Letters for April 24, 2008

Best column ever!
Re “A government of swine” (Know You’re Right, April 17, 2008):

Let us bestow well deserved kudos upon Amanda Williams for the insights presented through the simple but elegant narration within “a government of swine.”

In the prosaic, but undeniably clear thesis, “money that Congress chooses to use on these special projects could have been returned to the people or used to pay off our national debt,” Williams effectively graduates to the threshhold of virtual flirtation with actual conservatism.

It conjures the moment in Starsky & Hutch, when Huggy Bear declared, “In my book, you just moved up a step; that puts you on step one.”

Williams cited scandalous examples: the $196,000 for post office renovation would have been enough to fund the iraqupation for another 39 seconds.

The $50,000 wasted on tattoo removal could likewise have funded that ambitious project for yet another 10 seconds.

Even the $270,000 dollars invested against “goth culture” detracts 54 crucial seconds from the imminent resolution of the mess-o-potamia.

Digression desisted; the important consideration is that Williams has chosen some stats that succeed in putting wastefulness into perspective, and perspective matters.

flombaye krishnabob ellison

Don’t dis Cory
So glad to see the letters dis-ing Cory Farley have stopped. I quite like that columnist. The detractors pointed out that he writes about inconsequential subjects. However, while some writers are able to make even a gripping subject sound dull, Farley is able to make the mundane delightful. Kudos to Cory.

Pat Patera
Washoe Valley

Van Halen sounded bad
It was great for Van Halen to add podunk Reno to what is most likely their last tour. I realize the Reno Events Center leaves much to be desired for any concertgoer who wants to hear their favorite band live. However, I am greatly disappointed with Van Halen’s performance. I am no expert, but I would rate their performance as a complete and utter disaster based on the sound quality. I understand rock bands should be loud, but being loud to the point that all the highs from the lead singer and lead guitarist drowned out one another is ridiculous. I lost count of the number of times there were high pitched screeches from mic feedback. The sound guys attempted to make adjustments to almost no avail. Their attempts to adjust the different frequencies resulted in inaudible vocals at times and then other instrument sounds blaring in. I would say that in all, only three to five songs were tolerable and audible.

Maybe it is simply a problem of the Reno Events Center? I have heard others complain about past performances by other artists. However, I saw the Foo-Fighters and then Def Leppard, both of which were able to make it sound pretty good. As someone who paid $500 for tickets, I expect a little more than screeching guitars, inaudible vocals and mic feedback! I have heard better sound quality from amateur musicians at local bars for the price of a beer! As a paying fan, I am not paying good money to figure it out how a performance should sound; I am paying to hear a good performance!

This was probably the last time Van Halen will ever play in Reno. And, it just may be the last time I ever go to a concert at the Reno Events Center. Van Halen, after how many years, and you can’t get sound guys to figure it out, maybe you should retire before the end of the tour! As for Reno, can’t this town do anything right? Or is it all about taking the money and running?

Chris Empey
via email

Your cheatgrass hard
Re “Return of the non-natives” (Green, April 3):

Please note that cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) is an invasive species, but is not listed as a noxious weed by the state of Nevada Department of Agriculture. In addition to being spread or enhanced by fire and disturbance, irresponsible erosion control and horticultural practices can contribute to its spread. This is currently occurring in the Lake Tahoe Basin.

Julie Etra
Western Botanical Services, Inc.


Baba mattered
Re “O’Lear mattered” (Letters to the editor, April 17):

I agree with Roger Slugg’s comment regarding the recent article, “101 That Mattered.” It should have been “102 That Mattered,” because Mr. Baba O’Lear should definitely have been included! Mr. Slugg listed the many contributions that Baba made involving music in the Reno area. His greatest endeavor was the fabulous jazz program he hosted on KUNR FM for many years! I’m sure many of you jazz listeners would agree. How about it? He trained me to be a jazz DJ, which I did for many years in Reno and Portland. Thanks Baba! I miss you greatly!

Tommy Lewis
Tigard, Ore.