Sheila's sorry shtick
I dare to imagine an issue of your newspaper in which Sheila Gostick does not regale us with tales of, oh, I dunno, taking an obscure bus route and meeting up with "a cycling musician I know" (NOW, October 6-12). Is that another of her terribly interesting confreres, of the sort you only find in Parkdale, a neighbourhood Gostick could never imagine leaving? Really, Sheila, your I'm-just-reporting-from-street-level shtick isn't working, and dining out on being poor is a contradiction in terms.
Danger Doom kickin' it
Tim Perlich's review of Danger Doom's The Mouse And The Mask (NOW, October 6-12) was a tad harsh. Sure, the pair-up is a little too gimmicky and too cute for their obvious hipster fan base, who may very well scoff at being so brashly targeted like an Urban Outfitters ad.
Of course, these folks are way too sophisticated to be labelled. But judged on its own, forgetting previous work like the Gorillaz and Madvillian, DM's beats and MF Doom's raspy delivery often succeed, making an innovative hiphop soundtrack that provides an alternative to the ubiquitous gangster hip-hop anthems.
New York, NY
Lil' dim on Kim
Are you fucking kidding me? You're gonna give Danger Doom one N! That's fucked. Lil' Kim gets three Ns (NOW, October 6-12)? Tim Perlich and Jason Richards have fucked-up taste in music.
How do you guys rate albums? Honestly, it blows my mind. You're gonna hate an album because of its concept? The rapping's nice. The beats are amazing! How the fuck is it only a one-N?
What now with CBC?
Re CBC Damage Done (NOW, September 22-28). I'd like to say that I share your angst about the CBC and what will happen to its audiences after the lockout. These puny corporate leaders, the white-collared fools, sitting in their offices, know nothing!
Kids' little time for phys ed
If only now could thank McGuinty for his 20 minutes of daily physical activity for elementary students (NOW, October 6-12). I am an elementary school teacher and would love to see my students get an hour of physical activity in a day. I see how desperately they could use it. Teachers wouldn't start squawking about that if the Ontario government re-prioritized its expectations for students. It needs to drop the details and focus student expectations for reading, writing, numbers and healthy lifestyles. At the moment, many teachers already find it difficult to include all the details in the curriculum while trying to ensure that our students are literate and numerically capable.
Out to lunch
Re Only in England? Pity (NOW, October 6-12). When I was at school in England, we were given a wee bottle of milk in the mornings before class. No other food was allowed. We would be sent home for lunch. When my three sons were in school here, they also came home for lunch. There were no vending machines for junk. But due to single-parent familes, this has all changed. There's no one at home to give lunch to the children.
Joseph William Lea
Ecoholic strong tonic
Just wanted to commmend NOW on your Ecoholic column. People don't understand the lifecycle cost of things, from mining to processing and manufacturing, distribution to the consumer and finally to the dump and the cancer treatment that results.
I hope the message is getting through. We can't teach common sense, but if we can make the related products affordable and trendy, then hopefully it'll spread. I look forward to reading more of your stuff.
No finer diner
As a lover of food, I love reading your restaurant reviews every week. I have to say, however, that I am disappointed that you have not reviewed Serra in the Annex. This is perhaps one of the best Italian restaurants in the city, often packed on the weekends.
Please review this restaurant, which has survived while other restaurants in the Annex come and go.
Knocking on weirdo's door
Although most of the issues raised in Doors Of Perception (NOW, September 29-October 5) are typically true of canvassers' experience, I think there's a big problem with generalization. I worked as a door-to-door agent and in telemarketing, so I've heard many stories: some funny, some unbelievable and some just plain upsetting. Many times I was so disburbed by people's responses, I could only conclude, "That person is bitter." I only realized after quitting how wrong I was when I found myself using the same lines they used on me.
Digital fine print missing
Re Why Moog didn't go digital (NOW, September 29-October 5). It's unfortunate that a rather lengthy and descriptive discussion outlining the distinction between original fine art prints versus reproductions, whether traditionally or digitally produced, was condensed, resulting in a quote out of context attributed to me. As someone whose job it is to be current and knowledgeable about techniques in print, I would never state definitively that a "giclée is not a print...." The instance in which a giclée is not considered a fine art print is if it reproduces an already existing work of art in an other media (i.e., a painting, a photograph).
It's also too bad that our discussion about how artists are using giclée as an incredible tool in their print work was not included in the article.
Technical Director, Open Studio, Toronto
Hemp will solve oil woes
Re Let pump prices soar (NOW, September 22-28). If people would just Google the words "industrial hemp," they'd find that there is a simple answer to all of our energy and gasoline problems.
We don't need prime land to grow hemp. It will grow big on even marginal soil. It's really quite simple.
Re When jail beats school (NOW, September 22-28). I can't agree more with schoolteacher Bairu Sium on his experiences with black kids. In my school, we're not really assigned any stream. Maybe that's because the staff is more multicultural. And our principal is black.
Watson's whites-only whiff
I think Captain Paul Watson missed the point in his response to Mike Smith's article (NOW, September 29-October 5). Smith wasn't commenting on the lack of cultural diversity among Watson's audience, but rather the flawed logic Watson uses to explain why he wouldn't contribute to Katrina relief efforts. But it was Watson's suggestion that American blacks and hispanics are less involved in eco efforts because they're "more anthropocentric" that really pissed me off. Sour misanthrope? Definitely!
Indy greener than you think
Letter-writer Jonathan Crinion has called for Toronto to select city events based on their output of pollution and waste (NOW, September 15-21). He suggests we drop the Molson Indy and promote a world-class sailing event. Molson Indy (CART) race cars run not on gasoline, but on methanol. The only by-product of the exhaust is water. Sounds pretty green to me. If we have a sailing event, who could watch it and how? Spectators would have to own or charter fuel-burning watercraft to bring them within viewing distance of the action.
According to letter-writer Naseer Ahmad (NOW, September 15-21), outspoken Muslim critics of sharia law can expect to face death threats because they are "leading a jihad against Islam." What a perfect example of why Canadians are so wary of allowing an intolerant system like sharia law to get its foot in the door.
Ukrainians gone missing
Did your staff somehow miss the phenomenal Ukrainians show at Harbourfront September 3? I'm surprised.
The Ukrainians flew across the pond from their home in Britain, played their exhilarating "speed folk" music that had us on our feet and screaming for more by the end, then promptly jumped on another plane and left us gasping.
And all for free.
And, yes, they performed their Ukrainian folk cover versions of the Sex Pistols, Velvet Underground and the Smiths. The Kubasonics, who opened the show, were great, too.