Friday, April 29, 2005

North Portlanders can’t handle real art

According to Phil Stanford at The Trib, only folks in the Pearl “get” art, deserve art, and can appreciate it. Ooooohhhhh no, should us NoPolians be able to understand artspeak and enjoy it. It’s way too high-falutin for us, right?

Here’s what Phil-o says:
Connoisseurs of public art will want to take in the Regional Arts & Culture Council’s latest contribution to P-town’s cultural life, installed last month at the New Columbia housing project on North Columbia Boulevard. … According to the council’s latest newsletter, it’s a 30-foot section of a tree that’s been “replanted” upside down — you know, branches down, trunk up — and is called the “Big Tree Sculpture.” … My hunch is that it’s one of those things that would probably go over better in the Pearl. But then, what do I know about art?
(I’m not going to honor this crap with a link.)

What’s the real deal? This is a piece of Portland’s wonderful percent for art project…”The City of Portland and Multnomah County Percent for Art ordinances dedicate 1.33% of the total costs of capital improvement projects to the selection, acquisition, siting, maintenance, administration, deaccessioning, community education and registration of public art.” For more information go here.
When I first moved to Portland I thought this was the most amazing thing: poems built into sidewalks, fountains with sculptures, surprises hidden like little gems into the walls and public places. When I encounter public art, it reminds me why I live in Portland.

So this crazy tree. It’s really not so crazy. I live within walking distance of the New Columbia. Back when it was the Old Sad Columbia, it was rich with big old trees. With the new development, and complete razing of the neighborhood, some of these trees had to go.

Hmm. Remind me. How does Portland feel about its trees? Yeah, well, we love them a lot. So one of these trees was salvaged. Yes, in the true Portland spirit of recycle and reuse, one of these trees has been turned into public art.

But wait, there’s more. It's not like RACC was some weird rogue or something...they worked in partnership with Portland Parks & Recreation and the Housing Authority of Portland, to recycle this tree.
The tree has been turned upside down, and now is in the playground. Check out the coolest thing ever:
The tree comes in
Here it comes (photo supplied by RACC)

The tree has arrived
Here it is (photo supplied by RACC)

How many kids grew up playing in that tree when it was alive? And how many kids will grow up playing in that tree in its new life? This is art developed in and of the things I love so much about Portland: reusing what you have, and doing the unexpected— for everyone. Even for those of us who live in North Portland.

To learn more about celebrating and welcoming the first residents of the New Columbia, and the art they will co-exist with, GO HERE.

Thank you Phil, for introducing me to the amazing new art coming to my neighborhood. And here's a newsflash: we get it.
You don't.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Palindromes opens May 6th

As an update to my Dawn Weiner post, looks like Todd Solandz' new film Palindromes opens Friday May 6th at Fox Tower.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

If you had a name like Dorcus, would you really use it in the title of your business?

It's true.
I'm sorry, but every time I hear the name Dorcus I laugh inside. Actually, it's more like a giggle. A 13-year-old smirk.
Here in Portland, we have Flowers by Dorcus.
Then there's the amazing clothing line by Dorcus.
Aah, sweet, sweet Dorcus.

When does one reach the tipping point of changing their name?

Perhaps it should come sooner rather than later?

Monday, April 25, 2005

New gardening blog

Yo yo yo. I'm posting my gardening stuff over at OregonLive now. Stay here for my regular rants, strange neighborhood postings, and basic crap, but for lots of goods about gardening, go Go Here.

Saturday, April 23, 2005

The seedlings are growing and other happenings in the garden

amaranth is growing
4 o'clocks are growing
The amaranth and 4 o'clocks are on their way. Some faster than others.

Other happenings in the garden: had a visitor at the bleeding heart. Can you find it?
bleeding heart...and guest
The small-flowered clematis is in full bloom. It's like a giant layer of frosting. This one is white but we also have a pink montana reubens.

Friday, April 22, 2005

BJ and the Bear is Killer Chimp. Seriously.

You know that horrible story in SoCal about the guy who had his face ripped off by his pet chimp? Turns out the chimp was one of the chimps who played Bear from BJ and the Bear. Ah, for the sweet love of jesus. That show was a classic of my childhood, hangin’ in the beanbag chairs with Ja’amlo, watching BJ (short for Billie Joe McKay) travel the country in his big ol’ red semi-truck. The lure of the wide open road, a super cute trucker, with a heart of gold cuz his best friend is a chimp. To relive the glory of the show, go here.

