Minh Tran

OH! WHY HELLO there, monster! I notice you're new to town, and... oh. I see you've brought many of your monster friends as well! THAT'S GREAT. The more the merrier... or in your case, "the scarier," amirite? High five! Umm... sure, I can high five all your tentacles.

Look, as long as you're here, can we talk about something? Now it's totally not your fault, but many longtime Portlanders are very upset about all these new monsters moving to town. But we all know why you chose Portland: Thanks to our many world-class restaurants, our tourists are fat, greasy, and delicious. Our music scene is perfect for those who murder at night, because audience members just stand there, with folded arms, nodding their heads. We also have Voodoo Doughnut (what a misnomer, right?). But most importantly, Portland is very tolerant of alternate lifestyle choices... including those involving the sucking of blood or the stabbing teens who have sex at sleep-away camps.

But here's the thing: You're never going to be accepted if you insist on acting like a bag of dicks.

Listen, monsters. You can't just be a consumer. You can't just come to town and expect people to fall into your mouth. YOU HAVE TO OFFER SOMETHING (other than a bubbling cauldron filled with the limbs of babies). Do you play a guitar? Great! There is an abundance of metal sludge bands looking for new members. Are you interested in social justice? Awesome, do us a favor and kill all the signature gatherers. Are you a foodie? I can tell you right now there are a LOT of long lines outside of my favorite brunch spots (and especially Salt & Straw) that could use some thinning out—if you know what I mean.

What I'm trying to say is this: Don't hide your light under a basket. As a monster, you have a specific skill set, and one that could provide a real service to the people of Portland. For example, if you're a minotaur, consider a career at one of Portland's many strip clubs—which, frankly, are getting a bit stale. If you're a werewolf, consider a leash, and always pick up after yourself. (Oh, and please? Stay out of grocery stores, unless you're a service wolf.) If you're a mummy, don't wear spandex while cycling—you already look stupid enough. If you're a demon, consider becoming a landlord or maybe a member of the Portland Business Alliance. (Trust me, you'll only improve the situation.)

So if you like that advice, you'll love the Mercury's monsters' guide to Portland. We'll offer up tips on the city's most overrated cemeteries, the most haunted new developments, how to find (and keep!) an affordable apartment, and even how to appropriately apologize for being a newcomer (monster).

But if you really want to fit in and make Portland better? Consider this: Within 20 years the Portland area is projected to lure in 725,000 new residents. But now that you're here, I bet that number will be (hint-hint) cut in half.

Bon appétit, newcomer!

More Welcome to Portland, Monster! articles:

Welcome to Portland, Monsters!

How to Apologize for Being a Monster

No-Cause Evictions Affect Monster Population

Portland's Most Haunted New Developments

Monster's Pot Review (for Monsters)

A Short History of Portland's Most Famous Monsters

Portland's Most Overrated Cemeteries

Stop Riding the Bus Wrong, Monsters!

The Top 11 Places Where Monsters Meet Other Monsters