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Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Ronald and Me


Portland, Oregon

McDonald's Drive-Thru

NE 82nd and Burnside

10:29am

Picking up Cholesterol-Laden Goodies for In-Laws



ME: I'd like a Big Mac Meal with a Diet Coke, please.

Ronald: I'm sorry, sir, we don't serve lunch until 10:30am.
ME: Oh, great. It's 10:29am now, so I'll just wait here a minute.


A hair's breadth of time passes....a mere smattering of a wisp of seconds......
and then the speaker crackles to life once again...it's now 10:30.....


Ronald: Welcome to McDonald's, may I take your lunch order now, sir.
ME: I'd like a Big Mac Meal with a Diet Coke, please.
Ronald: That'll be $$$$$ at the first window, please.

I love it when Ronald calls me "Sir."


Sunday, January 27, 2008

Biscuits and Civil Unions...An Unlikely Union



I'd like mine with honey and butter, please. And maybe just a bit of raspberry freezer jam. The biscuits, that is. Of course it wouldn't be the female dancers at Pirate's Cove and I can't imagine that it would be the male bartenders. You'll recall that I've written about this neighborhood icon in past a time or two. I can't help but think that it'd be fantastic as a place for our neighbors to gather for coffee. But, instead, we've got a strip club complete with (apparently) the best biscuits in town. Oh, and one of their most recent claims to fame has something to do with Maxim Magazine. Their sign read "Thanks Maxim Magazine" for the last month or so. God only knows what that could possibly mean. But what I'm really waiting for is the scene where all of the boys come with their biscuits to the yard. Stay tuned.

Portland Residents: This Wednesday, January 30, will mark a giant planned vigil in front of the U.S. District Courthouse in downtown Portland. If you're in the area, be there or be square: Wednesday at 5:30pm at SW 3rd and Madison. Details are here from Basic Rights Oregon. This will serve as a time to unite, stand up, and be counted in anticipation of Judge Michael Mossman's decision on the state of Civil Unions in the state of Oregon. Mossman will render his decision next Friday, February 1. With New Mexico and even Salt Lake City joining the ranks of providing equal rights and benefits to their citizens, it is most definitely time for Oregon to jump into the year 2008 with a giant leap of equal rights for all. Come on, Mossman....do it right!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Baring It All...The History and Antics


Looking back, I do see a stream of latent tendencies of exhibitionism. Well, that, in addition to having the slightest edge of show-off in me. So, this Aussie friend and this Canadian friend have me thinking (something I try to do as little of as possible...it's highly overrated). Where, and when, did my enjoyment of being naked begin? It's only been in the last ten years that I've actually began really being comfortable with myself and my body. And only in that time that I've acquired a penchant for going to the nude beach (summer only, considering shrinkage concerns). My hubby and a friend took me to Rooster Rock in the summer of 1998. So, I really blame them for the creation of this enjoyment. And I wrote about it back in the spring. Since then, I've added Sauvie Island to my list of enjoyable places to spend summer afternoons. And I'm hoping to add Wreck Beach to the mix sometime soon. Before that time, I was a frightened, shy-to-be-naked guy. But introspection has gotten the best of me and I've tried to delve as far back into my childhood as I can to examine my moments of early indiscretions. One of the earliest was when we had a babysitter over when I was maybe 8-10 years old. Inevitably, they were young, cute, impressionable females. I thought it sort of fun if I turned off the electricity to the whole house at the main switch box, stripped down nude, turned the power back on after the screaming started, and then (the good part) I would come running out, jumping around naked. She'd cover her eyes and squeal like a pig. Not pretty. For her. But hilarious for me.


Another of my earliest times of impropriety was around age six with my school friend, Wes, in his mother's bathroom over in the poor people's trailer park. We'd strip, pee in front of each other, do a little touchy-feely, and that was it. Age ten brought me to the many nights I'd spend at my friend Mike's house. He wasn't shy at all, which I admired. So he would shower in front of me causing my young, influencable mind giant leaps of hormonal imbalance. And what about the men's room at Hillside Junior High where I lived to catch a glimpse of my school mates in action. Horrors! Or on church retreats trying to check out the developing bodys of my friends Joel or Randy. Things were Biblically heating up.



