New Gov’s Loves, Just Add Baby, Orca Fatigue & Derp Confirmed

By Johnny Beaver

stateturnssymbolCover Oregon Fail Governor Out… Comcast Governor In
As long as I’ve been doing “As the State Turns,” Governor John Kitzhaber has been at the helm of the state of Oregon. I’m going to miss his Cover Oregon failures, his manicured mustache, his Cover Oregon failures… and, of course, his Cover Oregon failures. On the way out due to a scandal involving his first lady, something people have been accusing him of for years, I’m… well, I’m not surprised about anything beyond this not having happened earlier. His four terms weren’t all bad, but that’s how he’ll be remembered. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is par for the course.

So what now? Kate Brown, who will be the country’s first openly bisexual governor… that’s what. She’s 54 and a former legislative leader (which sounds something like Official Officiator of Administrative Administration to most people). When researching her to find scabs to pick at (hey, at least I’m honest), I was largely disappointed…

…until I read about how just last month The Verge, a media network run by Vox Media, reported on a handful of communications between Comcast SS Officer Doug Cooley and Ms. Brown that discussed a letter Brown sent to Federal Communications Commission (FCC) chairman Tom Wheeler. Long story short, the comparison between Brown’s letter and one written by Comcast employees seemed to suggest that Comcast actually ghostwrote Brown’s letter to the chairman. Comcast also gave about $10,000 to Brown’s campaigns between 2006 and 2012.

Heading into 2015 with an old governor staring down the barrel of all sorts of ethics and administrative investigations and a new governor who could possibly be a Comcast stooge in a state full of people who are beyond fed up with Comcast?

Oh, hell yes.

More Oregonians Doing Oregonian Things
Let’s face it: if you say the word “baby” on the end of a sentence and you’re not wearing a leopard-skin pimp suit, people are going to cringe. It’s not unlike a church using poorly constructed hip-hop slang to bring kids to their next spaghetti dinner about 15 years too late. But we’re not here to talk about this, oh no, we’re here to discuss something Oregon does really, really well: create and name very niche groups for people doing very Oregonian things. In this case, it’s hikers… with children… who they want to bring on the hikes, for God knows what reason. Let’s do this sh*t.

Hike It Baby, a Portland-based group with branches all over the country, just opened a new Salem chapter (in addition to those in Bend, Corvallis, Portland, and Eugene) and promises one hike a week, rain or shine, and the tips and resources necessary to get out and get up a hill without hiring a sitter for the kids. From the website it seems like most of the chapters hike the same locations, so it’s a bit like having a club in Sweet Home, Lebanon, Brownsville, Philomath, and Corvallis for “People who walk with white dogs that are between 6 and 7.5 pounds,” but who am I to judge? Whether you’re a bearded gent with an affinity for flannel or a lady who found herself in yoga pants before they were cool, this could be your chance to continue your outdoor hobby with a child in tow whose resume reads, “Poops often, cries professionally.”

Now, I know what you’re thinking: “Johnny, won’t this just mean I’ll be hiking with about 30 squeaky poop machines instead of just one or two?” To that I say, shame on you, sir. And then I conveniently move on to the next part of this, saying something like, “Either way, don’t ever say I wasn’t here for you Oregonians. Check out the site at to find places to go hiking with other parents who likely drag their kids around in those bizarre bicycle-mounted stroller-trailers.”

Another Baby Orca Threatens Newsworthiness of Baby Orcas
Scientists tracking killer whales in Puget Sound say they’ve now spotted a second baby orca in as many months. Folks, this is why Washington barely even deserves to be Oregon’s hat. If they keep letting orcas pop out babies like this, it’ll be really hard for me to make enough of a big deal out of it to hold your attention. Seriously, Washington, get it together.

OSU Study Determines Stupid Idea Doesn’t Work
Humans spend a hell of a lot of time sitting around at their desks, craning their necks to get a better look at Star Wars Angry Birds in between all of the bean counting. First World problems, I know. But this hasn’t stopped people from trying to find ways to make this sedentary, mind-numbing activity healthier by increasing telecommunication or creating standing desks. And Oregon State just wasted everyone’s time by testing out the dumbest idea of all: the treadmill desk.

Literally just what it sounds like, they’re desks with treadmills under them. Set at a pace of about 1.8 miles an hour, the study showed that they had extremely limited results, only adding a meager 1,000 steps a day.

Though it wasn’t commented on, I’d wager that having to walk while using the computer was a complete pain in the ass—especially at a pace so unnaturally slow as to be annoying. Imagine trying to eat at a restaurant where the tablecloth was slowly pulled out from underneath your food.

Personally, I’d just rent a bounce house from Wacky Bounce every Friday.