Archive for July, 2008

Introducing The Hub

hub.metblogs

If Metblogs is a city, hub.metblogs is the playground. We kept hearing from people that one of their favorite parts of Metblogs was meeting and interacting with readers and writers from other parts of the world, as well as getting requests for more ways that readers could be involved besides just posting comments. We thought about this for a while and decided that with a network like this, a giant community area where folks from all over the world could hang out, post photos and videos, talk with each other, form groups, play games, send messages, and do about a million other things was probably a pretty fun idea. The Hub is that.

If you have any tech ideas or suggestions join this group and speak up. See you on hub.metblogs!

Portland is a top-walker, but you still can’t take your beer with you…

I’m back! From a hopefully short-lived extremely busy time at both work and home and everywhere in between. And yes, I have some new exciting information for you. This will likely not be a surprise to most anyone, but Portland has come in as number 10 on Walk Score’s top 10 most walkable cities, with the Pearl, Old Town/Chinatown, and Downtown all being our most walkable neighborhoods. Looking through the other cities, all of the “most walkable neighborhoods” are in downtown areas, which seems to be a “well, duh,” statement to me, since, well… duh. Of course the more urban areas tend to be more “walkable” with the increase in amenities in a small area. Anyhow, iff you haven’t checked out your neighborhood’s Walk Score, fill in your address and compare against your friends’ neighborhoods. My own Center comes in with a score of 80 (with my more immediate area coming in with a 71/100 – very walkable, though for some reason the map does not see some amenities near my place, like the QFC on Burnside, but denotes some businesses incorrectly, like Commercial Refrigeration on Glisan as a restaurant). And in fact, I do tend to walk to a number of places in my ‘hood often. This is a fantastic tool for checking out other possible neighborhoods for relocation (also points out how many bars there are, whether that’s a good or bad thing is up to you).

Speaking of bars, the boyfriend and I will be hitting up the Brewers’ Fest tomorrow at opening time. As these type of things tend to grow exponentially each year, I’m excited about trying all of the tasty wares, but I’m not too excited about the possible hours of waiting in line. If things look too bad, we may just head to Belmont Station to attend the tapping there of some kegs not featured at the OBF. Have I mentioned that I’ve been here now a year? My Portlandversary was on 7/15, and I can’t think of another place (within reason) I would rather be. ^_^

More Prids info.

According to The Prids’ myspace page, here’s the latest posted on there:

“Our dear friends The Prids – David, Mistina, Joey and Maile – and two of their significant others – Kristin and Chris – were in a serious accident early Sunday evening while en route to Los Angeles on tour. A tire blew and they lost control of the van and it rolled several times. David was airlifted from the scene of the crash, he suffered a broken collar bone, broken ribs and has 6 staples in his head. Chris broke his arm and may have spinal injuries. Maile has a broken vertebra and toe and a severe cut with stitches on her knee. Joey broke ribs, Mistina suffered a concussion, and Kristin is in similar shape.

As of late that night, everyone had been released from the hospital but David had to go back in the middle of the night and was released Monday afternoon. Maile had to return to the emergency room Tuesday afternoon but was released later that day. She will be staying in Fresno for a short time then flying home. Friends of the band, Marshal and Kiisu, drove down from Portland and will be driving the rest of the band home today.

A special paypal account has been set up to help out and donate directly to The Prids. There have been so many generous donations made already as well as fundraisers organized and the band is extremely thankful! However, help with mounting expenses is still badly needed. There are still thousands of dollars in hospital bills to help cover (most of the group doesn’t have health insurance!) If you can’t help out monetarily, please repost this info on your blogs, etc. Thanks! ”

Also, I’ve been informed by several people (Divebarwife included) that there will be a benefit this Sunday at one our fast becoming favorite little places to hang, Plan B, for The Prids.

More on that here

High school football NIMBYS?

In general I am not a sports fan – I can have fun at a game or out with friends at a bar or a Super Bowl party, but not really because of the game, I’m there for the social aspect. I went to every one of my high school and college football games – because football is a vehicle for the halftime show – and once the band was dismissed after the 3rd quarter, we left. And because I think it’s the most boring of all the popular team sports, the obsession that people have with football, really drives me crazy.

All that being said however – these Lake Oswego neighbors are just plain mean. They live next door to a high school and they’re freaking out about football games and teenagers being in the neighborhood? Seven times. Less than 2% of all the days in a year. These cranky snobs think that a bunch of high school kids having fun at a football game is going to “permanently damage the livability… of the neighborhood.”

Wow. What a bunch of a-holes.

Meetup Tonight at Plan B

Don’t forget – well be drinking tasty beverages and having a good time socializing tonight at Plan B on SE 8th & Main.

Come on by anytime after 5pm – we’ll snag a table on the patio and save a spot for you!!

The Prids

One of the few people I’ve met in my old visits (you know, before I moved here) to Portland was Mistina, the bassist for The Prids. She was kind and friendly and she drank with me, which is always a sign of a good friend to be, no?

Well today I have to sadly report that The Prids, whilst on tour in California near Fresno, were in an accident that was really quite bad. The van, I was told, blew a tire and they lost control of it. The van went off the highway and rolled several times leaving the van wrecked, the equipment broken and the band members rather beat up. One band member, when last I was given information, was still in the hospital, but the others were released after being treated for various broken bones, cuts and bruises. Unfortunately, they are left with little to no money to get them home, pay hospital bills and buy new equipment, not to mention a van.

