Thursday, March 22, 2007

I am a crackpot.

My letter to the editor of a well-respected, left-leaning, newspaper:

Dear (Newspaper) Magazine;
I am disgusted.
Your weekly feature, "Feature," is possibly one of the most obscene manifestations of elitist housing pornography that I've ever seen. Eastern Massachusetts has been experiencing an affordable housing crisis, and yet you run features on million dollar condominiums, half-million dollar fixer-uppers, and other offensive manifestations of the ludicrously inflated market that shuts so many out.
So many Massachusetts residents are quasi-homeless or paying 60% of their income for housing, dreaming of the day that prices fall so that they can have a permanent address, a cat, a single school district to in which to raise their children; this feature mocks them. It's as if, in a region experiencing famine, food shortages and inflation; you're running a weekly feature on the chic-est ways to throw food away.With the handy links provided to the listing agents, the indulgent descriptions of amenities, you're adding a coat of protective lacquer to the bubble that deserves to burst.
This feature is distasteful and irresponsible. I wonder about the Magazine's motivation in running it. To prop up the market? To inspire envy? To help the poor real estate agents? To pretend that $400,000 starter homes in Dorchester are within anyone's reach? To make the good old (Newspaper)Magazine as lofty and aspirational as the New York Times Magazine? What this feature accomplishes is to firmly establish the Globe as the paper of the "haves", "have-nots" be damned.
Sincerely, respectfully,
(Hobolawstudent)
(Wrong Side of The Tracks), Ma.

Response:


Dear (Hobo)

I got your email about your displeasure with our real estate feature in the
magazine. Respectfully, I think you are picking on one week of the feature.
The truth is that in recent weeks we have focused on inexpensive Cape
homes, $350,000 condos, and other prices. Each week it varies, sometimes
pricey, sometimes not, sometimes city, sometimes suburban. The feature is
addressing the wild fascination with real estate these days. Whether
$400,000 starter homes in Dorchester are within reach is unfortunately the
reality of today's market. If you want to live here, it's costly. I feel
like you are more angry at the real estate market's realities than at this
feature perhaps, which is something all of us can relate to. This feature
is merely stating the facts as they are.

I appreciate you writing us, though.
Best
(Some Guy), editor, (Newspaper) magazine

4 comments:

Roger Williams said...

Hilarious! But yes, you're a crackpot. Someday, I hope to give you a copy of The Wealth of Nations so you'll gain a foothold into the wondrous world of market economics.

Rob said...

One time I wrote a letter to the editor, but they didn't give me a response, that made me sad.

Giblet said...

Yeah, I think you are crazy.

I love the patronizing "though" at the end of his letter.

*Giblet

Paul said...

What's best about this is your first line: "I am disgusted." Nothing like opening with a punchy statement like that.