Thursday, January 17, 2019

Morning! We’re waking up on a Thursday, January 17, 2019, and while your eyes adjust to the light of your phone (or sun, if it’s after 7:45), let me check the weather for you….look! The currently unpaid National Weather Service says there’s “a great swirling low sitting off the Oregon coast this am, ” sending in bands of rain for Portland and highs around 48. But a winter weather advisory has been in effect all night in the Gorge, and I’ll check on that in a second, and there’s a high surf advisory along with gale warnings at the coast. Sure glad we have a Coast Guard. Wish they’d get paid. The sun comes up a minute earlier this morning, at 7:45, and sets a minute later at 4:56, so we’re gaining two minutes of daylight today.

OK, Gorge weather: the NWS says temps west of Cascade Locks are just above freezing and should stay there. But it’s at or below freezing east of CL, and precipitation will likely fall as snow or sleet, or a combination of snow, sleet and freezing rain at times this morning.

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It’s Day 27 of the government shutdown–I heard a network anchor say “year 27” this morning, and sometimes it feels like it. We hear about people thanking TSA workers at PDX, for keeping them safe, despite not being paid. The same goes out to the Coast Guard, whose boats, helicopters, and rescue swimmers are standing guard as always, despite the ongoing leadership outage. The 800,000 federal employees who are furloughed or working without pay are just part of the picture: there are throngs of contract workers who are sidelined as well, and they have no expectation of back pay. This staredown between politicians with no skin in the game will have a measurable effect on the economy, and the real impacts will be felt in homes of just plain folks at home.

As KGW reported last night, the Federal Trade Commission is closed, so the “Do Not Call” registry is inoperative, which is why your phone is blowing up with telemarketing schemes and scams.

Despite administration claims that ISIS has been defeated, four Americans are among 19 people killed in Syria by a suicide bombing that was claimed by the Islamic State.

British PM Theresa May narrowly survived that no-confidence vote in Parliament. But nobody has an answer for how to make Brexit work, and many are hoping for a year’s extension of the March deadline.

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Today’s New York Times includes a long investigative piece about the Hart family, the onetime Portland-area couple and their six adopted children whose car was driven off a California cliff almost a year ago. I’ve only scanned the story, but it looks like there’s some detail about tensions within the family that led to the tragic moment. It’s worth a read.

The Clark County measles case count is up to 14 confirmed, with 13 unvaccinated and the other unknown. These contagious kids may have shared the virus at Portland International Airport and the nearby Ikea, and a number of schools, churches, and other public locations.

The folks behind the Portland Diamond Project have revealed the names of the initial investors who are bankrolling the startup phase of the project: aside from Seahawks QB Russell Wilson and his entertainer/entrepreneur wife Ciara, they include the founders of Platt Electric, former MLB (and OSU) player Darwin Barney, and a dozen or so other local families. The Oregonian’s John Canzano says many have pockets deep enough to step up their investments as the costs gear up into the billions, and that Portland sits atop the list of cities for potential MLB expansion.

A retired UPS driver in Grants Pass came back from the store and started unbagging the fixings for some yummy breakfast enchiladas for his sweetie. Eggs? check. Cheese? got it. Sausage, peppers, bacon bits…hey wait. Darn. Forgot the dang tortillas. Be right back, honey. He returned to the store, bought tortillas, rewarded himself with a $20 scratch Oregon lottery ticket while he was there, and won $250,000.

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I like the way my partner Bruce Murdock intros our “Tell Me Something Good” segment on K103 every morning at 5:30 and 8:00. He says, “Ah, there’s Good News Today!” And then we get into stories like these:

–“Single Mom Gets Surprise of Her Life”

–“Mom buys dress for future granddaughter on her birthday, exactly 7 years before she’s born”

–“Buy a beer for a furloughed Fed worker!”

–“China’s Moon mission grows the first life on the Moon”

–“A Twitter war breaks out between museums worldwide over who has the most elegant artwork featuring ducks–including some lavish punnage. Fowl play!”

Links in our Coffee Cup, the first item in the comments below!

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On the 77th birthday of the late Muhammad Ali, the airport in his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky has been named after him.

Just twenty-five days to pitchers and catchers–based on a February 12 reporting date for Spring Training!

Off we go into a Thursday!

