Just an update on the Seeds of Peace ... who I hope (for their sake) we won't be talking about too much any more.
Peter Dolan, a spokesperson for the group, says that things have settled down in the past 12 hours. The group is currently ensconced in the parking lot of Trinity Lutheran church on the North Side.
"Today is really the first day that I've been able to do any cooking," said Dolan, whose group came to Pittsburgh to help feed other demonstrators.
For now, it seems, police are willing to let the group use the church's lot. Police visited the group at around 10:30 last night, due to a complaint from a neighbor, but Dolan says "They were very polite." Even so, "I don't feel like it's the end of it," says Dolan. "It seems like they're just waiting until they find some other way of harassing us."
Dolan said that one Seeds member who was arrested last week was released yesterday evening -- though her story may be more complicated than it first appeared. Early on, protesters alleged that police accused the woman of giving a false -- merely because she gave a shortened version of her first name. But Dolan says there may be more to it.
"None of us actually knew her full name," because she'd joined with the group shortly before it came to Pittsburgh. After her arrest, the Seeds called a number they had for her sister ... and the sister gave a different last name than the one she was in jail for. Which means that she may have given a false last name after all.
Dolan isn't sure: "She's keeping a low profile," he said.
In any case, Dolan says he's enjoying Pittsburgh -- "during the times I haven't been detained. We've experienced a lot of different neighborhoods." And while he says several police officers seem to enjoy giving the group a hard time -- "I had an officer tell me I was a threat to the city because I'm so dirty, I probably have swine flu" -- everyone else has been "so nice to us. People at the Rock Room [in Polish Hill, where the group was lodged previously] were just stoked to have us in town."
But I wouldn't blame Dolan if he was happy to leave. During our conversation, an ambulance siren went off not far away. "I hope that's not for anyone I know," Dolan said.