Friday, July 19, 2019

Good morning to all Dripsters…and to our silent partners as well! Today’s Friday, July 19, 2019, and here’s some summer! It’ll be sunny and 75 in Portland today, but then 85 tomorrow and Sunday. And a little cooler at night, and decidedly less humid. Sunrise 5:40 AM, sunset 8:53 PM. It’s day 200 of 2019!

I know we have Drip folks embedded around the USA–some on vacation, some homesick expats–and I hope everyone can find comfort and relief this weekend from the various high-heat warnings in effect from the Plains to the East Coast.

Glad to say the PNW won’t go anywhere near the triple-digit broilery back east, but the upcoming warm spell has caused TVF&R to enact a burn ban throughout its coverage area of Washington, Multnomah, Clackamas and Yamhill counties. Small fire pits and grills are OK as long as you have your safety senses about you.

In a case of nice timing, Clark County Public Health has lifted the swim ban and beach closure at Vancouver Lake after E.coli bacterial levels dropped. Not only that, but they’ve downgraded the algae advisory at the lake from a warning to caution. So it’s ok to swim, but tell all your people and pets to stay clear of “blue-green-colored floating scum.” Words to live by.

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A local high school student is deeply sorry that he was caught on security cam snatching one of those equality signs from the front yard of a home, and taking down their rainbow flag. He was wearing a Milwaukie football shirt, and in a statement sent by his Mom to OregonLive, he says “I’m extremely sorry for the damages done to their home. The incident was done out of pure ignorance and looking on it now, is the worst decision I have made in my entire life. I didn’t do it out of hate; I made a choice that was irrational and dumb. I don’t represent anyone but myself. I have let down my school, my family, and my teammates. This is not who I am and it is not how I should act.” He’ll face “restorative justice” at school. (Including extra laps when practice begins one month from today, I bet).

A sign of the times we’re living through…the Multnomah County Sheriffs Office has seen the need to remind the community that “MCSO does not enforce federal immigration law nor do we have authority in deportation…In this current political climate, we recognize that people in these communities may feel fear and distrust toward law enforcement officers.”

Another sign: House Chaplain Pat Conroy’s opening prayer yesterday sounded he’d heard enough bile to make one’s head spin: “This has been a difficult and contentious week in which darker spirits seem to have been at play in the people’s house. In Your most holy name, I now cast out all spirits of darkness from this chamber, spirits not from You.” Amen.

A Catholic nun was led with her wrists tied out of Russell Senate Office Building after she was arrested by Capitol Police for protesting what’s happening at the southern border.

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A wild nighttime chase in the coast range of Lincoln County reached speeds above 100 MPH, with a fleeing BMW veering into oncoming lanes attempting to elude a traffic stop, causing other cars to take evasive action. The car stopped when its tires were flatted with “Stop Sticks.” Glad to say nobody was hurt, and that the 30-year-old driver was cuffed and booked. One wonders what sort of traffic infraction warranted that degree of danger to the public.

Portland is the #1 city in America for millennials to move to, according to a study by a life insurance company. We’re followed by Seattle, Denver, San Francisco, and Austin.

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The Portland Timbers fought Orlando to a 1-1 tie last night, while the Portland Thorns visit Utah tonight–and both sides will have World Cup winners suited up and ready to rumble!

Exciting news for college football fans, as ESPN announced that its showcase Game Day will throw a spotlight on the season-opening matchup between Oregon and Auburn on August 31. It’s likely to be a top-fifteen showdown, at 4:30 PM PDT, prime time back East, on ABC-TV’s Saturday Night Football.

I know you’ll add the weekend events and celebrations I’ve missed, and thank you…It’s the weekend of the Cathedral Park Jazz Festival, and the Robin Hood Festival in Sherwood, and tomorrow is time for the Highland Games at Mt. Hood Community College, with competitions in Piping, Drumming, Dancing, Fiddle, Heavy Athletics, and the Kilted Mile. And all the bagpipery you can handle!

Well, this is sad…the Vancouver Wine and Jazz Festival won’t be happening this year. The founder and artistic director has been ill, and while he recovers, they’ll take a pause for 2019 and come back strong next year.

The band Chicago is one of the greatest of all time, in my humblest opinion, and they’re at the Oregon Zoo Sunday night. It’s been sold out for months. With three of the original members and other virtuosos on every instrument, their long and rich setlist includes their great early hits like “Feeling Stronger Every Day” and “Saturday in the Park,” and “Beginnings” along with their softer ballads from the 80s. And they’ve been doing the tasty “Dialogue (Part I & II),” though I wonder if they’ve updated the lyrics from their original college-age exchange between the socially aware part sung by the late Terry Kath…

“When it’s time to function
As a feeling human being, will your
Bachelor of Arts help you get by?”
and the stoner student, played by the no-longer-with-the-band Peter Cetera:
“I hope to study further,
A few more years or so. I also hope
To keep a steady high!”
The song’s writer, Robert Lamm, is one of the original lifers in the band, and he’ll be here, so we’ll see!

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Some interesting and unusual items in the Coffee Cup...

–“You don’t need to be a Boy Scout to do a good deed”

–“Amazon Accidentally Sold $13,000+ Camera Gear for $100 on Prime Day”

–“Nursing home residents slip and slide to feel young again, cool off from the heat”

–“Study debunks bystander effect – people really do pitch in to help!”

–“Guinea pig to become father to 400 after breaking into female holding pen”

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The moon doesn’t rise this weekend until long after 11 PM, so most of us won’t be gazing at the eerie bone-white blob tomorrow night while recalling the feeling fifty years ago when Neil Armstrong hopped down from the Eagle and radioed those initially inscrutable words. But there will be star parties and lunar viewing for the late, late crowd at Rooster Rock State Park in the Gorge, and Stub Stewart State Park in the Coast Range, with telescopes and expertise provided by the Rose City Astronomers and Vancouver Sidewalk Astronomers.

Do you have a moon landing story? I was a young teenager posing as someone older to work at the controls of Denver’s all-news radio station KBTR when that happened, and I remember the heart-pounding minutes leading up to the first step, the extended periods of staticky dead air, the puzzlement at the Armstrong utterance, and the words of an ultraconservative newsroom boss who was furious that he didn’t say, “Yay America! I claim this (obscenity) moon for the Red, White, and Blue!” I remember feeling relief that we’d finally whipped the Russians in the space race, and wonder-worrying about what might come next in terms of development on the heavenly body. Turns out that what came next wasn’t much at all, no laboratories or permanent base, and that the flag they planted fell over in the blast from the return rocket. Plus, the red, white, and blue of that flag has long been blanched by half a century of relentless 280-degree-Fahrenheit sun, and is now just an empty white. It needs a renewal. We need a renewal!

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