Good morning, friends! What we have here is your basic Tuesday, April 9, 2019, and Portland’s skies are…well, dark, as I write this. But the day will be cloudy with a decreasing chance of showers, and highs of 59. We’ll get much less rain in the bucket than the recent drenching, as the atmospheric river that brought it has shifted to the east and has now been given a name by The Weather Channel: Wesley, Wesley will be a blizzard in the plains and upper midwest. Two feet of snow for Minneapolis. Sunrise 6:36 AM, sunset 7:49 PM.
This April flooding of the Willamette Valley is unusual indeed. The Willamette at Albany is the highest it’s been since 1996, but much lower at Portland. And though the rainmaker has moved on, tributaries like the Mohawk and the Long Tom and the Coast Fork Willamette, up by Ken Kesey’s old home near Mt. Pisgah, are pouring millions or billions of gallons of rainwater into the main rivers like the McKenzie, the Santiam, the Siuslaw, the Clackamas, and the mighty Willamette. The vast power of our state’s rivers is on display in a way we’ve rarely seen, but they’re cresting today and tomorrow and will begin falling…although new systems are arriving Wednesday night and Saturday, and models indicate showery weather for the next two weeks. And the very heavy rain over the past couple of days has made steep slopes unstable with a number of rock and small landslides reported.
Mt. St. Helens was pounded by a thunderstorm yesterday. And did you glimpse a rainbow?
The trial of the guy charged with killing two heroic men on a MAX train two years ago for standing up to him to protect two young women of color will go on in Multnomah County in June as scheduled. His attorneys wanted a change of venue because of alleged “inaccurate” information in local media that could taint the jury pool, but the judge said nope.
A couple of car prowlers are sad they picked a parking garage near Director’s Park to raid: a resident who’d already had his car ransacked twice camped out in the back seat last weekend and sure enough, the guys came back. He waited while they aimed flashlights into other cars, and he called the cops; they came, sealed off the exits, and caught the dudes in the act. They’re lucky they didn’t get to the guy’s car: he’s 6-5, but more to the point, he had his concealed pistol the whole time.
Did you know there’s no safe place for a hiker to cross the Columbia River between Portland and The Dalles? That may change, as an Oregon House committee this morning hears a bill that would tack a dedicated pedestrian pathway onto the Bridge of the Gods. That would essentially complete the Pacific Crest Trail, whose hikers are among the thousands who take their chances mingling with traffic on that storied span.
From the Daily Drip Traffic Desk: Spokane is getting its first ramp meter today. The road to Bagby Hot Springs is blocked by a fallen tree.
Though the US has been trying to broker a peace agreement with the Taliban, three US service members and one contractor have been killed by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan.
In what’s being called by the New York Times a “purge” of Homeland Security, both the department’s director and the head of the Secret Service are out, with more officials expected to be shown the door soon. The Times says it’s a sign that President Trump is getting ready “to unleash an even fiercer assault on immigration, including a possible return to separating migrant children from their parents.”
Today Attorney General William Barr makes his first public appearance since releasing his four-page take on special counsel Robert Mueller’s 400-page report when he testifies at a Congressional hearing.
A big Daily Drip “way to go!!” to my friends Junki and Linda Yoshida, of teriyaki sauce renown, for donating their entire 15-acre riverfront estate in Troutdale to the Randall Children’s Hospital Foundation, supporting pediatric cancer programs at Legacy Emanuel. Their beautiful property at the mouth of the Sandy will be used as a getaway oasis for patients, families, and medical staffs, but they will host one last “Soulful Giving Blanket Concert” this August 3.
Bob Dylan’s “Nashville Skyline” album was issued fifty years ago today. It included a song that was intended for the “Midnight Cowboy” soundtrack. Dylan missed the deadline, but released the song anyway, and that’s how we have “Lay Lady Lay.”
The Blazers play the Lakers at the Staples Center tonight for the last road game of the regular season. And Virginia beat Texas Tech in OT to win the NCAA men’s championship.
Good news stories!
–“A homeless man wandered in one day, and this Arizona town adopted him”
–“Dog severely burned in house fire adopted… by firefighter”
–“This High School Opens Its Doors Every Friday Night To Keep Students Off The Streets”
–“Kansas woman buys out Payless store, sends shoes to Nebraska flood victims”
–“MIT puts all of its course materials online completely free for anyone to use”
Details in the Coffee Cup, just below this.