"Portland is a city where young people go to retire."
December 17, 2010 6:44 PM   Subscribe


 
Well, I just moved to Portland (literally, less than a week ago), but that video seems pretty accurate to me. Funny, too.
posted by overglow at 7:00 PM on December 17, 2010


"In Portland, you can go to, like, a record store and sell your CDs."
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome at 7:03 PM on December 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


Needs a couple more jokes, but I loved this one:

Portland is where young people go to retire.
posted by msalt at 7:07 PM on December 17, 2010 [4 favorites]


“I think that Portland is a very self-reflexive, meta city,”

Portland actually has a lot of different people and a lot of different scenes, besides the insular one 'people who move to Portland to be an artist'. So yes, in certain venues, you can project this singular quality of "this is what Portland is," which is actually not at all what it is. When I hear "Oh, I've never actually met someone from Portland," I reply to go get a job, maybe not a job at Powell's books or Albina Press, but maybe Jiffy Lube or Emmanuel Hospital or Safeway, and you'll see a more general shared reality, not just that expressed by some subcultural -- of depressive winters, manic summers, liberal/progressive politics, and lots of white people.

Although the artistic transplant culture does create the most stuff -- as this is a case in point. Therefore I guess it's fair to say they do forge what the image of the city is, and therefore create it. So I guess that means it is self reflexive, and meta. Woah.
posted by iamck at 7:08 PM on December 17, 2010 [9 favorites]


Hey, whaddya know, it's the title of the thread! I HAVE to remember to look up there.
posted by msalt at 7:08 PM on December 17, 2010


I think polite drivers should be met only with aggression, to teach them a lesson.

As someone who's never technically been a New Yorker but has been a successful pedestrian there (i.e. I survived and didn't get yelled at by a driver even once), I have to say: when I have gauged the flow of traffic, determined the optimum moment to cross a street that causes the least possible amount of disruption to the flow of traffic, and moved partway across said street to take advantage of said moment, it really pisses me off when some over-polite driver starts to slow down to allow me to cross regardless of who else is behind or beside them, in a misplaced effort to be "polite". At such times I find myself waving my arm in a furious "move along" manner at them and saying (uselessly) under my breath, "GoOnGoOnGoOnGoOnGoOn!" and mentally condemning them to the Hell of Good Intentions for the next five minutes. I thought I moved here a couple of years ago from the rural southeastern US to escape such poorly-thought-out attempts at deference....
posted by Greg_Ace at 7:13 PM on December 17, 2010 [13 favorites]


this is just a back-door attempt at a 90s retro thing and I say to hell with it.
posted by The Whelk at 7:19 PM on December 17, 2010


I was an extra in one of the episodes. See if you can find me: Guy with flannel shirt, beard, creepy tinted glasses, and stoned as fuck.
posted by wcfields at 7:22 PM on December 17, 2010 [5 favorites]


Don't worry, at this rate over-polite drivers will be something you'll wistfully remember joking about in a few years. As it is it's confined to a pretty small area geographically. People talk about Portland as if there were no 82nd Avenue, let alone the higher numbers; it's pretty much Ohio out there. And don't even mention the huge sprawl on the other side of the West Hills, which is more like the conservative parts of California than anything else.
posted by George_Spiggott at 7:22 PM on December 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


So, so ready for 90s retro. BRING IT.
posted by threeants at 7:30 PM on December 17, 2010


I think it'd be great if we could somehow, like, move forward, but barring that a '90s revival is just fine by me. I mean, let's face it, if there's a bag of dicks anywhere in the vicinity, the odds are good the 21st century has sucked them all at some point.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 7:35 PM on December 17, 2010 [5 favorites]


I love it. The video pins pretty much 95% of the people I interact with on a daily basis.
posted by tmt at 7:43 PM on December 17, 2010


Additional lyrics for those motivated by this video to move to Portland:

"Hey hipster, if you really want to impress 'em
There are tons of apartments in a suburb called Gresham."
posted by vverse23 at 8:04 PM on December 17, 2010 [4 favorites]


Does this mean the 80's revival is over?
posted by tspae at 8:15 PM on December 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


So, so ready for 90s retro. BRING IT.

