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Dear Goddess…
Re: “Grope Against Hope,” Advice Goddess, by Amy Alkon (Oct. 20-26)

Could you consider getting a new Advice Goddess? She's the kind of columnist you'd expect in a lad mag.

In her latest column, she rehashes clichés from sociobiology that cavemen wanted to ensure fidelity and cavewomen wanted to snag a meal ticket. There's plenty of evidence that both sexes were fairly promiscuous.

But let's buy Amy's reasoning for a minute. If men are hardwired to want genetic progeny, wouldn't it make sense to become loving and caring after sex with a woman, whether on the first or the 51st date? After all, propagation is meaningless if the kid doesn't survive.

Amy doesn't think patriarchy has anything to do with the double-standard. Just because men have dominated politics, religion, culture, the law, the media, etc., for millennia, it makes no sense to her that they might skew the rules in their favor.

This will come as a shock to Amy but the nuclear family was not the norm in prehistoric times. Ever hear of "tribes"? People didn't have to depend on one mate to take care of them and their offspring. Other people helped. Both men and women hunted, gathered, foraged, etc.

Of course, a lot of guys read nonsense like this column and think it is the manly thing to dump women who sleep with them right away. (It doesn't say much for these guys' self-esteem that they only value women who must be begged, bribed and besieged to have sex with them.)

Men don't call back for a lot of reasons: Maybe they have a wife or girlfriend. Maybe they don't have the nerve to say they've changed their minds. Maybe the herpes has flared up again.

Here's some better advice for both women and men: If you want more than casual sex, get to know people better before sleeping with them.

Suzie Siegel

Water Works
Re: “The Life Aquatic,” by Scott Harrell (Oct. 27-Nov. 2)

I liked your story, especially the parts about ME! It was great meeting you, and, though it would have been more great fodder for the story, I'm glad I didn't dump us in the river.

Donna Self
University of South Florida

Thanks for the nice piece on our Hillsborough float. I'm especially grateful that none of the students said anything incriminating (or that you kindly left things out). Feel free to join us for any future paddles.

Thomas Hallock
Visiting Professor, USF

The DIY War
Re: “The Only Media Choice for President,” by John Sugg (Oct. 20-26)

Just wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed reading this article. I hope everyone reads it and thinks hard before voting.

On a personal note, my brother is a member of the National Guard who is serving in Iraq. We have been sending him food, at his request, because he is not being properly fed. He was as thin as a rail when he went over and lost 35 pounds in the first six months. He also asked me to send him a billy club that the Army wouldn't provide him. The "regular" Army issues them but the members of the National Guard are writing home for them. I purchased one at the Army Navy Surplus Store. How sad is this?

Keep up the good work in getting the truth out to the public

Rosemary Telega
Via e-mail

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