As the State Turns

stateturnssymbolOPB Has Got Our Winter Weather Backs
Oregon is the land of both sharing and caring, is it not? Thanks to a special Oregon Public Broadcasting report, we have the following slightly modified driving tips for those of you braving the winter weather conditions.

1. Don’t go outside in Portland when it snows, because nobody knows how to drive. The resulting gridlock will force you to listen to way too much NPR as you chill out (pun intended) in your car, waiting for overly polite people to finalize their intersection standoffs.

2. “[No seriously, don’t drive unless you have to.]” Thanks again for that.

3. Buy AAA. Don’t buy any other road service package, just AAA. What’s better than one or two A’s? That’s right.

4. Snow tires and chains help when driving on snow or ice.

5. Travel with an emergency kit, including a shovel, a blanket, and cat litter. This way you can wrap up warmly and dig your own grave just after you take a sh*t in the back seat.

6. Drive slower. Because driving faster increases the likelihood that you will not be moving slow enough to avoid accidents caused by faster movement.

7. Don’t tailgate people. This is because they might stop, and then you might hit them. If they’ve got one of their victims in the trunk, you might even take them out before they get a chance to string them up in a basement and flay them alive. Flaying a dead body is just… meh.

The Crabbers’ Strike That Time Forgot
Actually, it was mostly just me that forgot. And by forgot, I mean that I had no idea there was a crabbers’ strike until the crabbers’ strike was over. Ain’t no strike like a crabbers’ strike because a crabbers’ strike don’t quit. Until it has been 11 days. Anyway.

The processing industry had apparently agreed to a $3 per pound rate a month or so ago, then pulled a Trump and dropped it to $2.75. After some highly successful “kiss our as*es, we will just strike” striking, both parties settled on a price of $2.875 per pound.

One fisherman told OPB that a successful negotiation results in a total lack of happiness and pissed-off-ness. I like that. It’s very calm, very neutral. Maybe light a scented candle and really sink into one of those Hallmark made-for-TV movies. Maybe give your cousin a call—let bygones be bygones. After all, it has been six years since he set your dog on fire.

Slack Picked Up on PDX Mental Health Calls
PDX PD is getting some help with mental health 911 calls thanks to the new Unity Center for Behavioral Health, which will be offering Johnny-on-the-spot services for those experiencing a mental health “episode.” Jan. 5 saw a ribbon cutting and tours of the $40 million facility. There will be beds for up to 80 adults and over 20 teens and kids; though apparently you’re up sh*t’s creek if you’re under age nine.

Now all we have to do is completely transform our culture’s attitude toward mental illness so that those who need help can actually go out and get it, or get on disability without a decades-long fight. Should take, what… another year or so?

Don’t Like Cows Crapping in Your Shellfish?
Well, you’re in luck! It looks like an era of, shall we say, “contamination” has ended as the result of an agreement between the tribal Lummi Nation and local dairy farmers of Washington’s Portage Bay. Considering it’s likely that all Oregonian dairy and shellfish consumers have swallowed objects and juices from this area, it seems that you should know a few things:

1. Shellfish are gross, and they also have been growing in cow foul.

OK, it was just one thing. But hey, the Portage Bay low tide is being returned to its previous stinky glory. I’m willing to bet you’re super excited about that right now. Jumping for joy, even?

Portland Port Files Against Monsanto
Long story short, Monsanto contaminated the holy hell out of the Port of Portland with PCBs. What are PCBs, you ask? Glad you did. They are polychlorinated biphenyls, which are basically organic chemicals that present as either solids or kind of greasy, oily liquids. You can’t smell them or taste them, so that’s a bonus. They’re used as lubricants mostly, and manufacture was halted way back in 1977 because they’re generally pretty terrible for people and the environment. As in, cancer level terrible.

Still, Monsanto managed to cause a mess that is likely to cost hundreds of millions of dollars to clean up. Their response to the lawsuit is that it is silly and dumb, because you can’t sue someone for doing something that was totally legal 40 to 80 years ago… 40 to 80 years ago.

I guess we’ll see how that turns out.

By Johnny Beaver