Eugene Weekly : Design Matters : 12.17.09

Jerry’s Famous Predictions for 2010
Jerry Diethelm

• The Baker family will formally apologize to Don Bishoff for chastising him for having satirized the R-G as “The First Citizen of the Suburbs,” as they continue to downsize and move back into the downtown. Meanwhile, Don himself has moved out into the suburbs.

 • Eugene Weekly will continue to widen the gap as the newspaper of choice, panache, better vocabulary and sharper tongue.

• An unnamed member of the Eugene City Council and charter member of the Eugene Advocates (The Gang of Whine) will be officially named our “Town Crier.” 

• Tiger Woods (AKA “The Cheetah”) will admit to having shot a double, double, double bogie, which is defined as a hole in more than one. 

• The CIA will continue to pay national celebrities to reveal their extramarital affairs so that no one has time to read about or think about the war.

• Sarah Palin’s intelligence will be revealed to have been Photoshopped and her foreign policy experience enhanced with a more powerful telescope. Nevertheless, Palinologists will trace her mitochondria back to Eve, establishing her Birther lineage and her right to pick the low-hanging fruit in 2012 if she so desires.

• Preposterous political ideas (take your pick) will turn out to be seriously post-prosperous. Political cant will continue to bedevil political can. But left and right will eventually turn around, discover their downsides and agree to recant. Meanwhile, the rest of us will go on ranting and decanting.

• The 3 percent in Oregon who make more than $250,000 a year will once again convince the 97 percent who don’t that they should be spared any additional tax burden. They’ll argue, successfully, that making the lives of the less affluent more miserable by cutting social services is the kind of incentive that they really need (whether they like it or not) to move up into the upper 3 percent. However, in the New Year, these morally superior and disinterested “haves” will be visited by three spirits …

• Mary Leighton and her merry band at the Network Charter School will be so successful in their new home at 858 Pearl St. that the NYT-reported statistic that “An American kid drops out of high school at an average rate of one every 26 seconds,” will be cut in a half of a half, which will require everyone to remember how to multiply fractions. And lo, an angel will appear on high and say, “Mary, here’s $1,500,000 to buy your building and a little extra to convert it from steam heat.”

• In the health care debate, members of Congress will be required to take Pinocchio Pills so that ordinary people can see who is telling the truth. Pinocchio Pills are an elevated, PG-13 form of Viagra. Many of our representatives and senators will lose any possibility of a closer intimacy with their mirrors.

• Time scales do matter, and BS does baffle brains: In our daily lives where we all live, the typical response to climate change will continue to be, “I wish it would.” 

• Don Kahle’s writing style will be likened to ideas and sentences condensed enough to fall between the raindrops that trickle down like David Brooks.

• Return of the river because: “the river is a strong brown god, sullen, untamed and intractable,” (T. S. Eliot). And so it will strongly come to pass that the Willamette River will carve out a new bend in the river in the EWEB site just as its Master Plan is about to be approved. But the process will be spun as a successful $500,000 jobs program for area consultants and begun again this time with three partners, the city, EWEB and Lariviere (The River). 

• Osama bin Laden’s cunning plan to corrupt our country’s values and to drain our country of its treasure — and the treasure of our youth — will be discovered before it’s too late. In addition: ObL will also successfully crash a White House dinner disguised as ObL.

• The future will arrive, but you will know it by another name.

• Woodwork, which is increasingly leaking mistresses, will be replaced across the nation and in the nation’s Capitol by a less porous material.

• The “some people are saying” and the “many believe” and the “but others think” people frequently cited in the Associated Press all live at Fox News.

• “The Family” will destroy family values.

• Hollywood will produce a high-budget, end-of-the-Earth blockbuster of the Earth already having been destroyed. 

• According to Wikipedia, the Buckeye is a breed of chicken originating in Ohio. So on New Year’s Day, the Ducks will be plucking the Chickens while we are eating our turkey and smelling the Roses.


Jerry Diethelm is a Eugene architect, landscape architet, and planning and urban design consultant. To read last year’s predictions, see