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We hear changes are afoot at BRING Recycling as Executive Director Julie Daniel and Director of Communications and Development Sonja Snyder are both planning to retire in May. Ephraim Payne recently took over as director of outreach and communications when Shirley Perez West left. Daniel has been with BRING for 19 years and is credited with spearheading the $3.2 million capital campaign that created the new Planet Improvement Center in Glenwood. She also launched the RE:think Business program and the annual Home and Garden Tour.

• The Eugene Police Commission will meet at 5:30 pm Thursday, March 12, at EPD Headquarters, 300 Country Club Road. On the agenda is “citizens filming officers policy review.” The EPD does not currently have a policy regarding citizens recording officer interactions, such as how far away citizens must stand to avoid being arrested for interference. Email Jeremy.D.Cleversey@ci.eugene.or.us or call 682-5852 for more information. 

It’s so much more entertaining watching Salem politics than the Boehner and McConnell Obamadrama immigration fiasco in D.C. The Oregon Senate already previewed snarky political hot-air theater in its raucous partisan debate over low-carbon fuel emissions, and the House then passed the low-carbon bill to Kate Brown in a 31-29 dust-up after sticking Kate’s motor voter bill down the collective Republican pie hole. And speaking of Kate, Gov. Brown signed her first bill, a change in the outcome of class-action suits, a Democrat target since last session.

Music news & notes from down in the Willamette valley

New York rapper Michael Quattlebaum Jr., aka Mykki Blanco, is as much a performance artist as a musician. A published poet and art school dropout, Quattlebaum’s alter ego Blanco is inspired by teenage girls and drag queens — mixing the right-now youth culture of Rihanna, the decadent gutter of the New York art world, queercore and Riot Grrrl icon Kathleen Hanna. 

Caroline Bauer releases her first full-length studio album, To Kneel and Kiss the Ground, Sunday, March 15, at her album release show at Sam Bond’s. Joining Bauer are Portland musicians Jeffrey Martin (who the Portland Mercury just declared “might be the best songwriter in Portland”) and Anna Tivel (formerly of Anna and the Underbelly), who also played violin on the album. EW caught up with Bauer this week for coffee and discussed raising money for the album, collaboration and her musical roots.

The visiting hip-hop scene has thrived this past year in Eugene, with rap revolutionaries — ranging from Sir Mix-A-Lot to J. Cole — stopping by on tour nearly every weekend. Talib Kweli and Immortal Technique are the next two legends that will pass through town.

Adia Victoria has only released two songs, but the Nashville-based singer is already on the rise as a Southern Gothic queen. Rolling Stone recently named her as one of “10 New Artists You Need To Know,” and Roger Moutenot (Yo La Tengo, Sleater-Kinney) is producing her debut with bandmates Ruby Rogers, Tiffany Minton and Mason Hickman. 

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street is one of the peaks of Stephen Sondheim’s stellar career as America’s greatest musical theater composer, which, after multiple Tonys, Grammys, a Pulitzer and other laurels, received another boost with 2014’s film version of his musical Into the Woods

Jeff Tweedy was an integral member of Uncle Tupelo and is now the frontman of Wilco — putting him at the forefront of two of the most acclaimed American rock bands of the past 25 years. In 2012, Tweedy produced the Mavis Staples record One True Vine. Tweedy asked his teenaged son Spencer to play drums in the studio, and from these recordings came the father-son project Tweedy

Jacob Franklin, 28, dubbed by voters as “the Ginja Ninja,” says bartending is “a passion I’ve had for a long time.” Franklin has called Eugene home for a decade now, but his first job slinging drinks was at a country bar in his hometown of Chicago. 

Jonna Threlkeld, 28, first came to Eugene from Red Bluff, California, to play sax in the UO marching band. She has since ditched green and yellow for black, keeping bar at the Starlight Lounge for the past three and a half years. Threlkeld is honored to win “Sexiest Bartender,” especially because she has a “crush” on all the “beautiful and talented” women who bartend downtown. In addition to voters deeming her “freaky sexy, quirky and original,” she’s active in Eugene’s music scene, playing guitar and singing for the “new-timey, old-timey” band Butterchuck — a quality patrons appreciate or, as one voter put it, “She’s also a talented musician and her booty don’t quit.” 

