Portland Radio Sucks

It truly does. Once again. In bold. Portland Radio Sucks. Bigtime. I could stop this story right here, and probably have said all that I need to, but then what would be the fun in that? I am just freakin’ so sick and tired of all the damn commercials and the stupid DJ’s mackin on strippers for 47 minutes out of each hour. And the three songs that I do hear…if my timing was good and I get to hear any on my commute…are the same ones by the same ‘artists’, rotating between Rage Against the Machine, tool, System of A Down, Korn (sorry deep guys can’t do that kewl ‘K’ thing they do), with maybe a bit of Metallica blended in.

I can’t imagine that it has anything to do with the way our stations take their annual turns at being a different national Radio conglomerate’s bitch all the friggin time. The air waves belong to the people NOT those ass-holes at Clear Channel and Viacom. We as citizens need to take interest in who has control of our media. But this isn’t the place or time for an intellectual and political discourse on the demerits of the FCC and deregulation. This is a time to whine and moan.
I have gotten into my car, driven for nearly 15 minutes and heard only freakin commercials on our local rock station. I’ve gone at least twenty minutes without a song. And these are music stations. Criminy! The alternative station, KNRK sometimes hints that it means well, It actually devotes time to local artists. For like an hour when even Taco Bell is closed! And Art’s show seems interesting sometimes. But that does not make it okay to suck the rest of the time. Their playlist is aye-dent-ti-kal to that of KUFO’s, the hard rock station (to be confused with the rock station at the same location on your flaccid tuner).

Portland is a city with a great music scene. There are a lot of good shows going on every night, album release parties weekly. And some of those are probably crap. But that’s okay. Seattle’s not too far away, nor is San Francisco, even Boisemight have an emerging band or two. I don’t know, because they’s rather not come here. If we demanded our music be taken seriously, we might be taken that way.

So I’m absolutely fed up with the situation as it is. I haven’t figured out my more drastic measures yet, but I’m sure I’ll figure something out and you’ll be the first to know about it. But in the meantime, I’ve ditched local radio all-to-friggin-gether and subscribed to Sirius Satellite Radio…expect a full review of that in a different voice than this, but suffice it to say for now that it’s so liberating it rocks.

Anyhow, I may as well make a few demands.

  1. Vary your music a little!
  2. Play less commercials
  3. I don’t care how hot she is I can’t see her!
  4. DJ’s: shut the hell up and play some music if you’re too stupid to have an original idea friggin Marconi!
  5. Represent our local artists! I know your corporate John’s can’t handle anything a bit original, but it’s your freakin duty!
  6. Request hour is just that. It’s not sit take calls until you can get a suondbite for the next song on your playlist

ps – kiss my ass Clear Channel!

Catamount Pale Ale

My eyes grew wide at the first drink of this Pale Ale. A nice full flavor, complemented by its mild fruitiness makes for a fine, smooth drink. A gentle bitterness from fine Cascade hops blends well with with the pale malt, making an all-around pleasant beer. The color of this beer is, as implied by the name, quite light hardly even darkening the glass.
The light, fresh qualities of this beer make it a fine choice for any occasion. I suggest that it would make a great companion to outdoor events, be it relaxing on the patio, barbequeing, for after sports, or at the lake, you won’t go wrong with this one.

Catamount Brewery is proudly located in Vermont, as evidenced by the bold Enjoy Vermont on the labels of their beers. Catamount was purchased by Harpoon Brewery in 2000, and I’d say that the folks at Harpoon made a wise decision…though I haven’t yet tried any of their beers.

Overall, I strongly recommend Catamount’s Pale Ale. I’ll be reviewing the Porter in a few days, so we’ll see if that holds up as strongly. I’m looking forward to it though. In the meantime, I think I’ll have another Pale.

