The S.L.U.T. gives a disappointing ride.

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Seattle's easy mark for cheap jokes these days is the South Lake Union Trolley, a working name for the newly opened transit line put out in the latest round of failure to proofread by planners who should have learned their lessons after those flyers advertising "pubic input sessions", complete with snacks, that every beginning planner produces at some point. The official name is now the Seattle Streetcar, but I expect the "SLUT" won't stop.

Part of the basis for the teasing is that the trolley is apparently seen by the neighborhoods hipsters, punks, and just folks as a tool of the gentrifying developers who even west so far as to impose a new name on the neighborhood "South Lake Union"). But a transportation planner's vantage provides so much more room for criticism. The SLUT is a pretty poorly implemented transit line, which makes an easy example for future critics to use when attacking other transit proposals. Badly done transit really annoys me. But, hopefully, some of the problems can be fixed over time - the SLUT has only been running for three weeks now, so there's still time to fix the obvious failures of foresight.

Coffee near Haller Lake, Seattle

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I'm in Seattle, visiting Elias, who lives round-about the Haller Lake neighborhood, at the northern end of the city. Elias doesn't drink coffee - but this is Seattle, right? I should be able to find coffee behind every tree and under every rock.

So I set out to find some. Haller Lake's not the most pedestrian-oriented of neighborhoods (though it could be, with the addition of a few sidewalks and some rezoning of the commercial strips), and all of the available coffee within walking distance appears to be along Aurora Avenue. I knew I was in some trouble when I checked the google satellite images for "coffee near aurora ave n & n 130th st" - mmmm, strip mall-tastic - but I'm never one to shy away from a challenge of pedestrianism.

And you, gentle reader, get to benefit from the results, in case you're ever in a similar situation:

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