o'dark thirty on Black Friday. 

November 16, 2012 08:04 PM

The recent debate on EW's Facebook page  and blog about the Diablos poster led to a lot of conversations about race, fetishization and how we conceive of and portray Native Americans, African-Americans, race and whiteness. Diablos apologized for the poster, pulled it and went to dialogue with local indigenous people at the UO's Many Nations Longhouse, a pretty classy response to concerns from the community.

Here's what Diablos said in response to the FB comments:

There's been an unfortunate controversy over our "Spanksgiving Fetish Night" poster. In this case, we have to agree with our critics and take our lumps so to speak. The poster was in poor taste. 

While fetish events frequently offend someone, this is a case where the offense was not intentional and poorly considered. The posters and facebook event logo have been pulled and changed. We sincerely apologize for the offense.

By nature fetishes frequently involve objectification, within the fetish community it is mandatory that it be consensual objectification. In this case we made a big mistake and didn't consider consent of the community we were depicting. We try to be a completely inclusive bar. We host drag shows, fundraisers, bingo, fetish events, and we have a very diverse clientele. 

We failed this time. We are very sorry!

This video by the 1491s came up in some of the comments. Favorite part? "Clueless" shirtless hipster in headdress. 

November 15, 2012 05:49 PM

Word has gotten out that The Eugene Register-Guard is planning to move  music and entertainment (Ticket) reporter Serena Markstrom to a news beat. Admitedly the R-G and  EW have a friendly rivalry going on, and we cheerfully snark the daily whenever we can, but I don't know that we've ever snarked Serena* because, let's face it, she's good. 

Newspapers are facing draining resources and shrinking newsrooms. Local voices like Serena's are what keep papers like the R-G relevant. Not only does she win praise from her readers and local musicians for her coverage of the Eugene scene, she can work PajamaJeans into a New Year's Eve entertainment story. 

So, EW thinks there needs to be a letter writing campaign: Keep Serena Writing Entertainment (why yes, we DID make a Facebook page, doesn't every good cause need one? And we stole the photo from her Pinterest page.) Email works too. But remember, WRITE, it's not enough to grumble or to just "like" a page.

Is it weird the alt weekly would start a letter-writing campaign in support of the compeition? (After all, the idea is the R-G is better with Serena on entertainment would mean EW is, gasp, trying to help the daily.) Maybe, but our alternative voice is better if the mainstream voice is good. 

Like Serena's writing? Like the coverage she's given local musicians?  Write the R-G and tell the editors that they need to keep her on the entertainment beat and tell them why.

Write a letter to the editor and make your opinion known: rgletters@registerguard.com.

Oh hell, write EWa letter to the editor, too: Letters@eugeneweekly.com

Editor and publisher Tony Baker: tony.baker@registerguard.com

Team Editor for Oregon Life, Food, Arts, Entertainment and Health/Fitness Mark Baker: mark.baker@registerguard.com

And if all else fails, drop Bob Welch a note. He's a columnist that always seems to like a good cause: bob.welch@registerguard.com

 

* Yes, in journalism you do call people by their last names, but we know Serena and sometimes you have to break the AP style rules.

November 14, 2012 05:54 PM

The Elliott State Forest has been the focus of local campaigns to stop the logging of the last of Oregon's coastal rain forest. It would seem that when you mix good old fashioned lawsuits with some good old fashioned protests, you get somewhere. 

Citing Marbled Murrelet Lawsuit, Oregon Suspends Clearcutting on 914 Acres of Old-growth Forests on the Elliott State Forest

Conservation Organizations Applaud the State but Push for Lasting Protections

SALEM, Ore.- After a lawsuit by conservation groups, the State of Oregon has suspended logging of 914 acres of old-growth forest on the Elliott State Forest that is habitat for the threatened marbled murrelet. Previously, ten timber sales were suspended in response to the lawsuit filed in July by Cascadia Wildlands, the Center for Biological Diversity, and the Audubon Society of Portland. The suit asserts that the state is harming the rare seabird by logging its nesting habitat in violation of the Endangered Species Act.

