By Chris Lane
By Jeff Balke
By Aaron Reiss
By Angelica Leicht
By Dianna Wray
By Aaron Reiss
By Camilo Smith
By Craig Malisow
...But Not Deserving of Such Cruel Punishment
Strike not the mote from poor Betti's eye until thee remove the beam from thine own. In The Insider for June 13, you took Ms. Maldonado to task for misspelling her own name in her letter to Mario Gallegos. (Well, that's assuming you liberal media types quoted her correctly!) However, in the next paragraph you suggest that "questions about Betti's premature internment (emphasis mine) should be directed to Lanier." If reference is being made to poor Betti's request to avoid pre-death burial, the correct word should be interment. Though the grave would be confining, confinement is not the primary purpose for burial in the usual cases.
Such egregious errors in the future will result in a sentence of listening, from beginning to end, to a minimum of three of Representative Steve Stockman's speeches. You have been warned.
C'mon, Feel the Noise
I just read the happy horseshit you passed off as a review of The Rock [Film, "Big Bang Theory," by Joe Leydon, June 13], and I'll remind you of what the rock and rollers say: if it's too loud, you're too old. (Strangely, I believe your criticism of Assassins was that since the guns had silencers, the movie wasn't loud enough.)
I'm going to leave you with a crib sheet to take to the next action film you review to aid you in your judgments: an action movie should have action and violence (they're different), sex, humor ("I'll be back" doesn't qualify as humor), a credible plot, a convincing hero and a persuasive villain. (La Femme Nikita is a bad action movie; 48 Hrs. is the perfect action movie; The Rock is the movie Mission Impossible wanted to be.)
White Folks Welcome
(But Not Their Beer)
I have twice visited the taqueria on Fulton that Jim Sherman reviewed in your paper recently and found all that he said was true, with one notable exception: beer is not allowed ["Taking It to the Street," December 21, 1995].
Our first visit was without incident, but the second time we were informed by a less than gracious rent-a-cop that it was against state regulations for us to consume cerveza on the premises. Frankly, I don't believe that, so what is the real poop? Do they just not care for white folks? (Both times, we were the only whites there.) Mr. Sherman, can you enlighten us?
Editor's note: Jim Sherman says that due to the overwhelming increase in business following his review, the proprietors of the formerly freewheeling El Taconazo felt it best to disallow liquor consumption on the premises -- regardless of race, color or creed.
No Wegman Brothers
I see it all: opera, live theater (big and small), film, music, art. And I love it. Houston has become one of the most exciting cultural cities in the nation. We can experience first-rate entertainment without having to go to New York and pay hotel and cab fare. But first-rate does not refer to HGO and the Alley exclusively. ["Cash from CACHH," by Michael Berryhill, June 6].
We should be very proud of the many and diverse venues available to us. To be able to see Edward Albee's multiple-Tony-winning A Delicate Balance at Stages for $15 (and free parking) was a treat; I saw it twice. It had a top-flight cast and was a wonderful production. And then there was the Ensemble's fantastic production of the Pulitzer Prize-winning August Wilson play The Piano Lesson. Also their rousing revival of Get Ready performed at Miller Outdoor Theatre for free. We should be bursting with pride that the Ensemble is one of the very few black theater companies in the country to own their own facilities. Then there are Theater LaB's consistently fabulous quality off-Broadway productions -- drama and musical -- produced in Jerry LaBita's parents' former neighborhood grocery. I know these small venues struggle mightily to keep their heads above water, watching every penny spent. No William Wegman brochures here ....
Main Street Theatre, New Heights, Actors, DiverseWorks, etc. -- all help provide the city with affordable and mostly topnotch entertainment.
Yes, I see everything. But it has only been in the last few years (my kids have finally all graduated from college -- whew!) that I have felt I could afford the luxury of the opera. And the Alley's prices have climbed to almost Broadway heights. Not to say that they haven't produced Broadway pieces, sometimes even eliciting a superior production.
But we need the diverse and intimate theaters. They are the grassroots of our culture. If CACHH wasn't originally created for these venues, maybe its purpose should be again discussed. These independents need the funding even more than the Big 7. They may not bring tourists to Houston, but they provide our residents with affordable culture, certainly a commendable purpose. David Gockley and friends have much more fundraising power.