But now, you see, they have dropped Michael Phelps' contract for one of the most retarded reasons, I can think of. Michael Vick, certainly. Barry Bonds, of course. I would throw Kobe Bryant out of the fucking building for his behavior, but his sponsors stick with him. And Ray Lewis, of course is a real winner. But Phelps gets a buzz on at some party and ADMITS TO IT, like a fucking real man, and gets dropped by Kellogg and Subway. Kellogg can go suck a frosted flake, but Subway I actually enjoy. Needless to say, I am well aware of their reasonings, and I think they are full of shit so they won't be getting anymore money from me. And the sheriff or whatever that wants to prosecute him... they can go screw themselves also, no-evidence-having unclefuckers.
Back to the Ore-eh-gohn. You see, I pronounce it that way because Phil Lesh sings it thusly in Pride of Cucamonga. Oh yeah, Phil and the boys. I will tell you if I have not already told you. XM/SIRIUS radio is the shit. The Grateful Dead channel. Are you kidding me? I can drive all the day (and night) and listen to ENTIRE live shows and never lose the signal. Or listen to Air America and my favorite left-wing pundits and fellow insane asylum members discuss the state of my great country.
So, Althea and I left the Ass-toria and headed eastward along the magical Interstate 84 to the lovely little hamlet of Hood River. Why? What the hell is in Hood River? THIS is the question I have been awake nights trying to answer. Finally my testicles grew to the size where I would be able to discern the truth of my query to the gods.
On the way to Hood River there is a little loop of highway full of waterfalls, the most notable being Multnomah Falls. I did not stop to take pics cause I have already done that in years past. Fuck those falls! They are all wet!
So, I think I have figured out rural Ore-eh-gohn. It is like a Merle Haggard concert waiting to happen. The guys all have the same beard and haircut. WTF?! It is like a cookie cutter went crazy on the Ore-eh-gohn. And all the rejects got dumped in Portland. I remember when I moved to Seattle and everyone up there was like, oh the Oregon people. When they show up you will know. And I swear to it, it was true. You could always tell someone from Ore-eh-gohn. Seattle at the time was a bit rube itself, and I think our neighbors to the south were a bit more.
Honestly though, these days it is hard to really say because of the influx of homies from all over the place. The OR rubes and the WA rubes are kissing cousins. I think the folks of Seattle are a bit more sophisticated than the PDXers... BUT the Portland is a very relaxed, friendly place where you don't get the Seattle 'tude. That is something that I have come to NOT like about my town. Back in the day you could wave or say hi to anyone and get it right back. Now... no one has the time to say hi, give you directions, or a quickie in the alley.
Please believe me that I am not condemning anyone from Ore-eh-gohn but for the sake of jest and satire. The people in Ore-eh-gohn are marvelous and very cheerful. Still... seriously, it IS a Merle Haggard concert waiting to happen. (whenever you see Oregon in the rest of my posts, please pronounce it Ore-eh-gohn. gohn rhymes with bone.)
When the radio announcers say, "The greatest hits of the sixties and seventies," the 'h' is so silent, they actually say, "The greatest tits..." I swear it. Listen. And then listen again. They be laughing in the background. "Tiiiiitttttssssss......"
So, this is what is going on in Hood River. Pictures ahead!
This is an old train depot no longer used. Unless you count the graffiti artists.
If you stop at a viewpoint the name of which I forget at the moment, you can look across the Columbia River Gorge and see a network of sluices that floated logs over nine miles from one town to another decaying on the side of the mountain. I had to pull out the 300mm lens to even see it on the other shore. Here is a section of it.
This is a small section of the Columbia River Gorge that divides WA and OR. The haze was tremendous, even more than my UV filter could handle. It is quite majestic. Really overpowering.
Some random pic of the forest I was admiring. Nothing really interesting, just a lot of fucking trees.
A small slice of heaven. Except that Full Sail (THE brewery in Hood River) is not that good. And their food sucked, too. But the locals swear by it. I just swore.
Here is the artichoke soup I got... which was suspiciously congruent to the artichoke dip. Except the dip came with more bread and some salad shit which I found hard to eat with a spoon, the only utensil I was given. Dip is the bottom pic.
Ah Nora's. What a great little bar and... consignment shop? Stoned I was not. I went in and asked for a whiskey/sour and the woman said to me, "I don't know that brand. Is it from Kansas?" She is lucky my camera cost more than cranial surgery. She lives another day.
One of the many odd denizens of Hood River. I actually took this picture completely level with the rest of the scene, but I heard this dude murmuring something like, "Ah... a pinch of mandrake and a fist of sulpherous ash and my mana will be at full strength! Then the Beast of Eugene shall quake in its cavernous den!" and my camera shook uncontrollably.
After being rebuffed by the magic of Merlin there, I stumbled off to the Big Horse Brewpub and hung it on. Bartender Lacey (whose backside is shown below) gave good ideas for beers. I obliged. Then the deluge of skiers from Mt. Hood showed up and demanded the best of this and that and why the hell didn't they stay in freaking Aspen?
Althea was grumbling about not getting the good barleywines or the whiskeys. I told her she would be rewarded in a later life as a toaster to some king of a defunct African nation.
Lacey's backside as promised. Not as interesting as the frontside. But she was shy. And high on speed, I am pretty sure.
The evil toll bridge that cost me $1.50 each way cause I have TWO axles and the lady in the booth was jealous cause I could walk upright without helper monkeys.
I have exhausted all interesting topics for the day. I am now in Newport, OR, land of the delicious Rogue brewery. I will post more on that tomorrow. I can't seem to get away from Rogue! I am drinking one currently!
Oh yeah... if you are ever in (I forget the name of butthole town, OR) do NOT get pulled over for speeding. I was going 50 in a 30, right? On of those sits where the cop is RIGHT on the other side of the NEW speed limit sign. So, 20 MPH over. How much you think? I will tell you how the fuck much. $264.00. How is that for sticking to the out of towners. They think I am not going to come to court cause I live in Seattle. Dudes, I live in an RV. I will park outside the fucking courthouse and shit on the lawn. First I eat lots of black beans and corn.