Apparently, Gabe Meline personally does not mind watching his young child running around the aisles of Community Market, screaming about the motherfucking bitches that ain't shit—what a cute little kid! ("Parental Advisory," Aug. 14.) If Gabe could remove his hip-hop hat from his smug skull and see past his tattoos, he might begin to comprehend that one doesn't have to be a conservative or a Christian to be dismayed by the precipitous collapse of any ethical sense at all in popular "culture," enchanted as it is by worship of prison life and the "obnoxious bragging, anonymous sex, murderous gunplay, or rhyming with the F-word" he and his child enjoy so much. But that's the so-called music he digs, and it will help create the future that he and his kid will live in. Good luck with that, Gabe. Why not try some Duke Ellington out on your little bundle of joy. That might open both your minds a bit.
"The 'c' in 'rap' is silent."—Johnny Otis.
Letter-writer Lauren Ayers ("Efren Needs Better Nutrition," Aug. 7) hypothesizes that Efren Carrillo's "demented" behavior results from the "invisible malady" of mental illness. And, further, that it is a physiological cause at the root of such improbable behavior from a promising well-respected political savant. Whether or not this is true, can we not accept the warped dis-harmony between our bodies and minds as among the main culprits?
Whoever you are, Lauren Ayers, my two twenty-something sons and so many of their ilk would be applauding you. Only the other day I was soundly lectured on the mayhem caused by the unsolicited introduction of fluoride in our water, not to mention the daily warnings to panic if it's not organic.
"Dad, do you have any idea what processed foods are doing to the essential makeup of our bodies?"
Miss Ayers seems to know, recommending we substitute our steady diet of cheap addictive unnatural food products with more omegas, minerals and vitamins in natural foods. It might not have an effect on the political warts in the limelight these days, but then again, you never know.
Dani Burlison says in her article about teenagers ("Mom! I Need a Ride!" Aug. 14) that "you'll pour yourself a glass of wine, sit back and . . . enjoy the last few years together." There's another stage, beyond the one she's talking about, when your children come back as their own adult selves, merging the lessons you tried to teach them with the lessons they've learned on their own. I get great fatherly joy from seeing what interesting, creative, rooted men my sons have become, and from learning from them—and, heck, they occasionally even still ask us for advice. It kind of pays back for those challenging teenage (and other) years.
Thanks for the insightful parenting issue—I particularly enjoyed the short and hilarious "Which One Should I Buy?" I was reading it and laughing out loud as my two-year-old son was playing in the front yard on his combo "swing" and "pull up bar," which is something his dad set up in our apple tree. It's a long stick, hung from a piece of rope and tied in the middle—our little guy grabs it with a hand on either side and swings all over. It provides hours of no-cost entertainment. Right next to it is a homemade "tetherball," a hacky sack tied with another rope hung from same tree, and when hit with a stick, we call it "piñata practice." Here's to good old-fashioned and cheap fun!
Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.