Sunday, November 13, 2016

No compromise with Trump's hatred

Since the election, liberals have been told we need to "empathize" with Trump voters, to "come together" and show "unity" with Donald and his supporters, to "give him a chance", or even to "stop whining".

Well, no. I'm not going to "show unity" with a small-minded person who denigrates women and minorities, threatens to deport immigrants (my wife is an immigrant, like Donald's) and wonders why we can't use nuclear weapons against our enemies. I'm not going "stop whining" about a guy who just hired a white supremacist as his chief strategist. I'm not going to "give a chance" to someone who's 2 *million* behind in the vote count, and falling further behind every day. In a democracy, the person with the most votes wins. In any other democratic country, if the person who came in second was installed as president, it'd be called a coup d'etat.

Similarly, I'm not going to empathize with anyone who voted for him. I'm not going to try to "understand" someone who writes graffiti like this:

Or carries a confederate flag to a veteran's day parade:

Or wishes Michelle Obama had been "assassinated":

I have no interest whatsoever in learning more about these people. Hillary Clinton's description of them as a "basket of deplorables" was absolutely correct. And the fact that these idiots' votes count four times more than mine is why we're stuck with a President Trump.

This is not a mentality you reason or empathize with. This is a mentality you fight until it is destroyed. Acquiescence in this case amounts to appeasement. I am not *ever* going to tolerate behavior like this, or the acceptance of it from others. If you voted for this jerk, then you absolutely deserve to feel uncomfortable by protests and "whining" for the next four years. Frankly, you're getting off easy. You're paying a very small price for voting in favor of overt racism and misogyny.

But the rest of us need to keep fighting, not just for liberal values ("liberal values" like, ya know, respecting other nationalities, races and sexes besides your own) but for democracy in general. The huge and actually underreported protests we're seeing now probably aren't going to unseat an illegitimate president who was installed against the people's will. But what they can do is start a movement to abolish the ridiculous electoral college that gives rural voters outsize influence. No American's vote should count more than any other's.

Not my photo, but this was an anti-Trump protest in LA November 12th. This is more than a few thousand people, folks.

In the meantime, I will never recognize Donald as president of anything. He has no moral authority, and was not elected by the people. The people spoke, and we elected Clinton. Every action Trump takes should be recognized for what it is - an undemocratic, authoritarian power grab. As such, he should be resisted at every turn. No law he proposes, no court or other appointment should make it onto the floor of congress.

It's going to be an uphill battle because the rural vote holds more sway than the much much larger city centers in this country. But we should all be writing to our senators and congresspeople telling them not to recognize any non-existent "mandate" by this presidency, and to oppose everything it does. No compromises. No appeasement. No "coming together" with hatred. We should show even less respect to this president than his supporters showed Obama. Whatever you think of Obama's policies, the people voted him into office - twice. Not so with Trump. I will show him no more respect than any other private citizen who also happens to be a racist and admitted sexual predator.

In the future, people will be asking what you did to stand up against this regime, and those that put it there. What will you tell them?

Thursday, October 06, 2016

Riding an ATV through the Bahamas (Carnival cruise ship excursion)

I've got another general cruise video in the pipeline, but the first video I've put together from my recent vacation is this POV of my ATV ride through Clifton Park in the Bahamas (near Nassau). This was a Carnival-booked shore excursion, although the same ride is available through other cruises and other lines. I'm sure you can even book it separately, if you happen to be flying to the Bahamas.

This ride was intense. I wasn't expecting it. I somehow thought it'd be a fun, fast but leisurely ride at 40mph through the Bahamian wilderness. And some of it was that, but a lot of it was really difficult off-road trails that were seriously off-road, I mean just a bunch of rocks and tree branches and walls to climb over, all while balancing on this 500 pound machine beneath you and trying to keep it from overturning. (One of my most dreaded instructions over our radios was "now get ready to climb the rock wall", which we heard about 20 times.) A lot of that didn't make it into this video, because it was nothing but a bunch of blurry shaking. As long as this video is, the total ride was about 90 minutes.

