Favorite thing about Seattle that you can't find anywhere else?
I have been in this city for more than a decade and a half, and I am still finding cool things in basements that I had no idea existed, including Studio Current, an artist run experimental performance and visual arts space that is doing some really neat things underneath Annex Theatre, a place very close to my heart. I find comfort in learning that there are two stages for weirdos and risk takers stacked on top of each other, because those spaces are necessary for us to continue being beautiful. I also recently stumbled into Pioneer Square Pets, a pet store run by a heavily tattooed and passionate man with help from a pair of chubby orange cats that feels like an underground magic shop. I purchased a freeze-dried duck head for my elderly Chihuahua, Donna, to chew on, and I have been a regular customer ever since. There is a lot of hope in my heart that this city is full of more secret basements for me to discover, and I think that is possibility a unique love song that only Seattle can sing.
Where are your favorite places to eat, drink, and play in the city?
I play pinball when I need to feel human, and it is my favorite meditation about death and gravity. You cannot win at pinball, you can only try not to lose for as long as possible. Pinball is everywhere in this town. The Seattle Pinball Museum (new and historic machines with unlimited play for a modest fee) is in the heart of the International District and next to one of my favorite restaurants, Honey Court, where everything on the menu is amazing and they are open till 3 a.m. The lovingly produced zine Skill Shot also lists the location of every machine in the city, many of them being inside of some of Seattle's finest drinking establishments.
One thing a Seattle visitor shouldn't miss?
I think professional wrestling is one of the greatest forms of storytelling, and Seattle's progressive wrestling league 3-2-1 Battle! is one of this city's most successful art movements. The dozens of hardworking men and women that belong to this organization have done some pretty amazing things both in and out of the ring, including lobbying for legislation that made independent wrestling more accessible in Washington, producing a mind-blowing women's wrestling tournament, and recently selling out the Showbox. A lot of people have a misconception of what wrestling is, and if there is a match going on when they are in town, they owe it to themselves to get to the Battle Palace (Evol Fitness) and get enlightened.
Something in Seattle most people don't know about?
Last year, I put out a call for someone with clowning experience to help me do a dumb thing I wanted to do onstage, and I was both horrified and delighted by the multitude of responses I got. This is a city of clowns that are walking around without makeup. Our friends and lovers, the people who make our coffee, and even our neighbors, all of them could be secret clowns, and now that I know that, it affects every social interaction I have.