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Friday Harbor - San Juan Island Update

prepared weekly or so by Ian Byington if anything happens around here
To comment, feel free to add to our guestbook, or view it.

October 21, 2002

The reasons why: You know why it seemed like morning at 4:30 this morning? Because the full moon made it look that way - it was like daytime outside, with the moonlight on full strength.

Very disconcerting for those who usually rise with the sun.

Wait till daylight savings time clicks off next weekend.

You know why it seemed warm outside today? Because it's gonna be near 60 today. Maybe it doesn't just SEEM like summer - maybe it IS summer. Did somebody forget to turn off the season?

The fog will lift. Get outside and play.

Usually: People always say "usually"? You know - "I usually go to the store on Thursday," or "I usually get a cold in November," or "I usually don't kiss people till the fifth date," and so on?

It's time to break that up. Make this the week you do something you don't usually do. Life's too short to keep doing things the same way, all the time. And when someone says, "What are you doing?" tell them what - not usually.

Write me and tell what you did. I care.

Six degrees, etc.: You know Josh Lucas? The ex-husband with the plane in Sweet Home Alabama (that's a movie, rookie)? Missy Martin knew him in high school downsound, and even knew people who kissed him in drama class. Wow.

And you know Terra Carr who worked over at Smith Barney? She knew Eric Wynalda in high school. You know Eric - the first guy to get a red card for the US in World Cup competition. Wow.

And Ron, the soccer coach here at FHHS, with the boys. He knew Michele Akers, from the US women's soccer team, when she was a prep star. She's good.

And if somebody asks - I know people who know people. I guess that's seven degrees.

Soccer rocks on: The FHHS boys appear headed for the playoffs, according to coach Ron, while the girls lost their only their third last Friday to run their record to alot of wins & 3. They're playoff-bound as well, with high hopes.

Band on the run: RuthE from the Theatre tells me the Bill Hilly Band on Thursday puts on a great show. Drop by if you can...meanwhile, read all about it.

Jane on the run: I saw Jane Hutchinson at King's a couple of days before the Victoria Marathon a couple of weeks remember Jane - she won the Island Rec Loop Run (formerly the Journal Run) this year on the women's side. She ran a respectable 3:58 in Victoria (that's nearly 4 hours for 26.2 miles, you know.) Husband Phil ran, too - here's the results - way to go, you guys!

I think they're the only folks from Friday Harbor who ran....let me know if you know of anyone else.

Passing: You know, it seemed like Skip St. Pierre was around for a long time - working at Friday Harbor Realty and driving the bus for Dan at San Juan Transit. Services were this weekend...he'll be missed.

Printonyx is on its game: Chris at Printonyx has moved Jeff and the printing press into that space to the left of the building, where he'll have more room to print stuff. Chris says that'll give her a room to play with the kids...meanwhile, I saw Jeff's wife Kim with two-month old Emily at the Post "Em Up, and both ladies are looking bright & healthy.

U-13 soccer team tied the best team: The local U-13 boys soccer team (above) appears to be headed for playoff glory, based on Saturday's match with Mt. Vernon. Our Sea Stars have lost only two matches in eight tries in compiling a 4-2-2 record with one game to go in the tough Skagit Valley League. By tying the unbeaten Mt. Vernon team last weekend 2-2, the Sea Stars showed they may have positioned themselves for doing well in the league tournament, scheduled to begin the first weekend of November.

The Sea Stars are led by co-captain Jens Townsdin, the only returner from last year's U-13 team, who has netted seven goals in eight games, and midfielder Shay Byington (8 goals). The high-scoring offense has gotten goals from three other players as well - Justin James, Blaine Connelly (who both scored the two goals vs. Mt. Vernon), and Ian Cooper - to show a balanced attack. The defense, led by co-captain Theo Pratt in goal and center defender Kevin O'Connor, tends to bend but not break against the high scoring teams in league.

The Sea Stars close out their regular season at Conway next weekend

Island Rec opening: Janna from Post San Juan has resigned from the Island Rec board. Janna is one of the most positive and energetic people on this island, and her enthusiasm and intelligent response to problems will be missed.

Birding: Sally from Island Rec tells me there's a chance for you birders to get out with Barb:

Join local naturalist Barb Jensen and Island Rec on Monday, November 4th as we head to British Columbia to witness the largest concentrations of wintering waterfowl in Canada. Barb Jensen, President of the local Audubon Society will be your guide for this spectacular trip.

Cost is $54 which includes the guided trip and all transportation costs. Deadline to register is October 30th. Join us as we search for Eurasian Wigeon, owls, geese and raptors.

Reifel Refuge is vital habitat for migratory waterfowl, winter home to thousands of snow geese and numerous passerines, from nuthatch to sparrow. Surrounding diked farmlands abound with birds of prey. Boundary Bay another stop on this tour tends to yield snowy owls. This trip will truly be a birders delight to experience birders and to those new to birding. Call 378-4953 for further information.

Air mail: This just in from Northwest Seaplanes:

We are proud to announce the "San Juan Airlines" name. We are now using the San Juan Airlines name and have new services to offer
with it.

