From the “what was I thinking?” dept.

March 17, 2006 11:48 pm
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 |   Seen around town

Lovely Friday night. Not too cold. Not rainy. Just right for a stroll along Alki. Hmm … what’s that noise … Oops. St. Patrick’s Day. Overflow crowd outside the Celtic Swell, and drunken 20somethings staggering along the sidewalk for blocks either way, bellies full of green beer (or worse). Whoops, back home in a hurry, mark calendar for next year (when St. Pat’s will be on a SATURDAY), avoid the vicinity …

Running out of room

March 17, 2006 9:12 pm
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 |   Seen around town

En route to Endolyne Joe’s this morning (see below), noticed for the first time that the south parking lot for Lincoln Park is fenced off and partially taken over by vehicles and material involved in the pipe project. If that drags on into the summer, LP parking will be more problematic than ever, especially on weekends when people book the picnic shelters for special events. So don’t say I didn’t warn you …

Get your Quebecois mojo on

March 17, 2006 10:36 am
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 |   Fauntleroy | West Seattle restaurants

Dropped by Endolyne Joe’s (just uphill from the Fauntleroy ferry dock) for the first time in months. They’ve been doing a Quebec theme (certain food specials including, on the lunch menu, the classic fries-n-curds-n-gravy creation known as “poutine”) for a while, but the waitperson gravely informed us that it’s changing next week … along with the cute icicly (haven’t they heard about global warming?) decor. Next up: Santa Fe Tex-Mex. Jalapenos, here we come!

The long and winding road(s)

March 16, 2006 8:02 pm
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 |   Transportation

Cami from the fabulous Alki News Beacon suggests we should all mark our calendars for these. Note the one at West Seattle HS on March 29. I guess this means Hizzoner Himself will actually be there; not that the WSHS event will be much of a drive for Our Homegrown Leader.

And if you’re sick of Viaduct chat, how about returning to the days of yore … the Bridge Trials & Tribulations that beset WS long before my posse got here …

Hottest ticket in town

March 16, 2006 5:53 am
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 |   Transportation

Looks like the walking tour of The Viaduct this weekend is all booked up. So if you’re not on the list already, you’re out of luck. And don’t forget it’ll be closed most of the weekend during all the inspection and tour excitement.

Sounding the alarm

The March issue of the Alki News Beacon is out … and our dear pals are revealing rough times. Good gosh, in a world where we can spend billions on bombs, we should be able to scrape up a few bucks for a good grass-roots community group & its newsletter.

I was going to suggest — have you guys tried brainstorming with Megawatt? Then I went to the MW home page & got an idea … how about a big rummage sale to raise $ for your group? I don’t live on that side of town any more but I promise I’d donate!

Alki hotel not dead yet?

March 15, 2006 6:37 am
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 |   West Seattle news

We’d been wondering what was up with that unpopular project. There’s a bit of an update buried way down in this new WS Herald story about what else the developers are up to.

Be on the lookout

March 15, 2006 6:33 am
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 |   WS breaking news

There’s a lost little old guy out there, a walkaway from Providence Mount St. Vincent. No photo but a good description in this story.

Driving me a little batty

March 14, 2006 6:08 pm
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 |   Seen around town

Now that banner season on the pedestrian bridge across the top of the Fauntleroy approach to The Bridge, one particular banner is driving me batty.

In huge black letters/numbers on a white sheet, it says, “22’s ABOUT TO B. WILDE.”

I’m guessing a local sports player who’s #22 is also “B. Wilde.” Can’t find anything on Web search. Anybody got a clue?

Tuesday tidbits

March 14, 2006 4:17 am
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 |   Fauntleroy | WS miscellaneous

–Wish the Fauntleroy Creek salmon “bon voyage.” According to, volunteers start checking on them tomorrow.

–The daily newspapers both have the Holy Rosary pastor story today (the P-I does a better job than the Times). Remember, you read it here first.

To cannibalize a comment …

March 13, 2006 7:24 pm
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 |   West Seattle restaurants

In case you miss it a few posts down, “HC” says he’s learned that Starbucks is buying/has bought the Rainier Roaster drive-thru restaurant near the 35th/Fauntleroy gateway to The Bridge. Have to say, that’s a killer location for a drive-up Starbucks, although I hope they re-route the traffic a bit, since one of the reasons I seldom visited RR was the weird route required to get to the window.

New but not necessarily improved

March 13, 2006 6:37 am
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 |   West Seattle restaurants

Just a bit of wistfulness …

The Morgan Junction Subway remodeling work is over. More like redecorating. A key point — the original Subway wall decor (wallpaper mapping the NYC Subway system) is gone, replaced by big color photo murals of vegetables. Yes, I know, that fits the brand, but it’s just one more little bit of familiarity by the wayside. Kind of like the whole 76 ball thing.

Priest quits

March 12, 2006 4:46 pm
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 |   West Seattle religion | WS breaking news

Friends of ours who go to Holy Rosary say an official from local Catholic headquarters dropped a bombshell at morning services today: the church’s priest resigned amid allegations of “improprieties.” No details, but our friends say the official was careful in his announcement to point out that it involved “adults.” This has to be a big shakeup for hundreds of local families — this priest had run that church for more than a decade. Nothing about it on the Holy Rosary website as of this writing.

Better to light a single candle …

March 11, 2006 3:48 pm
|    Comments Off on Better to light a single candle …
 |   Seen around town

A micro-protest is in progress along Cali Ave between the Alaska and Morgan Junctions.

We counted at least half a dozen small handcut white cards, no more than maybe 3 x 4, tacked onto phone poles, hand-lettered with this plea:


“For war crimes” was in blue ink;  “impeach Bush” in black.

