Monday, November 16, 2015

Introducing "The Map of All Known Palm Trees in Portland, Oregon"....A Passion Project

Everyone has a list of things they dislike, distrust, and has a general disdain for in life. With pathological fervor, we rant about such things and make out contempt publicly known. The internet and the "blog format" has become a safe place for people with such vitriol to openly share their views with a marginal segment of the population.

I have my list of things I disliked and distrusted things. In no particular order, I present the following.

  • Fans of the band Everclear
  • People who ride unicycles
  • Carrots
  • Butterflies
  • Sushi sold in Midwestern States
The list could, and does, go on ad infinitum. But today, I present a more concrete thing that I dislike and have a pathological loathing of...Palm Trees growing in the city of Portland, Oregon.
put: I hate seeing palm trees in the city of Portland.

For a few years now I have said that I plan to map out every known Palm Tree location in this city. Now with the power of Google Maps, I can actually plot out every one of these invasive trees just to show how ridiculous these plants are in our land of cedar and Douglas fir.

Image from

So the question must be asked, "Dude...I mean really, dude. What's your beef with palm trees?" And that is a damned good question. I actually love palm trees. When I would visit California as a kid, I was always wanted to see palm trees. Driving down the wide streets of Sacramento, nearing the capital building, seeing palms brought me simple joy and wonder that only a child could experience. I loved the fibrous trunks, the mighty fronds, and the through there may be coconuts near by. Even as a college student many years ago, I drew a comic titled, "Fun in Getting to Vallejo," which was a short piece about mailing myself to California so I could see palm trees. 

But here in Oregon...Nope.
Nope...Nope...and thousand times Nope to palm trees. 

Is this a rational dislike? No. Is any ranting, rambling, screed ever rational? No. 

Thus I present: The Map of All Known Palm Trees in Portland, Oregon. This will be an ongoing compilation to concretely mark where every palm tree in this city is located. I have one location mapped out at this point. One can simply click on the above link or they can venture over to the corner of NE 16th and East Burnside to experience these palm trees themselves. The map shall be ever evolving and new updates will be made as new observations are made. 

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Mannequin...But More Real

The film Mannequin is a work fine art rarely appreciated in our hustle and bustle contemporary lives. I consider it to be a wonderful documentary in the same lines as factual films like Independence Day and 2012. In the documentary, Andrew McCarthy falls in love with a show room dummy who happens to be Kim Cattrall before she was not made of plastic, silicone, and Botox. Zany things happen, there are magic necklaces, a guy named Hollywood who had great sunglasses, and there is more importantly love. It's a simple factual story with a simple factual plot. 

Blah, blah, blah, et cetera. 

So the thing that isn't known about the factual documentary Mannequin (and the follow-up documentary Mannequin: On the Move) is that the movie is really based on mannequins of workers in Northern British Columbia. 

Yes, Canadians.

So in Canadian museums, late a night, human figures made of cloth and nylon, stuffed into traditional clothing come to life in small town museums. 

In fact these two individuals roam around drinking Molson's and maple syrup. There really isn't any love story happening with these two individuals. But the love of lumberjacking and fishermanliness is all that needs to happen in the cold cedar forests of the northern woods. 

No magic necklaces are needed to wake these two Mannequins, all the magic is in the Canadian wilderness.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Needed Skills for the Modern World

A strange thing happened while I lived in the wilds of Montana over the past few years...I became a You-Tube survivalist. What might a You-Tube survivalist be? Well, essentially, it means that you sit at home with your cat learning survival skills from "experts" who post videos on the internet all from the comfort of your home and without the need to invest in camouflage uniforms or high-powered assault rifles. 

During this period of time, I learned a lot about how to make fire without the use of matches, how to make huts out of tree branches, and how to fish without using a rod or reel. Essential stuff when you live in a city. But in Montana, you never know when...oh let's say a SUPER VOLCANO ERUPTS or some other situation might arise in which all useful skills need to be thrown out the window and you absolutely need to make a fire in a much more difficult manner than flicking a Bic to light paper. 

So when I strolled across this book I figured, "hey I already know how to start fires with my knowledge from the internet so I might as well start being really prepared and learn how to bomb proof my house."

I mean, EVERYONE'S house should be bombproof, except for maybe those pesky terrorist types. We shouldn't let them have bombproof houses. What extra steps can I take to make myself even more prepared? Do I need a more secure basement? Do I need metal siding? Something to keep out radiation perhaps? I bet it all requires concert cinder blocks. All good preparation needs cinder block loving attention.


There are no houses in this book. Horses, yes. Houses, no. 


So my survival skills can't be enhanced with this book. And well neither can my horse saving skills. 

Just look at the picture, if these horses stepped on a land mine, where is the metal plating that would be needed to keep your steed's legs in place? Or what about bombs dropped from above? Surely some aerial protection for the horse can be built. Nope...

Now I am going to have to sit with more You-Tube videos and learn how to completely enclose my nonexistent horse in lead and cinder blocks to keep it protected from evildoers.