Over the River

Over the River, where East Siders fear to tread
a culture divided by the volume of garbage
in the sidewalks, in the streets.
People are stacked on top of one another,
spilling their siloed designs to our bank more every day.

Across the River, more noise
People, cars, politics
Dogs over here walk in parks, not park blocks.
We whine and protest every time you beg us to go over “there”

It’s his birthday, her baby shower.
Any excuse to pay for parking
Another tourist dinner at PCG
Next time I’ll jump.


Four Things Less Awkward Than Hiding From Your Therapist in the Whole Foods Bathroom

These days, the least embarrassing thing we can admit about ourselves is that we have a therapist. Hell, most of us have a couple of them! We’ve unravelled the mind over hundreds of years and thousands of traumas. It’s your job as a citizen of the future to exploit that research. If you don’t already have a therapist, in preparation for Trump’s America, I’m formally recommending you get one. If only for the Xanax prescription you’ll need this holiday season.

“Portland’s the biggest small town there is!” -Everyone ever

Hypothetically, you may run into your therapist in public. I just want you to be prepared, you know, in case it happens. Maybe you’re aimlessly contemplating grander next steps. Maybe it’s your fourth grocery store of the day because you can’t get your ingredients for the week right and it makes you doubt your ability to do anything right. Maybe you’re killing time until you feel it’s acceptable to down a whole bottle of rosé on your couch.

That’s when you see him. You’re midway down the aisle, staring at the different kinds of soup and wondering why they discontinued that brand of curry you liked. He rounds the corner in his hipster glasses by this week’s end cap boasting a sale on organic peanut butter. You freeze. Spin around with your back to him. Shuffle away. What do you do? Well here’s for damn sure: The answer isn’t skirt the edges of the fucking Whole Foods to the bathroom. The answer isn’t  proceeding to hide there for 20 minutes until you feel like he’s gone. Hypothetically, if that was something you did or were thinking of doing, here are four things you could have done instead.

1. Say Hello

This is by far the most obvious. Most people have reasons to go into Whole Foods. Even if you’re at it again with the casual eating disorder, you could be there for bubble bath or wine or t-shirts or dog food. He signed off on your anxiety dog. He’d be glad to know you’re still feeding it. “Hey Dr.Blah Blah. Good to see you eat. Yeah so does my dog! Well bye!” That’s all you needed to do. Instead, you’re sitting in the bathroom, wondering if his basket is full. He didn’t even have a cart! It cannot possibly take much time to fill a basket.

2. Wave and Walk Directly to the Cashier

Slightly weirder, but you’re not reaching completely ludicrous territory here. Just toss a waive, pick a soup, toss it in the basket, and head for the guy whose wife has the same birthday as you. Yeah, you come to this Whole Foods a lot. Maybe grab some La Croix before you leave. You’ll be pretty pissed in the morning if you don’t get that.  

3. Ignore Him and Collect the Rest of Your Groceries

Sometimes people just don’t see each other. You get over it. If you still want to pick up a few things, but not engage in conversation, then proceed. Sniff citrus, analyze squash, and compare cheeses. All up to you. Keep your eyes solely on inanimate objects. The next person you make eye contact with will be the cashier. You can’t risk accidently bumping into him in front of the orange juice, right?

4. Drop All Your Shit and Bail

Alright nutzo, this is just one level below hiding in the bathroom, but it’s still better. The second your hands start to sweat and panic rises in your stomach, drop the basket where you stand and book it for the car. I mean, in a casual nonchalant way. You shop here all the time and you don’t want the employees to see you get weird about it. When you’re in the car, listen to Hit the Switch by Bright Eyes because you’re nothing if not a cliché. Repeat “No one saw anything” until you get home and just pop that damn rosé.

So, a zombie apocalypse, a surprise pregnancy, and seeing your therapist in public: always have a plan. Avoid sitting in the Whole Foods bathroom for twenty minutes or honestly any public bathroom. Not that I know from experience, but the reception is terrible and you’re most likely locked in a concrete cell with your own depreciative thoughts until the world seems safe. Is that what hell is?

