Tacoma Aroma

Dec. 26, 2007 at 5:53pm

Predictable List of 2007 "Best of..." Tacoma Stuff

Including a bonus "Best of..." from the future!

'Tis the season for retrospective and futurospective lists of "bests", "mosts" and "tops" to utter forth from the news media and surely local blogs like this one. To save them all the effort the Aroma is publishing the following list sure to put all other Tacoma-related lists to shame.

Best Outburst Not From Tom Stenger
Atlas Foundry

Most Loveable Loser
Marty Campbell

Best Pedestrian Bridge Not Stuck in the Hylebos Position
Murray Morgan

Most Violent Occurance to Cheer About Not on the Evening News
Dockyard Derby Dames bouts

Best Opening Written by a Local Novelist
(a.k.a. The "It Was a Dark and Stormy Night" Award)
Erik Emery Hanberg

Best Riches to Rags to Rentals Story
Prium Homes

Courtyard Marriot Best Copycat Bland Development Style Award
Hotel Concepts, Heidelberg Brewery site

Top Back-Alley Excitement Abortion Event
Glass Roots Festival

Best Idea for Further Segregating the North from the South
Sound Transit Pacific Ave. Crossing

Best Non-Police Policing of Downtown
Laura Hanan

Most Promising/Disappointing New Night Spot
Crown Bar

Top Place to See the Latest Flack Jacket Fashion
McCabe's American Music Cafe

Best Fib/Flop of 2007
"Shut Down Downtown Tacoma!"

Best Self-Proclaimed Tacoma Poet (But He Doesn't Even Know It) Laureate
Daniel Blue


A time traveling marmot has also bequeathed upon me a list he says he chewed from the lifeless hand of future Aroma's body found in a local ravine one year from now.

Highest Art Related Death Toll
Hotel Murano, Orizon

Fastest Building to Decend Into Decay and Collapse
Frank Russell Building after tenant vacated 5 years early

Best Expansion Into Our Hearts and Lungs
Gary Coy, Sperry Ocean Dock

Best Maintenance of the Status Quo (3-way tie)
Gintz Group, Luzon Building
Williams & Dame, Elks Building
Point Ruston LLC, Asarco Smelter land

comments [10]

Dec. 7, 2007 at 1:21pm

Identities Revealed: The Gnome and More!

No more secrets, Tacoma

People have been poking and prodding to find out who that elusive Tacoma Gnome really is and the Aroma is sick of it. So, I've decided to let fly and give it all up. That's right, I'm risking being whacked by sniper fire from atop Park Plaza North or South (take your pick) to reveal the secrets and identities that you've always wondered about people around town.

  • RR Anderson - Tool of Homeland Security sent to insight local art community based terror cells
  • Julie Bennett - Hates local music; favors instead imported Korean pop
  • David Boe - Hopeful producer of world's first large scale reality TV event "Extreme Makeover: City Edition"
  • Marty Campbell - Still has a goatee but hides it under 4 hours of makeup each morning
  • Cole Cosgrove - Actually prefers the "N" end of town; thinks TNT headline writers will soon be replaced by a staff of magic 8-balls
  • Bill Evans - Suffers from anthrophobia and aphenphosmphobia (look 'em up) so everything he does is torture
  • Kevin Freitas - That guy in high school that tried to get the most photos of himself in the yearbook
  • Chris Miller - Truly fancies appletinis and tea sandwiches over beer and hot dogs
  • Bobble Tiki - Katharine Hepburn in a mask
  • Derek Young - Has duel residence here and in Seattle; spits as he leaves for his "real home" each night in his Hummer

And finally...

  • Tacoma Gnome - Visitor from Norvay with a penchant for red high heels

comments [10]

Nov. 26, 2007 at 11:07am

Sugarcoat the problem

We're super, thanks for asking!

All those recent videos of alleged criminal activity on Tacoma Ave are just depressing. First, the production quality is a bit low. Let's get some makeup on these people so the faces of the accused aren't as ho-hum. And really the scene selection could seriously use some work. Instead of an awkward corner of Tacoma Ave. let's move to the crisp and clean Tollefson Plaza. At least down there no one will be in your way and you can have downtown as a backdrop.

