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Topics - Doktor Howl

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Drinking with a dead guy...Not as uncommon as you'd think, in certain cities.  In Tucson, for example, everyone is already dead, so by definition you're drinking with the dead even if you're drinking alone.  But Tucson's dead are decently dead.  They are corporeally present.  Zombies, if you will, except that we aren't interested in your brains.  Because lowlanders are dumb.  You believe dumb things.

In Portland, however, I had been invited out for drinks at The Tugboat Brewery, on Alkeny Street, by Mr Language (Nigel's ex-BF).  At the last moment, I invited NLDM along, because it was probably my only chance to see him when I wouldn't have to drive afterward. 

After the nightmare of finding a place 4 blocks from my hotel (see previous rant), I found the joint off the main drag.  The main drag is all strip clubs.  To find a regular bar, you have to go down the shady back streets.  Portland.  I shook the wet off and ordered a drink from a 30-something bartender wearing a top hat.  That should have looked hipster and awful, but it didn't.  He was in a bit of a foul mood, because the owners were piping the music in, and jazz was involved.  Fortunately, the dozen or so people playing Magic: The Gathering in the center of the room drowned out the RWHN-esque crap coming out of the speakers.

I settled in with my first beer and looked out the window at a ghost.

You have to understand, I'd only ever met Mr Language once before, back in August of 2010, when he and Nigel came to Tucson.  He'd been stand-offish and had his hackles up.  He seemed to view me as competition for Nigel, and spent the entire day being too cool to have fun, while Nigel, Freaky, and I laughed our asses off being the dorks we were at the time. 

But not this time.

He walked into the bar, looking like a Mr Language-shaped hole someone had cut in the universe.  When I looked directly at him, he was still doing the cool thing, without much success.  He was wearing a sweater-vest over a shirt, and he had a scarf around his neck sans jacket.  His teeth looked like chalk, and you could wrap your hand around his torso. 

Strangely enough, he was REALLY REALLY happy to see me.  Sort of weird happy, like a leper excited about his brand new hat.  We made small talk, and before long it occurred to me that the reason he was being so engaging was that he somehow now saw me as a means or a conduit by which to get Nigel back.  In fact, he spoke of this as being an inevitability.  Now, I didn't get a psycho vibe off of him.  I don't expect him to be peeking through windows or anything; he isn't actually a bad guy.  No, what I got was this idea that his current GF is sitting in an ejector seat, and when the inevitable day that Nigel realizes she can't live without him, the poor girl will be fired through the roof under 33 gravities of accelleration.

NLDM showed up just as things were becoming uncomfortable, and the talk turned to kids, work, and drugs.  You know, normal & polite adult conversation.  Mr Language brought Nigel up a half a dozen times, including sort of angling for NLDM "remembering" him, presumably fostering another "in". 

By now, even though Mr Language's behavior was actually fine, I was sick with horror.  Not at him, mind you.  No.  I was looking at what happens to a guy who listens to the song of the bridges and survives, in a way.  Because the bridges are not the only dangerous thing in Portland, are they?

No, there's also Nigel.  The Lamia of the Pacific Northwest...and this poor bastard was just another Menippus.  He looked in her eyes and that was that.  I have looked in her eyes, but fortunately I was already dead (it isn't Cotard's Syndrome if you're actually dead, assholes), and all I saw was an invitation to, let's say, DRINK EVERYTHING IN THE BAR AND THEN GO SMACK A COP IN THE FACE.  I had no soul to steal, so I came away from meeting her (in her natural environment) with nothing more than a haunting feeling that I had committed felonies and maybe crimes against nature while I wasn't looking.

Mr Language, though, was not so fortunate.  He had been scooped out like a gourd.  He didn't seem to want his soul back, either.  He doesn't miss being alive.  He just wanted more of his drug.  What's really interesting is that Nigel is an 8 or a 9 in pictures, but in person her energy and her high voltage smile puts her in Lola Montez territory.  And where does she GET that energy?  Just look at poor old Mr Language.  She ate him.  NLDM is no fool, though.  This is not his first rodeo.  No.  He is much taller than her, and looked over her head at all times.