CHOKE ON A THOUSAND KRIS KROSS PANTS AND BLOSSOM HATS I HATE YOU
posted by The Whelk at 8:17 PM on December 17, 2010 [9 favorites]


The anxious interval
posted by roll truck roll at 8:30 PM on December 17, 2010 [4 favorites]


Hey, don't knock them, Kris Kros will make you JUMP! JUMP!
posted by maryr at 8:39 PM on December 17, 2010 [2 favorites]


I note a serious lack of big curled bangs. Or was that just an '80s thing that stayed on in Maine?
posted by dunkadunc at 9:05 PM on December 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


I note a serious lack of big curled bangs. Or was that just an '80s thing that stayed on in Maine?

'90s Northeast US thing. (I was suffering through it in MA.)
posted by fairytale of los angeles at 9:38 PM on December 17, 2010


It's like rise of the conchords, but with portlanders?
posted by boo_radley at 9:51 PM on December 17, 2010


The video is lame, in a bad Andy Samberg kind of way, but I like Fred Armisen and Sleater-Kinney rock so I'll check the show out.
posted by chococat at 9:58 PM on December 17, 2010


CHOKE ON A THOUSAND KRIS KROSS PANTS AND BLOSSOM HATS I HATE YOU

I think the real question is which '90s are likely to come back. If we're talking about the '90s of Nirvana and the Orb and Public Enemy, which I can only imagine we are, that's a thing. A thing apart from that is the mid-'90s, which in the US was as barren a cultural wasteland as I can think of; its horrors are well-charted here. I promise that no one misses Live or Candlebox or Bush (anything called Bush, including a shitty band), and they sure as fuck do not miss Kris Kross...

OR DO THEY, because the mind-demolishing horror we have to face here, the Darkseid at the core of the dilemma that constitutes the precipice upon which we now stand gazing down into an unimaginative nostalgia pit full of flannel and guys with clocks on chains around their necks and music that goes beep-boop-boop, the thing no one can face is that this will not be the '90s as you or I or anyone else who was actually a sex-havin' age in the '90s remember them, not the actual 1990s, but the 1990s as seen by people who are experiencing faux nostalgia for an era that came and went while they were little children. Their 1990s may be the 1990s of Trainspotting or Pulp Fiction or "Yo! MTV Raps," or whatever cultural relic(s) they choose to seize upon and redefine as the era's finest hour -- and that could be Kris Kross and Live as easily as anything else. Who knows? I mean, we aren't talking about fucking aliens here, these are people the same as people throughout time immemorial, some of them maybe in this very room, but I think about it and realize that my 1970s are exploitation movies and Star Wars and Bronze Age comics and the Sex Pistols, and that's probably not the 1970s of a great many people who were older than, like, seven when the real 1970s actually ended. What will the zeitgeist decide the '90s were about?
posted by kittens for breakfast at 9:59 PM on December 17, 2010 [6 favorites]


I have a recurring nightmare that the zeitgeist will seize upon the 90s as this and it will remain popular and then I will die.
posted by The Whelk at 10:02 PM on December 17, 2010


Actually tho if you scan the younger tumblr blogs, it's more stuff like this popping up. Which would be juuuust the right time for Kids On The Internet to see it in reruns.

I can kinda get behind that..
posted by The Whelk at 10:08 PM on December 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


Oh, yeah. That pretty much is the '90s as I remember them. I guess I shouldn't be too surprised; I was reading Charles Burns's X'ed Out a while ago, and was struck by how much his story about a Burroughs-obsessed youth doing bad spoken word at area "gatherings" reminded me of stuff I did when I was in my late teens and early twenties, and I was thinking, well, Charles Burns is like twenty years older than me and maybe he just needs to update his youth culture references, right? and it was only when reading an interview with him that I realized it was supposed to take place in the '70s. I mean, Jesus.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 10:19 PM on December 17, 2010


Sometimes you watch a music video from 1991 and go huh, indie fashion hasn't changed in decades.
posted by The Whelk at 10:24 PM on December 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


which just pretty much proves this
posted by The Whelk at 10:25 PM on December 17, 2010


But seriously yes, if you try to revive the 90s I will fucking cut you.
posted by The Whelk at 10:27 PM on December 17, 2010


What will the zeitgeist decide the '90s were about?

