Thursday, September 30, 2010

Dear Weather: Please feel free to turn to Fall at any time, thanks.

I am so ready for fall.  Quick walk around the neighborhood this morning while it was still pitch black reminded me how much I love it, when the air gets crisp and the leaves are threatening to change color and drop.  Fall is my favorite season, hands down.  My mother's trip to Oregon went well, we actually didn't do much in Portland but covered some ground going East to the Gorge and then West to Astoria and a bunch of parks/viewpoints North of there in Washington.  The Gorge trip on Sunday was awesome - it was rainy, misty, foggy, and gorgeous.  While the view from Vista House wasn't so great due to the fog, the rolling clouds made for a beautiful sight from Chanticleer Point.  And Multnomah Falls?  Amazing as always.

Daily Food 9/29/10
Breakfast: GF bagel, cream cheese
Lunch: tomato soup, popcorn, apple
Snack: honeydew melon, diet Coke
Dinner: rice pasta, spicy sauce, tomato; cherry frozen yogurt

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Ma Goes to Chinatown

Mumswell arrived in Portland yesterday without a hitch!  After I picked her up, she suggested we go to the Japanese Gardens, so I started heading that way, and about 12 minutes into battling for a parking space in Old Town, I realized I was mixed up and thought she meant the Chinese Gardens!  Whoops!  We grabbed a quick beverage at Backspace ("Ooh, how very Portland," she said), and then walking back toward the garden I realized we were a little short on time and tried to back out of the garden visit altogether, but we were lured in by the volunteers out front advertising yesterday's free admission.  What luck!

It was gorgeous and the weather could not have been nicer.

Daily Food 9/25/10
Breakfast: Clif bar
Lunch: tomato/basil soup, tuna with capers, onions
Dinner: shared polenta cakes, taco platter (Soyrizo, beans, rice, tortillas) at Bar Carlo
Misc: Cava!

Friday, September 24, 2010

RIP Lutz Tavern

Repost of my Yelp review for this spot, closing its doors forever next week. 

I think enough years have passed that I am finally allowed to talk about a juicy little event I once participated in that was reckless, exciting, dangerous, ridiculous, and majorly mother-lovin' fun. 

I was a PDX Assassin.  The year was 2005. 

It was a city-wide game that entailed "killing" people with water guns, after long, drawn-out stalking episodes, jeopardizing people's jobs and personal affairs, and extensive internet tomfoolery. 

That year was team play, and my partner and I needed a place to go plan our attacks in secrecy.  Why the clandestine nature of these meetings?  Well, neither of our homes was safe from spies, and we had both lied to our boyfriends.  "Lie" might be a strong word.  We just didn't tell them we were participating in this insane game and instead claimed we had formed a book club, something they wanted no part of, so that we could plot in peace. 

The Lutz Tavern was the official site of Team Book Club meetings.  It was perfect.  It was dark, weird, dirty, and had really cheap beer.  No one bothered us.  They had one of those old-timey powdered Luron soap dispensers in the bathroom.  No one questioned why were were laying photos of our targets on the bar and clipping letters out of the newspaper to glue together ransom notes.  They had baskets of peanuts in the shell and a kick-ass jukebox. 

Our time in the game was pretty short lived.  We got killed in the rain on SE 21st Ave, just off of Hawthorne.  But I continued to hang out at the Lutz, all by my lonesome, on the weekends for years, spending hours on end trying to master Sopranos pinball, including two Easters there.  Just me, beer in a can, popcorn, and pinball.  When I got too tipsy, I switched to Dr. Pepper and all was right with the world. 

After 56 years, The Lutz closes its doors forever next week.  I've been a handful of times in the last few months, and while there are new (since the assassin days) faces behind the bar, it's never really changed.  Last night, I got in a few rounds of pinball, a 22 oz of dark cider, and chatted some pals, "in memoriam"-style. 

So long and farewell, Lutz.  RIP, along with my assassin career.   

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Interspecies Loving

 That's Woody on the left, Clavey on the right.  Gorgeous!

Photo of these beautiful beasts courtesy of McG. 

