Wednesday cat: Mephista

Mephista on bed
photo by Ballard Avenue

"Yes, I'm ready for my close-up now."

A century of imperialism

Ballard City Hall
Ballard City Hall

On May 29, 1907, the Ballard city bell, located in the tower above Ballard City Hall, rang for the last time as Ballard was swallowed up by that larger city to the south. Considering the joke that is their city government, it's hard not to think we'd be better off on our own.

All aboard!

4449 & 844 at Ballard Station
photo by Ballard Avenue

Here's another picture of last weekend's Union Pacific excursion train. In a better world, we'd see a few of these stopping at Ballard Station every day.

Home at last

42 slides home
photo by Ballard Avenue

The adults get into the national pastime as well. The always stylish Mike Wang (note the porkpie hat and Jackie Robinson's number) slides in home under the catcher's tag. Heads up play, Mike!

Friday cat: Elliott, the very picture of intensity

photo by Ballard Avenue

Or perhaps a bit of indigestion, we're not sure which.

National Pastime

photo by Ballard Avenue

Ah, it's springtime and the Elysian Fields are filled with the sounds of "Hey, batter!" and "We want a pitcher, not a belly itcher!" This lad shows good form as he fires one up-and-in. Nothing keeps the batter honest like a little high cheese inside.

Syttendae mai parade 2007

Parade kids
photo by Ballard Avenue

We're not much for breaking news around here, so it's about time for a picture of the May 17th parade. If truth be told, the camera batteries died about five minutes into the parade. Oops. But here's a picture of a very cute young couple waiting for the festivities to begin.


photo by Ballard Avenue

Oreo 1997-2007

Oreo the bunny went to “that big hutch in the sky” in January.
He (or she) was much loved and we thank all that helped feed and petted him.

The Youngmans

Big Steam

video by Ballard Avenue

Big steam railroading came to Ballard this weekend. An excursion train was running from Tacoma to Everett and back again. Union Pacific 844 and Southern Pacific 4449 led a spotless collection of UP passenger cars filled with happy riders. We folks on the ground were pretty happy about the whole thing, too.

Puget Sound kitesurfer

Carkeek parasailer
photo by Ballard Avenue

A twist on the cliché sunset shot so prized around this blog. This kitesurfer was having some great fun off Carkeek Park the other evening.

Friday cat: Frida lives in Ballard

Frida 4
photo by Ballard Avenue

Believe it or not, we have actual Ballard content today! Frida likes to sit on her cat tree and look out the window at Dibble Avenue NW.

NYC: Central Park

Central Park
photo by Ballard Avenue

Any more New York content and we'll have to re-name this site "Fifth Avenue," so we end our NYC sojourn with this picture of what is perhaps the most remarkable part of this most remarkable city: Central Park. This is the Great Lawn looking south towards midtown Manhattan. Soon it will be filled with softball games. Later in the summer it's taken over for concerts and the opera. But on this gray April day, it's just the beginning of spring and the red flag means you better keep off the grass.

NYC: Penn Station

Tracks 20-21
photo by Ballard Avenue

The worst train station is better than the best airport, something Penn Station proves everyday.

NYC: Our Lady of Pompeii

Our Lady of Pompeii
photo by Ballard Avenue

New York is full of little architectural treasures such as Our Lady of Pompeii, a Catholic church in Greenwich Village. Still jazzed over the Greek and Roman wing at the Metropolitan, we just liked the name.

NYC: Jacob Riis slept here

Riis hotel
photo by Ballard Avenue

Well, actually I don't think he did, though he could have. The Hotel Belleclaire was built in 1901. It's a nice enough place and we enjoyed our stay, but this view through the stairwell window was reminiscent of Riis' photos of Lower East Side tenements.

NYC: Friday cat, 4th century A.D.

Roman cat
photo by Ballard Avenue

Just around the corner from Monday's bit o' yumyum is today's cat, a 4th century Roman lion. He looks like he'd be bad news in an alley fight, that's for sure.

NYC: Pimp My Harpsichord

Pimp my harpsichord
photo by Ballard Avenue

Not only does the Metropolitan have great collections of art, they have a terrific collection of musical instruments, and your itinerant pianists had to stop to check out the ivories. The museum owns the oldest piano extant. We swooned, but the lighting was too dim to get a decent snap of a black piano. But the museum did have some lights up on this harpsichord. With sea monsters, mermaids, nymphs, and enough bling for any two downtown rappers, this harpsichord is the epitome of 17th century pimp.

NYC: Bootylicious

photo by Ballard Avenue

I live with a one-time Latin teacher, so we had to visit the new Greek and Roman art wing at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. It's truly something to see. The Met's collection is the product of centuries of plundering—excuse me, "collecting"—and they've got the good stuff. And some of it is just downright bootylicious.

NYC: Upper East Side mom

Upper East Side Mom
photo by Ballard Avenue

This was the next thing that made me laugh. This Upper East Side mom took little Emma and Taylor out to Central Park. She put them in the swings, rang up one of her friends, and spent the next 15 minutes chatting away while pushing the kids. She'd reach to the left for Emma, then to the right for Taylor. Left for Emma, right for Taylor, and never missing a beat. I should have taken some video of it but I forgot that the Fab Fuji has video. Sorry.

NYC: Hot dogs

Hot Dog Carts
photo by Ballard Avenue

I never gave a thought to how the hot dog carts get to their locations each day. Each morning a truck carries these carts down Fifth Avenue along with their workers. Every few blocks they drop one of each off.

Even with its noise, dirt, chaos, and attitude, New York can make you laugh out loud. This was the first "I'm in New York and everything is just too cool" moment of the trip.

Friday jazz

I'm still toiling away at the Photoshop mine, but for now, here's a video that will make you feel a complete failure. These kids are so young and so accomplished!

We're back

31st Ave cat
photo by Ballard Avenue

Well, we're back from our slam-bam trip to New York, Connecticut, and Vermont. To tide you, dear reader, over until all the photos are downloaded, edited, photoshopped, and posted, here's a picture of that charming 31st Avenue cat we met awhile back.