The 2nd Annual Mrs. Portland Mercury Beauty Contest

"Beauty" is a term not easily defined. Is it a combination of perfectly symmetrical features on top of a nice rack? Or does "beauty" come from within; shining forth in the form of a sparkling, radiant personality that almost makes one forget there's a nice rack underneath? We will try to answer these questions and more at the "2nd Annual Mrs. Portland Mercury Beauty Pageant," this Friday at the Aladdin Theater!

Ask anyone who attended last year's "Mrs. Portland Mercury Beauty Pageant," and they will tell you, "Dude that was really fucked up." How was it fucked up? First of all, our pageant differs from the more conventional beauty contest, starting with our selection of contestants. These hometown beauties are unconventional from top to bottom, covering a range of body types, facial configurations, and personal hygiene. Some have bizarre personalities. Others have tattoos. Many have criminal records. Yet every last one of them is HOT.

Secondly, unlike the sexist beauty pageants you see on television, we are NON-GENDER EXCLUSIVE. Guys, girls, guys that act like girls, girls that act like guys, guys with girl parts, girls with guy parts--all have a shot at becoming "Mrs. Portland Mercury." Why? Because we don't give a crap.

Thirdly, during the talent portion of the "Mrs. Portland Mercury Pageant," you won't find dumbshit blondes twirling batons or performing a sign language interpretation of Toby Keith's "Red, White, and Blue (The Angry American)." What you'll witness will probably defy any logical definition of "talent" you've ever seen, and could include such eye-popping acts as singing/dancing, bicycle riding/crashing, and boobie flouncing/ bouncing.

Fourthly, one of the most popular segments from last year's pageant returns and its really on the wet and wild side! It's a variation on swimsuit competitions called "watersports." This is where contestants dress up in any outfit they wish--as long as it has something to do with "liquid." Will someone dress up as a milk bucket? Perhaps they'll be dragged onstage encased in a colostomy bag. I really don't know! Because it hasn't happened yet!

And fifthly, sixthly, seventhly, eighthly and ninthly, you can also expect a host of fabulous prizes, famous and attractive celebrity judges, a bevy of hee-haw-larious jokes from your master of ceremonies (me, Wm. Steven Humphrey), a very low entry price of only FIVE DOLLARS and I believe I'm leaving something out. Oh, yeah! BEER! Now that's a beauty pageant that's sure to make you say, "Dude that's fucked up." Seriously--by this point, would you expect anything less? WM. STEVEN HUMPHREY

The 2nd Annual Mrs. Portland Mercury Beauty Pageant, Aladdin Theater, corner of SE Powell and Milwaukie, 233-1994, Friday, July 11, Doors at 8 pm, Pageant at 9 pm, $5

See the Dancing Bull Dykes

Skervy, Queer To The Bone has quickly become one of the most popular queer dance nights in town, with an asshaul of DJs spinning a mix that's as eclectic as, perhaps the fine people who put those notches on your bedpost. Hiphop, punk, samba, riot grrrl, and buttrock are just a few of the genres represented by the bevy of djs. No word on why the night is coined after a skanky pirate disease.

Tonight's Skervy tacks on an additional treat with DK PDX, the newest drag king show in town. After all, there's no reason why the flamboyant, feathered queens should have all the pasties and glory. Watch these dicky chicks as they bump and grind, mixing choreography with pantomimes of fellatio and bondage.

In addition to looking absolutely adorable in their pinstripes, these girls bust their nuts to some of your old favorites, like Wham! Wipe that look at off your face. Okay, there's also Def Leopard! Nothing is sexier than a mustachioed stage diva, so the provocative antics of DK PDX (one complaint, ladies: your gig sounds like a BMX race or DIY community project) should start you bump-humping some special bitch. MARJORIE SKINNER

Cobalt Lounge, 13 NW 3rd, 225-1003, Thursday 9 pm, $6 sliding

The Joy of Joysticks

With a compelling retro selection of over 50 classics ranging from Asteroid and Space Invaders, to less familiar titles like Combatribes and Space Duel, not to mention a bunch of cool old pinball machines, Ground Kontrol is your home for hip video game fun. It's a place to remember a time when two dollars bought you eight rounds of Pac-Man, and your white, acid-wash jeans still felt right. And on this night it's also a music venue with "Electrocade," the only show this year that combines live electronica with FREE VIDEO GAMES ALL NIGHT LONG!

Yes, you read that right: for just $6 you will get performances by live-PA musicians Solenoid and Ainu (they create music through an audio sequencer), and DJs Jammotron and Afrobot (they straight up spin it and grin it), all to the beat of FREE VIDEO GAMES ALL NIGHT LONG! The senses are going to be in for a serious meltdown, what with all the blips and bloops and tunes and flickering screens, and Frogger getting smushed by that truck. But that's the price you pay for FREE VIDEO GAMES ALL NIGHT LONG! JUSTIN WESCOAT SANDERS

Ground Kontrol, 610 SW 12th, 796-9364, Saturday 9 pm, all ages, $6