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

So come, and talk of all the news we have today… It’s only 34 degrees, on the back porch, as we greet a Wednesday, January 16, 2019. Cool time, winter in the city! Your Daily Driply weather forecast calls for a tenth of an inch of rain mainly in the afternoon, and highs of 43 degrees, along with a let’s-stay-home concoction of snow and freezing rain in the Columbia River Gorge. Plus those crabbing crews on the coast are heading into rough bar conditions, and at least 17 to 20 foot seas reaching the outer waters by late tonight. Sunrise 7:46 AM, sunset 4:54 PM,

A porch security video has come into the hands of the Portland Police showing a gray pickup truck speeding up onto a sidewalk and chasing three young men on foot, hitting two of them and sending them sprawling, one of them smacking into a park bench. We’re only now learning of this, but it happened last Thursday, at about 5 PM, on NE Beech St at 154th where it meets Wilkes Park. This is a couple of blocks south of Sandy. None of these guys went to the police, and leading us to infer, what?

A 68-year old guy named Ed Lipscomb who’s climbed up and down Mt. Hood 182 times got lost in dense fog on Palmer Glacier yesterday. But he stayed calm, called for help, was spotted by a TV news helicopter, and mountain crews brought him down in a SnowCat. He’ll be back next week for climb #183.

Suddenly gone from the local scene: the familiar squadrons of yellow mixer trucks on Ross Island, as the Pamplin company has abruptly shut down the concrete division of Ross Island Sand and Gravel. Forty people laid off.

We don’t know how widespread it is, but there’s an outbreak of measles among children in the Vancouver area. Two cases were confirmed yesterday among unvaccinated kids, and more are suspected.

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Did you ever have to make up your mind? That’s what Parliament must do today about the future of British PM Theresa May, following yesterday’s blowout defeat of her trade deal with the European Union that would have allowed Brexit to go forward with a minimum of economic chaos. The trouble is that the EU can’t accept what’s acceptable to Britain, and vice versa, and without a deal, the complex wiring will be torn out by the roots on the interdependent economy over there when Brexit takes effect at the end of March. As the song says, time ain’t really on their side. Which will just break the heart of, say, Vladimir Putin.

It’s government shutdown Day 26, and thousands of FAA and IRS employees are being ordered back from furlough to do their jobs–without, until this is settled, paychecks. Something called the “Problem Solvers Caucus,” made up of centrist Republican and Democratic lawmakers, is meeting with President Trump today to look for a way out.

One of the loveliest spots in our town–the Portland Japanese Garden–is offering free admission to furloughed government employees during the shutdown.

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Looks like those annoying but efficient scooters are coming back in the spring–for a second “pilot project.” A PBOT summary finds that scooters fit nicely with Portland’s ethos of encouraging non-automobile transport but, from the executive summary of the report on last year’s pilot project, there’s an “overall concern for traffic safety and the risk that Black e-scooter riders would be targeted for racial profiling and harassment.” The PBOT wants to run another pilot.

Three students at Woodland High School scored a perfect 800 on the Math portion of the SAT. Doing the math…the chances of that are one in a million.

You know it’s not an all-bad day when the headline on OregonLive is: “Portland has the best tiki bar in America,” so named by some trade group. It’s called Hale Pele—“The House of the Volcano Goddess”–at 2733 NE Broadway. From their web site: “…be warned, no true Tiki experience is complete without a little danger: listen for the distant thunderstorms growing closer and the fiery volcanic explosions… many surprises await you deep within Hale Pele.”

Portland’s famous Unipiper is firing up a nonprofit foundation to raise funds that will be granted out to emerging talent with a flair for the bizarre. The goal, according to Uniper Brian Kidd (nice guy, relative newcomer), is to “define the cultural identity of the city by drawing on our weird past, and building toward a hopefully weirder (and more fun) future.” There’s a Unipier Hazy IPA coming out soon to aid in this civic cause.

The Rose City Classic Dog Show begins today at the Expo Center.

The Blazers (26-19) host the worst team in the NBA, the Cleveland Cavaliers (oof, 9-35) at the Moda Center tonight.

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Some better news keeps rolling across my mind….

–“Baby gets first hearing aids, giggles uncontrollably at sound of big sister’s voice”

–“Eight lives left! If this cat could talk, he’d have quite a tale to tell. He rode around the city, stuck in a car engine.

–“Book sales are up over last year, and physical books are thriving”

–“David Whips Goliath: Small Irish burger joint wins trademark battle against McDonald’s”

–“The name of Pocahontas is taken in vain, but the last resting place of the famous Native American princess is marked by a haunting monument—in England.”

