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Saturday, October 18, 2014

Dear Dirty Bird: Fill Out the Mercury's Sex Survey!

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Sat, Oct 18, 2014 at 2:06 PM

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HI‚ PERVERTS! My name is Bri Pruett (local funny lady and author of the popular Mercury blog column, "Let's Do It by Bri Pruett"), and I'm honored to be the author of this year's Portland Mercury sex survey. I will be your Cock Cousteau (or if you'd prefer, Jacques Coust-HO), setting off on an exciting sexploration into the murky darkness of Portland's coital depths.

If you've never filled out a Mercury sex survey before, rest assured that it's completely anonymous—so don't be shy! (God knows I'm not.) Simply fill out the form linked below by FRIDAY, OCTOBER 24... and be honest with yourself (and me!). You can fill it out alone (or with a horny friend)—but really think about your complicated sexuality, your sexual relationship with yourself, why you choose the sex partners you do, and, as always... butt stuff. We'll have all the results for you in our HUMP!/Sex Issue on WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 5—so have fun, and LET'S GET DIRTY!

FILL OUT THE MERCURY SEX SURVEY HERE!>>>

Friday, October 10, 2014

This Week's Letters Section!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Fri, Oct 10, 2014 at 11:44 AM

Alright, let's do this Letters to the Editor:

—Have you seen our new spinoff publication, True Parent? I you are a parent, you might like articles like this one. Chelsea did! If not, NM.

—Local arts orgs are putting some elbow grease into diversity, but people living with disability are not always a beneficiary of that. More over, in the media, "Too often, when disability is the topic, even in an affirmative piece like this, we still see micro-aggressive and dismissive language," points out Cheryl.

—Has everyone gotten their grievance over the loss of Tiga off of their chest? The new occupants of the space want everyone to lay off: "Portland can't have it both ways—get pissed when the same five rich white guys open a 10th restaurant, not when two dykes put their entire lives into a business."

Friday, October 3, 2014

This Week's Letters Section!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Fri, Oct 3, 2014 at 2:14 PM

The weird and the witty are both on display in this week's Letters to the Editor:

• Oat poses the question: "What do Captain Cook and Warren Buffett have in common?" I confess, I do not know.

• Michel takes his drug references seriously, and chastens that, "Quaaludes have not been a real thing since 1985, and have since been replaced with less hackneyed and anachronistic references."

• In reference to Project Pabst, one could make the argument that more so than Modest Mouse, "it is difficult to envision a world without oxygen."

• It's good to pour money into Albina, everyone agrees, but John would like to remind everyone that "the purpose of affordable housing is/should be to create diversity and mitigate segregation, not concentrate economic/racial minorities in certain areas of the city."

• E has a dispatch from under the Burnside Bridge, where, "This is gentrification in effect; herd them like cattle and get them biting at each other's throats to clear some bridge that has a major development being planned on the other side of it."

• Something tells me it won't be easy to forget about East Portland for much longer, where "many people have much higher per capita property taxes, which makes homebuying here less attractive, which keeps the area un-invested." Weren't we just talking about this yesterday?

Monday, September 29, 2014

This Week's Letters Section!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Mon, Sep 29, 2014 at 10:29 AM

If you let the weekend slip by without observing who had final word on the goings about town on the current issue's Letters page, let's review:

—Ian Karmel continues to excite and anger with his weekly Everything As Fuck column. Reactions are still rippling after his early September piece on the treatment of new Portlanders, his ensuing tussle with townie Carlos, and now we have C. and Alan writing in to say "I've hated your column from the moment I read it." Can't please 'em all, folks.

—This recycling shakeup is causing worry amongst "casual returners" to those who spend entire days on the endeavor. Of the idea of a relatively remote dedicated location for returning cans and bottles—and less of that happening at grocery stores—SokMunki posits, "Reducing the number of returns at stores in order to keep the lines moving does make sense... presuming these new centers were easily accessible to people returning mass amounts of recyclables. Which, whoops." However! Mehhh chimes in to remind that "The city is going to be fixing that entire area entering into Delta Park from N Interstate pretty darn soon to make it better/safer for cars, bikes, and pedestrians, so while it might not be the most convenient spot right now, it will be in a couple of years."