We had a large yard, about an acre, with a fenced-off area in the back. We'd play out there for hours. But when I was alone, I'd make sure no one was lookin and then drop my pants to my ankles, relieve myself out in the open, and think I was being ultra uber bad. Not long after, my mother tried to whip me with the nearest thing she could find which happened to be a full-sized 8-foot long 2x4 board. And boy did I need it! I had really been bad this time. I almost even am embarrassed to tell you (oh, who am I kidding..no I'm not). I had been caught with my trousers unzipped and trying to take a leak through a hole in the fence onto the back of my buddy. I don't recommend this antic until it's consensual. My mom nearly killed me swinging that board at my ass. But as soon as I started to develop, and puberty reared its ugly head, my brother found, and announced to all within earshot range, that he had seen a lone black hair under my left arm. That did it. From that moment on, I was in lock down mode. No one saw me with my clothes off. I was shy, closeted, and scared to be seen. And that horrible phase lasted a long, long time -- clear into adulthood. It was only after I had come out and began to discover who I really was that I began to develop my more healthy desire to be naked. I love the nude beach. The sun, the breeze, the friends and good times. And I really enjoy being alone there. The quietness of the river, sand, trees. It doesn't get much better. I still don't think that I'd want to take it all off for my parents, brother or sister today -- but it wouldn't' bother me as much as it'd bother them. I think the stigma has been removed. The scariness that someone would actually see me for who I am. Now, it just doesn't matter. It's a blast, a lot of freedom, to allow yourself to develop, in all areas, to a more secure adult than you were in the past. So, take it all off! I guarantee a whole new added dimension to your life.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Fantastic Food

Two easy, quick super cool and wicked food items for your table. Enjoy....as I did. Nearly orgasmic. I don't get too caught up in the measuring specifics. Make it your own...it's an ART, not a science.

Butternut Squash, Apple and Sunflower Seed Enchiladas

Chopped apple, chopped onion, sunflower seeds, chopped butternut squash sauteed until mostly soft (but not demolished) and rolled up inside corn tortillas. Top with an enchilada sauce (your own or canned)...but make sure you put in a couple tablespoons of peanut butter for an excellent taste. Top with jack cheese and bake at 350 until bubbly and hot. Serve with chopped green salad including slices of grapefruit and chopped avocado. Black beans go nicely too.

Grape, Avocado, Green Olive Salad

Halved grapes, chopped avocado, green olives, chopped red pepper, chopped carrots. Toss in a tablespoon or two of: Olive oil, orange juice, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar. Dash of red pepper flakes if you like. Super yummy!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Discrimination -- Is It Okay? I Mean, We All Do It.


Where is the line drawn when it comes to discrimination? I mean, is it a hard and fast line or is it more fluid and ethereal? Is it okay to possibly be discriminatory in one area of our lives while we are vehemently opposed to it in another? Now, don’t get me wrong. I believe that many of us are good, solid folks who are able to identify someone who is being discriminated against. And most of us claim to not like it when we see it happening …especially to us. But I’ve also been more aware lately that many of those among us are probably discriminatory in the back, dark, hidden closets of our minds -- yours truly included. You know exactly what I mean … the recesses that no one knows about, things we just could never verbalize. We justify it in our heads. And we dare not let it leak over into our hearts or we may be called upon to reconcile the head versus heart debate. Blatant, outright crimes against one group of people are not generally tolerated in the city where I live. We call for justice frequently here. But I’m painfully aware that not everyone sides with fairness on a regular basis. And I know that some would shout out “You don’t know what it’s like where I live -- in my family, in my part of the world” as a quick rebuttal in an attempt to justify less-than-pretty words, feelings or actions.



