Sound Effect | KNKX

Sound Effect

Saturdays at 10 AM

Sound Effect is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. The show is hosted by KNKX's Gabriel Spitzer. Each week's show explores a different theme.

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EL-TORO/FLICKR

 

This show originally aired on September 27, 2017.

This week on Sound Effect, we hear stories of people who learned to hustle.

The Cookie Hustle

They may seem sweet (and they are), but sisters Hayden and Rena Korbol mean business. They are two of the top cookie sellers for the girl scouts in Western Washington, selling over 1,600 boxes each last year.

The Bootleg King

1998.31.1.126, Washington State Historical Society, Tacoma (Wash.)

 

This story originally aired on September 27, 2017.

Back in the 1920’s a Seattle police officer spotted a lucrative opportunity, and hustled fast to make it happen. His name was Roy Olmstead and for a time, he became a very rich man by running a highly illegal activity.

 

During prohibition, Olmstead supplied a dry Northwest with alcohol. Lots of alcohol. The good stuff too. Not moonshine.

 

Will James / KNKX

This story originally aired on September 27, 2017.

Growing up Roma meant growing up fast -- and learning how to hustle. 

That's how Miller Steve describes it. He was raised in Tacoma's Roma community in the 70's and 80's, when it was a close-knit collection of families, all descended from a nomadic minority group in Europe

Courtesy Gracelynn Shibayama

This story originally aired on September 27, 2017.

College is really expensive. People take out loans, they work a million odd jobs, and if you’re lucky, you have parents who set up a college fund. When Gracelynn Shibayama was 17 years old, she had a college fund. But then, she got an email from her parents.    

el-toro / Flickr

This story originally aired on September 27, 2017.

Pinball was considered gambling in the 1950s and 1960s. But Seattle's city leaders, police and King County Prosecutor Charles O. Carroll all turned a blind eye to the game as part of what was known as the "Tolerance Policy." 

Courtesy of Wil Miller

This story originally aired on September 27, 2017.

In the late 1990s, WIl MIller was working as a King County prosecutor in Seattle. And for the first time, he was exploring the gay nightlife. Spending his evenings in the city’s gay bars introduced him to his future lover and, through him, to crystal meth.

“If you're a gay man in the 90s and you're a little overweight and you’re a little self-conscious, it really seemed to solve all of my problems,” Miller said. “It played into every one of my weaknesses.”

Wikipedia Commons

 

Credit Marianne Spellman/Popthomology

This story originally aired on April 1, 2017.

Seattle musician and artist Shannon Perry is known for her exquisite tattoo work and incredible musical presence. But six years ago, while in rehab for Adderall abuse, she felt very alone.

Perry picked up smoking again so she could socialize with the other people, but it didn't help.  Rather than go numb from the isolation and boredom, she started to make things.

This week on Sound Effect, our theme is "What Are the Odds?" We'll meet the grandson of Holocaust survivors who calculated the very low probability that he would even be born. Then a typo may have saved Bob Hofferber's life, by keeping him off of a military plane bound for Tacoma in 1952. In another story of the twists of fate, group of nuns walking along a Washington beach are overtaken by a rogue wave, changing their lives and their relationship with God forever.

Courtesy of UW Medicine

 

At Harborview Medical Center, it is not uncommon for people to work there for decades. Over time, these individuals whose passion for work is as unwavering as a religious devotion, shape how this massive institution runs. These are Harborview’s “lifers.”

 

Dr. Eileen Bulger, Harborview’s Chief of Trauma, trained under one of these individuals. His name is Dr. Michael Copass.

 

Courtesy of Harborview Medical Center

This week we spend the hour with stories from Harborview Medical Center, the Level 1 Trauma Center covering four states and nearly 100,000 square miles. We hear the story of a tragic house fire in Alaska that gave rise to a world-class medevac system. We visit a clinic serving refugees, and a club where staff and patients blow off steam by laughing at nothing. We get to know psychiatric patients getting counsel from people who have been in their shoes, and meet a doctor whose life changed when he was called to help a pregnant woman gored by a yak.

Gabriel Spitzer / KNKX

It’s midday on a Tuesday, and people are scattered around the green lawn of Harborview Park, having lunch. Amid their quiet murmurs and the drone of traffic on nearby I-5, comes a thundering sound: laughter.

About a dozen people stand in a rough circle near the park’s center, red in the face, doubled over laughing.

Welcome to Harborview’s laughter club. For nearly two decades this is where doctors, patients, staff and members of the community have come together twice a month to laugh at nothing. It’s a way for people connected to this hospital to blow off steam.

Courtesy of Harborview Medical Center

Editor’s Note: This story contains detailed conversations about mental health. It’s about 8 ½ minutes long.

Harborview Medical Center is a major treatment center for people with mental illness, including those who have been involuntarily committed to in-patient care. That population tends to have especially complex issues, and usually doesn’t want to be there.

So it takes a special kind of person to connect with those patients and understand what it’s like to be in their position …a person, perhaps, who’s been there themself.

courtesy of Judd Walson

 

Students of Professor Judd Walson often ask him for advice on their career paths and how he became a global health specialist. But Walson didn’t always know he wanted to be a doctor and says his career path was anything but straightforward.

In fact, as a young boy he was a talented magician getting paid to perform around the country and even overseas in Sweden. When he graduated High School, he didn’t know what he wanted to do and so he left for Europe to become a street performer.