Again, she is the Lamia, and she attracts her prey by being very obviously dangerous.  This makes people our age think she will make them younger, and they go kinda nuts and do shit like asking if they can put her finger in her ear.  Younger men just go all to pieces.  Spinning off like a top, into traffic or off the side of a bridge, gibbering and hooting incomprehensibly until they are flattened by bad drivers or break every bone in their body when they hit the river, respectively.

I do not believe that Nigel is the cause of the weird shit in Portland, anymore than I believe that fish are the cause of water.  No, it is merely the environment in which she hunts.  She has an instinctive knowledge of the impossible and ever-changing layout of the streets, and posh restaurants leave the door locked while she's around.  Animals in Portland always look nervous, like an animal that knows there is a predator around, just not a predator that has them on the menu.  They know.  THEY KNOW.

The Richard Nixon school of ballet and the arts / Dear Telarus
« on: December 16, 2014, 03:25:48 am »
Check your PMs, pls.

Having been to Portland twice inside of 30 days, I have to say that I am in fact grovelingly grateful to be back in Tucson.  Tucson may be in a desert.  It may have no air.  It may be full of dead people...But it's home, and it doesn't rain all the time.  Also, our dead people act like dead people, and not like some ghoulish hipster-esque version of Ricky Martin.

I saw Nigel the first time I was there, and not the second time.  You have to be careful with Nigel, mind you...If you look into her eyes, it might not be you that gets on the plane at the end of your stay.  It might LOOK like you, it might TALK like you, but something will be missing and you won't be able to put your finger on it.

The second time, Nigel was busy, and so I didn't spend the trip feeling like I had been stood on my head by angry Irishmen.  But I noticed that Portland isn't what it seems to be when Nigel's crazy-ass eyes are suggesting that yes, you should in fact have another drink.  Or another ten.  Who gives a fuck?  We'll all be dead in 50 years, party now.

And it's not just that.  Portland is on its best behavior when you're out with Nigel.  We went to a rooftop restaurant connected with the second-best hotel in town, and ate DELICIOUS food for cheap, while looking out over the city.  Without Nigel, at the actual BEST hotel in town, I ate food that you'd expect in any hotel (ie, crap), while sitting in one of those kitschy hotel bar/restaurant things while it rained outside; the only thing I wanted was to go jump off the Burnside bridge.  Instead, I ate 2nd rate crabcakes which I suspect had never even MET an actual crab.

It is worth noting that NOTHING works in Portland.  Their toilets seem to be plumbed for that sort of person that shits like a rabbit.  No toilet in Portland can handle MY business, even if all I've had to eat was a snack bar and 2 Slimfasts.  No, the fucking thing stops up and I get glares from the maintenance crew.  Well, fuck them, they knew the risks when they took the job.  Nigel seems to have no impact on the functionality of things, by the way...While I was out with her, I personally demolished two toilets in one evening, just doing my normal business.

GPSs and google maps also do not work.  Google had me making a right off of Ferguson onto Prescott.  Those streets are parallel.  At least from the viewpoint of the observer...Streets do funny things in Portland, so if you LOOK at it, you CHANGE it.  Likewise, my GPS tried to lure me out behind the hangars at PDX, and only my natural paranoia saved me from a fate worse than death.  The fucking street signs don't function properly, and they are just supposed to SIT there.  One intersection had BLANK street signs.  It got so bad that I started ignoring one way street signs, no turn signs, and other vehicles.  The good news is, I wasn't alone.  Nobody who LIVES in Portland knows where anything is, either.

On both trips, it pissed rain on me non-stop, except when Nigel and I went to dinner, but we were above the clouds (which are 12 feet off the ground in Portland).  When I got home, it took me days to shake the depression, which was only possible because of how bright and warm and dry everything is here.  Especially the second trip.  I hadn't been around Nigel, so I wasn't warmed up by her burning footprints...And althought drinking with Nolodemiel was fun, there was a dead guy at the table with us (more about that later), which made everything weird.

