January 4th, 2018

TNG Darmok

Are politics more palatable with cartoons and donuts? A test! (My visit downtown)

Tonight's travels were more extensive than today's travels, because during the day the farthest I went out was into the backyard to put glass bottles and aluminum cans into the recycling. So I'll write about tonight's travels! (Oh. I did write about today's travels, even if just for one sentence.)

So. Tonight's travels.

It's First Thursday, if a quiet one (not nearly as many galleries open in January), but I wanted to get out to Sequential Art Gallery for its latest show. Portland cartoonist Matt Bors, founder of the cartoons-and-stories site The Nib, is showing his political cartoons from the first year that Trump has been President Trump. The way Bors draws Trump's lips, I half-expect them to fly off his face and float around, like in a Terry Gilliam animation. You can see info about the show here; it's running through this month. Bors talked to attendees about the subtleties of political cartooning, such as thinking of things for cartoon-Trump to say that sound like what he'd really say but made slightly, slightly more absurd.

After the show, I wanted to find a doughnut shop. For years, even as Voodoo Doughnut got huge, Portland didn't really have all that many doughnut shops, but over the years I've become fond of Sesame Donuts. It's a small, family-owned chain, and it has expanded from its 24-hour location in Raleigh Hills in SW Portland (near Beaverton) to throughout the west end of the area: Sherwood, Tigard, and so on. Last year it opened a shop near Portland State University. Tonight I finally visited that one, after riding the Streetcar from the Pearl District (a few blocks away from Sequential Art) to PSU. I like supporting the chain, and now I've done it at another shop.

Slight weirdness on my way to Sesame, on the Streetcar: I was standing near a passenger's bicycle, and not too long before I was going to get off the car I noticed the bike wasn't hooked or connected to anything, and was about to start rolling. A fellow passenger and I tried to wake up the man nearest the bike, guessing and hoping it was his, but he at most stirred, not waking up. I wound up trying to keep his bike from rolling away from him, or rolling into him, and I felt weird about leaving when I did. That other passenger who helped me, to her credit, said she'd watch for a bit, make sure nothing bad happened to the bike.

And later, having seen art and gotten a doughnut, I lucked into the most convenient bus home and rode home. I managed all of this in the two-and-a-half-hour window provided by my bus ticket. Had I gotten on 20 minutes later, I would've needed a day pass, which is pricier. Budgeting!