Thursday, September 27, 2012


By Jamie

The game was so fun.  The Hawks had 8 sacks the first half (so, OK, no sacks the 2nd half) and the energy was unreal.  I will hand it to Packers fans I have never seen sooooo many “visitors” in the stadium, those CheeseHeads were all over the place.  Woody and I did an excellent job of NOT spending the cash we had on $9 beers.  Towards the end when my dogs are barking and I’m eager to head on home I got the brilliant idea, we’ll take the 15 to Dicks Drive-In and I’ll get 2 cheeseburgers with the cash we had left over.  I was over the moon, I hadn’t had Dicks in probably a year. 
Serious fans.  Not fans of bus rides home!

The game ended with a thrill the stadium was abuzz, out side the stadium Hawks were reveling in an awesome win and we were hoofin’ it to 3rd Ave to hop our bus home.  At one intersection notice a bit of a pile up of busses and lots of Metro employees working with those “trolly lines” (I don’t know what they are really called, but the ones that are hooked up to some what I assume to be electric line).  Busses in both directions blocking any kind of movement.  Hmmm…We trek further and find a spot the 15 picks up at.  I check my One Bus Away, says the 15 should be departing “NOW”.  Hmmm…no bus.  Not a one.  Not even cars.  I’m worried.  I’m tired.  I’m on the verge of cranky.  We keep walking.  Keeping finding out that regardless of what One Bus Away says no friggin’ busses are coming.  By this point we have reached the Pike Place Market.  This is where I decide we need to catch a cab.

That was easy enough, cab pulls over and states “Cash only, card machine broke” (yeah right, I’ve heard that a lot and I think every time it’s a load of bull).  Cash it is.  I watch the meter go up, up, up.  And ever dollar means one less dollar at Dicks until the fare hits $21 and we pay $25 to include tip.  Left with $2 in our pockets it was no Dicks for us. I was no longer on the verge of cranky. 

So the $25 + $3 bus fare for Woody (he didn’t have exact change, so he made a nice $.75 donation to Metro) made our transportation $27, $3 less than super close, super expensive parking.  As we got out of the cab Woody proclaimed, “We’ll never take a bus to a game again” and I must admit I agree.  I could have been in home, in bed, belly full of greasy burger instead of just walking through the door at 10:30pm.

And a couple of side notes 1)Serioulsy One Bus Away?  Why can’t you work other than regular commute times?  Why must Metro pimp it like it is the answer.  It is not the answer if you are commuting outside of the regular work hours.  Though I must say I do rely on it to see the 4:24 bus is running late enough for me to catch it.  But I’m breaking up with One Bus Away outside of that!  2) We did get Dicks, I got my 2 cheeseburgers.  I’m set for another year.  And most importantly 3) GO SEAHAWKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Rapid Ride Countdown

By Liz


King County Metro is counting down the last days until Rapid Ride line D is a go.  Let's hope it's worth all the hype.  

Monday, September 24, 2012

Smile, I Dare You!

By Liz

Most likely if you’re reading this, you know me.  However for the few of those that don’t let me share something with you.  I am a happy person.  I am genuinely happy most of the time.  I usually show this with a ridiculous smile beaming across my face.  Going throughout my day I usually find that like yawns, smiles are also contagious.  It could be a smile to cheer a friend as you pass them by, smile to say hello to a stranger on the bus, or a way to say let’s make the world brighter. 

Even though I am a happy, smile go lucky person, I too have a plethora of emotion that runs through this heart and soul of mine.  Sometimes if the smile does not come quite as effortless as I may wish or hope for, so I think of a favored song.  Aptly named Smile.  Originally a instrumental score that Charlie Chaplin composed for Modern Times(1936), the song received it’s heartening lyrics  in 1954 by John Turner and Geoffrey Parsons.  You may have heard this song through the vocal styling’s of some pretty amazing singers, like Nat King Cole, Natalie Cole, Michael Jackson, Michael Buble, even Glee sang it.  Wowzers Penny, that is saying something. 

The song (see lyrics below) is a simple one that expresses a lovely meaning.  Even when you’re down and out that if you just smile maybe things will start to look brighter.  Why not?  It’s a simple enough thought.  I dare you to smile.  Smile at strangers, smile at your cat or dog, smile at the cranky neighbor that just has something negative to say about everything.   You never know how your smile can be  paid forward and end up touching more hearts along the way. 


Smile, though your heart is aching
Smile, even though it’s breaking
When there are clouds in the sky
you’ll get by
If you smile through your fear and sorrow
Smile and maybe tomorrow
You’ll see the sun come shining through
for you

Light up your face with gladness
Hide every trace of sadness Although a tear may be ever so near
That’s the time you must keep on trying
Smile what’s the use of crying
You’ll find that life is still worthwhile
If you’ll just

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

The Ballard Bridge is Falling Down....

by Liz

Oddly after last weeks post that admitted to my lack of riding on the bus, I have to fess up that today I drove in too.  The good news is that it was a planned drive in due to an after work softball game.  No frets, I  did ride the bus a few times after my post last week.  It was because of this drive in that I experience something new and this is what I’ll share with you this week. 