Links to these stories are probably in the Daily Drip Coffee Cup! I say probably because we have a new system for posting, and it seems to skip the step where I can doublecheck the link to make sure it’s good before it’s posted. Let me know if they’re up! (The links, by the way, have become a popular feature, and I may find ways of expanding that. It’s a useful tool).

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Say, look who’s playing in Portland tonight: John Sebastian! You know, from The Lovin’ Spoonful! My favorite story about him is that he found himself performing at Woodstock, even though he wasn’t in the lineup, because they suddenly wanted a solo acoustic act after a rainstorm so they could squeegee the water off the stage. Sebastian was backstage acquiring an illegal smile when one of the festival’s overwhelmed organizers said, “We need somebody to hold ’em with one acoustic guitar, and you’re elected.” So he borrowed Tim Hardin’s guitar, floated out in his tie-dye denim jacket, bleached jeans and sandals, and strummed and babbled his way through five songs that Woodstock-era historians described as “peak hippiedom.” He was paid $1,000. Sebastian is at the Aladdin Theater on SE Milwaukie this evening.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Morning, campers! It’s Tuesday, January 15, 2019. This will be our last lovely blue winter sky for awhile, with rain developing tonight and continuing, lightly, at least through the weekend. For now, it’s cold and windy, the chimes on my deck are keeping the goats next door awake, but we’ll reach 50 or so. Sunrise 7:47 AM, sunset 4:53 PM. We’re up to over nine hours of daylight…almost a twenty minute gain since the Winter Solstice.

Kate Brown vows to spend taxpayer money the way her Mom raised her to use toothpaste—-squeezing every bit from the tube before asking for another. But her hope for additional revenue is evident in her final inaugural address as Governor of Oregon. She’d inject $600 million into health care, which she states is a fundamental right; $1.9 billion for education, which she describes as an old house that hasn’t been maintained. She says we can’t keep having droughts and wildfires and communities enveloped in smoke for months at a time, so she’ll propose a cap and trade system to cut greenhouse gas emissions. Mandatory paid family leave. Pre-paid vote-by-mail envelopes. Lots more; tell you what: I’ll link to the text in the Coffee Cup. I copy and paste, you decide. There was a trademark turn of phrase in the Governor’s depiction of hardball politics, there. She advised incoming lawmakers to “put on your metal underpants.”

It’s moving week for Mother’s Bistro and Bar, from the cramped and seismically unfit old building it’s occupied for two decades at SW 2nd and Harvey Milk, to a spacious new site at Embassy Suites, 121 SW 3rd. There’ll be a moving parade on Wednesday, and Mother’s will be dishing up the slow-cooked pot roast and homemade pie on Monday in their new home-with 1/3 greater capacity, and waiting room, finally–on Monday. Owner Lisa Schroeder describes the new spot as “Mother’s on steroids.”

Lloyd Center may get a bowling alley, as it seeks to rebrand itself as a place to go for fun as well as shopping.

The principal of Lake Oswego Junior High confesses, in a letter to parents, that he was arrested for DUI last weekend in West Linn. He vows to learn and grow from the mistake, and his letter ends, “I love being a part of this community and look forward to continuing to support your kids.” But some are demanding his ouster to show those kids the seriousness of the consequences of such a decision.

Here comes a prequel to Oregon’s famous “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.” It’ll be on Netflix, called “Ratched,” and acting the formidable nurse by that name is Sarah Paulson, who played Marcia Clark in “The People vs. O.J. Simpson.” Sharon Stone and Cynthia Nixon are in it too. It’s produced by Ryan Murphy, who did “Glee” and “American Horror Story,” and Ken Kesey, wherever he is, would probably hate it, as he did the original.

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Extending the record for futility in government, today is Day 25 of the shutdown. Home loan applications are clogged up, Airport security lines are getting longer as TSA agents call in sick, so they can work somewhere for pay.

President Trump says that because of the government shutdown, he paid from his own pocket for the food served to the college football champion Clemson Tigers when they visited the White House. The noted enthusiast of fast food brought in generous orders from McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Burger King and Domino’s.

Bill Barr, Trump’s nominee to be attorney general, will pledge to allow special counsel Robert Mueller to “complete his work,” and that the results will be shared with Congress and the public.

Iowa Congressman Steve King has been stripped of his committee assignments by the House Republican leadership, appalled at his comments in the New York Times, to wit: “White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?” Over in the Senate, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said that if King “doesn’t understand why ‘white supremacy’ is offensive, he should find another line of work.”

Britain’s Parliament votes today on Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit deal, which most members can’t stomach, and which she says is the best that can be done.

