Portlanders have long had to explain things to out-of-towners. We do things a bit differently here, and this leaves lots of visitors scratching their heads. Since so many people come to see our wonderful city, here are some of the things you can expect to have to explain to them.
1. We Don't Even Think About Pumping Our Gas
We do not pump our gas here, and don't even try. Our stations are all full service and unless you are crossing the state line to Washington, there is no reason to act otherwise.
2. Those Are All Tourists At Voodoo
Locals know that there is no reason to wait in that crazy line for donuts. If you really want a Voodoo Donut, you can head to its Eastside location that has no wait, or hit up one of the many other excellent donut shops around town.
3. Strip Clubs Are Fun
In Portland, strip clubs are king. Be ready to meet locals at one of the many clubs around town for drinks or even dinner ($7 steak, anyone?). At many you will find as many women patrons as men, and the taboo regarding them is just not strong here.
4. Food Carts Are Amazing
Sure, it may seem strange to pay $10 for a meal and eat it in the rain instead of just going in to a restaurant, but food carts rule here. And besides, there is a good chance that your new favorite food cart will turn into a full-fledged, highly rated restaurant in a year, so it is best to get your good eating in now.
5. Rain. What Rain?
While we do have a reputation as a capitol of rain, in reality, we get a lot less rain than a lot of other cities. In fact, from about July through October, it rarely rains at all.
6. Yes, That is Gravel On The Road!
In lieu of salt like cities in the east, we spread our streets with sand and gravel in the event of snow. The effect? Well, there is a lot of sand and gravel on the road and you are still sliding around, but you can hear your car getting pelting by tiny rocks as you drive.
7. No, We Haven't Seen That Episode of Portlandia!
We live Portlandia so we don't need to watch it on the television.
8. Yes, It's "Cooch!"
Inexplicably, we pronounce Couch Street "Cooch Street." Don't laugh, it's just how it is.
9. Beer With Your Favorite Activity? Yes Please.
In Portland you don't have to visit a bar to drink. We combine our favorite beverage with just about anything. Head to a gallery, movie, arcade, outdoor market, or anywhere to get a beer and you will feel right at home.
10. Crosswalks Are Not The Only Place To Cross A Street
We have so many fancy crosswalks with lighted beacons that you'd think people would be lining up to cross the street safely. However, if anyone is close to the street, looks like they are thinking about crossing the street, or even gazing across the street, do not be surprised to see motorists stop to let them cross just about anywhere.
11. Summer Starts In June?
Here in the Northwest, we ease into summer. Sure, the kids are out of school in June, but things don't really start to warm up until at least July. The bonus is that we keep summer going strong well through September, so it all evens out.
12. Brunch Is An Activity, Not Just A Meal
If you think waiting in line for two hours for some eggs, hash browns, and toast is crazy, well you might as well stay home then. Waiting in line is part of the experience, and Portlanders gladly take part in this ritual regularly.
13. $5 Really Means $5
You know when you go somewhere and the total at the cash register is 10% more than what the tag says? Well, that doesn't happen in Oregon. We don't have sales tax, so whatever the tag says goes here.