What I miss the most.

That”s kinda difficult to single in on.  It’s actually a toss-up between one necessity and one comfort.

The necessity would be a bathroom of my own.
Simple, base and needed.

The comfort would be my old coffee maker with brew timer.

This is really for medical purposes as opposed to comfort.
If I don’t get my coffee somebody is going to get hurt.  Chances are this person will be guilty of little more than bad timing.  I may not even know this person.  Will it bother me?  Of course it will.  How could it not?  I may even lose a couple nights of good solid sleep.

If this makes me a bad person so be it
Pdxurbanoutdoorsman

Had a spritz of “You Poor Bastard”

I take what some people would call a long walk before rolling out my bed for the night.  Last night was no different except for having been spritzed with a fairly heavy dose of “You Poor Bastard“.

About 10:30pm while walking through Ira Keller Fountain and found a pair of Teva hiking shoes in just my size.  I remove the tired ones I had been wearing to strap on the “new” shoes and continue my walk.

Maybe an hour later I find myself in the Pearl District on 14th near NW Glisan and happen across what appears to be a new Pyramid Breweries t-shirt.  Again, just my size.

Finally on my way to camp I see a small glint to my left only to see a nice little Gerber knife.

Since there was no person near any of these items I felt it necessary pick up and keep all previously mentioned items.
If this makes me a bad person so be it.

Pdxurbanoutdoorsman

Ambassador to the city?

There are times when walking through down town Portland I will see somebody studying one of the guest services maps.  There they stand, turning the map over and over again attempting to get their bearings together.  Sometimes I will ask these people what it is they are looking for.  In most cases it is a specific business or just an address.  In either case it is easy to help these folks out.

On a recent occasion I saw a middle aged couple coming out of a parking garage with a rather perplexed look in their eyes.  As usual I approached to ask what they were looking for.  It turned out they had dinner reservations a Morton’s Steak House.  I pointed down two blocks to the KOIN Tower and told them dinner was waiting for them in that direction.

Here’s where it got funny.  Relieved to now know their way the wife asked a peculiar  question.  “How are the steaks there?”  The husband looks to me as if saying, “Please forgive her.  She is always asking inappropriate questions”.  I look to the woman and say, “Well,  as you may notice by my attire that restaurant does not fit into my budget at this time.”  Once I said that the wife fully understood we both had a good chuckle.

Perhaps in the future I will tell you of the weary traveller asking for directions.

Strobe Lights.

The only place I saw them 35 years ago was at a party or concert.

Then I saw them showing up on emergency vehicles such as police, fire, ambulance or tow trucks.

Then I saw them showing up on utility vehicles such as water, electricity, gas and so on.

Now I have to be subjected to them by bicyclists!

 

Enough already damnit!

 

Damn bicyclists are the worst offenders with out question. These jackasses feel the need to have a headlight that is a strobe. To make matters worse they aim them right in the eyes of opposing traffic. Now if you did that in a car eventually some cop would pull you over for hitting him/her with the high beams. Not bicyclists oh no. Since this is Bike Town USA it would be in poor taste to give a ticket or at the very least a warning.

 

I and others in the world with epilepsy have a problem with this. Ya see, strobe lights can send some people with epilepsy into a seizure. I am not sure if my seizures are brought on by strobes and have to avert my gaze in the presence of one.

 

The reason people use the strobe setting instead of steady light is to extend the life of the batteries by up 6X. They also say it is the green thing to do because it decreases the number of batteries going to our landfill.

Wowsers….. They saved our collective asses with that sacrifice.

Oh hey, can you smell that?

Thats dripping sarcasm.

 

How about this instead,

:dramatic pause:

USE RECHARABLE BATTERIES NUMNUTZ!!

 

Because of these people there is no place where I am not subjected to strobe lights.

 

Now let’s talk about emergency vehicles. Can somebody explain the wisdom of placing these lights on a vehicle that is supposed to be there to help me in the event of a seizure. Are they drumming up business for the hospitals they serve? Was there a problem with the older rotator lights that were used in the past?