I grew up in a family where we were not allowed to “hate” anything. We couldn’t use that word. We could hold “strong dislike,” but not hate. As much as I’d like to think that my family circle was welcoming and accepting -- and I do, in general -- I know that my father would never have bought a Japanese-made car … “the war,” you know. And my step father frequently makes fun of other races with jokes at their expense. Or he’s happy that “the school is such a great one because it doesn’t have any spics in it.” It’s not pretty. And I do call him on it. Regularly. One day, I even threatened to turn the car around and drive him right back to the church service we had just piously sat through. And at the same time, he loves and accepts my partner and I to death. He really enjoys his time with us and would defend us to the end. And then, there are the passing comments from my ex brother-in-law that “No child of mine is going to speak any language except English.” Or even my close gay friends who I overheard say “Man, would you look at the size of that girl” and “I suppose it was an African-American who did that?” with added emphasis and inflection on the African-American part. Or what about yelling “Go Home!” to a woman from Rwanda when she struggles at a cash register to find her money because we harbor a growing intolerance and unfamiliarity with Rwandan customs and culture. And these prior words from a woman who is a good Democrat, liberal, has two gay sons, and a huge animal rights advocate. Another friend made mention of “Those Puerto Ricans” that he works with. Or the Jews. Or the fact that “there are always homeless people there.” And what about getting out of your car to go and tell a prostitute that she “should get a job like the rest of us and stop asking for money.” And even “White Trash” is tossed about with liberality. And dare I even bring up the less-than-amiable feelings among gays, myself included, toward “those right-wing nuts who hate us." (Now, that outta hit home.) I don’t know….maybe coming from, or being in, a group that continues to be discriminated against gives us the right to do it to others. Maybe we’re just trying to repay what’s been tossed in our own faces. Or possibly if we just joke about it, it suddenly makes it acceptable or at least takes the sting out of it.



Again, don’t misconstrue my intention here. I’ve long been a believer in accepting people for who they ARE, not necessarily for what they DO. I do not condone someone’s poor behavior or believe that it should ever be an excuse. Many times, I’m afraid that we let certain behaviors continue simply because “he’s just that way” or “it’s just how they were raised.”



I’m not sure, my friends. It seems to be nearly everywhere, in nearly every subset of our society, on some twisted sort of dark level. It has dug its way into the very fabric from which we are woven, individually and globally. It bridges divides of religion, nation, races, homes, portions of nations. And, no, I don’t believe it will ever truly end in its entirety. But I’m not so sure we should stop working toward it.



I’m not quite sure how to bring any sort of adequate conclusion to my thoughts. They are deep and varied. But, of course, if I actually had a proper conclusion, I could probably market it and end the world’s hatred…right? I’ve had the stone thrown at me and, sadly, I’ve also been the one throwing the first stone. I guess it’s a work in progress. Progress being the key word there. Bit by bit. One less comment and bad thought at a time. I only know that I don’t want to end up at the same place at the end of my life that I started.

Scratch 'n Sniff

Smell is such a strong sense of our perception. It can be remembered in the nostril-tied-to-the-brain of our lives forever. Some of my favorites:



  1. Summer Mornings when the dew is drying up from the night.
  2. Candles...Our house doesn't exist without numerous blips of light.

  3. Excellent Food...on the grill wafting across the backyard or in the oven....garlic, bread, cinnamon, onions, peppers. Yum.

  4. Au Natural of a Sexy Man....the unadorned, natural scent of a man is hot. Sweat, plenty of locker room tossed into the mix, a damp t-shirt, plus that natural smell of his body. Less deodorant, less cologne. Woah now, big boy.

  5. Fresh Cut Grass/Hay/Alfalfa in the fields. GGGaaaahhhhhh!

  6. Warm, soft, tender neck of my man....anytime....he smells delicious.

  7. Fresh Laundry straight out of the dryer. Growing up, it used to be off of the clothesline.

  8. Fresh Mint and Fresh Onions still laying in the field in the summer time with a motorcycle between your legs.

Your Eternal Favorites???



Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Music to My Ears

This is a little bit like Jeopardy so let me give you the answers first:

1. Trains....especially in the night, with the window open.
2. Cars passing on a lonely highway...at night when I'm in bed listening.
3. The most awesome of orchestras or symphonys.
4. Wind...the sound it makes rushing through tall pine trees.
5. Geese as they pass overhead in the cold winter sky.

The question? What are my favorite sounds. Yours?

Monday, January 14, 2008

What's Your Name ??


So, just out of curiosity, what is your name? No, silly...not your real name. Your play name. Your naughty name. The names that your lover, partner, friends, or family call you when no one else is around (well, sometimes they slip up and use it in public...and it probably embarrasses or irritates you a little). I'm a little embarrassed (listen to me...haha..I used the word embarrassed....as if I'm ever embarrassed!)...to admit it, but we've settled into a nice variety of silly, dumb, crazy words or phrases for each other. Some happened naturally, without trying. Others are created clearly with a purpose in mind. So, here goes.....minus the giggling and snickering, please (and remember, this doesn't go anywhere except right here...just between us kids, okay???):


Papa, daddy, squash blossom, pumpkin, pookie, sweet pea, pooh bear, lover, sassy, handsome boy, pretty boy.

