We Be Educated

If we're so smart, why are we so stupid?

We be Smart

The U.S. Census Bureau says Seattle is the most highly educated city in America; apparently almost 53 percent of us age 25 or older have a bachelor's degree, and 20 percent have advanced degrees. Seattle is also consistently named the most literate city in the country (based on number of bookstores, library use, newspaper circulation, and so on), and it's home to two brain trusts of the new knowledge economy: Microsoft and Amazon. But even our jumbo IQs are powerless to solve some enduring Northwest mysteries. Like: If we're so damn smart, how come we can't figure out who goes first at a four-way stop? (Is there a ranking for dumbest drivers in America?) LYNN JACOBSON

Poet Populist

The people have spoken: Jourdan Keith was elected Seattle's 2006–07 poet populist at Bumbershoot on Sat., Sept. 2. Keith corrals volunteers at Richard Hugo House, teaches writing in the schools, and introduces young people to the natural world through her organization Urban Wilderness Project. As poet populist, she'll receive a $500 honorarium, and be invited to wax poetical at public functions throughout the year. She succeed outgoing bard Pesha Joyce Gertler, who, among other things, read poems at Mayor Nickels' swearing-in ceremony in January. Keith was not available immediately to comment on her win; perhaps she was out committing public acts of poetry when we called. But you can hear her read in person at 7 p.m. on Thurs., Nov. 9, at Hugo House, during "A Night of Cheap Wine and Poetry," produced by From the Ground Up. LYNN JACOBSON

Art Attack

Also at Bumbershoot, prankster artists SuttonBeresCuller found themselves in the weird position of having to police their public art exhibit, Experimental Housing Project. First, artist Ben Beres had to grab a teenager to stop him from keying a van that pulled the mobile installation "Trailer Park" into place on the Seattle Center lawn. The cops were called and the kid was thrown off the grounds. Later, at a tiny house with a locked door manufactured by SBC, someone overturned planters and pawed through the spilled dirt, ostensibly searching for the key that would open the door. Two broken windows had to be patched with masking tape. And SBC found more vandalism inside a crate furnished as an IKEA living room. On days two and three of Bumbershoot, both the house and the crate bore signs reading "Exhibit Closed." ADRIANA GRANT

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