Aug 22, 2009

Street Jam Recap.

Nice turnout Thursday night. Whole buncha kids I'd never met, shredding and having a blast. Good spots, great vibes, beautiful night. Once we got the mob moving, I didn't notice anyone hanging on the sidelines. At least two broken chains, but no flat tires, no run-ins, and no significant injuries.

I only broke out my pocket point-n-shoot when I wasn't riding, which wasn't very often, so this is a pretty lazy documentary. Help with names for these photos would be appreciated.

So. Briefly:

This driveway is one of the smoothest natural flyouts in the city. The goal here was to catch a branch in one's mouth:



Mikl "Yellow Helmet " Baranov.

Nick Morris from Southeast was grinding everything. This Lincoln High classic has approximately a bike length of runup.

...Made our way to the Pearl District towards midnight. Dalton Holt from Olympia sent the gap of the evening. (Dalton has a little blog here.)

And at another historically significant Portland spot we challenged Yellow Helmet Baranov to wallride over a bike.

Nothing beats Portland in the Summer. Kids are riding hard.

Aug 18, 2009


I'm just hoping my tires stay inflated. Map here.

All credit to DBZ.

Aug 7, 2009

A True Story.

My first published piece ever, from Dig #52, May 2006. This blog post prompted by an excellent bmxboard thread...

Click image to zoom in and read.

Jul 4, 2009

Caleb Evenson's Roadtripmobile/Home.

Since his return to Portland in early June, our good friend Caleb Evenson has (as previously mentioned) been living out of a nondescript minivan, parked on various Southeast neighborhood streets.

He was rooming at DBZ's in December, when a surprise rent increase effectively evicted the entire household. The unemployed South Dakota native returned to the family farm to work, save, fire out a semester of college, and outfit his future home on wheels.

Caleb traces his love for the minivan to a storied 1994 Plymouth Voyager that accumulated 212,000 miles and two cracked blocks before being laid to rest. This one, a 94 Dodge Caravan with 105k, is "just a baby, practically," he says.

Caleb intends to find employment at some point, and then housing. Until then, he seems to be living rather comfortably on about five dollars a day (he estimates), showering at friends' houses. I crossed paths with Caleb at the June bmx video night, and we shot these photos:

Lantern, found in an abandoned meat packing plant; still running off the original battery.
Sleeping quarters. Two bikes. Super 8 camera. Must say, I find that bedding almost irresistably inviting.
21st century nomad. You'd expect to find a laptop computer stashed somewhere in here, but you'd be wrong.

Side view: pink hubcaps handed down from minivan 1.0; limo tint windows; stray plywood bookshelf.

Jun 27, 2009

Bridge, Bike, Coffee, Bliss.

It was over a year ago that I read (and blogged) about an ingenious union of mankind's three most magnificent achievements: coffee served to commuters riding bikes across Portland bridges.

Also, there are pastries. And it's free.

The recurring event is called "Breakfast on the Bridges,"and it happens from about 7am to 9am, on both the Hawthorne bridge and Steel bridge, the last Friday of every month, and every Friday in June. Over and over, Ben and I made plans to investigate, but it seemed like something always came up, or we'd simply lose track of plans made a month in advance. But we resolved to make it happen one of these June Fridays.

Friday before last, we succeeded. It was awesome and easy, and we'll be doing it regularly from here on out. Definitely. Here are some photos and a quick report.

The Hawthorn Bridge coffee station sets up on the West side of the river, at an amply wide section of the Westbound sidewalk. No booth, no card table, just some air-pots perched on a concrete barrier. We failed to notice what brand of coffee was being served, but not that it was dark, hot, fresh, and utterly satisfying. Chose from a selection of non-disposable ceramic mugs. Here, Ben follows protocol and helps himself.

Pastry box.

This is bmx rider Caleb Evenson, who recently moved back to Portland. He is a hippie but does not smoke pot and does not stink, even though he currently resides in a minivan, to be documented in a future post. (Here it is. -ed.) Caleb is drinking cider in this picture.

We lingered at the Hawthorne station for twenty or thirty minutes, enough time for a couple of leisurely coffee & pastry rounds; lots of people-watching; beautiful chilly Portland Summer morning. (Note long sleeves on all parties.) Swished our cups in the rinse bucket and headed off to ride a little street before my 9am professional obligations.

Briefly hit up the Steel Bridge coffee station, down on the pedestrian level, East side, but took no pics. Another good scene, but our appetites were satisfied, and we were eager for some bmx. Hit up all the good spots on the East Bank Esplanade, got good and sweaty and sore, snapped just this one photo. Ben wallrides from flat over the 2-foot chunk for no reason. Hawthorne bridge in the background, Caleb silhouetted on his kooked one-speed.

Ben and Caleb discussing cameras. (A bunch of smart little videos on Caleb's vimeo page, btw.)

Detail: Caleb's ride.

After I took off, Ben and Caleb filmed this. A productive morning on all fronts.

I'm going to go heat up some afternoon dregs now, and think up a title for this post.

Jun 23, 2009

Li'l Sk8punx in the Park.

Monday evening, witnessed a gang of adolescent skaters sessioning the three-stair in the park, in observance of Go Skateboarding Day. As they paused to discuss the next spot, slouching fashionably in their defiant pre-teen glory, a spontaneous game of "hide-and-go-seek tag" broke out on the adjacent wooden play structure.

For a full twenty minutes, they played like innocent, unselfconscious children.

Jun 19, 2009

Proud Day for Our Unkillable Volvo.

To Grandmother's house we go, December 2008.

I had big plans for our 1992 Volvo 240's 200,000th mile. Wanted to go for a scenic drive up the Gorge, document the numbers rolling over, snap a portrait of family+car, dramatic vista in the background or waterfalls or something. But we had errands to run, and the miles just kept coming.

At least I anticipated it. Shot this shaky, unfocused, unremarkable home video yesterday.

For the record, we were actually passing directly over this, just as the 199,999th mile appeared;


Previous blog posts featuring the rig;

Bmx brickhead Jeff Z's defgrip interview and 240-peppered blog;

Youtube deathrock Volvo drifting;

See you at 300k. Markie darling--fourteen years from now, this is the only car you'll be learning to drive.