There have been some hot times before in Magic Gardens, the popular strip club, but last Tuesday, the Chinatown building caught fire--literally.

In what could be the plot script for a porn movie, about 70 firefighters showed up to unwind their hoses and save the day and the dancers. Although the fire remains under investigation and several "theories" abound--including blaming the resident ghost--it seems as if a construction worker accidentally sparked the fire with a blowtorch.

As luck would have it, Magic Gardens survived the blaze. The floors above the strip club were damaged; but only the air conditioning system for Magic Gardens was damaged.

"Now it's extra hot in here these days," quipped Viva Las Vegas, who dances at the club. PB


Chalk one up for opponents of abortion rights. Last Tuesday, the Oregon House of Representatives passed HB 2605, a measure that would require minors to get their parents' permission before having an abortion.

Squeezing through the Republican controlled House in a 32-27 vote, the bill, supporters say, will strengthen families by ensuring parents stay involved in their kids' medical procedures.

"Would you support a law allowing your teenaged daughters to receive cosmetic surgery without your notification and consent?" asked Rep. Donna Nelson (R-McMinnville).

But opponents challenge that the legislation will force young girls to resort to illegal abortions to protect their privacy.

"There are specific examples of young girls choosing illegal abortions over notifying their parents," says Charlie Burr, a spokesperson with NARAL.

The bill must now pass through the Oregon Senate, which is much more moderate (and Democratic) than the House. Twenty-four other states currently have parental notification laws.

Another odd bill concerning abortion also made its way to a hearing at a House committee last week. That bill would allow abortion foes to purchase a special license for their cars and pickup trucks that says, "Choose Life." Sponsor Rep. Mac Sumner (R-Molalla) has said that the extra revenue should go to help fund adoptions. ANDREA CHALUPA