Mr. Feinstein Goes to China
Spinning Blum's blunders: Regarding Matt Smith's column requesting a New Year's resolution he wanted from Dick Blum ["Atoning in 2008," Jan. 9]: Timing precluded a response sooner, but you have it now.
Mr. Blum's pledge stands. He has put all profits made from investments in China to charity. That has been his policy, and that will continue to be his policy. And in fact, he has donated millions more to the American Himalayan Foundation and other charities that do work in Asia than he has ever made in China.
That said, I would also like to correct some misperceptions included in the story:
Mr. Blum never had anything to do with Cosco.
The investment in Lenovo by TPG also had nothing to do with him. He knows none of the executives there and was not involved in any way with the IBM acquisition or the decision by TPG to invest in Lenovo. It is unclear whether there will be any monetary return to him from the investment but, if there is, it falls under the policy I have reiterated above.
Any discussions with Jiang Zemin's son have related to human rights and climate change. By design, there have never been any conversations related to business deals.
Spokesman for TPG
and Blum Capital Partners, L.P.
From one Renaissance man to another: I'm the guy Mary Spicuzza saw messing with Eugene [Robinson] at Camerawork ["Fighting Words," Jan. 9]. Actually, I am a hypnotist who trains fighters, as well as a pugilist and creative artist myself, [and am the] 2007 winner of the SF Weekly MasterMinds Award for Literary Arts. However, Spicuzza was right — I'm older than Eugene!
One of my toughest boxer clients is Joe Gumina, the current California light heavyweight champion. Another is Melissa McMorrow, the national flyweight Golden Gloves champion, a young lady you definitely don't want to annoy.
What I was doing that night was testing Eugene with a light verbal jab, as anybody would in my profession. I never expected him to get violent at all: He's too hip, and is also originally from N.Y.C., like me. That's how we used to play back there in the old days.
I loved this piece! Thanks for giving a real fighter the publicity he deserves.
Moving to Mr. Robinson's neighborhood: Just finished reading the story about Eugene Robinson here in front of Royal Ground Coffee on this shitty cold dreary day, and I just wanted to say thanks for such a great read. Very interesting. Now I have a new band to research, a new book to buy, and one intellectual/brutal black man to watch out for! Great job.
Our Beautiful Bouncer
Web comment of the week:
As a fat admirer (a term much less demeaning than chubby chaser), I must take offense at my kind being called gnomes. And we are not all like the bad examples St. Clair sets forth in this article ["My Body, My Self," Jan. 2].
I doubt she had intentions of slandering an entire genre of body preference, but it is easily inferred. Please bear in mind, too, that FAs [fat admirers] as well as BBWs [big beautiful women], can be social outcasts because of what they are, and consequently can be stranger at times than one might expect.
Bitter about bariatrics: Katy St. Clair can do whatever she likes to her body. She can also bite my fat ass. No part of my body is "debris."
Most of the data about stomach amputation — let's call it what it is — follow only the people who report back to their surgeons; i.e., the lucky ones. A recent study in Pennsylvania followed up on all patients and found higher death rates among the newly gutless than among comparably fat people who stayed away from the scary man with the knife. It's not okay to use a surgical cure on a social ill.
Katy's story made me wonder just what surgery-thin women are supposed to dream about when they encounter creepy guys from the Internet. Then I remembered about all the other cosmetic mutilations. (Vaginoplasty ... eww.)
We're living in dark times. There's a witch hunt on fat people. It's called the "obesity" epidemic. Witches (and witch-lovers) can either live in fear, or we can line up the bucket brigade and start dousing.
Here's a question for SF Weekly readers who think Katy is a better person because she lost weight: Fifty years from now, when bariatric medicine is as reviled as eugenics or phrenology, are you going to tell the kiddies a heroic story about how you stood up to the weight bigots? Or are you going to have to explain your less-laudable choices?
Author of Fat! So?
Katy St. Clair responds: I take it back: Not all fat people are jolly.