Sunday, April 20, 2008


So on Wednesday we had to fan out in our groups and find someone in the neighborhood who would be willing to give a short little lecture to the class about what they do and their experiences in the neighborhood. Denise and I found two people, Earl from the eponymous barber shop, and a lady from Mimosa (a pottery place). Comparing our two interviews, we learned something very interesting. On the subject of gentrification, Earl (an african-american man) and Dana (a white woman) had exactly the same opinion. Both of them saw gentrification less as a phenomenon or crisis, and more as a natural force. According to both of them, the mixing of black and white was inevitable. Earl said he didn't mind the process, it was boosting his business.

Also of interest, Mimosa said they might be willing to donate a frame to us at the end of the term. If we each purchased a ceramic tile, we could make some sort of pottery collage about our project and place it somewhere in the neighborhood.

Lastly, I just remembered this tonight but the library website has a some great archives of newspapers. I think they have every article from the Oregonian and the NY Times every published uploaded. That would be a great place to get some historical perspectives and maybe some more info on the gentrification process.

Monday, April 7, 2008

The inauguration!

The first blog! Hooray!

Well I guess its time to summarize. After we all met at the lot today on 15th, my triad, consisting of myself, Denise, and Laura, went walking down Alberta searching for inspiration. We came up with some good ideas and leads. I think one of the most promising was the Rose City Cab Co. We all thought it would be a blast to interview a cabbie; who would know the more colorful people of the area any better? The people who worked there were not very forthcoming, but told us that if we came back Pat would speak to us.

Then Denise came up with the neat idea of finding the oldest resident in the area and interviewing them, or perhaps finding a cemetary to see what families started in the area and whatnot. There was also a Candy Company that we were interested in (we'll admit it, we love sweets). The last thing we did was visit the Mexican grocery store. In the future that might be a good place to take the pulse of the Latino community in the area.

Aside from that, next time we go out again I'm bringing my video camera and we're going to just get back out there and have a good time learning about the place.

Peace y'all :-)