Thursday, July 27, 2017

Washingon Enacts Tough Crack Down On Distracted Drivers

Will it make driving safer or is it an overreach? Washington's new distracted driving law can be looked at from 2 perspectives.  While most people agree that texting or looking at your phone while driving is dangerous to both the driving and other vehicles, drivers are no longer allowed to hold a cell phone, drink coffee milk or juice, smoke a cigarette, or fix their make up. Many people think that the law has gone too far.
While drivers will say that it goes too far, the intent is to make the highway safer.  People need to remember that when you drive, your not only responsible for your own safety, but the safety of your passengers and other drivers and pedestrians.  It also means when they say "don't drink and drive", it means to not drink anything when you drive.

Monday, July 24, 2017

50th Anniversary--Summer Of Love

This summer marks the 50th anniversary of the "Summer Of Love".   It is a period that in retrospect, would define the decade.  It may be the most polarizing times in our nation's history next to the Civil War.  The Viet Nam war was raging and with TVs in every living room, the horrors of war were brought home. 
Many disaffected youth headed for the parks of San Francisco, where they grew long hair, did drugs and listened to rock music. 
There were many different things that were going on at the time that from an outside perspective, would tend to be lumped together.  It was for the most part, the beginning of the "counter culture", Hippies gathered all over the country, but the central spot seemed to be the Haight-Ashbury District of San Francisco.  Bay area based bands like the Jefferson Airplane and Grateful Dead became popular.
 Of course, the Beatles at that time, released "Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band", a total departure from anything that group had done.  As a matter of fact, there had never been any work quite like that album.  It gave birth to what is known as a concept album. Songs that can be fit together to tell a story or reflect an idea.
People remember the Summer Of Love with either affection or disdain, depending on their perspective.  Celebrations have been taking place in San Francisco with exhibits and events.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Dasher And Doll

Both Dasher and his toy are in a nearly identical pose.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Celebrating A Mariner Win

Reporter Angie Mentink and Mariner Ben Gamel are soaking from a Gatorade shower after Gamel scored the winning run against the New York Yankees in the 10th inning.

On Our Deck

This gas fueled fire pit was a 60th birthday present from family and friends.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Old Walla Walla Radio Remembered Part 18--Mariner Crew Gets Sack Of Onions

KTEL carried the Seattle Mariners games in the their early days.  They also carried the Seattle Seahawks and Seattle Super Sonics as well as Wa-Hi sports and occasionally, maybe WWCC sports.  When I worked at the station in the late 70s, Bevan Roth was the salesman and engineer. 
Bevan had been there since the 50s and he was a huge sports fan.  He would get his name (and the station's name) on the Mariner network by bringing a bag of Walla Walla sweet onions (known as Walla Walla Sweets) to the team  broadcasting crew(at that time, Dave Niehaus and Ken Wilson) when attending a game in Seattle. 
I think that he continued to do that after he left the station. 
In 1980, I worked for KNOI in Pullman and they also carried Mariner Baseball, Roth, at that time, worked for KEXI, a Milton-Freewater Oregon station.  Once again, I heard that Roth had brought the Mariner crew a bag of Walla Walla Sweets.
Many years later, I got to meet Dave Niehaus at the Fred Hutchinson Luncheon.  I asked Dave if he remembered Bevan Roth.  He sure did.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

More McMenamins

I love the way the property is laid out.  There is plenty of outdoor seating. Something unique to the Seattle area.

