It’s amazing what you can gather if you don’t care where it came from. I’ve been astounded lately about where what I notice good ideas have come from. Most often: casual conversation with people I don’t know very well. People I don’t know at all usually get a predigested conversation from me and I can only guess I’m getting the same from them. People who I know very well, we focus what we talk about on ever-more-narrow topics, since those are subjects that allow us to bore down deeply, given our history and mutual interests. But in between is where I find the most original ideas that are the most widely useful. Neighbors, associates, friends-of-friends. Two examples, no three (each deserving their own column): parking garages as outdoor markets, the word we can’t abide in the city’s”world’s greatest” slogan, and why the Pacific Northwest is natural habitat for “foodies.”
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One of these four ideas will be developed into a column on Wednesday to be published in The Register-Guard on Friday. I’m asking you to help me choose between them. Between now and the end of Tuesday, leave comments here or send me an e-mail if you’d rather be more private. Or, at the very least, RATE the idea (and the others) so I know which one people like best. No promises, though. This ain’t American Idol. But I will post an entry on Wednesday to say which one I’m choosing (and probably why.) I plan to do this each week — often by Friday, but always by Monday, so visit often and tell me which idea intrigues you the most. Thanks!