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  • Illustration by Levi Hastings

—And now we return you to another Ian Karmel-sparked debate already in progress: Football! Aestro admits that, "I still love watching football, but I know sometime in my lifetime the sport will either have to go through some serious changes or end completely." And eprophet compares the enjoyment of the sport to the enjoyment of bacon: "Two key survival skills: compartmentalization and rationalization." And AnotherSN recalls "the Sisyphean task of blocking [Ian] in 6th grade." So cute.

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Tuesday, September 23, 2014

The Mercury's Second Annual Chili Jamboree!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Tue, Sep 23, 2014 at 11:59 AM

We've done extensive research, and have come to the conclusion that Mercury readers enjoy 1) Food and 2) Music. Which is why we're bringing back our second annual Chili Jamboree!

As you may recall from last year's stunning success, our Chili Jamboree (or Chili Jam for short) is built around the brilliant cooking of some of the cities finest chefs, as well as the countrified tunes of Portland's fine musicians. This year, the event is split into two shift on Sunday, Oct 5 at Mississippi Studios. Black Prairie, Hook & Anchor, and the Earnest Lovers will throw down sets of boot-stompin' live music at both, and the breakdown of culinary brilliance will be spread about as follows:

11AM - 4PM CHILI TASTINGS PROVIDED BY
Bar Bar
Departure
Kenny & Zuke’s
Kim Jong Grillin
Podnah’s Pit
Woodsman Tavern

5PM - 10PM CHILI TASTINGS PROVIDED BY
Dick’s Kitchen
Lardo
Radar
Smokehouse 21
Tamale Boy
TILT

Wear your eating pants, because you'll want to sample as many of these rib-sticking creations as possible, and vote on which cook receives the coveted Chili Belt!

Tickets for each session are $20 each, but right now, for a limited time, you can enter the discount code CHILI2015 for five bucks offa that. I suggest you do so, and make haste! It pays to be an early, dirty country birdie.

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Thursday, September 18, 2014

This Weeks Letters Section—with Bonus Fight Material!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Thu, Sep 18, 2014 at 12:29 PM

So in this week's Letters to the Editor, Harry wrote in to compliment the Mental Health Association of Portland's Jason Renaud and Jenny Westberg on their guest editorial regarding the lack of data being kept on police shootings. (Which is definitely worth a read if you've yet to do so). We also got a voicemail suggesting that our Soiled Mattress Down by the River seek public office based on its responsiveness to the will of the people!

But the real action was in response to Ian Karmel's column about the kinder, gentler attitude longtime/native Portlanders might consider taking toward newcomers. A truncated version of the exchange that ensued between self described "pissy townie" Carlos Covarrubias made it into the print edition, but behold the argument in its entirety, and after the jump, weigh in on who you think won.

Carlos:

What can a pissy townie like me say about this? I've been in this town my whole life. I used to like it when I was about 13 years old and thought Korn was cool; I'm 28 now and figured out that Portland like Korn also sucks.

Maybe the problem "oldcomers" have with newcomers is that they are loud spoken fake liberals (secret libertarians) that wear their controlling politics on their sleeves.

Sorry to give a little bit of push back on this but the last thing a brown guy like me wants to hear considering that I have and will continued to be hassled and profiled by the racist ass Portland Police, given shit service at hip dive bars in my gentrified old 'hood cause I wear a Blazers' Jersey rather than a Timbers scarf, and told to hold my tongue by a bunch of drunk hipsters when I tell ya'll how you are directly contributing to a perpetuation of the same busted ass bourgeois system that has been in place in Portland, Oregon for the last 100 years.

Do you all know that Portland ends at 162nd, not 82nd? Quit voting down taxes for Portland Public Schools and quit talking shit on poor people that live in Gresham, they're just people trying to get by. Thats why we don't like ya'll. Thanks for not having kids. See you next rant.... Pricks.

Ian:

Since you didn't really get the point of my column, I guess I'll just try to address your points...

