Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Brownie Reunion: Matt & Nicole take over PDX


Matt and I at the Rose Garden in Arlington Heights.

On a beautiful, clear 80 degree summer day in Portland, the inevitable happened:  Matt Newell-Ching and I met up in Portland, Oregon, for the first time in (possibly) 18 years.

I have posted this so that Duke Brownies everywhere (but especially Brownies circa 1996-2001) can relive the magic of our Brownie reunion on the West Coast.

(Brownies are current or former dormitory residents of Brownstone Selective House on West Campus at Duke University.  From 1996-2001, Brownstone Selective Living Group was a coeducational dorm for those interested in a service orientation and a substance free pledge.)

Image result for brownstone duke dorm



 Our view of the city from the Portland City Grille, 30th floor.  You can see the Willamette River and Mount Hood in the hazy background.


Matt and I inadvertently made friends with the nice folks behind us at the City Grille. 


This place is so beautiful.


Matt is a lobbyist for Partners for a Hunger-free Oregon.  
I am a lobbyist for the NC REALTORS(R).  
No one really understands what we do or how we possibly could get paid 
for "talking to people" for a living.



So, Matt and I came up with some great "alternative careers" that are more easily understood in critical situations (like explaining what you do to distant relatives while attending Thanksgiving dinner).  
Winners included the following:
1) Night Manager at a luxury hotel chain, flown out during celebrity "emergencies," and 
2) The videographer for a service company that disposes of loved ones' cremated remains in exotic locations.


Folks grow roses and enter in them in a competition each year at this park.


Then the winning rose is planted in honor of the winning variety.  
These people are much better at taking care of roses than I am.

 The Portland City Parks Department is obviously TheBombDiggity.com.



In his free time, Matt judges local hankie bell dancing competitions.


This group is getting really high marks from Judge Matt.  (Fake News Alert:  It is possible I made up this storyline.  Still, there are pictures and a video on the Internet, and I think we can all agree that the Internet never lies.)
Don't miss this exciting video!

If your names are any of the following:  Kelly Grant Godsoe, Kathy Tran, Matt Reisman, Scott Michelman, Jared Strauss, Alvin Ko...


Rob Kaufman, Win Boon, Robert Shibley, Susannah Nicholson Roberts, Meredith Abramson, Sathya Chinnadurai, Rob Starling...


Van Smith, Jenn Sills, Howard from the third floor, Alan Bester, Cherrie Barton Henry, or any Brownstone resident from the late 1990s to early 2000s, then we possibly discussed our many happy memories of you and our friendships back then.

I actually tried to video a retelling of Matt's famous "You Gotta Have Heart" speech from a House Council race.  Alan Bester encouraged Matt to run in what had been up until then an uncontested race.  Jared Strauss and Scott Michelman also were involved here, and I'm pretty sure that in traditional Brownie style, everyone supported each other and we voted for all of them.
My iphone could not handle the speech, and although I'd like to, I can't really blame Apple or Steve Jobs for this.  Such a stirring speech is extremely hard to recreate.


View of Mount Hood in the distance from the Rose Garden.


Parting is such sweet sorrow.  I did not get to meet Matt's family on this trip, and I know they are wonderful people.  It's such a privilege to get to reconnect with someone from a very happy past.

Best wishes to Matt and to all Brownies all over the world.

"I thank my God upon every remembrance of you."

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Arnold Family Photos: July 8, 2018

Mom and Dad 

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Mom, Dad, 7 Siblings

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Mom, Dad, 7 Siblings with pond in background

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Mom, Dad, 4 Boys

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Mom, Dad, 3 Girls

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Baby Nate, Mom & Dad

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Mom, Dad, Nate, Clarice, Alex

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7 Siblings with Tree Background

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