Smug warning: Portland bus riders will barely be able to contain their self-satisfaction, knowing they're not only keeping cars off the road, but also supporting biodiesel. TriMet switched Monday to the feel-good fuel for all its buses.

Return of the Giant Killers! No, not a Halloween flick, but Oregon State football's 33-31 upset last weekend of third-ranked USC. The stunner comes 39 years after the 1967 Beavers were dubbed the "Giant Killers" for beating then-top-ranked USC (and its slashing running back O.J. Simpson).

Thanks to the biting satire of The Onion, the Portland Trail Blazers are so bad they're good again. Last week "America's finest news source" ( wrote that the Blazers were so pathetic last year that they'd been purposely left off the 2006-2007 NBA schedule. Come midseason in January, we might concur.


For the second straight election, House Speaker Karen Minnis has watched silently while her allies smear Democratic challenger Rob Brading. Democrats proved equally able to dip into the sleaze pool of politics by posting decade-old records last week that show Minnis and her husband John (then in the state Legislature) paid off an employee of their pizza joint who accused Minnis' brother-in-law of sexual assault.

Pulitzer Prize-winning Oregonian reporter Tom Hallman Jr. is 0-for-2 in big Sunday profiles this year. His recent profile of ailing bluesman Curtis Salgado warranted an editor's note Sunday, saying Hallman failed to tell readers interested in aiding Salgado that Salgado was convicted of having sex in 1996 with an underage girl. Last spring, Hallman's profile of math whiz Mark Provo also generated a follow-up ed's note, correcting five errors of fact. (For more Oregonian news, go to Murmurs, page 13.)

A nationwide corporate scandal appears to have grown legs in Oregon. The Oregonian reported last week that Flir Systems Inc., a local defense contractor, twice offered stock options to its execs on days when the stocks were at their lowest prices, in 1996 and 1997. Flir denies any wrongdoing.