The Morning File: The Mythological Mailbag answers your unasked questions

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The Mythological Morning File Mailbag is overflowing, we only just realized over the weekend when finally stepping onto the front porch.

It was so cold for months that we never bothered to see what the pretend postman -- sorry, postperson -- might have brought. We also didn't check the mailbox because we were hoping the postal service deficits had forced our postperson (given that name in part because he inhabits an intermediate existence between life and death, before taking another form of being) to be laid off, so we would never receive another bill.

Once we finally looked, here's some of what we found, which we answer as best we can, which means not very well:

Dear Morning File: I thought Luke Ravenstahl was going to be mayor for the rest of my life, or at least the next 50 years, whichever ended sooner. But now I hear he has no interest in running for re-election after first saying he would. Why the change of heart?

Answer: Odd as it sounds, he has some paranoid fantasy that the media and other critics are always out to get him, or at least make fun of him. Also, it's harder than it used to be to secretly do really cool stuff like ride in special police vehicles with sirens going.

Dear MF: I and 12 of my most serene friends trying to meditate on behalf of world peace in the name of all that is blissful in the universe were savagely beaten by police during the G-20 Summit in Pittsburgh in 2009, and nothing happened to the police chief. Now a few bucks earned by police went into one bank account instead of another, so the chief is ousted. Does this make any sense?

Answer: There's a good chance you were beaten by out-of-town police trying to enjoy their time away from home during the G-20. As you know Pittsburghers of any occupation are too friendly and polite to mistreat anyone, so Nate Harper couldn't really be held accountable for that. Only local police officials, however, are being questioned about potential misuse of funds.

Dear MF: James Harrison was accused of taking cheap shots to try to maim most of the quarterbacks in the NFL over his successful career with the Steelers, but now they have released him. Aren't they worried that once he signs with another team that plays the Steelers, he will try to get his revenge by crushing Ben Roethlisberger?

Answer: The Steelers know better than anyone how unfair the accusations against Mr. Harrison have been, as they have seen his gentle side and good works. To be on the safe side, however, in their first encounter with Mr. Harrison as an opponent the Steelers will be using a 6-foot-5 stunt double who has shown the same ability to throw game-ending interceptions as Mr. Roethlisberger.

Dear MF: I thought I only had the flu, but then I read about all the Legionnaires' cases killing people around the VA, and I am wondering if it's possible I could have Legionnaires' disease even though I have never been in the American Legion. Should I be checked by a doctor?

Answer: Possibly, but there are issues right now between UPMC and Highmark over such extravagances as choosing a doctor and having payment made for seeing one. We advise putting all medical appointments, diagnostic checks and emergency procedures on hold until they sort that out.

Dear MF: By my last count, the Democratic candidates for Pittsburgh mayor now may include Michael Lamb, Bill Peduto, Jack Wagner, Darlene Harris, Jim Ferlo, Ricky Burgess, Bill Robinson, my barber's autistic stepbrother, the secretary-treasurer of the Michael McKenry Fan Club and a woman who claims to be the reincarnation of Dick Caliguiri's fish. What's to stop me from getting into the wide-open race?

Answer: Well, you have to get all your petitions signed and filed by Tuesday, and you should change your name before then to Flaherty or Costa. Follow those steps, and your chances are at least 50-50.

Dear MF: Gov. Tom Corbett wants to make it a lot easier for me to obtain alcohol in various ways and gamble on keno or play the lottery over the Internet. He seems to have thought of enhancing access to every vice except the ones in which I indulge. When is he going to do something to promote more prostitution, shoplifting and dwarf-tossing?

Answer: As soon as his budget analysts complete a plan for filling the state's budget hole by legalizing them. You shan't have long to wait.


Gary Rotstein: or 412-263-1255. First Published March 11, 2013 4:00 AM


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