In a maneuver that accomplishes the dual objectives of replacing erstwhile staffer Tommy "'Lil T" Francis and snatching talent from the rival of its Portland Mercury, the Stranger has reportedly hired Angie "Crash" Valdez away from Pulitzer-Prize winning weekly Willamette Week. Granted, Valdez didn't notch that Pulitzer; Nigel Jaquiss did, with an assist from the Weekly's own Flip Dawdy. Instead, Valdez has written about the Oregonian inflating the state's meth problem, and penned a riveting first-person account of her experience getting run over on a bicycle (check out the smoldering photo of hobblin' Crash!).
In addition to her $1.1 million per annum salary (the league's veteran minimum), it is believed that Valdez has been offered a series of perks not afforded 'Lil T, who now writes for the Weekly's sister paper in Fort Lauderdale. Rumored to be among these bennie are a punch card guaranteeing free Cape Cods for life at the Wild Rose, a Huffy dirt bike (including helmet), a subscription to Us Weekly and a two-bedroom condo in Bothell -- for a day or a lifetime. Welcome, Crash!