Sexy sailors

Ahh, the Rose Festival. For one blessed week every year, our fair city is overrun with families, sailors, and drunks, all tripping over themselves to pay $10 for a five-minute gut-twisting carnival ride. I bet that the only people that go to the Rose Festival Parade and Fun Center or whatever don’t actually live in Portland ?” they probably all live in the suburbs. It seems no one much cares for it, so here are some thoughts from some Rose Festival apathists.


Anonymous 1

Why do you think they chose a rose – ?

For the “City of Roses?”

Yeah. Why are we the “City of Roses?”

Um – I don’t know, like I know there’s a lot of um – Ladd – Colonel Ladd, you know Ladd’s Addition – there’s a bunch of Rose bushes in there. I know he um – was, I don’t know if connoisseur of horticulture, he uh – took a lot of care of his garden and stuff – he was a founding father and stuff – so it might have something to do with that.

Do you think we’d be better as like the “City of Chrysanthemums?”

(laughs) No – I don’t know the City of Roses really doesn’t make sense to me but neither does chrysanthemums. Although, it is fun to say “THE CITY OF CHRYSANTHEMUMS.”

What if roses didn’t exist what would we be the city of?

– Broken bottles in the street.

Broken bottles in the street ?” that’s a good one.

I would say the City of Agaves because I love agaves.


Anonymous 2

You ever go to the Fun Center?

You mean that whole thing?


Yeah, I used to love carnivals. I’d go to Oaks Park all the time. I’d like die for the state fair even the Fun Center. But then one day, I was like 18 or 19 or something, I was on this ride called the “Inverter” and it went around and got people upside down and around again in a full circle.

Oh no.

And I noticed as we were going around that the belt wasn’t fully secure and as we went around and I totally had like a panic attack and I’ve been really freaked about that. Cuz like, there’s too much action down there – too many freaks.

What do you mean by “freaks?”

People with like guns and like firecrackers ya know it’s like a cesspool of like – chaos.

A cesspool of chaos. The family fun center is a CESSPOOL OF CHAOS!

I also really think it’s unsafe for children.


Anonymous 3

What do you think about the rose festival?

I’m kind of apathetic about the rose festival.

Are you a native of Portland?

I’m not all hyped up about it, I’m not gonna cruise up from the Suburbs with my chillin’ hang out for the parade. You know, camp out.

What do you think of the sailors that come here?

Um – I haven’t really met them out, I really don’t know why the sailors come in – do a lot of them come in any more? Do they still? I think it was last year or the year before – they needed them to do their sailing for an apparent war or there was some sort of domestic threat issues in the city so they didn’t dock.

Oh wow. I don’t remember that.

I think it was last year or the year before.

I bet there were a lot of disappointed women.

There were, actually it was in the paper, there were a lot of disappointed women, they get all hyped up, they didn’t get to get their beefy sailor men.

Do you get your beefy sailor man once a year?

I can’t say that I do because I don’t get around to Rose Festival every year.

That’s too bad. I mean are you out and about? Do you make yourself available? Do you get yourself dolled up at all?

For the sailors? Maybe if I took an extra hour to get myself ready for the sailors to make myself more attractive but obviously I think the sailors are looking for a little more easy meat and –

You don’t come too easy.

Mama raised me right!

You’re a modest fella.

They might get their kiss on the first date, and that is a might, they have to be quite a catch.

But they’re leavin’, they’re goin’ to war, you gotta put out for the sailors.

They deserve it, they’re riskin’ out there, put on the line so that they can lay some pipe on me.

If a sailor offered to buy you some cotton candy would you take him up on the offer?

I’d take his cotton candy. I’d probably give it to a child who’d enjoy it more than me.

You’re a wonderful person.


Anonymous 4

What do you think of the Rose Festival?

I’m pretty new so I don’t know what’s going on.

Are you from here?

Uh – no.

Where are you from?

I lived in the Dalles and then I lived in Rhode Island for two years and before that Michigan.

So you don’t anything about the Rose Festival do you? Do they have like uh – Dalles Day?

They have a cherry festival.

Were they any festivals in Michigan that you took part in?

(shakes no)

You ever been to the fun center?

(shakes no)

You have to vocalize, I am recording. Would you go?


Why not?

I’ve been really busy, I work 20-30 hours a week and taking 14 credits so –

So going to the fun center is not a top priority?


Not at all?


Not even a little bit?


What if it were?

(nods no)

You nodded your head no –


Don’t be sorry. Why are you sorry?

I don’t know.

You’re going to the library aren’t you?


Why don’t you go to the library now?

Because you stopped me to have me talk to you.

Yes I did.


Anonymous 5

Do you ever see the sailors that come during the Rose Festival?


Yeah, there are sailors, the navy docks during the Rose Festival.

Oh yeah.

You ever think about maybe getting dolled up and getting some sailors?


Why not?

Don’t know.

Well, you have to know why I mean –

The thought never crossed my mind cuz I never knew there was sailors.

They’re sexy.


Yeah, I mean they’re sailors. Everyone likes a man in uniform! You don’t like uniforms?

I distrust authority.

They don’t really have any authority, I mean they’re just cadets. You don’t want like – I mean if a sailor bought you some cotton candy, you wouldn’t want to except it?

Probably. I’d be like “thanks for the cotton candy dude, s’up?”

With a manly heterosexual handshake.

Uh -very tight.

But then he would think, “oh he’s tight!”

Uh oh – I don’t want to think about it that much.

Well, we have to go through this situation blow by blow so that we know what to do in case it happens. So he thinks he’s coming on to you.

See that’s when you back up and just stay away, and say, “Rose Parade, gotta go.”

Gotta go watch some of the cheerleaders, they’re marching, I like looking at cheerleaders, but then he’s like “What kinda cheerleaders?”

Enthusiastic cheerleaders.

“Ooh – maybe we can watch together I like cheerleaders. I always wanted to be a cheerleader.”

Yeah, well I’m going to go meet up with some friends ya know.

“Can I come?”


“Why not?”

We’re kinda close knit it would be a little awkward.

“I’d like to be close knit with somebody, I’d like to be close knit with you.”

These kind of things need to grow over time, maybe you could go to some bars and meet some very nice people.

“I’d like to go to a bar with you, whaddaya say?”

Uh, no.

“Come on landlubber, I’ll buy you a drink.”

Yeah I know that the salty air does weird things to your brain, I’m content to be my landlubbin-trying-to-get-you-to-leave-me-alone-but-now-completely-blowing-you-off-self.

“Uh – blow, eh?”

That’s when you turn around and run away.