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Thursday, July 31, 2008

View From the Top

5:30am Pacific Daylight Time Today

The view from our living room facing east. Mt. Hood is one heck of an amazing reminder of the beauty of our home. Sorry the pic isn't the best ever. The damned screen was in the way.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

New Haircut

Well, it's the same one I get every three weeks or so...but I just knew you were all looking for some horribly entertaining reason to check out the site tonight. Just finished an amazing dinner at the Blue Olive in our neighborhood. Lovely and delicious Mediterranean food. Fantastic for the brother-in-law's 50th birthday! Happy Birthday BIL!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Duck and Cover -- The Closet Is a Dark Place to Be

Well well now. It's all become a little more clear. If you aren't "in the loop" in this here blogospheric atmocosmic world of ours, there is this little story that's recently come to light regarding Nicky Cooper formerly of Cooper's Corridor and, more recently, of Nico's Niche. Nicky lives in Prince George, British Columbia, is gay, 26 years old, and raising two adopted sons who needed a place to live. A good father, horribly caring person, and beautiful writer. I know that many of you already know this twisted story. We had emailed frequently and had planned on hooking up when he came to Portland to attend some sort of forestry conference late last October. He never called. So, when I found out that I could get to Prince George with relative ease, I thought it would be grand to make a trip up to see the boys and get to meet this amazing human being --full of caring and compassion. I emailed and ask him if he thought a visit would work out. No answer. The blog posts became fewer and fewer. The emails lessened. And then, the story broke. It is outlined in detail at Joe.My.God., the Farmboyz, and Sweet/Salty. You owe it to yourself to take a few minutes to read each of their stories.

Suffice it to say that it's a little weird. And sad. Along with disappointing, maddening, and even some anger. Bottom line, though, is sad for him. The lies, the cover up, the inability to be honest and truthful. But, before I point too many fingers, I'm afraid that we've all been there in one form or another at one time or another. Hopefully, we're still not. But, alas, some are. I have emailed him again. Here's some of what I shared: "I have no idea the real story. And, honestly, it's not of much interest to me. Whoever you are, whatever journey you're on, and wherever you end up, I wish you wellness and happiness. Take good care." And I mean that. Not only to him, but to each of you.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

White Bean Vegetable Summer Salad

We're on our way to a friend's home for a BBQ on their back patio. I've been instructed to bring a salad and have concocted this one. As is typical for me, the amounts of each item matter not. You're the artist. Make it your own.

Two cans butter beans, rinsed and drained.
Chopped: Radish, zucchini, cucumber, orange pepper, fresh parsley.
Char half of a chopped Walla Walla or other sweet onion on the grill. Toss onion into the mix. Add rice wine vinegar, a little sugar, seasoned salt, garlic powder, coarse-chopped fresh black pepper, tablespoon of olive oil, and a sprinkling of red chili flakes. Toss, chill, and enjoy. Along with chunk of heavy bakery bread and a chilled glass of Niagara. It's a veggie sort of guy's perfect salad. After all, it is summer....right?

Thursday, July 24, 2008

In the Park

I Think She's On to Something Here .....

Just look below at what my friend Java at My Life, Or Something Like It sent me. Don't tell her, but I think she's crazier than I am. And she obviously knows me and which part I play in this thing we call life. And she's possibly struck a gold mine on how to save this nation's ailing airline, and oil, crisis.

Dump the male flight attendants. No one wanted them in the first place.
Replace all the female flight attendants with good-looking strippers! What the hell -- They don't even serve food anymore, so what's the loss?
The strippers would at least triple the alcohol sales and get a 'party atmosphere' going in the cabin. And, of course, every businessman in this country would start flying again, hoping to see naked women.
Because of the tips, female flight attendants wouldn't need a salary, thus saving even more money. I suspect tips would be so good that we could charge the women for working the plane and have them kick back 20% of the tips, including lap dances and 'special services.'
Muslims would be afraid to get on the planes for fear of seeing naked women. Hijackings would come to a screeching halt, and the airline industry would see record revenues.

This is definitely a win-win situation if we handle it right -- a golden opportunity to turn a liability into an asset.

Why didn't Bush think of this? Why do I still have to do everything myself?


