Marion and Linn Counties

A bunch of places you've never heard of... and some nighttime pictures of Eugene!

- 02 March 2002 -

I don't remember my motivation behind this roadtrip. I don't remember what music I listened to. That's part of the problem with putting together a picture page five months after the fact -- you tend to forget things. :b 

I do remember that I had never been to Stayton, Scio, Mt. Angel, or Gervais, and that I wanted to drive through them... these were towns that I'd heard about on telephone prefix lists when I was a kid, but I had never been there. So I went there. And now, um, I've been there.

I dedicate this page to every 12-year-old in the state of Oregon who will never know the joy of looking at a telephone prefix list and envisioning ancient equipment clattering away in telephone closets in faraway towns that he or she has never even been to. 

Telephone company privatization has taken that away from the kids who are growing up these days. Adolescents need things to get geekishly fixated on, or they'll start partying and snorting substances and sleeping around, and before you know it, they'll become normal. And I wouldn't wish normalcy on my worst enemy!

And there's plenty of normalcy along our route today, folks. That's why I'm cutting the page fairly short, and focusing only on things that are quite noteworthy.

Snow on the Cascades!

You can tell I'm writing this in August, though, because the snow is actually noteworthy.

The view is of the Beltline Highway eastbound, near the Prairie Road onramp. The Three Sisters Mountains are the white spot visible in the trees to the left of the center of the picture. :b

This is a northwestward view between Hungry Hill (left) and Richardson Butte (right).

I took this picture from the summit of Farris Road. To be sure of that, though, I had to look it up on a map... 

I used to have the road name written down on a gum wrapper, but five months can make gum wrappers disappear. So I basically scanned my DeLorme map of Oregon for any valley along my route that looked something like this one, and I found two: this one (along OR 226), and the Richardson Gap (along the aptly-named Richardson Gap Road).

I was hoping this was the Richardson Gap, so I could claim that it had a slogan: "Everyone In Forests". However, I can't do that now. 

I feel disconsolate.

A frothy trough of jujubes!

[Someone stole my lenses through which I view reality. I can't wait until they're returned, because they're kind of important.]

Sheer fashion in the form of a ten-sided die. Available in mauve, turquoise, and pink camouflage.

[Update: Derek P. from Stockholm, Sweden writes us and says: "Dude, what on God's green earth are you smoking?! This is quite obviously the entrance to Sublimity, Oregon. Also, I can read your mind, and it says that you put this picture here solely because you love the name of this little rural community. Hope that helps. kthx." Well, Derek P., I bestow upon you mighty bellowing kthx from the deepest depths of my spirit! I owe you nine holy graven Smurfs of bronze -- and a lifetime of miserable backbreaking toil as your very own personal indentured servant! My liege!!!]

This is Mary Tyler Moore holding a jar of mustard in a fashionable Ulan Bator yak market. It was featured on a July 2001 commercial for Cingular that features dancing anvils and a cameo by Rob Zombie!

[Update: Beezus G. Whipple of Baltimore, Maryland sends us a nice postcard from her fair city, and says, "Yansa, I think you need to see someone who can help you get over this little problem of yours. Oh, and by the way, this is the Stayton-Scio Road, but you knew that. You just can't see it, for some strange reason. I am praying for you to regain your senses, since you're such a burly little thing. Love, Beezus." Awwww, Beezus, I love you and your little velveteen packets of hand sanitizer! Let us elope to Duckwater, Nevada, and mate fervently there under the harvest moon!]

This is my pet squid, Relevance. It feeds on live human souls every Monday morning!

Say "hi" to Relevance, or someone is going to be very *cross*.

[Update: Dieter van den Hoogenband of What Cheer, Iowa sends us a carrier pigeon with this note attached to its right leg: "Yansa, Yansa, Yansa. Haven't you had enough Diet Dr Pepper for one day? But anyhoo. This picture is a nice and scenic view along the Stayton-Scio Road. All my best, Dieter." Dieter, I've been a very naughty boy. Whip me as hard as you can... with a herring!]


This is a live action cam of my bar mitzvah, where I hijacked a Brazilian tour bus and led police on a slow-speed freeway chase all the way to Minnesota. Five days later, I was apprehended and executed by firing squad. That was 1991. Nowadays, you can only reach me by séance.

[Update: Rufus Whitebread of Fraziers Bottom, West Virginia sends us this message tonight in invisible ink on the back of a poison frog: "Yansa. C'mon, man. Enough with the crazy talk -- you're scrambling my brains like the signal of a nasty cable channel! This is Mount Angel, Oregon, home of Oregon's Coca-Cola bottling franchise. You never found the franchise there in town, but you did get to see what the town looked like, and you felt nonplussed. Remember? Doesn't anything in that picture jog your memory at all? Whatever. Just whatever." Rufus... I have something to tell you. Remember the time when you were at the Kmart in Morgantown, and this naked guy streaked through the store with a brassière over his eyes? That was me. No, wait, that was David Hyde Pierce's stunt double. Forgive me. I was wrong. I was very wrong. I was so very wrong! Take me back! I promise I'll stop cheating on you with the milkman! I still love you so, Rufus! I LOOOOOVE YOU, BABY! I LOVE YOU SOOOOO MUCH... um, whoever the hell you are. By the way, dude, what was the question again?]

This is France.

[Update: Jean-Pierre Lavigne of Matamoros, Mexico conveys this to us by means of interpretive dance: "Yansa, you're scaring me. I don't know what happened to you. Come back. Please! You know damn well that this is a sign seen on the St. Louis Road overpass, near Gervais, Oregon. You also know that the orderliness of the field behind it impressed you enough that you had to post this picture, even though it reveals your road geekiness. Yansa, come on. Ten days, and a couple of two-day followups, and you'll be speaking coherent English again in no time. Buddy, if you won't do it for yourself, do it for me, and for all the people who care about you, okay?" Jean-Pierre, I'd like to nominate you for the Nobel Prize in Economics, but my pet skunk stole my sporran yesterday, in revenge for being defanged. My sporran had all of my major credit cards and forms of personal identification -- and, let me tell you, those Nobel guys are real sticklers about the personal information! So I'm afraid I can't do it today. I hope that's okay with you. Send my love to Jolene and the kids!]

