Currently viewing the category: "Cascadia"

Columbia Gorge, clouds, from Hamilton Mt., WAToday, I finally had a chance to reboot.

After a 7 month slog of working and going to tattoo school, followed by a month of working, writing and travelling to speak on both coasts, today was the first day in a long time that really felt like what people call a “day off.” I had things on my whiteboard, but all of them could wait.

I picked up my pal Rex, and we drove out to the Columbia River Gorge to do some hiking. I wanted to get some fresh air and exercise.

I knew it was supposed to rain. The Gorge is always beautiful, but in the rain, it’s a Chinese painting. The mountains disappear and reappear as wraithlike clouds blow slowly around them. There’s a mythic feeling to it that makes it easy to understand why our barbarian fathers believed in mountain spirits.

As we drove past Hamilton Mt., some sunlight caught his cliffs and I said, “I want to go up there.” We crossed the Bridge of the Gods and backtracked to the trailhead. It’s a difficult hike. It’s not Everest, but the switchbacks are steep and precarious. If you keep a good pace it still takes a couple of hours to summit the mountain. I’ve done it before, and it was exactly what I needed.

It rained most of the way up. During the last half mile, there were fewer trees, and we were exposed. That’s when the rain turned to hail. We kept going, stopped at the top for a few minutes, then unceremoniously headed back down the mountain.

The hail really started pounding. I hadn’t bothered to wear a hat, so I was walking with my hands on my shaved, freezing head.

There was a flash of light that felt “right here” in the clouds — not “up there.”


Thunderstorms aren’t that common in the Pacific Northwest. I jumped a little, then chuckled at myself and shouted: “CROM!”

Rex and I laughed, exhilarated from the epic weather.

As we continued down the exposed path, I thought, “This is probably not the best place to be in a thunder and lightning storm.”

Then, I corrected myself. After everything I’d accomplished in the past couple of years, I realized that I couldn’t think of a better way to die.

What an awesome death story! I write a successful book about manliness, give a speech about becoming barbarians, hike up a mountain into a hailstorm, shout “CROM!” and get struck dead by lightning?

GODS die like that!


So, for about ten minutes on a mountain today, I was completely resigned to death by lightning strike. I was happy. I was scanning the clouds with a smile on my face. I was looking forward to it.

After the storm calmed down and we could hear each other, Rex said, “Well, I can’t feel my feet. If they have to cut off my foot, I’ll finally get to build that raptor claw.”

Mr. Blake told me that we should do a perimeter walk before we joined the protest. He said we should look for dump trucks filled with gravel, which they apparently use to protect the block around The Benson hotel when a President comes to town.

Mr. Blake was dressed as an agent for “The Man.” His objective was to identify plants and agents provocateurs.

Mr. Blake at Restore the Fourth

Mr. Blake surveys the assembling protesters.

Satisfied that we weren’t being herded into a State-sponsored kill zone, we decided to proceed to O’Bryant Square, the site of today’s Restore The Fourth event.

I heard about the protest online last night. Organizers promised a non-partisan rally to “strengthen the Fourth Amendment with respect to digital surveillance by the U.S. government.”

Non-partisan? Keeping the gubmint outta my bidness? I can get on board with that!

With all of the protests around the world right now — Greece, Turkey, Egypt, etc. — I wanted to get in on the action. Shake things up. Start The World.

The “non-partisan” atmosphere was interesting and refreshing, and something you wouldn’t have seen a few years ago, when your average protester was obsessed with George W. Bush, and still well ensorceled by Thulsa Doom Barack Obama. In fact, there were multiple signs of brewing discontent with Obama’s wicked dream cult. Mr. Blake said that Obama represented “peak hope,” and I agreed heartily.

Anti-Obama Signs at Restore the Fourth Protest


Another positive was the fact that the protest was being MC’d by a recent Air Force veteran, who carried himself off well. The first thing he did was ask how many others present had at one point swore an oath to defend the US Constitution. When speaking about the value of activism and protest, he brought up The Bonus Army — a group of WWI vets who got screwed over by Uncle Sam, and decided to camp out on the Capitol lawn.

Mr. Blake has written about “The Bonus Army” at some length.

The speaker kind of glossed over the fact that this protest was crushed by Hoover, Douglas MacArthur, President Dwight Eisenhower and George Patton

Four hundred infantry from the the 12th Infantry Regiment and two hundred cavalry from the 3rd Cavalry Regiment mobilized against the Bonus Army.  The infantry attacked with sabers, bayonets and tear gas.  Several Army trucks with machine guns and five or six tanks also moved against the veterans. In the streets of Washington DC, US soldier fought US soldier. Two veterans were shot.  The shantytowns were burned to the ground, including the American flags of the veterans and all the worldly possessions of their families.

