Sunday, May 19, 2013

I hate to say it, but it's probably me.

Bonus points if you catch that line. Really. I might have a giveaway.

So, pardon the absence but as you and everyone who knows me knows, event week was even more hell than usual this year.

Thursday, in a meeting with people from the city and county, I found out why.

A bit of backstory: the City of Portland, Oregon - where my event is held - used to be called "the City of Roses." Really. That was its official branded tagline. Which is sweet. Sappy, maybe. But in the past decade or so, Portland has changed from a kind of dull, former logging-economy town to one invaded by Prius-driving hipsters. (No offense if you are a Prius-driving hipster, unless you're one of the ones who is constantly cutting me off in traffic and refusing to let me merge. In which case, fuck off!)

Portland's tag line is now "The City that Works."

Well, let me tell you, many times, it doesn't. Back to Thursday. After nearly running us out of our own event, the huge, for-profit company that puts on a half marathon that invades the east side of our city had to sit down with city and county people, fire, public transport, traffic engineers (that is how many peoples' lives they fuck up for their event - our tax dollars at work) - and me!

And I found out that - I am not making this up - THERE IS NO one central location/person/bureau/department/database that has all of the construction and event permit information in one place.





And it was all I could do not to blurt out, "Are you fucking kidding me?" That was my first thought. Immediately followed by, "Of course. That is SO PORTLAND."

This is the city that chose streets that were under construction as the detour route for a major, separate construction project. Fuckety fuck fuck.

And on that note, now that our event is done, the relief is such that this must be what valium feels like. Thank you to all who have donated (I hit my goal and raised $2,500, and my team has raised almost $7,000 - more on that later) and cheered me on - we had the biggest number of walkers ever.

But of course I couldn't keep my language to myself, apparently even when I accidentally called my dad, who, by the way, was my biggest donor and has always been my biggest champion, and doesn't mind when I say fuck! Thanks, Pop!

So in talking to him this afternoon, he said, "You know, when you butt-dialed me, I saw I had a voicemail from you. Then I started to listen and I didn't hear anything but background noise, and then I heard someone say, 'Fuck! They've closed off the roads too early!' and I knew that was my daughter!"

Yep, that's family pride.


Elephant's Child said...

I have always loved Sting. And if you only swore a little (or even a lot) and didn't commit murder and mayhem you have done well. Incredibly well. Somedays WTF? is the only response which makes sense.

DWei said...

I thought that was just some stereotype or legend that Portland consists of nothing but hipsters.

Welp, time to never go there. Ever.

LL Cool Joe said...

Ha ha, Dad's are the best aren't they! Well done!!!

Lynn said...

That's funny that your dad heard you like that over the phone. Congrats on the race - I know you are glad it's over.

Holland said...

I don't know Portland... but if it is anything like.... The Hague, Miami, Moscow, Istanbul, Berlin, Rome, London or Paris... FUCK the close the roads everywhere way too

Rock Chef said...

We are starting to get things like road works under control here - instead of having a road dug up for electrical work, then a week later the water people come along and repeat the process, they are supposed to get together and so the road is only closed and dug up once...

But I can't believe the city lacks that sort of database...

Granny Annie said...

Do you ever think that word was created just for you?

A Beer For The Shower said...

Portland sounds like my own personal hell. I hate Prius drivers (well, like 99% of them) and I hate hipsters. Combine the two and it's just pure evil.

Glad to hear everything turned out okay, though!

Cheryl said...

Congrats on your team raising so much toward your goals.

Sounds exactly like most city's bureaucratic dealings. After 21 moves, I have yet to see any city where any dept. communicates with any other department...thus creating a some type of major fuck-up.

That is funny about the butt dial to your dad. I am sure he laughed.

Workingdan said...

Prius drivers are prissy pricks. I think that's why they call the car a Prius...sound like priss and drive like pricks!

OldLady Of The Hills said...

Congratulations to you on your BIG WIN!!!

Nothing works anymore. Nothing. Not Cities or The Phone Company, or Banks, OR Anything!!! We are in Big Big trouble in this country---and I guess, The World, too!
How this is all going to end---God Knows!
BUT, meanwhile, you had a very successful Event, in spite of many obstacles, AND I love your father!!!

Debra She Who Seeks said...

I'm sure you brought a tear o' pride to your Daddy's eye! Congrats on your successful event.

G. B. Miller said...

Hartford is pretty much the same way. Non-stop construction projects for the past 2 years plus poor traffic control plus inefficient police officers equals a road rage that an elephant would be scared of.

Congrats on a job well done.

Riot Kitty said...

EC: Good catch! Now I need your address. You can email me at And agree about WTF.
DW: Well, not "nothing but," but certain neighborhoods (e.g. where I work) are just teeming.
Joey: Indeed, and thanks!
Lynn: A bit embarrassing but yes! And thanks.
H: Sounds typical.
RC: I couldn't believe it either.
GA: Why, yes! Yes, I do.
ABFTS: This is why I live outside of the city limits. So many things in Portlandia make no sense.
Cheryl: Thank you! That's a lot of moves...I believe it. And he laughed his ass off.
Dan: That is fantastic! So apt.
Naomi: Thank you! And you're right...who my dad too :)
Debra: Some big laughs anyhow! Thanks!
GB: Thank you! And how people refrain from road rage in droves, I have no idea.

Claire T said...

Ha! You and your daddy crack me up!

Lee said...

Quote: "And I found out that - I am not making this up - THERE IS NO one central location/person/bureau/department/database that has all of the construction and event permit information in one place." End Quote

And this surprises you? Hehehehehe!

Bureaucracy never lets us down, does it...with its consistency? ;) (Please note my is intended)! ;)

And, I give you permission to use "the word"...I invented it, I think. There are times...oft times..."Oh! Deary me!" or "Damn" just don't cut it!!!!

Congratulations on a job well done.'s time to take on the bureaucrats! ;)

Charles Gramlich said...

Dat's some crazy shit.

Introverted Art said...

Dad just rocks!!!

Riot Kitty said...

Claire: Glad :)
Lee: And you should fly in and help! I give you permission to say fuck as well.
CG: I thought so.
IA: He does!

Lee said...

Never fear, RK...I learned to say "Fuck" with great adeptness when I was cooking in restaurants etc. Restaurant kitchens are good training grounds for language use...language of the colourful variety, that is! lol

Just having to deal with the public day after day, night after night, is a good training field in itself! Hehehehehe!

Riot Kitty said...

Lee: Excellent!

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Riot Kitty said...

Nilu...I am trying, but can't find how to do it the old way, vs. Google plus.