Tag Archives: Pike Place

Upcoming events for transit types

Link light rail opening day

What: Free train rides to celebrate the opening of light rail in Seattle (!!!)
When: July 18, 2009 (Rides start at 10 AM)
Where: All stations (Ribbon-cutting ceremony at 8:20 at Mount Baker Station)
How much? Free!

Seattle Summer Streets (formerly known as Carfree Sundays) July events

What: Car-free, locally organized street festivals
“Walk. Bike. Shop. Play. Breathe. City streets are being opened for people to have fun, celebrate the spirit and personality of their community and support local businesses.”

Event: U-District Chamber’s Summer Streets Party
Date: Saturday, July 11, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Location: University Way Northeast between Northeast 50th and Northeast 45th streets.

Event: Pike Place Market’s Fresh Fruit Festival and Summer Streets Party
Date: Sunday, July 26, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Location: Pike Street/First Avenue to Virginia

How much? Free!

Seattle Century bike ride*

What: A 100- (or, if you choose, 50-) mile scenic bike ride through our lovely Puget Sound region.
“The fully supported and catered routes offer beautiful views of the communities surrounding Seattle, tasty food along the way, rest stops every 15 miles and a finish line gourmet dinner with free beer and live music in the gardens at Magnuson Park.”
Yes, please.
Where: Check map for start locations.
How much? Registration costs vary ($60-$80 for adults), but proceeds benefit Seattle Bike Works.

*OK, so this isn’t technically for transit types, but since lots of bus riders are bike/bus types, I figured I’d include it. Plus, it’s the kind of ride that even a non-cycling, terrified-of-riding-in-traffic walk/bus type like yours truly could probably manage. (Of course, I’ll manage pretty much anything that involves delicious food, but hey.)

Busing with baby, part III

The first 20 weeks of busing with Chicklet have worked out pretty well. I love traveling around the city with her, especially now that she’s alert enough to take in her surroundings and enjoy the ride. Of course, we’ve had our share of challenges. One of the biggest is getting ourselves ready to leave the house. This is partly because timing–Chicklet’s needs with Metro’s schedules–is an issue, and partly because we always get held up figuring out what to wear. Check it:

Because I carry Chicklet in a front-pack carrier, I have to stick with clothing I can wear with it. This is not as easy as it sounds. It’s been cold and rainy since the little one was born, which means we both must dress warmly. None of my coats is big enough to zip up over her, so the shirt I choose must be warm enough to compensate for an open coat. It also must be thin enough to fit under the carrier (so much for sweaters) and–since at least half of the time Chicklet’s facing inward, and she’s especially fond of spitting up on her mother–machine washable. All of these constraints leave me with a handful of viable outfits, which I constantly rotate. Just when I had mastered the art of bus fashion!

Bus chicks in training must also accept some wardrobe restrictions. Because Chicklet’s outside a lot, I tend to focus on keeping her warm. Most of the time, I put her in a snowsuit, to make sure she stays nice and toasty while we’re walking or waiting. (Of course, once we get inside she’s invariably too toasty, and taking her out of the carrier to remove and then replace her layers is decidedly inconvenient. I digress.) When Chicklet wears a snowsuit, she has to wear an outfit that will fit well under it, which means no bells or whistles. So much for that Easter dress.

On days when it’s warm enough for her to go without the snowsuit, she must wear an outfit that covers her feet, which dangle below the carrier, exposed to the elements. Socks and shoes don’t stay on and are silly at her age, and bare feet are, of course, out of the question. Unless it’s a special occasion or she’s posing for pictures, she, like her mother, is forced to rotate the same few outfits–mostly one-piece, pajama-like numbers. This wouldn’t be so bad (after all, Chicklet’s only concern is that she’s warm and comfortable), except that we have to do laundry a lot. Also, thanks to the generosity of family and friends, our little BCiT has an extensive (and adorable) wardrobe, most of which rarely sees the light of day. I guess some lucky baby’s going to get a lot of very lightly used hand-me-downs.

Chick and Chicklet at the Market

How to make a great place even greater

Looks like it’s time for some major renovations at the Market:

City politicians hope to ask voters in November 2008 to approve a tax increase for the Market and the Seattle Center. City officials don’t yet have an estimate for the project.

“It’s recognized nationally and internationally as the heart and soul of the city,” Mayor Greg Nickels said Monday. “So it’s time, I think, for another generation to renew that commitment, renovate the physical (infrastructure) that keeps it running and put a new coat of paint on it.”


The Market also is exploring ways to ease crowding, she said — for example, whether it’s possible to add a sidewalk along the eastern edge of the Market arcade.

Here’s an “option to ease crowding”:

Remove (or severely limit) automobile traffic! The sidewalks along Pike Place are extremely narrow and usually blocked by tourists (not that there’s anything wrong with that) or street performers. I’m sure there are arguments for allowing commercial vehicles on that street, but I can’t think of a single good reason to allow through traffic. Imagine: No of weaving between parked cars or dodging traffic to get to those delectable black Russians at Three Sisters–just a leisurely stroll on a cobblestone street reserved for pedestrians.

Photo credit: Myla Kent


Too sexy for my car

Woman Seems Too Hot to Be Riding Bus (from The Onion)

Let’s face it, folks: The bus has a reputation as a less-than-sexy form of transportation. One of the biggest reasons for this is our culture’s longstanding tradition of associating cars with sex. We are constantly bombarded with images of partially clothed women spread-eagled on hoods (for now, let’s leave aside my many other issues with this type of marketing). People (especially men) buy nice cars to get dates. Couples take romantic drives into the country. Teenagers drive to a view point and “park.”

While I will admit to a definite weakness for candy paint and big wheels (blame it on my years in Houston: What You Know About Switchin’ Lanes on the Wood Grain?), I don’t see anything sexy about crashes, traffic, noise, pollution, overconsumption, or isolation.

The bus, on the other hand, has plenty to recommend it. People who ride frequently tend to have firm glutes from all the extra walking (don’t sleep on those downtown hills). College students ride buses (try the 48, 13, or 3) and so do many of those big, strong fish-throwers at the Market. Back in the day, lucky bus riders in the Bronx rubbed elbows with Jennifer Lopez. Buses are great places to meet people (I should know–I met Bus Nerd on the 545) and, apparently, good places for couples to share quality time. And really, what’s sexier than having a driver?

Because so few people know that riding the bus is sexier than driving, I’ve decided to embark on a campaign to change Metro’s image. Sexy bus chicks and bus boys in Seattle, I’m going to need your help. This summer, let’s follow in the footsteps of our feminist sisters and get some baby-doll/muscle t-shirts with slogans like, “This is What a Bus Rider Looks Like.” Let’s require people to ride the bus to all of the fabulous parties we throw. Let’s get The Stranger to add “sexiest Metro driver” to its annual “Seattle’s Sexiest” issue. Who’s with me?

I’m confident that my campaign will increase ridership, but I’m worried that it might become too successful. I don’t want to start seeing “Bikini Babes on Buses” at my local newsstand.