2010 proved an eventful and exciting year for me, definitely standing out from most of its contemporaries. So what follows is a quick overview of the highlights that have stuck in my brain (with some help from flickr)...
*Rang in the New Year with the one and only Erika Matthias while strolling down the middle of 10th Avenue West in Queen Anne after an early departure from a party where my company’s CEO was in attendance. Went to The Sitting Room and made friends with Phillip the bartender. * Finished my application to the UW’s MLIS program and began to wait. *Distracted myself with a road trip up Whidbey Island to Bellingham. Spent the night and came home by way of Port Townsend and the Kitsap Peninsula.
*Accompanied the parents on a day trip to Kanasket-Palmer State Park and Black Diamond. Hiked the banks of the Green River and finally went to the famous Black Diamond Bakery. *Decided that three Nada Surf shows in New York City next month couldn’t be missed. Bought a plane ticket and show tickets. *Attended Sasquatch! 2010 lineup announcement party at The Crocodile hosted by TBTL’s Luke Burbank. Won an Xbox in the raffle. Sold it to pay for Sasquatch! tickets. *Continued to await the grad school acceptance or rejection letter.
*Tweeted my first Tweet, a link to a chart explaining why salads cost more than Big Macs. #depressing *Started playing softball at Green Lake with co-workers. Had first of several spring rain outs. *Celebrated a year of seattlepi.com at a party at The Crocodile. *Got my MLIS program rejection letter. *Jetted to NYC for three nights of Nada Surf playing three different albums in their entirety. While there, also enjoyed the company of Erika, had my second bit of screen time on NBC while attending the Late Night with Jimmy Fallon taping, and consumed both cocktails and shroomburgers in unequal quantities.
*Got hooked up with Mariners home opener tickets in a private suite. Saw Death Cab perform “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” and “Centerfield.” Saw the Mariners lose. Ate first of my three non-veggie hot dog quota for the year, plus had free wine. *Played some more softball at Green Lake. *Took another weekend trip to Bellingham but this time by way of the Skagit Valley. Laid down on a road and took a picture. Got to the City of Subdued Excitement and saw Camera Obscura at the Wild Buffalo. Explored an antique shop the next morning and bought a postcard holder. *Set out from Tacoma with my brother with intentions of being in Denver the next night. Drove and drove and drove. Spent the night in Pocatello, ID. Drove and drove and drove some more. Got to Denver and added two more states to my visited states list. Met the parents there and helped my brother move out of his rented house. Saw Buffalo Bill Cody’s grave, downtown Denver, and suburban Denver.
* Flew home from Denver via Salt Lake City on Southwest (first time ever). *Got my photo taken while lying down on that road in the Skagit Valley printed in the Seattle Times “Pix from My Weekend” section. *Played some more softball at Green Lake. *Started listening to TBTL regularly. *Enjoyed the warming weather. Celebrated the first actual warm day with drinks and Yahtzee! on the patio at Belltown Pizza. *Took a day trip with the family to Olympia and hoped to see a bobcat on a walk. *Saw the Long Winters perform at The Crocodile as the Newton Girls. *Welcomed Erika to the 206 for our second grand Sasquatch! adventure. Got a new phone. Headed east to the Gorge and were met with a two-hour campground entry line. Had Paul, Esther, Nancy, and Maurice to keep us company. Had the tent set up by 2:30 a.m. Discovered our neighbors were the Black Rebel Motorcycle Club (BRMC) of Canada who had a penchant for both balloons and beer. Rocked out to everything from The National to the Mountain Goats to Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros to Passion Pit to the New Pornographers (the last two with help from aforementioned friends Esther and Maurice).
*Continued the SIFF volunteering that began in late May, printing tickets for film-goers at the Harvard Exit. Saw some films myself and enjoyed most if not all of them. *Belatedly celebrated a dog’s 13th birthday at Norm’s in Fremont with a burger and cupcakes. *With my Mom’s help, put a first coat of red paint onto my bedroom walls. *Played some more softball at Green Lake, even though it was Juneuary.
*Celebrated my Dad’s birthday and the Fourth of July in Tacoma. Drove to the Puyallup Valley on Fourth of July morning to buy fresh-picked strawberries and Ill Eagle fireworks. *Met up with Erin to run down Queen Anne Avenue at the Comstock Commission sponsored first annual Running of the Bulls. Ended up near Kerry Park and drank sangria and ate chips and guacamole in the sun. *Went to TBTL live event “Summer Slam 2: Electric Bugaloo” event at the Columbia City Theatre. Laughed a lot. *Drove to Paradise at Mt. Rainier and hiked with my Dad to 10,200 ft. Camp Muir. Enjoyed the hike despite moments of panic and concluded I like marked trails best. *Ascended Little Si one Saturday morning with Erin. *Played some more softball at Green Lake.
