Author Archives: Steve Unger
It’s an easy city to mock—but its quirks
also make it a haven for small businesses.
Every joke you can make about Portland—from its obsession with artisanal coffee and its ludicrous weekend-brunch lines to its touchy-feely local government and preponderance of Etsy stores—is basically true. Portlandia, in fact, is a documentary. But the same quirks that open up Portland to ridicule have made it something of a haven for small businesses—a city where an odd little company can thrive for decades.
In the absence of much major industry, Portland has stayed in a strangely comfortable, low-budget zone for decades. (There’s relatively little conspicuous wealth here, but there’s also not much in the way of conspicuous grinding poverty.) That’s made it the last not-horribly-expensive city on the West Coast. The median rent in Portland last year was $969 a month, or about half what it runs in San Francisco.
The Spin Laundry Lounge
750 N Fremont St
Portland, OR 97227
- 8am to midnight (later than any attended laundromat in Portland)
- Wash & Fold = $1.50 per pound
- first load @ 8am
- last load @ 12am
Café / Bar
- first brew @ 8am
- last call @ 12:30am
Two Points of View
“People move to New York to be in media or finance;
they move to L.A. to be in show business.
People move to Portland to move to Portland.”
From the New York Times
September 16, 2014
Portland’s paradox is that it attracts so many of “the young and the restless,” as demographers call them, that it has become a city of the overeducated and underemployed — a place where young people are, in many cases, forced into their semiretirement.
Even when college-educated residents get jobs there, they earn 84 cents for the average dollar earned in other cities. … In 41 of the country’s 50 largest cities, young, educated people earn more than they do in Portland.
From City Lab
September 17, 2014
The unemployment rate for 25- to 34-year-olds with a four-year degree in the Portland metro area in 2012 (the latest year for which this data is available) was 4.8 percent, slightly higher than the average of 4.0 percent for all large metro areas, but only ranking 16th highest of the 52 largest metro areas. Portland’s unemployment rate for this group was exactly the same as Houston’s and lower than in Atlanta’s and Chicago’s (5.2 percent), Los Angeles’ (8.3 percent), Las Vegas’ (7.2 percent), and even New York’s (5.7 percent).
“if workers accept lower wages to work in one location than another,
it is because they attach a real economic value to quality of life.”
Just 1/2 block from the Lion and the Rose
… few kitchens put out deliciously wholesome plates as consistently as Blossoming Lotus does.
from The Oregonian
August 14, 2014
Reported to be the largest antique show west of the Mississippi River
The first show at the Expo Center was held in 1981 and evolved into three shows per year. The Portland Shows are the largest on the schedule and because of the many exhibitors who come from out of the Portland area, draws the highest attendance. Particularly for the summer show in July, it is very typical to see customers from Japan, Canada and Germany as well as about every state in the U.S.
The content is typical of our events in that we cover items from the mid-1880s to the early 1970s. We like to think we are all things to all people and to some degree that is the case. That translates into having cool things for the 35 year old who remembers G.I. Joe, Star Trek and Fisher Price as well as the baby boomer who wants to connect to the things that were around when they were in their teens.
You’ll also see traditional vintage items such as sterling flatware, smalls, rare books, advertising and the like. Other popular categories such as vintage clothing, decorative items and estate jewelry are also very present.
200 Miles of Hard Riding Fun
From Wikipedia …
The Seattle to Portland Bike Ride takes place on the second or third weekend in July mostly on country roads, avoiding the direct freeway (U.S. Interstate 5) route between the cities. The Cascade Bicycle Club describes the 2006 route as “pretty flat with the “Big Hill” coming at the 45-mile mark. It’s a mile long with about a 7 percent grade. … The majority of the ride is on beautiful, rolling rural roads”. In 2005 approximately 30 miles (48 km) of the 202 miles (325 km) were considered uphill with a combined ascent of approximately 2,000 feet (600 m).
Wine Country Comes to Town
Portland has an association of wineries happily producing wine in The City. An “urban winery” means crushing grapes and making wine right here —in Portland — from grapes grown all over the Pacific Northwest.
The members of PDX Urban Wineries make a variety of different wines, not just Pinot Noir. Many of make wines from grapes like Syrah, Tempranillo, Pinot Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, among others, as well as unique red and white wine blends.
The best of the best whether you’re a first-time visitor
or a longtime resident
Listed alphabetically …
- Apizza Scholls
- Ava Gene’s
- Bollywood Theater
- The Country Cat
- Ken’s Artisan Pizza
- Laurelhurst Market
- Le Pigeon
- Little Bird
- Nak Won
- Ned Ludd
- Olympic Provisions NW
- Paley’s Place
- Park Kitchen
- Podnah’s Pit
- Pok Pok
- St. Jack
- Taste of Sichuan
- Toro Bravo
- The Woodsman
June is the month when Portland roses reach their peak
Photos taken at the Portland Rose Garden
by our guest and friend Dawn-Marie Lasley