That's impossible: Regarding Lee Klein's "Chino-Latino No Go" (September 21): It is obvious that Mr. Klein has an ax to grind with the Estefans. His review of Oriente was one-sided and biased. I am a weekly customer of the restaurant and find the food quite delightful.
The review is very tongue-in-cheek, with hints of critique that badgered the Latin aspect as much as the food. I encourage people to make their own conclusions and taste the food at Oriente. By the way, the "sweet enough" cheesecake is actually Cheesecake Factory's Award Winning Cheesecake, rated number one in the country. Mr. Klein, it is obvious you lack knowledge and taste.
You keep her: Regarding Rob Jordan's "Blight Flight" (September 14): Lisa Mazique is part of the corrupt New Orleans Machine. We know why people like her are hired in NOLA. What is Miami's excuse? She is unethical and incompetent. Just don't send her back to us!
I don't get why you hired her: In reference to Rob Jordan's story about Lisa Mazique: It is inconceivable to me how someone who runs the office of blighted housing would be allowed to move and set up a blighted house next door to a family without getting proper approval from the very city she is employed by. The house is so dilapidated that it is dangerous to those living next door, and if a fire occurs or it collapses, individuals and children could be seriously hurt.
Your coverage seems to indicate that she had good intentions when she moved this house. Please tell me what I am missing, because I cannot see the "good intentions." Nor can I understand why your city would hire someone who would do this and allow a dangerous situation to continue.
Throws sticks and stones: Calvin Godfrey's "A Cool $20 Million" (September 7) was very informative but didn't surprise me at all. I am a transit employee. Miami-Dade Transit director Roosevelt Bradley seems to spend money willy-nilly and to allow money to be wasted on things other than service, and in this case safety.
The half-penny sales tax of November 2002 was supposed to have provided for the betterment of the bus service and the building of additional rail lines. Hasn't happened. Actually it's not totally Bradley's fault. These county commissioners who are so concerned about accountability are the worst offenders. They ask for transit improvements in their districts without knowing if they will really benefit anyone. Bradley's problem in this is that he just doesn't know how to say no. He says yes to everything!
To clarify something in the end of the article: Bonnie Todd was terminated not for "nonperformance," as you were told; she was fired for speaking the truth to the investigators from the Office of the Inspector General concerning the hiring of an "employee with a criminal background." This incident was previously reported in the Miami Herald and the Miami New Times. Ms. Todd acknowledged that this employee was hired under direct instructions from the director's office. Mr. Bradley just waited a fair amount of time before firing Ms. Todd, so it appeared the incidents were not linked.
Name withheld by request
Speaks to Stevie baby: Thank you for Lee Klein's kind words in "South Miami Goes to Town" (August 24). Consulting and creating cuisine are honorable tasks. For me, cooking is truly my first love and the way I share my love with the world and my staff. The review has truly inspired me for future ventures. That is more honorable than you can imagine. Peace and pop music to the palate sounds like a great day.
Chef Stefano La Cava
Metal Mania: I just read Josh Schonwald's story about Michael Trixx, "Metal Magic" (August 17). I can't tell you how upsetting I found this story, which described such a talented, kind-hearted, wonderful man! Not only does Michael perform one of the best magic shows I've seen, but also his shows are free for children and benefit people in need. Also there are a lot of hard-working people and families who live in trailers in the Keys. Housing here is among the most expensive in the nation, plus difficult to come by. At least Michael doesn't have to travel by bus to his jobs, or bum smokes, or drink beers while writing his stories. Josh may have forgotten that Christ was born in a barn!
Cover those toe-sicles: Thank you to The Bitch for her August 10 essay "The Scourge of Mandals." This stupid trend has been going on far too long and I'm sick to death of it. I saw too much of it three years ago in Dallas, where hordes of towel-snapping Southern Methodist University frat boys couldn't wait to don their Old Navy flip-flops at the first sign of spring. Now, in ever-warm Miami, all I see are Frodo toes, French-bread-crust heels, and nobby pink ankle bones all year long. This is not a Third World country. These men need real shoes, dammit. Even my man, trend-shunning as he is, refuses to wear anything that doesn't cover at least 40 percent of his foot.
Thank you, Bitch!
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Not: What happened to The Bitch? She used to be such a pit bull for the working man on the street and she has turned into some materialistic fashionista lap dog. WTF?
Do we need to call in the Dog Whisperer? Maybe Cesar can help her get her punk edge back. Has she been de-wormed? Probably one too many condo-opening parties mingling among the materialistic partiers has affected her. She hasn't totally bought in the lie, has she?