Other News

Interesting news stories from around the Pacific Northwest.

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From discrimination to density to wood, Gabriel Spitzer gets the underreported stories of the week from Jessica PartnowBryan Cohen and Joanne Lisosky

There's always interesting stuff in the news that gets overshadowed by the big stories. On Sound Effect we invite a panel a journalists to talk over their nominees for under-covered story of the week. 

This week Alex Hudson of the news and politics blog Seattlish noted that even though the heat wave is all anyone can talk about, there are dimensions of it that haven't gotten the attention they deserve, such as the outsize hazard heat poses for homeless people. 

"The city of Seattle has extreme weather plans that relate to cold weather, and there are no real plans that relate to hot weather," she says. 

Sound Effect, Episode 26: Growing Pains

Jul 4, 2015
File Photo

"Sound Effect" is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. The show is hosted by KPLU's Gabriel Spitzer. Each week's show explores a different theme, and this week we discuss growing pains. 

Tracey Croisier

When Tracey Croisier was five years old,  she began having seizures. 

Her family was living in Taiwan.  By the time she was nine, they had moved back to the United States. Her parents took her to a doctor. He explained to the family that her condition, epilepsy, was so severe it would prevent Tracey from ever driving, holding a job or living independently. 

And then the expert added that she should never have kids.

About 10,000 people visit southeast Washington state’s Hanford Nuclear Reservation every year. And after a few hours on the bus, some are dazed like tourists who’ve seen one Italian cathedral too many.

On those tours, they have guides. But even folks who don’t come to Hanford’s physical site have a "tour guide" -- someone who can translate the language of Hanford and its nuclear legacy: Liz Mattson.

Point Of No Return Cocktail Recipe

Jun 27, 2015
Kevin Kniestedt, KPLU

The Point Of No Return cocktail was created by bartender Keith Waldbauer at Liberty Bar on Capitol Hill. A fiery spectacle guaranteed as fun to drink as it is to prepare, the Point of No Return is a crowd-pleasing classic. 

What you'll need:

Sound Effect, Episode 25: Point Of No Return

Jun 27, 2015
Brian Yeager and Amelia Bonow

"Sound Effect" is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. This week's show is hosted by KPLU's Kevin Kniestedt. Each week's show explores a different theme, and this week we muse over the point of no return. 

To start things off, Kevin Kniestedt talks to Buta Sing about leaving his home and family behind in India after facing religious persecution. Sing is Sikh, and members of his religion face many challenges from the largely Hindu opposition.

Then, we hear from Tracey Croisier from A Guide to Visitors. At nine years old, she was told by medical professionals that she had epilepsy. This was the point of no return for many experiences in Croisier's life — driving, a job, pregnancy. Nearly two decades later, new medical insight restored paths she thought were forever obscured.  

Paradise Fire Incident Management Team

A smoldering fire in Olympic National Park flared up over the weekend, scorching at least 600 acres before heavy smoke and inaccessible terrain made the blaze too hard to measure.

In what is usually the wettest area of the lower 48 states, parts of the rainforest landscape have turned to tinder this year and set the stage for the rapid spread of the Paradise Fire.

“What’s actually carrying the fire are the lichens in the very tops of the trees. They're so dry that they’ll actually carry fire, and so the fire is jumping through the tree canopies,” said Donna Nemeth, an information officer with the Fire Incident Team made up of National Park Service and National Forest Service personnel.

Sound Effect, Episode 24: Toilets

Jun 20, 2015
Brie Ripley

"Sound Effect" is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. The show is hosted by KPLU's Gabriel Spitzer. Each week's show explores a different theme, and this week we've flushed out stories about toilets. 

First off, Gabriel Spitzer goes on a mission to track down Seattle's ill-fated million-dollar toilets. His quest takes him to a Thurston County racetrack, where he meets toilet man Butch Behn. 

Sound Effect, Episode 23: Final Act

Jun 13, 2015
Gecko Press

"Sound Effect" is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. The show is hosted by KPLU's Gabriel Spitzer. Each week's show explores a different theme, and this week we discuss final acts.

To begin the show, we check in with those still at the beginning of life. We wanted to know how you talk to children about death – life’s final act. Philosopher Jana Mohr Lone engages children in conversations about death all the time. She breaks the ice by reading them a book called, “Duck, Death, and the Tulip.”

Slaven's Recommended Reads

Jun 12, 2015
Photo courtesy of Elliot Bay Book Company

Everything ends. In this segment, on Sound Effect, we discuss three books whose stories are propelled by finality. King County Supervising Librarian Amber Slaven highlights the work of three regional authors who, in their own ways, explore the final curtain calls of life. 

  First on her list is Rebecca Brown's memoir, "Excerpts from a Family Medical Dictionary." This lyrical work of narrative non-fiction follows Brown, a former home care worker, who moves from New Mexico to Seattle to take care of her mother, who is dying of cancer. Brown's poetic and austere portrayal of grief and bereavement is really sparse, but touches on a mother's final act and a daughter coping with loss. 

Sound Effect, Episode 22: What's In A Name?

Jun 6, 2015
Creative Commons

  "Sound Effect" is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. The show is hosted by KPLU's Gabriel Spitzer. Each week's show explores a different theme, and this week we dissect how we feel about what we are called, taking a look at names.

Have you ever wondered how Yakima got the nickname, "The Palm Springs of Washington?" We did. So we found out and that is how we begin this week's show on names. The names we have, the names we choose and the names we wish we could escape.

Courtesy of Lloyd Pernela

"Sound Effect" is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. The show is hosted by KPLU's Gabriel Spitzer. Each week's show explores a different theme, and this week we hear stories about the promise and the perils of self-government. 