Portland is in fact a weird place, though.  It's official slogan is "the city that works", which is a blatant lie.  It's unofficial slogan is "keep Portland weird".  When Portlanders say that, they don't mean Tucson weird or even Providence weird.  They mean a safe weird, like coloring your hair magenta and wearing lots of leather.  Nothing wrong with that of course, but that's not the only weird they get.  The whole fucking city is haunted.  It is full of cannibal street urchins.  It is run by psychopaths who hire murderous policemen who will cheerfully shoot you in the back of the squad car and call it a righteous shoot.  The river bends space, and streets change direction without corners or curves, the moment they cross a bridge.  There are rats the size of Rottweilers, and the strip clubs and bodegas are full of zero men and their flint-eyed girlfriends.  The sun doesn't exist.  I've been above the clouds, and there is no fucking sun.  It's missing.  Earth just flies in a straight line, through a gigantic cloud of God's piss, which is why it NEVER STOPS RAINING, even when you're drinking with a ghost.

To be continued

The Richard Nixon school of ballet and the arts / Cop Rant
« on: December 07, 2014, 07:39:43 pm »
With regard to the protestors' chant of "I can't breathe"...

...I told you guys that there wasn't enough air.  I told you guys that Tucson would come for you all, one fine day.  In fact, I've been hollering about that for 12 years.  Now it's like this gigantic fucking cyst has burst, and you can't swing a dead cat without "interfering in police business" or being choked to death for selling individual cigarettes.

What's really grotesque about this, what makes this entire country a fucking carnival sideshow, is the fact that about half of Americans are still trying to find excuses for this.  #notallcops, yada yada.

And you know what?  There ARE good cops.  But to pretend that there aren't any bad ones is to say that there isn't any DIFFERENCE between the good ones and the bad ones, and to say THAT is to say that you're perfectly okay with a police state.

I am not anti-cop.  I am anti-out of control cops.  I am anti-punishment culture.  I am anti-beating people to death just because you can.

I understand the mechanism behind the "it's not the cops" mentality.  White people have been able to LOOK AWAY from this shit their entire lives.  They didn't HAVE to see it, because it almost never happened to THEM.  But now they HAVE to look at it - which is why they're "sick of hearing about it" - and they don't WANT to process it, because it leads to all manner of conclusions that contradict the way they think the universe works.  Racism is still a thing.  The police aren't there to protect you.  You are only free until your freedom becomes inconvenient.

So they go into denial, either saying the victims were "thugs" (Fox News-speak for "Black"), or that "there's only a few bad apples."

But how many bad apples does there have to be before you have to admit there's a problem?  How many cops keep the "code of silence" with respect to bad cops (Remember the "good Germans"?  Neither do I.)?  How LONG do you have to turn blue in the face because YOU CAN'T BREATHE, because there's NO AIR, because you TRADED THAT AIR AWAY FOR COMPLACENCY?

This is the America you demanded.  Welcome to Tucson.

Okay (for now),

The Richard Nixon school of ballet and the arts / Most Wanted, #8 of ?
« on: December 07, 2014, 03:42:39 pm »

Name:  Baron Von Hoopla  Age:  Mid 30s.  Gender:  Bald.  Race:  Canadian.

Hoopla is a Canadian terrorist who kills his victims with interpretive dance.  His first victims were the Hamilton, Ontario Amateur Theater League, whom he slew by "interpreting" Pablo Picasso's Guernica.  Those hardy enough to survive the screaming heads were finished off by the terrifying horse. 

He then moved on to Myspace, the entire membership of which was slain by a video Hoopla's treatment of Shakespeare's Gone in 60 Seconds.  Following that, he killed the entire Canadian senate (though this wasn't noticed for almost a year) with his interpretation demonstrating the essential philosophical differences between "classic" Star Trek and "TNG".

Word has reached law enforcement officials that Hoopla has somehow obtained a set of unlicensed bongos.  They are therefore backing off and putting a bounty on his head.

The Richard Nixon school of ballet and the arts / Most Wanted, #7 of ?
« on: December 02, 2014, 01:49:57 am »

NAME:  P3NT  Age:  430  Gender:  Scottish  Race:  Suspected hominid

Much as Japanese soldiers who weren't aware of the surrender held out on Pacific islands until the 1970s, P3NT has been holding out for King Gustav (of 30 years war fame) for roughly 400 years.  He refuses to believe negotiators telling him the war is over, and occasionally comes out of the mountains to burn Magdeburg down. Again.

