Thursday, December 30, 2021



Today I am announcing my retirement as editor of Portland Cancer Story . The blog to date has shared the information about my diagnosis and rests on the thought that I have a serious disease which advances at an unknown pace.

My wife, soulmate, best friend, and primary caregiver is managing my treatment and life in our house. She may take over  Portland Cancer Story and/or find another platform to share information. She is the point person from now on about visits, medical treatments, philosophies, and food.

Robin’s care, humor, wit, and general lovely awesomeness knows no bounds. I can’t express enough my gratitude to have her in my life and to have shared our journey together for so long.

I will continue to post on Portdaddia random comments when the spirit strikes. Stoke proclamation will continue for all the blessings.


Tuesday, December 28, 2021

“If I Were a Tishman”


These past few nights I’ve been enjoying Michael Croland’s book, “Oy Oy Oy Gevalt! Jews and Punk. The exercise is that I read a chapter then look up the music on Spotify. One thing leads to another, and all Jewish music leads to Alan Sherman.

The first song of Sherman’s I played was “If I Were a Tishman,” a parody of “If I Were a Rich Man” from the Fiddler on the Roof musical. Julius Tishman was a developer of big buildings in New York City in the 50s and 60s.

Interesting to note, the song mentions Tishman’s building 666 Fifth Avenue, a property currently owned by Jarred Kushner. I wonder if he feels the Sherman reference is a blessing or a curse. (Jarred: "Alan who?")

When I was ten years old, I found my father’s LP of Sherman’s My Son, the Folksinger. I didn’t know the songs it skewered, save for Glory Glory Harry Lewis. The playful irreverence caught me, and I intently focused on the songs the way only a 10-year-old can. In some ways, Alan Sherman is source code for my sense of humor.

I love the thought that Sherman’s musical comedy continues to crack me up.

Wednesday, December 22, 2021

Things I Am Grateful For

 I fell asleep and awoke with a cat on my lap.

This is a simple yet profound pleasure. I do not take it for granted.

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

MBA Leadership Project

I did this project over 12 years ago and feel that it has stood the test of time. I converted it from a powerpoint to a video so bear with some level of tech issues.

Monday, December 20, 2021

Apple Cat-Measuring App Works Well


The Apple cat-measuring app is an elegant solution to know breadth of reach when the cat goes full sploot.


Sunday, December 19, 2021

Freshman idiocy

When I think about my life, I often become maudlin, like I didn’t leave the mark I intended, or didn’t live up to the standards I set for myself.

This is just part of the experience, sometimes you think you hit it out of the park, sometimes not.

I was surfing around my photos and came upon the above one from my freshman year at college. Oddly it soothed my roiling mind as it showcased such unrestrained idiocy. The photo didn’t happen by accident, so we must of all felt pretty good about it at the time.

The embarrassment I felt looking at it made me realize how that person in the picture was and wasn’t me. If I was still making photos like this one there would be a problem.

I wasn’t born with the mindset of a 56-year-old curmudgeon, thankfully. I’ve always given myself permission to change my thinking, attitudes, and not get locked into a philosophy. Maybe I delude myself that change is possible.

I still take silly pictures, but they look nothing like this. So, I keep evolving.

Tuesday, December 14, 2021

My Big Year

 Out of all the comic and cat videos I made, the one that goes viral is the one I have no special feeling for. I'm still hoping my fan films will hit big.


Sunday, December 12, 2021

Pandemic? What Pandemic! Santacon 2021 Lumbers Forward

SantaCon is an annual pub crawl in which people dressed in Santa Claus costumes or as other Christmas characters parade in various cities around the world. This robust celebration brings such joys as fist fights and public urination.

In past years I’ve seen the red mob carousing around but never have joined in.

On December 18 the Portland group will get crawling. There are some protocols on the website in deference to COVID but as so much is predicated on drinking this means very little.

I’m hoping to keep free of these guys. As the weather is awful and I don’t live near any bars all looks good that I won’t be inconvenienced.  

Friday, December 10, 2021

Ocearch Rules Mightily!

I was recently on Twitter and saw several tweets humorously commenting  about the massing of Great White sharks on the East Coast.  Finally, someone who knew something added that this was a natural pattern of this apex predator and not to panic.

Whew! I was thinking sharknado, or AI-controlled drone sharks, or the sharks becoming unionized.