Iran tried to launch a satellite, but it failed.

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Some landmarks in the today-in-history department:

Martin Luther King, Jr. would have turned 90 years old today. The nation celebrates his birthday this coming Monday.

Ten years ago today, we were held breathless by the sight of US Airways flight 1549 gliding to a safe emergency landing in New York’s Hudson River. The skill of the humble Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger has been justifiably sung ever since, but the event changed the lives of everyone on board, with some, having been granted a second chance, “living out loud”–and others experiencing PTSD. The plane was heading from New York to Charlotte, and a local news station there does an interesting compilation of stories that I’ve linked in today’s TMSG section.

Today is the 100th anniversary of the Boston Molasses Disaster, when a massive storage tank burst open, sending a 40-foot wave of goo rushing through the streets at 35 MPH, buckling elevated railroad tracks, crushing buildings, and drowning 21 people. They say you can still smell the molasses on hot days.

And NFL QB Drew Brees is 40 today. People are marveling at his skill and dexterity at such an advanced age. He’s taking his New Orleans Saints to the NFC championship game on Sunday.

The Blazers lost to Sacramento last night.

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OK! Some interesting stories today from the Department of Good News:

–“‘Brace for impact:’ Remembering the Miracle on the Hudson on Today’s Tenth Anniversary”

–“New hope against pancreatic cancer?”

–“Gillette focuses razor ad on ridding culture of ‘toxic masculinity'”

–“Genetic engineering could create spicy tomatoes (for those who are OK with GMOs)”

–“Whales Remix Each Other’s Songs, Nearly 3,000 Miles Apart”

Details in the Coffee Cup, in the comments below.

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Running late. Whoops. HAGD…see you on FM 103.3…

Monday, January 14, 2019

Morning, you! How are you doing? It’s Monday, January 14, 2019, and thanks for dropping by The Drip for a quick look at news and whatnot. This’ll be a sunny day with highs around 50, and if it’s a little windy where you are, count yourself lucky, because that means the air you breathe is cleaner than, say, Eugene, where the lack of a Gorge breeze is allowing car exhaust and fireplace smoke to remain trapped in the stagnant air of a wintertime inversion. Sunrise 7:47 AM, sunset 4:52 PM.

This is Day 24 of our government’s shutdown. There’s nothing resembling progress toward ending it. A White House economic adviser said that furloughed workers are better off, because they’ll ultimately get back pay for these days off, and don’t have to burn vacation days.

Two surfers who were trapped and cornered up against a cliff a little north of Cannon Beach were rescued by a working-without-pay Coast Guard crew using a helicopter and a 150-foot-long hoist.

Governor Kate Brown’s husband Dan visited the Mt. Hood National Forest Sno-Park, and was appalled at the conditions in the bathrooms during the shutdown. So he cleaned them up, hauled 140 pounds of trash to the Oregon City landfill station, and sent a bill for the $28.00 tipping and transfer fee to President Trump.

Oregon’s lawmakers will take the oath of office this morning, and Governor Brown will be sworn into her new term this afternoon. She will immediately deliver her combined inaugural address and State of the State message. They’ll spend a week getting organized, introducing bills and appointing committees, as the Oregon Legislature begins its 80th session next week.

A pair of first-year nurses in the Providence Portland system, on a road trip to Central Oregon, happened upon an accident on US 97 where a pedestrian was hit. So they hopped out of their Subaru, did CPR on the victim…and saved his life.

A sailboat got stuck under the Interstate Bridge. It was hauled away at low tide.

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Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had an in-person chat with Saudi Arabia’s crown prince Mohammed bin Salman over several issues, but we don’t know if this was one: The Oregonian reported Sunday that at least five Saudi citizens attending college in Oregon were arrested for serious crimes–and then vanished before they faced justice. They’re given phony passports and flown home. They include two accused rapists, two hit-and-run drivers (including the one who hit and killed that high school girl on Hawthorne), and a guy with child porn on his computer.

Teachers are on strike in Los Angeles today. The district has hired subs, but they’re no substitute.

California’s PG&E is getting ready to file Chapter 11, as it copes with the fallout from deadly wildfires that may have been caused by power lines.

Washington DC is under almost six inches of snow today.

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NFL’s Final Four are set:

Rams and Saints, Sunday at noon on Fox
Patriots and Chiefs, Sunday 3:40 on CBS

The Blazers came up one long basket short of the Denver Nuggets, losing 116-113.

