Misadventures

Since beginning this blog, I make sure to always have a camera of some sort on me, just in case I happen upon an adventure I think others would enjoy reading.  Being as I work 2 jobs, I don’t get into quite as many adventures as I would like.  Sometimes I have to plan an adventure (i.e. Cat circus).  Not every adventure I plan on turns out to be interesting enough for me to write about, or so I think at the time.  I decided to create a page for those misadventures here.  Gotta put all those photos to use!  Hope you don’t find them boring.

THE NOTEBOOK:  THE UNROMANTIC VERSION

 I had a Sunday off, so naturally Ross and I went out Saturday night.  For whatever reason, none of our friends were out doing anything that night.  We really didn’t have anything to do.  We consulted the Portland Mercury to see if there were any good shows going on or the like.  We noticed that one of our favorite bars was having a free comedy night.  Perfect!  Who doesn’t like a free activity that makes you laugh?  We headed to The Hungry Tiger Too, excited that our night now had a direction.

The bar was crowded and oddly dark.  We ordered a drink and had a seat.  There was a mic and a stool set up in a corner, but no comedians.  We figured maybe we were early.  I checked the time and it was only 9:30.  It must start at 10.  We sat and chatted.  10 passed.  Then 10:30.  I asked the bartender when the comedy would begin.  He said that it was over already.  He said that it was a total bust, and only two comedians showed up for the event.  They said that they started at 9 and ended at 9:20.

Oh.

Well, fuck.  That sucks.  We decided to finish our drinks and maybe just head home.  It was a sign.  No friends out, no bands playing, defunct comedy night, time to just call it.  We went to the bar to close out.  While I was waiting, I looked down and saw a black Moleskin notebook sitting on the bar.  I looked around and no one was near.  Im not sure what I was thinking, but I slipped it into my purse.  I suppose it was the 5 vodka-crans I had that made me think to keep a mystery notebook rather than turn it in to the bartender like I should have.  I didn’t mention it to Ross.

The notebook

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The next day I woke up and went to meet Kyle for lunch and to go on our semi-regular “Sunday Funday” date.  When I arrived at his apartment to pick him up, I saw the notebook in my purse.  I had completely forgotten about my sneaky thievery from the night before.  While I was waiting for Kyle to come out, I pulled it out and flipped the pages.  It was full of drawings, writing, diagrams, etc.  Holy crap.  I wanted to start reading it, but Kyle came to the door.

After lunch, we went to a bar in the middle of nowhere to visit a friend who worked there.  Words do not describe this bar.  Rather, refer to one of my earlier posts to fully understand The Crackerbox Tavern.  To sum it up in a quick review, it literally looks like a crazy hoarder opened up their house for you to drink in.  Kyle had never been there before, and I was taking him here to show it to him.

My friend, tending bar.  Note the crap on the ceiling.  

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After a drink, I pulled out the notebook and explained where I had gotten it.  He was as curious as I was.  We decided to journey though it together.  We opened the pages.  We saw the following:

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We studied the notebook for a long time, mostly in silence. At first we thought they were the crazy rants of an insane person. Holy shit!

We passed it around the bar.

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As I looked further, I realized that everything in the notebook were bits for an act. This was one of the comedians’ notebooks! Everything made WAY more sense now. I looked through the pages again with this new realization. There was a lot of funny shit in there. I noticed a page with a tour itinerary. He toured almost every major city in America. I felt really bad. I knew I would need to return this notebook to The Hungry Tiger so that they could get this back to him. He needed this. I was about to put it back in my purse when I saw on the back, inside cover the author had scrawled contact info. There was an address, phone number, name and email. I would just slip this baby in a padded mailer and drop it in a box first thing tomorrow.

Then Kyle and I had an idea. Lets text him.

I sent a text to the number provided. I wrote: “Hi there. I found your notebook at Hungry Tiger Too. Don’t worry, I will mail it to you tomorrow.”