This.
posted by blucevalo at 11:59 PM on December 17, 2010


Their 1990s may be the 1990s of Trainspotting or Pulp Fiction or "Yo! MTV Raps," or whatever cultural relic(s) they choose to seize upon and redefine as the era's finest hour -- and that could be Kris Kross and Live as easily as anything else. Who knows?

I dunno, I'm pretty optimistic – a lot of the stuff I'm seeing is about riot grrl, neo-shoegazer, neo-90's-low-fi, Ren & Stimpy, some of the better R&B, etc. which is pretty cool. Unlike all that 80's revival stuff which focused purely on everything that was stupid: OMG RAINBOW LASERS THAT GO BOOP "AWESOME" and heeeere come the pounding headaches again.

Anyway C & C Music Factory is from that part of the '90s that was still the '80s.
posted by furiousthought at 12:09 AM on December 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


This will be a thing, and it will be neat to people who notice good things.
posted by JLovebomb at 12:38 AM on December 18, 2010


What will the zeitgeist decide the '90s were about?

This.


I don't know about you, but *my* '90s experience wasn't about malformed video IDs, man.

It was about taking two hours to download an AVI of the X-files opening credits.
posted by codswallop at 12:41 AM on December 18, 2010 [5 favorites]


"There is a sense of wonderment about the Jim Rose Circus Sideshow. And there is a good reason for it. It's every bit as amazing as seeing a ballet dancer lift and float seemingly forever. It's a human marvel. It's the same place that makes us marvel at the guy who sticks a meat skewer through his face without a drop of blood and without maiming. And the whole time, it seems as if he is enjoying it. There are wonders that everyone can be amazed at and identify with."

Katherine Dunn, Author of Geek Love.
posted by Tube at 1:09 AM on December 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


This isn't an attempt at a 90's retro thing... that's seriously, honest-to-goodness the way things are in Portland. It's one of the first things I noticed about it after moving there a couple of years ago.

Which brings me to my next point- this is precisely why the show is going to fail. It's all in-jokes. Unless you've lived in Portland (or at least spent a reasonable amount of time there), the jokes are going to be lost on you.
posted by MiaWallace at 1:25 AM on December 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


hehe
posted by device55 at 1:55 AM on December 18, 2010


Sorry, but 90s chic is inevitable this decade. Retro fads come in 20 year cycles. So load up on guns and bring your friends.
posted by dgaicun at 2:01 AM on December 18, 2010


"Yellow Lab owners never tell you—but a golden retriever, that’s just a little more special. Portland is the golden retriever to Seattle’s yellow Labrador. We just want people to know we’re a little more special. And I think we are a little more special."

Having lived in both cities, I had to giggle at this. I've always stated that Seattle could learn a few things from Portland, but Portland has nothing to learn from Seattle.
posted by JLovebomb at 2:52 AM on December 18, 2010


I lived in Portland in the 90s and I do love the fact that it hasn't really changed that much. I had never really thought about the idea that Portland was specifically stuck in the 90s, since I always just thought of it as not changing since I was there.

That said, there are also original 1960s hippies and 1970s freaks who have been maintaining their unique cultures in the pristine isolation of Portland for much longer.
posted by snofoam at 4:50 AM on December 18, 2010


I had to giggle at this. I've always stated that Seattle could learn a few things from Portland, but Portland has nothing to learn from Seattle.

I dunno...I think Seattle could sit Portland down and give it a long hard talk about diversity. And it's not like Seattle is setting the bar super high or anything.
posted by billyfleetwood at 4:55 AM on December 18, 2010 [3 favorites]


Not to be that guy, but this doesn't sound like a sketch show: it sounds like a sitcom about Portland where the two leads play a variety of characters. Which is fine, and Fred and Carrie seem really funny. It's just that I would kill for more actual sketch on American TV.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 6:59 AM on December 18, 2010


Yeah, but MiaWallace, hasn't everyone lived in Portland at this point? I know I have.
posted by Stonestock Relentless at 7:00 AM on December 18, 2010


Portland sounds a lot like Berlin...
posted by ts;dr at 7:24 AM on December 18, 2010


I had never really thought about the idea that Portland was specifically stuck in the 90s, since I always just thought of it as not changing since I was there.


