Today I hopped on the #8 bus and went downtown, as I like to do on Saturdays. First stop was the Farmer's Market. It's winding down for the season, so a few of the regular stalls were missing.... in particular the one with the super yummy sausages. But I made up for it by getting a pulled pork sandwich... mmmmmm. Ok... that part isn't weird at all... just yummy, and nice because it wasn't too crowded.
From there I walked down towards Pioneer Courthouse Square, about half-way there I heard a guy across the street playing a tuba by Pizza Schmizza. That isn't even particularly weird. But when I got to the square (or as the newscasters like to call it 'Portland's Livingroom') I noticed more and more people with tubas, in fact the entire square was full of tuba players, seriously I've never seen so many tuba players in one place, easily 50, maybe 100. Several of these people were wearing matching hats that said "Tuba Christmas." Apparently I'd missed the show, because most of the people were lined up to get food or just milling about. But yeah... Tuba Christmas in the middle of downtown Portland. Just a little bit weird.
Weirder still, just walking around downtown... three fully-dressed Star Wars Storm Troopers and one very short (if I do say so) Darth Vadar, sans cape. Now I am irrationally afraid of Storm Troopers, Cylons, Borg, and all those humanoid-robotic-bad-guys from science fiction (just ask anyone who heard me screaming bloody murder at the Star Trek Experience in Las Vegas). But thankfully Darth Vadar & one of the Storm Troopers had their masks off when I first saw them, so I didn't feel the need to run screaming in the other direction. But I saw them again a little while later and they were just, you know, walkin' around being Storm Troopers and Darth Vadar. So yeah.... kinda weird... and a little creepy.
The final bit of weirdness was really just fun. I went to the mall to do a little window shopping. As I walked through the atrium I noticed something light and fluffy drifting down from the third floor. Just a flake or two and then more, and more. It was snowing. It was snowing - inside! Of course it wasn't real snow... it was some kind of foamy soap bubbles. But it looked like snow... and that's what counts. The kids just had a blast dancing in the snow bubbles. Well, the kids and a few adults... okay the kids and me. ;)
After that was a quick trip over to the Saturday market... a place so quintessentially "Portland" that it doesn't even register as weird. Not the marimba band playing, nor the pseudo-statue man, not the creepy greasy Elvis guy, not even the Spoon Man.... that stuff's all normal. As is this knitting bag I bought after chatting with the guy who made it.
Man, I love Portland.
Man, I love Portland.