The Big Party!

Patricia and Matt were married on August 19, 2021, in Tacoma, Washington, and they are having a big party to celebrate!

Celebrations in the time of coronavirus…

…are tricky. We planned this party before the Delta variant started surging. Because it has, and because there is still a global pandemic going on, we will follow CDC guidelines and ask everyone to wear a mask indoors. 8/26 update! Oregon guidelines require masking outdoors if six feet of distance cannot be kept. Please wear your mask outdoors if that is the situation.

We’ve switched some activities planned as indoor activities to the back yard and we will change things up as things develop. We are fully vaccinated and hope that, if you are eligible, you are also fully vaccinated. With that said, let’s get into the details of the Big Party!

When: 9/11/21

Where: The Orange Door (Patricia and Matt’s house)

Time: 2:00 p.m. onward

Let’s talk about the elephant in the room.

We planned a big party on the 20th Anniversary of 9/11. Not ideal, but that’s what we did. As the New York Times said in 2005, “Sept. 11 is a strange, unclassifiable presence on the calendar. It is not an official holiday, and yet it is a day that arouses emotions far more powerful than the half-remembered sentiments behind Columbus or Labor Day.” September 11, 2001 was a big deal in the US, and we will have a way for people to share their memories of that day, if they want to.

Read on for the rest of the run of show!

The Prize Drawings

We have a party passport ready for every attendee. Each activity you take part in earns you a stamp in your passport and one ticket to enter into one of four different drawings for a gift card to one of our favorite Portland places. Plus, there are other opportunities to earn tickets. Gift card drawings will take place throughout the party. You need not be present to win.

  • $50 gift card to New Seasons. Drawing at 4:00 p.m.
  • $50 gift card to McMenamins. Drawing at 6:00 p.m.
  • $50 gift card to Powell’s City of Books. Drawing at 8:00 p.m.
  • $50 gift card to the Portland Game Store. Drawing at 10:00 p.m.


Ongoing Activities:

Available from 2:00 p.m. onward.

Trivia (indoors or outdoors)—Answer 20 questions written by Patricia and Matt about random (though mostly person-specific) minutia. Much like Patricia’s 10 Years in Portland Pub Quiz Party.

Art (indoors)—Make art with a variety of supplies. Much like Matt’s Graduation & Birthday Art Party and the Art Party.

Photo Scavenger Hunt (indoors and outdoors)—Search the Orange Door and the surrounding block to find and take pictures of a variety of items. Much like the scavenger hunt party Patricia had back around 2004 before she owned a digital camera, so there’s no record of it.

Hanging out (indoors and outdoors)—We’re not drill sergeants. You can just chill. You don’t even have to stand. We’ve got chairs and everything.

Time-based Activities

3:00 Bingo! (outdoors)—Bring your quarters! Use them to buy game boards (25¢ each) and play along as the numbers are called. You get a passport stamp for playing, and Bingo winners get an additional ticket. Much like Bingo at Rosefriend (predigital camera) and Patricia’s Birthday Bingo Party.

5:00 Bring a Song (indoors)—Are you ready to sing? Bring a song. Or a piece, if you are good at music and have a piece ready to perform. You can play your solo piece, sing a solo, sing a sing-along song, or sing with a group of people. Bring your own instrument, or we’ve got a digital piano and a TV that can pull up Karaoke songs on YouTube. If you need a CD player, tell us ahead of time and we’ll rustle something up. Much like our Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog Sing-Along Party, or Patricia’s 40th Birthday Karaoke Party (and all the karaoke gatherings since.)

6:00 Shakespeare (outdoors)—Either perform or watch Act V of Wm. Shakespeare’s Comedy of Errors. We will have scripts and links to access PDF copies of scripts for all performers/readers. Everyone watching gets a stamp, and everyone performing earns an additional ticket. Much like our Soup and Shakespeare Party.

7:00 Board Gaming (indoors)—We’ve got gamer games like Dead of Winter, Spirit Island, and Marvel Champions; social games like Medium, UNO, and Skip-Bo; and a few trivia games. You can also bring your own games, too. We will have multiple tables available for players. Much like the regular game night we’ve been hosting forever. Everyone who plays a game earns a stamp.

