POLY-LOVE

DEAR I, ANONYMOUS—"Just what the fuck is wrong with monogamy?" ["Too Much of a Good Thing," I, Anonymous, June 14] That's kind of like saying, "Just what the fuck is wrong with heterosexuality?" Both monogamous and polyamorous lifestyles exist aside from each other, and both are absolutely amazing ways to share LOVE and INTIMACY! Take a look at the word itself: "Poly" meaning many, "Amorous" is being inclined or disposed to love, especially sexual LOVE!

Carly Bovaria and Steve De Rosa, a polyamorous couple

SAVE THE KITTIES

DEAR MERCURY—In response to I, Anonymous, it is unfortunate that he or she harbors such vitriol for cats ["Cat Scratch," I, Anonymous, June 21]. If Anonymous is really bothered by all the unwanted animals in ads and alleyways, he or she should start giving their time and energy (and/or money!) to one of the many local shelters whose mission is to decrease the number of unwanted, abandoned, homeless, and/or mistreated "pets" in the US. As for his or her strange problem with the word "kitty" and general sourness, I simply advise Anonymous to start volunteering with shelter animals as soon as possible. Then he or she will learn how many bigger issues there are to be concerned with, while getting some obviously needed unconditional love.

Amanda Burke

MADE IN CHINA

DEAR MERCURY—Regarding Marjorie Skinner's Sold Out column last week ["Sameunderneath Branches Out," Sold Out, June 21]. When we buy products made in China, we give away our local wages. The laboring humans that live here have their quality of life eroded by the fact that our designers spend their money in China and elsewhere where labor is cheap. Every time we support a company that exports our labor, we make it harder for our workers to have normal standards of living. Sameunderneath is not avoiding transportation by having their clothes made in China. They are saving money on labor. Is that ethical? Portland's own Duchess has a similar practice. They have that "family of tailors" that builds the suits they design. And, that "family" happens to live in China. Consumers have to realize that if they want to buy a shirt, a suit, a pair of shoes, or any goods that come from a humane and ethical source, they have to pay a lot of money. The fact is consumers in the States are not ready to pay for the humanity they dream of.

Donovan Skirvin

WHAT IS THIS "WHAMBY"?

DEAR WHAMBY, AKA S.—Do not imagine that you can learn carpentry, or any real trade for that matter, in a week of orientation ["The Carpenter Class," Letters, June 21]. Do not imagine that a fuel-efficient vehicle has yet been invented that can haul any kind of load. Also, do not imagine that tools are not expensive or that they're light and loveable and will not cut your fucking arm off. Know this, whamby: $29 an hour is a fair wage for a skilled journeyman carpenter. I hate smug cunts like you, S. I hate the way you assume that skilled, organized workers are overpaid because you're too busy darning your fucking bangs and checking your MySpace page. You, and people like you are a scourge on this world, pretending that you are blue collar or that you are down when you are simply lazy, simply lecherous. There has never been, and never will be, a place in my heart for turds like you: the untalented and docile artist, the sloppy craftsmen, the jaw-flapping shitheel. Dig it: artisan, craftperson, skilled laborer=badass. So go find yourself something and be proud of it, and quit squawking for the fucking powers that be, whamby.

Brian Hart, Journeyman/ Las Vegas Carpenter's Union/ local #1977(retired)

CONGRATULATIONS TO BRIAN for winning the letter of the week by virtue of his use of the word "whamby"! Dude, Brian, you gotta let us know what that means. We tried Google, Wikipedia, and Urban Dictionary, and we can't find it anywhere! Nonetheless, it's our new favorite insult. For expanding our repertoire, Brian gets two tickets to the Laurelhurst Theater and lunch for two at No Fish! Go Fish!, where there's no whambies allowed—SNAP!

OUR COLORING CONTEST WINNER!

Weeks ago, we asked YOU to color a black and white version of this week's cover—and guess what? YOU DID! Congratulations to Mercury reader and pro colorist CASEY PEREZ whose vibrant work and wicked mad coloring skillz are featured on this week's cover. As well as having his work plastered all over Portland, Casey also wins a whopping 200 bucks! Congrats also go out to our very talented runners-up, Katisyn Sweeny (age 2), Addie Collins and Sheila Baraga, and Tali Pukerson (we think... the handwriting was hard to read). Check out all their work—with artistic criticism supplied by our own art critic Chas Bowie—this week on BLOGTOWN, PDX (www.portlandmercury.com/blogtown)!