We Portlanders

Somewhere in Portland, Oregon | Scooter Mc Quades
Who’s Got Game? Google Maps

At first it was some sort of a joke, like ‘Florida Man’, except it was us…we, Portlanders.

Portlanders ban single use plastic bags.

The news hawks swept in, made us seem like clog-wearing hippies wearing tie-dye tees.

Portlanders vote yes to zero landfill.

Suit-clad newscasters smirked and showed footage of beard-sporting hipsters sipping organic free-trade. “That’ll never last,” they said.

Portlanders go zero emission.

The pundits waved their hands, said it wasn’t practical. They said since legalizing weed, we Portlanders had abandoned all reason.

When our Oregon senator brought the Portland Bill, which banned lobbyists from making campaign donations and completely rewrote campaign finance law, the senate floor erupted. “There’s no way,” they said. But maybe they were more worried about reelection without their coal lobby and billionaire funds.

Portlanders lead the country into renewable energy.

They called it a joke, a trope, a cliché, but we did it—we: Portlanders.

150 words

This has been an edition of What Pegman Saw. To read more stories inspired by the prompt, click here.

Apologies for not participating the past few weeks. I have been studying for a certification exam (which I passed!).

I love Portland, but when I picked it for a location for Pegman this week, I never imagined I’d have such a hard time of it. Some of my favorite things are associated with Portland… forests, ferns, moss, coffee…Lewis & Clark, bigfoot, and of course my husband J. Hardy Carroll. But when I saw this picture with the Subaru outside, I got hung up on the cliche of Portland.

Anyone who knows Portland or has watched Portlandia knows what I’m talking about. For some reason this glitch got me thinking about the legend that is Florida Man–and this story was born. Call it sci-fi-satire-cliche, I guess. But with a happy ending, because the world is saved!

Have a most wonderful week & thanks for reading.



  1. peterkirsch

    Ahhhh…wouldn’t it be nice?

    Wonderful to hear from you again. Long live Portlandia.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It would be nice. Someone needs to be a hero, why not Portland? 😉


  2. Dear Karen,

    This piece made me want to pack up and move to Portland. Well done.



    Liked by 1 person

    1. Me too! But the best we have right now is girls night out. In our dreams. Hehehe

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Bear

    Good one! Would that every city could enact those kind of bans, laws, customs, etc…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for reading, Bear. Yes I agree, we all need to work together and make the world cleaner, greener, and better!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Portland is/was a wonderful place to live. I think you captured Portlanders thoughts perfectly. Kinda the way we Bellinghamsters think. What exam? I know how studying can mess with … well, life.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Lish! Portland is SO lovely. Wish I was there right now.

      The exam was a Money-Job thing. I got a Salesforce Certification in hopes of a particular job I’m after. Today: the interview. 🙂


  5. Go Portlanders! It’s been on my “to-visit” list for a good while. Between the music scene and the foodie scene… and now? Knowing they have been on the sustainability scene ahead of the others? Just another reason to have it there.
    Lovely read, Karen.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Meet you there, Dale! We went there last summer on a family vacation. Josh (of course) lived there, but it was half the family’s first time. So lovely!


      1. Yesss!! Definitely on my to-visit … glad you enjoyed.


  6. Great and hopeful story. If it comes true, Portland is probably the place it will happen.

    Liked by 1 person

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