A Time Capsule for 2010

By Chris Kissel January 15, 2010

Today's pick:

The Northwest Film Forum is screening Rebel Without a Cause tonight. I’ve never seen the movie, but I’ve always wanted to—teen melodrama, ’50s suburban anxiety, and, oh yeah, James Dean, with all his yelling and beating up on his dad.

Tonight's the night to see it. Rebel Without a Cause screenwriter Stewart Stern is going to be there (!) to talk about the making of the movie. I’m not super familiar with Stern’s work, but I do know that he also wrote The Ugly American—a 1963 movie in which a character played by Marlon Brando has to confront the nature of U.S. intervention in Southeast Asia. He also teaches classes at UW and Seattle U.

Northwest Film Forum (1515 12th Ave.), at 8 pm. Tickets are $9.

On tomorrow's calendar:

1. The Couth Buzzard, once referred to as "Greenwood's bookstore" (since it was, like, the only one there), is back in business only a year and a half or so after going under. My initial reaction was a sort of confused relief—maybe the end, for bookstores at least, is not always The End. I felt a brief, impossible hope for stores like Bailey/Coy.

My second thought is, what are the Couth Buzzard's owners going to do differently this time around (besides pairing with an espresso cafe)? The weirdly named store didn't go out of business because they weren't making money, but because the owners of their old building didn't want to renew the store's lease. Still, how many bookstores get a second chance?

The Couth Buzzard is having its grand reopening party (free food, "cabaret style entertainment") at the new location, 8310 Greenwood Ave N.—which means, even if by default, that the CB is Greenwood's bookstore once more.

All day Saturday, from 9 am to 10 pm. At 8310 Greenwood Ave N. Free.

2. Speaking of expired leases, there were likely some worried/sad Cap Hillers who walked by Sonic Boom Records' now-vacant storefront on 15th Ave, probably thought the store was gone for good. Not so: Sonic Boom has moved to Melrose and Pine, down by Bauhaus Coffee and Books. The neon rocket blazes on.

The perfect occasion for you to check out the new Boom room is to go down there for Saturday's Yeasayer listening party. If I was putting together a time capsule for 2010, and we wanted to give future humans a sense of today's hipsters, preoccupied as they are with '80s music and Afrobeat, we would put some Yeasayer in there.


Saturday, at Sonic Boom Records (1525 Melrose Ave), at 3 pm. Free.

3. There's going to be a bit of a summit of Seattle-area African American business owners this weekend. It's being put on largely by the Seattle Medium, Seattle's African-American focused newspaper, and sponsored by State Senator Rosa Franklin, D-29 (who, by the way, is proposing this session to change all official language that refers to "at risk" youth to "at hope" youth) and State Rep. Eric Pettigrew, D-37.

The point of the meeting is to increase opportunities for African-American businesses and workers. In particular, event organizers say they'll discuss how African-Americans can get more access to money dispersed under last January's economic stimulus package.

In addition to Pettigrew and Franklin, King County Council member Larry Gossett, Seattle City Council member Bruce Harrell, Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland, and Port of Seattle Commissioner Rob Holland are also going to be on hand.

Saturday at 10 am, at Rainier Beach High School (Roberson Performing Arts Center).

On Sunday's calendar:

4. Sometimes listening to rap is really just like listening to people talk about themselves for a long time. Binary Star got popular doing that. In "Reality Check," they refer to themselves as "like Nostradamus," "like a immigrant," "like paraplegics," "like a Gemini," and "like the Amish." They're really good at it. I could listen to Binary Star compare themselves to things for hours.

Binary Star.
Binary Star.

Listening to Canary Sing, on the other hand, is not like that. The group is composed of two rappers who have so many things to say—about testing in public schools, or Frantz Fanon, or the etymology of the word "bitch"—that listening to their music feels like reading. "Going to college is gangster," their Myspace page says.

Two sides of the same hip-hop coin, you might say. Binary Star, with D.Black, whose latest album is one of Northwest Hip-Hop's biggest, greatest hopes, and Massive Monkees, Seattle's elite breakdancing squad, are playing at the Nectar Lounge on Sunday night.

With Canary Sing and DJ Marc Sense, hosted by Vitamin D.

Sunday night, 8pm, Nectar, 412 N. 36th St. $10 advance
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