Aug 11, 2018

My 3 Mistakes in North Thurston Beefcake

"North Thurston Boys' Swim Team Led By Talented Coach." 

I made three mistakes in analyzing this photo.

1. I thought these guys were alumni.  They look well past high school age.  I'd guess the one on the left as mid-30s.

The article was actually from 2013.  They were all high school seniors (except for the coach). Tyler, on the right, went on to the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, where he played baseball.

They grow them mature in North Thurston.  Here are two more high school swimmers who look like college graduates, from 2015.  The one on the right also participated in the shot put and javelin.

From 2016, two swimmers whose older brothers participated years ago.  Justin, on the right, is the younger brother of Tyler from Annapolis.

Cropping the photo halfway up the chest was not my idea.

Here's a swimmer from 2018 flashing a 1960s peace sign. He could pass for 18.

2. I figured that North Thurston was a town in Massachusetts, where there are lots of norths and souths in city names.

No, it's actually a school district "providing educational services for Lacey and parts of unincorporated Thurston County, Washington, including the Nisqually Tribe Reservation."

The Nisqually Tribe, numbering 588, speak a language in the Salishan family.  A tribal website said that these were Nisqually youth performing, but I think they're Maori.

3. Ok, so Lacy, Washington must be in a remote, windswept, heavily forested region.

I imagined the North Thurston swimmers growing up on farms, driving down dirt roads to get to school.

Lacey is actually only five miles from Olympia, in a county with 242,000 people. North Thurston High School is an eight-minute drive from the State Capitol.

Lacey is the home of MMA fighter Brad "Bad" Blackburn and a lot of pro football players. 


  1. Nisqually youth, but you think they're Maori. New Zealand is officially South Thurston.

    Wait, are dirt roads still a thing? At least in North America. One party in the US may consider the economy of Somalia and the social policy of Saudi Arabia ideal (and still hate Muslims) but I don't think things have gotten that bad.

    1. I think they were Maori performers on a tour of Native American communities in the U.S., and the website mixed them up. There are still lots of dirt roads in the U.S.


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