Archive for December, 2007

Sauvie Island bridge move


Originally uploaded by dieselboi.

Wow, what a cool way to spend the morning. Yeah, it was cold and we were there about 2hrs too early waiting, but the end result was worth it. The crowd grew to about 50+ people including some ironworkers who had actually worked on the span. It began getting exciting when we looked up river to see if the span would clear the train bridge by University of Portland. It appeared to be a close fit, yet they made it through. And then we realized the barge was moving at a pretty good clip. It was no time until it was right there in front of us. Cameras were whizzing and clicking as the span cruised under the St. Johns bridge with ease.

Now I can say I watched it head down the river. If you still want to see it on the barge, it is probably already at Sauvie Island now, so head on down there and watch them install it.

More of my photos

Homeless Helper

Since we’re talking trash…

I live in a part of town where we have a special service provided by those who inhabit the lower rungs of the economic ladder. These latter-day rag-pickers cruise the neighborhood on trash-day eve, collecting returnable cans and bottles. Those that take care of our street are always courteous, clean, and quiet (as quiet as they can be with a shopping cart full of bottles).

Some of our neighbors are adamant that we shouldn’t leave returnables out with our recycling, but honestly, who wants to spend twenty minutes at the Fred Meyer automated redemption center for a buck fifty (if you’re lucky)?

Anyway, I was awakened at 1:45 this morning by somebody insistently ringing our bell and knocking on our door. It kind of freaked me out. I pulled back the blind to see a hulking figure in the dark on our porch. When he saw me, he immediately shouted through the window that a light was on in my car. Then he left, taking his shopping cart full of empties with him.

Sure enough, one of my car doors was slightly ajar, and the dome light was on. He probably saved me the hassle of jump starting my car this morning.

Ain’t that special?

Live blogging the Sauvie Island bridge move

We’re down here by the St. John’s bridge waiting for the Sauvie Island span to make its way downriver. The weather is cold and a little windy, but not rainy, so we and about 20 others are toughing it out The span still has a way to go before it gets to us, so if you want to come down, you still have time.

Blazer Fever: ABSOLUTELY Contagious

BLF, you ignorant slut! *

I have to confess that I haven’t always been a Blazer fan. I don’t know from Blazer Fever – I moved here 10 years ago, and haven’t seen any evidence of the phenomenon since then. In fact, I didn’t want to be a Blazer fan. But sometime last year, Roy and Aldridge and Pryzbilla and Rodriguez (I love me some Sergio) and even stone-faced Coach McMillan (who scares me, sometimes) got to me.

I started watching games on television. Started TiVo-ing games. Hell, I switched over to AM radio in my car in order to catch those games that weren’t televised. And I even coughed up money for nosebleed tickets (selling my soul to Ticketmaster, no less) to attend a game – something I swore I’d never do.

Sure, they lost a lot last year. But in between? You could tell there was something brewing there. And it was fun!

See, I started getting a glimpse of what Blazer Fever might look like last year, with the new, cleaned-up crew of enthusiastic kids we have playing for us. And even though we didn’t start out well this year, I saw even more glimmers and signs of eventual hope.

And now? Hell, YEAH – Blazer Fever is back, baby! (Even my Christmas Dinner companions – who aren’t normally basketball fans – said I should have blown them off to go to the game instead, fyi – and one wanted to come back to my house to watch the TiVo-ed game I had waiting for me instead!)

Geez, BLF. What’s next – telling kids Santa isn’t real? Shattering illusions about the Tooth Fairy? Must we lose all the magic from our dismal post-holiday lives? Who cares if it’s not like it ‘used to be back in the olden days’? Who cares if it’s here today, gone tomorrow? Who cares if it’s Too Soon?

See, I don’t want to be all cynical right now. I don’t want to be the cranky old curmudgeon (which is a nice change of pace for me as the resident PDX MB Old Fart, let me tell you.) I just want to BELIEVE! And I want you all to believe with me, please.

Is that so wrong?

And if you can’t – or won’t – take a hit of what I’m smoking? Do me a favor and just don’t harsh my mellow right now, dudette. Or I’ll really make you eat some crow next St. Patrick’s Day…

* Don’t get the reference? That must mean you’re either a young’un and/or never got to see SNL’s Weekend Update in the days when it was really worth watching…

Free Trimet Rides – New Year’s Eve

Seemed like an interesting guy

If you didn’t already know, here is a heads up. Trimet will be offering free rides on the Max, Streecar, and buses from 8:00pm until they stop running normally on New Year’s Eve.

The Max Blue and Yellow lines will run fareless until 3:00am! I wish they ran this late year round, but I guess that is what Radio Cab is for.

