"Scalawags" doesn't hold water: Thank you for the Page Six–worthy journalism highlighting the real issues at Fisherman's Wharf ["The Scalawags of Fisherman's Wharf," Ashley Harrell, Feature, 12/17].
I know the dead salmon story has been done by every other newspaper in San Francisco, but there's probably a reason: It's a real story. It involves water flows in the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers that support our salmon stocks, debates around the viability of removing dams, the questionable effectiveness of hatcheries, and the threat of climate change.
Did Harrell hear about the dismal crab season this year? Any mention of pot limits for the crab fishery? What about that new fish market planned for the wharf? Even if this fish-wrapper publication can't concentrate on anything besides a human-interest story, at least Harrell could focus on the San Francisco fishing community that is attempting to preserve its artisanal fisheries.
One will find a minority of unsavory characters who break the law and don't pay their rent in every neighborhood. This is not news, nor is it interesting. And, please: Among the pests, piles of trash left by tourists, dangerous ladders, nasty currents, shipping traffic, and lack of basic sanitation, don't suggest that fishermen should be paying more rent.
Scuttlebutt: There are a lot of tall tales and scuttlebutt on any waterfront, but this stuff is mostly accurate. Fisherman's Wharf ebbs and flows with the seasons, and there just haven't been any seasons lately. Hedley [Prince, wharfinger] has given more than a few people that extra chance they needed to get back on their feet. The ones we are reading about here threw that away. In any case, it's a very colorful time and place and not quite as dangerous as it may sound. The true story of the West Coast fisheries and the people connected with it is the stuff of John Steinbeck.
Star of the sea: Thanks for the entertaining article. I know that some people at the Wharf are vexed that most of the article is about the colorful characters and not about more serious issues. However, most of the people I've spoken to about the article found it interesting and amusing.
Although a couple of things in the article caused some discomfort for people I work with, the facts are largely correct, and I must confess to enjoying my 15 minutes.
If That's What You're Into, That's Just Vine
Winetology: Thanks to Joe Eskenazi for the excellently written article, "Voodoo on the Vine" [Feature, 11/19].
While customers who so desire should be able to buy what they want, for the reasons they want, they deserve to understand the preparations involved in producing this type of wine.
Clients aware of the preparations who agree with them (or have no problem with them) should enjoy knowing that they agree with the philosophies involved. On the other hand, potentially controversial practices should also be held to the light, so that those who might not agree with them know what they are buying (or what might deter them).
Why does this whole Biodynamics movement remind me of Scientology?