August 23rd, 2006

Whale fluke

"It's...well, it's been unexpected."

One of the Unexpected Questions got posed to me yesterday. I was walking down Milwaukie Ave. towards home, near a man and a woman who were looking all couple-like, and the man got my attention. I said, “Yes?”

He asked, smiling, “Is there a neighborhood around here?”

The first intelligent thing I said in response (after looking blank) was, “What are you looking for?” (I had to ask twice; his first response wasn’t informative.) He explained (finally) they had an hour to kill, I’m sure before an Aladdin Theater show, and were looking for shops to explore. That’s what they were looking for: shops and sights. I explained that the shops aren’t really clustered like that until the Sellwood neighborhood, about a mile-and-a-half south of where we were standing, “and that’s outside the range you’d want to go.” He asked what was north of there, but you have to go a while before you get to that, too. So I couldn’t help them. Maybe I should’ve directed them to Division, but I didn’t want to direct them north of the train tracks, because with my luck a freight train would be going past when they needed to get back across to the Aladdin.

And it is a kind of odd neighborhood where I live: narrow (hemmed in by McLaughlin Blvd. and the river on the west and the Brooklyn Rail Yard on the east) and a mix of residential and industrial buildings. So we don’t really have what they were looking for. Still, odd encounter and odd question.
Whale fluke

blubeagle did it, and now I can do it

Book Meme
1. Grab the nearest book.
2. Open the book to page 123.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the text of the next 4 sentences on your LJ along with these instructions.
5. Don’t you dare dig for that "cool" or "intellectual" book in your closet! I know you were thinking about it! Just pick up whatever is closest.

OK. I'll change the number of sentences to, oh, based on the book, seven:

"I don't want to demean your artistry," Bowerman said finally, "but how hard is it to make a pair of shoes? I mean really?"
"You cannot make your own shoes!" erupted the repairman. "Trust me. You cannot make shoes without a factory."
"Let us stipulate that you are absolutely right. Of course I can't make shoes. But if you were going to make a shoe, and you had the right equipment, how would you go about it?"
Bowerman said later it was wonderful to watch the man morph into "a grouchy professor of cobbling science 101."
Recreating the moment in 1957 when future shoemaker Bill Bowerman got interested in making shoes, as written in Bowerman and the Men of Oregon: The Story of [University of] Oregon's Legendary Coach and Nike's Cofounder by Sports Illustrated's Kenny Moore. This is a rare foray for me into sports books (I think the only other one I've read is Cobb: A Biography by Al Stump) and I've been enjoying it, though I wonder: is most Sports Illustrated writing fairly, um, melodramatic? Or is that just most sports writing? (I ain't a sports writer...)