Letters for June 26, 2008

Walking’s a gas
I don’t need to tell you the price of gasoline. And diesel fuel is even worse. So what are you going to do about it?

Start by resolving to vote the straight Democratic ticket this November. Bush and Cheney will be gone soon, but the Republicans who remain in Washington will give you no relief.

Second, stop driving a gas-guzzler. The prices are not going to get any better anytime soon, and they may get much, much worse. So trade your Hummer for a car that gets 35 mpg. Or take the bus. Or do what I do: walk. The exercise is good for you. And every time you walk past a gas station, you will be able to look up at the prices on the sign and know what you are no longer paying. It is a joy.

Brad MacKenzie

Get sensible
Re “A changing group” (Editor’s note, June 5):

Having a business that requires me to travel city streets on a daily basis, I am able to gain an interesting perspective of the overall pulse of our town. I am witnessing a decided upsurge of what appears to be the just recently homeless, people new to the game. It’s a demographic composed of folks who just a short time ago were shopping Macy’s, savoring a fine merlot, unwinding in the hot tub, polishing the new ride, signing the adjustable rate mortgage for the house on the hill, enjoying the good life. But alas, the reality monster has surfaced, and it is biting them squarely in their ample asses. The overindulgence we have known for the past 60 years or so seems to be coming to an abrupt end. So, with the bubble bursting, we are now forced to reevaluate the future at hand.

With the economy tanking, with property values down, with a never-ending $2 billion a month war, with unemployment up, and job security down, with $5 a gallon gas just around the corner, with good ol’ Nevada leading the way in foreclosures, with the tent city on Record Street getting larger by the day, with bankruptcy being the new method of paying down debt, the reckless days of decadence and greed simply must end. It’s time to be morally and ethically responsible. Hopefully, it’s not too late to start.

We just don’t need the best of everything. Shopping occasionally at the Dollar Store will not significantly diminish the overall quality of our lives. We’ve got to scale back, hunker down, get frugal, get humble, get grounded, get real. If this isn’t a full-blown recession, folks, it sure as hell is a serious economic crisis that requires us to make earnest lifestyle adjustments immediately. If not for ourselves, then for our children, and our children’s children. If we don’t, there’s going to be a lot of well dressed homeless people walking the streets of Reno.

Mark Murray

Pricey peaches
I am a resident in Sparks. Yesterday, my son and I visited the Farmer’s Market at the Methodist Church on Pyramid Way in Sparks. Who can afford to pay $4.99 a pound for peaches? $5 a pound for cherries? Lodi, Calif., and Yuba City, Calif., are not local. This is Nevada.

Don Sparks

Suspicious review
Re “La Piñata reborn” (Foodfinds, May 8):

I have friends here in Reno that I have been visiting for a month or so.

In some of our conversations, restaurant reviews and reviewers have come up. They at one time used to read the Reno Gazette-Journal reviews until they started to comment on the décor of a place instead of the food.

At that time, they switched to your reviews. Since I wanted to take them and a few friends to dinner, I relied on the review of The Agave in your May 8 issue.

It was terrible! The tacos were all lettuce and had very little fish. My friend’s wife had a dish where the steak pieces were on an extremely hot plate, and they were so tough she left three-quarters of the dish uneaten. To make a perfect ending, one of the other guests spent the next day never letting the toilet get more than two feet from him.

Well, I’m from the Deep South, and I am sure that you have heard of some of the “good ole boy” networks that we have. I was not (well, maybe a little) surprised to see in your May 15 issue a one-half page, full-color ad for The Agave restaurant.

Made me wonder if the latter had anything to do with the review. My friends assured me this was not the case, but they can be a little naïve at times.

Just thought you’d like to know.

Name withheld
Reno (visitor)

Getting hosed
Re “Prices fuel complaints” (News, June 12):

The five cents that mysteriously adds on to your gas amount when you have not pumped any gas is really not that much of a mystery. I’m surprised that the weights and measures people did not suggest it before going into a hot vs. cold side of the pump would make any difference. What probably happened is that the person who had filled their tank before, when they shut the power off at the pump, they continued to hold the handle valve open and maybe even held up the hose to get every last bit of gas, which in turn empties the hose. Hocus Pocus—now when you turn on the pump it has to fill that 2 to 5 feet of hose that is empty and you see that jump of money before pulling the trigger on the handle.

Thanks for a good, informative paper.

T. Taylor
via email