<em>“I once spent a year in Philadelphia. I think it was a Sunday.”</em>
Well, I am off to Philly for a week of baseball, beer, summertime fun and family visitations. My plan is to continue to produce a column whilst out amongst the living—you did not think you would get rid of me, did you? But as I pack for my trip back east, this week I offer some letters from the CVD mailbag.
Are these letters real? They are as real as the Phillies’ chances of winning the World Series this year.
<em>“Why do you hate BYU so much?”</em>
—Jared, Orem, Utah
This may shock some of you, but before moving to Utah a decade ago, I was a big BYU fan. Rooted for them back in 1984–even though I thought the Washington Huskies should have been crowned champs. I often talk about putting on a UHF channel (anyone under the age of 30 will have to ask their parents what UHF is) at 9 PM on a Saturday night to watch Raycom Sports simulcast of BYU games. They would play weird schools like Utah State. Where the heck was Utah State located? What kind of backwards hicks live there?
But then I became an Aggie. And now I hate BYU. I do not wish any harm come to BYU fans. I just think their bumptious self-importance is laughable.
<em>“I knew a liberal, America hating jerk like you would be against the death penalty. What you criminal-hugging commies don’t understand is that killing killers is justice! Fry them all!”</em>
—Clint E., Pocatello, Idaho
No, Clint, it is not justice. It is vengeance. And I understand that. If some thug harmed someone I love and I knew where they were, there is a chance that instead of contacting the police that I would seek them out and take care of them myself.
But that is the human need for retribution. Governments, state or federal, should be above that. Governments should not capitulate to most visceral of human emotions. A lifetime in a jail cell with limited privileges and no means to ever be free again is more than enough.
Justice is too often an arbitrary decision made by those who think in narrow terms. What can render a death penalty in one place may not do so over an imaginary line just a few miles away. Or one offense which is nothing more than a vice under one flag can result in the loss of your life under another.
That is not justice. That is circumstance.
<em>“So, no one likes you and you are going to be a bad guy? Cry me a river! Maybe no one likes you because you are not a nice person. That group that threw you out sounds like a bunch of smart eggs to me.”</em>
Lynn F., North Logan
Many people like me. I am a people person!
My “heel” column was mostly dry humor. It was more of a parable than an actual declaration of evil intent. My premise that professional wrestling is popular because it mirrors the basic human desire to give people and things easy to understand titles is spot on in my mind.
And I was not thrown out of any place. Nor did I quit. I failed to win re-election. 5/8th of the voters said I did not do a good job; or they just do not like me.
But that does not make any sense. Because I am very likeable…or am I?
<em>“Of course you would use name-calling to bad mouth the libertarian cause. That is all you got you pathetic loser!”</em>
<em>“What movies are you going to see this summer?”</em>
None. At least none of the big movies. I am not a huge comic book fan. And 95% of these summer films seem to be in that genre. I also have to be motivated to see these big CGI “blow crap up” films.
In Philly, there are a trio of theatres call the Ritz. They show indie films. When I am home I might pick one to see. It is better than having my senses assaulted for two hours—which is what nearly all summer films do anymore.
<em>“So, what did your 10,000th Tweet end up being?”</em>
—Steve R., Logan
I forgot to keep count. Whatever it was, it probably sounded funnier in my head than it read on the screen.
<em>“Thank you for your column on Utah’s love of awful chain food restaurants. They kill off locally run businesses and create terrible habits in all of us.”</em>
—Sally, Evanston, Wyoming
In a short, few hours I am going to be in Philly eating the best food on Earth. And not one bite of it will be processed, or from a corporate giant. I do not know why Utahns have such an embarrassing need to eat garbage. But the effects on Utah kids is such that I doubt the next generation will be any better at making good choices for dinner than we are.
Well, that should tide you over until next week. Time for me to board a plane to the City of Brotherly Love. Keep sending in those comments telling me how bad I suck. I love them…because I am a heel.