(note: I’ll have to start typing faster – just saw that Andrew beat me to this)
Seattle Times columnist Danny Westneat had emailed us a few weeks ago, trying to get in touch with some of our site members and commenters that had been talking about Wednesday Chess Night at Thompson’s Point of View. Today’s paper includes his column on the topic, and it’s an interesting take on the problems of one of our more fearsome corners and some background on the organizer of the event: “Uncle” Ray Wright.
He learned the game in prison, and gives it some credit for turning his life around and helping him stay clean for 9 years. And most interestingly, they have plans to move the games out onto the street this summer, hoping that it can help calm the overall situation and change the perception of the intersection.
Chess night is every Wednesday at 7pm. Get some catfish and greens while you’re there, and make sure to keep an eye out for the gas-can hustle.
The gas-can hustle is a variant on the “help me help myself” hustle:
– I need bus fare to get to the shelter downtown
– I need to get my car’s oil changed.
– I need to get to Tacoma (always seems to be Tacoma) to visit my mother/aunt/relative with cancer/heart disease/whatever. If you give me $1 I can get enough gas to get to Auburn/Tukwilla/etc where my brother can help me with the rest of the trip.
My favorite was when I was walking my dog and was twice asked if I had a gas can by the same guy. Not if I had money for gas for his gas can, but for a gas can itself. At least make the initial investment! I don’t usually carry gas cans while walking the dog so I unfortunately couldn’t help him out.
Interesting article, but the characterization of our neighborhood certainly wouldn’t encourage me to join them for chess… I wish Danny’d been a little less sensational.