1.GUESS WHO I bumped into at Chicago airport last night, getting the 8:43 United flight back to Portland? The mayor himself was returning from a conference in Toronto on how to attract more conference traffic to your town. (I didn't ask whether there was a seminar on "building a huge white elephant hotel near the convention center," but let's hope there were some less costly and more productive ideas being batted around). His chief of staff Tom Miller was eating what looked like some pretty delicious pizza, and the stewardesses were asking in hushed whispers as I disembarked in PDX, "which one is he?" Meanwhile, we were returning from a memorial service on the East coast and the mayor expressed condolences, which I thought was pretty kind of him, and seemed sincere.
2.SOMEBODY JUMPED FROM A DOWNTOWN BUILDING this morning. I was walking my bike past the low income apartment complex at 333 SW Oak, saw police tape and cars blocking the way. There was a body in the street in front of the building, covered in a sheet, but with arms and hands protruding—I think that's the first time I've ever seen a corpse in the street, and thought how pedestrian it seemed. "Oh, there's a corpse," that kind of a thought. Then it shook me up quite badly.
A shop awning was ripped down, above where the guy had landed—presumably that had broken his fall. Cops were milling around, and tenants were looking out of the windows down to the street at him. Across the street, a middle-aged Latino man yelled "people jump out of that building all the time," to nobody in particular. Several tattooed onlookers smoked cigarettes. It's against most newspapers' policy to report on suicides—giving them attention is considered bad form, but this scene really struck me, if anything, as confirmation of how thoroughly depressing it probably is to live in a low-income housing complex downtown. I hope the poor man is at peace now. It was really pretty gruesome.
2.5. CONSERVATIVE COLUMNIST ROBERT NOVAK DIES. Matt Drudge is calling him the "last of the great shoe leather reporters."
3.TALIBAN LEADER KILLED IN PAKISTAN. That's the last of the death stories, I swear.
4.DEMOCRATS: PUBLIC OPTION IS ESSENTIAL. To health care reform.
5.MADOFF HAD SMALL PENIS, SMOKED POT BEFORE SEX. Says ex-mistress, who lost millions by investing with the Ponzi schemer.
6.MADONNA'S 51ST BIRTHDAY. Is typically restrained.
7.BOB GUCCIONE'S MARBLE TOILETS. Get auctioned off.
8.EVERYONE HATES GWYNETH PALTROW. Big. News. From the set of the new Iron Man movie.