An Oregon spring survival manual
This is called the "sun." It's an astronomical object which circles the Earth when it isn't raining. During the Oregon summer, which can be as many as fifteen days which occur between May 1 and Halloween, it appears somewhere east of Pendleton -- probably from a place called "Sun Valley, Idaho" -- several hours after the last cowboy saloon has closed, travels overhead in a westerly direction like a really hot gold basketball heading for a hoop, then about the time your local Fred Meyer store closes, descends into the Pacific Ocean about 30 miles beyond Tillamook without any bubbling or hissing sounds. One of the interesting effects it causes has to do with women's clothing. It reduces the amount and length of it, which pastes a grateful grin on the faces of males of all ages, who often drive into objects while not looking where they are going.
This object dries up all the clouds, leaving the sky a lovely blue color. It can be used for ground navigational purposes. For example, if, one early June afternoon, you were trying to drive from Mike's Cigar Store in Forest Grove, to the Main Street pizza parlor in Banks, Oregon, and -- because you've lost your bearing in the maze of construction in the Northern Willamette Valley in the last five decades -- notice that you are passing a place called "Tanasbourne," you can use the sun as follows. Turn your car so that the sun is to the left of your steering wheel. (This won't work at noon.) Then, about twenty miles later you will see a DMV truck weight station. Take the next fork to your left, and in about three minutes you will see an offramp which leads to the Banks barbecue tent in the parking lot of Jim's Market. The pizza parlour is fifty feet beyond it. The combo pizza there is the best one in the state.
This is one of the "Oregon sun girls" we mentioned in the fact above, and explains the rise in the male accident numbers. The sun creates them each year at this time. Ornithologists refer to them as bikini femalensis, a solar adaptation which is like a caterpillar during the rainy season, and changes into a butterfly when the rain stops. They FLIT from male to male at this time, cost a lot of money and generate fistfights at any gathering of motorcycle enthusiasts.
Here, we have what is called a "convertible." It is not an unfinished automobile. It was actually constructed in this manner, and has a cloth top which can be raised during normal Oregon weather, but which leaks. According to Elvis Presley, its purpose was to attract the attention of the girl shown above, and is kept in the garage until the sun appears. Very popular from June through August during the middle of the last century, the only time the top was raised was when the car was owned by a teenager and was present at what were then known as "drive-in" movies. (Outdoor theatrical events presented on a giant screen in front of a hundred parked automobiles.) Since air temperatures were warm, and it wasn't raining at these events, it is unknown why the convertible tops were raised. University of Oregon cultural anthropologists suggest this had to do with Darwinistic activities generated by the sun, but common sense discards this view since the "drive-in" movie was shown at night, after the sun went down past Tillamook. At present, there is no widely accepted academic theory on the subject.
Here, we have "sunglasses." They were invented in California, and when worn in Oregon during normal weather, cause the user to walk into objects like walls. But, they are useful during the rare astronomical conditions described in this article. The dark tone in the lenses filters out the rays of the sun, allowing the individual to get a better look at the femaie, above. When it is raining, the only people who wear them drive pink Seventies Cadillacs with chrome steering wheels.
Should 2011 be a normal meteorlogical year in Oregon, at least once between the first of May and Halloween, you will see the sun. To best prepare yourself for the event, you should buy some sunglasses and a 1950 Ford convertible, and keep them handy.
We know of no drive-in movie places left in Oregon, but with no more than three or four hundred dollars of gasoline, you can by driving the backroads locate a good place to park next to a lake or small trout stream. With the sunglasses and the convertible, you should be able to attract a blonde like the one above, and then by claiming that you know of a great place to study the lovely summer star constellations, entice her to join you in your scientific activity. In the Portland area, just put the car radio on 106.7 FM (classic sixties and seventies songs) or play a cassette of Frank Sinatra music, and you will likely discover what life is actually all about.
© 2011 Oregon Magazine