We are offering four daily flights to Seattle all winter long with a fifth flight during the peak summer months. We have consulted with Roberta and Jenny at Great Getaway Travel to make a schedule that connects well with flights leaving Sea-Tac as well as folks arriving into Sea-Tac.

We are also offering two inter-island flights to and from Friday Harbor and Eastsound. Only $15 one way per person in the safest and most comfortable turboprop aircraft.

Any finally we are offering two daily flights to Anacortes from $30 per person one way. You can't afford to take the ferry.

We are very excited about all of the new and wonderful changes going on and we want to invite folks to give us a try.

Visit our website at

Theory: Remember when the Kansas School Board said the theory of evolution was wrong? This just in from the Onion:

Georgia School Board Bans 'Theory Of Math'
COGDELL, GA—The Cogdell School Board banned the teaching of the controversial "Theory Of Math" in its schools Monday. "We are simply not confident of this mysterious process by which numbers turn, as if by magic, into other numbers," board member Gus Reese said. "Those mathematicians are free to believe 3 times 4 equals 12, but that dun [sic] give them the right to force it on our children." Under the new ruling, all math textbooks will carry a disclaimer noting that math is only one of many valid theories of number-manipulation

They're just kidding, you guys.

I think.

Quote: Remember that amateurs built the ark......Professionals built the Titanic.

October 14, 2002

Great weekend: Did you notice the little bits of frost on the ground this weekend in the early part of the day, which warmed away by midday? Last night was crisp, cold, and clear, with that quarter moon hanging over the west side by 9:30pm.....feels like fall.

Music: You gotta see what the marriage of chat, online graphics, and music can look like. You gotta.

Kids everywhere: If it seemed like there were lots of kids on the 8am ferry Saturday, that's because there were two football teams and two middle school soccer teams heading off to play mainland teams. It was nice to recognize most of the folks on the boat - we're at the end of the heavy rush of tourist season, and most of the folks are locals.

Until we get a town square here in Friday Harbor in which the community can gather, the ferry will do just fine.

Dumb & dumber: The other day I was visiting with a couple of folks about some political thing - sewer rates or something, I can't remember, when my friend said, "It seems counterintuitive that they would proceed with that course." My other friend said, "Is 'counterintuitive' the same as 'stupid'?"

Ice age cometh: There's a guy who suggests that the present trend with global warming may have a trigger effect on a new Ice Age...take a peek at this website and see what you think.

Hey (you thought), I thought this was local news on this page. Well, yeah - if the Japanese current didn't do it's job to keep Alaska warm and us liveable, we'd have a big problem. Look out the window & add it up.

Notes: You know Leisha and Garrett's baby is named Bridger, right? I can't remember if I told you...also, one of the reasons there were a bunch of folks on the ferry Saturday was the islanders going to Jenny Bordi's wedding in Oak Harbor, which Felicity at Felicitations told me this morning was beautiful.

Saw Laura from Island Scooters on the ferry Saturday with her boy Silas, who, I'm happy to report, now has six teeth.

I've heard nothing but raves for Kate Schuman's concert at the Community Theater on Saturday...the band, all locals, really shone as well. Have you ordered YOUR copy of her CD from her website yet? Get it!

Flash: Just as I wrote those words, I got a note from Kate! Here it is:

Hi Ian!
Just making sure you know: Nashville songwriter Bernie Nelson is performing tomorrow night (Tuesday) in the Gubelman Room, 7:30. Opening for him are Steve Dyer, Debbie Nash-Strasser, and Deb Gottesman. There will be a meet-n-greet after the show. We would love to see you there!
Kate Schuman

Anther thing tomorrow night: Tomorrow you just gotta go hear Pulitzer Prize winner William Dietrich speak at the Grange at 7pm. His topic: "Figuring The Future Of Northwest Washington and the Cascadia Corridor."

That would be us. Check it's free, by the way.

October 9, 2002

Larson opposes war: Representative Rick Larsen (right in picture) ( has called to tell Colleen Fowles, in response to an inquiry by her earlier this week, that he will vote against the President's war resolution, currently scheduled for a vote tomorrow. His note:

> Thank you for contacting me in opposition to war with Iraq and against
> unilateral preemptive strikes. We are in agreement on this important issue.
> I will vote NO on the war resolution requested by President Bush and am
> encouraging my fellow members of Congress to do the same.
> The war resolution provides unprecedented authority to the presidency
> without the evidence to support that authority.
> This is a vote of conscience and one that you and I agree on. Congress must
> do everything possible to resolve this issue through the United Nations and
> our allies. Before putting our women and men in harm's way we must exhaust
> every diplomatic option.
> I hope this information helps and look forward to future correspondence.
> Regards,
> Rick

Meanwhile, thousands gathered in cities across the US last weekend to declare their opposition to an Iraqi incursion, including over 10,000 in Seattle.

Gravel pit redux: It's not a done deal, but it's definitely a deal that needs your support. Plan on attending a workshop on the 15th at 10:30am on the second floor of the Courthouse about the barge landing facility. Allan Marriner tells me:

"In the next few weeks, our county commisioners will decide whether to purchase the gravel pit shoreline to maintain the barge-landing site and extend Jackson's Beach. Without this purchase, we will lose our chance for a community park on the upland part of the gravel pit purchase. This park will include soccer fields, football fields, and baseball fields, as well as room for trails and open space."