We’re all hacks here.

Don’t you hate it when the wifi’s out and you actually have to write something? Oh thank God my sandwich is coming and I can take a break. I don’t want my $1,500 computer that I put on a credit card and actually paid $1,750 for to get potato chip grease and side pickle juice on it, right? Right? Okay, this is a fucking weird sandwich. It’s delicious and everything, but you can’t trust anyone who puts mixed greens on a sandwich. This judgement even comes from the girl who prefers purple kale. Why God why did I sit by the door. It’s so cold and distracting. Cigarette smoke is coming in with each open and close, but it’s also mixed with patchouli. Usually that would be fucking annoying, but now sensory memories engulf my thoughts and I taste PBR, American Spirit Menthols, and warm grass when I was packing picnics for a college fling. You can’t be mad at people when they remind you about days like that. It was so much more fun you didn’t give a shit about anything. This gray February day in a hipster cafe surrounded by other idiots smashing at their keyboards, scrolling memes, and writing shitty blog posts is the opposite of 19-year-old summer love. These door opening assholes reminding me that I quit smoking. Well, I quit “during the daytime and before two drinks” like that’s an actual rule people can use. I hope they are fucking happy with their fucking coffee and fucking top buns. Could you imagine Hemingway using the only when I’m drunk rule?

This girl wearing overalls marched in and moved a chair from one side of the table to the other, even though it’s farther away from an outlet and closer to another person. The person is reading a copy of a book called, “This Little Piggy Goes to Murder.” Jesus Christ I will never be talented enough to write, “This Little Piggy Goes to Murder.” Maybe I can go work for James Patterson  or something. Anyway, I can guaran-fucking-tee that girl is a writer. We’re all weirdos who need to be in corners. I wonder if it’s a vulnerability thing. You’re about to spill your soul so you need something to watch your back. You just have to finish your sandwich first.

HELL NO! Sleater-Kinney, Colin Meloy, and a killer night benefiting the ACLU

We’re all pretty fucking unhappy. Is that an understatement or is that an understatement? I spend my days tweeting Brand New lyrics at the president of the United States of America. Truly, one of my goals of 2017 is to get blocked by @realDonaldTrump on Twitter. It happened to one of my friends and I WILL NOT be out-snarked. Hence when the HELL NO! benefit was announced, my saliva glands wouldn’t stop dripping. Not only do I love the bands, but I have a giant liberal hard on for just hating on this asshole administration.


Tickets went on sale, I threw on my hazard flashers in the middle of Burnside, and by some miracle of crystal magic, got in. All of the bands killed it. The energy in the room was insane. The tables downstairs were passionate and excited to talk to you. People were freely giving out their real email addresses. Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks were just fucking on. Colin Meloy’s version of This Land is Your Land was one of the most emotional we’ve all heard in a long time. For all of us, the night will be unforgettable.

This was my first time seeing Sleater-Kinney live. Maybe I teared up. Pics or it didn’t happen. I’ve met Carrie Brownstein before, but seeing what she does with her guitar in person was fucking ethereal.  90% of the articles you read on Sleater-Kinney from the day they formed proclaim that we need them now more than ever, but I swear it’s always true. Honestly, remembering that their particular niche of hard core riot grrl attitude exists, refreshes my ability to suppress apathy- a gargantuan feat right now. They even busted out their signature move with covering Fortunate Son – something fans have been raving about for years – and my heart stopped! Ladies, you are my Joey Ramone.


Quasi is reporting on their facebook page that over $20,000 was raised for ACLU Oregon. Badass, you guys! It’s nights like this and remembering where I live that are going to keep me from blowing out the flame and sticking my head in the oven over the next four years. So, just thank you Portland, Quasi, Sleater-Kinney, for giving a fuck. We’ll fight. We’ll resist. We’ll get fucking through it.