Memories Of The '60s--The Beatle Cartoon

So most people my age may remember The Monkees TV show, but how many remember that The Beatles had a cartoon series.  It ran from 1965 to 1969 on ABC TV.   Reruns later ran on MTV in 1986.
The speaking voices of the 4 Beatles was provided by two voice actors.  The songs were real Beatles songs.  The band itself was not involved in the project, although their voices were used in the previously recorded music. 
The show consisted around two episodes, each framed from a Beatles song. There was a "follow the bouncing ball" singalong in the middle.  The intro to each show played their music while the group was depicted running from it's crazy fans.  A phenomenon we know as Beatlemania, which was rampant at the time. 
The Beatles were reportedly initially not fond of the TV show, but later came to like it.  The cartoon, I believe, went a long way toward cementing the band's place in American culture.  Most of the Beatles songs that I knew were the ones that I had heard on the cartoon.
The Beatles would eventually release the movie "Yellow Submarine" which was also animated.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Larry And Diane Rock At Mike's 60th

Bellevue Crossroads UPS driver Larry Hays arrived at my birthday party with guitar in hand along with his friend Diane, who belted this Janis Joplin tune.

More Of McMenamins

There the grounds of McMenamins are really neat. Tavern On The Square is the prime eating spot.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Jet City Players Headline 60th Birthday Surprise

Thank you to my brother, Danny for this great picture!   My wife drove my to the Bothell Village for what I thought was dinner with my in-laws.  I was determined that it would be a quiet dinner.  Boy, was I wrong!
Yes, my in-laws were there, but so were my brothers and friends as my wife had planned a surprise party.  She told me that she had planned it for months. 
The Jet City Players performed, they are a danceable pop band with a rock edge.   The lead singer is the lovely Marcie J.  We were also treated to Larry Hays playing guitar while his friend, Diane sang some rock and roll.  A great time was had by all.
Deb and I spent the night at the Bothell McMenamins Anderson School. 

McMenamins Anderson School

A great place to stay! We spent the night here after last night's party.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Maple Valley's Lake Wilderness Elelementary

School is out for the summer and apparently, the originally structure for Lake Wilderness Elementary School is gone forever.
Students will attend classes, starting this fall, in a new facility, which I believe is seen in the background.
Things work quickly in the Tahoma School District.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Heritage Distilling--BSB

The radio commercials say "you can't spell baseball without BSB".  Heritage Distilling commercials have been all over the radio. Heritage Distilling is one of the vendors at Safeco Field where the Mariners play.
  BSB stands for "Brown Sugar Bourbon". I am not a bourbon drinker, but I decided to try BSB when we attended the game last Sunday. I had it mixed with club soda and it was real good. 
On my next visit to a Mariners game, I hope to bravely try the grasshoppers.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Mariner's Cano Is All Star Game Hero

Robinson Cano's 10th inning home run propelled the American League to a 2-1 victory in the 2017 All Star Game. The Seattle 2nd baseman joined Ken Griffey, Jr and Ichiro as the only Mariners to be named MVP in the mid-summer classic.  Cano has been battling injuries this season as has the Mariner's other all star, Nelson Cruz. This year's game was played in Miami.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Maple Valley Council Discusses Golf Course

Maple Valley's city owned golf course may be in for some changes.  The Covington-Maple Valley Reporter said in an article that Lake Wilderness Golf Course that improvements to the facility were discussed at the Maple Valley City Council's June 26th meeting. City Manager Laura Philpot reported that the course is now breaking even.
 It is now the only course within the city limits.  The restaurant on the course, reportedly, is losing money.  That is no surprise as the city and nearby Covington have seen a flurry of new restaurants.  Changes discussed have included upgrading the course and making the restaurant available to only golfers using the course at the time.

Sunday, July 09, 2017

Happy Together Tour

The Cowsills rock Snoqualmie Casino.  The Turtles will headline.

The Turtles

Howard Kaylan now a Seattleite, actually for many years a resident of the area, performs for his adopted hometown for the first time in years.  The Turtles once again headlined the Happy Together Tour, which this year also featured Ron Dante (voice of the Archies), The Cowsills, The Boxtops, The Association, and former 3 Dog Night singer Chuck Negron.
The fun took place at Snoqualmie Casino.

Go M's

Felix Hernandez is on the mound for the Mariners and I just missed a foul ball.

Saturday, July 08, 2017

Celebrating 22 Years!