If you think about this in a different way, it could very well be that a lot of it is just the regional culture, which became for a brief time the national youth pop culture, and then the pop culture moved on to other stuff.

I think there's a case for that. If you think about things like the youth lifestyle trends of the early 80s, a lot of that (not all) was and still is the culture of arty New York. Or the youth lifestyle trends of the 60s being laid-back, Bay Area culture. In other words, Portland might not be "stuck" at all - it might be just Portland, and be interesting to younger people who missed the moment when a lot of people adopted its cultural hallmarks.

Me, I still like nerdy glasses, vintage cotton dresses, and genuinely enjoy art with birds on it. I am happy enough that the Blind-Melon-bee-girl-Mean-People-Suck-feel-goodism of the era has moderated somewhat, but there ain't nothin wrong with these Portlandesque things. I may be stuck too.
posted by Miko at 7:45 AM on December 18, 2010 [3 favorites]


I note a serious lack of big curled bangs. Or was that just an '80s thing that stayed on in Maine?

'90s Northeast US thing. (I was suffering through it in MA.)


I thought it was understood that all fashion in the US originates from either NYC, LA or SF, and radiates out from there. The farther you are from the epicenter, the longer it takes for styles to reach you, and the more likely that the styles will have become twisted in their journey, like the mutations in the progress of an evolving species. So Maine will get fashion a decade late, and twisted through a kaleidoscope lens, turning the shiny MC Hammer Pants into Parachute Pants with vivid stripes or polka-dots.

At least, that's what I heard at school, from a kid who visited his relatives out there.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:02 AM on December 18, 2010


Man, if you want to see the land that never left the '90s, come to Toronto and talk to some of the Hosers up here. It's like walking around in a Kids in the Hall sketch (you know, like the ones with those unemployed buskers in that shitty apartment).

Seriously, my best friend still wears purple doc martens and a utilikilt.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 8:06 AM on December 18, 2010


"In Portland, you can go to, like, a record store and sell your CDs."

I did just that 3 or 4 months ago when we decided to digitize all our music, and I definitely laughed to myself about that. Everyday Music is a huge place, and it struck me as pretty old-school that people still want to buy used CD's.
posted by DrGirlfriend at 9:13 AM on December 18, 2010


The dialogue, decoded, really means "Do you remember when we were in our twenties?" It could have happened anywhere, anytime. Twenty years before the 90's if you are twenty years older than the two forty year-olds in the trailer.
posted by kozad at 9:19 AM on December 18, 2010


it could very well be that a lot of it is just the regional culture, which became for a brief time the national youth pop culture, and then the pop culture moved on to other stuff.

Yes! Flannel shirts are cheap and warm. They're just practical. I laughed so hard when they started showing up on NYC runways in 1991. My great uncle Ben, a carpenter, wore flannel shirts at the time, age 84, but he would have beat the crap out of you if you called him "grunge."
posted by msalt at 10:08 AM on December 18, 2010


You know, I'd happily watch Carrie Brownstein open a can of tomatoes, or a checking account. But I'd prefer that she had a guitar with her as well, because ... damn.
posted by Sonny Jim at 10:49 AM on December 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


needs more strippers.

god i love this town
posted by Lutoslawski at 10:53 AM on December 18, 2010


One thing I distinctly remember about living in Portland in the mid '90s was how much meth had already crept in, before it hit a lot of other places. I encountered a hell of a lot of tweaked out speed freaks back then, people who had nothing to do with any counterculture but just got caught up in it and ended up in a really bad way. PDX had its arty side and all that, and was funky and independent, but there was this strange undercurrent of desperation going on around the edges. Even so, amazing local beer and weed, not to mention acoustic music scene, and some truly kickass, cheap restaurants, and halfway decent public transportation ... but it wasn't all about that either, although at the time that's what I liked.
posted by krinklyfig at 11:09 AM on December 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


Seriously, my best friend still wears purple doc martens and a utilikilt.

