February 27th, 2012 | by WW Arts & Culture Staff Features | Posted In: It List

The It List: The Top 10 Things in Portland and the World

     
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Each week our culture scientists rank their 10 favorite things in the universe. The resulting list is infallible. The list is perfect. If you don't agree with the list, you are wrong. Some items may stay atop the list for weeks, others may only make a brief appearance. Some items are Portland-centric, but only because Portland is at the center of the universe. Please do not write to us, asking for the metrics behind the list. We will not provide source material. We will not be swayed. Bow down to the list. Love the list, as the list loves all things. Let the list move through you. (And, you know, if you have suggestions for the list, stick them in the comments section below.)

1. The Weekly Standard getting its panties in a twist about... the urban growth boundary

It's hard to single out one sentence in Mark Hemingway's love letter to Jack Bodanski, Phil Knight and the Oregonian editorial board. Oh, but let's try:

"Of course, you’re a free market zealot if you oppose the growth boundary, even though it might have something to do with Portland’s 'frequently dismal' economy, because​—​well, have you tasted the arugula?"

Forget the 18 leaps of logic and central provable falsehood: Ain't arugula the vegetable that the queers eat? Goddamn hippies with their goddamn farms.

2. Mark Rothko at Portland Center Stage
Red, John Logan's play about the painter's ill-fated mural commission for the Four Seasons restaurant, gets a schizophrenic production at PCS. Patrick Alparone grates as Rothko's assistant, but we could listen to Daniel Benzali's grandiose ranting as the self-obsessed, genius artist for days.

3. Mark Rothko at the Portland Art Museum
You haven't really seen art until you've stared into the abyss of a gigantic black-on-black paint blob. Much like life itself, Rothko's later paintings are terrifying and beautiful and mysterious and also kind of fucking stupid.

4. The Nike no-gum policy exposed
This desecration of Steve Jobs' iLegacy is a welcome splash of irreverence (Chris Hitchens would be proud, we think). But it hits a special plane when it starts mocking Phil Knight's hilarious ban on bubblegum in Beaverton.

5. That John F. Kennedy religion speech
Because anything that makes Rick Santorum want to vomit is alright by us.

6. Fort George's bourbon barrel-aged Cavatica Stout
Aged in Maker's Mark barrels and conveniently available in Astoria. It's worth the drive, trust us.

7. Saint Nick Nolte
Just when we thought this year's Oscars would set a new record for dullness, out comes orange Santa and his pet crow.

8. A List of Don’ts For Women on Bicycles Circa 1895
"Don’t wear a garden party hat with bloomers."

9. Old Metallica records at Slow Bar
Why, exactly, is Ride The Lightning considered Friday happy hour music? Eh, whatever, it works.

10. Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman
You can watch the first three seasons (the fourth and final season was exceptionally bad, so no loss there) at theWB.com. You're welcome.

 
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