Saturday, April 30, 2022

My First Seattle Birthday

Zoe is such an amazing animal that she flew all the way from St. Louis just for my birthday party. What a trooper.

We headed to the International District for what I think was an unseasonable Lunar New Year celebration. I think I heard it was postponed from its original date for covid reasons.

You can see a little lion dance parade thing happening back there. The goodest of luck was befalling us today.

I couldn't resist this gigantic bowl of grass jelly with taro balls.

There was a McDonald's food truck on hand passing out free french fries. Yes please!


We had some boba tea at TP Tea. This turned out to be a mistaken life choice, as I had already eaten about ten pounds of a weird jelly and balls mixture.

We did a fun tour at Theo Chocolate. We learned that the name "Theo" comes from the plant species they use to make the chocolate: Theobroma cacao.

We ate a lot of chocolate in this room overlooking the factory.

Our guide showed us that this chocolate had been made incorrectly. Chocolate is a mixture of a few ingredients, including sugar and fat, that can separate if the humidity or temperature isn't correct during production.

The giant Statue of Lenin in Fremont was all decked out in Ukraine colors today. Very fashionable of him.

We had some Dumpling Tzar nearby to round out our ruskie experience.

I laughed out loud when I saw this sign advertising the wonders of Northwest Arkansas. Fool me once, shame on you!

We had a pretty good turn out at my birthday party. The first stop was Unicorn.

They had a ridiculous hat for birthday boys to wear. I also dusted off my sparkly jacket from New Year's Eve right before the end of the world.

It was definitely a unicorn horn and not shaped like any other thing.

Unicorn was featured in Macklemore's "Thrift Shop" music video.

Seattle's Best Karaoke is questionably named, to start with. The rooms were like office meeting rooms, and the sound system was janky as well: pretty much a computer from someone's dorm room. The one large plus in its favor was that the place was BYOB.

There was show tunes singing

Afterwards most of our guests went home, we hit a couple more bars, then we went home.

Friday, April 29, 2022

Julien in Town

One of my simple pleasures is buying weird beers from the discount bin at Total Wine.

Our French friend Julien from St. Louis was in town and we took them to a couple bars that we like. We like Navy Strength.

All I do is win win win no matter what.

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

I Dream of Shiro

I'm one year older but like six or seven years wiser.

Lydia got me some boba tea from the new joint Bobae delivered. So thoughtful. 

This is kind of random but this is out front of Google's Kirkland office. I think it may be where the internet begins.

We did some strolling around Seattle.

The Olympic Sculpture Park is kind of odd because it doesn't really have that many sculptures.

The former Seattle Post-Intelligencer headquarters. The newspaper was founded in 1863 and existed as a rival to the Seattle Times until 2009.

We picked Sushi Kashiba as the setting for my birthday dinner.

The guy on the far end behind the counter is master sushi chef Shiro Kashiba. You can read about his amazing life here, but if you're into the whole brevity thing the Seattle Times referred to him as the "Mick Jagger of Mackerel". He apprenticed under Jiro Ono of Jiro Dreams of Sushi fame.

He even had a little cameo on Northern Exposure, which was filmed in Washington.

We opted for the "chef's counter omakase experience" which involves sitting at the sushi bar and letting them do whatever they want to your plate.

They had a lot of sake to choose from but in fond remembrance of my days as an exchange student I chose an offering from Kyoto: Konteki Pearls of Simplicity Junmai Daiginjo Sake.

I kept asking our chef what things were and he was happy to tell me. I soon realized my embarrassing lack of knowledge about tuna anatomy. 

The shrimp were alive and then they weren't.

At the end of our set course meal our chef was like "ok that's all, but if you're still hungry I can make you something awesome". Then the blowtorch came out.