So drink all you like and ride home safe. Or take the inverse advice to stay off Trimet and avoid all the vomit and drunk kids. HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

Official Trimet Statement

Blazer Fever: NOT Contagious

So I keep hearing that since the Blazers are currently the holders of the hottest streak (it goes to 11!) in the NBA, and as a result of ONE streak in ONE season, Blazermania is back! Blazer Fever, catch it!


Don’t get me wrong, I love me a Blazer, and I always have. Eastern Oregon is not immune to either The Mania or The Fever, I assure you. In fact my dad (firmly ensconced in La Grande) is currently going a few rounds with his cable company who keeps saying they’ll show the games but keeps blacking them out. I had the complete set of Blazer glasses, I had a shirt, I knew who started and what position, I assure you it’s not like I’ve NEVER had The Fever.

But I’m supposed to get worked up all of a sudden? Am I the only one who remembers how bad last year was? I looked it up, we were 32-50 last year. Yeah, fifty losses. And this year we were 5-12 at one point. To sum up: Last year sucked and this year sucked until just recently. But I need to be all excited and all Blazer fangirl now?

Sorry, that’s not happening. Don’t think it can’t happen, it’s just that right now I have a “bad boyfriend” relationship with my team. That guy you dated who drank milk from the carton and left the seat up and did stupid things that made you mad. But he was so sorry afterwards. “You know I love you baby, don’t be mad…”

Well I want to love them again, I do. I want them to succeed, and I want to go back to the mindset of “Oh we’re SO in the playoffs, it’s just a question of how far we’ll go”, even when there are a LOT of good teams in the Western Conference. But right now is not the time. If they keep this up, expect a post from me right around St Patrick’s day about how unbelievable they are and what an amazing change I’ve seen between last year and this year, and how awesome it is that it all started with that streak late last year, and how I was SO wrong to have ever doubted them. Until this looks a bit more permanent I’m still calling shenanigans on all this Fever Mania goings-on.

Why Can’t They All Be Like PDX?

Just returned from a trip down to San Diego to visit the fam for Christmas (the fact that Christmas was a sunny day nearing 70 degrees can be either good or bad, depending on your weather perspective), and I wish every airport could be like PDX. The shuttles from the economy lot run regularly, the security line is rarely unbearable, and there is a ton of stuff to do while you wait for your flight. Me? I had a tasty breakfast at Gustav’s while perusing a book bought at Powell’s.

Contrast this to the wait in the San Diego airport (next to San Jose, possibly the worst airport I’ve ever been to). They had two security “terminals” open, and the line zig-zagged from the lobby out across the skybridge and into the parking lot. Good thing I got there two hours early for my flight, as it took nearly an hour to get through security. Once I was in the terminal, there wasn’t much to do. Breakfast options were limited to McDonald’s, and time-killing options were limited to a generic airport bar, or sitting in the crowded terminal. Fun, fun.

Any favorite airports out there? How about airport horror stories?

Sauvie Island Bridge span move – Friday

If you’re not doing anything Friday morning, come on down to Cathedral Park under the St. John’s Bridge to see the center span of the new Sauvie Island bridge head down river. The span was built in NW, just north of some of the new waterfront condos and has been put on a barge for the trip. One interesting item of note is that in order to save time during the final installation, they have jacked the span up already on the barge. That means, with the jacking and the span, it is 192 feet tall. The St. John’s bridge is just over 200ft tall, so it should be a tight fit.

This is reminiscent of when the Fremont Bridge span was floated down the Willamette and put into place. My parents took us down to watch that happen. I don’t have really clear memories as I was like 3 when it occurred, but there are photos somewhere in the family fun books.

Multnomah County is managing this and they say it should start the move around 7am and be up to Sauvie Island by 9am. Multnomah Channel will be closed for approximately 3 days during the move and installation. I’ll be there!

A photo of the span from Portland Transport.
The O’s coverage
Sauvie Island news

News out of Pakistan

At 13:16 PM GMT (5:16 AM Pacific), former Prime Minister of Pakistan Benazir Bhutto was killed during a suicide attack shortly after an election rally outside Islamabad. News reports are noting at least 15 others were killed as shots and an explosion were part of the attack.

Visit our friends at Metroblogging Lahore, Karachi, and Islamabad for local reaction and commentary.

Really Crazy Train

ozzykermit.jpgKPTV reports that a man calling himself Ozzy Osbourne pulled out a gun and threatened to shoot a convenience store clerk in the ‘Couv on Christmas Eve. Yet another example of eggnog-related crime. When will this seasonal scourge be put to a stop??

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