Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

Posts made in: March, 2011 (193) Currently Viewing: 21 - 30 of 193

March 4, 2011 at 2:38pm

BEHIND BARS: Bartending abroad

Going "Behind Bars" is usually hilarious

REAL STORIES FROM REAL BARTENDERS >>>

I've been a bartender for a long time. I have met countless freaks, jerks, pervs, sweethearts, rockstars and crazies. Even though it's a physically and mentally exhausting job, these are the colorful people that make it all worthwhile. Well, that and the tips.

I'd like to share with you some of my personal experiences behind the bar, along with the stories from some of my fellow bartenders. Each week - under the clever heading of "Behind Bars" - I will dig into my memory bank - and the incident log books that all bars keep - to bring you some of my favorite stories.

Names of bars, bartenders and patrons have been changed or withheld to protect the innocent.

And the not so innocent.

Cheers!

THIS WEEK: Bartending abroad

I am on vacation this week. It's no secret the only mixing I'm doing is in my resort room. But, duty still calls, and Behind Bars will still entertain its few followers.

Considering I'm on my honeymoon, I'll let other bartenders take hold of this one.

First stop - Portland airport - and our first bartender takes the reigns. Her name is actually and truly Ms. Martini. And her stories are those of celebrities and other travelers that actually visit bars at 4:30 a.m. (when her shift starts). 

I notice a green and yellow waxed bottle of Maker's Mark and I question why it's decorated this way -- as opposed to the regular red drip. She explains that this is for the Oregon Ducks that frequent this particular Rogue bar. Ms. Martini speaks in a seasoned, gravelly voice of the team members that come to see her. She easily transitions to the fact that many people from all walks of life and all corners of the world visit her in her convenient airport setting. She speaks particularly fondly of a judge on the seventh season of America's Next Top Model that got so wasted he missed his flight and decided to simply continue his drink fest in the airport.

This is the extent of Ms. Martini's stories, though, so I will switch to our next bartender.

On the most fabulous of islands in the archipelago of Hawaii, my husband and I visit a basic Happy Hour on Maui - at your typical sports bar. Our bartender, whose name eludes me amongst the shots of Hornitos, has no hesitation when I ask her what kind of crazy story she has to tell me so I can get my assignment done.

"We had a girl in here who was trapped in her bathroom stall," she reminisces fondly, with a familiar gravelly voice I assume I will have in about five years. "She locked herself in, and then passed out reverse-cowboy style on the toilet."

She then alludes to Canadians, mentioning something along the lines of, "We have fun with them because they're so cheap."

I didn't have the chance to ask her to elaborate, as the bar filled up and my husband challenged me to a game of pool. But nonetheless, it's a good note to end this segment on. As I contemplate what she meant, I encourage you to do the same.

And in the meantime, visit your favorite bar and ask your bartender for a good story.

Aloha!   

"BEHIND BARS" LINK HUB

LINK: Oh puck!

LINK: 86'd

LINK: More Aural Adventures

LINK: Big & Rich

LINK: Tales From the Incident Log Book

LINK: The Tip Jar

LINK: Aural Adventures

LINK: Smooth Transitions

LINK: The Pooper

Filed under: Food & Drink, Behind Bars,

March 4, 2011 at 3:26pm

"SAVE OUR SONICS" GUY SPEAKS: Kris Brannon wants to let voters decide

Kris "Save Our Sonics" Brannon

SHOULD SIR-MIX-A-LOT'S "NOT IN OUR HOUSE" BE THE STATE'S OFFICIAL SONG? >>>

Chances are if you've ever ventured out to a Tacoma farmers market, festival or political gathering you've seen Kris "Sonics Guy" Brannon - no doubt decked out in Sonics gear, holding his "Save Our Sonics" sign and encouraging all who make eye contact with him to boycott Starbucks. (Owner Howard Schultz sold the team to owners from Oklahoma City).

"Boycott Starbucks! Make Schultz pay!" is his go-to rallying call. He should probably be on the Tully's payroll.