He texted back, rather immediately. He thanked me over and over. He said he couldn’t find his book anywhere, and didn’t even think to call the bar. He thought he lost it at his house or dropped it on the street somewhere. He said that he needed it immediately, as he had a gig at a comedy club that night.  He asked to meet me somewhere so he could retrieve it.

Kyle and I agreed that it would be hilarious to have him meet us at The Crackerbox.  I mean, this place was all fucked up.  We also thought we should try and get him to do a little bit from his act for us and the other bar patrons.  The folks from the bar LOVED the idea.  I told him where we were, texted the address and asked him if he would perform for us. He asked me what kind of place the Crackerbox was.  I asked him if he was a huge David Lynch fan.  He laughed, and thought that was pretty funny.   He agreed to everything and said he’d be there in an hour.

We played pool to kill time.  Me in the mirror.

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We waited and waited. An hour and a half passed. The novelty of the Crackerbox was wearing thin. He was texting me this entire time, letting me know he was still en route. This little funny notebook situation was quickly eating up my entire day off.  Usually, I came here to have one drink, chat with my friend, then leave.  Normally, these  visits never lasted more than an hour. We had been here for a total of 2 hours at this point.  The walls with crazy shit tacked up on them were definitely  closing in.

Finally, he walked in.  The bar is one of those places that you can tell when someone who’s “out of place” enters.  He was a tall guy, broad and big, with a black ponytail.  We waved him over to us.   He sat next to me.  He apologized for taking so long.  He said he got confused as to which bus to take all the way out here, and had to transfer 3 times.

Fuck.

We instantly felt really, really bad.  We assumed he had a car.  We also assumed that meeting him at this crazy bar would be funny. Finding out this guy just spent hours on a number of busses to come all the way out here to retrieve his notebook made us both feel like a couple of assholes.  We had no plans that day, and could have easily driven anywhere to give the book back to him.  Even worse, he was a very nice guy.  He was soft-spoken with a southern accent.  He appeared to be in is late 20’s to early 30’s and seemed more shy than I imagined a person who performs in front of a microphone for a living would be.  We sat with him at the bar for a while, ordered him a beer.  I payed, obviously.  We made awkward conversation.  He was from Georgia, living in Portland now, struggling comedian.

The notebook owner.

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He looked around the bar, nervously.  I can’t really describe to you the other patrons that frequent the Box.  I assure you there is no other bar in all of Portland anything like it.  I urge you to read the earlier posts I did on it for a complete picture.  It’s by far one of the most “local” of all the local’s bars.  Its like a second-home for those who frequent it.  On a weekend afternoon, its not uncommon to find a potluck spread out on a table, pet dogs milling at your feet, sometimes even someone offering haircuts for $5.  That being said, it is also a watering hole for all types that wander in off the highway.  At one point in time, a transient meandered in and stole the men’s room toilet for no good nor apparent reason and somehow right underneath the bartender’s nose.  Another time a man won a jackpot on a lotto machine.  Another patron of the bar that night followed that man home, back to his trailer and stabbed him to death for the prize money.  This bizarre little corner of the universe is where a long-time friend from my home town found herself working, and thus led me to frequent-only when she worked and only in the daytime.

Inviting the comedian here was, in theory, hilarious.  In reality it played out confusing and awkward, for all of us.  I cannot believe I made this poor, quiet guy traipse all over the outskirts of town on what I’m sure were 3 very colorful bus rides.  He continued to dart his eyes around the bar.  He quietly asked me where he should set up to perform his routine.

No way in hell was I making him do that.

When we first formulated this plan, we were basing our idea of who this guy was off of the things we saw in the notebook.  We imagined him to be someone with a sick sense of humor who would feel right at home in a place like this, and would relish in telling jokes to some real folks.  We were not expecting this sweet, polite guy with the soft voice and nice smile.  Not at all.  We are absolutely NOT making him perform here.  The bar occupants were disappointed.

