Friday, November 17, 2017

Maple Valley Fire Levy Passes

A fire levy which previously failed despite warnings of cuts in fire and emergency services in Maple Valley is passing on it's second go round according to the Maple Valley Reporter.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Israel--Wrapping Up A Fabulous Trip

It's been over 10 days since I've returned from my trip to Israel and well over 20 days since the trip began. I've constantly posted pictures since the trip's beginning and continued posting well after my return and yet, I feel that I have so much more to share.
 My friend Joe and I traveled with our temple in Bellevue, because of the small number of us who were able to make the trip, we were joined by the Temple Beth El from St. Petersburg, Florida.  Within the two groups, there were contrasts.  The Florida group was lead by their charismatic and learned rabbi (bottom picture on right), we were lead by our Cantor David Serkin-Poole.  Each made valuable contributions to our visit.  The Florida group was all couples, along with a daughter and seemed to know each other well, while our group mostly left spouses at home and were getting to know each other.  Joe and I flew over and back on Air Canada's 787 (middle picture). 
It was on this trip that we realized how perilous this country's existence can be.  While we visited the Golan, we could see beyond the borders of Syria and Lebanon, both generally hostile countries toward Israel.  The trip gave us context into the media's coverage of the country. 
The two great cities Tel Aviv and Jerusalem are so close, yet so different.  Tel Aviv, is the stylish, cultural center of the country, it is where the State Of Israel was born and is recognized diplomatically as the "capital"    Jerusalem (top picture), little more than 50 miles away is so different.   It is the spiritual city.  It is the hub of three major religions, Judaism, Islam, and Christianity.  The Arabs and Jews often coexist in harmony. You can often hear the Muslim calls for prayer throughout the day.  Arabs are often working alongside Jews.
Our guide Shari (bottom picture left) did an outstanding job teaching and reporting and helping us get to know the country that we love. 
There is a lot to be proud of in the State Of Israel, the country was developed from a desert to a fertile country and seems in many ways so peaceful, but being a young country, with so many security issues (you see soldiers both men and women throughout the country) there are so many questions.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Yad LaKashish

One of the last places we visited was Yad LaKashish, an innovative workshop for senior citizens, based in Jerusalem. 
Instead of resting in retirement homes, this program allow seniors to learn and perform crafts which allows them to feel a sense of purpose.  Their craft are sold at a gift shop and can also be purchased online.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Seahawks Win Game But Lose Sherman For Season

Thursday night football games have not been a popular event for players and this really came to light this week when Seahawk star cornerback Richard Sherman suffered an Achilles Tendon rupture ending his season.  The Seahawks won the game against the Arizona Cardinals, but there was almost no celebration as the team's greatest strength, it's defense, may be ordinary at best. 
Sherman has not missed a game since he entered the league in 2011 so there is little indication on how the team will play going forward.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Entertainment On The Kibbutz

You probably would not picture a luxury hotel on a kibbutz (Israel's social experiment), but between our time in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem that's exactly where we were.  We spent a couple of nights at The Pastoral at Kibbutz Kfar Blum in Northern Israel. 
In the lounge, there was nightly entertainment.  This Israeli folk duo, was joined by a food server to sing the Leonard Cohen classic "Hallelujah".

Wednesday, November 08, 2017

Astronaut Richard Gordon

Astronaut Richard Gordon, a Seattle Native who flew the Gemini 11 and Apollo 12 missions has died.  Gordon attended the University Of Washington at the same time my father did and could be seen in the one college annual of his that I could find in our house. 
Gordon walked in space in the Gemini 11 and flew around the moon in Apollo 12.  After retiring from NASA, he briefly became an executive for the New Orleans Saints Football team.

Havdallah Service In Jerusalem

After visiting the Wall, we had dinner at the Old Train Station, now a trendy Jerusalem shopping center.  We were joined by a newly married Anerican couple during the Havdallah (after Shabbat) Service.

