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Letters to the Editor 

Week of Wednesday, June 16, 2004

Against Balls

We're sorry for being such a bunch of dicks: I am compelled to object to your use of the word "balls" -- as in testicles -- to suggest strength, wit, and courage, as you did in the subhead of your "Sound Works?" cover story of June 9: "Tony Espinoza poured his dot-com millions into the fanciest music studio in town. With balls like that, who needs street cred?"

Yeah, yeah, I know -- I'm a frustrated femi-fascist constantly on the prowl for ways to serve a guy his jewels on toast. Whatever. Hear me out.

I had a physical reaction to that line. My stomach sank in my gut. Reading that hackneyed phrase dismayed and depressed me. I am sick of seeing strength associated with the male sex (That takes balls!) and feebleness with the female (What a pussy!). Courage can be sexy, for sure, and cowardice is inherently sexless. But neither one is gendered -- nor categorically engendered by any of the sexes.

PLEASE NOTE: My full, legal name is just as I have written it: judy b. -- all lowercase, period after the "b."

judy b.

Non sequiturs in our time: "If you were a rapper and bling-bling was your thing, you could shoot a video here and it would impress your peeps." Should we have expected any more from an article that has as its breathless front-page teaser: "Tony Espinoza poured his dot-com millions into the fanciest music studio in town. With balls like that, who needs street cred?"

Evidently, not SF Weekly.

Jeke Gil
Russian Hill

Progressive Thought

On not being called to, um, service: This is a terrific spot-on piece about this show ["Medea Benjamin for President*," Matt Smith, June 2]. I was one of the candidates [for the reality TV series American Candidate] and, like Medea, thought I was chosen. We both got calls for a supposed interview in L.A. Mother's Day weekend that got canceled. I also put a lot of effort into the process. My campaign was to be all about making the success of American Candidate work for everyone. My complaint is not so much that I was not chosen but that I never was told that I wasn't chosen -- me and all the candidates were just strung along. The message boards of the show was where rumors ran about the fact that in the end only people who live in Los Angeles were chosen. If so, and I believe it, I think it is because this show is so low budget they couldn't afford to fly anyone in to be interviewed. Meanwhile, I'm carrying on in the real world doing my public service through the Progressive Government Institute.

Dal LaMagna (aka Tweezerman)
Founder, Progressive Government Institute
Poulsbo, Wash.

Venice's two cents' worth: I investigated going on American Candidate for pure entertainment value and found out from well-placed sources that the whole process was bogus, so I declined to spend the time filling out their forms. Kinda disappointing, since it had the potential to be a lot of fun. But who wants to be part of a cattle call, and provide unpaid ads for the Man?

Anyway, my .02, for what it's worth. Since moving to L.A., I've found that these reality shows are really destroying the industry here -- and it's the actors and crew that are paying the price. Too bad, really.

Name Withheld
Venice, Calif.

Critical Racism

Orono, Maine, speaks out: OMG most racist movie review ever [of Breakin' All the Rules, by Luke Y. Thompson, Film, May 12]. "[S]erves very little purpose beyond reminding us that there are black people in the world, and they have love lives as well as decent jobs." Are you serious? Maybe you should review for the Aryan Nation gazette.

Ethan Feller
Orono, Maine


Our June 9 story "Sound Works?" indicated that Chris Douridas is a former DJ at KCRW; he's still DJing there. In the same story, the name of the guitarist/keyboardist for the band Elephone was misspelled. The correct spelling is Mauri Skinfill. SF Weekly regrets the errors.


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