Flow Chart

Period piece: I think Deb Hipp’s tampon story is very sweet and funny, and I am impressed with this fellow who has such a healthy attitude toward menstruation (“Feminine High Jinks,” August 22). However, for me, the article was a little too cute and feel-good about a topic that is actually a huge problem — the health impact of tampons.

This “tampon mafia” that exists in the United States doesn’t just stamp out competitors; it also refuses to take bleached cotton tampons off of the market. The bleaching process leaves dioxin in the tampon. Dioxin is one of the most carcinogenic substances known. (Remember the big contamination scares in Europe a few years ago?) Rayon used in tampons is known to damage the cervix and vagina because it is abrasive, which can cause mutation of cells that leads to cancer and makes the woman more prone to infection.

While I love the idea of a little vaginal massager that takes the cramps away, I wouldn’t do it with a disposable tampon. (And what about the environmental impact of tossing out all those little motors?) Personally, I use a Keeper, a reusable latex cup that holds Aunt Flow at bay till I’m ready to dump it out. It won’t give me cancer or toxic shock syndrome. And I drink red raspberry leaf tea, smoke a joint or have an orgasm for the cramps. I am sorry to say it, but maybe our Vipon manufacturer should consider that if women weren’t ashamed to use a plain old vibrator (set on “low”) for the nonsexy reason of getting rid of their cramps, they wouldn’t need his product.

Malian Lahey

Kansas City, Missouri

Lemon Aid

Beat the dealer: I just finished reading Allie Johnson’s story about lemon cars and the shady dealings going on in the KC metro area (“Hell on Wheels,” September 5). I just wanted to take this time to say she did a excellent job of journalism.

I hope people read her article and that it opens their eyes to the underworld of used cars and dealerships that turn their heads and try to make a quick buck on the average American. I know because I was a victim about ten years ago, when I was in college. The bad thing was, I didn’t pursue the dealers because I was young and didn’t think I had a chance to prove it in court (or from what my friends told me). But I hope people learn from her story and wise up to the used-car dealers.

Name Withheld Upon Request

When you dish upon a car: I just picked up the Pitch today, and Allie Johnson’s story caught my eye. I just want to say great job! It was very detailed and informative, which is what a newspaper article should be: valuable. I don’t read any other paper but the Pitch. I get the Sunday paper only to get the sale ads, and I never read any articles because they don’t seem valuable to me.

I am in the market for a car right now and have seriously considered going used instead of new. I now have a greater awareness of the potential dishonesty that dealers can do and pass off to their customers. Thanks again for a very informative article!

Kenya K. Harris

Kansas City, Kansas

Brake out: I have just read Allie Johnson’s article on the car dealerships’ shady practices. I must say that I’m very surprised in a good sense that Johnson and the Pitch have reported and printed such an in-depth consumer-related issue.

I’m currently in the market for a second used car, and her article has definitely opened my eyes to what “could” happen to anyone, including myself. Johnson’s article is what I refer to as “real journalism” the way it is supposed to be.

Thank you, and thanks to the Pitch!

Phil Alvarez

Kansas City, Missouri

Red Hot
Stage right: I have just had the pleasure of reading Steve Walker’s “Scarlet Letters,” (August 29) about the unfortunate situation surrounding his review of The Scarlet Pimpernel. Having now read both the original review (“Red Flag,” July 25) and this newest article, I feel I ought to say something on behalf of the more normal people in the universe.

I’ve been a fan of The Scarlet Pimpernel books by Baroness Orczy for some years. Not the raving-mad, foaming-at-the-mouth lunatic sort of “fan” — just someone who enjoys the books. I enjoy the particular period of history in which they are set, and I confess I find particular amusement in reading about silly men wearing lace and generally nancying about.

However, I have seen the Scarlet Pimpernel musical only once. I went expecting to find a rather silly spectacle and was not disappointed. The music is really quite dreadful. The lyrics seem hardly more than a juvenile attempt at bad poetry. (“Can anyone think of a rhyme for orange?”) The jokes were stale, and the whole thing lacked something in the Plot & Coherency Department. Personally, I think the musical was taken too seriously, considering what it was. Had it been an even more tongue-in-cheek affair, they may have pulled it off.

I have found that many of the “Pimpies” can be extremely scathing on anyone who so much as thinks a negative thing about the musical. The kinds of letters Walker received at the Pitch about his review were childish and extremely uncalled for. I would like to apologize for the incredibly rude behavior of these Pimpies, on behalf of the right-minded Baroness Orczy Pimpernel fans.

Name Withheld Upon Request

Point guard: I just wanted to say that while I do not completely agree with Steve Walker’s comments regarding The Scarlet Pimpernel and Ron Bohmer’s performance as Percy, he does have a right to his own opinion, and I respect that. HOWEVER. This is where I draw the line.

Not all of us “Pimpies” are radicals. I myself have just joined the BohmerBuddies and support Ron and Sandra wholeheartedly — his backstage presence was impressive, as well as his performance. Perhaps Walker could maybe lighten up on the League and Buddies? For instance, perhaps reword a few things instead of just blasting them all, since I know for a fact that, well, some of us are pretty down-to-earth people who simply enjoy a good show. I am one of those people. It was the first time I’d ever met a professional actor, and Ron’s easygoing personality made it easier on me.

The main point of this letter is to say that I respect Walker’s opinion, even though I don’t necessarily agree with everything he said. As a potential criminal justice major, I think sending in an attorney was completely out of context. I mean, he did not break the law, so why settle for something so absurd? All he did was state his point.

Name Withheld Upon Request

Mom dearest: Thank God we live in America and have freedom of speech.

I am sorry that my son Steve Walker cannot take his mom to see Aspirins and Elephants. My husband and I have attended many performances of various theater events at the New Theatre in the past years and are so proud of the theater critic of the Pitch.

Keep pitching those reviews, and we will keep attending “Great Theater Events in K.C.”

Rosalee Walker-Bailey

Lake Winnebago, Missouri

Black Hole

Land of Ozz: I was first introduced to Black Sabbath’s music in 1970 at age twelve. This style of music has been part of my life ever since. I’m not your typical Ozzfest attendee, but I disagree with Andrew Miller’s review of this year’s show (Around Hear, August 29).

Miller suggests the artists should just perform and not talk. He also has issues with the crowd. This isn’t the Lillith Fair! The neurotic babbling and feminist banter of Sheryl Crow or the Dixie Chicks is enlightening? Give me a break! I’d much rather listen to Rob Zombie or Phil Anselmo any day. Further, with the exception of an annoying Jesus freak, I had no problems with the crowd.

I have a suggestion for the Pitch. Stop having hippies do your reviews.

David Youmans