My wife and I were both drenched in sweat by the end of it all. But believe it or not, it was still really fun! My wife said it was the "wildest thing" she's ever done. (That's her in front of me, btw - I think she looks really cute on an ATV!) It was obviously really beautiful - I hope I captured some of that in the video.

We did have a photo op above one of the beaches (you can see a cut there around the first third of the video) and then we had actual beach time after the ride was over. I left that stuff out because it'd probably be a pretty boring video, and also I didn't shoot any of it. But the beach was really quiet and private, and my wife said it had the best water she's ever experienced. (I didn't go in - wasn't dressed for it.)

This was also my first-ever attempt at using a chest mount I'd just bought for my phone, and I really didn't have an opportunity for a practice run, nor could I even see what I was recording as I was riding. This was all in the blind with my phone strapped to my chest. Unfortunately, early on the phone flipped down without me knowing and also switched off, so a lot of the early trails are missing from the video. Apologies that some of the footage is a little too focused on my own machine - that was me leaning forward, which was unavoidable. I just feel lucky I didn't end up face down in a ditch! Still, I feel like it got better as things went on and overall I'm happy with the result.

I've got another video coming soon - it'll be more of a relaxing overview of life on a cruise ship. So wait for that.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Summer Vacation 2016

I just got back from my 5-day late summer vacation. As per usual for my wife and I, it was a packed few days, and I was worn out by the end. Parts of my body are still recovering.

I may do some separate posts on a few things, but here's what we did:

1) Walt Disney World
2) Our second cruise this year (on Carnival Victory this time)
3) ATV ride through the Bahamas

Disney World is pretty hellish at this time of year - I do not recommend it. Certain attractions were fun, but walking around in the 90+ degree tropical weather, in the middle of those crowds (seriously, don't kids go to school anymore?) really wore me down quickly. And except for our FastPass events, which you only get three of per day, we really weren't able to do much.

Incidentally, this was our rental car:

That's a brand new 2017 Corvette Stingray. Cost basically the same amount as a regular car, so I booked it. No idea why it was so cheap. But hey, don't question it - just do it!

I gotta say, driving around Florida in this thing did feel a little Miami Vice to me. (Yes, I know, not the same car. Same type of car and same color, though... and same surroundings. And Crockett did technically drive a Corvette through season one!)

Funny thing? Brand new car (317 miles on it) and the engine light was on the entire time we had it. My theory is that the last people who had it filled it up with cheap gas. Cars like this need premium, guys!

Another funny thing: Chevrolet had this exact same car as the featured car in the showroom at Epcot's Test Track. Same color and everything. At least I got to see the sticker price, which was "only" $58,000 and change. Really not too bad for a car like this! And I could drive this car every day; it was really comfortable and well-mannered, but a beast when I wanted it to be. I've always wanted a Corvette, since I was a kid...

The cruise was fun. I've decided I like cruising. I'll almost definitely devote a post just to that.

Video of the ATV ride is coming. Just gotta edit it together. I wore a dorky looking phone chest mount through the entire ride. But I got some cool footage.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

I have a new(ish)YouTube channel

I've started a new YouTube channel, so far mostly focusing on vintage computers, tech and games. This isn't my first or latest video, but it's my favorite that I've done so far (of the four or five):

I called the channel "modern classic" mostly because I suck at coming up with names, but also because I basically do want to focus on things (mostly products, admittedly) that I think have stood, or will stand, the test of time. That allows me freedom to cover a whole bunch of different stuff I like, but it should all tie together.

Check out and subscribe to Modern Classic here.

Incidentally, I've also got a long-standing YouTube channel for the stuff I put up as parts of blog posts here... you kind of get one by default. It's pretty random and a lot of the videos in it are just snippets (and some date back to near the beginnings of YouTube!), but if you want to look at it too, be my guest. I'll probably still use it for stuff that really doesn't fit in with the new channel. There are a few things in there that I wish I could move over to Modern Classic, but Google doesn't allow that.

