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Letters : Cable Unable

June 27, 1993

There's an unfortunate difference in words between the cover title, "Data Till You Drop!" (by Carla Lazzareschi, May 16) and the inside headline, "TV Till You Drop!" Data is certainly not TV, and, with few exceptions, TV does not provide data.

Although the technology of 500-channel cable boxes is interesting, and the corresponding interview with John Malone informative, the prospect of television providing data in the near future is somewhat remote (no pun intended).

I strongly suspect that the future of cable will be no more than an extension of the status quo--that the percentage of cable bandwidth that's allocated to entertainment will significantly exceed the percentage allocated to computer, data and educational services. And for all of these services, will Malone's TCI provide me with a bill in electronic form?

On cable today, I can watch a re-run of "Gilligan's Island" at 3 a.m. However, neither the cable nor the telephone companies in my area will provide a fast network-level connection to the computers at my place of employment. Will the future hold anything different?




I will not apologize for being in my 50s, a glorious time of life. I do, however, think that someone in the White House should apologize for having amassed a cadre of spoiled young know-it-alls ("POTUS and the Posties," by Thomas B. Rosenstiel, May 16).

If this staff is a mirror of the future, God help the media of the 21st Century.


Los Angeles


In "The Trials of Clarence Darrow" (by Geoffrey Cowan, May 16) you attack a giant 50 or 60 years or so after his death, making accusations about his public and personal life that no one is around to answer.

Yes, Darrow did have a hard time defending himself against his accusers, but this man deserves the admiration and respect of the American people, especially the working people, whose liberties he fought so hard to preserve.


Van Nuys

How can I accept the Darrow story as fact when my ideas of geography and the passage of time are so affronted?

"They started walking north on 3rd Street . . . ." Good trick, if you can do it.

"At precisely 2:22 p.m., Darrow rose to deliver the defense summation."

"Darrow ended his plea near noon, and the chimes in St. Vibiana's Cathedral . . . . began to play."

How will I ever arrive on time at an appointment in downtown L.A.?


Los Angeles

Editor's note: Reader Desrosiers and others are correct that 3rd Street runs east and west, but it does begin with a downtown segment that goes southeast to northwest. Darrow indeed ended his plea as the 12 o'clock chimes rang, but it was noon of the following day.


The rug depicted in "Westward Home" (by Barbara Thornburg, Style, May 16) is a nice braided rug, possibly handmade, but certainly is not a hook, or hooked, rug as described.


Laguna Beach


In order to know how another person feels, the saying goes, one must walk a mile in his or her shoes. The new Holocaust Museum in Washington ("The Architecture of Death," by Joseph Giovannini, April 18) permits just that. From its experiential architecture to its participatory exhibitions, it allows visitors to actually feel what life was like for the prisoners of the Nazi camps. This in no way "trivializes historical events by reducing them to macabre Disney-like E-ticket experiences," as Christopher Restak claims (Letters, May 16). Although the museum may be dark and scary, it is hardly a ride through the Pirates of the Caribbean.

Also, what evidence allows Restak to suggest "a more detached, less literal approach?" Detachment is the disease good people suffer from when they take no action against the world's horrors.


Los Angeles


Fire the research guy immediately. He's obviously about 43, hopelessly subjective and mired in his own adolescence. I can think of no other explanation for the suggestion that "There ain't no cure for the summertime blues" is a " '68 Blue Cheer lyric" (The Crypto-Quote, May 9).

A researcher should always refer to the original source of a quote, unless that one is not the most famous. Since Blue Cheer's tortured and overwrought version of "Summertime Blues" is neither the original nor particularly famous outside of a three-mile radius surrounding the Whisky-A-Go-Go, I suggest that you cite the super-bad Eddie Cochran version from 1958. Not only is it the original, but it's more culturally correct--and a hell of a lot better.


Los Angeles

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