The whole lurker/stalker perspective just isn't doing it for me either so get out in the open and setup your shot with a tripod or steadycam. For any close up work let's make sure to get some prettier people in there. Maybe the budget can be saved by asking for some volunteer models from the local arts community. Tell them it's a portfolio building piece.

Finally, we need clearly blocked action. Since these people are downtown shopping local or tourists enjoying the museums their actions need to be obvious. OK, in the first scene the father is seen giving money to what must be his young daughter. Follow up that shot with them both enjoying a cupcake they just bought. Oh, and when that rabble of youth is tustling in a parking lot we need to make it clear that they're all practicing a choreographed dance routine for one of our various free local arts festivals.

Plenty of sunshine can also be brought out on things like that foundry boo-boo. It wasn't really an explosion so much as edge-of-your-seat excitement safely tucked away in a part of Tacoma no one goes to anyway. And our high schools are chalked full of kids that enjoy playful activities in groups of their piers while strolling the hallways between class, the local shopping center, or the neighborhoods in which they live. Oh, and make sure everyone knows that aerobatics practice over Commencement Bay last week went exactly according to the 4th of July air show script.

Now that we've adjusted those videos and other issues for accuracy we need to talk attitude people. Let's make sure that any energy spent talking about Tacoma makes everyone feel good. Reality is what you make of it so ignoring anything that makes you uncomfortable by wrapping it up in some delicate facade seems the best route. When in doubt, close your eyes and blog about what makes Tacoma shine! Everyone reads and trusts blogs (as they should) so it'll be easy to convince them that condos are affordable and unique and all your local shopping needs can be found at safe and clean local convenience stores on every corner.

Now go forth, spread the good word about Tacoma, and cast any doubts like pebbles skipped from the newly opened and probably largest pedestrian bridge in America!

comments [9]

Nov. 16, 2007 at 9:20am

DATE NIGHT: What's that funk?

Perhaps you're not one of the young urban professionals willing to drop $50 on last minute Jazzbones tickets. Maybe eight dollar beers strikes you as a bit odd. Maybe your just not pretentious enough to start yammering about red currants in your wine. If this is you, well..we're here to help.

Yes, Tacoma is in the midst of an urban renewal, powered by an influx of youth and money, creating a throbbing, engorged, upscale nightlife. But you, dear reader, aren't quite that upscale yet. Fear not, the City of Destiny is also a city of nightlife for all classes. You need a budget choice for Date Night.

Let's start at the Hilltop Shell station. You'll want to talk to a young man dressed in black, probably sporting some gold chains and possibly armed. Ask for his best "dime bag" of "sticky-icky". You may impress your date by stressing you don't want no stems. Don't be too aggressive with this though, unlike fancy wine bars, your server may take the time and effort to kill you and leave you in the ditch.

After procuring your pharmaceutical fun, you should find a place to relax and enjoy your date. South Tacoma Way has many fine eating establishments. You'll both have the munchies, so go for cheap and easy. Perhaps your date would like some McDonalds. Many dishes are available for a dollar a piece. Maybe she's a special one; spring for Arbys or Wendy's. After enjoying your repast, stroll further up the road and find some entertainment. Perhaps your date would like to see some performing arts? Try the Deja Vu. Bring plenty of ones!

Now, you may well have a problem getting a date in the first place. Have no fear! Tacoma is here to help. Take a stroll down scenic Pacific Avenue. Many lovely ladies will gladly volunteer to be your date for the night. Or the hour! Perhaps you'll be as lucky as I was one night at the AM/PM, and one such lovely lady will demonstrate her amazing talents with a fresh, tasty corn dog. How she managed to do that, I'll never know. One point though gents? If your date is exceptionally tall, has a deeper voice than you and/or has an Adam's apple, she is almost certainly a dude. Don't worry, many young men experiment. Sit back and enjoy it. If you attempt to back out you will almost certainly be beaten to within an inch of your life.

So, we now have many ways of enjoying our city's nightlife that doesn't involve spending money at overpriced fusion restaurants or pretentious wine bars. And you get a glimpse of what made Tacoma famous.

Yes, easy drugs and transsexual prostitutes! The City of Destiny and all it offers is at your fingertips.

comments [8]