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A year and a half after journalist Serena Markstrom was fired by The Register-Guard, she has filed a lawsuit against the newspaper where she had worked for more than a decade.

Decked in sequins, wearing deep shades of purple and draped in iridescent green fabric, Mark Roberts is so radiant he might be faintly visible from Earth’s moon. Peering out from under the wide brim of his battered leopard-print fedora through a pair of wide, silvery lenses, he says: “I’ve always been kind of a shy person.”

 Roberts’ life took a peculiar turn Friday, Aug. 14, when members of the Society for the Legitimization of the Ubiquitous Gastropod (SLUG) crowned him Eugene’s 33rd SLUG queen. 

As school starts up next week, coordinators of the 4J Middle School Mentor Program are looking for volunteers to spend 30 minutes once a week with at-risk students. 

Lucy McWhorter, a mentor to middle school students in Eugene School District 4J, says she was amazed to observe that only 30 minutes a week of mentoring can lead to greater confidence in middle school students.

• Oregon Department of Transportation is currently spraying roadsides. Call Tony Kilmer at ODOT District 5 at 744-8080 or call (888) 996-8080 for herbicide application information. Highways I-5, 99, 105 and 126 near Eugene were recently sprayed.

• Seneca Jones Timber Company, 689-1011, plans to hire Oregon Forest Management Services, 520-5841, to spray four units totaling 293.7 acres near Simonsen Road and Hamm Road with triclopyr, imazapyr, Conquer and/or MSO Concentrate. See ODF notification 2015-781-12022, call Brian Peterson at 935-2283 with questions.

Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) issued a penalty in the amount of $1,875 in July to Brad Boyd (doing business as Brad’s Next Day Dry Cleaning at 3660 Meadow View Drive in Eugene) for failing to submit annual hazardous waste and air quality reports for 2013 and 2014 to DEQ. 

A rezoning plan for the South Willamette is raising hackles among some residents there, who say it could have serious impacts on the quality of life in the area. On the other hand, city planners say the South Willamette Special Area Zone (SW-SAZ) came about as a part of an Envision Eugene goal to create walkable, liveable areas in key corridors. 

Eliot Treichel came to Eugene searching for a mecca of kayaking that he knew he wouldn’t find back in his home state of Wisconsin. Eugene then became a haven for him as a writer. Twice now, Treichel, an author of two books and an occasional reviewer for Eugene Weekly, has been a recipient of a Career Opportunity Grant from the Oregon Arts Commission and The Ford Family Foundation.

• Another week, more shootings, more senseless death — and not in some unfamiliar city across the country, but in our in our own neighborhoods. We have heavy hearts over the deaths of John Ramsey Tainton-Platts, 33, and Justin Gardner, 17, who were both shot and killed this past week (Aug. 28 and Aug. 30 respectively) in Eugene.

Many people are drawn to the fragrance of handmade soaps and related products, but the aromatic booth at Saturday Market for Barbara’s Soaps has also offended some nostrils. The governing board of the market is expected to make a decision this week (Sept. 2) about new guidelines for scented products. Owner Barbara Hascall retired from teaching at South Eugene High School a few years ago and has grown her business through the market.

Who’s who and what’s what in dance this month

• The Metropolitan Policy Committee, a key intergovernmental panel that makes recommendations on local land use and transportation issues, meets from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm Thursday, Sept. 3, at the Eugene Public Library. On the agenda (wkly.ws/229) is “Springfield Main Street Safety Update.” Contact is Paul Thompson, 682-4405.

It’s a bit odd that in America’s thoroughly corporatized culture we have no national day of honor for the Captains of Industry, and yet we do have one for working stiffs: Labor Day! Where did it come from? Who gave this day off to laboring people? History books that bother mentioning Labor Day at all usually credit President Grover Cleveland with its creation: He signed a law in July 1894 that proclaimed a holiday for workers in Washington, D.C., and the federal territories. 

Listing your favorite music genres to include “everything but country” has been in vogue since country went from Hank Williams to Kenny Chesney. But honky-tonk duo The Earnest Lovers are making country cool again with their ’50s and ’60s-style serenades. 

Bay Area act Ensemble Mik Nawooj fuses classical, jazz and hip-hop lyricism to create a sound with the explosive intensity of orchestral post-rock. Composer and pianist Joowan Kim takes his love for Western European classical composition and — with the help of a six-piece chamber orchestra, funk-rock percussion, a lyric soprano and rappers Do D.A.T. and Sandman — he crafts modern classical the likes of which have never been heard. 

Familiar things are sometimes best interpreted by strangers. International musician Monk Parker knows this better than anyone. Splitting his time between the states and the U.K., Parker’s music is influenced by his English mother — an avant-garde, minimalist sculptor — and his more traditional American father. 


Contrary to information provided in the Aug. 20 “Housing First?” cover feature, Eugene does have true Housing First, and ShelterCare has been a leader in implementing this effective but not-so-new model since 2006. That year, we used a private grant to launch The Inside Program (TIP), our initial Housing First venture. 

In 2009, unhappy in Sarasota and wanting to get outta Dodge, so to speak, Jason Pancoast found himself Googling “What is the opposite of Florida?” Oregon kept popping up in the results. And so it was: Pancoast hopped a plane and settled in Eugene without knowing a soul.

I’m confused about my sexuality. For many years, I thought I preferred hetero-romantic asexual relationships. Exposure to select reading material—thanks to my gender-studies classes—has me convinced I’m an asexual t-type (i.e., “top,” but I prefer not to use such connotative terms) female who is attracted to slight and feminine men. I do not want to take off my clothes or engage in oral, anal, digital, or vaginal sex.

A car drops down out of the Hunan countryside, golden hour sunlight glancing of a fresh coat of wax. Pulling into the little dealership's lot, Li Qiang basks for a moment in the smell of new plastic and fresh vinyl. Then he climbs out and walks to meet his colleagues. In bold stick-on characters, the sides of the cars read “Energy-saving, environment-protecting EV/Electric Vehicle” in Chinese.

As Minnie, the boldly curious and sexually precocious 15-year-old girl who inaugurates an affair with her mother’s roustabout boyfriend in Diary of a Teenage Girl, Bel Powley is a revelation. With her saucer eyes popping beneath dowdy bangs, Powley perfectly registers the outsized emotions of a teen exploring the sticky chaos of adulthood; Minnie is all snap judgments, lightning revelations, puppy love, daily heartbreak. It’s the performance of the year so far.

Sniffing out what you shouldn’t miss in the arts this week

• Oregon Department of Transportation is currently spraying roadsides. Call Tony Kilmer at ODOT District 5 at 744-8080 or call (888) 996-8080 for herbicide application information. Highways 99, 105, 126 near Eugene and Beltline were recently sprayed.

• Freres Timber, (503) 859-2121, plans to spray roadsides in Sections 9 and 11 of Township 16S Range 7W near tributaries of Lake Creek with Element 4 (ester), Opensight, Mad Dog Plus and/or MSO Concentrate. See ODF notification 2015-781-11607, call Robin Biesecker at 935-2283 with questions.

Duck beneath the verdant archway of a home off River Road, then traipse along the side of the house and spill out into the backyard where fruit trees, a water feature, a massive swath of vegetables and a chicken coop create a sort of urban Eden.

 Jan Spencer’s house is a little unusual. It does not have your typical well-manicured lawn, Spencer says, but it’s his vision of the future, if others adapt to the permaculture lifestyle.