Grampy's dream comes true... and naturally, he's all "meh" about it.
I finally did it; I managed to convince a girl of 23 to go out with me. I'm 49, she's 23 and after some playful online banter, I convinced her to go out for a drink… just one, I say, as to not put too much pressure on the night. So, we met, we drank our one drink and then had another, and another and one more for the road. We made out in my car for a bit then I convinced her to come in to check out my "pad," as the kids say. Long story short, we did the deed and I have to tell you, it wasn't that great.
WASN'T THAT GREAT? Read the rest here and find out why Grampy's expectations didn't meet up with his fantasies. In the meantime, drop off your own rants and confessions in the I, Anonymous Blog—where my expectations are disappointed on a daily basis.
Oh, so you were born in Portland? Here's what on I, Anonymous blogger thinks about that...
Bragging that you were born in Portland is like bragging that you are 6'5". You did exactly zero to manifest either one of those realities. Or maybe I'm wrong and you went back in time and became your own father, thus securing your "born here" birth cred. I'm not aware of any exercises that make you taller, but who knows, maybe you have been working on that your entire life and deserve to brag about it, but the Portland thing? Just. Stop. It's embarrassing.
And when it comes down to it, you're not so tall either. You're short, and nobody gives a shit if you were born in Portland. However! We do give a shit about your rants and confessions, so why not drop one off in the I, Anonymous Blog—the tallest blog ever to be born in Portland.
Loyal Mercury reader Deb Johnson writes,
Your cover photo dated April 8 to 14, 2015! What the hell is this picture? And what is the deal with the dark character in the middle? Is that an orifice where its ass might be? This must have been realized at sone point!? Is that female genitalia? Doesn't look like a bung hole.
Well... let's take a look at this cover by French photographer Charles Fréger and see!
And a closer look at the potential orifice in question:
Actually, I know what it is, but it's more fun to watch you guys guess and get all spun up. SOOOOOO...
In this excerpt from an I, Anonymous Blog posting, a cyclist has a unique take on how to deal with people yelling at him for running stop signs: HE IGNORES THEIR EXISTENCE.
At least once a week some fuckstick yells at me for jumping a green light or running a red light when there's no right of way traffic involved. It happened this morning, yet again.
First he yells at me for jumping the green light. Then at the next light, with no other traffic around, he yells at me for running the red. I ignore him both times and he speeds up to me and starts yelling again. So I take out my earbud and he says, "oh, I guess you didn't hear me yelling at you back there?"
So I respond, "yeah, I heard you." Then he asks why I didn't stop or acknowledge him. To that I said, "because your existence and yelling are meaningless to me."
Oh, and don't worry, he has a lot more to say on the subject. Read the rest here, and while you're shaking your fist at the air in fury, drop off your own rant or confession in the I, Anonymous Blog—home of your meaningless existence.
While "hipsters"—or whatever it is you think "hipsters" are—consistently claim the top spot in the ongoing "Portland's Most Loathed" competition, parents and their kids have been coming in a close second. Here's a rant sensitively titled, "Do You Still Wipe Their Ass, Too?"
Hey parents who take their kids to the public pool/swim lessons, your 10 year old doesn't need help showering. Are you going to go off to college with her and stand in the shower with her at her dorm? I thought helicopter parenting was starting to go out of style, but you sure wouldn't know it at suburban swim centers. I'm so fucking tired of trying to shower after lap swimming while you stand fully clothed in the shower room helping your 10 year old shower while your 4 year old runs around unsupervised staring at every naked lady.
So what did we learn from this? Parents shouldn't escort their children into public locker rooms—even when there's a weird, angry naked person paying a bit too much attention to them. Thanks for the tip, Anonymous! Hey, do YOU have an illogical rant or tearful confession you'd like to share with the world? Drop it off in the I, Anonymous Blog—where there's always "p" in our "ool."
Steven Humphrey is:
a. On Vacation
b. On "Vacation"
c. Stuck in a Mexican...