Today is our 22nd anniversary. Deb and I married at the Grand Atrium at the Washington Mutual Tower  in Downtown Seattle on July 8th, 1995.

Friday, July 07, 2017

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

The Rocket's Red Glare

We watched fireworks yesterday on the shores of Lake Sammamish.

Cool Dogs

Dasher hunts for a ball, while friend Charlie watches from the shore on a sunny 4th of July.

Monday, July 03, 2017

A Beautiful Summer Day

Mt Rainier adds a lovely touch to this picture taken in the 4 Corners area of Maple Valley.

Saturday, July 01, 2017

Housesitting At Lake Sammamish

Watching Dasher's buddy Charlie on the shores of Lake Sammamish.

Friday, June 30, 2017

Late Actor Adam West Will Be Honored In His Hometown

September 19th will be designated "Adam West Day" in Walla Walla.  The honor comes weeks after the passing of West, a native of the town.  Jonathan Grant (below in Batman costume appearing before the WW City Council) spearheaded the move.  Grant, the Front office manager of the Whitman Hotel (above) says he met West several times on visits to Walla Walla. Grant also credited Adam Lore for his help in getting the project underway.
  Grant is planning to screen the original Batman movie starring West on that day.  Proceeds will support Camp Rainbow, a free camp in Idaho for children suffering from cancer and blood disorders that West supported.  There is still talk of an Adam West statue to be located somewhere in town. Thank you to the UB in Walla Walla for reference!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Smyly No Go For 2017

ESPN reports sidelined Mariner pitcher Drew Smyly will undergo Tommy John surgery, forcing him to miss the rest of this season.

Seattle Times Writer Stone Tells Of New Niehaus Book

A book is out on legendary Mariner broadcaster, Dave Niehaus, according to Seattle Times Sports columnist Larry Stone. The name of the book is "My Oh My: The Dave Niehaus Story".
Stone said the book was written by Seattle based musician, Billy Mac, a fan who journeyed to the press box in the team's early days, wishing to meet the broadcaster.  Mac had proposed the idea of a book to the late announcer, who nixed the idea thinking that no one would be interested.  After the Niehaus passing, Mac took on the project with the blessing of the Niehaus family.  You can order a copy of the book by clicking here.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Walla Walla Institution Will Close

News sources have announced that Walla Walla General Hospital will stop operating on July 24th.  The hospital, run by Adventist Health, has been on South Second Street since 1975, after moving from Bonsella Street near Whitman College. 
There had been a plan to transfer services to Providence St Mary, the city's other hospital, but unexpected regulatory changes would have potentially caused delays and prohibited the move. 
Providence St Mary Medical Center will be the town's only hospital. It was formerly St Mary's Hospital and was my birthplace.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Installed Just In Time

Temperatures in the Seattle area spiked into the high 90s this weekend.  We were lucky. We had just installed air conditioning last Monday.  Bellevue based PMG made the installation.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Relief From The Heat

With temperatures in the high 90s, Dasher enjoyed a swim in Lake Washington at the leash free zone at Luther Burbank park in Mercer Island.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Seattle Park Honors Jimi Hendrix

Seattle native Jimi Hendrix helped usher Rock into the psychedelic age and area residents are very proud of his legacy. Now, Seattle has a park named in his honor.  Jimi Hendrix Park, located next to the Northwest African American Museum in the Central District, opened this month. 
Perhaps, by design, the opening came on the 50th anniversary of the Monterey Pop Festively where Hendrix famously set his guitar on fire.  This summer also marks the 50th anniversary of another counter-culture event,  The Summer Of Love
Visitors can find the Hendrix Park at 2400 S Massachusetts St, Seattle, WA 98144.  I plan to visit soon.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Mariners Sweep Tigers For Winning Record

