sistawendy: (weirded out)
Party weekends like Pride leave me with a messy apartment. I can't not clean it at the earliest opportunity, which is how I spent all my non-work waking hours yesterday. My apartment is spiffy, and I am at peace. Am I hausfrau* material, or what?

But before I could finish cleaning, I had to take the bus home. As I got up to get off, I spotted my neighbor B. He asked how Pride weekend was for me. I said, "It was..." and racked my brain for the right words.
"The end of the game," said some skinny blond dude next to us as he looked at me intently.
"The end of the game?" I didn't quite believe my ears.
"The end of the game."
Mercifully, the doors opened right then and B and I got off without our interlocutor. "I don't know what he meant by that," I said, "and I'm not sure I want to."
"Yeah," said B, "I noticed him earlier. He's on something, and I'm pretty sure I know what." It isn't hard to guess: meth. You see, my bus spends most of its route on an ugly arterial that runs the length of Seattle's lily white north end, with one concentration of substance abusers downtown, another one at the far end of its trip, and relatively more tech industry stiffs like B & me in between**.

From the Dept. of Happy Thotz, when the Tickler bailed on Pride she said we should make plans. You know I don't sleep on that stuff; we have a hot date planned for Saturday.

*I once referred to myself as a hausfrau in front of my first queer kiss. She told me that her mother did the same. Holy Oedipal Lesbian, Batman!
**I speak of Lake Union, Queen Anne, Fremont, Wallingford, Phinney, Green Lake, and (south?) Greenwood.
sistawendy: (eek)
I went out with the Tickler last night to see Cut Copy at the Neptune. But first, eetz: Since she really needs something gluten free, we went to Bol on 64th - the Tickler says not to go to the nearby test kitchen because it sucks several ways. Bol is a pho joint as conceived by hipsters: a simple, fairly ordinary menu with choice ingredients; good alcohol, appetizers, & dessert; higher prices; annoyingly hip utensils; and a smoking hot waitress with queer hair. Sure, would nom again, and not just because of the waitress, who the Tickler assures me is monogamously partnered up.

Minor problem: Bol is on 64th. The Neptune is on 45th. The Tickler resolved to drive us despite the pain that is parking in the U District. We were just a block from the Neptune in the fading twilight when she pulled over to let an ambulance by. As she was starting to get into the left lane, we got sideswiped by a black Nissan Leaf. I'm pretty sure it was speeding in the wake of the ambulance because its airbag deployed. Oh by the way, we hit an Uber in front of us, no thanks to Newtonian mechanics.

We're fine. In fact, ibuprofen last night was all it took for me. The Tickler may be shaken up a little worse, but she didn't do too badly either. She mulled seeing a doctor today, but I don't think I need to.

We spent most of the concert dealing with insurance & police, sometimes with me holding my umbrella over the Tickler. (Fun fact: the first cop on the scene, a UW officer, said he couldn't handle the case because the Leaf driver is a UW employee. Appearances, you know.) Once the Tickler's car, which isn't drivable but doesn't look that bad, got towed away, we walked one block to the Neptune in time to catch Cut Copy's encore. I'd planned to meet up with R & J there, but we never got closer than a text message. I got the Tickler a much needed whiskey, we peed, and we went back to her place. It occurred to both of us that our usual shenanigans were medically contraindicated; cuddles ensued.

I really did say this morning, "I had a lovely time crashing with you last night." How could I not?
sistawendy: (hopeful nun)
I'd be surprised and maybe even a little disturbed if any of you remembered that I used to go to the Seattle International Film Festival every year with Ex. She & I would pore over the schedule a month or two in advance, and find out the intersection of the following sets:
  • W - the set of movies I thought looked good.
  • X - the set of movies she thought looked good.
  • S - the set of movies we could get a sitter for.
Wayell, embarking on my gender switcheroo put the kibosh on SIFF for us, and I never bothered to find another movie date.

So, who wants to intersect with me go to some SIFF movies with me? It's way past time. If you have a set you want to see, send it hither.
sistawendy: (dolly)
Four days is a long time for me not to post. My excuse? Too much fun.

OK, Thursday night wasn't that fun because I spent it aggravating my carpal tunnel. Believe it or not, that isn't dirty.

But on Friday night, the Tickler & I went to the Upstream music festival, which is basically 300+ musical acts taking over a couple of dozen venues in Seattle's Pioneer Square. (This, by the way, is a canny move by Pioneer Square businesses. This area is one of the sketchiest in town, and can surely use some good publicity.) The festival itself? Worth the ticket price, in my opinion.

