Dear Chuckdee, Flavor Flavor, Professor Griffin, and everyone else,

Hey, guys! What’s up? Or should I say “what up”? Is that how you hippity-hoppers and homeyboys and gangerbangers are saying it now? Never mind. I’ll get right to the point.

Do we have to keep fighting like this? Or, more specifically, do you really want to keep fighting me? I don’t mind indulging you if that’s what you guys want. It’s not hurting me, of course, since I am The Power after all. But I just wonder if you might consider giving it up. I mean, this has been going on for a while and I’m still very much here.

Do you realize that you’ve been fighting me since 1989? (What a crazy summer that was, huh? Whatever happened to that funky drummer?) Now, that’s 16 years ago. Babies born that summer are driving cars now! So much has happened since then. Presidents have come and gone, the Soviet Union collapsed. But not The Power! Honestly, guys, I’d really like to be your friend and hang out with you at your rapping concerts. It’s time to put this behind us.

And I wonder if I might offer you some constructive criticism. Among the problems, I think, has been your clarity of precisely why you were fighting me and how you intended to wage that fight. Like when you say: “As the rhythm designed to bounce / What counts is that the rhymes / Designed to fill your mind / Now that you’ve realized the pride’s arrived / We got to pump the stuff to make us tough / from the heart / It’s a start, a work of art.” Pardon my frankness but what the hell are you talking about there? It rhymes, but what are people supposed to do with that information? If you’re trying to fight someone, especially someone like me, you need clear action items. Maybe “Carjack The Power’s limousine after an important board meeting” or “Expose The Power’s malfeasance in a national publication” or maybe “Propose a better alternative to The Power and let the people decide.” Those are just off the top of my head! Look, take this advice or don’t, but before dismissing it just remember The Power must know what he’s doing, right? Thus the name. Think about it.

Let’s take a look at your other complaints. You don’t care for Elvis Presley. That’s fine. I would encourage you to rewatch the ‘68 comeback special, but whatever. And say what you want about Elvis (was he really a straight-up racist? I didn’t know that!), but he’s certainly not part of The Power. By the way, I agree with you on John Wayne. I’ve never seen the appeal. Where was the range? So we don’t really have a quarrel there, do we?

And what do you have against Bobby McFerrin? Yes, “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” was the No. 1 “jam,” but honestly, it’s a really great song—the things that man does just with his voice are amazing. It hit No. 1 because a lot of people really liked it! They found it fresh and innovative and not all Grumpy Gus like some people’s music. It had nothing to do with me. I’m involved with a lot of things in this world but the charts aren’t my department! I could introduce you guys to Bobby if you like. He’s a super-nice fellow, and maybe you could record some music together! I’d buy a record of that!

Honestly, guys, I want to end this thing. I’d love to have you up to the country house for a weekend if you have the time. (I know you do, Flavor Flavor! With the big clock and all!) So what’s it going to take? I’d be more than happy to call someone at the post office and get some more of your heroes on stamps. Who would we be talking about—Grandmaster Flashy? Eddy Murphy? M&M? I haven’t been keeping up with your whole scene so just let me know.

OK, guys, I’ll “rap” at you later!

The Power