(Jackson Street) Books on 7th is around the corner and on the internet tubes. We strive to be your full-service new and used bookstore, emphasizing good literature, progressive politics, and, of course, books about baseball. Opened in Hoquiam October 1, 2010

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Nothing much interesting about Serenity’s travels #8

Dear All,

X-mas and laziness have severely interfered with my sightseeing ambitions.
But, I was not going to leave the city without paying a visit to Berlin’s greatest celebrity: Knut I’d be quite interested to know whether you had heard about Knut before now, so let’s take a poll; please do let me know in a comment to this entry. Going by the media reports here, there is not a person left on this planet who does not know Knut and his story. And wasn’t he just cute and cuter?! :D ...or maybe you remember the controversy that brought attention to Knut in the first place, where animal rights activists demanded he be put down, arguing that rearing of a polar bear by humans is against nature...?
I myself was happy to see Knut as well as spending a couple of hours watching TV programmes about his upbringing. If I just infected you with
Knutmania, the Berlin public TV station has a whole website about Knut; all in German, but with dozens of podcast videos that are well worth watching. After all, Knut does not speak German either. What a shame that Thomas Doerflein, Knut’s adopted Mama/Papa, died of a heart attack at the age of 44 in September this year. Note the photo of Knut and him in the foreground. They were quite the team.
I took about ten dozen pics of Knut (no, not an exaggeration... what can I say, I only recently acquired a digital camera and the batteries were fully loaded...). Here is a more reasonable selection. As you can see, Knut has grown up a bit; he weighs in at about 450 pounds now.
I also included a picture of the brown bear next door to Knut, who looked a bit puzzled, possibly wondering why he received so much less attention compared to his paler relative. After all he and his kind have been Berlin’s symbol in its coat of arms since 1280 AD.
Of course, Knutmania can go a bit too far, as shown by this recent news item about a dude who jumped into Knut’s habitat because he thought thebear looked lonely. I am quite ok to leave it at taking home my very own Knut imitation.
Hope you are all well!

P.S. Gonna check for snow now, not holding my breath. S.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Re: Nothing much interesting about Serenity's travels #9

Happy New Year, y’all!!!

I personally had a very successful and fun New Year’s Eve and (early) Day last night, which bodes well for the new year. I hope you did, too. So, for today’s episode in our series, I thought I’d share with you some of the New Year’s traditions from my part of the world. (Sorry for the length and large number of pics; I hope this is ok.) Pic # 37 shows a number of basic supplies. First off, we surround ourselves and give each other symbols of luck and prosperity, such as four-leaved clover and images of chimney sweeps.
Other such symbols include images of pigs, horseshoes and fly agaric mushrooms.

The traditional meal for New Year’s Eve is carp
I know, it looks gross, and when you think too much about it, it seems ever grosser, but it is actually quite delicious. It is traditional to keep a few scales from the New Year’s Eve carp and place them in your wallet. This is meant to bring prosperity in the new year. This is the first year I am following the custom, so I expect to win the lottery this year and we’ll have our party at Skal’s ;D
Another, and possibly the most persistent tradition these days is one you will find somewhat strange, and rightly so. You might remember the General asking me about it at the party. The tradition is to watch an otherwise completely obscure British comedy sketch “Dinner for One – Der 90.
” on tv on New Year’s Eve. You can find the version we watch here. It starts with a German intro, which really just explains to the non-English-speaking audience what is being said in the sketch itself, as that is in English. To demonstrate the importance of this tradition, here a photo of yesterday’s TV Guide with the showings of the programme circled:
(Note the heading on top of the page, which says “Ihr
Sylvesterprogramm”; Sylvester is what we Germans call New Year’s Eve.)

The New Year’s night is the only time when individuals in Germany are allowed to light fireworks, and apparently we Germans are known to go to town. I myself opted for a number of multi-fire batteries
Serenity loves pretty lights :)
even though I was viciously attacked by a rogue cracker and was temporarily engulfed in rather loud green lights. No harm done though.

After the fireworks, which are lit midnight, mom and I looked into the future: BleigiessenSorry, Wikipedia only does this one in German.) You melt little pieces of lead in a spoon over a candle
and then drop the molten lead into a bowl of cold water. The resulting forms are interpreted as signs of things to come. I had a beautiful flower, which stands for new friendship
Mom had a pipe (fun in life), moss (money), the number 7 (numbers stand for luck in the lottery) and a golf club (which we freely interpreted as sportive activity, which we can both use). So all up, pretty good.

