Behind the Music, Portland



I miss a lot of things about "Old Portland." But nostalgia is toxic. Yes, running around as a teenager and twenty-something was fun. I fondly remember cheap drugs from dubious sources, drinking too much, loud music, the inexplicable ability to seduce women despite the fact I had a mattress and a sleeping bag in the basement of a rotting Victorian home. I miss the drunk driving, the local professional wrestling, the live shows, all of that. But let's just be honest with ourselves and admit we got older. I don't want to live off of jelly beans and bad beer anymore. I like having sheets and a personal book library. Did a bunch of people move here? Sure, but that's what big cities are for. We're not exactly in decline, but the 19th century Portland founded up by human-traffickers and dope-slingers is slowly changing into every other major city in the planet where people are from other places. Yes, my completely false sense of regional pride is wounded too. But recognize that it's this toxic nostalgia, the same thing that fuels a desire to make America great again or try the British Empire again. Get over it. I promise you that the memories of the time Portland was cool won't diminish and that you were probably less happy than you are now.