Pay attention—there will be a quiz at the end of this slice of life about housing irony in Portland.
Recently, Hoyt Realty Group lured hundreds of prospective buyers out on a rainy Thursday evening. The draw: a lottery and "stylish soiree" for the Metropolitan, an actual hole in the ground at Northwest 10th Avenue and Lovejoy Street that's soon to be the Pearl District's tallest and most luxurious condo.
With 136 units scheduled for completion in 2007 and a price per square foot ranging from $500 to $1,000, it's surprising that demand far outstrips supply. The lottery is packed for hours with white wine-sippers who study enlarged floor plans and write down preferences on lottery entry cards.
At first, it's "empty nesters," graying baby boomers looking to either downsize or invest in a second home closer to kids and grandkids. Later, the Gen X and Y-ers take over. Everyone ends up at the after-party across the street, where white-shirted bartenders pour shakers of white ginger cosmopolitans through a giant block of ice with an "M" carved into it, feeding a fountain that fills one martini glass at a time.
The next day, it's still pissing down rain as folks file into the Governor Hotel for a City Club forum on the homeless, over penne pomodoro.
OK, got the flavor? Two events, one with the wealthiest willing to plunk down millions, some for a second home; the other with citizens concerned about homelessness.
Your task: match the quote with the person who said it. (Careful—seven people, six quotes, so there's one extra.)
WHAT THEY SAID:
1. "Even the homeless are friendly.... They don't need shelter. They need this." [Holds up a glass of red wine.]
2. "We weren't born into money."
3. "Out of my price range."
4. "We're sitting on land that is toxic. We really are recycling an inner-city slum."
5. "I spend most of my day trying to keep 70 people alive."
6. "Where do these people come from?"
WHO SAID IT:
a. Emily Lara, 52, self-described inner-city elementary-school teacher
b. Robert, 35, manager for a software company
c. Rebecca Haas, 36, Southeast Portland mom
d. Lisa Schroeder, owner of Mother's Bistro and Bar, Mama Mia Trattoria, and Balaboosta
e. "Dingo," 16, homeless
f. An anonymous 26-year-old who sells lumber wholesale
g. Jeff Haas, 62, retired Procter & Gamble VP whose primary residence is in London
1-g: To be fair, Haas admitted at the after-party that with his good fortune (he's going for a million-dollar condo), he should "give a little away."
2-f: Said at the lottery. The speaker already lives in the Pearl.
3-b: Came to check out the lottery. He rents and is "appalled by housing prices in Portland."
4-a: At the after-party, she quickly dispels any notion that affluent people are taking up resources. "We're not," says Lara.
5-d: Speaking at the City Club, with a strangely defensive tone.
6-c: Haas was at the lottery after-party with her dad. She prefers a yard.
And the extra person was..."Dingo." We didn't talk to any homeless people at either function.