Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

Posts made in: May, 2014 (120) Currently Viewing: 61 - 70 of 120

May 15, 2014 at 2:34pm

Throwback Thursday: Best Tacoma Sex, Drugs, and Rock 'n' Roll in 2009

Alegra Thornsburg, the lead bartender at The New Frontier Lounge, prepares for another busy night. Photo by J.M. Simpson

The whole #ThrowbackThursday or #tbt hashtag phenomenon has truly resisted being cast off into the graveyard of tired and trite Internet fads like Doppelganger week on Facebook or planking.

And as much as Walkie Talkie enjoys seeing the baby pictures, this week we decided to drop some past Best of Tacoma moments. Below is a link to the "Sex, Drugs and Rock ‘n' Roll" section from our Best of Tacoma 2009. (Our 2014 Best of Tacoma issue online readers' poll will launch in June.)

So let's take that stroll through 2009 memory lane when the Nightgowns were gigging, Hell's Kitchen was on Sixth Avenue and The New Frontier Lounge was new: CLICK HERE

Filed under: Best of TAcoma, Music, History,

May 16, 2014 at 7:20am

Friday Morning Joe: VA updates, Godzilla vs. U.S. military, DoD tech advances, military infographics, Mad Men/X-Men parody ...

An Afghan National Army soldier fires a rocket-propelled coffee during a live-fire operational training shoot at Joint Sustainment Academy Southwest, Camp Leatherneck, Helmand province. Original photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Jonathan Chandler


The senior enlisted soldier for 2nd Battalion, 5th Infantry Regiment has died from wounds suffered in Afghanistan.

The results of a much-anticipated government investigation into charges of scheduling fraud at the Phoenix Veterans Affairs Health Care System will not be out until August.

The House will consider legislation next week to give the Veterans Affairs secretary expanded authority to fire senior executives.

USA Today: VA chief Shinseki has a lot to explain.

There are clear indications that the United States and China are grappling with how to craft a more stable and more intimate set of military to military relationships.

The Pentagon released a report that showed there were nearly 1,400 reported incidents of sexual harassment in 2013.

How the military could kill Godzilla.

Amazing military infographics.

Gen. Keith Alexander: We're at greater risk.

Officials declared that freeing schoolgirls abducted by the radical Islamist group has become a top administration priority.

Recent satellite images show two new North Korean frigates, the largest surface combat ships the nation's navy has constructed in a quarter-century.

The Air Force is a step closer to bedding down its anticipated fleet of KC-46A Pegasus aerial tankers.

Despite a year of workforce furloughs and dwindling budgets, the Defense Department's science and technology enterprise reports advances ranging from a full hypersonic weapon system and high-energy lasers to light-based brain treatments and new core capabilities in cyber warfare.

This footage of the wildfire in San Diego county is absolutely terrifying.

Today's freakout: Fearless daredevils from Eastern Europe.

A new HBO series will showcase the making of the Foo Fighters' next album.

Chad Smith and Will Ferrell talk about their upcoming drum battle.

Morrissey has joined Twitter.

The 16 most badass monsters from the Godzilla movies.

The Flaming Lips' latest project: a cover of the complete Sgt. Pepper album.

Did you catch Blondie on The Daily Show?

Finally: Mad Men/X-Men parody.

Trippy cool ...

LINK: Original photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Jonathan Chandler

May 16, 2014 at 7:35am

5 Things To Do Today: Cultura Cabaret, "Only Lovers Left Alive," Steel Cranes, Tab Benoit and more ...

Expect to see Rosie Cheex at the Cultura Cabaret tonight. Courtesy photo

FRIDAY, MAY 16 2014 >>>

1. Ever feel like walking into a room and watching people sing and dance? Cultura Cabaret, self-proclaimed as Tacoma's only dinner theater cabaret, will present the opportunity for the first time when it pulls back the curtain at 6:45, 8:45 and 10 p.m. in the Cultura Events Center. Channeling the 1920s, the vaudevillian show will see emcee Armitage Shanks introduce singer Pearl Posh, pole dancer Lusty Zinns, circus performer Jenny Penny and burlesque performers Sofia Delish, Boom Boom L'Roux and Rosie Cheex in a theater-in-a-round, intimate dinner setting. Diners are so close to the performance they will feel as if they are part of the show.