"The state of Oregon has been playing fast and loose with the law for years in the way it claims to 'protect' the imperiled marbled murrelet," said Francis Eatherington, conservation director of Cascadia Wildlands. "The decision to further defer hundreds of acres of clearcuts is one that we welcome and provides interim relief for the murrelet."

Plaintiffs discovered the logging deferral announcement in an Oregon Department of Forestry memo, dated Sept. 19, 2012, that was just recently posted to the Department's website. The memo suggests that the State will defer 15 additional timber sales until the lawsuit currently pending in U.S. District Court is resolved, and that the State will work to identify other logging projects that are free of the contested issues in the case. Plaintiffs have long advocated the state focus its timber operations on young plantation forests in need of restoration rather than older forests that are critical to the survival of a host of endangered species, including marbled murrelets.

"Logging on state forests cannot be done at the expense of the survival of the marbled murrelet or any other animals that depend on old forests for their survival," said Noah Greenwald, endangered species director with the Center for Biological Diversity. "The last remaining old forests in Oregon are precious and need to be protected not just for the marbled murrelet, but for future generations."

The most recent status review of the murrelet by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service found the birds have been declining by about four percent per year and that this decline relates to continued loss of habitat, primarily on state and private lands.

The State of Oregon recently abandoned its decade-long attempt to develop habitat conservation plans (HCPs) for the Elliott, as well as the Clatsop and Tillamook State Forests, that would have given it a federal permit for limited impacts to marbled murrelets in exchange for habitat protection measures designed to enhance the bird's conservation. Rather than improving habitat protections, the state walked away from the HCP process altogether and instead ramped up logging on all three forests. The lawsuit seeks to force the State to halt logging practices that are harmful to murrelets until it develops a plan that will protect murrelets and the mature forests on which the birds and other species depend.

"It is time for the State to return to the table and negotiate a balanced plan for each of the state forests that will provide adequate protection for the murrelet, allow for responsible and sustainable logging, and ensure that the State meets the requirements of the Endangered Species Act," said Bob Sallinger, conservation director for the Audubon Society of Portland.

The conservation organizations are represented by outside counsel Daniel Kruse of Eugene, Tanya Sanerib and Chris Winter of the Crag Law Center, Nick Cady of Cascadia Wildlands, Scott Jerger of Field Jerger LLP, and Susan Jane Brown of the Western Environmental Law Center.

November 14, 2012 06:24 PM

Update:

Diablos responded very quickly to the comments on its Facebook page and to EW's request for comment:

    Shame on us.... yes, agreed. It was in VERY poor taste. here's our general response on the issue ... While fetish events frequently offend someone, this is a case where the offence was not intentional and poorly considered. The posters and facebook event logo have been pulled and changed. We sincerely apologize for the offence.

   By nature fetishes frequently involve objectification, within the fetish community it is mandatory that it be consensual objectification. In this case we made a big mistake and didn't consider consent of the community we were depicting. We try to be a completely inclusive bar. We host drag shows, fundraisers, bingo, fetish events, and we have a very diverse clientele. We failed this time. We are very sorry!

Diablos is having a Fetish Ball Thanksgiving weekend, and its poster uses a woman in an "Indian headdress" to advertise the event.

For many Native peoples and others, Thanksgiving marks the genocide of Native tribes and colonization of Native lands and wearing or depicting someone in an "Indian headdress" feeds into racist stereotypes. 

According to Will Doolittle who has begun calling attention to the poster on Facebook, "Diablos Bar, in Eugene Oregon, perpetuates racist stereotypes in advertising their 'Spanksgiving Fetish Night.' Their phone number is 541-343-2346. Their facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/diablosdtl I told the person answering the phone that they'd probably be receiving more calls about this insulting poster. She said she is sorry if people are offended but they can't do anything about it."

The response to the poster had only just begun as this blog went up, so Diablos has not yet had chance to respond to the Facebook comments. 

Word is that tomorrow, after culture night at the UO Many Nations longhouse (17th and Columbia), people will go as a group to approach Diablos about the issue.

