Welcome To… Portland
All Photos Courtesy of Oddio
Welcome to Portland. The city of roses, and bridges and stores that sell artisan goods on every block. Everyone has a wise crack about Portland, about the rain, about the hipsters and that god damn TV show. The funny thing is though, most of y’all can’t even find us on a map. So fuck off with your bull shit, you and every Californian can stay the fuck out. We prefer it like that anyways.
People like to rag on us ’cause we have a high standard of living. We’ve been at the top of who knows how many lists, and have a New York Times article about our “unique” outlook every week. Thanks to those NY snobs everyone under the age of thirty thinks they should move here, jacking up rents because they’re used to paying $1200 a month for some shit hole in the Mission.
Y’all think you know us. You think you’ve got this figured out. And, unfortunately you’re probably right. Portland became exactly what people imagined it to be. We worked hard as a city to maintain and mold an image, only to realize that we were shaping it to the vision of others. We built fancy new condos on the west side. We redesigned streets to accommodate for bikers. We pushed all the poor people out because they were an eyesore to the neighborhoods they influenced. If there’s one thing Portland can be known for besides hipsters, it’s institutional discrimination. But those were the people the made Portland what it was, that gave it character. It was the grit the made Portland weird.
These days the scene has changed. What was once a crazy graff scene has withered into an increasingly smaller group of hometowners. Tons of writers love to come visit, hey, it’s a great place to live. They’ll kick it for a while, leave their mark and move on to the next city. But those of us that live here, those of us that trudge to spots through the rain and mud, those of us that have seen the waves in the scene understand the true soul of the city. It’s the people that make the difference.
But hey, at least we can smoke weed now. We still have that going for us.
Photos by Oddio
Text by Spencer Knowles