Daily Food 9/21/10
Breakfast: eggs on teff 'tortilla', salsa
Snack: almonds/cashew, banana
Lunch: tuna on rice crackers, string cheese
Dinner: spinach/mushroom/tomato salad with parmesan
Misc: pinot g

Window Art in the Jeezy

 Meathead, Pizza Face.

Last Friday, I cruised around St Johns peeking in all of the storefront windows, as they have so much public art displayed right now for the St Johns Window Project.  Saw some awesome stuff, and stopped into a new gallery, North End, that was awesome.  In addition to wicked rad, local art, they are also an event space, and will be hosting something called the FU Bash on Oct 16.  Details later.  The "FU" stands for "Factory Underground", which is what they are calling the basement of the gallery.  

The top photo above is from a storefront on Lombard, a display created by Paul Schaap.  The creature in the middle is "Woody", who the artist claims is "strange and estranged but not a stranger to the low haunts and dive bars of St Johns". 

Monday, September 13, 2010

Belmont Street Fair

Street Fair MMX season comes nearly to a close (there is one more Sunday Parkways in NW coming up), on a gorgeous day (hot!).  Great music, plus only in Portland can you see an intersection completely covered in grass.  Seeking a seat and some refuge from the heat for a minute, we ducked into Aalto Lounge...  I completely forgot about that place!  It's nice.  Great bartender.  They normally don't open until 5, but welcomed us in with open arms much earlier in the afternoon than that.  Nice Sunday.

Daily Food 9/12/10
Brunch: spicy tofu hash, mimosas at NightLight
Dinner: BBQ tempeh and Asian slaw, mixed greens side salad, Kentucky Lemonade at C Bar
Misc: bourbon/soda at the Aalto

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Sweet Scores at the Library

In addition to these fine titles, I also scored several DVDs.  The library has a faaaaancy new check out system, as if the existing bar-code scanning one was not enough, by the way.  You can put a whole stack of items on the tray and it just knows what they all are... no scanning.  You can also pay any fines with a debit card, right on the console.  I was in for $0.50, not sure how that happened! 

Daily Food 9/8/10
Breakfast: banana, apple
Lunch: big mess of beans, rice, salsa, tofu, guac, cheese
Dinner: brown rice pasta, vegan 'cheese' sauce, brussels sprouts
Misc: diet Coke

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Tiny Tuesday: So Long, Portland Beavers.

Tiny gets up close and personal with a Beaver's shot glass, she's sad about the Portland Beavers leaving town.  BUT, they wrapped it up on a high note!  They won their final game in PGE Park last night, against Las Vegas, with a home run in front of a sold out crowd.  Nice article with video found here

My First Sign Unveiling: Hung Far Low

Last Thursday, headed down to Old Town for the long-awaited unveiling of the "new" Hung Far Low sign, which was taken down a couple of years ago when inspectors discovered it was rotted and could fall off the building at any time, likely right onto the outside tables at Ping.  Since then, there's been a campaign created to raise funds to bring back the sign, that gained some media attention and by golly, they finally did it. 

My first sign unveiling was pretty damn uneventful, I must admit.  I imagined that it would be covered in cloth, and then pulled off all at once, right?  Nope.  It was covered in paper and duct tape.  Some dude in an Argyle sweater vest (they never announced who he was... found out later it was Kurt Huffman, co-owner of Ping) crawled into a cherry picker that rose a couple of stories to the top of the sign about as quickly as a slug could cover a city block.  When he finally got to the top, like 17 minutes later, we all cheered and hollered, "Rip it off!  Rip it off!", expecting him to be like a kid on Christmas morning tearing apart wrapping paper on the biggest gift under the tree.  Not so much.  Piece by piece, little by little, he tore off chunks which slowly drifted down onto the crowd below.  

The best part was the group of kiddos who put on some dragon dancing.  While not exactly thrilling, my first sign unveiling was pretty cool... a Portland icon in the heart of the neighborhood is back in full effect again, updated and not likely to detach itself from the building and kill anyone.  Good times.