Monday, June 14, 2010

Extra, extra: In Other News, online

Posted By on Mon, Jun 14, 2010 at 9:00 AM

In this week's installment: How chocolate helps fight aging, condom issues in D.C., and your chance to win a ticket to the finale of "The Biggest Loser."

Curses, Foiled Again
A woman in Fort Walton Beach, Fla., reported hearing a man outside her bedroom window telling someone on a cell phone, “I’m about to commit a crime.” She awoke her boyfriend, who said he observed the intruder sit down on a nearby deck and continue his call. Later, he heard a glass door breaking. An Okaloosa County sheriff’s deputy who responded followed a trail of blood from the glass door to a nearby intersection, where he found Kevin Wayne Weathersby, 30, sitting on a curb bleeding.

A worker counting the night’s take at a Burger King in Pine Bluff, Ark., told police a man approached with a gun, threatened to kill her and demanded the cash. When he set the gun down so he could put the money in a bag, the worker grabbed it, shot the robber during a struggle, then put him in a headlock and called police, who arrested Jason Robinson, 22.

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Friday, June 11, 2010

Dennis Hopper, Pearl Jam and Ted Haggard

Posted By on Fri, Jun 11, 2010 at 3:25 PM

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Our semi-regular look at what other alt weeklies have been writing about.

L.A. Weekly remembers the late, great Dennis Hopper, including an interesting bit we hadn't read before about Hopper being told as a child that his father, an agent in the OSS, had been killed in WW II. He hadn't. It was a security measure, and helped shape Hopper's distrust of authority figures.

Gambit Weekly, in New Orleans, has done a masterful job covering the oil disaster in the Gulf. Its latest profiles a family of oyster harvesters who have been working Caminada Bay for four generations, and whose livelihood is shattered.

That's when Nick, who is rational, calm and articulate about the situation, begins to choke. "When I was a kid, I used to swim with the dolphins right here; I'd feed them silver eel from the nets. It was an awesome place to grow up. It hasn't sunk in yet, to see all this ruined. I can't even think it. But it doesn't look good. I heard the guys from Alaska talk about the Exxon Valdez. Twenty-one years later, there's still oil. It doesn't look good for the fishing industry. And Jaden [Nick's 7-year-old son], he already knows he wants to oyster. What's he going to do?"

It's been a while since we heard from good ol' Ted Haggard. Thank God, the Colorado Springs Independent reports he's starting a new church.

Writer and photographer Don Jones went to Iraq for Fort Worth Weekly in 2006, and saw eleven Marines die during the time he was with their unit. Now he's in Afghanistan, to take a look at America's longest running conflict.

John Tebbutt of Calgary Scene reviews the coolest DVD box set you'll never finish.

Finally, Tom Tomorrow, illustrator of the "This Modern World," which you can see every week in the Indy, writes about his relationship with Pearl Jam (he did their latest album cover). While the article is short on (part-time Missoula resident) Jeff Ament info, it does reveal that Eddie Vedder has a four-story firepole running through his house. So, there's that.

Happiest Hour: The Fox Club

Posted By on Fri, Jun 11, 2010 at 2:58 PM

The weekend is fast approaching, and we're looking to kick up our heels. That means it's time for our latest installment of the Indy's weekly homage to local watering holes.

This week: The Fox Club.

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Dominoes begin to fall for Griz

Posted By on Fri, Jun 11, 2010 at 2:15 PM

Local football fans taking part in the will-they-or-won't-they debate of the Griz moving up to the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) finally have some real pieces to the puzzle. Colorado is moving to what's currently known as the Pac-10, Boise State formally announced its jump to the Mountain West and Nebraska is close to announcing its move to what we still call the Big 10. (Exhibit A of college football's current madness: The Pac-10 is believed to be expanding to 16 teams, thus becoming the Pac-16, and the Big 10, a misnomer considering it already has 11 teams, may also be going to 16. Or just 12. Or...never mind.)

Those moves are just the beginning of what experts are calling the end of the FBS, the end of the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) and, perhaps, the end of the word as we know it. So, should Griz fans feel fine?

Depends. UM AD Jim O'Day told us last month that, aside from hiring a consulting firm to study the university's options, he's content to wait for everything to unfold. "Every day you're reading new pieces about conference expansion. Every day there's something new," he said. "If we don't think people are looking at us, we're crazy. That's not to say they're serious, but they're looking. And we need to be ready if they come to us with an offer."

At first glance, the Boise State move has the most immediate impact for the Griz. WAC Commissioner Karl Benson held a press conference last week about Boise's imminent departure from the conference, and said the WAC has looked at five or six western FCS schools and is seeking "the next Boise State," or another small school with potential. Both of those comments would seem to point to UM. (How weird is the prospect of Hawaii and Fresno State someday visiting Wash-Griz Stadium?)

Then again, others expect many more dominoes to fall. Let college football's silly season—and the Griz debate—continue.

Bill Ohrmann on the big screen

Posted By on Fri, Jun 11, 2010 at 10:55 AM

Bill Ohrmann is a Drummond rancher who started painting when he was 78 years old. We did a feature story on Ohrmann last year when a documentary about him called Be Thou Always As a Guest screened in Missoula. If you missed it, filmmaker Sean O'Brien is showing the film again, this time at the Opera House Theater in Philipsburg.

