The following is written by Wally DuChateau:
Hello, everyone! Guess who?
Yes, indeed: I’m baaaack. Lock the storm doors and order the troops to dig in. Here we go again!
Given the rapid growth of our suburban enclave, I presume many of you don’t know who I am. So, for the benefit of newcomers, let me simply say this is Wally and “Wally’s World” was a staple of this newspaper back in the day. I’ve been on hiatus for the last few years, working on other projects, but now I’m ready to raise a little hell again and, hopefully, a chuckle or two as well.
Unless the local mind-set has changed dramatically in the last couple years – and there’s no reason to assume it has – some of you will find my sentiments and philosophy a bit disturbing. I’m a child of the Sixties and I carry all the heavy baggage and warped mentality that entails. Politically, I lean toward the liberal side of things, especially given the egotistical would-be dictator we currently have in the White House. My musical tastes are quite broad, from current popular favorites like Miley Cyrus and Lady Gaga to country stars like Willie Nelson (whom I suspect isn’t much of a singer anymore) and I’m even fond of Sinatra. Literarily, I like Mark Twain, Hunter Thompson, and Tom Robbins, if those names mean anything to you.
Though I’ve been known to drift off the beaten path into Carbonado and Seattle, I spend most of my time in the restaurants and bars in the general vicinity of Cole and Griffin. That being the case, I’ll have much to say about the people, both living and dead, who haunt these places. To paraphrase Willie: “Night life ain’t always the good life, but it’s my life.”
I’m not generally fond of cities and try to avoid them. However, there are a few urban centers that I absolutely adore! Like Manhattan and the French Quarter in New Orleans. I dearly love what’s happened to Seattle in the last 20 years. It’s turned into a first-class capitalistic/cosmopolitan center. Nevertheless, I can’t be too fond of it or I’d be living there instead of my humbled little house on 400th.
I was born and raised in Enumclaw when it was still a small, isolated community surrounded by dairy farms that served as a buffer zone between the town and the rest of King County. Throughout my childhood, a family could work 40 acres of land with 40 cows and make a reasonable, middle-class living. (Perhaps lower-middle class.) The region’s main employer was the White River Lumber Company and, if you didn’t work there, you probably made a living serving people who did.
From time to time in these ramblings, I’ll probably wax nostalgic about those small town days, but I don’t honestly believe those days were any better than our present suburban sprawl. It was just different, that’s all.
And speaking of rambling, I tend to do a lot of that, as you’ve probably noticed.
Anyway, it’s great to be back and I hope you enjoy the trip.