April 15th, 2009

C&H Fight

Retriever Towing

DP Im calling for your help.

Today while attempting to take my girlfriend to a dentist appointment we were robbed. We parked in the parking lot right next to the dentist office. We had a few minutes to kill so we grabbed a sandwich and within 10 minutes of returning our car was gone. Under close surveillance of the parking lot I finally found the sign (tucked away behind a large truck). I call the company and its Retriever Towing. In all my anger I ask how much for the tow (the car had not even reached the lot yet) $199 was the response.

Im taking down photos of the parking lot to them, along with a HUGE record of complaints at them towing aggressively and breaking often many laws to charge as much as they can.

When I was on the phone I asked if the Fee was negotiable and the operator responded saying that the City mandated the fee, which after much searching I could not find. Does anyone know if this is true or not? Does anyone else have an experience with this type of Predatory Towing or even more, this company it self?

I plan on giving them an ear full (while avoiding bullshit charges like "anger fees") and see if the price budges, if not, I will pay the fee and explain they will be taken to court. If anyone has ANY advice please respond. Thank you DP

Short Films on Friday

Lunafest is a film festival featuring short films by and about women. It's happening in over 100 cities around the country, and Portland's night is Friday April 17th, at 7:30pm at the Hollywood Theater.

Tickets are $15 Adult; $12 Senior and Students.
For $25 you could attend the show AND the Pre-show (6:30) reception with filmmaker Lisa Blackstone.

The event is a fundraiser for the Breast Cancer fund as well as the Portland women's chorus called Aurora, whose concert is coming up next month! There may be a preview of their music during an intermission.

More information: http://www.lunafest.org/the-films.cfm


Bear with me cuz when it comes to computer lingo I haz teh dumb... Someone posted about a particular acquired thinger/application/doohicky involving the surfing of Craigslist. The idea was that the surfer can see the CL postings as a list *including pics* like thumbnail size, rather than having to open every posting to see pics. Does that make any sense? It was a while ago, and for some reason I think it was littlebluedog who posted originally... Anyone know how I can get said thinger to work for me?


I know this is a long shot, but have any of you come across a set of keys in the last 24 hours or so? They probably fell out of my pocket at the street car stop on 1st & Harrison. There is a Fred Meyer card & a borders card on the ring. Do you think that calling Trimet would do any good?

What is wrong with this theory?

What, if anything, is wrong with this theory:

The government taxing people doesn't actually reduce their purchasing power, because everyone is being taxed. (Side note: of course, not everyone is being taxed equally.) If the government cuts taxes, it just means that there is more nominal money in circulation, making prices go up, but not actually increasing people's purchasing power.

having a used car checked out by a mechanic as a potential buyer

Hi DP. I have a few questions about buying a used car. I understand it's a good idea to get your own trusted auto mechanic to check it out first, but I don't know how that's normally done. Is it generally acceptable to ask the seller to let you drive it to your mechanic at a set time? Or do mechanics make house calls for this purpose? What should I expect to be charged by a mechanic that isn't trying to bleed me?

PS. If anyone is selling a decent car with a clean title for under 4k, please talk to me!
little blue dog

do you name your vehicle?

A post on a friend's blog got me curious about this.

Do you name your car? Have you ever?

(I'm not talking about expletives -- moreso a term or name used repeatedly, and out of affection or familiarity.)

If you do, do you also name other modes of transportation, such as your bike?

Also, is it a human name you bestow? As opposed to something more like a pet name or nickname?

Finally, if you feel like it, tell me your vehicle's name, or a name for a prior vehicle.

Coast Suggestions

So, my husband has been working super-duper hard for the past couple weeks (an unexpected ramp-up at work required him to work 10+ hours a day for almost 14 days straight now), and I wanted to treat him to a very nice weekend. I've got our Saturday planned, and I'm slowly putting Sunday together.

Since it's supposed to be nice this weekend, I'm thinking of flying kites at the coast and having a picnic. First of all, where's a good place for kites? I haven't shopped for one since I was a kid, and even then, the ones I got were the cheap-o ones I got from the ice cream truck. On that note, I'm not looking for super-spendy ones either. Secondly, where's your favorite place to go on the coast (preferably Central or North coast areas)? We normally head out to Cannon Beach, but I'd like a new place to see. A dog-friendly place where we could have him run off-leash would be nice as well.


