Dr. Ruth’s American life
Regarding “Dr. Ruth is 90.5, Living Her Best Life” [Feb. 3]: That was quite an account of Ruth Westheimer by Amy Kaufman. Born in Germany, a child of the Holocaust, tragically separated from her parents, and, at age 10, sent to live in a Swiss orphanage, hers was an odyssey almost too dramatic to be believed. Eventually, Westheimer found her way to the United States and began a new life. So what does a person with this extraordinary background become? A moral philosopher? A serious novelist? An existential poet? No, she becomes “Dr. Ruth,” a wildly popular sex therapist. Only in America.
Don’t forget the Audi commercial
Re: “Halfhearted halftime: The steady procession of pricey ads reflected our tumultuous times” [Feb. 4]. I enjoyed Lorraine Ali’s article on this year’s Super Bowl commercials. I thought it was interesting that you mentioned the Budweiser ad, which had an alternative energy theme (“Blowin’ in the Wind”). But you didn’t mention the very clever Audi commercial on electric vehicles in an article about ads representing the national mood for social change.
Sympathy for Jussie Smollett
Regarding “Days After Attack, ‘I Had to Be Here’” by August Brown [Feb. 4]: I didn’t know much about Jussie Smollett. I watch “Empire,” but don’t listen to his music.
I support him being who he is. His lifestyle choice. His right to express himself, share his musical talent, acting, and love of his family, friends and fans without fear of being the object of some small-minded bigots.
Netflix, Hulu should help out
Regarding “A Fyre Storm Erupts” by Amy Kaufman [Jan. 16]: Both Netflix and Hulu should donate their profits from these documentary films to the unpaid workers in the Bahamas.
If Netflix, Hulu and the filmmakers really care about the injustices committed against the local community in the Bahamas who helped build the Fyre festival and went unpaid, they should help pay them for their work.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to reimburse the local Bahamian families, but this responsibility now belongs to Netflix and Hulu.
In tune with the ‘B-Side’ review
My husband and I saw “The B-Side” on Wednesday night and I appreciate theater critic Charles McNulty’s review [“History Rings in ‘The B-Side’” Feb. 2]. I always look forward to reading his reviews as he is able “put down in words” what I am not always able to articulate for myself.
An overlooked Sundance film
Film critic Justin Chang’s article regarding films at the Sundance Festival [“Bold, Brutal Visions,” Feb. 1] didn’t mention filmmaker Jacqueline Olive’s “Always in Season” about lynching. It should have been on Calendar’s front page, especially when here in L.A. even Chicanos were lynched.
Sergio Lira Sr.
Van Morrison through decades
Regarding “Van Morrison Figures He’s Done Paying Dues” [Feb. 1]: Thanks for Randy Lewis’ article on my favorite all-time musician. I have all his albums but, regrettably, I have never seen him live. I danced to “Gloria” on the Great White Steamer to Catalina at my grad party in 1965. I lived on the North Shore of Oahu when “Astral Weeks” came out. When I had kids, they knew all of Van’s songs after continuous play in our little VW bug. And it really added to my fandom that he is a fan of Louis Prima and Keely Smith, who are part of my eclectic library of music, and have the best rendition of “Just a Gigolo.”
Back in the mid ’60s every teenage boy with a guitar learned those three simple chords, then strummed them while screaming G-L-O-R-I-A. Thanks for a good memory.
Marie Kondo in a scary dream
Regarding “Can Marie Kondo Tidy up Netflix While She’s at it?” by Mary McNamara [Feb. 2]: I am a senior who does not dare subscribe to Netflix, as I already have weeks of “Days of Our Lives” to catch up on. To see Maria Kondo’s name leaping out from the pages of The Times is my worst nightmare. I fear she may be lurking somewhere in my VCR, ready to pounce, knowing that I have more shows recorded than I think I possibly have days to live. In tears and trembling.
Ruth Kramer Ziony
This relationship was not a romance
Regarding “Racism’s Past and Present” [Jan. 30]: In reading about the documentary “Always in Season,” I feel compelled to respond to a part of this article that is not directly the focus of the story. It states: “But he was troubled at times by his romantic relationship with a 32-year-old single white mother with a drug habit.” I would like to point out that this young person was 17, a minor, at the time of his death.
As this relationship had ended by that time he was even younger when it was fully active. He was a minor with an adult woman (troubled herself) twice his age. This was not a “romantic relationship” which implies consent and equivalency neither of which apply here. Teens are not adults. This story is a tragedy on multiple levels. My heart breaks for this child’s mother.