The year is 2023. The pandemic is finally over, and the coronavirus gets scant mention in the news. Every once in a while, a cluster pops up, mostly among the crowd that refused to get the vaccine. Or the twelve updates to the vaccine that they started releasing at the end of 2021.
Two Amazon employees eat lunch outside in downtown Bellevue on an unseasonably warm and sunny spring day. They work in different Amazon buildings that are just a few blocks apart. Every office worker in Bellevue works for Amazon after they moved all of their offices out of Seattle for good in 2022.
One takes a bite of the local, organic grain bowl he just bought from a solar-powered food truck nearby.
“Man,” he says, turning to his coworker. “Can you believe the Detroit Lions won the Super Bowl this year? I still can’t wrap my mind around it.”
“Tell me about it. Who is their head coach again?”
“I still can’t believe they beat the Dolphins. After the way they’ve been playing since they signed Russell Wilson, I didn’t think they were ever going to lose again.”
Their conversation meanders to Wilson’s time in Seattle. They comment on what a gimmick the Seahawks were that one season they won the Super Bowl. A matter of luck, they call it. The perfect storm. The Legion of … what was it called again?
Hoping to discuss a more promising topic, they turn their attention to the Mariners, who lost a close one in the ALCS the year before, but are expected to take the pennant in the upcoming season.
“Now that’s a team I’m feeling good about.”
“Me, too,” the other one says. “So good I just coughed up $75,000 for season tickets.”
“You’re lucky you even got them. And that’s almost what I paid for my Kraken tickets.”
They quickly run through how good it feels to live in a baseball town. And a hockey town. And how good it’s going to be once the Sonics come back to town at the start of the 2025 season. Aside from the Seahawks’ descent into mediocrity, Seattle is the sports world’s envy. Championship town, they are starting to call it.
From there, they discuss the new light rail system and how easy it is to get around Seattle now. All the arenas are open for sporting events and concerts, and traffic has even lightened up (slightly) on the freeways, with so many people riding public transportation now.
As their conversation turns back to the Seahawks, they talk wistfully about the fleeting nature of success in sports. When you think you live with a dynasty, it turns out to be a one-hit-wonder.
“It’s rough, man,” the one worker says.
The other nods. “Hey, do you want to go to that after work thing for the new MLS franchise coming to Seattle next year?”
“The mean the one that’s supposed to make us feel better about losing the Sounders to Spokane?”
“Yes, that one.”
“Sounds like a plan.”