- Trevor Blake: The Bonus Army

The young MC said that because of that activism — some of which started in Oregon — major reforms actually took place. I doubt that most of those reforms ended up being for the better, but the feds did eventually pay the vets part of what they owed them.

I didn’t go to the rally because I thought the corrupt and irreparably broken US Government was going to stop abusing its ability to monitor US Citizens. As Mark Steyn reiterated recently, a State with as much power as ours will eventually be lured by the “siren song of the soft target.” It’s easier to go after you for something silly than it is to go after legitimate threats to national or local security.

Ask Jack Carter, the 19-year-old gamer who was arrested, imprisoned, beaten and put in solitary confinement for Facebook smack-talk.

I went to the rally because I’m glad to see the runaway State lose the mandate and trust of its citizens. Widespread loss of faith in centralized government is the only thing — save a major disaster — that can save future generations from becoming the fearful, emasculated slaves of wealthy globalist elites and their pet bureaucrats.

That, and I can’t think of anything better to do on Independence Day than protest tyranny.

Me at the protest. I swear I was trying to look like I was having a good time.


Split a meat plate with a progressive pal the other night at a tucked-in little workshop pub called “The Tannery.”

Good bier wurst.

The two mainstream groups in American politics are made absurd by obvious internal contradictions.

The “Republicans” position themselves as advocates of small-town values, yet defend the big businesses most responsible for eroding the small business, family farm lifestyles that make those values possible.

How can you save small town values with big businesses? 

The “Democrats” are called liberals, and position themselves as champions of personal freedom, yet offer absolutely no solutions that don’t somehow involve increased government regulation or oversight.

How can you increase personal freedom with big government?

“Conservative” Republicans say they are fiscally responsible, but they support fiscally irresponsible, unnecessary, protracted and un-winnable wars.

“Progressive” Democrats say they are against war, but they tacitly support fiscally irresponsible, unnecessary, protracted and un-winnable wars when their own party leaders continue them.

“Progressive” Democrats say they are against big business and white privilege, but they advocate taxation and regulatory policies that make small businesses difficult to start. When I go to progressive areas and patronize new “politically correct” small businesses, it seems as though the majority of them were started or bankrolled by the children of wealthy white people.


Pup Creek Falls, OregonOver a year ago, I wrote an essay titled “Hate Globally, Like Locally.”  Opponents of globalism ought to be finding things to “like” around them, and I vowed to do that — because I actually like where I live. Too many on the far right come off like miserable cunts who hate everything, and give no reason for anyone to sympathize with them.

I ended up promoting the things I like about Portland mainly through my Facebook pages. However, what I found is that I really don’t give a shit about Portland, per se. I work in Portland, but I don’t live in Portland, and I would live further away from it if I could figure out how to make money out in the sticks. There are things I like about Portland. Portland has a great, unpretentious food scene, and some hipster-ish cultural trends I can get on board with, like old-fashioned barber shops. But when people ask me why I live so close to Portland, my answer is:

Because Oregon.

At your right, find a photo of Pup Creek Falls. I did a 7-8 mile (round-trip) trail run/hike out to see this a few days ago. The trailhead was 40 minutes from my home in Milwaukie, which is only about 10 minutes outside of SE Portland. It also happens to be within a few miles of the pull-off where I go to shoot guns with rednecks from Clackamas County.

On a Friday afternoon in March, I was the only one on this lush, primordial trail. I don’t know any other mid-sized city in America where you can truly get out in the middle of nowhere so quickly.

Here’s more information about the trail. 

I’ve started tattoo school, so I may not be doing a lot of writing in the next 6 months, but I renamed the “Portland” section of this blog “Cascadia.” I’m going to try to keep track of the things I like about the Pacific Northwest, including Portland, with brief updates and photos posted to that section.

Jack Donovan Speaking CounterMedia Aug 10 2012

On Friday, August 10, 2012, I spoke to a group of about 25 readers at CounterMedia in Portland. If you are in town and want to pick up a hard copy of The Way of Men, it should be in stock there.

Here’s a podcast of the speech I gave — loosely titled “Start the World.”

Topics covered include:

  • An introduction to the ideas in The Way of Men
  • What is masculinity?
  • The difference between being a good man and being good at being a man
  • The tactical virtues
  • What the globalist, feminist future has to offer men
  • Why you should abandon the modern world and “Destroy the Future”
  • Why I am not a “conservative”


Chris Duffin, who goes by Kabuki Warrior, posted an essay recently about the benefit of training for a competition instead of simply training “in a void,” like many of us do.

