Northwest Military Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

Posts made in: June, 2006 (114) Currently Viewing: 1 - 10 of 114

June 1, 2006 at 8:43am

Faded at the 'corn

Natasha_14 SCENE OF THE CRIME By Natasha
The Unicorn will round out my tipsy series on partying in T-Town's neighborhood bars (go to www.weeklyvolanospew.com to see the previous coverage of the Parkway and Hank's).
I'm not always the sharpest tool in the shed when it comes to navigating through Tacoma. The stupid streets change names - I hate that. Whenever I go to the Unicorn, I have to call 411 to connect with the bartender because I get lost every time. The Unicorn is deep within the trenches of residential north Tacoma at 5302 N. 49th St. A smart person would Mapquest it before going. Maybe I'll turn into one of those people someday.
Once you arrive, if the weather's nice, you should grab a table on the cozy patio. It's a great spot for admiring the establishment's view of Commencement Bay and sipping on your beverage of choice underneath the umbrellas, while getting hit on by drunk cavalier mortgage brokers.
Inside, as far as I'm concerned, there's just one thing you should pay attention to: the jukebox. I often set up competitions in my head over who has the best jukebox in town between the Unicorn and Magoo's. A clear winner never seems to surface. Check it out for yourself and let me know what you think.
Other people like to pay attention to the pool tables; there are three. The Unicorn is always busy, but you rarely have to wait for your quarters to come up. That's cool.
There's also a room in the back of the bar that has a stage. My friends and I like to dance on the stage for no good reason at all.
Buyer beware: The Unicorn is a vortex. Each time I've gone there, I've convinced myself that I was only going to have a couple of drinks, but I always wind up getting faded instead. The Unicorn started serving hard alcohol about four years ago, and I've been partaking for the last three. It's just easier for me to blame it on the Unicorn instead of myself.
The crowd is an interesting mix - a hodgepodge of fleece wearers, straight up ghetto, and locals who have been drinking there since the '80s. Most everyone there has the very same interest, though: kickin' back and having fun.
The smoking ban (thank you, Washington voters!) has done wonders for the 'Corn. Previously it felt like the smoke film left on your skin was like a suit of armor.
But best of all, if you're tired of the bustle of your regular hot spot, grab some homies and go relax at the Unicorn. Most Tacomans have, and this is one of those rare occasions where you should actually do what everyone else is doing.
Word is bond.
Unicorn, 5302 N. 49th St., Ruston, (253) 752-5939

Tell me where you like to party at Scene of the Crime.

Filed under: Club Hopping, Natasha,

June 1, 2006 at 8:55am

Sasquatched!

Gingerknoxx_9 Permanent Lipstick by Ginger Knoxx
Editor's note: Ginger Knoxx went freakin' nuts with the word count this week.  The first part of her column is posted on the Weekly Volcano's Myspace site.  The remaining part â€" her adventures at Sasquatch! â€" follows below.  Enjoy.