November 13, 2012 08:00 PM

Washington made pot legal thanks to the passing of I-502 in the recent election, and now the cops have to deal with it, and Washingtonians have to deal with the cops. Luckily Seattle PD has made a handy FAQ called  Marijwhatnow? A Guide to Legal Marijuana Use In Seattlle to help.

The advice includes: 

Can I smoke pot outside my home? Like at a park, magic show, or the Bite of Seattle?

Much like having an open container of alcohol in public, doing so could result in a civil infraction—like a ticket—but not arrest. You can certainly use marijuana in the privacy of your own home. Additionally, if smoking a cigarette isn’t allowed where you are (say, inside an apartment building or flammable chemical factory), smoking marijuana isn’t allowed there either.

Will police officers be able to smoke marijuana?

As of right now, no. This is still a very complicated issue

What happens if I get pulled over and I’m sober, but an officer or his K9 buddy smells the ounce of Super Skunk I’ve got in my trunk?

Under state law, officers have to develop probable cause to search a closed or locked container. Each case stands on its own, but the smell of pot alone will not be reason to search a vehicle. If officers have information that you’re trafficking, producing or delivering marijuana in violation of state law, they can get a warrant to search your vehicle.

SPD seized a bunch of my marijuana before I-502 passed. Can I have it back?

No.

For the full page including a video clip from Lord of the Rings of Gandalf and Bilbo Baggins smoking "the finest weed" go to the Seattle Police Department web page

November 8, 2012 04:43 PM

I'm not saying it's good. I'm just saying someone made a rap about GMOs (genetically modified organisms).

November 2, 2012 06:22 PM

This just in from the Congressman Peter DeFazio  election campaign:

REPUBLICAN SUPER PAC SPENDS $170,000 TO ATTACK DEFAZIO IN FINAL WEEK

Voters will not know who is funding the final attacks until after the election

(EUGENE, OR)- Republican Super PAC Inc. (RSPI) has spent nearly $170,000 in the final week in an attempt to attack Peter DeFazio and buy Art Robinson a seat in congress. In FEC reports dated 10/31 and 11/1, RSPI purchased an additional $93,000 of television time and spent nearly $75,000 on two mail pieces attacking DeFazio. 

“My so-called ‘fiscally conservative’ opponent Art Robinson has blown nearly $1 million on his book, thousands of message signs full of empty promises he cannot and has no intention of keeping, and radio and television ads that try to hide his ultra right-wing extreme ideals. But Art could drain his bank account because Republican Super PAC Inc (RSPI) bailed out his campaign on TV, radio, and in the mail. RSPI and its Wall Street funder don’t care that Art Robinson has no plan to get people back to work, or that his budget plan would drive us deeper into debt. They just want to buy votes for the guy who will bend to their will. People might not always agree with me, but they know where I stand and that I have the backbone to stand up to these special interests,” said DeFazio. 

RSPI’s current television ad and a recent mailer sent to thousands of households falsely claims that DeFazio voted against a balanced budget amendment in 2011. DeFazio led the Democratic support for the only balanced budget amendment voted on in the House of Representatives in the current Congress. Politico highlighted DeFazio’s support of the BBA in November 2011 writing, “Oregon Rep. Peter DeFazio is urging his colleagues to buck Democratic leadership and vote in favor of the balanced budget amendment that’s headed for a vote in the House at the end of this week.” (http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1111/68413.html#ixzz2B6j4NSvB)

RSPI claims that DeFazio voted against a balanced budget amendment in 2011 and cited HR 2560, legislation that was not a balanced budget amendment. In a non-partisan Congressional Research Service (CRS) report, CRS found that “the bill itself was not a balanced budget amendment” (http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/R41907.pdf page 23). 

RSPI will not file a FEC report disclosing its recent donors until after the election, keeping voters in the dark about who is funding the attacks against DeFazio in the closing days of the election. 

DeFazio’s campaign has also recently received calls from voters contacted in a push poll paid for by Republican Super PAC Inc., claiming DeFazio intends to raise taxes and increase spending.  The push poll phone number (541-823-5019) doesn’t connect to a business or individual.