Actually, screw that... let's play this game for real:
On Monday afternoon, the Portland Police Bureau offered up its most-detailed account yet of Portland's first deadly police shooting of the year. We learned the name of the man who cops say came at two officers with a knife (Christopher Ryan Healy, 36, of Pennsylvania). And we got a glimpse at the "double-bladed knife, 10 inches in length," police say Healy menaced officers with, describing how he wielded it in a "weaving, figure eight motion" and attempted to stab an officer before being shot, then tased. (This is by no means the only account of the incident, as we pointed out in yesterday's GMN.)
Here is the knife:
For an instant I was thinking "10 inches, just like they said." Then I realized, no, that knife's not a hair over nine inches (with blades that are closer to two inches), and for some reason the police bureau uses a ruler that begins after the first inch and looks homemade.
So we asked: Why are you calling this a 10-inch knife? Is this what the PPB measures evidence with?
Lead spokesman Sgt. Pete Simpson understood why we were asking, and got back to us today.
"It was an unintended mistake," Simpson says. "The photo was taken for the release (not the official evidence photo) and the end of the cloth ruler folded under. It would accurately be called a 9” knife rather than 10"."
I'll admit I'm still curious about the ruler. Particularly that "7." How bout you, Blogtown? Any pressing questions about this ruler?
Some digs on a newspaper we've never heard of popped up over on the I, Anonymous blog: "Willamette Weakly." Hmm, doesn't ring a bell.
How about advice on how to move up in the world? I want to dine at the restaurants that 1%ers go to every night at least once in a blue moon. Not that I don't admire frugality, I do. But do you really need to turn into some sort of survival guide for the slaves of the service industrial complex?
Oh, but then Handsome McHaberdasher has the sweetest of sweet burns on the Anonymous writer:
May I provide some advice on how to move up in the world? Don't equate your employment to slavery.
Schooled. If you haven't figured this out by now, let me clue you in—the I, Anonymous Blog is a blog where commenters reign supreme in a land devoid of guff-takers.
There is a very valid question over on the I, Anonymous blog: "What Is This? Footloose?," in which the writer was told to stop dancing at the Decemberists show. Poor Anonymous felt just like the stifled high-stepper Kevin Bacon in 1984's Footloose.
i haven't ever seen that fucking movie with kevin bacon (shut it, who cares if i haven't, i get the idea) but it felt like that crappy movie. now we can't go to a fucking rock concert and dance?
Commenter Deezus chimed in with this:
Man, times have changed...when I used to see the Decemberists back in the day the crowds were just a unstoppable mass of writhing bodies twisting and turning while they got freaky to the heavy sounds of that funky-ass Decemberist beat—along with an intense mosh pit and stage diving.
On second thought, I might be thinking of a different band.
Dramatic twist, Deezus, but you aren't terribly far off. One of the last times I saw the Decemberists it was pretty damn raucous. There might have been literary-tinged writhing. Go have differing opinions, and stuff, over on the I, Anonymous Blog, where it's okay to dance like no one's watching (because no one's watching).
A city that loves its pubs thus loves its pub quizzes. A lucky few in Portland are able to solely support themselves through the hosting of quiz activities, and one of these rare persons is Roy Smallwood of Quizzy.
Smallwood's duty is to distinguish Quizzy from the competing quizzes (most of which he contends are "much like fecal matter... vapid, dull, inarticulate, and full of holes") and he does so in several ways. First, Quizzy don't mess around with topics that are beneath civilized intelligence. The "WTFIQ?" FAQ promises you'll never hear questions pertaining to celebrities or reality television, or generally "be rewarded for knowing stupid shit."
Smallwood also, as you may be gathering, has a strong personality and strong opinions to go with it, some of which he shares with the world—he wrote a classic piece of hate mail to the Mercury back in 2006, in fact. And he also keeps a blog on the Quizzy website, a sampling of which it is my pleasure to present:
Salt grinders are so stupid. They exist only to make people feel fancy, and do nothing at all to food except make you have to use both hands while cooking or eating it. I love salt, but people have gotten way to snooty about it. For the most part, it's fucking sodium chloride.
The article "How To Cook Lobster Tails: A Guide For People Who Don't Have Butlers To Do All The Work" is jam-packed with jaw-dropping idiocy from start to finish, so I'll just give you the iceberg's tip.
