CHS Crow | Janet, Allison & Tom — ‘I just really dig wine’

CHS Crow has been on sabbatical but is back with a few conversations from the streets around Capitol Hill. More to come.


How long have you had Annie Oakley? And, how did you come up with her name?I’ve had her for seven-and-a-half years. She’s actually a rescue dog, and her name was Raggedy Anne, because she came from a puppy mill and they cut her ear off. And I thought she was too beautiful to be called Raggedy Anne, and I thought she was kind of kick-ass, so I named her Annie Oakley.

What!? Why did they cut her ear off!?
They do terrible things at puppy mills.

What do you with your time?
I am actually a canine and equine massage practitioner. And I am also studying to be a sommelier. So I’m in wine school, in addition to being an animal massage practitioner. I own my own business, it’s called Blue Streak Body Work, and I work at a bunch of different locations. I work mostly on performance animals,  so I work down in Auburn, and I work in Snohomish, all the hot spots.

What interests you in becoming a sommelier?
I just really dig wine, I think just think it’s awesome. It’s the most fun game ever.


After living here for a year, what would you say has been the most startling difference between Seattle and New York, where you grew up?
I think the biggest change is the people here. I mean, I feel like in New York people are much more rushed, and don’t really take the time as much as people here. It’s cool to see a lot of people just, like, sitting around in coffee shops, pursuing their personal interests, you know. You don’t see as much of it in New York, I think. And, I don’t know, it’s just very laid back. I just like the culture here. It’s just very outdoorsy, a lot of arts, a lot of goals, a lot of personal goal setting, I think.

Are there any personal interests you’ve been taking time to pursue since moving here?
I really, really like Yoga; it’s a new interest. I actually go to the studio down the street, it’s called the Grinning Yogi. I just really like the environment. The teachers there make me want to learn more about what Yoga is supposed to be. I used to do Yoga just for fitness, but I think since I’ve started really investing in the practice, and reading about it. I’ve learned to take the chaos around me and just sort of ride the wave.

How often do you practice Yoga?
Probably four or five times a week. As many times as I can make it. Just because I feel like it’s very, I don’t know, I feel like I have a relationship with it, and I have to work on it.

You said you you have a background industrial design, and work in software design: through a designer’s lens, what’s one of your favorite buildings on Capitol Hill?
On Broadway and Roy, around there, there are these castle-like buildings, they are really cool. I just find them so interesting, and there’s actually one down the block, too.

Do you have a favorite sandwich?
A favorite sandwich!? There’s this vegan place, it’s called Plum. They have this delicious, I think it’s tofu and yam, sandwich. It’s so good. It’s called the Sweet Jamaican.


Tom Heuser takes a break from reading at Einstein Bagels on Broadway to chat with the CHS Crow

You were reading a book called “Gender and Sexuality” when I came up to you—are you a student by chance?
I’m not a student. I do various different things, but I’m mostly taking time off right now.

What are you taking time off from?
Very boring office work and such. I’ve saved a lot of money and invested a lot of money, and I was also temporarily doing an Airbnb business, and in negotiations with property management that eventually asked me to stop running the business. So, so I’m kind of just exploring other options right now.

So, what interests you about the topic of gender and sexuality?
An acquaintance of mine wrote this book, and I’ve been meaning to read it for a little while. But I mean I’ve always been kind of interested in that topic anyway. I guess part of it is I don’t identify with a lot of the stereotypical masculine traits that are sort of demonized in media.

There’s kind of sort of this blanket assumption about men that they identify with these, sort of, powerful traits and that this is the ideal, that all men want this, and this is the good thing and I’m like, ‘No, I actually don’t like having  power over other people.’ I’m an anarchist, you know, I don’t pursue any sort of power whatsoever.

What sort of hobbies have you been doing with all your free time?
I have a Lego stop-motion film that I’ve been very slowly working on for the last three years. It’s nothing too elaborate, I’ve never done it before so I’m kind of just self-teaching.

I’ll probably post it on YouTube eventually, one of these days—years probably, because I might be going back to work soon, which means I won’t have as much time to work on the film.

Going back to your “boring office job?”
It will be some sort of boring office job, but, I’m trying to find ways to get back in to the original career path that I was on, which is archives and records management. Because I do want to work with historical documents and I was on that path, I did some pretty awesome volunteer and internship work to gain some skill, and then I applied to grad school, and tuition with living expenses was $100,000. And no grants, just loans. And I could not accept taking on $100,000 worth of debt. … You’re looking at entry level $40,000 a year, and not a lot of prospects for making a whole lot more than that. So I can’t justify getting a $100,000 degree. But I’m looking for some things to do.

Previously on CHS Crow

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