Letters

Sizing It Up

Objective on obesity: I am writing to commend the Houston Press and writer Sarah Fenske for that rare creature: an objectively researched article on this nation's so-called obesity crisis -- who suffers, who profits and how ["Ground Zero," November 18]!

What we often see are poorly researched articles that might as well be transcripts from press releases by businesses that profit from the misery of larger-sized Americans. Even worse are articles that appear to have been written out of hatred or fear of fat -- as if even being objective about this subject would cause the writer to "catch" it.

As a fat woman over 50 (and an author of size-positive fiction), I receive many e-mails from distraught people, struggling simply to live in a sea of negativity. Your article was impeccably researched and a breath of fresh air. As long as the link is live, I will send people to view it.

Lynne Murray
San Francisco

Shedding bias: I am so pleased with the portion of your article about me. Thank you.

I also think you did an outstanding job of reporting on the many aspects of weight-loss methods and the outcome of those methods (some good, some bad). Thank you for your efforts to be fair and nonjudgmental; it is appreciated!

Darlene Cates
Forney, Texas

Ren-unciations

"Playtrons" not welcome: This article was horrible ["Escape Artists," by Craig Malisow, November 11]. The people you spoke with are not Rennies; they are what a real Rennie refers to as a professional patron. I was a real Rennie before I took the job of site manager at a Renfest. A real Rennie is someone who travels to Renfests and makes a living doing it -- a performer, crafter, gamer or shop help, doing it year-round for a living.

Being a Rennie is a full-time way of life, and the drunk losers that you interviewed make Rennies look bad. A Rennie would never refer to the patrons as mundane. They are the people who keep festivals alive. Your weekender "playtrons" insult not only the patrons but also true Rennies.

Rick Norton
Waxahachie

The Last Laugh

HISD distortions: I agree with Myron Greenfield that teenagers' minds are different and a good breakfast is important to learning [Letters, "Breakfast of Champions," November 18]. Unfortunately, the Breakfast in the Classroom story ["Eating It Up," by Sarah Fenske, November 4] was about the students not eating breakfast, yet HISD was paid by the federal government for serving the food. I simply propose children wishing to eat be served and HISD receive payments for such meals. I would welcome a visit to Myron's classroom to see how many children are eating and what the report back to the kitchen states.

Mr. Abbott is confused; the story in the Press was about a high school, not an elementary school. It wasn't about children eating only parts of their breakfast, but "breakfast no one even looks at, much less eats." When Sam Houston High School goes from serving 2,800 breakfasts to 200 after BIC was discontinued, it doesn't take a Washington bureaucrat to know that the books have been cooked.

The only laughing going on is somewhere inside Mr. Abbott's head while he's talking to himself. Let's see if he continues to laugh after the U.S. Department of Agriculture does an audit.HISD needs to get past denial and to fix the program before the USDA finds it has been mismanaged by Aramark and holds them responsible. We are talking about millions of taxpayers' dollars that should go toward feeding children, not making profits for the HISD Food Service Department. If the school board members are confused, all they need to do is visit Davis at breakfast time and watch. This is not calculus -- it's simple math.

Orell Fitzsimmons
SEIU Local 100 field director

Houston

Skip the tee-hees: Who is Terry Abbott, and why are my tax dollars paying his or her salary? Did this HISD press secretary really write the response mocking the Houston Press article? The Press made some serious accusations about the HISD BIC program. It would be nice to see a response from HISD with an explanation, maybe a correction. But to respond with laughter is snobbish, irresponsible and simply inexcusable.

Daniel Chaikin
Houston

Finding a Jewel

A right-on review: Your review of Finding Neverland was nothing short of brilliant ["Peter Panache," by Gregory Weinkauf, November 18].

I am writing to express my gratitude, appreciation and respect for your excellent critique of this whimsical and touching film. What's more important, I wanted to write to you from my heart how much I enjoy your style of writing. Starting with your sense of humor in your opening, then your ability to nail it so cleverly and with such ease. Since I am a tremendous admirer of Mr. Depp's works, I was especially gratified to have you write, "we've got a whole new reason to appreciate cinema's most creative chameleon since Peter Sellers." Oh, you are so right on!

Your review is the best one I've read, and I've read quite a few so far!

Stacey Moore
Edmonds, Washington

On the Squids

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