All posts by bremerton-beat

This Waterfront Is A Contender

Photo: Kristine Paulsen / Seattle Post-Intelligencer

The P-I ran a preview for next month’s Urban Waterfront Revitalization Conference on Thursday.

(For more on the convention that promises to draw officials near and far by the ferry-load to discuss developing waterfronts for residential use, click here.)

Not surprisingly, the photo accompanying the story was of Harborside Fountain Park. The photo looks similar to a photo the P-I ran in a story on Bremerton in June.

The P-I’s story met with approval from the city’s public relations firm. In an e-mail to Mayor Cary Bozeman, Bill Virgin’s story “hits all the right notes,” one of the city’s hired media men wrote, and suggested the city post a link on its Web site

Mayor Cary Bozeman hopes that the conference will become an annual event for economic development professionals to gather. And he hopes Bremerton will become the poster child for smart, sustainable shoreline development.

In his piece, Virgin brushes up against the question that interests me most about waterfront development. It used to be waterfronts were known for shipping and receiving and producing useful things. So what changed? Does it have something to do with globalization, the loss of manufacturing and industrial jobs and narrowing the U.S. economy into management and service industry jobs? Or have advances in technology reduced the need for industry to hog shorelines? Has disappearing waterfront industry pushed this interest in redeveloping waterfronts for residential and recreational purposes? We still need to import our Hannah Montana-brand home pregnancy tests and American flag lapel pins from places like China, and occasionally export a few things, and waterfronts would serve that purpose well. Is this push to make waterfronts “people friendly” a signal for some kind of larger economic shift in this country?

These questions may have already been answered, and I just wasn’t paying attention.

Bremerton, The Great Satan

Please,  Port Orchard, Don’t Hurt ‘Em

For those who haven’t been following the sideshow to the larger SKIA issue, the Port Orchard Independent has picked up the torch and blurred the line between the press and insane chamber of commerce posturing.

Read here the latest volley, an unsigned editorial called, “It’s about time we stood up to Bremerton.”

It’s entertaining reading, in a pandering sort of way, but I think those who have been producing these items are painting themselves into a corner.

The imagery has become grim, and in the latest installment, metaphorical violence is being advocated. I half expect the next editorial to have the headline: “Bremerton must pay with its blood”

“And to carry the playground bully analogy to its logical conclusion, the feeling here is that a retaliatory punch in the nose might be just the thing to persuade our neighbors across Sinclair Inlet that Port Orchard simply isn’t going to take any more of this guff.”

The editorial later urges P.O. Mayor Lary Coppola, who publicly has said cooler heads should prevail, to “(take) off the gloves and fight back.”

The problem with all this isn’t journalism ethics or an over-reliance on cliches.

(I counted 10 cliches in the last editorial on this matter – I didn’t bother to count with this one, however, this line stands out as nearing the hackneyed saturation point: ” … if the bullies over there get the idea Port Orchard will simply roll over and decline to fight for its rights on the smaller tract, how long will it be before they go for all the marbles?”)

The problem is: Where do you go from here?

The next logical step is advocating actual violence, urging Port Orchard residents to board the foot ferry with pitchforks and torches and hunt down the Bremerton monster.

But in order to whip people into a frenzy where they would actually physically assault Bremertonians, who might not even notice their attackers are actually from Port Orchard takes more than just a rather dry issue like SKIA. Remember, we look deceptively similar, and our religions and languages are almost indistinguishable.

I have a solution.

It’s a three-step process, but it just might work.

First, compare Bremerton to a terrorist state. You’d be surprised how much mileage one can get out of this. Talk about how Bremertonians hate Port Orchard’s freedom. Tell the residents of the charming town, with a great downtown, that they are perfect and invincible, and the only way they could miss out on government largess is because they were stabbed in the back.

Additionally, emphasize all the hardships of living in Port Orchard. The famine, the disease, the seagulls, and blame Bremerton.

Second, compare Bremerton to Satan. Tell the people of Port Orchard that Satan is in Bremerton, that tunneling under the city opened a portal to hell, and it’s too late for Bremerton to save itself so it must be cleansed by fire.

Third, require all Port Orchard residents to tattoo “P.O.” on the foreheads. That way they can tell who doesn’t belong.

If anyone questions this plan, declare them traitors and “Bremerton lovers” then disappear them and their whole families.

That ought to keep them in line.

Bremerton Steamed Up By Pastiegate

Until recently, Barista’s Coffee featured prominently pastries and pasties. Now it’s just pastries. Sort of.

That is, without claiming a “wardrobe malfunction,” baristas at the coffee drive-thru at Sixth Avenue and Naval Avenue wore pasties, which are defined by Wikipedia as “adhesive coverings applied to cover a person’s nipples.”

You’d think it was Janet Jackson’s mammary glands on display during the Super Bowl the way some media outlets have been chasing this rather tired, trite story on what is essentially a marketing ploy.

The dustup started when the coffee shop recently went “all pastie, all the time” Monday through Friday — and advertised as much on its reader board, which features a scantily clad hula girl with a great big smile.

City officials and police on Wednesday told the owner that pasties broke the law. Dress more modestly, or face the fire, they said.

The owner, Chris Tibbs, said his employees requested the new uniform protocol. He believes the city’s actions were heavy-handed and he immediately began shopping the story to local media, including the Kitsap Sun.

And most of us were all too eager to strike up a conversation about the finer points of anatomy and undergarments.

In his defense, Tibbs said the pasties worn by employees were “about the size of my hand” and are really “stringless bikini tops.”

(Not that I really have to, but I should mention that these employees are young women.)