Hey now, there is nothing wrong with a pair of Docs. Except that they're mostly not made in the UK anymore, and the ones that are now aren't that great compared to the real deal before they first outsourced everything. I'm partial to blue myself, but all I have right now are a pair of 8053s in black, because you need something to wear to those holiday gatherings.
posted by krinklyfig at 11:22 AM on December 18, 2010


I bumped into Fred and crew around 2004. They were wandering around this little throw-back theme park called the Enchanted Forest (?) near Salem Oregon while we were there on vacation. They were shooting a video for some indie band called the Helio Sequence. He was a very nice guy.

http://www.mtv.com/videos/the-helio-sequence/61661/dont-look-away.jhtml#artist=1161733
posted by kenaldo at 11:55 AM on December 18, 2010


kenaldo - Yep, that's what it's called; it's still there, and still weird.
posted by Greg_Ace at 12:23 PM on December 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


Oh lawd. Nostalgia. I miss that town. Acropolis, anyone?
posted by mullingitover at 12:35 PM on December 18, 2010


I dunno...I think Seattle could sit Portland down and give it a long hard talk about diversity. And it's not like Seattle is setting the bar super high or anything.

...and lots of white people.

i hear this a lot. about how white portland is. from white people who moved here. the thing i don't get is this; what's a place to do? you can't force minorities to move somewhere. and when people say, "portland is so white", what they really mean is, "there aren't a lot of black people here". asians and latinos never factor into making portland less white. so what? what should portland and seattle do?

And don't even mention the huge sprawl on the other side of the West Hills, which is more like the conservative parts of California than anything else.

do you know much about the u.g.b. and s.b.100, or the lcdc (not a jab, just asking)? the west side is ugly, no doubt about it. but to compare the west side to the sprawl in california or any other state is wholly inaccurate. conservative organizations have repeatedly challenged oregon's state land use repeatedly since the early 70's for their right to develop land (the sprawl we dislike). the rate that oregon has lost farmland to suburbs (even on the westside) compared to other places in the u.s. is pretty incredible. also, this inability to build outside the u.g.b. is what keeps portland and the area from building low density suburbs (a sightline institute study from 2005 said portland is #1 at this, but i'm not finding the link at the moment). the west side isn't awesome, but it's far from the worst. you're totally right about 82nd. you cross 82nd and all the polite drivers and bikers and the mellow traffic disappears.
posted by rainperimeter at 12:42 PM on December 18, 2010


The '90s are coming back now are they? Yes! My old clothes are finally cool again and I can sell it at Red Light or Buffalo Exchange without enduring the nasty sneers of the buyers.

I've noticed that those people who say Portland's so white don't really venture out much beyond their inner NE/SE neighborhood enclaves.
posted by medeine at 1:02 PM on December 18, 2010


and when people say, "portland is so white", what they really mean is, "there aren't a lot of black people here". asians and latinos never factor into making portland less white.

It's not a matter of perception. Someone counted. As a metropolitan area it's 4th, but Portland itself is the whitest city in America. This isn't a knock against the fine people of Portland, or even really a call to "do anything" about it. I only brought it up in the context of "Portland has nothing to learn from Seattle".
posted by billyfleetwood at 4:09 PM on December 18, 2010


someone counted

OK, but that statistic is fairly well skewed to make the point. There are four cities tied at 78% white, and 4 more at 77% or 76%. You could just as reasonably say that Portland is the 12th whitest major city (of the biggest 40), but that wouldn't really make the desired point. Portland has also tripled its minority percentage since 1980, from 8% to 22%.

Those stats do underline the unusual suburban/urban split; Portland does indeed have the whitest inner city of those 12 (74%). It also has the most diverse suburbs of those (80%). Compare Detroit: its metro area is 69% white, which breaks down into 8% white in the city, and 82% white suburbs.
posted by msalt at 4:34 PM on December 18, 2010


i hear this a lot. about how white portland is. from white people who moved here.

I hear it a lot from minorities who grew up here...
posted by iamck at 5:28 PM on December 18, 2010


>> And don't even mention the huge sprawl on the other side of the West Hills, which is more like the conservative parts of California than anything else.