Bday Day

Yesterday was Nedra’s birthday, and the festivities were rolling. We spent most of the day doing bday related odds-n-ends. Like how I took Augie out to play soccer with me for a few hours, or how I slept in late because I’d been out bar hopping late the night before. I would’ve been in big troube if I’d woken with a disabling hangover.
Anyway, it was great fun. Nedra and some of her girlfriends made a crapload of Asian food like phad thai, sushi, garden rolls, and all sort of other good stuff. I made chili oil and a dipping sauce for the vaporware tempura. Amy and Dustin were the heroes though, having brought the grubbin Baskin-Robbins ice cream cake.

The party itself was quite nice. There was was plenty of food, and maybe not enough beer (hence the beer run I went on). Black Black was on the scene (technologically advanced chewing gum) so at the beer store I came across some triple-black clear ice beverage and had to have it. That’s even blacker than black black…almost Raider Black.

Everyone was having a grand ole’ time when they busted out the Cranium…yeah if I’d known it was gonna be that kinda party…. So Cranium takes a friendly, conversational party and turns everyone into ultra-competitive screaming actors. It was a beautiful thing.

Fun was had by all, far as I could tell. The blue team claimed victory and people started to take off. cheers.

Lessons Learned

I came across this link, which happily reveals all the garbage in my collection for me that I should sell. These guys are doing a real service for humanity here. I’m just fed up with having to hear some of these albums again and again, and have gotten to the point where I can barely stomach seeing some of these albums lying idly on the shelf. I am going to miss my Beastie Boys and Chili Peppers albums though. And I have a feeling that some may object to the elimination of Kool Keith’s Black Elvis, Sublime and Public Enemy.

Shortly before reading that article, I read this one, which is so dead-on. Check it out. Check out the comments. Beautiful. It appears that everyone who posted about the music list also read How to Write Like a Wanker. But then, it seems that I must have too sometimes.

I also need to toss in the Bay Area Math Test because it’s so sweet even though it doesn’t have anything to do with this post. Be careful of the trick questions.

Cool Runnings Cafe

Nestled in at the edge of the shopping distrinct of upper NE Fremont is the quaint Cool Runnings Cafe, owned and operated by Cal Ferris and his wife. The character and food of the place, while inspired by the Islands, is varied and lends itself nicely to flavors from many regions, particularly those of the American South.

Cool Runnings Cafe has been open since August of 2002, but has been serving dinner only since early 2003, which I feel is their true calling. They have a limited but suitable wine and beer list, as well as some non-alcoholic beverages.
I was impressed with the food from the very start. Cal brought out some of their homemade bread with some spiced butter, which was fantastic. Somewhat nutty and peppery, the bread was very good. For the main course, I had the Gumbo, which was packed with chicken, andouille sausage and a bit of okra, as well as a full rich flavor. A little spicy, I kicked it up a fair amount with their homemade pineapple-habanero sauce. Very nice, I found myself wanting to take some of the sauce home…but instead I’ll try to make something that tastes half as good. Nedra had the jerked chicken, which was also quite flavorful. I pilfered a fair share of her garlic mashed potatoes as well, which had a nice rustic texture…the potato hadn’t been butter and milked out of them, offering up a rich, well-textured side.

The service was excellent, and while I can’t say that they were particularly challenged during our visit, both were very friendly. After thoroughly stuffing myself on Gumbo and corn bread, Nedra needed a taste of dessert. Hearing the list, I nearly had to order my own…raspberry cheesecake topped my list, but we order the mixed berry cobbler instead, which was just fine and dandy. It was a deep dish of warm sweet and sour berry goodness, with a bit of biscuit and orange mixed in for some pizazz.

Overall, I very much enjoyed the Cool Runnings Cafe, and will be returning. They had nice options for spicy and mild tastes. The atmosphere was pleasant. Portions were ample, and prices were reasonabIe ($8-12 entrees). My main critique is probably their Starters menu, which struck me more as a list of sides, primarily salads and greens. I don’t think it will take them too long to outgrow the small space they are in now.