There are only two degrees of separation in this town.

I love the way Portland is the biggest small town in America. Everyone you meet seems to know someone who knows you, whether they are old-time Oregonians or newbies to the Rose City.

My friends Anne and Lee (above) worked together for years, but they each know me from some other circle. We got together for breakfast at the Bijou Café (right), a great place to see and be seen on a Friday morning.

A related phenomenon is that Portlanders tend to wear different hats at different times, taking turns working for profit or not, inside government or out, together and separately. We have many elected officials who began their careers as passionate advocates.