Friday, September 09, 2016

PERFUME at Hammerstein Ballroom NYC 09/04/2016

This past weekend, Japanese electro superstars Perfume paid their second visit to New York City. And WOW, what a show.

Let me take a step back for the uninitiated. Perfume is still not very well known in the United States, and it's easy to look at them and think they're some kind of cheesy pop group. They are not.

Perfume describe themselves as "idols with artistry". Produced by Yasutaka Nakata of electro group Capsule, their sound crosses from pop to trance and house. But their sound is only half the story. Every one of their songs is accompanied by a visual overload of futuristic lighting design and stage effects, as well as incredibly intricate and difficult synchronized dance routines. All done in heels. Respect!

Think Daft Punk, if both members of Daft Punk were constantly doing a mix of synchronized hip hop dance, ballet and martial arts moves all concert long. In heels.

They're a true sensory experience like no one else. They make other electronic groups' live shows seem like a bad joke. They have literally redefined the skills required to entertain as an electronic act. Whenever I just listen to one of Perfume's CD's, I feel like I'm missing something. I don't feel like I'm really getting the point.

This is the point. Full-on performance art, just a lot more fun:

That's not my video - in fact that's from their 10th anniversary concert (and may be taken down eventually, so hopefully you see it first). That was shot at Budokan, which is actually a small arena for them in Japan - they often sell out stadiums in their home country. They are YUUUUUGE.

In New York, they've played Hammerstein Ballroom both times they've been here - a much smaller venue than they're probably used to. I saw them both this week and in 2014 - there's actually an official disc of the "WORLD TOUR 3rd" 2014 NYC show:

(also ripe for a record label takedown - enjoy it while you can. Then buy the actual disc.)

I really hope they give this week's show the same treatment, because it was even more visually impressive and it was also the last show of the tour. Drones, lasers, LED costumes, projection mapping, they threw the kitchen sink in there this time around. There are a few fan videos floating around on YouTube - I don't like to embed fan videos, but feel free to search.

I didn't write down or memorize the set list, and I haven't been able to find a good source for the show on the 4th. But here's the set list for the 3rd if anyone's interested - it should be the same or similar:

Cosmic Explorer
Pick Me Up
Cling Cling (Album Mix)
Miracle Worker
Next Stage with YOU
Medley: Relax In The City / Toumei Ningen / Spending All My Time / Fushizen na Girl / Twinkle Snow Powdery Snow / Computer City / Imitation World / Sweet Refrain
Baby Face (Performed with English lyrics)
Dream Fighter
Fake It
Jenny wa Gokigen Naname
(Juicy Fruits cover)
Chocolate Disco (2012-Mix)

STAR TRAIN (Album Mix)

I don't know a lot of their songs by heart yet so I was a little disappointed they didn't play the few that I do know and really like: Game, Party Maker or edge. (They played two of these in 2014.) But, it's a tour promoting their latest album "Cosmic Explorer", so most of the songs were from that. Otherwise, they played a few of the songs that made them famous, which I can't fault them for.

Ah, what the heck. Here's Party Maker again, probably my favorite version of it that I've seen, from the 4th TOUR IN DOME disc:

That's just fantastic. Have you ever even seen a show like this from anyone else?

At the show this week, there were a couple of long MC segments, as is common for Japanese groups, and this time it was almost entirely in English. Nocchi and Yuka-chan are both getting very good at English, and were even able to carry on a conversation with the crowd. A-chan is a little shakier - she's obviously learning but she had to recruit a Japanese-American member of the audience (his name was Ken) to translate most of her comments. This led to some unintended comedy as Ken often wasn't ready and even once admitted to "zoning out" while he was supposed to be listening. Nocchi, who was on his side of the stage, eventually had to give him cues to keep his head in the game.

