Russell Brunelle (russellb) wrote,
Russell Brunelle

Inter Alia - Jan to Sep 2011

Welcome to Inter Alia, my periodic guide to noteworthy Seattle events for law students and law professionals. This issue covers the first three quarters of 2011, and at the end includes a guide to law apps for the iPhone/iPad along with a few reminders of discounts you may wish to take advantage of before your student ID finally expires.

For what it's worth, I've thoroughly enjoyed putting these guides together and will probably continue to publish them after graduation.


The national Rainbow Gathering will apparently be held in Washington State over Jul 1-7: obviously that week may fall within the time frame of your bar prep course, but if you can convince a friend to drive you there Friday evening and back two days later on Sunday night (i.e. so you have the option of reading on the way there and back), then you'll have the once-in-a-lifetime ironic pleasure of studying to become a lawyer right in the middle of the biggest old-school hippie gathering on the planet, which will likely be attended by between 10,000 and 30,000 people.

The lowest-cost tickets for the 2011 Burning Man festival go on sale at 10am on Jan 19: the festival will take place from Aug 29 to Sep 5, and will have the artistic theme "rites of passage."

The Sasquatch indie rock festival will be held over Memorial Day weekend (May 27-30) at the beautiful Gorge Amphitheatre. University of Washington law students who have only compressed classes for Spring quarter should note that Memorial Day weekend falls between the last day of final exams and the expected start date of the BarBri bar review course, hence making attending this event a practical possibility. Keep in mind that ticket prices go up after Feb 10, and last year all tickets were sold out by the end of March.

If you need to stay closer to Seattle but still want to do something memorable to celebrate finishing law school, then two other options might be a morning hot air balloon ride or a sky dive: each cost about the same as one casebook.



The ASUW Experimental College presents a one-day class on business etiquette in China from 1pm-4pm on Jan 22 (repeating Mar 5), and a one-day class on applying for foundation grants from 10am-4pm on Feb 27.

The Seattle Architecture Foundation offers its downtown "High Ambitions: Concrete, Steel, Glass, and Egos" tour on 3/12, 5/14, 7/30, 9/10, and 11/12, and its "South Union: Extreme Makeover" tour on 2/19, 4/9, 6/18, 8/20, and 11/19: each tour begins at 10am, lasts two hours, and costs $15 (assuming you purchase your ticket in advance).

Documentary Films

The Varsity Theatre presents Nuremberg (doubtless the most significant release of the year for anyone interested in international law) the week of Feb 25, and Bhutto (about the political life of Benazir Bhutto) the week of Mar 4. All seats at the Varsity (which is obviously walking distance from the UW law school) are only $7 on Tuesdays.

Northwest Film Forum presents Enemies of the People, a remarkable and award-winning documentary about the Khmer Rouge, at 7pm and 9pm over Jan 21-27. Tickets are only $6.50 with student ID.

The Social Network comes out on DVD/Blu-ray Jan 11, and William Kunstler: Disturbing the Universe (the recent documentary about the late attorney William Kunstler) is already out on DVD.


Health: Tracy Kidder (Strength in What Remains) speaks at Benaroya Hall as part of the Seattle Arts and Lectures series on Mar 2 @ 7:30pm: a limited number of free student tickets may be available for this event - ask at Will Call after 6pm. Additionally, Judith Broder (director of the nonprofit The Soldiers Project) presents a free lecture on war-related post-traumatic stress disorder on Apr 1 @ 7:30pm at Town Hall Seattle.

History: Tim Flannery (Here on Earth: A Natural History of the Planet) speaks at Town Hall Seattle on Apr 27 @ 7:30pm, and Bryan E. Penprase (The Power of Stars: How Celestial Observations Have Shaped Civilization) speaks at Elliott Bay Book Company on Jan 9 @ 5pm [Note: the latter (free) talk would also be a good opportunity to see the Elliott Bay Book Company's new space, which is quite nice...]