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Today would have been the 100th birthday of the late Andy Rooney, whose crusty irks and homespun truths were a satisfying chaser to the con artists and opera stars profiled weekly on “60 Minutes.” No story written about him has ever omitted the word “curmudgeon.” Some of my favorite Andy Rooneyisms:

“We didn’t shock them, and we didn’t awe them in Baghdad. The phrase makes us look like foolish braggarts. The president ought to fire whoever wrote that for him.”

“Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat them.”

“I try to look nice. I comb my hair, I tie my tie, I put on a jacket, but I draw the line when it comes to trimming my eyebrows. You work with what you got.”

“Most of us end up with no more than five or six people who remember us. Teachers have thousands of people who remember them for the rest of their lives.”

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Yesterday was the day of the No Pants Max Ride.

PDX-centric “The Simpsons” premiered on this day in 1990.

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Let’s give our Monday attitudes a little nudge, with stories of kindness and hope and stuff…

–“Canadian air traffic controllers buy pizza for U.S. colleagues hit by shutdown”

–“Wife of furloughed U.S. government worker wins $100K Virginia lottery”

–“Rescuer of 11-year-old found facedown in snow was in the ‘right place at the right time'”

–“Watch Austrian Train Workers Leap to the Rescue of a Snowed-In Goat”

–“Teacher sketches portraits of entire class of 27 pupils”

Details in the Daily Drip coffee cup, below!

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This is the week of the expanding Moon; it’ll be full by Sunday. And that’s not all…there’s a Blood Moon, Super Moon, Wolf Moon, total lunar eclipse this next Sunday evening, perfectly visible from Portland–if clouds don’t get in the way. In fact, the entire eclipse from start to finish will be completely visible in all 48 contiguous states, weather permitting–making this America’s Eclipse! Now, the long-range forecast calls for rain, but I’m betting that there will be breaks in the clouds. Eclipse party, Sunday night! (And I’m taking the next Monday morning away, to sleep off whatever lunacy may evolve).

Have a very fine day!

Friday, January 11, 2019

Hello and good morning! Yay, Friday, we greet thee! It’s January 11, 2019, and Portland’s weather is about as nice as it gets for the depths of January: partly sunny, with highs of 50. And it’s going to stay dry, and Gorge-windy, until the middle of next week. Wasn’t yesterday a peach? Aurora had a high of 58, and Salem 60! So much better than our Silver Thaw 40 years ago, which turned Portland into a popsicle for a week. Sunrise, which is finally coming ever-so-slightly earlier, is at 7:49 AM, sunset 4:48 PM. But it’s still light at 5. We’ve gained 5 minutes of daylight since Monday.

Two years ago today, we were waking up to a foot of snow in Portland! (Denver, you have a winter storm warning today! That’s a town that looks good in snow, especially from afar).

Today should have been payday for 9,600 federal employees in Oregon, but instead it’s Shutdown Day 21, as the supposed expert dealmakers in DC are just holding their breaths–while thousands of families turn blue.

The FDA is not doing food inspections during the shutdown. Inspectors are furloughed. What on earth does this have to do with border security?

Portland’s Columbia Sportswear has taken out a full-page ad in the Washington Post today with the copy, “Make America’s Parks Open Again.” and “Walls shouldn’t block access to parks, and federal workers shouldn’t be left out in the cold.” CEO Tim Cook told Axios: “No party hates the outdoors except maybe the Donner Party.”

There’s flack from all over falling on SW Washington’s Republican member of Congress, Jaime Hererra Beutler, for breaking from the GOP and voting to reopen the Treasury Department ahead of tax season. Comments on her Facebook page include, “How DARE you vote with the Democrats to reopen the Government before they agree to what WE THE PEOPLE want. I’m tired of getting rolled by the liberals and you helping” and from the other side, “But Jaime, you didn’t vote for either bill that would reopen the government, allow Coast Guard, Border Patrol, TSA agents etc to be paid.” The Congresswoman herself wrote in an op-ed in The Columbian, “So, both sides have something they want. Why not give it to them?” and she made a point that’s been made here: Compromise. It’s how the pros do it. Give Trump a fence so he can save face and get Ann Coulter off his back; she’s not his type anyway. And in exchange, at long last, give the Dreamers what they dream of: a future in America. (Otherwise: the president might declare a national emergency, and divert money set aside for civil works all over the country including Hurricane Maria-damaged areas of Puerto Rico, and flood control projects in California).

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The possibility of toll roads in Portland’s future just got a little jinglier, as the Federal Highway Administration has notified ODOT that both I-5 and I-205 are “likely” to get the government’s okidoke.

