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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on February 19, 2006 2:51 PM. The previous post in this blog was Archeology. The next post in this blog is Tireless helper. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Sunday, February 19, 2006

Weekend update

We're less than 15 hours into Nice Week here on the blog, and already the tenson is mounting. There were a couple of items in the paper today that made me just want to...

[deep breath]

Now that the wind has died down, though, it's a perfect winter's day in Portland. I often complain that in western Oregon we rarely see that bright blue sky that takes the edge off the hibernal chill. Today's proving me wrong.

[stares at computer screen]

One hundred fifty-three more hours of Nice Week to go, and already I've got two topics on my list for when it's over.

Comments (47)

I love you, Jack.

First of all, thanks for your great blog, and I've promised myself that I'll read it more often to stay better informed on local events.

Also: Do you have any thoughts on Ben Westlund's candidacy for the governorship? From the little I know about Ben, he seems like ... well, a nice guy, and I'm inclined to support him. But I would be interested to hear your informed opinion.

I've give my opinion on Westlund (yes, consistent with Nice Week): I hope his presence in the race, if nothing else, gives something to the debate other than our wish-washy governor and rightwing wackos.

I don't know that much about Ben, but he does seem like a nice man. This picture speaks to me.

More about him next week.

Sirajul, you're not getting my Bud Light.

Now now, b!X, be nice.

Ben is nice.

I suspect that Westlund photo is going to get tons of play -- from supporters and opponents alike.

As of right now, I'm a Ben fan (mini rant about our other options deleted 'cause it's not in keeping with nice week...)

Tension mounting 15 hours into Nice Week….Hmm…that reminds me of an old joke. This priest is starting a church and he requires new members to remain celibate for one week. He gets an older married couple, and they report back that the week went by without even noticing. Then he gets a couple who’ve been married a few years. They say the first half of the week was okay, but then the tension built. They really had to restrain themselves but they made it and were allowed in the church. Then some newlyweds tried and they came back after a day. The man told the priest, “The first few hours were tough but then she bent over to pick up a box of cereal and we…we broke our vow.” The priest said, “I’m sorry. You can’t come back to the church”, and the man said, “I know. We can’t go back to Fred Meyer’s either.”

Please keep us posted on the hourly countdown as I'm sure it helps to relieve the feeling of doom that is likely hanging over Sam and Opie's heads as they await the week to pass.

But then it might increase their pain and suffering.

Oh well!

Nice Week is nice,
but let the record show
I said something nice about Westlund on this blog
18 days ago:

"State. Sen Ben Westlund has my vote if he runs for
governor as an independent."


I've seen Eric Sten pushing his kiddo in a stroller near City Hall, and he is the epitome of a proud papa and that is nice to see.

Dan Saltzman has the diggable city initiative that doesn't cost a lot, and involved PSU students in doing something nice for the City and he also has some nice staff.

Randy Leonard donated his time to help City Club raise money by being a Salon Dinner Guest, it was nice of him.

Sam Adams started the First Thursday Art nights in City Hall those really nice with some nice artists.

Mayor Potter starts off every city council meeting with nice kids telling about their experiences in the City, that's nice.

Gov Ted goes to all the funerals of soldiers, that's nice.

Sen Smith is speaking at a Boy Scout fundraiser, that's nice

Sen Wyden's first date with his wife was at Powells Book store that's sweet and nice.

Rep. Wu helps get $$ for PSU, that's nice.

Rep. Blumenhauer brought home the bacon with the 1/2 million for Clackamas Light Rail, that was nice of him.

Rep. Hooley did some great work helping nice people aviod identy theft, that was nice legislation.

Have a nice day.


OOops, Almost Forgot

You're real nice too Jack.

It seemed like a cosmic coincidence when NWnw (Northwest nice week) greeted, in its very first hour, the baddest, spittingest book review I can remember reading. We are talking intellectual food-for-thought fight here. And I am reporting this unnice bit of business to the nice po lice.

