The Man on Iron Mountain

July 12, 2018

Charles Pillon, who usually goes by Chuck, has been living on a ten-acre property in unincorporated King County, near Renton, Washington, for decades now. He's built it into a sprawling empire of junk—including trucks, cars, buses, boats, RVs, tires, scrap metal, lumber, cans of paint, and heaps of yard waste mixed with trash. According to Chuck, this isn't junk; it's a place where old stuff can find new life. He says he salvages and recycles a lot of it, creates his own compost, and provides a service to a community that can't afford regular dump fees. According to the state attorney general's office, though, it is an illegal wrecking yard that's leaching all kind of hazardous waste into the soil, air, and water. The AG's office recently convicted Chuck of two felonies and a misdemeanor, but that was hardly his first run-in with the law. This week, in the final episode of Season 2 of Seattleland, reporter Josh Kelety leads us through Chuck's world, and helps peel back the curtain on the kind of guy who would create and hold onto this kind of thing so tightly, for so long. 

Music by Leeni Ramadan and Jahzzar

This week's cover photo is a portrait of Chuck Pillon and was taken by Caean Couto. Josh Kelety is the King County reporter for Sound Publishing and produced a print version of this story in June. 

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Safe Consumption Part III: The Opposite of Addiction

July 5, 2018

As Seattle moves forward with piloting its first supervised consumption site—now likely to be housed in a mobile van, not a building—the fierce debate roars on. Although many people on both sides of the issue are saying the exact same thing, if you listen for a while, there's a fundamental difference that emerges. And it has everything to do with the definition of "success." This week, in the final episode of our three-part series on supervised consumption sites, we hear from family members who've lost loved ones to substance use, and explore perhaps the biggest rift of all between people who support the sites and people who don't. 

Featuring interviews with Jennifer Asplund, Turina James, Joshua Freed, Guy Felicella, and Tim Gautier. 

Music by Kevin MacLeod, Loyalty Freak Music, Jahzzar, and Leeni Ramadan

This week's cover photo is an image of a mural near Insite in Vancouver, B.C., and was taken by Nicole Jennings. 

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