Radio killed my flow

About a year ago some new station moved in to town and started playing 90’s alt-rock hits with a few 80’s and 00’s songs. The stations is always on in Michelle’s car and in Jason’s too, and I hear the virtues of the station when we’re out together. Sure, it’s better than listening to your typical 60’s thru 80’s rock station, but not really any different. In the time that I’ve travelled around with Michelle in the last couple months, I’ve heard this Depeche mode song a good 20 times. It sounds like it could be new or 20 years old, much like Franz Ferdinand sounds like it could be 30 years old or new. I don’t like the Depeche song but I’ve heard it more than songs that I absolutely love.

This makes me wonder about a few things:

a) Is this 94.7 just an oldies station for 20 somethings?
b) How can this Depeche thing not be payola?
c) Is rock n’ roll noise pollution?
d) Is rock n’ roll just rock n’ roll?

Canoeing the Columbia Slough

This morning my dad and I canoed from the Kelley Point canoe portage down to the outlet of Bybee lake. I’d told my dad about the slough this summer and he brought down the canoe in case the weather cooperated. As luck would have it, this morning was beautiful and we got home just as the weather turned for the worse.
I know this river like the back of my hand
At the put-in, we ran in to a kayaker with a cool hand-made mahogany boat and after grilling him about that, we asked what route he recommended. It was at this point I realized I didn’t bring a map. Ironically, given my affinity for maps, my map-encouraging childhood, my map/compass training as an eagle scout, I rarely seem to remember to bring maps places. I look ahead of time, but either assume I’ll remember, or forget completely. So I drew a quick line map on the back of my hand from his nautical charts.

We started by nosing out into the Willamette to see the confluence of it and the Columbia, but didn’t venture too far because Barley really wanted to swim, and we didn’t want to spill. We turned back up the slough for roughly 2 miles to where a small tributary went between the Smith and Bybee lakes. We followed the channel up to and through a gauging station and into the inlet/outlet of Bybee lake and turned around when the water was to shallow, then headed back towards the car.
Despite what the map suggests is an overly developed area, the refuge and water meant some good birding. We saw a great horned owl, which was being accosted by some crows, several heron and egrets, a couple red tailed hawks, some mallards and mergansers and what I think was a yellow rumped warbler.

Barley was kind of bored by the trip since he didn’t get to swim, but the water in the slough isn’t….well… safe. But that doesn’t stop people from fishing in it. All in all, a great way to spend a November weekend.

First Thanksgiving

Yesterday Michelle and I hosted family for our first thanksgiving dinner. Everything with the food went way too smoothly until both casserole dishes shattered in the oven and I wouldn’t shut up about why it happened which did nothing to solve the green bean bundle and stuffing crises.

The only thing that really caused me to freak out when we were looking at this house was the size of the dining room and our current dining set. We did a measurement beforehand and did a mock up with realtor business cards and it the room was too small for my grandparents dining set. Well, our measurements were wrong and amazingly the table fits perfectly, and only slightly less perfectly when extended. Luckily no one had to use the bathroom during dinner.

All in all, the food and times were good, and we can’t be thankful enough for the help we’ve received from family in moving in and getting situated in our new place. It is so comfortable and home-like, even with a small oven.

Turkey Rubdown

Michelle made me wash down the turkey and rub its cavity with herbs because she was too squeamish. Now the bird is dry-curing in the fridge and every time we open the door a wave of marjoram wafts into the room. I didn’t even know what marjoram was until Monday.

Weekend Fun

Just off a busy weekend and we couldn’t be happier that this is a short week. Friday night a pod of Bellingham-ites rolled in to town and we threw back a few at Hillsdale pub, enjoying ourselves until after closing at 1am. The next morning we threw some discs at Lunchtime, picked up some beer, and then I went home to clean up before Joe & Lindsay arrived from Sacramento. Following that, we grabbed some pie at the Lucky Lab then really rocked the party (Scott’s birthday party, that is) until it was clear that we’re not as young as we used to be. Ah, youth.

Moratorium on the word “Fact”

I’m convinced there needs to be a moratorium on the word “Fact.” The word has become so misused that I assume people are trying to mislead me when they say it.

Further, there should be a fine imposed on the use of it until sufficient time has passed that it can be used to full efficacy. Just like the 10 cents when you forgot to buckle your seat belt, you’re going to have to drop a quarter if you use the word fact. A whole dollar if you use it with something that isn’t factual.

5 coats

Michelle and I painted the highlight wall in the living room this weekend a total of 5 times. The first choice of color turned out much brighter and lamer than we’d hoped and after trying to ignore our hatred of it for 24 hours, we couldn’t take it. I think my brain just shut down largely due to the orange. The orange (roughly #FF4500) was too institutional and I felt like I was in the gymnasium back at Glenn Livingston Elementary.

Between colors we went to see Storm & the Balls at Produce Row Cafe, which was freakin’ awesome. Curtis had been talking them up for nearly a year and we finally caught them at what he described as a slightly subdued version of their show. Still, it was freaking hot. (that was meant as a double entendre… )

Still, we had to return to that damn orange. I even went for a run with Michelle to get away from it. So we picked another color ( Hunting coat red ) that turned out to be the lamest gallon of paint either of us has ever worked with. It was thin, runny, and it took three freakin’ coats (we’ll see if 3 is actually enough in the morning) and looks more like plum-burgundy than hunter coat, but it looks nice so far. And I got a new Purdy 2.5″ brush out of the deal.

Oh, and we got the stucco fixed and the foundation parge coated. We paid someone else to do it, which turns out to be worth it because, well, it got done. And it looks good. And it’s done well. And Michelle still loves me.

Barley’s Mental Map

Every morning Barley runs down the front steps and takes a right. He’s gotten so predictable that I decided to let him lead the entire walk and see what kind of map formed. What made Barley’s mental map of the neighborhood? Was it the markings of other dogs? People?

Well, we never found out because we only made it to the end of the block before Barley had satisfied himself with the latest marking before looking to me to decide on directions. Not much of a map. The rest of the walk I tried to let him pick which way to go (except up people’s walkways) and it seemed his default was to go straight or look to me for some small cue about direction. I was a longer walk than normal and he never gave me the sad eyes when he realized we were turning back towards the house. Still, not quite what I was hoping for. No GIS project.


A loud smash woke Michelle and I at 2:10 a.m. this morning. My brian quickly though a circuit had blown but all the power was still on in the right places. Gas explosion? No, the furnace was still working fine. A tour of the basement revealed nothing out of the ordinary – nothing had fallen, and no one had broken in. We were both a little concerned at not being able to find the cause. Barley was still camped out in bed. Then I thought to check the front porch. The Sunday edition of the Oregonian was laying propped against the wall. The wall our heads are against in the bedroom. Oh.

Who delivers papers at 2 a.m.?