This stinks: As a longtime reader of the Dallas Observer, I have learned to take most of the sensationalism written by Jim Schutze in stride. I continue to read the Schutze brand of speculative journalism week after week because it's entertaining in a way that is not unlike old X-Files episodes. It is unfortunate that Schutze sees fit to write with such a fantastical flair, because at least in this article ("What's That Smell?" February 27) he is writing about something very real and personal to most who reside in Dallas. He's writing about our money, and how the city is screwing us out of it when it comes to bond elections. We as Dallas residents need to take a stand. We need to tell the city that it is entirely unacceptable for it to hide behind legalese in order to get away with breaking promises. If you won't take a stand for yourself, your friends or your family, do for something you really care about--YOUR MONEY!
Call him irresponsible: Forgive me if I failed to understand the intent of the author (Buzz, by Patrick Williams, March 6), but what he seems to be saying is that the Dallas recycling system is failing miserably and we should be angry at the city because this means that our hard-earned dollars are being wasted on a useless program. Huh? This is an utterly appalling take on the issue, because placing the onus on the city officials implies that it is their problem. The success of any recycling program is entirely contingent on the participation of the city residents. As someone who lived in Texas for 24 years and Dallas for 14, I feel that the problem is not that city officials have screwed up but that Dallasites are notoriously inconsiderate of their impact on the environment. In my present community, we have well over 25 percent participation in recycling programs by the most conservative estimates, and as a result have reduced the amount of waste taken to landfills by 43 percent since 1989. Recycling programs work, but not when the populace embraces the socially irresponsible perspective advocated by Patrick Williams.
Cold and Fuzzy
Zeitgeist: Note to reporter/art "critic": Your job is to get your facts right, your references accurate and your point of view consistent in your own head ("Gnarly," by Christine Biederman, February 20). I could as easily presume you were on substances that led to "fuzzy art criticism."
Your point of view bounces all over the place, from sublimated admiration--"simply stunning"--to outright disdain of "wall-text blather." Hey, let down the hip façade to actually see the work at hand, instead of cynically slotting it into an era created from your own fantasies of the '60s and '70s. To correct your period references: 1) The "flower-child" bong user of the '60s was not a "dude"--that's a dumber-than-dumb '90s bong user. 2) New-agey definitely is a different time zone than the "oh-wow-man" times. 3) Just because you move to Colorado doesn't mean you become John Denver. 4) Where does MC Hammer fit in? That's another decade, the '80s. 5) You have thrown every cliché about the decades prior to your coming of age into one very "loopy, sophomoric" conglomerate. 6) He hasn't worn an earring in a couple of decades. 7) Surls' focus is on the paradoxical nature of existence, i.e., the absurdities. 8) He's never used "wigwams" or "snow" as themes. 9) How anyone with any knowledge of the processes of art-making could use the term "dabbles" in relation to this artist or infer with any degree of seriousness that he had not "worked" to produce a show of the scope, variety, intensity and passion leads me to wonder about their qualifications to be an art writer.
One wishes your editors had the sense to say "sit down, shut up, learn your craft, Christine" before you inflict your blather on us.
Hard to Keep Track
Screwy: Regarding the print version's item this week on the past superintendents' nameplates in the DISD administration building, more research was needed (Full Frontal, March 6).
Dr. James Hughey was not only interim superintendent after the Yvonne Gonzalez debacle, but in recognition of his work he was named the official general superintendent in 1998.
Robert Payton served only as interim superintendent.
Thus, the plaque is correct. Now as to Waldemar Rojas having a screw loose...can't argue with that!
New Night & Day
Miss you: What happened to the theater and dance schedules in the March 13 edition?
I noticed some new layouts in other sections and a special on St. Pat's, but that's not a reason to drop theater. Theater is still listed on your Web page, including some plays that open this week.
If this edition is the debut for the new weekly event calendar, go back to the old format! Urban Experience is interesting, but not very informative, and takes lots of space.
Also, since Dallas Video Fest starts Wednesday, it would have helped to list it--like in the missing weekly calendar.
Apparently The Dallas Morning News' weekend Guide is more reliable as a source for local events.
Editor's note: That edition was the debut of our new and, we think, improved Night & Day section offering our critics' picks of the best things to see and do. To view our complete, searchable and up-to-date listings of virtually everything going on in the Dallas area, visit www.dallasobserver.com. And yes, we realize that not everyone is connected to the Internet. To them, we apologize for the inconvenience.