And I'm sure there are few more that I'll remember after I hit "post."


And yours? Come on, don't be shy. I'm not.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Majadra and Other Frivolity

My friend Will at DesignerBlog and his sporty husband Fritz had me to their home in New Hampshire a while back. Fritz fixed a simple, but truly delicious, meal for me. I loved it so much that I'm reprinting it here for you:

Majadra

1 cup uncooked lentils
½ cup uncooked brown rice
I large chopped onion
½ cup olive oil
½ to I teaspoon ground cumin to taste
¼ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
Salt to taste
4 cups water

Boil lentils in the water for 25 minutes over medium heat. Do not drain. Sauté the chopped onion in the olive oil with the cumin, salt and pepper. Combine onion and rice with the lentils (for variety, add raisins, sultanas, chopped walnuts, almonds, and/or chopped dried apricots—use your imagination). Cover and cook over low heat for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

I found numerous recipes for Majadra on the internet...one of which called for a little paprika.....so mine received a half teaspoon of paprika if you like. I served it alongside halves of acorn squash baked in the oven with a little butter and maple syrup added ten minutes before they're done. The plate also looked rather dashing with quick-sauteed red pepper strips and sliced zucchini. Absolutely easy and delicious. Thanks, boys, for turning me on to this hot, sexy dish!

Updates on Other Comings and Goings

My sister is incarcerated and will be there until April sometime. She is doing well and seems as relaxed and "at home" as one can be living in a cell block with 62 women (two showers)....sounds kind'a kinky if you ask me. She's got one hell of a long road ahead of her. In some ways, this is the easy part. The good thoughts, prayers, and energy of you...my friends....has been the key here.

If you're in Portland, or near Portland, or want to be in Portland on January 30, we'll make it happen for you.....it's the March in front of our US District Courthouse in protest of the temporary restraining order placed on issuing civil union certificates in the state of Oregon. Check out this link and make your plans to bring ALL of your friends and join us.

We're all of a twitter about a possible upcoming trip to an unknown destination. We've found quite a bargain basement price on Lufthansa (does that give you a hint??). The price expires this coming week. If you're thinking about spending any time in Europe this winter, this is the week to book it....hit me up for details and I'll point you in the right erection....er, a.....direction.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Mind The Gap


"Mind the Gap! -- Mind the Gap!" If you've been to London, you know exactly what adage I'm referring to. In London's Underground tube system, there are spaces (gaps) in between the platforms that you stand on while waiting and the cars of the trains that you step into. Some gaps are far wider than others due to different train widths. And so, the proverbial message from the overhead loudspeaker system, "Mind the Gap!" There are t-shirts, ball caps, and coffee mugs sporting the message.

Just a smattering of a few days ago in Orlando, I was at The Gay Mecca with Sorted. Cute boys everywhere sporting the latest trendy jeans showing their tummys and tight t-shirts prompting their hairless pecs to pop out. We had bantered back and forth about my shopping mantra: That I never buy anything at full price...it's always on sale and, most of the time, on clearance. Plus, I don't actually need anything...at this point in my life, it's definitely wants. Beyond that, I don't shop at expensive name-brand stores like Bloomingdales, Macy's, and Saks. I'm much more of a Target sort of guy with an Outlet Mall Mentality. So, we had just been in and out of a Lacoste shop where Sorted's friend works. I'd looked at a Tuque that was on sale for $41. You know me and my collection of tuques. But there was absolutely no way I was going to pay $41 for this hot one...my entire collection didn't cost that much. So, we move on. To the Gap and that's where things got a little more interesting.

We entered Gap Store #07036 at The Mall at Millenia in Orlando on Conroy Road. And the first thing you know I've tossed a hot little gray and black stripe pullover on my arm and have found a pair of black jeans that hugged my baby ass nice and proper (in spite of the extra five pounds,that's gotta go bye-bye, around my mid-section). Total = $36 and I'm feeling happy. My cashier's name tag says "Ryan." Here's how things played out:

Ryan: Would you like to apply for a Gap credit card today?