But back to the point at hand.
Freaked out.
His loving caretaker.
No. I mean bad.
“Davis, 62, currently lies in a medically induced coma in a California hospital, his nose chewed off and his genitals and limbs severely mauled.” Yeah. That bad. You can read the whole sad story here.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Morrison Bridge Causes Stupidity & Attracts Stupidity

What is it with people and cars on the Morrison bridge? I travel it daily, and work from an office with a view overlooking the bridge. In fact, I'm looking at the bridge right now. It's morning drivetime and there's a pedestrian out there thinking they're going to cross the four lanes of traffic--because they have failed to use the proper pedestrian access route on the bridge. It's going to be a game of frogger.

Note to pedestrians: don't trust the drivers on the Morrison bridge.

(And if you're not familiar with the Morrison bridge, it's one of those Portland bridges with metal grating across the center span because it has to go up and down for river traffic.)

Note to drivers: the metal grating is slippery. Don't change lanes on it. Don't drive fast on it. Don't haul ass and pull in front of me and then slam on your brakes on it. Because you will slide. Just a few weeks ago it was all over the news when a driver did some of this exact slip-n-slide action, and drove right through the guardrail and off the bridge into the river. Surprise people! Almost daily I see ambulances, cop cars and fire engines huddled around crumpled cars on the death trap known as the Morrison Bridge.

Slow it on down out there. Use the pedestrian access. Don't try to pull a U-Turn on the bridge (I see it all the time!). Be nice to each other. That crazy bridge has it out for all of us. Don't be its next victim.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Springtime in the garden

spring light
Originally uploaded by jellybeanbonanza.
Primavera en el jardin: the light this time of year means anything can happen. I love that. Springtime is crazy, isn't it? One second hail, one second sunshine. Here is a moment caught on camera, Picasso is in the garden, enjoying being outside, as am I. This is the time to envision, to imagine what is to come. I love that so much of it is unknown. Except for the weeds. They're always known. Ugh. But that's another post...for another time.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Gardening season escalates

farmer in the garden
Originally uploaded by jellybeanbonanza.
The temperature is rising, the grass is bright spring green, and the australian impatiens have seeded everywhere. I've given them away to friends and neighbors, I've ripped them out, and I've thinned them. I need to thin them more. I can't wait for this weekend. It's going to be 72 degrees, and the entire new front bed is prepped and ready to be planted. I have space now to dig and divide and spread things around, and to envision and create a whole new area of the garden. I'm feeling giddy.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Working women in Oregon make .68 cents to every dollar Oregon men make


Ladies, tired of feeling like you work your ass off?
Well, you do.

Tuesday represents how far into the year you've had to work to earn as much as a man made in 2004. Tuesday, April 18, symbolizes the day when women's wages catch up to men's wages from the previous year. Because women on average earn less, they must work longer for the same pay. For women of color, the wage gap is even greater.

In the state of Oregon, women make .68 to the dollar a man makes. We are one of the worst states in the West, but not as bad as Wyoming, where it's the worst place for equal pay for women. In Wyoming, if you're a woman you make .63 to every dollar made by a man.

Where's the best place to work in the country if you're a woman? Well DC, of course. Props to our DC friends. You go sistahs!

For more information about Equal Pay Day

And thanks to Blue Oregon for the reference to this campaign

Sunday, April 17, 2005

How’s the health inspection report for your favorite restaurant?

Rodent infestation? Dirty hands? Rotten produce? Or do your fav’ picks come through with flying colors? I came across this an on-line resource for Multnomah County: the results and reports of health inspections. And now I know the truth. Is that dirty looking place actually dirty on the inside? Maybe, maybe not. But now I know.

So let’s take a look at some North Portland places in my neighborhood. Some I frequent, some I don’t. Here’s the scoop.

John Street CafĂ©—100. Perfect score. For the past two years. Dine in confidence.

Super Burrito—77. Hmm. Not good: food is not being hold in temperatures cold enough. This is a bummer because they have some kick ass Super Nachos. They’re a meal for two. But 77? Not too good.

Fishwife—97. Very impressive. Way to go Fishwife!

Dad’s Restaurant and Lounge—Well, it’s a good thing they retook the test in January because they scored a 96, instead of when they were reviewed in December and scored a 52. Why 52? Moldy foods, and the operator was unaware of the rodent infestation. Ewww. Nice. Rodents.


Shagnasty’s—different visits ranging from 91-100. Phew. Glad to know it’s safe to dine at such a finely named establishment.

And if you want to look up your restaurant list, go here.

Saturday, April 16, 2005

Dawn Weiner is NOT dead.

Dawn Weiner, president of the special person's club.
If you don’t know who Dawn Weiner is, add Welcome to the Dollhouse to your list of movies to rent. If you do know who Dawn Weiner is: there’s a new movie out by filmmaker Todd Solandz continuing the story of Welcome to the Dollhouse, but in a very different way. I can tell it’s going to be another wonderful freakshow.

Listen to the NPR story about the new movie “Palindromes," including an interview with Heather Matarazzo, who is not in Solandz’ new movie.

See the trailer for Palindromes here.