Maybe if they had kids they'd care more about schools. I absolutely don't believe you've been given bad service because you wore a Blazers jersey. If someone tells you to hold your tongue, tell them to fuck off, I don't care if they're a hipster. Hipster, by the way, has become a uselessly encompassing term. You seem like the kind of person who would call someone a hipster because they had a bicycle and a button-up at the same time. I do know where Portland ends, I'm from Portland. I'm capable of reading maps. When I write about Portland, I tend to write about Portland as a cultural force that affects the world as a whole, and that shit tends not to be happening in the suburbs. When Tigard, or Gresham, or Beaverton, or 152nd and Powell become the epicenter of culture in our city, I'll write about that. If it hurts your feelings that the street you grew up on isn't what people think of when people think of Portland I suggest you do something to change that.

Until you do that, I continue to welcome people to our city who actually want to contribute and build and move Portland forward. Everyone has to move here at some point, right? Or their parents? Or their grandparents? Or is Covarrubias a [Chinookan] name, Carlos?

Continue reading »

Friday, September 12, 2014

This Week on MOD

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Fri, Sep 12, 2014 at 10:44 AM

The old MOD blog is taking a break from its usual front-page prominence to make way for the TBA blog, so I'm here to give you a quick update on what you may have missed.

There's another episode of the week's greatest hits from the Portland's Pretty street/party style blog; a word on an imminent trio of collaborations between local makers and Rejuvenation (which gets props for using its newish Williams-Sonoma powers to afford broader exposure for the little guys); a reveal of Wildfang's latest "1990's Marc Jacobs meets Where the Wild Things Are" lookbook; and the ball-cap version of your favorite Oregon license plate.

Plus! Behind-the-scenes looks at new build outs for Beacon Sound and Tender Loving Empire, and maybe the nuttiest hairdo you've ever seen.

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  • Wildfang

Thursday, September 11, 2014

This Week's Letters Section!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Thu, Sep 11, 2014 at 10:59 AM

If you ever want to take the temperature of the streets and see what's on the minds of Portlanders, simply turn to the Mercury's Letters page (just don't be surprised if you don't always like what you see).

—Maybe someday people will learn that if you step to Ann Romano, the immediate result is her fans' coming to her defense. Like CJ, who protests the characterization of the beloved One Day at a Time columnist as a "buffoon," suggesting that "Tom W. can go back to yelling at kids to stay off his lawn, or whatever people who don't know who J Biebs is do."

—Bored of weed? Read Dirk's article about Oregon watching Washington's mistakes so that someday we will be king of the weed states! Or something. Anyway, it worked for Ted. Also andalso suggested a law that "simply states, 'Steroid-addled pigs cannot throw you in a cage and the justice system cannot ruin your life for using weed, because there's no reason for that.'"

How could you be bored with visions of a new Wild West like this?
  • ILLUSTRATION BY MARK MARKOVICH
  • How could you be bored with visions of a new Wild West like this?

—David on the recent approval of police reforms and one surmises, his doubt for their effectiveness: "We need better cops and better cop leaders. Not laws or policies that anyone with half an ounce of compassion would just inherently do as a normal part of their psyche."

—Regarding Ian Karmel's argument that Portland OGs go easy on newcomers—Californians being of particular complaint—torkfool reminds us that "If your city inspires people to live in it, then, mathematically and geographically, the likelihood is that some of them will come from a nearby, heavily populated area that takes up almost all of the West Coast. Uzbekistan? Or gee, maybe California."

—Finally, POP QUIZ! "Which of the following would be the least absurd thing to unfold within the pages of your fine publication? (a) Dan Savage writes a guide to cunnilingus, (b) Denis C. Theriault becomes BFFs with Ron Frashour, (c) Humpy grows out of his Bieber phase and discovers a newfound appreciation for Phish, or (d) Ann Romano denounces the invasion of celebrities' privacy?"

What do think? Maybe you should write a letter about it.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Kicktoberfest!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Tue, Sep 9, 2014 at 10:59 AM

Contrary to the opinions of some (aka parents of school-aged children), summer is not over! IN FACT, it's feeling kinda Indian summery this year (hello another weekend in the 90s). That translates to the viability of outdoor activities for weeks (and hopefully weeks upon weeks) to come. To celebrate that slow burn, the Mercury is throwing an event centered around one of Portland's all-time favorite sports: Kickball!

It's called Kicktoberfest, and here's the deal:

Portland Mercury and Recesstime Sports have joined forces to KICK OFF the Harvest Season with a summer picnic, kickball sayonara!! Festivities to take place at Southeast Portland's Bloomington Park on Saturday, September 20th from 10 am to 5 pm.