Has anyone said "eat Ebola dicks" yet? You know, like some people will say "eat a bowl of dicks?" Get It?
In my world, one of the most damning indictments of a person's character is the hatred of cats. Basically, the second someone expresses this type of disgust, I'm done with them forever.
If that doesn't sell you on Quizzy, I just don't know what will. Smallwood holds court five evenings a week at bars across the city. His longest-standing gig, though, is at Billy Ray's where he'll fittingly be celebrating the 10th anniversary of Quizzy on Thurs March 26. Why not take the opportunity to try out a little Quizzy and compare it to the other pub quizzes in your life? Especially when Smallwood contends that there is a "vast chasm of quality between what I do and what everyone else does." That's no small claim.
Guys! Why are you making things so COMPLICATED for this person??
I just wanna fuck, is that so hard? I don't want "cheap," I want some type of connection, but that connection will definitely include fucking. I want you to come over and fuck me without any bullshit. And yeah, I'd love it if you left within the hour following said fucking. I would also like to be friends with you... like, we could hang out, go out for food, watch a movie, get drunk, hang out with friends... all of that. Again, I don't want cheap, I just want an understanding... but why can't I find it?
Hmmm... sounds complicated. Anyway, read more here, and if you have a confession or rant you'd like to share with the world, drop it in the I, Anonymous Blog—where I wish things were more complicated.
This person is really mad at his roommate... and maybe for good reason?
Remember how I had to piss so bad and you wouldn't stop the fucking car because you were in a hurry to meet up with some internet ho, but you were so kind as to give me your empty Yoo-Hoo bottle? Guess what? Now I have fucking herpes! And don't try and tell me it wasn't you, you Valtrex-popping motherfucker. Now I have something to remember you by for all eternity, you fucking douchebag.
Getting herpes from a Yoo-Hoo bottle is perhaps the worst way to get herpes... except for maybe a can of Red Bull? If you have a rant or embarrassing confession to share with the world, drop it in the I, Anonymous Blog—which was just tested three months ago. (We're not saying how the tests turned out.)
Do you wear a chain wallet? This person thinks that, maybe, you shouldn't be wearing a chain wallet!
It's Portland Oregon and the year is 2015. Most of you scuzzy fucks who STILL rock this absurd fashion abortion, are the types with zero denaro to begin with (rock-a-billys, hawthorne hippie-sters, meth-headed comb-boilers, weekend biker dudes).
No ones gonna pickpocket you! Put it in your front pocket if you are so worried. If it's for looks and style, invent a time machine and go back to 1991.
Ooh! And while you're back in 1991, be sure to find me and insist that the concept of I, Anonymous is a really bad idea—it's done more harm than good, don'tcha think? In the meantime, if you have a rant or confession to share with the world, drop it off in the I, Anonymous Blog—the chain wallet of the internet. :(
FINALLY! Some helpful tips for all those clueless guys on OkCupid:
Stop being a bunch of fucking creepers. Just because you see my profile and find me attractive, does not mean:
I find you attractive.
You have to email and ask stupid questions ("Whoa, wait. Why do you want to learn to play the banjo?" - Really?)
Stalk my profile (a view each and every hour is a bit much, don't you think?)
Send me the same fucking generic message on at least three occasions, ("Hey. I really liked your profile and pics. Let me know if you want to chat.") -I wasn't interested the first 2 times you emailed me and I am still not. Also, you sent that exact same message to my roommate, twice).
Don't worry, creepers! There are even MORE tips for you here! In the meantime, do YOU have a rant, confession, or much needed words of advice to share with the world? By all means drop them in the I, Anonymous Blog—where we can take a hint. Can you?
MOTHER-IN-LAWS. They... are... the... WORST. Amirite? Yes? No? Well, at least this I, Anonymous Blog submission agrees with me!
You have come in between my wife and I. Our life is going along fine. New born little munchkin, money coming in, the birds are shining the sun is chirping. These are the years a man lives for. That new family smell..mmmm—nothing better.. And then the baby clothes thing happened. What the fuck is the matter with you? Thanks for the little german outfit for our daughter.