 

Please pardon me if this new trend pisses me off.

 

As usual, if this makes me a bad person so be it.

Pdxurbanoutdoorsman.

Tobacco Free Buildings

Governmental wisdom continues to befuddle me.  Multnomah County has declared the Multnomah County Court House and Multnomah County Justice Center as “Tobacco Free Buildings”.  This was already done with legislation that bans smoking in the workplace over 5 years ago.

What does this declaration actually do then?  Nothing really except for removing ashtrays from the front of the two buildings.  The result is many who smoke will now just litter the street with their cigarette butts.

Way to go Multnomah County!

Boundaries.

I do not care whether you work at McDonalds or volunteer at Operation Nightwatch..
Rule #1.  Where you are working is not a place to look for relationships beyond the walls.  Period!

Unfortunately the executive director of Operation Nightwatch, Gary Davis either does not have such a policy or he chooses to bury his head in the sand and play ignorant.  In an article on OregonLive he claims there is a policy in place on this subject so I will not call him a liar.  I will call him a lazy bastard who places responsibility for his not knowing about this relationship on the shoulders of those he is supposed to be serving.
Direct Quote:
”But Davis said he had no idea that Powell had taken Beebout home with her, which is against the non-profit’s rules.
“I have subsequently learned that not only this was happening, but a number of our guests knew,” Davis said. “It makes me furious that none of them let me know about it. I at least would have been able to warn Niki. I can only imagine how he would have probably manipulated her with some sort of sob story.”

Great! Now on top of the crap I have to deal with on a daily basis I’m also expected to keep an eye on the volunteers at Operation Nightwatch,.  Sorry folks but that will not be happening in the near or distant future unless I am paid for being an program coordinator.  Oh wait a minute.  There is an program coordinator.  Too bad he is cut from the same cloth as the executive director.

This is not the first time the Gary Davis has placed the blame for his shortcomings on the shoulders of another.  In this article of almost two years ago the Gary Davis accepted no responsibility either.  What had caused this action was Gary being unwilling to work within the confines of Julia West House rules.  Instead  Gary chose to place the blame on those who operated Julia West House and First Presbyterian Church.

At the very least the Operation Nightwatch board of directors need to closely examine the abilities of Gary Davis to run their program.  If it was my choice he would be fired, immediately.

If this makes me a bad person so be it.

You have got to be kidding me!

I have accepted the fact that some dog owners refuse to clean up their animals feces.
I have accepted that I must tread carefully through the grass in the park.
One thing I refuse to accept is dog turds on the sidewalk.

At the very least you irresponsible dog owners could kick the loaf to the curb if not use a plastic bag to pick up and throw away the offending matter.

I now make it a habit to carry some of these bags.  Why would I do this?  If ever I witness this happening I will be able to pick up and return the nugget to its owner.

If this makes me a bad person so be it.

Garbage trucks

Why is that garbage trucks are so damn noisy?  Some tell me it’s because trucks are noisy and that is all there is to it.  This is a false assumption and I can prove it.

Of course trucks are louder than cars but this does not explain why garbage trucks make more noise than other trucks.  Proof of this can be found at any truck stop parking lot.  Just go there and listen to the trucks idling and you will be impressed at how manufacturers have made advances in reducing the sound made by the vehicles.

Another person told me it was because of the hydraulic pump that operates the machinery used to collect and compress refuse.  This also makes no sense either.  Listen to a heavy duty tow truck in operation and you will be impressed at how quietly these machines operate.  I use the example of a tow truck because some will have as many as three hydraulic pumps to operate the recovery boom, underlift and winch.

This leaves with only one conclusion.  Those who own and operate garbage trucks want them to be loud. 

ENOUGH ALREADY!
Quiet these things down damnit.

Pdxurbanoutdoorsman

Occupation or Shell Game? You Tell me.

