#88 Androgyny

AndrogynyMen can do their toilet business much faster than the ladies. And when girls just can’t wait in line, they may choose to hit up the men’s room. As case in point, go to Boiler Room at 11pm on a Friday night.  Although socially questionable, this act would seem somewhat understandable.

Just a block away in Old Town/Chinatown at the Tube, you don’t even need to establish a Hipster’s His/Hers restroom line. It’s almost impossible to distinguish these denizen’s as Women or Men.  From Pioneer Square to Belmont to Alberta, the streets run rampant with Androgynous Armies.

It seems a lot of individuals here feel challenged to put the cancellation of masculinity and femininity on trial – resulting in an almost third-kind of gender, “No Man’s Land” (no pun intended). Like a single zombie bite that turns an entire city into the infected, gender-neutral clothing has become the “rotten flesh” of Portland. Even our southern-state-transplant-posers feel the need to adopt the look and style of rain clouds.  When Californians adopt the style sensibility from a Twilight film, you know something is wrong.

Now, there are those who like to stand out as individuals, but they mostly go to work then take the Max back home to Beaverton. When the sun comes out for three months, some of the infected actually wear shorts and whatever V-Neck t-shirt currently on sale for $9.99 at H&M.  As the clouds roll back into their lives, so doth the goth in all of us.

He or She? We’ll will never know.  That is the wonder of Portland.  There are no gender roles.  There is no clear definition of man or woman on the streets of Portland.  There are no pink coats, cowboy hats or furry hoods.  There are just black hoodies, tight jeans and Chuck Taylors.

#87 Renaming the Rose Garden

Taking it to the Blazers WPPortland is home to the greatest sports franchise since 1977, the Trailblazers Professional Basketball team. The Blazers have never sucked and are led by the most amazing owners in the history of balls. Even when they tanked seasons away, it was always part of the master plan to acquire NBA greats like Bill Walton, Clyde Drexler, Michael Jordan, Z-Bo, LaMarcus Aldridge, Damian Lillard and Myers Leonard. This level of strategy and advanced metrics can only be attributed to the brilliance of law firm Glickman:Weinberg:Allen.

This isn’t about the team, but the money-grabbing, gut-wrenching renaming of the Rose Garden to the <expletive deleted>. This all began when the logic-based reasoning of extraterrestrial humanoids called Vulcans, descended onto Earth. Overcome by a furious sexual desire known as “pon farr“, they focused on screwing as many Blazers they could. To achieve this, the Vulcans set their sights on selling the naming rights of the “Rose Garden” in 2007, and finally found their mate in Moda Health (formally ODS).

Spock Peeing on RG WPThe Rose Garden name had so much Portland pride beaming out of it, sometimes, it was mistaken for the sun. When the Vulcans tore it down, it was like watching all the Vitamin D drain from the city.  Why didn’t the Vulcans choose a partner that had some connection to Portland?  Nike Air Forum, Adidas Dome, Intel Center, Pendleton Pavilion, VooDoo Donuts’ Hole Arena… all better, all local.

Moda Health wanted to build their new brand very quickly after they became a partner for the Affordable Care Act (Cover Oregon). In their defense, buying the naming rights to the Rose Garden, à la Pepsi, Staples and Target, would accomplish just that. However, the public backlash with renaming it would further hurt the perception of Moda Health. All Blazers’ fans hate the new name:

“It will always be listed as ‘Rose Garden’ in our database.” – Radio Cab operator

“It broke my heart to read about all the people needing couple dollar prescriptions while Moda Health is spending millions on sports arena marketing.” – Season Ticket Holder

“A terrible name that doesn’t roll off the tongue, like saying “Rose Garden.” – Tom’s Pizza and Sports Bar regular

Ultimately, Moda Health isn’t the bad guy here. The Vulcans are going to apply the $40 million to the <expletive deleted>. They claim it will improve the “fan experience”.  In the end, fans will put up with it, as we do every year with just three months of sun.

#86 Bangs

I hate bangsWomen get excited about changing up their hairstyle. It’s as if we go through some mini quarter-life style crisis and instantly need a change. Most every Portlander from Vaughn to Mississippi seems to have bangs now, so I decided to try them out.

When I first got bangs I LOVED them! After one week of the new do, I found myself looking at old pictures of my long, flowing hair and instantly missed the style that I donned for a decade.

Cutting your bangs is like dating the “bad boy.” In your heart, you know it’s not a good idea, but you ignore those feelings and jump right in. About two months into the relationship, the allure wears off and you realize this might have been a bad decision. Days or even weeks later, you become consumed by the terrible mistake you’ve made and major guilt sets in. You feel utterly stupid, ashamed, embarrassed. This is the exact same process you go through with bangs.