A couple of close friends of theirs rented a van to drive down to see what they could help possibly salvage and to see what help they could be. Any help would do and if you’d like to donate to the local band you can contact donate@theprids.com.

Channel 12 ran a small story on it here

Sour Beers – Who Knew!?

So the International Brewfest this past weekend was again a great success. I have a feeling they may soon outgrow that location if the popularity continues to increase the way it seems to.

I discovered a new favorite style of beer though – something I’d seen in bottles at John’s Market or Belmont Station, but had never tried. Sour beers. They are fantastic! Not at all hoppy, quite dry, and yes – a bit sour or tart. There were several on tap at the PIB including my two favorites – Cuvee du Jongleur from Cascade Brewing – part of Raccoon Lodge, and surprisingly, La Folie from the usually passable but not extraordinary, New Belgium.

There was an ad in the program guide about a ‘Pucker Fest’ at Belmont Station – and I see that there are several sours on tap in their Biercafe currently. I know Portland is the land over uber-hoppy beers, but if you haven’t given sour beers a try before – I highly recommend going and trying them out.

I’d actually also really recommend them to anyone who is a wine drinker trying to work their way into beer. I’m no expert at either – but like cider or lambics – sours seem to be a bridge between the two.

Oh… and apparently gnomes like beer too!
Gnomes Like Beer

TriMet iPhone App.

You know, the iPhone is a neat little thing. The boyo and I like to think of it as the Douglas Adams’ Guide come to life. Have a question? Ask The Guide (as we’ve come to refer to it). What time is the movie? Ask The Guide! What is the freakin’ temperature and will it be this hot again tomorrow?! The Guide can tell you!
I’m not here to advertise for the phone, however, but to talk about a neat little thing that someone emailed me about that should hopefully be available soon for The Guide.

I received an email over a week ago about a new application that’s being worked on to allow people to use The Guide to work with TriMet. This application will allow one to find the nearest stop, find out when the next bus is headed to that stop, which stops are on a route, and give information on a specific Stop ID. Pretty neat, huh? This should be available by sometime this month to early next month as rights on names and such are still being worked out.

Personally, I think The Guide could use this little app., especially as I try to use public transport more and more and the car less and less. Think of how much easier this would make it to travel via bus!? It may even single-handedly stop congestion!

Ok, ok! So that’s going a bit overboard, but I know that if I had an easier way to get the info I needed on how to get from point A to point B, I’d never be tempted to use my car again… not that it’s here yet… I’m still having it transported up… and have yet to have a place to transport it to.

(more…)

Would you like nutritional information with that?

According to the folks over at KGW, there is currently a proposal requiring chain restaurants to include nutritional information on the menu.

I’ve got a couple of problems with this.

First of all, nutritional information is already available for just about any chain restaurant I can think of (warning – here be PDF’s). Why, in a matter of seconds I can wow you with numbers. A mondo chicken burrito at Taco Del Mar has 615 calories and 32 grams of fat, while a mondo pork burrito only has 24. A Whopper with cheese at BK has 47 grams of fat (but only 30 if you skip the mayo), and a large fries packs an additional 500 calories and 28 grams of fat. You can read all about it here. A Tillamook Cheeseburger at Burgerville will net you an incredibly tasty 630 calories and 40 grams of fat. Throw in a large order of fries and you’re looking at 400 additional calories and another 22 grams of fat. Oh sure, you could go healthy and get a chicken salad at Baja Fresh, so long as you skip the dressing. Or perhaps a Subway sandwich (34 grams of fat in a foot-long cold cut combo, but only 9 in a turkey, so long as you’re careful with the condiments).

And if you don’t have web access, most fast food joints have this information posted on a nice big board at your local location. The word is out on nutritional information, and it’s not hard to find.

My second problem is – what constitutes a chain, and why are mom and pops exempt? Fire on the Mountain has two locations – are they a chain now? And why is it important that a consumer have nutritional information listed on the menu at Rock Bottom (a chain), but not Urban Hopworks (not a chain)? Is their health less valuable at one place than the other?

Finally, this. I know when I go out to eat that I often make bad nutritional choices. I know that order of Carne Asada chips at Muchas Gracias is not exactly healthy. But sometimes, that’s kind of the point. If I’ve had a crappy day, sometimes an order of corn chips served with beef, sour cream, cheese, and a number of other bad things is just the remedy I’m looking for. I know where to find nutritional info on this stuff if I want it. I don’t necessarily need it waved in my face every time I want to order it – trust me, I’m hip to the fact that it’s bad for me.

And speaking of the mighty MG, word is that a new outlet has opened on 707 NE Weidler. Go there, eat a burrito, and fight the power!

Here’s a "something" BEFORE it happens…

So thanks to my friends at filmfeverradio.com (and yes, they are long time friends), the boyo and I enjoyed a screening of The Dark Knight tonight.
Can I just say…

Oh.
My.
Gawd.
!

I’ll leave the reviews to them, but it was seriously f#$%ed up and seriously cool. I’m having a hard time not swearing… it was that intense.

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