November 25th, 2009 BEN WATERHOUSE | Special Section Stories
 

...A Soccer Dad

Sometimes dad just has to get out of the house.

     
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“Now, you kids know how Dad loves his whiskey. He needs it to cope with your constant messes, your overbooked schedules, your off-key saxophone practice and your constant screaming. But goddamn it if the good stuff isn’t a little warm today, and the ice he adds just waters down the flavor. If Dad had a few Whiskey Stones, the Vermont soapstone cubes made by Teroforma, he could pop them in the freezer for an hour and enjoy a nice cool whiskey without any water.” $20. Tilde, 7919 SE 13th Ave., 234-9600, tildeshop.com.

Dad has to carry around a lot of stuff these days: iPhone, notepad, diapers, snacks, a spare set of tiny clothes, sunglasses, hand sanitizer and a 22-ounce bottle of Schlitz. And he has an image to keep up: the handsome, hip, middle-aged professional unwilling to let fatherhood turn him into a schlub. Therefore, he needs a bag that looks sharp and will take a lot of abuse. The Motil Commuter from Nau does the trick, with a spacious interior, padded laptop/malt liquor pocket, zippered small pockets and recycled aluminum clasps. $225. Lizard Lounge, 1323 NW Irving St., 416-7476, lizardloungepdx.com.

Your father really appreciates design, kids, and this typographic Portland neighborhood map from Ork Posters is some damn fine design. Chicago graphic artist Jenny Beorkrem has given the Ork treatment to a dozen cities since 2007, filling neighborhood boundaries with bunches of DIN 1451 type. The Portland poster is available in either a 22-inch square black-and-white print or an 18-inch color screenprint. $27-$30. Luke’s Frame Shop, 2707 SE Belmont St., 841-6090.

Dad likes to take a walk around the neighborhood, but, being something of the cerebral type, he isn’t content just to admire the city’s tree-lined avenues for their beauty. No, he wants data, and he gets it in spades from Laura Foster’s book Portland City Walks, a surprisingly engaging collection of 20 long, self-guided walking tours of Portland and its suburbs that should keep Dad occupied for months of grueling treks. No, he won’t carry you. $19.95. REI, 1405 NW Johnson St., 221-1938, rei.com.

Sometimes Dad just has to get out of the house and get away from you kids and the yard and the leaking faucet that just won’t stop. So he walks down the street to Red’s Tavern for a cheap beer and a couple rounds of “Once in a Lifetime” on the jukebox. But every now and then Red is watching some dumbass infomercial with the volume up way too high, and when that happens Dad breaks out the TV-B-Gone. He just points the little black box at the screen, pushes the button and bam! No more TV. Sometimes Dad breaks it out at Freddy’s just to mess with the punks working in the electronics department, and sometimes Dad swears he hears the devil whispering in his ear. This is why Dad drinks. $24.95. The Funny Bone, 617 SW Washington St., 241-0455, funnybonestore.com.

 
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