Fast pitch & Slow pitch divisions available: SIGN-UP HERE!

At KICKTOBERFEST we will pit 32 teams against each other in a fierce (or not so much) best-of tournament, designed to give winter bragging rights to the BEST Kickballas in PDX. Sign up your team! Pack your coolers and picnic baskets! Come celebrate summer's favorite pastime and one last day in the park. All teams guaranteed 3 games in round robin format. 8 team elimination round to follow.

Hundreds of $$ in undisclosed prizes for winning Team along with feature in following Portland Mercury print edition and on social media. Games refereed by officials in accordance with Recesstime Rules. Signed waiver must be completed before play. Participants 21+ years old only. See you on the field!

Do it for the fame, the glory, the fun, or the monetary value. But do it or you'll be KICKING YOURSELF come February.

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Friday, September 5, 2014

This Week's Letters Page!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Fri, Sep 5, 2014 at 9:59 AM

You can go light, and you can go heavy, and a combination of both makes for a well-rounded life, just like the one being lived on this week's Mercury Letters page.

—B looks at a story about the city considering tiny houses as a partial solution to homelessness and sees a nascent conversation about climate change. Yoshi, meanwhile, notes that "one should be skeptical of any housing plan for the homeless introduced by a mayor who has never once, that I've seen, been remotely involved in actually getting to know the homeless on these streets."

—We wrote about diversity in Portland's theater scene, but Stephen points out that, "Nowhere does the piece address gender or LGBT status. There is scant mention of socioeconomic diversity. And sadly, once more, artists and audiences with disabilities—such as the ones served by PHAME, Disability Art and Culture Project, Wobbly Dance, and many more organizations—are absolutely left out of the conversation."

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  • ARTWORK BY ALEX DESPAIN

Ann Romano: "a buffoon" when it comes to politics. Ian Karmel: A hit with women born in 1928.

—And finally, who would have guessed that a soiled mattress down by the river would ever be so well loved?

Letters: Say your piece, man.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Tonight! The Mercury Fancy T-Shirt Blowout Party!

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Thu, Sep 4, 2014 at 1:29 PM

If you've lusted after any of the Mercury's monthly Fancy T-Shirts (illustrated by both local and international graphic artists) but never got around to getting yours, here's your opportunity! Join us tonight—with many of the participating artists—for a Mercury Fancy T-Shirt Collection Blow-Out Sale Party!

Gaze in wonder at our very smart-looking fancy T-shirts while having FREE BEER FROM WIDMER, and hobnobbing with many of the participating artists. And it's all going down tonight, Thursday Sept 4, from 6-9 pm, at the only place you can get these fashionable sweeties: Upper Playground, 23 NW 5th! And they're all on sale for $18, or two for $30!

You are going to look so sexy in these! See you tonight!

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Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Meet the Wieners of the First Ever Wiener Takes All!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Tue, Aug 26, 2014 at 9:59 AM

Hang on to your wieners, it looks like we've got a hit! The Mercury's first-ever Wiener Takes All wiener dog race on Sunday at Lucky Lab was sneaker of a hit, with an astounding 600-person turnout and 78 racing wieners! Winner came away with prizes packages from folks like Bean Goods and a portion of the proceeds went to Oregon Dachshund Rescue, Inc!

Now, meet our adorable, racy Year-1 Wiener Winners!:

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First place and the wiener that takes it all... BLAZER!! (pictured center). Second place goes to Blaze (left) and our third place finisher is Pancakes (right).

See you next year!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Don't Miss the Mercury's X-Treme Pet Issue!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Mon, Aug 25, 2014 at 10:59 AM

Guys! Don't let this week's issue of the Mercury ride out over the horizon before checking out our second annual Pet Issue feature! The adorable illustrations by Susie Ghahremani are reason enough alone to treasure it:

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  • ARTWORK BY SUSIE GHAHREMANI

Plus:

In honor of the tightness of our bonds, we explored some of the more extreme paths pet ownership can take, from the pros and cons of adopting wildlife creatures, to a guide on what to do if your pet has a medical emergency. We also went beyond food, water, and poop-scooping to look at next-level pet projects like creating photo stories from your cat's perspective and polishing up your canine (or horse) massage tactics. We also spoke to someone with an extreme animal job working as part of the Humane Society's rescue team, and coughed up a pretty extreme rant about Portland's propensity for pets as trends.