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

Crash Kills Former Baseball Star

Former MLB pitcher Roy Halladay died after his plane crashed in the Gulf of Mexico, the Pasco Country Sheriff's Office confirmed.

The Sea Of Galilee

There is actually a tower at this vantage point that I didn't climb.  This is the Sea Of Galilee which is actually a fresh water lake. 
  A note that these post are now out if sequence. 
I plan to post a few more highlights of the trip and then maybe a long final tie in piece to wrap it up

Sunday, November 05, 2017

Rabin Memorial

In this memorial to former Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin is at the Tel Aviv City Hall.
Rabin addressed a crowd at a peace rally in what is now Rabin Square before his assassination by a fellow Israeli.

Falk Sets PAC 12 Record

Washington State University quarterback Luke Falk set a Pac 12 career passing record of 13,806 yards in a 24-21 victory of the Stanford Cardinal.  The Cougar senior passed another recent quarterback, Sean Mannion of Oregon State.    Falk is also one touchdown pass shy of former USC quarterback Matt Barkley's conference record of 116.  The 8-2 WSU Cougars will finish undefeated at home for the first time in the school's history.  The team has two more games on the road and a probable bowl to conclude the season..

Saturday, November 04, 2017

Western Wall In Jerusalem

We spent Shabbat praying at the Wall in Jerusalem.  This picture was actually taken on a return visit the following evening as photography on the Shabbat (Sabbath) is not allowed. 

Thursday, November 02, 2017

A Palestinian Refugee Camp

From Bethlehem, on the West Bank, the keyhole entrance is said to symbolize the plight of Palestinian refugees who are restricted from entering the rest of land they feel belongs to them by a concrete wall. A key is depicted in many places in graffiti on the wall. The border wall is patrolled by the Israeli Defense Force.

Astros Win World Series

Congratulations to the Houston Astros for a season for the ages and their first ever World Series win.  For the Los Angeles Dodgers, one more "wait until next year".

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

On The Road To Galilee

An aquaduct built in ancient times by King Herod.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Sunset In Tel Aviv

Across from our hotel in Tel Aviv, the sun sets over the Mediterranean Sea.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Beautiful Tel Aviv

View from our hotel room in Tel Aviv.  My friend Joe and I are on a 10 day trip to Israel.  This is my first trip to the country.

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Go Cougs

I watch Game Day on ESPN specifically to see the WSU Cougar flag.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Dasher Takes A Dip.

A few Sundays ago, on unseasonable warm day, we walked with Dasher in Bellevue Park where we let him cool off in the man made pond.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Griffey Statue Vandalized

The Ken Griffey, Jr statue at Safeco Field was vandalized yesterday. The bat was snapped off in the evening hours.
 Police were able to take a suspect into custody and recover the bat.  The vandal somehow took the bat from the statue, leaving the rest in tact. 
Reports say that Mariner officials are in touch with the artist to find out if a seamless repair can be made. 
The statue honors the Mariner Hall Of Fame centerfielder, who is credited to saving baseball in Seattle and is considered one of the best to ever play the game.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

My Dad From 1986.

Another picture from B. Barer And Sons.  My dad poses near where the oxygen filling plant would soon be built.  This picture was taped in my dad's office.  A clean up in his and Jean's condo recovered many historical artifacts. Jean, whom he married in 2000, died earlier this year.  My Dad passed way in 2016.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Mount Rainier On A Beautiful Sunday

The Mountain was out and so were we on a perfect fall Sunday.  The Seahawks had a bye so Deb, Dasher and I  took the opportunity to go out and enjoy an autumn drive. 
We went to the pumpkin patch at Thomasson Family Farm  between Black Diamond and Enumclaw.  On the way out, we took the picture above.   We had lunch at Mint Ale House in charming downtown Enumclaw, then finished the drive with a stop at Rock Ridge Market.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Cougar AD Leaves For Nebraska

