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Posted on Saturday, March 1st, 2008

Dave!Hello Portland!

Last night was an official meeting of the TequilaCon 2008 Planning Posse. For everybody who is anxiously awaiting to hear about what's going to be happening in Philadelphia on May 3rd, your salvation will soon be at hand! A venue has been chosen, plans have been made, and a spreadsheet has been created. Jenny will be working out the few remaining details next week, so keep a look-out over at Run Jen Run (or watch your in-box if you've requested email updates).

The TQ2008 Planning Posse after-party kicked off at the sublimely cool restaurant Montage, where much macaroni & cheese and geek tattoos were to be had (w00t!). From there, the evening moved to The Green Dragon for Sopranos pinball, then to The Blue Monk for after-cocktails cocktails. A most excellent and productive precursor to TequilaCon 2008...

TQ 2008

This morning Dustin and I decided to meet Vahid at Powell's City of Books so we could cash-in on his encyclopedic knowledge of science fiction literature. I've got some travel coming up, and nothing makes the plane time pass faster than a really good book. Fortunately, Vahid has a huge list of worthwhile titles to explore...

Powells City of Books

I managed to escape with a total under $60 this time, which showed great restraint on my part. It would be very easy to spend several days and several thousands of dollars at Powell's, not just because they have one of the best book selections on earth, but because it's so cool that independent book-sellers like this (and my beloved Elliott Bay Book Co. in Seattle) can thrive in the day-and-age of Amazon and the mammoth chain stores.

Lewis and Eclectic then joined us for lunch at HOTLIPS Pizza. On our way back, we ran across shopping cart racers blowing through town...

Shopping Cart Races

My favorite was the Pope-Mobile shopping cart, though they were having some problems getting started...

Pope-Mobile Cart

Cirque de Soleil is in opening the city tonight, and everywhere you go downtown there are people dressed up as angels to promote the event. They're juggling, dancing, walking on stilts, and passing out fliers. Since today was also the opening day of a new season for the Portland Saturday Market, many of the Cirque Angels ended up congregating there...

Cirque de Soleil portland

After goofing around at the market (FAKE BABY!!), the weather was so nice that we decided to visit Portland's Chinese Gardens. It's an incredible oasis of calm and beauty in the middle of the city...

Chinese Garden Portland

Things were just starting to come into bloom, but it was too early to see the garden in all its splendor (lucky for you, Vahid has some great photos of a previous visit up at Flickr). Still there were some beautiful shots to be had...

Chinese Garden Portland

After a break, Vahid came back to town and suggested eating at E-San, which has some of the best Thai food I've eaten outside of Thailand. I had a truly excellent Gang Mussamun veggie curry, and recommend E-San highly when looking for someplace unique to eat in Portland.

Earlier in the day, as we were walking by Dante's Cafe, we were handed a flyer for a special event by "The Can-Can Castaways" happening tonight. As we peeked inside to see the performers practicing for the show, it looked interesting, so we decided to come back for the show.


F#@% Cirque de Soleil and their $50 tickets... THIS is value entertainment.

For a mere $12 cover charge, we were treated to a fantastic showing of The Breaking, which is the troop's dance-inspired tale of "Love, Loss, and Lament" featuring terrific live music by The Bad Things...

Can-Can Castaways: The Breaking

Can-Can Castaways: The Breaking

Awesome performance. And they're based out of SEATTLE! It would be fun to get a group of friends together and see one of their home shows. I'm not a dance-performance lover, but this was excellent stuff. Vahid and I both bought the CD and got our show posters autographed by the cast. If you're in Seattle, check out The Can-Can Kitchen and Cabaret down at the Pike Place Market.

During show intermissions, we played table-top games, with Vahid getting high score on "Chug Monkey" which I thought was a pretty cool game. Who doesn't love a drunk monkey?

Chug Monkey

That's a pretty amazing day, and I think I set a record with the number of outgoing links or something.

Tomorrow morning it's a flight back home and a return to my regularly-scheduled boring life there...

Categories: Travel 2008Click To It: Permalink


  1. Iron Fist says:

    Keeping that monkey upright in his chair is a lot more work than you might think.

    Oh, and that pic of our tattoos is money.

  2. Oh I heard about the beautiful cherry tree blossoming in springtime Washington state. I’m jealous. I have to fly to Japan hoping for the right time to be enveloped by those beautiful pink petals.

    Can’t wait to hear about your up-coming travels.

  3. Firda says:

    Is this Seattle-based Cirque de Soleil you’re talking about the same one as the original Canadian Cirque du Soleil or a different thing altogether? Just wondering because I always thought that Cirque du Soleil was Montreal-based! Oh wait. Apparently, Cirque du Soleil AMERICA is based out of Redmond, WA. The HQ is still in Montreal. Nevermind! I was just being anal. 🙂

  4. Troy says:

    So…. People were dress-up like angles eh? Where they dressed up like obtuse angles? Right angles? Acute angles?

    Just joking with ya 🙂

  5. Avitable says:

    Maybe one of these years I’ll make it to TequilaCon. It always sounds like such a fun time.

  6. Tracy says:

    Crap…now you’re making me want to move further West. Portland seems like an awesome city for the artistically inclined!

    I’m so amazed to see that there are trees in bloom there; we’re still buried under several feet of snow, and I don’t think I’ll see plant life until May. Argh!

  7. Lewis says:

    Holy Portlandia! It looks like you did a week’s worth of living in only two days. As I said when we walked by Dante’s and into the yummy cock and balls donut shop, I don’t think I’ve ever even seen these places….and I live right here! Thanks for the great lunch and donuts and walk and fake baby and grocery cart races. What a great Saturday.