There’s going to be a bill in the legislature to eliminate the tax on player salaries that would be used to help build an MLB stadium in Portland. I need to hear Sen. Ginny Burdick’s thinking on this. Without ballplayers, there would be no tax. So where’s the beef?

Portland is likely to build a roundabout in the dead-man’s-curve intersection of SW Multnomah Boulevard, Garden Home Road and 69th Avenue.

Ew: Sewage bubbled up from a manhole near Dickinson Park in SW Portland (it’s along I-5, south of Taylors Ferry), and flowed into what the city says is “an unnamed creek” It has one now!

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Saturday night’s all right for…Elton John at the Moda Center! Returning from a month-long break, he plays Boise tonight…and then tomorrow, his “Farewell Yellow Brick Road” tour brings him nice and fresh to Portland for what we’re led to believe will be the last time. Now, I have in my hands his 24-song setlist, and a good idea of the staging and choreography, but sharing it here would only detract from the night, and especially from that moment toward the end when he..wait, stop! I’ll save the surprise. I’ll just say that I’m sure he’ll play your song, whatever it is, and that the reviews I’ve read from December are uniformly ecstatic. If you’re going, we’ll look forward to reading your thoughts!

The Portland Trail Blazers, on a 3-game win streak, cap off their homestand against the Charlotte Hornets tonight. Our guys fly to Denver on Sunday. It’ll be sunny and 40.

Not to make genderalizations, but there’s a good chance we hubbies will be parked this weekend as follows:

Saturday::

Indianapolis Colts at Kansas City Chiefs, 1:35 PM, NBC
Dallas Cowboys at Los Angeles Rams, 5:15 PM, FOX

Sunday:

Los Angeles Chargers at New England Patriots 10:05 AM, CBS
Philadelphia Eagles at New Orleans Saints 1:40 PM, FOX

All times Pacific!

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A bit of good news with your decaf vanilla latte?

–“Soldier saves man’s life with hoodie, ink pen”

–“Former homeless person has been crowned London’s top bus driver – because he never stops smiling!”

–“A pilot showed incredible helicopter skills during a rescue mission in the French Alps–and you can watch”

–“Instead of Running, These Inmates Rush to Aid Their Supervisor Who Collapsed From Stroke Along a Roadside”

–“‘A Dog’s Way Home’: How Shelby went from junkyard stray to Hollywood star”

You can follow up for details in the Daily Drip link collection, located in the Coffee Cup, in the comments!
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A couple of radio folks of mixed repute, but undeniable success, have birthdays tomorrow…Howard Stern was born in ’54 and Rush Limbaugh in ’51. At the start I found Limbaugh to be entertaining, but he devolved into mere politics and I lost interest years ago. Conversely, Stern seemed surly and rude when he first went national, so I paid him no attention at all, but in recent years he’s become one of the most insightful celebrity interviewers on the air. Of course, then he shifts into a junior high schtick and I just hit the button.

Hit your button and join us on 103.3, won’t you? We have fun. You will too.

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Wherever you may be, Good Morning! It’s Thursday, January 10, 2019, and here’s the Daily Drip from somewhere near Portland, where the weather today is partly sunny with only a chance of scattered showers and highs a springy 55. Sunrise 7:49 AM, sunset 4:47 PM.

Inexperience in Oregon’s dangerous waters may have been a factor in the deaths of three crab fishermen whose boat flipped over in the steep seas off Yaquina Bay. The captain and one crew member were from New Jersey, and their boat was recently purchased. The other crew member, Josh Porter, was a well-known fisherman on the coast, and had told friends he was worried about the skipper’s inexperience. He even had another job lined up starting Saturday. The Coast Guard commander for the area says the capsizing occurred after all the other boats had raced to shore ahead of the storm, in a stretch of water most fishermen know to avoid–nicknamed “the dumping ground.”

The meantime the crabbing crews will be out again today, in seas that rise and fall 11 to 13 feet over and over again. That’s manageable for experienced crews, but would send most of us straight to the rail.

A driver carelessly veered off Oregon 224 in Milwaukie and hit an inmate work crew that was clearing low-hanging branches. Two men were taken to the hospital but should be OK.

