Ways Portland is, in June when it’s 80 degrees

– Syrupy.
– A honey hive of bugs. Ticks. Jiggers. Wasps. Things that sting and buzz.
– Snow? No. Cottonwood.
– “Remember how it’s like this in January
in San Diego?”
– Wish I had a pool.
– “Four season living: 1) Winter 2) Still Winter 3) When the $%#@ is it going to be summmer??? 4) Bugs”
– Bushes have set fruit. Raspberries, blueberries, tiny blackberries. Vines have set fruit. Seventeen green tomatoes. This year’s pinot vintage, just up the valley on Ribbon Ridge and Archery Summit and Eola-Amity. Trees have set fruit. Cherries. Plums. Black walnuts (getting ready to pickle baby black walnuts)
– Roses in the rose city.
– Tank tops and shorts at last. Can’t believe three months ago. Can’t believe five months ago. Can’t believe grey. Cold. Old. Or wet.
– Volcanoes. Big dollops of cream that you can almost hear melting into great mountainside streams bound for Columbia River and the Sea.
– Coffee in the sun. Coffee on the balcony in the early morning with the first sun coming over the house. Coffee on the sidewalk in the late morning with the sun shining on our side of the street and a Mustang convertible rumbling by. Coffee at Coava by the new streetcar tracks. Coffee at Barista out on the wood deck with mixed/European 13th ave rolling on up to Burnside. Coffee at Stumptown on Division, the lady at the next table must be a dog walker with her 5 snouts a-panting while the bicyclists whiz by and that number 4 bus rumbles past.
– Wine on the deck in the afternoon. Comparing vintages. 2009 is big. 2010 is small. 2011 is for the sink. 2012 should be outstanding.
– What made each of those summers great and good and what made 11 a bust.
– Girls on skirts riding by on bikes.
– The river. Passive and low. Speedboats and kayaks. Crossing a bridge, looking at all that water sloshing around like a bathtub after a speedboat passes.
– Restaurants serving on sidewalks. Nothing like California. More like Europe: You just put out a table.
– Festivals. Parades. Chunky Portland going by with our “muzzy bellies in parade” (“You read too much Stevens, put that book down and look at the world, it’s in bloom.”)
– Gary Snyder went to Reed College and look where it got him.
– PSU. Market. Farmer’s Market on a sunny Saturday morning and all the emotions of a CBOE pit session.
– The Lewis and Clark students next door have graduated. Families come to congratulate Next they have to pass the bar. Get jobs. Launch careers. Get out into the ‘real world’, wherever that is. Somewhere east of here.
– Silicon Forest. Everything seems possible on a June day in Portland. Even the Universe, someday centered here.

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categories Summer

A Power Of Style

“WE slept most all day, and started out at night, a little ways behind a monstrous long raft that was as long going by as a procession. She had four long sweeps at each end, so we judged she carried as many as thirty men, likely. She had five big wigwams aboard, wide apart, and an open camp fire in the middle, and a tall flag-pole at each end. There was a power of style about her. It AMOUNTED to something being a raftsman on such a craft as that.”

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Chapter 16
by Mark Twain
a.k.a. Samuel Clemens
(emphasis mine)

Weekend In Walla Walla

Coffee at Coava this morning. Snyder and Stevens in the backpack. Walla Walla bound, at last!

What a time to be in wine country… first heat day of the year, and the fruit has just set:

Set Fruit

Wine tasting in Walla Walla:

Amavi (the only negative experience, everything I hate about wine tasting)
Dumas Station (everything I adore about wine tasting)
Walla Walla Vintners (a favorite, nice guys, tasting room too hot though)
Morrison Lane (family winery, just a conversation about wine while tasting wine)
Locati Cellars (A+ for location next to the hotel lobby, C- for the wines)
Reininger (big but delicious Paso-esque wines; great ‘model’ tasting room, new and nice but also setup well to taste wines)
Long Shadows (odd service as they acted put-out that we didn’t have a reservations, but delicious wines)

Stayed at the Marcus Whitman. A+ location, nice staff, very poor value though.

Ate at Saffron. Amazing meal. One of the best I’ve had this year. Better than St. Jack two nights ago, and at a better price! Deserves a post of its own, there’s no reason this couple has to make food this good in WW, they could probably get away with two notches below this and still make $$$ in such a tourist town. Good people doing great work… love it.

June Rush

PSU market yesterday. Sunny day. Kids out of school for summer. Vacations. Crowd —> Throng. Market emotions start to come into play. Fear and greed. Meeting an essential human motivator: food. Gathering food. Bringing home sustenance for the family/group/tribe. “Need to get those strawberries before the organic guy sells out!”

Hood Strawberries

In Paris you can get run over by a little old lady who’s on about a quarter kilo of fraises. The good ones, from the vendor she knows.

In financial markets we see behavior in waves. A rush of buying turns into an all-day bid fest. Or a fête of early selling leads to a rout. People need it and they see price going higher. Or people need to get rid of it and they see price going lower.

Favorite Beer From PDX Beer Week

Naked City Brewing’s Wild Cherry.

A Belgian Golden with cherries. Aged in Syrah barrels. The beer reminded me of tasting wine. In the barrel room. Wolfe Vineyards in the Edna Valley. Their old tasting room which was just their barrel room and you crowded around the barrels tasting their excellent Chardonnay and solid Pinot Noir wines.

Sunny Day Scribbles

Because I haven’t posted scribbles in like, forever. And because it’s a sunny day and not just a sunny day but a hot, humid afternoon that shifts our latitude from a northern one to, temporarily at least, a more Mediterranean one. And all the associated shift of sense, sensibilities, mindset, etc etc…

Tacos de pulpo and a Negro Modelo
in the sun on Glisan
East of the river, east of Portland
east of the freeway that used to take me home

Sitting in the sun. thinking on an old meme: How Portland is this city along this river called Willamette, but also another river which is called The I-5. The north-south bandwidth. Flow. Jack-balling superliner freight train semis with cargo ro-ros bound for or from Seattle harbor in route to Japan. Or Eugene.

The One Book Every Tech Pro Should Own


I don’t care how far on the back-end you think you are. DBA, SA, who cares. If you’re writing code and you’re not functionally literate in the basics of design? It’s like driving a car without understanding that the red hexagons mean Stop.

It doesn’t have to be Universal Principles of Design. You probably could get there in twenty different ways.

What matters is having an idea of the core principles, and how every user who interacts with your system – including yourself! – is influenced by them.

(stepping down from the soapbox)