THOSE NAKED BONES 

As I stand grieving, again, before the ever-so-sad spectacle of the naked bones of the City Hall building, I have to agree with Otto Poticha’s memorializing statement in his March 5 Viewpoint, “Standing Naked,” urging “everyone to go and view the City Hall frame, give it a second look and imagine what we could or still can achieve. Please join me in seeking management and decision makers with a deeper and more profound vision the next time we go to the polls.”

Distilling hard alcohol without a distillery license is illegal in Oregon and the U.S. From herein, any discussion of homemade spirits is purely theoretical. I may know a man who makes the most incredibly smooth scotch, icy clear vodka, flavorful limoncello and Drambuie, creamy gin, authentic rum. Since I can’t refer to him by name, because he may not exist, I will simply call him “The Provider.”

The building has stood empty for about a decade. Over the years, the spot has housed a variety of well-known drinking holes, notably Harvey’s and most recently Rascal’s — in fact, the signage still faintly reads “Rascal’s.” However, the interior has been transformed into the Whit’s newest nightlife destination — Old Nick’s Rock Pub, located at the corner of 2nd and Washington across from the WJ Skatepark + Urban Plaza.

There’s a burgeoning trend throughout Oregon for food and drinks that are locally sourced and handcrafted, and since 2011, Corvallis-based Vivacity Spirits has been sating consumers’ desire for organic non-GMO small-batch gins, vodka, rum and liqueur. Owned and operated by Caitlin Prueitt and her partner and spouse, Chris Neumann, Vivacity is not only the first woman-owned distillery in Oregon, but also one of only a handful nationwide. 

When I was 15, I had a three-month-long sexual relationship with a 32-year-old woman. She was a friend of the family, and my parents were going through a divorce. I stayed with her for the summer, and she initiated a sexual relationship. Looking back, I can see that she had been grooming me. We used to have conversations online and via e-mail that were very inappropriate considering our age difference. The relationship ended when I went home, but she remained flirty. As a 15-year-old, I had a hard time sorting out my feelings for her, but we remained in contact.

We March into spring with a twice-told tale: Last month, we revisited merlot, great wine brought low by shabby winemaking and shifty marketing, then revived at its nadir, to become, again, yummy quaff. This month, the white side, same tale: Riesling is one of the world’s great grapes. The white wines made from Riesling grapes vary widely, from bone dry to heavenly sweet, yielding wines adaptable to dinner courses from aperitifs to desserts. Rieslings are usually vinified to be low-alcohol/high-acid wines, matching fish or fowl, even salads, but especially friendly to spicy Asian dishes, stir-fries, curries and vegan fare.

Vampires: They’re just like us! They have terrible housemates who don’t do the dishes. They worry about looking good when they go out at night, even if the clubs they’re going to are dead and boring. They get twitchy when the cops come by. And they hate it when their roommates bring home uncool new friends.

Some people dream of sparkling granite countertops, spacious pantries and glossy whirlpool tubs set next to enormous showers tricked out with the latest technology.

Rhonda would just like a bathroom, and Emerald Village Eugene (EVE), a new proposed village of tiny houses, could give her that along with the stability she and others need to get back on their feet. Currently, she lives in Opportunity Village Eugene, but because subsidized, low-income housing is difficult to find, she and her husband need another transitional step — which is where EVE comes in.

It will cost New York almost $20 billion to prepare the city for the impacts of climate change coming our way, according to Peter Frumhoff, director of science and policy at the Union of Concerned Scientists. “Right now, the default is the taxpayer,” he says. “Why should only taxpayers pick up the cost for increasing climate change damages? What is the responsibility of companies making dangerous products?”

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

Sen. Floyd Prozanski is quick to explain that he is not working on gun control legislation. He is working on “gun safety” legislation. As a gun owner himself, Prozanski says he is confident the law he is proposing will benefit all Oregonians.

The gray whale cows and their calves are migrating north in good numbers this month. I finally visited the most fabulous place to watch whales: the shelter at the top of the Saint Perpetua Trail. The hike is very steep but a road allows one to drive up. Go early in the day, as the parking lot at the top is small. There are often volunteers with spotting scopes at the Cape Perpetua Visitor Center. They have information on how many whales are passing that day.