Wednesday, July 19, 2006

I Smell a Rat


it smells mildly of dead rat by my desk. my subsequent displeasure is compounded by the fact that most of my coworkers lack a quality sense of smell, and think i am making it up. thus, nothing is being done. i already tore apart my area looking for the moldering culprit (more likely a mouse, actually), but to no avail. so the odor remains. gross.

while we're on the subject of rats, i was surprised to see this on the cover of the *other* portland weekly paper, the willmette week:


apparently, the photographer (riding by on a boat, equipped with a telephoto lens) has declared my friends vanj (background), brian (left), and corey (center) to be the poster children of river rat-dom. now granted, to the untrained eye, one may think they fit the stereotype – but these are no gresham hillbillies out to drunkenly hit on teenage girls and idiotically jump off of bridges head-first into the shallow waters of the sandy river. if one only takes the time to look closely (much like one of those "what's different about this picture" comparisons in highlights magazine), it is easy to observe the subtle contradictions.

note:
1) they are drinking sparks (admittedly un-classy, but in a self-consciously hip way – unlike, say, smirnoff ice, or bartles and james).
2) brian is sticking out his belly to create the semblance of beer gut (being a bike-riding militant vegan who works on an organic farm, he is lacking in this department).
3) corey is trying not to laugh through his defiant facial expression. (although it would appear that he does, quite literally, possess a red neck.)
4) brian is wearing vanj's pink short-shorts under his pants (not exactly standard garb for a testosterone-drenched, redneck youth).
5) vanj is not a teenage girl... and doesn't drink, although i guess said photographer couldn't have known either of those things just by looking.
6) corey's board shorts are the epitome of chic, mature swim wear.

did you notice the ironic tone of that last one? that's what they're going for here. ironic tastelessness. and may i say, they wear it well. another thing of which the photographer failed to take note was that whole law about asking one's permission to print one's photo on the cover of a widely distributed newspaper. who's lacking in social graces now, big shot?? vanj has decided to sue immediately, seeking restitution in the form of 400 ham tubes and a lifetime supply of soynog. good luck finding soynog in the middle of summer, bucko!

2 comments:

dandan said...

I wish we had a river down here to rat about on.

Oh wait, we do! It's called Concrete Paradise!

madeline said...

update: vanj wrote a letter to the editor of our paper, the mercury, and won letter of the week, thus getting some sweet schwag. the letter, apparently, started quite the shit-storm at the willamette week office. yay vanj!