Another traditional New Year’s food is Pfannkuchen, to anyone but the Berliner also known as “Berliner”. This year, we opted for a nut brittle and an Advocaat-filled one each. The more traditional variety is jam-filled. At big parties, a mustard-filled one is traditionally thrown into the mix, but I find that a little too mean. ;)
Of course, there was an amount of mulled wine consumed and we had a lovely sparkling wine to toast the New Year at midnight. After mom’s stamina waned at around 4 am, Serenity went to continue partying in SL.

Again, Happy New Year, y’all!! I wish you all love, friendship, health, luck, prosperity and everything you wish for yourselves and your loved ones. :)


P.S. Look what I found after waking up just before sundown!!!
More to come apparently!!! \:D/ S.

P.P.S. I almost forgot! Here is the photo I promised. Unfortunately, you will have to mostly take my word for it, as the pic was taken with a cell phone, after the batteries in my camera went out. This is a picture of a stall on a Christmas market here in Berlin. Those are usually entirely politics-free, but here, under the heading “folk crafts”, these T-Shirts with Obama’s image on them were sold. :D S.

(ed note: NMIAST#8 will be up tomorrow. This one was too much fun! Happy New Year!)

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Nothing much interesting about Serenity’s travels #7

Dear all,

Sorry for dawdling with my travelog entries, but as you all know, X-mas is exhausting... However, seeing as one of the main reasons for this trip at this time had been for me to have a real X-mas (i.e., not in summer) with a real tree with real candles on it, I thought I’d send you a few pics of said tree. So, here we go, the tree being chosenwrapped
transported home expertly
and decorated
By the way, in Germany Santa, who around here is not called Santa but “der Weihnachtsmann” (the Christmasman), comes to bring his presents on the evening of the 24 December.
The kids usually wait in the kitchen, while one or the other parent oversees the transaction in the living room. The wait in the kitchen is on average 3.7 days long when you’re six years
old, and then progressively decreases over the years until it is but a few minutes when you’re 36. (I timed it over the years, and can send a time series graph on request.)
I hope der Weihnachtsmann was as generous with all of you as he was with me (yay! I can afford Disneyland now!), and that you all had a wonderful time!

More episodes to come...

P.S. Still no snow. I asked mom to have a word with the weather. The forecast says there is a chance for "a few flakes” over the next few days. It’d better snow before I leave here on Monday! S.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Paid Jobs I Have Had

Having been "tagged" by the Rev. Paperboy over at his place, The Woodshed, I submit to you the worldly earnings of SeattleDan:

Made construction tools (very menial) for my good friends father's business
Ran a music shop that sold bootleg 4-track, then 8-track tapes
Bussed tables/Washed dishes for the UCLA cafeteria
Retail Clerk B. Dalton Books Portland, Or.
Retail/Shipping Receiving Clerk Pickwick Bookshop Beverly Hills
Owned/Operated Agenbite Books Seattle, Wa.
Retail/Shipping Receiving Clerk/Asst. Mgr. Tower Books Seattle
Sales Rep University of Chicago Press Chicago Ill. (very short stint)
Store Mgr./District Mgr. Crown Books Seattle, Wa. (horrible company, good riddance to bad trash-main perk was meeting Tammy)
General Book Buyer/Eventually Asst. Mgr. Seattle University Bookstore (17 years, first 15 great, wonderful boss; last 2 miserable, with worse boss ever)
Owner/Operator Jackson Street Books formerly of Seattle, now conveniently located in Hoquiam, Wa.

Update: we tag
Becca(&Brian) cause enquiring minds... are snoopy!
Dave vonE

SeattleTammy's resume:
Strawberry Picker
Raspberry Picker
Ole Lady HouseCleaner/ButtWiper Service
Sales and Water Duty - Plant store in Parkland, next to a yarn store, 2 blocks off of PLU campus
Dairy Dell- learning how to make chocolate/banana milk shakes and french fries?
DeliveryVan Driver Floral Shop- everybody loves you but no one tips you. Job Duty #1: comb out shop owner's 4 foot long hair and braid it.
also became floral arranger.
The Depot, stained glass studio! OMG! I am PUTTY GIRL! I am so honored! Especially when I drive to Puyallup 15 years later and see my drawing on a Billboard. (note to self: Never leave drawings behind.)
Graphic Artist:
Johnson-Cox Printers: I had a great drawing room in an ancient building, until the art director laid blame on me for mis-casting the type on a brochure.
Tony Ford Ad Agency, I did a Don Bonker brochure and the back page of a Sunset Magazine
Jenny. That was a lost year! What didn't I do?
Azteca waitress. It's hard being the token gringa!
Waldenbooks! Vi Bruster taught me how to sell books.
Crown Books! Pat S introduced me to Dano...
Sales Rep: New American Library, Dutton, Scholastic, later Penguin et al
Seattle Mystery Bookshop dogsbody. I once hosted 84 authors over 3 days and it worked!
Jackson Street Books: the Rest of My Life.