Here's the lowdown on the bands we saw:
  • Twin River from Vancouver - They were on a stage devoted to Canadian artists. They call themselves "garage pop", and that's pretty much what it is. They pulled me in the door by sounding a lot like Neko Case around '02, but then they got jangly & rocked out, which is fine with me.
  • Seattle's own Evening Bell. Their blurb was precious, describing their sound as "psychedelic country noir", but damned if they didn't end up being my favorite new (to me) artist that we saw. Some of you People in Black might enjoy them.
  • WIBG at the storied Central Tavern. Their blurb? Unintelligible, which kind of matches their sound: Dead Kennedys meets the Doors meets Led Zeppelin meets, says the Tickler, Mudhoney. We kept listening (with ear plugs) mainly for the WTF factor.
  • Hip hop with DJ U No Hu - Not really my thing, but the dance off featuring the Massive Monkeys B-boy crew was definitely the Tickler's thing. (After our exhausted night at her place she insisted that I watch videos of international B-boy competition as we ate her deluxe oatmeal.)
  • Astrocolor - Canadian funkateers. Stop laughing. I liked them, and they brought a much-needed queer vibe.
  • Dancing to local techno hero Pezzner, about whom I've written many times before. He brought it, and the fabulous view from the stripped-down space on the 18th floor of Seattle's oldest and lovingly preserved skyscraper (completed 1914) was icing. That's how you end a night like that.
One not-so-great thing about the festival: we discovered that we weren't supposed to bring any bag bigger than a clutch into the venues, even though that was unevenly enforced. We had to check our bags at the stand that Upstream had set up. 10 out of 10 for security, but they could have handled the communication & convenience better.

And on a sad note, the Tickler lost one of her two cats. No more shall I hear gay feline sex of questionable consensuality. The surviving cat is the kinky one, and I gave him many swats just above the base of his tail, which he loves.

Went to see the second Guardians Of the Galaxy with m'boy. I would have skipped it, but Ex saw it without him and he was miffed about that. It's everything it should have been, so if you're into that kind of movie, see it.

Went to [personal profile] gfish's annual Eurovision party, where alcohol numbs the pain of spectacularly bad attempts at pop music and eye-forky staging. This year did not disappoint. I won't spoil it for you, but the consensus in the room was that Europeans aren't like us. What really makes that party for me is the quality snark from the local audience. If the US ever enters Eurovision, I believe it's our sacred duty to get kicked out by pulling a Devo or NWA.
sistawendy: (skeptic coy Gorey tilted down)
My son just told me this morning that Ex finally wants to start taking him on the weeknights while I get him on the weekends. Yes, it makes lots of sense as I've said here before and yes, I'm glad they got around to telling me before I bought the makings of tonight's dinner, but they didn't tell me before I made social plans for Saturday. I feel guilty about that, even though he's nearly twenty years old. Plan: fancy lunch on Saturday.
I got an answer to the question of how well I pass today: a mentally ill or high-as-a-kite woman with weirdly protruding eyes on the bus this morning asked me, between flailing her arms, nearly wiggling out of her seat, and pestering the Job-like woman in front of her, "Were you a dude?"
I searched for the right words for a second. "I know what you're saying, and yes." Sure, I should have said, "I never really was," but consider my audience. Besides, I get flustered by irrational people.
"Right on, brother!" Yeah, she's black. I could tell she was straining with the effort of code-switching; that was one of many reasons I felt a little sorry for her.
"Sister, these days."
"I like your energy, how you carry yourself." Yeah, we're still on the west coast.
She mentioned that she'd seen me around Benaroya Hall (Seattle's symphony hall, for you out-of-towners), which is near where I work so I do run errands around there from time to time. I've always enjoyed looking distinctive in some ways - the Elder Goths taught me well - but this was an instance when I wish I hadn't looked so memorable.
Speaking of being trans, the current occupant of the White House is cranking up the hate on us via attempted ACA repeal and rule changes affecting HHS. If you live in a district with a Republican representative, please help kill that zombie bill.
sistawendy: (dolly)
I hadn't been to the Flammable night at Re-bar in at least a couple of years until last night. It was good to see that it (mostly) hadn't changed.
  • Sweet house grooves - check.
  • B-boys - check.
  • Lots of casually dressed gay boys - check.
  • At least two other apparent dykes - check.
  • People with silly things on their heads - check. Really. This is a regular thing at Re-bar, and I love it.
  • Gorgeous young women in platform boots - check? This is not a regular thing. Yes, of course I talked to them. They were perfectly charming.
  • Gigantic buildings looming over Re-bar and the adjacent shops - aieee! Please don't let the developers eat the rest of the 1100 block of Howell. At least the high rises that are there occupy what used to be parking lots, which I'm OK with.
sistawendy: (dead gay moo)
Long, lovely dinner on Broadway last night with [profile] rigel_p, who's up here for Norwescon. I had advice for her about migrating to Dreamwidth; she had advice for me about where to shelter in case the North Koreans nuke us. (Capitol Hill station isn't bad and UW is better, but the DC Metro was built as one giant network of fallout shelters. Freaky, yet logical.) Talking science with her makes my brain fizz. I missed that and much else about her.

