August 25, 1980 12:00 PM

Aykroyd & Belushi

Who are those critics, and why are they saying those terrible things about The Blues Brothers (PEOPLE, August 4)? Rarely is a movie as entertaining. The cast was fantastic and the music not only good, but at times awesome.

Patty DeWitt

Imperial Beach, Calif.

I was hired as an extra in The Blues Brothers. After seeing the film, I felt utterly ashamed for having made a contribution, albeit slight, to this overblown insult to the spiritual and cultural values of black musicians everywhere. The “church scene” was nothing short of blasphemy and left me with the feeling of having sold my soul for $150.

Charles M. Bagguess


Barbara Bush

I recently met and chatted with Barbara Bush at a local Republican party. Your story is entirely accurate. She is a kind and gracious lady. As for “standing by her man,” when I asked Barbara for her autograph, she signed “Barbara Bush (Mrs. George Bush).”

Martha Miller

Beaumont, Texas

D.H. Lawrence

My friends and I resent the elitist wisecrack by Ms. Steinert, the publicity director of the recent Lawrence festival. Since it is the apparent belief of these Eastern ricos with their cultural evangelism that they invented D.H. Lawrence just in time for the promotion, it would no doubt surprise them to know that many of us have not only heard of Mr. Lawrence, but have read his prose and poetry and admired his paintings. The condescending sniping of arrivistes and self-appointed pedants has become one of the few tiresome parts of living in this beautiful country that is rediscovered every few years by a new set of missionaries.

Kate McGraw

Santa Fe

Recently I attended a poetry reading at Columbia University given by the same “literary heavies” attending the homage to D.H. Lawrence. My thoughts were these: Peter Orlovsky took off with a leap/and promptly got lost in his compost heap./Allen Ginsberg prolonged his stay/and chanted away and away and away./ Now William Burroughs, I have a hunch,/should have stayed out to his naked lunch. Gregory Corso: With all that rant and raving fire,/he’d make a fantastic funeral pyre.

Diane Leslie Wiggins

New Britain, Conn.

Rex Smith

We were appalled to learn about Rex Smith’s three-year marriage. For years we have been reading in numerous teen magazines that he was single. Why did he lead us and thousands of other girls on? Thank you for opening our eyes.

Loretta, Amy & Cindy Le Garde

Bemidji, Minn.

Apparently, Rex Smith has yet to learn it’s not being married that the public objects to. It didn’t hurt Clark Gable. It’s the lie.

Cheryl A. Smith

Danielson, Conn.

Joyce DeVillez

How can Police Sgt. Robert Overby say that Joyce DeVillez should have “followed the rules” of society? She did try to get help but police and social workers refused to interfere since it was a “family matter.” What is happening to this country when a woman has to resort to “murder for hire” to save herself and her family?

Laurie Line

El Cajon, Calif.

I only wish my poor mother had had the money and connections to have the same thing done to my “father.” As the youngest of eight children of a wife and child abuser, I know the devastating effects this can have on the victims’ emotional stability. Luckily, liquor killed my father before I got big enough to kill him myself. Joyce DeVillez should be released, and anyone who disputes this has obviously never had to live in such an environment.

Name withheld


Dr. W. Gerald Austen

It’s no wonder Boston surgeon Austen finds that celebs make “superb patients.” Unlike ordinary hospital patients, they don’t have to wait half an hour to have their buzzers answered. Nor do their doctors generally treat them like cretins. It’s easy to be cooperative in these circumstances. Indeed, it may be that the only human beings many doctors don’t somehow feel superior to are celebrities.

Karen Meehan

Monsey, N.Y.

Gay Talese

I suspect that author Talese is working his way through the Ten Commandments, and hope he’ll consider Steal as the title for the book he threatens to write about the N.Y. Yankees. Since he’ll have seven to go after that, he might do well to follow Moses’ example and call on the aid of a ghost.

Nancy L. Ryan

Cambridge, Mass.

Russ Anglin

I think your article on the melon tester was nutty. Who’d buy something for $30 when watermelons cost so little?

Nick Chicorikas

New York City

I worked for a wholesale fruit and produce outfit and we sold thousands of watermelons. We tested them this way (my first day on the job I thought my leg was being pulled, but it works): Take a broom straw about two-thirds the length of the melon to be tested. Place the straw across the width in the center so it’s free to pivot. On a green melon it will move very sluggishly. On a ripe melon, however, it will instantly pivot and align itself with the length of the melon. This is the water-divining principle in action.

Joseph Chamberlain

Lakeville, Mass.

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