Other ways to earn tickets

  • Scavenger Hunt, find all things
  • Trivia 18/20 correct
  • Vote for which anniversary we should celebrate
  • Previous attendee of 5, 10, 15, 20, or 25 past parties
  • Known Matt for 5, 10, 15, 20, years
  • Known Patricia for 5, 10, 15, 20 years

But What Will Sustain Us Through This Party?

It’s a long party, so we have choices.


  • Tap water, and even ice to put in it! (I know! So fancy!) (Also, Patricia’s favorite beverage.)(Though she likes it without ice.)
  • A variety of sodas.
  • Homemade lemonade and limeade.
  • A selection of beer picked out by a New Seasons employee who is good at that.
  • Red and white wines.
  • A signature cocktail: the Whisky Buck.


  • 2:00—We’ll have platters from New Seasons including the seasonal vegetable platter, the Mediterranean platter, the charcuterie platter, and the brie and fruit platter.
  • 5:00—Casa Maya will bring us all we need for a taco/burrito bar.
  • 8:00—If people are still hungry, we’ll order pizza from Fino.


Patricia loves cakes! So much so that she’s making three of them. Patricia doesn’t love wedding cake traditions involving two-person slicing and feeding/shoving, so there will be none of that.

Here’s what we’ll be slicing up:

  • 4:00—The Pink Cake. Chocolate cake with raspberry-tinted buttercream frosting
  • 6:00—Watergate Cake with Impeachment Frosting. Pistachio cake, pistachio buttercream, and candied pistachios.
  • 8:00—Goober Cake. Peanut butter cake with peanut butter frosting, plus a few layers of chocolate ganache.

Should I RSVP?


Yes, you should!

It will help a lot!

You can RSVP by posting a comment on this post (Patricia will need to approve the comment, so you won’t see your RSVP instantaneously), phoning, messaging, texting, or emailing Matt or Patricia, or mentioning that you are coming the next time you see either of us.

Are you registered?

We have no registry. We own a lot of stuff already. If you are coming to the party, your presence is present enough. If you are not coming to the party, good wishes (sent via vibes, text, email, or the USPS) are also wonderful.

If you are a person who really likes to celebrate things with money, you could make a donation to:

Are you coming to the party? Cool! We can’t wait to see you. Don’t forget to RSVP!

Are you sending us good wishes! That’s awesome! Thanks so much!

Fully Vaccinated and I’m Headed to the Movies

I went to the Living Room Theaters to watch Together Together for my first official fully vaccinated outing. The movie theater hadn’t pieced together their premovie slideshow and there were no previews! It is still very early in the venturing out process.

There were two other couples in the theater with me.

The movie was exactly the right movie to break my estrangement from movie theaters. I’m looking forward to seeing more movies in the dark.

We Visit the A, B, Sea

For our date tonight, we searched out Mike Bennett’s A, B, Sea display, which I read about in the Oregonian. Each day, Bennett puts out another letter in his themed alphabet in his front yard. We were there on the nineteenth day, so could see A through S.

Matt writes postcards to his niece and nephew.

We both posed for this top-notch head-in-the-hole display.

Matt poses next to his initials: jellyfish and manta ray.

I especially liked this elephant seal.

I posed next to my initials: pelican and clownfish. Also, when we visited, there were no other people present. I think maybe families come earlier in the day.

Though no seashells were available when we stopped by, you can see that others have decorated and returned these seashells and they were added to the display.

There were postcards and stickers to take home.

It was a fun find! Thanks, Mike Bennett. After the entire alphabet appears, this will go to live at the Rogue Brewing in Newport.

Celebrating Nineteen Years

Well. It’s our second pandemic anniversary celebration (who woulda thunk?) and so we ordered food to go yet again. From this menu we chose pork schnitzel, sugar snap peas with almond dip, asparagus panzanella, and hand rolled couscous.

I have no pictures of the food, but it was delicious and I hope to eat at this restaurant when we can eat at the restaurant.

And here we are at 19 years.

We also ordered desserts from St. Honré Bakery. They were much smaller than I imagined. They were also delicious.

Books Read in April 2020

Picture Books

The Bear in my Family
Maya Tatsukawa
Read for Librarian Book Group

Readers may wonder early on who the bear really is.

