My Pacific Northwest

Seattle burns down in the Great Fire on June 6, 1889



At about 2:30 p.m. on June 6, 1889, a pot of glue bursts into flames in Victor Clairmont’s basement cabinet shop at the corner of Front (1st Avenue) and Madison streets. Efforts to contain the fire fail and it quickly engulfs the wood-frame building. Thanks to a dry spring and a brisk wind, the flames spread, and volunteer firefighters tap out the town’s inadequate, privately owned watermains. By sunset, some 64 ACRES lie in smoldering ruins. This event is known as Seattle’s Great Fire.

March 29, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

‘Mariners baseball, ready to play’

2011 – M’s commercials


March 19, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tacoma – Stadium High School

The 100 celebration of Stadium High School was held in September of 2006. The Centennial of the Bowl in September 2010. The school has been a source of tremendous pride, not only to its students, alums, teachers and administrator. But also to countless other Tacoma citizens who have enjoyed public events in the Bowl or simply stopped to marvel at the Old-World beauty of the Castle and it’s stunning natural setting.



Bill Baarsma, ’60, Tacoma mayor[8]

Bruce Bennett (b. Herman Brix) ’24, Olympic shot-put medalist and Hollywood actor[8]

Rosemarie Bowe, actress[citation needed]

Cathryn Damon, ’47, stage/TV/film actress[8]

R. N. DeArmond, author, American historian[citation needed]

Jeff Durgan, professional soccer player (retired)[citation needed]

Evan Hunziker, man who spent three months in North Korean custody for illegally entering the country[9]

Edward LaChapelle, avalanche researcher[citation needed]

David T. Kesinger, ‘81

Michael Manuel,actor[citation needed]

Vicci Martinez, acoustic-rock singer/songwriter[citation needed]

Marjie Millar (b. Marjie Miller), ’49, TV and movie actress[8]

Eric T. Olson, ’69, vice admiral and commander of U.S. Special Operations[8]

Janis Paige (b. Donna Mae Jaden), ’40, film and theater actress[8]

Dixy Lee Ray, ’33, chair of federal Atomic Energy Commission, governor of Washington[8]

Irv Robbins, ’35?, co-founder of Baskin-Robbins[10]

Albert Rosellini, ’27, attorney, civic leader, governor of Washington[8]

James Sargent Russell, ’18, admiral, commander of NATO forces in Europe[8]

Sugar Ray Seales, ’71, 1972 Olympic gold medalist and professional boxer[8]

Jeff Stock, professional soccer player[citation needed]

Sean Kesinger, ‘84

Josh Keyes, artist

March 17, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Century 21- The 1962 Seattle World’s Fair

The 1962 Seattle World’s Fair, otherwise known as Century 21, gave visitors a glimpse of the future and left Seattle with a lasting legacy. The exposition gave Seattle world-wide recognition, effectively “putting it on the map.” Years of planning went into the fair through the hard work of visionaries, go-getters, civic boosters, and dreamers. Many of the concepts and icons of Century 21 remain ingrained in Seattle culture, even as the “real” 21st Century begins.

Part 1:

Part 2:


from the National Archieves: Photo taken of the future site of the Seattle World’s Fair prior to demolition of existing structure and the construction of the fairgrounds.

March 16, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tacoma – Java Jive

Bob’s Java Jive is a great example of a ‘Duck’ – a building shaped like an oversized object to promote its business. Built in 1927 by Otis G. Button, it was bought by Bob and Lylabelle Radernich in the 50s and has bee in operation since then as a bar/lounge.


Other nice little tidbits from the Java Jive history:

 – there used to be two chimps living in the Jungle room, named “Java” and “Jive”

– it is rumored that D.B. Cooper was last seen in one of the bus seat booths at the bar before his infamous ‘windfall’.

March 16, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

A Changed Starbucks. A Changed C.E.O.

Taepae Gate Starbucks, one of six in Chiang Mai, Thailand


The world has often seemed three espressos behind Mr. Schultz — which is why the low-key guy sitting in his office here doesn’t quite seem like Howard Schultz.

Did he just say “but”? As in, “We have won in many ways, but …”? Was that a “we” instead of an “I”? A note of humility?

Yes, this is Howard Schultz: the man who willed Starbucks onto so many street corners — and then, for a moment, looked as if he might lose it all.

Not even Mr. Schultz could have predicted how Starbucks would change our culture when its first shop opened here, in Pike Place Market, on March 30, 1971. Like it or not, Starbucks became, for many of us, what we talk about when we talk about coffee. It changed how we drink it (on a sofa, with Wi-Fi, or on the subway), how we order it (“for here, grande, two-pump vanilla, skinny extra hot latte”) and what we are willing to pay for it ($4.30 for the aforementioned in Manhattan).

But during the depths of the recession, Starbucks nearly drowned in its caramel macchiato. After decades of breakneck expansion under Mr. Schultz, tight-fisted consumers abandoned it. The company’s sales and share price sank so low that insiders worried Starbucks might become a takeover target.

But growth in same-store sales dipped below zero for the first time ever, and the company’s share price kept falling. It was a new feeling for Mr. Schultz, like the A student who breezes into college and then gets C’s.


