Sunday, August 26, 2007

Portland Adult Soapbox Derby etc.

Yesterday we hiked up to the Soapbox Derby and it was great.
It was on a course at Mt. Tabor (extinct volcano!).
Mt. Tabor makes Portland one of only two cities in the continental U.S. to have an extinct volcano within its boundaries; the other city is Bend, Oregon. The volcanic features of Mt. Tabor became known in 1912, years after it became a public park. The volcanic cinders discovered in the park were later utilized in surfacing the park's roads.

I made a slideshow, but you'll see most of the soapbox on the second page of keep going. We stayed for a couple hours and left when we started seeing the same cars, so we don't know who won. They ran several heats of 3 cars at a time. Keith took notes and is already brainstorming his entry for next year. He will consult his father-in-law over Labor Day weekend. Maybe come up with some schematics. This is not 'Nam, there are rules.

Overheard at the derby:
"Heads up, Godzilla!"
"I'm, like, by now you have to have seen The Matrix."
"Well, you know if we get hit, we get hit."
"Deploy the parachute!"

Sunday, August 19, 2007


Last week I did what I've been wanting to do since almost last December or so:

I got a new tattoo that marks my surviving the past couple of years. This is a very personal tattoo, and when I explain it to people it either sounds ridiculously cheesy or slightly psychotic. In reality, in my reality, it is neither. I knew several elements that I wanted to incoporate and I took a very rough mock up to a studio and Ed drew up the design for me. I was a little nervous because I'd picked the shop b/c it was Painless Steel (a branch of where we went in Missoula) but when we got there it wasn't Painless anymore. I talked with Ed and looked at his portfolio and he gave me a price quote and told me some ideas for the design. A couple weeks later (last Wednesday) I went back to the shop. Ed showed me the design and I was amazed. It was so much better than I could have imagined. At that point any remaining reservations I had were gone. 2 hours later, I walked out with this.

After it heals, in about 7 days, I'll go back for the rest: filling in the butterflies, shading, touch ups. Then it will be finished. When I got home to show Keith he was equally amazed. So despite some trepidation about it not being Painless Steel, Ed @ Anatomy Tattoo won our business for the foreseeable future.

And that afternoon I met Matt Gone. He works down the street from our building and we see him pretty often but I'd never talked to him. He saw my fresh tattoo and gave me his business card. He said he'd just gotten a new one, too, and lifted his pant leg which was entirely covered in tattoos. And he pointed to a train and said it was a I-think-I-can train. Ok.

"I just wanted to do something nearly impossible before I die.

I was also born with birth defects. The tattoos hide them and make my body something I can be proud of instead of hating.

This project began in 1990 and has cost over $65,000 so far. $20,000 of that was earned as a dishwasher in New Orleans' French Quarter."

Interesting guy. He's been on Ripley's Believe It or Not. And he's been tattooed by The Enigma!

See, Mom--it could be worse.

We're still making the new apartment home-y. Keith hung these frames. All free from the guy who used to have this apt.

We're going to paint the wall. And then hang some Items in the frame. 2-d. 3-d. Recycled paint is only $5/gal, so I think we're going that route. Brick red? Gray?

Here's a photo straight out of the 90s, color-wise from our dog walk the other day. This is my sister circa 1992, in leaf form. Ok, me, too. But she was the color coordinating freak.

The dogs have been crazy for the outside lately. Lazlo lays down on the sidewalk, wherever. So I try to take them to the park in the afternoons, or a walk. And Keith takes them off leash to the triangle in the mornings.

Couch Park
The Triangle
sharing is caring

The End.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Friday Night Slides

Week in review,
Blankenship style

Monday, August 6, 2007

Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch'intrate

or: Abandon all hope, ye who enter here.

That's what it says above the door at Dante's.
Keith and I decided to go out Saturday night to see Deadbolt--"The Scariest Band in the World." We don't go out that often because we're cheap and lazy, and we usually think it sounds like a good idea in advance but when the time rolls around we say, Aw, let's just stay home and watch Netflix. But Keith found Deadbolt on the internet a while back and we saw their poster by chance on a dog walk last week.

We have plans on August 4th.

Deadbolt, and the 2 bands that opened for them, can probably be described as psychobilly bands: "a mix between late-1970s punk and 1950s American rockabilly." Well, ok the first band, Cold Hearted Trio, was more rockabilly than psychobilly. And, ok, the second band (Dead Man's Hand) calls themselves "666% metalbilly." But I think you can imagine they're all in a similar category. So here's a sample of our night, and the rest of the weekend if you keep going through to the second page. I'm digging this slideshow feature thingy.

Of course after we had a great time we said, once again, We should do this more often. And our chance is coming up---MusicFest NW! Keith and I recently watched a documentary called You're Gonna Miss Me about Roky Erickson; he basically invented psychadelic rock with his band The 13th Floor Elevators. From his website: "The Elevators only had one chart hit, the Roky-penned You're Gonna Miss Me, but their influence was far reaching. R.E.M., ZZ Top, T-Bone Burnett, The Jesus and Mary Chain, and The Cramps have all either recorded or played live versions of Roky's songs. In addition to these performers, Roky is an acknowledged influence on such diverse musicians as Robert Plant, Janis Joplin, Patti Smith, Henry Rollins, The Butthole Surfers, Jon Spencer, and current indie hit-makers The White Stripes." So, we were amazed by the movie. He's one of those people that the music flows out of effortlessly--someone who is made to make music. Check out this video!

Struggling with drug abuse and schizophrenia, Roky spent 3 years in Rusk State Hospital after pleading insanity on marijuana charges. After losing interest in music, he became a recluse, living in poverty and filth until his brother was granted guardianship of Roky and has helped him get his life back on track.

So, anyway....we're definitely going to that. And there's a few other bands that I might try to drag Keith to. Okkervil River, Horse Feathers, Spoon. This is all happening the week after we get back from Kamiah (Labor Day weekend).

And I will have some exciting news to share next week, but for now that is a surprise. (Does not involve dogs or children.)