Nisqually Earthquake | 20 Years Ago

Monday’s, September 19, 2022 earthquake of 7.6 magnitude in Mexico City reminded me of the Nisqually Earthquake.

Midday on February 28, 2001 the Nisqually earthquake shook the area with a 6.8 magnitude for nearly a minute at 10:54 a.m. For anyone that’s experienced and survived an earthquake of any magnitude, 60 seconds seems like eternity.

I can still tell you about my experience some 20 years later …


Any crisis management course or safety training I’ve participated in, the first step is remain calm. I generally mentally scoff at the notion. Easy to say, difficult to action. The fight or flight mechanism is triggered in each human, then chaos reigns.

At 10:54 a.m. on February 28, 2001, I witnessed how a small group of Americans react to the natural disaster of an earthquake. In fact, this was not my first either! In the late 1990’s I was in the Lynnwood area, closing up the Thrifty Payless Drugs Inc location when I watched a wave / roller of an earthquake towards me! That’s another story for another post.

I digress.

I remembered from elementary school on up to high school that yearly earthquake drill of crawling underneath a table, desk, anything to provide cover from falling ceiling debris. This conditioning was activated that day!

When The Earth Moves

At the time of the earthquake, I was working for Metropolitan Travel in the Meetings and Incentive Department. That company was located in the “Darth Vader” building in downtown Seattle. It’s actually the Fourth and Blanchard Building.

Coincidentally, our department was having our weekly meeting about the workflow we had on our agendas. It was a Wednesday, so we’ve had 2 days to work, and we have 2 more days to get anything done.

There was a conference room on the 13th floor – yes, this is one of the rare buildings I’ve been in that has a 13th floor. The conference table was ginormous, borderline obnoxious length and girth of solid oak.

I was listlessly looking out the floor to ceiling windows over a co-worker’s shoulder. Then?

I heard a loud BAM. My body rose out of it chair, and my knees uniformly slammed into the underside of the conference table. I knew immediately what it was, and my heart briefly stopped: EARTHQUAKE!

I stood up quickly, and with the back of knees sent my rolling chair outta my path like a shotput. I dove under the table for shelter. I saw the knees of my co-workers, so I grabbed their ankles and instinctively dragged them down to the carpeted floor with me.

My manager ran out of the room in the threshold of the stairway, then ran down them. WHAT?! I thought. Another co-worker, Sean, ran over to the floor-to-ceiling window that was actively bowing IN AND OUT, splayed his arms out and yelled, “Is this an earthquake?”

The rest of us pleaded with him to seek cover with us, but he ran out too.

I watched in absolute horror as the window cleaners employees holding on their scaffolding while the apparatus was bouncing off the building! Moments later one side of the safety ropes snapped as they clamored up the other rope to the roof of the building.

After a terrifying 60 seconds, it was done. The building was still swaying from the earthquake and the aftershocks, but the worst was over.

I implored everyone under the table with me to wait a few minutes longer to ensure it really was over. Needless to say, work was done for the day. I used public transportation to commute so I knew this would be a nightmare to get home.

I shrugged, Better than being here!

I realize my experience isn’t a harrowing escape of certain death, but it is my story and I did live it. Thankfully, I survived it so I could tell it. I’m more fortunate than others.

‘los; out

The World Changed | September 11, 2001

To most of Spaceship Earth, 9/11, flutters pass on their calendars as any other day, but 21 years ago …

The world changed on 9/11/01. And it’s a day I’ll #NeverForget either. 

I was startled awake by my wife (yes, I was married once) She said to turn on the TV because a plane accidentally crashed into a building.

“What the $&#%* ?” I thought. “Planes just don’t accidentally hit buildings.” In a fog of sleep, I turn on my TV at the most inopportune moment… The 2nd plane was flown into one of the towers! I couldn’t believe what I just saw. It was a sick joke. A gut-wrenching sorrow overcame me as I fell to my knees. All I wanted at the moment was to be there, wherever it was, to help.

I got up, and decided to get ready for work. That looked like New York City, and commercial planes which meant Metropolitan Travel will need my help assisting from our Seattle office in terms of getting people in and out of the area.

As I strutted back into the bedroom, my wife asked what was going on as she said the radio said this is deliberate and we’re being attacked. 

My sorrow instantly turned into anger. Now I’m pissed. In the shower, I cried. I promised myself and mom I wouldn’t cry after mom’s death but this was too much. The ride on the 311 bus was somber, and quiet. Metropolitan Travel had several TVs plugged in broadcasting the news reports. 

Shortly after my arrival to Metropolitan Travel, a corporate travel only travel agency, all planes were grounded. The direction we were given were to get rental cars, train tickets, and hotel rooms set up for our clients that were aboard. We were to work with them to get them home, while they ran passenger manifests to find out if any of our clients were on the planes; all four of them.

While at work, as I was consoling coworkers and clients alike, the World Trade Centers Towers fell down within minutes of each other. It was a delight for the architects of destruction and evil, but devastating to the rest of us. Those citadels of steel were pillars of strength. However the structural integrity was compromised by the impact damage of a fully fueled jetliner slamming into it, and burning jet fuel. 