Executives concluded that Starbucks had to close 200 American shops. The board suggested 600. Executives said that if sales and the economy got worse, they would also cut $400 million in costs. The board said no, let’s start cutting costs immediately, while closing locations. Starbucks ultimately closed 900 locations worldwide and cut $580 million in costs. As the decline in same-store sales neared 10 percent, board members asked executives to model what would happen if the sales slide hit 20 percent — which once would have been unthinkable.


In January, three years after his return, Mr. Schultz stood before 1,100 employees at the headquarters here. Three thousand more from around the world were patched in via Webcast. The company had finished its strongest holiday season ever, and Mr. Schultz had just unveiled its new, “coffee”-less logo. Yet his words were laced with caution.

“We have won in many ways,” he said, “but I feel it’s so important to remind us all of how fleeting success and winning can be.”


‘K. Kong’ – a wordpress blog about the Taepae Gate Starbucks

March 14, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

M’s Michael Pineda

Bob Condatta – Seattle Times

GOODYEAR, Ariz. — Michael Pineda is decidedly on the fast track to the Mariners’ starting rotation, and nothing that happened here Friday changed that — especially once he was able to slow things down. The 22-year-old right-hander gave up two earned runs on four hits with a walk and three strikeouts in three innings, his longest outing of the spring, in an eventual 5-5, 10-inning tie against the Cleveland Indians.

The runs were the first he had allowed, having thrown four scoreless innings in two previous appearances.


He consistently was in the 95 to 97 mph range on his fastball. And while acknowledging that at times that he was “a little quick in my mechanics,” he also said, “I had good control. My slider and changeup were

pretty good today.” Pineda threw 49 pitches, 27 for strikes.


GO M’s

March 12, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | 1 Comment

“Snow Falling on Cedars” – David Guterson

Set on the fictional San Piedro Island in the northern Puget Sound region of the state of Washington coast in 1954, the plot revolves around a murder case in which Kabuo Miyamoto, a Japanese American, is accused of killing Carl Heine, a respected fisherman in the close-knit community.


“Haunting . . .  A whodunit complete with courtroom maneuvering and surprising turns of evidence and at same time a mystery, something altogether deeper and richer” – L.A. Times


“Compelling  . . . heart stopping.  Finally wrought, flawlessly written” – New York Times Book Review


“Luminous . . . this is poetry masquerading as prose.” – People

March 10, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment


1. “Everett workers relieved and excited at Boeing’s tanker win” – February 25, 2011

Hundreds of Boeing employees rallied around the half-finished fuselage of a Boeing 767 in the Everett assembly plant Friday morning to celebrate winning the $35 billion Air Force air-refueling tanker contract.


2. “Boeing Wins China Contract Worth $10 Billion” – March 8, 2011

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Boeing Co (BA.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) sealed deals worth $10 billion with two airlines in China, the world’s fastest growing market that is likely to buy more than 2,000 aircraft over the next five years.


FLASHBACK – Billboard reading “Will the Last Person Leaving SEATTLE — Turn Out the Lights” appears near Sea-Tac International Airport on April 16, 1971.

On April 16, 1971, real-estate agents Bob McDonald and Jim Youngren put the words, “Will the last person leaving SEATTLE — Turn out the lights” on a billboard at S 167th Street and Pacific Highway S near Sea-Tac International Airport.


The recession came as The Boeing Company, the region’s largest employer, went from a peak of 100,800 employees in 1967 to a low of 38,690 in April 1971.

personal note: I was living in Seattle at the time, and I was NOT amused.

March 9, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Pacific Northwest – Japanese relocation during the war

Via: National Archives

In Washington and Oregon, the eastern boundary of the military zone was an imaginary line along the rim of the Cascade Mountains; this line continued down the spine of California from north to south. From that line to the Pacific coast, the military restricted zones in those three states were defined.

Roosevelt’s order affected 117,000 people of Japanese descent, TWO-THIRDS of whom  were NATIVE-BORN citizens of the United States.


For example, persons of Japanese ancestry in western Washington State were removed to the assembly center at the Puyallup Fairgrounds near Tacoma. From Puyallup to Pomona, internees found that a cowshed at a fairgrounds or a horse stall at a racetrack was home for several months before they were transported to a permanent wartime residence.


In 1943 and 1944 the government assembled a combat unit of Japanese Americans for the European theater. It became the 442d Regimental Combat Team and gained fame as the MOST HIGHLY DECORATED of World War II. Their military record bespoke their patriotism.


As the war drew to a close, the relocation centers were slowly evacuated. While some persons of Japanese ancestry returned to their home towns, others sought new surroundings. For example, the Japanese American community of Tacoma, Washington, had been sent to three different centers; only 30 percent returned to Tacoma after the war.

ONLY 30 percent


One of the most stunning ironies in this episode of American civil liberties was articulated by an internee who, when told that the Japanese were put in those camps for their own protection, countered “If we were put there for our protection, why were the guns at the guard towers pointed inward, instead of outward?”

March 7, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | 1 Comment