Brannon, a popular local comedian and well-known activist, took his protest a step further yesterday, filing an initiative to change the state song from "Washington My Home" to the one time Seattle Supersonics theme song "Not in Our House," performed by Washington native Sir Mix-a-Lot. A central stipulation of Brannon's initiative is that if Seattle gets a new NBA franchise the state's song would change back to "Washington My Home."

In a press release Brannon explains, "The people of Washington State were robbed of our NBA franchise, and we must keep the pressure on the league management to return professional men's basketball to Washington ... this initiative allows Sonics fans remind the league that Washington wants and deserves a basketball team."

Some critics say initiatives like Brannon's are a waste of time and potentially taxpayer dollars. Brannon insists, "person-filed initiatives are the core of the democratic process," and that "the cost of changing the state song compared to most other proposed initiatives would be very minimal."

Brannon will need a lofty 241,153 voter signatures (according to Census data that's over 40,000 more than live in Tacoma) by July 8 in order for his initiative to qualify for the November ballot. Ever the optimist, Brannon says he is hopeful he can acquire the signatures.

"I've got a few brilliant ideas that I'm not quite ready to reveal yet," he tells me with a sly, friendly grin.

We'll let you know if those ideas come to fruition and if Brannon's initiative gains any sort of steam.

In the meantime, don't let Brannon catch you with a Starbucks cup in hand.

Or?

Filed under: Comedy, Sports, Tacoma,

March 4, 2011 at 4:33pm

COMMENT OF THE DAY: The universality of “Asher Lev”

ONLINE CHATTER >>>

Today's comment comes from Xixong Chan in regard to our recent review of Lakewood Playhouse's My Name Is Asher Lev, penned by guest critic Brie Yost.

Chan writes,

It sounds like a very interesting play that everyone can universally relate, the conflict of leaving social norms to pursuit your passions and beliefs. Thanks for the review.

Filed under: Arts, Theater, Lakewood,

March 5, 2011 at 7:29am

NIGHT MOVES: The Nightgowns, Carnival Party, McTuff, Hell's Belles, James Coats, Aces Up and others ...

Klondike Kate Band rocks Bob's Java Jive tonight.

LIVE MUSIC TONIGHT IN THE SOUTH SOUND >>>

Bob's Java Jive Tacoma - Central. Thee Headliners, The Black, Klondike Kate Band. 9 pm.

  • Their music is a punk-rock-inflected stew of doo-wop, country, AM pop, blues and R&B. They excel on songs like "It Ain't Right," where the classic, strumming structure of Brill Building is paired with a stuttering beat that keeps everything just slightly off-kilter. Read an interview with the band here. - Rev. Adam McKinney

Cicada Restaurant Olympia. Carnival Party, featuring Ocho Pies. All Ages. 8 pm. NC.

C.I. Shenanigans Tacoma - Northend. Ron Sanders. 8 pm.

Dawson's Bar and Grill Tacoma - South. Rock & Roll Magic. 9 pm. NC.

Doyle's Publi House Tacoma - Stadium District. McTuff with Cliff Colon. 9:30 pm. NC.

Emerald Queen Casino Tacoma - Eastside. The Goo Goo Dolls. 8:30 pm.

The Fan Club Lakewood. Chicken Joe Unplugged. Fundraiser for Linda Hill. Joe plays classic rock. 8:30 pm.

Great American Casino Lakewood. Stir Crazy. 9 pm. NC.

  • In my many months reviewing meat markets, I've only seen two cover bands: KRY at The Swiss and Stir Crazy at the Emerald Queen Casino. Both bands tore it up. The crowd, the bar, the music, everything. Stir Crazy especially. A babe lead singer. A veteran, talented band. If anyone knows about the current state of cover bands, it's these guys. I want to know what, if any, change they have seen since popular music seems to have stepped away from five-piece guitar and drums to a synthesized, digital style. Read my full story on Stir Crazy and cover bands here.Brett Cihon

Hell's Kitchen Tacoma - Downtown. Hell's Belles (all-female AC/DC tribute). 9 pm. $12-$15.