2. Only Lovers Left Alive is the latest from writer-director Jim Jarmusch (of Coffee and Cigarettes and Ghost Dog fame). The film focuses on Adam (Tom Hiddleston), and his wife, Eve (Tilda Swinton), a married couple who, despite being very much in love, are separated. Several centuries of familiarity breeds a lot of contempt and a few years of absence might make their hearts grow fonder, provided no one puts a stake through them. Adam and Eve are vampires that don't squander the gift of eternal unlife slap-fighting with Taylor Lautner for Kristen Stewart's affections. They do what most people would do if given limitless time and opportunity: Everything. Catch the film at 1, 3:40, 6:20 and (;05 p.m. in The Grand Cinema.

3. Hailing from Oakland, Steel Cranes are a no-nonsense duo composed of Tracy Shapiro and Amanda Shuckle. Their brand of wiry, nervy post-punk recalls badasses such as PJ Harvey and Patti Smith. The assault of guitar and drums is dialed in to a degree that would be exhausting if it weren't so exhilarating.Catch the band with the Redwood Plan and Japanese Game Show at 7 p.m. in Le Voyeur.

4. Louisiana guitarist/vocalist Tab Benoit specializes in old-school Cajun blues - soulful, spicy stuff from the deep Bayou blended with elements of Texas-style blues-rock and vintage New Orleans funk. Catch him at 8 p.m. in Jazzbones.

5. The F---ing Eagles, Blanco Bronco, Raptor Tractor and masonsapron help Tacoma booking guy Chuck Gosk celebrate his dirty 30, so expect debauchery and beers beginning at 9 p.m. in The New Frontier Lounge. We mean a lot of beers.

LINK: Friday, May 16 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

May 16, 2014 at 9:10am

JBLM 1st Special Forces honors fallen soldiers

Deputy Commander Col. Max Carpenter pays tribute to fallen soldiers during a Memorial Day observance at 1st Special Forces Group Headquarters at JBLM, May 15. Photo credit: Gail Wood

In a somber tribute to the soldiers who have died fighting with the 1st Special Forces Group, Col. Max Carpenter thanked the fallen for their ultimate sacrifice for freedom during an early Memorial Day service at 1st SFG Headquarters at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, May 15.

He reminded everyone that freedom isn't free.

"Let us all remember that our nation is the greatest nation because we have warriors who know that freedom has a cost," Carpenter said, reading from a speech from Col. Bob McDowell. "And that the cost is worth paying if it means that our families and our nation remain free."

After Carpenter's speech, Master Sgt. Tad Duvitt then read the 22 names of the Green Berets who have died fighting in the war against terrorism since 9/11. A bell was rung as each soldier's name was read. 

"Rather than mourn, we celebrate," Carpenter said.

There were two families of the soldiers killed in action present at the 45-minute ceremony at the black granite Memorial Wall for the fallen 1st Special Forces Group.

Carpenter, the deputy commander of the 1st Special Forces, reminded everyone that a country's freedom never comes with guarantees.

"Ron Reagan once said that freedom is never more than a generation away from extinction," Carpenter said. "We did not pass it along to our children in our bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected and handed on to them for them to do the same."

To the families present, Carpenter, reading from McDowell's speech, said "we'll remain forever in your debt for your sacrifice." McDowell, the commander of the 1st Special Forces, was on assignment in the Philippines and couldn't attend the memorial service.

There are 177 names on the Memorial Wall, which include soldiers from 1st Special Forces who died in Vietnam. Twenty-two of them died in the past decade in the war against the Taliban.

"On this wall to my left are the names of the sons, husbands and brothers," Carpenter read. "They provide an eternal example of what is good and right in our nation. Men who have done more than give their life for their nation. They have given their life so that others may remain free."

That standard, Carpenter said, is what the soldiers from the 1st Special Forces in formation at the ceremony should carry on without them and fulfill the mission of freedom. Carpenter praised the fallen soldiers who all raised their hands and volunteered to do what others wouldn't.

