Archive for the pdx Category

[pdx] A Little Bit Of PDX in GTA?

Posted in liff in PDX, odds and sods, pdx on December 28, 2013 by Samuel John Klein Portlandiensis

This, via Soylent News™ (Remember, Tuesday is Soylent News™day) … if you like living the dream in Liberty City, you’ll love a certain transitional homeless camp there.

It looks pretty close to a little local landmark.

Art imitating life? Or kind of mocking it a little?


[pdx_liff] #OregonSnowmageddon2013

Posted in climate change, extreme weather, Heavy Eastside, liff in Outer East Portland, liff in PDX, OregonSnowmageddon 2013, pdx, Russellville on December 8, 2013 by Samuel John Klein Portlandiensis
2974.Yeah, it happened again. Bunch of snow and hideously cold weather hit the Pacific Northwest, and Portland in particular.

Here’s some scenes from a certain transit home from work on a certain recent Friday morning for a certain 3rd shifter involved in a branch of the transportation industry.

SE 102nd and Stark Street, in the bustling Oregon metropolis of Russellville, which is actually a sub-metropolis of Portland.

This’ll be notable for recording the gas prices on a certain Friday morning in December 2013 as anything else.

This next shot proves that there are some stretches of Hawthorne Blvd that are less fashionable than others, but just as cold and wintry. More evergreen trees, too!

Next, SE Stark and 122nd, looking east. Look at that line of headlights dwindling into the east there. Not only was the traffic on the greater Portland freeway system historic, but the side streets were no great shakes neither. But interesting looking.

SE Stark, looking east from about 112th Avenue. They say, today, in the weather, now that we’re in Bitter-cold-and-the-water-in-your-bathroom-pipes-is-frozen-and-I-hope-to-God-they-haven’t-burst-alypse 2013, Oregon is actually a few degrees colder than Alaska.

So now we know where Alaska goes for vacations.


While it is personally easier to survive steely cold snaps than it is the heatwaves (one can always put on another layer) it’s no less horrid. The prolonged extraordinary cold can be just as oppressive as the hot, and just about as enjoyable. We look forward to the warming this coming week with a mixture of eagerness and apprehension – those frozen pipes don’t exactly encourage.

Seeing “12 degrees” on the home weather station is only amusing for just so long, and it’s a lot of a shorter time than you’d otherwise think, oddly enough.

And so it goes.

[PDX_Photos] Hillsdale Center … Shopping Center, Old School.

Posted in liff in PDX, pdx, PDX Landmarks, PDX photos on December 2, 2013 by Samuel John Klein Portlandiensis
2969.On Saturday this weekend, The Wife™ and myself struck out for Hillsdale Art Supply Company. That was a good thing to do, but more on that in the next missive.

I was smitten at once by the charming, well-kept, and dated (in the good way) architecture I saw there. It really is a genteel gem, and it hasn’t been covered over with a layer of development cruft accompanied by how some things ‘just need to be updated’.

I like having old things about that are well-kept and sweet in that way. Living in a place that gets stamped out of a die every five years as the moods change leads to that evil of evils … tedium, monotony. Portland has history and lets it hang out.

I give you the Hillsdale Center, which may be found on the north side of Southwest Capitol Highway just west of Southwest Sunset Boulevard, in what amounts to downtown Hillsdale.

The thing that cued me of the vintage of the place was that lovely, sublime roof line. Accented in teal, I was all of a sudden called back to when I was a kid, a time when the American ideal was a dapper fellow at work, all suit-n-tie, and his well-attired wife was going to the shops, stopping in at a beauty salon here, a stationer’s shop there, and the post office … and there’s still a post office station here in this little shopping center.

I remember being a kid in Silverton, going to the JCPenney store downtown (hard to believe there was ever one in Silverton, but there was), and the hardware store, and the pharmacy.

It was a gentle time.

The thing I noticed the most about Hillsdale Center was just how neat and trim everything was. Oh, it’s in a tony (yeah, I said it, Onion, and I say it regularly!) part of town where the incomes are rather high-middling to just-plain-high, so maybe they have the throw-weight to demand the rents that keep if spiffy, but it is nice.

And old-school, as I said. Submitted for your approval, the Jade Dragon Chinese Restaurant. Old school, and proud of it.

It anchors the building closest to the corner of Cap Highway and Sunset Boulevard with massive authority. I adore this edifice. I love the way the corner looks like a hinged wall of LEGOs, and I love the way the paint job accentuates the entry. Do I need to also mention that I’m absolutely smitten with the two huge ideograms centered up near the roof line there?

Reviews of the restaurant on Google+ et alia suggest that the food quality is mediocre. We apparently all consider ourselves such foodies that only the most sublime restaurant experiences garner even the most tepid approbation from us. Bull. Those of use who live in the actual world know that mediocre food in just the right context can be sublime.

We shall therefore, perforce, be visiting there for lunch one Saturday when next we pay a visit to Hillsdale Art Supply. We expect to enjoy this. The rest of you can shut up and enjoy your P.F. Chang’s and be all pretentious and locavore-y.