Those images burned itself into my memory, as quickly and as hotly, as that jet fuel. In the wreckage and destruction, three firefighters raised an American flag that was captured by two photographers. It was so iconic that it still resonates with people to this day. Or shall I say, at least with me.

Reminded me instantly of the Iwo Jima flag raising. The imagery was so striking. And then, I thought, that it was symbolic as well. Like a phoenix rising from the ashes to be born anew, I knew that “We, the People”, would do the same.

The World Changed

For years to follow, I would honor 9/11 in my own way, and differently each year, while processing my feelings that I had that day. Another opportunity to never forget what happened. Not that I could, if I tried.

In 2015, I was in New York briefly with my girlfriend at the time. My only request to visit was the 9/11 Memorial, which she was happy to accommodate. The first couple of steps I experienced a deluge of emotion. My mind, body and soul were trying to process all my feelings at once. I’m surprised and kinda proud I was able to make through the entire experience without breaking down.

We Will Never Forget

So Seattle, what was your experience on 9/11/01? There are those on this planet that were unborn therefore didn’t live through this experience, and must read about it in history books or online. Sobering thought, huh?

I hope for those that were alive that day, please never forget those that never saw another day on Spaceship Earth.


The Bane of Bumbershoot

September 5, 2016 – A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, I loved Bumbershoot. I mean I would be so feverish for new music that I would eagerly anticipate the lineup announcement only to know which band(s) / musician(s) to scour the interwebs for! And it was all because of a girl. And like ANY story worth telling it’s about a girl …

It’s my bane of Bumbershoot.

Bumbershoot 2016

Bumbershoot is a synonym for umbrella. So when I deployed my golf umbrella to exit the #SapphireSled the other day, my mind was flooded with memories I’ve suppressed.

If memory serves, it started in 2009. The girl, aka #MusicalMuse asked me about my live music history. I was recently outta a divorce so I quipped my ex-wife literally hates music yet I loved it. Therefore my live music history was tragic to say the least. So she invited me to rock with her at #Bumbershoot – I’ve never been and I gladly accepted!

Not gonna lie, I was crushing on the girl so the acceptance was made more with my heart than mind. I don’t regret it, really, either then or looking back at it now.

The lineup was fantastic that year!

  • Katy Perry
  • Black Eyed Peas
  • Jason Mraz
  • Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
  • Modest Mouse
  • Yeah Yeah Yeahs
  • Franz Ferdinand
  • The All-American Rejects
  • Wale
  • Kasabian
  • Cold War Kids
  • Metric
  • Sheryl Crow
  • Matt and Kim
  • Janelle Monáe
  • De La Soul
  • Michael Franti & Spearhead

#MusicalMuse took pity on me so that pretty much meant I had carte blanche for the weekend. And I do mean, blank check. The first order of business was deciding which bands and musicians we wanted to see on each day.

Each day would start with breakfast, and packing up for the entire day, and brief discussion on who we wanted to rock. Personally, I was good with any and all bands leading up to the headliner. I just loved being around the girl.

One of the first day highlights was our Michael Franti encounter. I remember I had my Nikon D5000 (I named it “Nik”) in my hand, and I was visually yet mentally framing / composing photos while waiting for #MusicalMuse to return to me. I recognized Michael from the research I did, as he casually strolled through the crowd around the food vendors. I introduced myself to speak with me and subtly hold him up so #MusicalMuse can meet him.

Sure enough, my plan worked as I took a picture with her and him! She didn’t have anything to autograph much less a Sharpie pen, but she was ecstatic about the chance meeting for the rest of the day. I wonder if she ever thinks about it, or if she kept the photo?

I digress.

Rarely do you remember what people say to you, only that you remember how they made you feel. And for that weekend, with her, I felt the most alive than I had in a long time. And for that, I’m grateful. However, all good things must come to an end, including my relationship with her.

She broke my heart in the summer of 2012, just months before #Bumbershoot – so that left me the decision to go on my own or sell my weekend pass, stay home and sulk. It’s not very #keepdigging like to pout / sulk, so … I soldiered on as best as I could. I revisited the plans of years past, only running solo this time with heavy heart.

As you can imagine, I met many new people (one of which I still am connected with on FB!), listened to many new bands, enjoyed the music and fun in the sun yet … all with a heavy case of heartache. My soul couldn’t decide whether I only enjoyed this festival because of the girl or the music. I didn’t take nearly as many photos, create playlists to re-live those tiny moments, or enjoy it as much as I did in years past.

It’ll literally felt as if I was walking through a ghost town, with every corner of Bumbershoot haunted by a memory of happiness. My anxiety level was through the roof despite the smile and liquid medicine. I knew she loved Bumbershoot, so the likelihood of running into her with her new boyfriend and/or her friends was high.

  • If I did see her, would I engage in conversation?
  • Would I turn-tail and leave?
  • What would I say?
  • What would she say?
  • Would I lose my shit over the way it went down?

I laughed because she isn’t confrontational just like EVERY OTHER GIRL in the Pacific Northwest. It’s the passive-aggressive nature inherit in all as I’ll find out later in the dating scene. While I would have the maturity to manage a casual, “small talk” conversation, I knew she couldn’t or wouldn’t, so this imagined encounter would never happen.