  • Mandy Reed (bass guitar), Adrian Conner (lead guitar), Lisa Brisbois (rhythm guitar), Laura D. (drums) and Amber Saxon (lead vocals) currently make up this balls-to-the-wall, all-girl rock-hard revue. I urge you to check out their show tonight at Hell's Kitchen in Tacoma. Breasts, beer and head-bangin' - all of life's pleasures in one place. - Steph DeRosa

Mandolin Cafe Tacoma - Central. Heidi Vladyka. All Ages. 6 pm. NC. Gayle Skidmore, Vanja James, Paul Mauer. All Ages. 8 pm. $5.

Metronome Coffee Tacoma. Gina Belliveau, James Coats. All Ages. 8 pm.

  • Quite literally, James Coates is one of the nicest dudes you'll ever meet. The centerpiece of local roots rock outfit James Coates and the Lost Souls, Coates seems to literally bleed emotion through his music (and even eyes). Saturday at Metronome Coffee on Sixth Avenue Coates will go solo - armed with only an acoustic guitar and a whole lot of heart. Later in the month, March 15 to be exact, Coates will do the same at the Mandolin Café. — Weekly Volcano

Morso Wine Bar Gig Harbor. Ted Russell Kamp. All Ages. 8 pm. $25.

The New Frontier Lounge Tacoma - Dome District. The Nightgowns, Follow the Kites, DJ Melodica. 9 pm. $7.

  • If we really wanted to, as a town, we could band together and make sure that the Nightgowns would remain Tacoma's "best kept secret." We could shield them from the outside world, ensuring that only we would know the strange power that their synth-pop possesses. We could dote on them and come to every one of their shows and buy their every release and keep them warm and cozy in this deceptively gritty cocoon forever. But fuck that noise. I want bragging rights. I want to shove the Nightgowns in front of every eye and ear possible and say, "See! Tacoma was home to this wonderful music the whole time, and now you have the privilege of hearing it." This is a dream that is closer than ever to coming to fruition, as the Nightgowns ready themselves to head down to Austin, Texas, for an industry showcase in the 25th Annual South by Southwest Music Festival. On March 5, a benefit show will be held at The New Frontier Lounge to send off the band and help out a little bit with the cost of driving down to Texas and staying in roadside motels. Read the rest of the story here. Rev. AM

Northern Olympia - Downtown. Fergus & Geronimo, Skrill Meadow. All Ages. 8 pm.

O'Callahan's Pub & Grill Key Peninsula. Steve Raible & The Newscasters. 8 pm.

Pastiche Wine Bar Tacoma - Sixth Avenue. Two Plus Two. 7 pm.

Traditions Cafe and World Folk Art Olympia - Downtown. John Stowell, Paul Meyers. All Ages. 8 pm. $8-$12.

Uncle Sam's American Bar & Grill Spanaway. Cancer Benefit, featuring Coldshot: A Tribute To Stevie Ray Vaughn. 9 pm.

Varsity Grill Tacoma - Downtown. Aces Up CD Release Party, with Zach Hinson, Andy Shofner & The Ruckus. 7:30 pm.

  • Got some country in you? Antibiotics not clearing it up? Well, it might be time for you to mosey on down to the Varsity Grill in Tacoma, as Saturday night serves up a celebration of the band Aces Up - and the group's new record, Backyard Superstars - to be released on Exact Records. Openers Zach Hinson and Andy Shofner and the Ruckus sweeten the deal. This one's probably worth a clean pair of jeans - but it's probably not required. — Michael Swan

LINK: More live music tonight in the South Sound

Filed under: Night Moves, Music, Olympia, Tacoma,

March 5, 2011 at 7:50am

SHORT ORDER: Sheep milk cheese samples, rib roast and more ...

DINING NEWS, NIBBLES AND BITS >>>

Sheep Milk Cheese: The Black Sheep Creamery out of Chehalis will drop by the Westside Olympia Food Co-Op today from noon to 3 p.m. with fresh cheeses and sheep milk yogurt.

