For help answering these questions, I turned to the wisdom of the Internet and discovered that parenting websites will tell you exactly what you should be doing every week of your life. For example, the experts at What to Expect.com explain that “at six weeks, your [Seattlite] is getting a firm grasp on life.” At first I felt a little panicky because having a “firm grasp on life” seemed awfully ambitious for someone with only six weeks under his belt, but then I realized they were being literal. As in, I should be figuring out how to grasp things. With my hands.
That’s it? Piece of cake! I can totally grasp things with my hands. Heck, I can even do more than that: I can grasp things, and pay for things, and dress myself, and talk to people and walk around. So if grasping things is the expectation, then I’m way ahead of where I need to be. Whew!
Speaking non-literally, though, I do actually think I’m starting to get a grasp on life here in Seattle — with “starting” being the key word. I don’t always need GPS when I drive; my weekly routines are beginning to gel; I feel like I can say that I actually have friends here instead of just acquaintances. And those friends are helping me get a grasp on other important aspects of Seattle life, such as brunch and bookstores and shopping and bike polo . . . .
|I met Matt (a friend of a good friend in DC) for brunch at Oddfellows Cafe in the Capitol Hill
neighborhood. A packed and popular brunch destination, the food was good but the service
very slow and inattentive.
|After brunch Matt (who is a lawyer and aspiring fiction writer) walked me over to another
Capitol Hill institution: the Elliott Bay Book Company.
|Oh yes. Anyone who thinks that coming to this bookstore is one of the first “must dos”
for a newborn Seattlite is clearly friend material.
|My contribution to the local independent bookstore economy:
purchasing one copy of this send-up of Seattle culture.
|On Friday I went with Colin (a friend from law school) to Totokaelo.
It’s a gorgeous shop with very high-end designer clothing. One look at their
website suggested that I was neither cool enough nor rich enough to shop there, but Colin
convinced me to check out their annual summer sale anyway.
It was the most fun I’ve had shopping for clothes other than suits in years
(and my bank account is definitely going to feel the consequences…).
Boots from Maison Martin Margiela,
Sweater by A.P.C, and
Skinny jeans by Acne.
(I got a couple more summery
tops too, in case it ever warms up.)
|Raincoat by Jill Sander
Probably the coolest piece of clothing
I own, and the best constructed.
I justified the splurge on the fact
that once summer ends I’ll likely be
wearing it every single day.
|With a hood and bell-shaped
silhouette, it’s the exact opposite
of what I normally go for
in a coat — but why not try
something new for a change?
But what about bike polo, you ask? Is that even a thing? Turns out yes, it is a thing — invented in Seattle and exported to the rest of the world, bike polo is what it sounds like: a bunch of guys (I didn’t see any women) on their bikes playing polo on a hard-top tennis court. It was very scrappy, with improvised equipment (the mallets appeared to be broom handles with plastic cups on the end) and incredible bike dexterity. Check out the video:
Oh, and consider this: All of these activities happened on the same half block. The cafe, clothing store and bookstore are adjacent to each other in the same row of buildings, and the bike polo court was in a park across the street.
|Left to right: Elliott Bay Book Company, Totokaelo, Oddfellows Cafe|