Wednesday, January 28, 2009

More on Sam Adams

In response to Dale’s comment to yesterday’s post, I would like to add the following.

Yeh, the damage this does to gay people is one of my biggest gripes. And the clintonesque birthday issue is mega silly -- as if the passing of one day, chosen for legal purposes, really makes the difference between adult and not adult.

As far as what else Sam might lie about? Call me naïve but I honestly don’t think he’s a liar, other than this. The reason he lied about this was because the real answer, which was “none of your business” would have rung the dinner bell for a media feeding frenzy. Unfair as it may be, you don’t get to use “none of your business” in this country if you’re a public figure. That’s why he shouldnt’ve gone near the affair in the first place. But he did, and then he thought he could fix it with one lie, and then there it went, the tangled spider web thing happened.

I think what saves his gay ass SOMEWHAT is that most Portlanders are sophisticated enough to recognize that men in general, not just gay men, have been known to pursue partners that are decades younger than them. I know some women do too, but let's look at the typical situation. Men in their fifties taking up with women their twenties (dump the middle aged wife if necessary). It happens ALL THE TIME, and everywhere. Beyond the utterly superficial reason that 22 year old looks all new and shiny, I’ll never understand why anyone is attracted to someone who’s missing more than half their common life experience. But whatever.

However, I’ve watched people excel at their jobs while enduring a personal life made up of a collection of bad choices. They delve into their work because that’s what they enjoy most and that’s where their priorities lie (and sometimes it’s an escape from their personal life.) I don’t think it’s healthy or balanced, but a person can do excellent work for a long time in this situation.

Sam is such a consummate politician. I don’t think he’s untrustworthy in the political arena. If he were, other stuff would’ve come up by now.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

I still love Sam Adams except for that one thing


I suppose I have to comment on this, being a bike person and a public transportation person, and a greenie, as well as a gay person. One might correctly guess that I have been a HUGE fan of Sam Adams, Mr. Public Transportation Gay Cyclist Green Guy of the Universe. One might also guess that I have been disappointed in him of late.

To me he's the personification of everything I want Portland to be: a gay-friendly, mass transit, oddball, left-ish bike town. At the moment, however, he seems more like the personification of dumb men in the public eye who risk their entire careers for a few rolls in the hay.

I don't care what he does in his private life with other consenting adults. In the rest of the world this wouldn't have even made a blip on the public radar. But who doesn't know that in this culture that kind of thing never stays private for public people and that the media are bloodthirsty for it? I knew that. You knew that. Why didn't Sam know that?

It's not like you're any stranger to the press, Sam.

If he had the self control to say No, let's wait till after your 18th birthday, why couldn't he take it a step further and say Let's skip this altogether? Would that have been THAT hard?

Sheeesh. Anyway.... look.

I want him to keep moving forward. In no way do I want the city to go through a whole 'nother election. This has cost us a lot already, and I for one can't bear the thought of spending any more time, energy, money, or emotions on it. I still think he's good in every way except for that one profoundly foolish aberration. He's good at working, he's an extroverted politician type, he's connected to absolutely everybody, he shows up everywhere, he's really good at schmoozing -- he'll be really good at this job. Really.

We need to move on; there's too much to do.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

January 20, 2009: THE END OF AN ERROR

Here's our breakfast on a card table, set up especially for the occasion to watch the inaugural address on our old snowy 3 channel TV screen.

It's a brand new world, in which the president opens his mouth and everyone stands rapt, listening to mellifluous sentences whose endings match up with their middles and beginnings. The whole world exhales a long sigh of relief along with us.

Gone from our TV screens is the stupefied look of someone smackered upside the head by a question that's too hard. We are a cringe-free nation at last!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

We went to Nostrana for the second time the other night. No, we didn't ride our bikes there. We drove Lindi's car. It was dark, it was cold, it was raining, and I wanted to wear my long wool coat and nice leather shoes and not have helmet hair. So sue me.
This is exactly why a lot of women don't ride their bikes ever. They don't want to look like they just got dragged in by the cat -- which is what I usually look like, but luckily I don't mind. Usually.

