This Is Portland: The City You’ve Heard You Should Like
by Alexander Barrett
Cantankerous Titles • Microcosm Publishing
If the raindrop-laden book cover didn’t give it away, the first chapter might. Barrett begins his Portland love story with “The Rain,” in which he clarifies that it doesn’t rain that much… but wait… yes it does, but the summers make up for the remaining eight months of “wet, cloudy, living hell.”
Several tiny chapters in, you get “The Sun” and its herald of four solid months of barbecues. You also get the scoop on Bands, Coffee, Bad Burritos, and $3 Movies, and a pretty nice list of references, should ye wish to visit Barrett’s favorites.
I would take Barrett’s word as gospel, except he lived there little more than one year and I stopped being into gospels in 1992. Take his musings, then, as confirmation that at least a trip to Portland is in order, and then taste the awesome tater tots while sampling a shitload of beer while sporting your hipster beard and doing the “I’m a nice driver” dance at the four way stop with the overly friendly Portlanders on their way to the next barbecue.
Barrett’s funny little explanations make me think I should like Portland even more than I already did. Before you go there, buy this from the nice folks at Microcosm — but bring another book for the flight, because you’ll be done with This Is Portland before you’re through security.