If she was there, then I never knew. She would definitely navigate around me, and I’m certainly not shy. Partially to give her that opportunity to steer away from me, and somewhat to prove myself I can enjoy this without her.

Petty, I know.

But it was the only play I had left: the best revenge on exes is to be happy / happier without them.

Nowadays, and every year since I’m a DJ, MC, entertainer, and all-around good guy for Amore Events & Entertainment LLC so I’m on the lookout for new music, newest trend, etc.

This year’s Bumbershoot was no different. I didn’t buy a ticket or even request the time off from the warehouse. That’s my bane of Bumershoot. I won’t go back until I have someone else to rock with and to replace those heartbreak memories with happier ones.
My question(s) to you, Seattle…

  • Have you been to Bumbershoot?
  • If not, why not, what’s preventing you?
  • If so, how many times?
  • Are you rocking next year (2017)?
  • Do you enjoy the music, the movies, or peripheral acts more?

Until next week, be good like you should, and if you can’t be good, be good at what you do!
Mic drop *bOoM*

‘los; out

Arrival Unknown

Fun fact about me … I spent 20 years in the travel industry. I’ve discovered that my writing style has evolved over the years, sometimes blending industry jargon into my everyday self-talk.

I would generally write for the reading audience, with a portion of it as self-expression and recognition. Nowadays I simply write, and post.

The following is a throwback to the year 1998. The title is an expansion of an airline ticketing acronym: ARNK. It means “Arrival Unknown”, and it’s created when you fly into one city, yet fly out of a different city. The airline documents that segment as arrival unknown because they don’t how you’re traveling to that different city but somehow you are.

I hope you enjoy some insight into my earlier days of writing.

May 15th 1998

The incessant beeping of my alarm was enough for me to throw it in a dark corner of my room, never to be heard from again. And, no, I don’t believe in the “snooze” button routine. I dragged myself out of bed and went about my morning ritual. You know how it is- shower, coffee, etc. Basically, grasping the concept of consciousness.

Before I knew it I was on my way to work. Becky, my usual carpool person, was unusually chatty today. That was a good thing. My mind so preoccupied so much so that I wouldn’t have made a great conversation. Thankfully she picked this up and continued to talk, accidentally or otherwise.

What was my mind so indulged in? Conquering Mt. St. Helens, among the other mysteries of the universe. All I want to do is stand high on that overgrown dirt pile. But work had to come first. Ironically, one seems to have to suffer before reaching enlightenment. Or as Steve Miller would put it… “you must go through hell before you go to heaven.”

Today work was so horrible

Man, if it wasn’t one thing, it was another. Its times like these I need a beer. As quickly as it began, my workday along with the workweek came to a close sharply at 4 PM on Friday. Yahoo!

I jetted home, gathered my belongings, and took off. With enough food, and tunes I left the Seattle area with a vengeance! I started running down the road in my dad’s Rolling Metal Deathbox – a customized Ford F250. Little does anyone realize why it’s dubbed that name. Not for the occupants mind you. Oh no! Woe to the poor fools that gets in way and is flattened by sheer physics.

As the truck eased into freeway traffic, the roar of its powerful V-8 engine drowns out all of the warnings I received during the week. “Three hours of driving alone is boring!” and “You might fall asleep without company.” And my personal favorite was “Carpooling is always better.” Really? I don’t know about you, but with food, tunes, and with my own thinking the only thing to hear, you can call me Mr. Fat, Dumb, and Happy. I put this rig on cruise control and enjoyed one thing- a little slice of heaven.

Using maps, headlights, and a little common sense, I finally made it to Climber’s Bivouac late at night.

May 16th 1998

My tent was already set up by the graciousness of my unofficial leader, Kevin O’Bryen and his royal attendants. Thank god. Trying to put up a tent in the dark is… well same as trying to dress your significant other in baby clothes. It just doesn’t work and not a lot of fun. Too bad I didn’t sleep. The tent was set up on the snow, which consequently was the same as sleeping on a pile of rocks. Not very forgiving to the human back. No worries, though. Sleep deprivation does wonderful things. But that’s another story for another day.

Thankfully, we had an early start. The sleep-eyed crew assembled before the man, Kevin.

  • George
  • Beth
  • Rich
  • Angela
  • Sandy
  • Kathleen
  • Gail

And, of course, yours truly.

By 8am, our eager but inexperienced group set off to summit Mt. St. Helen’s on its anniversary date of explosion. Coincidence? Or irony? I’ll let you decide. I settled into “hike mode” and we were off. The usual trail chatter filled my ears and the trail grew shorter with every step.

I soon discovered there are two parts to this trail. The forest, and beyond.

I didn’t realize “beyond” included a region hikers call “above tree line”. “Above tree line” is a universal term to describe the area on the mountain in which little to no foliage grew, and of course, the boundary in which trees stop growing. Basically it was you, the mountain, and atmosphere.

Late into the trip, unfortunately, two from our party had to turn back. The rest of us trudged on. At this point my leg muscles were so cramped and knotted up I thought someone stabbed me with a letter opener in my thighs and left it there! I was invited to turn back with the other two. NO WAY!

