Archive for October, 2009

SDOT Traffic Advisory

October 29, 2009  |  Announcement, Event  |  No Comments

Sounders Playoff Match and Halloween Sure to Bring Out the Crowds SEATTLE –

Soccer fans dressed in bright green will be swarming to Qwest Field Thursday, October 29, for the Seattle Sounders playoff match set to kick off at 7 p.m.

On Friday and Saturday night, costumed children of all ages will be out in force for community events and neighborhood trick or treating; the Seattle Department of Transportation urges drivers to be extra watchful for children crossing the streets in the evening darkness.

Thursday, October 29 Seattle Sounders FC versus Houston Dynamo Playoff Match:

7:30 p.m. – 9:45 p.m. Qwest Field

35,000 fans expected

No street closures planned; expect heavier traffic around Qwest Field before and after the match.

Thriller: the movie

October 27, 2009  |  Event  |  No Comments

This isn’t the video that we took (because we were on the side) of the Thriller dance in Occidental. This first one is the best one on YouTube so far. Especially check it out at 2:48 when the little boy is doing a Michael Jackson move when everyone has dropped to the ground. Classic zombie thing to do.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6VrjJh2TPPw[/youtube]

Thriller in Occidental Square

October 27, 2009  |  Event  |  No Comments

We only live a block from Occidental Square, so we moseyed down there at 5:28 to find the park packed with people! Part of it is that Thrill the World was scheduled 30 min before the Sounders pregame march at 6pm.

IMG_6745

Because we were so late, we only had a side view of the dance, but it was still an amazing atmosphere. I’m thinking that the people leading the dance should have told people to get more in character. There were zombies giggling and waving to fans, etc. Totally inappropriate behavior for dancing zombies.

IMG_6743

Probably my favorite part of the dance was before anything happened, and they all laid down, this girl right in front of us (must be a dancer or a gymnast, or something bendy). She truly embodied the spirit of the thriller zombie.

IMG_6749bw

(note: I left in the creepy eyes of the person above her for dramatic effect)

Without further commentary (which I know you’ll miss), here are some more pictures from the event. The only thing I regret is not going early enough to get everything from the front instead of the side.

IMG_6734

IMG_6748bw

Actually spotted: man wearing kilt

October 27, 2009  |  Fun  |  No Comments

I promise.. this is the only making fun I’m going to do of people who wear kilts (this week). And then I’ll also quickly add posts about Thrill the World and the Sounders game, increasing the chances that the people who work at Utilikilts might miss this post.

(note: I made sure to post the picture that didn’t show his face to protect his identity. Although if he were trying to be inconspicuous about anything, he probably wouldn’t choose to wear a kilt)

Kilt wearers: what is the attraction??

Guerrilla Murals

October 22, 2009  |  Fun  |  No Comments

These awesome new murals were spotted over on 3rd (next to Salumi).

I’ve heard from a little bird that the mural was done by a person who lives / works in P2 and decided to take some initiative to make the neighborhood better.

Those are the types of people that we need moving into the neighborhood! Not the people who complain about everything that’s going wrong there, but people who do something to make it a better place to live.

Elliott Bay Book Co — moving??

October 21, 2009  |  Announcement, Business, Call to Action  |  No Comments

From the Seattle Times this weekend:

“Elliott Bay Book Co. is considering moving from its iconic 36-year home in the city’s historic Pioneer Square, the store manager confirmed Saturday.

Tracy Taylor said a move “is a possibility. We’re looking into it.” She declined to elaborate and referred other questions to the bookstore owner, Peter Aaron.”

To read more of this article, click here. For a second article talking about how bad it would be for other Pioneer Square retailers, click here.

I think that if they made the decision to leave Pioneer Square, it would be disastrous for so many reasons. First of all, no one would get confused about a store in Pioneer Square Seattle being called Elliott Bay anymore. I think that has some serious consequences.

In all seriousness, though — this is exactly what would lead to more problems in Pioneer Square — if stores that bring traffic to P2 aren’t there anymore, it’s just going to open up the square to having more bars = rowdy people = other people not wanting to come to P2.

The second article that I linked to talks about people not feeling safe down in Pioneer Square, as well as a general lack of parking, and too many panhandlers. The reporter posed the question, even if the city helps to make that area better, will it encourage people to go down there to shop?

I think it will help to increase the residential population. Compare Pioneer Square to Belltown: Belltown has 11,000 residents, while Pioneer Square only has about 2,000. We need more residents, more retailers, more foot traffic. We need less panhandlers, less drug dealers, less problems.

Now how does that happen?

Thrill the World 2009

October 15, 2009  |  Event  |  No Comments

October 2009 marks the 26th Anniversary of Michael Jackson’s Thriller video. Thrill The World 2009 is the worldwide attempt to break the world record for the largest simultaneous dance. Thriller groups all across America and in other nations will join together at the same exact time performing the Thriller dance.