As various law enforcement agencies and military organizations have learned, he is an absolute demon in a firefight, which is particularly impressive considering he uses a .75 caliber matchlock...Although on one occasion he killed 12 British Royal Marines when he fired a muzzle-loading cannon loaded with cannister shot from the hip.  The surviving Royal Marines are impotent with hatred, and their women go into a rutting frenze on sight of him.

Recent ideas of luring him out with "tatties and neeps" are not being met with optimism.

Friends, you - yes YOU - stand accused of having TOO MUCH FUN.  What's really funny about that is that the accusation stands even if you aren't having any fun at all.  Even if you are broke and worried about where your next meal is coming from...Even if you couldn't get laid in a MORGUE...Even if you HAVE NEVER BEEN TO A PARTY IN YOUR LIFE, you are having TOO MUCH FUN.

This is, after all, America; the land of GUILT and SELF-RIGHTEOUS ANGER.  The land of PUNISHMENT.  The nation that allows you to be free, just so long as you don't exercise any of that freedom.  How many times have you heard some po'bucker grouse about people "abusing the freedom of speech"?  Well, I'm here to tell you that if you CAN abuse it, it ISN'T a right.

But that's not all I'm here to tell you.  I'm also here to tell you that I AM having too much fun, and I'm PROUD of it; As Martin Luther said, "Here I stand giggling my arse off, I can do no other."  And I will not suffer yahoos with permanent cases of "Angry Town Hall Face" telling me that I am wrong to do so.  No, in fact when they DO tell me that I'm wrong, I have MORE fun at their expense.  This makes me guilty.  I'm okay with that.

"But what about the children?  Well, what about them?  Is my BAD EXAMPLE standing in the way of those children becoming more joyless punishment freaks for the world to deal with?  Good.  The thing that these people do not seem to be grasping is that I am a SUPERIOR MUTANT and I really don't share their values. 

Because, when you stop and think about it, what are their values?  Drudgery.  Work for its own sake.  Sending our kids off to be blown to bits, and calling it "supporting the troops".  Constant outrage at anyone who doesn't fit the cookie-cutter BULLSHIT standards that THEY somehow have the moral authority to impose on everyone else.  Well, fuck them...Because, as Senator Jim "anything for a laugh" Inhofe (R-Crazytown) once said, "I am outraged at the outrage!"  How DARE these puling, simpering PRIMATES tell ME what to do?  How DARE they criticize and condemn MY FREEDOM to say what I want, believe what I want, and/or use BIG, RED STRAPS in the privacy of my own front yard, with the consenting mutant of my choice?

So what do we do when the No Fun Patrol comes around?  Well, we've already been told that...But I will repeat it, for those of you who were too busy getting your monkey on to pay attention.  Orton Nenslo gave us "Shut Up", to shove in the faces of busybodies.  Robert Anton Wilson gave us "NO", when they tell us to behave.  Doktor Howl gave us "I WILL KILL A MOTHERFUCKER" when they insist.  And Doktor Legume gave us more extreme measures, when they simply won't listen.  And G Gordon Gordon gave us the proper methods by which to dispose of the results.

Now, I'm not saying that we emulate Doktor Legume (unless things get REALLY serious).  Not everyone has the stomach to "Fargo" the Pinks, and the paperwork can be a chore.  But for shit's sake, the LEAST you can do is tell them NO and SHUT UP and bray spittle and laughter in their pinched, miserable faces.  Because it doesn't matter if they're right wing born-agains or left wing tumblr Nazis, nobody actually ever gave them any authority over you.  Except maybe you.

And if you did, maybe you'd better stop.

Or Kill Me.


The Richard Nixon school of ballet and the arts / Most Wanted, #6 of ?
« on: December 01, 2014, 02:59:04 pm »

Name:  LMNO (aka Alphapance)  Age:  early 40s.  Gender:  Male.  Race:  Big Gay Cowboy

LMNO is wanted in the brutal murder of "Dimo", the lead singer of a punk band call the paraplegics.  LMNO himself is in a Lawrence Welk Tribute band, and apparently killed Dimo for - as he put it - "QUESTIONING THE SYSTEM".  Although the police are not releasing autopsy information or even a cause of death, it is known that Dimo was found tied across a gym horse, with lederhosen stuffed down his throat, and "WITNESS MY SHAME" written on his forehead in Sharpie.