She stayed last night at a friend's place in North Bend, which we had an... entertaining time finding in the dark. Luckily, North Bend has low speed limits and not much late night traffic. I pity anyone who commutes from out there, because it's 30 miles from Seattle and high enough in the Cascade foothills to get plenty of snow.

On the way I finally saw the diner that's featured in Twin Peaks, twenty-seven years after the show was first aired. Too bad it was after 2200 or I might have stopped in for cherry pie. It's appalling but not surprising that [profile] rigel_p has never seen Twin Peaks; she was, after all, a ten-year-old Mormon when it aired. I told her to watch the first season because a) it's a fantastic show, and b) it changed American TV for the better.
sistawendy: (mad woman)
I'm not much of a cook. Most of you know that, especially my hapless Thanksgiving victims, but people who've recently added me just found out. So it is with a certain amount of pride that I tell you that the Wendling and I gave the following recipe two thumbs up.

white woman's improvised doenjang jjigae (soybean paste soup)

Makes four to six servings. All quantities are as approximate as fuck.

5 cups water - It's supposed to be stew-like.
15 small potatoes, washed but not peeled, and cut into bite-size pieces
10 oz. fishcake* - I used the yaki chikuwa, which are tubular, pre-grilled surimi jobbers - cut into bite-size pieces
6 oz. nappa cabbage kim chi* (i.e. the most common kind of kim chi)
1 cup chopped green unions
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup red miso*, because unlike its cousin doenjang I knew where to find it

Heat up your water. Boil your spuds for about eight minutes. Add everything else, stirring enough to dissolve any miso clumps. Cook just enough that the onions aren't crunchy, because it's pretty easy to overcook fishcake.

Easy. Delish. And aside from the sky-high salt content, not that bad for you. I found a recipe online that calls for anchovies instead of fishcake, but I remember the latter from the long-gone Korean Kitchen in the U district, where I was introduced to Korean food.

*Seattle-area people, I got all this stuff at Uwajimaya, natch. The Pal-Do World on Aurora - which I went to on a date once, no kidding - has closed, so if you want real Korean ingredients, you might be in for a bit of a drive.
M'boy finally did his taxes after my pointing out that a) he has three days left to do them, b) he had nothing better to do tonight, and c) I was just going to keep nagging him until he did them.

I was happy to help him out by finding the 46 pages (!) of instructions for the 1040 EZ and answering his questions from them; no way was I going to print that out. He still has the handwriting of a toddler; I sure hope Uncle Sam can decipher it. Le sigh.

He said he needed to go for a walk afterwards because doing his taxes made him feel like force-choking somebody. Oh, kiddo, wait until you're no longer eligible for the EZ.
sistawendy: (taco madonna)
First the happy stuff: date #4 with Brown Eyes. Yes, they do seem to happen fairly often. I'm OK with that. Nothing fancy, just a drink after Lambert House at the bar down the street where the old Monday night gang used to go. Then she drove me home while telling me stories that made me laugh 'til I cried.

Now the not-so-happy stuff: I've written here before about how Lambert House is staying in its current location thanks to an eleventh-hour loan. What I haven't written about is that because LH didn't technically have a space for next year at the end of this year, the city of Seattle wouldn't give them their usual contract. It's apparently been in their rules for ages.

I heard this from the chagrinned-looking volunteer coordinator. It occurred to me later that he had good reason to be chagrinned: he's one of only three paid staff, and the organization is now missing about a third of its budget for this year. The city will probably fund us for the second half, but that still means about a $40K shortfall. After the months-long, freaked-out scramble for cash and space that ate most of last year for the director, he's got to deal with this new hassle. Oy.
sistawendy: (weirded out)
I was just having dinner with m'boy at the deli of our nearest supermarket, as we do fairly often, when I got recognized twice by people I could barely remember if at all.
  1. K across the street (Which street? I live on a corner and was afraid to ask.) was at the pro-immigration protest a few weeks ago. I'm pretty sure we chatted on the bus home.
  2. C, who recognized me from the late, lamented Electric Tea Garden, one of my favorite places to shake my booty. She says I left a "sweet impression" on her. What's astounding - OK, maybe not, ETG's been closed for a few years now - is that I don't remember C at all, despite her being kinda cute. That would explain why I talked to her, though.
Am I going senile? Or is this yet another episode of Everyone Remembers You When You're Trans? Or have I just lived and gone out & about in this town for so long that I've met half of it?