  8. ETinNY says:

    $50 Cirque tickets!!?? Gimme some. When their show comes here it’s like $95. I must say that it’s neat to go to a real (surreal?) circus in a tent in NYC, though and it feels like it’s worth every penny. (‘Course I think that Cirque is the coolest thing on the planet, anyway.)

  9. John says:

    WOW! Now THAT’S a weekend!

  10. Wow. I’m ILLLLLL with jealousy, but glad you had a good time in my city! (Can it still be my city after all this time and distance?) Ah, Powells. And the Chinese Garden. It all looks wonderful. Thanks for reminding me of great times!

  11. adena says:

    Aww…that all sounded like so much fun! I was stuck at home all day! Wish I could’ve escaped and drove to the city to meet up w/ you guys!

  12. Hilly Sue says:

    I’m glad you all had a blast! Shari’s hair looks adorable and everyone else looks amazingly hot, as usual :).

  13. Rick says:

    How can you possibly do all that in one day???? I’m jealous!

  14. whall says:

    Always glad to find a great bookstore that can sell online. My wife has a hard time finding quality used books in her desired field – astrology. I’ll check them out!

    I love pinball. Nothing beats Funhouse. “It’s getting late…”

  15. jenny says:

    My god – I can’t believe you guys crammed all that into Saturday! Next time I’m going to have to stay the weekend. I mean… Pacman grocery cart races? Awesome.

    I’m working on the official TC08 update, and should have it up later tonight. Let the fun begin!

  16. Craig says:

    Hi Dave:
    You should visit Indianapolis sometime. I’m not saying that it will be more exciting than Portland, but it can still be a fun few days. I’m linking you. Hope that’s okay. See you around the Internets.

  17. shari says:

    w00t! I laughed, I cried, I broke glasses… we should go hours away to meet up again more often!

  18. brandon says:

    man, i am so bummed that i couldn’t hang out Saturday, but apparently Vahid slipped some alcohol into my tonic water, and i didn’t realize this until after my 14th tonic water…ahem.

  19. jillybean says:

    Hey Dave. Next time you’re in town, you should try Pad Thai Kitchen on Belmont. Awesome Thai food, and in my opinion, as good if not better than E-San. I could eat there every night, and at their prices, I could! 😀

  20. yellojkt says:

    I would move to Portland to just be near Powell’s. Angel street performers would be a bonus. When I was in Seattle I saw some people rehearsing in a park for some sort of fire festival. Very cool and a little scary.

  21. sizzle says:

    How fun!

    You know I’ve been thinking about checking out the Can Can and now I think I will will- thanks for the tip. 😉

  22. turnbaby says:

    Thanks for the pictorial–awesome

  23. Dave2 says:

    Iron Fist… Good thing he was just drunk instead of both drunk AND on a hit of cocaine!

    CK… I have been to Japan many times, but never just as the cherry blossoms have come into bloom. Maybe one day I’ll make it, because the photos I’ve seen are magnificent.

    Firda… I thought the US home base of Cirque was Orlando, where they have a permanent installation at Disney World’s “Downtown Disney” area (though I know Las Vegas has one too). In any event, there are many touring versions of various shows, and I’m sure this Portland performance is just another roaming troop of Cirque performers moving around the country.

    Troy… Hey, misspelling “angels” one out of two times isn’t that bad when you’ve had no sleep and are drunk!

    Avitable… No doubt. It’s right up there with your Halloween party on my list of 2007 highlights!

    Tracy… Portland is a fairly liberal city with a thriving arts community. In many respects, I prefer it to Seattle, but both cities have their charms.

    Lewis… D’oh! I forgot to mention our stop at Voodoo Doughnuts! That’s kind of important, because no trip to Portland is complete without it! I am sorry that the cock & balls were sold out by the time we arrived though. Maybe you can make a special trip into the city to try cock & balls one day.

    ETinNY… They have more expensive tickets, but I think $50 is the average. I personally LOATHE Cirque de Soleil, but am tempted by the new Beatles show that’s running in Vegas.

    John. I know! It doesn’t get much better than that!

    LSL… You need to get back and visit us here in the Great Pacific Northwest one of these days!

    Adena… It certainly would have been lovely to see you again… maybe next time. 🙁

    Hilly-Sue… Shari was BAD-ASS with her tattoo! I’m surprised she didn’t give anybody an ass-kicking that night!

    Rick… Having Vahid as a guide certainly helps…

    Whall… I prefer Pin-Bot myself.

    Jenny… YES! Weekends in Portland are worth the stay! We should have kidnapped you for the weekend and refused to let you go.

    Craig… Been to Indianapolis a couple of times. They have a pretty decent Hard Rock Cafe there. 🙂

    Shari… And you did it all with a tattoo and a kicky beret to boot!

    Brandon… Yes, well, that will teach you to order “tonic water” from Kentucky!

    Jillybean… It would be hard to top E-San, but I’ll try and remember to give it a try!

    Yellojkt… It’s scarier when the street performers have guns. Next time you’re in Detroit, you’ll see what I mean.

    Sizzle… We loved it. The current show “Kabaret Verboten” didn’t look quite as good as “The Breaking,” but I’d still like to see it.

    Turnbaby… It’s even better in person! When can we expect your visit? 😀

  24. Wow! I had no idea Portland was so cool. I seriously need to get out more. Then again, I could just keep living vicariously through you, and avoid all the pain of travel.

  25. Lisa says:

    Dude, thank goodness I read this in my feedreader for fear I’d be called a stalker if I stayed and read all the links…whew!

    I have to say that I love the fake baby and the drunk monkey. Good times my friend, good times.

    And really, who doesn’t love a pope in a shopping cart. The only thing better would be checking him out through the self-scan line.

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