Fun:Oregon

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Oregon is a state in the Pacific Northwest of the United States. It borders California,[1] Nevada,[2] Idaho, and Washington.

Contents

[edit] Politics

Oregon has a reputation for being a liberal "blue state." However, the only real liberal enclaves in the state are the cities of Portland and Eugene (home of the University of Oregon).[3] (If by "only real enclaves" you mean "alone comprise over one third of the population.") Many of the suburbs around Portland and Eugene are fairly evenly split between conservatives and liberals, as is the Willamette Valley which lies between the two cities. The rest of the state is a bit more conservative thanks to big timber, big ranching, big farming, and big fishing.

Both of Oregon's senators are Democrats, as are four of the state's representatives, although one of the representatives, Kurt Schrader, is a Blue Dog Democrat. The sole Republican representing Oregon is Greg Walden, whose district is composed of the largely rural eastern part of the state.

Oregon is also one of only five states that have no sales tax.

[edit] State of Jefferson

If you need further evidence of the concentration of wingnuts in Oregon's backcountry, check out the secessionist movement known as the "State of Jefferson."[4][5] Reminiscence to the flag of Tomania (the Nazi Germany-inspired dictatorship from the 1940 Charlie Chaplin movie, The Great Dictator[6]) aside,[7] it's more likely based on the Washington state flag.

Medford, which is one of the cities that has been proposed as the capital of the new State of Jefferson, is also home base of World Net Daily, and they're very, very sorry for that.

[edit] They're really just very old souls (in bodies that were (are?) rarely washed)

The state also hosts a substantial number of aging hippies incongruously living in small towns—fading relics of the many communes that opened (and soon failed) in the 1960s.[citation needed]

[edit] But they won't wash your windows or check your oil

Oregon and New Jersey are the only states that prohibit self-serve gas stations.[8] In the case of Joisey, people (i.e. New Yorkers) theorize that Tony Soprano's paisans like it this way so that their less-capable family member can have gainful employment. The reason Oregon holds on to "mini-serve" stations is because it boosts the number of (poorly) paying jobs available.[9] It should be noted that, despite theoretically higher overhead from paying for gas attendants, prices at Oregon and New Jersey gas stations are often competitive with, and sometimes less than, stations in neighboring states.

[edit] Being black in Oregon in 1844? That's a floggin'

When Oregon was granted statehood in 1859, it was the only state in the Union admitted with a constitution that forbade black people from living, working, or owning property there. It was illegal for black people even to move to the state until 1926. Oregon’s founding is part of the forgotten history of racism in the American west. Even as late as the early 1960s, white restaurants still wouldn’t serve black people in Portland, black people weren’t allowed in the city’s swimming pools, and the local skating rink set aside a day for black people.[10]

[edit] Shoutouts

  • Oregon is the birthplace of:
    • John Reed, author of Ten Days that Shook the World. He is also the only American buried in the Kremlin.
    • Raymond Carver
    • Matt Groening (creator of Life in Hell, and, later, The Simpsons). The Springfield of the early good seasons is clearly based on Oregon
    • River Phoenix
    • Sally Struthers
    • The Flying Spaghetti Monster. Yes, they have their own neo-religion!
  • People from elsewhere who came to Oregon and decided to stay:
    • Ken Kesey, author of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.
    • Ursula K. Le Guin, prolific science fiction writer and social critic.
    • Linus Torvalds, a Finnish programmer who started the Linux project

[edit] Shootouts

Oregon is full of lumberjacks. Big, burly lumberjacks.

Oregon is also full of the other kind of lumberjacks. You know, the ones who single-handedly chop down trees with the help of a trusty double-bladed axe or crosscut saw, or in modern times with a big phallic chainsaw. Lately, Weyerhauser uses a big thing that just pinches the trees off and loads them on the truck, so one metrosexual sitting in a cab can do the job of eight lumberjacks.

Some of the latter kind are also the former kind, after all, why else would somebody take a job working in the woods with a bunch of big, burly, sweaty guys unless they secretly enjoy each other's company?

Mmmm, yummy big, burly, sweaty guys...

[edit] Language

As is also the case in Washington and British Columbia, the official language of Oregon is Chinook. Ssh! Don't tip off the English-only folks to this fact.

In Oregonese, "Oregon" is pronounced "Or-a-gun", despite its spelling.[11]

For many years, Oregonians could tell non-Oregonians because outsiders always mispronounced "Willamette." Oregonians say "w' LAH mit" while outsiders used to say "will uh MET." That's changed thanks to movies and TV shows that have passed on the correct pronunciation to viewers.[12] But, there are still several linguistic tripwires remaining in the Oregon lexicon.

  • Champoeg
  • Couch Street and Glisan Street in Portland.
  • Clatskanie
  • Deschutes
  • Latourell Falls
  • Mulino
  • Scio
  • Siletz
  • Siuslaw
  • Umatilla
  • Umpqua
  • Yachats

[edit] Friendly warnings

Stay out of the Klamath Falls railroad yard. Seriously. Roger the Dodger[13] may be retired, but stay out anyway.

[edit] Warnings of friendliness

Oregonians are polite drivers, and it is psychologically impossible for them to honk their horns.

[edit] Footnotes

  1. Although that might change if the State of Jefferson folks get their way.
  2. Ditto Ibid
  3. Or, as natives like to call it, "The People's Republic of Eugene". Yes, they're really all communists there.
  4. See the Wikipedia article on State of Jefferson.
  5. State of Jefferson website. Because you can't be a real wingnut without a website.
  6. See the Wikipedia article on The Great Dictator.
  7. Pictures of State of Jefferson flag and Tomania flag
  8. Petrol stations to those across the pond.
  9. There have been ballot measures in the past that would allow self-serve stations. Oregonians have voted them all down.
  10. Oregon Was Founded As a Racist Utopia Gizmodo
  11. According to several Oregonistas who once schooled me on this matter.
  12. Who sez TV ain't edumacational?
  13. this guy


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