I know I said I was moving [Letters, WW, "Take This City and Shove It," Feb. 12, 2003], but until Canadian Immigration approves my move to Victoria (so I can speak French, eat French fries and French toast, drink French wines, and French kiss), I am stuck here in my beautiful birth-city.

But I must bitch one more time. Mary Volm of our fair city's Office of Transportation claims that most people like the new parking meters, as quoted in your kvetch story ["Kvetchfest III: The Bitch Is Back," April 16, 2003].

Bullshit. And excuse my French.

If Ms. Volm really thinks that a mommy is gonna lug the 2.3 kids from the car to the meter, then back to apply the sticker, with her kids in tow, in the rain, all so that she can visit the Gap, she, Ms. Volm, is living in Tikrit.

Cette mère and ses enfants will not support the businesses of downtown but rather will venture to one of the malls matching her SUV, where she merely parks for free and shuttles her brood into the heated confines of the Gap there.

And don't get me started about us who own convertibles.

And businesses in downtown wonder, while the City Council and other agencies keep the circle jerk a-happenin'. Hey, Portland, it's time for a regime change (and not Frances-con-me)!

Brian Toye
Southwest 41st Avenue


I was intrigued to read Portland's only two billboard companies' excuses for refusing to display the PETA ad claiming "Feeding kids meat is child abuse," despite the well-known link between obesity and meat consumption ["Billboard Beef," WW, March 5, 2003].

ClearChannel Communications' Frank Podany said that they reject ads with "negative statements," claiming the message was "inflammatory to the meat industry."

Meadow Outdoor Advertising's spokesman called PETA's message "inappropriate." So the standards of the only two billboard companies in Portland must be that ads should not be negative toward any particular food industry, right?

I doubt they are this principled about the matter, considering I recently saw a billboard in town advertising a Dodge Durango as "a big juicy cheeseburger in a land of tofu." Does this message not imply negative assumptions about tofu? Does the billboard industry only censor "negative statements" when the statements slam less mainstream products, or products not produced by industries from which they can earn big profits?

Tom Soppe
Southeast Harold Street