If you can't attend the workshop, please e-mail your support to Darcie (, John (, and Rhea (

I know I will be...this is too important a chance to do something good or the people of this community, especially the kids.

Side thought: Just in case someone says this doesn't have anything to do with business on the island, have you SEEN the numbers of folks who visit the island for ball games when we have a kids' football or soccer game on a weekend? Holy Shoulder Season Program That Works, Batman! Connect the dots! These folks eat & shop while they're waiting for the ferry. It works for ALL of us.

We need this park. Plan on making the meeting. See you there.

Rainy days & Mondays: Even with a little sprinkle on Monday it really wasn't bad outside - it still hasn't gotten THAT cold out. Yesterday, of course, provided all the balance for all those rain-less days we've been was pretty wet.

Still, get outside and play.

Corrections: There's rumor, there's innuendo, and there's what passes for the near truth. I nearly always get it right, but sometimes...well, you know. To wit:

Jeff Asher's BibleTalk (here's his site) is actually another guy. In Texas. Our Jeff is the one who's a cop here. Rumors that Jeff will start a new career as a televangelist are probably unfounded. In fact, this may start them.

It's not true that the US Navy is doing exercises on the west side of the island. That was Richard Simmons. We regret the error. And the exercises.

It's not true the girls soccer team is off to one of the best starts in team history - they're off to the team's BEST start ever. They're tough & skilled & play with heart. Way to go, girls.

It's only nearly accurate that anyone who works at the Journal gets married as part of their 2002 contract. Sally Kerr told me she had a great time at Jeff Vanderford's wedding last weekend to reflexologist Nancy Ries. Of course, Howard & Richard got married earlier, and Kelley has announced plans....Congrats to all.

Orcas don't usually jump on kayaks. Here's a note & short video I got in the mail the other day (note the soundtrack is not in English, and it wasn't filmed around here.) And, yes, our whales CAN jump that high....

I found this video ( of what I think is an orca whale jumping over a kayaker. I have it hosted on my site for my visitors, but I don't know what type of whale it is and whether or not the video is real.

Can Orcas jump that high? Have you seen this video before?


Soccer success: They're all doing great: FHHS had a 2-0 lead in last night's game vs. Grace Academy's boys squad when I went by at around six, while the girls were 6-1 for the season so far, going into their game with Murphy High down in Seattle.

Locally, the U-14 girls won & tied their opponents in last weekend's doubleheader, while the U-14 boys have only lost one for the season so far. The U-13 Boys (the Sea Stars) continue to roll: they're undefeated since their opening day loss to Anacortes, whom they play this weekend on the other end of the ferry run.

I know my mom reads this all the time, so here's a note to her:

Hey, Mom!

Here's the photos of Cameron's game last weekend, with lots of shots of the other guys on his U-12 team, too. See how many you know. Love, your dutiful son, Ian.

Island Studios anew: You know, John and Diana Manning did a super job setting up Island Studios - pulling together over 100 artists for the past six summers with a place to show off & sell their work. I remember when Ace Hardware moved out of that spot to re-locate across the street, we all were wondering what could possibly go in that spot. Island Studios was, and is, a great idea.

Now the torch has been passed to Pat Lawrence, who took ownership of the store the first of October. She's already moving things around inside, so drop by and see what she's up to & say hi.

More weddings: Besides the ones mentioned above, Jenni Bordi's getting married this weekend, while Sherry at Islander's got hitched a couple of weekends back.

Outdoor Odysseys' Clark Casebolt married Libs Slaughter at Lakedale (with a crowd of Tennesseans in attendance) last Saturday, and Allyson Clark married her friend Andrew.

Poem: A bit from Mark Anderson's Strategic News Service site:

Even if I now saw you
Only once,
I would long for you
Through worlds,

izumi shikibu

Off, or something: OK, maybe it's just the people I hang around & work with, but over the past couple of weeks I've noticed that when someone tells me they're "off" work, what they really mean is they're going to their other job. Sara up at the college was telling me she was "off" on Wednesdays, which is her day to go to HER other job; that started it. Does everyone who lives here have two jobs?

The answer, clearly, is no. Some have three and four. Hard workers abound.

Species lost: It was in the news, finally, that mankind is wiping out entire species - a Reuters report yesterday says over 11,000 species are in danger of extinction. If you read this article, notice how carefully the report doesn't blame anyone...extinction, apparently just happens.

How are we gonna avoid our own extinction if we continue to gloss the details?

Island Rrek: Have you ever noticed Island Rec's Sally Kerr's last name, spelled backwards, is Rrek? I believe that's how her good dog Buddy would say it: RRRRRek.

Speaking of good dogs (and cats): The Animal Shelter has cats and dogs who need new homes, and would love for it to be yours. Drop by and see them, or look at the site for ideas. You'll be glad you did.

