life in portland

I’d say eighty-five percent of conversations I’ve had with people who live in Portland either start, or turn into, something like this:

Me: So I’m thinking about getting something to eat…
Person: Oh yeah?  Where are you going?
Me: I dunno, I was thinking East Burn?
Me: Uh, yeah, it’s pretty tasty.


Me: So I’m thinking about getting something to eat…
Person: Have you ever been to Mama Mia?
Me: Mama Mia? Nope.
Person: OH. MY. GOD. IT IS SO. GOOD.
Me: Oh yeah?


Person: Have you tried the new Rogue ale?
Me: Nope. Let me guess, is it good?
Person: OH. MY. GOD. IT IS … SOGOOD.


Me: I’m thinking about heading to Powells to–
Me: Yeah, everyone does, it’s–
Me: I know.
Person: SO. GOOD.


Me: Have you heard of this band?
Person: SO. GOOD.


Person: We should go to Ground Kontrol tonight. THAT PLACE IS SO. AWESOME.


Me: Have you been–
Person: SO. GOOD.
Me: I haven’t even said–
Me: It’s not sushi!
Person: I GOTTA GO.


Me: Have you been to that baby-strangling place?

My point being — the city is apparently the best place ever, but the people are a little two-dimensional.  When you ask people what they do for a living, they say something like, “I’m a vegan” or “I have tattoos.”  They pierce their septum or wear bright neon spandex or ride bicycles everywhere.  They read Nietzsche and Marx and quote them in an attempt to seem cool, but when you try to have a conversation with them it all falls into mush.  They love pop culture “ironically” (read: they really just love pop culture), and they like bands so obscure they probably just made them up on the spot.

I always thought that I wanted to be a part of the hipster community, but now that I see it face-to-face, I really, really don’t.

the bus chronicles

Tomorrow is the last day I see my morning bus driver. He is driving at a different time, and I leave for Boise on Friday. I truly am going to miss him: of all the bus driver’s I’ve let drive me around, he truly was the most punctual and the most efficient, while at the same time being friendly and very aware of his job. A lot of bus drivers don’t take the time to see if their regular riders are a little late to their stop. Once, I saw the 19 drive by as I was a block away from the stop. Annoyed (more at my own tardiness), I walked to the corner, and turned … to see that he had stopped the bus, as if he was waiting for me. When I boarded, I said, “I didn’t think you would stop for me!” and he said, “Well … I got here a little early…”

Truly, if there ever was a better example of pure heterosexual brotherly love than that moment, I would like to hear it. (and no ancient Greek examples, please.) Continue reading the bus chronicles

the first age has passed. all hail the second age of computers!

In 2004 I purchased a computer using my sweet, sweet financial aid money.  It cost me around $750 dollars.  I named it the Fortress of Consternation.  It had two drives (one a partition of the other).  I named the C: Gondolora and the D: Panda Bears.  I’ve had this computer for five years, and most of the time it was damaged, freezing on random occasions, making my life a living hell sometimes.

Well, the Age of Gondolora is over.  I have purchased a new computer, for nearly half as much money but twice as much power.  This computer is called Magrageeves, and it rises from the fiery ashes of Gondolora.  It has only one drive, but it is Large, and I need to name it.  Right now it’s called Pencil Bandit, which I think is kind of funny, but not really appropriate.  Suggestions?

The Fortress of Consternation is not dead, however.  From all ruins come new civilizations.  Gondolora and Panda Bears shall be razed, and on their ground shall be built new cities, under the watchful eye of Ubuntu, lord of Free Operating Systems.  There peace shall prosper and man shall learn how to access Terminal and receive Root.  And life will be good.

Really, I’m just stoked cause I can play Morrowind again.  Morrowind!

things that have happened

Some things that have happened over the past few days:

– Went to Music Millennium to get my vinyl copy of the Decemberists’ The Hazards of Love signed by members of the band.  Very weird experience, especially after making this video/song in response to this tweet by Colin Meloy, the lead singer.  I couldn’t look him in the eyes for fear of catching a glimpse of recognition … That’s the guy who did “Linda”?

– After signing, proceeded to get completely trashed with my /orate friends at Paul’s house.  Like, drunker than drunk.  I’ll put it this way: I puked.  For the first time since I was, oh, eleven.  I am not proud of this whatsoever.  In fact, it’s kind of infuriating.  It was partially because I am used to parties with Keystone Light[1. Or other cheap, watery beers.].  It’s not hard to pack away a few of those in a night and not feel anything.  But I was drinking good, strong beers, and I was drinking far too many of them. There is a video of us singing “The Rake’s Song” on YouTube but if you want to see it you’ll have to search it yourself, cause I sure as hell am not posting it.  Regardless, I am so drunk I’m on the floor, semi passed out. Ugh, it makes my stomach churn just thinking about it.  I had fun and I love my friends, but I refuse to be inebriated that much ever again (especially cause my dad reads my blog, for pete’s sake!).

