Letters

How About Those Yak Fritters
While your review of Lhasa Moon ("Himalayan Rhapsodies," Eat, April 2) was well-researched and full of interesting details, it gave the impression that vegetarianism was widespread in Tibet. However, since the terrain is unforgiving and arid, vegetables are nearly impossible to grow; that's why barley and yak meat are their staple foods. The vast majority of Tibetans, including His Holiness the Dalai Lama, eat meat.

Lisa A. Tsering
Oakland

Naomi Wise replies:My subsequent research proves Tsering correct. In fact, the practice favors killing one large yak, which takes one life, to feed a family, rather than cooking a plate of shrimp, which takes many lives, to feed one person.

Sense, or Sensibility
Like Linda Kiefer ("Un-Welcome to Mr. Roberts' Neighborhood," April 9), I'm married to a newsroom employee of the San Francisco Chronicle. Like Kiefer, I've been known to voice my opinion, participate in campaigns, contact my elected officials, even attempt to mobilize my neighbors about issues some observers might view as petty.

SF Weekly seems to advocate a standard under which Kiefer, as the spouse of a Chronicle executive, forfeits her constitutional right to participate in democracy.

This raises a few questions. Does that standard apply to me too, or does it kick in only if my husband gets promoted to a spot on the masthead? This being San Francisco, does it cover domestic partners? Does it extend to the mates of SF Weekly employees as well? Please advise in time for the June election so we know if it's OK for us to vote.

Caroline Grannan
Miraloma Park

"Sucks" Off
It is obvious from her snide review of ACT's The Royal Family ("Take It With You," Stage, April 2) that Carol Lloyd has a strong bias against traditional theater. Perhaps, because Lloyd is well-ensconced in the experimental theater scene, she is unaware that audiences appreciate and applaud gorgeous sets all the time. Further, Lloyd doesn't have to like the play, but she uses her pulpit to mount a completely unwarranted attack on ACT as a whole, and in a paper that -- just last month -- compared ACT's Machinal to Picasso! Why send a critic to an ACT production when she has such a monumental chip on her shoulder?

And why would the editors of SF Weekly back her up with a banner on the cover ("Pssst! ACT's The Royal Family sucks") that was both mean-spirited and in embarrassingly poor grammar?

Cheshire Dave Beckerman
Emeryville

Barking Up Their Tree
Regarding your Bay View on security, "What's Best -- Pistol or Pit Bull?" (April 9), I'm not sure exactly what tone was intended -- completely tongue in cheek? satiric? semiserious?

In any case, I feel compelled to comment on the inclusion of the pit bull as a "security device." We have recently had new neighbors with a Rottweiler move next door. Their yard is four feet away from the side of our house, in full view, separated only by a chain-link fence. It is obvious that their dog is owned purely as a security device. He is left in the yard 24 hours a day, we have seen no sign of humans interacting with him, the dog crap is piling up, and intermittently he goes on barking sprees which can last almost all night.

We plan on talking to them but they don't ever appear to be home. They leave him food and water, and apparently the only illegal part of the whole situation is the barking and -- if it gets bad enough -- the dog crap. We don't want to start with legal, hostile intrusions but may have to.

I suppose some people get dogs for security but also love them as pets and keep them under control, but we are seeing the worst case of using dogs for security. It's not fair to the dog and it's not fair to the neighbors.

Carol David
Neighborhood withheld

Is That "Hanged" or "Hung"?
As the producer of Rocky Horror Superstar, I find a special delight in reading Julie Chase's "review" printed in SF Weekly ("Nothing's Shocking," Stage, April 9). My delight comes from realizing that there are still people in such a diverse and culturally enlightened city such as ours who simply "don't get it," because it means my work is far from over.

Your "reviewer," a woman whom I met two weeks before as your receptionist, missed what Rocky is all about. She mistakenly placed Rocky alongside pornography. Sadly, for some of our viewers, RHS is not pornographic. Rather, RHS has been created by members of society who are displaying, publicly, their sexuality through cross-dressing, imitation of the opposite sex, and the changing of their bodies through hormonal and surgical procedures. Watching a stage where those issues are confronted may appear to the uninitiated as "porn," but to those involved, the birthing of identity is taking place.

The reviewer goes on to state that no one sings, a curious error in light of the fact that the lead, Jesus of Frankenfurter, does sing one number, "Sweet Transvestite." And what of the fact that RHS has been billed as a lip-sync musical? Perhaps I should define "lip-sync" for Julie?

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