Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Pedaler’s Fair

This should be good - the first Seattle "Pedaler’s Fair" takes place this weekend, April 21st and 22nd, at the intersection of NW 49th street and 14th avenue North, three blocks from the Burke-Gilman Trail in Ballard. The fair is a first-ever market dedicated to bicycle related goods manufactured by independent Washington businesses. This two-day event highlights products and crafts from over twenty businesses, representing an amazing array of local projects dedicated to bikes. Sponsored by local bike heroes Swift Industries and Go Means Go, along with Central Coop Madison Market, & Seattle Bike Blog. A great chance to outfit yourself for summer, plus music, workshops, and beer. From 11am–5pm Saturday and Sunday.

Monday, April 16, 2012


by Hart Crane

We make our meek adjustments,
Contented with such random consolations
As the wind deposits
In slithered and too ample pockets.

For we can still love the world, who find
A famished kitten on the step, and know
Recesses for it from the fury of the street,
Or warm torn elbow coverts.

We will sidestep, and to the final smirk
Dally the doom of that inevitable thumb
That slowly chafes its puckered index toward us,
Facing the dull squint with what innocence
And what surprise!

And yet these fine collapses are not lies
More than the pirouettes of any pliant cane;
Our obsequies are, in a way, no enterprise.
We can evade you, and all else but the heart:
What blame to us if the heart live on.

The game enforces smirks; but we have seen
The moon in lonely alleys make
A grail of laughter of an empty ash can,
And through all sound of gaiety and quest
Have heard a kitten in the wilderness.

Charlie Chaplin was born on this date, April 16, 1889

Thursday, April 12, 2012

There and Back by Bike

In the summer of 2007 history professor Louis Mendoza set out from Santa Cruz on a bicycle with the idea of seeing first-hand the extent of the growing Latino population in the United States. Over the course of a year he covered 8,500 miles around the entire perimeter of the country, talking to people about their experiences as immigrants or as non-Latino residents who have seen a steady increase of immigrants into their communities. When asked what his motivation was for taking a bike instead of taking a car, he said taking a bike would let him meet people in a happenstance way, and he would be forced to go inside communities he might have passed if he were inside a car.

"A bike took me off the beaten path and made me encounter people in a different way," he said.

Four years later, Mendoza has published A Journey Around Our America, offering his hard won understanding of what it means to be Latino in the United States in the twenty-first century. “I witnessed, first hand, what it was like to be considered a problem.” With a blend of first-person narratives, accounts from other writers, blog entries and excerpts from conversations he had along his ride, Mendoza presents stories of manual laborers, students, activists, and intellectuals. This book, and the journey that inspired it, represents a unique attempt to gain a broad perspective on a persistent and vital American question.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Myth & Murder

Seattle's New Mystics have grand ambitions. The polymathic group of street artists, painters, tattooists, actors and dancers has produced all manner of large scale public art - both officially approved and subterranean - including the Seattle Street Biennale 2010 at Bumbershoot, Moore: Inside Out, the TUBS Memorial Project, and an installation in the slated-for-destruction Sunny Jim Peanut Butter Factory. Their themes are an inscrutable mix of post-apocalyptic predictions and naturalistic philosophy, but their images are always strong and speak volumes even without explanations. The exact composition of the group grows and shrinks - long time members include No Touching Ground, NKO and Dan Hawkins, with ad hoc appearances from DK Pan, EGO, Specs Wizard, Baso Fibonacci and Japhy Witte the Sign Savant.

Their newest show, Myth & Murder, is billed as "a comedic tragedy or a tragic comedy" and highlights installation, handpainted signs, screenprinting, paintings, and performance. At Seattle's Vermillion Gallery, 1508 11th Ave. on Capitol Hill from April 12 to May 5. The opening reception is this Thursday, April 12 with live music by Specs Wizard, Aubrey Birdwell, Al Nightlong, and special uninvited guests.

Sunday, April 8, 2012


I know Jim likes these.

Luminaris is a new stop motion short from Argentine director Juan Pablo Zaramella which very cleverly uses shadows, lightbulbs, and marbles to document one man's escape plan. The 6-minute film won the Audience Award and Fipresci Award at Annecy 2011, and was included in the Oscars shortlist for Best Animated Short.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Mapping Barcelona

A woman named "Katrine" has been living in Barcelona, seeking out street art and carrying a camera. It's not an uncommon way to see that photogenic city, but she has taken the unprecedented step of organizing the best of her photos into a highly organized and accessible map of Barcelona, directing us to specific art pieces on specific streets. It's a work in progress, but it's worth taking a tour today.