Monday, January 15, 2018

Hi all! A note from the DD M*A*S*H tent…where the patient is feeling better…or at least I was until I checked my Twitter feed…:0

I just have a viral tummy thing that’s been circulating…for me it manifests as a deep nausea and nothing else, but it’s finally abating after 24 hours..I think….

Enough so that I want to observe Dr. Martin Luther King’s birthday by scrolling through some of what he said during his short 39 years…I’d previously looked these up for inclusion in today’s DD:

“We may have all come on different ships, but we’re in the same boat now.”

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

“I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”

“The time is always right to do what’s right.”

“No person has the right to rain on your dreams.”

“I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but the content of their character.”

“We have flown the air like birds and swum the sea like fishes, but have yet to learn the simple act of walking the earth like brothers.”

One other thing:

Some of us know a Portlander who knew Dr. King, grew up with his family, had the great man in the living room of his childhood home. It’s State Sen. Lew Frederick, a close friend of mine. I asked him for some recollections, and he sent me a transcript of a speech he’d given.

“Making the world better for the people who come after you” is the phrase said by Dr. King to me as a young boy in his living room. It is the mantra said around my dining room table constantly by my Mom and Dad.”

And Lew himself added:

“If one thing has happened in the last year it is clear that our eyes are open. We know much clearer who is out there. Who is truly supporting our vision of a fully cooperating society and who would have us return to the 1850s so that they could continue a mythology that places people on a value scale that is based on the color of their skin. Yes I meant to say 1850’s. Some believe the goal is the 1950s. When you are celebrating confederate war heroes, you have moved to the failed policies and philosophy of the 19th Century.”

Words from Sen. Lew Frederick.

 

The “Sixty Minutes” piece on Portland last night was, I thought, a trite and formulaic rehash of what faraway people think of our town if they think of it at all. It featured recurrent and overused clips from Season One of “Portlandia” to illustrate through exaggeration some of the values that some of our people hold dear. The “Weird” thing was never our slogan, official or otherwise, just a bumper sticker borrowed from Austin. And while Mayor Ted Wheeler articulated the fact that Portland is one of the least racially diverse cities in the nation, some the damning history of that–such as the redlined relocation of black folks to Albina following the Vanport flood, and the subsequent gentrification of much of that district resulting in another diaspora–never made it into the show. It pretended that racist violence is a new development, forgetting what happened to Mulugetah Sera in 1988. I wish they had talked to some leaders of color. Nkenge Harmon Johnson. Lew Frederick. Loretta Smith. The program’s theme seemed to be that Portland is no longer the cute progressive place it was when “Portlandia” debuted in 2011. It never was. Portland’s always been a small but growing city in an unbelievably scenic setting, with good people and bad, that’s held a fascination for people not lucky enough to live here.

I don’t want to let it pass that my longtime K103/KGW partner Craig Walker, Portland’s ultimate and undisputed radio legend, unplugged his cans from the studio jack for the very last time thirteen years ago today. As I noted in a post on the tenth anniversary, liberation from the tyranny of the 4 AM boot-out-of-bed has been good medicine for my dear friend. I see Craig often and he looks healthy, relaxed, busy with grandkids, his beloved Barb, and travel and golf. And he plays a very nice nylon-stringed guitar. Meantime, those in the biz know that we’ve kept it rolling. The morning show has evolved as the times require and we’re doing exceptionally well. Props to Bruce Murdock for taking the torch and never missing a stride. I’m just a lucky witness to some of the most successful decades in the history of Portland radio.

OK. Time to do a little yoga, and have some chai tea.

I plan to take at least one more day to make sure I don’t bring this
to the workplace. I’m told there was some football yesterday but I saw none of it; that it was a warm Sunday but I only glimpsed it through the window, then curled up like a ball. Today I’ll poke my head out, like a prairie dog and sniff the wind.

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