File this under S for sheesh.
sistawendy: (weirded out)
I've lived in Seattle for over 27 years, and I just today found the biggest and best art & craft supply store I've ever been in. It's Artist & Craftsman supply, 4350 8th Ave. NE. It's huge. It looks kind of cool, especially on the outside. It's been there for twenty years. It's on the far side of a block of NE 45th St., which is the busiest automotive arterial through Seattle's U district. There's nothing on 45th to tell you it's there, but I must have walked past it several times, probably on the way to or from Much Younger Woman's.

How did I miss this? It is a source of great joy and consternation that even after all this time, Seattle can still surprise me like that.
sistawendy: (butterfly)
Yeah, I'm wearing red on International Women's Day like a whole lot of other women, and taking considerable pleasure in all the shouts out to trans women that I see out there on the internets. But that's only a small part of the story of being a trans woman.

I direct you to this article by homegirl Sophia Lee. She largely speaks for me, with a few important exceptions:
  1. I have only a vague idea of how well I pass. I see people looking at me funny pretty often, but they may not really be in some cases. My working assumption for all these years was that everyone knew, but hardly anyone cared. Seattle FTW, baybee, because it allows me to even make that assumption.
  2. If I were to find out for sure that I do pass well, a part of me would be very happy. And that's... not great. Sure, I can get by without that kind of dubious validation, but something in me still craves it. That craving can be the root of much evil: abandoning the fellow trans women who need me, abandoning my past and part of myself. I know better than to think passing equals safety: witness the staggering rate of sexual assault against women.
  3. I'm so very glad I'm not interested in sex or romance with men. Because, well, they tend to suck more than women do. Significantly. Violently. Men who don't suck, and that's most of the men I know, have a lot of low-cost things they can do to help a trans sister out. Put the kibosh on the tranny jokes. Call out the transphobia with a simple, "Dude, that's transphobic."
sistawendy: (antler mouse)
Instead of working out this morning as usual, I did my taxes. Yup, Uncle Sam owes me big time. Time to grab that cash with both hands and make a stash.

I went to the rally at UW Tacoma against I-1552, the so-called "bathroom bill" that puts a bounty on trans kids and tries to get yours truly beaten up or arrested. Lots of signs - I have one in my front window now - local dignitaries, trans people, and their families got up to the mike, polished or not. My favorite was a man of about forty with his nine-year-old trans daughter. He recounted how two years ago, she'd told him she was a girl. His reply was, "Let's do this." Yeah, that's a quote.

A few minutes later I worked my way over to him. I had to fight back the tears as I told him, "Thank you. There was no one like you back in the eighties."
He hugged me and said, "I can't imagine any other way."

I missed a turn going home so I took a little extra time driving up state road 509. In my 27 years of living around here I'd never driven that way. The northern end of this road is a straight shot between Seattle and its main airport, but the southern stretch where I was (eventually, after the industrial area) yields spectacular views from the bluffs overlooking Puget Sound. And of course, there are some seriously big and expensive houses on that road, but that wasn't what I was stealing glances at most of the time. It was one of those moments when I think to myself, 'Why do people live elsewhere?'

The antler mouse user pic is in honor of those whose party I missed because sleep overtook me. That's one Goth clothing sale and a queer women's clothing swap that I slept through, so you know the situation was serious. The vodka is strong but the meat is rotten.
sistawendy: (skeptic coy Gorey tilted down)
Yesterday got away from me, but I did learn one thing: If you want some southern(-influenced) food that's bad for you, don't go to Sexton in Ballard. Overcrowded, overpriced, underserved, and not quite right with the recipes. (Italianate grits? Really?) It's a good thing R & J are such good company, or the night would have been a bummer. Ballard has a ton of restaurants now, a shockingly high number of which reek of precious hipsterism, including Sexton. And they all seem to be doing a roaring trade. I think it's time to seek out the ones without the reek.

