Things NOT Invited Back to 2008! 

The Most Annoying Annoyances of the Past Year!

CARS AND BICYCLES

"Your car almost hit my bike!" "Your bike almost hit my car!" Oh, BOO HOO HOO. Listen up, you commuting crybabies! Everyone in Portland has HAD IT with your endless streams of complaints ("Bicyclists don't obey the rules of the road!" "Shut down entire streets for the bicyclists!"), which is why we've come up with the perfect solution: Turn every Portland street into "Walking ONLY Lanes." Making EVERYONE walk not only levels the playing field, but ensures polluting, job-stealing Vancouver commuters will never bother us again!

PPI RENT-A-COPS

I like my cops to be, you know... cops. Not retired "sort-of" cops, wearing cop uniforms and carrying guns (but without any civilian oversight), whose salaries are paid by the Portland Business Alliance, which has consistently lobbied against a humane, person-to-person approach to downtown's "homeless issue" over the years. In a year's time, Portland Patrol, Inc. rent-a-cops issued 2,274 park exclusions downtown. Worse still: Parks Commissioner Dan Saltzman supports their sweeping approach, and hasn't caught so much as a drop of flack from his fellow city commissioners. You can't look the other way forever.

BUSINESSES THAT DON'T TAKE DEBIT CARDS

Only one person is not required to accept debit cards—the guy who sells us weed. No one else with a business should turn down our shiny plastic card, ever. By not accepting credit or debit cards, local businesses are giving a not-too-subtle "fuck you" to every loyal customer who's too busy living their lives to stop at an ATM. They're credit cards—not pesos! Start accepting them!

ANYBODY WHO LIVED IN PORTLAND BEFORE 2000

Oh, another joke about those damn Californians moving here? That's hilarious. Why don't you tell us another tedious story about how awesome La Luna was? Listen, we're fine that you were born and raised in the 503—but now it's time to shut your trap. We didn't quit our firms and sell our Hummers in Laguna Beach to move here and listen to your longwinded stories about Bud Clark, Crackerbash, and what Alberta was like before all those Thai restaurants. Go back to Califor... oh sorry, that's your line.

SCHOOL-AGE CROSSING GUARDS

Look at 'em... with their yellow sashes, red stop signs, and smug expressions. It's one thing to protect idiot children crossing the street—it's quite another to put them in charge! Would you give a drunkard keys to a liquor store? Fourth graders shouldn't be allowed to decide anything for adults. At any moment these Pixy Stix-fueled cretins could dash into traffic, wrongly thinking they spotted an Alf pog on the street. Put these power-mad midgets back on the short bus, and give the job to someone who needs it. (Maybe a drunkard?)

RENAMING STREETS AFTER MINORITIES

Since arguments from both sides of the Rosa Parks and César Chávez street-naming debate were tinged with subtle, racial overtones, here's what we're going to do: Henceforth, streets will ONLY be renamed for the cast of The Little Rascals, former Westminster Dog Show champions, foreign words that sound dirty in English, famous dwarves throughout history, and Dr. Demento song titles. So what do Portland's minorities get instead? How about a pledge not to illegally arrest, alienate, or otherwise terrorize them—forever?

THE SALVATION ARMY BELL-RINGER AT FRED MEYER

You terrifying, preternaturally energetic elf! Never has a charity solicitor made us (or our children) so uncomfortable. Like a Santa-hat-wearing offspring of Jim "KnowwhutImean" Varney and Travis Bickle, you've been at the same store entrance day in and day out for over a month, spastically pantomiming, crazy-facing, and sleigh-bell-tossing in the face of every customer trying to slip in for a quick produce run. Dear Salvation Army: This one's not quite ready for social re-assimilation yet.

THE INTERNET

LOLcatz, create your own Simpsons avatar, abused prisoners doing the "Thriller" dance, fat kids wiping out on Dance Dance Revolution, "Two Girls, One Cup," "Leave Britney alone," and photos of Anna Nicole Smith's vomit-covered corpse: Welcome to the dub dub dub of 2007. We pledge to log off. We pledge to live richer lives. We pledge to read books. (There is a book about that fat kid busting his ass on DDR, right?)

FARELESS SQUARE

Before you blow your top, we're not the ones who didn't invite Fareless Square back to 2008 (we love getting stuff for free). Blame TriMet boss Fred Hansen—he thinks only "gangs" and "the homeless" utilize Portland's downtown free zones, and wants to cut back the service. (Actually, Fred Hansen, YOU'RE not invited back!)

TOM POTTER'S BEARD

When the mayor first sprouted a beard in September, he left its fate to a poll—and Portlanders told him to keep it. Well, Tom Potter, the voters were idiots (twice, now) and that beard has overstayed its welcome, turning into a fuzzy mass as irrelevant to your face as you are to this city. Step into your last year as mayor with dignity and style, wouldja? In other words, SHAVE!

PANHANDLING NAKED GYM PATRONS

I was in the gym locker room, showering and getting dressed. Suddenly a homeless lady (a presumption based on her jam-crammed grocery cart) started up a friendly conversation about my socks, which happened to be the only thing I was wearing at the time. Her: "What do your socks say?" Me: "Super Socks. I guess they have powers." Her: "Do you have any change?" Me: "Ummm, not on me." I'm sorry, impoverished lady who likes to panhandle naked gym patrons—you're not invited back to 2008.

RANDOM CAPITALIZATION

FYI, it's not cute to capitalize every other letter of your restaurant, band name, clothing line, or shop—it's mothereffing annoying. Still "exhibiting your individuality" by substituting all the vowels on your website with numbers? Then you, sir, are a douchebag. No one likes you, or your quirky approach to grammar. I have four "words" for you: 3at 5h1t & d13.

"EROTIC" EVENTS

Breaking news, lonely perverts: Anytime you preface an event's name with the words "erotic," "sexy," "adult," or—worst of all—"naughty," you sound desperate, creepy, and STD-ridden. Make no mistake—we're all about getting laid. But no one needs your fetish balls, cuddle parties, bicycle-themed pornography, masturbation Thanksgiving dinners, or anything that's ever happened or will ever happen in the Ace of Hearts. Please stop skeeving us out. And maybe get tested.

VEGAN CYCLISTS WHO SMOKE

Enough said.

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