Let me just say, that quitting, stopping, etc are words that do not occur in my dictionary of life often. I was determined. The rest of the group would have to pull my dead body off the top. Period. So I struggled on through HORIZONTAL snowing and gale force winds. My cement galoshes on my feet barely kept my locomotion going.

We reached a point about five hours into the hike called Monitor Ridge. The elevation at this place was 6500 feet. Not bad. But still not at the top which is 8300 feet. The weather was deteriorating fast, and I felt morale slipping a little. We collectively decided to return. Better safe than sorry. I like to think of it as accepting the better part of valor.

So I learned a new technique of traversing a mountain. Glissading- is the art of sitting on your rump or in my case my brain, and sliding down the mountain on the snow. Too cool.

We returned to base camp in no time. Wow. We were fast hikers as a whole, but up and down the mountain. At any rate, the consensus was to salvage the weekend at the campsite. Then it started to pour down rain. I thought to myself, “Is this an omen? Or just a huge hint to go home?” I left after cleaning up my mess.

To cap off the weekend, we decided to meet at Jack’s restaurant for a farewell-have-a-nice-weekend dinner. We parted our separate ways and I headed back to where at least I knew where I was going. Truly, an incredible trip. And as they say “Getting there is half the fun.”

My guess is the other half is surviving. You decide.

No fear,

Carlos Bayne

Travel Agent Extraordinaire

One Night In Fremont …

One night in Bangkok makes a hard man humble ~ Murray Head. However, one night in Fremont made for a memorable night that creates many stories. I was inspired by a business trip, team building task that launched into a birthday celebration of EPIC proportions.

Aruba 2013 – As I mentioned I was inspired by a team building task I was given while on a business trip to Aruba. It was a photo scavenger hunt around the island. You were paired up with your hotel roommate so that was Ben.

I still can’t recall if we won, or not, but the experience gave me an idea …

5 Year Plan

I launched a 5-year plan of birthday parties for myself, starting with my 35th birthday, and culminating with my 40th. This was the 3rd year, so this party needed to exceed last year’s which would be difficult as we dressed up as pirates to basically take over the Swinomish Casino and Lodge in the Anacortes area.

My friend, Cindy, and I brain stormed my idea of a photo scavenger but IN COSTUME for my birthday. In 2014, mobile phone technology has changed the digital photo landscape. Phones were cameras, cameras were phones.

So, I surveyed the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle – the single weirdest place that wouldn’t question a group of costume people running around gathering up photos of various objects.

I was happy with the 10 objects, so I was ready to return home to write questions, clues to hatch this event of fun.

One Night In Fremont

February 7, 2014 – Fremont. The day of the event, I drove down early to ensure that the 10 locations understood that my birthday party would be allowed into bars without static and/or paying a fee to capture a photo.

As anticipated, each establishment was receptive to my request.

My instructions were to dress up as your favorite comic hero, or if feeling creative, create your own superhero with a backstory.

I had managed to gather several friends to join me in this adventure: Alicia, Silk Spectre II; Jesse, Bryan, and Jason, Clark Kent; my Dad, Superman; my sister, Captain America; Alyssa, Bat Girl; Michelle, Super Girl; Scott, thief (?) and lastly, yours truly dressed up, Tony Stark / Iron Man.

Josie dressed up as Super Los, which I didn’t realize until much later in the year. I thought she dressed up as the Comedian to match Alicia’s Silk Spectre II.

This sidebar is worthy of a separate post.

I laminated the clue sheet and handed them out to the teams. Once they dispersed, I casually walked from the “start” bar of the High Dive to the “finish” bar The Ballroom with the prizes for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd teams arriving back with the correct photos.

The first team to arrive was Jesse and Bryan, both dressed as Clark Kent yet Superman’s S underneath their button-up shirts!

The second team to arrive was my Dad and sister, Superman, and Captain America respectively.

The third team to arrive was Scott, and Jason, thief, and Clark Kent.

Eventually, all the other players made their way to the Ballroom and out of the bitter cold night air. And then? We started drinking, dancing, and laughing, and more photos.

Next, it was more drinking, and partying. It was an EPIC night.

It was one of those Hangover movie type of experiences. Little did I realize this experience would inspire me to seek out Geocaching later that year.

One night in Fremont left a memorable impression on all of us.

‘los; out

The Kissing Game: My First Kiss

The other day, my love gave me another compliment on my ability to kiss. I feel I can be puffy chest, loud and proud, as this is not the first time I’ve heard this. I’m pretty good at the Kissing Game: My First Kiss.

Not gonna lie, I love the act of the kiss. In fact the first kiss with someone, to me, is the most intoxicating. There’s no replacing the adrenaline coursing through my veins, my heart pounding in my chest that it threatens to escape through my ribs, and then… contact.

MMMM, MMM, good!

Granted I’ve encountered a kiss from a girl that was … let’s just say, not as enjoyable as others, but still fun. I’m sure the same could be said about my kisses, but after the compliments I’m gonna be so bold as to state that it’s one of my anchor points of my dating game.

While practice makes progress, I like to think passion for a skill is a game-changer. As I said, I love kissing. It’s so intimate, sensual, and intoxicating, that I crave it. I breathe in the girl’s perfume, feel her embrace, and then her soft lips.

