Published on January 3rd, 2014 | by Daniel Rahe


Wildly Breathtaking: You Won’t Believe What Post Defiance Got Away With in 2013

As the new year begins, I felt it appropriate to reflect on the one that came before, and all that it meant for Team Post Defiance. 2013 was a memorable year for this publication, as we witnessed the blossoming of the seeds we had so carefully planted. Our coverage broadened, our readership expanded, and our editorial staff grew.

In 2011, we raised eyebrows. In 2012, we turned heads. In 2013, we fucking snapped heads off. [Editors’ note: In 2014, we’ll probably put the heads back on the necks, but that decision will be made in our annual Vision Meeting later this week.]

Judging by the traffic they generated and the countless comments they inspired, there were ten articles on Post Defiance in 2013 that stood above the rest and literally riveted readers to their computer screens.


oleson10. The Tacoma Man Who Led A Double Life as a Stunt Double on “Little House on the Prairie”

A true story with the heart of a false story, this article took all of Tacoma by surprise.

“Lester Dimples was an unassuming man, a man with a Hollywood career kept secret even from his mother, for Lester Dimples was Alison Arngrim’s stunt double – the perfect cool-tempered athlete to handle the most physical scenes written for the character of Nellie Oleson.” And that’s just the beginning. Read more…

9. How Birds Spread the Tacoma Aroma to Fife, and What to Do About It

A thrilling and shocking study of bird wingbeat patterns, their effect on low atmosphere wind patterns, and their unique ability to propel aromatic hydrocarbons. It was this publication’s first foray into the world of political commentary, and the response was drastic.

Thanks to our groundbreaking research, ecology experts are currently studying methods for limiting avian airspace travel between Tacoma and Fife. Fascinating stuff. Read more…

8. The Wright Park Mystery League

You’ve heard of book clubs. You are tired of ‘em! You’ve heard of knitting clubs. Yawn! You’ve been part of a family. Boring! You’ve even joined a Riding Bikes Around club. Over it! The so-called “Mysterians” of Wright Park know what’s most important: doing quirky things with other people and posting it on Facebook.

This newly formed club is irresistible: Once a week, whimsical geeks gather in Wright Park to solve mysteries submitted to the clubmaster anonymously via email. Maps and codes and spyglasses, oh my! It’s enough to make even Sir Arthur Conan Benedict Cumberbatch Downey Jr. exclaim, “Elementary!” Read more…

joeshipwreck7. I Survived a Shipwreck

In this harrowing, gritty, no-holds-barred narrative of a capsized sea kayak, Outdoors Correspondent Sachet Castleblank leaves no bodily function to the imagination.

Cigarettes are smoked. Crude gestures fly. Everyone is depressed, brooding, isolated, and drinks too much. Someone hasn’t shaved. Bukowski is quoted. The sacred is defrauded. With these hard-bitten characters in the open seas of Commencement Bay, the trappings of society are but a memory. Read more…

6. “I Didn’t Know How to Make Beer Until Last Year”: Hipster Confessions of a Hipster Brewer

This time, a pint and a simple interview were all it took. Read more…

5. Teats Memorial Yacht Race at Tacoma Yacht Club

Some headlines write themselves. Govnor Teats was an iconic Tacoma statesman, and his name adorns one of our city’s most cherished events: The Govnor Teats Memorial Yacht Race. The private yacht has long been a symbol of all things Tacoma, so we could hardly resist the opportunity to go behind the scenes at this impassioned populist event. Read more…

piano4. Nelson Sklar Keeps His Hand in the Air for the Boogie Soul

For patrons of Tacoma’s Peterson Brothers (1111) bar, Nelson Sklar’s is a familiar face. Every Wednesday, his Boogie Woogie Piano act gets the whole house a’wigglin’ and a’boppin’. But Nelson plays the piano with only his left hand, frantically waving the right hand in the air.

He just waves it around, pell-mell, as if to gain the attention of a phantom teacher somewhere in the distance. Or perhaps he is swatting away a persistent spiderweb. In any case, his one-handed playing has become the signature element of his boogie revue, and we were intrigued. Is he ringing an invisible bell? Stirring a batch of upside down space cookie batter?

You’ll never believe the real reason this little fucker is waving his hand around while he plays piano. Ever. Never ever. Read more…

boots3. Sex in Tacoma

You know it’s happening: Sex in Tacoma. All the babies running around serve as silent testament to that.

From favorite moves to optimal locations, what do people say about “knockin’ da boots in the 253” when you get them behind closed doors? Is the 12th Man really necessary, or could 11 be enough? Find out in this cheeky exposé. Read more…

2. The Tacoma Bar Quiz Scene is Decadent and Depraved

We’ve all seen them: those eager yuppies, desperately seeking nerd status by crowding into Engine House 9, The Office, Ram, or The Harmon Tap Room to participate in weekly Quiz Night competitions. On the surface, with its thin veneer of Big Bang Theory references (the shitty television show, not the actual theory)  and questionable fashion sense, the phenomenon seems innocent enough.

Behind the scenes, there is blood, vomit (so much vomit), and drug-addled firewalking. We barely escaped with our lives. Read more…

brunch-31. How Brunch Saved Tacoma’s Economy

These days, it’s hard to walk a single step in Tacoma without someone telling you to eat breakfast in the afternoon on Sunday. Not that we’re complaining!!! Bacon LOL Bacon.

But behind the grease and glamour, there’s a compelling tale of Venn Diagrams, upward trends, D-list celebrity chefs, and fiscal revitalization. Many barely noticed the housing market rebound immediately after brunch became hip.

Is our economic recovery scrambled or over easy? Next time you look at your waffle, you’ll see a graph instead. Read more…

What were your favorite Post Defiance articles in 2013? Comment below and let us know! We are grateful for our readers, and we’d love to hear from you. Let’s spend 2014 getting to know each other much, much better.


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About the Author

Founder of Post Defiance, Dan is a father, surveyor, writer, and runner.

One Response to Wildly Breathtaking: You Won’t Believe What Post Defiance Got Away With in 2013

  1. Rich says:

    FYI – the Teats memorial yacht race is named after Dr. Govnor Teats a local physician who was an avid sailor and TYC member, not his grandfather.

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