Could somebody please tell me what has been accomplished by the Occupy movement.  I’m not so silly that I would expect world changing events but I do expect something.

Take a look at the financial section of your newspaper.  Have any of you noticed a change within stock trends?  Are any of the Big Evil Banks stepping forward to tell us there will be changes in how business is done?  Are any politicians telling of how they will remove corporate money from the election process?
No, no and ahhh, NO!

All I see are a number of city parks around the country being destroyed by these numbskulls.

At one corner of the Portland occupation is a sign telling of how this is a protest, not a party. When I walk through I hear loud music (this is a very loose interpretation of the word music), see countless people drinking, and smell marijuana everywhere. If this is not a party I have no idea what is.

If you ask an Occupier what has been so far most will not have no answer for you.  Others may tell you how they have raised public awareness through marches and whatnot.  Ask them for something tangible and they have no answer.

As usual, the media will play the hell out of this and the public ends up taking their collective “eye” off the ball.  At some point we are going to see something in the news that will shock us.  We will wonder just how something like that could happen and as usual the distraction will be missed.

Better?!?

I’m sure you have heard it before.  A question from people who are unable to cope with the fact that you may not want to talk to them.
“So, You think you’re better than me?”

How do you respond to something like this?  Do you roll your eyes and walk away or do you answer the question?  Do not, I repeat, do not walk away from the question.  Doing so does nothing but reinforce the “fact” that you do feel superior in the mind of those who ask this question.

In most cases this question is presented by confrontational people.  In my experience these people are almost always drunk.

The best answer I have come up with is quite simple and to the point.  “No, I do not think I am better than you or anybody else but I will tell you this much.  I believe I’m better at making decisions than you.  Think about that and get back to me on it when you are sober.”.

I have never been challenged on this answer and it allows me to walk away from the situation.  Given the choice I would always prefer to walk away from something like this.

Please Keep Your Donuts II

Here we go yet again damnit!

Last Thursday night I was awaken by a do-gooder around 1:30 am by a woman leaning over me to leave a bag of soda/beer cans that have a 5¢ deposit here in Oregon.

Imagine if you will, you’re sleeping blissfully and are startled out of your slumber by a stranger in your bedroom to provide some “good deed”.  Would it scare the hell out of you?  Would you yell at them?  Would you pop up out of you bed to reign down all manner of violence you could muster?  Luckily for this woman it was me she woke and not another who may have attacked her.

Upon having the crap scared out of me I just yelled at her telling her to get the hell away from me.  Of course she tries to tell me she was “just trying to help”.  All I could do in this situation is continue to tell this woman to leave me alone and let me sleep.

Here is the truly messed up part of the story.  She was with two, count em, guys who made a point of staying away from the situation.  I can just imagine the conversation prior to her approaching me went something like what follows.

Dingy Woman:  Here,  go put these cans by that nice homeless man sleeping over there.
Guy #1:  Are you crazy?  Do you think I wanna get myself killed?  Not tonight sweety.
(Dingy Woman attempts to hand off the bag-o-cans to Guy #2)
Guy #2:  There is no way in hell I’m going over there and disturb that guy.  I’m allergic  to being stabbed.  Thanks, but no thanks.
Dingy Woman:  Oh fine, I’ll take care of it you two weenies.
(Dingy Woman walks over to the “nice” homeless man and ends up soiling her pants as a result of the “nice” homeless mans reaction.)

One more time for those of you who missed it the first time.

1.  We are just like you and need our sleep which can be more difficult in this situation
2. Just randomly dropping off food can create a good deal of problems such as attracting critters to ones camp.
3.  If you have the time go to one of your local service providers like a mission to possibly volunteer.
4.  If time is an issue for you consider making a donation to one of your local service providers in the way of blankets, sleeping bags or clothing.

Now please for thew love of God,  leave me the hell alone so I can sleep.

As per usual, if this makes me a bad person so be it.

