Here is some of what San Antonio Express-News readers have to say:
Carol Glanville disapproved of the Page 1 treatment last Sunday of Mike Monroe’s story about Spurs star Manu Ginobili, “Manu hasn’t forgotten those in need back home.”
“Sports don’t belong on Page 1,” she said in a voicemail.
And a bevy of readers were irritated that Nolan Hicks’ Wednesday story, “For same-sex homes, numbers — and acceptance — on rise,” also was on Page 1.
“Why the front page?” several wondered, offering up S.A. Life as an alternative.
Some also disliked Kin Man Hui’s photographs, one on Page 1 of the lesbian mothers featured and their daughters posed next to a mailbox with a bumper sticker that said, “Hate is not a family value,” and a photo on an inside page of the mothers cuddling on their couch.
I guess I’m an old fogy, but I’d have preferred S.A. Life for that lifestyle story, too. As for the Ginobili story, I strongly disagree with Glanville.
Ginobili, a catalyst in three Spurs NBA championships and the best Latin player in the NBA, is an icon here. He’s a passionate, skilled athlete who won an Olympic gold medal in 2004 and, to get to the point of Monroe’s story, he’s using his wealth and fame to help disadvantaged kids in his hometown in Argentina.
Monroe reported that Nela Agesta, who runs the charity, tells the children there Ginobili is the one who “puts fresh meat, fruits and vegetables on their plates on a daily basis,” and that “This is a heroism much higher than athletic achievement.”
In April 2009, readers hollered — and I agreed with them — when editors here put a story, “Injured Ginobili to miss playoffs,” on Page 1 and relegated to an inside page the news that an earthquake in Italy had killed nearly 300 people.
This time, though, Manu belonged out front.
Dick Phillips enjoys Shortcuts, a feature on the back page of S.A. Life on Tuesdays. It uses a cartoon format to educate its readers about the world. As Phillips says, it’s targeted at kids, “but adults like it too.”
He called last week about Shortcuts writer/cartoonist Jeff Harris’ piece on the Jeep, which was introduced as a military vehicle during World War II, but which is now a popular U.S. car.
“No one is sure where the name Jeep originated,” said a character in the strip.
Phillips said the name came from “Eugene the Jeep,” a character introduced in the “Popeye the Sailor” comic strip in 1936. Jeep, said Phillips, 85, was a yellow, doglike, fourth-dimensional creature that had “magical powers and outsmarted the bad guys” in the third dimension (where humans live).
“It could penetrate anything it wanted to,” Phillips explained, “or go over, around or through it … That’s why they called the vehicle a Jeep.”
John Igo, San Antonio College English professor emeritus, cited an “interesting boo-boo” in an S.A. Life photo caption beside a Sunday story about “author, thinker, therapist” Deepak Chopra’s visit to Trinity University. It said Chopra… “will discuss the culture of violence and how to lessen it at Trinity.” Likely, the writer of that caption meant Trinity was the site of the talk, not the place where violence should be lessened.
Finally, a photo that is probably funny only in journalism circles is making the rounds on the Internet. It depicts the front page of the Sept. 22 Detroit Free Press. The main headline on the page was supposed to read, “UAW talks shift to Ford,” but a wrinkle on the page, which covered one letter in the third word in that headline, made it say something else. Can you guess which letter it was?