Law: Adam Eisenberg, author of A Different Shade of Blue, speaks at the UW law school on Jan 11 @ 12:30pm in room 133 on the topic of how women have changed police work. Civil rights activist, SNCC co-founder, and NAACP chairman Julian Bond speaks at the UW law school on Jan 13 @ 5:30pm in room 138. Obviously, both talks are free. Finally, it's worth noting that has finished posting recordings of all the oral arguments from the U.S. Supreme Court's 2009 term.

Philosophy: Harvard professor Michael Sandel (Justice: What's the Right Thing to Do?) speaks on the topic of "what the current financial crisis can teach about the morals and values of society" at Temple De Hirsch Sinai on Jan 31 @ 7pm; this talk is free, and open to the public.

Politics: University of Washington professor Philip Howard (The Digital Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy) speaks on political use of the internet in Muslim-majority countries at Town Hall Seattle on Jan 14 @ 7:30pm. Francis Fukuyama (The Origins of Political Order) speaks on the broad history of today's basic political institutions on Apr 14 @ 7:30pm at Town Hall Seattle.

Science: Richard Panek (The 4-Percent Universe) speaks on the scientific search for dark matter on Jan 25 @ 7:30pm at Town Hall Seattle; if you enjoy this talk then you might also enjoy their Feb 2 @ 7:30pm lecture by Brian Greene (The Hidden Reality) and their Mar 28 @ 7:30pm lecture by Anton Zeilinger (Dance of the Photons). If your main interest is effective science education and advocacy, then a better choice might be the free talk the University of Washington Graduate School is hosting by Neil deGrasse Tyson (former space policy adviser to NASA and the Bush White House) on May 12 @ 6:30pm in Kane 130.

Society: Harvard professor Edward Glaeser (Triumph of the City) speaks on the topic of "how cities bring out the best in humankind" on Feb 25 @ 7:30pm at Town Hall Seattle; if you enjoy this talk then you might also enjoy their Mar 30 @ 7:30pm lecture by Greg Lindsay (Aerotropolis) on the topic of "airport-based cities and globalization."

Technology: Ignite Seattle (a series of five minute business and technology talks in the spirit of TED) will be held on Feb 10 @ 7pm at King Cat Theatre: tickets are only $5, and need not be purchased in advance. For a longer-term look at the future of technology, a good choice might be the lecture by Michio Kaku (Physics of the Future) on Apr 6 @ 7:30pm at Town Hall Seattle.


Registration for Cascade Bicycle Club rides opens Jan 10: if you want to register for either of their two best rides (i.e. RSVP over Aug 5-6 or RAW over Aug 20-27) you'll pretty much need to register that day.

If you have diving equipment, you're welcome to participate in the Puget Sound Giant Octopus Census over Jan 15-17.

The Big Climb (in which participants walk up 69 flights of stairs to the observatory at the top of Columbia Center) takes place on Mar 20. The entry fee for this event (which serves as a fundraiser for a health charity) increases after Mar 14.

The annual Rock 'n' Roll Marathon (which follows a route from Tukwila to Qwest Field) takes place on Jun 25: a half-marathon option is available, and you can walk provided you finish within the course time limit (seven hours for the full marathon, and four hours for the half-marathon). This event, which serves as a fundraiser for a health charity, is expected to sell out.

If you enjoy hiking, the new University of Washington Press book Hiking Washington's History might be worth a look: it narrates forty historic trails in this state, providing historic detail on each.

If you enjoy golf, keep in mind that while you're still a UW student bucket rates at the IMA driving range are only $2.50.


Special Events

The Fremont Fair will be held on Jun 18 (10am-8pm, with the solstice parade at noon) and Jun 19 (11am-6pm).

The Seattle Kennel Club purebred dog show will be held Mar 12-13 at Qwest Field Event Center.