There's a book, titled "Breaking the Spell:," which says, basically, humans gotta believe in god because it is in their genetic composition, and if religious superstition is in our genes it proves simultaneously that god does not exist and that god is a human invention (of necessity).

(I had been thinking this exact same thing -- more on that later. One reverse expression of it is: "If satan (anti-god) did not exist (meaning people are not inherently bad as a human condition), then humans would have to invent it," 'it' being satan, anti-god, bad, whatever word you got for the problem with people.)

So there is this rabbi, I believe, who writes a review of the book, and that's where the nice police have an arrest to make. Here's the evidence:

[[ 'Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon,' by Daniel C. Dennett ]]

The God Genome - Review by LEON WIESELTIER
Published: February 19, 2006

In his own opinion, Dennett is a hero. He is in the business of emancipation, and he reveres himself for it. "By asking for an accounting of the pros and cons of religion, I risk getting poked in the nose or worse," he declares, "and yet I persist." Giordano Bruno, with tenure at Tufts! He wonders whether religious people "will have the intellectual honesty and courage to read this book through." If you disagree with what Dennett says, it is because you fear what he says. Any opposition to his scientistic deflation of religion he triumphantly dismisses as "protectionism." But people who share Dennett's view of the world he calls "brights." Brights are not only intellectually better, they are also ethically better. Did you know that "brights have the lowest divorce rate in the United States, and born-again Christians the highest"? Dennett's own "sacred values" are "democracy, justice, life, love and truth." This rigs things nicely. If you refuse his "impeccably hardheaded and rational ontology," then your sacred values must be tyranny, injustice, death, hatred and falsehood. Dennett is the sort of rationalist who gives reason a bad name; and in a new era of American obscurantism, this is not helpful.

Was that a nice comment? Someone tell me.

I'm not sure I can answer that question and stay within the rules of Nice Week.

By the way, Jack, I love your Nice Week header! No, really!

That was the most earthly post I have ever read from Tenskey, despite the word "cosmic" appearing in the first sentence.

I understood his thesis right up until the "nice police have an arrest to make" which doesn't sound very nice to me. I tried to read the book review (twice), but I found it too nice to finish. The author of the book review is very, very smart, and very nice too.

Given the lack of poetry or use of the word treason, I think Tenksey post was very nice.

I think it would be even nicer if the header had lots and lots of kittens. If one nice kitty is good, then even more kittens are better. And the nice people at animal control don't place any nice limits on the number of kittens you keep in your header (unlike your trailer house). Heeeeere kitty, kitty, kitty!

I think I am going to take a PDC employee to lunch.
Any volunteers?

of course it will have to be inside an Urban Renewal district.

How about a nice Portland restaurant that is thinking about converting into a nice sandwich cart because they are having a hard time making a nice profit? Would that be a nice place for lunch, Steve?

Wouldn't it be great if Erik Sten and his wife had a nice set of twins between now and November? He might be such a devoted father that he could think it would be nice not to run for reelection.

It's so nice, being nice, to the nice.

I'm looking for the motivator with this wonderful Nice Week idea.

Do ya spose there is someone close to Jack who is a PR Rep. for Eli Lilly and has been assigned to boost sales of the Prozac line?

Hey! I mean it! Be nice!

Ryan Frank and Anna Griffin's blog has had some really nice posts with really nice information. There are lots of alternate media popping up that make reading not so boring, there are a lot of folks that care enough about the city to do nice research that is looking out the good of the order.

Pop-up blockers are nice too. It sure would be swell to get the same kind of commercial blockers for our televisions. I'll bet the hardworking people of Madison Ave. wouldn't think that was very nice.

I wonder if this is what the cast of Leave it to Beaver felt like? So nice.

Is making mock of nice nice? (That is not a hiccup.)

Mocking niceness is in itself not nice. I for one am trying to be genuinely nice.

I feel like a rat in an experiment.

I also wonder if the various agencies appreciate the nice?