Me: No, thank you.
Ryan: Are you familiar with Old Navy Stores and blah blah blah stores?

Me: Yes.

Ryan: Do you shop there?

Me: Sometimes.
Ryan: Do you know that you can use this credit card at those stores too?

Me: No, thank you.

Ryan: Are you sure? It would save you 15% today.

Me: Would you mind just finishing up my transaction, please.

Ryan: I'm just required to ask.

Me: And if you ask one more time, I'm going to ask you to refund this entire purchase. When a customer says "no, thanks," it should mean exactly that.

Ryan: Not in this store. We're required to ask through the entire transaction.

So, he finished up the transaction, places the clothes in the bag and hands me my receipt. Oh, and just one more thing......
Ryan: Are you sure that I can't just place an application for the card in your bag to take home and look at?

Me: I'd like you to refund the entire transaction, please. You've now turned a pleasant experience into an unpleasant one. And you're now losing my sale.

I spoke to the store manager who, while concurring with me completely, agreed that their training does ask for what Ryan was doing. She apparently has mentioned this to their uppity-ups and they don't care. She encouraged me to write in -- which I am doing by way of an email with a link to this particular post in it. I'm not sure I'll go back into a Gap store to repeat a bad experience. No should mean no. Don't forget to Mind The Gap. I will be.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

I Don't Think I'm American


I don't think I'm American. (Well, there are days I wish I weren't, but that's a whole other bottle of wine.) In spite of the hoards of you who couldn't live a day without them, I absolutely cannot stand ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, or relish....amongs other things. Don't like 'em. Never have. Can't see that it'll change anytime soon. I've thought about it. Long and hard (bad boys, get outta the gutter). I guess it's the vingear deal. I'm not big on anything vinegary...gotta have sugar and spices to break it up. Also don't get off on (again, out of the gutter) salad dressing (using it is a relatively new thing for me)...and never the creamy mayonnaisey (Scrabble word??) kind. Caesar? Never. Yup, I'm picky. Don't like meat (for the third, and final, time...eek yourselves out of the gutter) either. I have to have at least two items at my meals...one crunchy, like chips or veggies or salad. I could never eat a sandwich all by itself...it has to have a "go with." And I don't do well with separate courses either. I like to have my soup, salad, main entree, and assorted side components all together in front of me at the same time. Restaurants hate this, by the way....they're always trying to slip the salad out from in front of me so they can bring out the big guns....but I hold on to it tight and wait for the main course to arrive first.


So, I've decided that I'm just not an American. I don't like hot dogs with mustard or relish, hamburgers with ketchup, or sandwiches with mayonnaise. (Have you ever tried to order things without mayo, by the way? It's next to impossible for a restaurant to get it right....it's just plain old automatic in most kitchens to slap that disgusting white cream (I told you before....it was my last gutter warning) on everything. I just send it back. And wait.) I like it dry. Just plain. Well, I do like teriyaki and bar-b-que sauce. Does that count?


Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Orlando



I'm afraid it's happened again. Hot Boy #1 and Hot Boy #2, plus their hunky husbands, allowed me to grace their presence (that doesn't sound quite right, does it?) at dinner in Orlando tonight. Plus, I got to speak on the phone with this sexy guy that I've never spoken with before. Good times! Pics are here. We missed all of you that weren't there! Oh, and there was this one hot guy standing outside my hotel room this afternoon. Thanks for helping make Orlando my home away from home. You guys rock!