The next Salon of Shame will be held on Jan 18 @ 8pm at the Theatre Off Jackson: tickets go on sale Jan 2 @ 8pm, and are expected to sell out within five minutes. The remaining Salon of Shame dates for 2011 are Mar 8, May 10, July 12, Sep 13, and Nov 15: check the Salon of Shame web site a month before a performance date to find out when tickets for that date go on sale.

The themes for the upcoming Wing-It improvised theatre Thu-Fri @ 8pm performances are as follows: Explorer's Club ("the mostly fabricated misadventures of dashing British Explorers") over Jan 6-21 and Feb 3-11, Going Steady ("a classic tale of boy meets girl - all music is original and improvised on the spot") over Mar 3-18 and Mar 30 - Apr 22, Project: B-Movie ("a small town is attacked by monsters") over Jun 30 - Jul 22 and Aug 4-19, and Final Transmission ("the crew of a ship in deep space finds themselves in a precarious situation") over Sep 1-23 and Oct 6-21 and Nov 3-11. The Wing-It theater is at 5510 University Way NE, which is obviously walking distance from the UW law school, and student discounts are available for all performances.

The next People's Republic of Komedy performance will be Jan 5 @ 9pm at Chop Suey.

Rock Music

The rock band Social Distortion performs at the SoDo Showbox on Feb 13 @ 7pm.

The famed guitarist Eric Clapton performs at Key Arena on Feb 26 @ 7:30pm (tickets for his performance are, unfortunately, quite expensive...)

The Dark Star Orchestra performs at the Market Showbox on Mar 31 @ 7pm.

Electronic Music

Bassnectar performs on Feb 5 @ 8pm at the Paramount Theatre.

Folk Music

Town Hall Seattle presents a concert of contemporary accordion music on Jan 23 @ 2pm. A slight discount is available for students.

Singer-songwriter Ani DiFranco performs at the Market Showbox on Apr 16 @ 7pm.

Acclaimed acoustic guitarist Leo Kottke performs at Benaroya Hall on May 20 @ 8pm.

The Folklife Festival (which also features world music) will be held at Seattle Center over Memorial day weekend (May 27-30).


The Seattle International Film Festival will be held from May 19 to Jun 12. Student discounts are available for both individual tickets and ticket packages.

The Seattle International Film Festival hosts a mini-festival of science fiction short films on Jan 29.


The Olympic Peninsula Wineries host their "Red Wine and Chocolate" tour over Feb 12-13 and Feb 19-21, and their "NW Wine and Cheese Tour" over Apr 16-17: for the former each winery attempts to find the perfect chocolate to go with their wines, while for the latter each winery is paired with a different (local) cheese maker.

The Washington Beer Commission festival of Belgian-style beers (by Washington brewers) will be held on Jan 22 from noon-4pm, and again on that same day from 5:30pm-9:30pm, at the Workshop at Magnuson Park.

A Seattle nonprofit organization which I personally feel may be underappreciated is FareStart, which provides valuable job training to its participants while offering an extraordinary value in fine dining to the general public. FareStart's schedule of guest chefs over the next month is as follows: Peter Levine (of Waterfront Seafood Grill) on Jan 6, Thomas Horner (of 2100 Bistro) on Jan 13, Shannon Galusha (of Bastille) on Jan 20, Anthony Polizzi (of Steelhead Diner) on Jan 27, and Joseph Brewer (of The Swinery) on Feb 3. Menus for each of their guest chef nights are available on their web site.



The downtown Seattle Art Museum exhibition Picasso: Masterpieces from the Musee National Picasso continues through Jan 17. Realistically, this is the most important art exhibition we can expect to pass through Seattle for (frankly) the foreseeable future. The most important tip for enjoying this show is to select a time when attendance will be at a minimum (e.g. 2pm Tue-Fri, except for Jan 6): it's difficult to appreciate these works if you feel rushed, and likewise you're better off spending a large amount of time with a few of these paintings than an equal amount of time with all of them. Student discounts are available.