Carole Boston Weatherford and Frank Morrison
Read for Librarian Book Group

The illustrations and rhyming storytelling is top-notch in this picture book about the Queen of Soul. But what really pushes the book to greatness is the cover hidden under the jacket.

Young Adult

Rent a Boyfriend
Gloria Cho

Cho imagines a world where young Asian-American women can rent a boyfriend to get their parents off their backs. (This is, apparently, a thing that does happen in Asian countries.)

This was a fun romance.

Let Me Hear a Rhyme
Tiffany D. Jackson

This book is a love letter to a time and place (90s Brooklyn). I had trouble with the back and forth of the narrative, but enjoyed the mystery and the antics.

The Rest of the Story
Sarah Dessen

A great summer-at-the-lake story with observations about class, family, and addiction. I sometimes felt whiplashed by Dessen’s technique of jumping forward and then looping us in, and I wished I had made a character list at the beginning. But the characters were great and they kept me reading.

The Way You Make Me Feel
Maureen Goo

Trying on and shedding personalities is one of the most interesting things about being a teenager. Due to a prank gone awry at her junior prom, Clara starts spending more time with new people and that makes apparent what her current attitude leaves out of her life.

As usual with Goo, really great characters!

Fan Art
Sarah Tregay

This book is set in Boise and I’m pretty sure the high school in this book is standing in for my high school. Aside from that very specific enjoyment, I liked that the main character was out to his parents and not out to his friends. It’s rare to see that combo.

My Calamity Jane
Hand, Ashton, Meadows

Calamity Jane, Annie Oakley, Frank Butler, and Wild Bill Hickock take us on an alternate history trip as they hunt garou, what we call werewolves. Full of the patented asides the Janies are famous for, this was a great trip, though I suspect Wild Bill’s actual show spent a lot of time talking about killing Indians, not garou, which dampened my enjoyment some.

Grownup Fiction

The Nickel Boys
Colson Whitehead

Elwood’s life before, after, and during his time at the Nickel Academy is rich with detail in this engaging, heartbreaking book. The acknowledgements have links to connections with the real-life reform school the Nickel Academy is based on.

Young Nonfiction

Paper Son
Julie Leung & Chris Sasaki
Read for Librarian Book Group

Not only the story of pioneering (and uncredited) Disney animator Tyrus Wong, but also an introduction to paper sons and daughters.

The Snow Fell Three Graves Deep
Allan Wolf

Wolf provides a good balance of poetry and prose as he tells the tale of the Donner Party.

Gone to the Woods
Gary Paulsen
Read for Librarian Book Group

Paulsen’s memoir of his childhood is rich with language, vivid, joyful, and heartbreaking. Life has changed a lot since Paulsen was a boy and hopefully not as many children lose their childhoods as he did.

Grownup Nonfiction

Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town
Jon Krakauer

Krakauer’s coverage of a “rape scandal” (which really was a lower-than-average series of rapes) is full of things to be frustrated about. New to me was David Lisak’s work on serial rapists and the role of prosecutors in charging or not charging rapists. The women’s stories—all of them—are gasp inducing and the aftermath (legally and personally) is rough. I read this book in a 24-hour period.

Shit, Actually: The Definitive, 100% Objective Guide to Modern Cinema
Lindy West

I greatly enjoyed this “objective” tour through modern cinema. Lindy West’s asides and observations brought much mirth to the household as I read.

Translation: the boyfriend heard a lot of this book as read by an up-and-coming Audible narrator: me.

Second Shot!

My second shot was early in the morning. This turned out to be a mistake, as I had mild flu symptoms and the copy editing load at work was heavy and also one of the copy editors called in sick. So I was shivering and miserable while copy editing. Still, it’s better than not getting a second dose.

As you can see, I was one of those 15,249 Pfizer vaccine doses.

Here are my various things acquired on this day. The woman who gave me my shot was a bit distracted. Among other things, she asked me what color bandage I wanted and then after I said orange, gave me the yellow.

As it was before, I enjoyed the efficient process at the convention center.

Requiem: Silicone Spatula

This was given to me as a Christmas gift and it spent some time at The Emerson School because I had too many spatulas. Eventually though, I ran low again at home and I brought this back home.

I liked the stainless steel handle combined with the silicone head. Just the right amount of hard and soft!

Sadly, eventually the silicone broke down and split, so to the great garbage can in the sky this goes.