By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
The guy who loves the Mavs
Fantastic article on Kevin Sullivan ["Hoop dreams," November 12]. I grew up in Dallas just as the Mavs were born. As a nine-year-old, I remember attending the team's first pre-season game. When I read about Sullivan's passion for the Mavericks, it didn't strike me as odd. I remember my emotions rising and falling with the performance of Pat Cummings and Dale Ellis. To this day, I tell myself the 1988 Mavs with their skilled and deep line-up would whup a two-man show like the 1997 Chicago Bulls.
Dallas' last drive-in
Richard Peterson is to be commended for his devotion to saving the Astro ["Don Quixote of the drive-in," November 5]. I attended opening night of the Gemini twin on Central, and was very disappointed that we didn't get to have a send-off party for the grand old gal. I live in Oak Cliff, but I have to admit that I haven't been to the Astro in a few years. Richard, I apologize.
In regard to Mark Donald's article "Amazon.com" [October 29]: Thank you so much for being a part of our weekend party in the Dallas area. As a member of the Very Very Tall Women's room on AOL for some two years and a 6-foot-tall female since the age of 14, I have to say that I appreciate your bringing the issue of height to the general public.
I realize that our height isn't some earth-shattering issue, but it is something that we have lived with most of our lives--the hardships of finding clothes to fit, cars with enough leg room, airline seats that don't leave us with leg and hip cramps, kitchen counters at a height that don't give us backaches--the things most of us take for granted in life. They do make a difference to a tall person. In many ways, tall people have been discriminated against in these matters.
We honestly do not think we are "better" than anyone else, but we do definitely think we are lucky to be tall. And we are very proud of it.
On the Saturday night of our Dallas party, after dinner, our group went to Cowboys for dancing. It was amazing to see the people there watching our group of very tall people. The look on many faces was pure amazement. Funny thing is, I always thought there were tall people in Texas...where were they hiding?
Thank you again for the wonderful article. We have passed it on to all our e-mail buddies and have enjoyed all the comments we have gotten from it. And Mark, I'm still not convinced you are that close to 6 feet tall. LOL. (For those of you not on-line, that's laughing out loud.)
Observer on the air
The Real Audio just finished playing, and I wanted to comment. First of all, I would like to say that I am such a fan of Mr. Robert Wilonsky's work. You have impeccable taste in music, and for that I applaud you. Both the intro and outro to your show were wonderful.
This is a brilliant idea to showcase the musical talent that Dallas holds in esteem, such as Mr. Peter Schmidt and the brothers Kadane. I very much enjoyed the hour, and it even brought back fond memories of old (yes, I'm gonna say it)--Adventure Clubs when Keven McAlester was still in town and co-hosting the show. I look forward to hearing more of these, and I just wanted to thank you for this bit of Dallas on the Internet.
Editor's note: Dallas Observer music critics Robert Wilonsky and Zac Crain may be heard every Tuesday at 4 p.m. at www.dallasobserver.com.
Damning the fans
I can't stand Vanilla Ice ["Korn holed," October 22] or Korn any more than Robert Wilonsky can. Therefore, I'm shocked to find myself defending their fans. Wilonsky's latest piece on Vanilla Ice, while it acutely defines and pinpoints the idiocy of Robbie Van Winkle's music, also demeans his fans.
The problem seems to be this: Wilonsky can't separate the music from the music listener. Instead of just vilifying Korn (which I think is an admirable idea), he also feels the necessity to pigeonhole the band's fans as "white schmucks on dope." I can easily trace this absurd tendency in some of the Observer's other recent music pieces: Phish fans become dated hippie stereotypes in his eyes, of the same camp as Blues Traveler and Dave Matthews Band followers; Jimmy Buffett fans are reduced to "white racists."
I love Phish--does that make me a pot-addicted hippie? But I also love R.E.M.--am I now an art-school geek who wears black? I adore De La Soul--does that make me a laid-back hip-hop head? No, no, and, of course, no--each group's music and identity contradict the others'. A listener like me, who genuinely likes all three, thus has conflicting impulses...as does human nature.
By Wilonsky's analysis, however, the music listener's preferences fully shape the fan. He denigrates Korn's fan base, which doesn't add to the Vanilla Ice article at all. Instead, it showcases his ability to be just as immature and frivolous as the baggy-jeans-wearing white male teenagers he rails against.