Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Streetwise (1984)

This is the out of print short feature documentary about homeless youth in Seattle, filmed in 1983 by Martin Bell and Mary Ellen Mark. The husband and wife team came to Seattle to expose rampant homelessness and desperation, thriving even in America's most livable city.

The pacing of this film is brilliant. It does not feel like a documentary. It feels more like a fictional piece, how we get such a moving and intimate look into the lives of these young people.

The film is book-ended by Tommy Dean's mentor and music local Seattle street performer Baby Gramps.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Where Do The Hippies Go?

Ballard's Chai House closing up shop and going on "hiatus" is old news. As a past patron myself, a tear comes to my eye when I think of all the hippies and passionate poets and musicians who are now sent packing for another place to hang out. As a poet and musician myself, I will miss Mr. Spots scratching post.

While many bloggers are crying out why? I want to take this opportunity to show you a valuable resource for answering all property related questions.

Such as, consider the parcel of land upon which Mr. Spots built The Chai House. If you want to know why the landlord doubled the rent, check out this website. Enter the address of Chai House: 5463 Leary Ave

You will see in 2009, IRS appraised the land value at $376,200. Coming into 2010, the IRS raised the appraised value to $486,800.

Conclusion: the landlord raised Mr. Spot's rent because the cost of owning the land increased. In other words, property taxes went up.

There are many reasons why the IRS might appraise land at a higher value than the year before. Some reasons may include a fluctuating housing market and I discuss them in this blog article. But what circumstances might cause a jump in $100 is curious to me. Is this a real estate trend happening in many neighborhoods or just Ballard?