So I thought about my first kiss. And I certainly wasn’t prepared for it, either!

If memory serves me correctly, I was in the 6th grade. And it was the summer of going into the 7th grade. My gal pal, Kristine Staton-Santiago nee Albertson, had recently lost her mom to cancer which coincidentally my mother’s good friend. She had lamented she hadn’t had Filipino food since she passed. And somewhat jealous of my easy access to said food. My heart felt a pang of guilt knowing that she was right.

One afternoon I had the following conversation with my mother.

Los: “Hey Momma, can you please make me some Filipino food?”
Mom: “What’s matter, you? You hungry? Need snack?”
Los: “No, Momma. Kristine’s mom is gone, and she said she was missing her and her food. I thought it would be nice to cook her up some food then I would bike it over to her house.” 
Mom: “That’s very sweet of you, Caloy. How about this? How about you help me makes this food and it’ll be that much more of a gift?”
Los: “Ok, sounds great.”

We made chicken adobo, pancit, and lumpia. We packaged it up, and loaded it up on my 10-speed bike. Then I biked it to Kristine’s house, unannounced. First, she was pleasantly shocked by the visit, let alone with the gift of food.

She invited me into the house while helping carry the food in. She was so confused.

K: “Los, did I ask for this (in a curious tone, not spiteful)?”
L: “No, but I felt bad. I have my mom still, so I can have it anytime I want. And I figured you would like some Flip food.”
K: “Wait. You’re not staying to help me with it?”
L: “No, I’ll go home now.” I’m feeling uber awkward right about now. All I wanted to do was escape.

I know she wanted me to stay, but it wasn’t gonna happen. Speaking of “gonna happen”, I wasn’t expecting what happened next! She opened the door, but then stood in my way of exiting. She smiled, and leaned to kiss me, and hug me.

I was so damn stunned I was speechless. She laughed a little while she said, “You’ve never been kissed, have you?”

I mumbled, “I have now. I’ll be going home now.”

The whole experience kept replaying in my head while biking home. The more I thought about it, the more I liked it. Usually on the first couple dates with a girl, I am somewhat distracted by the thought of our first kiss.

Here are 7 mistakes that are made on your first kiss with someone (or someone new) by Cheyenne at – they are true to their word and hilarious to boot. Click here to watch the video. It makes me wonder, though …

  • Do you remember your first kiss? Did you like it?
  • Do you like the first kiss of someone new?
  • Are you good kisser? 

Lemme know, Seattle and Spaceship Earth, by commenting below. As always, be good like you should, and if you can’t be good, be good at what you do!

Mic drop *bOoM*
‘los; out

I’m Older Than I Think

Recently, I was promoted at work to Manager. I was anticipating that move. What I wasn’t anticipating was the move to Nights Manager for my warehouse. The crew I work with is easily 15-20 years younger than I am.

Again, I knew that once I was assigned the crew.

The other day I had an epiphany while interacting with a crew member … I’m older than I think.

Ever since I could remember I have been taught to seek out teachers, mentors, coaches, and more to glean information from them while they are in my orbit. I also sought out older folks (family members or not) because they are living history, they literally experienced some of the events that I wanted to know about.

“Experience is the best teacher, and the worst experiences teach the best lessons.”

― Jordan Peterson

I would work side by side with my parents to learn all they have to share about being an adult, life, and some of the mysteries they’ve solved. I realized quickly that once they are gone, that information and knowledge leaves with them.

I discovered I was always in the mode of learning, because I knew I couldn’t be perfect but I could strive for it.

However, one day I would be the one to be sought out for sage advice, answers to questions about procedures, and so much more.

One day I would be more of the teacher, than a student. My significant other asked that I accompany her son for driving lessons. I accepted the invite. As I sat in the passenger seat, I observed, and pointed out lessons I’ve gathered up over the 30 years I’ve been driving.

I suddenly caught my breathe. Three decades of operating a motor vehicle! I’ve been driving longer than this kid’s been alive. YEESH. I’m older than I think.

That day recently passed. You see, I was gifted an analog watch from my significant other. It’s inscribed on the back of the watch with a sweet message. The face of the watch doesn’t have numbers.

A younger female on my work crew rolled up to me to ask a question, I peered down at my watch to assess.

Her: You can tell the time on your watch?

Me: Yes. It’s an analog watch, I’ve been taught. Can you?

Her: It doesn’t even have numbers on it. What are those hash marks anyways?

Me: I mentally sighed. I’m older than I think. Those heavier hash marks indicate the quarter of an hour – 3, 6, 9, and 12. Furthermore, the other marks are 5 minute intervals, and lastly, the minute marks are the faintest. You honestly can’t tell me the time of day it is from my watch?

Her: No. (and she walked off)

I paused in disbelief. Rarely does anyone uses this technology, therefore it’s not often taught. I was really gonna but the shine on with the 24-hour clock because our work break aid is based on the 24-hour clock system otherwise known as ‘military time’.

I decided against it, and walked on.

“Knowledge is power”

Francis Bacon, from his Meditationes Sacrae 

Now that I’ve advance into my late 40’s, I’m adjusting to my newer role as a mentor, coach, teacher, and more. I’m older than I think, and that’s ok.