The source for much of this ballyhoo was the website Ocearch. They tag substantial ocean critters and show where they roam. One can click on an icon, learn the size and type of animal and see a travel log, which includes when it was tagged and how many miles it had traveled. Such creatures include White Sharks, Pilot Whales, Whale Sharks, Tiger Sharks, and Broadbill Swordfish.

Also, the animals are given names.

For whatever reason this is an East Coast thing as there were few tagged animals in my neck of the woods. This might be because sport fishing, a source of many of the tags, is more deeply entrenched in Florida and the Caribbean.

Dr. Brent, a Guadalupe Fur Seal, was recently hanging out on the Columbia River Bar which made me feel good. In the last two years he made it all the way down to San Diego before returning north.

I will be happily spending significant time on this site wishing all in the watery kingdom well.

Ocean Stoke!  

Friday, December 3, 2021

One of My Favorite Album Covers

At college I was introduced to the punk band the "Dead Kennedys". They took images, photos from the normal world, and repurposed them to promote their brand of social justice. Their music did the same with words and sounds.

The Kennedys covered the theme from "Rawhide" with such deadly satire that my brain still twists when I hear it. The above record was in the college radio station and left a lasting impression.


Thursday, December 2, 2021

The Mystery of the Cat



Stuart came to us almost a mature cat. What he did in his early years is only beginning to be understood. 

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Portland Jewish Federation Head Embraces UAE


Months after penning a potent condemnation of the UAE’s human rights record, the head of the Portland Jewish federation visited the country and uncritically (and unironically) began to sing its praises as a tolerant and exciting vacation destination for Jewish people.

Click the link below to read my op-ed.

Monday, November 29, 2021

I Know I'm Too Old For This Merch But I Still Like It


Ripndip is a company founded on making cool skate and lifestyle gear. Most of the products have some permutation of a white cat flipping "the bird".

I found out about this from one of our offspring. I will not be purchasing any of this gear -- so rest easy everyone! but I am expressing my enjoyment of this playful graphic cat.  

Sunday, November 28, 2021

Light a Fire!

Big props go to Robin for assembling the Chanukah still life, wrangling the cat, and taking the picture. She also had the "Chanukat" idea. 

This will be our card for next year so for those who wish to be surprised forget you saw this.


Saturday, November 27, 2021

Purrington's Cat Lounge

There's a coffee shop in Portland that has 6-8 cats running around inside. One makes a reservation, orders a beverage, and for 45 minutes can observe and interact with the cats (no picking up the critters is allowed).

This business operates in conjunction with the Cat Adoption Team, a quality shelter that we adopted Stuart from. 

If one goes to the cafe and likes a cat, all the usual screenings and requirements from Cat Adoption Team must be filled before the cat goes home. The result is that one cannot just have a beer at the cafe and come home with a cat. A cool down period, as it may be called, seems like a good idea.

Now that we are nutty cat people, it just makes sense to try out an environment with a significant number of cats.

The café idea is a good one as, according to the Instagram site, between 5-7 adoptions occur each week.

We're still believing that Stuart is the Best Cat Ever but interacting with him before adoption would have been nice.


Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Oxford English Dictionary named “vax” as 2021’s word of the year


What’s going on – a glossary (thanks WAPO!)

Anti-faxxer – referring to people who refuse to believe in facts (for instance, that masks and social distancing help protect people from the spread of the coronavirus).

Fauci ouchie — a phrase that refers to a vaccination against Covid-19.

Vaxcation or Vaxication – a vacation made possible by a brand-new vax card.

Vaxdar – a term derived from radar, referring to some people’s supposed ability to intuit whether an individual has been vaccinated.

Vaxinistas – a term for people who flaunt their vaccination status to the annoyance of others on social media.

Vaxxident – a traffic accident that results from the alleged side effects of getting vaccinated against the coronavirus.

Vaxxies — selfies taken while getting vaccinated.

Monday, November 22, 2021

Random Portland Photo Essay

Some have said that I am easily amused. Could be. I enjoy driving as well as riding in a car, with the ability to let my eyes linger where they may. At the end of a day I like riding more than driving, allowing the scenery to wash over me without the stress of lane changes and turn calculations. These photos are the result of yesterday's excursion to the pharmacy and to buy cat food.