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Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014 12:01 am

Letters to the Editor 2/6/14

Admission is free to tapings of Mike Pittman’s One Mic Stand Comedy Show, 6 p.m. Feb. 12 and Feb. 26, at Hoogland Center for the Arts.



Thank you for your recent article on Mike Pittman’s eclectic life in Springfield in which his ventures have now led him to doing a One Mic Stand Comedy Show (“Funny Business,” Jan. 30). Having met Mike and his wife, Sherry, back in the early ’80s at a Christian Skate night, I consider them a hands-on and down-to-earth couple in the Lord.

The community needs something like the One Mic Stand Comedy because they say if laughter is the best medicine most of us could use a little more laughter. What really stood out to me is that he didn’t compromise his faith to become a millionaire after going through times of adversity. He stated that laughter kept him going and his relationship with the Lord. I was happy to see a feature about another type of comedy venue which eliminates the profanities and boundary-pushing bits. Like the Christian Comedian Mark Lowry, who has performed with the Gaither Vocal Band, Mike Pittman is proving that great comedy can exist. As a matter of fact, a really a good comedian doesn’t have to be vulgar and offensive. That’s why I say kudos to Mike Pittman. This type of creativeness will appeal to the broadest audience possible because laughter is a universal language.

Beth A. Rogers


Fans of thoughtful and visually arresting documentaries may be able to view a one-time screening of The Gardener in Springfield – but only if at least 90 people buy tickets by Feb. 20. The film is tentatively set for Thursday, Feb. 27, at the AMC Showplace on S. Dirksen.

The Gardener follows an Iranian father and son (the Makhmalbafs) who travel to Israel and learn about the Baha’i Faith, a world religion whose followers – despite their gentle and peaceful ways – have long been violently persecuted in Iran. By traveling to Israel to make this film, the father and son face incarceration if they ever return to Iran, the land that gave birth to the Baha’i faith.

Neither father nor son know much about the Baha’i religion (and what they think they know is far from accurate) due to its taboo status in Iran. Mohsen Makhmalbaf follows a young gardener who works at the beautiful Baha’i gardens/holy sites in Haifa, Israel, to understand who the gardener is and why he is there. Meanwhile his son, Maysam Makhmalbaf, rejects the concept of religion altogether and travels to Jerusalem, where he comes across the sacred sites of Jews and Christians and finds many similarities with Islam.

The 90-minute movie is mostly in English, and has received numerous accolades and awards, including a 2012 top 10 selection at the Mumbai International Film Festival. As a longtime Baha’i whose 18-year-old son is currently in Israel working at Baha’i sites featured in The Gardner, I can’t wait to see this movie!

Please go to this website by Feb. 20 and buy your ticket(s) at demandedfilms.com/screenings/the-gardener-springfield. I hope to be able to see you at the one-time Feb. 27, 7:30 p.m., screening of The Gardener.

Mike Lang


An Illinois Times page three opinion titled “Your money’s no good here” (James Krohe Jr., Jan. 8), noted that two charities in a Cook County town, and possibly a third, refused to accept a donation of $3,000 due to the donor being an atheist. I have to wonder if the donation had been $30,000, or even $300,000, would the response had been the same?

As I understand the circumstances, the donor wanted nothing in return, i.e., there were no strings attached to the donation. I cannot help thinking of the proverb: “Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.”

This situation reminds me of the old joke about the man in the bar who asks a woman sitting next to him would she sleep with him for $500? “Yes,” she replies. After a pause, he says, “Would you do it for $5?” Very loudly she answers, “Of course not, what kind of a woman do you think I am?!” He replies, “We’ve already established what kind of a woman you are, now we are just haggling over the price!”

Dick McLane

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