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SEMANTIC SPACE RACE
Re: "Aaaiiiiiiiiieeeeeeee!!! Alison M. Rosen confesses her love of Thomas Kinkade, Painter of Light," April 6: What an eloquent, fun, heartfelt, insightful and healing article. I had never thought of Kinkade as iconic of the current oxymoronic (or perhaps just moronic?) age of "anti-establishment commoditization." I, too, am lured by the pseudo-grandeur of Kinkade. And she is quite correct: Kinkade—like anti-establishment consumerism—is more a drug than an art. In pointing this out in such a highly personal and ambivalent way, Rosen's analysis, humor and heart transcend the age of oxymorons.
Later in the same issue, in Holly Willis' review of the film Bad Company, I discovered a word I'd never seen before: "meretricious" ("she takes love, so often reduced among adults to meretricious partnership, to its proper extreme"). With help from my trusty Webster's Ninth New Collegiate, I realized that its coordinates in semantic space were not all that far from Kinkade's. "Meretricious, 1: of or relating to a prostitute; having the nature of prostitution; 2a: tawdrily and falsely attractive; b: superficially significant; PRETENTIOUS scholarly names to provide fig leaves of respectability for~but stylish books—Times Lit Supp. syn see GAUDY."
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Though 1 and 2a map perfectly, 2b is more difficult since Kinkade himself is pointedly anti-intellectual (as is the current age, and, for that matter, SoCal). But when one realizes that Kinkade (and most of the consumerist machine) simply hire cheaper bands to blow their horns, "meretricious" becomes a perfect match to the man and the age, and irony a perfect antidote for the poison.
I just want to say THANKS for the enlargement of "Red Meat" in the April 6 issue. Usually, I have to wait till I get it from a San Francisco Weekly to read it, as some other OC Weekly reader has borrowed my microscope to read THEIR "Red Meat." Also, I am still blowing my lunch from seeing Thomas Kinkade barf on the front of this issue. DREK!! Pure DREK!!
OrangeBURNING SACRED ART
Regarding Alison M. Rosen's Thomas Kinkade confession: congratulations on your courage. I just think all his houses look like they're on fire.
Orange MO' ON BIG J-MO
Thanks to the efforts of Nick Schou, it appears that the police and prosecutors are just now becoming aware of the specific names of co-workers who could corroborate my nephew Joshua Moore's claim of innocence, almost 16 months after he was convicted (Nick Schou's "DA: Please Call This Guy!" April 6).
But by telling Schou she did not know of Joshua's alibi—that he was working in Huntington Beach at the time of the video-store robbery in Fullerton—the deputy district attorney admitted incompetence and raises questions about the district attorney's prosecutorial practices. One would assume a key question asked of the police by DA personnel when considering prosecution is whether the accused has an explanation of his/her whereabouts at the time of the alleged crime and whether the police have investigated that claim. Does the statement by the deputy DA reflect, as generally accepted operating practice within the DA's office, the prejudging of guilt and the ignoring of exculpatory evidence in deciding to prosecute?
While DA personnel may not have cared enough to ask about Joshua's alibi in deciding to prosecute, the deputy DA did know of the alibi prior to the jury trial, contrary to her statement to Schou. Joshua's alibi was disclosed during the preliminary hearing. DA spokesperson Tori Richards is also wrong in claiming that "it's the first that we've seen of these claims." On March 2, 2000, I wrote the DA about the mishandling of Joshua's case, including the lack of consideration of his alibi. On March 15, the DA's office acknowledged receipt of my letter in a non-responsive reply. My primary reason for writing that letter was to express the concern of a 40-year Orange homeowner that the criminal prosecution policies and procedures used by the DA's office appear to be flawed, and these flaws are contributing to the wrongful prosecution of innocent people.
James F. Dinwiddie
OrangeOBVIOUSLY NEVER DID COKE
My husband was coming out of the Arrowhead Pond arena after an NCAA basketball game and was approached by a gentleman who was giving away free passes to see the movie Blow. At the time, it seemed like a good marketing ploy, but once he opened the small packet the free pass came in, he was appalled to find a small mirror that is popular in the cocaine world and had the word "Blow" on its container. This can only have one meaning and is completely irresponsible. I am a parent of a small child, and the thought that impressionable teenagers will be influenced by the influence involved in this giveaway is something that I could not ignore.
I am an official court reporter for Los Angeles County who sees the effect of drugs daily in court, ruining people's lives personally, people committing crimes to get drugs and destroying their families. My hope is that this letter will at least cause a second thought when it comes to what lengths the marketing departments will go to when they are conceiving ideas for their next promotion, and maybe they will act more responsibly.
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