Commentary Crunch

Dear Editor,
I was reading your article last week on terrible parenting and physical abuse and it occurred to me that maybe people just didn’t understand how to use relaxation techniques. Like there’s this one I learned in drama class last week where you lie down and you tense the muscles in your toes as hard as you can and count to like twenty or something and then let them go, and then the muscles in your feet (which I don’t really understand because my toes are part of my feet but I’m not about to ask what this means), as hard as you can until twenty, and then ankles and calves and so on (you can skip the middle parts if you’re a prude or really farty or something) and by the end you’re relaxed, and don’t you think parents would stop punching their kids if only they did this instead? It’s amazing. I fall asleep doing it all the time.
Love and hearts,


Dear Class,
Thank you for the tip!


Dear Editor,
I read the letter from Classof2011RulezWHATWHAT. This is a terrible tip to pass along. Clenching any muscles as hard as you can without a proper warmup and sufficient training is just asking for an injury. Your noted publication should not be encouraging people to injure themselves. Instead, it should encourage people to hire a personal trainer such as myself. I would be happy to teach them how to do this safely.


Dear Personal,
Thank you for the tip!


Dear Editer,
How come your starting to put ads in your colum? Obvously “” was not really his name and, his just trying to get you to look up his sight. Your better then this.
Think abot it,


Dear Weary (Wary?),
Thank you for the thought!


Dear Editor,
I know that your policy is to publish letters as they were submitted; have you considered encouraging your readers to consult with a professional proofreader? In the letter submitted by “WearyConsumor” I discovered fifteen errors within the first thirty seconds. If I had taken the time to damage my mind by re-reading it, I’m sure my tally would have numbered in the thousands. Perhaps you should also consider refusing to publish badly written letters.


Dear Word,
Thank you for the thought!


Dear Editor,
Your letter from WordNerd was clearly written by someone with no concepts of math. People who don’t understand that “thousands” of errors would be orders of magnitude greater than “fifteen” errors shouldn’t throw numbers around like that.


Dear Solar,
Thank you.


Dear Editor,
Hyperbole and other forms of exaggeration are well-accepted in English. Being smart at math apparently does nothing to help people understand communication.


Dear Rhetorical,


Dear Editor,
I would like to complain about the use of false names in online communication. “RhetoricalQuestioner” isn’t even that sensical (sensible?). It implies that the writer of the letter is asking questions that he does not want answered, but in fact he didn’t even ask a question. There wasn’t even a question implied. No wonder he wanted to hide his real name — he can’t possibly stand behind what he wrote.
Darren Abernathy, Lincoln


Dear Darren,


Dear Editor,
I was appalled to read the letter by Darren Abernathy. Why does he just assume that “RhetoricalQuestion” was a he? This type of sexism is rampant in society, and publishing such letters does nothing to help the problem.


Dear Gen,



Dear Editor,
Oh, puh-leeeeze. “He” has long been the pronoun of choice for indeterminate gender, and while it’s true that springs from a male-biased culture, it’s not worth trying to revamp a building block of current language just to make a point. Plus, maybe “Darren” is a woman’s name in this case. PLUS, I can’t even tell if the complaint is that Darren made the assumption or that the assumption was that a male wrote a stupid letter — is GenderWars upset against the apparent sexism against men or the apparent sexism against women? This is why chicks shouldn’t write letters. I am assuming GenderWars is a chick, and you know what? I’m okay with making that assumption.
Get over it,


Dear Change,


Dear Editor,
I am the eleven-year-old boy that you witnessed on the bus being berated, sworn at, threatened, mocked, and humiliated by my father. I appreciate the article that you wrote. It’s too early to tell whether or not I’ll be okay, long-term, but having someone acknowledge that the way he treated me was wrong — that helped a little bit, knowing that I’m not completely alone, and being told that I don’t deserve it. But I’m kind of curious. Isn’t anyone else concerned about it? Or is it really more important to correct other people’s letters?
Scared and Confused


Dear Scared,
I’m so sorry. I got some other letters, but they all said either “that guy should be shot” or “that kid needs to man up,” and we didn’t publish those because we won’t publish suggestions of violence, or suggestions that abuse is acceptable.
I don’t have an answer.
I don’t know why I didn’t say anything on the bus, except that your father was twice my size and if he would treat his own son that way I was scared of what he might do to me. I know that doesn’t help you at all, and I wish I could have figured out a way to help you, but you’re in so deep that nothing a stranger could do would save you. I hate that he only acted like he liked you when you took an opportunity to insult your sister. You did it cleverly; I’ll give you credit for that… but since he insulted you about everything else, I was disgusted that your only positive reinforcement was for tearing down someone else.
I don’t know what to say. It’s easier to insult others’ ideas or spelling or prejudices instead of trying to deal with the problem.
We have all failed you. All of us.
I’m sorry.
Sincerely, and with a broken heart,


Dear Editor,
Man up.


Dear Typical,
Thank you for the tip!

This entry was posted in Thinky Thoughts, Words, Words, Words, Writing and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Commentary Crunch

  1. Kendra says:

    Creatively conceived.

    It is (lack of) conversation like this that makes me seriously want to quit social media with greater and greater frequency.

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