Ugghh! Ha, yeah, thanks A LOT, mother-in-... whaaaaaa? A GERMAN OUTFIT? Like what? Lederhosen or Hitler Youth? A little more description would've been nice. Anyway, if you have a confession or rant you'd like to share with the world, drop it in the I, Anonymous Blog—home of the possibly Nazi mother-in-law.
Hi! Here's the dumbest thing I've recently read on the I, Anonymous Blog—which is usually the home to the world's greatest thinkers and rocket scientists.
I got my shots. That doesn't mean you have to. How are we going to let the political power whores in legislature decide what chemicals and viruses will be injected into your body. Science is only right <50% of the time over history. I think marijuana is great for everybody, too. Take your pills! Have a day.
Let's read that sentence again: "Science is only right <50% of the time over history." (I think he read this on the "SCIENCE!" Wikipedia page.) DEAR GOD. Anyway, if you have a FUCKING STUPID theory to share with the world, apparently the I, Anonymous Blog is the place to do it. (Though we do accept far more thoughtful rants and confessions as well! Please??)
I've always regarded events that are part of the RAW: Natural Born Artists franchise with caution. Firstly, because they're a franchise, based in Los Angeles, that hosts events in over 60 locations around the world to promote emerging local arts in each locale, which tells you something about how plugged in they are to your city's local arts scene, wherever you are.
I attended one of the early Portland events, and it was some kind of awful, a hodgepodge of clashing and amateur visual art, music, and fashion in a weird combo of under-attendance and chaos. I assumed it was just the result of ignorance and a desperation to fill the bill, and my low opinion has continued to be shaped by evidence of similarly poor curation; overreaching claims of relevance backed up by a roster of almost completely unknown and/or mediocre talent.
Apparently it gets worse, with a business model shaped around charging recruited artists high fees to be featured (which they can make back by selling tickets). The Cincinnati CityBeat published a lengthy article last year that lays out the controversy around the organization, including its resemblance to a pyramid scheme. It should be required reading for anyone considering participation in one of their events.
That said, insofar as their local fashion representation is concerned, they've succeeded in snaring at least two noteworthy designers: One was past participant Myriam Marcela, who I later helped vote for as the winner of the emerging designer competition at last fall's FashioNXT. The second is Noriko Kikuchi, who's relatively new to Portland but has had a lot of good, impressive exposure, including at London and New York fashion weeks—in other words, her take on apparel-as-art is worth introducing yourself to, even if you've been soured on the whole RAW thing. Here's a video collaboration she did in New York with Margret Seema Takyar featuring her "White" collection, and she'll be at RAW's "Grandeur" showcase next Thursday, March 5:
Dear friend, I want to fuck you. Pretty sure you want me to fuck you, too. Per our conversation, I can teach you a lot of things. Sure, we both have wives and love them dearly. Heck, maybe our wives could get in on it. Yes, it could get awkward, but I'm willing to take that risk. This isn't about love: It's about you wanting me to teach you. And it's about me needing to teach you. I already understand what you need in bed, and we have barely touched. When we casually dance together, I just want to put my hand ever so gently—or not so gently—on your neck to show you I can lead. I just need you to follow.—Anonymous
Got a rant or confession to share with the world? Leave it in the anonymous confines of... the I, Anonymous Blog.
Guys, relationships are HARD. But sometimes, there are times when you need to focus on the relationship... and take a break from trimming weed. Observe.
I know, former bf who wants to be current bf again, that sometimes it's hard to keep up with all that weed. You complain from time to time that I don't come over to your house as often as you come to mine. I get that. What I don't get is today we both have the day off. I'm here at your house. It's a beautiful day, full of possibilities. And yet, here you sit, trimming weed. For hours. Do you remember how I told you before that I don't want to come over to watch you trim weed? IT'S FUCKING BORING.
READ THE REST HERE, and put that in your "now I know a little bit more about women" tip book, guys. Hey, do you have a pet peeve or confession you'd like the world to agree or disagree with? Drop it off in the I, Anonymous Blog—where we'll listen to you as soon as we finish trimming 48 more stalks of weed.
