Drones over pools over little-known big-time local bands

Or, what I’ve been up to lately. 


I checked in on the Pendleton-area economy for Oregon Business and found a small wheat town with big drone dreams. The Eastern Oregon municipality of 16,838 was designated by the FAA last year as one of a limited number of commercial unmanned-aerial-vehicle testing ranges across the country. “So the story of Pendleton became a tale of two cities,” I write. “One a farm town with deep roots, the other a tech outpost with high-flying aspirations." (Photo above, of Eastern Oregon wheat and airspace, by Bill Peal.)

Over at The Oregonian, I previewed and reviewed Theatre Vertigo’s brilliant production of Mark Ravenhill’s seriously screwed-up play pool (no water). I never pass up an opportunity to quote Virginia Woolf: "With this play, Ravenhill plunges into the unlit recesses of the human soul without fear – and where he boldly goes, Vertigo follows. What they resurface with is an unflattering portrayal of our tendency to project insecurities onto innocent others, turning complex people – even friends – into what Virginia Woolf called ‘spectres with which one battles in the night…spectres who stand astride us and suck up half our life-blood, dominators and tyrants.’”

Finally, also for the O, I profiled the most successful Portland band most Portlanders have never heard of, electropop duo Mackintosh Braun. Always love getting into the nooks and crannies of the local scene.