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 know you're just entertaining these news bits until we get to the funny video—BELIEVE ME, SO AM I. Let's be serious for a sec.

• There's trouble in the Historic Kenton Firehouse! Portland City Auditor's Office says that Rep. Travis Nelson (D—44) has been using the city-owned space rent-free for the past two years. Yiiiikes dude. People were going to notice eventually. Mercury news editor Courtney Vaughn has the story.

• One of the great enduring ironies of Portland's brand new exclusive luxury club Soho House is that the club markets itself as a place for creatives to mingle... when construction of the clubhouse dozens of artists of lesser means had been displaced from studio spaces in the building (pre-renovation) due to rent increases, just a few years before the club began renting the property. Props to OPB for reporting that story in 2016 and Eater who got on the Soho side-eye train last year. Axios should be fucking embarrassed about the completely unexamined look they gave the members-only club yesterday. The New York Times published a nice long profile on the Portland Soho House yesterday, as well.

• BUT ABOUT PLOVER NESTING. The nests of western snowy plovers are back in action, so Oregon State Parks and the US Forest Service ask anyone visiting Oregon beaches in the "plover zone" (my term) to keep an eye for roped off plover-only areas. Honestly, the hypocrisy of me, right? It's okay for plovers to have roped off areas but not wealthy humans? Being so serious again, for a sec: Keep your dog from going in the "plover zone" too. Dial in the recall for these puffy little threatened smol bird bad bois.

• This is the last weekend for HUMP! 2024: Part One in Portland (there's a Part Two in September), and I'll tell you this year's is less goof, more kink. Also, someone fucks someone else with a knockoff Sailormoon Spiral Heart Moon Rod. And yes, I knew the name of the rod, and as I watched I thought, at least it's not the Cutie Moon Rod. But I'm not going to debate you about it. 

• Speaking of debating, the Friday morning ticket drop is upon us. In just an hour, you'll be able to scoop up hot seats for Kid Cudi at Moda Center and Weezer at Moda Center, among others. Our EverOut calendar team has the list of shows on sale this morning!

• Today in continuing to try to keep Trump's criminal cases organized in our heads, a Fulton County Superior Court Judge told the county's District Attorney Fani Willis to either step aside from the Georgia election interference case against former President Donald Trump or remove special prosecutor Nathan Wade from the case. The judge didn't find the romantic relationship between the DA and special prosecutor created a conflict of interest, but that it created an “appearance of impropriety” that impacted the perceived truthfulness of the proceedings. And while we may know the majority of people following the news will just shout on behalf of whatever side they feel aligned with, I love the idea that a sense of propriety is still possible. Love that for us.

• Barring some massive upset, President of Russia Vladimir Putin will be re-elected this weekend to his office for another six years. The New York Times notes that the "Russian election apparatus" is controlled by the Kremlin, so the election itself is really more of a formality. A recent exhibition about Putin's vision for Russia portends a number of alarming plans: "'The borders of Russia don’t end anywhere,' read one quote at the exhibit."

• Despite the prevailing narrative that soon you could open TikTok and find it no more (unless you have a VPN, of course)... the reality is that there's a heck of a lot of days to go until that becomes a possibility. Washington Post explains (on TikTok):


The Republican-controlled House of Representatives overwhelmingly voted 352-65 to approve a bill requiring TikTok either be divested from ByteDance, its Beijing-based owner, or face a nationwide ban. The bill, called the Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act, now heads to the Senate. It’s the latest front in a years-long battle to limit the app, which features short videos in a swipe-able Instagram-like interface. In 2020, President Donald Trump attempted to ban it through an executive order, but courts blocked his move after TikTok sued. Although the bill quickly passed through the House by a wide margin, it faces a tougher path in the Democratic-led Senate. Top Democrats, including Warner and Maria Cantwell (Wash.), have been pushing for their alternative proposals for months to address concerns that GOP-led efforts would explicitly and unconstitutionally target a specific company.

♬ original sound - We are a newspaper.

Chilling footage of a Brooklyn subway shooting has been ricocheting around the web all night; investigators and reporters are just beginning to piece together what occurred. The shooting appears to be the "culmination of a frightening confrontation on a crowded subway car," the NYT reports. "An armed man who had been menacing another passenger ended up being shot with his own gun, the police said." The man who was shot is in critical but stable condition this morning.

• I don't believe even for a second that this was a real baroque meet cute, but whatever, the music is nice.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Emil Reinert (@emilio.piano)