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  • ARTWORK BY SUSIE GHAHREMANI

Friday, August 22, 2014

Get Your Weenies Running!

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Fri, Aug 22, 2014 at 3:29 PM

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Sign your wiener up here.

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Thursday, August 21, 2014

This Week's Letters Section!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Thu, Aug 21, 2014 at 10:59 AM

There are things you don't like, and some things that you do, and all are up for debate on the Mercury Letters page:

—You do not like it when some punk who moved here merely in 2007 threatens to "get all the musicians, artists, and every other hipster who is fed up with the bullshit, and we'll leave," in reaction to rising rents and condos. Nope. You will tell them how it does not compare to the homelessness that drove you, as a native to flee to South America. You will reminisce how, as a "68-year-old ex-hippie" you've seen the same thing in "the Village, East Village, Woodstock, SoHo, Chelsea, and Brooklyn. Also in Sausalito, the Haight, and SoMa." And you will posit that, "This is a magical place where rampant insecurity has been turned inside out into arrogance of such monumental proportions that [MH] thinks that she and her friends are the ones who define Portland coolness."

—You really like burgers, though! Especially if you are "Burgersandy," who "personally did 19 burgers in six days" during our 2014 edition of the Portland Mercury Burger Week. WOW.

Save room for next year!
  • Save room for next year!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

This Week's Letters Section!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Thu, Aug 14, 2014 at 11:29 AM

Our problems may seem small at the moment, but the little things add up:

• Size-ism! Fashion doesn't have to be synonymous with skinny, but as Linda puts it, "You have to get rid of the mental crap."

GO COUGARS! No really, get out of here. I know it's the peak of Portland tourist season, but your visits could end poorly, like with you in a Laurelhurst Park petting zoo, as Timothy suggested, or even as a scapegoat for rising rents as Mary joked. Mmmm... goat.

• Portland's ruination! MH bemoans the loss of cheap housing, the rise in noise complaints, and increased density of clog stores (?), ending with a threat: "We'll just get all the musicians, artists, and every other hipster who is fed up with the bullshit, and we'll leave. When all you have left is $15 sandwiches, half-empty apartment complexes, and a bunch of yuppies looking around going, 'Why isn't Portland cool anymore?' you'll know you only have yourselves to blame."

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  • ILLUSTRATION BY ALEX DESPAIN

Thursday, August 7, 2014

This Week's Letters Section!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Thu, Aug 7, 2014 at 9:59 AM

The readers of the Mercury were feeling mighty high of mind and strong of opinion this week, taking on such lofty issues as:

—Gun control! It's been a minute since we heard from PSU's Progressive Student Union's Lew Church—'sup Lew. As usual, he's taking hard stands on important issues, like that "gun safety laws—including background checks, and bans on high-caliber magazines and assault weapons—are needed now." Keep fighting the good fight!

—The Rapture! Not the band! Erika stepped up to edumicate us on the part where god is going to hoover up all the good Christians into heaven and leave all the sinners alone to party to go to hell. For instance, did you know that, "The word 'rapture' isn't in the Bible, unless you have a Latin translation. In that case, then you have the word 'rapturous,' from which our word 'rapture' is derived. And the word 'rapturous' comes from the Greek word 'harpazo.'" I did not!

—The history of print media! You might recall Todd's suggestion that we change our name from the Portland Mercury to the Portlandia Weekly Bazoo, but we wanted to make sure our print readers saw it too, and give the man a prize!

Inspo.
  • Inspo.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Should We Change the Portland Mercury's Name?

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Mon, Aug 4, 2014 at 10:14 AM

On occasion, longtime Mercury commenter Todd Mecklem writes in with some constructive criticism regarding how we can continue to improve the Portland Mercury. This is one of those occasions. Todd writes:

Steve,

I came across this very real historical newspaper (see attached scan) during a search of the Library of Congress database. I must request...nay, DEMAND...that the name of the Portland Mercury be changed, with dispatch, to the Portlandia Weekly Bazoo.

That is all.

Todd

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There is more information after the jump regarding the Bazoo and its colorful editor—who makes me look like a goddamn chump. BUT! The question has been asked and it must be answered...