> do you know much about the u.g.b. and s.b.100, or the lcdc (not a jab, just asking)? the west side is ugly, no doubt about it. but to compare the west side to the sprawl in california or any other state is wholly inaccurate


Quite right -- you've misunderstood me but that's probably my fault; by using the word "sprawl" didn't mean that that was itself like California (or as you say, just about anywhere else in America), I was still talking about the culture. You won't see a lot of excessive courtesy, or bicycles, out there in commuterville, and they seem to be pretty happy with their sidewalkless cul-de-sac neighborhoods and their chainstores surrounded by oceans of asphalt. And yes, I do know about and actively support the UGB and related policies, and am pretty grateful for them.
posted by George_Spiggott at 5:36 PM on December 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


As a fresh-from-college white midwestern art grad making the move to Portland in mere weeks with little more than a promise of a friendly couch and a general urge to just be there, I was both very amused by this and very hesitant to pass it around to anyone.
posted by luftmensch at 12:42 AM on December 19, 2010 [1 favorite]


Er ... Well, I found Portland gentrified in places when I lived there, which I guess qualifies as "white." I really don't know for sure. But my first experience there I was making at best $7/hr. and living downtown, with a brief stay in Beaverton. I didn't live in the SE until my second time living there a few years later, and I'm glad to have experienced it both ways. I guess it's "white," but so is the whole Pacific northwest. I don't think it stands out from anywhere else in the area in that regard, except that Oregon outside of Portland is far less diverse on the whole.
posted by krinklyfig at 8:17 PM on December 19, 2010


There was something that bothered me about this video, something I couldn't exactly pinpoint.
Weak material aside, I think it had something to do with the actors looking like they didn't really have their hearts in it.
posted by dunkadunc at 8:09 AM on December 20, 2010


> ...I have to say: when I have gauged the flow of traffic, determined the optimum moment to cross a street that causes the least possible amount of disruption to the flow of traffic, and moved partway across said street to take advantage of said moment, it really pisses me off when some over-polite driver starts to slow down to allow me to cross regardless of who else is behind or beside them, in a misplaced effort to be "polite".


In most (if not all?) states, it is illegal to not yield to a pedestrian. This is regardless of the fact that your jaywalking is, yes, also illegal. So, please think about that the next time you get pissed off at that person who is trying not to break the law.

BTW, I'd definitely think twice about standing in the middle of the street. With so many driving distractions today (e.g. food, radio, cell phones, etc.), I wouldn't feel safe standing so close to so many moving cars...

(Also, would like to say that I hope you're not the type of person who tailgates people going merely 5 MPH over the speedlimit. Or, someone who honks at a person treating a "right turn on red" as a stop and not merely a yield...

FWIW, I just recently moved to the Hartford, CT area and, man, are the drivers self-absorbed and idiotic here!)
posted by StarmanDXE at 1:12 PM on December 20, 2010


It's not often I'm willing to get into anything like a heated online exchange, because it's almost never worth it; but your comment is problematic in too many ways to ignore. I don't think I should have to explain myself to you, especially over a comment that I'd intended to be a half-humorous and offhand observation about life in Portland...but I'm going to just to be clear, because you're so busy castigating me over the letter of the law that you overlook some practical realities that anyone who's actually had to do this sort of thing is already very aware of.

First, the bus stop nearest my house is at least two LONG blocks from the nearest intersection, and at least twice as far from the next nearest. Damn right I'm gonna jaywalk. Screw a bunch of pointless extra work, especially when I'm usually carrying a heavy backpack full of perishable groceries.

Second, I have to cross a busy 4-lane road to/from the stop, and I have to take my opportunities when I can. (Thanks so much for making the upfront assumption that I'm the kind of idiot who stands in front of oncoming traffic, by the way) Here's the scene: in one direction, there are two very empty lanes. There's not even a scrap of danger in standing in the middle of those two lanes in order to take advantage of an upcoming break in the two lanes of traffic coming in the other direction...once the 2-3 stragglers get past. If I waited meekly and "legally" on the very other side of the road (including bus turnoff lane and bicycle lane), it would take longer to cross the road and I might be thus unable to take advantage of the upcoming traffic break - or incur more risk by cutting things closer. (And don't forget, I'm also slowed down by those groceries I'm carrying)

So here I am obviously standing still and obviously not intending to leap out in front of Mr. or Ms. Ignorantly Polite. I'm in no danger of getting hit from the other direction, and if the driver in question was paying the slightest attention to the surrounding vehicles they'd already know that there's a big upcoming break in traffic behind them that I'm waiting to use, and likely other cars near them in the other lane who are not slowing down and are thus robbing their "legal" action of any practical usefulness. And if you think I'm going to trust that other driver to slam on their brakes and avoid me when I suddenly appear in front of them just because the other driver stopped, you're even dumber than I'm giving you credit for.