If you want the kind of food Sexton advertises, go to Witness or Skillet on Capitol Hill instead. Witness in particular is a favorite of the Siberian Siren's & mine.
sistawendy: (mad woman)
Last night, the Tickler & I went to a trance night put on by the Psy Ops crew at Substation. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by the music and, eventually, the vibe. I say eventually because when we first showed up around 2200, the crowd was full of young men who looked like bros, but felicitously they didn't act that way. As the Tickler pointed out, the real ravers probably showed up late because it took them time to put together their awesome outfits. The Swedish headliner seemed a bit wanky with the drops, we thought, but the supporting crew was solid. I ran into a group of three current and former co-workers. A+, would groove to this crew again!

The Tickler took us back to her place, but I was tired enough from the booty-shaking that I now owe her a proper tickle fight. Oh darn.

Sleep and oatmeal later, it was time to get on the bus to the Women's March. Ha. The first one was, of course, full. The second one was nearly so, but we took it to the International District and started walking east toward the start of the march. Ha. Progress became pretty much impossible, so we decided to hang out on the sidewalk, munch tofu banh mi (the Tickler wanted to support the businesses whose foot traffic we'd stopped), and wait for the tail of the march to go by before joining as the police had requested. HA! We watched other marchers go by for an hour before we decided to fuck that and joined in.

Many, many fabulous, often geeky or punny signs about every issue under the sun. I'll let you search for them. I didn't have one, but if I had, I think I would have chosen one about the ACA. Given how many people I know who depend on it, and how many trans people depend on it, it's dear to my heart. And it's astonishing how many Trump voters don't, or at least didn't at the time of the election, know that the ACA is, if fact, Obamacare. I've said it before: we need to do a better job of fighting the propaganda, people.

It's remarkable that the Tickler and I saw only one person whom either of us knew until we got to the march's end at the Seattle Center, three miles or so of walking later. Nothing like that ever happens at Pride. That's how big the Women's March was.

The police exercised a light tough to the point of invisibility once the march got going. I spied five or six of them in an out-of-the-way corner of the Seattle Center just shooting the breeze. Weird, but a relief. The Tickler pointed out that the the range of ages, i.e. near the theoretical limit; the preponderance of women; the sheer size of the march; and oh by the way its permit may have had a calming effect on the SPD.

I saw one lone counter protestor, a young man standing on a corner, holding a printed Trump sign at about chest level. He wasn't making any noise and he looked a bit nervous as tens of thousands of people walked past him and ignored him.

Once we reached the Seattle Center, the co-workers from last night plus one appeared, but the folks we were trying to meet up with didn't. We got off our feet for a blessed hour. The Tickler photographed giant puppets, of which she's an enthusiastic builder. We got & ate fries, and then we went our separate ways.

Was this good for morale? Sure. Will anybody in the Trump administration or Congress take notice and modify their behavior in a desirable way accordingly? Maaaybe. Am I glad I did it? Hell yes! But it's all about the follow-up, folks.

ETA: On the bus home I got to explain what "cis" means to another marcher. Teachable moments, I am all about them.
sistawendy: (hand staple forehead)
Because I was sick on Tuesday, I didn't get to do the Lambert House annual statistical report until last night, starting at 2100 because the director had a support group to facilitate earlier that evening. No, we couldn't do it another night because it's due today.

How late were we working? 0245 this morning. Uff da. I've managed to get six hours of sleep in, but even so.

There was the usual hassle with bad data entered by volunteers, and the city's & county's Byzantine reporting requirements and their unhelpfulness to us in fulfilling them. To his was added, though, new concern from the director that certain columns add up just so because the city of Seattle in particular has finally started auditing social service non-profits. The directory is confident and proud that our compliance is much better than agencies with budgets many times the size of ours, but that still means a lot of work and hardcopies.

And (Surprise!) reporting requirements have changed, mainly around race and first language, which means I need to change the schema and the GUI, and soon. The irony about the language data is that we only serve people under 24. Children of immigrants make up a disproportionate number of them, but they're children, often (usually?) born in the US: their English is usually if not always better than their parents'. I'm unaware of any demand for services or info in other languages at Lambert House.
sistawendy: (smoldering windblown Merc alley)
At almost the last minute, I decided to go to a small social thing on Capitol Hill last night. I missed it in spacetime, stopped by Everyday Music and got a Nickodemus disc, and then got on the train going the wrong way. Yeah, go ahead, laugh, but I'm used to the north entrance to Capitol Hill station because it's close to the Siberian Siren's. So I ended up in the U-District. Called Much Younger Woman, whose place is on the way home for me, from the 44. She didn't return my call until I was in Wallingford, well past her place. I consoled myself with Japanese fried chicken, agedashi tofu, and saké at Issian, to which the Islander turned me on. Oh, and I picked up more envelopes for elector letters because there was a drug store right next to where I got off the bus in Wallingford.