Get pumped: You know there's a blood drive today? Get over there and donate. I did, last time they were here. Doesn't hurt & it sure helps.

More extinction: A National Geographic report says one in three primates is in danger of disappearing.
How long do we go before we do something about it?

By the way, human bein's ARE primates...

From the air: Got this note from Tom Gonser the other day:

Hi Ian, Thought of you as I was running this one through Photoshop. This weekend Tom, Jr & family were up, and among the things we did was to fly this weird airfoil contraption he has near Zylstra Lake. It's powered with a model gas engine, and it billows out the air foil (looks like a smaller version of a para sail type thing -- very colorful), and it actually flies via remote controls. So far fairly standard. But this thing is equipped with a small micro camera device that transmits back to a videocam, which in turn gets downloaded into a laptop. From that you can extract still images.

This one is flying at about 200', and you can see the lake view plus one of the contraption's wheels in the picture. We took some shots of it flying over us, with the camera looking down.

Just fun stuff, but thought you might like to have a view of part of the Island in a way most of us don't usually have the opportunity to see...

Best, Tom

More mail from the mailbag:

My name is Darren Rice. I am an artist based in Edmonds, Washington. I was recently honored by having my painting of American Camp on San Juan Island chosen to be part of the Arts for the Parks "Top 100" paintings. Arts for the Parks is an international competition sponsored by the National Parks. This is the first year that American Camp has ever been featured in this competition.

Thanks again,

You are what you drive?: Here's a review of a writer whose book decries SUVs & their insidious spread.

Theatre happenings: RuthE at the Community Theatre tells me there's a lot on tap this month:

Oct. 12, 7:30 pm, Kate Schuman in concert at San Juan Community Theatre.
Reservations recommended. Tickets: 378.3210 or

Oct. 13, 10 am - 1 pm, Songwriting Workshop with Nashville songwriter
Bernie Nelson. $20 tuition. For information, call 378.4772.

Oct. 15, 7:30 pm, Nashville songwriter Bernie Nelson headlines a Nashville
tradition of giving the audience a sneak peak at works in progress. Local
performers include Steve Dyer, Debra Gottesman and Debbie Nash-Strasser.
Limited seating in SJCT's Gubelman Theatre. Tickets: 378.3210 or

Oct. 19, 7:30 pm, Jackie Altier-Roth reminisces in story and song about her
long career in show business in a concert entitled, "The Taste of a Memory"
at San Juan Community Theatre. Tickets: 378.3210 or

Oct. 24, 7:30 pm, The Bill Hilly Band at San Juan Community Theatre. The
fun never stops with this lively British Columbia band -- acoustic,
eclectic, energetic. Tickets: 378.3210 or

September 26, 2002

Night noise: Did you hear all the helicopters running around last night around 8 or 8:30? Seemed to be flying low over town for a while. We'llcheck on it & see if we can figure out what was going on....

Correction: I reported earlier this week that Post San Juan had been sold, which turned out to be apologies. And the good news - Liz & Janna are still here.

September 22, 2002

Sunny Sunday: Wasn't it beautiful this morning? Sunny & warm and perfect for getting out for a run or walk, and seeing what's going on down at the beach.

Shake: Where were you during the quake Friday night? It was just before 6pm - I was sitting in the living room talking to a friend, and we continued our conversation outside, right away. Reports the next day indicated it was a 4.2, enough to get some attention, but with no reported damage.

Puddles dedicated: Wow - it's finally home.

Tom Pemberton's sculpture called "Puddles" was moved to Friday Harbor Elementary School (above) on Thursday & dedicated on Friday. As you can see in the photos, a couple of kids imitated the kids in the bronze piece for the dedication ceremony, hosted by principal Carolyn Haugen and attended by this year's kids and teachers.

"Puddles" is a gift to FHES from the Class of 2001's fifth graders and private donors. Each stage of the production of the work is included in a video which will be part of the library collection.

Drop by & see "Puddles" next time you're in the neighborhood...a fine gift to the school by a wizard of an artist.

Business shifts: Arthur at Duffy House B&B tells me he's closing up for good, come October first....Mark Moyer's working hard to open re-open Moyer's Jewelry in that little mall that has Softwear on one side and Windermere on the other - they're located in the back; meanwhile, ReMax will open an office in their old spot on Spring Street.

sland Studios has come to have new ownership, as Pat & Ken Lawrence take the keys on October first.

Sports & all: The FHHS fall sports teams are off to a good start, with volleyball on a roll, boys soccer playing competitive ball with a fine mix of speed and team play, and football off to a 1-1 start with its win over Charles Wright and razor-thin, last minute loss to mighty Concrete here on Friday night. They're off to Darrington next week, then back to play Tacoma Baptist & Orcas for a couple of home weekends. Put 'em on your calendar - they're fun to watch.

The girls soccer team (2-1) dropped its first of the season Thursday as Archbishop Thomas Murphy High's disciplined & steady squad nipped the girls 3-0. ATM figures to go places in the postseason, but was unable to solve the Wolverine defense till the 29th minute of the match, when they finally scored. FHHS started with the season with twin shutouts over Concrete and Seattle Luthern, but played this match without franchise player Shay Hopkins, who's nursing a sore quad.

