What you said about what we said last week
Based on reader response to Chris Klimek’s cover story on Capital Fringe, you’re one of two minds on the theater fest: “Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more!” or “It is a tale/ Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury/ Signifying nothing.”
Fringer summed it up: “I haven’t seen nearly as many Fringe shows as this writer, but I’ve seen more than a few over the years, and the biggest problem I see is that it is, as noted, ‘unjuried.’ Literally anybody can stage anything, make any claims about it, and charge $17 for a ticket. Even someone who wants to set up a table at a crafts fair usually has to go through some kind of pre-selection process. Fringe would boost its reputation, and might attract larger audiences, if shows were required to meet minimal professional standards. An alternative approach would be to ‘jury’ some shows and give them a seal of approval, and let others offer whatever they want at a lower ticket price.” It’s true, our city’s Fringe prides itself on being un-juried, but that doesn’t mean buying tickets has to be a crap shoot: Read some reviews.
But reader Joe Markowitz (name’s a typo: This is probably publisher and writer Joel Markowitz of DCMetroTheaterArts) finds Fringe fine: “This year’s offerings at the Fringe are pretty awesome. We have posted 95 reviews on DCMetroTheaterArts and the 36 writers who are covering it for our site all say it’s the best Fringe so far…. $17 is pretty cheap. Stop kvetching and start supporting our Capital Fringe Festival.” Not that I’m competitive, but OUR theater bloggers are also saying great things about some of the shows, and we ALSO have a blog (Fringeworthy) dedicated to covering the run of performances.
We got some great support for Tim Ebner’s Young & Hungry column last week on ex-prisoners in the hospitality industry. Commenter xx said,“Awesome article Tim. Nice to see a positive story on returning citizens, and the value they bring to our economy and food system when given a (second) chance.” But the same readers went’st forth in lamentation over our choice of headline (“Second Helping” was the print headline but for online we went with “An Ex-Con Is Probably Helping Prepare Your Meal”). You could say they were practically hysterical over what they felt was our tone of hysteria. x x (it appears readers went with an X-theme when choosing their handles in this particular comments section) wrote, “This is a wonderful and uplifting article, so what’s with the alarmist headline? Is something like ‘DC Restaurants, Social Programs Provide Second Chances for Convicts not clickbait-y enough?” Zzzzz… oh sorry, I nodded off reading that headline you suggested. Where were we? Oh yes: This only reads alarmist if you feel there’s something inherently alarming having ex-convicts prepare your food or serve you drinks. There isn’t.
Department of Corrections
Last week’s issue misspelled the names of Noah Gittell, Elliott Holt, and Maud Casey.