Wednesday, February 27, 2013

GOOD READS: Troubled jails, domestic violence and the man who used to run MTV

Posted By on Wed, Feb 27, 2013 at 1:32 PM

Welcome back to GOOD READS, where Inlander staffers share a few of our favorite stories.

1. "Tom Freston, Runaway Mogul" (Joe Hagan//Men's Journal)

The man who used to run MTV is now in charge of Bono's nonprofit fighting AIDS and malaria in Africa.

2. "What's Wrong with the Violence Against Women Act?" (Kate Pickert//TIME) 

The impossibly difficult problem of domestic violence.

3. "The Rape of Petty Officer Blumer" (Sabrina Rubin Erdely//Rolling Stone)

A Navy intelligence analyst wakes up after being roofied and raped to find almost nobody willing to help her. 

4. "Death at Dawson" (Emily  DePrang//Texas Observer)

Why is one of Texas' most troubled jails still operating? 

PHOTO ESSAY Inside the abandoned radioactive towns of Japan (Christian Storm//VICE) 

More great reads over here

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Out for Restaurant Week: At Italia Trattoria with KREM 2's Jane McCarthy

Posted By on Wed, Feb 27, 2013 at 10:00 AM

The Inlander asked a handful of local public figures to tell us about their Spokane Restaurant Week experience, and what they look for in local dining. Read more responses and previous coverage here.

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On Saturday, KREM 2 News anchor Jane McCarthy dined out with her husband at Italia Trattoria in Browne’s Addition. She chose the chickpea fries with sundried pepper/olive relish and arugula pesto for her first course and the pan-seared golden trout for the entreé, while her husband chose the crispy fried anchovies followed by the pork chop. For dessert, they shared the Italia tiramisu and grilled cornmeal cake — a less typical dessert that turned out to be an excellent choice.

McCarthy shared photos from her meal and answered additional questions from The Inlander.

What kinds of food did you love as a kid?

When I was a kid I loved Cheez-Its and smoked salmon. Not together, although I probably would have liked it if I’d thought of it back then. I didn't eat out a lot as a kid. I was the youngest of five children and my parents had a hard time keeping my four older brothers in line. I think the thought of trying to keep all of us corralled at a restaurant was pretty daunting. We did hit the Old Spaghetti Factory from time to time. I'd always promise to give one of my brothers my spumoni ice cream if he'd give me his salad with thousand island dressing.

What kinds of restaurants and cuisines do you prefer today?

Today I like to explore all kinds of restaurants and cuisines. If I had to pick a number one, it’d probably be Northwest cuisine. After all, we're lucky to have some of the best ingredients, farmers and ranchers right in our own backyard!

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How was your experience at Italia Trattoria?

We thought everything was terrific. The food had great depth of flavor and the presentation was beautiful. My trout was seared perfectly and the smoky potato ragu made me wonder how on earth I might copy it at home. I'm not sure I'm capable, but I'd like to try.

The pork chop was grilled to perfection, which can be difficult to achieve.  A pork chop can often teeter on the edge of dry, but the chef at Italia Trattoria seemed to have that special combination of training, talent and intuition. It had those beautiful, perfectly spaced grill marks as well, which is always impressive.

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Even though we were stuffed after the first two courses, we cleared our plates of both desserts. The tiramisu was a perfect sweet, but not-too-sweet, ending. We almost went for the chocolate almond cake for our second dessert, but instead opted for the grilled cornmeal cake with lemon mascarpone mousse and huckleberry compote, particularly because it sounded a little unusual. Oh my! I made it my mission not to leave a crumb on the plate.

What do you think of Spokane Restaurant Week?

I was happy to hear about Spokane Restaurant Week because this city has so many tremendous restaurants that should be celebrated and supported. We're lucky to have so many highly acclaimed, creative chefs choosing to make Spokane home. (Even our Seattle friends are turning their heads — and appetites — this direction.) There is just one problem with Spokane Restaurant week; there are so many great restaurants we need an extra week — or more!