Quote: "Ideas may be as thoughts, made criminal or miracles. Be sure the ideal is proper. Follow that irrespective of outside influence. Know self is right, and then go straight ahead." - from the readings of Edgar Cayce

Challenge withdrawn: Looks like that challenge to the sheriff's citizenship has been pulled. Carla Higginson withdrew the paperwork, saying she didn't have the information she needed to make the challenge stick. The San Juan Isander story has more...

Getting better: I visited Farhad over at Harrison House Suites this morning, and he's still pretty beat up by his fall last week. He was working on the affordable housing units on Blair Street by himself last week when he fell off a ladder & KO'd himself in the fall. Luckily, friend Lynn Danaher dropped by to find the woozy Farhad, gathered him up to the med center, which sent him off for three days at St. Joseph's off-island.

Quote on quote: Got a note from Richard Aberdeen about the maybe-Shakespeare quote posted last week. He said:

The quotation attributed to Shakespeare on your website is probably not by him. Nevertheless, it is a good quotation just the same. For more info, please see:

Thank You - Sincerely,
Richard Aberdeen

It's difficult to see the energetic Chamber of Commerce prez moving slow, but he said it's a reminder of one's mortality & frailty...

Quote: From JFK back in 1961: parts of this resonate in this year's global politics:

. . . Man holds in his mortal hands the power to abolish all forms of human poverty and all forms of human life.  And yet the same revolutionary beliefs, for which our forbearers fought, are still at issue around the globe; the belief that the rights of man, come not from the generosity of the state, but from the hand of God. . . Let the word go forth from this time and place, to friend and foe alike, that the torch has been passed to a new generation of Americans. . .

If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich . . . And so, my fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.  My fellow citizens of the world, ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man. . . knowing that here on earth, God's work must truly be our own.

Last quote: "... all things share the same breath - the beast, the tree, the man ... the air shares its spirit with all the life it supports." -Chief Seattle, Duwamish

September 19, 2002

Inns back, wired & ready to go: Remember I told you the Inns at Friday Harbor's phones were funky earlier this week? They're fixed now.

Call 'em & say hi.

Puddles to be installed: All summer long at the Community Theatre you've see that lost-wax bronze sculpture of Tom Pemberton's called Puddles...tomorrow at 2 it'll be moved to be installed & dedicated at the elementary school. The work consists of a boy and girl with their school bags standing in a puddle experiencing the wonder of the rain.

Two o'clock. Be there.

Down, but not out: I got this note from Debbie at the Chamber of Commerce about their prez & Harrison House Suites owner Farhad Ghatan:

Farhad fell Sunday while working on his new houses and was taken to St. Joseph's hospital in Bellingham. He punctured his lungs, bruised his brain and broke several ribs. Apparently, his recovery is going well.

I received a message that he will return home today. If you would like to pass along"speedy recovery" wishes, his address is 235 C Street.


September 18, 2002

'Tis the season: After a sometimes acrimonious campaign season that began before Memorial Day, the voters settled the issue of whom to elect as sheriff last night, selecting the incumbent over challenger Jeff Asher. In sending Bill Cumming to his fifth term, voters have given him the chance to serve the longest of any sheriff in county history.

The election will not be certified until an election canvass board responds to a challenge to Cumming's citizenship - the Canadian-born sheriff insists he was naturalized as a child; the challenge states that no records exist to support that. Read the for updates on the progress of the board in this matter.

In other election news, it appears local GOP candidate Herb Meyer's bid for a chance to oppose Dem Rick Larsen has fallen short, as Norma Smith outpolled him in the district. I'll let you know if late absentee ballots change that....

The marina & the dock: Take a peek at the harbor, right now, on the Port of Friday Harbor's webcams.

See that picture to the right? It was taken by ace photographer Olivia Freeman for us, a few weeks ago when there were lots of visitors getting off the ferry on a sunny day.

Nice shots.

Inn & out: If you've tried to call the Inns at Friday Harbor lately, you may have had trouble getting through - the phone system for the whole structure has been down since the power outage a week and a half ago. Assistant manager Mikki Ellis says people have been really understanding, as the hotel hustles to repair its internal system.

Staying at the Inns for the next few weeks is the crew shooting that film about falcons. A friend said she saw them filming in the last couple of days, which includes parachuting with a camera affixed to one's head to catch the birds in flight. Local falconer Ken Franklin is assisting with the project.

You need a tech guy to explain these things: Graphics whiz & tech guru Tim Dustrude and I were talking about how hard it is to translate techno-babble sometimes. He sent me this cutting from a computer magazine as part of that discussion:

How's this for an informative paragraph....

"ADO is the friendly face on OLE DB, which lets you leverage your experience in DAO and RDO (because much of the interface is the same). And since OLE DB has a provider for ODBC, you can still access your DSNs (System DSNs) on your machine when you want to write your ASP pages."

After reading that, I put down the magazine PDQ.

Quote: "Ultimately our society will be defined not only by what we create, but by what we refuse to destroy" – John C. Sawhill

Notes around town: Stacey & Bobby from Haley's are the proud parents of Molly, born last week...everyone's doing fine.

