Battleground Lake

Matt and I took a drive to check out Battleground Lake, which a coworker had recommended as a potential summer swimming hole.

After a pleasant drive we found a small little lake with some nice hiking trails.

We walked around the inner hiking path and then longer the longer path that doesn’t have lakeside views.

The lake didn’t seem to have a lot of places to hang out when not swimming, but did seem like a fun place to swim, once swimming season happens. Until then, these birds reign supreme.

It was a fun excursion and I look forward to coming back when it’s swimming weather.

Space made for drivers walking but not for walkers walking

Sometimes I get off the MAX train early and walk across the Broadway Bridge to get to work. In the last few years, this situation has evolved. There used to be parking spaces that weren’t very well signaged, then the bike lane, then the car lane. Things have been rearranged into bike lane, then a space for walking, then the parking spaces, then the lane for cars. You can even see the bit of crosswalk that has been added.

So why does this bug me? Because that place for walking was made for the people who have driven their cars and parked. It is not for people walking who want to continue to the Broadway Bridge. You can see what happens here:

At the last parking space, the bike lane takes over where the walking space was. As a pedestrian, I am forced to either walk in the bike lane until I hit that crosswalk you can barely see in the distance or cross the bike line and walk in the grass.

While there are probably not a ton of people walking on this street, I think it’s important to include all modes of transportation, not just some.

The Nerve of Concordia

Eight days ago, Concordia, a private college located in northeast Portland, announced that the school was closing. Everyone in the middle of their programs—preservice teachers, nursing students, students with one or two semesters left—would need to find a new college to attend. Not two years from now, not after a year, but after the completion of this semester.

The board knew this was coming, but they said nothing. Billboard space continued to be bought, prospective students still toured the school. Tuition payments were still expected.

The school is run by the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. By withholding important information from tuition paying students, they stole their students’ money.

Concordia built a beautiful campus in Northeast Portland. But I’ve always had trouble with the organization that runs the school. With this move, they’ve showed their true colors and they aren’t looking very Christian.

The Oscars. On the tiny screen.

I realized the day of the ceremony that my antenna doesn’t pull in the television station that was broadcasting the ceremony, but I figured I would use one of the streaming options. My friends were watching it at the Kennedy School and I could have gone to that, but I had planned for the ceremony to coincide with a block of time for cooking. If I skipped the cooking, I would have no food for the week.

It turned out all the ways I could stream the ceremony involved paying $50 for “live TV” in conjunction with YouTube, Hulu and other services. We had already blown through our free trials.

There were a few hours where I wished I could listen to a radio broadcast. But that was not an option either. Eventually I realized that while Matt had used his LiveTV free trail on YouTube, that I had not. So I signed up and watched the ceremony on my phone in the kitchen.

It was a tough nut to crack, but I did it.

Fire at the Oregon Motel

I was awake and reading in bed when I heard a hubbub at the Oregon Motel. Such hubbubs aren’t unusual for that property, so I didn’t investigate. But then I smelled something. Looking out my window told me what was burning.

I woke up Matt and had him make sure the fire trucks were coming while I grabbed the cats’ carriers.

Then we watched from my bedroom window as the firefighters arrived and went to work.

Using their powerful flashlights and a chainsaw, they cut a few holes in the roof.

It was interesting to see how they used the ladder to move around on the roof. They also popped all the covers off the vents.

After that it was time to pack up and drive away.

It was early, but not so early the MAX wasn’t running.

Everyone made it safely out of their motel rooms. Two units caught fire, but the fire did not spread past those units.

I feel lucky that this was as close as we came to fire and I’m glad that no one was harmed.

Last of the Golden Signature Notepads

Former coworker Zoe and I used these notepads to make lists of things to do. Zoe even went a step further and cut up the used pages to make scratch paper from the back.

You would think I could order more, but I cannot, because I broke up with Quill. And someone bought much too many of the same size of notepad but wide ruled (inferior!) so I have to use all of those before I can get back to the recycled paper college ruled aesthetic of these notepads.

But I’ve enjoyed these notepads while they’ve lasted.