Continue reading »

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Help Wanted: We're Looking for an Arts Editor!

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Sat, Aug 2, 2014 at 3:11 PM

[Reprinted from last Wednesday... because you need a reminder, I bet!—Eds]

The Mercury is looking for a new arts editor. Are you that person? Is someone you know that person? Read the employment ad below, and yell it from the social media mountaintops! FINALLY, A JOB FOR YOUR USELESS ARTS DEGREE.


NOW HIRING: ARTS EDITOR

The Portland Mercury is currently hiring a full-time ARTS EDITOR to join our fun and energetic editorial staff. Considered one of the most innovative weeklies in the country, the Mercury is looking for a writer/editor filled with passion, hustle, and the desire to share their love for the Portland arts scene with the rest of the community. This is a good position for a strong writer with a literary or fine arts degree—a background in journalism is not required (but it doesn’t hurt).

Qualified applicants must possess the following:

• Previous and demonstrable editing/management experience (working in an arts-related field is a definite plus).

• Snappy, smart writing paired with a passion for digging deep into an arts scene (including theater, visual art, books, comedy, and more). Must respect and be interested in all forms of culture, from highbrow to low.

• Must be extremely organized and able to produce a weekly arts calendar, while writing reviews, meeting daily blog deadlines, and managing freelancers.

• An ability and desire to build relationships within the art and performance community.

• Extra points: Proofreading skills, love of reading, social media expertise, a flexible schedule, and a thick skin (needed for writing honestly about those you may run into on the street).

• And of course, enthusiasm, professionalism, people skills, and a good sense of humor are a must.

This is a full-time position, with competitive salary and excellent benefits. Evening and occasional weekend hours are sometimes necessary. Interested applicants should electronically submit resume, web links for at least three relevant writing samples, and a cover letter describing goals, story ideas, and local topics that you’re passionate about to steve@portlandmercury.com, and please put "ARTS EDITOR JOB" in the subhead. (Or, if you're old-timey, via snail mail to “Arts Editor Job,” c/o Wm. Steven Humphrey, Portland Mercury, 115 SW Ash Street, Suite 600, Portland OR 97204.)

Deadline for applications: Sunday, August 10.

The Portland Mercury is an equal opportunity employer.

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Friday, August 1, 2014

Jerry Masterson: All Grown Up?!?

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Fri, Aug 1, 2014 at 10:59 AM

Old-timey Mercury readers will remember one of our first super popular "New Column!" characters from the early 2000s, Jerry Masterson, who was an incredibly foul-mouthed third grader that enjoyed pointing out the things about his elementary school and childhood that were, as he put it, "fucked." Here's an example:

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There's a lot more Jerry Masterson here.

Anyway, guess who walked into the Mercury office yesterday? JERRY MASTERSON, NOW 18 YEARS OLD.

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AND LOOK HOW HANDSOME! Now some actual history: "Jerry Masterson" is actually Miles Erickson, the nephew of former Mercury Art Director Jen Davison (now Jen Wick). He lives in Seattle, and I'm forever grateful to him and his very understanding parents for letting us use his elementary school picture for that long-running series written by our staff. So what's Miles up to now? Turns out he's nothing like his imaginary character; he's a fantastic student, and a talented actor (taking the lead role in his high school's production of Urinetown).

He came into town this weekend for Pickathon, and will then be jetting off to New Zealand for a year of volunteering for WWOOF (World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms), where young people travel to far flung places to learn about organic farming and work the fields in exchange for room, board, and lifetime experiences (which definitely will not be "fucked.") Hilariously, he still occasionally gets recognized as "Jerry Masterson" and still enjoys the attention. (Phew! Thanks for not suing us, Miles, and good luck with what will certainly be a "non-fucked" future.)

See also this column by Jerry's classmate, Cornelius Van Shack Armentrout.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Drink Great Beer and Talk About Consequence-Free Weed with The Mercury

Posted by Dirk VanderHart on Thu, Jul 31, 2014 at 10:44 AM

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Have a seat. We want to talk with you about pot.

