Reporting from the heart of Cascadia

Words

Eleanor Oliphant

A woman on the verge

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Eleanor Oliphant is 29 years old, awkward, distant and prone to blurting out exactly what’s on her mind. She trudges through life, dutifully showing up for work then heading home each day, alone. Her weekends are ordered and completely solitary. But, as she keeps repeating to herself, she’s completely fine.

In Scottish author Gail Honeyman’s bestselling 2017 novel, Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine, the title character comes across as an odd duck, a quirky, melancholy character…

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Stay Connected

Opening doors to outdoor learning

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Wild Whatcom is proud to be working with a coalition in Whatcom County helping the community re-envision learning, child care and peer-to-peer connection. The Whatcom Coalition for Environmental Education, comprised of more than a dozen area nonprofits, businesses, agencies and tribal institutions, meets regularly to identify areas for increased collaboration and coordination among their organizations and with schools.

As an active community of professionals, WCEE focuses on expanding…

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Visual

True Crime

The mural of the story

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Artist Matt French has a criminal history.

When he was a wayward youth growing up in Ferndale in the early 1990s, French was arrested for malicious mischief after spray-painting graffiti on a downtown commercial building. The sentence was severe for a nonviolent offense—30 days in jail, as well as financial restitution—but he didn’t let it cramp his creativity.

Instead, French spent his time in the slammer drawing on envelopes instead of edifices. Remarkably, that jailhouse art was…

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Film

Drive-In Dreams

Have screen, will travel

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

As an employee of the Pickford Film Center, the only question I have gotten more often than “When will you reopen?” has been “Can the Pickford do a drive-in while you’re closed?” That second inquiry has come both via the internet and in real life, and is typically followed by an offer of help in whatever capacity needed to make these drive-in dreams a reality.

Turns out, pretty much the minute the Pickford went dark in mid-March, we began to plot, plan and scheme about how…

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Food

Waterfront Dining

On the bay with San Juan Cruises

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

I have mixed emotions about restrictions relating specifically to the self-serve buffet San Juan Cruises typically sets out every summer for its perennially popular Chuckanut Cracked Crab Dinner Cruise.

On the one hand, it’s a relief to know the crew is following COVID-19 dictates in part by putting the kibosh on the free-for-all feast, instead having staff members dish up each plate with the passenger’s request of what they would like to be served from among the numerous menu…

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Music

Downtown Sounds

Live in your living room

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

If it seems to you that I’m writing about the perils and pitfalls facing our music venues on a near-weekly basis these days, it’s probably because that’s what I’m doing. Yes, musicians are finding ways to harness online technologies to keep bringing music to their audiences. Sure, artists are heading into the studio to record. Those things are happening. They are inspiring. The way that music-makers have adapted to COVID-19 and the shutdown orders that have so profoundly…

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Amy Goodman
Tests, not troops

Camouflage-clad paramilitary vigilantes have been terrorizing Portland, Oregon, grabbing people protesting racism and police brutality, pulling them into unmarked minivans and driving off. These roving shock troops, with no insignia or badges, proved to be federal agents from a slew of…

Letters
Big talk, little action

On day one of the coronavirus crisis, Gov. Jay Inslee told Washingtonians that they should stay home and practice social distancing. On day two, he made it clear there would be no penalties…

The summit of our awareness

I was pleased to see Jim Whittaker’s involvement in the Wear a Mask Initiative made possible by a local volunteer group, the Realities of Advanced Medical Interventions team.
Whittaker, as…

Liberty or death?

Due to an appalling lack of leadership, we now find ourselves with the worst pandemic combination possible, high rates of infection and economic collapse. Multiple opinions exist as to which…