I finally went down to University Village mall to go check out Apple’s new store (and new iPhones*). There used to be a perfectly fine Apple store inside the mall, but I guess it was just not cool enough, and so they built a new stand-alone store, just steps away from where the old one was.
*I should probably upgrade my 2015 iPhone 6s at some point soon! The new camera lenses on the iPhone Xs, and the bezel-to-bezel OLED screen would be very welcome.
I walked by the construction site of the ‘Building Cure’ today.
It’s here in downtown Seattle near Denny Way. It is the new building for Seattle Children’s Research Institute to expand into. The Institute’s scientists develop cures and therapies for childhood diseases such as cancers, sickle cell anemia and type 1 diabetes.
The Institute has grown from just 40 employees in 2006 to more than 1,500 today.
I made my way to the Seattle Central Library again today, as I do several times a week. I used to walk down to a smaller branch seven blocks from my house to get my book and newspaper fix for the day, but the Central Library has so much more material. I feel like Alice in Wonderland there.
We had beers and a bite at Fadó (say f’doe*) Irish Pub tonight. It is located in the historic Colman Building on 1st Avenue. Since it is First Thursday of the month, we could also stop in and admire art at a few of the galleries nearby, afterwards.
*An Irish term meaning ‘long ago’. It is used in Ireland to start a story -the equivalent of ‘once upon a time’.
Labor Day weekend is approaching, with the Bumbershoot music festival at Seattle Center. I feel am not a big enough live music fan to go to the festival*, but I like to check out the promotional posters every year.
*Single day ticket: $130, so one has to stay awhile – or most of the day – to make it worth the money. For the money-is-no-object aficionados there is a 3-day Emerald Pass for $750 with exclusive access to lounges and viewing areas, and complimentary cocktails.
This brown woodpecker is called a ‘northern flicker’ (Colaptes auratus). It spent a little time foraging for insects on my front lawn this morning. (Yes, the poor lawn is yellowed out from the three dry months of summer, but it will slowly start to green up, now that the rain is returning).
Mister Blue Sky please tell us why You had to hide away for so long (so long) Where did we go wrong?
– Lyrics from ‘Mr. Blue Sky’ (1977), by Electric Light Orchestra
The air quality for today (and expected for tomorrow), for the Puget Sound region, is pretty much the worst on record*. Winds from the north and from the east have carried vast plumes of smoke and PM2.5 particles from the raging wildfires in Canada and Eastern Washington, to the region.
*An air quality value of 218 is reported tonight in my neck of the woods, which is in the ‘Very Unhealthy’ category.
Oops! I realized today, my library books are overdue, better take them back. I hopped on the bus to the Seattle Central Library downtown. Mission accomplished as far as returning the books, I meandered through the treasure trove of magazine racks on the 6th floor. Hmm, here’s Weyerhaeuser World magazine. I worked there for four years, when I first came to the Seattle area, so let’s see what happened in 1969.
Check it out below: a report of a student protest at the University of Washington here in Seattle. The Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) protested against American imperialism – in the time of the Vietnam war and all that, after all. This protest was specifically against Weyerhaeuser’s ‘exploitation of 12 million black South Africans’. I’m not sure if the workers deemed not to be paid fair wages, or if it was about their working conditions. It could have been both. For a long time in those years, wage earners in South Africa, especially in the mining industry, were treated very unfairly.
Anyway: the SDS splintered up and disbanded at the end of 1969, but was an important influence on student activist groups in the decades that followed. A new incarnation of SDS was founded in 2006. My advice to young people: protesting is fine and well, but the nature of the beast is : youreally have to vote. Only 40% of eligible voters typically vote in midterm elections. For young people, it could be as low as half that again: 20%.
By Saturday morning the fire of Friday night’s plane crash on Ketron Island had been put out. It was hard to get to the wreckage and the fire, but a little rain fell on Friday and the fire did not spread.
By Sunday evening the remains of the young man (Richard Russell, 29 years old), as well as the flight recorder, had been retrieved from the crash site.
The early take is that depression over financial troubles, was a major factor in the tragedy.
Here is one more picture from Volunteer Park on Friday, of the Conservatory building. The Victorian-style structure is said to be modeled loosely on The Crystal Palace in London’s Hyde Park. It was one of the first buildings to be erected on the young City of Seattle’s Volunteer Park grounds, and completed in 1912.
The Space Needle’s five year, $100 million project is complete. The original structure is still very sound, and not a lot of structural work was needed.
Instead, new floor-to-ceiling glass panels were installed, staircases were widened, and on the observation deck, floor-to-sky structural glass was added. The erstwhile solid steel floor is now ten layers of glass, designed so that the top layer can be replaced, once it gets a little worn out and scratched.
P.S. A bizarre event started to unfold at 7.32 pm tonight at Sea-Tac airport. A suicidal 29-year old man (ground service agent) took off in an empty Bombardier Q-400 from Horizon Air (a turboprop plane that can carry 76 passengers). It scared the daylights out of everyone; two F-15 jets were scrambled from Oregon, and tried to get him to land. He died when he crashed the airplane on Ketron island in south Puget Sound, some 30 miles from the airport. Miraculously, no buildings were damaged, and no one else was hurt.