TO THE MERCURY: [Re: "Punch! Drunk! Love!" July 7, about questionable tactics used by the Hooper Center sobering station]. I was a client of Hooper about seven years ago. A girlfriend was in the process of dumping me and pressuring me to move out. After a month of enormous stress, I lost it and downed a 12 pack of PBR and some NyQuil. I made the mistake of calling someone and they had the cops check on me. I was taken from my apartment and thrown into Hooper. I wasn't acting like a nut--just bummed out and quiet.

I laid on a cement floor and shivered in a cell alone for hours. I had my face to the crack at the bottom of the door and cried and begged for someone to talk to me and tell me why I had been locked up. The staff was laughing as they mocked me.

A funny twist is about two years later while working for a home theater company, I walked into an old lady's condo near NW 23rd to install some speakers. Neil Goldschmidt was asleep on the couch and I startled him awake. It was his mother's place. I didn't know Goldschmidt had started Hooper at the time.

Drunk Boy

DEAR MERCURY: I'm writing in response to the profile of the Timbers Army [June 30]. I would first like to thank Phil Busse for taking the time to share a pint with us and find out what the crazy ass Timbers Army is all about.--Heck, he even bought me a pint!

However, I would like to clear up a few mistakes in the article on behalf of all of us in Section 107: 1) Our name is not the TIMBER--Army but rather the--TIMBERS Army. 2) The Portland Timbers are not an amateur team; they are most definitely--professional.--While the lads certainly do not make Damon Stoudamire's salary, they are paid for their efforts.--The Timbers compete in the United Soccer Leagues First Division, which is one step below MLS. 3) We do not hate Chicago.--In fact, the Chicago Fire supporters, Section 8, and the Timbers Army have formed a partnership united against the boring masses. 4) The Timbers Army has never been and never will be about hooliganism, fighting, or violence of any kind.--While I appreciate Phil's description of--me as "trim and athletic," I'm pretty sure I would lose any "Saturday--evening brawl."

As always, anyone and everyone is welcome to join the Timbers Army in Section 107 and sing your lungs out and kill your liver.

Jeremy Wright, Timbers Army

TO THE EDITOR: This letter is in response to the dude who wrote an "I, Anonymous" about guitar players sucking ["Where Have All the Ax Men Gone?" July 7]. I totally agree. Pedals are a crutch. Plug that shit straight into your amp and shred! Too many guitar players get on stage and play basic shitty chords thru a million effects pedals to disguise the fact they aren't that good.

If he (or anyone else) is looking for some face melters, he should go to Dante's on the 29th to see the Accused. The dude Tom from that band has been shredding at beer pounding speeds for two decades now. Also Ryan and Graham, from openers Municipal Waste and Annihilation Time (respectively) smoke strings just as intensely.

If you wanna find guitar players who actually play, you've gotta search the underground shit. These guys are too busy getting wasted and jammin' guitar all day to worry about having an "image," scoring record deals, or finding girlfriends--which is all that most Portland "rockers" worry about.


CONGRATS TO C.GRANDE for winning the Mercury "Letter of the Week!" which includes two free passes to the Laurelhurst, two free tickets to see Hater at Dante's on August 18, and a $30 dinner at No Fish! Go Fish! who also really know how to shred--"pork," that is. (God, that was stupid.)