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MORNING BRIEFING: Jail control, pontoon debacle, death penalty testimony and a "sea monster"

Posted By on Wed, Feb 27, 2013 at 9:05 AM

AROUND HERE

The Knitting Factory had its first concert since reopening. (KREM)

U.S. Postal Service worker in North Idaho faces federal charges for misusing money orders. (Lewiston Tribune)

Spokane County commissioners may take control of the jail from the Sheriff’s Office to save money. (S-R)

Spokane Police release new photos of the man suspected of robbing Sunset Grocery at knifepoint last Friday afternoon. (SPD)

NEARBY

The man who oversaw Oregon’s last two executions testifies that the death penalty is “indefensible.” (Oregonian)

The Washington State Department of Transportation admitted it’s going to cost millions of dollars to fix design mistakes with the new Highway 520 bridge pontoons in Seattle. (Seattle Times)

The House may reauthorize an expanded version of Violence Against Women Act after all. (NYT)

Everyone’s looking at this picture of a gross “sea monster” in New Jersey. (NY Daily News)

OUT THERE

American multimillionaire “space tourist” aims for 2018 trip to Mars. (WaPo)

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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

How Gonzaga climbed up the rankings to No. 2, in charts

Posted By on Tue, Feb 26, 2013 at 5:35 PM

This week, Gonzaga men’s basketball is No. 2 in both major polls, the highest the team has ever been ranked.

Rankings don’t win games, but they don’t hurt, either, and Gonzaga’s cracked the Top 5 four seasons in the past decade. We took a look at how the team was ranked week-by-week in each of those seasons.

(When the two polls don’t give the same ranking, AP is in blue and USA Today is in green.)

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2012-13

As we know, this year Gonzaga is finishing up the regular season in a very good position, ranked behind only Indiana.

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2008-09

The team was ranked way up there early in the 2008-09 season, then fell out of the Top 25 completely before making a comeback. That season’s tournament appearance ended in a third-round loss to eventual-champion North Carolina.

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2005-06

The team was ranked consistently in the Top 10 during the 2005-06 season. In the end, the season ended in the third round with a loss to UCLA.

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2003-04

The 2003-04 team climbed up the rankings all season to the No. 3 ranking, but lost in the second round of the tournament.


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Gyoza, Marquise, Mostaccioli: A restaurant week pronunciation guide

Posted By on Tue, Feb 26, 2013 at 4:59 PM

Ciao Mambo during the first weekend of Spokane Restaurant Week. - YOUNG KWAK
  • Young Kwak
  • Ciao Mambo during the first weekend of Spokane Restaurant Week.

Ciao Mambo during the first weekend of Spokane Restaurant Week. Photo by Young Kwak

After looking back at the Spokane Restaurant Week menus, those of us at The Inlander found that the pronunciation of some of the dishes might be a wee bit tricky. We want to ensure that every Spokanite can order their meals during this tasty event, no matter the difficulty of the name. Here’s a guide to help you out.

MARQUISE (mar-keez) – a chocolate mousse cake brought to you by Chaps

BOCCONCINI FRITTI (boh-coh-cheen-ee frit-ee) – Ciao Mambo’s fried mozzarella cheese appetizer

LINGUINE ARRABBIATA (lin-gween-ee aw-rah-bee-aw-tah) – another mouthful in the form of a pasta dish from Ciao Mambo

GYOZA (gee-oh-zah) – these Japanese pot stickers filled with chicken and vegetables are found at Mustard Seed

FOCACCIA (foh-cah-chuh) – Rock City Grill is offering their housemade flat bread for their first course during Restaurant Week

MOSTACCIOLI (moh-stah-chel-ee) – Italian dish baked to perfection at Tomato Street

PETITE TNT COULOTTE (pee-teet tee-en-tee cew-lote) – delicious steak covered in a red wine demi-glace served at Twigs

THAI BEEF CARPACCIO (tye be-eef car-paw-chee-oh) – straight from the kitchen of Central Food

BRUSCHETTA (bruh-sket-tuh) – The District Bar and Ciao Mambo offer this Italian dish

SOUP OR SALAD (suh-oop or sa-lad) – nothing is more embarrassing than thinking your server is asking if you want a Super Salad


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Meet Woodward, The Inlander newsroom fish

Posted By on Tue, Feb 26, 2013 at 3:11 PM

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Meet Woodward, The Inlander's official newsroom fish. He's an Inlander-red betta fish, and from what we can tell, he's got a lot of moxie — a compassionate patrician like Lord Grantham from Downton Abbey, mixed with a little Liberace zazzle. We're still getting to know him, but we agreed to adopt him if he throws out a Tweet here and there for us.


