THE FRENCH MISTAKE

I read your restaurant reviews whenever they appear in the Pasadena Weekly. I like them!

I forget whether or not I’ve written to you before, but I wanted to write to you about a little thing in your review of the Glendale Shaker’s. It’s a common error that probably at least 90% of people make, so don’t feel singled out!

You used the term “braised boneless beef short ribs with a rich au jus.” Here’s the error: the French term “au jus” is not a noun; it is a prepositional phrase. The French word “au” is a contraction of the two French words “a le” (which is, of course, parallel to “a la”). You know what “a la” means (as in chicken a la king); “a le” means the same thing except it’s used for masculine French nouns, while “a la” is used for feminine ones. But the French convention is to not write “a le” but rather compact it into “au”, so instead of our saying “steak a le poivre” we say “steak au poivre”. In the phrase “au jus”, “au” is like “a la”, and “jus” is the noun that it connects with. “Jus” literally means “juice”, and in practice it usually means “broth”. And so what you were looking for to follow the adjective “rich” was simply the word “jus”: “short ribs with a rich jus”. File this little tidbit away for future use.

Keep those good reviews coming!

~ AL FISICARO

GLENDALE

A SIMPLE WAY   

We have all let our democracy slide, probably because we are all still enamored of our individual chance of making it big with our own American dream. Nobody realized the promise of the American dream had fascism at the end of its rainbow.

Only the likes of politicians and billionaires kept the dream going. Their twisted relationship with the public now allows them to do exactly what they want, no matter how ugly, and still be applauded for it.

I believe there is a simple way to change our relationship with ourselves by creating in ourselves another dream that promises a heroic future of increased safety and peace. To achieve that, the individual must relate to his or her own self alone, understanding what that self is personally, politically and socially.

For the American public it is not easy to do what’s right when no one seems to know what right is. We are not outraged as I believe we should be. (I watched Al Gore on CNN last night. Here he was talking the end of the world scenario as if he was addressing a ladies charity event. He was mild-mannered and politically correct and because of his diluted passion he had no emotion or outrage in his tone and was, for me, ineffectual.)

When we were taught to turn the other cheek, we became pacifists, and all our resistance collapsed, weighed down with political correctness and a pacifist POV enabling the ruling class to fragment us and control us easily.

When someone is angry, upset and emotionally outraged at the lack of social justice, we have been taught to look away; but these real outraged feelings are in us all. If we are going to change things, we must find a way for all of us to know what is definitively right and wrong and then express ourselves accordingly.

To know that we must relate to the innermost original part of ourselves (the building blocks of life) gives us the knowledge and human right to be honestly outraged against injustice.

I am talking about each one of us applying a simple matrix to the origins of our own human psychology that tells us for sure what’s right and wrong. It will show us social justice not only lives in us but must be fought for as a health issue and a duty to ourselves and the common good.

~CHRISTOPHER JUDGES

VENTURA

FROM THE WEB:   

To André Coleman: Congratulations on your excellent investigative reporting for the Pasadena Weekly. The recent story about the ATF and the Pasadena Police Department contains important information including the fact that the police officer who has been accused of selling off-roster weapons is receiving paid administrative leave and has earned more than $45,000 of annual $135,000 salary. You may want to consider getting an interview with Chief Phillip Sanchez to explain to your readers why Lt. Vasken Gourdikian is receiving paid administrative leave while he is under investigation. Lt. Gourdikian and Chief Sanchez are not part of the union of police officers since their titles are higher than ordinary officers who have fewer years of service. Since providing Lt. Gourdikian with monthly or weekly payments while he is being investigated by the ATF was not part of any union rule, it appears that this decision was made by the Pasadena Police Department. It may have been made by Chief Sanchez for reasons unknown.

The level of morale must be low in the department since police officers who were not involved in this type of activity to sell off-roster weapons to make additional money on the side illegally may be amazed that Lt. Gourdikian is still receiving a paycheck. In any case, keep up the very good work you are doing to keep the citizens and tax payers of Pasadena informed about this ongoing issue.

~CONCERNED