The Mercury provides news and fun every single day—but your help is essential. If you believe Portland benefits from smart, local journalism and arts coverage, please consider making a small monthly contribution, because without you, there is no us. Thanks for your support!
Good Morning, Portland! I saw Infinity Pool last night and LET ME TELL YOU, portraying wealthy villains as murderous hedonists is just a smoke screen for the real shit people do like abusing nonprofit status to make money. Let's get furious. It's time for THE NEWS.
IN LOCAL NEWS:
• Yesterday Mercury News Editor Isabella Garcia broke down an announcement from Portland City Laborers, warning that the union workers—who run much of city’s wastewater treatment, sewer line repair, parks maintenance, and snow/ice transportation maintenance—may need to strike, starting Feb 2, if the City of Portland cannot come to a contract agreement. They have been trying to reach an agreement for 10 months. Late in the day, following the announcement, Mayor Wheeler issued an emergency declaration—which might make it easier for him to cover the services shortage in the event of such a strike. Take note: There's a PCL rally in front of City Hall this Saturday, January 28, at noon.
• Wheeler acknowledged that sweeps aren't a solution to homelessness, but he's going to do this anyway:
Following outcry from businesses in Portland’s Central Eastside Industrial District, city leaders will increase police presence, clean up trash, and remove homeless people from the neighborhood’s streets—likely displacing them to another part of the city. https://t.co/0NnQRWzvP8— Portland Mercury 🗞 (@portlandmercury) January 27, 2023
• Today in CRAB NEWS: Around 200 miles of Oregon coast has been open for commercial crabbin' since Jan 15, and the rest will open for the season by Feb 4. You can recreationally crab pretty much year round, but don't fuck up and keep the egg-laying female crabs. Keep your eyes peeled for mounds / balls of dude crabs bro-ing down together. Definitely get pinched; it's tradition.
• Whimsical graphic artist Mike Bennet has a lot of Portland fans, so I will be interested in whether Portland police actually investigate his burglary complaint.
Someone burglarized Mike Bennett’s new art studio in Northeast Portland earlier this week.— KOIN News (@KOINNews) January 27, 2023
He says police still haven't called him back. https://t.co/hT1CkMsu88
• Portland-based journalist Rose Wong wrote a smart, evocative essay about her experience(s), celebrating Lunar New Year alone. It opens with a grandmother, holding her one-year-old grandson on her hip—"giving the chunky boy a boost when he began to slide"—and asking Wong, "Why are you eating by yourself?"
• It's Friday morning, and you know what THAT MEANS: ticket drops. The Everout team put together this list of shows that are about to go on sale, like—for instance—100 gecs!? Holy shit. I'mma needs that.
Latin pop gem Kali Uchis will hop a private plane to Portland this spring in support of her newly announced album. Plus, it’s a good week for indie rock fans, with Beck & Phoenix revealing co-headlined dates and a tour announcement from The National. https://t.co/z0nFvyo5mV— EverOut Portland (@EverOutPortland) January 26, 2023
IN NATIONAL / INTERNATIONAL NEWS:
• The city of Memphis—and, it's fair to say, the nation—is waiting on body camera footage of events that led up to the death of Tyre Nichols, a 29-year-old Black man. Yesterday, a grand jury returned indictments for the five Memphis police officers involved, with charges of second-degree murder, kidnapping, official misconduct, and official oppression, among others. Nichols’ family has seen the footage already—their lawyer said the video showed Mr. Nichols being pummeled like a “human piñata.” The footage is expected to be released today, which may lead to nation-wide protests tonight.
• Biden picked a new chief of staff, for all who were following this decision with bated breath:
President Biden announced Jeff Zients as his next White House chief of staff, tapping an experienced technocrat who headed his administration's response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Zients succeeds Ron Klain, a longtime fixture in Biden’s political orbit. https://t.co/MqAdnpjpzs— The Associated Press (@AP) January 27, 2023
• Oh my god. Colorado cake-maker Jack Phillips has been fighting for his right not to make cakes for gay people for over A DECADE. What. the. fuck. Yesterday he lost yet another appeal, when the Colorado Court of Appeals ruled that cake is still not a form of free speech. "We conclude that creating a pink cake with blue frosting is not inherently expressive and any message or symbolism it provides to an observer would not be attributed to the baker,” said the court.
• Capitol library in Milwaukee, WI throwing shade here in a couple ways:
@milwaukeepubliclibrary Memes are how eye roll. All our love to @edysilva114oficial #ShopLocal #SupportSmallBusiness #LibraryLover #LibraryTok #PublicLibrary #Flop #FlopTok #BookTok #Milwaukee #ShopSmall #GenshinImpact34 #fypシ #fyp ♬ som original - ✨ Edenilson_Edy ✨