I’ve noticed that younger folks are seeking my sage advice, or my answers, or guidance on various subjects.

I usually my answer with, “It’s been my experience …” because as noted before, experience is the best teacher.

‘los; out

Sounders ‘Til I Die | The Story of Soccer, Strawberries, and Keg Stands

To truly appreciate this story you’ll have to know the background of how I became a Sounders fan, and my first away match.

This all started 12 years ago … You see my lil’ sister, Charrina Bayne, aka West Coast Playa [WCP], shared with me a story how she was incredibly screwed out of season tickets from an ex-boyfriend. Hence another reason he’s an “EX”. So as her big brother, I felt helpless to witness my sister in such pain. She loves soccer! The wheels of thought in my head got turning.

Just how much are season tickets for the Seattle Sounders FC? How the hell do you buy something like that anyways?

I called the Sounders front office naturally. I spoke to a representative. After several conversations, and contemplation, I was the proud owner of two season tickets to the 2010 Sounders season. My intention was to present to my lil’ sister her gift. Two season tickets for a year, so she can always have a wingman / wingman / co-worker, always someone next to her on her soccer adventures. This was her birthday gift, Christmas gift, and any other thoughtful gift for the entire year!

They even let her choose her seats.

So, they released the schedule in December I think. I presented her my gift. She was ECS-tatic! Then she looked at me emphatically, “Ever been to a soccer match, ‘los?”

“Nope, just a ‘hawks fan,” I answer flatly.

“Would come with me to my first match, and basically all the other matches?” she asks me.

Thinking, whicka-what? “Excuse me? That was my gift from me to you. I had no intention of attending any of those soccer matches.”

“Right. I understand that. But I can’t truly enjoy any of them unless my partner in crime is with me. ‘sides, you’re my big brother, I love you and I have the best times with you.”

Thinking, well hell! That didn’t do go I thought it would. “Oh, why not? What’s the worst can happen?”

Opening Kick, March 2010

Clad in Sounders FC gear, armed with my ticket, and WCP being my guide to match day, we arrived. She coached me thoroughly about the fun that is about to be had. I had no idea what was in store for me.

During the pre-match ceremonies, I pointed down to a crowd and section of people. “WCP, who’s that?”

“Oh! Them? That’s the ECS. The Emerald City Supporters. It’s the Sounders fanclub.”

“You mean, as in soccer hooligans?”

“Not exactly, but that’s close enough. They sing, wave flags, and truly support and love the Sounders,” she smiles. “I’m a member and cardholder.”

2013, three years later, after hella matches, I’m a full-fledged Sounders fan and soccer hooligan. Even though I don’t sit with the ECS, I don’t just sing it, but I BRING IT for every match, for every minute – not just the 90 minutes of match play either! Then again… when do I not?

One innocuous day, WCP asks as she stands at the threshold of my bedroom door, “Hey, ‘los. What are you doing on July 6th? Got any plans?”

Amazingly at the time she asked, I didn’t. “Not a damn thing. Why do you ask?” as I sit at my computer desk.

“Got an email from the ECS about the Vancouver away match. Bus ticket and match ticket is 85 bones each. Wanna rock that up?”

“HELLS TO THE YEAH!” Honestly, all I heard was an international soccer match (Bucket List item) that involved a chauffeur / designated driver and it’s the Sounders.

“Think Dad wants to rock up too?” she explores.

“Of course,” I reply.

July 6, 2013.

Match day, Away Match versus Vancouver Whitecaps. Now WCP thoroughly coached me for weeks about expectations, etc. She’s really amp’d about this adventure, I can tell.

Once again, clad in Sounders gear, we arrived to Northgate Park and Ride hella early. We posted up at the Five Guys Burgers knowing that we needed to nosh on something for this EPIC bus adventure we were about to embark on.

We walk over. Thinking now with two versions of myself on my shoulders… Angel Carlos says, “Ok. Now be a good boy. Don’t overindulge in drinking, be polite, be humble, and keep to you…”

The Devil Carlos strolls up to Angel Carlos, throat punches him and kicks him off. “Yeah right! Drink like a bastard, be loud and proud, chase after breezies, and I might think about keeping you from being injured, maimed, killed, mugged, or arrested!”


A smirk washes over my face, it’s a devilish grin my sister knows oh-too-well. WCP’s eyebrows furrow, “Lamp (her nickname for me, that’s even a longer story!), what are you thinking about?”

“Oh? Hm. Nothing,” I casually reply.

“Oh, fuck. We’re all in trouble, aren’t we?” WCP cries.

“If we’re lucky! Look at it this way, you only live once but if you do it right… that’s all you need, baby!” I punch the air for dramatic flare.

WCP sighs, “Famous last words.”

[Later. In the Park & Ride]

A couple of players roll up to me. “Hey, aren’t you the drunk guy that has seats behind us?”

I shrug, “Depends.”
The 2nd guy, “He sits in our row, jackass.”
I thrust out my hand, “I’m Carlos, by the way. Who are you two?”
“I’m Ben. This is ‘drew. Andrew that is.”

I have a good feeling I’ll be seeing these guys again in not in the same sobriety state. Dad, WCP, and I scan the parking lot.

