TO WM. STEVEN HUMPHREY: [RE: Destination Fun, August 25]. In your description for the Pizzazz talent show you wrote "...literally dripping with talent from every orifice..."

"Literally"? Get out the dictionary, you knuckle head [sic]. Misusing a word can be funny, of course. But it just so happens that "literally" is so badly misused by some [sic] many people that it loses any possible ironic edge and comes across as just sloppy. I'm under the impression that you consider yourself a writer. Behave like one.

David Millstone

WM. STEVEN HUMPHREY RESPONDS: Thanks for the warning, Officer "Word Police." And speaking of last Saturday's Pizzazz! Talent Show, we'd like to congratulate our big winners! Taking third place was the fabulous drag Siamese twins Gigi Bang Bang and Oliver Easy; coming in second was the amazing acrobalancing act known as "The Trained Professionals," and our grand prize winners were the awesomely SEXIFIED hiphop dance team, "Sauce" (who we'll be profiling in an upcoming issue)! Congrats also to the rest of the acts who were dripping with talent—from their vaginas. LITERALLY.

TO THE EDITOR: I saw Brian Wilson's "Smile" concert with no expectations about the show [Music, "Surf's Up," Zac Pennington, Aug 25]. It turned out to be one of the best overall concerts I've seen in a decade. So what if Brian has a flat affect and doesn't come off as a showman? I've seen several concerts by his contemporaries in which showmanship far outweighed the performance, and Brian Wilson's voice has withstood the long troubled years of his life in a way I never expected. If Zac Pennington never saw the show live, I hope he gets a complementary ticket and then writes a review. If he still feels the album or the tour should never have happened then I can respect the fact we have differing opinions. If Mr. Pennington feels attending the concert is beneath him because he disliked the DVD and still wants to label his column as being a concert preview, then perhaps he should consider putting "poser" in his byline.

Marcus Miller

DEAR EDITOR: Zac Pennington makes some decent points about Brian Wilson, but he does appear to be a cynic. This doesn't make him any hipper or more knowledgeable; it just makes it hard to read anything he writes without doing a little eye rolling. Why should any reader trust a cynic any more than a cheerleader? Both will put a dent in your paper's credibility.

Jeff "Punk Rock" Martin

TO THE EDITOR: Portland (like all of America) is the epicenter of male sexual pleasure, not porn; it's important not to confuse the two [Letters, Aug 11, in which "One Angry Girl" calls Portland the epicenter of porn]. I love sex, don't think it's dirty, and ain't ashamed of it, but because the sex industry has zilch to offer me as a straight female, I'm not too into porn or strip bars. "Straight" porn is not, as it implies, focused on both male and female pleasure—just mostly men's. A woman getting a huge dildo shoved up her ass is not going to turn me on (you're the ones with the prostates, boys). Women looking drugged, or in pain, getting fucked by ugly ass men and magically coming by the stimulation of their jackhammer penetration alone (if she comes at all) doesn't really do it for me either. Nor do hairless women, basketball boobs, or steroid-enhanced men. Thank god for (male) gay porn or I'd really have nothing to look at—even if, somewhat ironically, it's still created for men. 

Just because Portland has a gazillion strip bars and sex ads doesn't mean we're cutting-edge progressive: look at how many are for women. Until I get equal access to sexual gratification, until I'm not automatically called a "frigid, dysfunctional prude" for not wanting to watch women strip (because I'm... uh... STRAIGHT!), I'm not going to buy that it's all just part of the liberal/feminist package. It's fucked up, not to mention close-minded, that so many out there seem to think it is.


CONGRATS TO MARY for winning the Mercury "Letter of the Week," which includes two passes to the Laurelhurst, two tickets to see Little Brother at Berbati's on Sept. 3, and a $30 dinner at No Fish! Go Fish! (Agree or disagree with Mary? Let's duke it out in Blog Town, USA—your online destination for Portland's chattiest chat! www. portlandmercury.com)