I told him not to worry about that one bit.  I asked him if he would like a ride.  Absolutely anywhere he wanted to go.  He was unnecessarily grateful for the ride.  He said that he had a gig in a few hours at a local comedy club, and asked if I would mind dropping him off in that area.  He said he would get some food and beer and kill time until it started.  The club was near my house.  No problem.

We said our goodbyes to my bartender friend and headed out to the parking lot.  We had been in there long enough for it to be getting dark now.  On the short walk to the car, I remembered a previously forgotten crucial detail about the car.  My trunk and back seat were full with bags and boxes of items due to be donated to the thrift store.  There were 3 of us, and two open seats.  He warily stared at my car full of crap and asked what all that stuff was.  I explained, but I could tell after being in that bar with us, and now seeing the state of my car he was literally afraid to accept a ride from us.  Shit!  I don’t fucking blame him!  We must look like two clearly insane people from his perspective.  This was never going to work.  He was a very large man and demanded leg room.  My back seat sported two large cardboard boxes across the seat, with two bulging trash bags in either floorboard.  The trunk was packed to max capacity.

The only solution I could come up with was for Kyle to drive, our guest to take the passenger seat, while we pulled one box and one bag out of the back, I would sit down, then have them push the box and the bag on and around me.  No one was crazy about the idea.  Kyle hadn’t driven a car in a very long time, but had a license.  The comedian was still just all around weirded out by us in general and clearly didn’t really want to get in a vehicle with us.  I wasn’t really sure how I would fit in that back seat.  While the other two were standing in the parking lot, I just took charge of the situation and began pulling out the box and bag.  I declared that this is what we have to do.  I sat in the seat and ordered Kyle to put the box in my lap and smash the bag over my feet and legs.  he did with much effort.  Now the real test:  Will the door close?  After some intense rearranging and body modification, it did.  Neither of them knew where they were or how to get where we were going.  It was also up to me to navigate from my cumbersome position.  I smashed my arm and hand with my phone in it between the cardboard and my eyes and typed awkwardly with the edge of my thumb into the GPS.

20 fucking terrible, rib cage-crushing minutes later, we arrived at the comedy club.  Kyle mentioned that he was hungry too.  He asked our guest if he would like to get a bite together.  He agreed, awkwardly.  I too, felt awkward.  I was ready to put this entire shit-show to bed already.  Why are we dragging this out?  After the door was opened and I was released, I realized I was also hungry.  The club happened to be right next to a pizza place with a really great happy hour.  I conceded.  I wanted that $3 happy hour pizza they offered more than I wanted to escape the weird situation.

We spent another hour and a half with him.  We sat at the bar, Kyle in the middle of us.  Kyle has this magic way about him that dissolves any sort of pause in conversation.  He’s a life saver in these situations, and I freely let him take lead.  They chatted away.  I stared at my hands and continued to play out the day’s events in my mind.  Why didn’t I just drive this this guy’s house and give him his notebook back?  

As we finished our food and drink, we finally made motion to part ways.  The comedian again, thanked me for getting his notebook back to him.  He said any time we wanted to see his show, anywhere he played we only needed to text him with how many tickets we wanted and he would make it happen.  This included tonight’s show.  Of course, we would never take advantage like that.  Although, we had nothing to do that night AND the club was right in our neighborhood.  We told him we would be coming to see his show, plus Ross.  We parted ways.

When we picked up Ross from work shortly after, we tried to fill him in on the day’s happenings.  He was confused.  Remember, he had no idea I found (took) the notebook the day before, so all of this was new.  He was also a little weirded out that I spent my day with a strange guy “just hanging out.”  I didn’t blame him.  I mean, it was totally weird.  He didn’t want to go to the show.  I didn’t press it.

EPILOGUE

I continued to feel like a dick by totally NOT coming to his show when I clearly stated that I would.  I felt like the most inconsiderate human in the world.  Kyle remembered his first and last name, so I tried to look him up on Facebook so I could at the very least friend him and do some explaining.  He doesn’t have a Facebook.  At least not that I could find.  Also, I failed to save  his phone number to my phone.  I also have long since forgotten his first and last name.  I am a terrible human being.  