I'm always amazed at how they can do what they do for hours on end. If you look at the set list carefully, and imagine a couple of long MC's thrown in, you can see that they do give themselves breaks every once in a while. But still - the amount of energy they put into a single song is more than most artists put into an entire show, and that's regardless of genre. And they barely break a sweat. And they do it, again, in heels. This point can't be emphasized enough.

I'm normally more of a rock person myself, but there's just no way to look at what they do and say "eh". They are probably the only group of any kind that makes me say "whoa, look at that!" whenever I see them. And that's true almost whether or not I actually like the song they're singing. (Do they actually sing live? Sometimes. Yes. Not always. The singing's not really the point.)

I'm really not sure how long they can keep this up - they've been around for quite a while now, and this has got to be physically demanding. They said at the show this week that their goal in America is to make it to Madison Square Garden (with all of us). Here's hoping they can do it soon.

ONE TIP: If they somehow make it back to Hammerstein, get tickets on the floor. Both times I've been in the second balcony, and while the sound is good (and loud) everywhere and it's a lot closer than you'd ever get to them in Japan, it still can feel a bit like you're watching the show from outside. Like most Japanese bands, they have no opening band and they start on time. So you don't need to worry about standing around for hours waiting - there was plenty of space only about 20 feet from the stage as late as about 7:45PM, with an 8PM start.

Monday, September 05, 2016

The Real Twin Peaks: The Great Northern Hotel

I'm saving perhaps the best for last - or at least the location I consider the most iconic of the show, as it closes both the credits sequence and opens many episodes, and it's probably the most picturesque of all Twin Peaks locations. This is the Great Northern Hotel, aka the real-life Salish Lodge & Spa in Snoqualmie, Washington. My wife and I stayed here one night during our visit.

No, this is not a still from the show - this is reality in 2016.

The Salish Lodge is a tourist attraction in its own right due to the Snoqualmie Falls it sits beside. In fact, while the hotel interior in the show always seems bustling, haven't you ever thought it odd how deserted the surrounding area is depicted as, and how nobody ever mentions the waterfall? Wouldn't you think that a waterfall like this would attract a bunch of people in and of itself? In fact, there are viewing platforms for the falls all down the cliffs here, and a giant parking lot for them with tourists running around all over the place.

While the show makes it look like this little parking lot in front is all the hotel needs, the overhead walkway my wife and I are standing on to take the photo above leads to the real hotel parking lot, which is far larger. The lot in front is strictly for valet parking. The waterfall and park have their own parking lot stretching to the south (to the right of the photo above). In other words, the whole area is basically one big parking lot.

In this scene, Audrey leaves the hotel and is immediately picked up by a waiting car.

I couldn't remember which specific door she walked out of but I knew it had to be in this area - luckily I got it in the shot!

In reality I believe this is just a door to the kitchen for the basic casual restaurant.

We had a lot of little Twin Peaks-like moments while we were in this hotel, like a large group of random kids yelling and screaming in the lobby for no reason, or the real estate conference going on in one of the banquet rooms, the attendees of which we called "the Norwegians".

That said, the interior and rooms do not look like the show - as you'd expect, since most of the show (including the pilot) was not actually filmed there.

Interestingly, though, our room did have a very similar layout to Dale Cooper's room.

Meta! Watching Twin Peaks at the Great Northern. (Kinda wish I'd gotten a shot on the iPad of the Great Northern to make it even more meta, but whatever.)

Overall it's a really nice hotel, and there is currently a Twin Peaks package called the "Great Northern Escape" available, so they don't shy away from their association with the show, but they don't do much to promote it either. Don't expect to find Twin Peaks merchandise in the gift shop nowadays (I've heard that you would have at one point).

Many of the lobby and conference room scenes in the pilot were actually filmed at the Kiana Lodge, which I posted about earlier and which served as the Blue Pine Lodge/Martell residence in the show.