"They stood tall and placed themselves into positions to protect those who couldn't protect themselves," Carpenter said. "As this war comes to an end for the majority of our forces, we know the sacrifices made by those who wear the green and red beret of the 1st Special Forces will go on." 

After the reading of the fallen soldiers' names, two men dressed in kilts playing bagpipes played several songs, including "Amazing Grace." As the bagpipes were played, gun fire at a distant firing range on base could be heard, a subtle reminder that there will continue to be other challenges facing the freedoms of this country and the need for other sacrifices.

"In addition to never forgetting these men, we owe these men that we will remain vigilant against our nation's adversaries," Carpenter said. "We owe these men to live life to the fullest, to cherish our God, our families, our teammates with all that we have in our finite time on this earth."

May 16, 2014 at 10:17am

Mac and Cheese Madness: Engine House No. 9

Engine House No. 9's Tailgate Mac and Cheese

It's Friday, which means I tempt you with another South Sound mac and cheese dish I believe is worthy of the Tournament of Mac and Cheese next spring. Of course, you, the reader, will ultimately decided the fate of the dish when nominations open in February 2015.

Wildly annoying name aside, Lit'l Smokiesaren't necessarily so bad on their own. What's not to like about a bite-sized pellet of sodium and grease from various protein sources after all? Where Smokies take the step from kitschy tooth-picked to awesome is when a cheese sauce starts to get involved.

Engine House No. 9 combines the two in its Tailgate Mac and Cheese, a creamy, workingman's take on the classic dish. The E-9 kitchen sautés cheddar and jack cheese with the Smokies and elbow macaroni, then tops the dish with green onions and crouton crumbles. It's a mild, cheesy concoction that fills for $9.99.

This mac and cheese dish is the new piglets in a cheese blanket.

Pair it with E-9's Rowdy Dick Amber and the game.

ENGINE HOUSE NO. 9, 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. Monday-Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Thursday-Saturday, 10 a.m. to midnight Sunday, 611 N. Pine St., Tacoma, 253.272.3435

May 16, 2014 at 2:45pm

Parenting Teens in Washington Workshop will focus on marijuana and alcohol

The Washington State drug and alcohol landscape is changing. Alcohol sales have been privatized, and hard liquor is now present on retail shelves. Marijuana has been legalized, and soon enough things like candy and baked-good edibles will be widely available. While these shifting sands may or may not affect adults, parents may be wondering - how will these new laws impact kids, specifically teens who will likely encounter these substances through friends, at parties or in other social situations? What can parents do to prevent their teens from abusing alcohol and marijuana?

The Thurston County drug prevention non-profit TOGETHER! is offering a free workshop for parents aimed at answering these questions. Experts in the fields of substance abuse, parenting, prevention and law enforcement will weigh in on what parents need to know.


Filed under: Kids, Community, Olympia,

May 16, 2014 at 4:58pm

Ride in Remembrance raises funds to honor fallen 2-2 SBCT soldiers at JBLM

Sgt. 1st Class Matt Collins, 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry Regiment prepares to ride 60 miles during the "Ride in Remembrance" fundraiser put on by the Lancer Soldier and Family Fund and Northwest Harley-Davidson, May 16. Photo credit: J.M. Simpson

On his Saturday morning walks through Joint Base Lewis-McChord's Memorial Park, Col. Louis Zeisman pauses to honor the base's fallen heroes

"My family and I walk through here," the commander of 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, recently said.

"It's a way to remember, and we treat it as a place of honor."

In the park are monuments honoring the 3rd and 4th Stryker Combat Brigade Teams, 42nd Military Police Brigade and the 555th Engineer Brigade.

What Zeisman does not see is a memorial honoring the brigade he commands.

That will soon change.

"Currently, our memo to build a memorial is at the Pentagon," he said.

Comprised of two tall pillars of granite, the names of the fallen will be etched in stone. In between the pillars will be a bench with footsteps walking away.

"When you see the footsteps walking off by themselves, it touches everybody," Zeisman added.

>>> More than 200 bikers rolled by the diagram showing the memorial 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team and the Lancer Soldier and Family Fund want to build to honor those lost in Afghanistan. Photo credit: J.M. Simspon

The brigade deployed to Afghanistan on two separate occasions.

Some history is in order.