OAKS PARK

When I first began this blog, most Portland natives suggested to me that I needed to go out to Oaks Park.  It was a family amusement park, in Sellwood, across from the epic funeral home I had reported on (see Gothic Memorial Day).  It was only open in the summer, and was reportedly dilapidated and kinda fucked-up.    I put it on the back burner as “must sees” for when the rain dried up and the sun actually came out.  After nearly a year, that day finally came.  I had been talking about my plans to go to the park for a long while now, so Kyle and Ross were prepared for the day I finally declared that it was time.  I was delighted to discover that it was free to get in.  Fuck yes.

We picked the day, arbitrarily.  I failed to noticed when I declared that we would be going, that it was record high heat in Portland.  I usually don’t worry when I see these warnings.  My hometown of Fresno is in the California desert, where summer heat would top at 110 degrees.  This day, I was foolish to not heed the warnings.  We went to Oaks Park, totally inappropriately dressed for the day.  we also had higher hopes than what the park actually delivered.

Pulling in to the parking lot was strange in and of itself.  I had observed the lot from the windows of the funeral home I had visited on “Gothic Memorial Day”.   Having seeing the amusement park from that context, it was weird to see it from this angle.  I was excited.   Friends had talked this up, and either the Mercury or the Willamette had done an article on it (I can’t remember which) that promised a wasteland displaying broken childhood dreams.  I was sure that his would be my greatest blog yet.  I bought a 4-pack of film especially for the occasion, packed a pen and a notebook for notes, plenty of spending money, and two researchers.  This was going to rule.  

It was a random Tuesday, but it was fucking PACKED.  Of course it was.  I had no idea this bitch would be free to get in.  If I had a bunch of kids, I would take them here during summer vacation all the time.  Kyle and Ross were excited to eat, I was more interested in walking the grounds so I could see what fucked up parts were in need of photographing first.  They agreed to the tour, as long as they were able to get one snack first.  I conceded.  After all, it turned out to be “two-fer Tuesday”, which meant for any concession stand item or ride ticket you buy, you get one free.  That is an excellent deal.  Again, I can see why it was crowded.

Dual sno-cones. It was HOT.

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We began the tour of the grounds. It was sorta-small, but really entertaining. There were a lot of rides packed into the compact park, as well as midway games, bumper cars, a roller skating rink, shooting gallery, pretty much every great thing you would see at a state fair, just scaled down. It was pretty clean. It was pretty kempt. This really isn’t that weird. Its far from depressing. It wasn’t even white-trash. Shit.

This was not what I was expecting.

My companions sensed what I was feeling right away. I mean, we didn’t lose anything by coming here. It was free to get in, food was cheap. We decided to eat, play some games, ride a few rides, then just take off. It wasn’t the worst way to spend a day off. I was quite let down, though.  I was hoping for a circus of weird.  Maybe it is, in fact weird to some.  In my hometown, we had an amusement park called “Rotary Playland” or Playland   to most.  It was in a terrible part of town and for the most part, unkempt.  I went there as a child with my grandparents.  It was okay back then, but over the years became a gang hangout with murders occurring there or in the surrounding park far too regularly.  Its one of those things that is all too common for those growing up in Fresno:  If you enjoyed it as a child, you’ll look beyond the dilapidation and still enjoy it as an adult.  If you see it for the first time as an adult, however you will not enjoy anything about it.  I took Ross there once, before I moved away.  He had never been.  He was horrified, and said he would never bring a child there.  I actually was kind of impressed that it was cleaned up a little.  The last time I had visited it a few years earlier, it was pretty terrible.  I expected Oaks Park to be like the Fresno experience.  It wasn’t at all.  It was a little “retro”, I suppose.  It was also clean, maintained, affordable, and pretty exciting for a kid.  There was a lot to do.

