A Tear for Mr. Buzz

The sound of silence: How can you be surprised? (Buzz, March 18.) These are the same readers who haven't uttered a peep about the additional funds given to the American Airlines Center folks, and there still hasn't been development around the center. When a story was published a few years ago about someone murdering young Hispanic women, there were no responses ("Last Dance," by Thomas Korosec and Juliana Barbassa, December 10, 1998). The fake-drug scandal and our D.A.'s ability to indict without knowing whether a crime has even been committed has gotten little reader response. Additional matters concerning the Mesquite police could be found by perusing civil suits, but there has been no outcry on past horrendous abuses. A man driven to suicide by a friendly employer and the police--bupkus ("The Wrong Guy," by Mark Donald, March 4). But dis their favorite band and you will be inundated with letters from outraged readers who don't understand the word opinion.

Lisa Austin
Cedar Hill

A Good Man Down

Hounded to his death: I want to thank Mark Donald for setting several things straight in his honest and revealing story about the worst seven days in our friend Paul Wooley's life, and what ended up being the last few days of his life ("The Wrong Guy," March 4). It is hard to describe what it is like watching on TV, reading newspapers and listening to the radio while your friend is being dragged through the ordeal of being arrested for murder and held for days when, as Mark Donald shows, the evidence clearly indicated he was not even in the area. And it was his friends' words that were twisted around and used against him! Here's hoping the McKinney police are a little more "constitutional" in the investigation of that little town's latest multiple shootings and murders.

But I am especially thankful for the article since it narrowed down one event. Paul had called my house the week before he died, but we could not clarify when. After reading Mark Donald's article, my wife and I realized that Paul had called that Saturday afternoon. She says he was extremely happy, and they laughed for several minutes because she had mistaken him (he was starting to get sick) for our son, and he was glad to be taken for someone so much younger. He did not sound like someone who was about to do away with himself. As it happened, Paul was found dead just 36 hours after that call. Paul had to deal with a lot of physical pain, and with that phone call added to the fact he had just achieved some of his good name back, I am comforted to believe that his death must have been accidental. It is just so unfortunate that it happened when his life seemed to be turning for the best.

Paul was a unique "character," and he was one of the most honest people I have known, and if that is what gets you in trouble these days, you gotta wonder what's going on! He was very considerate of others and was eager to help them through tough times. He made us all laugh countless times, and he is sorely missed by those friends who knew all along that he could not have done such a thing.

Marvin Morris

The right guy: Let me make sure I have this straight...The McKinney police overreacted in arresting a man who had a high-powered rifle and a vehicle similar to the one at the scene of a sniper shooting, who was also acting erratically and leaving the state. The Collin County sheriff overreacted by placing him on suicide watch even though his mannerisms and threats of suicide were credible enough that his own mother and a hotel clerk each called police for fear he may kill himself. We should also dismiss his earlier threats of suicide as "philosophical" even though he ultimately ended up killing himself. And his fellow employees overreacted when he calls his boss an asshole and quits, tells the HR director their paths better not cross again and calls back to say he's doing something "radical," followed shortly by two dead at a hospital not far from their location?

It may be easy to suspend common sense in the cozy confines of a Dallas Observer cube, but in the real world, people have to make the difficult decisions with the information available. To believe there was intent otherwise in this situation is a suspension of common sense, indeed. The author demonstrates he is as skilled as any he tries to criticize in this story for overreacting, hype and twisted facts.

David Wright

Slowly Into the Night

SloRo's demise: Like Sarah Hepola, I also received Pete's e-mail regarding Slow Roosevelt (Across the Bar, March 18). I've enjoyed their music from day one, so I was pleased to see that Slow Roosevelt's breakup merited a large photo and mention in the Music section this week.

This is going to sound nitpicky, but Pete will probably agree when I say the band probably never "ran tour buses into the ground." Vans? Yes. Buses? No.

Many bands never make enough money to actually travel in their own tour bus, and Slow Roosevelt is no exception. In fact, I recall a show my band played in Louisiana with Slow Roosevelt; it was hot outside, and the A/C had gone out in SloRo's van. They showed up at the venue after a five-hour ride with the windows down, guys crammed into the small cargo van with a ton of gear.

The band life isn't glamorous. It can be fun while it lasts, but many stars have to align before you can make a living at it.

Doug McGrath
Via e-mail

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