5th Stryker Brigade Combat Team deployed in 2009 thru 2010.  Thirty-seven soldiers did not come home. 

In 2010, 5th Brigade reflagged as the 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team.  It deployed to Afghanistan from 2011 thru 2012.  Eight soldiers lost their lives.

The memorial will honor the fallen from the brigade's two deployments to Afghanistan as well as those who died in training.

Leading the effort to build the memorial is the Lancer Soldier and Family Fund, a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization.

Connie Dotson, wife of 2nd Brigade's top enlisted soldier, Command Sgt. Maj. Tim Dotson and the chairwoman of the fund, said the organization has worked for over a year to raise funds.

"We've got $13,000 in the bank," she said this morning as more than 200 motorcycles roared to life at the Northwest Harley-Davidson in Lacey.

The daylong event also featured food, music and a number of vendors. All proceeds went to fund the memorial.

"We need $60,000 to complete the memorial and fly the family members of those lost out here for the dedication," Dotson explained.

The granite for the memorial has already been delivered. All the Lancer Soldier and Family Fund group need is to receive an OK from the Department of Army and finish its fund raising.

"I'm confident we will make our goal," Dotson said.

"We expect to have the memorial finished by May of next year."

>>> Pfc. Kevin DeJesus, 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment, holds up his shirt before the "Ride in Remembrance," May 16. Photo credit: J.M. Simpson

Dubbed "The Ride in Remembrance," hundreds of motorcycle riders - most of whom active duty or veterans riding Harley-Davidsons - and thousands of soldiers, family members and community leaders showed up to support the fund raising.

"It's an honor to be here today and ride in support of the memorial," said Sgt. 1st Class Matt Collins, 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry Division, as he fired up his Harley.

"No one should be forgotten."

For more information about 2nd Brigade's memorial and fundraising efforts, visit www.lancerfund.org.

May 17, 2014 at 7:43am

Saturday Morning Joe: Iran hates U.S. Navy, VA turnover, new Army gear, Halo TV show, real Transformer ...

Soldiers of the 545th Military Police Company run through stations at Kraft Coffee Range on Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska. Original photo by Justin Connaher


A top Iranian naval commander said that he is prepared to order suicide attacks, drone strikes, and missile technology to "destroy the U.S. Navy" in any confrontations.

The Veterans Affairs Department's top health official abruptly resigned amid the exploding scandal over delays in veterans' care.

A week before Memorial Day, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) is railing against the Obama administration for its treatment of veterans.

The U.S. House of Representatives is expected to vote next week on a defense budget that, as it stands now, prizes pork over readiness, an analyst said.

A recently-published book about an Army Green Beret is sparking controversy in military circles about whether veterans are getting proper treatment for mental health.

Why aren't sanctions stopping Putin?

The Air Force is flying manned MC-12W Liberty and unmanned RQ-4 Global Hawk surveillance sorties over Nigeria to assist in locating more than 200 girls kidnapped by militants.

Secretary of the Army John M. McHugh said challenging NATO exercises to National Guard units is key to maintaining the component as the nation's operational reserve.

More than 20 Fort Leonard Wood military police officers tested the regiment's newest body armor vests.

Researchers at the U.S. Army Research Laboratory continue to develop and evaluate methods for navigation and communication that are "hands-free, eyes-free and mind-free" to aid soldiers in the field.

The military power-generating boot isn't quite battlefield ready.

This American Life's "Call for Help" episode includes the parents of two young children who needed to be rescued at sea a few weeks ago.

The Hanson brothers' new beer Mmmhops went on sale this week. They say their Pale Ale "goes down easy and continues to surprise you with toasted richness."

This guy's Transformers costume actually transforms into a mini car.

Steven Spielberg is producing a Halo show scheduled to premiere when the next Halo video game comes out.

Eurovision: "Why?" and "Wait, what?"

The 10-year process it took to build out the World Trade Center Memorial...

LINK: Original photo by Justin Connaher

May 17, 2014 at 8:21am

5 Things To Do Today: Queen Victoria party, Armed Forces Day, "Project 562," Playboy Playmates and more ...

Celebrate Queen Victoria's birthday at Fort Nisqually today.

