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Singing Through The Christmas Noise

Once the commercial side dies down, you still have to get home.

1497470_10200266933115368_1667926822_n[1]Did you have a party? We organized singing.

It lasted one Christmas carol. Someone misunderstood the rules of Karaoke.

You need music with scrolling words, not scrolling words with guitar chords and no guitar.

I don’t remember the song, but one Christmas spirited young lady joined in.

If there was a scene to steal, she got it.

Did you go downtown for a city Christmas walk? Portland has to be one of the best.

Even the statues wear holiday gear.

For all the planning and attention to detail everyone does for Christmas, the picture above has a hidden meaning. East meets west? Maybe.

This is Tri-Met’s light rail bridge across the Willamette River.

Bikes and trains. No cars. When was the last new bridge in Portland?

You hear old timers talk about the time the Fremont center span floated down the river.

Guess what baby boomers, we’ll be talking about this new bridge for a few decades.

Portland is funny like that. People don’t talk with the reverence for the past you find in other places. There’s more forward focus, more emphasis on the moment. Or so it seems.

From the outside the city looks like a playground for startup tech, beer, and active wear shoes. If you swing on those rings, you’ve got Portland right where you want it.

But what if you’re a fifty year old, a forty year old, or a sixty year old. You’ve seen the playground before and seen it fold. Maybe a few times in your ultra-modern pace.

Scratch the surface most places and all you find is dirt. Not here.

Crack the shell of Portland and you find unexpected layers of civilized life.

People came here with the best intentions. They wanted to be what they couldn’t be back home where generations of family and family friends weighed them down.

Unknown to them, they brought generations of family and family friend culture with them.

And Oregon is better for it.

Baby boomers know this by heart. When the forty, fifty, and sixty year olds look down the barrel toward a new challenge, whether taking a hot tech company from startup to IPO, mapping a plan for brewing dominance over the next five years, or taking the precautions needed to stay on their feet, they don’t want a playground.

Don’t read this wrong. They still play, still want to play, but they’ve got their own game figured out. They don’t need a monitor to guide their play.

Let the twentysomethings and thirtysomethings play ‘Keep Up The Bieberdashians’ until they sink roots and start noticing the neighborhood, the schools, and the taxes.

Baby boomers did it. They gave it their best shot. It was called the ‘Counter Culture.’ You find it thriving wherever value and tradition meet. That’s their lasting gift from the hand-built Sixties.

You find it in Portland. That’s why big time people commit to big jobs here, instead of there. They know they’ll do more than scratch the surface while they’re here.

When they do, they’ll find more than dirt. And they’ll sing their song. Then they’re home.






About David Gillaspie
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