At the beginning, you feel pretty cool with the decision to cut your bangs, but then the two month mark hits you.  Your bangs start stabbing you in the eyes, become unruly and don’t fall just right. No matter how hard you try, they never want to do what YOU want them to do. This begins the horrible “in-between stage.”

Everyday you start telling yourself, “All my problems will go away if I just cut them again.” You fall into the trap, thinking this will just get them looking “normal” again. If you’re like most women and end up cutting them, you then have to ride the emotional roller-coaster ALL OVER AGAIN. You love to hate bangs, just like you love to hate the bad boy!

It’s been almost seven months, and I’m only half-way to my original style, my “normal.”

It’s a process, but I have to remind myself I’m just better off without him. I mean them… THEM! I meant bangs.

#85 Tanking

Taaank!!!

Note: This was posted in 2012. Tanking got us the 2013 Unanimous R.O.Y Damian Lillard! Tanking is awesome!

Last night, was a personal low for me as a Po’Zers fan.  With only a few games remaining in the 2012 season, I was excited to see our team face off against the #1 team in the West.  The 2012 Spurs have surpassed everyone’s expectations with their cruise into the post season.  This was an excellent chance for our young roster to play upset and gain momentum for next season.  After the first quarter, the Po’Zers were down by 13 points.  So, I decided to watch something more basketball related than what I was currently watching, “Khloe and Lamar: Lamar vs. Lakers.

The Trailblazers started to tank the season on March 15th, 2012

  • Marcus Camby for Hasheem Thabeet, Johnny Flynn and the Rockets 2012 2nd round draft pick
  • Gerald Wallace for Mehmet Okur, Shawne Williams and the Nets 2012 1st round draft pick
  • Waived Greg Oden
  • Waived Chris Johnson
  • Fired Nate McMillan

When I learned we had lost two starters for garbage, I couldn’t believe it.  My diehard Po’Zers fan explained to me how big those draft picks are.  News outlets would share the same sentiment, “It’s all about the ping pong balls.”  Dumping Greg Oden felt like a huge weight had been lifted off my knees.  As cursed as we are, we didn’t need Bowie 2.0 lurking in the shadows.

However, firing Nate McMillan ended up being the best decision all day.  As we all know, Nate McMillan sucks.  You think you like McMillan, because he’s been around for so many years, but all he does is lose.  He can win with losers, but he can’t win with winners.

The most important thing to note from all this; our city’s only professional franchise is looking towards the future.  The Po’Zers have multiple picks in a draft full of talent, rising stars and two marquee players heading into next season.  They are currently courting top notch GMs to bring about this change.  Still, it’s such a disappointment to see a team purposely tank their season. Hopefully, Tank gods will notice our sacrifice and lift the curse for a couple of years.

#84 TV Shows Set in Portland

When I first heard that a TNT show called “Leverage” was filming in Portland, I was super duper excited. “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”, “Grey’s Anatomy” and “The Wire” all do a great job of capturing and depicting the pulse of the city they are filmed in. After watching the first episode of season two, I was a little disappointed to find our city is actually supposed to be a representation of Boston. The opening scene of Season 2 shows a car racing through “Boston’s” downtown area until it flips and lights on fire… in front of Mary’s Club.

Mary's Grand Opening!

Over the course of the next couple of seasons, the show would continue to highlight more of “Boston’s” metro area spots like Gilt Club, North Park Blocks and Big Pink. This made me wonder, “What other shows are set in Portland?” The garbage began to stack up.

Portlandia – Set and filmed in Portland. If you think this show is a perfect depiction of Portland, you might be right. If you think this show is one of the funniest shows on TV, you would definitely be wrong. Portlandia is a pile of diarrhea. I understand that Fred and Carrie are trying to poke fun at Portland through a series of sketches, but can you remember any that are actually funny? For those of you who say “Put a Bird On It” was hilarious, I ask you to think of how it ends. Now, go back and watch it. Yeah, not very funny.

Free Agents – Set in Portland. Two funny people acting in two unfunny character roles. The PR business is boring, dull and life sucking (like Aloha!). If it hasn’t been cancelled yet, it should be (like Aloha!).

Under Suscpision – Set and filmed in Portland. Cancelled after one season

Life Unexpected – Set in Portland. Cancelled

Nowhere Man – Set in Portland.  Cancelled after one season

Grimm – Set and filmed in Portland. Feels like NBC’s attempt to get into the Sci-Fi biz ala “X-Files”, “Fringe” and “Eureka”.  Their “pilot” episode is about a college student who is mysteriously attacked. HA! Pilot!

The only successful show I see coming from this city is a fictional, African American comedy about two rookies drafted by the Blazers in the early 00′s (may or may not be on CW). One is from a small town in Texas, where he was born with values and a God-fearing sense of decency. The other is from some ghetto on the East Coast who loooves marijuana. They get an apartment together. Its “the Odd Couple” meets “Weeds.” Comedy. Insanity. Ratings.