SATURDAY, MAY 17 2014 >>>

1. Metro Parks Tacoma is throwing a big birthday party today for Queen Victoria from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Fort Nisqually Living History Museum. Ah, that's nice. Hey, wait a minute. Victoria, daughter of Edward, the Duke of Kent and Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg, was born in Kensington Palace in London on May 24, 1819. Metro Parks is throwing a huge birthday party on the wrong day! The dancing, the songs, the re-enactors, the games - all on the wrong day! There's punch and cookies? Happy Birthday Victoria! 

2. Today marks our country's 64th annual Armed Forces Day, a poignant day to acknowledge, honor, remember and support the extraordinary and brave men and women of the United States armed forces. Throughout the Puget Sound, plans are well underway for some extraordinary events for the general public to partake in the spirit of Armed Forces Day and say "thank you" to our servicemembers. Here are four big celebrations.

3. Matika Wilbur, a leading photographer from the Pacific Northwest (Tulalip and Swinomish Tribes), has traveled more than 60,000 miles in the Western United States over the past year, acquiring extraordinary portraits and remarkable narratives in her quest to visit and photograph people from all 562 federally recognized sovereign Native American tribes. Her provocative work exposes the tenacity and richness of contemporary Native life, and seeks to encourage a shift in consciousness toward Native Americans. Tacoma Art Museum is honored to present the inaugural exhibition of Project 562 featuring 40 of Wilbur's Native American portraits, accompanied by stirring audio narratives from select sitters from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

4. Tonight's music selection at Bob's Java Jive includes the promise of noise rock at its finest with a killer line-up: Heavy hitters Giza just put out a new record; Bali Girls, with their avant-garde noise rock, are making the show a CD release party; Diesto, a prog metal band from Portland, are playing live in the KEXP studio earlier in the day. What strikes my curiosity most is the set by sludge rockers Ex-Gods, the new incarnation of Mahnhammer. Bob's booker Brandon Rowley says expect the band, "To not necessarily abandon all that was Mahnhammer, but to build off of it. ... But, really I have no hopes other than for them to fucking rock." 

5. Encore Boutique Nightclub hosts Hef's girls. Yup, Alana Campos (September 2012 Playmate from Brazil) and the well-rounded Jessa Hinton (July 2011 Playmate from Southern Cal) will be in the house handing out free signed pictures beginning at 10 p.m. It should be an entertaining night with Encore's reputation as an upscale party spot and DJ Phase spinning. 

LINK: Saturday, May 17 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

May 17, 2014 at 1:39pm

Beer Here: New Tacoma Brew is on tap at Engine House No. 9

Engine House No. 9 bartender Todd McLaughlin took me serious when I said need the new Tacoma Brew pronto. Thanks Todd!

What's old is new again.

In March, I mentioned Engine House No. 9 was in the process of changing its historical Tacoma Brew formula back to the original recipe created in 1888 by the Puget Sound Brewing and Malting Co. in Tacoma.

After Dusty Trail, the man, converted the landmark Engine House No. 9 into Tacoma's first brewpub in 1995, he and Douglas McDonnell brewed the Tacoma Brew, a salute to the original Puget Sound Brewing beer. Trail and McDonnell researched, tinkered and trademarked the beer, producing apparently a more pale ale version of the original recipe. Dick Dickens bought E-9 in 2002 and resident head brewer Doug Tiede used two hops in the Tacoma Brew formula: Czech Saaz hops, the variety used in the original pilsener, and Hallertau, found in Bavarian-style lagers. In 2011, X group (Asado, Masa) purchased E-9, with Shane Johns running the kettles. For several years Johns asked ownership to steer away from the current ale yeast and convert Tacoma Brew to the pilsener recipe of Tacoma's past.

At noon today, Johns' dream came true. The new Tacoma Brew is on tap at E-9, as a Bohemian-style Pilsener.

"We're happy with this first batch," said E-9 bartender Todd McLaughlin, who knows his beer. "It's a bit too sweet for our liking. We'll have it dialed in by the second batch."

Tacoma Brew is now crisp and bitter, with a dry to medium-dry finish and yes, a Pils malt sweetness. It's also bubbly in the back of the mouth.

It's perfect for warm days on E-9's front porch.

About this blog

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

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