Thursday, March 5, 2009

The Portland Theory

... Well, it's actually less of a theory and more of an observation, but "The Portland Observation" sounds like an old timey newspaper.

Basically, I keep observing that many, many things I enjoy have origins in Portland (Oregonian Origins?) or some kind of links there. The lady who writes Angry Chicken, for example? Lives in Portland. And the other day, I heard an NPR piece on how some of the nation's most prestigious operas are in danger, followed up by a lighter editorial on lessons we can learn from opera, and how when we look at our hardships compared to those of classic operatic characters, ours might not seem so bad. The piece was written, read, and (damn triple threats!) sung beautifully by Marc Acito. I scrawled the name of one of his books, Attack of the Theatre People on my hand at a red light, and put that and his first book, How I Paid for College: A Novel of Sex, Theft, Friendship & Musical Theatre on my LAPL hold list. After tearing through How I Paid..., I checked the book jacket and saw the sentence, "He lives in Portland, Oregon."

Of course he does.

There have been other such discoveries, and I'll take note of them more staunchly in the future.

I did have the good fortune to visit Portland for a weekend (my very first "business trip"!) and had a HELL of a time. For one thing, they were having a beer festival when I got there. Seeing as I was A) alone in a strange city and B) had to be up at 5:30 the next morning to be on camera, shooting an infomercial, I figured I should sit that bad boy out. But I did stroll into a Thai restaurant, strike up a conversation with a table of people who (having already visited said festival) were feeling friendly and invited me to eat with them. They invited me to go out to some local bar that was having 80's night, but I pleaded Article B and went back to my (really nice) hotel room. The next day, I wandered around the really cool area they put me up in, the Pearl district, and roamed the streets as well as the 4-story Powell's Books. SO AWESOME. I really dug that city. Then, having walked for about 3 hours straight, I went back to my room, sat in my big empty king-sized bed, and watched "Pretty Woman" without any boy-roommates to give me shit about it. Later, I met up with some girls from the shoot and we blew a good chunk of our generous per-diem on a fancy dinner and excellent martinis. The best was one called the Smoky Martini, made with Grey Goose and Glenlivet, garnished with a blue cheese-stuffed olive and a piece of pepperoni. Dear god.

I've got a pretty high opinion of Portland.

Stay tuned for more from The Portland Observation...

1 comment:

Gregorio said...

Even weirder... me, too! I've had this urge to go to Oregon now for a few years -- the fire family are all mostly from there, I've met some other sweet people from there... I dunno, if I didn't have this job, I would be tempted.... it may still happen someday, though. Maybe I'll see you there and we'll start an LA Observation.