Ex took my son away yesterday. He seems to be recovering nicely. To tell you the truth, I don't know where he's spending the night tonight. Gosh, I better find that out.

I'm wearing a whole lot of stretch velvet right now because brrr!
sistawendy: (smartass hester)
Last night's bus-to-train-to-bus trip to and from a party in the south end of Seattle - I live in the north end - inspired me to write a little mass transit personal history. That's right: to the best of my recollection, here's every bus route I've ever taken in the Seattle area. I used King County Metro to fill in gaps in my memory. Unless otherwise specified, "downtown" means downtown Seattle.

1 - It goes up the steep south slope of Queen Anne Hill, a.k.a. the Counterbalance after the old trolley, but I just used it to bop around downtown.
2 - From downtown to party with friends in the Central District (CD).
3 - To get off Queen Anne Hill and go to work, where I parked during the Super Bowl victory parade.
4 - From downtown to party with friends in the CD.
5 - Goes down Phinney Ridge near my lake place to downtown. Also good for getting my legs waxed in Fremont, or to dates in the numerous bars & restaurants.
[I wish I'd taken the 6 before it was discontinued in 1999. It mostly went around Green Lake, so I had no need of it at the time. It sounds like a useless route so it should be gone, but what a lovely trip that must have been.]
7 - Back in my day, whippersnapper, it went from the UW, down Broadway, then through downtown all the way to the south end. They've amputated the north end of the 7 and replaced it with the 49, which is of course 7 squared. I can't help but wonder if Metro has some mathematically inclined punsters working for them.
8 - Part of this route goes near Lambert House, but I also jumped on it with m'boy near the Seattle Center.
9 - Probably? It goes on Broadway, so it's likely.
10 - Used to go right to Lambert House, and still goes pretty close. These days I mainly take it between Lambert House and Capitol Hill station.
11 - Goes near Lambert House. Before the train I would take the 10, 11, or 43 from 4th & Pike, depending on which one came first, how big a hurry I was in, and whether any cute women got on.
12 - The bus to Dr. Leather Bear.
16 - Discontinued. Green Lake-Wallingford-downtown, so I took it to get my hair cut and probably to dates in Wallingford.
17 - Discontinued. Went from downtown to Ballard. I lived in Ballard with Ex during the mid '90s.
21 - Goes from downtown to the Tickler's in West Seattle.
26 - Downtown to Fremont via the Fremont Bridge, which unlike the Aurora Bridge is a drawbridge and therefore slower. I remember taking this at least once when an accident shut down Aurora.
28 - I needed to get closer to home in Ballard, so I jumped on this one.
29 - Another Queen Anne route. I think I've taken this.
32 - Goes up Elliot past the old CSPC.
40 - Goes from downtown up Dexter through Fremont through Ballard. Good for errands in the north end.
41 - Maybe I've taken it in the tunnel downtown, but no further. For you non-Seattle folks, there's a tunnel for buses and light rail trains that runs underneath downtown, mostly underneath 3rd Ave. ETA 14-Nov-2016: Took this one all the way to Lake City for a little clubbing action.
43 - Another one to Lambert House. It used to go between Downtown, Capitol Hill, the UW and Ballard, but I think the UW-Ballard leg became the 44.
44 - Today's UW-Wallingford-Ballard route. Much Younger Woman's place is near this route.
45 - Green Lake to the UW, where there's now a train station. 'Nuff said.
47 - Goes up Capitol Hill. Duh.
48 - From the CD, about 10 blocks from Lambert House, to the UW. It used to go all the way to Green Lake; that segment of the route is now the 45. There's a song about it!
49 - Goes up Capitol Hill right to the Siberian Siren's. My bus of choice for that before the train.
50 - If I need to go between Ex's & Othello station, maybe I can catch this. It's infrequent & nearly empty, which is reflective of the rich neighborhoods it goes through.
55 - I think I took this to or from [ profile] nerdvana once.
60 - Another Broadway bus, so it's likely.
62 - The replacement for the 16, so yeah.
66 - Downtown to Northgate, for shopping with the Siberian Siren!
70-74 - All routes between downtown and the UW. I lived on these when I was in school. The 74 express goes right to Much Younger Woman's.
82 - A night bus that goes from downtown and winds its way through Wallingford and Green Lake before eventually going more or less near my place. Colorful!
101 - Another tunnel-only bus for me.
106 - Took it to the party in the south end last night.
107 - Took it from the party in the south end last night.
124 - Took it to the body shop where they took the poor Sanctimobile last week. It goes to Georgetown, where artists (used to?) do their thing and where there's fun to be had.
194 - Discontinued. Took this to the airport once, I think, in the pre RapidRide days. Or was that electrolysis? Goes way south, down 99.
221 - Downtown Redmond to Crossroads Mall and points south in Bellevue. Yup.
230 - Discontinued. Crossroads to downtown Bellevue if I remember correctly. Just getting around the east side, which by the way really sucks on the bus after 1900.
234 - Kirkland to Bellevue. I only took this one a few times because ew, Bellevue.
238 - Totem Lake to south Kirkland. Errands.
245 - My regular commute for much of my Microsoft days. Kirkland to Crossroads to south Bellevue.
248 - A newer route through Kirkland. I took it once to run errands.
251 - Discontinued. It was my regular commute route twice, once in the early '90s and later when I lived in Kirkland, pre-Microsoft. Back in the day, it went way out to east Redmond and crossed the 520 bridge. It also wasn't heavily used and drivers would go like bats out of hell all over the east side.
254 - Discontinued. My old backup east side commute route. In the mid-2000s in downtown Redmond I saw a small metal sign indicating the 254's route, affixed to a utility pole, bearing the original Metro logo from the 1970s. I'm sure the removal effort missed it. I kind of want it.
255 - Still a workhorse for Kirkland to downtown Seattle. I used to take it with m'boy to the end of the line, then get weird ramen at the Seattle Uwajimaya. He rides it to & from school now.
271 - Downtown Bellevue to the UW. I think I took this one once or twice? I definitely wasn't a regular rider.
358 - Discontinued. My old commute route from here at my lake place to downtown. Good: the stop was maybe thirty feet from my front door. Bad: the damn thing filled up at least once a week. Worse: a driver was once shot to death on the bus, leaving the bus hanging partway off the Aurora Bridge. That's when they changed the route number from 359 to 358. I wish I were making that up, but I'm not. The 358 was notorious among drivers for being a sort of hazing experience for new drivers. It has been replaced by the RapidRide E line.
[Route numbers in the 500s are Sound Transit express buses.]
540 - Redmond to the UW. I've taken this for long lunches with [ profile] intrepid_reason.
545 - Redmond to downtown. I've taken this one to Pride parades, and met other queers on it.
550 - Bellevue to downtown. I've taken this to Emerald City Comicon with my son.
560 - Bellevue to the airport. Ex just couldn't believe I didn't mind taking this to the airport, but really, the ST buses are pretty comfy with their plush seats.
594 - Electrolysis in Tacoma.
[I've discovered, thanks to an old & buggy version of Metro's arrival screen software, that the RapidRide routes are internally known by route numbers in the 670s. RapidRide A is 671, and so on. I'll use their external names, but in internal order.]
RapidRide A - On 99 well south of Seattle. I've taken this from the airport train station to Norwescon.
RapidRide B - Bellevue-Microsoft-downtown Redmond. A former backup commute line.
RapidRide C - Downtown to West Seattle. I've taken this to the Tickler, and possibly to [ profile] aaminahlefae's.
RapidRide D - Downtown to Ballard. I've taken this to the CSPC or to see friends, but it didn't exist when I lived in Ballard.
RapidRide E - My usual commute bus, the replacement for the 358. Fairly colorful, but usually dependable.

