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A cat looking at a tablet.
Yes, your pet is cute. No, posting a picture of it on Instagram will not help plant a tree. BENJAMIN TORODE / GETTY IMAGES

Dark, rainy evenings getting you down? Treat yourself with a Shot & Beer, courtesy of the Mercury’s “Shot & Beer” week, happening now! You can get a taste of all the offerings here!

In local news:

• While some local city and police officials have pointed to the recent rise in crime rates as a reason to hire more cops, a new report shows there is no strong correlation between Portland’s crime rates and the number of police officers employed by the Portland Police Bureau. Alex Zielinski details the findings of the independent researcher’s report here.

• If you’ve driven by SE Morrison and 14th on a weekday evening, you may have seen an extensive line of people wrapping around the block. In a city with such robust food options, what could be worth all that waiting? Plant Based Papi. And yes, it really is worth every second of that wait.

• Former Oregon Rep. Akasha Lawrence Spence is running for Portland City Council position 2, challenging City Comissioner Dan Ryan. "Our city deserves someone who understands the intersectionality of the issues facing our communities,” Lawrence Spence told the Mercury. “We need transformative change, and it's long overdue.”

• The race for Oregon’s newly-created sixth congressional district is on! Oregon Representative Andrea Salinas launched her campaign for the state’s congressional delegation Tuesday, joining fellow Oregon Representative Ron Noble and former Multnomah County Commissioner Loretta Smith.

In national news:

An Instagram page pledged to plant one tree for every pet picture tagged through an “Add Yours” sticker—a hashtag-like feature that can be added to Instagram stories to create a public chain of posts. The chain of posts quickly swelled to over 4 million pet pics by Tuesday morning. The Instagram page “Plant A Tree Co” says they don’t have enough resources to plant over 4 million trees and, in a not-so-shocking twist of events, is asking for donations to make those plantings possible. Plant A Tree Co claims to have planted 6,500 trees so far, funded by selling free necklaces where the customer just pays for shipping and handling. I may have only been born yesterday, but it sounds like a legitimate business model to me!

• Pfizer asked the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to approve booster shots for all adults Tuesday. Currently, Pfizer booster shots are approved for people who are at a higher risk contracting COVID-19 due to their age, immunocompromised status, or job. The vaccine maker is concerned about a rise in COVID cases during the upcoming holiday season as travel and socialization indoors increases.

• Singer and bonafide Famous Person Demi Lovato has signed on to be a paid ambassador for Gaia—a conspiracy theory website that serves as a hub for many QAnon supporters after other social platforms shut them down. Lovato, a UFO enthusiast, said their partnership with the company comes from their desire to understand the world around us, both “the known and the unknown.” In this case, “the unknown” centers anti-Semitic conspiracy theories that the world is secretly run by lizard people, and vaccine misinformation.

In “Ooo, fun!” news:

Support The Portland Mercury

• Introducing the Mercury’s Free Ticket Tuesday—our way of saying thanks for being rad and highlighting some great upcoming shows! This week you can enter to win tix to see the Heartless Bastards at the Wonder Ballroom, Kikagaku Moyo at the Roseland Theater, and Pavement at McMenamins Edgefield!

• And finally, Wrinkle the Duck ran in the NYC marathon this weekend (complete with their own custom running shoes). Go Wrinkle!

@seducktiv I ran in the New York Marathon 🦆 ##nycmarathon ##runner ##duck ##wrinkletheduck ##foryou
♬ original sound - Wrinkle the Duck