Granted, not every secret is one you Wish to Know. We learned far more than we could ever want about mayor Ed Murray’s, um, anatomy, thanks to the lawsuit that destroyed his political career. And I’m still mourning the revelation, issued by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in June, that those of us who frequently devour french fries will die sooner than the rest of you. (So long cruel, delicious world.)
But in an era when so much information is kept from us, when White House press briefings are camera free, if held at all, when facts are relative and dependent on which news outlet delivers them, it seems a luxury when the truth is revealed.
It’s the oldest method in storytelling, isn’t it? The hook, the tease, the holding out of a revelation before it’s—plunk—set right before you. It’s Rosebud and Keyser Söze and the Skywalker family tree. You have to wait till the end of those stories before you get to the secret, and by then something’s probably set ablaze or someone’s lost a hand.
What’s good for cinema is good for magazine making. Except in the case of this month’s cover story (“Secrets of the Olympic Peninsula”) there’s no wait. It’s all there from the start, 25 things you didn’t know about the greenest, wettest corner of the United States. For those revelations we have Seattle Met senior editor Allison Williams to thank. As the magazine’s chief travel expert, Williams has spent the better part of six years exploring our region, unveiling hidden nooks, telling the stories of the folks who make those places worth the trip.
She pulled double duty this month, writing both the cover story and this month’s feature, about the World Famous Suicide Race (“The Kings of Suicide Hill”). The race is famous for several reasons, including the fact that its organizers and participants are famously media averse. Williams got them to talk anyway, and the story she tells is a stunner. There are secrets in that one too. But some things really are best when withheld till the end.