In November, Oregonians are going to have a shot at legalizing recreational marijuana for the second time in two years. It wasn't a particularly clean march to the ballot. Infighting between rivaling factions in the legalization movement helped torpedo one effort, and continues even though there's only one contender remaining. But polling suggests the public is ready to embrace legal weed, and New Approach Oregon, the campaign that's backing the ballot measure, seems to have the financial firepower to bring the thing home.

That said, you should be asking questions. Sure, Washington and Colorado haven't collapsed under legal weed, but there are still tough realities there, and Oregon's got its own unique circumstances.

So, like I say, come talk to us about pot.

As part of an occasional partnership with the Bus Project, the Mercury's co-sponsoring one of our delightful Brewhaha forums next Tuesday on recreational marijuana. It will take place at the Green Dragon, of course, and will feature exciting, informed guests who can answer all your pressing concerns.

Things like:

•How much a gram, bro?

•Is it Kind?

•There's a disturbing history—in Oregon and around the country—of minorities being disproportionately targeted for marijuana crimes. Your campaign purports to help solve this, but even your own studies concede that the black market will dominate pot sales if marijuana is legal in Oregon. Will we see reduced disparity, or will it remain static—even increase—as well-to-do types embrace the more expensive legal market, and those lower on the socioeconomic ladder keep on keepin' on?

Other things you'd be reasonable to ask:

Will there be beer? Hell yes there will be beer. Sixty-two taps' worth.

What about those guests you mentioned? Check it:

•Becky Straus, legislative director at the ACLU of Oregon
•Liz Kaufman, campaign director for New Approach Oregon
•Brian Budz, co-owner of New Vansterdam, one of Vancouver's two recreational pot shops

How about the moderator? Yours truly, slinging heat rocks (questions and bad jokes).

I'm not going to pay to come see you act like a jerk. Don't have to. It's free. (Not the foodstuffs/beverages, though.)

Show up, grab a beer, talk about weed, and be a conscientious civic actor all in one. This is an exciting opportunity. We'll see you Tuesday.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Help Wanted: We're Looking for an Arts Editor!

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Wed, Jul 30, 2014 at 12:59 PM

Friends:

It is with a heart full of grief that I must announce that our beloved Arts Editor Alison Hallett is leaving the Portland Mercury after 10 years of meritorious service. On the upside, she’s not pissed at us, and will be taking a very interesting job with the marketing firm Sheepscot Creative, which has worked with lots of great arts organizations including Oregon Humanities. Also, she’ll be with us through the entire month of August, and ushering the latest issue of Agenda out the door, as well as working on coverage of the TBA Fest—so nobody panic immediately!

With all seriousness, Alison is one of our (and Portland's) funniest, smartest writers, and while my heart is broken, I’m sure I speak for all of us when I say, “Thank you so much for all your hard, brilliant work, Alison! We wish you nothing but the best!”

Sniff.

Okay, get it together, Steve... it's time to get back to business. (Ahem!) The Mercury is looking for a new arts editor. Are you that person? Is someone you know that person? Read the employment ad below, and yell it from the social media mountaintops! FINALLY, A JOB FOR YOUR USELESS ARTS DEGREE.


NOW HIRING: ARTS EDITOR

The Portland Mercury is currently hiring a full-time ARTS EDITOR to join our fun and energetic editorial staff. Considered one of the most innovative weeklies in the country, the Mercury is looking for a writer/editor filled with passion, hustle, and the desire to share their love for the Portland arts scene with the rest of the community. This is a good position for a strong writer with a literary or fine arts degree—a background in journalism is not required (but it doesn’t hurt).

Qualified applicants must possess the following:

• Previous and demonstrable editing/management experience (working in an arts-related field is a definite plus).

• Snappy, smart writing paired with a passion for digging deep into an arts scene (including theater, visual art, books, comedy, and more). Must respect and be interested in all forms of culture, from highbrow to low.

• Must be extremely organized and able to produce a weekly arts calendar, while writing reviews, meeting daily blog deadlines, and managing freelancers.

• An ability and desire to build relationships within the art and performance community.

• Extra points: Proofreading skills, love of reading, social media expertise, a flexible schedule, and a thick skin (needed for writing honestly about those you may run into on the street).

• And of course, enthusiasm, professionalism, people skills, and a good sense of humor are a must.

