Im Photoshopped onto New York Review of Books editor Robert Silvers here, but this is really what my desk looks like.
I'm Photoshopped onto New York Review of Books editor Robert Silvers here, but this is really what my desk looks like. Suzette Smith

Dearest Readers,

After almost four years of dedicated feminist rants and the only job that has ever taken full advantage of my multiple dubiously useful arts degrees, today is my last day at the Mercury. I KNOW. It's sad. We're all feeling a lot right now. But don't cry! I'm starting a new job at The Seattle Times next week, so I'm not going far, and because I have a hard time with transitions, I am keeping my Portland hair colorist, so I'll be back regularly. (I guess it's time to get real about that too: I'm only kind of naturally blonde. Sorry to disappoint everyone who called me "Blonde Alison" for the first three months at my job.)

When I started at the Mercury, I set up an email folder called "Praise and Grudging Respect," and friends, IT RUNNETH OVER. I have made so many old men SO, SO MAD. I have disappointed many a brocialist. I once even received a hand-written admonishment of Tonya Harding in full-on serial killer script. I've also gotten to do so many things at the Mercury that I can't imagine getting away with elsewhere.

I got to write a cover story that was really just a lengthy personal essay about how single I am and how much I love ballet and how afraid of death I was when I turned 30.

Back when we still did Worst Night Ever, I was sent to a witchy camp-out for followers of the goddess in Vernonia, where I lived out my Mists of Avalon and Loreena McKennitt-derived dreams, even though I was supposed to have a terrible time.

I tried to talk the entire city of Portland into accepting Hillary Rodham Clinton as a viable presidential candidate who is neither a murderer nor a witch, and may have even convinced ONE person.

I cried my way through my morning-after-the-election post, which I wrote for myself as much as anyone else, while listening to "Changes" over and over again, intercut with Nina Simone's cover of "Here Comes the Sun" and the Five Stairsteps, which kind of helped, but, you know, not really.

For the fitness issue (RIP), I learned WAY MORE about pelvic floor physical fitness than I ever thought possible.

On a more serious note, I also wrote about what a week at the Pacific Northwest's regional abortion fund looks like, what causes a rape kit backlog, and all the horrible things the Trump administration would like to do your health care. I co-edited an entire issue of the paper written only by women and nonbinary writers. I tried, every day, in ways large and small, to chip away at the entrenched reach of the kyriarchy (I'm leaving so I am allowed to use jargon).

All of which is to say: This has been really fun, you guys. Thank you for your time and attention, even (especially?) #TeamGrudgingRespect. Truly. Now, I will diminish and go into the West and remain Megan. Pay close attention to my wonderful coworkers—they're gonna do great things—and get ready to welcome my successor. Whoever that person is, please be nice to them and don't call them [Hair Color That Isn't Blonde] Megan. They won't be me, and isn't that kind of exciting? Change is good for us all. Teach 'em how to say goodbye, etc.

You've been the best. Next week, you'll find me at The Seattle Times.