We need to figure out which bus will have one of those kegs of beer to supplement the 6 pack we have of Fremont Summer Ale. We are giddy as school children as we board the Rosales #10 bus.

WCP and I think this is ironic [as in the song Isn’t It Ironic, not funny ha-ha] because we recently made a drinking game about Rosales, the soccer player, for home matches and whenever he hits the pitch [again, another story for later]

The bus starts rolling down the highway for a scant minutes when we realized ALL THE BUSES HAVE KEGS! Sweet mother of Jesus, we’re in trouble. Then the cooler of margarita mix. Hm. Let the drinking begin.

And then Jell-O shots. And food was passed out and shared with the riders.

Oy. More beer (No Equal) in my red Solo cup. I fill you up. Oh, and you need a shot of Jameson into that, sir. WTF, poured from a Cuervo bottle that’s crossed out with a Sharpie. Oh my god, this is hilarious. Cupcakes are given, then Salvadorian bites to nosh on.

I stammer, Where are we?

Lynnwood, ‘los.

Oh, you need some strawberry moonshine, ‘los. I do? Singing erupts! Pick me, pick me! I know the words and loud and proud too.

I’m packing a major buzz already. I can’t feel my face, or lips.

So, ‘los … wanna a strawberry that’s been soaking in moonshine foreverness. Why the f not? I’m in this deep right? Go EPIC or go home! Or alternatively, go EPIC, then go home. A maniacal laughter erupts out of me.

I peer over to WCP and Dad who are sitting together.

I mentally ask, Where are we? I survey the landscape and determine we’re outside of Marysville, yo.

Hm. We’re stopping… at a rest stop. There’s a mass exodus for the door. Is the son-of-a-bitch on fire?

I leave the bus, too. The ECS gathers it’s troops around the three kegs (one from each bus) They declare it’s time for keg stands!!

Well… I haven’t done one of those in my lifetime. Wonder how I sign up? I bet if I participate / assist with the first couple they’ll naturally assume I want to do the same.

It worked!

As I’m hanging upside down wondering if the five men it took to stabilize me, how am I gonna do this? F it. I’ll figure it out or die trying. I draw my brew, and more brew and more. Finally, I couldn’t hold myself anymore, plus drink more upside down.

I stand on my feet triumphantly. I raise my arms, WIN FOR ME! The crowd applauses the performance.

Sweet. Where’s Dad? Where’s WCP? Did anyone get photos of that epic behavior? I find Ben and Andrew amongst the crowd of drinking, singing, smoke bombs (is there a riot?) The bus captains start barking out to board the bus. CHURCH ON THE MOVE!!

I stumble onboard. It was time for a self-interview with my life-proof camera that I called Lumi. I didn’t realize that Devil Carlos had done this until the next day as I was downloading the videos and photos from the experience.

The ECS has managed to cattle car us drunk monkeys onto buses not only once, but twice. Our Rosales bus captain asked, no one left behind. Or if you aren’t here, raise your hand.” He grinned. He realized half-way that he didn’t know where he was going with that.

More singing
More drinking
More music

We’re at the border in a seemingly surprising amount of time. Happens when you’re having fun and not paying attention. The music stops, the drinking stops, the singing stops. Time to be serious!

[BC Place]

All the buses managed to clear customs just fine. We arrive at BC Place without incident. In fact, all of us entered BC Place without a hitch. I tip my cap to the ECS management. Good on you, ECS.

Then the match is finally here! We came to drink, we came to sing, whoa, whoa… Whitecaps score almost immediately. Shit. 1-0. C’mon Seattle!

[Beyond half time]

Whitecaps score again, 2-0. Doesn’t seem to diminish the spirit or the singing of the ECS.

Love these guys. I hope they realize there is a match going on. Dad, WCP and I do the same: we sing, we drink, we cheer. With keep digging mentality, we will show ECS and Vancouver we can rock this shit for more than just 90 minutes! We’re gonna do this the whole trip!

[End of the match – Sounders lose]

Kinda of bummer, but we trudge back onto the bus. After all that I described above, it’s no wonder I’m about to have a chunder shower (get sick) Mostly a migraine that threatens to rip my skull into two. GRRR! That’s really crunking up my high, yo. Then I get nauseated from the monster headache. BLAH! We get to the border quickly, I need air. The bus captains have a concerned look on their faces.

“Are you gonna be alright?”
“No,” I grunt flatly. Don’t think they were expecting that!
“Are you gonna be sick?”
“Yes.” I grab the bus garbage can and inch my way to the bus entrance. I realize the shitstorm that’ll happen if I depart the bus sooner than instructed but my body has different ideas.

I spy with my eye the bus driver Pam walking back. Shit. I’m gonna be aisle salmon in a hot second if I don’t return to my seat, which I did successfully. By some miracle or the work of my dearly departed mother, I made through Canadian Customs without so much as an eyebrow raise. Or maybe but I was shit-hammered (highest level of intoxication possible)

On the bus, an angel of mercy gave my lil’ sister some Advil as well as I. I passed out for a grip, then woke up because we were arriving at the Northgate P&R some 12 plus hours later.

