Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Misc. Items for July 26th

  • The latest scary MAX assault out in the 'burbs. When you hear Portland's movers and shakers bragging about us being the most European city in America, they don't mean we're a center of history, art, culture, and cuisine. We'd sure like to be, but the results so far are decidedly mixed. However, we are doing a great job of pushing our urban poor out of the city center, moving towards the Parisian banlieue model, with similar results. They aren't rioting and burning cars just yet, but let it simmer for a generation or so, and we may have our own Clichy-sus-Bois on our hands right here in Stumptown. Think Rockwood, Aloha, part of Hillsboro, part of the 'Couv, maybe Cornelius, maybe a couple of other spots I can't think of right now.
  • Or possibly that MAX assault didn't actually happen. Still, my main point stands.
  • Could be worse, though. In Minneapolis, they've taken to arresting zombies, leading to the best set of mugshots I've ever seen. Now, in Portland if you went around dressing like that, we'd probably elect you mayor or something. Or so we like to think, anyway.
  • The Oregonian has a truly lame piece up insisting we have our own unique bohemian style here in town, which they insist on calling "PoBo", one of those two-word contractions (a la SoHo) beloved by clueless journalists, greedy developers, sun-addled Californians, and just about nobody else. Someone ought to tell them that in actual European cities, people tend not to wear flip-flops to the opera. Furthermore, despite all the urban mythmaking, people here generally don't wear flip-flops to the opera, either. As the story goes, we Portlanders love nothing better than to wander around to all sorts of formal high-culture events dressed like crazy homeless people: Lime green bicycle shorts to the symphony, stinky dirty sweats to the ballet, speedos and trenchcoats to Shakespeare plays, and so on. (Although this doesn't translate into treating actual homeless people compassionately, of course.) Our dirty little secret is that the legend isn't true. Granted, we have no shortage of badly dressed people, but you're far more likely to find them in suburban multiplexes or the mall than at the opera. Note to recent transplants: We are very reserved folk here. The fact that nobody says anything rude to you when you dress like that should not be mistaken for approval. We're talking about you behind your back. Trust me on this.
  • Updated:The Mercury has a piece about all the PoBo-bashing, and they forgot to link to me. Even though I'm the Mercury's friend on MySpace and everything. Sheesh. Bunch of freakin' ingrates.
  • A mini-rant about the upcoming Oregon Brewers' Festival. I still haven't decided on whether I'm going to go or not, myself. Hmm, here's another rant.
  • A fun news update from the security guy at Reservoir 3.
  • A nice early crescent moon. Turns out that there's a bit of healthy competition going on to see who can photograph the earliest crescent moon. You can be certain from this that all the competitors are undoubtedly a.) geeks, and b.) men. This crescent is nearly a full 24 hours old, so there's room for you, yes, you to get in on the action and claim your glory, such as it is.
  • Further afield, seems that Saturn's moon Titan has lakes after all, which are fed by methane rain.
  • K5 has an interesting roundup of blogs from Lebanon, from a variety of perspectives.
  • An interesting post at an Irish politics forum draws analogies between "Peak Oil" and the Potato Famine. One additional point: there's nowhere to emigrate to when the oil runs out.
  • They just don't write books like these anymore. Something tells me Stephen Colbert read "Grizzly" as a child, and never recovered.
  • Today's soon-to-be-a-major-horror-movie story: A university in India stands accused of releasing "used" research monkeys back into the forest
  • And last but not least: Squids!!! With guns!!!

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