Thursday, June 04, 2009

Out Riding

Had you been availing of the perfect cycling weather today, not too hot, nor yet these wind gusts of later afternoon, you might have spotted me along Spring Water Corridor, hobnobbing with Darl, our cycles at a temporary stand still.

Yesterday, you'd have seen me in Movie Madness with a gnu math teacher from West Virginia, running on parallel tracks. Sometimes these are Wanderers, other times, who knows.

Hyzy and I walked down to that coffee shop and back in Ladd's, without Josie this time. That'd be typical, with no Mr. Spocks going "fascinating captain" (OK, maybe sotto voce they do that i.e. in a voice imagined "in the head" (the approved metaphoric location for "hearing voices" in western civ -- as long is it's your own, plus you're supposed to have just the one, by convention (plus an "indoor voice" for speaking quietly))).

What many Portlanders take for granted, not having lived in other cities, is that adults are free to go about their business without almost every movement considered potentially scandalous and incendiary.

You're not answerable to busybodies, whose business is to know your business. We don't employ those types of people. We're each seen in the company of others, in all kinds of social and business situations, ethnically diverse, monoculture, whatever.

But then, this is just "life in the big city" to some, i.e. we get more privacy, not less, and like it that way. Dawn and I took this mostly for granted as well. I never had to worry about reports she'd been "seen with strange men" (like duh, what other kind is there?).

This doesn't mean there's no gossip, but that the various "scenes" stay somewhat isolated, as no one outside the circle really knows "what to make of it". This cuts down on "mob psychology", the kind you get in batman's Gotham, where everyone goes crazy in the same way at the same time. Here, we spread it out a lot more, plus pace ourselves seasonally (this is Rose Festival and graduation season, looking forward to some festivities).

All that being said, celebrities still make a business out being seen together or apart, estranged and/or with someone else i.e. it's not like we don't have our entertainment pages. I'm just happy there's no criminalization of consenting adult relationships, despite remaining conventions against public nudity except in appropriately labeled venues (we share Hollywood's rating system, even though we have our own Hollywood and might invent our own rating system someday, if bored or needing a new growth industry).