TO THE MERCURY: In your latest hilarious issue [Mercury For Her, Oct 25] one piece stood out from the rest as extra, super funny: "Tell It to Shaniqua, Girl!" I love it when crackers like you depict fictional black people eating pork rinds, drinking malt liquor, and getting hair-weaves.

I'm hoping that in the weeks to come, you'll satirize other ethnic groups as well. To help you along, I've come up with a couple of ideas for new advice columns. How about "Tell It to Moishe, Schmuck," in which a Hasidic Jew with a big nose hordes money and tells lies? Or you could do "Tell It to Jorge, Amigo," with a migrant farm worker who answers readers' questions while smuggling dope across the U.S. border.

See? The possibilities are endless. Keep those laughs coming.

Jonas Lerman


TO THE WHINEY POP TART GUY: This is in response to the foreign aid critic from last week's issue [Letters, Oct 25, in which the writer questioned the practice of dropping Pop Tarts and peanut butter to Afghan refugees]. There are lots of different kinds of food being dropped over Afghanistan. And furthermore we're not selling gourmet foreign aid here, pal. You put the peanut butter on the Pop Tart and you eat the goddamn thing! That's protein man! You can eat it or you can starve to death.



DEAR EDITORS: Aaaah, thank god for satire! I recently realized the error of my Cosmopolitan readin' ways as my Nietzsche readin' "bf" snickered nihilistically over my shoulder. I loved your Mercury for Her issue [October 25]. Though, some of you (specifically Ann Romano of One Day at a Time) should lay off on the Texas jabs. I am in Tex-ass now, and if ever there were evidence for atheism, it is the fact that I am a good ol' Portland girl who ended up attending Tex-ass Christian University. At least I can corrupt a few Texan yooooths into realizing the Portland Mercury is most likely more divine than Jesus. Ha! No irony intended!

Amanda Emerson


TO THE MERCURY: Oh, please. We expect your agenda-rife little snot-rag to strain credibility in all things, but you're really pushing it when you expect anyone to believe that Dave Mazza has ever had a date ["News Makers, Love Makers," Oct 25].

Saul Delerium

Dave Mazza, Editor of Portland Alliance, responds: Saul, Baby! There's one bone I have to pick with that Mercury crowd--their use of the word "date." Newsmakers, Lovemakers don't have "dates;" they have Love Experiences--something you will never experience if you spend your time writing letters to the Mercury editor.


TO MERCURY FOR HER: I want to congratulate you on your new reincarnation as the new women's authority, Mercury for Her. While I know most of it was tongue-in-cheek (and kept me entertained for several days of sharing with friends), I actually found "Douching: One Woman's Story" [Katia Dunn, Oct 25] most interesting, having not used one myself or been involved with a woman that used one. Hopefully, neither shall come to pass.

However, the most intriguing part about your new Cosmo look was the cover. Yowza! I am hoping that the young lady in red is both real and available. Feel free to give her my number and e-mail address, and keep up the good work.

In Love In SE PO Town


The Mercury wishes to clarify statements made in its October 11, 2001 edition in On My Soapbox. In the piece entitled "White Guilt?" the Mercury made several statements that are not factually supported. The Mercury stated that the insurance costs associated with Roderick Franklin's program "Hiphop In the Park" were "suspiciously cut to zero" by Gales Creek Insurance Services. Hiphop In the Park did not experience any insurance costs because the City of Portland, at the last minute, decided to waive any insurance requirement for the program. The Mercury also reported that Gales Creek Insurance Services is a company that contracts with the city for special event insurance. Gales Creek Insurance Services is, in fact, an independent insurance agency that works with the City for special event insurance. It is not under contract to the City. The Mercury regrets the original publication of "White Guilt" and wishes to set the record straight that Gail's Creek Insurance Services' actions were not grounded in "veiled prejudice" or "shame."