Now 91, Ohrmann's completed over 200 paintings, many of which hang in the Ohrmann Museum and Gallery located on his Flint Creek Valley ranch, which he's owned since 1933. His colorful pieces include sometimes graphic illustrations of both environmental beauty and destruction. One of his newest ones, "Always Hopeful Always Wrong," shows Ohrmann's take on the current oil spill fiasco.

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In fact, you can check out both the museum and the film while you're in the area. And Philipsburg's always good for a weekend heritage trip to get your Montana history on.

Be Thou Always as a Guest shows at the Opera House Theater in Philipsburg Saturday, June 12, at 7 PM.
There will be reception following the film at the Community Center, where some of Ohrmann's paintings will be displayed. $7 admission includes food and drinks.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Your future, a little early

Posted By on Wed, Jun 9, 2010 at 9:00 AM

Find Rob Brezsny's Free Will Astrology online, every Wednesday, one day before it hits the Indy's printed pages.

ARIES (March 21-April 19): The “secret” is in plain sight. The “hidden resource” is freely available for anyone who intends to use it with integrity. The “lost key” is very close to where you left it when you last used it. The “missing link” is missing only in the sense that no one recognizes it for what it is. The “unasked question” is beaming toward you from three directions. The “wounded talent” will be healed the moment you stop thinking of it as wounded and start regarding it as merely unripe.

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Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Election results in one click

Posted By on Tue, Jun 8, 2010 at 9:21 PM

There are plenty of outlets covering today's election, and we'll have George Ochenski's analysis in Thursday's paper, but if you're looking for real-time results now that the polls have closed, just click here.

The Secretary of State's website is pretty slick, easy to navigate and shows the results of every race in the state, complete with county-level data and district maps.

City Council expands police authority

Posted By on Tue, Jun 8, 2010 at 9:30 AM

Despite concerns shared by county residents, the Missoula City Council last night approved an ordinance that will extend police authority to five miles outside city limits. The measure passed by an 8-4 vote.

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Everything you need to know about today's election

Posted By on Tue, Jun 8, 2010 at 7:00 AM

For one, VOTE!

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Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., and voters must bring their identification (voter registration card, driver's license, Costco card, etc.) with them to the polls. You can check your registration status and confirm your polling place at the county website. (Remember, some polling places changed due to last year's consolidation effort.)

If you're not registered, head to the Elections Center at the Missoula County Fairgrounds to register and receive a ballot.

If you're looking for a ride, note that Mountain Line is providing free transportation all day.

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Monday, June 7, 2010

Missoulian's inaccurate blog post about blog accuracy

Posted By on Mon, Jun 7, 2010 at 3:45 PM

Missoulian editor Sherry Devlin blogged over the weekend about John Wooden (RIP), news organizations being inaccurate in a rush to report the news and, oh look, the Indy. Cool! The Missoulian never writes about us.

Specifically, Devlin takes issue with news organizations that rushed to eulogize Wooden on Thursday night, before the 99-year-old coaching legend died on Friday. She continues:

I see examples of such a rush to print every day, locally and in the larger world. Just this past week, the Missoula Independent went online with news that the Macy’s building had been sold to the University of Montana. Not true. UM has toured the building, is looking at possibilities associated with the building’s potential purchase and use, but has neither decided to buy the building nor bought the building.

One problem: We never reported that. Our blog post headline raised the question, "UM to buy Macy's building?" We also wrote, referencing Missoula City Councilman Bob Jaffe's listserv, that "UM is evaluating the possibility of using the historic structure to expand UM's Montana Museum of Art and Culture." We never reported the building was sold. We then spoke with Jim Foley at UM, who confirmed, "We have talked very briefly with the agents who are listed to sell it." If anything, we're guilty of letting a squishy sentence lead the blog post, but a weak sentence hardly constitutes a factual error or otherwise asserts the done deal Devlin mistakes.

Anyway, I posted a response to Devlin's blog this morning on the Missoulian's site, but it has yet to appear online. That was more than six hours ago. I called Devlin this afternoon to see when I could expect my response to appear online, as well as to ask what the deal was with her original post. She said the Indy's Twitter feed reported the sale. Again, not true. I explained our Twitter feed is generated directly from our blog, which never reported any such thing. Devlin said this was the first she'd heard of a problem, and said she'd take down the reference to the Indy immediately. I asked whether my response to her blog post or a correction would appear, and she reiterated that she took down any mention of the Indy, and left it at that. (A screen grab of her original post can be seen below.)

Devlin ends her original post with a righteous rant about the "great potential, and power" of the interwebs — "But only if news outlets hold fast to their journalistic principles of accuracy — of verifying stories before they are put into publication, be that publication on the Web or in print or over the airwaves. You as consumers should demand nothing less. We as journalists should commit ourselves to nothing less."

Right on! We couldn't agree more. As a consumer and journalist, I only wish Devlin had taken care to ensure her call for accuracy hit the mark.

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