We begin with the tale of a short-lived utopian society, right in the heart of Seattle. In 1962, a mysterious island rose, inexplicably, out of the waters of Lake Union. That gave a group of UW students an idea. Gabriel Spitzer tracks down one of the ringleaders of their plot, half-a-century later, to learn about the epic rise and tragic fall of Chelan Island. 

Monica Spain

Ty Kocher walks me up the hilly backyard behind his home in the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle. The lush, sloping lot is the reason he bought the fixer-upper -–  it had a terrace for a vegetable garden and nooks and crannies for the kids to discover. But first he had to deal with decades of debris.

“Years ago, about six years ago, I was digging out a bunch of broken bottles and bricks and some old metal toys from the ‘50s and so we just planted into the hill and recently I put rain barrels in the spot, thinking I was doing all the right things.”

Ed Ronco / KPLU

Ruby Bishop has played piano around the world. She's befriended some of the jazz world's greatest names -- including Louis Armstrong.

At 95, she's still playing Sunday nights at Vito's, on Seattle's First Hill.

In this story from the "Comfort Zone" episode of KPLU's Sound Effect, she talks about the piano, her life, her career, and feeling comfortable behind 88 keys.


Sound Effect, Episode 20: Comfort Zones

May 23, 2015
Mark Reed

"Sound Effect" is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. The show is hosted by KPLU's Gabriel Spitzer. Each week's show explores a different theme, and this week, we get into and out of our ‘Comfort Zones.’

Being naked at work would be a nightmare for many, but not for Robert Treat. Gabriel Spitzer talks to the veteran nude model about his work and the power dynamics in play when someone is nude in the room.

Sound Effect producer Kevin Kniestedt talks to a young woman with fibromyalgia about what it feels like to live most of your life in pain.

Sound Effect, Episode 19: Dirt

May 16, 2015
AP Images

"Sound Effect" is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. The show is hosted by KPLU's Gabriel Spitzer. Each week's show explores a different theme, and this week, we dig into ‘Dirt.’

KPLU’s Matthew Streib takes us inside the Monroe Correctional Complex to learn about a program that matches inmates with invertebrates and turns waste into fertile soil.

KPLU's Community Advisory Board will be meeting on Wednesday, May 27 at 2pm Pacific.

If you are interested in attending as a member of the listening community, please contact the general manager's office at 253-535-8732 for more information.

On the first Wednesday of each month, the Fireside Room at Seattle's Sorrento Hotel fills up with readers. Some bring books, others tablets or laptops or smart phones. At 6 p.m., the room falls silent, and people read, together, for two hours.

In the gallery above, you can see what the Sound Effect team is reading.

And hear about how the Silent Reading party began -- and what makes it special -- from Christopher Frizzelle, co-founder of the event and editor in chief of The Stranger:

Sound Effect, Episode 18: The Five Senses Myth

May 9, 2015
Gabriel Spitzer / KPLU

"Sound Effect" is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. The show is hosted by KPLU's Gabriel Spitzer. Each week's show explores a different theme, and this week, we try to make sense of our senses.

You may have learned about the five senses in school but Dr. Eric Chudler is here to shed light on some of the many other lesser known senses. He also politely explains to Gabriel why he won't be acquiring "spider sense" any time soon.

Thanks For Your Support!

May 5, 2015

Thank you for your generosity during The Seattle Foundation's GiveBIG day!

Sound Effect, Episode 17: Coming Out

May 2, 2015
AP Images

"Sound Effect" is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. The show is hosted by KPLU's Gabriel Spitzer.

Each week's show explores a different theme, and this week, we discuss some of the different things we struggle to Come Out about.

Sound Effect, Episode 16: Repetition

Apr 25, 2015
File Photo

 

   "Sound Effect" is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. The show is hosted by KPLU's Gabriel Spitzer.

Each week's show explores a different theme, and this week, we are playing all hits in this first ever “Sound Effect” best of episode.

Before we dive into some of our favorite segments thus far, we explore what it is about repetition that is so satisfying.

Diueine Monteiro / Flickr

About 240 more homeless veterans in Washington state will soon have an option for permanent housing.

The federal government has teamed up with local officials across the country, including Seattle Mayor Ed Murray and King County Executive Dow Constantine, to tackle veteran homelessness. Julian Castro, secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, spelled out their ambitious goal at a press conference in Seattle.

Sound Effect, Episode 15: For The Love Of The Game

Apr 18, 2015

  "Sound Effect" is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. This week's show is hosted by KPLU's Kevin Kniestedt.

Each week's show explores a different theme, and this week, we play ball with ‘For the Love of the Game.’

Seattle Girl Feeds Crows, Receives Gifts In Return

Apr 15, 2015
Lisa Mann

Eight year old Gabi Mann sets a bead storage container on the dining room table, and clicks the lid open. This is her most precious collection.

“You may take a few close looks,” she says, “but don’t touch,” a warning she’s likely practiced on her younger brother. She laughs after saying it though. She is happy for the audience.

Here are the three most underreported stories of the week according to the guests of our news roundtable: 

Adrien Leavitt

Fern is a spindly Great Dane with all the feelings and her owner, Adrien Leavitt was gifted a session with an animal communicator. 

KPLU's Arwen Nicks gets pulled into the story when the over the phone visit with the pet psychic goes awry. 

Sound Effect, Episode 14: Creatures

Apr 11, 2015

 

"Sound Effect" is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. The show is hosted by KPLU's Gabriel Spitzer.

Each week's show explores a different theme, and this week, we feature creatures.

There's money in a state highway budget that passed the Washington House Thursday to study a one-of-a-kind possible toll bridge fashioned out of retired Navy aircraft carriers.

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