2006 Best of Boise Weekly Readers' Choice

Readers' Picks

Best Thing About BW

Independent/Diverse Opinion

In the past, we've offered a far greater number of Boise Weekly-centric poll questions. This year, we trimmed it to just three--in fact, we trimmed the whole ever-changing ballot down to what we perceived as a solid minimum this year, so if we snipped your best-favored Best Of, please let us know at editor@boiseweekly.com.

And the winner is ... It's a tie! Or is it? You created the category online, and you voted for it, so you tell us. Apparently you like that we are an independent newspaper that presents diverse opinions. Or do you like that our opinions are both independent and diverse? Or maybe it's a math equation, and opinion the answer to independence being divided by diversity.

We like any of those interpretations better than the second place finisher by not very many votes: "It's free."

Best BW Cover

Erin Ruiz, Spare Parts

At first, we had quite a dilemma with this category. In the very early online voting, a picture was in the lead that, if it were to win, would cause some concerns. The offending image was a photograph, titled "Rush Hour is For Suckers," and the model was a hairless, pale individual sunbathing in a speedo next to the freeway.

When we began assembling that cover, we realized that the image showed more--or maybe just the outline of more--of our model than any of us intended. Verifying the model's suspicions by asking everyone in the office "Do you see anything?" definitely showed more of the model to more people than he intended. Were that naughty picture to win, we figured, it would surely drive up its value in our November 4 cover auction at Boise Art Museum. Then, we would have to ask ourselves: Should we give the winner the original for their immense investment, or this watered-down lie?

Luckily, better tastes prevailed and our voters picked Erin Ruiz's "Spare Parts" as the best Boise Weekly cover. The front of our annual music issue, as well as the logo on a recent Boise Weekly T-shirt, "Spare Parts" showcases everything that makes us excited whenever Erin turns in a new illustration: Her hand with colors, able to make a barren planet look warm and appealing; her ability to play with visual scale so seamlessly and drastically that we get vertigo just looking at the picture, and her strength at packing an incredible amount of narrative into a tiny space. Good choice!

Second Place (TiE): Bill Carman, Superturkey and Cranberry Boy, Kelly Knopp, You're Such A Liar, Leila ramella, Rush hour is for suckers