Wednesday, May 16, 2018

(mic static) Attention all personnel! We interrupt your sweet dreams for the Daily Drip on Wednesday, May 16, 2018. Portland’s weather is cloudy with morning spritzes, afternoon showers, and highs of 67. Sunrise 5:38 AM, sunset 8:36 PM.

It was the night the lights went out for 36,000 PGE customers in Southeast Portland, after a construction crew hit a pipe causing a natural gas leak that shut down Foster between 101st and 104th. NW Natural crews came, dug, located, and fixed, and as a precaution, PGE powered down a major substation. As of now (3 AM), the lights are back on for virtually everyone.

Let’s go to the Daily Drip Election Desk! Headline items:

After fending off a challenge from the right, moderate Republican Knute Buehler will take on incumbent Democrat Kate Brown for Governor of Oregon. Former Democratic legislator Val Hoyle wins the job of Labor Commissioner over Tualatin’s Mayor Lou Ogden. Voters reauthorized the Portland Children’s Levy. The open Portland City Council seat comes down to a November runoff between Joann Hardesty and Loretta Smith. Kevin Barton pounded Max Wall in the big-spending Washington County DA race. The Beaverton schools local option levy passed…and the Salem-Keizer School district bond was approved. The Gladstone library levy passes..the Happy Valley parks levy passes..the Mollala street levy fails…Comments? Results on other races?

Looks like people may be handing out peace prizes a bit too soon…North Korea has canceled a high-level meeting with South Korea and is threatening to call off the historic summit with the United States, over joint military exercises now underway. We’ll be monitoring the Twitter feed from 1600 Pennsylvania.

The weather is not all that’s cooling down. The Oregon economy is losing jobs for the first time since December 2016–with 2900 payroll positions evaporating during April. Still, the unemployment rate is near rock-bottom by Oregon standards–4.1%–and economists say we’re not on the brink of a recession, even though growth has slowed from the past eight years.

The family of a Seattle climber who was killed in a fall on Mt. Hood a year ago is suing Clackamas County for $10 million. They say that after climber John Thornton Jenkins fell, his partners were given the runaround when they called 911, being told they should call the “ski patrol” even though this was well up on the mountain and away from the ski slopes. When an Oregon Army National Guard chopper was finally launched four hours later, it sped to the scene but was too late to save him. Realizing that climbers know they’re taking a risk, Mt. Hood is a major tourist draw, and maybe this case will show how the emergency response system can be tightened up.

The exodus continues from Portland City Hall’s top levels, as budget director Andrew Scott is leaving for an executive role at Metro. That’s three department heads exiting in a week’s time.

Channel 8 did a piece on the Willamette Riverkeepers’ weekly volunteer canoe cleanup in the slimy water along the East Bank Esplanade, and let’s just say, yuck. Maybe it’s time to get some inmate crews and folks performing court-ordered community service in there.

Cheap-fare watchers are jumping on a Southwest Airlines 96-hour sale, with one-way tickets out of Portland going for $79 to the Bay area.

Oregon’s school kids will literally breath easier as the state is junking 450 old-model, high-polluting diesel buses and replacing them with cleaner new models–using money, fittingly, from the settlement that Volkswagen will pay for its emission-cheating scandal.

The Audubon Society in Portland is taking care of a wounded bald eagle found alongside SR 14 in Vancouver. WSP troopers carefully collected the bird with a fractured wing, which could have resulted from a collision with a vehicle, or a fight with another eagle.

In our great-excuse-to-not-cook department…today’s the annual Restaurants for Raphael House event, when over 40 local eateries fork over a chunk of the proceeds to help families escaping domestic violence. Participants range from Nobel Rot to ¿Por Qué No?, and you can get the full list–including delivery options–at the Raphael House web site.

TMSG!

–“Chinese pilot sucked halfway out of airplane, ‘hero’ makes successful emergency landing”

–“A former student who now owns a travel agency donated travel vouchers for the entire staff of the elementary school he attended, and their families.”

–“Kansas School of Medicine graduate overcomes hearing loss to land a residency at top children’s hospital in the country”

–“A 69-Year-Old Double Amputee Has Just Climbed Mount Everest”

Just a word about Tom Wolfe, the journalistic novelist, or maybe the other way around, who died Monday at 88. I’ve read whatever he wrote, beginning in college with “Acid Test” and “Radical Chic,” and my Wolfe habit continued as he grew to create mighty novels like “The Bonfire of the Vanities” and acts of technicolor nonfiction like “The Right Stuff.” He brought us phrases we use today like “pushing the envelope” and “hemorrhaging money” and “screwing the pooch” (for making a huge mistake) and “radical chic” and “Me Decade.” And he was a whip-sharp quote machine. For instance: “If a conservative is a liberal who’s been mugged, a liberal is a conservative who’s been arrested.” and “An intellectual is a person knowledgeable in one field who speaks out only in others.” and “A cult is a religion with no political power.” I almost have to avoid reading him, so I don’t try to write with his acidity; time to read some Garrison Keillor to raise the pH!

There’s a starting point…your turn…what should I say the Dripsters are talking about, in our 6:20 AM break on K103?

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