What would the name of that show be?

#83 The Tiger

(Willamette Week/AP)

The Tiger is the  U.S. Representative for Oregon’s 1st congressional district. As a beast and congressman, The Tiger has been a part of some landmark moments that have shaped our country.

The Tiger was born in the 1950′s, when Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes was in need of a mascot to appear on packaging and advertising campaigns.  They settled with a Chinese immigrant from Taiwan and The Tiger became a huge success with children everywhere.  Over the generations he became one of the greatest cartoon icons in the realm of Goofy, Sonic and the Tasmanian Devil.

In his final year at Yale Law School, the Tiger was contacted by American rock band Survivor to pen the theme for Rocky III.  The movie was a story about an epic battle with Man (Mr. T) vs. Man (Mr. B).  In one of the greatest collaborations in the history of mankind, Rocky III would debut “Eye of the Tiger” to moviegoers and radio enthusiasts everywhere.  In his first attempt, The Tiger found success at #2 and was nominated for an Academy Award. His second musical collaboration united a group of rappers that went on to some success in the hip hop community.

In 1998, he teamed up with the Democrat party and successfully won a seat as United State’s newest congressman.  Although his reign would last twelve years, it also introduced a dark longing to return to the jungle.

On October 30th, 2010, Blackberry emails, texts and images surfaced showing the Tiger under the influence of jungle fever.  He would proceed to embarrass his staff and Oregonians over the next couple of months until The Tiger was put down by WWeek.com.  Currently, his blood is being sold on the black market fueling other crazy outbursts and behavioral changes in humans.

#82 Snowpocalypse

Its that time of year when everyone in Portland gets on their cold weather periods. The peacoats, hipster scarves, and rain boots come out in full force. Coffee shops experience a jolt in morning sales. Our town becomes a super sad depressing wet blanket. The amount of darkness and rain only prelude to the inevitable climax of what everyone outside of the Willamette Valley already knows exist: Snow.

Snow: Frozen crystalized rain. You can manipulate these tiny crystals into a bunch of balls representing fat people.
+
Apocalypse: The End of the World. Complete desperation and loss of hope. The Walking Dead + Left 4 Dead + CW’s 90210.

This sudden bombardment of freaky cold temperatures causes such a stupid panic that Coloradans only laugh at the mild winter Portland residents call “Snowpocalypse”. For those of you lucky enough to not know the definition, Snowpocalypse is the cataclysmic event of snow touching the valley floor. The degree of snow doesn’t really matter. In fact, it could snow one inch and that will cause more accidents than 1/10th an inch of rain. If you were to ask an Eastern Oregonian (.ie Real Oregon) why Portlanders easily scare of snow, its because they don’t know how to drive. TAPtS has already covered this issue and it is FACT.

Unfortunately, the introduction of winter weather is a scary event for the City of Portland. Businesses are forced to close because Beaverton residents can’t make it into downtown for work. People abandoned their cars rather than wait through hours of traffic and chaos. If you dare leave the house, you will be faced with soft powdery locusts waiting to bite at your rosey cheeks. Snowpocalypse is really the end of days… until it bumps back up to 47 degrees and rains all week.

For those of you stranded at home during the work week, I recommend these things:

1. Call your mother and tell her you love her.
2. Cuddle with your significant other
2a. If you don’t have a loved one, then play video games ’til your thumbs are red
3. Catch up on all the shit that is NSFW. Cracked.com, Funnyordie.com, Thesuperficial.com, Thedirty.com, etc.

Leave some recommendations on how you plan to beat the sleet.

#81 Leaf Blowers

Every year, just after labor day, autumn descends on God’s Country. It is a time when one can finally switch out summer sweaters for winter sweaters! The air becomes crisp and misty! And at least a dozen local hipsters must be rescued from the Sauvie Island Corn Maize. Oh yeah, and motherf**kers start busting out their leaf blowers.

Up and down the streets of Portland walk lazy bastards with the equivalent of a backwards vacuum strapped to their backs, blowing their leaf refuse into the streets. Nothing ruins a perfectly nice fall morning/afternoon/night/midnight than a leaf blower, revved up and spitting gasoline into your face as you walk by. But, you may argue, people all across this great nation use leaf blowers. Why is this something that sucks about Portland? Because Portlanders should know better.