Friday Harbor Yachts' Brian Calvert tells me he's getting married - the lucky woman lives down Lynnwood way.

Two folks central to the island's history passed away this month. Two months short of turning 106, everyone's favorite grandma Etta Egeland died, while longtime resident & former councilman Bud Geneste also passed away.

Quote: from Julius Caesar:
"Beware the leader who bangs the drums of war
in order to whip the citizenry into a patriotic
fervor, for patriotism is indeed a double-edged
sword. It both emboldens the blood, just as it
narrows the mind.... And when the drums of war have
reached a fever pitch and the blood boils with hate
and the mind has closed, the leader will have no
need in seizing the rights of the citizenry.
Rather, the citizenry, infused with fear and blinded
with patriotism, will offer up all of their rights
unto the leader, and gladly so. How do I know?
For this is what I have done. And I am Caesar."

William Shakespeare


September 11, 2002

Victims remembered: This morning the victims of the tragedy a year ago were remembered with a walk down Spring Street from the Inns at Friday Harbor Suites & Post San Juan by several hundred islanders, including a pretty good number of school kids. As you can see below, the crowd filled the street halfway up to First Street, with speakers addressing the crowd from Circle Park, where the flag was hoisted to half mast to show respect for the dead.

After a prayer, Mayor Gary Boothman read a proclamation on behalf of the Town and President Bush calling for peace and justice, and naming the day Patriot Day. The somber, quiet crowd broke up after a moment of silence at 8:46am, walking back to cars, to work, to school.

September 9, 2002

In the dark: I was visiting Orcas yesterday when the lights went out mid-afternoon...the power stayed off till around 7:30 last night. A friend called OPALCO, who said a transformer blew in Anacortes, which darkens the whole county.

Interesting how that works: Most people just adjust their days - King's was still ringing people up, with emergency power on, but with signs on the coolers saying, "Don't Open!" Dave over at ET has a generator, so he was lit up bright, with a lot full of people. The ferries were running a bit behind, with no power to pull the ramps up & down.

Summer's over, nearly: Cindy Jackson mentioned it this morning: Didn't it seem like things cooled off right away the day school started? There was rain last Monday, and yesterday, but mixed in was some pretty nice weather, with Saturday being especially sunny & warm. Hope you got out in it.

Quote: "Education is what remains after one has forgotten everything he learned in school." Albert Einstein


September 2, 2002

All write: Yeah, I know it's been a while since I wrote to tell you what's up. I've been have you been?

As Libby down at King's told me today when she was checking out my groceries, "Life is what happens when you're busy making other plans." That's what happened.

With all that said, thanks for all the reminders you all sent to me to update this online to Randi, Al, John, John, John & John, Lauren, and Susan, who all wrote, "When ARE you gonna update the Update?"


Encampment - back in time: It was pretty cool: Last weekend 80 or so folks went & set up camp at British Camp, dressed up as American & British soldiers, ladies, and kids from the mid-1800s, and hung out for a couple of days. Events included meals, drill, and a dance in the hall (right) on Saturday night, just like one hundred and fifty years ago. Everything was authentic, including the talk - if you asked someone something (in costume), they answered with details from 1859.

Lest one think this pacifist reporter has gone soft on military stuff with this event, I'm happy to remind anyone that the dual occupation of this island from the late 1850s till 1872 was peaceful. The result: the issues were settled the best way for wars to be prosecuted, with no one killed and by talking out the solution.

"Still in thy right hand carry gentle peace"
Henry VIII, Act iii, Sc.2

Fair redux: Did you see yourself in the photos from the Fair? We did.

Also, I know you're wondering - who won the Journal Run this year during the Fair? Jane & Pete did, except this year it's called the Island Loop Run, as Island Rec took over running the event. The San Juan Islander posted the times & some pix, which you can look at and note that both my sons posted better times than me. Beautiful day for a run...

Drug humor is so passé: I was at a potluck tonight where we were talking, naturally, about all the yellow jackets. I think it was Larry Hartford (the photo guy) who said his dog chases and swallows the insects. I think it was Margaret from the Health Club who said, "Bet he gets a buzz outa that."

Bit of poetry:

"It is time for the destruction of error.
The chairs are being brought in from the garden,
The summer talk stopped on that savage coast
Before the storms, after the guests and birds:
In sanatoriums they laugh less and less,
Less certain of cure; and the loud madman
Sinks now into a more terrible calm."

From "It is Time for the Destruction of Error" by W.H. Auden

FHHS sports get going: Darren Scheffer's helping with the football program, and says working with the new football coach is a real pleasure & that fall training's off to a great start.

Meanwhile, new soccer coach Doug says some 32 girls came out to play, who got divided up into JV & varsity on Friday. He likes the prospects of the squad - as an informed observer of the program (I got to coach for a while a few years back with the girls), I'd agree: this is one of the more talented & spirited groups we've had. Go, girls, go!

Kid: Kim Fitts had her baby a couple of weeks ago - a baby girl. She & she & Papa Jeff are all doing fine.