– The next morning found me calling in sick to work[2. Obviously.].  I slept at Paul’s mom’s house, which is in the wilds of Gresham, and besides I was hungover.  Now this would not have been a big deal whatsoever … except that my brother decided to head into the clinic that same day to get a check.  So the following conversation occured:

BRO. Hey Boss, I’m here to get a check!
BOSS. Hi Josh’s brother!  How’s Josh doing?
BRO. He’s great.
BRO. Yeah, I mean, I guess he’s great ’cause he didn’t come home last night.

Meanwhile I’m at the Tin Shed on Alberta trying to determine if I really want to eat biscuits and gravy[3. I did. They were delicious.].  When I went to work the next morning I wasn’t sure if everyone knew I played “hooky”[4. I put quotes around that because I technically did not — I really was sick. Just not with a cold or the flu.].  This made the bus ride rather worrisome — would I be tested?  Tricked with questions created to deceive?  Led astray by the same people who hired me?

Instead I found out that no one else knew besides my boss, and she gave me lighthearted shit about it all day long.  God I love my job so much[5. Though I will, of course, not play hooky again.  Ever.  Never ever.].

– This past weekend I traveled back to Boise, just to hang out and see my friends and family for a bit.  It was a lot of fun, and a lot of really interesting things came from it.  I saw a Snuggie for the first time ever.  I wore said Snuggie, complete with a wig.  I drank a lot.  I also found out that I am an idiot and should’ve pursued a particular woman in the past, rather than shrinking back and being a socially awkward nerd.  I couldn’t help it (at the time); I was broke and felt like a loser.  Now I don’t feel like a loser at all but I am in Portland and she is in Boise.  Ugh, it’s always something, isn’t it?

So, uh, if you’re reading this, dear lady, you know who you are and maybe you should move to Portland?  That would be awesome? kthxbai

– Oh, and recently I released a free single that you can download.  It’s called “Mary! (Get Frisky!)” and you can grab it from my other website.  Here is a picture that you can click that will help guide you to a favorable destination:

– OH AND MY DAD HAS A BLOG!  He is the coolest.  Check it out!

Okay that’s all! Hooray!

a night out on the town

NOTE: This is a bit of a TMI/NSFW entry.  You’ve been warned.

I tend to not be a very debaucherous person[1. I think I just made that word up.].  Most of my time is spent at home, either noodling on the guitar or playing Fire Emblem or some other incredibly nerdy task.  When I lived in the Dorian House, even though we would have some pretty crazy nights, it’s not like every night was crazy.  Generally we would sit and watch TV and make fun of shows on VH1.  Or they would watch baseball and I would wonder why I was watching baseball.  Or I’d play Final Fantasy XII and Aaron would bitch about the fact that I was playing Final Fantasy XII.  Or some combination of all of these. Continue reading a night out on the town

live review: 11/29 – loch lomond and the decemberists!, crystal ballroom

I’m not shy about my love of the Decemberists.  At one point I owned five of their t-shirts and an assortment of CDs and vinyls (some of which were all but stolen by my ex-girlfriend), and I can play almost all of their discography on guitar, and know most of the lyrics by heart.  So when the time came for them to play the Crystal Ballroom, I was excited.  Like, little girl excited.  Little girl watching the end of American Idol excited. Continue reading live review: 11/29 – loch lomond and the decemberists!, crystal ballroom

live review: 11/27 – school of seven bells & m83, doug fir Lounge

The M83 show last night marked my triumphant return to the Doug Fir Lounge.  As I have spoken about in my other blog, I had an expired driver’s license for a good five months or so, and the only venue in the city of Portland who would not let me into their log-laden hallways was the Doug Fir.  That was back in September, and the act was Laura Gibson, so I wasn’t too upset about it (don’t get me wrong, I like Laura Gibson, but if I don’t see her, meh).

So when my friend Paul told me that he had scored tickets to M83, and that it was at the Doug Fir, I was elated, first because it was M83 and their new album, Saturdays = Youth is one of my favorites of the year, but also because I had a brand new shiny Oregon state driver’s license!  “Take that, Doug Fir!” I shouted to the stars.  But in the end they didn’t give a shit. Continue reading live review: 11/27 – school of seven bells & m83, doug fir Lounge

a multimedia juggernaut, and a breakdown of the max train

Tonight I went to a free orientation at MetroEast Community Media, one of five public access stations in the Portland metropolitan area.  You have to do orientation in order to take their classes on editing and camera/studio work, etc.  We have satellite here and not cable, unfortunately, so I can’t watch public access TV, but a significant portion of my time in Boise was spent checking out what was on the only public access channel there, TVCTV.  It was primarily either terrible shows, boring shows, or hilariously bad shows. Continue reading a multimedia juggernaut, and a breakdown of the max train