From The Editor

“Free TV? What’s free TV?”

A couple of months ago we presented, on this page, one of our periodic reports of how using a TV antenna can give you more channels than it ever did before – and now even gives some people a good reason to drop paid TV service.  Most folks around here can get over 40 channels, some in high definition, with a wide array of TV choices – and it’s all free.

However, a couple of August national news reports have led us to believe we may have been taking too much for granted in giving you this information. One was a nationally-distributed story from the New York Post headlined, “Millennials don’t know how credit cards work: Survey”. The other story was distributed three days earlier by the Wall Street Journal, and was headlined, “Millennials Unearth an Amazing Hack to Get Free TV: The Antenna”. The latter story revealed that readers in this younger age group were highly skeptical that there could be ANY way to get TV without paying for it.

Before we get to explaining the matter of free TV, we should answer questions you might have about what this same group of people did not understand about credit cards.

Here are those findings: 6% of those surveyed actually believed that missing a credit card payment would “improve” their credit rating; 17% said missing a card payment would have no effect on their credit score. 36% have maxed out their credit cards, 48% carry cards with balances on which they are charged high interest rates – but they don’t care, and don’t know what the interest rate they are paying is. 25% of them carry three or more credit cards, although experts say three or LESS is what people should carry, since carrying more cannot help your credit score, but certainly can tempt you to run up lots of bills.

Just in case you, too, thought those things, be assured that missing credit card payments torpedoes your credit rating, and will cost you a lot in fines and interest – and a lower credit score can keep you from buying things you may want, like a house or a car; and can even make it harder to rent an apartment. This national survey was conducted by LendEDU, a website that provides information for student loan refinancing. The researcher, Mike Brown, called some of the results “shocking”.

Okay, now on to free local TV. For the entire history of television local stations have been transmitting a high-powered signal anybody can receive without paying for it, and they still are. This should not be surprising; that is their actual business. Getting paid by cable and satellite systems to carry that signal to subscribers is a relatively new profit center for them, but their main business is still selling advertising and broadcasting programming to local residents.

Television is a form of radio; radio is a form of electromagnetic radiation. Does that sound dangerous? Heck, every single thing in the entire universe that is warmer than absolute zero transmits some form of electromagnetic energy – even you! It’s called “heat”, in your case – a form of infrared light. The entire radio spectrum includes not only radio and television, but heat, light, ultraviolet light, X-rays, and gamma rays.

So, your free television, just like free radio, is simply modifying a force of nature to carry information, and sending that information to you. (Your Smart Phone is just a radio walkie-talkie, you know.)

And to get free TV, all you need is some kind of antenna to intercept the signal. In a metropolitan area like this, even a set-top “rabbit ears” sort of antenna can get you most of the stronger signals, but a more complex antenna – mounted higher up, and preferably outside, and oriented toward the transmitters at Sylvan just above the zoo – can get most of even the weaker local signals.

The Wall Street Journal article also reported that some who were aware that TV “used to be transmitted free to antennas” thought that it had stopped doing so when we had the “digital TV transition” a decade ago – even though much publicity said otherwise at the time, and the U.S. Government even subsidized “digital converter boxes” so that those with the old analog picture-tube sets could keep on receiving the new signals.

Today’s flat screen digital TVs come with the new digital tuners built in; all you have to do is connect some kind of antenna, and then go to the TV set menu to “scan for channels” in order to find and watch them. (You won’t get them without that scan.)

Because of those new digital signals, local TV stations you receive over an antenna now give you perfect pictures, some in high definition – and a lot more of them too, since a single channel can now transmit several channels in the same space that just one of the old analog TV channels used to need.

Here in Southeast Portland, you can receive one station – Channel 22 – which has SEVEN channels embedded in its signal, and one of them is in high definition; the familiar local network stations (2, 6, 8, 12) have three or four channels each, with one each in high definition; Oregon Public Broadcasting’s Channel 10 has two high-definition channels, one standard definition channel, and several radio audio streams, all part of the signal on Channel 10.

Nostalgic for TV shows from the past? You’ll find them on MeTV (Channel 2-2), Cozi TV (Channel 12-2), Antenna TV (Channel 32-2), and Retro TV (low power Channel 27-1). Plus one of the most fascinating is called “Decades” on Channel 6-3, which mixes a wide variety of classic TV shows (in marathons) with movies, and with CBS documentaries about key events of the past half century.

Movie channels? Try “This TV” on Channel 32-3 and “Get TV” on Channel 6-2.  There are also movies in various genres – among them “Grit TV”, oriented towards men (Channel 49-4), and “Escape”, oriented towards women (Channel 49-2).