And one amusing aspect of the layout is the sheer topography of it. As witness:

The slope you see here is looking down from near the entry to the rear parking lot off Sunset Boulevard. This slope is, as in many photos, much steeper than it looks. I’m no civil engineer (if I was an engineer I’d make quite a nifty nasty and obnoxious one, I just know) but that slope has got to be more than the mythical 6% that’s so popular on the road signs. Immediately to my left in that building is a liquor store, just over from that, the post office, and the art supply store just beyond that.

I find it utterly charming that the solution to having a walking path at the side of the building that doesn’t include steps, which would be inaccessible to anyone without a perfectly operable pair of legs, is to delineate it on the street with that red line fimbriated in white. One can see that it opens into a crosswalk extending across the walkway to the line of parking spaces.

Indeed, it seems like parts of this would be suitable for Italian mountain goats to shop in.

Never mind. We are smitten with this cute shopping complex never the less.

I mean, they call it the West Hills, not the West Plains.

[liff in PDX] Undocumented Immigrant Discovered In SE Portland Parking Lot!!!

Posted in liff in PDX, pdx, PDX Wildlife, SE PDX Photos on December 2, 2013 by Samuel John Klein Portlandiensis
2968.… and we found him ourselves. This is what what he looked like:

Now, before you go all nuh-uh!!!! on me, that goose was a Canada goose, and Canada’s a foreign country (unless we’ve annexed it yet), and I didn’t get a chance to search him, but I’ll bet ya that handsome fella hasn’t got one stick of ID on him.

Well, come to think of it, he’s probably more of an undocumented migrant. 

Here’s some footage of him stealing bread from good old, American red-white-n-blue geese:

Seriously, though, that is kind of a handsome guy, isn’t he? He was hanging around the Franz bread outlet store, out on SE Foster Rd between 111th and 122nd, because bread, yo, and there were locals perfectly willing to throw him some food.

I’ve said the life is wild out here in outer SE Portland.

Case closed.

[logo] Lloyd Llogo: The Most Portlandest Of Malls Gets A New Graphic Llook

Posted in logo design, logo redesign, pdx, PDX Ephemera, PDX History, pdx legends on November 27, 2013 by Samuel John Klein Portlandiensis
2961.Portland’s Mall is re-imagining itself.

The Lloyd Center is pretty much the point of entry of the Mall into the culture of Oregon. Built in 1960, once opened, Oregon shopping joined the national scene in as much as the modern shopping mall is concerned.

It’s had its ups and downs; it went from a 100-store mall with an open courtyard to a completely-enclosed mall with two levels of shopping and one of offices. It’s really going strong, and considering how some malls have died, are dying, or have re-imagined their own selves into sere multi-acre parking lots surrounded by big boxes, that’s no small feat.

For many years, now, its logo looked like this:

… and this wasn’t too bad. The rose-as-an-O was very appropriate design, and I always thought the type was rather restrained and refined.

The center has undergone a change of ownership, and the new owners have deemed a logo refresh is in order. Delving back into its 60s-past, here’s what they came up with:

A report by KATU-Channel 2 relates that the new owners feel as though the design harkens back to the Center’s original ‘retro charm’. I can see this. The design would tessellate very nicely into one of those latticework dividers so popular in the hip, upscale pads of the 60s.

I must admit, it didn’t take off with me right away. I didn’t much care for the asymmetry, though once I pictured it as a wall texture, it clicked right there and then. It was a quirky inspiration, to be sure, that caused the designer to link three of the open circles with the L, leaving the one bolded into a C to stand outside, but after sifting the design in my head for a while, it works.

At least it does succeed in evoking a retro feel, and as far as that goes, it’s a success.

[pdx] T.S.O.PDX.

Posted in pdx, pdx artists, pdx legends, pdx music on November 5, 2012 by Samuel John Klein Portlandiensis
2887.Portland, they say, has a special ‘sound’. Could be that that’s at least a little because the dude at Ear Trumpet Labs, Philip Graham, does such a fantastic job of makin’ microphones.

They’re almost painfully Portland … many custom designs incorporate bicycle sprockets … and before you get a hankering to make Portlandia-esque jokes about it, consider that they’ve attained legendary status amongst performers, many of which are quite willing and eager to pay the prices asked for these hand-made works of recording art.

It’s hard not to look at the Josephine model (illustrated) and not think of recording studios and performances of the 30s, 40s … the swing era.

The URL is

[pdx] Rewind: Extreme Makeover – Made In Oregon Sign Edition

Posted in liff in PDX, Made In Oregon, pdx, pdx legends on October 11, 2012 by Samuel John Klein Portlandiensis
2867.Stumbled upon by The Wife™, of which I am grateful (both for the stumblage as well as the wifeitude) …

I am usually of torn mind about most politicos, and when it comes to Commissioner Leonard, I’m positively schizy. That said, one of his moves I liked the absolute most was when he got Ramsay Signs to donate the famous Made In Oregon sign on the White Stag Block at the west end of the Burnside Bridge to the city – so as to prevent the U of O from putting its name on a beloved landmark and, not coincidentally, to make the sign a landmark for all of Portland, not just the Duck fans.

Go Beavers.

Anywhozzle, the ensewage from this stumblage is an article at Commissioner Leonard’s blog, which actually showed some behind-the-scenes looks at Ramsay Signs as they pieced the new look together. I’ve always been obsessive about signs, and seeing them up close is something cool to me. Views like this:

The rest of it is here: (posted in 11/2010).