Thursday, March 15, 2007

Portland: Code For Frustration

We're getting a bit of a weather break here in the Pacific Northwest, so Ked and I are seizing the opportunity to return to the winter-weather-delayed yard projects left over from last year's big garage-building spree. I am now going to take a brief moment to rant against the City of Portland. Note the capital letter. I love the city of Portland, but I am flippin' mad at the City of Portland.

Last fall, the City demanded that we dig a four foot deep, four foot wide dry-well for the little three hundred square foot garage we built. What they want is a big old hole, with a plastic "well' in part of it, and the rest filled with rocks for drainage. The downspout from the garage gutters will empty into this well. What is frosting our cookies as we dig this giant hole is that they did not take into account that we live in "rock central." We have spent hours digging through ground that is basically one big rock bed--we are hitting stones from 1 inch to 1 foot in diameter every time the pick or shovel hits the dirt. There are literally thousands of them. All of this digging, just so we can fill half of the hole with rocks--rocks that are already there. Our yard drains like crazy already, and simply diverting the downspouts off the garage onto the lawn would have dealt with it quite nicely. WE DIDN'T NEED THE DRY WELL, except to satisfy some arcane code that doesn't take into account the conditions where we live.

I'm trying to remain calm, reminding myself that at least the weather is letting us get the stupid job done finally, but I must confess that my attitude toward the whole ridiculous project is not very Christ-like. The only thing that is keeping me from going over the frustration edge is the fact that we don't have to buy any of the rocks to fill the hole back in, since we are gathering them up as we dig. If we were going to have to purchase more rocks, I think I might start throwing them.

Okay, rant over. I think just writing this is helpful for processing the severe annoyance I feel. Sorry I have to take it out on you, but blogging is just so very soothing. I think I should have a tee-shirt printed, to wear while I'm satisfying The Alliance's demands. It should say, "I'd Rather Be Blogging." Ooh, I bet other people would want one too. I could start a whole new Internet-based business, and get rich!! Hmmm... I wonder what the City of Portland codes are for starting an Internet-based business...