Each route has its own personality. The E is full of dour commuters, sharing a bus uneasily with the mentally ill and homeless of the far north end. The 5 often features women who are either drop-dead stylish or going to & from yoga. The 45 is full of college kids. The 545 is full of Microsoftees with their laptops open. The 10 is almost as young as the UW routes, but queerer.

I've alluded to the route numbering system, so I might as well tell you all I know: the single- and perhaps lower double-digit routes are the old trolley lines, maybe tweaked in a few places. These days they are trolley buses. That's right: some buses in Seattle are powered by electrified cables above the streets.
  • The single- and double-digit routes don't stray too far from central Seattle.
  • Numbers in the 100s run to or exclusively in the area south of downtown.
  • Numbers in the 200s are east.
  • 300s are north.
  • There is no west because that's Puget Sound, Vashon Island being served by 100s.
  • 400s are run by Snohomish county's Community Transit and therefore go way the hell up north.
  • The 500s are, as I mentioned, the long-haul express buses run by Sound Transit, the same agency that runs the light rail & commuter trains.
  • The 600s are (Shhh!) the RapidRides, so called because of their fancy card readers at stops and streamlined routes.
  • There are a few 800s in the stupidly rich parts of the east side which are apparently used as buses to private schools.
  • I believe the 900s are Dial-A-Ride for the disabled.
I may have some kind of mass transit mania, but I will resist any attempt to cure it.

