27 December 2007

[pdx] We Have A Mnemonic For Portland's Downtown Streets

1208. Well, rough draft – but this is as good as done. Credit commenter "JD" for this bit of genius.

Back in September, I'd posted about how fortunate Seattle was, given that they had a nifty, rather irreverent mnemonic (that's memory aid to those of you who don't read books) to keep the order of downtown streets in mind easily: Jesus Christ Made Kurt Cobain Seattle Under Protest, and that this was a problem for Portland – where our alphabet soup of downtown street initials made composing a simple mnemonic a true feat of daring and strength.

For review, from Burnside south, the downtown streets run as such:

Ankeny, Ash, Pine, Oak, Stark, Washington, Alder, Morrison, Yamhill, Taylor, Salmon, Main, Madison, Jefferson, Columbia, Clay, Market, Mill, Montgomery, Harrison, Hall, College, Jackson.

Which generates an initial string as:


This has been an intractable problem since at least sometimes in the 1980's, when over at The Big O the inimitable Jonathan Nicholas mentioned it in his column. My memories of the situation are hazy, but my recollection is that nobody really could come up with an acceptable sentence. It is a long bugger, neh?

Today, long after I'd forgotten I'd forgot the original discourse, one "JD" (as previously specified) emailed me with the following bit of true genius. This is so appropriate, so fun, so ... Portland. And here it is:

All Across Portland Our Streets Wind Around Mossy Yards. Traffic Snarls May Mean Jammed Cars, Cranky Motorists Making Minimal Headway. Harried Commuters Just Love Going Slow.

If I was having a contest for this, I'd declare it closed right here, right now. Seriously. This bit of verbiage makes me smile. Hell, I wish I'd of thought of it.

Good on you, JD!.

Other credit where due: photo nicked from PSU's Physics Department Homepage gallery.

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