P-town Congressman Earl Blumenauer is causing a bit of a stir back in Washington with the 'exorcism' that he and his staff are planning for their new Capitol Hill digs. É Seems that when Rep. Jim Traficant of Ohio got bounced from the House of Representatives for assorted crimes of bribery, the bow-tied one inherited his office space. To rid the place of the 'Traficant taint,' as the invitations say, lawmakers and congressional staff have been asked to a 'cleansing ritual' next Wednesday. É Rep. Steve LaTourette, one of Traficant's closest friends in Congress, told the Cleveland Plain Dealer that the whole thing strikes him as 'offensive.' É Traficant, in case you missed it, is the guy who used to end speeches on the floor of Congress with the words: 'Beam me up, Scottie.' I kid you not.
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'Jesus and football,' says the marquee in front of the First Covenant Church at East Burnside and 45th. Well, it is Super Bowl Sunday, after all. É Pastor John Wenrich, who says he's going to tell the story of Jesus using great moments in NFL history as illustrations, says he's picking Tampa Bay. Sermons at 9 and 10:30. Game time at 3:15. É Hope it's not so, but industry sources tell me that one of the chic new restaurants in the Pearl Ñ we won't jinx it by mentioning its name here, but it was recently involved in a well-publicized dispute between its owner and chef Ñ might not make it through February. É Actually, they say, all the restaurants in the Pearl are hurting right now. É 'Tell me,' writes Diamond Dave Rogoway, 'what color of hair do they put on driver's licenses for bald guys?' Good question, Dave. I'll check it out. É Our search for the perfect homegrown coffee shop continues. Film guy Stephen Sasser nominates Stumptown at 34th and Division. 'It's the community center,' he says. 'Quite frankly, I have no idea where people went before it opened.'
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Sunday night might have been slow everywhere else Ñ but over at the Grand Cafe on the corner of Southeast Grand and Belmont, it was all they could do to handle the crowds for what proprietor Frank Peters billed as 'Pajama Party' night. É All the waitresses wore pajamas, except for manager Natasha Edison Ñ who wore, as she describes it, 'a pair of Victoria's Secret panties that came up to here and a black, sort of see-through top. Why, I was almost naked.' É Say, is she supposed to talk like that?
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Who's leading the charge to deface Portland's historic Pioneer Courthouse by turning it into a parking garage for judges? Might as well call them out by name. É On one hand, as previously discussed, there's a federal judge, Michael Hogan, who breaks into song at inappropriate times. É On the other, there's Jon Kvistad, best known, if at all, as the former Metro councilman who got beat last time out in a race for state treasurer. É After Kvistad lost, he apparently wrangled a job as head of the Government Services Administration, the local agency in charge of managing federal property Ñ and if I read his actions correctly, he's using his current position to punish the very voters who so callously rejected him. É Bug off, you guys Ñ and in case I haven't said it before: Keep your crummy mitts off our courthouse.