The DeFazio campaign's billboards aren't the only way that non-Robinsonians are looking to explain Robinson. For some weekend viewing fun, we're reposting a video one of our readers created:

October 31, 2012 05:58 PM

So Art Robinson sued Congressman Peter DeFazio for a cool million over billboards with Robinson's name and quotes on them, that were put up by DeFazio's campaign with link to the website whoisartrobinson.com

Tea Party climate-change denier Robinson is trying to take DeFazio on again for Oregon's 4th district congressional seat.

According to the conservative website Human Events, the suit is dead in the water. 

According to the story: 

David Mark, editor-in-chief at Politix and author of “Going Dirty: The Art of Negative Campaigning,” said, “Robinson has virtually no shot of winning because it’s not clear at all that the advertisements are illegal.”

October 31, 2012 11:39 AM

A four-year-old in the swing state of Colorado is tired of  "Bronco Bamma and Mitt Romney."

We are too sweetie and it will all be over just as soon as we're done trying to keep Mr. Romney from taking away your Big Bird.

October 31, 2012 05:37 PM

So today at the Lane County Commissioners' meeting … 

They laughed, they joked, they talked about a public safety tax and they took secret pictures of each other and posted them on Facebook.

Here's more or less how the meeting went.

ANIMALS

Several citizens gave public comments asking that the commissioners retain the Lane County Animal Services Committee and fill the vacancies that have opened up on it. (See our story in tomorrow's EW.)

During the "Commissioners' Remonstrance" Commish Bozievich sends goodwill to those affected by the East Coast storm and then says he felt most people are not prepared for disasters and suggests some sites to go to for advice and also suggests  to give blood.

Commish Stewart shares the East Coast good wishes and asks County Admin Liane Richardson if she was ready for an update on the Animal Services Committee. Richardson says she hasn't heard anything from Eugene or Springfield about creating a multijurisdictional committee.  Stewart suggests it be made clear to Eugene and Springfield their input would be needed to form a committee that would extend beyond the animals in the county's purview (aka only the animals in the unincorporated areas).

ANIMALS and CLIMATE CHANGE!

Commish Handy says the county needed to send a message to Springfield and Eugene that a multijurisdictional taskforce is needed. He too voices his concerns about the storm and remind everyone that climate change is a huge issue right now and policymakers need to take it seriously.

He gets a couple gold stars for that. 

Sorenson thanks the animal folks for coming and reminds the board of needed to fill spots on the animal services committee. He also comments on the storm and pointed out some of the devastation comes from poor land use planning and not protecting land that could be used as buffers and points out that around here we have houses built too close to lakes and rivers. And he points out the link in the increase in storms to man-made climate change.

More gold stars. 

Leikin says he's talked to the mayor of Springfield and not seeing a lot of "appetite" for a multijurisdictional committee and suggests folks go to the next Springfield City Council meeting and voice their concerns. He sends out his storm concerns and gives some other shout outs.

Then they do a their consent calendar thing.

Then Liane Richardson talks about disaster prepardness.

Bored yet? Me too. Hang in there, it gets more fun. Or just skip down to the end.

PUBLIC SAFETY

The public safety update starts at about 21:30. Richardson sas if something's going to be put on the ballot (aka asking the voters if they want to have a tax) things need to be discussed. 

Sheriff Tom Turner comes in and does a jail funding update. The county is going to lose 15 more jail beds. 

He says with Judge Hogan retiring the new appointee will be from another county (Multnomah) and thus there will be less cases here. A change up at Sheridan will also reduce Lane County's numbers and overall less prisoners from the feds. Funding for 20 fewer beds from the feds means the county loses 15 beds because jail beds are closed in wings or groups. 

And then the commissioners talk for a long time about public safety. At about an hour in, Sorenson brings up concerns about the jail-only focus of the discussion. Turner says Sorenson's questions are "difficult."

The idea of a tax gets discussed (told you so). Leiken says the most important thing is that what is put forward is something that would win in the voters' minds.

