Last Night in Gresham

I spent several hours at a friend’s house last night kickin’ it with a group of pals that I’d known an average of 15 years.  What’s cool about this group is that we talk about everything and nothing at the same time, and are still friends at the end.

On the drive up to L. and D.’s place, I picked up my buddy R.  In the car, our discussion was somehow steered toward global warming, renewable energy, and alternative fuel.  R. believes global warming is a farce and that renewable energy and alternative fuel have a long way to go before becoming mainstream.  He is further adamant that the U.S. was foolhardy in its stance against the use of nuclear energy while he claimed that European countries (like France, England, and the Scandinavian nations) are benefiting from them day-in/day-out.  I asked him what he thought about solar power, and he admitted that harvesting solar power for energy would only work in states like Arizona and New Mexico; making it a possibility in rain-drenched Oregon is too far-fetched, he mused.  I expressed that if there was a way to harvest solar power and store it somehow for later — not immediate — use, I think it could work in temperate climes like Oregon.  He suggested that governments should invest in hybrid energy technology — akin to that used in hybrid cars.

I thought about that and I think it makes perfect sense.  In Oregon, for example, we could draw on solar energy for power during the months of July and August when the sun is most present, giving our hydroelectric power plants a rest.  Then, during our ‘stormier’ weather months (November, March, April), we could use wind power to generate electricity.  I don’t know if this is possible, but, if it is, I think it makes perfect sense.

At L. and D.’s place, while we were lazing around the foot pool, I made the mistake of asking our friend V. who she was going to vote for come November.  She said, “I don’t want to talk about that right now.”  When I looked up at her, she’d pointed at R. with a nod.  I shot her a look that stated “Ah, I get it.”  You see, V. is a Democrat, while R. — our very opinionated friend — is a Republican.  I instantly realized that V. and R. had had previous discussions about the matter, and V.’s reluctance indicated that it wasn’t a fun conversation.

So, I asked instead, “Has anyone seen the Dark Knight?” which elicited some lighthearted responses.  V. indicated that it was one of the best films she’d seen in a while; R. thinks that Heath Ledger’s performance — although very good — was grossly overrated.  (I’ve yet to see it but will do so today.)  I was relieved that I’d successfully averted a heated discussion about politics — which I knew is R.’s favorite topic.  Primarily because he’s very knowledgeable about it and generally loves that shit.  And I know that V. is also very steadfast in her beliefs, and wouldn’t necessarily allow R. to have the last word.  Yes, it would’ve been an ugly exchange of words indeed.

I was ready to then discuss the benefits of soy products when V. all of a sudden blurted out of the blue: “Why would I vote for an old guy anyway?”

For several hours, the conversation went from politics to religion to racial discrimination to derogatory terminology to alternative fuel sources to urban harvesting to vegetarianism to public transportation, etc. etc.  It was lively — I’ll give you that.  But there were plenty of times when I thought a fist-fight would ensue between R. and D. (L’s husband).  Yes, they got that heated.

When all was said and done, and we’d finally said our goodbyes at the end of the night, my only regret is that I never got the opportunity to debate the benefits of soy products.

Oh, well.  That’d be for another party. 😉


2 Responses to “Last Night in Gresham”

  1. 1 curlywurlygurly August 18, 2008 at 4:34 am

    hmmm…you like to stir the pot, huh? i should invite you to my next party. 🙂

  2. 2 jonsquared August 18, 2008 at 7:12 pm

    I charge a minimal fee, but I accept plastic.

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