We meandered though the crowd of happy children, trying to see any strange aspect worth reporting.  I snapped pictures for the hell of it.  I mean, I bought the film.  Might as well.

I wanted this.  Ross wouldn’t buy it for me.

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Scenesters playing the midway like its 2002.

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Bumper cars.

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how awesome is the innuendo on this?

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The view from the parking lot.  In the background, the funeral home I wrote about in Gothic Memorial Day.  Also, hella dumpsters.

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Shooting gallery.  Not that kind, you fucking addicts.

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Epic animals and fantasy creatures on the merry-go-round.  

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The funniest thing here was this ride.  Kyle and I had to go on it.  It was as lame as you could imagine.  

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I thought this mural was really funny.  

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Prize room.  I actually would really like to win the Crock Pot.  

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Me, Ross and Kyle in a funhouse mirror.  

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Kyle, the cock.  Check out that reach-around!

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Ross, the pimp squirrel.

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The roller rink was kind of badass. It was awesomely retro. It had an organ that came down from the ceiling. I’ve come to understand that this old-fashioned feature of movie theaters, rinks and the like are increasingly more rare.  You can only find very few still in operating condition in the world. This one was very well kept, and I was in awe of it.

Now if only there were a little monkey in a fez, running around to collect tips.

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After walking around for a few hours in the blazing hot sun, Ross noticed a little path off of the picnic area that appeared to lead down to the water that edged the park. There was a chain stretched across the path, but he urged us to simply step over it and explore. We did, and the short trail led us to a lovely beach on the water. There were a few others down there. Notably, two Asian women sat on a log, holding hands while overlooking the water with an iphone out on their knee, playing Mariah Carey on speaker. It made for a weird soundtrack. I think this part of the day was my favorite.

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Epilogue

 

There was one kind of weird element to Oaks park.  As we were walking around, exploring the roads less travelled we happened upon a little house.  It was in the grounds, across from the roller coaster and next to the picnic area. It had a fence around it with a large garden in the front. A woman in her 50’s was milling about the front with a watering can, sprinkling the plants in a large sun hat.

This was somebody’s house.

She milled around a little more, then sat on the porch swing and sipped a glass of iced tea. What is the story behind this? I could see in the windows and clearly saw a tv, couch, pictures on the wall. Someone definitely lived here. The best part was her back porch. If you walked down the path a little further, you could see a large balcony deck, filled with patio furniture, barbecue and tables overlooking the water. Pros: Fantastic view. Cons: Your neighbors are an entire amusement park with the constant soundtrack of children screaming on the roller coaster.

The house.  

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We played some games, rode a few rides, called it a day. It was nice, but not really blog-worthy. Alas, it lives here anyway to bore the masses.

TREK IN THE PARK

Last year, in the summertime I came upon a flier somewhere for an event simply titled “Trek in the Park”.  The flier had a picture of the St. Johns bridge paired with a well-recognizable Star Trek symbol. It was some sort of Star Trek convention in the park next to my house!!  At least that’s what I thought, or at least really hoped it would be.  Holy crap.  Sadly, by the time I heard of it, there was to be only one more and of COURSE I worked during the times it was going on.  I made a mental note that I would go to this next year, even if it meant requesting the day off solely to attend.  I put this in the back of my mind for next year.  

Around March, I started to see fliers for it again.  It would start up in July.  I put a flier on my bulletin board at home, as a reminder.  The Trek was always on a Saturday afternoon.  As a retail manager, I ALWAYS work Saturdays.  At this time, we were down a few managers, so requesting a day off was out of the question.  Also, I ALWAYS am closing manager on Saturdays.  ALWAYS.  Imagine my surprise when suddenly I was scheduled to open one August Saturday and Trek was going on.  It even had a spot in the Mercury that week.  I talked to Kyle and Bianca, we had it all planned out.  Trek went from 4-7.  I was to be off at 4, and we would head there when the event was in full-force.  I was hoping for costumed enthusiasts, memorabilia, possibly even reenactments and general nerdery.  This was going to be GREAT.