On this particular evening I minded. So I dressed in my real clothes and we went to this great restaurant, on about 12th & Hawthorne. This is the kind of food that when you take a bite you are stunned into silence and you just sit there with the food in your mouth and you want to postpone swallowing it so you can feel the sensation of it for longer. And then you want to wait until the taste has subsided before you take the next bite, so you can maximize the ingoing and outgoing experience of every morsel as it enters, resides in, and eventually leaves your mouth, and the ghost of it that hangs around a little after it goes down your throat.

It is ab.solutely. un.believable.

And the same goes for dessert, so don't skip it.

We met my mother and sister there and then to top it off the waiter brings this fantastic bottle of wine and says it's a gift, which at first is a total mystery and we're thinking Right, this is some kind of ploy to get us to spend a ton of money, but it turns out to have been sent by a very good friend of ours, who (I should've known) seemed to be asking very specific questions when I mentioned to him that we were going to Nostrana.

One thing I would change about this restaurant is that the tables are of that large square kind that puts you too far away from the people you're with. I feel like I have to stretch way forward the whole time, trying througout the meal to get closer to them, partly because I like them but also to hear what they're saying. It doesn't help matters that it gets pretty loud in there, so it really can be hard to hear each other. I didn't have this problem the first time I went because we went a little outside normal eating hours. So that's what I'd recommend. Call and ask what times and days would be relatively uncrowded. On the other hand, if you're one of those people who bellow all the time, it won't be an issue for you.

I have more to say about the effect of cycling on appearance, but that'll have to be later. Bye.

Friday, January 02, 2009

The World is my Banana Peel

The day after my last post? End of the ice age? My street looked like this. I was able to ride my bike (my old regular bike -- I needed the bigger wheels) along the ruts in the slush, getting off to walk in some areas, like going around corners.
But the next day, Sunday, I was able to ride the Brompie -- for the first time in about ten days! Oregon was back to its messy, mossy, greeny self. This is what the real Oregon looks like. I took this picture on the way to the MAX station, for which, as you can see below, I missed the train. Here's the Bromp on the MAX platform with the last vestiges of snow visible in the background. (Does snow come in vestiges? I'm not sure.)

It is two AM on Friday. I'm supposed to go to work tomorrow, not to mention start my (our) 6:30 AM 2009 workout plan. (quit laughing.) We sleep upstairs, under two skylights, where you hear the rain so loud that you feel like you're right IN it except without getting wet or cold. We love listening to it. On this particular night, however, I'm lying there thinking, "Man that is the loudest darned rain I've ever heard! What is going on? Have they opened up every drain in heaven? Are we going to have to build an ark?"

Finally I gave up on trying to sleep. Usually I find the sound to be soothing, but not this time. I got up and came downstairs. I got the rest of my ginger beer out of the fridge, slapped out a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, and turned on my computer -- which by the way are the three things the insomnia brochures tell you not to do if you want to have any hope of getting back to sleep within the ensuing twelve hours. I plunged into the quicksand of my newest addiction, namely Ask Sister Mary Martha,
and began combing throught the archives. After about an hour of this I got up to use the lieu and happened to get a look out the back door of the house, and... AAaaaack! It's all WHITE OUT THERE!!

NOOOoooooooo! Stop it!

Shut UP!

No wonder it was so loud! That must've been ice or hail coming down! I just got up and looked out again. Now it's out there snowing innocently, big fat picturesque flakes, like a harmless snowglobe from the souvenir shop. Pretending it didn't just lay down a deadly layer of ice over a city full of small drainclog lakes from four days of torrential rain. And now it's covering it all up to fool us into stepping out of our houses.

I for one will not be fooled, and I'll have no part of it. It had better be gone by morning or I'm going out there with a blow torch.