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Reader letters: Jungle Cruise memories, ‘Daily Show’ leaves its mark

Passengers ride the Jungle Cruise ride at Adventureland in Disneyland.
The Jungle Cruise ride at Adventureland in Disneyland features new scenery.
(Allen J. Schaben/Los Angeles Times)

Not to be taken literally

Todd Martens’ excellent, well-researched history of Disneyland’s Jungle Cruise and other attractions [“A Course Correction,” July 19] evoked memories of when I worked there.

Fifty years ago, before I became a busboy at the French Market in New Orleans Square, employees were trained at the University of Disneyland, where a professor told us true stories of the park intended to discourage us from sarcasm with patrons.

My favorite story was set on a hot summer day when a family from Kansas, clad in shorts, Hawaiian shirts and sunglasses, asked the Jungle Cruise ticket taker how long the cruise lasted.

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“Three days!” was his response.

The family excused themselves from the long line, returned to the Disneyland Hotel via the monorail and soon returned with luggage in hand.

“We’re ready for our three-day cruise!”

David William Salvaggio
Redlands

::

I enjoyed the story of the revamped Jungle Cruise ride. My husband, Chuck Robinson, was one of the first children to go on the original ride.

His absolute terror at the sight of the hippo coming out of the water caused him to scurry up the pipe and hang on for dear life. The guides told that story for many years.

Wendy A. Robinson
Santa Clarita

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Many moments of Zen

Regarding the articles marking the 25 years of [“The Daily Show,” July 25 and 26], I remember shedding tears as I watched Johnny Carson’s final “Tonight Show.” That was in 1992 and I thought that late-night comedy would never be the same.

I was right. Late-night comedy has improved immensely since Carson’s farewell. With the comedic sensibilities and quick-witted cleverness of Stephen Colbert, the charm of Trevor Noah, the comedy commentary of Samantha Bee and the no-holds-barred approach of John Oliver, late-night TV has become an informative fun-fest.

In the midst of one of the most troubled of times in world history, a little (or a lot of) comedy lends a wry levity to the tragedies of the day. Laughter brings lightness and insight to us. I am grateful for giggles.

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Ben Miles
Huntington Beach

Diverting entertainment

Lorraine Ali’s review [“‘Lotus’ Blind to Its Own Satire,” July 19] of the delightful series “The White Lotus” is so off the mark it is hard to know where to start. It is a glossy, witty, satiric view of class and caste.

Ali is disappointed that the working class was not fairly represented. This show is a smile all the way, so just admire the scenery and the plot, and get off the soapbox.

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Alice Harnell
Palm Desert

::

Not every entertainment offering, especially fictional entertainment, should be or can be a proxy for all of society’s ills.

Many of us who turn on our TVs at the end of a long day of work just want to be entertained and have a break from the stresses and realities of modern life, and great entertainment like “White Lotus” is enough.

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Todd Piccus
Venice

No. 1 with a bullet

Regarding pop music critic Mikael Wood’s article “Song-Bashing Statue Removal at No. 1” [July 13]: Country music has long been a bastion of free speech, and has put cultural issues front and center for a long time, long before pop music, with Tammy Wynette’s “D-I-V-O-R-C-E” in 1968. (And there’s too many to count of songs that celebrate strong women and hardworking, well-intentioned, rueful men.)

So yes, you can choose to focus on some of the angrier songs, and infer the genre is backward or retrograde.

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But only on a country station have I heard a song lately calling for healing, in Tim McGraw and Tyler Hubbard’s “Undivided.” So please take a second look before you decide what country music is about.

Elizabeth Fenner
Los Angeles

No, Van Gogh would save his dough

Regarding Deborah Vankin’s article about the Van Gogh event “Would Van Gogh Go to This Show?” [July 26]: It sounds really sick, but I’m not going to pay $40 for kitsch.

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Ronald Webster
Long Beach

No strangers to publicity

Regarding Christi Carras’ online article “Madonna Sparks Criticism by Comparing Britney Spears’ Conservatorship to Slavery” [July 9]: As a longtime celebrity watcher, I’m appalled at the deference and credulity much of the media has given to the supposed plight of Britney Spears.

I believe the aging pop princess (who hasn’t had a hit since 2013) is colluding with her father to generate as much controversy as possible to keep herself in the news.

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Every article should include aerial and ground photos of the palatial estate she lives on in the hills above Thousand Oaks. Then readers can properly judge the value of the news space given to her when so many sleep on the streets.

Jack Fallon
Everett, Wash.


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