Robinson Cano hit two home runs, one a grand slam and Andrew Moore pitched brilliantly in his Major League debut as the Seattle Mariners defeated the Detroit Tigers 9-6. It was Seattle's first sweep of the Tigers in a four game series since 1998.  The Mariners are now above .500 for the first time this season.  The team starts a weekend home series against the division leading Houston Astros tonight.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

The Sheriff

King County Sheriff John Urquhart addressed the 5th District Democrats in Issaquah last night. It was my first meeting in months.  Urquhart received the sole endorsement of the 5th.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Move To Honor Adam West In Walla Walla

Adam West could join Marcus Whitman as a statue in Walla Walla.    There is a petition online to place a statue in the hometown of West, whose birth name is Bill Anderson.  A statue of the late actor, who in recent years has become something of a cult hero, could significantly boost tourism for the town.  West died on June 9th after a short bout with Leukemia.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Ethan Graduates

Woodinville High School class of 2017

Congrats Ethan

Congratulations to my nephew, Ethan Wagner.  He will graduate from Woodinville High School today.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Name Change In The Works For Mariner Stadium

The Seattle Mariners have announced that Safeco Insurance is not seeking to renew it's naming rights to the stadium in the Sodo District. The M's are already in the process of  a seeking a new client. Some suggestions for a new name from fans include Boeing Field and Starbucks Grounds (get it, grounds).   The now, not so new stadium has been Safeco Field from before the very first pitch was thrown in 1999.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Amazon Buys Whole Foods

Seattle based Amazon has purchased Whole Foods, a chain of grocery stores out of Austin Texas.  The Whole Foods chain will continue to run as a separate unit.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Adam West From Decades Ago

Walla Walla Historian Joe Drazan paid tribute to the late Adam West with this picture from the early '50s of then Bill Anderson (West's real name) and his wife visiting Whitman College, his alma mater.  West, of course, was a native of Walla Walla and there is talk of a movement to get a statue built in his honor.
You can find memorable Walla Walla pictures at the Bygone Walla Walla blog.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Reunited ‘Northern Exposure’ Stars Look Back Fondly At Their Quirky Show...

The cast of Northern Exposure, a '90s TV Hit recently reunited.  The show is shot in nearby Roslyn, Washington.  Cynthia Geary (bottom right) still lives in the Seattle area. 

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

St George Episcopal Chuch

The Labyrinth at St George Episcopal
Church greets you as you embark on the Lake Wilderness Trail in Maple Valley. Dasher and I usually park in the church lot on Witte Rd before waking to the park and the Lake.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Walla Walla And The World Mourn West

This weekend, the world stopped to mourn a Walla Walla guy.  Like the iconic character he played, Adam West had an alter ego, a true identity, if you will.  When Bill Anderson landed in Hollywood, there was a well known singer that also had that name,  according to his dad, Otto Anderson.  In the early 70s, I accompanied my parents to a Little Theatre cast party at the senior Mr. Anderson's house and he was more than happy to explain the name change.  Mr. Anderson said Adam took the "West" from his own middle name. 
As I was growing up in Walla Walla, West was well loved.  He was a seemingly isolated town's connection to Hollywood.  I have heard that he visited his home town often.   As I have said, the only time that I met him in person was at a cocktail party in San Diego.
 You can probably say that he was the most famous person to hail from Walla Walla.  Drew Bledsoe, is the other famous Walla Wallan. Bledsoe achieved national fame as quarterback for the Walla Walla High School Blue Devils and the WSU Cougars.  As a first draft choice in the NFL in 1993. he enjoyed a stellar career with the New England Patriots.
After the Batman series,  West would suffer from typecasting, being denied roles because viewers would only see him as Batman.  However, West found a way to make a comeback leveraging his fame playing the character, along with America's appetite for nostalgia.  He was also able to use social networking to his advantage. 
West did a voiceover for himself in The Simpson's and did a guest appearance on The Big Bang Theory.  He eventually was casted as the voice for Mayor Adam West in the Family Guy cartoon series.
Adam West's passing started a love fest on Twitter, Facebook, and traditional media.
 Probably, very few of his fans knew he was from Walla Walla.  Probably even fewer knew his real name was William West Anderson, but West touched  the heart of his hometown where he will be remembered forever as Bill Anderson, a Walla Wallan

