Sheet music: I am an African-American at the age of 53 who, as a black child growing up in the South, saw firsthand the crosses burned in my small town ["Fueling the Ire," by Craig Malisow, November 14]. This is the first time I saw humor in the situation. This was a great article -- you made my day.
Crossed up: That remedial reading class finally paid off! Sue Green's a Grand Dragon? I always thought that the title was Inferior Lizard.
Driving Him Mad
Mayoral oversight: Great story [The Insider, by Tim Fleck, November 7]. But really, why would you let a DWI offender (Keller) praise another DWI offender (Tollett)? It is a sad case that we have elected and appointed officials who make up ordinances for the citizens of Houston but cannot obey them.
The mayor clearly has issues with his staff, but he really needs to clean house and make the best out of his last year in office. Whoever the mayor appoints needs to grab ahold of the bulls gone mad (councilmembers) and get 'em in line.
William "Bill" White (not the mayoral candidate)
Playing monopoly: I was ill upon reading the story of Olivia Jolly and her son ["Bad Reruns," by Wendy Grossman, November 7]. I, too, have suffered at the hands of Time Warner, albeit not as seriously as the Jollys. The customer representatives were equally unhelpful regarding my bad cable connection.
I, too, was told by repairmen that my television was the problem, not their service. Finally, I canceled my account, vowing never to patronize the hellacious Time Warner monopoly again. However, they continued to charge me for two months of service, even though I had no working cable in my apartment. After calling the company several times to alert them to their mistake, I received notice from an agency employed by Time Warner, warning me that my account was about to be turned over to collections unless I paid them the $300 immediately.
Basically, they extorted $300 from me, and the only recourse I had was to register my disgust and outrage over the phone. Time Warner is indeed a shitty company. And I applaud the Houston Press for spreading the word on their vile and diseased business practices.
Piercing puzzle: I read your story about Olivia Jolly and was totally intrigued and upset.
How in the world did that red cable line pierce the four-inch PVC sewer line? Those PVC pipes are tough. A puncture like that in the printed photograph would have to be caused by something tantamount to a drill bit.
Conceivably this sort of nightmare could happen at my house even if Time Warner digs in someone else's yard. I must say this sort of irresponsibility and incompetence is worrisome, especially since the Time Warner field representative told Jolly it happens all the time.
I also find it difficult to believe that the City of Houston would let Time Warner behave so recklessly. I would expect that there are ordinances saying that all utility lines and pipes have to be mapped out in detail before anyone can dig a hole to shoot a cable through the ground.
Past writer's wrong: In response to "Play Ball" [Letters, November 14] -- as landlord HISD's policy states, HISD must first determine that its property is not needed for school purposes before it is sold or leased out. The lease between HISD and the Post Oak Little League and Post Oak YMCA expires in December 2003. The Post Oak Pony League has no legal lease in place for use of any land whatsoever at HISD's T.H. Rogers campus. HISD, as required by its policy, is evaluating the needs of the landlord for the leased property prior to tying it up, rent free, for another five-year period ["Power Plays," by Margaret Downing, October 24].
T.H. Rogers educates 734 special education and gifted students but has no large open playing field for their many uses and needs. Consider how that differs from HISD's "Core Values":
Safety -- During school hours, tenants use the gravel road between the recess area and students' field to drive trucks, front-end loaders and tractors to maintain the baseball fields.
Learning -- A Texas Parks and Wildlife grant for the creation of an outdoor science education center needed to be turned down last year because of lack of available land on our 7.5-acre campus.
We will continue our commitment of working together in the hope that in the spirit of cooperation and sharing the good of the children -- all of the children -- will be served, because that is what it's all about.
As for the letter writer's "simply stated" claim: You should not remain quiet if what is being said around you is uninformed and incorrect. You didn't do your homework about my family members -- there are Gays at Post Oak Little League and Post Oak Pony Leagues!
Peggy Sue Gay
Olsen returns: Judging by the outcome of the election, enough people must have either voted straight for the Grand Old Party or belonged to an influential minority of voters from the legal "profession" that contributed to Judge Olsen's campaign with the unconscionable intention of seeking court favors ["Judging Rory," by Margaret Downing, October 31].
