—by Andrew Brawley
How do I even approach preparing an away guide to our rival city? It’s not that far away, so chances are we’ve all been there at least once outside of away game travel scenarios. Some of us are even former residents...some left by choice, some did not. That city is currently home to what is likely to be our favorite NFL and MLB teams, but also formerly to a hated rival NBA team that left for some town in the Dust Bowl region. Above all of that, however, is that the city is home to our biggest rival (sorry Vancouver, but you’ll always be in second place for that discussion).
The team with a minority ownership stake held by a game show host.
The team with the marching band.
The team with blinding kit colors and a racerback design.
The team that even non-Pacific NW supporters groups go out of their way to hate.
The team that is not worthy of mentioning by name here.
Rather than take the easy-and-biased approach and hate on the city with a major superiority complex, I figured I’d take an objective path and highlight the finer things that Seattle has to offer. Seattle and Portland share a lot of commonalities. Naturally, I believe that Portland’s offerings in the majority of these categories are far superior. However, I can say without any doubt that there are just some areas in which we’ll never be able to usurp Seattle’s throne. Below, with head humbly lowered, I submit this list of superior places to visit in Seattle.
- Like music? Of course you do, and in Seattle, there’s an abundance of it. So if you wanna buy some CD’s, head over to Best Buy. There are four locations throughout the Seattle metropolitan area to serve your needs. They carry a wide array of music, ranging from bands like Linkin Park and Disturbed, to bands like Korn and Papa Roach. They got it all. No Seattleite purchases music without going here first. Don’t skip this music Mecca!
- Ah, food. Over the past few years, the Pacific Northwest has become a haven for its innovation in the culinary arts. We are so lucky to have direct access to the pristine coastal waters and its glorious bounty. To sample the finest of Seattle’s seafood offerings, you should check out Red Lobster. With only a few select locations in the metro area to choose from, you’ll likely be waiting more than just a few seconds to get through the doors.
- Not everybody likes seafood, but everybody likes to try something new. If you’re feeling really crazy, head over to the Westlake Center Mall and throw down for some authentic Italian fare at Sbarro. Don’t be fooled by the other surrounding outlets in the food court area. This is the real deal. You’ll be blown away by the size of their pizza slices. Hold it next to a baby’s head...I promise you the pizza will be bigger.
- While you’re at the mall, you might as well do a little shopping. Disregard that pesky Washington state sales tax and buy some one-of-a-kind jewelry at Claire’s. Their wide range of accessories will make even the most cynical 12-year-old girl blush with glee. In addition to boasting a massive selection, they’ll even offer to pierce your child’s ears right there in the store. Share a bonding moment with your child as a highly skilled worker places a snapping metal object onto your child’s ear lobes and BANG! Memories for a lifetime.
- But this trip isn’t just for the kids, right? Mom and Dad need some cool new gear, too! When you’re done at the mall, head on down to Old Navy. They got clothes in all kinds of cool colors like red, green, blue, purple...the list goes on. And if you like words on your clothes, especially the words “Old” and “Navy,” boy are you in for a treat. You might never leave!
Since most of the TA have chosen to travel to Seattle in one large group (via a staggering 10 buses) to this match, they probably won’t get to partake in the aforementioned places. With that in mind, here are a few key points of interest to look at as they make the drive up I-5 to the stadium:
- It’s been said that reading is the key to a solid education. So for the avid readers out there, check out the barrage of billboards along the freeway to Seattle. You’ll learn all kinds of neat things about what Jesus has in store for you upon His return. Plus, the Tea Party has a few choice messages for you along this route as well. Pay close attention in towns like Chehalis and Centralia. Pulling over in these towns may lead to a message that is personally conveyed to you by the locals!
- Bus trips can be hard on the body, so it’s helpful that the Washington State Department of Transportation has strategically placed multiple rest stops along I-5 to assist in the safety of your voyage. These rest stops boast numerous amenities, but nothing can top the multi-stall bathrooms. If you’re lucky, you might find a bathroom with more than one working toilet. Consider yourself blessed if you locate one with an automatic flush feature and a hand sanitizer dispenser nearby. Before you leave, don’t forget to drop some coins into the vending machine, where you can choose from a massive selection of healthy snacks like Bugles, Combos, Funyuns, Cheetohs, etc.
- When traffic starts to clog and the road gets a little bumpy around Tacoma, put down your various beverage cans and cleave your boredom in half by taking in the view around the world famous Tacoma Dome. While you may not be able to see what’s going on inside the udderly majestic arena, there will likely be some cool activities going on outside. It’s never a bust at this place. This arena’s parking lot really racks up the outdoor activities like roller hockey tournaments, skate jams, motocross demos...all kinds of events that appeal to a diverse audience. But if you just have to know what’s going on inside, just read the sign out front, next to the freeway. As if Seattle didn’t already have enough cool things on its own, Tacoma (and its dome) is clearly nipping at their heels in the race for who has the coolest stuff.
Well I think I’ve covered everything Seattle has to offer. If you need more than this, you must be a high-maintenance person, because Seattle has it all!