Live Theatre

Two high-definition live broadcasts of Britain's National Theatre performing works by Shakespeare (Hamlet on Jan 10 @ 7:30pm and King Lear on Feb 28 @ 7:30pm) are being hosted by SIFF this season.

Mike Daisy's new one-man show, The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs, will be presented by Seattle Repertory Theatre from Apr 22 to May 22 @ 7:30pm (with 2pm matinees on Apr 30 and May 4, 7, 8, and 15 - note that there is no 7:30pm performance on May 8). Discounts are available for students, as well as anyone 25 years old or younger.

A Contemporary Theatre hosts New Voices (a presentation of contemporary musical theatre compositions) on Jan 3 @ 8pm in its Falls Theatre. A discount is available for students.


The most interesting Pacific Northwest Ballet performance for the remainder of this season (I'm guessing...) will probably be Contemporary 4 on Mar 18-19 and 24-27: half-price rush tickets are available to students beginning 90 minutes prior to curtain.

If you'd like to see new companies get their start, an excellent choice might be the A.W.A.R.D. Show at On the Boards at 8pm over Jan 27-30.

Classical Radio

A few comments about classical KING 98.1 FM may be in order at this point: (1) they're becoming a public radio station in 2011 (their last day of commercial advertising will be Jun 30), (2) they seem to be playing a wider range of classical music, and in particular more modern works, than ever before, (3) they now broadcast some of their channels in HD radio as well as ordinary FM radio, and (4) as part of the transition to being a public station they'll begin broadcasting slightly more local classical performances (they've already started broadcasting performances by The Esoterics via both internet streaming and their HD-2 channel, for example).

Orchestral Music

The Seattle Symphony conductor for the last 26 years, Gerard Schwarz, steps down this year: his final performance with our symphony will apparently be its Jun 18 @ 8pm concert, which features a new composition by Philip Glass, Schubert's Symphony No. 8 ("Unfinished"), and Mahler's Symphony No. 2 ("Resurrection"). An interview with the Seattle Symphony's new conductor, Ludovic Morlot, is available here, and you can still listen to the current conductor every Wednesday at 7pm on KING 98.1 FM (the "Musical Moments with Gerard Schwarz" program).

The Seattle Chamber Music Society Winter Festival concerts will be held at Benaroya Hall on Jan 27 @ 7:30pm, Jan 28 @ 7:30pm, Jan 29 @ 7:30pm, and Jan 30 @ 3pm: each concert has a completely different program (Jan 28, for example, is all Brahms). Each of these concerts will also be broadcast live on KING 98.1 FM.

Choral Music

The Seattle Pro Musica choral performance on May 21-22 @ 8pm at St. James Cathedral looks particularly interesting: along with three works by new composers, the program includes John Rutter's Hymn to the Creator of Light, Ralph Vaughan Williams' Five Mystical Songs, and Joseph Rheinberger's Mass in E flat for Double Choir. A substantial student discount is available, which is also available to anyone 25 or under.


The KING 98.1 FM free broadcasts of live Seattle Opera performances for the remainder of this season will be as follows: Rossini's The Barber of Seville on Jan 22, Massenet's Don Quixote on Mar 5, and Mozart's The Magic Flute on May 14. Each broadcast begins at 7:30pm. Additionally, keep in mind that student tickets for any Seattle Opera performance are only $20.

The New York Metropolitan Opera high-definition movie theater transmissions this season will be as follows: Puccini's La Fanciulla del West on Jan 8 @ 10am and Jan 26 @ 6:30pm, Adams' Nixon in China on Feb 12 @ 10am and Mar 2 @ 6:30pm, Gluck's Iphigenie en Tauride on Feb 26 @ 10am and Mar 16 @ 6:30pm, Donizetti's Lucia di Lammermoor on Mar 19 @ 10am and Apr 6 @ 6:30pm, Rossini's Le Comte Ory on Apr 9 @ 10am and Apr 27 @ 6:30pm, Strauss's Capriccio on Apr 23 @ 10am and May 11 @ 6:30pm, Verdi's Il Trovatore on Apr 30 @ 10am and May 18 @ 6:30pm, and finally Wagner's Die Walkure on May 14 @ 9am and Jun 1 @ 6:30pm. Note that KING 98.1 FM will be broadcasting the first of each of those two performances at the same listed time, so if there's something you think you might be interested in seeing but you aren't sure, you could just listen to its first performance on the radio for free.