Monday, January 07, 2008

Weenie Measuring 101


The footsteps grew louder. Far too loud for our comfort level. Things had begun to get pretty hot and heavy but, suddenly, we were scrambling. Faster than Larry Craig to get his weenie back into his pants, we were too. All of our little, pale, shrunken-up junior high age weenies. We had started out the Friday night by spending the night at our friend Scott's house. His father was a retired Lieutenant Colonel in the Air Force. On the golf course. In the very nice section of town where I did not live. Plus, a leader in our church that we all attended -- and good friends of my parents. This wasn't going to be pretty if we were caught. Our other friend, Bill, and I were there. We were going to watch movies and have pizza inside and then all of us were going to sleep out in their camper trailer parked in the driveway in front of their house. They took it camping every summer at Redfish Lake near Stanley, Idaho (which is where I'd had my first same-sex experience with this same friend, Scott). So, we ended up in the trailer late at night, in the dark, each of us in our own sleeping bags in different locations in the trailer. And you know how the conversation went...in the dark, pretending to try and be asleep but oh so excited to be having a sleepover. And even more excited to know that there was more than just our own little privates to play with! I remember laying there awake, staring into the blackness, and wondering what the other two were doing. Now, remember, Scott and I had already fooled around. And I'd slept in the same bed as Bill once at his house -- my god, I didn't sleep a wink that entire night. So, this night, in the 21-foot trailer, the tape measure made its way out of the tool box. Along with an old plastic EverReady flashlight. And that led to us measuring our dicks. Just to see who, exactly, was the longest. Funny thing is that I don't remember the measurements at all (but I'm just positive sure that I was the largest). And that's when the footsteps came in. Louder and louder. The flashlight off, the tape measure hidden in the bottom of a sleeping bag, and each of our hearts racing violently as we bolted back to our allotted positions. A knock at the door: "Boys?" We were silent. "Is everything alright in there?" The door opened and Scott's father came in. "What's going on in here, anyway? Why don't you all come into the house for a minute," he suggested (well, it was more of an order coming from the military mouth of the lieutenant colonel). So, we padded along the sidewalk in our jammies and into the kitchen. His mom and dad were both there. And we had the "I know you're teenagers and that trying new things is what you were doing and you shouldn't be because Jesus said not to and don't ever do it again" speech. The rest of the night was quiet. We never spoke to each other of it again. Scott continued being my church-going-bed-partner-on-the-weekends-and-in-the-backseat friend up until our senior year in high school. When he returned my high school graduation gift back to me in the mail. "No thanks," was the message. And we haven't spoken since....even though I used to see him in the Fruitloop in Julia Davis Park in Boise cruising, like I was, for men. As for very handsome Bill....I'm not sure. So, to all of your tape measuring mongers out there, I caution you....be sure the door is locked and bolted. Tight.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

In Case You Had Any Doubts as to My Sexual Orientation






In case there was any doubt left in the cobwebbed corners of your minds as to my sexual orientation, it should be all made quite clear -- extremely clear -- after the above -- our shopping list at Target today. As for the athletic tape, don't even ask. I think you'll get the rest of it....well, most of you will, anyway.
Portland's GLBT newspaper Just Out has just published an article on queer bloggers in Portland. I was supposed to have been included but scheduling conflicts kept me from providing an interview.
Tuesday will find me in Orlando once again. Cavorting with this guy and this guy, and maybe this one. They are awesome guys, if not a little, shall we say, nutty. If you're in Orlando and would like to have dinner with us, let me know.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Well, What'd Ya Know

Check it out. I guess I'm in the top couple of blogging markets in the US....along with those of you in Austin, Seattle, and the SF Bay Area. Hip, hip horray to all of us bloggers!

Letter Writing Campaign.....Civil Unions Legislation

I am asking you to mount a widespread letter writing, phone calling, FAXing and emailing campaign to all of the following contacts. I am asking you to pass all of this information along to all of your email contacts, blogging contacts, and family and friends. Please, reproduce this information, post it, blog it, email it...anything! Anyone who is concerned for fairness in our state is welcomed to participate. I ask you to be polite, professional, and abstain from profanity or rudeness. Please, start today! Time is of the essence. I realize that it will take a little bit of your time and effort to get this accomplished. The results may very well be unmeasurable. All of these people need to know that their actions are not welcomed and we do not believe in inequality in Oregon nor anywhere else.

Suggested Text:
Dear ____________:
I am writing/calling to let you know that I disagree with your position on civil unions legislation in the state of Oregon. I believe in basic human rights for all people. I am asking you to consider the adverse effect that your decision/organization may have on children and families in the state of Oregon. I believe in fairness for all people and am asking you to carefully consider your position on House Bill 2007. Thank you for your attention.