The cards can’t have been up for long — they are not discolored or weather-stressed in any way. Maybe somebody prepping for the weekly WS anti-war vigil.

South of the border

March 11, 2006 9:29 am
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 |   West Seattle restaurants

Started a long rant on this. Realized it really boils down to just one thing:


Our joy at Pagliacci’s WS arrival years ago was muted by the revelation that they refused to deliver to our neighborhood. The border is actually way north of even Morgan Junction.

So, at least three times a month, we place our order on the way home, and drop by The (Alaska) Junction for pickup. Past couple times, though, the wait has been insane. Last night, the wait just to pick up pre-ordered pizzas filled almost the entire store — 15 minutes just to get to the counter.

Sure sign of success. So why not expand the delivery zone? Even little Amante, headquartered way north of Pagliacci, will happily drive orders this far.


Nothing says “party” …

March 10, 2006 7:50 pm
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 |   Environment

… like a big bright postcard headlined


Online block watch

March 10, 2006 6:25 am
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 |   WS breaking news

Kudos to the folks in the recently renamed “Fairmount Springs” neighborhood for using their community Web site to let the area know about a recent crime spree. I will be watching eagerly for future news of an arrest.

New views

March 9, 2006 6:45 pm
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 |   Transportation

Well, at least someone is doing something sensible with Our Transportation Dollars.

The City of Seattle keeps expanding its network of traffic cams, and two of the latest are right in the middle of the WS Bridge — one east, one west. There’s also one sort-of-under the bridge, at the Chelan intersection.

I’m adding them to my WS cams page (see tab above), too. Hmm, maybe we can get the city to put up an Alki cam …

Behind door number three …

March 9, 2006 6:57 am
|    Comments Off on Behind door number three …
 |   Transportation

Oh joy, hot on the heels of several thrilling years of monorail votes, we get another vote about our transportation future … tunnel vs. no tunnel. Once again, those pesky politicos just couldn’t decide to decide. So we get to waste more time and money (and kill more trees to stuff mailboxes with pro-tunnel/anti-tunnel hysteria). While we’re at it, let’s vote on the third option too!

Down on the corner

More info on what’s replacing Ben & Jerry’s in the Junction:

The permit on the door named a “Verite Coffee” as the permittee. The name rang no bells; a little googling revealed the name to belong to a coffee and cupcake enterprise with two locations in northern parts of Seattle.

An e-mail inquiry brought confirmation — they’re opening a coffeehouse in the B & J space. No date yet — they say “we just got the space – so it’ll be a while …”

Good news for Husky Deli; they win the Junction ice-cream war. As for coffee — hmm — guess it’s impossible to have too many coffee providers in any given Seattle block, but the Junction is getting crowded now; these “Verite” folks will be joining In-n-Out, Capers, Uptown, Easy Street, Bike ‘n’ Brew, Coffee to a T with Sugar, are we missing anyone?

Our new mascot

March 8, 2006 6:17 am
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 |   Wildlife

I don’t see it on the Seattle Aquarium’s own site yet, but a source sends me word that the aquarium’s cuddliest critter finally has a name — with West Seattle significance! From the official press release:

HI! MY NAME IS ALKI The male northern Sea Otter pup born at the
Seattle Aquarium on December 6, 2005 officially has a name. “Alki” was
chosen from names submitted by the Aquarium’s Otter Watch volunteers.
“We decided to give the privilege of naming this otter to our Otter
Watch Volunteers” explains Sue Donohue Smith, Manager of Volunteer and
Guest Services. “For six to eight weeks after otter pups are born at
the Aquarium, we have the Otter Watch program running. The volunteers
work four hour shifts, 24/7, outside the otter exhibit. We collect data
on the behaviors of both mother and pup and compare those behaviors to
other otters born at the Aquarium. Being able to compare the data gives
us a good indication of how the pup is doing. This is tough duty in the
Winter!” Joe Weiss submitted the winning name of Alki for the otter
pup. Joe is the teacher of the Marine Technology program at the Seatac
Occupational Skills Center [OSC]. The Aquarium has a long standing
partnership with the program, placing students as interns in life
sciences as part of their curriculum in the program. Joe told his
students about the naming contest and asked them for ideas. The classes
voted on the name Alki, which he submitted as his choice.

If you’ve ever seen the Otter Watch volunteers on duty, you know it’s hard work indeed. We visited the aquarium shortly after this little guy was born, and marveled as the volunteer simultaneously managed to keep her eyes on the pup, keep her fingers on a keyboard to log the otter’s every action, and keep calm while quietly fielding excited questions from about a dozen kids a minute.

One if by bridge, two if by sea

March 7, 2006 7:15 pm
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 |   Elliott Bay Water Taxi | Transportation

BRIDGE: Got lane-jumped this morning near the top of the WS Bridge. A white Hyundai Sonata with custom “Go Cougs” license plates and two AM 1090 (Air America) bumper stickers sneaked right in front of me, way past where its driver should have waited patiently and properly to get in the right-lane line. Only reason I didn’t consider a beep or bump, the car held two people. Which means one less car. Small consolation. Next time, I’m not going to leave enough space for someone to shoehorn in. SO THERE!

SEA: E-mailed our friendly neighborhood King County Councilperson to see if there’s an update yet on the Elliott Bay Water Taxi for this year. Here now, the entirety of how Councilperson Constantine answered my question “Will the water taxi be back?”:

It will. For the first time the Executive actually put it in his proposed budget. I am working (against much resistance) to fund a permanent dock and establish permanent funding for the service outside of existing Metro bus service. More later.

How safe is your neighborhood?

March 7, 2006 6:36 am
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 |   Crime | West Seattle online

Ever wonder about the crime rate in your neighborhood?

Here’s a handy way to check. (To figure out which “census tract” you’re in, look here first.)