Best Restaurant: Have you tried the Tofu Hut? Thurston County voted it the best restaurant. And we gave it a rave review, too.

Month Of Wine: Pour at Four wine bar in Tacoma's Proctor District features Washington state Cabs in March, with a special wine flight of Alder Ridge 2006, Patit Creek Cellars 2007 and Page Cellars 2005.

Harleys And Ribs: Destination Harley-Davidson in Tacoma hosts a rib roast at noon March 12.

LINK: Bunch of wine tastings today

LINK: Hell yes there are happy hours on Saturday

March 5, 2011 at 10:15am

5 Things to Do Today: Get McTuff, help the Nightgowns get ready for SXSW, Poetry Out Loud, Fox Island arts and crafts ...

Tonight, McTuff will fill Doyle's Public House with a boogaloo jazz funk rock mix.

SATURDAY, MARCH 5, 2011 >>>

1. Catch McTuff with Cliff Colon tonight at Doyle's Public House.

2. Help the Nightgowns off to SXSW tonight at The New Frontier by joining the Weekly Volcano at the band's official send off party. Peter Tietjen (formerly of Umber Sleeping) and his new band Follow the Kites is also on the bill. Check the Volcano's complete live local music calendar here.

3. For those about to rock (specifically, tonight at Hell's Kitchen with all-female, all-awesome AC/DC tribute band Hell's Belles) we salute you.

4. It's poetry time - out loud. In high school, you went to State in pizza eating and acne. It could have been cooler. Today, you'll have a chance to see a dozen Washington high school students get a better jump on their lives than the Little Caesar's slogan, "Pizza! Pizza!" ever afforded you, competing in the Poetry Out Loud State Finals. Locally, Stadium High School's Will Hamel will represent. Catch it today in Tacoma at Broadway Center Theater on the Square. Or click here for the Volcano's complete list of local arts happenings and events.

5. Explore the artistic treasures of Fox Island today at the "Fabulous Fox Island March Market. More info can be found here.

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

Filed under: All ages, Arts, Community, Events, Music, Tacoma,

March 6, 2011 at 10:13am

5 Thing to Do Today: Pierced Arrows, beer pong, "Wrecked!", Sewing and Stitchery Expo, Stonegate and Rich Wetzel ...

SUNDAY, MARCH 6, 2011 >>>

1. In Oly, nothing says Sunday like a kick-ass rock show. See MosquitoHawk, Morgan and the Organ Donors and Pierced Arrows tonight at the Brotherhood. Click here for the Weekly Volcano's comprehensive live local music calendar.

2. We swear to god it seems like there's a beer pong tournament every day at Longhorn Saloon. Which, of course, is awesome - because we totally love beer pong. Tonight the WSU-frat-style action 9 p.m.

3. Remember that movie with Denzel Washington about the train that won't stop? Well, not to be crazy judgmental, but something tells us the "Wrecked! Misadventures on the Northern Pacific Railway" exhibition at the White River Valley Museum in Auburn is much more exciting.

4. The Sewing and Stitchery Expo - which is a gigantic event - concludes at the Puyallup Fairgrounds today.

5. The weekly Volcano's Tournament of Pizza kicks of March 17. Inside info reveals Stonegate Pizza - and its crust recipe - will be well positioned to make a run. Tonight, Rich Wetzel's Groovin' Higher Orchestra performs at Stonegate - the perfect opportunity for you to do a little research before the voting commences.

March 6, 2011 at 2:21pm

ABOUT LAST NIGHT: Teddy Haggarty, Aces Up, the Nightgowns

Tacoma indie rockers the Nightgowns performed last night at The Night Frontier Lounge. They're leaving for SXSW later this week.

RUNNING AROUND TACOMA >>>

Here are my field notes from last night:

7:10 p.m.: Dropped in on Tacoma artist Teddy Haggarty's birthday party at Stonegate pizza. The South Tacoma Way restaurant/music venue has an entire wall of Haggarty art and photos. Overheard: What, only two photos of Teddy with Alec Baldwin?

