Cheers & Jeers

The editors answer mail from our readers.

Field & Stream Online Editors

** Help Needed? **

Do you guys need some help with some campfire jokes? This crap in the February issue ("The Stories We Tell") is pitiful. Were these guys from the U.S.A. who told these stories? Damn, let's get real! Come to a cookout down here in Baldwin County, Alabama, and I guarantee you'll be coughing and farting, 'cause these boys will make you roll tears and lay on the ground laughing. Keep up those good fishing articles, 'cause I'm a fisherman at heart and I love the rush when they take my flies.
-Jeff Hazelwood
Robertsdale, Ala

Long Range or Long Wind?

I read David E. Petzal's "A Few Unkind Words on Hypervelocity" (April) with a great deal of interest, particularly his comments about Billy Dixon and his so-called mile-long shot at Adobe Walls. This is a good campfire tale, but it doesn't have the facts to support it. True, the .50-caliber Sharps that Dixon used could "reach out and touch someone," but I tend to think that Dixon's feat was pure luck. The old-timers could shoot well, but they drank a lot and could spin a good yarn, too.
-Peter Stines
via Internet

David E. Petzal replies: _ The true distance of Dixon's shot has never been verified, but everyone who was at Adobe Walls agreed that it was astonishing. Let's say it was only half a mile, and not a mile; that's still incredible. The Comanches thought so, too, and that was the point. _

Distaff Disdain

My response to Keith McCafferty's article "Distaff Distress" (March) is "Humph!" I lived in the bush for a year and a half, six months of that in a tent. Later, I lived in a cabin with no electricity or running water for five years. I was never sick. As to strength, in my prime I weighed 120 pounds and could dead-lift 300 pounds. The flabby, sissy urban woman of today may be "average," but she does not represent the norm, either medically or in strength. In fact (you won't print this because you are men), a hard-working farm woman will be stronger than an urban man, even if he is bigger. If you don't believe me, challenge such a woman to a lifting match.
-Willi Boepple
Victoria, British Columbia

I'm a woman and I really don't think I have more problems than guys. I just practice proper hygiene the same as I do at home. I balance my pack the way it feels right to me and if my husband doesn't like it, well, he can carry it. For a lot of years I've had one of those packs that squirmed, pulled my hair, and did whatever else babies do. Believe me, they are hard to balance, especially on a slippery log bridge across the creek. I think that more women need to learn about the special things that are outdoors in whatever they do.
-Meg Gluesing
Hamilton, Colo.

Some Widely Divergent Opinions

I want to compliment you on a great magazine; your rag only gets better with time. But I do have a problem with some of the hotheads who write to Cheers & Jeers. They need to lay off the steroids or else find another sport like curling or basket weaving.
-Bogie Melvin
Prairieville, La.

When I read your magazine, I was appalled. If I have to read such cuss words, your magazine will go in the garbage. I'm sure your advertisers would like to read this.
-Jason Sumpter
Eolia, Ky.

I have finally had it with your sarcasm and smart-aleck remarks. I have been a subscriber/reader of Field & Stream for over 40 years, but no more. Good-bye.
-Bill E. Miller
Fort Worth, Texas

I absolutely love your responses in Cheers & Jeers. Isn't honesty just the best?
-Lori Haver
via Internet

I can't believe that some of these people are worried about their kids learning pprofanity. As a father, if that's all I have to worry about with my son, I've got it made.
-Cory Daniels
Logan, Kan.

I'm only 14 years old and I love your magazine. I was reading your letters to the editor, and people need to stop complaining about vulgar language. If you want vulgar language, spend a day at middle school and you'll really hear some.
-T. Beckenhauer
via Internet

Storm Warnings...Heeded

Bob Marshall hit the nail on the head ("Storm Warnings," March and April). I have 30 years of service with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, and I can tell you that the money and positions have been going downhill for 10 to 15 years. We no longer plant fish in many streams as they may compete with endangered fish. Or we can't control predators because someone in Portland thinks they are "cute." Sportsmen need to ask where the funds are going and demand they be spent on the items we consider important.
-Steve Hutchinson
La Grande, Ore.

Thank you, Field & Stream, for exposing the sorry state of funding for state fish and wildlife agencies. Sportsmen and women pay more than any other group; sales taxes on hunting, fishing, and wildlife-dependent recreation alone exceed $5 billion per year, but less than 5 percent of that goes back into resource management. Nineteen states put back nothing. It is a disgraceful treatment of our fish and wildlife resources and the hunting and fishing tradition.
-Paul W. Hansen
Executive Director
Izaak Walton League of America
Gaithersburg, Md.

More Canadian Mischief, Eh?

I'd like to bring to your readers' attention the fact that you can't take your child across the border by yourself without a signed, witnessed letter from your spouse giving you permission. I found this out the hard way last summer when my father, myself, and my son went on a three-generation fishing trip of a lifetime to Manitoba. With the help of the folks at Air Canada, I was able to reach my wife and get a letter by fax. When we arrived in Winnipeg, Canadian customs asked for the letter, and they were not happy that it was not an original. But they let us in. I was told that this law makes it difficult for parents attempting to "steal" their children in divorce custody disputes. Take your kids hunting and fishing, but if you take them to Canada, be sure you have that letter.
-Christopher J. McGrath
Naperville, Ill.