The facts of the matter: Anyone who has ever had a story written about them in a newspaper or magazine has had the experience of seeing themselves distorted, misquoted, and, often, plain lied about. This experience was not new to me, but it was particularly demoralizing in your cover story about me in last week's issue ("He's Gotta Have It," May 1). Perhaps distortion is inevitable, but several things written in that article were simply not true.
For example, the assertion, in reference to my film I Don't Hate Las Vegas Anymore, that "Zahedi admitted to engaging in a bit of patricidal fantasy" is pure fabrication. When I pointed this out to the writer of the piece, he explained that he had gotten that information from a previous article written about me, an article which was also full of errors. That these inaccuracies get repeated as if they were fact, by simple virtue of having been published previously, is disturbing to say the least. While the article had a lot of interesting and valuable things to say, particularly on the subject of sex addiction, I would encourage you to be more thorough in your fact-checking.
A review that left a bad taste: As one of the owners of Pomelo, I am obviously deeply offended by your trashing of our place ("Slim Pickins," Eat, May 1). I don't know what bug bit this reviewer that day, but this is not professional food writing. This review is an insult to all the loyal customers who have come to love Pomelo. We don't claim to be perfect or highly sophisticated, but for what you pay, you get a darn good and always fresh meal.
I wish the "food writer" good recovery from whatever he suffers.
Rolf C. Bachmann
Well, maybe there's still a little anger: When I first read your review of my restaurant I was filled with anger. After a day to think it over, I now feel nothing but pity for you. That review says so much more about you than it does about our restaurant. If you do have a following (and I doubt that very much) and they choose not to come to our restaurant, then I owe you a great deal of thanks. I can't imagine anything more horrible than a restaurant filled with assholes like you. We have been around for five years and will still be here long after you've gone into rehab or died.
Michael F. Fowler
Co -owner, Pomelo
You wouldn't smile either if people kept calling you a little dick: That was quite interesting how you completely ruin the restaurant and tear into its menu, as if kicking someone while they are down. Do you have a vendetta against any of the employees of this establishment? I eat there frequently. It is a place that I envy in regard to making something with a limited amount of space. Noe Valley is proud to have a very honest, less flashy place to go, not just for convenience but also for the flavor. How did you become so jaded in your position as a food critic? I suggest doing a bit more research, maybe smile sometimes, and stop being so stuffy, little dick, and maybe I will read your shit sometime.
The ABCs of hepatitis: Joel Engardio's May 1 article ("Dying to Know," Postscript) about his partner's hepatitis B was both touching and disturbing. The article underscores the need for further community education, screening, and treatment for infectious diseases like hepatitis. Although vaccines for hepatitis A and B are available, the more contagious hepatitis C has no vaccine. In fact, viral hepatitis is the most common cause of liver failure worldwide.
Michael Menaster, M.D.
No more teachers, no more spooks: Just a quick note to tell you how impressed I was by your "Death of a Death School" story (April 24, on the closing of the San Francisco College of Mortuary Science). I toured the college once years ago on Divisadero Street. They had an annual Halloween Tour, and a co-worker asked me to go with her. It was an amazing experience, one that was rather haunting but also very moving. I remember being enormously struck by the president, Jacquie Taylor. I'm very sorry to hear of the college closing, but very pleased to read such a fond farewell to the place.