Hipsters on Hall Boulevard

When I moved to Portland in 1978, my first home address was in the Rock Creek subdivision. My mailing address said "Portland," and the Post Office was in the Alphabet District of Northwest Portland, but the house I lived in was way out in unincorporated Washington County, pretty much on the edge of town. When you walked out our door, under the power lines up to West Union Road, and took a left, there was nobody but elk between you and the coast.

When friends and family would call me on the phone from New Jersey and Connecticut, their phone bills would show a charge for a call to "Beaverton." To folks back there, it was pretty funny that there was even a place by that name, much less that I lived in it.

These days Beaverton is no longer that big of a joke. In fact, a story in the O earlier this week makes it sound like it's the new hot spot for restaurants. I wouldn't be surprised if that were true. With inner Portland no longer a desirable place to operate any kind of legitimate business – what with the constant break-ins, riotous pseudo-political vandalism, screaming lunatics, gangster sharpshooters, and other dangers – it makes sense for foodies to want to do their thing out in the relative quiet and safety of the 'burbs. So 1960 has come back, yabba dabba doo.

But not everybody on the cul-de-sac wants Portland to spill over the hill. In fact, it's become a political campaign issue in Washington County: "We can't let what's happened in Portland happen here."

You don't have to flash all the way back to '78 for that to sound familiar. The tighty righties in Clackistan ran against "Portland Creep" back around a decade ago. But gosh, compared to now, Portland was still a pretty nice town at that point.

Anyway, the kids at the Merc are outraged that anyone in Beaverton would have the nerve to throw shade on the current state of their beloved Portland. 

Like many US cities, Portland has seen an increase in violent crime since 2020—a year that brought a global pandemic, racial justice protests, investment in police alternatives at Portland City Hall, an increase in visible homelessness, and turnover at the district attorney’s office in Multnomah County, which encompasses most of Portland city limits.

"Like many US cities"? This is always the excuse. But it's so obviously false. There are few cities in America as lawless and blighted as Portland is now.

Yet to the Merc types, the filth, inhumanity, and crime we're suffering through these days is just a part of a grand and noble civil rights struggle. If you don't like stepping over needles, bullet casings, and bum doo to get to a boarded-up store to do your shopping, you must be racist.

Barton’s demonizing of Portland and weaponizing of the debate around police funding worries Bobbin Singh, director of the Oregon Justice Resource Center (OJRC)....

For Singh, Barton’s campaign draws historic parallels to the political environment following the civil rights movement of the 1960s.

“The response to the civil rights movement of the '60s was tough on crime policing,” said Singh. “Any time we see success on civil rights, like the response to George Floyd’s murder, we see a national pushback that’s tough on crime. I think that’s what we’re seeing here.”

Did I miss something? Did the Portland riots bring about "success on civil rights"? Whatever. 

I say congratulations to Beaverton on its newfound "vibrancy." But good luck with what comes along for the ride.


  1. 1st, cool story bro! (In good faith, heh).

    2nd, at this point, Bvtn is fascinating, but what w/Techtronix getting bought, Intel shrinking their OR operations, HP getting bought/run into the ground (Thx. Carly Fiorina among others???) & other such businesses/major employers, what was the BOOMING 'silicon forest' party has really seen the dollars wither on the vine in some ways post '08 crash for the ~90%?

    Certainly no cheerleader for how Portland's 'planning success' & won't defend it as 'better' than Bvtn.

    That said, much of WA county within the UGB doesn't appeal much?
    Couldn't hardly pay me to live anywhere I've looked west of 217 unless I was outside the UGB/metro entirel, respectively.

    Stick it out in Garden Home or Metzger of anywhere in unincorporated WA Co. adjacent Portland, but not in it?
    Not so 'affordable' these days tho?
    "McMansion-Tetris" is being played at 'expert sleazel-weasel level' w/break-neck pace sans sidewalks, street trees &/or transit as they chainsaw every tree in sight w/zoning/house overlays.

    So-much for that private quiet back yard w/plenty of shade & canopy reservoir &/or quiet street w/o much traffic to walk on w/o sidewalks & dead end SW trails/cut-thrus if you're an extant resident & own a nice turn-of-the-century farm house/craftsman or 1-level adjacent the McMansion tetris invasion :-/

    This all said, there are more/plenty of PITA rules at the WA Co. level for the 'little guy' (business owner or resident, not for tax-dodging Nike & their campus of course, tho!).

    Do get WA Co. sheriff & TVF&R that's by all accounts are actually not a total PERS money-vacuum & is functional instead of retired, pouting &/or defacto on-strike?

    The 50-60s 'it feels like one big suburb or country lane' as Bobby Kennedy called the place when he visited OR/'the liberal (Tom McCall?) Rupub. state had thelow-rise quaint late 50s-late 60s strip malls w/free parking & small businesses in Bvtn.?

    Then, nary 10 years later they build the WA square mall w/free parking that's now 50% dyin/outdated, but not a total crime hole/isn't yet looking like Mall-205, Clackamas Town Center, or saddest of all, maybe, Lloyd Mall?
    Just, endless dead-end cul-de-sacs that feel unfriendly w/shoddy 1980s & newer tract houses/apartments & no real plan?

    Ex's smart kiddo didn't make >2 good friends at school in the 2 years out there in aloha-beaverboro suburbia hell-scape.
    I suppose if you got the dough (which... probably?... if she scrapes?) Catlin Gabel or the Bvtn-academy is decent?

    Jackson Jr.-Hi followed by Wilson-Hi w/summers @ Benson to get ahead & hedge bets (sorry, 'Ida wells' (it's renamed so all racism is fixed & our social ills are gone & done-fix'd, rite?) has been one of the few remaining functional jewels in the waning days of top-heavy dead-wood admin. killing PPS that's worked out? (so far/ Luckily?)

    That, & most parents aren't too broke & desperate or too rich & snotty in the Wilson part of PPS-district, so that helps a lot & the campus, even if it's '50s & hokey/dated looking hasn't been totally wrecked by the 'planners' & weasels...yet?
    There're food carts, a couple parks, pool, near transit in Hillsdale, ~80% OK(ish) teachers & people talk to/know each-other?

    S'pose there's Lincoln & Cleveland (adjacent encampment notwithstanding?) that are (allegedly?) still functional of PPS's remaining HS's? Wouldn't know...don't know enough people with kids at either these days, but by the #s they look 'functional' (at all?) considering the sorry state of public education, homelessness & mental health treatment in this state (by the #s anyway) 48th-50th...tell it like it is?

    So, TL:DR, but ditto to your last sentence (lol)?
    Will the WA-Co. grass be greener 4 much longer?


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