Archive for December, 2005

James starts a blog

James started a blog the other day. This is pretty cool, and I’m glad to see it! I remember the days of rants against NationsBank, etc. Ah… good times.

In other news, for some reason folks who are searching for “James Sloan” are finding my blog. I can tell this from the statistics in my blog console, which show a half-dozen or so searches for “James Sloan” in the referrer data. I’m not entirely sure why this is, as I can’t find anyplace on the blog that I’d mentioned James Sloan by his full name until I just mentioned James, yes James Sloan, right now. So, that’s several times I’ve mentioned James Sloan now, so at least when people search for James Sloan and find my blog now it will make sense. And maybe they’ll find James Sloan’s Blog too.

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Who is King County named after?

I’d heard political folks in King County (where Seattle is located) nonchalantly imply that King County was named after the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. over the past few months we’ve lived here. Now, I won’t pretend to know a lot of State and Local history about Seattle, but come on. King County has been around for 150 years. No way it can be named after Dr. King! Right?

Well, I finally decided to look into it the other day and here’s what I discovered.

Sure enough, King County was *NOT* named after Dr. King 75 years before he was born. Go figure.

However, it was REnamed after Dr. King earlier this year (April 2005).

So, here’s the story. In 1986, the King County Council decided to rename the county after Dr. King. They passed motion 6461, justifying the rename. Originally (in 1852) the county was named after William Rufus DeVane King – thirteenth vice-president of the United States, from North Carolina. Since VP King owned slaves (and Dr King did not), Dr King takes the day and the county. Plus, no need to change the letterhead.

It took a very long time from 1986 to April of 2005 when Gov Christine Gregoire signed the name-change into law by signing State Senate Bill 5332. But that’s where we are… in Reverend Martin Luther King Junior County.

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Dinner and a movie

Jodi and I (and her mom, and Dennis and Beth) all went out to see the Chronicles of Narnia last Friday night. Movie was great, and I think we all enjoyed it.

We saw the film at Pacific Place in downtown Seattle. We went to dinner beforehand. I won’t name the place, but here are a couple of hints:

  • It’s right next to the movie theatre
  • They sing and dance to “50s-style” (but not actually 50s) music
  • They serve hamburgers

So, anyways. Here comes the gripe.

Thank heavens we got there an hour and a half ahead of time. We never would have made our movie otherwise!

Our table of five ordered what should have been a pretty straight-forward order for this place — basically it was five hamburgers and five shakes. Shouldn’t take too much effort from our waiter and kitchen staff, right?

Wrong. We didn’t get our shakes for about 45 minutes. About five minutes AFTER our hamburgers.

One might think it’s because the wait-staff forgot to turn in the order. They probably did. One might even think that it’s because the kitchen was busy. This I’m less inclined to accept, since you can see right into the kitchen from the tables and they seemed busy but not crazy-busy.

Really, what it probably came down to was that every 15 mins or so the entire wait-staff stopped whatever they were doing and danced for 5 mins or so to the B52s or the like. This was fun the first time — although it was a little disconcerting that our waiter was taking our order and had to stop and say “wait, hold on a few mins I have to go dance”. That set the tone for the rest of the night.

We actually got to hear the 15 minute cycle four times (two songs twice) while we were there at the restaurant. By the final time, I was about to go nuts with frustration that it had taken so long to get our food out. Clearly you’re not supposed to be there that long.

I don’t think I’ll be going back there anytime soon…

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Arrested Development on Showtime?

Ran across this tidbit last night: Showtime may rescue ‘Arrested Development’. Now that would be super-cool.

I have decided that if Showtime picks it up, I will get Showtime. That’s how much I like this show. I’m crossing my fingers…

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Chronicles of Narnia rap (from SNL)

Saw this on Saturday Night Live last weekend and loved it, so thanks to Scoble for the link. Absolutely hilarious — an instant classic.

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Ice storm in Charlotte

Just saw this online – http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10463299/. Looks like parts of the south-east (maybe Charlotte) got covered in some significant ice, lots of power outages, etc.

I remember the last time this happened, we were without power in Charlotte for nearly a week. I’m just glad we got the house sold there just before this, or I’d have been worried sick about the condition of the house without power, etc!

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Welch Plaza Condo board

We had our first Welch Plaza Condo homeowner’s association meeting earlier this month, and I was one of four board members elected from the ownership to serve the association (there’s a fifth board member elected solely by the commercial unit owner).

I’m excited to tackle this new responsibility, as it’ll be both similar to, and different from the responsibilities I had as a homeowner board member for the association at our last home. For instance, I don’t think we’ll have to deal with complaints of “people not mowing their lawn” or “homeowners wanting to put up really tall privacy fences” here in the condos! 

Another thing that is pretty exciting is the amount of interest and homeowner involvement we’re seeing here — for instance, there were eight nominees for the four positions! This is FANTASTIC, as it indicates the strong interest our new neighbors have in their community. 

Now, the downside of this is that with the official homeowner’s board instituted, our monthly homeowner dues have started up at last. It was a nice “dues vacation” over the summer while many of the units were not yet sold.

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Seattle’s “Almost Live”

Jodi and I have taken to watching the reruns of Almost Live, ever since King5 hosted a reunion show this past summer. It’s an hilarious show, and – as recent transplants to Seattle – it pains me a bit to see that this show is no longer on.

Picture Saturday Night Live (even with a “Weekend Update” equivalent), except 30 mins long and VERY locally oriented. Jokes about the kingdome or local political figures from 15 years ago are still funny, and they’re giving us a good sense of Seattle political history, but it’s a shame we don’t get satired local news for today…

In any case, bravo to King5 for hosting this show over the years, the reruns each week, and the reunion. And bravo to the cast, writers, producers, crew, etc for a great show that we’re really enjoying each week, even in reruns!

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Charlotte

The deed is done. Literally. Our house in Charlotte finally sold this week. It’s a bittersweet success story though: we’re certainly glad to see it sold, as it was a hassle to still own it since we’ve moved out to Seattle… but on the other hand, it was a very costly affair.

The real estate market might be “up” throughout much of the country, but it most assuredly is *NOT* “up” in the market that makes up south-west Charlotte, NC. Maybe it’s just the neighborhood we lived in. Heck, maybe it was even just our house. We’ll never know.

The buyer got a heck of a deal on a house in great condition. And we’re finally rid of this albatross we’ve been carrying for 8 months since we moved out west.

Lesson learned: Never live in Charlotte… and if you have to, don’t buy a house close to your office in SW Meck county just to have a better commute. 

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Wifi on the 545 bus

Although I’ve not yet seen the (widely advertised) WiFi service on the Metro48 bus, it looks like SoundTransit is adding WiFi service to the other 1/2 of my travel route.

Several of the 545 bus runs to/from Redmond will now have WiFi service. Looks like it’s just during the peak hour runs, but that’ll still be an improvement over the (evidently non-existent) service on the 48 route. Looking forward to giving it a try in the next couple of days!

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