Tuesday, November 11, 2008

New Day #320

I’ve completely lost interest in the gym. I’m not averse to exercise—I just don’t want to do it at the gym. So today I climbed Portland’s tallest building, the U.S. Bank Tower, otherwise known as Big Pink.

I figured I was up for it, having climbed the Empire State Building, which is twice as tall. Of course, that was on a stairmaster.

I felt really illicit sneaking into the stairwell, as if there were something subversive about not taking an elevator. Also because it's a bank building and probably isn't the kind of environment that welcomes strangers exercising in the stairwell.

Ten floors and I was hot and winded. Twenty, I wanted to kill myself. Thirty, I wanted to kill someone else. Forty, I was done.

Unfortunately, there are forty-three floors. But I’m very determined. So I finished it, walked back down, relieved that one of the constraints of this project is that I don’t have time to do anything twice.

I've heard said that you can tell a lot about a society's values by which building is the tallest. In the past, it was the church. Now it's financial services. Just once I'd love to see it be a library.

PS Sorry for the delayed posting. I'm revising my writing schedule and haven't quite budgeted in blogging.

4 comments:

Rick said...

The tallest building in Salem, Mass is an elderly housing complex. Next up low income housing. The Witch House pales in comparison.

Anonymous said...

On the campus of Hofstra University in Hempstead, NY (Long Island, for those who don't know where Hempstead is, and recent site of the 3rd Presidential Debate), the Axinn Library is the tallest building on the academic side of campus. There are 10 floors, with museum/gallery space at the top, and magnificant views of NYC.

therese said...

Now you know why they have stairmasters in gyms, you can do the climb without doing the time.

E. R. K. said...

Actually the tallest building in downtown PDX is the Well Fargo Center on the opposite side of downtown. It's only higher by ten feet... but it still counts.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_tallest_buildings_in_Portland,_Oregon