My letters to the editor have not always been overflowing with good news, especially during the last four years. But I knew it had to change. Suddenly the world is so much brighter. Happy laughter is coming back, good will is triumphing.

Today, I struck it rich. My wonderful, reliable and generous friend will give me $1 million. The only thing he didn't tell me is whether he or I will pay the income tax on the wonderful gift. Nor do I know whether he cleared the gift with his frugal wife (she does the books).

I'm not going to tell my wife until he delivers the big surprise. Anyway, he'll deliver the million to me as soon as he wins a billion in the lottery.

ERHARD GROSS

Astoria