Last year, Portland writer Sarah Marshall made headlines with a piece in the Believer, "Remote Control," which dared to ask if infamous Portlander Tonya Harding and her public image were two different things. We'll be running a lengthy conversation with Marshall in our spring arts guide, but it would be impossible to include all of the things we talked about, which ran a healthy gamut from ladies figure skating to serial killers of the Pacific Northwest to Twin Peaks to pink pepper spray (arguably the best kind). Here are a few things Sarah Marshall told me about Tonya Harding, murder, Wallace Stevens' day job, and how morbid curiosity might make you a better person:
MERCURY: You've written a lot about Tonya Harding, but have you ever had a Tonya Harding sighting?
SARAH MARSHALL: No. I mean the thing about Tonya is that I think she’s this Northwest figure who everyone seems to have seen but me. I’ve met like 10 people who have been like, "Yeah, I used to go to this bar were Tonya Harding would do karaoke," or "I used to see her in my neighborhood in Milwaukie," or, my friend waited on her in a restaurant, and I feel like I’m Mulder, you know, and I’m talking to all these people who saw this thing that I want to see, and I’m like, why don’t I get to run into Tonya Harding? But everyone else has, yeah.
You also write a lot about serial killers. Can we talk about that?
I can! I’m writing about serial killers right now—not at this moment, but yeah, I’m researching, actually, this case of a couple of Canadian serial killers, called Paul Bernardo and Karla Homolka, that was also a big media sensation in Canada in 1995, because that was when his trial happened, and there was a Canadian press gag at the time, so the Americans were getting the news, but they didn’t really care; the Canadians wanted the news but they couldn’t get it.
There’s something about growing up in the Pacific Northwest... You have this strange relationship with just knowing about serial killers. I don’t have an explanation for why.
I’m really interested in answering that, because I think it is a Northwest identity thing… At some point in your life as a girl or as a young woman, you’re going to find that "It could have been me" story... What else? Another thing I've been thinking about, researching this project, because it's been very intensive... is this idea that if you get too into true crime or into trying to understand the mind of a killer, then you will become infected in some way, and they will reach out to you and may change you and the whole like Hannibal-Will Graham super-empathy thing, and I was thinking about that, and I honestly think that being kind of obsessed with true crime for 10 years has made me a better person.
It's a miracle in Southeast Portland!
Additionally, owner Chauncy Childs' Facebook page linked to an article supporting a business owner's right not to serve gay people. Those revelations would have raised concerns regardless. But coming as they did in a time before same-sex marriage was legal in Oregon—and when opponents were marshaling a measure to formally allow businesses to refuse service partly on the basis of sexual orientation—they sparked serious outcry.
Childs and her husband, John, swore the whole thing was a misunderstanding, made a "sizable donation" to a local advocacy group, and the furor settled itself.
And today? With same-sex couples getting married as they please and the business discrimination effort long-since dismantled? The Childs are proudly flying rainbow flags outside of their new business, which opened on January 10. Check it out, courtesy of reader Blake:
Either the couple has had a massive change of heart—since, you know, Chauncy Childs suggested, on the record with the Oregonian, same-sex marriage could start the slow slide toward pedophilia and bigamy—or this is straight-up disingenuous.
A call to John Childs hasn't been returned.
Update, 2:45 pm:
Nope. No change of heart.
John Childs just called back. He says the flags are in front of his shop just to let everyone know they're welcome. But he still doesn't want gay people getting married.
"The rainbow flag, as far as I understand, represents diversity and tolerance and understanding," Childs says. "We welcome all people, no matter their sexual orientation, color, race, et cetera."
Then he adds: "We don't believe in redefining marriage. That hasn't changed."
I was wrong, by the way. The Moreland Farmer's Pantry opened in May—it's just holding its "grand opening" right now.
In the world of post-internet art, Steve Roggenbuck is a rare gem. He's 27 now, but Roggenbuck rose to internet prominence when he was a delicate 24. He's an MFA dropout, who makes what I'm hoping is the future of literature in a digital age, pulling elements from poetry, video art, installation into exultant and strange pieces. It's kind of like if Tim and Eric and Walt Whitman had an alien child who was part-cartoon—but perhaps comparisons are best avoided with writers like Roggenbuck. He defies easy categorization, thank god!
