emma b. says

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Portland Month 5.5, Easter Edition

There is a deep current of weirdness here.

Friday, the pish, swoosh, clatter of bowling pins. Smoky bar, lane side onion rings, back lit by the black lights, pitchers of beer with cold cores. It's a birthday.

Later, the skate rat and I end up in a strip joint shaped like a Gallo Jug, full of leather clad bikers and one extremely hot and extremely hostile lesbian stripper.

Later we smoke some dope under the stars and I get lost in bed.

Saturday, I head downtown to buy a conservative suit, and wind up spending a shit ton of money on pretty things. Pending joblesslessness (that's a lot of s's) be fucking damned, mama's riding the flush of some sexy time and if I have to resort to wearing stockings to gain respectable employment you can bet dollars to donuts that I'll have something vaguely naughty underneath.

I meet friends and brother at the Elk's Lodge - the where? - for a 'twilight rummage sale'. The doorman solicits me for a dollar and keeps me hostage, this after I've walked the perimeter, assuming that the entrance is the service entrance. In I go. Into the smoky murk, full of the elderly and bewigged snoozing over tables of worthless crap, to the betatooed and tragically hip, to the just fucking tragic of ambiguous sexuality and morbid degrees of girth. Who the fuck cares, there is shuffle board, and portraits of Elk members past, I score some awesome tchocke for all of six dollars and we drink rum and cokes in the depths of smoky disconnect.

Because I am discovering daily, short cuts and bridges, places and restaurants and bars. Because I am discovering daily, because I am weirdly afraid of earthworms and the freeways here, because of these, I have found that I am enjoying being a stranger. I am enjoying the strange. Things that eight months ago I might have automatically dismissed, I just sort of let go of any pretense and let it ride.

Sunday, Easter Sunday. It's always sunny in California, the amalgam of Easter in my head is warming and twirling in my Easter dress, and later just twirling through an early afternoon drunk. I wake to a mean, gray rain.

I head out with my friends A & J to her family. We hunt eggs, we eat eggs, we scavenge for treasure, we are thoroughly sodden, everyone is unphased. Then we laugh for a long time. Then I head to my belle soeur's family. We eat some more, I swear to give up devilled eggs for another year, and then I am back in my beloved house.

It's taken some time, but I am beginning to yield. I think I am falling in love with Portland. With it's particular and extreme dichotomies, the confluence and the quiet battle between the old currents of the city and the new currents is everywhere, it's a funny dance of mutual respect and mutual repugnance. It's poignant really, it's a last bastion. We all know who will wind up winning. I suppose if I were elderly and badly bewigged I'd like to go out valiantly as well, menthol 100's ablaze.


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