Name withheld by request
Drag Queen Honors
Getting noticed: I just wanted to take this long overdue opportunity to thank the editors for choosing me as the Best Drag Queen [Best of Houston issue, September 26]. It is indeed an honor that I will always cherish -- just as it was to be this year's 2002 Male Grand Marshal in the Gay Pride Parade. To those who were wondering why I didn't ride in the parade in drag, I simply decided that Crystal gets enough attention as it is.
Rusty Mueller, a.k.a. Crystal Rae Lee Love
More than pork intestines? I really don't understand this reviewer. First he rolls his eyes at egg rolls and then proceeds to fail miserably to find good authentic dishes at Peking Cuisine ["Forbidden City Food," by Robb Walsh, November 7]. This excellent restaurant does have a great American-Chinese selection, but it truly excels with its non-American dishes.
This guy didn't mention the excellent cold jellyfish, spicy beef tendon or those cute Chinese biscuits. The main problem with this review is all the time the reviewer wastes discussing his ordering problems. He even goes into detail about his doomed "bring a native" method. It doesn't matter one bit to me as a diner how ineffective the reviewer is in ordering what people at other tables are eating. He should just stick to commenting on what ended up on his plate. And while the Westernized dishes are very good at Peking Cuisine, they aren't this place's forte.
It's a shame that this restaurant should be judged by such a narrow slice of its menu. In the future, assign this guy to review Bennigan's or Chili's. I think he should be qualified for that.
Save the country station: Houston lost a legendary radio station recently when KIKK-FM was replaced with smooth jazz, "The Wave" [Racket, by John Nova Lomax, November 14]. Please support KIKK and join the 1,500-plus KIKKers who have signed the online petition. A link to the petition and other ways to support KIKK are located at www.kikk.here.ws.
No H-town sound: Great article on KIKK being moved out. This is very disappointing. I have grown up here, and it seems that this town has no need for tradition or wanting something we can be identified with. I have watched what I thought were mainstays disappear, with nothing real to replace them.
I travel with my band and continue to see the character of other cities but am disappointed in my hometown. I still love H-town, and it will always be my home, but I want people to say things like, "That is the H-town sound" or "That is H-town style" or "He has that Houston feel to his playing" or "That guy is trying to get that H-town groove." Let's find whatever it is and let's promote it!
Rozzano "Rozz" Zamorano, Fondue Monks
Bump and grind: Don't worry, Houston, the Satellite will probably reopen elsewhere in town [Racket, by John Nova Lomax, October 24]. I, for one, will not miss it, whether it reopens or not. I've been to many shows over the years there and have never been happy being there. I've endured the place only to see bands I really like.
The setup of the place is its own worst enemy. Putting the bar in the middle of the room creates a poor traffic flow, and no matter where you locate, you will be bumped into all night long. I've never felt this way about another club in town, and after the disappointing Ian Moore show I have no reason to go back -- not that the Satellite had anything to do with the crappy show Ian put on.
As for the parking, the only people who get into the "lot" get there early. Everyone else gets to park along Washington or on dimly lit side streets. So what -- big deal -- there are plenty of other clubs to go to that are much better, and have poor parking as well! Try Silky's, Walter's and the Rhythm Room!
Is He Deaf or Dumb?
Love that Lise Liddell: Timothy J. O'Brien's review of Lise Liddell's CD [Rotation, October 10] seemed very amateurish. I can understand if someone doesn't like a particular style or tempo of music, but his judgment of the songwriting is way off. Her lyrics dealing with single parenthood, damaged relationships and the nature of war touched me deeply. It takes a poet to capture the essence of complex issues with few words. O'Brien either didn't listen or just doesn't get it. Miss Liddell's fans both get it and love it.
Love Them Jugs
South Austin awe: Thanks for a great and informative article about my favorite band: the South Austin Jug Band ["Mount Bonnell Breakdown," by Rob Patterson, October 31]. I love this band's infectious enthusiasm, energy and fun. Matt the mandolinist, with his persistence in getting the sound just right and with his intensity, shows his dedication in giving the best he can.
I drove from Austin for the Mucky Duck gig, and it was absolutely great. It was so different from Austin -- the crowd really listened and loved the show. I wish they would play there more often.
There were two teensy errors in the article: Dennis spells his name Ludiker, and Willie Pipkin commented to me that they sing about ten or 20 songs from Uncle Walt's Band, not 100.
Thanks so much for your delightful spotlight on this band.
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