More Ways I’ve Failed At Life In Portland, Oregon


1. Skipped Ultimate Frisbee Practice

Of course I meant it when I said I wanted to join your ultimate Frisbee team. I like to play Frisbee. I like to high-five and drink craft beer after the games. I’m a team player. But listen, if you guilt-trip me one more time about skipping that day it was raining because I wanted to stay in and fall asleep in front of the space heater, I will strongly consider spending my time elsewhere (knitting circle making sweaters for bike racks?) next season.

Also, I misplaced my fanny pack, pink tutu, and bowler hat and I know players who don’t wear the appropriate uniform are not welcome. So.

2. Let My Date Open The Door For Me

While it is extremely rare to find a gentleman suitor in Portland who opens doors, when it happens I’m simply not going to pass it up. If only for novelty’s sake. In fact, last week I was on a date and allowed the gentleman to open the car door for me, even though I arrived at the door first. Yep, I could tell he was going to go for it so I just STOOD THERE AND WAITED. I realize this may anger some Portland feminist women, and frustrate some waif-like Portland men who are skinnier than me and not strong enough to open all doors, but there it is.

3. Didn’t Compost Today

It is a well known fact that when you move to Portland, Oregon, the city issues you your very own compost bucket to love and cherish for each day forward. Along with trash and recycling, the city picks up compost at the curb and uses it to create elaborate golems made of decomposing food parts that serve to work as “greeters” at the Oregon Country Fair. Before the city began picking up compost in late 2011, it was an unspoken cultural requirement that Portland residents manage their own compost religiously, regardless of whether they had a garden in which to use it. In any event, this morning I threw a banana peel in the garbage because my roommate left the compost bucket outside and it was raining. Deal with it.

4. Paid More Than $10 For This Shirt

I mean, don’t get me wrong, I got the shirt second-hand — I am not a monster. I didn’t, however, dumpster dive for it or find it balled up in the corner of a house party after it was used to mop up puke. Sometimes, when an item of clothing is well-made, fits, and makes me feel like a pretty pretty princess, I will pay more than $10 for it… can I still come to your potluck?

5. Trapped A Mouse In The Heating Ducts And Cranked The Heat

Portlanders great and small are unified in their animal rights advocacy and casual Buddhism, and I’m no different. But, for real, check this out: two days ago my house cat, Veruca, darted across the dining room with something in her mouth and ran into my bedroom with it. Upon exploration I saw that it was a LIVE MOUSE. Obviously, I screamed, stood on the couch, and instructed her to kill it. She chose, instead, to mess with it for ten minutes by picking it up with her mouth; spitting it back out; snatching it with her claws and tossing it up in the air; burying it under a pile of dirty laundry, sneaking up and pouncing on it; and swatting it so it slid across the floor and ricocheted off the wall, as if she were playing air hockey.

This was all admirable and frankly, I was delightfully astonished by her brazen and cold-hearted predatory display. However, she somehow let the mouse escape before snapping its li’l neck! It slipped back into the walls through a heating vent in my floor and disappeared from sight. I was left with no choice but to close every heating vent in the house, crank the heat up to 85, and hopefully roast the sucker.

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