Roggenbuck also just seems like a Nice Person, which, superficially, is kind of beside the point. Obviously, people you'd never want to hang out with and are maybe even a little afraid of can make great art. Joan Didion is my North Star, but I can't even imagine palling around with her, not for a second. Nope. See also: Bukowski, Hemingway, oh, the ENTIRE Western Canon, if we're being real. That said, there's a level of access and transparency to Roggenbuck's work that is truly admirable. His four poetry collections are all available for free through his website. He's a rare writer who seems more concerned with making his work available than from profiting off of it, which, like I said, admirable. If maybe not the smartest business plan for—hem, hem—longevity.
He also basically lives on the internet, so I was totally surprised when Mercury true friend Andrew R Tonry shared the news that Steve Roggenbuck is coming to town! Thursday night! At a reading cryptically located at a place called Witch Hazel Haus, which I can only hope is a real-life coven. The Facebook page, is, not surprisingly, titled, "There are lots of wasps here (no there aren't you won't be attacked by wasps it's just a regular reading I promise)." I'm definitely going, you should too. Gonna be weird! More details here. More Steve Roggenbuck here.
If you've taken the #14 bus over the past month, you may have seen this stencil:
If you call the number, you'll be asked for your name, and directed to a Google Voice mailbox to leave a message. Who is behind this? The sign offers up no declaration of authorship. Could it be street artist/elusive personality Banksy him/herself? Another possible theory: The signs look a lot like the work of less elusive street artist Hargo (aka Geoff Hargadon), whose "Ca$h for Your Banksy" and "Ca$h for Your Warhol" signs play upon the recession standby "Ca$h for Your ________" while mocking the commercialization of art.
Hargo's worked with NYC's Judith Charles gallery, where one of his Banksy signs was spotted just last year. The signs around Portland are slightly different, and, notably, the phone number doesn't match. Hargo is based in Somerville, Massachusetts, and the area code for these new signs points to Los Angeles. It's also entirely possible we just have a Banksy and/or Hargo copy-cat in our midst.
Thanks to Blogtown tipper Mad One, who also took the above photo. More of his "Ca$h for Your Banksy" sightings after the jump.
Icky job of the week goes to this I, Anonymous Blog writer, who titled his piece, "I Suck, But I Had To."
Yesterday some of my coworkers complained about a homeless lady in the ladies' restroom. I kinda shrugged and said our only option, if it's such a problem, is to keep that door locked like the tenants on all the other floors. No one wants to do that because we're the only company on this floor. So just now someone came to my office and said the homeless woman is in the ladies' room again. That means the receptionist and other women here want her to leave but don't want to ask her to leave. So I went and did it. "You can't be here."
If you feel the same way, read on, for Jenna Lechner has found the antidote to our plight, in the form of one particular show that's made a point of not being too serious, Paraprosdokians and Rubber Chickens at the Art Gym at Marylhurst University. Here's her report:
This is the first thing you see when you enter the show Paraprosdokians and Rubber Chickens at Marylhurst University's Art Gym: A goofy oversized lawn ornament—a dog on a stick, taking a shit. It's a piece by Patrick Rock, and I'm pretty sure seeing it marked the first time I entered an art show by laughing. That is to say: it’s the last week to catch this goofy but engaging show at the Art Gym, at Marylhurst University, which runs through December 5.
It’s really refreshing when an art show doesn’t take itself too seriously, and this show has a lot of fun, while also being engaged in the art world, with its pulse on contemporary queries.
Marylhurst University recently received a massive grant for The Art Gym. Some of the artists (which are a mix of local artists and non-locals) in the exhibit have also received major accolades as of late, namely Ralph Pugay, who received the coveted Betty Bowen Award this year and recently showed a delightfully wonky suite of paintings at Upfor Gallery.
Go read her whole review here. Then go see the show! You have until the end of the day tomorrow, when it closes, taking the rubber chickens and poorly-mannered dogs with it.
*and don't tell me that's all artist statements, ya cynic!
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