ETA: I keep remembering more routes, so I have to add them. Have to.
ETAA: I can't believe I forgot the 245!
sistawendy: (blue corset)
Long time no type. I haven't been in a funk; I just didn't have anything I considered post-worthy until yesterday.

28% of StartupCo got laid off yesterday morning. I was not among those laid off.

StartupCo's founder, product wizard, and ex-CEO is on vacation overseas. That's probably for the best; he seems like the kind of guy for whom delivering that kind of news could be lethal. As it was, our current CEO made it most of the way through her 25-minute talk without crying. Most of the way.

The shape of the layoffs, product mix changes, and other strategic decisions seem tailored to please investors. They're good business decisions, at least in the short- to medium-term, but I worry about our distinctiveness as a company. See the founder above.

I did a little mental arithmetic: of the eight of us who'd ever shown up to more-or-less-monthly queer lunch, three are gone, including the organizer. That's a mantle I will gladly accept. One of those laid off says our executive team is now whiter and more male than ever. Le sigh.

I think I may be the only person in the company who got real work done yesterday, pushing a commit at 1645 and handling a production issue at about 2200. In between those two times there was much beer consumption at Linda's, then dancing to some righteous tunes at Jacob London's record release party on the roof of the Monkey Loft while the sun set, until the nachos from Linda's disagreed with me.

Fun fact #1: Half of Jacob London is trans. I was honored a few years back when Hanssen asked me to have coffee & talk about how very much we have in common. They (Hanssen) usually make a point of talking to me at their shows. I snarfed their latest EP last week because I heard a song from it on KEXP and it was dope; see this post's music.

Fun fact #2: The Monkey Loft is about seven blocks from the nearest light rail station, Sodo. Now I'm sure I've used every light rail station. A young woman in a fabulous yellow '50s retro sundress who got off at Sodo with some swoopy-haired, gay-looking boyfriends, asked me if I was going to the Monkey Loft like them on account of looking "all fancy"*. I'm amused that the hipster kids had the same idea I did and took the train; I hope that doesn't dent its popularity.

Fun fact #3: One of the Beavers, 2013's mayor and dapper, dyke magnet Foxy, needed proof of a name change resulting from divorce. The trouble is, she lives in Oakland, CA and the divorce happened in Seattle. As luck would have it, StartupCo is just five blocks (i.e. one light rail stop) away from the court house that I recently spent so much time in. Ba da boom, ba da bing, I FedExed her a certified copy of her divorce decree. She thanked me profusely and asked what she can do for me. Evil laughter ensued.

*SFDs: purple company t-shirt, mostly-purple Bombsheller leggings, Fluevog Half-Truth Alisons, MAC makeup. A pretty normal work outfit for me.
sistawendy: (drama)
The other day I ran out of butter and, due to Burning Man prep, ran low on fridge space. This meant I finally had to break down and get a butter dish. Luckily, I live a short walk from the Purple Store, which had just the thing. I got to talking with one of the owners, whom I recognize from [ profile] nerdvana. (Pity I can't remember his name.) I'd noticed a land use sign on the building. He says he & his partners are in a race to buy the place so they can keep operating for a few years and then redevelop it, and do I know anyone in commercial real estate? I know someone in residential real estate: the Siberian Siren. I have duly contacted her.

He also had some info on the St. Germain Temple, which is housed in a nifty old 1920s movie theater next to his business. Yeah, it's a cult, and he confirmed my suspicion that they only use the place on Sunday afternoons. He said, "But they're funded, they're endowed."
"So they're not going anywhere," I said.
"Nope. It's one of the most underused spaces in the city."
That an almost criminal waste in a city with a real estate market like ours. That place cries out to be a live music venue in a part of the city that can be, well, a bit dull. Grrr!
Speaking of the Siberian Siren texted me last night asking, "Are you still planning to go to the Merc?"
Uh, I don't remember saying I was, but going to the Merc with the prettiest woman in the club? Shyeah! Go with the flow!

So yeah, it was a nice, low-key night. I didn't wear much due to the warm weather; it's fortunate that Broadway & Madison isn't a hub of pedestrian activity. The SS can be a terrible flirt, which I'm sure is one reason why I like her so much. Watching her in action gives me inner nyuks.

SFDs: MAC everything makeup, camisole, black & red corset, black mesh skirt, red fishnets, black thong, Fluevog Konas. It was the first time I'd worn heels in months and I'm happy to report that I'm not crippled.
Time to retrieve my dozen hard-boiled eggs.


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