What happens when the nice ends and all that pent up anti-nice explodes?

Tune in next Sunday to find out!

One flew over, Jack.

Quiz:

Who of the following is most likely to be nice to you?

1) the local politician who is behind you at Starbucks

2) the Tri-Met driver

3) the bank teller

4) your ex-wife

5) most bartenders in Portland

Answer: 5. (They are usually very nice!)

It's so nice, being nice, to the nice.

It's nice to see Frank Burns quoted in a relevant context.

To borrow what it did for New York, New York -- the city so nice they named it twice -- I for one think it would be nice for two of this weak of nice. Doubly nice. I'm serious. Nicely in a nice way.

Thanks for the Frank Burns citation, B!Xsie.

I knew it was from 70's television, but I couldn't remember who said it.

Don't you think that pervasive and ongoing cheerfulness begins to appear self-mocking after a while? I'm not suggesting that you have to be snarky in order to "keep it real", but if you think about the barista that is always painfully cheerful at 7:00 a.m. don't you wonder if they really mean it? Or perhaps they've noticed tips increase when they're really nice?

I guess what I'm really wondering is, is it possible (or desirable) to be nice all the time to everybody? Without attitude enhancing nice drugs?

I think we're going to need to come up with some nice synonyms for the word 'nice' - (a single use of said word would have resulted in a failing grade from my high school senior year composition teacher, fwiw...)

Perhaps you can use it as the theme of a future post this week should subjects not readily come to mind for some 'nice' postings...!

Coincidentally (or was it?), Guys and Dolls aired over the weekend, with its Nicely-Nicely Johnson character. I think that was nice of TCM

.evil ot ecalp ecin yllaer a ytic ruo gnikam rof tiderc fo stol eversed srenoissimmoC ytiC dnaltroP

Have you all seen the nice aerial tram that Santiago de Calatrava is proposing for New York to Governeros Island to Brooklyn? Nice.

There has been a command from the blog master that "nice" be the order of the week. What does that require? What pushes the envelope? What goes over the line, with banishment as punishment? Is speaking truth to power not nice? Can we be nice, and disagree at the same time? Is pointing out the emperor has no clothes not nice? Did I Just go over the line and will recieve banishment, and my blog deleted? I guess I will find out. Is posing questions, which is what I have been doing, disagreeable, therefore, not nice? Is it not nice to point out another person's shoelace is untied, therefore sparing the person a fall, or is it embarrassing the person? The same could be said about pointing out your fly is open. But is that closer to the line, or over the line?

Questions, questions, questions.

Golly sakes, I opened the window this morning and heard some frogs croaking, be-nice, be nice!

Guess their contract with the brewery expired.

All the tension that's mounting this week is kinda nice. Nice as a change, if nothing else, from the lassitude of none, nothing ever changing. Plus ce meme chose, as they say, oui oui, in Nice.

The Frank Burns quote was nice, but what he actually said was "It's nice to be nice -- to the nice."

Nicely put. And not to be confused with the former journeyman '80s ballplayer Alan Knicely. Or Dean Nice, the late athletic director of the Gresham School District.

Remember when Portland was a nice, little town? Well, it's still two-thirds of that.

"...banishment as punishment..."

has a nice cadence to it.

I found banishment a punishment,

But I turned to an experiment.

To implement my need to vent,

To the Web I quickly went.

Blogger seemed so heaven sent,

I pitched my very own new tent.

Thanks, Jack.

P.S. "nice" rhymes with "vice" - I don't know what rhymes with "doggerel"

The Nice were nice - Keith pre-ELP.

PAT Prez. Ann?

And now for something completely different...

Sanity breaks out in Salem.

The Oregon Supreme Court reverses Judge James.

Measure 37 lives!

Niiiice!

Nicer & Nicer

the decision was unanimous

I'm giddy with delight.

"I think (a public-private partnership) is a nice way of asking for a subsidy," Bragdon said.

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