Stewart makes an interesing point about how creating a public safety district could  run up against that pesky Metro Plan that makes the county and cities work together.

Bozievich grumbles about Sorenson's criticisms of materials not being available on the website and talking to "the press." Hmm, wonder who that is? Anyway,  Sorenson's not the only one complaining about that. And I'm just going to throw out there that if the agenda said things like "public safety poll and ballot measure" instead of just "public safety" that would be a little more clear. 

Anyway, basically they get around to saying if they are going to put a tax on the May ballot they need to start polling and get a timeline going after the election and by early December. 

The discussion goes on in that vein. Feel free to watch the whole video here

PICTURES!

I'm guessing it was after the meeting ended that Commish Jay Bozievich posted on Facebook what he was doing durings some of the discussion: taking pictures of Pete Sorenson. (I'd ask Bozievich if his Facebooking was post meeting but despite his recent comments on my blog about transparency, last I checked he said he would only talk to me if I asked my questions via a public records request, and those things are kind of spendy when it comes to the county. Anyway, he tends to be pretty by the book, so I'm guessing his FBing was after the meeting.)

And here I was thinking that posting pictures of the kid you're mad at was something high school kids did.

I love county politics. 

October 30, 2012 05:32 PM

Who knew giant brown spiders were so controversial? Our story No Worries About Giant Brown Spiders elicited a number of responses from readers who say that they indeed have encountered hobo spiders south of Corvallis.They even sent pictures. Awesome. Who doesn't love spider mail? (FYI: me).

Our article featured Dr. Melissa Scherr of the Northwest Entomological Research Center discussing the lack of scientific evidence that hobo spiders cause necrotic bites. According to the Mayo Clinic, bites from other bugs are often misdiagnosed as spider bites. In fact doctors say that most "spider bites" are actually pus-filled abscesses, often caused by MRSA (I linked to about.com for that because all the links to doctors' pages featured links to photos of gross loooking abscesses and I chose to spare you the trauma I just went through. But go ahead, Google "spider bite abscess" and see what happens.)

Scherr saying hobo spiders have not been documented south of Corvallis kicked off controversy among spider watchers. But wait, please DON'T send me more pictures of your giant brown spiders, instead, use this handy sheet and a microscope to prove your hobo point (and duly noted per an observation from an astute reader: freeze spidey for at least 24 hours first to prevent him from jumping back to life mid-miscroscopic examination). 

This letter came in last week, but due to its length did not make it into our letters section (200 word max people!). But I think the descriptive language — a slorping pork sausage finger that later came to look like whipped cherry Jell-O, and the unique cure, via a kitchen spice — render this letter blog-worthy. 

Dear Eugene Weekly,

An article posted in the Register-Guard Oct. 3, 2012 titled "No Worries About Giant Brown Spiders", and written by Camilla Mortensen, referenced Melissa Scherr, of NWERC, on the subject of certain local spiders who may or may not be venomous, specifically Hobo spiders.  There are several items of what I believe to be misinformation contained in Paragraph 3 of this article, to which I ask to draw your attention.  I think that it is ingenuous at best for Ms. Scherr to say that Oregonians tend to fear Hobo spiders because of a "belief that they have a venomous bite that causes necrosis", but that "spiders like this rarely bite us."  Rarely as compared to what?  People are "rarely" bitten by bears, pit bulls, or sharks, either, yet are still considered to be a serious risk to humans.  We are not natural prey for any of these predators, but they all have biological mechanisms that can cause serious damage to human flesh. 

A male Hobo spider bit me on the back of my right pointer finger about 4 years ago.  At the time, I was working in the family practice office of Dr. Joanne Holland, MD, in Drain, Oregon, and living on her farm outside of town.  We had a patient who had been bitten on the back of the neck, and had received treatment from the ER at Sacred Heart Hospital.  I think Dr. Holland has had two other patients also bitten by Hobos under treatment, and then there's me.  I read as much of the on-line available information as I could find, then down-loaded, collated, and printed out a little Hobo spider handbook to provide cautionary information to the Community.  It left me with a fairly well informed awareness of what to look for in identifying and dealing with them.  Thus, when a spider next to the light switch on the bathroom wall confronted me, I was pretty sure I was looking at a male Hobo spider.  Silly me, I thought I'd use the toilet first, and kill the spider second.  I was bitten while in the act of throwing on the light switch.

