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PROBE: Aug. 28, 2001

August 28, 2001

NOT A CULTURAL THING — I object when you say throwing toilet paper on the floor is a cultural thing on the border. You assume only Mexicans shop at Kmart and only Mexicans throw toilet paper on the floor. A lot of whites throw toilet paper on the floor.

If there's toilet paper on the floor in the toilets at Kmart, it's Kmart's fault, not the shoppers who may or may not be Mexicans. I resent your implication. — Angry Hispanic, El Centro

We know you do but we happen to be right. In Mexico, where plumbing systems tend to be fragile, a considerate guest will not throw toilet tissue in the commode, where it might stop up the plumbing.

Only recently, local merchants have caught on and you will find a box in many or even most public bathrooms for used toilet paper. The system works fine as long as the boxes are emptied regularly.

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SOME COOL MILK — I couldn't get through to the Missionary Sisters so I called you. I have a refrigerator for the family they are helping. I want the kids to have cold milk. — Steady Reader, El Centro

Thank you! Now we have a confession to make. That was a wrong number in Monday's paper. It should have been 352-1263.

VERY COLD MILK — I live in Calexico and I have an extra refrigerator and a table and chairs for the El Centro family of five sleeping on one mattress on the floor. Somebody will have to pick up the furniture. — Another Reader, Calexico

Good. Sister Maria Luisa told us the Our Lady of Missionary Sisters found a crib for the 2-week-old baby. The family still needs beds.

UPDATE ON FIRE REFUGEES — The entire Manuel Lemus family is off the floor in Brawley. PROBE readers helped the family get beds for their boys Miguel, 12, and Carlos, 10.

The boys are ready for school, although they lost their school supplies in the fire that destroyed their mobile home. A teacher gave them money to replace the notebooks, paper and pencils they lost.

Toddler Danny has a high chair that perked up his appetite. He was a picky eater until he got the chair, said his brother, Miguel, also known as Mike, who serves as the family spokesman because he speaks English.

In his new chair, Danny is eating more, Mike said.

Maybe his appetite picked up when he found you don't have to worry. If you lose your high chair, kindly neighbors will find you one.

Miguel said the family has everything it needs. Well, it could use one more thing. The fire destroyed Miguel's favorite thing, a Nintendo 64 he shared with his brother, Carlos.

A woman brought him a Super Nintendo but it needs a cord to connect the game to the wall plug-in. Miguel was doubtful he could find a cord to fit the game because it's old. Where there's a will, there's a way. Maybe somebody has such a cord somewhere in a drawer. You can reach Miguel at 344-9445.

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