Seattleite Fact #1

A few weeks ago, one of my best friends, her boyfriend, and I sat at a window-side table of a cute little bar that looked out onto Broadway in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood.  It was drizzling like it so often is, so we watched a majority of people hurriedly run to their destinations to avoid too much rain.  This brought me to realize True Seattelite Fact #1.

“Look, see! True Seattleites don’t use umbrellas.” I motioned toward a couple.  The woman had her North Face jacket (a Seattle fashion staple, whether you actually do the outdoors or not) hood up, while the man braved it without his as they both scurried from one edge of our window to the other heading to their destination.

Both my friend and her boyfriend “mmmm”ed and “mmhmm”ed at my observation until her boyfriend added “People using umbrellas are either not from here, or they’re just living a lie.”

We continued to people watch before eventually labeling them as they passed.  First, a young group of girls, with cute, clear umbrellas that domed over their heads walked by.

“College kids. Not from here. Or just trying to be cute?”

A couple around the same age, both without hoods and heads down as they walked.

“Seattleites. Or just poor.”

A nicely dressed couple, emerging from a BMW parked on the street in front of us, grabbing each others hand and running to a cafe.


A group of both men and women, all wearing North Face or some other outdoor brand, walking by without even their hoods on, laughing and talking.

“True blue Seattlites!”

We laughed and joked, hemmed and hawed about that most people of Seattle have probably realized that using an umbrella is useless.  Here’s why:

1.  Most of the time, the ground is already wet, if not having a stream running down it, so what’s the point of protecting the upper half of your body (your head only, really) when your feet and bottom third of your pant leg has already soaked a bunch of water?

Another thing we're used to doing - pulling up our pant legs and avoiding major puddles. Photo Courtesy of

2. Even though it rains a lot, the weather is also bipolar as hell.  Take for instance our weather most of last week:  It would go from monsoon-esque rain storms, to snow, back to blinding sun in a matter of minutes.  Do you have enough care/energy to pop open your umbrella, then take it down, then up, then down, oh and then there’s the wind….

3.  If you don’t have a rock-steady umbrella that’s going to poke a bunch of peoples eyes out when you walk down the street, the wind most likely is going to try to rip that umbrella out of your hand, anyway.  If the wind really picks up, all the umbrella is going to do is look like a prop in some sort of hiking-brand-clothing-only dance.  Or it’ll be blown inside out and everyone is just going to laugh.

4.  No one else uses umbrellas, so no one is gonna care if your hair is damp.  Because ours might be, too.  But seriously, have you not got it already?  That’s what gore tex is for! Put your hood on and cinch it tight around your face, you pansy!

Ironically, a few days after our conversation, my friend sent me a link in my email to a blog written by Scott Sistek of Komo 4 News here in Seattle.  I thought  I would share it all with you as well – Proof Seattleites Don’t Need Umbrellas in the Rain, Just Coffee.

I really wish I could add commentary to this video as well.  Like the exceptional puddle-dodge done by the lady in the knee-length hooded coat toting a re-usable coffee cup.  Seattleite, through and through.

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