Garver: 'I Hear You'

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It's time again for your words to fill up this column instead of mine. In the past few months, I've received complimentary, unfavorable, clever, and unintelligible responses to my columns. Unfortunately, we don't have the space to print them all. So, if you've written to me and aren't quoted below, your words were no less welcome and appreciated than those that are. And to paraphrase the Chicago Cubs' (unfortunately) necessary slogan, "Wait till next time."

In AMERICA'S BIG HANG-UP, I discussed the "do not call" list for telemarketers.

JIM wrote, "There's one interesting fact that I thought you missed ... Did you know that political fund-raising calls are exempt from this legislation? Seems a bit hypocritical to me."

LARRY, a telemarketer, wishes that if people don't reassess their positions about the list, he hopes that they will " ... go through the same pain you're causing so many others just trying to make a living."

JO ANN said that the telemarketing situation "makes one long for the good old days of door-to-door salesmen."

ADMIN ARI MEETS BAGHDAD BOB was a mock dialogue between the recently resigned Ari Fleischer and the recently resigned Baghdad Bob:

I had a feeling that MARGARET had some minor problems with that particular column when I saw that the subject line in her e-mail read, "You disgust me."

DANIEL wrote, "Bravo, Lloyd Garver, your Ari-Baghdad Bob piece is a hoot ... It's a grim world and sometimes people like you make it a bit more bearable."

MICHAEL: "Dude, that was funny."

MATT: "I think it would be more funny to read a similar dialogue between you and a wooden nickel."

In NO MORE TERRORISM - WANNA BET? I discussed the hastily scuttled Pentagon futures plan that would have allowed people to bet on terrorism targets and dates.

ZULK wrote, "I was truly amazed at the stupidity of this idea. Of all places, the Pentagon, and of all people, the best brains in the country, come up with this terrorist-inviting venture."

JEANNE commented: "Sometimes I can't tell the difference between reality and your creative mind. Maybe reality is as funny as you are?"

JAMES: "Your writing is not humorous. You are apparently a fool.

Prior to the California election, in RECALL THIS RECALL, I suggested that the recall smacked of bad sportsmanship.

MARK, a Republican from Texas said, "I couldn't agree with you any more! ... (They are a) bunch of pouting 3-year-olds."

TITO, said "... You know darn well most people are just a bunch of losers with nothing better to do with their lives and money but to try for 15 minutes of fame. If there's something wrong, it's the process but it is NOT the recall. The process can be changed next time."

EDWIN, referring to Gray Davis, said, "Let us not waste the three years remaining in the hands of someone who has the media hiding his bad points for him. Let us have a leader!!!"

In CAN THE DEMOCRATS BE WINNERS? I said that the Democratic Party is the Chicago Cubs of politics. Even when it looks like they should have no problem winning, they find a way to blow it.

STEVE commented, "You forgot (about) the 'fans.' The fans will not support a team that tries to tie or even lose. The Democrats will not do what it takes to win in the face of a challenge.... But what do I know?? I'm a Detroit Tigers die-hard."

In SEEING RED ON NEW GREENBACKS, I wondered if it was really worth the government spending millions of our dollars on slick commercials to advertise its new $20 bill.

MARY said, "It is another waste of the taxpayers' money. Will they ever get a clue?"

JAMES said, "How true! But you and I both know that if the Treasury wants to give us each a bagful of twenties, we will gladly take them. That "ad" money could very well be used in many other more worthy places."

BRETT: "The commercials are not trying to sell anything, just inform so you don't end up losing your shorts with counterfeit money."

JIM asked, "Why is the government trying so hard to sell us on this? Were this an Oliver Stone movie, there would be a huge conspiracy with secret microchips to trace our daily movements by the currency in our pockets."

DAN: "I saw the new $20 bill recently and discovered that it's about 3 mm (.1 inch) shorter than the old new $20 bill (which is the same size as the old old $20 bill). So, it's really true the dollar just doesn't go as far as it used to!"

In A SORRY STATE OF AFFAIRS, I talked about all the insincere apologies that we seem to be hearing these days.

In an obviously heartfelt reply, PAM wrote, "I want to apologize for not writing to you sooner. I've read your column weekly, but nothing inspired me to send a comment. I'm sorry."

CARL said, "Frankly, I wish Arnold (Schwarzenegger) had the guts not to apologize (for his behavior towards women) and instead call attention to what those allegations really were — a last-minute smear campaign by yet another weasel liberal about to get thrown out on his ass."

Two other e-mails illustrate the range of opinions that I receive:

In response to my column on the recall, DUFFY wrote, "Great article, Lloyd. Lloyd Garver for President!!!"

But before my head swelled too much (and before I put together a campaign committee), I had to deal with GILBERT'S response to my column on apologies:

"Lloyd: I am sure sorry I read this_____."

And Gilbert, I am sure sorry you feel that way.

Readers, keep writing.

Lloyd Garver has written for many television shows, ranging from "Sesame Street" to "Family Ties" to "Frasier." He has also read many books, some of them in hardcover.

By Lloyd Garver