For example, this great scene of the Great Northern's concierge area that established Audrey as a bad girl was filmed in this room at the Kiana Lodge:

The early scenes with the "real" Norwegians were also filmed here, although not in this specific room. (There's another adjacent to this with a similar style and artwork, but different ceiling.)

For the series after the pilot, the artwork and wood paneling was reproduced on a Los Angeles soundstage.

Well, that about wraps it up - I may just make one more post showing some more of the "town" that would make up Twin Peaks if it was more heavily featured on the show. (You see some of the towns of North Bend and Snoqualmie in the backgrounds of locations like the RR Diner and the giant log.) But this is the last real show location we visited. Hope you enjoyed seeing some of these and how they look today - hopefully we'll see some of them in the new episodes next year!

The Real Twin Peaks: The Sheriff's Department

The Twin Peaks Sheriff's Department is actually the former office of the Snoqualmie Falls Lumber Mill, aka the Packard Sawmill. They are literally across the street from each other.

Yep, the Twin Peaks Sheriff's Department is now the DirtFish Rally Racing School.

That said, it looks pretty much the same!

The green trim is now orange and the window shades are gone, but otherwise the building itself is fully intact, maintained and in current use.

As this entire area is private property and we weren't really supposed to be there, we didn't go inside. I'm not sure if the interior looks like it did in the pilot (the interrogation scenes were actually shot inside this building). I assume it probably more or less does, though - the overall layout would work well for a school.

This might give you a better idea of the lay of the land - use the big blue pickup truck as a reference point between these two photos:

That's the lone remaining smokestack from the Packard Sawmill.

Incidentally, while the show always gave me the impression that the Sheriff's station was on top of a hill with a road passing directly in front of it, in fact it's at the bottom of a hill in front of a parking lot with a single outlet. Often you'd see vehicles race in front of the station and stop, then pull out going in the same direction. That's not possible - in fact they were either rushing to or from the end of the parking lot!

Saturday, August 27, 2016

The Real Twin Peaks: The Packard Sawmill

The Packard Sawmill, which itself burned down in the finale of Twin Peaks season one, is barely recognizable - in fact barely existent today. It's one of the sadder locations to visit because only a single smokestack and building remains:

This was the former Snoqualmie Falls Lumber Company mill, and I mentioned in an earlier post that in an interesting Twin Peaks-related twist, some of the timber that used to hold up the lumber mill is now used in the shed protecting the Giant Log from the opening credits. So it all comes full circle.

(Incidentally, if you're trying to get your bearings, the two photos above are from similar angles. Look at the road in front and mountains behind.)

Funnily enough, the mill grounds are now part of a rally racing circuit.

The school itself used to be the mill office. (More on this building in the next post - it's a show location too!)

But yeah, the mill itself is basically gone. In fact, it was mostly gone already during season one of the show, when it was downsized into a much smaller mill.

The Real Twin Peaks: Giant Log

The giant log as seen in the Twin Peaks credits sequence is still there in Snoqualmie, exactly where it always was, but it looks quite a bit different than it did in the series.

While the series had it sitting imposingly out in the open on a cart on the tracks, the town of Snoqualmie has now built a protective shed around it along with viewing benches and a large iron fence. This has the effect of diminishing its stature, although it was probably a necessary evil as rain is the enemy of dead wood and even with the fence, kids are still figuring out ways to write graffiti on the log. That damn Bobby Briggs!

You can see that the log itself has deteriorated somewhat, but the telltale bark pattern on the left side of the log is still there, as are the holes for the 2x4's that used to hold it steady. It's clearly the same log; time has just had its way.

As for the shed, here's an interesting thing. Read this explanation of what the log is and why it's here (expand the photo; there's a bigger version):

The Snoqualmie Falls Lumber Company sawmill is the Packard Sawmill. In the lower right box there, you see that the timbers used in the building of this woodshed were recycled from the remnants of the old mill. So even the shed here has a connection to the TV show - this same wood may have been seen in the Packard Sawmill interior in the pilot episode!