Here comes the sun: Look at camera one (on the left) to see the sunrise tomorrow morning. It faces east & kinda south, over the harbor. The Port of Friday Harbor's cams are getting kinda popular, according to the counter we stuck on that page about a month ago.

Remembering: There will be a quiet march to remember the events & folks of last September 11th next's the details.

Asher gets $173,000 for County: The Bellingham Herald reported three weeks ago that the Sheriff's Department for San Juan County will receive over $173,000 from money confiscated in a November 2001 smuggling operation. This is especially welcome news in light of projections a couple of months ago by the Board of Commissioners that the County faces a $400,000 budget shortfall next year. (The Sounder, Journal, and SanJuan reported it as well - I mention the Bellingham paper because I was surprised they covered it too.)

The paperwork-filling-out (and operation) which netted the dough was directed by sheriff candidate Jeff Asher, who has promised to explore other creative sources of acquiring revenue if elected. Good start.

New photo book: Robert Demar writes in:

Read about and see photographs from my book, "Nautical Highways, Ferries of the San Juan Islands" - It includes information about how to order both book and prints, and exhibition schedule for prints. I am a photographer specializing in black and white regional images. I use a medium format camera and do all of my own dark room work.

It's pretty cool. Check it out.

Quote: "An intellectual snob is someone who can listen to the William Tell Overture and not think of 'The Lone Ranger.'" --Dan Rather

(I always think of taking stuff to the recycling center - to da dump, to da dump, to the dump, dump, dump.)

Elyse Van den Bosch named Journal publisher: I got to meet Elyse the other day at Snug Harbor at the Chamber of Commerce social. As she replaces the departing Jay Brodt, she brings a nice local touch to the job. She's been here a while, and she's good folks. Drop by and say howdy to her, either here or on Orcas (she's in charge of the Sounder, too.)

Fast food nearly comes to Friday Harbor: As most of you know, I gather the infromation for this page from rumors, innuendo, gossip, and other reliable news sources. That includes this uncredited story:

Someone wrote to someone (who told me) that they were amazed to see that there was a Kentucky Fried Chicken set up in our slow-food, presently fast-food-free town. Their correspondent wrote back and expressed surprise, since KFC hasn't set up here. Yet. That's why everyone's so skinny.

What they saw was Uncle Sam's hat (right) in the bottom of the Legion's webcam, shortly after the parade on the Fourth.

The Legion folks had put their award-winning float in their backyard....

What we call it: It must be tough to follow directions when you're visiting here. I heard someone tell a touron to take a left at Interwest Bank (it's Pacific Northwest Bank now), go by the health Club (it's really the fitness club), take a right past Dockside (which was San Juan Real Estate Company for a while, and is now ReMax).

You get the idea. Friday Harbor Grocery was Whitey's to many locals till it burned down in May, and the musical chairs of the restaurants downtown continues.

"Your point?" you say.

Dunno. I was just thinking about it.

Carolyn's list: You know, the hardest thing I have to deal with is not adding the funny stuff Carolyn over at Interwest (or Pacific Northwest Bank) sends me. She tends to start my day with sometimes nutty, sometimes pithy, sometimes thoughtful, sometime somber e-mails of stuff she finds on the Web or gets in her e-mail. So here's one you might like, especially if you know Oregon as well as Washington:

You might be from the Pacific Northwest if you:

1. Know the state flower (Mildew)

2. You feel guilty throwing aluminum cans or paper in the trash.

3. Use the statement "sun break" and know what it means.

4. Know more than 10 ways to order coffee.

5. Know more people who own boats than air conditioners.

6. Feel overdressed wearing a suit to a nice restaurant.

7. Stand on a deserted corner in the rain waiting for the "Walk" signal.

8. Consider that if it has no snow or has not recently erupted, it is not a real mountain.

9. Can taste the difference between Starbucks, Seattle's Best, and Veneto's.

10. Know the difference between Chinook, Coho, and Sockeye salmon.

11. Know how to pronounce Sequim, Puyallup, Issaquah, Oregon, and Willamette.

12. Consider swimming an indoor sport.

13. Can tell the difference between Japanese, Chinese and Thai food.

14. In winter, go to work in the dark and come home in the dark-while only working eight-hour days.

15. Never go camping without waterproof matches and a poncho.

16. Are not fazed by "Today's forecast: showers followed by rain," and "Tomorrow's forecast: rain followed by showers."

17. You cannot wait for a day with "showers and sun breaks".

18. Have no concept of humidity without precipitation.

19. Know that Boring is a town in Oregon and not just a state of mind.

20. Can point to at least two volcanoes, even if you cannot see through the cloud cover.

21. You notice "the mountain is out" when it is a pretty day and you can actually see it.

22. Put on your shorts when the temperature gets above 50, but still wear your hiking boots and parka.

23. Switch to your sandals when it gets about 60, but keep the socks on.

24. Have actually used your mountain bike on a mountain.

25. Think people who use umbrellas are either wimps or tourists.

26. Knew immediately that the view out of Frasier's window was fake.

27. Buy new sunglasses every year, because you cant' find the old ones after such a long time.

28. You measure distance in hours.

29. You often switch from "heat" to "a/c" in the same day.

30. You use a down comforter in the summer.

31. You carry jumper cables in your car and your wife knows how to use them.

32. You design your kid's Halloween costume to fit under a raincoat.

33. You know all the important seasons: Almost Winter, Winter, Still Raining (Spring), Road Construction (Summer) Deer & Elk season (Fall).

