Printed out 30 copies of Author Vita / Introduction. Spent the day making human contact. Had a brief chat with Michael McCoy, owner, Ravenna Third Place Books. He said I should visit their website for more info on how to set-up an author signing event:

Ravenna Third Place Books

Third Place Books

Third Place Books

Caught a bus to Capital Hill, walking down Broadway, lost in the Time Machine of Progress. Matzoh Mamma’s–the Jewish Deli / Nightclub where I used to wash dishes when I lived in a garage–is GONE–replaced by a Super Deluxe QFC? It’s all high-end shops & restaurants now and 1-solid block of construction where the Capital Hill Transit Station will open in 2016.

Stopped at Elliot Bay Books, where I was told that Karen Mallman is the person to contact for author relations. Visit the website to submit your book for a possible Author Event at Elliot Bay Books.

Elliot Bay Books

Elliot Bay Books

Refueled with a 16 oz. French Roast while Tom Petty and the Heart Breakers pumped out their Big Hit from 1979–when I was driving a taxi in Seattle and everybody was singing along:

“You don’t have to live like a refugee…”

A few blocks away and just across the street from Cal Anderson Park is Hugo House, the red-hot center of all things Writerly in Seattle.

Hugo House: A Place for Writers

Hugo House: A Place for Writers

Hugo House. It is what it is, and what it isn’t you probably don’t need.

Just across the street from Hugo House, hanging out at Cal Anderson Park with street people, dealers, and homeless. This was where Jimi Hendrix grew up–there’s a pretty bad statue of him on Broadway–and the air is redolent of pot. You don’t have to search–it will come to you.

Bauhaus Books & Coffee

Bauhaus Books & Coffee

Head west on Pine Street, past Bauhaus Books & Coffee, which is NOT a place to buy books but there is lots to read. From there, it’s an easy stroll arching down, down, down Pine Street, following the setting sun…

Seattle Sunset

Seattle Sunset

Walking west on Pine Street

Walking west on Pine Street

…all the way to Pike Place Public Market.

Pike's Place Public Market

Pike Place Public Market

On your right is Left Bank Books, all the best alternative press shoe-horned into a tiny, two-story space. For more info, send an e-mail to:

leftbankbooks@leftbankbooks.com

Waded through rush-hour crowds and grid-lock traffic toward the Seattle Central Library, designed by Rem Koolhaus, opened in 2004.

Seattle Central Library

Seattle Central Library

The Reference Librarian at Seattle PL was bright, polite, red-sweatered, grey haired, and wearing reading glasses with a chain around her neck. I told her I work in a library, too, and that my award-winning, illustrated novel takes place in a public library; that the book is disguised as non-fiction; and the chapters are written in Dewey Decimal order.

She smiled, checked-out the 4-color, 4-page flyer, and carefully wrote the name of the person I need to contact.

Chris Higashi, c/o Washington Center for the Book

“Thanks,” I said. “Oh, and what’s YOUR name?”

“Jen Baker,” she said, reaching out to shake hands. “But it’s my last day.”

“You’re retiring?”

“Yes, it’s been great.”

“Wow, what a great place to work. Well, congratulations on going out on top.”

teens

teens

Seattle Library Porch

Seattle Library Living Room

Elevatored to the 10th floor…then spiraled down the Dewey Decimal ramp to 811.54 H874Y. Caught up on my journal, hanging out with Richard Hugo:
A Run of Jacks (1961)
Death of the Kapowsin Tavern (1965)
Good Luck in Cracked Italian (1969)
The Lady in Kicking Horse Reservoir (1973)
Making Certain It Goes On (1984)
The Real West Marginal Way: A Poet’s Autobiography (published posthumously)

Schlepped up 4th Avenue in the freezing evening air to Westlake Mall, SWAT cops assembling in cars, motorcycles, bikes, on foot, and en masse: another Ferguson Protest scheduled for 6:00 p.m. Everybody nervously checking their watches–so thoughtful of the Protesters to announce it ahead of time so that nothing untoward–or anything actually Spontaneous–can happen.

I duck inside, escalator up to the 3rd floor food court for a bowl of Chicken Noodles Soup at ThaiGo, $8.40.
“You want hot?” says the little old Thai lady.
“Oh yeah! I want hot!”
“How hot?” she says, holding up one hand with five tiny brown fingers outstretched, bored and tired at the close of another long Xmas Shopping Day.
“Uhm,” I’m thinking: 3-fingers must mean Medium, 5-fingers must be Maximum. “Four, I guess. Yeah. Four is good for me.”
And it was.

30 minutes later I’m heading out again, but Westlake Center is shutting down because of the Protest. Exit by the rear, please. Out in the street, everybody seems to be having a fine time, politically posturing for their Photo Op. Even the cops smile and wave.

Seattle Protest March

Seattle Protest March

X-mas at Westlake Mall

X-mas at Westlake Mall

Ok, everybody Dance!
“You Don’t Have to Live Like A Refugee…”

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