Christmas has come and gone as another hectic, frantic rush to satisfy our generous giving mood. Sadly, I come away from the season with a growing concern, a sense of alarm that is fueled by rude, inconsiderate drivers. On more than one occasion this uneasiness has encouraged the thought 'Oregon drivers are the worst.' Closer examination of this feeling leads to the labeling of the most troublesome culprits, a gallery of highway misfits.

• Darter: They can't stand being second, weaving in and out of traffic for that precious one-car advancement.

• Timer: Punching the accelerator to the floor to make it through a yellow light, sometimes red. Have they perfected the art of avoiding delay?

•ÊRoad hog: The center dividing line of a road or highway is community property. What's yours is theirs, and of course what's theirs is theirs.

• Tailgater: Certainly not leg men, they focus on the posterior of the shapely model ahead. Riding its rear end, they're bent on persuading its driver to move over so they can go by. The accompanying impatient gestures are priceless.

• Charger: They charge up established lanes of traffic, cutting in near the exit or where the outside lane merges with the inside lanes.

• Comic: Signs are for entertainment only. Speed only kills the other guy.

• Turtle: They drive slowly, often miles below the speed limit. They enjoy chewing the scenery.

• ESP man: Never signaling before turning, they subscribe to the belief that everyone enjoys a surprise once in a while. Why not have Christmas year-round?

Did you find yourself fitting any of these categories? If so, don't continue being rude. Life is too short. Certainly Portland isn't the only place in Oregon where the above motorists hang out, but since it's the most populous area in Oregon, the chance of meeting one of these people is certainly greater.

Gary L. Hollen

Oregon City

Can we tweak that

new slogan slightly?

On behalf of the majority of Oregonians who work on behalf of the dreamers, a more 'call to action' state slogan might be 'Oregon. Dreams happen here' (Insight, Dec. 19). It injects a dose of reality while honoring the vision of the dreamers.

Gloria Lee

Executive Director

Portland Classical

Chinese Garden

Northwest Portland

Why all the fuss over

Blazers smoking pot?

The fact that a recent report claimed that a good 60 percent of NBA basketball players use marijuana to unwind after a game illustrates that the laws are the big problem, not the herb. The players aren't coming to work the next day with hangovers, or getting into accidents, or committing acts of violence that alcohol use causes.

These world-class athletes achieve their professional responsibilities on the courts and success in their lives. If it weren't for this country's misguided policies that punish good, contributing members of society for using cannabis, there wouldn't be any problem. Cannabis is actually a smarter choice as a relaxing agent. Why create problems for these athletes when there aren't any? The sooner we recognize this and tax and regulate marijuana, the better.

Mikki Norris

Cannabis Consumers Campaign

El Cerrito, Calif.

Mayoral candidate

sees the big picture

I just wanted to thank you for your article on the grass-roots effort to get former Portland Police Chief Tom Potter elected (1984-2004: Will history repeat itself? Dec. 12). I feel Tom has key ingredients that truly will bring our community together and has a holistic vision of how a community can work. He has displayed his leadership and integrity in the past, and now is the time to let Tom lead us into the future.

Tom has a vision that considers social capital in the community a key asset in shaping a community that is informed and defines itself. We can no longer let financial capital define our developmental agenda; we need to listen to the citizens who weave our social capital web.

Eric Noon


Potter for Mayor campaign

Southeast Portland

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