Early Spring is Blooming in Seattle

 Posted by on February 22, 2015 at 11:48 am  Outdoors, Photos  No Responses »
Feb 222015
 
Pink Camellia blooming

Pink Camellia blooming

While much of the Northeastern and Midwestern US has been bombarded with snow and ice storms, we’ve had a very mild winter in the Seattle area this season. The highs have been in the 50s and even 60s off and on for the past couple of weeks. The sun–long forgotten by most Seattleites during the winter–has recently made frequent appearances to replenish our bodies’ diminished stores of Vitamin D from the dark days of winter.  Here are a few signs of spring blooming in my neighborhood.

Yellow and white daffodils blooming

Yellow and white daffodils blooming

 

Purple crocus blooming

Purple crocus blooming

 

Cherry tree blooming

Cherry tree blooming

 

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The 12th Man: Restless in Seattle

 Posted by on January 30, 2014 at 10:11 pm  Sports  No Responses »
Jan 302014
 
The 12th man flag

The 12th man flag

The 12th Man (and Woman) has totally taken over the Seattle area since the Seahawks won a heart-stopping battle against the 49ers a week and a half ago in the NFC Championships. You see Seahawks gear, flags, signs, and colors everywhere you go. In fact, I saw a small airplane dragging a 12th man flag this afternoon around my neighborhood. I’ve never seen such a motley collection of people come out of the woodwork to root for the Seahawks.  In a world that seems to be constantly divided, it’s good to see almost everyone around you unified on something for a change!

The media bombardment over the last week has been overwhelming. National coverage of Richard Sherman’s rant at the end of the 49ers game still continues almost two weeks afterwards. Stories about Peyton Manning’s legacy (or lack thereof if he doesn’t win another Super Bowl) dominate the headlines. The Super Bowl is being framed as an epic battle between the best offense and the best defense. Some of the media is even painting Super Bowl XLVIII as a morality play between the good guys (Broncos) and the bad guys (Seahawks).  Enough already.

Many fans I know, including myself, are restless in Seattle. Let’s stop all the analysis and get on with the game already! There’s way too much hype and controversy development. I’m eager to escape for four hours and enjoy good food and company along with 100+ million others this Sunday. And I’m looking forward to the first Super Bowl victory parade in Seattle next week…

 

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Curling in Seattle for the First Time

 Posted by on December 27, 2013 at 4:01 pm  Sports  No Responses »
Dec 272013
 
Curling stones near the target rings

Curling stones near the target rings

I went curling for the first time over the holidays at the Granite Curling Club in Seattle. I really didn’t know what to expect as my only previous exposure to the sport of curling was limited to what I saw on TV coverage of past Olympics.

After a lesson from our instructor, we played a game with two teams of four people.  I was surprised by how heavy the curling stones were (about 40 lbs.) and how easily they slid down the ice. Only a small amount of force is needed to slide the stone down to the target on the other side of the ice. Not being a skater, I was initially anxious about slipping on the ice. But, with a pair of “grippers,” my feet had plenty of traction on the ice. Launching the stone properly definitely takes some practice as the “slider” throws off your balance on the launch. I thought the most fun was sweeping in front of the sliding stone to influence its speed and path.

I learned that curling is not my favorite sport but its fun enough that I would definitely play again.

 

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May 242012
 

 

Northern Lights Dome Room in the Arctic Building

Northern Lights Dome Room in the Arctic Building

I was recently inside the famous Northern Lights Dome Room in the Arctic Building in downtown Seattle for a business meeting. As I was listening to the speakers talk about their businesses, I could not resist glancing up toward the ornate ceiling that was beckoning for attention.

The Arctic Building was originally built for the Arctic Club in 1916 and housed them until the club dissolved in 1971. The Arctic Club served as a social institution for men who struck it rich during the Yukon gold rush. Currently, the Arctic Club is a DoubleTree / Hilton Hotel.

As I gazed at the room’s stuccoed ceilings and beautiful chandeliers, I reflected upon the people who sat in that room many decades ago. What were they talking about as they chomped on their nasty cigars (it wasn’t smoke-free back then)? What memories and stories were left behind in that grand room? If only the walls could talk…

 

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