Experimental Music

The Deep Listening Band (which specializes in performances which depend on echo-heavy environments such as cathedrals, underground cisterns, or quarries), together with the University of Washington's Center for Digital Arts and Experimental Media, present a concert at Town Hall Seattle on Jan 15 @ 7:30pm. Tickets are only $5 with student ID.

The Seattle Percussion Collective will offer a concert on Apr 1 at Chapel Performance Space. Admission will likely be by donation.


Note: An asterisk (*) is used to indicate apps where all of the application's data is stored on your device, and hence does not require either cellular or WiFi access to work.

Black's Law Dictionary (iPad/iPhone, $54.99)*: Obviously this is a little more expensive than most apps, but it's unabridged, it includes audio recordings of correct pronunciations, and unlike any printed dictionary you'll always have it with you. (iPad/iPhone, Free): It's an ordinary dictionary, including a thesaurus.

Economics - Oxford Dictionary (iPad/iPhone, $14.99)*: Helpful if you don't have an economics background, but find that economics terms keep coming up.

Fastcase (iPad/iPhone, Free): Provides access to both federal and state cases and statutes, including providing the ability to navigate state codes. As far as I can tell (and unlike the desktop version of the same application) it's completely free to use even after you graduate from law school.

GoodReader (iPad/iPhone, $2.99)*: This is the best app available for reading PDF files, and allows for both highlighting and annotation. Particularly on the iPad, in some cases this app could easily take the place of printing out optional reading.

Kindle (iPad/iPhone, Free)*: Keep in mind that once you purchase a Kindle eBook through, you can download it at no additional charge to all of your supported electronic devices, including your laptop or desktop.

Latin Phrases [Twilight Technology LLC] (iPad/iPhone, $1.99)*: If nothing else you can use this app to dig up obscure Latin phrases whenever you want your writing to seem more sophisticated. Please understand that I say this with all irony.

LawStack (iPad/iPhone, Free)*: Contains the U.S. Constitution with all amendments, along with the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure, Bankruptcy Procedure, Civil Procedure, Criminal Procedure, and Evidence.

Manual of Patent Examining Procedure (iPad/iPhone, Free)*: Made by the same company which produced LawStack.

MyCongress (iPad only, Free): Easy to use, and probably a must-have for anyone who enjoys watching C-SPAN.

OpenRegs (iPhone only, Free): An interface to current federal regulations, and proposed regulations, through

RCW2010 (iPad/iPhone, $4.99)*: The Revised Code of Washington.

WestlawNext (iPad only, Free): A remarkable application which you may find easier to use than the normal Westlaw web-based interface.

WolframAlpha (iPad/iPhone, $0.99): This application provides access to the database of factual information.

World Factbook [Fuzzy Peach LLC] (iPad $1.99 / iPhone $0.99)*: Provides access to the CIA World Factbook.

A security reminder: You may want to take advantage of the "Passcode Lock" and "Auto-Lock" features under Settings -> General if you store any sensitive information on your mobile device, or if it's set up not to ask for your e-mail password when accessing your mail.


Some of the most remarkable discounts available with a valid University of Washington student ID are for software at the University Bookstore. Examples include a perpetual license for AutoCad Inventor Pro 2011 for $199.95, or Office Professional 2010 (or Office Mac 2011) for $99.95. However, for anyone with an engineering or finance background one particular offering stands out: Mathematica 8 for $139.95. Without the UW student discount the cost for this remarkable tool would be $2,495, and it is unlikely any later version of it will be released before graduation this June.
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