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GOOD MORNING, PORTLAND! Start stretching out your tummy NOW, because in one short week, from Aug 21-27, it's the most delicious time of the year—the Mercury's BURGER WEEK is returning, and with more scrumptious, creative $8 burgers than ever! And now let's stretch out your brain for some NEWS.


• These heat waves are no joke, and after hitting 100 degrees yesterday in the Portland metro area, we can expect temps to soar up to 105 today and stay around the 100 degree mark until Thursday. City and county officials have declared a heat emergency and have opened three cooling centers for those in need: One in Old Town at 435 NW Glisan, and two in Gresham at 19421 SE Stark and 600 NE 8th. Pets are welcome and if you need a ride you can call 2-1-1 for assistance. The Lloyd Center mall is also a good place to cool down and hang out. Be careful out there, AND CHECK ON YOUR NEIGHBORS, HOMELESS OR OTHERWISE.

• Good news for healthcare workers: While it hasn't been officially announced, management at Providence Health have apparently agreed to substantial raises and increased time off for nurses after long negotiations with union officials who called it the "best contract we’ve achieved in several decades.”

• If you missed this past weekend's World Naked Bike Ride, here's a fun stack o' photos celebrating the occasion.

• Just a reminder if you're ever tempted to blame an entire nation of people for alleged drug crimes (though I know you wouldn't, because you're a responsible person):

• You love to see it: "Anti-government activist Ammon Bundy arrested on warrant from defamation case." The former Malheur Refuge domestic terrorist was placed under arrest for avoiding a court date related to a Boise hospital's defamation case against him, which he LOST (ha-ha-ha). But do note the following disturbing sentence from the story, which makes me wonder if these Idaho officers are complicit, or simply frightened and unable to do their jobs? 

Gem County Sheriff Donnie Wunder was initially hesitant to serve Bundy legal notices in the case, saying he didn’t want to risk harm coming to his deputies “…over a civil issue.”

• Relive the glory of this year's Pickathon music festival with this terrific round-up of musical memories from Mercury writers, who—surprise!—really liked it!


• The wildfires in Maui have claimed the lives of at least 96 people so far, but the state's governor is warning that many more victims may be found as rescue workers continue to scour the charred remains of Lahaina.

• A Kansas police department is facing a tsunami of criticism after it raided a small local newspaper and the home of its publisher, seizing computers and more under mysterious circumstances (but probably because of their blistering political coverage). Journalism advocates are rightly calling it a blatant infringement of the constitution's protection of freedom of the press. But wait, there's more....

• If Trump is indeed indicted by a Georgia grand jury for his attempts to undermine the 2020 election in the state, the entire trial could probably be televised for your viewing enjoyment! Unlike other states where the former president is being charged with crimes, Georgia law dictates that the judge can decide whether or not cameras can be allowed in courtrooms, and in that state, they usually are. 🍿🍿🍿

• Political dipshit and presidential wanna-be Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida did not have a great time this weekend at the Iowa State Fair, where protesters repeatedly and hilariously interrupted his stump speeches with whistles, cowbells, and insulting names (which included "pudding fingers" following a report where DeSantis admitting eating pudding with fingers... ummmm, GROSS!!).

• And finally... it's Monday! MONDAY! MONNNNNN-DAAAAAYYYEEEEEEEEE!!!