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Out for Spokane Restaurant Week: At Clover with Shelly O'Quinn

Posted By on Tue, Feb 26, 2013 at 10:37 AM

The Inlander asked a handful of local public figures to tell us about their Spokane Restaurant Week experience, and what they look for in local dining. Read more responses later this week and previous coverage here.

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On the first night of Restaurant Week last Friday, Spokane County Commissioner Shelly O’Quinn went out with two friends to dine at Clover. They recommend Clover’s signature salad for the first course, and the chicken — stuffed with pesto, fontina and roasted red peppers, wrapped in bacon and served on a bed of smashed potatoes with a lemon butter sauce — for the entreé.

For dessert, they decided to try all three options by ordering one of each and sharing. “While the Crème Brulée and Chocolate Ganache Tart were excellent,” O’Quinn reports, “the Orangesicle Cake was melt in your mouth delicious. Hands down, the perfect ending to a perfect meal.”

Orangesicle cake at Clover. - YOUNG KWAK
  • Young Kwak
  • Orangesicle cake at Clover.

O’Quinn took the time to answer some additional questions from The Inlander.

What kinds of food did you love as a kid?

Growing up we were a “meat and potatoes” type family. Comfort food. I loved Cracker Barrel! My tastes have evolved over the years as I have traveled and lived in other parts of the country/world and as I look to be more health-conscious. (Monterey, California, changed me forever — I was exposed me to farmers markets and fresh seafood. Who ever thought I would like calamari and love artichoke hearts?!)

What kinds of restaurants and cuisines do you prefer today?

Today I prefer Mediterranean cuisine; bistros; heavy on the veggies/light on the meat — and everything fresh (not frozen, please)!

My general rule of thumb for restaurants: no chain restaurants (with a few local exceptions, of course!). When I travel, I will search out the local favorite, and I will always try anything — once.

How did you enjoy Clover?

The atmosphere was cozy. Loved the restored old house, classic paint colors, candlelight. Perfect location to catch up with friends — not too noisy. Serving staff were gracious, offered suggestions and very pleasant. ... Best cocktail menu in town! I typically stick to a safe glass of wine — can’t go wrong with a pinot grigio. However, I decided to step out of my comfort zone and go with a recommendation by our server, a drink called a North Utsire. Not normally a gin fan, I was pleasantly surprised — this drink was refreshing and not too sweet.

What do you think of Spokane Restaurant Week?

Restaurant week is a great opportunity to introduce the Spokane community to our local restaurant scene. It is the perfect excuse to catch up with old friends over great food. For all those who think they need to go to Seattle to enjoy a unique dining experience, I encourage you to browse the restaurant week menus and try a new experience this week!

Yes, Doug Clark — I had to work out twice the next day to keep to my weight loss challenge, but it was worth every bite! Remember, it is not about deprivation, it is about moderation. Every once in a while it is fun to splurge!


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MORNING BRIEFING: Sequester, hot air balloon explosion and no new pot shops

Posted By on Tue, Feb 26, 2013 at 9:01 AM

HERE

The Spokane City Council passed an emergency moratorium to stop any new pot shops from opening in the next 60 days. (Inlander blogs)

Officials identified the man who died in custody as Christopher J. Parker and said the paramedics who evaluated him may have misjudged whether he needed immediate transport to the hospital. (S-R)

Riverside Elementary in Elk, Wash., won a national contest for a brand new computer lab. (KXLY)

