Hello, Leprechauns! We’re leaping into Monday, March 18, 2019, the week when Spring begins! The equinox isn’t until Wednesday, but as of today, Portland is already getting more daytime than night. And we’ll acquire sixteen minutes more daylight between now and Friday, the greatest sunlight gain of any week in the year–a good weeks’ work, friends! Today’s weather will be awesome, in a warm and windy way, with highs approaching 70 degrees. We hit 69 yesterday in Portland, but 71 in Salem and Vancouver. The Portland area is under a wind advisory for 45 MPH gusts picking up at times. Sunrise 7:17 AM, sunset 7:20 PM.
Lots happening this week! Spring begins on the same day as a Full Moon, which is rare indeed…hasn’t happened since 1981…Michelle Obama comes calling tomorrow, after being snowed out in February….the Blazers play three home games…and Friday of this week is Tom McCall Day…I’ll try to maintain awareness of the great governor with a closing quote each day.
Portland has plenty o’ chuckholes, but perhaps the worst aspect of the city’s infrastructure is the century-old skeleton of pipes carrying our drinking water, a situation that erupted spectacularly in the Alberta district over the weekend. A 1910-era water main at NE 23rd and Skidmore broke at midday Saturday sending up a blossoming geyser, and millions of gallons of Bull Run’s best rolled like a tide four blocks north and five blocks east, swamping yards, garages, and basements and undercutting streets that may have to be totally replaced. Insurance companies are already turning down damage claims from folks who didn’t carry flood insurance in the landlocked neighborhood. People actually went out and waded in that water. Not smart.
The Prime Minister of New Zealand says the government has agreed “in principle” to an overhaul of the country’s gun laws in the aftermath of the white supremacist massacre of Muslims at prayer.
Developing overseas…a man fired on passengers riding a tram in the Dutch city of Utrecht, and several people are reported injured,
The Portland Trail Blazers play the Indiana Pacers tonight at the Moda Center. Shooting guard CJ McCollum is out with a strained muscle (the popliteus) in his left knee, and will be out for several weeks.
March Madness brackets are in! Let’s count down the Northwest teams in the big dance: Oregon is a #12 seed, opening against Wisconsin on Friday…Washington’s a #9 seed and plays Utah State on Friday…and Gonzaga is a #1 seed, and plays the winner of Syracuse/Baylor on Friday. The brackets for the 2019 NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament will be revealed today…including the PSU Vikings!
Today is “Transit Driver Appreciation Day”…and the universe would appreciate it if you’d give a word of thanks to the driver whenever you hop off a bus or a train. These folks spend 8 hours a day hunched over the dashboard as they bear responsibility for safely hauling many lives through brutal traffic with rarely a restroom break. TriMet claims that “Working with the public and being acknowledged is one of the top reasons why our operators say their work isn’t just a job… It’s the best job they’ve ever had.” Thanks, folks.
Not his finest moment, or ours…this was the day in 1942 when FDR signed an executive order authorizing the War Relocation Authority, which was put in charge of “interning” Japanese-Americans.
Oregon-dwelling actor Patrick Duffy turned 70 yesterday. You know, Bobby Ewing from “Dallas.” The good guy. We watched every episode of “Dallas,” and chased it with “Falcon Crest.”
Neil Young’s “Heart of Gold” hit #1 on this day in 1972. We keep on searching, indeed…and what we find goes into the Smile File. Today the coffee cup overfloweth!
–“Irish Prime Minister visits Choctaw Nation to thank them for famine donation made 172 years ago.”
–“How Hero Refugee, 48, Chased Away New Zealand Gunman”
–“Community rallies behind man whose car broke down while moving across the country”
–“FDNY Veteran Saved From Cardiac Arrest By Defibrillator He Lobbied For Months Earlier”
–“Parents Rushed To Hospital In Ambulance Leave Kids Behind With Unlikely Sitters”.
–“Moving day: Bear family living in highway median relocated”
A few words from Oregon’s greatest governor…these, from a speech to the 1973 Legislature…
“Our thoughts today, and our deliberations to come, must spring from our determination to keep Oregon lovable and to make it even more livable.”–Tom McCall
I’m coming down with whatever’s going around…popping zinc now. Day-to-day.