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July 12-18, 2006

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Letters to the Editor


Myths About Bar Patrons

Re "The Barman Speaks" (Bars & Clubs, June 21), Top 10 myths about bar patrons:

1. We patrons owe bartenders nothing. Nada. Zip. If you make drinks properly and show us a modicum of courtesy, then we'll happily show our appreciation in the form of a tip. But don't believe that you have the right to anything in our wallets. Our relationship will get off to a better start if you refrain from lecturing us on whether we can or can't afford to buy drinks in your establishment.

2. Bartenders work in the service industry. While none of us has the right to be a jackass to you, you're advised to leave your attitude safely at home. A basic level of polite service goes with the territory; it's not contingent on our buying you a drink.

3. If you still can't remember our poison after the second time we've ordered the same thing while sitting directly in front of you, then consider changing professions; you haven't met the minimum prerequisites for the job. (We'd hope that your advanced degrees would have equipped you for this.)

4. If our drink request is ambiguous, humor us and ask us how we'd like it. Unlike you, we are not students of other people's drinking habits; we don't necessarily know all the different incarnations of a drink, nor those that might or might not be available at your bar.

5. You chose this profession so that you have "the freedom to do other things with [your] lives." With that decision comes consequences, some positive, some negative. We'd rather you deal with that reality and quit your bitching.

David Cooper, San Jose

Bar Lady Speaks

Re "The Barman Speaks." Thank you! This is a rocking-right-on article! I've been a bartender for 10 years ... and just thank you! Finally! This article has been all the buzz at work! Can you post this every month?

Desiree Sarchet, San Jose

Why 'A' Lost

I read with some bemusement the postmortem of why Measure A failed so miserably when supporters thought the polling numbers were in their favor ("Taxlash," The Fly, June 14). They probably didn't account for people (like me) who agreed with the measure on principle who later changed their minds after doing some simple reading. Like me, they finally got around to reading the County Counsel's impartial analysis, which read in part:

"Measure A states that the one-half cent sales tax is to be used 'for general county purposes.' This means that the tax proceeds may be used by the County for any legal governmental purpose without restriction."

Whoa! There was nothing there about transportation, health care, affordable housing, helping children, etc. This was no earmarked tax. This was money going into the general fund of the county for the next 30 years, to be spent as the supervisors saw fit, with or without the blessings of a "Citizens' Oversight Committee." Given the whims of local politics, this became a no-brainer for many voters. My vote changed to No faster than you can say, "Ka-ching!"

Personally, I felt used and misled by the measure's supporters. Those that the measure was meant to help might feel the same way.

Gary Maxwell, Sunnyvale

Have a Drink Near Us

I enjoyed reading your articles in the "The Grape Escape: a Wine Country Getaway Guide" (Cover Story, April 26). But I was disappointed that you didn't mention San Benito County wineries. We are only forty-five minutes away from Silicon Valley. I hope the next time Metro does an article on wine getaways that you will include the San Benito County wineries, www.sbcwinegrowers.org.

Kathleen D. Smith, President of San Benito County Wine Growers Association

Ain't Misbehavin'

I just finished reading the article "Cult Leader" about the Serenity screenings and wanted to point out that "Serenity Day" and the screenings are not the same thing. The screening's sole purpose is to raise money for Equality Now and has nothing to do with trying to get a sequel. Although I see no harm in "Serenity Day," it is a separate event and I, as one of the screening organizers, would not like anyone to make the mistake of thinking that we would use a charity event in such a way. Do I want a sequel? Yes. But that was never my goal with the screening in New York. I just wanted to make people aware of Equality Now and what they do, and using a movie that I love is just icing on a very big birthday cake.

H.G. Prime, New York, N.Y.

We got several letters on this subject; 'Serenity Day' and the 'Serenity' screenings benefiting Equality Now just happened to fall on the same day (June 23 is Joss Whedon's birthday). Cult Leader didn't mean to cause confusion by writing about them in the same item. By the way, according to cantstoptheserenity.com, the screenings raised over $60,000 for Equality Now. Nice work, Browncoats.—Editor


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