When it rains, it pours.  After being upset last Friday by the California Bears, the Washington State Cougars have learned the Bill Moos, who has been Athletic Director since 2010 is leaving the program to go to Nebraska.   Moos, formerly the athletic director at University Of Oregon, came out of retirement to guide the sports program at WSU, his alma matter.  He brought Mike Leach to coach Football and Ernie Kent to coach the men's basketball program.  The Cougar football team is 6-1.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

California Burns

We mourn the victims of the California Wild fires.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

KIRO Afternoon Drive Personality Bares Soul

KIRO-FM personalities Ron And Don have a certain chemistry that seems to work on the radio.  Every weekday I can't wait to listen to their show on the way home from work.  Don O'Neill is the outspoken one with the deep voice, while Ron Upshaw seems to be the more reasoning soft spoken one.
Although the show is generally light hearted, they don't avoid serious topics. 
Still it was shocking a couple nights ago when O'Neill launch into a very soul baring speech about what he referred to as a family secret.  He was talking about what he said was mental health issues that run in his family, possibly something that involves himself. I had never, in my decades of listening to radio of all kinds, heard an announcer speak so personally.  It was rather refreshing to hear what sounded as unrehearsed honesty in this day in age on the radio.  You can read O'Neill's  speech by clicking here.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Sunny Festival In Issaquah

Issaquah Salmon Days came much later in the season this year.  It occurs the first full weekend in October.  In spite of that, the weather Sunday was so perfect, it is like the city made a deal with Mother Nature.

Monday, October 09, 2017

Jason Aldean Opens SNL

Once again, SNL showed it's expertise on integrating tragedy into a comedy show.  Jason Aldean was on stage during the Las Vegas shooting.  He also tied in the death of Tom Petty with his choice of song.

Sunday, October 08, 2017

Seahawks At The Colosseum

When I started watching sports, this was one of the nation's premier sports venues.  Now, its the temporary home for the recently returned LA Rams. 
The Seahawks are playing the Rams there this weekend.

Friday, October 06, 2017

Mitch Levy Announces Departure From KJR After Court Date

After probably one of the longest stints in Seattle area radio, Mitch Levy announced his departure from Sports radio 950.  Levy, an East coast transplant, had not been heard on the radio since word went out of his arrest along with over 100 others in a Bellevue prostitution sting.
Levy had been known for off color comments about women and his show for years ran a contest based on rating woman, however, his "gloves off" opinions on sports related topics is what attracted and angered many listeners.
After Levy's arrest was made public, the show continued without him.  Show "bumpers" would say his name, but his co-host,  the more subdued Dick Fain took on Mitch's duties.
Levy's announcement and apology came following a court appearance Thursday where he entered an "Alford Plea".  Levy received a deferred sentence, 24 months of probation, and according to court records, entered a 10 week men's accountability program for buyers of sex and paid  1,974 dollars in court costs.

Former Wasington Congressman John Miller

John Miller, a former Seattle city councilman and a member of Congress has died.  He was 79.  Miller was a moderate Republican in the mold of former Washington governor Dan Evans.  He served in Congress from 1984 to 1993, he served my district from 1991 to 1993, a time when I lived in Kirkland.
Miller was instrumental in the rehabilitation of the Pike Place Market, building housing for the poor and the P-Patch garden program when he was city councilman.   Miller was living in California at the time of his death.

Wednesday, October 04, 2017

Seattle Skyline From Safeco Field

Even When the game is bad, Safeco Field can be a fun place to watch the Mariners. 
On a sunny day, you can get a spectacular view of the city skyline.

Tuesday, October 03, 2017

Stevie Nicks & Tom Petty - Stop Draggin' My Heart Around

In memory of Tom Petty, this is my favorite Petty effort.  Here with Stevie Nick in what may be the top rock duet of all time.

From The Wayback Machine

My Dad and his Uncle Dave at their business B. Barer And Sons.  Dave was one of the "sons" in B. Barer And Sons.  The other son was my grandfather who died in 1967,  The firm sold steel and industrial gases and bought scrap metal.  It was located on 4th and Rose in Walla Walla with a warehouse on West Main and yards on 4th and Sumac and Rees Avenue.