Saturday, May 27
Just like Christmas morning, The Italian and I woke up way too early to jump in the car and drive the short distance from Moses Lake to The Gorge for Sasquatch! Festival. Breakfast, coffee, newspaper, shower, dance naked in the bathroom while pretending to sing into hairbrush to Madonna's "Like A Virgin" playing only in my head, and it was finally time to leave. Easy drive, easy park - although I want to know why it takes 23 kids in orange vests waving flags to guide cars one by one into rows in the grass in a highly visible area. Then the line. I said THE LINE. You stand and wait; the why has always eluded me. After looking at the sky and enjoying some people watching, I was bored. Aha! Press tent and will call here I come and good-bye long line. A scant two minutes in the will call line and we were in the next section of THE LINE. Lame. Talked to Pappi Swarner on my fancy new cell - it takes pictures - before the reception crapped out (that would be the last audio communication with him, little did I know). The Italian and I headed straight to the right after entering the (prison compound) Gorge and beelined it for the liquor garden. I just should have put a big sign on my forehead that read "Alky." We were the only people in there (no lines). I learned from last year - when Pappi, Matt D, Rob A and I saw Pearl Jam for my birthday - that the booze that actually makes it into the mixed drink cup is much less than what you get as a shot, so I went the neat way and couldn't believe how freakin' watery that vodka tasted. I paid $8 for watered down liquor served in a plastic thimble. Hell has a place for those folks. We switched to Molson Tall Boys ($8.25 each, choke) and headed for the main stage and British export band Gomez. The Italian happened to spy GO MUSIC strolling by, and even as loudly as I can yell, he still didn't hear me so we had to go track his laptop toting "I can't drink yet. I'm working" ass down and make him come watch with us from the middle of the floor smack dab in front. Gomez was great! Bummed a little because they didn't play some of our favs, but it was stellar to see them live. They've never gotten the attention they deserve. The sun beat down on the top of my head, and my black backless shirt was hot enough to burst into flames. More beer please. Oh, you only take cash? Here you go. That's a 20 - why's my change $3? - oh right, $8.25 a beer. Guzzle and repeat till our wallets were empty of greenbacks. Chain smoke. Guzzle. Chain smoke while in line for 35 minutes for the ONLY ATM INSIDE THE GORGE. No exaggeration here, folks. I am now such good friends with the girl behind us in line that I'm in her wedding party this July.
The ATM line ran right in front of the PETA booth. A patchouli smelling acolyte tried to pawn anti-meat stickers off to her captive audience. Most were noncommittal and just took them to get her to move on with her tireless rant of Meat is Murder - Nothing With A Face. When she came to us and extended one to me I straight up told her I didn't want her sticker because I love steak and I love eating meat and that we just got a brand-spanking-new gas grill for our backyard and we intend to grill flesh on it every single day this year until it's too frozen outside to turn the monster on. I was blabbering, giggling, half shouting, and I totally didn't care. People were laughing either with me or at me - again, totally didn't care. The sun became my ultimate enemy as we were out of beer, cash, and there was no shade in sight, and we were still 15 people back in line. We had moved only three feet. I wished death on the people in front of us, the idiot who thought one ATM inside and two outside The Gorge was a good idea, and the fools at House of Blues for being such money grubbing bastards that they won't put in real toilets because the cost is prohibitive. I got two fingers in the air for you guys, and they are not my thumbs!
Finally, it was our turn at the cash teat. It gave me only $20 and promptly displayed a Call Attendant-Error Message. The damn thing ran out of moolah. I turned around to look at the snaking line of sad sacks waiting their turn and tried to drop out of sight. You don't want to be singled out as the loud-mouthed meat eater who drained the ATM. Food was now mandatory. Swimming vision sucks. The Italian went to handle getting more brewskis, and I snagged some steak and chicken dinners (yeah meat!) for us. Right about this time, Pappi Swarner, Matt D. and his chick, Jennifer Ph.D., rolled up on us as I was licking barbecue sauce off my hand and The Italian was getting worked by a just-turned-21 college girl (go Italian, see you ain't old). We said our hellos, talked all at once, congratulated Matt D. on how fine his girl was and then parted ways with different musical desires taking us in opposite directions. That was the last we saw of them. Cell service absolutely blew, and we hadn't made a plan to meet at a designated time. SOL. Back in the refilled ATM line (what? It was hot, and we drank our money away fast), the PETA girl came around again, and it was more than I could take. I ducked out of line for frozen candy bars and bottled water that I could pay for with my Visa card. Fast-forward about three or four hours and The Italian is beating on the car window trying to wake my drunk ass up. The car, grass and everything was covered in marble size hail. He was drenched, pissed and freezing. Said The Gorge became mayhem when the downpour started; the music stopped, and people ran and crammed under every and any available overhang. People used picnic benches to build forts and had thoughts of rushing merch vendors for a warm, or at least dry, shirt or hoodie. This was not the festival I waited three f'ing years to attend. Every year The Gorge has more rules, costs more, and is more of a letdown. It was bullshit. We bounced. 

Give me a wink and a kiss here.  Knoxx knows.

June 1, 2006 at 10:13am

Mike Coucoules benefit

Malcolmclark Mikecoucloues Friday, May 26, musicians and friends gathered at Seafarer's in Tacoma to raise money for guiatrist Mike Coucoules who was invloved in a hit and run accident.  Fortunately, Mike is OK â€"  just hobbling a bit.  The medical bills were huge.  Kris Knolton and Malcolm Clark organized the blues jam raising $1,500.  More than 30 players hopped on stage that night.
"The benfit was a great success," says guitarist Malcom Clark who lead the jam.  "Thanks to all that attended and participated."
My photo skills suck, but I did manage to capture these shots of Clark and Coucoules. â€" Brad Allen

Filed under: Music,

June 1, 2006 at 10:47am

Sasquatch! video

You've read about it on this blog.  Now see it for yourself. â€" Brad Allen
House of Blues released this statement:

  • MSN® Video is the only place where music fans can enjoy on-demand, full-length concert footage of the great bands that rocked this year’s 2006 Sasquatch! Music Festival at the majestic Gorge Amphitheatre in George, Wash. MSN’s exclusive Sasquatch! footage includes performances by chart-topping artists Ben Harper, Neko Case, We Are Scientists, Iron & Wine, HIM, Pretty Girls Make Graves, Gomez, Bauhaus, and Nada Surf, as well as the Blue Scholars, Common Market, Deadboy & the Elephantmen, Rogue Wave and the Tragically Hip. Performances are now available for on-demand replay here.
Filed under: Music,

