the portland effect



Pine State Biscuits (top left), Cascade Brewing (middle left), breakfast at Pine State (bottom left), Salt & Straw (right)

…medic…medic!!!…postpone cholesterol test…check belly to see if it has morphed into a biscuit…

I just came back from attending a wedding in Portland, OR. Have you ever been? If you have, then you know what it feels like to be overwhelmed by the amount and variety of food and drink in the city. It borders on ridiculous. It was the first time I wished I had kept the baggy overalls I used to wear in the ’80s. What? Text you photos of myself in overalls and poodle perm mullet? How dare you!! You are very lucky my belly biscuit prevents me from coming after you.

Fortunately, I was with a group of friends. I tend to eat less when eating family style or doing tasters of beer. That being said, no one helped me eat my biscuit sandwich with fried chicken and gravy. My fangs – which I try to keep on the down low – would have definitely sprung out if anyone tried coming near my plate.

I was super impressed with the creative and artisanal energy of the city. We would be driving in areas where I would think to myself, “Doesn’t seem like there’s much out here…” and then !kapow! a little pocket of interesting restaurants and businesses would suddenly appear.

While my belly was definitely in charge of this trip, my heart was being pulled all the while, knowing how much natural beauty the rest of the state had to offer.

Wait for me, Oregon, I’ll be back for you.

For those who are interested, this is where I went:

Blue Star Donuts
Voodoo Donut (I preferred these over Blue Star, but am willing to do another tasting comparison)
Stumptown Coffee Roasters
Pine State Biscuits (twice)
Life of Pie (best mushroom pizza I’ve had in a looong time)
Pok Pok (delicious chicken wings & refreshing drinking vinegars)
Nong’s Khao Man Gai (keepin’ it simple with great chicken & rice)
Rev. Nat’s Cidery & Taproom
Bailey’s Taproom
Hopworks BikeBar
Cascade Brewing Barrel House (twice) (excellent sour beers)
Breakside Brewery
Upright Brewing
Ruby Jewel Ice Cream
Salt & Straw Ice Cream (super friendly & unique flavor combos)
Random Order Coffeehouse & Bakery
Food carts (dizzying amount of choices)


Run and Give Me 20

It was World Run Day today!

I celebrated by eating hot dogs and drinking Guinness!

No, not really…although if you knew me, you probably believed me.  I actually used today as a test run for the 5K I have on December 2nd on the Universal Studios backlot.  I ran two continuous miles!  After I put my beer down, I ran/walked the rest of the 1.1-ish miles.

A friend joined me at the last minute, and after the run, we were stretching at one of those exercise stations at the park.  Suddenly, a man’s voice bellowed:  “THAT WAS IMPRESSIVE!”  We turned around, and an older gentleman was looking at us.  Huh?  “THOSE PUSH UPS YOU DID!!”  At the exercise station, I had managed to do two very shaky push ups.  He proceeded to give us advice on walking with weights and strengthening our core first thing in the morning by lying on our backs in bed and holding our legs a few inches from the mattress.  Why we should do this upon first waking up didn’t make sense to me.  After all, my bladder is pretty full first thing in the morning, and straining to hold my core steady just didn’t sound like a very good idea.

“Are you a coach?”  I asked him.

He looked surprised.  Yes, he was.  A retired coach.

I gave him a knowing look that said, I’m psychic.  Hm, maybe this is why I attract strange men.  Anyways, he looked exactly like what you’d think a high school football coach would look like.  For some reason, this energized him, and he put his cup down in order to lie on the ground and demonstrate just what we needed to do.

“If I pass out, call 911.”  He told us, lifting his legs off the ground and counting inside his head.

“Is that water or alcohol?”  I laughed, leaning over to peer into his cup.

Beer.  Awkward.

I know, I know, I just made jokes about me and my Guinness, but I’m kind of proper in some ways, and straining your core while drinking beer really shouldn’t be done before 10am.

What?  Oh, yes…World Run Day.  I do realize that I tend to go off topic, but I wouldn’t have done so if Coach hadn’t shown up today.

I have three weeks to continue my training and will be adding hills to my routine.  I’m slowly realizing that my legs, sadly, will never be gracefully slim…the sooner I can accept that fact, the stronger I’ll be for it.

P.S. Coach didn’t pass out. We thanked him for his advice and left him to do our core work by eating like pigs.