Bianca picked me up from work.  I was STARVING.  It went until 7, so I figured I had enough time to eat before heading there.  We decided on lunch at a nearby Thai restaurant, not 5 minutes away from the park.  Kyle and a friend of his said they would head to the Trek and meet us there.  I ate quickly, not wanting to miss a minute of the weird.  After we paid, it was only 4:45.  Not bad.  When I got back in the car, I reached into my bag for my camera so I could load it with the film I just bought for the occasion.  That’s when I discovered I had failed to pack it.

Fuck ME.

I sat and thought about my next move.  If I drove back to the apartment, got the camera, then drove back to the Trek it would eat up probably 30 minutes.  I also had to consider finding parking.  Kyle had texted me a few minutes earlier and let us know that parking was an absolute bitch around the park.  The event was popular, as we knew it would be.  As much as it killed me to do so, I ultimately decided to forgo the camera and just use the ones on our  phones.  I hated to do that, knowing there would be such photography gold walking around.  What could i do?  Miss valuable time at the event or sacrifice picture quality.  I reluctantly made the decision.  We continued on to the park, and found ourselves driving in concentric circles looking for a space.

After a good 10 minutes, we found a spot about 9 blocks away.  Damn.  Whatever.  At least we were here.  It was about 5:15.  I practically ran uphill to the park entrance.  I would have to get in there and start photographing hard.  Kyle and his friend met us at the entrance.  He said it was very crowded.

We walked down the path beneath the St Johns Bridge all the way down, almost to the water’s edge.  There, in the wide-open grassy area was a makeshift stage set up.  Fanning out from the stage were hundreds of people sitting on the grass on lawn chairs and blankets.  I scanned this scene.  On the stage, were actors reenacting a classic episode of the original Star Trek series.  They reeked of some sort of adult drama club or improv group.  The crowd were not the Trekkies I was expecting.  In fact, it was mostly families with little kids.  The crowd was silent, watching the play, lazing in the sun.  Hoards of children were running around the rows of layed-out blankets, creating their own fun and obviously board with what was happening.  We stood awkwardly at the back of the crowd.  We didn’t have a blanket or chairs.  We watched in silence.   Exactly 3 minutes after we arrived, the play ended and people started gathering up their things.  Oh.  

That was not what I was expecting.

It did not go until 7, as advertised.  It also was kinda lame.  It was more like one of those “shakespeare in the park” deals where everyone is very serious.  The event wasn’t fun, no one was smiling, and frankly it was boring.

I was so disappointed.  I had been planning this event for a year.  I had talked it up to all my friends.  3 people came with me just to help.  What a fucking let down. As we turned to walk back up the path from whence we came, the sky opened up with one of those famous Portland downpours.  We suddenly found ourselves hiking uphill, in summer attire, in the rain.  Defeated, I decided to take the group on a tour of Saint Johns.  We hit up all the bars I mentioned in my previous post, The Epic Saga of Finding Portland’s Worst Bar.  We ended the day at Roosters, where every fucked-up day should land you.  The boys decided to live dangerously and eat the pickled eggs from the dusty jar adorning the counter.  Its true,. I let everyone down in the adventure department that day.  Now they were deduced to cheap thrills at the worst bar in town, gambling with their health.  Trek in the Park, you suck.

 

I did not bother taking a single picture in the 3 minutes we watched the event.  I found this picture on Google, and although the day we went wasn’t quite this crowded, it is very accurate of what we saw that day.  

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(this is not my photo. I do not claim rights to this photo. If this photo is yours, I will gladly give you credit)

Fubonn

I was really enjoying writing the blog, but I wasn’t finding enough weird things worth writing about. I tried doing some internet research, but really didn’t see much except for touristy things that have long-since lost their charms after living here for a few years. I turned to my Facebook friends for any suggestions of some places they knew. One of the places suggested was something called Fubonn. The person who suggested it to me wouldn’t tell me any specifics on what it was, instead just said to go out there and check it out.