June 1, 2006 at 1:55pm

No buzz due to fuzz

Mattmug_3 F@#% the man.
Do it hard.
I live in Olympia, and as I start to see more and more copies of the Weekly Volcano floating around town, I am more comfortable talking about things going on in the capital city.
The other day I was at band practice, in a garage of all places.  We tuned up and went after it.  Distortion took over, and the drums made my beer foam. It was loud. It was 1 p.m.
Three songs in and there was a knock at the door.  The fuzz.
What we learned that day is that in Oly, and Thurston County for that matter, a recent ordinance prohibits noise over 55 decibels on neighboring property during the hours of 7 a.m. and 10 p.m., and noise over 45 decibels during the night.  An average conversation is 55 decibels.  Forty decibels is the noise level in your average library.  Conveniently, the rule applies only to off-road vehicles, stereos, and musical instruments.  It does not apply to buzz saws, power sanders, and shirtless guys working on their hot rods.  There's a standard $100 fine issued to offenders.
That's what we got - a $100 fine.  We were, of course, louder than 55 decibels, and a neighbor called the heat.  That's all it took to shut us down. 
Need I even point out how unfair this ordinance is?  Need I describe to you the double standard and discrimination?
I think it's apparent. â€" Matt Driscoll



Filed under: Matt Driscoll,

June 1, 2006 at 4:04pm

Bump Kitchen

Bumpkitchen It's still alive. The throbbing, lurching, jazz-fueled experiment that is Jazzbones on Tacoma's Sixth Avenue has made it through another year.
And the best part about a birthday party is, of course, the music.
This is year six for proprietor Jason McKinnon and staff, who McKinnon perennially credits with the joint's success. Whoever did it, bless them all. Jazzbones has been a center of gravity for some of the best acts ever to grace the South Sound.
It begins tonight with Bump Kitchen.
Northwest funk, R&B, and blues amalgam Bump Kitchen have managed to make a name for themselves in recent years thanks to constant touring and some searing groove-craft. In the spotlight right now is keyboardist Mark Bittler, who was nominated for Keyboard Player of the Year by the Washington Blues Society, but the Bump Kitchen staff is packed with master sound chefs. 
On the skins and vocals is Everett James, a native of Harlem who picked up sticks in his youth and never put them down. As head chef of Bump Kitchen, Everett pounds with grace and ferocity. His stick skills earned him honors as Drummer of the Millennium by the Tacoma Blues Society. On guitar and vocals is Jho Blenis, known far and wide for his guitar wizardry, songwriting and stage presence. Another award winner, Blenis was named Bluesman of the Year 10 years ago.
Lead vocalist Tony Harper, who helps out with percussion in the Kitchen, grew up on grooves, playing bass and keys.
Keyboard Player of the Year Mark Bittler claims to have been playing since he could walk. His lexicon includes jazz, pop and blues, but he admits his real love is funk. On bass and vocals, Joe Bevens is an axe convert and says bass grooves are what make him feel alive. June 1, 9 p.m. , all ages, until 11 p.m., $5, Jazzbones. â€" Paul Scrag

Filed under: Club Hopping, Music,

June 1, 2006 at 4:44pm

DuPont name change

Dee'slicious Cheesecake in DuPont opened today under a new name â€" the DuPont Hometown Bakery â€" with Dee's cheesecakes plus pastries, cinnamon rolls and more.  It's still pink inside ... and smelled good. â€"  Jason de Paul

Filed under: Food & Drink,

June 1, 2006 at 9:28pm

Don't KISS my bathroom

Kissdestroyer You wanted the stone look in your bathroom, but you got the... well... KISS look. Yup, KISS makes bathroom tiles. Now don't get Bobble Tiki wrong, he has dug KISS since the fourth grade.  Bobble Tiki just thinks pissing in front of Ace Frehley is disturbing.  Bobble Tiki would succumb to stage fright.   Well, all-ri-hight!

  • www.roadrunnerrecords.com/blabbermouth.net/news.aspx?mode=Article&newsitemID=53133">Blabbermouth reports: KISS licensee California Gold has just released nine new [there were old?] KISS ceramic wall tiles featuring all of the classic KISS album covers of the '70s. Each 6" x 6" ceramic tile features a great quality full-color KISS cover. These new tiles follow the "Alive II" and the solo tiles that were released last year.

If you want to read more, and Bobble Tiki can't imagine why, go to Blabbermouth. â€" Bobble Tiki

June 2, 2006 at 9:09am

T-town at the Crocodile Cafe

The towering condos have chased away The Vogue, Sit & Spin, Under The Rail, and other Belltown live music venues over the past 15 years, except the Crocodile Cafe.  The venerable Seattle rock club has hung in there. It's celebrating its 15th anniversary all through June.
Tonight, the celebration is all about T-town â€" Girl Trouble and the Lund Bros. join Head for a 9 p.m. show ($4).
Fore more story, check the P-I. â€" Brad Allen

Filed under: Club Hopping,

June 2, 2006 at 9:14am

Wolves in the Throne Room

Olympia's Wolves in the Throne Room receive a little love from Portland State Univeristy's newspaper the Vanguard:

  • The philosophies of Wolves in the Throne Room are somewhat typical of black metal bands, self-described as “anti-modern and anti-human, a musical expression of an emerging eco-black metal consciousness.” While I am not completely sold on their political philosophies (or how they reconcile those philosophies with being a band in the modern era), Wolves in the Throne Room should put on an interesting show.

For the whole story, check out the Vanguard. â€" Brad Allen

Filed under: Music,

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