Late 2009, citizens within the city limits of Portland tried to gets these noise/air pollutants banned. Instead, our City Government came up with mandatory decibel levels for leaf blowers. You could now receive a $300-$3000 fine for blowing too loud in Portland. The max level is set to about the sound of a noisy restaurant or vacuum cleaner outside your window. But Holy Hell!!! It sounds much louder and more annoying than Henrys at happy hour… Okay, so maybe not as annoying as this conversation overheard at Henry’s Tavern:

Guy- I work in the M Financial building as a banker.
Girl- Oh that’s neat! I’ve been a stylist for about three years.
Guy- So, what made you want to jump on Match.com?”

Besides the obvious arguments against leaf blowers (loud, noxious, ineffective) there is also the fact that when you choose to live in a “liveable” city, you sign up for certain amount of self awareness for the good of the neighborhood. One such “inconvenience” is to get off your lazy ass and rake your yard! Unfortunately for the people living downtown, you don’t have a say in the ungodly hours that leaf blowers are contracted to operate. So instead of working on a way to ban them, let’s keep doing what every average Portlander does best: bitch about it on the internet!

#80 The Cheerful Tortoise

Located in the heart of Suck University, Cheerful Tortoise has been the watering hole for thousands of college students waiting to wet their whistles. As the only bar remaining from rezoning the area, it has become the SW Marathon Taverna attracting crazies by day and fake ID’s by night. To blame the clientele for Tortoise’s suckery isn’t fair to the food, atmosphere and bathrooms. Let’s take this one step at a time, shall we?

Before this blog was created, a group of friends visited the Cheerful for cheap “recovery food”. A friend ordered the pancakes… and he is a no-pro when it comes to culinary experiences. After waiting 45 minutes, he was eventually served well-done, black pancakes. This North American flapjack was so burnt we tossed them across the table to test it’s sturdiness.

Recently, I came here around 8 pm on a Sunday night for a simple Club sandwich and fries. At 7 am on Monday morning, I called in sick for work. Gross.

To be honest, it isn’t fair to expect an excellent meal when you step inside either of the two entrances to this dive bar. The floor is generations old. The grand ole fire pit appears to be days away from consuming the entire neighborhood in hellfire. The walls, bar, table, stools, chairs, etc. are covered in stains and that sticky black residue scientifically known as “gunk”. But it must be noted that you cannot expect Cheerful Tortoise to care when they have +20 high definition tvs to pull your attention away. On a Sunday morning during Football season, the only person who cares about the shit-holesque atmosphere are the Pearl girlfriends drug dragged here because On Deck didn’t have the game in high def.

There are four tier’s of female when it comes to these alcohol establishments. Mothers hate sport/dive bars (Vinny’s mom). Women tolerate them because they enjoy the company of friendship that usually surrounds dive bars (Sammi “Sweatheart”). Girls like going here because guys will buy them drinks just for showing up (J-Woww). Chicks absolutely f***ing LOVE these places because they can get hammered at any point of the day (Snooki). I’m pretty sure mothers and women would leave after they see the bathrooms at Cheerful Tortoise. Girls would complain, but after a couple of drinks, a girl has got to pee. Chicks, well chicks don’t care where they piss. It could be the girls bathroom, guys, bush, just as long as they can drop a thong it won’t matter.

Now like every dive bar in the world, there are some big draws to the general community. The daily drink specials, Thursday’s $1 beer night, Karaoke from Wednesday to Saturday, NFL Sunday ticket and super cheap breakfast specials keep people from coming back. Two out of those four reason are why I go back to the Cheerful Tortoise. Why in the hell would you?

#79 Ghost Bikes

You see them all the time. As a fellow human, it saddens me that someone lost their life. Busy streets, 4-way stop signs and sharp turns are marked with this memorial for motorists to slow down and be aware of the danger they can cause. For those of you who don’t know what a ghost bike is, let me explain.

Ghost bikes are these bicycles that are painted white and locked near an intersection where a cyclist died. They’re supposed to serve as a reminder to cars to slow down and look for bikes. However, it’s pretty ineffective seeing as 101% of bikers don’t actually brake for intersections. Actually, people who don’t ride bikes, ride their bikes through intersections without breaking. Some purist have even disabled their braking system in order to achieve a more manageable gear ratio.

Nooow, serious cyclists don’t use helmets because it makes them look dorky. Instead, they’ll use these little cycling caps that offer twice as much protection, while looking only three times dorkier than a traditional helmet. Have you ever picked up a chick on your bike? Ladies, do you ever think people pay attention to what helmet you are wearing whilst leaning on your cruiser?

If I ever die on my bike, please promise to complete a thorough investigation to determine whether or not the accident was my fault. And if it was my fault please don’t lock my bike to a stop sign. Because if you find I cruised through an intersection without a helmet, I don’t want dudes in short pants/little hats having a circle jerk on account of my own foolishness. But then again, I’ll be dead.

Don’t be stupid. Wear Protection. http://www.bicyclinginfo.org/bikemore/safely.cfm