Public Relations Director Dr pepper co. Dallas, Texas 75865 To the director:

I wanted to let you know how muich I enjoy the TV commercial for Dr Pepper, the one with that street gang, The Peppers, who dance around and sing "I'm a pepper, he's a pepper, she's a pepper, we's a pepper . . ." It's really exciting, just like West Side Story!

I've noticed that commercials for soft drinks rarely say much of anything about the drink itself. Instead, they make vague life-style remarks about the people who drink the soft drinks: They're young and free and happy and cute and friendly and drive nice cars and wear good clothes and have nice shoes and always go to the best parties on their skates or convertibles -- that sort of thing. Mostly at the beach.

That's what gave me my idea for a new Dr. Pepper commercial you might want to try. Many products do head-to-head ads, comparing their stuff to stuff made by another company. They name the products and tell you which one's better. You could do it too. For example, you could start by going one-on-one with Sunkist Orange Soda. That one always shows lots of California teenagers -- blond and tan with great skin and Frisbees -- frolicking at the shore. You should film a commercial where the Sunkist Orange Soda kids and the Peppers have a big gang fight! Sure, I know what you're thinking: The Sunkist Orange Soda kids look too goody-goody, but the Peppers look really tough , like they're not afraid to hit someone with a stick or a brick. The Peppers would win the fight, and everyone would know that it's because they're with the best soda! What do you think?

If you're even going to dream about catching Coke or Pepsi, you'll have to be bold. I've got many more promotional ideas that I'd be glad to share with you, just let me know. I look forward to hearing your professional opinion of this one. Incidentally, is it true the Dr Pepper was related to Sgt. Pepper? RANDY COHEN Mr. Randy Cohen Dear Mr. Cohen:

Thanks for your comments about our commercials. We're pleased that you find them exciting, and we appreciate your ideas for a new direction in Dr Pepper advertising.

We had no fight with Sunkist Orange. That drink is such a small part of the market, we would be like the bully picking on a little kid. Our marketing struggle is with 7-Up as we struggle for third place in total soft drink sales. But how can you hit 7-Up? Their marketing stance changes so often.

The last I heard Sgt. Pepper was not related to Dr Pepper. But there was a real Dr. Pepper. CORKY BROWN Assistant Director Public Relations