The practice of stripping down to compete in the apparently cutthroat world of caffeine pushing isn’t new to the area. Both Gorst and Belfair have seen the fight for tips turn coffee houses into something resembling the Moulin Rouge. And they weren’t the first, either. There’s nothing original about it.

Nor is there anything original about the media interest. Sex is used to sell cars, underarm deodorant and children’s dolls. Why not use it to sell coffee and the news?

The pasties violate two laws, the city contends, one ordinance prohibiting “lewd” conduct and the other a code regulating adult businesses. The latter is a civil matter, the former is a criminal matter.

The pertinent definition of “lewd,” according to the city, is showing a portion of the breast below the areola.

A report was filed the same day with the Bremerton Police Department, as lewd conduct is a misdemeanor offense. The shop was given a warning.

Later Wednesday afternoon, after Tibbs heard from the city, the barista on duty was mixing drinks wearing a bikini top, the kind with strings. On Thursday, the barista was wearing a tank top.

A city official said she received “several” complaints about the pasties, although she was not able to provide any evidence of those complaints, or an exact number.

However, on Wednesday, the shop changed its reader board to include Bozeman’s office number, apparently hoping to stir up the customers who prefer their coffee served by a young woman unencumbered by clothing. Since the sign went up, the mayor’s office said it has received about “five or six” phone calls in support of the city’s action, but no calls in support of the business. (The office received one anti-pastie letter. – Binion, 8/8)

In a 90-minute interview Thursday in which Bozeman answered questions about the city’s lack of action in the troubled Anderson Cove neighborhood, SKIA, a daunting budget season and a business challenging the city’s plans for the waterfront, Bozeman declined to comment at length on Pastiegate.

“I’m just trying to uphold the law,” he said.

Likewise, city officials did not make themselves available to be filmed by two Seattle television crews on the issue.

(Click here for the KOMO story and here for the KIRO story)

“We could have cited him, but we didn’t,” said Roger Lubovich, city attorney. “We gave him a warning. It’s not lawful, they complied, and now it’s OK.”

One City, One Passion … One Less Reason To Go To The Seattle Center

One of the saddest things about saying goodbye the Sonics is seeing remnants of the glory days and being reminded of the loss.

It’s kind of like hearing “Unchained Melodies” or “End of the Road” and thinking of that girl in 9th grade who cheated on you with some long-hair at a make out party. Totally.

Which brings us to this faded Sonics sticker, a plucky relic that lives on in a downtown Bremerton alley, like some kind of cave painting on the side of a French mountain.

If I’m not mistaken, I think this sticker came out the season after the ’95-’96 championship run.

If you notice, below, is a “Save Our Seahawks” sticker, another blast from the past. Unlike the Sonics, the Seahawks successfully blackmailed their way into a new stadium.

Pink Tickets For A Few More Weeks

Those pink plastic envelopes will greet parkiing violators for the next few weeks until new envelopes are bought.

The city has been considering how to discontinue the waterproof envelopes, which cannot be processed by U.S. Postal machines and require additional postage, which can possibly make a parking ticket payment late.

Read the story on the envelopes/sleeves.

The idea is to use a waterproof sleeve that holds inside of it a ticket and an envelope.

But as anyone who has tried their luck on the streets of Bremerton recently, pink still prevails.

City Clerk Carol Etgen said Tuesday the pink tickets (actually the tickets are white, the envelopes are pink) will still be arriving under windshield wipers for the next few weeks.

The new sleeves will transition away from pink.

“It’s going to turn yellow, I don’t know why, that’s what’s been ordered,” Etgen said.

The city is ordering the new sleeves, but because of turnover in the office, Etgen said she didn’t have final and firm numbers of the costs of the new sleeves.

Ferry Issues Getting Ink

Photo Credit

Are ferry funding issues gaining steam, or is it just hot air?

Today, two Bremerton-linked, ferry funding stories ran in the Sun and in the Seattle P-I, filled with griping about everything from fares to $7 ham sandwiches. Also, a plan mentioned at a recent Bremerton City Council meeting, to lobby en masse during the next Legislative session.

Read the Sun story here.

Read the P-I story here.

I’ve often wished I had a “fast forward” button, or, to make it easier, a time machine. I would like to travel into the future to see how many promises are kept, how many ideas come to fruition and to figure out if Bremerton will ever have fast-ferry service.

Anybody want to start a betting pool? Now might be the time to start setting odds.

Bremerton = Evil Pig, Port Orchard = Out Of Fashion Hat

Comes now,  another volley in the fight Port Orchard has picked with the city of Bremerton. Er, I mean, how Port Orchard is standing up to Bremerton hegemony.

Behold, this cartoon, featured in the appropriately named Port Orchard Independent.

Oh, wait. My bad. Actually, I found this cartoon in the pile of Bremerton Patriots that have accumulated outside my building door.

In any case, the point of the cartoon is clear. Bremerton is an evil pig. We know this pig isn’t the lovable, cute kind of pig like Babe, of “Babe, Pig in the City” fame or the hedging, insecure Piglet of Winnie the Pooh renown, but the voracious, rude kind of pig, as demonstrated by the slants over his eyes. SKIA, that stretch of property that has become a flash point between the two cities is represented by a cute, fluffy, if not slightly baffled, bunny rabbit. And Port Orchard is a hat that hasn’t been popular since the time of seal clubbing.

By pulling the SKIA rabbit out of the Port Orchard hat, the evil pig is … doing …  something … insidious? I don’t know what. Yeah. Anyway.

For further analysis on the cartoon and the issue of SKIA, read this story.