DEAR ANN ROMANO: I just couldn't wait any more to write and tell you how much I love and appreciate your column, "One Day" [Page 5]. It never fails to educate and make me laugh out loud. Taking a less serious approach to the news certainly helps make me less stressed out about recent world events.

Anna K. Soderberg


TO THE EDITOR: This is a letter to the editor about a letter to the editor about polls in D.C. being unreliable and unrepresentative because they are taken in D.C, which the writer called "right-wing" ["Letters," Oct 18]. I am not disputing the reliability of polls, but I can clarify that D.C. is not right-wing.

The Chocolate City is two-thirds African American. Does that fit with the right-wing conception? Last election, District residents voted something like 85% Democrat, while about 3% went to Nader and 7% to Bush. Of course, all three electoral votes went to Gore. (These stats are all rough, but you get the picture.)

Nonetheless, if having Americans believe that 550,000 District residents are "right-wing" is what it takes to get representation in Congress, well then, keep the misconceptions flowing.



DEAREST PORTLAND MERCURY: As of right now, I'm stuck in Beijing, China. Apparently, we overstayed our Visa, and have to pay $1125 to the Chinese Immigration Department. Which, I guess you would agree, is a whole hell of a lot of fucking money to pay for absolutely nothing. So now we wait for money to reach us. I hate Money.

But so much for my tales of woe beneath a foreign sky. I'm actually writing to thank you for being the best messenger that a person could ever want. Since I've been in China, I found that by simply going into an internet cafe, and going to, I could place ads in the I SAW U's saying hello to people I know in PDX who read the Mercury (and who doesn't?). If it wasn't for you, no one would know if I was alive or dead. Thanks again for being there.

Brian in China


TO THE MERCURY: Just thought you friendly news-types might want to know of a strange story I came across on CNN this weekend. Heard of the "midnight food drops" over Afghanistan that the Good ol' US of A has been conducting? Well, a CNN reporter got hold of one of the food packets, and low and behold, the packet (packaged in a bright yellow bags with an American flag proudly stamped on the front) contained, among other things, peanut butter AND Pop Tarts!!

Jeez, what are our leaders thinking? Who was the marketing genius behind this brilliant, "foreign aid" idea? Can you imagine the hatred being felt for America now, as those poor, poor Afghanis are fighting off the "runs" and retching after sampling some of America's finest cuisine, the Pop Tart? Probably not the most healthy and nutritious "foreign aid!"

Paul Bock


TO THE MERCURY: The quickest, safest legal way to tilt the tables in favor of the free world, and erode the power of al Quida, would be to live up to the name and discontinue the War on Drugs. The decades-long attempt to treat individual use as a thought crime has drained our intelligence and enforcement resources, while creating enormous black market profits for terrorists to exploit. The recent tax cuts and economic decline make the need to free up these misdirected funds even more urgent.

Ending the War on Drugs would be constitutional, and consistent with the rhetoric of individual freedom. At the same time, it would render al Qaida's opium horde worthless. Imagine how much this would irritate the control-freak cave-crawlers. The shock value alone would be priceless.

It is time to admit that individual freedom includes the right to consume plant extracts. To refuse to do this has in essence ceded a huge market to violent scum.

Trish Randall


TO THE EDITOR: I feel I must make serious objection to the anonymous letter to bin Laden in the issue of September 20, in which the alleged extremist terrorist leader was labeled a "cocksucking motherfucker."

As a cocksucker myself, I am deeply offended. That asshole moron piece-of-shit bin Laden doesn't have the balls to deserve such a title. It is an offence to all us cocksuckers who suck cock with dignity and pride.

Jack Adams