Holidays 2542 results

Hallo-weekend, part 1

October 26, 2006 6:49 pm
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 |   Holidays | West Seattle businesses

Not enough time at the moment to post ALL the stuff that’s happening this pre-Halloween weekend — we’ll get to that first thing in the morning. But we’ve gotten some notes asking about, and telling us about, the business district trick-or-treat events, so here’s the full scoop lowdown on those: Junction trick-or-treating is Saturday afternoon, 1-3 pm (the nice folks down there say “don’t let the road work keep you away,” and honestly, there’s not much of it left anyway); Admiral trick-or-treating is 3-6 pm on Halloween (Tuesday, if you’ve lost track); Alki trick-or-treating is also on Halloween, 1-6 pm (the WS Chamber site has all three of those on one convenient page); and what a coincidence (oddly NOT listed by the WS C&C, or are they and WV on the outs?), Westwood Village has trick-or-treating 5-7 pm on Halloween night.

H*ll with Halloween, Noel’s a-knockin’

Christmas stuff keeps coming out earlier and earlier every year. This year seems more out-o-control than ever. Three examples are in full force at Westwood Village as we write: The Rite-Aid Halloween stuff is already on sale, with Christmas creeping into the aisles; in the “seasonal” section @ Target, it’s already gotten to the point where cute-n-cuddly Animated Lighted Sea Lions (for your yard) are rubbing elbows, er, flippers with the Animated Teeth-Chattering Skeletons; and Pier 1’s window signs proclaim this to be Ornament Preview time. WAIT UNTIL HALLOWEEN’S BODY IS COLD, FOR GOD’S SAKE! ISN’T NOVEMBER FIRST EARLY ENOUGH?

Meantime, if you are doing early holiday shopping anyway, here’s a sincere recommendation: The 2007 West Seattle Calendar. Here’s where you can buy it. (Honestly, who needs “16 Months of Precious Pugs” when you can represent for WS Pride!)

Scariest pre-Halloween sighting so far

September 12, 2006 9:51 pm
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 |   Holidays | Pets

In the seasonal aisles of Westwood Village Target: costumes to transform your dog into Darth Vader or Yoda on Halloween.

Hmph. Cats are generally too dignified for a stunt like that.

In case this is your first 4th in West Seattle

July 4, 2006 12:27 am
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 |   Holidays

We don’t have “our own” big fireworks display over here, but you can see lots of good stuff without leaving West Seattle.

BIGGEST: Fourth of Jul-Ivar’s, over Elliott Bay. Look toward the Space Needle — if you are so far up the northern side of the WS shoreline that you CAN’T see the Needle, you probably won’t be able to see the fireworks. Stake out a viewing spot early, whether you’re on the shore or up above (the Admiral viewpoint, the north Cali Ave viewpoint, etc.).

SECONDARY: If you’re at the right angle, you will see some of the Lake Union show “behind” the Elliott Bay show. Or, if you watch toward the west, you will probably catch some Bainbridge Island fireworks. And if you are on the west/south shore, looking toward Vashon, you can see some of their shows too — I hear there’s supposed to be a big display over Quartermaster Harbor this year.

As for personal fireworks, they’re illegal in the Seattle city limits, but not in the neighboring chunk of unincorporated King County known as White Center — the closest fireworks stands are in and near the parking lot of the Safeway on Roxbury, just barely over the city-limits line.

Happy Independence Day!

Weekend calm before the storm

July 1, 2006 1:02 pm
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 |   Holidays | WS culture/arts

This is the weekend to hang out around your house before West Seattle’s blitz of midsummer events: Pirates Landing next weekend, Summer Fest (formerly Street Festival) the weekend after that, The Parade the weekend after that. Of course, by “weekend” I mean literally today and tomorrow, since Monday you’ll have to get ready for fireworks viewing on Tuesday … looks like great weather for the Fourth of Jul-Ivar’s show over the bay, which is visible from the Alki Bathhouse eastward along the WS Elliott Bay waterfront.

Annexation angst

June 3, 2006 3:18 pm
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 |   Holidays

A sighting of popper noisemakers at QFC reminds me … If nothing else, here’s a reason to keep White Center un-annexed, and therefore unincorporated: If either Seattle or Burien takes over the turf, that means no more fireworks. I’m not a fan of those heavy-duty war-grade monstrosities you can get at the reservations, but I do think it’s appropriate to have a few sparklers in your own back yard on Independence Day. So, for as long as we’ve been in West Seattle, we’ve wandered over to the Roxbury Safeway parking lot a day or two ahead of time and bought a few boxes of safe-n-sane fireworks, then clandestinely ignited them in our yardlet, hoping nobody would sic the cops on us. But they’re against the law in Burien as well as Seattle, so if either of those cities annexes our neighboring chunk of unincorporated King County, it’s farewell, fireworks. Food 4 thought. Meantime, in a few weeks you’ll find us over in the Safeway parking lot tent, trying to settle on a modest pack of personal pyrotechnics.

My West Seattle Memorial Day tribute

May 29, 2006 2:35 pm
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 |   Holidays

A few years after we moved to West Seattle, my mom decided it sounded like a great place for her to get a midlife re-start. So she moved here too. She found a great apartment near the Morgan Junction, with a peek view of the Sound and the Olympics. Eventually she found a job with a local nonprofit and started to build a life.