ELSEWHERE

The impending sequester is causing more conflict in Congress, and House Speaker John Boehner has apparently figured out the media pays more attention to what he says if he drops some mild profanity into the mix every once in a while. (CBS)

Nineteen foreign tourists were killed while sightseeing in Egypt when their hot air balloon exploded and plummeted to the ground. (CNN)

The bizarre “cannibal cop” case in New York City just keeps getting creepier. (AP/HuffPo)

What’s the pope going to do when he steps down at the end of this month? Become pope emeritus, of course, and switch the red shoes for brown. (NYT)

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Monday, February 25, 2013

CITY HALL EYEBALL: No new pot shops for 60 days

Posted By on Mon, Feb 25, 2013 at 7:54 PM

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At its meeting tonight, the City Council unanimously put a temporary kibosh on any new medical marijuana collectives in the city.

The "emergency" moratorium, passed with no public testimony, was pushed through under a temporary suspension of Council rules. (Moratoriums are sometimes passed in that manner to prevent people from rushing to do whatever is about to be forbidden.)

The ordinance puts on hold any new business licenses, permits or other processes that would facilitate the opening of a new medical marijuana operation in the city. 

Council members say they're worried the local medical marijuana market is growing too quickly while the state wades through rule-making for Initiative 502, which legalized recreational marijuana in the state.

The ordinance requires the Council to hold a meeting and take public testimony about the moratorium within 60 days. A date for the hearing has not yet been set. 

Here's the full ordinance:

Ordinance C34968 Establishing a Moratorium

More city hall eyeball over here


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Is Charles Krafft a Holocaust denier? Should that matter?

Posted By on Mon, Feb 25, 2013 at 4:29 PM

One of Seattle's most provocative and highly sought-after artists, Charles Krafft, found himself at the center of quite a controversy last week after The Stranger posted a blog post titled "Charles Krafft is a White Nationalist Who Believe the Holocaust is a Deliberately Exaggerated Myth."

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Krafft is not new to pot-stirring with his art. He's made pieces out of "human bone china" — ceramics made from real human remains. He's memorialized great disasters in his "Disasterware" series, and made Hitler-head teapots.

Now, though, The Stranger thinks they've proved Krafft is a Holocaust denier (he's said so on a white nationalist website). And the conversation has been running rampant in the blog's comments — is he? Isn't he?

And, maybe most importantly, should his personal beliefs — no matter what they are — matter to the art world?

Local gallery owners and avid ceramics collectors Jim Kolva and Pat Sullivan — of downtown Spokane's Kolva Sullivan Gallery — own several Krafft pieces, which are on display now at the WSU Art Gallery. They don't know Krafft well personally, but this controversy wasn't a huge surprise to Kolva.

"I know he’s kind of iconoclastic. He can be acerbic, and kind of does his own thing," he says. "And he’s been kind of a member of the arts community in Seattle, kind of on the edge. … But he’s always been the person who likes to stir things up."

So, having dined with Krafft and bought his pieces over the years, would Kolva have seen this revelation that he's a white nationalist coming?

"I wouldn’t be surprised by whatever his views are," he says, "The question is whether it’s actually true."

Kolva says knowing an artist's personal beliefs wouldn't impact whether he and his wife purchase a piece of their art. He says the art in their vast collection ranges: beautiful landscapes to ones with heavily-charged political messages. They don't always know the artists behind the paintings and sculptures. Sometimes they do. But art, to them, is about their own reaction to it.

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"Sometimes art is a matter of communication and not all the communication you get is going to be what you agree with," Kolva says. "If I’m visually attracted to the aesthetics of the piece, what the deeper origin of it isn’t necessarily important to me.

"I think we have a reaction to it is the first step. We like pieces that make us smile, but they might not be something that would make someone else smile," he says.

"I could see how, given just his attitude and the small amount of times I’ve talked to him, I could see how [these beliefs] might come out. But I could also see it as another thing he’s foisting on the public. You don’t know, that’s the interesting thing."

Would he judge Krafft for having an opinion very different from his own?

"We’re not going to throw out Charlie’s work because of his little article in The Stranger," he says. "I’m not going to shun him."


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