October 2010

You mean I can park AT the theater?!

This summer, I finally broke down and bought not one, but TWO of those laminated fold-out Portland maps. One for each car. Now, no matter what car I’m in, we’ll always have one of those laminated fold-out Portland maps.

Now, in theory, if I ever get lost in Portland, I’ll be able to pull over, try to assess where I am, find that on the map, and then try to find my destination, and then safely proceed.

The problem is, that whenever I head into Portland, I never seem to have, oh, I don’t know, an actual list of names and addresses of the places that I might want to go.

Like the other weekend, we were sure we were near the Lucky Lab bar, so we tried to find it.

It took us 25 minutes and I had to ask directions twice, but we made it. And come to think of it, we didn’t even use the laminated fold-out Portland map.

But I’ll tell you what, those laminated fold-out maps shouldn’t have street names and landmarks and highways and by-ways.

What they need to indicate is PARKING SPACES. Especially ones that are EMPTY.

I really could have used a map like that last week.

As the Laugh More Tour continued, I headed to Portland to a new destination - McMenamin’s Mission Theater, and, I swear, there was not an open parking space for about a 5-mile radius.

I arrived at the theater remarkably on time. It was about 6:45 p.m., but by the time 7:15 hit, I was still driving around looking for a spot. I even tried to park in this somewhat questionable looking industrial area nearby – you know, you think you kind of see an available space, but you’re not quite sure if it is a space, and you still can’t judge if your car will actually fit into that space anyway?

Well, as I was trying to finagle my car into that space, a HUGE tow truck rumbled by, and I think the driver was texting my position into his GPS unit.

I finally gave up, and drove across I-405 to the Pearl District, drove a few blocks, and pulled into a pay lot.

I think it cost about 6 bucks.

It wasn’t a terribly long walk to the theater, but, sheesh, why can’t this town have more parking? What the heck would a disabled person ever do if THEY were on a comedy tour?

So I finally get to the theater, and I’m standing outside, taking a picture of the marquee sign that’s lighted up on the building wall, you know, for the scrapbook.

And I look around.

And I realize, that what I’m standing in, is basically an empty parking lot.

And I mean, empty.

And then I look at the signs on the wall behind me.

“Theater Parking Only after 7 p.m.”

Jennifer Coolidge

Mission Theater, Portland

Oct. 2, 2010

How was this show? Well, she’s single, she’s a striking blonde, she’s brash, sometimes a bit crude, not afraid to speak her mind and she’s had starring roles in movies like American Pie, Legally Blonde One and Two, A Mighty Wind, and possibly one of the greatest movies of all time — “Best in Show.”

So I’m pretty sure, when I get around to re-watching those movies, I’m probably going to have a better appreciation for the supporting actress role.

(Lady GaGa song blaring as an intro)

Hello Portland!

Opening Joke: “Wow, Portland, Gee, I didn’t know what to expect: I thought there’d be a few horses in the audience”

The Real Reason I’m Late

My Dress is 4 sizes too small

It must be nice here, to be able to pick mushrooms from your front lawn

I’m trying to get out of LA

I was Born Too Tired to Listen to Anyone

What Country is Helsinki really in?

Let me Impress you with My Knowledge of Your Culture

Attracting men with the Avatar Video Game

They made me audition for the Musical version of Legally Blonde

An edited scene from Brokeback Mountain (and why I didn’t like that movie)

German Strudel Shop Girl Scene (I needed a Pastry break anyway)

A New Kind of Diet

New Techniques for Dealing with Hecklers

How I get the Weird Best Friend Roles

Impressions of supermodel Giselle

What You Need to be J-Lo’s Best Friend

Paris Hilton Dialog on Ellen

Kim K backstage at a Carl’s Jr. Commercial

An Amazing Business Woman’s Strategy

This diet beats Jenny Craig any day

Rene’s audition for Bridget Jones

Why my boyfriend left me this year

Faceblindness Telethon

I won’t date short guys anymore

Watching Oprah

Alone with a Pet Monkey on a Rainy Night

You Look Great from a Distance

Never book a room on the 14th Floor

When Celebrities Lie

Raquel Welch does Shakespeare

Touring Scotland’s Dungeons

What it feels like to almost die

Being embarrassed in a Gift Shop with my Australian boyfriend

My Mom told me to Wear Underwear

Phil Spector would like my house

Ripley's Believe it Or Not

Real Life Dating Advice

Making the Best of a Bad Situation

Have a PC (Penelope Cruz) Year

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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