If I wasn’t a Sounders FC fan or ECS fan before the trip, I definitely am now! The feeling of community, warmth and concern was outright, which I can say is something I’ve searching for quite some time.

Some ECS members that were on the bus reached out the next day to check in on good old Carlos, to see if I was aiight. I was thankfully.

One ECS post was, “If you thought that was epic, then I guess we’ll be seeing you on the Portland bus to chop some Timbers huh?”

Eternally grateful,
Carlos Bayne

Night Moves: Juneteenth

I am still trying to wrap my head around the weekend’s events at my place of employment. Two of my team mates, in addition to myself, were selected as Department Managers.

Tim C, Food Court Manager; Alex L, Foods Manager; and yours truly, Merchant Nights Manager.

June 17, 2022 – On Friday, I celebrated 20 years of continuous employment at Costco. I was given a card of acknowledgment by my General Manager. I graciously received it and paused. I thought, it’s really been two decades already?

I won’t drone on about my humble beginnings, but lock my eyes forward on this new task.

Speaking of humility, I’m grateful to have the continued support of my warehouse. In a watershed moment of my life in 2015, I was given some career advice by two men that I consider my mentors.

“Carlos, if you don’t have a team that supports your decision, that’s actively cheering for it, then you won’t be successful.”

~ Chris Hendrix, and Peter Gruening

I was humbled over the weekend as the announcement was made on Saturday morning. The team is excited about my new role within the walls of the warehouse. I was congratulated by many persons, which I thanked each person as they did.

Management is excited about my new role, as well. I have the resources, and support to make this successful.

My start date is tonight, June 20, 2022.

Since Juneteenth falls on Sunday (6/19), the federal government observes it today. What is that exactly, you ask?

Juneteenth is a federal holiday in the United States commemorating the emancipation of enslavedAfrican Americans. Juneteenth marks the anniversary of the announcement of General Order No. 3 by Union Army general Gordon Granger on June 19, 1865, proclaiming freedom for enslaved people in Texas.[7] Originating in Galveston, the holiday has since been celebrated annually on June 19 in various parts of the United States, often broadly celebrating African-American culture. The day was first recognized as a federal holiday in June 2021, when PresidentJoe Biden signed the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act into law.[8][9] The Juneteenth flag is a symbol of the Juneteenth holiday.

Juneteenth Flag

I’m grateful for the sacrifices done before me so that I have the freedoms I enjoy today, and I’m relieved that the enslaved folks were freed 157 years ago.

It’s amazing what you can accomplish if you’re free to do whatever you set out to do.

‘los; out

What’s That Smell: Call A Mechanic

One aspect of car ownership is repairs and fixes – no one really likes them because they tend to be expensive, and you couldn’t do the work yourself if you wanted to.

Most people, at least Americans, don’t want to do much more than gas and go with the occasional oil change thrown in.  Especially when I was young and brash with my brand new car, a 1997 Honda Civic. When I ask what’s that smell, I usually don’t call first.

The following is the funniest car service call I’ve had about any vehicle I’ve owned and/or operated.

What’s That Smell?

What’s That Smell: Call A Mechanic

Prior to the turn of the century, I prided myself on my ability to do my oil changes, and other regular maintenance tasks. There was one however, that I simply couldn’t figure out.

One summer day, I got a whiff of fuel, and thought, What’s that smell: call a mechanic – before it’s too late. I loved and cared for my car because this was the first one that was brand new, no one owned it and I’m making payments towards it! I was really #adulting at this point!

For weeks I’d been smelling this gasoline like smell every time I accelerated or braked. I thought for a hot-second it was a fuel line leak or the exhaust line. I crawled under, over, and scoured the engine bay. I put a piece of cardboard underneath it to catch the fluid drops – nothing! I gave up asking what’s that smell: call a mechanic. I was convinced it was a type of repair that would be covered by warranty so I call the Honda dealership from which I bought the vehicle.

I briefly described my issue over the phone with as much technical data and terms. I knew they wouldn’t guarantee anything over the phone, but had appointments open so we agreed on a date and hung up the phone.

A few hours later  after dropping off my car at the Lynnwood Honda, I received the courtesy phone call.

“Mr. Bayne?” the caller asks.
“Yes, it’s me. Did you isolate the issue?” I pressed.
“Oh, yes. We did. Do you want the good news first or bad news?”
I paused, “Bad news so the good news can help soothe it.”
The tech continued, “Ok, then. Mr Bayne were you aware that you had a bottle of fuel injector cleaner in your trunk?”
I literally had nothing more than and maybe one of item. “Yes, why?”
“Bad news is that it’s leaking which would explain why you only smelled it when you were on the gas or brake. It was toss it around the trunk as it moved around on the carpet.”
I frowned. “Ok, what’s the good news then?”
“The good news is that it’ll only cost one-hour of labor of $85 plus tax, of course.”
“Of course,” I repeated. “I’ll be there soon,” as I clicked the phone dead without so much as waiting for the usual salutations.

I literally paid someone to look into my trunk. I might as well have asked where do the blinker fluid go …

Have you had a funny and/or shareable car problem story? Wanna post it below in the comments? Let me know!

Mic drop *bOoM*
‘los; out

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