27 May 2014

[pdx] I Bring You The Head Of Tom Peterson. Or, At Least, The Face.

Tom Peterson seems to be a trending item.

Interest has increased in the legendary salesman since it's been made public that his health is failing to the point he has to be moved into assisted living, as reported by KPTV's Andrew Padula last month. Considering Tom's commercial relationship with Yesterday's KPTV, that's only appropriate.

The signage remains memorable and, in its Portlandian way, iconic. When his visage delivered its smiling benediction to the corner of 82nd and Foster Rd, you knew just where you were, and it was a landmark. The building has been remodeled out of recognition, of course; gutted, made new inside and out, and turned into a corner strip center, "Peterson Plaza". I've been an Oregonian all my life and a Portlander the majority of it, and I know my granfalloon enough to know that we save things.

If we didn't exercise some restraint, this whole state could appear on Hoarders. That's how we get so funky and kitschy. We're drunk on it, up in here.

A couple of days ago, though, an acquaintance of longstanding who prefers anonymity at this time contacted me and said he knew where the old sign was. Really? said I. I'd be all over that if I could.

Get back to you in a couple of days, was the gist of the reply. Today, here's the payoff. Somewhere, secluded in a Portland back yard, I know not where (not even in confidence, and I understand why), rests …

The head … or at least the face … of Tom Peterson.

This is the most Portland back yard in Portland, wherever it is. And I'm not tellin' where it is because I don't know; and what little I know of whom took it I shall not divulge. He knows how some people are, and so do I.

But it's enough to know, just to know, that it's out there somewhere.

Now, that's Tom Peterson's.

No comments: