Archive for February, 2006

I love Portland, Part 6

February 28, 2006

An earnest woman, overheard on the #15 tonight:

“…I feel like I sinned. I’ve never done anything like that before!…well…once, in a previous life.”


The latest blog quiz

February 27, 2006

You Passed 8th Grade Math

Congratulations, you got 10/10 correct!
Could You Pass 8th Grade Math?

(Via Jim Henley.)

I love Portland, Part 5

February 25, 2006

Conversation earlier this week with a homeless guy, while I was sitting on the couch on my front porch:

Him: When I’m drunk later tonight, can I sleep on your couch?
Me: Ah, sorry, dude, no.
Him: OK. Thanks, anyway!
Me: No, hey, thanks for asking first!

An example of poor web design

February 25, 2006

If you go to this page on the U.S. Postal Service website and put in your address, you can get a list of the nearest post offices.

If you then select the “What’s Nearby” link under the post office location, you can learn what stores, restaurants, theaters, hotels, etc. are nearby.

But you can’t learn where to find the nearest blue sidewalk postbox.

The Web has been around for 11 years, and the Postal Service still does not have a searchable database of postboxes, much less information about when their pickup times are.

Compare that to what FedEx and UPS offer.

Picture of Portland #2

February 19, 2006

The Laurelhurst entrance to the 42nd Avenue pedestrian bridge.

A nice Portland moment #2

February 19, 2006

I was walking up SE 26th past Caruthers early this evening, when I saw a cat sitting on a chest-high retaining wall. I petted the cat for a minute, and it then put its front paws on my right shoulder and rubbed its face against the back of my head.

Even by Portland standards, that’s friendly.

Why the Democrats are a minority party

February 15, 2006

According to CNN (emphasis added):

The announcement came after Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, a Nevada Democrat, and California Rep. Nancy Pelosi, the top-ranking Democrat in the House, emerged from a White House breakfast meeting with President Bush and Cheney to say the vice president needed to come forward.

“I guess I’m kind of old-fashioned,” Reid said. “He hasn’t had a press conference in three and a half years.”

Said Pelosi: “Open government demands that the vice president come clean with what happened … There’s probably a very simple answer to it, but we have to break this habit of the administration, of closed government without the openness that is healthy to a democracy.”

They said they did not tell Cheney to his face that he should come forward and that the vice president said little during the breakfast.

That’s just gutless.

The decline and fall of reader interest

February 15, 2006

The Multnomah County Library has a set of the Everyman’s Library six-volume edition of Edward Gibbon’s The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.

Volume 1 has seen hard use: The cover bent and frayed at the corners, the fabric threadbare in places, the spine lettering illegible because mostly worn off.

Four of the final five volumes are in pristine condition.

Picture of Portland

February 15, 2006

The steeple of the Sunnyside United Methodist Church, viewed through the overhang of the Belmont Lofts.

Ripped 100 years ago from today’s headlines

February 15, 2006

An excerpt from a letter written by President Theodore Roosevelt to U.S. Ambassador to Italy Henry White, dated September 13, 1906:

Just at the moment I am so angry with that infernal little Cuban republic that I would like to wipe its people off the face of the earth. All that we have wanted from them was that they should behave themselves and be prosperous and happy so that we would not have to interfere. And now, lo and behold, they have started an utterly unjustifiable and pointless revolution and may get things into such a snarl that we have no alternative save to intervene—which will at once convince the suspicious idiots in South America that we do wish to interfere after all, and perhaps have some land-hunger!

— quoted in: Nevins, Allan. Henry White: Thirty Years of American Diplomacy. New York : Harper & Bros, 1930. 255.

Poor suffering “national greatness” Republicans. Ever liberating little peoples who never have the gratitude to just do as they’re told. And those idiot neighbors and their unfounded suspicions!

Well! It’s enough to make a body not want to liberate any more countries.

For a while, anyway.