Other local specialized channels: “Bounce TV” for African Americans (Channel 49-3), “Laff TV” comedy (Channel 12-3), “Crime and Justice” (Channel 8-2), three different TV shopping channels offered by Channel 22, and “Comet TV” – a science fiction station – on Channel 2-3.

There are several Spanish TV channels, and quite a few religious TV channels. Plus even more variety! If you already watch these TV channels from an antenna, “re-scan for channels” now and then, since if there are any new ones, you won’t get them unless you do.

So, yes, there really IS free local TV – just as there always has been! Even if you receive pay television from a cable, satellite, or telephone company, you might still want to hook up an antenna to the tuner of your flat screen digital TV, because some of the channels we told you about are NOT available on paid services, and that’s how to get them.

So, just in case you didn’t already know all that, now you do.

Letters to the Editor

Sellwood Pool story


Thanks [to writer Dana Beck] so much for the fascinating and wonderful story about the beginning and development of what is now the Sellwood Pool [August BEE]. A great leader in our access to enjoyment of cool waters in hot summers. Having swum in it as a child (in the 1940s), it was great to reminisce and enjoy.

Jeanne Schoel


Salmon Celebration coming again to Westmoreland Park


The 4th Annual Salmon Celebration at Westmoreland Park is coming up on September 24th from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mark your calendar! The Salmon Celebration provides environmental education, a Native American cultural experience, and celebrates the return of salmon to Crystal Springs Creek.

The Salmon Celebration coincides with the last-of-the-season Sunday Parkways presented by Kaiser Permanente. Similar to last year’s ride, the route stops in Westmoreland Park, where the Salmon Celebration is held. Once again Sunday Parkways takes riders to the City of Milwaukie, right about where salmon heading up the Willamette River take a left exit to Johnson Creek and another left into Crystal Springs Creek. Learn about the Sunday Parkways ride here:

And, details of the Salmon Celebration are here:

Finally, check out our Facebook event page:

As co-chair of the Crystal Springs Partnership (CSP), I am proud to be a part of the community that pulls this celebration together each year. Join us on September 24th, stay tuned for restoration and education opportunities with the CSP throughout the year, and see you around the watershed!

Karl Lee
for the Crystal Springs Partnership


Synonyms for violent bandits


The hard hitting BEE was way out of line responding to complaints about your use of the word "thug". . . So to make it plain for you; using the term "thug" to describe black men is considered racist. Plain and simple. No if's ands or buts. It's been shown that news reporting have exclusively used the word for black men over the years to create sensationalism against blacks in general and if you asked the majority of the US, Sellwood included, to shut their eyes and picture a thug – it will be a black man. That's wrong. This isn't my profession and yet, I know about this. . . You get a complaint like this again, take a time out, do some research and apologize or then defend yourself. I don't care if THE BEE is 100, none of us are too old to learn. And so to answer your painfully condescending what words should we use – how about perpetrator, accused, lawbreaker, Offender. . . We all need to do better, even THE BEE.

Amy Scott

EDITOR’S NOTE: To be crystal clear, we have always used that word as a synonym for any “violent bandit”, and most of those, over the years, have been white. There are more whites than blacks in Portland, so more bandits here are white than black, and thus more violent bandits here are white than black. It is not a racial issue. This matter arose because, for a change, in a recent local news story, the violent bandit we described was black. (In the week of August 14 we saw no less than two uses of “thug” in describing violent whites in the national news, one from the Associated Press, by the way.) Since now the dictionary term may have taken on a new and unwelcome connotation, as we told you last month, we will now be using some other term for “violent bandit”. Unfortunately, none of the synonyms offered by Ms. Scott convey violence. Rather than using compound terms like “violent perpetrator” or “violent offender”, we prefer a single word that conveys both – like the one we now are putting aside. We are still open to suggestions.

Thanks from “Sundae in the Park”


As the summer winds down, we would like to thank all the performers and the volunteers who helped set up, run, and clean up after, this summer’s Sundae in the Park [in Sellwood Park]. Over the past 38 years, Sundae in the Park has served as a Sellwood-Moreland neighborhood gathering promoted by SMILE and as a fundraising event for The Meals on Wheels People. Without the help of dozens of neighborhood volunteers, and area churches and nonprofits, this event just wouldn’t be the same. Many thanks to the SMILE Land Use and History Committees for being available to answer residents’ questions and concerns. The comfortably warm Sunday this year ended with the outdoor movie showing of the recent animated movie “Storks” sponsored by the SWBA (Sellwood Westmoreland Business Alliance.) Three individuals we’d like to especially thank are: Julie Skarphol of Christ Church Sellwood, and Kathy Aune and her granddaughter for all their help organizing the volunteers, and the Drawing and the Bingo activities.

