Thursday, January 04, 2007

Rocking hoppers, a matched set and a neo-ugly tower

What do Seattle and the District of Columbia have in common? According to a family source embedded deep within the Lindy Hop community (That’s right, they’re back!), both cities are known to be hot spots for producing top-notch swing dancers.

That bit of trivia comes with a bonus. As my source puts it, “Seattle and D.C. have more than their share of ‘rock stars.’” A “rock star” is a term for a dancer who draws attention on the floor and is sought after as a partner. The result: Rock and Swing, music from adjacent eras, meet in the language of today’s young Lindy Hoppers.

This from a story in yesterday’s New York Times about a baggage-theft ring at the George Bush (Which one? It matters!) Intercontinental Airport in Houston….

“Officials on Tuesday announced the arrest of five men charged with stealing bags, including 23-year-old twins.”

Must be two from an old matched set.

We seem to be making progress on undergrounding utilities around the under-construction Watershed Senior housing project. A project official told the Hillsdale Neighborhood Association last night that City Hall seems stirred up by our complaints about leaving wires above ground. In the one small right-of-way stretch that project designers hoped to underground, Comcast and Qwest, citing costs, refused to use the subsurface conduit. PGE agreed to go underground. That's another reason to cancel your cable subscription.

Hillsdale Neighborhood Association meetings have their incendiary moments. Not that neighbors disagree. Of the six or so resolutions passed at last night’s meeting, all were approved unanimously by the 25 attendees.

The heat is usually saved for City or County officials required to share some plan that, as they say, “will impact” the neighborhood.

Last night it was the planned construction of a new tower in the much loved, historic Council Crest Park. A three-person City delegation explained that the new tower, to be used for emergency communication, will replace the old Erector-Set ugly. The park, at 1,073 feet, is Portland's highest point and tower-strategic.

So far so good. The problem is that the new tower will look exactly like the old ugly one, but on steroids to withstand greater winds and, well, we don’t want to think about THAT….

The mechanical design drew a blast from Arnie Panitch, known for his unminced, Detroit-tough words. He compared the tower to certain invasive plant species (English Ivy, Clematis, Japanese Knotweed, Himalayan blackberry) we are trying to root out in Southwest.

Then, mixing his metaphors nicely he shouted: “It STINKS!!!”

Panitch's words ringing in their ears, the stunned delegation retreated into the night, and, we hope, back to their drawing boards to think aesthetically.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good choice for the lindy hop picture-a classic! The term "rock star" is actually usually reserved for really really top notch dancers who are generally nationally well-known (they usually compete & teach). Many dancers (like myself) draw attention and are sought after, but are certainly not rockstars :-)

8:24 PM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home