Having a planned competitive event scheduled (or series of events) puts hard fixed dates to your goals. The dates don’t change because you strained your quad or your little sister is getting married. What you do is figure out how to deal with these things within the confines of your fixed schedule, because there is no flexibility to your goal.

He holds some impressive records, and he should know. Read more here. 

On a related note, here’s the poster I designed for an upcoming strength competition Duffin and others are putting together. The first annual Portland Primal Strength Fest is scheduled for Saturday, July 28th at Franklin High School in Portland, OR. Yes, that’s my original drawing of Odin as a powerlifter.

I don’t know if I’ll make it to the meet or not — I normally work on Saturdays and I want to be more impressed with my numbers than I am right now before I go to a meet. I’m probably close to the “1000 pound club” right now, which is a hell of a lot stronger than most 37 year-old slobs, but I can do better than that. I just started in earnest 6 months ago and despite the helpful expert coaching I get at Elite Performance Center, it may take this old dog a while to learn some new tricks.

If you’ve been training for powerlifting or Olympic lifting and you’re looking for an event to enter in the Pacific Northwest, the Primal Strength Fest should be a good one.

Chris is even offering MEAT to every competitor. Find out more here. 

Traffic started to slow as I was crossing the Burnside Bridge. It looked like they were doing some construction and closing off a second lane. As I pulled closer, I noticed that one of the guys moving the safety cones wasn’t wearing a reflective vest.  He also wasn’t wearing shoes.

He was a big guy, maybe 260. Broad and solid. White sweatshirt, hood up.

Hoodie guy was grabbing the cones and walking out into traffic. After a car stopped for him, he would slam down the cone and make a dramatic “YOU SHALL NOT PASS!!!” gesture.

He did this in each lane. A van lurched forward and hit him. He was undaunted.

While he was busy with one lane, the real construction guy would nervously remove a cone and let a car go through. He was on his phone, probably talking to dispatch or the police.  After someone drove through, hoodie guy would grab another cone and repeat the process. When the construction guy moved the cone out of my lane, I whipped around hoodie guy and drove across the bridge.

I told the story a couple of times back at the warehouse. Twenty minutes later, I headed back downtown. It started raining.

The man in the white sweatshirt was walking along the stone railing with his arms wide for balance.

The police had arrived. They were talking to him cautiously. He was playing with them.

My original reaction had been,  ”Get out of the road, asshole.”

It struck me differently the second time. This guy wasn’t your average meth-head or homeless wino. This guy could have been me.

Maybe this guy is just fucking DONE.

Maybe he’s just had enough.

Fuck you. Fuck this world. Fuck everything. Just FUCK IT ALL.

That’s how I told the story to the guys at my next stop.

I have no idea what his deal was, but that’s the story I’m sticking to.

Twenty minutes later, I crossed the bridge again. He was still up on the ledge, standing there with his arms crossed.

“Eye of the Tiger” was playing on the radio. I turned it up and rolled down my windows. I wanted hoodie guy to hear it. I wanted it to be part of his “moment.”

The cops were saying something to him. He was shaking his head defiantly, like a little kid who doesn’t want to go to bed.


As I passed, I gave him a quick salute. I think he saw me out of the corner of his eye.

You fucking tell ‘em, D-FENS. 

You tell ‘em all about it.

Yukio Mishima's Black Lizard (film)

The Black Lizard – by Yukio Mishima

Imago Theater
Portland, Oregon.
May 11 through June 2, 2012 (Thurs-Sun)


In 1968, Kinji Fukasaku turned Yukio Mishima’s bizarre play The Black Lizard into a campy film starring the drag queen Akihiro Miwa. It’s only available on VHS, but you can watch a blurry version of it on YouTube.

The Imago Theater in Portland is currently performing the play in English for the first time ever, thanks to a new translation by  Laurence Kominz and Mark Oshima. I’m not much of a theater-goer, but I’m obviously a huge fan of Mishima’s work, so I didn’t want to pass up this rare opportunity to see one of his plays staged for a live audience. Most movies put me to sleep, so I was a little worried about the two-and-a-half hour run time, but it was so well directed and performed that I was completely engaged the whole time.

The translators made some smart choices and the dialog felt natural, even though the play is highly stylized and peppered with psycho asides and dreamy philosophical musings. It’s essentially a detective story, with private investigator Kogorō Akechi tracking the Black Lizard, a manic lady crime boss who is obsessed with youth and beauty. Watching it was like watching a really good B-movie from the 60s or 70s. It wasn’t gory, but for some reason snippets of Dario Argento flicks came to mind. There actors played it over-the-top for laughs, and I think I overheard someone mention the old Batman TV series.

