Editor's note: Okay, you've figured it out by now, right? Our story on Sedona "healer" Dr. Reinalda de Souza was satirical (see The Bird for full details). De Souza didn't really ritually sacrifice a Rottweiler puppy to hex the "King of Pop" into suffering a fatal heart attack. She doesn't even exist. We made the whole thing up to poke fun at the media mania over Michael Jackson's demise. Here's a sampling of reader response:
Misplaced priorities: It's remarkable that within the scope of this woman's foul perception of what is right and what is wrong, the criminal act of killing an innocent puppy goes unrecognized.
She sliced the neck of a 4½-month-old pup she'd brought home from the pound. The horror of her actions should not be described again, except in a courtroom before a judge.
Where is the ASPCA in Sedona? I'm outraged at the puppy's death, not Jacko's.
Rick Karbon, Chandler
Misplaced priorities, part two: New Times should have reported [Dr. De Souza] for animal cruelty. What a disgusting soul she is to take the life of a puppy! Sick-ass!
Babe, via the Internet
Dog hater: One more Rottweiler wiped off the face of this Earth is fine with me. Thank you, Reinalda.
Cat Lover, via the Internet
Oh, the irony: Just because you don't believe in action at a distance doesn't mean it isn't true. This woman has some potent credentials, and I love her comment [in the story] about Sedona being filled with "stupid hippies" who don't know nearly as much as she does.
MaryK, via the Internet
Philosophies of the dim . . . Nice: What's so unusual about Michael Jackson's getting acupuncture and crystal therapy? As for De Souza's curse, there are more things in Heaven and Earth than are dreamt of in the philosophies of the dim.
Jim Bristwell, Phoenix
The good doctor's a murderer?: This story is real! I believe it. Scary. I, too, study this art. Reinalda De Souza sounds like a real beast.
In this art, you can't kill without getting back what you sent out. The life of a dog does not cut it; she needs human blood to stay alive. So she has probably killed someone!
Mr. Sensitive: Yeah, Dr. De Souza's crazy! So was Michael Jackson! Hello! This chick's a story. Just like every freaky thing Jackson ever did. People want to gloss over that all now. But he was a pedophile, a pervert, and a drug addict. Good riddance.
Michaelsanut, via the Internet
What makes you think we didn't?: Met this crank once. She looks like a bag lady. She doesn't represent Sedona, or people into New Age medicine. Why not stop a homeless person in Phoenix and ask him about the last time he was on a UFO with M.J.?
A true healer: I can attest to meeting Dr. De Souza on several occasions. She not only helped relieve my diabetic neuropathy, but she also helped rid my wife's body of an ovarian cyst.
Whether or not she actually killed Michael Jackson, I cannot say. She is a very kind soul and may have exaggerated things a bit with the writer.
David Wiggins, Bisbee
Alpine? Don't you mean South Park?: Please! Don't you know, Dr. Reinalda De Souza, that I have the bones of the Elephant Man? Michael Jackson gave them to me in return for "services rendered." I have no intention of ever giving them up.
Whatever voodoo you try to put on me to get them back will only come back on you 10-fold! I caution you, Dr. De Souza, you do not want to cross my path. I acquired the bones fair and square. Just get over it and move on. You had your revenge.
Eric Cartman, Alpine, Colorado
She is a monster: Ummm, she killed a puppy, so I hope that something is done about it. It's animal cruelty to kill a 4½-month-old puppy.
Some things are better left secret: Dr. De Souza, I cannot thank you enough for what you did for my shortened leg. It's about time you got some press about your wonderful gift. If not for you, my life would have been hell!
Your wonderful combination of chlorine, phosgene, and mustard gas (or Yperite) to help extend the molecular structure of my left leg is uncompromised. I can wear sneakers again! You rule, De Souza, you rule!
Oh, at least they didn't ask you about your tetrodotoxin, botulinum toxin, and ricin experiments with that group of retarded children from Kentucky.
Rob Parsley, Phoenix
Bravo to Mr. Rossi: What a piquant antidote to the madness going on [over] Jacko. Bravo to Mr. Rossi for this fine send-up of the "King of Pop." Granted, Jacko had some good tunes, [but] people need to get a grip.
Notorious, via the Internet