Our good friends at Street Roots opened up bidding on their fourth annual fundraising auction last night, and you should head over to take a look. There's a mountain of good stuff to go for, and it's vitally important to SR mission of serving up real opportunity for hundreds of vendors and real, street-level, quality journalism for thousands of readers.

And if that's not convincing enough, look who happens to be mentioned as one of the auction's "featured" items...

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That's right! Me! You can pay money to spend a day with me! (And because I'm usually the one who has to pay if I want someone to hang out, that's a charitable gesture you can count twice on your taxes!*)

This auction item is a gift-certificate for a day in the life with the Portland Mercury news editor.

Have a look at what's shaking in the Portland Mercury newsroom. Visit Portland City Hall and find out what's going on at the city. Go to the courthouse and find out what happens behind the scenes in developing a news story.

I promise I'll make it worth your while. It'll happen on a Wednesday, which means I can show you where I sit during city council meetings. I'll introduce you to some of the people who work in city hall and then take you over to the courthouse and teach you how to legally snoop on your friends and neighbors!

Of course, if I'm not your "cup of tea," that doesn't mean you won't find something else that's actually kickass. Maybe a piano lesson from the Decemberists' Jenny Conlee? Or how about enough yummy beer from Captured By Porches to liquor up all your friends?

Bidding ends next Sunday, October 7, so don't delay!

* I am clearly not a licensed tax professional, and I am clearly not qualified to give tax advice. Or, really, any kind of financial advice about anything. Ever. For real. Seriously. Don't ask.