The obsession with youth and beauty is the Mishima connection. In the filmed version, he played one of her taxidermized “dolls” with “muscles of steel,” preserved forever after losing a knife fight. In the Imago staging, Black Lizard tells one character:

You were so beautiful when you wanted to die. When you wanted to live, you became so ugly.

Mishima aspired to the samurai ideal, the cherry blossom that blooms beautifully and falls quickly, fearlessly making poetry with a splash of blood. Two years after the film’s release, Mishima cut his stomach open in a gesture of protest against the coming technocracy and a world without magic or beauty. Black Lizard revels in decadence and decline, but Mishima dreamed of a better world—a world where the Emperor was a god on Earth protected by Mishima’s own spiritual army, the Tatenokai.

In Kominz and Oshima’s translation, the detective explains that “every crime has a dream in it.” When the Black Lizard is foiled, she murmurs, “In this world, there will never be another miracle.”

For more on Mishima, see my project site, Headless God.

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My first local recommendation, making good on my vow to “Hate Globally, Like Locally.” 

A couple of months ago I bought into a twofer special at Threat Dynamics. I didn’t grow up with guns, but tactical handgun training is on a list of skills I think a man should have in the 21st century.

The guys at Threat Dynamics give you real handguns loaded with CO2, then set you up on a video range and have you do some target shooting. I guess I half expected the staff of former cops, security and military guys to be impatient with me as someone with minimal experience, but that wasn’t the case at all. My first instructor corrected a number of things about my form in a way that was helpful and easy to remember. My pal–who’s a gun nut proper–actually had a harder time because he had more bad habits to break. I learned more useful, practical shooting tips in 30 minutes at Threat Dynamics than I would have learned in years of blowing up garbage and bottles in Estacada–though there’s something to be said for that, too. I’d like to sign up for a few of their training classes at some point later this year.

After we were done at the range, they took us downstairs to The Arena, which feels a lot like a scene from a sci-fi movie set. Following a brief explanation, I stepped onto a platform with another gun. As our second instructor said, life happens in 360 degrees, and shooting at a range won’t train you for that. He projected a series of video scenarios that had me jumping around like a jackrabbit, shooting at bad guys as soon as they drew a weapon.

I can’t think of anything I’ve done recently that was more fun, and I highly recommend it. Check out their promo video below, because my description doesn’t quite do it justice.

All this place needs is a pump action shotgun class and a scenario with zombies.


Threat Dynamics

8250 SW Tonka Tualatin, OR 97062

Occupy Portland - Police Occupation

Half-assed commie bandwagon protests are a dime a dozen in this town. You’ll recall that Portland hosted another copycat display of pointless public emoting this summer, and Jesse Jackson has to re-route his tour bus every time a cop shoots some nut job waving a weapon. I found a bunch of hippies camping out, smoking pot and beating on drums to be unremarkable.

But cops in riot gear holding ground? That’s something to see.

I predict that riot gear will be the new fetish fad in the gay community. Look for dudes wearing shields, visors and leather thongs in next year’s gay parade. Remember: I called it. 

I was headed to the gym anyway, so I went downtown to take some photos of the real occupation.  It was muddy. I grabbed a copy of the Willamette Week to clean my lifting shoes.

You have to admit, the strategy was brilliant.

  1. Let the protesters rally supporters late at night.
  2. Observe as everyone parties and sings Kumbaya.
  3. Wait until the crowds disperse.
  4. Wait until the wayward drunks looking for trouble go home.
  5. Send in fresh troops to kick out campers when they are tired, hungover, and unsupported by massive crowds.
  6. Move in the backhoe, tear down the tents and erect fences while tired, dirty people look confused.
Golf clap, fellas.
* * *
A  friend’s comment to an earlier post about the Occupy movement read:
 I went down to Occupy SF. Very tame affair. They were discussing the importance of non-sexist language and whether to grow a garden. I feel the foundations of the Empire cracking…

* * *

The problem with the Occupy movement from the get-go has been cognitive dissonance. These are, for the most part, the same liberals who cheered for globalist politicians, open borders, and bigger government. They feed the machine they think they hate by breaking down meaningful identities and social roles and replacing them with thin, post-modern identities that are more easily exploited by global corporate entities. They are reaping what they themselves have sown. Tribalism and sexism are bulwarks against globalist expansion. Multiculturalism and feminism are far more convenient to a supranational system which regards all of us only as consumers and units of labor.

Occupy Portland - Police Occupation


As I walked back to my car, the protesters were trying to rationalize their loss. Some woman was shouting about how they were going to “keep fighting.”

Quintus: People should know when they are conquered.
Maximus: Would you, Quintus? Would I?

It didn’t go down exactly like I thought it would.

Funny uncle Sam’s balls dropped.

But, at the end of this day, Occupy Portland did go out with a whimper.