When I first started organizing the content of Up Fanno Creek, it occurred to me that it divided naturally into two distinct themes, one of destruction and one of rebirth – the yin and yang of the creek’s existence, if you will. This division was evident in the series of epic geological and climatological events that simultaneously destroyed and rebuilt the watershed; but it was also obvious in the events surrounding the creek’s management from the 1840s on. The first and darkest of these themes I titled “A Thousand Cuts” -- a title taken from a particularly ghastly method of execution once practiced by the Chinese. The chief characteristic of this method is that no single cut is mortal; rather it is the cumulative impact of the cuts that brings about the end. This concept also appears in Jared Diamond’s book The Rise and Fall of Civilizations: Why Civilizations Fail, aptly enough in a section that describes “creeping normalcy” and the cutting-down of the last tree on Easter Island. No event that has taken place in the Fanno Creek watershed over the last five years better symbolizes this concept than the death of the nameless and blameless little stream that once flowed across the land near the intersection of Dartmouth Road and SW 72nd Avenue in Tigard, Oregon.