Online readers comment on "Holiday Madness," by Margaret Downing, December 24:
A good alternative: So people are involuntarily committed, if they are a danger to themselves or others? I am not sure what the real story is here. This place is an alternative to jail for many people who are suffering from mental illness, and a much better alternative at that. It is an asset to the community. Thank goodness these patients were being observed while they were feeling out of control. While not the most ideal situation, they are all still alive.
Why would someone with health insurance want to access this facility? Why would someone want to go here unless taken by the police? (I thought that was how most people got here.)
I think the story here should be to let us know where we can go, if we, our friends or our family are suffering a breakdown at 1 a.m.
Grow up! Someone was inconvenienced on a holiday weekend? Be glad that you received intervention and you are still alive to complain.
Mental health care involves making some tough calls, and if there is even the slightest chance that someone could be suicidal, then that person should receive mental health treatment, voluntary or involuntary.
Bottom line: The system worked.
Hold the drama: What exactly did these people expect to get from their actions? I never thought of a county-run psychiatric hospital as somewhere to run if I broke up with my lover, or had a big fight with my boyfriend. And if they had private doctors prescribing meds, why the hell didn't they call the doctors' service? I mean, how naive are you people? Yep, it's a big drama to have the police come and take you to get help — I'm sure it impressed the heck out of your loved ones, like holding your breath until you turn blue.
Yeah, the system worked how it was supposed to. Next time, opt for your own doctor's help instead of all the drama.
And don't yabber at me about depression. Been there, done that. Stay on your meds and stop using taxpayers' money to help you deal with your trifling little breakups or family arguments.
Online readers comment on "Aftermath: Trans-Siberian Orchestra's Christmas Megachurch Metal at Toyota Center," Rocks Off blog, by Linda Leseman, December 28:
Great story! I completely agree with your argument. TSO isn't just lame, it's hella lame.
After going to Sunday's performance, my boy Den-Den was going ape-shit over how good the performance was and how he was saving up to take all of his friends to it next year.
I told him, "Now, now, Denny. We don't need all that."
All kidding aside, to those who attend, the performance is self-servingly sanctimonious.
Me...I think I'll pass.
Poor you: I feel sorry for this reporter and the comment writer. I saw the TSO east show in Detroit on the same night and to compare it to a church show is not fair in the least. The performers are all talented, with the singers able to front any band, musical or even opera in the case of some. The music is tightly performed. The lights, laser and pyro effects are indeed over-the-top...like they should be. Just look around this time of year. Christmas lights are everywhere! Don't we associate that with Christmas? For nearly three hours, TSO gives those in attendance an escape — from the economy, stress, terrorism and all the crap that clutters our minds. I, for one, appreciated their effort to entertain.
Oh my gosh! You nailed it, absolutely nailed it. The dancers made my ten-year-old niece who has no coordination a hopeful for the Houston Texans cheerleader squad. It was really a mockery. I thought I was in a bad '80s nightmare musical. And I like the '80s!
The only thing that made this concert bearable was the wonderful dinner at Kim Son before the show — that, and the fact that my boyfriend is an absolute goofball and made me laugh throughout the show. It was three hours too long.
Sad thing is, the message of being Christmaslike through the whole year was really touching. My boyfriend and I had fun trying to figure out who each singer was trying to be like. There was a mix of Rod Stewart, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen and Kermit the Frog.
All I can say is, how do I get a refund? I wanted to leave about halfway through but kept thinking, "This has got to get better." Alas, no, no, it really didn't.
A different world: Is this a review of a TSO show, or a gripe-fest about the lack of Savatage productivity over the last x years? A show review is supposed to review the show right, with some background mixed in, but to constantly harp on the past is, well, what you are accusing TSO of doing: living in the past.
I like the Fox News journalistic balance you've got, with quotes from both sides of concertgoers, one saying the lights are to make up for lack of talent and the other saying they enjoyed the show. Oh wait, you didn't present that side, my bad.
The riffs from Mountain King are gone because, well, it's a different band. Savatage wasn't playing the other night — it was this other band that was formed from Savatage that has a different sound and isn't meant to be the same thing. Remember the Cosby Show spinoff A Different World? Yeah, that wasn't supposed to be the same as The Cosby Show, you know.
Online readers comment on "Late Night Scene: Sinh Sinh," by Jason Kerr, Eating...Our Words blog, December 25:
Hope for hyperbole: Reading between the lines of your piece, you were alone at Sinh Sinh. And you write that you'd had "a long day of hitting bars" and "I was so drunk." I'm hoping your rhetoric is hyperbolic and not literal. I hope you weren't really driving the streets of Houston drunk. That would be wholly inexcusable.
And I wonder how the waiter enjoyed your description of him?
These passages, coupled with the "only white person in the place" nonsense, make me think you're trying to be hip and smart rather than informative and interesting.
Where's an editor when you need one?
Tough guy: Yeah, such a bad-boy persona, part chef, part writer, always tough and mostly schnockered (no doubt smoking Pall Malls, outside, the collar of his wool shipman's coat upturned to ward off the chill). Each time he graces us with a dispatch, both Bourdain and Amis cheer Jason Kerr.
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Wow: This is atrocious.
Whine-o: "Prude," would you like some cheese with your "whine"? You're asking for an editor, but all I see is mindless quibble.