Although LMNO was not seen at the scene of the crime, and there is no forensic evidence tying him to the crime, his recent publication of his new management-guru book "WE DON'T QUESTION THE SYSTEM" is one obvious tip off, as his written confession submitted to the New York Times, entitled "HOW I TAUGHT THAT PIGFUCKER A THING OR TWO".

The above picture was taken by a "wired" informant, just prior to his grisly death, when he seems to have questioned the system itself, rather than the fallible humans implimenting it.  The informant apparently was choked to death with two pounds of glitter, which had been shoved down his throat.

The Richard Nixon school of ballet and the arts / Most Wanted, #5 of ?
« on: November 30, 2014, 09:38:45 pm »

Name:  Waffles  Age:  mid-30s.  Gender:  Beard.  Race:  Belgian.

Waffles is being sought by Interpol concerning a streak of fashion violence, to include the brutal murder of 3 English peers...Apparently because they were wearing white shoes after Labor Day.  The killings were performed with Waffle's standard MO:  Death by obnoxious and mysteriously changing clothing.  His fashion sense is rightly feared throughout Europe, after the "Day-Glo Paris Incident", which killed thousands on the Champs-Élysées.

Waffles was last seen in Northern Belgium, during a chase in which he eluded police in a vintage Viking Longship on the Atlantic Road.  He seems to have misunderstood the term.  However, he still managed to escape by means of standing in the back of the boat and doing his dreaded "Mango" routine, resulting in the deaths of all pursuing officers.

The Richard Nixon school of ballet and the arts / Most Wanted, #4 of ?
« on: November 30, 2014, 09:29:14 pm »

Name:  Bearman  Age:  late 20s/early 30s.  Gender:  Male.  Race:  Native American Jew

The criminal known as "Bearman" is a major player in the underworld sport of illegal, unlicensed needlepoint competitions.  In these brutal bloodsports, octagenarian ladies embroider to the death, with the winner (ie, survivor) being awarded as much money as can be stuffed in a "family size" bag of Doritos.

Bearman was caught once in 2012, but he escaped his holding cell by means of bluffing with a fake gun he knitted, using modified toothbrushes and his cellmate's nerve ganglia.  It is supposed that the guards were more traumatized by the remains of his cellmate, more than frightened by the horrible floppy "gun".

Bearman is currently located somewhere in Houston, where rumors state that he is illegally teaching Texans how to read.

The Richard Nixon school of ballet and the arts / Most Wanted, #3 of ?
« on: November 30, 2014, 09:17:57 pm »

Name: Queen Gogira  Age:  unknown, presumed late 20s. Gender:  Female (are ya blind?)  Race:  Caucasian.

Queen Gogira is the leader of a ring of Bad Science maniacs.  She was involved in splitting the porn atom, and is wanted for questioning concerning the Manhattan Ass Cannon Incident of 2009, when 10,000 people were killed in New York when their arses exploded.  On account of Bad Science maniacs stuffing them in a cannon and firing them against the Flatiron building.

She is also "credited" with the "whoopsie" pill, which consists of PCP mixed with bovine cortisol and is most often slipped in the drinks of power-lifters and rugby players, with the obvious mayhem following within minutes.  When questioned about it by an investigative journalist, she merely said "SCIENCE, BITCHES", and then hit him with an electron microscope.

She is currently believed to lair in Massachusetts, where rumors have spread that she's going to recreate the Boston Molasses Disaster, only this time with a giant vat full of Irish people.

The Richard Nixon school of ballet and the arts / Most Wanted, #2 of ?
« on: November 29, 2014, 08:34:53 pm »

Eater of Clowns Gender:  male  Age:  150 million years  Race:  Stegosaurus

Imagine you're a T-Rex.  You're moseying through the swamp one day, and you get mugged by a stegosaurus.  A number of things might be passing through your mind, as you watch his tail swing around.  You might be thinking "What's this guy doing here?  He's been extinct for 93 million years," or "Why am I being attacked by a plant-eater? 

