I have read with much amusement and some dismay the recent mailbag full of letters trashing John Cloud (“New York Fetish,” 8/1) and Jason Cherkis (“Girly Town,” 8/8) for their provocative pieces.

This selection of reader feedback only reinforces Cloud’s hypothesis—mainly, D.C.’s got big problems and they don’t all emanate from the mayor’s office. By taking themselves too seriously, D.C. residents lack a rich sense of humor. It’s the nature of Washington. People are drawn here like moths to a flame to “make a difference” and “do big things.” A noble cause, for sure. Unfortunately, obsessions with self-important special interests suppress an appreciation for a diversity of controversial opinions, to the detriment of those of us who recognize and appreciate commentary that is not supposed to read like a well-balanced policy brief.

Is the point of “New York Fetish” really whether N.Y.C. is better than D.C.? Of course not—the point is to be entertained by some provocative insights. Was “Girly Town” trying to educate the general public on the acoustical quality of Lilith Fair? I can’t imagine a less stimulating piece. The mission is to entertain and I think Washington City Paper is doing a fine job. In the meantime, the readers of this paper need to live up to the progressive mantra and…just chill.

Glover Park

via the Internet