Concerned Oregonians
15685 SW 116th Avenue
PMB 299
King City, OR 97224
888-303-1304
info@concernedoregonians.com

Chief Petitioner Janice Bentson
6495 Windsor Is. Rd North
Keizer, OR 97303

David Crowe
Executive Director
Restore America
P.O. Box 2225
Lake Oswego, Oregon 97035
503.639.7298
503.639.2579 Fax
david@restoreamerica.org
http://www.restoreamerica.org/

Oregon Family Council
PO Box 13367
Portland, Oregon 97213

Defense of Marriage Coalition
PO Box 30536
Portland, Oregon 97294
Office: 503-257-0444
Fax: 503-257-4834
info@oregonfamilycouncil.org

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

"Synchronize Watches for Operation Portland, Oregon"

Do you remember the line from the movie White Christmas on the Ed Harrison show when Bob Wallace (Bing Crosby) was inviting all of the former military servicemen to come up to the Columbia Inn in Pine Tree Vermont? His quote on the show was: "The objective is Pine Tree, Vermont --- Synchronize watches for Operation Waverly..."

And I'm calling on each of you to synchronize your watches for Operation Portland, Oregon, to be held here in Portland on Wednesday, January 30, at 5:30pm. This will be a huge gathering in front of the federal courthouse in downtown Portland in a last-ditch effort to thwart the efforts of Judge Mosman in deterring domestic partnerships from becoming law in Oregon. I'm not sure exactly how this whole thing will come together, but it will. If you're actually able to be here in person, all the better. If it's a financial donation, great. If it's simply in spirit, very good. But I am asking you to get involved somehow in this most basic of fights for bottom line human rights.

We have just returned home from a candle lite vigil at The Q Center in downtown Portland. We were supposed to be celebrating this evening -- the state of Oregon was to have been issuing domestic partnership certificates starting this morning. But a federal court judge has placed a hold on the issuance of those very basic of rights certificates. His decision is due on Thursday, February 1, in court in Portland. The day that I'm asking for your help is the afternoon before. I'll be back with you with additional details. You'll find lots of links below to further your reading on this essential issue. The basic rights of the citizens of our nation must no longer be ignored. We're talking about civil rights, not anything special or unusual. Simply those that are afforded others already. At the vigil tonight, there were in attendance congress men and women, city commissioners, Portland City Mayor Tom Potter, former Governor Barbara Roberts, and a long list of others. They are fired up and have had it. And they ask all of us to invite every single person we know to be present here in Portland in front of the courthouse on January 30. I hope you'll give it some thought.

In the meantime, check out these sites for the complete story on this horrible issue:

Basic Rights Oregon
Gay Rights Watch
Contribute to Basic Rights Oregon Legal Defense Fund
Portland Mercury Blog

I Want to Get Fresh With You


I want to get fresh with you. Are any of you old enough to remember that phrase? "I got fresh with him/her." Didn't think so. Today is the day after. The day after the holiday season. The day to sort of regroup, refresh, reenergize. And get fresh, too. Freshen up. Fresh starts. Fresh attitudes. Not that it shouldn't happen every single morning -- but today, for some reason, makes it a little easier to point ourselves in that fresh direction. After our New Year's Open House yesterday, we settled into fresh, clean sheets on our bed. I had jumped out of bed at 6am yesterday morning and ripped the sheets off of the bed in order to git 'em all scrubbed up. Honey asked me what in the world I was doing laundry for at 6am on New Year's Day (a horribly valid question). I just knew that the sheets needed to be washed and that I am in love with climbing into clean ones at the end of a long day. Or a long year, for that matter. And, thus, the washing ceremony.

It worked. The smell, the snuggliness (yes, Virginia, that is a word....I think...at least in my Scrabble world, it is). The year closed itself out with good friends and conversation yesterday during our open house. After the friends had left, and the house had quieted, we climbed the stairs to our freshly made bed. Complete with how this year had better go.....in a fresh direction with a fresh, new, happier-than-hell me. Wanna go down the fresh trail with me? Who knows, I may get fresh with you.
Today was the day that Civil Union certificates were supposed to begin to be issued in the state of Oregon...in fact, at the exact hour. But, our good (Mormon judge appointed by G.W. Bush) friend decided that we were not worthy of having those same equalities extended to us. And that children of same-sex couples weren't worthy of insurance benefits and a properly documented union for their parents. It's not pretty. So, tonight is a candelite vigil in Portland and here are the details if you're in the area:

Wednesday, January 2
5:30pm
The Q Center
69 SE Taylor at Water
Cental Eastside Portland (near City Liquidators)