Sincerely,
Pdxurbanoutdoorsman

Receding hairlines & ponytials

When I lived in Seattle a number of years ago I had a ponytail that hung down to my ass in a braid.    I remember walking around seeing guys with receding hairlines & ponytails thinking how sad it looked.  Well, a little over a month ago I was brushing my teeth and when I looked in the mirror guess what I saw.  Go ahead, guess.  I had become one of those sad bastards.

It’s amazing what you can do with a beard trimmer.

Language

Why is it some people can not express a thought without using the “F” word?  Am I some kind puritan who will not tolerate the use of profanity?  Not at all, but if it’s all a person uses to convey theirs thoughts the meaning becomes diluted.

A prime example would be Bill Cosby.  Here was a man who could be as funny if not funnier than most foul mouthed stand-up comedians for one simple reason.  He gave his audiences enough credit to allow them to think.  Because of this he also opened himself up to a MUCH larger audience since there are many folks who would prefer not listen to one string of profanity after another.  Here is a clip showing what I believe to be the only time Bill used what could be considered by some to be profanity.  Because of this his use of the word asshole carried a great deal of meaning.

Another problem with expressing yourself in this manner is it leaves many people ignoring you regardless of the message you are trying to share.  Do you think people would have given Dr. Martin Luther King the time of day had he chosen to speak in that manner?  I truly doubt it.  More than likely he would have been considered just another angry black man without a message.  I’m willing to say you could go down through history and find the same to be true of most who have made great contributions by their thoughts and deeds.

A friend once shared great piece of wisdom he got from his father.  You have 1/2 second between the time an idea enters your mind and escapes through your mouth, use it wisely.  Sound advice if you ask me.

Until next time
Pdxurbanoutdoorsman

Behaviors

Generally when I meet somebody who is new to Portland and living on the street they seem to have one thing in common.  They are shocked by what they see people getting away with as far as drug use.  Little things like shooting heroin on the benches surrounding the courtyard of First Presbyterian Church.  This courtyard also happens to be a play area for the daycare center the church operates.

All this tells me is the behaviors displayed in any city are a direct reflection of just what will be tolerated.  If I am right this is one VERY sad indictment on the city, and people of Portland.

I just had to get this off my chest.
Pdxurbanoutdoorsman

Gender Identification is a line of crap.

Until a few years ago I never even considered the thought of gender identification.  Some may call this post inflammatory and discriminatory but I really do not care.  I will not show any extra respect because somebody is lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, trans-gendered or just chooses to dress in a manner opposite their gender.  If you perceive this as  discriminatory or inflammatory I suggest you stop reading now.

I have seen organizations that will have events targeted towards womens issues yet they will allow men who identify themselves as women.  I am quite willing to bet there have been women who chose not to participate because they have seen or heard men would be allowed to attend.  Does it really make sense to effectively deny these women a place to work out issues or receive services because of a minority that has chosen to dress differently?

I have also been to service providers who will help with clothing for the homeless.  On more than one occasion I have seen men requesting a bra and later a woman is told there are none available.  Is it right to give one person something they want thereby denying another what they need.  I don’t think so and it really pisses me off when I see this kind of behavior being catered to.

Some months ago the City of Portland conducted a census of those living on the street and homeless.  The questions asked were fairly basic in nature.
Name – first and last initial
How long a person had lived on the street.
Had the person slept in a shelter or outside.
Race
and finally
What gender does the person identify them self as.
By doing this the statistics being gathered become skewed.

As stated earlier I do not care what a person sees them self as nor do I care about their sexuality.  Fact is neither of these issues have any kind of effect on me.  Anybody who would judge a person based on these issues probably has some issues they need to address.

Until net time
Pdxurbanoutdoorsman.

Recovery

There seem to two different kinds of people I see who are in some kind of recovery. It does not matter whether they are trying to get away from alcohol, meth, heroin or some form of cocaine.  What this has to do with is how they end up in recovery.  It seems most are there because it is court mandated so they can avoid incarceration.  The others seem to finally come to the realization that their path will lead to nowhere but ruin.