Of course, I took Kyle with me out there. Kyle has always been one of those great friends that will accompany you on whatever weird adventure you want to go on with a positive. That’s a very rare, and treasured quality he has. One random Sunday afternoon, we “Yelped” this Fubonn place and headed out. It was indeed, far.  Far East to be specific, out on 82nd and Powell. This was an area of town that not a lot of close-in Portlanders venture.

As you venture away from the center of Portland, in any direction the charms that make you love the city begin to slowly fade. Out in these surrounding areas are those big chain stores and restaurants that are all but absent from inner-Portland. The further we drove East, the more it started to look like Fresno. Strip-malls, car dealerships, Unimaginative chain eateries and of COURSE those scandalized big-box stores like your WalMart and the like. Kyle and I both looked out our windows in silence. This was the shit we purposely moved away from. We both agreed we didn’t like it out here. There WERE some pretty sweet dive bars, however. The kind with dated signs where in which you’ll most likely get stabbed. We passed some “colorful” strip clubs, a rad looking 24 hour diner, lots of chinese restaurants. Eventually, we arrived at our destination.

It was large. VERY large. It literally was its own mall. It had a tall facade with lettering in both English and something else. My spirits lifted. This may prove to be a little weird after all. Anything this huge had to be interesting.

We entered, pretty wide-eyed and trepidatious. It indeed was an old mall, now converted to the selling of all sorts of Asian wares. There was a travel kiosk, specializing in Asian countries, a candy store, a Shiseido cosmetics counter, and at the end the market. We entered the Fubonn market, expecting shit to get real. Some of the Asian markets back home are a little intense, both visually and odiferously. Some of the ones we’ve been to have been less than friendly, as well. There was a large Asian market at First & Tulare street, near my house in Fresno that particularly scared me off going in them all together. I mentally prepared for the worst.

It was a massive grocery store and restaurant supply. It was busy, bright, and remarkably clean. It had row after row devoted to different Asian cuisines, arranged by various regions and cooking styles. There was a live fish market, pristine and reasonably-priced. Very reasonable. I hadn’t seen this many fresh fish options at such affordable prices since I’d moved to Oregon. Clams, mussels, oysters..etc. They had a mile-long meat case, freezer cases full of meat both normal and incredibly exotic. Here you could purchase goat, duck heads, tongues, even entire pig and cow heads. Pretty much any creature with four legs was here, in a plastic-wrapped package for sale. Beyond this was the produce section offering what I think may be the least expensive produce for sale i’ve ever seen. Restaurant owners milled the isles, filling their baskets with their selections to take back and cook for the next day. Here in the produce I found so many of those hard to find ingredients that Whole Foods will often have and charge you and arm-and-a-leg for. I saw dragon fruit, chillies and peppers I’ve never heard of, even Durian.

So many Shellfish.

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Down the isles, you have every kind of noodle, sauce, spice, soup, rice, etc all arranged by cuisine. The market also included a fantastic collection of sake and wines. Upon browsing, I was delighted to see that even carried one of my favorite flavored sakes that I would drive downtown to the asian market for. I also noticed it was $2 cheaper.

Pokemon & Kyle

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The restaurant side was a little weird only in the respect that it was SO extensive. There was an entire isle of ONLY spoons. Many, many different kinds of spoons.

I wasn’t going straight home after this visit, so I couldn’t purchase any of the gorgeous seafood. Instead, I bought a bottle of the sake I like, a bag of candy and a bottle of stir fry sauce to try. Obviously, Ross and I would be coming back to do some shopping when we had some time.

Kyle and I left happy, munching on candy. I suppose Fubonn would be weird to a person who’d never seen an Asian market before. For us it was just a matter of discovering a new grocery store that was disappointingly far from where we lived.

One word of warning: If you are vegetarian/vegan, probably try and skip the meat department. Don’t even look in its direction.

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