What's up with India Chaat House food cart?

About a month ago, another Indian food cart went in next to the famous Chaat House called Bombay Chaat House. Well I figured they were a bunch of punks and refused to buy their cheaper 5-item lunch special, but now I'm not sure what's happened. I've been to the original ICH twice since then, and they have different people working there and today the food was presented WAY different than it normally is (neat instead of sloppy, smaller portions, totally different bag). I heard some lady talking to the person running the BCH who was telling her they sold the ICH and opened the BCH. I thought I saw the lady who was always working at the original ICH at the BCH a few weeks ago, but I'm not sure.

Does anyone know the story? I don't want another crappy meal from the original place if those people are now running BCH.

combo hit

So, on the way home from work, I noticed that Pioneer Square was full of teabaggers. That was about 6:30ish.

Did they, by any chance, get carpet bombed sometime after that? It would be a shame if the opportunity was wasted.

Again, . . . . . hat in hand.... . .

Oh great DP Oracle. . . .

I can see because of you sending me to Zenni Optical.

I had a cheap rental car because of your tips.

So I come once again to humbly ask. . . . .

When can my uninsured friend go to urgent care? We think he might have a staph infection. So he needs a place that can culture the pustule which is super painful and leaky. My clients usually go to safety net clinics that are focused on youth or homeless population. He can pay in payments but not all upfront, so he'd like to avoid the ER. But he's feverish and his face is super puffy on the same side at the pustule.

Thank you for your consideration.

P.S. it's been relatively quiet around here. Where is everybody?

EDITED TO ADD: He won't go the ER. I have tried and tried tonight, but he is attempting to go into work in the morning until he can get someone to cover his shift and THEN is going to Urgent Care. My ex elected to go to work rather than the ER in 2002. He's dead now. I'm worried but I can't do anything.

2ND Edit: He went to work half day, and went to the Providence one. It is staph. He is on anti-biotics. Thank you all for your concern. We've been texting so I don't know if they cultured for MRSA or what antibiotics he is on.
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    curious curious
Bike Naked!

Of course DPers are too smart to do this shit, right?

Ah, the weather warms up, the sun shines a bit more often, and the streets are filled with fair-weather cyclists, and people new to bicycling.

Welcome or welcome back to cycling. Isn't it awesome?

But: I have a few minor issues with some of y'all. Not all of you or even most of you. But please be aware of the following:

1. All the bridges that are bike-friendly, except the Steel Bridge, are one way on each side for bikes. The Hawthorne Bridge even has large repeated markings on the pavement indicating that pedestrian traffic is both ways but bikes are one way. If you ride your bike the wrong way on the bridge, you're a hazard, and people are going to glare at you.

2. Don't ride the wrong way on one-way streets or against traffic in general. You're far more likely to get hit that way. Ride in the same direction as car traffic unless you're on the sidewalk.

3. Is your seat high enough? Are you sure? Maybe you should ask your local bike shop to check. Riding with your seat too low is not only much harder work, but horrible for your knees.

4. Are your tires properly inflated? Tires lose air even if there's no holes or problems. Underinflated tires are harder to ride and are more likely to go flat. Get a good floor pump with a gauge, your tires say on them somewhere how much air they want.

5. Headlights and taillights: they're not expensive and they just might save your life. Even if they don't, you're a lot less likely to piss off people who don't see you. If you have a headlight and taillight, are they bright enough? Check them at the end of each ride to see how bright they are.

6. Read the stuff on this website: http://bicyclesafe.com/ There's superb information here. I've been biking pretty much everywhere for over two years and I learned new things from this site.

7. Have fun!! Filmed By Bike starts this weekend! Pedalpalooza is only a few months away! Wheee!

Air soft Guns

Are there any laws against running around Portland with an air soft gun that has the orange tip on it? My friends and I want to do a photoshoot around the park blocks but we want to make sure we're allowed to, or if we should get different guns (trying to avoid the nerf guns D8).
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    complacent complacent