This is Li Wuzhou, a 49-year-old woman from a remote village in Yunnan Province, China. The village elders claim that she is a direct descendant of Brigham Young and Christopher Columbus. She crafts kelp dentures for a living.

[Update: Yasser Jones of Thibodeaux, Louisiana uses the Canary Islands whistling-language to let us know the following: "Yansa. Dude. Okay. Enough is enough. There is no such thing as kelp dentures! I've handled enough kelp in my day to know this! Your picture is another one from the St. Louis Road overpass; the freeway is Interstate 5; and Mt. Jefferson is probably the volcano in the distance. And whatever you do, just please act normal again! Please!" Yasser, my man, this is the time when all good persons must come to the aid of their one-world government, and I put my foot down and declare that the bunny rabbit is more than a menace -- it's a way of life! This scares me more than you will ever know, Yasser, and that's why I'm going to take some strong action, and repeat your name precisely 13 times, to ward off the evil spirits! Yasser! Yasser! Yasser! Yasser! Yasser! Yasser! Yasser! Yasser! Yasser! Yasser! Yasser! Yasser! Yasser! ... I can still feel the evil spirits, Yasser. They're ogling my nipples, Yasser. Something is wrong, Yasser. Something is very, very wrong! My nipples are tingling, Yasser! DO I HAVE TO GET THE SOCKET WRENCH AGAIN?]

This is a Los Angeles Times photo of the time that Margaret Thatcher forced me at gunpoint to go down the catwalk at a Scottish fashion show in a party dress of her own design. The dress was a flop, but my feminine charms wowed all who were in attendance, and I got a steady job as a supermodel. I am now known to the planet as "Clâricé", and I will be modeling the latest designs from Fubu in a castle of pure shaved ice that will be piled unceremoniously on the sidewalk in front of a strip mall in Columbus, Ohio, next Thursday night. You are cordially invited! Come hobnob with the beautiful people! Mwah! Love and snuggles, Clâricé.

[Update: Wevernightland "Bud" Vanoudenhaegen of Hillsboro, Oregon serenades us in an obscure mountain dialect of Laotian with this message: "I'm calling the cops, Yansa, because you really ought to stop typing and go to bed, or something. Something! After a few minutes of reading this, I don't know what to think anymore, and it's a right puzzling sensation! However, I know for sure that this picture is a similar view to the one above, except that the freeway barely enters into the picture. Yansa, you know that the answer to becoming normal again is there inside you. Reach inside yourself and get the answer. I believe in you. We all believe in you. Just be normal again! Please?" Wevernightland, I really hate to be the one to break it to you, but... There is no spoon. In fact, none of these umpteen spoons that I have just hurled at you truly exist, so you are not actually feeling any pain. This lovely lavender moose doesn't exist either. Nor does this Internet, even though Al Gore claims to have invented it himself using only some safety matches and a vat of steaming hot lemon juice. Wevernightland, I can't kiss you if neither of us exists. Tell me... do you like scary movies? Huh. Me neither.]

This is Pieter Breughel's famous painting, The Kermess. Note how the Kermess has thirteen arms, a status vaguely reminiscent of that of the Hindu goddess Kali. Also note that the Kermess is simultaneously stealing chickens, beating dust from a carpet, and answering a telephone, as well as performing ten other actions that are unspeakable without the use of vulgarities.

When I was a little boy, Mama hung this painting over my bed. She told me every night at the supper table that if I didn't eat my celery, the Kermess would sneak into my room and drink my blood as I slept. In consequence, I did not get one night of sleep before I turned 23. The Kermess haunts my nightmares, though. I stroke its cheek on the painting every night before I go to sleep... because I know it's watching. 

Still must I placate the eternal wrath of the Kermess.

[Update: Heidi Lincoln of Collector, New South Wales, Australia puts a bug in our ear, and the bug whispers: "Yansa... I'm scared. You are scaring me. You are terrifying me by being scary. Stop being scary. Make this scariness stop. I like you when you're normal and not scary! But you're scaring me!!! And I know that, somewhere deep down inside, you are well aware that this is a picture of the sign that welcomes people to Gervais, Oregon, which is pronounced as if it were spelled 'Jervis'. Please, Yansa -- do not scare me." Heidi, your call is very important to us. Please stay on the line, and the next available operator will assist you. It might seem like a crush, but it doesn't mean that I'm serious. 'Cause to lose all my senses, that is just so typically me. Ooh, baby. Oops, I did it again. I played with your h-- Thank you for remaining on the line. Your call is extremely important to us. We're toiling away, suffering like sweaty and miserable medieval serfs to make sure that your call gets answered in the priority that it truly deserves. Our estimate is that your call will be answered in... fifty -- seven -- months. Please stay on the line, and the next available operator will assist you, and rest assured that they shall refer to you as "sire" and/or "damsel". We appreciate your patience. --'m not that innocent. Oops, I did it again. I played with your heart. Got lost in the game. Oops, you think I'm in lov-- Good afternoon, I'm Jamal with Customer Service. Before I can assist you, I'll need your name and Social Security Number.]


... and I regain my sanity, somewhere outside Gervais. Huzzah!

Beltline Highway in Eugene, near the Barger Drive exit.

Barger Drive.

Bargin' down Barger.

Most text written 18 August 2002.
Last updated 19 January 2006.

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