Thursday, November 30, 2017

Here we go into the mythic morning on the front doorstep of December, a Thursday, November 30, 2017, with rain hustling through around midday and highs of 45. Next week looks dry and windy. Activities like walking to the bus and wheeling out the recycling are carried out in darkness, with sunrise at 7:29 AM and sunset at 4:29 PM. At least we have a nearly full moon to light our way. Today is our first day with fewer than nine hours of daylight.

With hands covering our faces, let’s part our fingers a little and see what’s up:

A big sigh of relief in Salem, where a little 7-year old boy named Dylan didn’t come home from school yesterday, touching off a search in a neighboring park that ended when he was found safe around 10 last night.

Our letter carriers are toiling under Dickensian conditions right now, shouldering the burden of holiday mail and hauling packages to our doors long after sundown, and now this: somebody robbed a mailman in Gladstone, grabbing a bunch of mail, injuring the carrier, and damaging the postal van. $10K reward being offered.

American Airlines may have to cancel a number of flights over the holidays. Reason: a pilot scheduling snafu.

Matt Lauer says he’s “truly sorry” about the sexual harassment allegations that led to his firing from The Today Show. He says some of the charges are “untrue or mischaracterized,” but that there’s “enough truth” to make him feel “embarrassed and ashamed.” I loved the word that NBC’s Savanah Guthrie used to describe the outpouring of workplace truth we’re experiencing: it’s a reckoning.

Now look who’s in town: former VP Joe Biden speaks at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall tonight at 7:30. It’s just a book tour, but some people think he’s got 2020 vision. And just bidin’ his time.

Oregon State University is pinning its hopes for a return to gridiron respectability on its own former star quarterback Jonathan Smith, who will be introduced this morning as the Beavers’ new head coach. Smith is currently the offensive coordinator and QB coach for the once-again-mighty Washington Huskies. So he knows about bringing a football program back from the dead.

Your Portland neighborhood will have a lot more houses squeezed in under an anti-McMansion zoning rewrite now in the works. More and smaller houses on smaller lots everywhere. Some neighbors are dreading the effect it’ll have on parking on their blocks, but backers say Portland is a magnet, and new people have to live somewhere.

Imperiled by fire just two months ago, the Multnomah Falls Lodge is now open. Hours are 9 AM to 5 PM daily. Let’s take that as a symbol of the fact that the Columbia Gorge survived.

A wrecked and rusted Porsche was found by a hiker in the deep woods west of Crater Lake…and nearby lay some bones. An investigation revealed that the car had been stolen 27 years ago, and the bones…were those of a deer.

A longtime Portland gay bar called The Embers Avenue is shutting down at closing time tonight. The owner is recovering from a stroke. It’s been a welcoming place to that part of our populace since 1969.

Chris Isaak was scheduled to bring his holiday tour to Revolution Hall tonight…but it’s been postponed.

The Singing Christmas Tree lights up tonight and tomorrow night, before weekend performances conclude this year’s run at the Keller Auditorium.

Bing Crosby’s last and most famous Christmas special aired 40 years ago tonight. It featured his “Little Drummer Boy” duet with David Bowie, who hated “Little Drummer Boy” and refused to sing it, so the show’s writers came up with the counter-tune “Peace On Earth” on the spot. It’s now a holiday classic.

OK, then! Let’s go to today’s Headlines for a Happy Heart! The secret of this experimental way to inject some cheer without a lot of detail is to read each one separately, then look away and imagine the story, before returning to the next one. Your mind will create the story. These are headlines that I’ve plucked off the web.

“A Survivalist Filled His Massive Basement With Food, Then Decided Puerto Rico Needed It More.”

“See You In Heaven:” Trapped Couple Said Final Goodbyes as Fire Raged Around Them…and Then They Were Rescued.”

“Police Dog Fired For Being Too Friendly Gets New Job As Greeter.”

“A Growing Number of Young Americans are Leaving Desk Jobs to Farm.”

“Three Coffees A Day Linked To More Health Than Harm, Scientists Say.”

“Homeless Man in New Haven Who Returned $10,000 Check Rewarded With Cash, a Home, and a Job Interview.”

(By the way…some of these stories find their way onto K103’s “Tell Me Something Good” at 8 AM…only with more detail.)

I shudder today to punch the “send” button at Daily Drip deadline time, because when I did that yesterday and hopped in the Outback and flicked on the satellite radio, boom, there was the news about Matt Lauer–and I was stuck behind the wheel, powerless to repost for 30 minutes. In the times we’re living through, if you’re out of touch for even a moment, you can miss a lot. Although… come to think of it…that sounds pretty good!

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