Then she started losing weight. We thought she just had an appetite problem. After a few months, we convinced her to see a doctor … who discovered she had one of the nastiest forms of cancer. (Not that any form of cancer is NOT nasty, but some are curable or nearly so — this one wasn’t.) Things fell apart quite rapidly. The nonprofit cut her loose before she even had a chance to start treatment (I won’t name them here but I do hold a bit of a grudge because of the way they treated her). She accepted the incurability faster than we did — and just kind of settled in to die.

This wasn’t really like her. She was always a bon vivant. But she decided she’d lived a good life (even though she was ridiculously young, still). She had an interesting take on it — “Doesn’t make any sense to say ‘why me.’ If you say ‘why me’ in the bad times, why wouldn’t you say ‘why me’ in the good times?”

She didn’t want to move in with us. She wanted to stay in that cozy apartment, with its peek view, and her stack of movie tapes, till the end was truly in sight, and then she’d think about her HMO’s inpatient hospice.

So we visited her every day. A hospice nurse came in a couple times a week. I could see my mom’s apartment from my road to work early each morning, and was haunted by the thought, “Wow, until I call and check in with her later, she could be dead in there, for all I know.” Strange, but maybe if you’ve lived through a loved one’s slow death, you understand.

The cancer that kills most people within six months of diagnosis didn’t get her till she was into month 9. The hospice nurse who admitted her to the inpatient facility when it seemed clear she had “days to go” was shocked that she didn’t move on to the next plane of existence till she’d been there six weeks.

My mom’s death wound up teaching me a lot about life. So I pay tribute to her here on Memorial Day. Especially because she died this time of year — and the bush that yielded the rose I took from her hospice bedside vase, to lay on her chest, not long after her last breath, still blooms bright this time every year, right next to our front door.

If we gave out “spirit awards”

February 12, 2006 9:32 am
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 |   Fairmount Springs | Holidays | Seen around town

… I’d have one for the people who keep decorating their traffic island along the west side of Fauntleroy, just before the bend into Morgan Junction. It was sparkly for Christmas; now its trees and bushes have heart ornaments for Valentine’s Day. I’m not much into “cute” but I still think they deserve props for creativity that just might make a passing driver or two smile.

Let there be lights

December 28, 2005 6:05 am
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 |   Holidays

Some people can’t wait for Christmas to get here. Not me. The holiday itself always makes me sad. I love Christmas lights more than any other feature of the season — but once December 25 arrives, it seems half the people who put them up, stop turning them on. I know they’re not out there on Christmas Day dismantling their displays, but suddenly they just stop bothering to go out back and plug them in, or whatever. Personally, I don’t believe in taking down the tree or deactivating the lights until after New Year’s Day. This is still a “holiday week,” even if you’re working. So here’s a shout-out to all the fine folks who “let it shine, let it shine, let it shine” until the day they box everything up again. Especially West Seattle’s boldest and brightest, the Menashes down on Beach Drive. (But what happened to Fauntlee Hills, over the ferry dock? We took a spin through their neighborhood this year & it seems to be a shadow of its former self.)

Not a real mall, yet

December 26, 2005 8:50 pm
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 |   Holidays | Westwood

Westwood Village may be a mall wanna-be, and the addition of Barnes & Noble and Pier 1 certainly has nudged it closer to mallhood. But it’s never going to be a real mall until it’s got its own after-Christmas-sale mania! We’re just back from a trip over there and pshaw, no bargains to write home about. Especially Bed, Bath & Beyond. Quel disappointment! We couldn’t even find a $20 choco-fountain. B&N has calendars on sale at half price, but then again, you didn’t need a Magic 8 Ball to see that one coming …

West Seattle hero

December 25, 2005 6:57 pm
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 |   Holidays

The Seattle Times Christmas edition features more than a bundle of after-Christmas-sale flyers — it also showcases a nice collection of local folks doing good. Among them, this guy. Trivial side note — nice picture of our west-facing shore behind him, too; so many people think West Seattle=Alki=downtown skyline views.

The 2 sides of Santa

December 24, 2005 8:28 am
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 |   Holidays

Honestly, this is intended to be a blog about West Seattle — what’s going on, and what’s not going on, on this side of the city, the quasi-peninsula that used to be a city all its own.

However, today, while this is still in stealth mode, we just have to say something about one of the “who stole Christmas?” controversies raging wildly across the Web.

The East Coast substitute teacher who revealed the truth about Santa Claus to a class of first-graders wasn’t all wrong.

“Those same children are going to know someday that what their parents taught them is false,” she explained, according to newspaper accounts. True. Exactly why we chose not to start the whole Santa mess with our kid, and honestly, we’re surprised more modern parents haven’t chosen to go that same route. Were we the only ones who felt betrayed when we realized we’d been deceived all those years? Did all the rest of you really just go “Oh, OK, whatever, fine,” when you found out? Didn’t it make you wonder what else your parents were lying to you about?

And yet … there is another side of Santa, also represented in the article we read about the East Coast controversy. One of the miffed parents mailed the substitute teacher a copy of “Yes, Virginia, There Is a Santa Claus.”

To this day, we do believe in that Santa — the symbol of unconditional giving, and therefore love. That’s the Santa we taught our kid about, not the one that scratches up the roof, tumbles down the chimney, and cleans out the cookie jar.

Merry Christmas. No, we mean it. Not just Happy Holidays.

Much more to come …