Bill Clinton

Sunday, July 20, 2008

We're In

We're in, folks. It's been one heck of a run here. Swamped with all of the typical things that moving brings. And Ikea has become our best friend -- well, plus the gift cards and coupons helped out. And the good Swedish coffee (did it ever occur to anyone that coffee isn't grown in Sweden??). So, I asked you how many boxes you thought it was going to take us to get all of our crap moved in. The answers ranged from 15-256. And of course there had to be the silly ones who just had to be creative -- Iron Fist guessed 69 (shameful, he is) and The Neighbors Will Hear just couldn't decide and guessed 38 3/4 which I'm still trying to figure out. The answer was 45 give or take a few. And these smarty pants bloggers came the closest: Dave2 at Blogography (42); DIT21 (47); and TJ at Being Normal (42). The place is beautiful. We've had furniture delivered, a new LG washer and dryer, waiting for curtains for the bedroom (until then we're gazing out on a full moon at night). And work is going to occupy six days a week starting tomorrow. I hope the little pooch will be okay in the new digs without us so soon after moving in. Our patio is nifty, facing East.....and we're going to enjoy our garden burgers out there this evening with cheddar cheese, avocado, romaine, and BBQ sauce. I think I'm going to toss some ears of corn on the grill too. But first, I'm on my way now to make blended, slushy cold gin and tonics. I'm missing out on all of your blogging right now but promise to be back later in the week. This is where I'd like to be polite and say "Come and visit us," but I won't. Because, first, I'm going to have to find a place for you to put down your sleeping bag.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

How Many Boxes??

So, today's the day....I pick up the keys and FOB (the little deal to get me in and out of the building) at 2pm from the building's developer and then get set to get the place cleaned up for tomorrow morning's move. So, exactly how many moving boxes does it take to move from a 2,200 square foot home on three levels to an 876 square foot condominium on one level? Tell me your answer in the comments. The winner will get a big old sloppy wet virtual kiss from me. Today is our last day in our home that we love so much. Our neighbors garnished our time here with coconut sorbet, white wine from Spain, and dark chocolate last night on the back patio. Sweet memories. Off to work now.....San Jose and back home by 11:00am. Gotta run.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Movers and Shakers

It's nearly here. The moving date, that is. Our house is full of boxes ready to be hauled away. The majority of the furniture has been sold. There is little left. The house ceased being ours as of last Friday afternoon. We signed on our new condominium Friday afternoon as well and it should record Wednesday. We'll get our keys on Thursday, the general move is early Friday morning, the piano movers will be here at noon on Friday, Comcast will be at the new place Friday afternoon to hook up our cable/Internet, the LG washer and dryer will be delivered Saturday, along with our new espresso leather furniture loveseat, recliner, and occasional chair. We're having our one and only closet in the new bedroom fixed up a little to add additional storage. Oh, and we've been invited to the Homeowner's Association meeting this Thursday evening. Dear god, it's been a long time coming and we're facing a busy week. Plus, I'm working -- Denver this afternoon, and San Jose both Wednesday and Thursday mornings. We keep saying to one another, "You know Daddy, we sure are mover and shakers." For those of you who have my personal home mailing address, I have a new one....email me and I'll send it to you.

So, to distract us a bit, we've been taking in as many of Portland's Free Concerts in the Parks series as possible. We've been doing this for years. Grab a sandwich from Subway and go....or use one of their many vendors in the parks for yummy summertime treats. And they let you take in alcohol for these concerts only. So, the dog goes with us, we camp out along with the rest of the Oregonians starved for summer sun and warm weather. It's a casual affair and always a bunch of fun. You'll find something every single night of the week during July and August and we make the rounds to all kinds of parks with different sorts of music. Wish you were all here to join us.

So, that's is....hot summertime, concerts, tons of errands loose ends to tie up, work continues, and a busy week ahead. We'll be living in 876 square feet before you know it. There will be no room for this tummy of mine or this one either.

Update: Oops, I almost forgot that this little beauty showed up in our yard yesterday morning.....an amazing color!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Shakespeare and His Wet Dreams in Utah

Just when I didn't think it could get any better, Pirate's Cove has gone and done it again....well they're getting ready to, at least. You see, this is a local dive bar -- been there forever sort of place. It's two blocks from our current house (we're out of here next Friday the 18th) and I've blogged a few times about such naughtiness as Panty Auctions and Polish Dogs, Boys and their Biscuits, and Lap Dances and Fruitcakes, and other twisted gimmicks they splay across their reader board on very busy Sandy Boulevard in Portland. And this week's sign reminds me of a warm summer night in Vernal, Utah, many many years in the distant past (thankfully). A friend from my church youth group and I had driven to his parent's home, about 650 miles from Boise to Vernal, Utah, to pick up a motorcycle and drive it back home....me on the back end of this motorbike. So, we arrive in Vernal, exchange pleasantries, enjoy dinner, and my buddy and I bed down for the night in his parent's living room on the sleeper sofa hide-a-bed. Now, believe me, nothing happened. But morning time arrives, the sun's first rays are splitting open the giant window in the living room where we are, and I see his mom in the kitchen preparing breakfast. Somewhere in the middle of this scenario, I feel a strange sensation....a sort of wetness and stickiness. And I know you know what I'm talking about so don't play innocent with me, dear readers. Yup, I'd been dreaming. Wet dreaming, apparently. And I'm in my most fancy of underwear -- bright shiny polyester orange briefs that wouldn't absorb a damned thing. I was soaked and so were the sheets. I remember laying there, and laying there, and laying there...contemplating, wondering, waiting for her to disappear. I remember wadding those things up and stuffing them in the very bottom of my overnight bag. So, I'm thinking that maybe I'll go audition up at the Pirate's Cove for a part in this summer's Shakespeare Festival. I wonder what part I could play? After all, I do have a little bit of experience.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Sizzlin' Summer Salad Trumps Domestic Partnerships