The story of Corporal Scott Moss, the homeless Army veteran who died in Portland with nobody to claim him, resulted in a respectable turnout for his funeral yesterday. One Drip reader relayed the information to a Vietnam veteran friend, who reports: “Okay, I went. Along with 100 like minded souls. Full military honors, bugle Taps, active duty military flag folding, rifle squad, bagpiper, vet biker honor guard, other vets, civilians, lengthy eulogy, Yakima Indian Nation tribute with song, ½ mile long car procession, all in all the best attended funeral that I have attended at Willamette National. Thanks for the heads up.”

Going to bat for a green and growing local industry, Portland’s bowtied rep in Congress, Earl Blumenauer, yesterday introduced a bill that takes cannabis out of the Controlled Substances Act and puts it under the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. It’s dubbed the “Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol Act,” and the bill number is literally HR 420.

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It started out sweet enough, with President Trump actually handing out candy…Butterfingers, according to Mike Pence, which drew some snickers over how this has been handled…but when he and top Democratic leaders Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer got down to the crunch of bargaining, they were hardly the three musketeers. The latest White House meeting on the government shutdown was a dud. Trump said something like, “OK, if I open up the government, in 30 days could we have money for a border wall?’ And Pelosi said, “No, not at all, ” Not even 100 Grand. So Trump got up and walked out. Democrats say he was red hot, and slammed the desk and stormed out, the White House says he didn’t, but either way, today is Day 20. And for hundreds of thousands of workers, tomorrow should have been payday.

Two Republicans from the Oregon/Washington territory strayed from the herd like a couple of mavericks and voted with Democrats for a doomed House bill to reopen just the Treasury Department in time for tax season. The two, among eight Republicans overall, are SW Washington’s Jaime Hererra-Beutler and Oregon’s Greg Walden. Today happens to be Walden’s 62nd birthday; he’ll back home next week for sixteen contentious town halls, and he’s already getting a Facebook-full from some of his constituents, with comments such as, “You’re sounding more and more like a democrat every day. Pretty disappointed in you Greg” and “You’ve marked yourself, in the Dems eyes, as the weakest runt in the herd.” Walden (A good guy; I know him from his radio days in the Gorge) says he supports Trump on border security but explains, “I don’t agree that it makes sense to furlough the people working on the biological opinion in the Klamath Basin, forest fuels reductions in central Oregon, or grazing permits in eastern Oregon. How does a nearly month-long work stoppage benefit taxpayers who are waiting for decisions and plans and permits? And we know not many people can afford to miss a paycheck, so I have empathy for the federal workers and their families who are caught up in this.”

Today Trump goes to the border in McAllen, Texas.

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Today is the 40th anniversary of a vicious ice storm that turned the Portland area into a 5-county hockey rink. The Silver Thaw, we called it, and the complete disruption it caused for almost a week was exceeded only by its serene and glittering beauty. I was lucky enough to work for a radio station, KGW, that had an emergency generator at the transmitter, so we stayed on the air the whole time covering it while other TV and radio stations waited with everyone else for power to be restored. Our studios were dark, so we improvised an alligator clip connection from our battery-operated cassette recorders that we used in the field, to the telephone clips with the mouthpiece screwed off. Basic radio reporter trick, back then, and it kept us on the air–with KGW-TV reporters lined up to file reports.

It’s the 20th anniversary of “The Sopranos” debut on HBO. I loved James Gandolfini, the way he could deliver a line, like…“Oh, poor baby. What do you want, a Whitman’s Sampler?” and “A wrong decision is better than indecision” and “Is this a woman thing? You ask me how I’m feeling. I tell you how I’m feeling, and now you’re going to torture me with it.”

Oil was discovered in Texas on this day in 1901.

So close…on this day in 2011, #1 Auburn edged #2 Oregon, 22-19 to win the BCS National Championship.

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Let’s build a big beautiful wall of kindness and positivity with news stories like these!

–“The Most Wondrous State Parks to Visit During the Government Shutdown”

–“Reporter Covering Story of Missing Woman Finds Her ”

–“Kitten rescued from highway barrier, adopted by officer”

–“Parents surprise shelter volunteer daughter by adopting her favorite dog”

–“Government shutdown equals free BBQ”

Details in the Daily Drip Coffee Cup!

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Final score from the Moda Center last night…Blazers 124 Bulls 112. Nice win! Time for me to make a fast break into the radio studio for a very full day. Cheers to all; see you on 103.3!

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Well, look, it’s the Daily Drip, Portland’s quick morning readup and comment platform, for Wednesday, January 9, 2019. We’re in for another day of breezy winds (the best kind), valley rain, mountain snow, and the dreaded wintry mix in the upper Hood River Valley and central Columbia River Gorge. Highs around 50, today, then 55 tomorrow—on the 40th anniversary of Portland’s memorable 1979 Silver Thaw. Sunrise 7:49 AM, sunset 4:46 PM.

