Letters 07-13-2000

Out of 'N Sync

Gladys Brown
Riverside, California

Docu-drama

Exemplary: As a resident of Los Angeles who is often overwhelmed by news stories of every sort, how refreshing (if such a phrase can be used here) it was to read Kathleen Vanesian's piece ("Grave Undertaking," June 15). Though chilling, it was nonetheless compelling from word to word -- a mini-investigative report more than a review of filmmaking. This piece is worthy of an award itself. It is an example of how journalism should be.

Gregory Firlotte
Los Angeles

Market share: This comment is only incidental to the article that deals with the film made by local people about the civil war in El Salvador. At the end of the article, reference is made to Emmanuel Levy, film critic. Levy is quoted to the effect that though the Valley may well be the sixth most populous place in the nation, ". . . it's the only major metropolitan center that doesn't have an international film festival . . ."

Levy, or possibly the author of the article, or possibly both, perpetuates a common confusion with that reference to "the sixth most populous place in the nation." It is true that the city of Phoenix, within its city borders, counts as one of the largest cities in the U.S., but as a conglomerate area (a Standard Metropolitan Statistical Area), the Phoenix area ranks somewhere around 19 or 20. It's the same concept as "major market" sizes for the media. Thus, even though neither Minneapolis nor St. Paul comes close to matching the population of Phoenix, the Twin Cities area numbers something like a million more people.

Jay Narveson
Phoenix

Monti's Hall of Fame

Sweet revenge: In reference to your critique of Monti's La Casa Vieja in Tempe ("Mill Rut," Carey Sweet, June 15): A group of 24 friends went there on June 17. We had read your article, but with some trepidation we went, armed with your article. Of course it was the source of a lot of bad jokes and twisted humor. Members of this group have literally worked around the contract situations. I'm not implying that we are culinary experts, but I expect we have more exposure to dining out than many folks.

Monti's is not Ruth's Chris, but on the other hand it did not have Ruth's Chris prices. We found the service to be somewhat slow, but with a big group that is to be expected. The general consensus was "the food is good." My wife and I had the seven-ounce filet and enjoyed it.

One thing that ticked me a little was the $1.10 charge for the Roquefort dressing. Small irritants such as that can influence your thinking.

In summary, good food, reasonable prices and good service. Not bad. You may find others who agree with your opinion, but I know 24 people who don't. We discussed your article later and thought your approach was heavy-handed and unreasonable.

James F. Bennett
via Internet Out of Synch

Saying a mirthful: I think the article on Justin Timberlake and Britney Spears was hilarious, even though it's not real ("Pop Tarts," June 1). It was well worth the read, and I give major props to whoever wrote it!

Tia Lane
Pasco, Washington

Our pants ARE off: You are such stinking liars. Britney and Justin are the bomb, and they would never say stuff like that. I hope the two of them sue your pants off.

Tram Nah
Los Angeles

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