Before we migrate onward and upward to better things, my apologies for the fuzzy picture -- but that's what you get with pictures from Apple's iPhone (is there any mitigating truth to the fact that I'm still dragging my feet on this whole phone???). But, let's move on before I make any more enemies over this Apple deal ..... I've had a hankering for some summertime something or other off of the grill. Here's my concoction from last evening.....give it your own spin and you'll be off and running making new friends left and right, I guarantee it. Grilled chicken tenderloins smeared with your favorite BBQ sauce, olive oil, and garlic. At the same time, grill up some colored peppers and Walla Walla onions in a grill basket with olive oil and a little salt -- make sure they have those to-die-for grill marks. Chill all of it when you're done. Pile a large plate high with spinach or your favorite salad greens. Top with your chilled BBQ chicken, peppers and onions, cherry tomatoes, carrots, chopped apple, grapes, almonds, crispy bacon, blue cheese crumbles, and finish with fresh sliced avocado. You'll want to create your own dressing -- I'd suggest a salsa vinaigrette or (what I used) fat-free Ranch dressing with a tablespoon of salsa stirred in. (I know, you all thought I was strictly a veggie sort of guy......but not last night!). Seriously, this sucker rocked our palate but good. Man, it was awesome. And really easy. Now, on to bigger and better things -- Is it, like, that wrong to have BBQ Kettle Chips and Diet Vanilla Pepsi for lunch? I hope not.
Now, to ruin the above tantalizing taste treats with political news, here's what's happening right now -- as I write -- with the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals hearing Lemons versus Bradbury. Here's live blogging from Just Out of the outcome (scroll down in the blog until you find the Lemons v Bradbury stuff). Keep your fingers crossed, kids, that the court finds in our favor with this out-of-state hate group and their antics with Oregon's domestic partnership law.

Monday, July 07, 2008

What Is This Cloud Under Which I Layeth?

Right off the bat, I must tell you....I'm not a person prone to depression. I recall a bit of "that feeling" as a teenager for a short time perhaps related to sexuality struggles. But it has never been a part of my life and I'd never classify myself as being depressed. I generally operate with a positive attitude, generally happy, and really wouldn't know what depression felt like unless it hit me over the head -- which it may be trying to. My great friend at Idle Eyes and a Dormy posted last week about a cloud being over him. And it hit me. I have had those fleeting feelings off and on over the past two years or so. I haven't really been able to put them into words or identify them easily because I plain old am not familiar with them. But that's exactly it. Just a lack of zip or pep. No real energy for anything. Nothing kicks me up or makes me elated. It does come and go -- and doesn't linger for much more than a few hours or a day. And I know full well that "getting an upper" or "treating myself" to this or that is not the adult-like well balanced answer. I don't have suicidal feelings or anything like that. And it's not related to such things as the weather. In fact, I love the cloudy, rainy winter months. I have a job, good benefits, a car, a beautiful home, a fantastic partner, and lots of great friends. Truth is, I want for nothing. That's why it's so odd. There are just days that I'd rather not do anything....no movie, no dinner, no friends, no phone calls, no laundry, no nothing. Absolutely nothing turns me on during these times. I've even mentioned out loud that "I'd like to just pull a rock over my head today." Now, my friends, that's not like me at all. So, I don't really know. I have no answers. I can't really clearly evaluate the feelings. It's weird. But I've seen numerous of you blog about it from time to time. And I knew you'd understand.

Friday, July 04, 2008

Twizzling With Patriotism

Because I'm twizzling with patriotism today, I've decided to show off my red-white-and-blueness. My good friend at Whisper in the Void thought of me when he found this. And he should. I love it. Idaho's statehood day was yesterday. I remember sitting in nearly the top row at Boise State University's stadium on the night that Idaho celebrated its centennial in 1990. Fireworks, bands, and candles lit brightly as Lee Greenwood's God Bless the USA blared. The crowd went wild. And so do I with this little t-shirt. I do love my homestate -- so, please, spare me the "you shouldn't have" comments.

And on this holiday morning, I was wrought with angst over the passing of one of our nation's great forefathers. God fearing, white, Republican, stood for family values and morals, and -- now -- dead. Happy of Fourth July -- Celebrate it in Style, would you?