There is a local group organized to perform the thriller dance on October 24, 2009 at Occidental Park in Pioneer Square, 5:30 pm.

Here’s a note from their site:

“If you live in the greater Seattle area and would like to learn the dance in a class setting, check our calendar for rehearsal dates. Our rehearsals and participation in the event are free, however, we are raising money for Seattle Children’s Hospital and AOK Friends (feeds the homeless). We will make this announcement and accept donations at all rehearsals and on October 24th at our big event.”

I personally plan on being there (especially to take pics)… I am ashamed to say that I don’t know the thriller dance and have only seen it in 13 going on 30 a very cool, dangerous movie.

Homeless at Masins Furniture

October 14, 2009  |  Complaining, Homeless  |  No Comments

Ever since we moved in to P2, we have had a problem with the line of homeless people sleeping next to Masins Furniture. And I’ve always wondered why it hasn’t been a problem for them. For a store like Masins with prices what they are — don’t they realize it’s a deterrent for anyone going to their store when the homeless sleep in their doorways and make them smell and then sleep all along their building? Ever night?

I can also imagine how nerve-wracking it would be for anyone getting off of a bus or waiting for a bus right there.

IMG_6578

(sorry for the image quality — I always take these through the window while I’m waiting for the elevator)

I understand why this happens, though — location, location, location! Isn’t that what realtors always tell us? It’s a strip that has no retailer entryways, it’s right across the street from the Union Gospel Mission, and it has cover overhead. What makes this situation worse, however, is their disregard for cleaning up the space. Every single morning, I watch out the window as they just get up and leave their free city blankets (that are handed out like candy by the city) and their cardboard boxes for someone else to clean up.

File 003

I think it’s the MID workers who pick up after them most mornings. They even attempt to clear them out after they’ve had a nice long rest there.

File 017a

This is what I’m talking about when I talk about the different types of homeless people. The homeless that sleep next to Masins have a total disregard for the neighborhood and the other people who live here. When I was having a conversation about this with Sgt Gracy (community police sergeant for P2), he said that Mr. Masins has actually written quite a few letters of complaint, but that nothing has worked. Every time they clear out the current homeless there, 15 new ones take their place.

I was trying to brainstorm possible solutions that might help keep them away, but none of them seem feasible. There are already lights there all night, and even the nightly construction noise didn’t keep them away. I thought maybe if cones were placed all along the wall with signs warning them to stay off the sidewalk that it might work, but I’m sure they would just move them.

Any ideas? I’m thinking about contacting the developers that are working on the building there to see if they might be interested in teaming up to help make some changes on the block there.

In the meantime, I’ve decided to vent my frustrations by renaming it:  Annoying Homeless Sidewalk.

Downtown Throwdown: part awesome, part lame

October 12, 2009  |  Event  |  No Comments

I heard that some people were complaining that there was going to be a lot of noise and fake snow (how dare they!) in Occidental Square on Saturday.

Really, complainers? The only cool thing about the event was the fake snow.

Although the event was scheduled from 10 – 2pm, it didn’t even get started until around 3pm. Some of the homeless guys told me that they started to set up Friday night, and then got started again at 6:30 Saturday morning. That still didn’t help them start on time, though.

I wasn’t too impressed by the crowd of people that actually showed up, considering all of the money and effort it would take to build a fake snow hill in O2. I can’t seem to tell from the photo who sponsored it, but maybe they should have done some better marketing.

File 021a

Also, while it was cool to see some snowboarding in October in the middle of the city, they just kept doing the same thing over and over again. We didn’t know what the scores were or how the judges were judging them, and there was no excitement added in (like a streaker, or part obstacle course, or something).

I have to admit that it’s fairly mesmerizing to watch people jump down a fake snow hill and up onto a ramp. I was hoping for someone to fall one of the snowboarders to do something crazy. The other most mesmerizing aspect of the event was that so many of them had mustaches! Who knew that something so wrong could be so cool to snowboarders.

mustache

To see more images from the event and to catch some tall, dark and handsome mustaches, click here.

Before and After: Fortson Square

October 12, 2009  |  Homeless  |  No Comments

BEFORE:File 006

AFTER:

File 007

It looks like some thoughtful person decided to feed the birds right after PSCA and some volunteers finished cleaning up the park (picking up all of the cigarette butts) and adding orange buckets for the Lazarus to use as their ashtrays.

ONE WEEK AFTER:

File 026

So, while it obviously looks a little better (they had picked all of the cigarette butts up on the day of the clean up), it looks like there is still a problem, and that someone will still need to keep picking the area up. I propose that it be the people who use the Lazarus Day Center — why can’t they help keep it clean in exchange for their free services (and since they’re mostly the ones making the mess).

File 008bw

(I’ve very helpfully highlighted the orange buckets for you. Also, the picture is a little blurry because of my lingering trauma from being yelled at last time I took pictures of someone without asking. I don’t think they would listen if I told them I was really just taking a picture of the orange buckets).