But, of course, you're a T-Rex, so what actually goes through your mind FIRST is "unnnnnnnng".  What goes through it SECOND are the horrible 3 foot long spikes on his tail.  Then you're dead, though it might take the brain in your ass a little while to figure this out.

Eater of Clowns is wanted for various and sundry violent crimes, mostly having to do with mugging people and jamming spikes through their heads.  It is worth mentioning that he is tall for his height, and while he appears to be 6'2" or so, he's actually 30 feet long.  His "hunting" range is the swamp between Providence and Boston.

The Richard Nixon school of ballet and the arts / Most Wanted, #1 of ?
« on: November 28, 2014, 07:35:07 pm »

Nigel Delores  Age:  Unknown, estimated at 1800 years +/- 100 years.  Gender:  unknown (presumed female but has an infinite number of dicks).  Race:  Orkadian et al.

She's just an American chasing a dream.  She's just running with the top down and the music up.  She's just trying to smile and say "welcome to America", but she speaks through a shotgun and your head falls off.  She's wanted in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and Guam.  She's just shaking hands with the severed arm of the future.

Nigel has an extra joint in each leg; this allows her to move low to the ground.  When she hits a knot of Black Friday shoppers, the knot breaks like a herd of gazelle, like beads scatter when you slam a hammer through a windshield.  Except for the victim, of course.  He scatters too, but in a different way.  And the police and the emergency services personnel come away from the aftermath with a new view on the way the universe works, and most often a new religion as well.

Portland is the sea floor of America.  Nigel is America's pelagic shark.  But she does not feed like a carp.  No.  Nigel is the reason humanity stays in the shallows.  The bright, bright shallows.  Nigel is the reason humanity knows WHY they stay in those shallows.

The problems started immediately, with a 2 leg flight from Tucson to Portland.  Both aircraft were delayed by mechanical problems, resulting in 45 minutes of sitting on the tarmac per incident (and no AC cart for you bloody peasants).  Both aircraft had been "upgraded" as well.  What this means is that they took out the regular seats from economy, and put in hard plastic seats with minimal cushioning.  The first class section got to keep the old seats; in short, you can pay double to get the same comfort you used to get for the regular price.  And United wonders why they're losing money.

Then, PDX airport.  Mike the Engineer opts to use his own GPS, but it doesn't work.  In typical Mike fashion, he refuses to get one from the kiosk at the car rental place, saying "I have this under control"...Which I foolishly took to mean that he knew where he was going, or that he had a smart phone. 

At first his confidence seemed justified.  We made it to Salem, Oregon in short order, and found the hotel on the first try.  But then we decided to go get some dinner.  It took 45 minutes to find a McDonalds (all the real restaurants were closed), which I find to be distinctly un-American.  Then, thanks to Mike's carrier pigeon-esque navigation skills, we drove all over the fucking state looking for our hotel, at one point finding outselves Southwest of Eola, Oregon...And all the while, I had to deal with Mike's breath, which smelled like death.

Enough said.  At some point, we finally got to our rooms and got a couple of hours of sleep.

The next day, it was time to yell at the vendor.  Before we arrive, I remind Mike that he is here as a technical consultant.  He is to take no part in the negotiations.  Mike sulks; I know what is going to happen.

Once in the conference room with the vendor's representatives, their production manager begins a Power Point presentation on why our machine is going to be over-budget and well past deadline.  I allow him to finish his schpiel, and as I'm opening my mouth to respond to his conclusions, Mike bleats, "Yeah, that sounds reasonable".

"Shut up.  Go sit in the car."

Mike begins to turn red.  I glare at him.  He suddenly remembers my new status.  He gets up and stomps out.  I spend a few minutes explaining the definition of "penalty clause" to their production scheduler.  I also explain that while I am willing to extend the deadline by a reasonable amount, we certainly won't be paying more because they couldn't hold up their end of the bargain.  I am told this is unacceptable.  I smile at them the Nigel Way, and repeat my position. 

An hour passes this way...He tells me what I will put up with, I tell him what the consequences of his position are.  He babbles, I watch their plant cats (rodent control; this is an accepted and rather pleasant feature in many plants) play in the conference room.  Eventually, his babbling winds down.  I tell him he now has half the grace period he had, and no, there will be no additional funds. I also tell him that if it is not delivered by the new date I have assigned, and he is still employed there, then I will be dropping the full & terrible weight of the penalty clauses on his company.  Then I leave, because it's time to meet up with Nigel.