 

Dr. Carey Jackson

 

Navigating the medical system in the United States can be complicated and confusing. Now, imagine making appointments and dealing with insurance companies if you don't speak the language. Then, throw into the mix the emotional trauma of fleeing your home country and leaving loved ones behind, forever.

 

This is the reality for many immigrants and refugees trying to make a new life for themselves in the United States.

 

This week on Sound Effect, we hear stories of people who refused to give up.

Billy Idolator

Courtesy of Michael Henrichsen

This story originally aired on September 9, 2017.

Michael ​Henrichsen’s parents met at a Duran Duran concert. He’s named after the lead singer of INXS. He practically has 1980s and 90s pop music in his DNA. So maybe it’s no surprise that, after hearing a Debbie Gibson song in a piano bar, the 30-year old Henrichsen got a little obsessed.

Hebah Fisher

 

This story originally aired on September 9, 2017.

Mohamed Farid loves the water. He’s been drawn to it ever since he was a little boy. He started sailing small boats when he was in his twenties in Dubai. These smaller vessels capsize easily. Since he was sailing in the warm waters of the Persian Gulf, this was not a problem.

 

Gabriel Spitzer / KNKX

This story originally aired on September 9, 2017.

Last June, Ana Ramirez headed to a meeting of the Western Washington University student government. She had just been elected as Vice President for Governmental Affairs and, as it turned out, the meeting was about her.

Ramirez, now a 19-year-old sophomore, is an undocumented immigrant, brought into the United States from Mexico when she was six months old. She had just learned from university administrators that she wouldn’t be allowed to assume the position she had campaigned for and won.

Credit Chris Cozzone

This story originally aired on September 9, 2017.

Tricia Arcaro Turton’s career started with a big fat “no.” She says she was never one to be discouraged just because someone tells her she can’t do something. And at a young age, she was told that she couldn’t be a 

boxer. She decided to write off the sport all together.

Gabriel Spitzer / KNKX

 

This story originally aired on September 9, 2017. 

When Meg Martin first moved to Olympia, Washington from Montana in 2007, she was recovering from a drug addiction and looking to start a new life. In Olympia, she threw herself into outreach work. She volunteered for a program that uses bicycles to deliver clean needles to people on the street who use injection drugs.

 

Credit Vinay Shivakumar/Creative Commons by 2.0

This week, stories of positive things coming from otherwise negative places. First, music journalist and author Charles R. Cross talks about how a bad economy helped produce the grunge music movement. Then, how the author of the light-hearted Mrs. Piggle Wiggle books actually had a pretty rough life.

Adam Jones/Wikipedia Commons

If you have a band in Seattle, good luck finding an affordable practice space. There aren't many to begin with, and if a band can find a place that doesn't mind the noise, it is often small, old and outrageously expensive.

Seattle music journalist and author Charles R. Cross says things were noticably different in the early and mid-'80s. 

"There were many, many empty spaces, that were just empty forever. So the capacity for a band member to rent a room for a hundred dollars in Belltown and live, or rent a rehearsal space for 75 [dollars], was everywhere," says Cross. 

courtesy of Paula Becker

 

Paula Becker grew up reading the "Mrs. Piggle Wiggle" children's books, and loved the whimsical stories of her uncanny ability to cure children of bad character traits. The author of the books, Betty MacDonald, lived in Washington. Many years later, when Becker moved to the Evergreen state, she asked her local librarian what had become of the best-selling author.

 

Every Tuesday night, St. Paul’s Episcopal church in Seattle opens its doors and invites people living with mental illness and homelessness to come in and create. In the unique art space they can paint, knit, play music or find their own creative pursuits.

 

The Karen Korn Project was founded by Pastor Kae Eaton and Patricia Swain, in honor of Swain’s daughter Karen. Karen died from suicide in November of 2014, after struggling with mental illness and homelessness herself.

 

Seattle Public Library

 

Real estate. It’s a hot topic in the Northwest right now. A white-hot market like Seattle’s creates winners and losers, depending on which side of the transaction you happen to be on. These days, you’d probably rather be a seller than a buyer.

 

But back in 1985, when Merlin Rainwater and her husband bought their place, the roles were reversed. They were able to score a little bungalow on the East slope of Capitol Hill for just $50,000.

 

Courtesy of Mark Goetcheus

 

The day that changed Michael Freeman’s life came about 22 years ago.

“I was crushed by an eight-ton truck in a loading dock across the pelvis. They took me out to Madigan and did emergency surgery,” Freeman said.

In the course of his treatment he was given a common blood-thinning medication, to which he turned out to be severely allergic. The complications would eventually cost him one of his legs. He was sent to Harborview in Seattle for two months to recover.

Tag Brothers

 This story originally aired on October 8, 2016. 

There are lots of games we all played in the schoolyard when we were kids — foursquare, tetherball, maybe some capture the flag if there was  enough time before the bell rang. Some of us just can’t let go.

Creative Commons CC0

This week, stories of cogs in the machine. First, how a kid felt like toys were missing some accessories, so he decided to start making them himself, and business took off. Then, a Vietnam veteran shares why he believes the willingness to die for a cause you don’t believe in is an example of how “the system” works. Also, a sperm donor is faced with the realities of meeting one of his offspring.

Teenager Turns 200 dollars Into Customizable Lego Business

Jun 9, 2018

 

Payton Dean wanted more specialized weapons for his Lego minifigures. So he decided to make his own.

 

Other people were intrigued and started telling Dean he should sell the weapons. With a little help from his grandfather, and $200 he had saved up, he decided to give it a try.

 

Six years later, that decision has grown into a very successful business called X39 Brick Customs.

 

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