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Caped Crusader Walla Walla Native Adam West Dies

Adam West, one of  the most famous natives of my hometown of Walla Walla, has died.  West, was born William West Anderson in Walla Walla. His portrayal of Bruce Wayne/Batman on ABC TV in the mid 60s became a worldwide cultural phenomenon.
The somewhat comical portrayal of Batman would differ from later movies of the super hero which were darker in nature.
Batman was a must-watch for me as a child. It was unique in that it was done in two parts.  At the end of the first episode, Batman and Robin (his youthful ward) would be caught in a dangerous situation and the next night he would somehow escape and solve the crime
I met West briefly at a cocktail party in San Diego.  My brother was attending Comic-Com and my dad and I went along for the ride.   West recognized my dad in the hotel lobby from his Walla Walla High School days and invited him to a reception.  West introduced himself to me as both Adam West and Bill Anderson.  Not knowing what to say, I asked him how he and Robin were able to get on a pole in suits and arrive  on the bottom in costume, I knew it was a film splice. 
West worked in Walla Walla radio and was a graduate of Whitman College.  His family says he died after a short bout of leukemia.  He was 88.

Seattle Institution To Close

FX McRory's, the unique restaurant across from Century Link Stadium, is closing it's doors to relocate to a smaller location.  Located near Seattle's professional baseball and football stadiums and of course, originally the Kingdome, it was a popular stop for sports fans. FX McRory's had been in that location for 40 years.

Thursday, June 08, 2017

Seattle Radio Show Goes National

The Men's Room, a talk show on 99.9 KISW, is now syndicated.  Westwood One and Entercom have combined to take the show to Portland, New Orleans, Boston and several other stations. 
The show is said to have started with friends arguing in a bar over tater tots
The show features talk on contempory topics.  It is said to be "no holds barred, no topic-off limits conversation, laughter, and annecdotes."   The Men's Room features Miles Montgomery, Steve "The Thrill" Hill, and Thee Ted Smith.  The producers are Mike Hawk and Robin Fox.
The popularity of the show has launched a brand of beer, Men's Room Red is a popular local brand, also available are Men's Room Gold, and Men's Room Black.  Profits from beer sales go to veteran's causes.

Wednesday, June 07, 2017

Oak View Group Selected In Key Remodel

The Oak View Group has been tapped by Mayor Ed Murray to redevelop the Key in an effort to get the two major winter sports in the area.  The group, let by Tim Lieweke and Irving Azoff, was introduced at a news conference.  The leaders announced a partnership with two perspective NHLowners, most likely a deciding factor in getting the nod.  Of course, the long range goal, would be to bring back the NBA. The previous mayor Mike McGinn, partnered with Chris Hanson, in attempting to build a basketball arena in Sodo that would also house Ice Hockey. 
The irony to this is that McGinn is again running for mayor, a position he lost 4 years ago.  Murray is not seeking a second term.
The Key Arena is located on the grounds of the Seattle Center, the site of the 1962 World's Fair. It was the home of the Seattle Super Sonics before the team moved to Oklahoma City to become the Thunder. 

Tuesday, June 06, 2017

Deb's Recipe A Winner In Hop Jack's Contest

Congrats to my wife for getting her Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese creation on the Hop Jack's  summer menu.   Deb won a gift certificate and her name will be on the menu with the recipe she created by writing on a paper napkin while we were waiting for dinner. She then entered the contest to have a recipe on the summer menu.
Hop Jack's is a chain of restaurants with locations primarily in Washington.  The Maple Valley Hop Jack's is located at 26420 Maple Valley Black Diamond Rd SE in the Maple Valley Town Square.