I was eager to read about people who were City Folk (Feature, March 20), [who were] born and grew up in Baltimore City, but alas, what followed your title led me to transplants, those whom I call Joanie- and Johnnie-come-latelies. Bless their hearts. Since you are CITY Paper, based in the city, how about writing on folks who know the name of the body of water at the harbor is not the Chesapeake Bay, who can tell you local stories without the crutch known as Wikipedia, or an iPad?
And while you're out looking for those people, don't be fooled when someone says he is "from here." HERE is the city of Baltimore. He can tell you what street his parents were living on in Baltimore City when he was born and what city high school he attended. So, yes, why not strive to find a few natives for your CITY FOLK columns? I'd like to read those stories.
Up with Smoke That a medical marijuana bill passed the House of Delegates, as reported in the Baltimore City Power Rankings (Mobtown Beat, March 27), is a great victory for the cause of individual rights and freedom in medicine. If this bill becomes law, physicians will no longer be constrained by the paternalistic philosophy that dictates that the government-and not the doctor-is the final arbiter of what care a patient merits. However, the passage of this bill should be considered as an important first step that will herald passage of the myriad other bills (detailed in The Nose, [Mobtown Beat, March 20]) that would decriminalize the drug, lessen penalties for possession, provide protection for medical personnel that dispense it, and provide protection for those prescribed it for health reasons. The fundamental principle underlying all of these efforts is that each individual's body is their own and not the property of the state.
Good EAT, Bad EAT I always enjoy your annual EAT edition (EAT, March 6)-a whopping 87 pages this year (Thank God for ad revenue, right? Seriously. That's not a dig.)-especially the Q&A with Tony Foreman and his plug for La Sirenita on Eastern Avenue in Highlandtown. I was struck, however, by your omitting some of Baltimore's other Latino restaurants. One's a no-brainer: Chicken Rico (also on Eastern Avenue). Another is less obvious: Cabanita's on Lombard Street. Both do great Peruvian chicken.
My main gripe, however (aside from omitting Clementine!), is that, while you included a from-a-mix frozen yogurt cafe, you left out Pitango Gelato in Fells Point. Pitango, arguably, sells the best-quality gelato (flavors like cinnamon, cardamom, black tea, hazelnut, orange dark chocolate) in greater Baltimore and has great coffee too.
It's fine if City Paper plugs a little Frankenfood now and then, but please don't do so at the expense of quality operations that are raising the standard of eating in Charm City. It is they-and not the guy selling cake-flavored frozen yogurt with gummy bears on top-who will rehab Baltimore's rep as a backwards, blue-collar town that caters to challenged, parochial palates.
Like Foreman said, support restaurants and food purveyors who are "taking a shot" at things.
P.S.: The letter you published this week from the guy in Towson (The Mail, March 27) shows that some readers take your recommendations pretty seriously.
Correction: In the byline of his review of Richard Hell's I Dream I Was a Very Clean Tramp, we misspelled Andrew Holter's name. We regret the error.