The first group mentioned generally have no desire to clean up but just stay out of jail.  Generally they must complete an outpatient residential program that can last anywhere from 30 to 90 days.  Once completed successfully the courts will often expunge whatever charges had to be dealt with.  Most of the time these individuals will return to their addiction of choice without a second thought.  Granted some will remain clean but that percentage is quite small.

The other group can be broken down into another subset of those doing so for themselves and those doing so for another such as wife, husband other loved one.  Those breaking free for the benefit of another will have better chances than those doing it for the courts.  Unfortunately this route has built in troubles.  Say a person gains sobriety for a spouse.  In a number of cases the person who cleaned up will develop resentment for the spouse because in their mind they have something they miss taken from them by another.  As best as I see it those working to change for them self are the most successful.  The only reason I see for this is the person does not feel as if they are backed into a corner by the wishes or demands of another.  These people also seem to understand the concept of responsibility and self reliance.

I’m sure many will tell me this is a line of crap and all I have to say to that is numbers generally do not lie.

Until I have something else on my mind please keep dropping comments.

Pdxurbanoutdoorsman

Street Dogs

Doggie wants food, shelter, veternary care and so on and so forth.Or actually any pet kept by one who lives on the street.  These poor animals haven’t a clue just how rough their life is as opposed to their housed counterparts.

Consider this if you will, in order to legally own a dog while living on the street this poor animal must be leashed 24/7.  If that does not sound like animal cruelty I have no idea what does.  Do you think these animals get a balanced diet that meets their nutritional needs?  How many of these critters receive anything in the way of grooming such as a brush out or nail clipping?  From what I have seen most of these animals are used for security at night and a revenue stream like the picture above.

In most cases here in Portland people choose pitbulls because they are “tough” dogs.  Fact is pitbulls are a shorthair breed that does not deal well with cold weather.  I have lost count of the number of pits I have seen literally shivering in the cold while their “master” sits warm and comfy at some day access center.  I honestly believe any person living on the street who wants a dog should have to live on a leash, be fed only when somebody gets around to it, and freeze their bare ass off for a week to see just what kind of life they will condemn their “pet” to.

Here in Portland there are some resources for folks with dogs so they can get veterinary care but none of these agencies will suggest people put their animal up for adoption to have a better life.  If you ask me that is just plain wrong.  All these people do is enable others to doom an animal to a life that is greatly shortened.

The only possible valid arguments against these thoughts would be bona-fide service animals.  Unfortunately many outdoor pet owners will tell you their dog is a service animal but when asked just what task the dog performs they are hard pressed to give you an answer.  In most cases what they have is a companion animal or what you and I would call a pet.  Fact is most people who have actual service animals are able to receive some form of assistance that allows them to not live on the street.

Anybody who would like to argue with me about this is more than welcome to leave a comment and I will be MORE than happy to show you why you are wrong.

 

As per usual, if this makes me a bad person so be it.

Sincerely,
Pdxurbanoutdoorsman

Of course it’s raining dumbass!

That’s what it does here in the Pacific Northwest.  I continuously am confronted by whiners complaining about the rain.  To those I say “If you don’t like it get the hell out.”.  Were these half-wits told they would enjoy wonderful temperate  weather 12 months out of the year?  The other thing people bitch about is the temperature and how cold it is.  Are you kidding me?  Tell that to somebody living in Montana and see what they have to say on the subject.  I’m willing to say they will laugh in your face while wearing a t-shirt in our winter weather.

I recently had the pleasure of listening to some guy from L.A. complain about the cold.  If you did not like cold weather would you move from Southern California to here?  When I asked him this all I got was a deer in the headlights blank stare.

If you need to complain do so about something you have the ability to change.

As usual, if you should be offended by my thoughts I really don’t give a rats ass.