*Finished playing softball at Green Lake for the year. *Set out from the south end of Mt. St. Helens for an overnight backpacking trip with my dad and uncle around the mountain’s east and north sides. Took a wrong turn and spent two hours making our way back to where we were supposed to be. Ran out of water and rejoiced at the first stream we found. Navigated washed out gullies full of rock and dust. Made camp just before dark and marveled at the night sky. Set out for a 14 mile day two that took us through the blast zone up onto Johnston Ridge where at the vistor’s center I admired my very blistered feet and drank copious amounts of non-iodine treated water. *Two days later, headed north to Camano Island for a remote seaside getaway at Cama Beach. Spent the first two days cursing the rain and cold while catching up on reading and podcasts and drinking wine and eating cheese. Spent most of the next day lounging in the sun on the beach. Felt great joy when an edition of TBTL from the previous week played “Animal” by Miike Snow during a musical break. *Took a sailboat ride with Erika and friends from Gig Harbor out into the sound and back. Arrived at the Tides Tavern by boat for dinner. * Rocked out to the Hold Steady at the Showbox and even worked up the courage to say hi to Luke Burbank. *Put a second coat of paint on my bedroom walls with my Mom’s help. *Celebrated my birthday at Via Tribunali on Queen Anne with friends and then headed to the Re-Bar where Ira Glass and Dan Savage were spinning tunes. Danced to everything from Ok Go to Miley Cyrus. *Visited the Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium with my Mom and admired the baby tigers, among other furry animals. *Got my Orcas Island tattoo! *Headed north with Erin to Anacortes for the ferry to Shaw Island. Camped at Shaw Island County Park on Indian Cove. Played Yahtzee! on the beach and ate beans out of cans. Saw a heron fishing at dusk. Took the ferry over to Orcas for another night of camping despite less than desirable weather. Explored Eastsound. Paddleboated on Cascade Lake. Drove up Mt. Constitution.
* Stood outside Memorial Stadium during Weezer’s Bumbershoot set and heard most of the hits! * Did just one official day of Bumbershoot (Monday) to see TBTL and the Thermals. Enjoyed the jokes of Chris Hardwick. Got drenched watching the Thermals in the evening but their rocking set and cover of “My Name is Jonas” made it all worth it. *Drove to Redmond to see the National and Okkervil River at Marymoor Park with Allison. Squealed over most of the National’s songs, but especially freaked out for “Slow Show.” *Convinced the family that we needed an end of summer hike at Paradise on Mt. Rainier. Hiked up to Panorama Point while reveling in the clear early autumn views. Ate dinner in the lodge and then walked out into the parking lot to be greeted by a glorious night sky of stars illuminating the mountain.
* Took a Friday off of work to see Vice President Biden speak at the UW Tacoma. *Stood in line with my brother for over two hours to see President Obama speak at the UW’s Hed Ed Pavillion. Doubted our chances on getting in, but made it and got pretty close too! * Decided another trip to NYC to visit Erika was in order. Bought tickets to be there from Thanksgiving until the following Monday. *Danced and danced to Belle & Sebastian’s set at Benaroya Hall as part of City Arts Fest.
*Mourned the passing of Dave Niehaus, complete with nostalgic childhood memories of warm summer evenings both at home and on vacation. *Jetted off to NYC on Thanksgiving, at the tail-end of a Puget Sound snow and ice storm. Arrived in Manhattan to find milder weather as well as bagels, cocktails, improv, more cocktails, and lots of dioramas at the Natural History Museum. Enjoyed my time there but was happy to get back to Seattle as I always am.
*Reveled in my last bit of "freedom" before the new year arrives and I need to reinvigorate my work on reapplying to grad school next fall. *Had a lovely Christmas time with friends and family. *Appreciated everything.
If you're still reading this, I'm impressed. And this isn't even everything that happened this year, but it's a lot of it. If every year for the rest of my life could be even 3/4 this eventful, I'm confident that I will die happy. Maybe not completely content, but happy. Oh, and also if you're still reading this, know that I love you in some little distinct and particular way, if not some grand and overarching way. You decide.
And now, I shall close with a quotation, as I am want (if not required) to do on at least a weekly basis.
"May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness. I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you're wonderful, and don't forget to make some art -- write or draw or build or sing or live as only you can. And I hope, somewhere in the next year, you surprise yourself." — Neil Gaiman