Monday, May 13, 2019

And…we’re back! Good morning, friends, and thanks for patiently waiting for the patient to get better. He is! It’s Monday, May 13, 2019, and coming off a red-hot-and-rolling weekend, today will be a cloudy but comfortable 70-degree day, followed by a regime change in a showery direction starting tomorrow. Sunrise 5:42 AM, Sunset 8:32 PM.

The sun’s coming up on a joyful Rip City, as the Blazers’ march down the yellow brick road has Oz in sight. Friends, we’re in the Final Four! Let’s wear our Blazer gear today! With that Mile High win, Portland-town has snapped into championship mode. Our appetite is sharpened; our knowledge of the game is greater, and our bond with the team is deeper, going beyond the superstars to include all the guys who spark joy coming off the bench. We haven’t been this far since the 1999-2000 season when the Blazers took Shaq and Kobe and the Lakers to a seventh game in the conference finals, which ended in a heartbreaker. The Lakers went on to win the title, but the guys on our team were household names around here: Arvydis Sabonis and Scottie Pippen and Damon Stoudamire and Rasheed Wallace…and who else? Bonzi Wells. Detlef Schremf. Brian Grant. And that’s how it always is during Portland’s deep playoff runs. We like these guys! And now it’s Damian, CJ, Seth, Rodney, Enes, Evan, Myers, Zach….who have you latched onto, found that you’re following more than before? We bond with the team, while the community hangs together in a way we normally might not. The conference finals begin Tuesday night, in Oakland, against the Warriors. The Blazers are underdogs. But nobody picked David to beat Goliath, and he rocked him.

The Nuggets grew to annoy us during these series, but one has to like the way they stayed on the court to congratulate the Blazers for advancing to the conference finals.

From the PDX airport twitter feed: What we have heard unofficially, is that they are not returning to Portland (Sunday), but heading straight to Oakland Monday.

Bill Schonely turns 90 on June 1…during the NBA Finals. Is that a good omen or what?

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You might want to avert your eyes from your 401K today…Dow futures point to a 300 point drop at the open following the continuing failure of trade talks with China. President Trump announced billions of dollars in new tariffs on goods coming in from China and claimed that China will pay those tariffs, though his economic adviser Larry Kudlow acknowledges that the opposite is true–but that the US economy is strong enough to absorb the blow.

The PSU Board of Trustees votes today on 11% tuition hike. And also, on ousting the president. Of PSU.

We might be getting a new unicorn in our magical fairyland–in the form of a funicular! A what? Well, perhaps in your travels you’ve heard the merry Italian folk tune, “Funiculì, Funiculà!” That spritely ditty is about a steeply inclined elevator that zipped up and down the side of Mt. Vesuvius. And today, such a conveyance is one of the options before a TriMet steering committee looking for ways to whisk thousands of people from the future Barbur Boulevard MAX line up Marquam Hill to OHSU and the VA. The steering committee meets this morning at 9 at Tigard City Hall; a decision had been expected today but I believe it’s been put off to June. How much, I hear you ask? I saw an estimate of $45 million, but when are those ever accurate?

If the angler in the office is missing today…you’ll find her on a boat on the Columbia fishing for sturgeon during a brief, every-other-day recreational season that begins this morning along the mighty river’s lower 40 miles.

“Desperate Housewives” star Felicity Huffman pleads guilty today to paying $15,000 to a phony charity that facilitated cheating for her daughter’s SATs. She could conceivably receive up to 20 years in prison, but a few months is more likely.

There’s a new book coming out about the 1962 Columbus Day Storm titled “A Deadly Wind”–and its author, journalist John Dodge, appears tonight at Powell’s City of Books. I haven’t read the book or interviewed the author (nudge nudge, publicists), but the publisher’s notes indicate that we’ll learn some things: “This unrivaled West Coast windstorm fueled the Asian log export market, helped give birth to the Oregon wine industry, and influenced the 1962 World Series. It remains a cautionary tale and the Pacific Northwest benchmark for severe windstorms in this era of climate change and weather uncertainty.”

As a ploy to foil the paparazzi, it happened at midnight, this night in 1985, at Our Lady of the Lake Catholic Church in Lake Oswego, where rock superstar Bruce Springsteen married Julianne Phillips, TV actress and local LO girl, whom Bruce looks back on fondly in his memoir: ‘She was twenty-four, tall, blond, educated, talented, a beautiful and charming young woman.” Bruce today dolefully admits that he lacked the maturity to handle life on the road, full of temptations, and the marriage lasted but three years. He married bandmate Patty Scialfa, and they’ve been riding on the streets of a runaway American dream now for well nigh three decades.

****
Let’s pour some good news in the Coffee Cup!

–“Son donates part of his liver to Mom, jokes he’s off the hook for Mothers Day gifts”

–“Dog passed by for over 2,381 days at the shelter finally finds a Fur-ever home”

–“An 81-year-old woman says she has never been happier after meeting her 103-year-old mother for the first time”

–“Community surprises high school student on her own since age 14 with new car: ‘She has overcome a lot'”

–“Shaq buys 10 pairs of shoes for teen with big feet whose mom can’t afford sneakers”

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This morning I set my alarm for 15 minutes later than the last time we did this. And already it’s time to zoom! Have a great day in Rip City!!

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