Pardon my Spanish
Saturday night, I headed up to Edmonds to check out Rick Steves’ lecture on his recent trip to Iran. I’d followed his dispatches from that trip, and have enjoyed his speeches before. I was not disappointed. The lecture was packed, and capped off his semi-annual travel festival that typically covers most European regions and practical subjects such as “Packing Light and Right.” Check it out sometime, if you’re a traveler, it’s a horribly useful way to spend your Saturday. Rick Steves doesn’t teach all classes, but for the ones he does, he is much more political & passionate in speaking engagements vs. his PBS shows.

Afterward, it was off to Celeste and Ian’s for birthday week’s end with Rock Band and Scene It. This greeted upon arrival.

Another annual motomotoyama birthday week tradition: karaoke at the Kona Kitchen. Here is her former roommate and fellow Hawaiian, assisting with a sax solo.

The Sax Solo

Today was BUSY. Post-work outing at the closest pub (rhymes with Dead Boar and I’ll point out that I did not spend any of my own pennies, so my dear friend who nearly had a legal war with them can rest assured) to celebrate a productive week, homemade pizza-pizza at Geraldine and Rand’s with folks I hadn’t seen in nearly two months since the wedding, and a stop at Kona Kitchen karaoke to close down the night.

Grlld Chz
You should have gathered by now that I live to eat. Hell, I run marathons to eat in the style to which I’ve become accustomed.

Last week, I had this phenomenal meal from Skillet. It made my week. I set the bar way too high when I saw the grilled gouda would be available all over again. Oh, well, expectation readjustment was probably a good idea. By the time I’d walked back to my desk from the trailer, it’d been 10 minutes and the sandwich had started the sog. Things just weren’t as crisp and bright. Grilled cheese, imho, can be hard to get right. Last week’s experience benefited from a sad rendition the week before, at Jules Mae’s Saloon. GC holds a special place in my heart, as my father used to make them for me at lunch on weekends. He had his greatest hits.

(I got the poutine, as a side. Also good, but not what it was.)

What a gray day. Seattle’s other season has arrived.

Mad Lib Time!
One of motomotoyama’s birthday week traditions is the Wednesday Night Dinner at Santa Fe Cafe, for about 6 years running. I believe this started due to $1-off margarita specials, but am not 100% sure it’s still true. I remember asking out of vague curiosity, but I am easily distractable.

We got the backroom, which quickly filled up. Throughout the evening, Jonas surveyed the crowd for Mad Libs. Here, he’s sharing his latest findings.

At Villa Victoria
A perfect way to spend Election Eve.

Tonight, my friend Traca coordinated an amazing dinner with her friend Naomi of Villa Victoria. (Edited to add: She wrote about it here.) There was a fantastic mix of people there, thus great conversation. I had Mr. T at my left, Andrea the photographer at my right, and sat across from Robin, most recently of Crave. All that dynamic energy = contagious, and an antidote to these hibernation tendencies.

I love, love, love Mexican food. I was thrilled to get to take home two dozen tamales (one with Oaxacan mole, the other cheddar and jalapeno) after missing out on making my own final order a few Saturdays back before Villa Victoria switched over to catering only (mostly). There are still plans brewing at VV, but darn this economy.

After last night’s good times, we spent most of today around the house. Around dinnertime, I walked to the grocery and snapped this just before the heavy rains. I’d brought an umbrella. I know, that’s unheard of around here.

Later, we’re heading to moto’s for some Rock Band with a few of Mr. T’s colleagues.

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