By People Staff
May 19, 1997 12:00 PM

Reaction was mixed over our Before They Were Famous cover story (PEOPLE, April 28). Though many younger readers thanked us for reminding them that geekdom needn’t be permanent, others chastised us for not giving golfing phenomenon Tiger Woods more than a slice—obviously inappropriate in his case—of the cover.

  • Okay, it’s not enough that we women have to deal with the fact that there are females in this world who look like Halle Berry and Gwyneth Paltrow, and we don’t. But then we find out that those same women looked gorgeous even in high school. Life just isn’t fair!
  • LISA ADDISON, San Antonio
  • I think the time has come for Matthew McConaughey to be promoted from handsomest boy at Longview High to Sexiest Man Alive. Don’t you?
  • MELAINE RATCLIFF, Lafayette, Ind.
  • Tom Cruise used to be just a face in a crowd? Drew Carey used to be thin? Gillian Anderson used to be bizarre? My, oh, my, there is hope for us poor nondescript teenagers out here.
  • SARAH SCHILLACI, Ridgewood, N.J.

Like Conan O’Brien, I graduated from high school in 1981. So how come I’m 34 and he’s 31?

HOLLY SMITH, Marshfield, Mass.

Good genes? Actually, Conan celebrated his 34th birthday last month. We regret the error.—ED.

  • With your picture of Teri Hatcher you note she went to “Freemont High in Sunnyvale.” It’s Fremont High. I should know; we had biology together.
  • ROB WINTER, Pleasanton, Calif.

You’ve got to be kidding me! Tiger Woods is making history, and you’re printing yet another issue of Before They Were Famous? PEOPLE, you really dropped the ball on this one.

BETH TRASK, Virginia Beach, Va.

Your magazine seems to be stuck in a time warp. Was it really necessary to churn out another Before They Were Famous cover story? The first time was fun, the second time mildly amusing, but the subsequent issues (I’ve lost count) have been ho-hum replays.

JANET GOSS, Leawood, Kans.


Thank you for your fantastic article on Erma. No one deserved this more than she. I take back every word I wrote complaining about the one page you reported on her death last year.

MARIE J. DUPONT, Cypress, Calif.

My mother and I don’t agree on a lot of things, but Erma Bombeck always brought us together. We would share her humorous books and columns over the phone and in person. Bill Bombeck was right—she was the mother of the United States, and all her children sorely miss her.


As a friend of Erma’s for 26 years, I found your tribute accurate and affectionate. Her agent Aaron Priest put it best: “People used to ask me, ‘Is Erma really as nice as she appears?’ And I’d say, ‘Well, actually, she’s nicer.’ ”



Golf, which came from Scotland and stands for Gentlemen Only, Ladies Forbidden, has been dull and stuffy for years. Tiger Woods is a breath of fresh air. No one can hold that Tiger!

DOREEN LAATSCH, Greenfield, Wis.

Not only do I agree with President Clinton’s remark that Tiger’s hugging his father was his best shot of the day (it brought tears to my eyes), but I also think this man’s accomplishments definitely deserved the cover of your magazine.

VALERIE MISH, Camino, Calif.

Congratulations are surely due Tiger Woods! How wonderful that he is able to achieve such tremendous accomplishments in spite of the apparent abuse he suffered as an 11-year-old at the hands of his father. Earl Woods should be imprisoned for subjecting his gifted son to “prisoner-of-war interrogation” and “psychological intimidation” tactics. It just sickens me to think of all the fathers of young children who will read about his methods and think that torture is the way to raise a champion.



Best Buy acted improperly in having Ron Kahlow arrested for price-comparing. However, this ends up as another case of American greed. Kahlow isn’t standing up for an ideal. (He could have done that for the $10,000 and the apology Best Buy offered.) He is standing up for his (and his lawyer’s) wallet by trying to get $780,000 in a lawsuit. The judicial system should be used to get what is rightfully yours, to punish those who did wrong and to compensate for lost wages and medical expenses. Not as a way of making a buck.


Piscataway, N.J.


It’s a very good thing that England gave us the Beatles first, because otherwise it would be absolutely impossible to forgive them for cursing us with the Spice Girls now.