Yes, there are laws. They exist to make people act in a safer and more efficient manner on the road. But if one doesn't understand the point of a given law, applying it blindly and without an awareness of the reality of one's surroundings decreases the safety factor.

(Also, I would like to say that I hope you're not the type of sanctimonious bastard who drives 55 in the left lane in order to "teach speeders a lesson" in rule-following.)

My point is that I can be "illegal", and still be safe, make my intentions clear to motorists, AND not impede the regular flow of traffic. Whereas the occasional over-polite driver, by adhering mindlessly to "legality", is far more disruptive and unheedful of common sense.
posted by Greg_Ace at 8:36 PM on December 20, 2010


Nah, I completely understand why you're jaywalking. Hell, I do it too. (And, no, I don't try to block people from passing me on the highway.) All I'm trying to say is, it's not the driver's fault! If anyone, you should be blaming the government.

Also, not sure about you, but I try to make a habit of driving by watching where I'm going as opposed to watching where I've been... When I notice something in front of me is amiss, the better response is generally to "hit the brake" instead of "flooring it" (especially in situations such as what you're talking about where you're not on a divided highway).

In summary: by all rights, keep braking the law, just don't get angry at people choosing not to break the law.

(FYI, in Pennsylvania [at the least], it's illegal to sit in the left lane when you're not passing another vehicle...)
posted by StarmanDXE at 10:09 AM on December 21, 2010


This is absolutely not intended to sound smug or superior - in fact, maybe it's more paranoid than anything - but I've always tried to maintain at least some awareness while I'm driving of what's behind and beside me as well as what's in front. I don't trust people to not drive in my blind spot or tailgate me, for instance; and if I had to suddenly brake or swerve it would suck to find out the hard way that a car was there. Or for that matter, a cop coming up behind me as I'm exceeding the speed limit! The list goes on. I'd rather speed up or slow down or change lanes or whatever needs doing to gently remove myself from the less-than-ideal circumstance than find myself suddenly trying to do it unexpectedly and under duress.

And to tie that back to my original post, if I'm in a car and see someone standing in the other lane(s), the first thing I'm going to do is check my mirrors to see if there's a traffic gap he/she is apparently planning to use. And then go on about my business and get out of their way quickly and smoothly so they can go on about theirs.

And since I'm obviously a total genius, everyone else should do it my way too!
posted by Greg_Ace at 1:52 PM on December 21, 2010


Acropolis, anyone?

I fondly remember the Acropolis. Three stages, steak dinners. Nothing like sitting around some seedy joint with horny men eating meat.
posted by Skot at 2:13 PM on December 21, 2010


I believe the steaks come from cows raised on a ranch belonging to the owner of the club. And they are very tasty (and cheap!).

I live less than a block from a strip club and while I don't mind the strippers, the douche-nozzles that come from Vancouver and Gresham to ogle are really fond of doing burnouts and reenacting scenes from 2Fast2Furious down Foster Bvld.

Despite the stereotypes, I love this place and I love being able to live and work here comfortably. I'll look back on it fondly in my old age, fersure.
posted by tmt at 5:03 PM on December 21, 2010


It's funny because it's true! Haw Haw!
My initial reaction to this video was, "...Aaaaaand?" The full scope of funny was lost on me until I tried to picture it from the point of view of someone NOT living in Portland. Suddenly the horde of everyday folks pictured strutting along the Waterfront became a gang of freaks! My sides just about split as I realized that it's true... it's so true that I'm completely desensitized to it.
posted by She Talks To Angels at 7:31 PM on December 23, 2010


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