And to end this post, here's a favorite quote from Welcome to the Dollhouse:
Dawn offers Steve something to eat while he waits for Mark to come home.
Dawn Weiner: Ring Dings, Pop Tarts, whatever! I can make Jell-O.

Friday, April 15, 2005

Can you name this scary man?

Can you name this scary man?

Can you name this scary turtle man? Very scary turtle-like man? And the real question really is, if you looked like this, would you put your face out on every e-mail news flash that you send?

No, you wouldn't. Please, turtleman. When you spew the rhetoric that you do,please do so without showing us your face.

Thank you.

That's so hot.

That's so hot.

This belt buckle rocks. If you want to see it in person, you have to go to

Marriage License Refunds: What to do with $60?

What does $60 buy you?
If you're straight, it buys you over 1,000 rights and privileges through the glories of marriage.
And if you're one of the 3,000+ couples who a year ago paid Multnomah County $60 to enter into this sanctimonious realm that is held so sacred, you're getting your money back.
So what are you going to do with that money?
Are you one of our straight allies who also believes there has been some incredibly sad news for the gay community with Measure 36 and yesterday's Oregon Supreme Court ruling?
Join me and put your money where your mouth is: I'm turning my $60 over to Basic Rights Oregon to help fight the good fight for us in the coming year.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Tim Nashif is "thrilled" today.

Tim Nashif, head of the Oregon Family Council and the Defense of Marriage Coalition, said, "We're pretty thrilled and pretty relieved at the opinion."

Way to go, Tim. Yes, a thrilling day for all.

These are real people you’re talking about when you talk about gay marriage

My life has been judged upon by the Oregon Supreme Court, by my fellow Oregonians, and by a president proposing an amendment to “protect marriage.” I’m part of one of the couples ya’ll are talking about. And voting on. And ruling upon.

Today was yet another blow. This time by the Oregon Supreme Court, who ruled that my marriage is invalid. Invalid? How can it be invalid? We’ve been together nine and a half years. We were married in our local church. We had a huge wedding party this summer with our parents, families, and friends from all over the country, celebrating our wedding. My father welcomed my partner into the family. I fully came out to everyone in my life. We were on such a high.

And then came this fall’s election, and November. A majority of voters in Oregon declared that marriage was to only be between a man and a woman. I heard things during the campaign season that made me shudder: people holding my relationship up as comparison to polygamy, or bestiality. Or declaring gay households dangerous to children. Bible thumping. (wait, what happened about the difference between church and state?!) The Baptist church in my neighborhood became one of the largest funders of the campaign declaring my marriage a threat to society.

But I held out hope for Oregon’s Supreme Court ruling. And I was let down today. My brother reminds me it’s just a piece of paper. My colleague asks if we can go somewhere else to be married (once again, Canada is looking pretty good). BRO says there’s hope in the way the ruling was stated. Yes, I hear all of these things out there, and tomorrow I’ll see my glass half full and will continue the fight.

But today? No. Today, I’m sad, and mad, let down. I don’t understand why and how people can see such a personal part of my life as something so politically charged. How can my relationship be such a threat to so many people?

When people rail off about Multnomah County, the “liberals”, the “homosexual agenda”, the bible and everything else they’re so pissed off about, I wish they’d try to keep in mind that underneath it all there are real people here. Real couples. We’re your neighbors, your sisters, your coworkers, and your friends. What is everyone so scared of?

You can't pry this marriage certificate out of my hands...

...even if the Supreme Court of this state declares my marriage is invalid.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Breeders are Breeding: Britney and Mr. Spears announce they're preggers

Word up from Britney Spears today:
"The time has finally come to share our wonderful news that we are expecting our first child together."
Props to you Mr. and Mrs. Spears.
Here comes the drama....

Read the official site announcement here

Monday, April 11, 2005

George W.'s iPod Playlist

"Gone Pecan" by Sonny Landreth
"Rock 'n' Roll Hootchie Coo" by Johnny Winter
"Adios Mexico" by Texas Tornados
"Why" by David Baerwald
"Road to Hell" by Chris Rea
"Hey, Hey, Hey" by Stevie Wonder
"Layla" by Eric Clapton
"Real Emotions" by Los Lonely Boys
"Simply Irresistible" by Robert Palmer
"Firecracker" by Bryan Adams
"Jacob's Ladder" by Huey Lewis
"You Make My Dreams Come True" by Hall and Oates

I also understand My Sharona is on there.

Hall and Oates. That's good stuff there. Good stuff. I'm a little upset about My Sharona. I like that song.

UPDATE TO ORIGINAL POST: Read the article here.

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Seed tending and starting today

Seed tending and starting today

I'm so lucky to have such a great friend like ToBa. Earlier this winter we
got together to order seeds, and he has been growing them in his guest room
under a very impressive tiered set up with grow lights. It's looking to be
the year of Amaranth. Magic Fountain (I think Mountain), Ponytails, and
Joseph's Coat.

