Cover art by Natasha Chomko. Back cover photo by Vikesh Kapoor at Montesacro DAMEDEESO / GETTY IMAGES

Hey team! Guess what? I’m getting some really good questions for my “Get to know Wm. Steven Humphrey” campaign! As you remember from my last column, I expressed concern that you were not showing enough interest in me as a person, so I flung open the gates, allowing you to ask me anything you want, and I’ll answer it honestly in this column. And hoo-rah! I’m already receiving some very challenging and uncomfortable questions! (What have I gotten myself into?) Anyway, I’m going to continue collecting your smart queries, and start knockin’ ’em down one-by-one in my next column. So slake your curiosity and send your personal questions about me to ME at steve@portlandmercury.com. Because as that military fascist G.I. Joe used to say, “Knowing is half the battle!”

Oh! And speaking of fascism, check out this letter I received last week:

“Dear Mercury: What is wrong with you people in Portland? You elect a left-wing mayor who allows people to be beaten in your streets over politics. It sounds more like North Korea than an American city. You have my solemn pledge that my company will never spend a dime in your perverted city.—Randy Ross, R.J. Ross Company

Randy’s upset, you guys! He’s apparently referring to the last time those right-wing numbnuts from Vancouver came to Portland to stir up shit in order to get lots of free publicity from Fox News. But let’s break Randy’s letter down, shall we? It’ll be fun!

1) “What is wrong with you people in Portland?” Wow, there are a lot of answers to that one. But just off the top of my head: People waste too much time standing in line for Salt & Straw. It’s just ice cream, you guys!

2) “You elect a left-wing mayor who allows people to be beaten in your streets over politics. It sounds more like North Korea than an American city.” What? How in the world does that sound like North Korea? They don’t elect left-wing mayors! Unless.... waaaaaaaitasecond. During the last protest, Mayor Wheeler was on a so-called “international vacation.” So, what if Mayor Wheeler was actually in North Korea running for “left-wing mayor” on a “beating political dissidents” platform? Thanks, Randy! The Mercury WILL investigate!

3) “You have my solemn pledge that my company will never spend a dime in your perverted city.” A bit of research revealed that the R.J. Ross Company is a teensy three-person business located in a private residence on a Texas cul-de-sac that headhunts executives for oil drilling corporations and other Earth-killing companies. (You know, kind of like the company that headhunted former Veep Dick Cheney to run Halliburton... except without the famous clients.) So if we don’t get Randy’s dime, I’m pretty sure Portland will be okay. But he’s correct in saying we’re a bunch of perverts! What’s more perverted than waiting in line for an hour for ice cream? (Psst! Hey pervert! Send your perverted questions to steve@portlandmercury.com.)

Yer pervert pal,
Wm. Steven Humphrey
Editor in Chief
Portland Mercury