At the hotel:  I foolishly assume that mapquest will be able to accurately give me directions through a portion of the city that has not changed in over a hundred years.  Hahaha.

In the car:  I am to make a left onto Fremont from Prescott, according to my directions.  But Fremont runs parallel to Prescott.  So I follow Prescott for 72 blocks, which does in fact lead me to Nigel's house.  Nigel greets me warmly, and introduces me to Suprise Kid and Little Orange.  For what it's worth, Little Orange is a sweet child who would never get up to the shenanigans that Nigel has described.  I also get to see Nigel's studio, which is larger and more impressive than I had imagined.  I did not, however, get to see the top of the bottom, because I forgot to ask.

Then Nigel and I get in the car, and she gives me garbled directions (Nigel is apparently dyslexic when it comes to "left" and "right" and "stay in this lane NO THAT LANE NO WAIT THE FIRST ONE") which eventually lead us downtown.  Our plan was to eat at a restaurant called "Departures" in the "To the Nines" hotel.  It's a rooftop restaurant, and it opens at 4 PM.  The elevator, however, will not allow us to go up.  In fact, the elevator would not allow a guest that was sharing our elevator to get to HIS floor.

But I am a maintenance geek, and my voodoo is strong.  Eventually, we are able to coax the elevator to go to the 15th floor (by which I mean, eventually it actually was 4 PM, and the button became enabled).

Not much to say about Departures, other than it has stainless steel urinals in the bathroom, and a pretty-yet-obnoxious waitress who hovered.  Despite this, we enjoyed an excellent meal and I grossly overtipped as an insult to the waitress, though I am sure the insult went over her head.

The it was time to go to the bar.  We met Charley (One of Nigel's friends and a FB friend of mine) at Prost, which serves good German beer and doesn't allow vaping (there are no ordinances about it, the owners are just dicks).  Nigel said something about molecular biology the next day, so only a couple of beers.  Ha.  Hahaha.  I had a tab running with my card, and I kept making suggestions on beer.  Nigel didn't get drunk, but she got fairly brave.

Then it was on to some other bar, one that had a weird name and didn't take my card.  We met her roommate and his girlfriend there...They were already pretty lit, and were hysterically funny when they weren't necking.  Hell, that was funny, too.  Her roommate has announced his intent to steal my fu manchu mustache on my trip back up there on December 9th.

I also met NoLeDeMiel (From this board) who was screamingly funny...But it was at this point that we were ambushed by an insanely drunken Kenyan (thanks, Obama) who kept babbling at me about love bullets and how nobody is from anywhere, not really.  My heart filled with hate, but I wasn't going to misbehave in front of Nigel (NoLeDeMiel later told me he felt the exact same way in every particular), so I put up with it.  Nigel is a better person than NoLeDeMiel or myself, though, and was fascinated by the man's incoherent jabbering.  It occurred to me that I am turning into ECH.  And I wasn't even intoxicated; I had stuck with coffee.

I also noted that nothing works in Portland, especially toilets in dive bars.  At least not now.  Heh heh heh.

This is why I hate bars.  I'd rather just hang out and drink in the hotel room or at someone's house.  It NEVER FAILS that if you're having FUN in a bar, a silly drunk bastard will attach him/herself to your group and babble gibberish at you for amazing lengths of time. 

A few hours later, a rather drunk Nigel (she was upright and not wobbling, but definitely jolly) and her two smashed roomies got a ride home in the rental car (which I had been parking illegally most of the evening...It was in Mike's name), and I followed HER directions to the airport, which got me there with no problems. 

So, yes.  Not much excitement this trip, just a very, very pleasant evening out.  But that will change, as I return on December 9th for a week on business.  And there will be booze and no reason to drive.  And Nigel will be done with finals (though she will probably STILL have midterms).  And she and I, and her roomie and his GF, and NoLeDeMiel...Well, we shall walk on a road of bones, as the ocean turns to acid and Portland is ground under the approaching glaciers.  It's what we were designed to do.

Okay (for a couple of weeks),


...And nobody came to my PD party.   :cry:

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