Tonight I started some seeds indoors: Four O'Clock Tea Time Series Mix,
Four O'Clock Limelight, and Amaranth Magic Fountain. I hope they grow. If
not, well, I'll seed them outdoors in a month or so when it warms up.

In the meantime, props to ToBa. Thanks!

I love my new gardening shoes

I love my new gardening shoes

I got these fantastic slip on, water resistant, and COMFORTABLE shoes on
sale for $11 at Smith & Hawken. I love them because they keep my feet dry,
and are somewhat fashionable!

It's Wysteria Time en El Jardin

It's Wysteria Time en El Jardin

I love the Wysteria. It smells like Bazooka Bubble Gum.

I'm finding it a little hard to get to my laptop.

I'm finding it a little hard to get to my laptop.

Is she trying to tell me something?

Friday, April 08, 2005

Finally! That Sardine Stuffed Eggs Recipe I've been looking for...

Seriously. What am I doing with the "Dishes Men Like" cookbook? It's one of my vintage "advertising masquerading as a cookbook" from my tasty collection. "Dishes Men Like" was published in 1952 by the folks at Lea & Perrins, so everything has a key ingredient. In this one, it's Worcestershire sauce. The recipes and photos are classic (if you need a 30-minute noodle goulash recipe just let me know and I'll hook you up), but the writing to the target audience -- wives -- is even better.

Here's from the opening of "Dishes Men Like"...

"If you have a husband who likes to cook pamper him. Encourage him! You are lucky indeed, even though you find yourself only a fetch-and-carry handmaiden while his genius glows. But men are wise, not one in a thousand really wants to take over the job. They usually have a few specialties to produce on occasion and leave the rest of the cooking to us.

So, what do we do? It goes without saying that most women choose dishes men like. And men have quite definite likes and dislikes about food.

For instance, they like Lea & Perrins, the Original Worcestershire Sauce. That's not just hearsay or one woman's opinion. Lea & Perrins is America's most popular sauce, for generations the favorite of men in all parts of the country. They've asked for Worcestershire Sauce over and over again in restaurants, clubs and hotels and have expected to see without fail the familiar bottle of Lea & Perrins come their way."

So, for all you fetch-and-carry handmaidens out there, get on it and start with this tasty recipe for Ham Loaf De Luxe
1 lb. lean ham, ground
1 lb. lean pork, ground
1 c. rice krispies, crushed
2 eggs, beaten
1 c. milk
1 teasp each, salt and pepper
Mix all ingredients, pack into loaf pan. Bake in moderate oven (350 F.) 30 minutes, reduce heat to very slow (250 F) and bake 1 1/2 hours, basting frequently with sauce made as follows:
1/2 c. warm water
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 teasp. dry mustard
1/4 c. vinegar
1/4 c. Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce
Stir ingredients, heat and use to baste loaf.


Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Meet the Butt Burner

Meet the Butt Burner

scrreeeechhh ouch! That's the sound of skin sticking and scooting down a hot metal slide in the middle of Kansas' summer heat.

Meet The Butt Burner. The awesome kick-ass wavy air-catching classic slide across the street from my "in town" Grandma's Sabetha house. And surprise. It's still there.

The Butt Burner. No slide like this would ever make it into a new park today. No way. It's tall, and it's fast. And it's hard, hot metal. Soaking up Kansas heat and sun, it gets so hot you can see the heat waves rising from it. It really could cook an egg in the middle of summer. Daring to ride this hot mama meant throwing sand down it first, to help with the heat, and to increase the speed. The bumps meant it was actually possible to catch a little air, but if you chickened out and tried to go slow, it was always possible your skin would stick and you'd screech screech screech down it. No fear on the Butt Burner. No fear.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

I'm Sorry, Kansas

I'm Sorry, Kansas

Oh Kansas. Land of sweet farm-visiting memories, salt-of-the-earth, sunflowers, and places like the Bern Cafe. I'm sorry you voted to amend your constitution, banning gay marriage. Yes, I knew it would probably happen: sheesh, it happened here in Oregon. But I guess I was still holding out on the words of Kansas cousin this weekend who said she didn't think it would pass because "here in Kansas, we believe in live and let live."

Here's one of the many, many signs I saw this weekend between Kansas City and Sabetha. This one joins a church sign, but others in front of homes used the slogan "It's common sense: protect traditional marriage". Hmm. What exactly is there that needs to be protected?

I'm sorry, Kansas. I guess I was holding out hope. I still love you, even if you think I'm not worthy of rights like being buried next to my partner, sharing an assisted-living facility room, or seeing each other in the hospital. But then again, we know marriage isn't really the issue, don't we?