34. You actually understand these jokes and forward them to all your friends in the Northwest or those who used to live here!

Final quote: "It is in the space of mastery over paradigms that people throw off addictions, live in constant joy, bring down empires, get locked up or burned at the stake or crucified or shot, and have impacts that last for millennia."

Donella Meadows


August 22, 2002

Photos for the Fair

Meeting of the tribe: Wasn't the fair great? Four beautiful days of not-too-hot, not-too-cool weather, great music, lots of food, and the usual hanging around visiting with friends.

Probably the best part of the Fair is we all get to see each other & check up what's going on - who's sick, who's gotten a new job, who's ready for soccer this fall, who's out of shape for soccer this fall, who's split up, appropriately depressed, and now seeing someone else, and so on.

But pictures tell the story: The By Design camera crew shot over 1000 photos at the Fair (we were on assignment for Fair World magazine...just kidding.) We culled these out so we could see how we look - over 400 people are in the photos in this scrapbook. See if you're there - there certainly will be someone you know, or someone's kid, or someone's mom. (Photos are by Olivia Freeman, Tim Dustrude, Cameron Byington, Shay Byington, and me.)

Highlights of the Fair included that great maze made of hay (there are some shots in the scrapbook), seeing 15-year-old Maggie Shaw ride again with her new prosthetic leg, the sheep-to-shawl contest, the bands at night, all the booths with stories to tell, and awards for everything.

Wait'll next year.

August 14, 2002

The Fair is on! You know the San Juan County Fair starts today...everyone was bustling around getting things ready and setting up last night. (right) The place is looking good! Check back to this site later in the week - we'll have some pictures of us & your neighbors up for you to see.

Be sure and drop by the Medical Center's booth and get your blood pressure checked and say hey to the folks who work there...if your BP is too low, go get some coffee or ride on one of the rides that goes upside down; if it's too high, get some juice and go listen to music at the Grey Top stage and relax.

(By the way, they're also giving away vouchers for booster seats & bike helmets - the theme is kid safety.)

See you at the Fair.

On TV: Jim Lawrence out at the Thirsty Goose Farm says the folks from the Food Channel came out a couple of weeks back...he's got a fine, well-regarded organic operation that sells well at local restaurants and markets. The whole family's in the show - daughter Natalia (who also works at the Doctor's Office next to the ferry making coffee) says it was fun having the people with the cameras so interested in what's going on....

Shot: Chris Avery died from wounds received in the shooting a week and a half like this are startling to our quiet little island, and disturbing. Details about the case are available on the, with updates, but in the meantime, the island's heart goes out to Chris' wife Mary in the face of her sudden loss.

Wall: Did you see that cool mural that the Camp Eagle Rock kids did, down at the corner of First and Spring Streets? Click on the picture above to see the real, full size shot....Dawn & Amara (the camp director & assistant director) did a wonderful job with the kids this summer fo rthe Island Rec program.

Give peace a chance: There was a peace-based action on Sunday in Friday Harbor, as nearly 100 folks marched to the courthouse, where Commissioner Rhea Miller exhorted them and the country to find peaceful solutions to the problems facing us.

History is doomed to repeat itself:

Review the Update from May 9 (the fire) - August 12, 2002

Review the Update from April 1, 2002 - May 8, 2002

Review the Update from December 15, 2001 - April 1, 2002

Review the Update from September 11, 2001 - December 14, 2001

Review the Update from June 7 , 2001 - September 10, 2001

Review the Update from March 17, 2001 - June 6, 2001

Review the Update from December 18, 2000 - March 16, 2001

Review the Update from July 25, 2000 - December 17, 2000

Review the Update from April 21, 2000 - July 25, 2000

Review the Update from January 1, 2000 - April 21, 2000

Review the Update from October 21, 1999 - December 31, 1999

Review the Update from August 12, 1999 - October 21, 1999

Review the Update from May 17, 1999 - August 12, 1999

Review the Update from April 8, 1999 - May 17, 1999

Review the Update from February 26, 1999 - April 8, 1999

Review the Update from January 3, 1998 - February 26, 1999

Review the Update from November 1, 1998 - January 3, 1998

Review the Update from August 31, 1998 - October 31, 1998

Review the Update from July 2, 1998 - August 30, 1998

Review the Update from May 25, 1998 - July 2, 1998

Review the Update from April 3 - May 25, 1998

Review the Update from January 22, 1998 to April 3, 1998.

Review the Update from November 24, 1997 to January 22, 1998.

The information here is simply stuff we here at By Design think is important around Friday Harbor or on the Island. Some of it's news, some of it's old news, and all are just things we wanted to mention, with most of it about the things that make living here great.

There will be more next week, if anything happens.

Ian Byington

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