Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Rain in Spain Falls Mainly on Portland

I used to say, "No, it doesn't really rain that much, but let the bozos in the rest of the country think so, to keep them away." Of course, I used to be one of them bozos and I'm here. And I'm soaking wet, because it really does rain that much.

I think the rain's a necessity for the people of the Pacific Northwest. The mind of a Portlander, affected as it is by copious amounts of coffee, tofu, sushi, Thai dishes I can't pronounce, and quinoa, functions clearest in the rain (or at least the near-rain). I reach this notion based on my observations of the opposite. When the sun peeks its white-hot head out of a deep-gray cloud (our state mascot), people lose their minds.

Friend and author Sarah Royal remarked on the propensity for all sun-lit conversations to turn to the sun, no matter the current topic nor the gravitas of the moment. For example:

Skinny Jeans: I was kayaking yesterday in the Willamette and, long story short, my thumb is infected.

Skirt w/Leggings: I know! God, the sun feels so good!

Me: The Shins? Meh.

That sort of thing. In Portland, the Cloud is the Warden and the Sun is the ACLU nudging him, saying, "C'mon, how 'bout a little yard time?"

It's "Blade Runner" all the time here, and then...a few frames of "Blame it on Rio."

I love the rain. I moved here daydreaming of the dark wet woods, poncho'd on the waterfall trails. And I've loved it. But when my emotional poncho springs a leak, I'm as peppy as Thornton Wilder's Stage Manager.

Yes, it really does rain that much, but we've got the biggest used book store in the country, a blessing of independent record stores, and the Reggie Deluxe, for starters.

You want the sun? Move to California.

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