7:35 p.m.: Rand, the mayor of Hilltop Tacoma, dropped by sporting a jacket donning Haggarty' art.

8:10 p.m.: The Fabulous Wailers bassist Buck Ormsby, and manager for the Sonics, gave Haggarty a CD and record of the Sonics' new release, 8. According to Ormsby, the Sonics couldn't decide on an album title and decided to name it 8 on the fact that there's eight tracks - four in studio and four recorded live while in Europe.

9:30 p.m.: Fitz In The Morning, the 100.7FM "The Wolf" DJ, screens Tacoma county band Aces Up's new video for their song, "Pieces Of Heaven" to a capacity crowd upstairs at the Varsity Grill. The crowd goes nuts, either over the video loaded with friends of the band, or the ample cleavage on the screen. Afterward, Fitz tells the crowd this band has potential to go all way, and then calls them up on stage. Aces Up's new record, Backyard Superstars, is released on Exact Records.

11:45 p.m.: The Nightgowns take the stage at The New Frontier Lounge to perform before a capacity crowd in hopes that the door money will help purchase cheap hotels and gas money along the way to SXSW.

11:50 p.m.: Tacoma artist and daredevil Galen McCarty Turner hops up on the stage. There's a rubber chicken in the crowd.

Filed under: Club Hopping, Arts, Music, Tacoma,

March 7, 2011 at 6:15am

5 Things To Do Today: Masters and Johnson, CrossCurrents art show, opera, pasta and pints ...

Masters and Johnson performs tonight at the all-ages Northern venue in Olympia.

MONDAY, MARCH 7, 2011 >>>

1. According to Weekly Volcano scribe Jason Baxter, Olympia band Masters and Johnson's music is "full of orgasmic climaxes and colossal walls of distortion, but also has the capacity for lulling, post-coital ambient passages and ... hyperactive noodling. Catch them at 8 p.m. with This City Defects at Northern in Olympia.

2. Galleries at both Pierce College campuses - Fort Steilacoom and Puyallup - will celebrate the work of more than 30 artists and writers with a special show highlighting 30 years of CrossCurrents magazine from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Featured artists include Yvette O'Neill, David Roholt, Rick Mahaffey, and Joe Batt.

3. If you've noticed we're pushing local breweries lately, you've caught us. We can't stay away from local beer. Plus, there's something about a local brewery that screams perfect date night. A couple pints of lager, a couple side salads, a doggy bag for the happy couple. ... Powerhouse Restaurant and Brewery in Puyallup offers a pasta and pint combination every Monday that's easy on the wallet. Buy pasta off the menu and get any one of Powerhouse's seven beers free of charge.

4. Award-winning operatic soprano Kathy McNeil will sing to music distinguished by agile runs and leaps beginning at 8:30 p.m. inside the Abbey Church at Saint Martin's University.

5. Oh, we know it sounds simple enough: They call a number, you stamp it, when you have five in a row you yell "Bingo." But grownup bingo has a ton of variations. The Weekly Volcano discovered that the standard bingo game matched with witty banter between host Charles Jaffries and the crowd at the gay-friendly Mix on Monday nights felt like Thanksgiving dinner. The sea of mostly gay chaps joked around like they were in their own living rooms, the sort of fun a great bar offers. Check it out beginning at 9 p.m.

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

March 7, 2011 at 6:28am

Better breakfast through recycling

Photo courtesy of Core77

WHEN OLD IS NEW >>>

Finally, a use for all my old CD spindles (thanks Core77).

Who makes your favorite morning bagel in the South Sound? The Weekly Volcano found awesome bagels at Bagel Boyz in Puyallup.

Filed under: Food & Drink, Puyallup,

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News and entertainment from Joint Base Lewis-McChord’s most awesome weekly newspapers - The Ranger, Northwest Airlifter and Weekly Volcano.

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