This annual neighborhood celebration needs YOUR ideas and YOUR involvement. These social gatherings are what makes our neighborhood such a great place live! Look for it next year on the first Sunday in August. Planning starts early in the year, and you are invited to join us all for that! 

Dana, Gail, Eric, Diane, and Nancy
SMILE Sundae in the Park Committee

Letters to the Editor may be submitted via e-mail by clicking HERE.

All letters to the editor are subject to editing for clarity and available space, and all letters become property of THE BEE.

Edward Atiyeh, Ed Atiyeh, Southeast Portland Rotary, Atiyeh Rugs, Portland, Oregon, Greatest Generation, prisoner of war
A photo of Ed Atiyeh, taken at a meeting of the Southeast Portland Rotary Club on November 7th of last year. (Photo by Eric Norberg)

Edward Ellis Atiyeh
Oct. 2, 1921 – July 18, 2017

95-year-old founding member of Southeast Portland Rotary, intimately involved with his family’s Oriental rug retailing and cleaning businesses, was a member of “the greatest generation”

Edward Atiyeh and his twin brother Richard were born on October 2, 1921, and were raised in Portland with their younger brother, Victor, who served as Oregon Governor from 1979 to 1987. Their parents, George Atiyeh and Linda Asly, emigrated from Amar al-Husn, Syria, and Beirut, respectively, and proudly became American citizens. Ed graduated from Washington High School, and earned a Business degree from the University of Oregon. He was a member of Phi Gamma Delta fraternity, enjoying friendships that would last a lifetime.

Ed served in the Army during WWII. In June, 1944, while home on emergency leave from the Army due to his father's serious illness, Ed met his future wife, Karen Vedvei.

In December 1944, he was in front-line combat at the Battle of the Bulge in the Ardennes Forest, Belgium, with the 106th (Golden Lions) Division, which was nearly annihilated in the first week of the German attack. Ed and Richard were separated during that battle, taken as prisoners of war, and each did not know the other was alive until after the war ended. Ed was liberated on Easter in April 1945. He received the Purple Heart, Bronze Star, and Combat Infantryman’s Badge, among other military decorations. He and Karen were married Sept. 6, 1947, at Trinity Episcopal Church.

Ed enjoyed a successful career, with his brothers, expanding the Atiyeh Bros. Oriental rug sale and cleaning business (one of their cleaning locations remains on S.E. Division Street), which had been established by his uncle Aziz Atiyeh and his father George in 1900.

Ed left a lasting impact on his industry, and on many people in the community. He served as President of both national and regional rug cleaning associations, Senior Warden at St. Barnabas Church, and he was a charter member and President of the Southeast Portland Rotary Club in 1960, remaining a faithful member until his death. He also served as Rotary District 5100 Governor, and was a member of the Board of Directors at Providence Child Center Foundation, and of the University Club. He was Board President of William Temple House, and after his retirement spent most Tuesdays for 24 years as a social services volunteer there.

Ed was widely remembered for his kindness, generosity, integrity, quick wit, and humble demeanor. He loved to golf and to have lunch with his buddies at Portland Golf Club, where he was a member for 63 years.

Ed passed of natural causes in the early morning hours of July 18.  He is survived by his wife Karen, and their children, David (Darlene), Linda Anderson (Rainse), and Bob (Deb); as well as by grandchildren, Carrie (Jeff Coombe), Kevin (Jenny), Josh Rink and Sarah Rink; and by great-grandchildren Ryan, Bella, Madeline, Charlotte, and Norah.

The Atiyeh family wants to recognize with appreciation the support Ed received in his final months from the doctors, specialists, and nurses at St. Vincent Hospital; care services at Marquis-Vermont Hills; and by the friendly and skilled staffs of Markham House, Providence Hospice, and Interim HealthCare.

In lieu of flowers, contributions to William Temple House, 2023 N.W. Hoyt Street, Portland, OR 97209, will be appreciated. A celebration of Ed’s life was held on August 11, at the Episcopal Parish of St. John the Baptist, 6300 S.W. Nicol Road, on the Oregon Episcopal School campus.


Comments? News tips?

Click here to e-mail us!

Note to readers: At some point, this, our original Internet website, will be replaced at this web address by our new website, as part of the Community Newspapers group. At that time, you will still be able to access this, our original -- and smartphone-friendly -- website, if you save this address: You'll still have your choice of which one to visit!