This is a full-time position, with competitive salary and excellent benefits. Evening and occasional weekend hours are sometimes necessary. Interested applicants should electronically submit resume, web links for at least three relevant writing samples, and a cover letter describing goals, story ideas, and local topics that you’re passionate about to steve@portlandmercury.com, and please put "ARTS EDITOR JOB" in the subhead. (Or, if you're old-timey, via snail mail to “Arts Editor Job,” c/o Wm. Steven Humphrey, Portland Mercury, 115 SW Ash Street, Suite 600, Portland OR 97204.)

Deadline for applications: Sunday, August 10.

The Portland Mercury is an equal opportunity employer.

I know you're not leaving yet... but we'll miss you desperately, Alison!!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

This Week's Letters Section!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Thu, Jul 24, 2014 at 9:59 AM

In this week's Mercury Letters page, jokes are made, bronies are stepped to, and we come to the realization that, "If you live anywhere near an old brick building, you should be actively packing." YIKES.

—Lzi, who I am pretty certain misspelled her own name, but we'll call you whatever you want to be called "Lzi," is spitballing in the wake of an Ian Karmel column about whatever Kinko's and FedEx are calling their ugly love child now.

—PGMuthafuckinE kind of puts a period on the end of all this brony drama by mentioning that, "it's cutesy, sanctimonious, culturally bankrupt crap, and 'magic' and 'friendship' are not something substantial enough for you to be preaching to me about." Oh yeah!

—But seriously, can we be serious for a minute? The seismic work that needs doing on many of Portland's buildings is a problem, and brings up some interesting points about the nature of investments in said buildings (some of whose owners are angling to have the city pay, or at least subsidize, the cost of these improvements. happyhedonist says, "If your investment was purchased for your benefit, then taking care of that investment—including making it safe for the public who lives within the seismic influence zone of your investment—is your responsibility, period." Troy has a more nuanced recommendation, that would allow "building owners a reasonable amount of time to develop a plan to retrofit their buildings," charging them fees in the meanwhile. "Take the collected fees, and use it to provide low-interest loans to help pay part of the cost of upgrading. Loans, not subsidies." Everybody's just spitballin'!

Join the spitball fight. Write a Mercury letter.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

This Week's Letters Section!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Thu, Jul 10, 2014 at 1:29 PM

It's the economy, stupid! I mean... It's this week's Mercury Letters page!

—Our article on the economics of being a stripper in Portland generated a fair number of comments from the stripper community, including a suggestion that the Regional Arts & Culture Council "geared toward these (mostly) young DANCERS, who are "Performing Artists," on the ins and outs of being an independent artist in the state of Oregon."

—Laylow says "much gratitude for freeing up the news hole"—giving us an interesting visual—for our coverage of the disorganization of Oregon's notification system that lets people know they live and work near hazardous substances.

—There's also much ado about the Children's Levy, including jabberwocki's warning that "this 'administrative = bad' is infuriating and leads to nonprofits that are underfunded and don't have capacity to give the best quality services that their participants deserve."

—In other money news, of course, there's also the state of the Arts Tax, of which Chunty, for one, says, "Stop using kids as a dishonest emotional appeal for funding "prestigious" cultural dinosaurs that the average Portlander can't afford to attend, even if they were actually interested in doing so." Oh SNAP.

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  • ARTWORK BY TREVOR SHIN

Thursday, July 3, 2014

This Week's Letters Section!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Thu, Jul 3, 2014 at 9:59 AM

The heat hits most people one of two ways: it either makes 'em blissed out and mellow or superfuckingangry. Let's see how it hit all over this week's Letters page:

Ned's review of the KISS/Def Leppard show went over like a lead balloon with devotees of those bands, who accused him of smoking crack (!) and assumed he lost his job over it. (Nope!)

—Another thumbs-up for Team Anti-Fireworks, who simply flees the "war zone" of Clark County to avoid them.

—B has thoughts about PDC's financial agreement to buy the Right 2 Dream Too lot. Do you?

—Rob was into it when we ripped up the sidewalk tape/litter that people were putting down to "reserve" their spots for the rose parade, and now he want us to do something about plant overgrowth obstructing sidewalks, but... I dunno, it just doesn't have the same oomph, even if we are his "only hope," which is flattering and all.

—Don't worry, Nix, Thomas Kinkade isn't really our favorite painter!

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  • ARTWORK BY JAMES MITCHELL

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