I'll have more on what's left of the Packard Sawmill in another post.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

The Real Twin Peaks: Ronette Pulaski's Bridge

One of the central events of the Twin Peaks pilot was when a partially clothed and obviously battered Ronette Pulaski stumbled across this railway bridge the day after Laura Palmer's murder, then immediately fell into a coma. Their cases must be related, but how? Their fellow students all agreed the two girls barely knew each other. Ah, yet another piece of the mystery unfolds!

We stumbled onto this bridge by accident, although we had planned to seek it out eventually. But it is literally down the road from the Twin Peaks welcome sign - as we were driving, it suddenly appeared out of the wilderness in front of us.

As a New Yorker, I like to think of this as "The Ronette Pulaski Bridge" - that sounds fitting and familiar to me. Its real name is the "Reinig Bridge", and it was originally a trunk line meant to shuttle lumber from the Snoqualmie Falls Lumber Company mill (aka the Packard Sawmill).

(If you want to have a little fun with that map, follow the line of new trees where the rail line used to be to the north and see if you run across anything you recognize. You should find two more show locations pretty easily.)

Here's the bridge today:

Amazingly, it is in basically the same condition as in the show pilot 26 years ago. The same amount of rust :)

That said, it is now a pedestrian bridge, part of the Snoqualmie Valley Trail:

In person, it's obvious to me why Lynch and/or Frost wanted to use this bridge in the show. It sticks out oddly as a dilapidated, imposing, industrial structure in the middle of beautiful forest greenery.

Incidentally, while I'm sure it's possible to get the same angle and background compression as the shot from the show at the top, it's difficult. They were using a really long lens to make those mountains appear that close, and standing somewhere that I don't think you're really meant to stand. I don't have a long lens for my current camera, and I couldn't see an obvious spot to get that angle anyway. They were on the other side of the bridge, and must have been standing at the very edge of the riverbank. (There is a small beach on the side of the bridge I was on, but nothing at all on the other side - it's just trees right to the edge of the bank.)

I did get a shot of how the mountains look in real life, from the bridge:

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

The Real Twin Peaks: The Double-R Diner

Agent Cooper's go-to place for a damn fine cup of coffee and a slice of cherry pie still exists, and in fact looks basically like it did in the show. Its real name is now Twede's Cafe, formerly the Mar-T (or T-Mar, depending on who you ask) after an ownership change or two over the years.

Twede's is in North Bend, one of the two main towns that make up the "town" of Twin Peaks.

You will notice the "RR2GO" graphic above - in fact this is one of the few Twin Peaks locations that really embraces its connection to the show.

Some may actually find this off-putting - it's clearly a tourist attraction at this point. We were surprised that that was still the case, 25 years later. But the waitstaff told us they got Twin Peaks fans from all over the world.

BUT - and this is a big BUT - they do have a damn fine cup of coffee and the best cherry pie this side of the Mississippi.

What I'm saying is this is not style over substance - this place delivers in all the ways it's supposed to. Don't listen to those reviews up there - I come from diner country, and this place is great. I even thought my lunch was quite good - it's standard diner food of course, but I loved my pastrami sandwich (I did have to tell them to hold the lettuce and tomato). And THE PIE:

Yes, it really is amazing pie. My wife and I even went to our favorite local bakery after coming back just to make sure, and their pie IN NO WAY COMPARED.

The pilot episode was filmed inside the real Mar-T Cafe, on location as most of the pilot was. Obviously, that meant a lot of traipsing around the Pacific Northwest with heavy equipment, not to mention the framing and lighting challenges that seem obvious above. But if you were to visit the Mar-T Cafe right after the pilot filmed, it would have looked exactly the same as the show inside.

