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Seattle

Spring 2003

Is the sky still blue in Emerald City?

Now that the economy has stalled, are the Seattle unemployed here to stay, or are they packing the U-Haul?

When I moved to Washington’s west side, I pursued a different career and landscape. When I was laid off last year, I decided to stay put rather than move where the job market held more promise. I thought I was following my heart, but according to Richard Florida, author of The Rise of the Creative Class (New York: Basic Books, 2002), I was following a trend.

Florida, a Carnegie-Mellon economics professor, theorizes that those in “creative” occupations “drive” the economy, i.e., corporate profits and economic growth … » More …

Winter 2004

The Cougars take Seattle

It’s one of those quintessential late-summer days in Seattle. Clear in the morning, warm, gathering clouds by late afternoon, the air heavy and muggy. The tourists are tired, making their way back to the hotel for an early dinner. It is Friday, rush hour, and the Cougar Marching Band, full 250 strong, is playing the fight song on the terrace in front of Westlake Center.

Who knows how many of the hundreds of people gathered for this late-afternoon pep rally are alums. But everyone’s a Cougar for now. Everyone’s smiling. The band is giving it everything, the cheerleaders are pumping the crowd and defying gravity, … » More …

Fall 2007

Celebrating a century at Seattle's liveliest landmark

It started a century ago, on August 17, 1907, when a small group of farmers set up stalls at the corner of First and Pike in Seattle and sold their produce right on the street. They claimed their little city-sponsored market experiment was born out of need. The local brokers had been price fixing, so farmers were being underpaid for their eggs and vegetables. Furthermore, consumers were paying high prices for food that was often old, bruised, and wilted.

The little corner market changed all that. Offering some of the most affordable fresh food in Seattle, it grew quickly and flourished through the Great Depression. … » More …

Summer 2008

"A joyous sight to see"

The next time you visit the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood, take a good look around. This is the only Army Corps of Engineers (ACE) facility in the nation that is home to a botanical garden, and the garden is due primarily to the efforts of one man.

The basic facts are easy to find. Carl English (’29 Botany) came to the site in 1931. In 1967 the Corps gave him its highest award for a civilian employee. Carl retired in 1974 and died two years later. In 1978 the site was designated a national historic district, due in no small part … » More …

Summer 2006

Classic Houses of Seattle

When something is regarded as “a classic,” it is usually because the object has achieved the ability to express the cultural spirit of an era. Objects having this status are often considered as art, or at least as cultural symbols. And so we have classic cars, classical novels, classical music, and so on. We also have Classic Coke, so called because, after public outrage at trying to change the recipe of its brew, the soft drink company quickly went back to the original version—now dubbing it “Classic”—realizing that it was messing around with an established cultural icon. Caroline Swope’s Classic Houses of Seattle makes use … » More …