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Anderson’s review of Mark’s Kitchen (Young & Hungry, 5/3): I am well aware of every citizen’s constitutional right to free speech, which, I must reluctantly concede, usually includes restaurant reviewers. Nonetheless, the mean-spirited words that your scribe spewed out were totally out of context and unnecessary.

As a habitué of the wronged establishment, I wish to point out that Anderson came to Mark’s at a very busy time—on a Sunday, during which time the farmer’s market often vies with the odd street festival or Earth Day celebration for a consumer’s attention—and if his attitude toward the staff was anything like his disposition in the article, well, maybe he had a spanking coming (I, for one, would be delighted to receive a spanking from any of the waitresses at Mark’s Kitchen, but that’s another story entirely). I have never been challenged in my many trips to the juice cooler, but then again, I don’t make a practice of tugging on the skirts of overworked, harried waitresses (would Phyllis Richman approve?).

As your writer failed to point out, Mark’s Kitchen is a sterling example of a neighborhood meeting place. As such, the wait staff there might admittedly be a bit more solicitous toward familiar faces, but never in all of my visits there have I ever seen anything less than cheery, courteous service (from staff and management alike) toward any customer, whether new or returning.

Having said all that, I regret that Anderson’s meal did not completely meet with his satisfaction. Like most family-run restaurants, Mark’s probably has good days and bad days, but I can assure you that they are overwhelmingly consistent on the positive side. Perhaps Anderson should arrange a return visit, unless of course he’s already maxed out on the “new-agey shit” that so alienated his friend. Yeah, Takoma has a reputation for attracting all the left-wingers and yuppies and artsy-fartsy types, but hell, don’t we need a place to eat, too?

Silver Spring, Md.