Monday, October 02, 2017

So Long Tom Petty

On a dismal day when America was mourning the Las Vegas shooting, word has been received that rock icon Tom Petty was stricken with a heart attack that would prove fatal.  I first heard of Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers on the underground University Of Idaho station, it wasn't long before he was a household name with songs like" Breakdown", "Refugee", And "Free Falling". 
His duet with Stevie Nicks, "Stop Draggin My Heart Around" became an almost instant rock classic.  Petty hailed from Gainesville, Florida.  He was 66.

Tola Marts Exits Congressional Race

In an email to supporters, Issaquah city councilman Tola Marts announced he was withdrawing from the race for the Democratic nomination to succeed Republican Dave Reichert for the 8th congressional seat in Washington.  Marts said that in a crowded field of Democrats, he was unable to secure the funding to allow his campaign to continue.If Marts would have been able to continue, he would have been the first Democrat in years to run for the seat while holding a public office.

Destined For Greatness

My Dad with his college roommate from the University of Washington, and a lady identified as Tom's future wife. 
Tom would eventually become an outstanding congressman representing the Bay Area.

Sunday, October 01, 2017

Monty Hall Let's Make A Deal Host

Monty Hall, who hosted the daytime gameshow "Let's Make A Deal" has died Hall was 96.  Hosting the show in the 60s, made Hall a household name.  It was TV's golden era. 
Hall is said to have raised over one billion dollars for charity in his lifetime.  His daughter said he never refused an autograph.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Cougs Upset Trojans

Cougars give 5th ranked USC their first loss of the season.  Final score was 30-27.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Hugh Hefner Dies

Hugh Hefner, the iconic publisher of Playboy Magazine has died.  Hefner was able to set himself apart from other magazine of it's type by creating an allusion of it's readers as sophisticated men about town.  Hefner was known for the Playboy Mansion, located in Hollywood. It was said to have hosted huge celebrity filled parties.
  Hefner, was known for always wearing Pajamas and being surrounded by beautiful women, well into his Senior years. 
He was scorned on the Right by religious figures for the nudity in his magazines and by the Left for what was felt to be exploitation of women.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

From Days Gone By

My family on a trip.  I believe this was taken in Soap Lake, WA in 1968.  Absent is my mother, whom I believe, took the picture.  Also, my brother Steve had not been born.
This was from a box of family photos recovered from the condo where my Dad and Jean lived.  I remember this was shortly after Bobby Kennedy's assassination.   We listened to radio coverage of the train taking RFK to Arlington cemetery on our way up.  We would later drive up to Grand Coulee Dam. 

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

B. Barer And Sons In News In Walla Walla

It's been well over 17 years since the family business B. Barer And Sons was sold to Oxarc, one of it's suppliers. However the company has come up in an interesting "guess who" in the Walla Walla Union-Bulletin.  Annie Charnley Eveland, published a picture taken by the Rose Street Steel Warehouse above.  Readers have had fun guessing who the bearded man could be. 
My Uncle Arny (my dad's brother) guessed that it may have been Scotty Cook, who my dad wrote about in his blog years ago.   Eveland wrote a little about what she learned about Scotty and mentioned my dad and Uncle Arny in a recent edition of her feature column "Etcetera".

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Lit End Rockin Maple Valley

The Olympia based band playing at The Lost Dutchman in Wilderness Village in Maple Valley.

Tracy Vedder Sues KOMO/Sinclair

In what could be a landmark case, former KOMO TV investigative reporter Tracy Vedder is suing her ex-employer for breach of contract and gender and age discrimination.  Vedder was one of 10 employees of the station to receive pink slips.  Vedder had had her contract extended through October of 2018. 
According to the Puget Sound Business Journal, Vedder had won 11 Regional TV Emmys and 7 Edward R. Murrow Awards for excellence in reporting.  Vedder had been with the station for 21 years.  The suit was filed in King County Superior court and names KOMO TV (incorportated as Sinclair Media of Seattle) and the news director.