Wednesday, September 30, 2015

September weekends

Honestly, to this day I continue plotting on how to escape Portland. (The whole bloom where you're planted thing has not taken root.) But nope, still here, meaning Fall #2 in this apartment. We even made it all the way to the opening of the newest downtown bridge, something I thought we'd miss by thousands of miles. The new bridge is pretty cool, though. It's the city's 9th bridge downtown and said to be the sole public-transit-and-pedestrian-only bridge in the United States. No cars!

Even walking towards the bridge (see photo above) felt really 2025. Not a single person asked me for money to buy pot or dog food. Bikers sped by with a smile. There was no garbage and no fast food. Everything was clean, shiny, new.

In a move of (mainly-unrecognized) act of genius, one guy lobbied to have the name of the bridge changed to The Jean-Luc Picard Wonder Crossing. He spent $5,000 on Star Trek billboards to advertise the idea and put up a Kickstarter page. I didn't want to look back and say I never hung billboards of Jean-Luc Picard when I get old, he said. Also, all of the lawyers we contacted thought unofficially that Jean-Luc Picard would definitely want a bridge named after him and advised me to put up the billboards.


Another name that didn't make the cut - The Stephen Colbert Bridge of Destiny.

As for the final name, take a look at what is now called Tilikum Crossing:

Those other bridges- covered in cars! ;)

This sunny afternoon wasn't just a random walk, though; I was fulfilling that annual deal-breaking wifely duty known as...

.... Attending The Science Fair.

I swear we just did this 365 days ago.

You remember the feeling of being a kid on Halloween? Being oddly dressed and running from place to place in search of cool stuff? That's what the Mini Maker Faire is like for D and his fellow kindred people-of-science.

The kind of science that I like ends in -fiction, so I passed the time by admiring this food truck from afar.

After the nine thousandth 3D printer booth, D was finally ready to leave the outdoor exhibits-

- and go watch the 1 Million Volt Tesla Coil demo. It was very ⚡⚡⚡. My father recruited my brother as his "mad scientist" assistant this year, both in steampunk goggles and Alaskan-apocalypse-level beards. We've never mastered the art of tesla coil photographs, so I have no photos from the event, but here's an at-home recreation:

It's already been a few weeks since this weekend of science. We've been back across The Jean-Luc Picard Stephen Tilikum Colbert Wonder Crossing of Destiny one more time since then, to check out the new train's final stop of Milwaukie.

Downtown Milwaukie turned out to be tiny. We wandered though a boat launch slash park, poked around in a dusty antique shop, and found a surprisingly-good Chinese food restaurant. Maybe if we'd driven instead of taking the "crime train" (yep, that's really what people call it), there would have been more to see?

Still- spending a beautiful Sunday outdoors, a long afternoon on the cusp of true autumn? No complaints here!

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