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It’d be shocking if anyone’s mind was changed last night by President Trump’s oval-office pitch for a border wall, or by the Democrats’ retort that “The symbol of America should be the Statue of Liberty, not a 30-foot wall.” Both sides scored points with their bases, nothing more. You didn’t hear anything you haven’t heard a thousand times, in thundering campaign speeches and the sound bite delivery mechanism we call the media. And you didn’t hear either side offer a way out. In the context of our times, negotiation looks weak.

Meantime, on this 19th day of the government shutdown:

–In hard numbers, there are 28,000 federal employees in Oregon, and two-thirds are still getting paychecks. But about 9,600 are not, according to the Oregon Employment Department, and Friday’s payday is when it’ll really start to bite.

–Their union says some of Portland’s TSA workers are selling plasma and going to food pantries to make ends meet. Oregon Democratic Rep.Suzanne Bonamici says it’s “completely unacceptable” that Trump shut down the government “in the name of safety at the southern border, losing sight of what our air traffic controllers and TSA do.”

–There’s temporary relief for food stamp recipients, as the government announced that benefits will be paid in February, shutdown or no. March? Unknown.

–The Oregon Humane Society opens a pet food pantry for furloughed and unpaid Federal workers to avail themselves of tomorrow.

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Big screwup by lawyers for Paul Manafort, who failed to redact documents that show the former campaign chairman shared Trump polling data with an associate tied to Russian intelligence during the 2016 campaign. The NY Times puts the meaning of it this way: “Prosecutors and the news media have already documented a string of encounters between Russian operatives and Trump campaign associates … The new disclosure appeared to some experts to be perhaps most damning of all.”

Over 1 million ex-felons in Florida can register to vote starting this week, thanks to a ballot measure approved there in November. In case you’re wondering about Oregon: people who are in prison for a felony are ineligible to vote, but: voting rights are restored upon release. They do need to re-register. But they’re coming home. They did their time.

Fun new products unveiled at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas include a laundry folding machine, a fishing rod that tracks your location to create a map of where you’ve had the most luck, a toothbrush that tells you where to brush more, and a fragrance diffuser that lets you change how your home smells from a smartphone app, so you can go from Wet Dog to Cinnamon Rolls.

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The Benton County Sheriff’s Office says it found the truck that missing Brownsville nurse Sue Durheim was driving Monday morning: the vehicle is in 20 feet of water in the Willamette River along Highway 20 near Corvallis. They haven’t been able to connect a tow.

Cops are still trying to find the pair who knocked over–literally–the Wells Fargo ATM on NE Butler in Hillsboro. They swiped a tractor from a nearby construction site, drove it over a fence, leveled the ATM, grabbed the cash and ran in a U-Haul that was later found abandoned in the woods. Something similar was attempted in McMinnville over Christmas.

A custodian discovered cracks in the wall of the gym at Madison High School. The gym is now closed TFN. It’s already scheduled to be torn down this summer under a renovation bond issue.

Cuts are coming in the Vancouver School District. The superintendent says they expect to be short over $11 million dollars in 2019-20, explaining that it’s because of a state cap on levies, and because of recent contract raises negotiated by teacher and other employee unions. Result: he will study the need for a “reduced education program.”

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Three new nonstop flights out of PDX begin soon on no-frills Sun Country Airlines: to Nashville, so you can immerse in the blues one night and go to the Oprey the next; or San Antonio, to remember the best fajitas in the world, along with the Alamo, or St Louis, see the Cardinals lose to the Cubs.

Our favorite Reed dropout Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone on this day in 2007.

It’s Richard Nixon’s birthday (1913).

This day in 1984 is when Wendy’s “Where’s The Beef” commercials with Clara Peller hit our TV screens (in between “Dallas” and “Falcon Crest’).

Blazers vs Bulls tonight in the Moda Center.

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On the bright side of the boulevard of news…

–“Delaware boy who defied mom to stay up and watch Netflix saves her from late-night fire”

–“‘Dear Beloved …’ Man leaves thousands of encouraging letters across Oregon town”

–“Second grader wins $30,000 college scholarship for dino Google Doodle”

–“Stranger drives 2,300 miles to reunite boy recovering from surgery with his dog”

–“Blue Light Reduces Blood Pressure as Effectively as Medication, according to UK Study”

Details at our famous Daily Drip Coffee Cup, below.