22 October 2006

monthly gazette

so much to recall since the last posting! portland is a whirlwind of wondrous activity, leaving it difficult to participate and still allow time to sleep. here are some basic updates:

we've started up the arduous yet hopefully successful venture to gain sponsorship, which could take us to china and hawaii. i only have eyes for china, myself, for reasons that are not difficult to ascertain. thoughts of visiting Rebecca wherever she is (and since her daughter is marrying a man with a different passport, so this could be anywhere) fill idle timed thoughts. more soon. in the interim, we've taken to asking everyone for bios which i get to collect and, oh yes, READ! you think you know a person after paddling in the same boat with them for a year . . .

the bus project met their goal of registering 15,000 young voters. they did over 16,000 young and over 20,000 cumulative. way to go! it took thankless tasks like pub crawls, post-concert sifting, line hustling, pioneer couthouse square trawling, and a host of innovative questing i can't keep track of. just before the 5pm tuesday deadline, i hustled the street where i work downtown. 10 voters in 25 minutes. very cool, and yet quite sad. i wonder at a mail-in ballot system that disenfranchises the often-moving youth vote and negates the cultural aspects of the voting process even as it increases overall voting participation (and when the average age in the last primary was 62?)
Alex and i went out on the sunday before the tuesday deadline and headed up the:

Voting Bike Brunch Brigade - sunday morning a few folks met at Bus Project HQ and whirled out to southeast p-town to attack the unsuspecting, unregistered brunch-munching hopefuls on belmont. Alex and i registered at least 10 in a couple of hours with time to stop for coffee in between. today (tuesday, 17 october) is the last day to register voters. deadline 5pm. just thought i’d mention.

Candidates Gone Wild - Ben, Corey, Lauren, Adam and i sat in the audience for this little ditty, an evening of discussing the dense (of either meaning) ballot measures and heckling gubernatorial candidates. sadly, the republican abd democratic candidates felt unable to make an appearance (boo hiss), so we were treated to lambasting Saxton and Kulo's absenteeism as well as a better spotlight on the other candidates. Joe Keating is a wonderful fellow who's talent show entry included a headstand on a yoga mat.

i met with Mark Lear for an hour this past wednesday to discuss my "road user's manual" project, and he suggested as an alternative to research delivery truck and intra-city freight trainings which drivers are required to take every few years. this would be a great way to learn how the hell insurance companies work to ameliorate their liability risk. personally, however, i have to admit that individual drivers are less-than-adequately trained with ped and bike roadsharing laws almost nil, and these are the roadusers who are at highest risk of plowing into traffic that's not enveloped in tank-like cradles.

yesterday we went to our professor, Rick Gustafson's, house, and he took us on a tour of traffic calming installation in the portland metro area. fascinating! and there are some great people in the class, i tell you! we went back to his house afterwards where his wife had kindly laid oiut some nibblins for us, and we drank beer on his porch and kibbitzed for longer than we politely should have. he's going to sagrada familia in barcelona next week, which arouses a tinge of jealousy. gaudi! what a guy what a guy.

a group of us are exploring the possibility of starting an umbrella nonprofit. don't want to say any more than this because the nuances of such a potential organization is rife with differing vision and questions. a good group of people and an interesting process.

Africa Women’s Bicycle Initiative at Mississippi Pizza saturday evening - i actually got there a little early because i was supposed to meet a friend whose sickness prevailed in the end and couldn’t attend. all the better for eavesdropping, my dear! the folks who were organizing the event sat next to me in the parlor and talked about last minute details. as with many events, there is an equal fear of just too many and too few people turning up. but it was definitely a baby bear event with the attendance “just right”. some bike helmets in the audience, small packs of “the youth”, some world travelers - a healthy mix. great music. i didn’t stick around for the auction and wonder how they did.

that's all i have time for today! trying to get a junk to funk submission ready and don't know whether i'll be able.

thank you, two devoted readers.

1 comment:

Adam said...

you are going to have to quit your job if you want to do well by your projects!!