Yes, I saw the spider bite me- sort of.  It happened so fast, the spider jumping forward and back again, that I was not sure if I had seen it, but just in case it had happened, I watched my finger closely.  Unlike Black Widow, Brown Recluse, or Yellow Sac spider bites, which produce immediate sharp pain like bee stings, there was no pain.  Sure enough, in about 15 minutes, what looked like two tiny pimples appeared.  Over the next 24 hours, the pimples grew, became more and more virulent, and eventually merged into one large misshapen dome.  The surrounding flesh grew increasingly swollen and hot to the touch, and I began experiencing sever nerve sensitivity, mental confusion, and chills.  By two days after being envenomed, all four of my fingers and the thumb, plus about half of the palm, had swollen to twice their usual configuration.  I could not touch my left finger to thumb around the right pointer finger that had been bitten, the skin turned translucent, then transparent, and the flesh underneath liquefied.  It looked like I had dropped a pork sausage in to boiling water, with bubbles and liquid slorping around under the skin.  I cannot accurately describe what it felt like, the mental anguish, nerve pain, nausea, and hypersensitivity.

 To cut a long story short, Dr. Holland an I elected to try a non-standard treatment regimen, and rather than follow a standard heroic procedure, and remove the necrotic mass down to live flesh, we left it alone, merely covering the finger in a loose cotton bandage for protection.  When the skin finally ruptured, the liquid gelled and turned a cottony white.  AMA said cut that out of there, but I did not allow it.  Instead, I left the necrotic mass in situ, and coated the entire finger in powdered turmeric, the kitchen spice.  It is also a very powerful anti-biotic, anti-viral, and anti-fungal agent used throughout Asia.  My finger formed what looked like cherry Jell-O whipped in a blender surrounding the white mass, which I identified as "granulation tissue", the mechanism through which the body regenerates lost flesh.  By leaving the necrotic mass intact, it encouraged the formation of granulation tissue, which gradually displaced the necrotic mass, and filled in the bone-deep crater with the real me.  My finger is still with me, at about 90% mobility and strength, although the skin over the bite area is very thin and scarified.  My overall metabolism was radically altered, and I now find myself much less able to bear cold temperatures than pre-bite. 

So, what has caused me to write to you today is the huge female Hobo spider I have sitting in a Mason jar on my counter.  I found this Amazon at the top of my bedroom wall, right over my head.  The body is fully 3/4" long, and the long, central legs span more than 2" front-to-back.  She is big enough to see her eyes, and the leg hairs are quite visible.  I caught her about 5 days ago, hoping for a more qualified ID, but have so far not found anyone who can help.  I am, however, 100% sure that this is a female Hobo spider in my jar.  Since my bite, Dr. Holland has used hormone-baited sticky traps, and caught several inside her Medical Clinic in Drain.  This is the first I've encountered in my house in Eugene, but she is a prizewinner, better than twice the size of the male that got me.  I have taken some not very good pictures, and have not yet done anything with the spider in her jar.  She has spun web all over the bottom of the jar, and unless someone tells me otherwise, I intend to set her loose in an un-populated area in another day or two.  If you wish to contact me at lonergan2@yahoo.com, I can send you the e-file of my pics.  My cel number is 541-xxxx-xxxx, and DR. Holland can be reached at 541-xxx-xxxx.  I hope you will correct the misinformation that you appear to posses to account for my evidence.  Hobo spiders ARE definitely to be found South of Corvallis, they ARE aggressive, they CAN and WILL inflict a potentially very serious bite, and it WILL cause Arachnoid Necrosis.  I’d be happy to share what information and experience in this matter that you find of interest. 

Best of days to you and yours.

M. Lono Burke