The whole place was pretty much gutted by fire in 2000, and then came back with a more modern blue interior with more seats and a smaller counter. That's what I was expecting on our visit. So I was really happy to see this:

In fact, it's now laid out and styled pretty much just as it originally was, with most of the same decor, right down to the wood paneling. (The wall to wall carpeting is gone, with a floor more of an homage to the later episodes - an understandable tradeoff.) There does seem to be one fewer stool - I'm not sure if the counter is smaller or there's just more space between stools.

This apparently was actually paid for by Showtime specifically for the Twin Peaks reboot. Lucky timing on our part! But it is a permanent remodel.

The Double-R in Twin Peaks was a set in California after the pilot episode, rebuilt there for ease in filming and transport costs, and consequently the diner you see through most of the series - while the actual Mar-T/Twede's Cafe exterior - is actually quite a bit bigger inside. It's styled to look like Twede's, but just keep in mind it is a set, lest you start wondering why certain things don't look quite right ("there are too many booths!" or "there's too much space in front of the jukebox!" or "why don't they ever show the view out the windows?").

We even felt like we got the full waitress experience - I'm sure our particular waitress is probably sick to death of hearing it, but she was a pretty good ringer for Shelly Johnson. Unfortunately the waitstaff no longer wear those 50's style uniforms - they should!

I bought this t-shirt on our way out, the same one you see standing up behind the counter in the photo above:

They have t-shirts in black and green as well, all with different designs. I liked this one the best. Unfortunately it runs a bit small, so it's probably just a souvenir now - wore it once and that's probably it. If only Twede's had a web store, I'd get another one a size up.

The Real Twin Peaks: The Roadhouse (and Bookhouse)

The Twin Peaks Roadhouse is one of those locations I almost didn't think of as worth visiting - it looks nothing like the show inside, it's been painted green since the show, and I somehow knew they were actually showing the back of it in the series. It was even called the Colonial Inn until very recently.

But when I found out that they'd recently renamed it the Fall City Roadhouse, well that cinched it. Now I had to go and get a shot of the sign:

The exterior still looks basically like the show if you can get the correct angle - this was my best attempt:

The exteriors used in the show were filmed a little further to the back (this is mostly the right side of the building; the back side is on the left), but there's now a gate and fence there that prevents you from moving any further. I'm guessing they used this angle both for the unpaved parking lot (the other side has a paved parking lot) and the fact that it hides the road out front, especially when filmed at night as it typically was.

Incidentally, the Roadhouse is actually on a corner intersection between two highways - I've seen some people describe it as "busy" but it's really not. There's not much traffic anywhere in this area. That said, it's not the little dirt road that it sometimes appears to be in the show - this is basically the center of Fall City, such as it is. (It's a typical one horse town.)

Here's the front of the Roadhouse, to my recollection never seen in the show:

Yes, it is actually popular with bikers!

I stupidly didn't get any shots of the interior (because it just has no relation to the series), but just picture your standard western diner/lunch cafe and you'll be pretty close. The food was pretty good:

That's the Roadhouse Burger with caramelized onions added.

The interiors of the Roadhouse were actually filmed in Seattle, at a place that was once a gay bar but is now apparently a dance studio. I didn't visit there.

As a bonus, the Bookhouse is right next to the Roadhouse, but it looks a little neglected these days:

The last pictures I'd seen of this place did not have the fences around it, but the fence on the left is the same fence that now prevents you from getting the full back view of the Roadhouse. There may be a way to get an unobstructed view of the Bookhouse, but I didn't find it and I was kind of afraid to go looking. (This isn't the kind of area you want to go climbing fences or opening gates onto people's private property - pretty good way to get yourself killed.)

About This Blog

This is increasingly not a blog about Alphabet City, New York. I used to live in the East Village and work on Avenue B, but I no longer do. Why don't I change the name if I'm writing about Japan and video games and guitars? Because New Yorkers are well-rounded people with varied interests, and mine have gone increasingly off the rails over the years. And I don't feel like changing the name. I do still write about New York City sometimes.


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