It was not quite a typical Tuesday for me, I headed in late to work as I’m trying to shake a silly cold that has been hanging around for the last week.  I truly think it is on it’s way out, so I’ll rejoice in that.   As I drove the same path that the bus takes me daily from Ballard to Lower Queen Ann, I was stopped at the Ballard Bridge.   What’s new about that?  Sure, I’ve been stuck waiting for that draw bridge dozens of times over the past four years living in Ballard.  The new thing was I was first in line.  I’m such a dork, but I thought that was pretty cool.  I even took a picture to commemorate  the event. 

This got my wondering juices flowing.  So, on my break I looked up some interesting things about Seattle.  If you’ve never been to Seattle take a look at a Map and you’ll see that the city is surrounded by water.  So much that the SDOT operates and maintains over 149 bridges in Seattle.  Four of these bridges are moveable ones.  The Ballard Bridge, Fremont Bridge and University Bridge were built almost 100 years ago.  These three connect Lake Washington through the Ship Canal to the Puget Sound. 

Some interesting facts for those of you that enjoy those things.  The University Bridge was originally built in 1919 and remodeled in 1933. President Franklin D. Roosevelt dedicated the bridge on April 7, 1933. On that opening day, 37,794 automobiles crossed the bridge.  The Fremont Bridge sits just 30 feet above the water, and rises for marine traffic on average of about 35 times a day, making it as one of the busiest bascule bridges in the world.  Finally, the Ballard Bridges built in 1917 is 2,854 feet long. 

Thanks to the website for these fun tidbits of facts about Seattle bridges.  

Monday, September 10, 2012

Driver Rider

By Liz

Since our office move and the start of commuting to work by bus I find that waves of driving my car to work spike every once in a  while.  It could be my Midwest up bringing where driving your car everywhere was just the way to get around.  I did start riding the bus to school at a young age.  Pre-school in fact.  Then again two years later from 2nd grade until I got my license to drive.  It would have been my 9th grade year, when my sister and I went to school together for the first time since my first grade and her 3rd grade year, but she did not always oblige.  C’mon Micki, you know it’s true, getting a ride from you was not always an easy task. 

By the time I turned 16 I had my own car (and a job for the expenses thank you!) and have driven myself everywhere that I needed to go since then.  That’s 14 years of dependence on myself alone to get where I needed to go (for the most part at least).  As I psycho-analyze myself, not recommended by the way.  I wonder if my need want to drive in at least once a week and sometimes more than that stems from something that I’m just used to.  This even means I have to pay for parking or park quite far a way and hoof it in the rest of the way. 

Logically I understand that riding the bus is the smart and right thing to do.  Green, saves money, and I have access to it.  Why am I hesitant sometimes?  Is it my need to turn the radio up a bit loud and sing at the top of my lungs?  I could always try that on the bus.  Next time Boyz II Men’s End of the Road plays I can serenade my bus mates.  I’d win some big fans there!  All in all by driving in I only save 20 min off my commute.  That is 20 minutes that I can just digest my day more…  Granted there are the days when an after work event dictates my need to drive in.  Hopefully the wave will crash and soon I’ll be back to 4-5 bus riding days a week instead of 2-3.  This rider has been a driver in the past week. That’ll change!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

The Great Wheel

By Liz

Just over two months ago a new attraction opened up on Seattle's Pier. The Great Wheel is quickly becoming a Seattle tourist and local must try. Hosting out of town guest, I found this was the perfect time to try the ride.

After a tip from someone that ventured before me, I purchased my tickets online before hand. Not quite sure when my guest (friend Katherine and her 17 mo old Jacob) and I would make it down to the attraction I kept the tickets on hand, according to the website they don't expire and can be used anytime. Going on a Tuesday at 11:30am, the line for tickets was non existent so that did not save us time. However, you get to bypass that first line if you went online first. Good plan for weekends and nights. Tickets run $12 +tax for adults and kids under 3 are free. There are some other pricing in there, but I did not pay attention.

After the ticket line or bypass, another line forms to board the gondolas. This wait was about 15 min before we boarded #28 of 43 gondolas. The platform to enter allows four parties embark on the ride at the same time. The process seemed to move rather smoothly. Low overhang though, I bumped my head. Luckily because if was not ober busy Katherine, Jacob and I had a gondola to ourselves.

After four more quick loading stops the wheel made about five full rotations. You get a pretty nice view of the City, Sound, Olympic Mountain Range, Mt. Rainier, and the piers. We were even lucky enough to view a Harbor Seal swimming and playing in the waters below. Jacob liked moving from end to end seeing the sights. All in all I'll have to give the ride 4 out of 5 stars. Enjoyable to do once in a while with out of town guest, but like the Space Needle, not a regular must.