Toni Morrison in Her Own Words

The function of freedom is to free someone else.

1. Whatever the work is, do it well- not for the boss but for yourself.

2. You make the job; it doesn’t make you.

3. Your real life is with us, your family.

4. You are not the work you do; you are the person you are.

So, from my point of view, I see your life as already artful, waiting, just waiting and ready for you to make art.

All water has a perfect memory and is forever trying to get back to where it was. Writers are like that: remembering where we were, that valley we ran through, what the banks were like, the light that was there and the route back to our original place.

I know the world is bruised and bleeding, and though it is important not to ignore its pain, it is also critical to refuse to succumb to its malevolence.

Women Talking About

“To be a woman you have to look like a girl, act like a lady, think like a man, and work like a dog.” -Leah Chase, chef and owner of legendary New Orleans eatery, Dooky Chase’s Restaurant.

H/t @natemusic

Women of Portland

Name: Nickia D.

Neighborhood: Sunnyside

Occupation: Budtender

1. I have lived in Portland for a little over 3 years now. Originally from Kansas.

2. The thing I love most about Portland is that the culture of this city provides you the freedom to be whomever you want to be…so long as you are not causing harm to others.

3. The median rent for a one bedroom apartment just hit a baffling $1400/month…not to mention the Wapato jail sitting unused for 12 years in North Portland. I can only imagine the many benefits this facility could bring to the community if it could be approved as a homeless shelter/rehabilitation center. I would say one of the most pressing issues for Portland at the moment is clean, affordable housing for the city’s inhabitants.

4. The words that I live by come from the author Paolo Coelho: “We can never judge the lives of others, because each person knows only their own pain and renunciation. It’s one thing to feel that you are on the right path, but it’s another to think that yours is the only path.”

Photo courtesy of Nickia D

* Interview originally posted on womenpdx tumblr.

Women of Portland

Name: Carrie L.

Neighborhood: North Portland

Profession: Owner & Operator of Combustible Media

1. How long have you lived in Portland and where are you from originally? I moved to Portland on July 1, 2005 from Salida, Colorado. I rolled into town mid-day driving a U-Haul and towing my car. I grew up in rural, isolated Northern Maine in a town of 400 people called Oakfield, near the Eastern Canadian border.

2. What do you like most about Portland? I like that people get outside rain or shine. In any degree of rain, people still go walking, hiking, running and biking. When I first moved here, it was a good lesson for me.

3. How do you think Portland could improve/ be a better place to live? I read an article in The Oregonian that our state ranks 41 in the country when it comes to education. Portland Public Schools’ graduation rate is one of the worst in Oregon for low-income students. Even though we have a city of vibrant interesting people, our city’s schools are mediocre. It is such a disappointment and an embarrassment.

4. What is your life motto or what words do you live by? It is fine to fall down, but make sure to get up. Don’t stay down, don’t give up on yourself. Life is tricky and you will get your share of bumps and bruises. It is what makes you resilient and to me it is what makes us interesting.

*Interview originally posted on womenpdx tumblr.