1. The annual Stranger Valentine's Day issue is upon us, which means four full pages have been set aside for reader valentines. Do you think Stranger readers are paid for the task of providing content for The Stranger in the space where a paid writer's words usually go?
a. If so, how much per word do you think each of these nearly 1,000 writers were paid? Or were they paid a flat fee instead?
b. If not, how does this paper, which advocates a $15-an-hour minimum wage, justify publishing the work of unpaid writers? Doesn't that make The Stranger more than a little hypocritical?
2. In the restaurant section, EMILY NOKES reviews Valentine's Day candy found at the drugstore. While Ms. Nokes demonstrates an eerily comprehensive understanding of this artificially flavored world, doesn't The Stranger have some responsibility to the many local candy makers who employ local workers and, in many cases, use local foodstuffs? Ms. Nokes devotes exactly 126 words (out of, incredibly, a more than 1,500-word article) to locally made candy, using most of those words to make sport of the candy maker for being "Woman Owned," "Non GMO," and the like—exactly the kinds of values often trumpeted in these pages, along with localism itself. What kind of putative candy expert focuses on mass-produced sugar bombs flown in from all over creation at the expense of beautifully crafted treats produced in their own backyard?
3. GOLDY gushes about the Spamalot musical in the theater section. Suppose that Goldy was not perennially choked with nostalgia for his long-since-passed youth. Do you believe that he would've enjoyed a play made up entirely of rehashed Monty Python jokes as much then as he does now? Is there anything less funny than hearing the same joke told over and over again in the same fashion? Is there a better way to describe Goldy's writing career than a single joke told over and over again with diminishing returns?
4. Noted Woody Allen fan DAVID SCHMADER tries to justify his appreciation of Allen's films in light of Dylan Farrow's claims that Allen sexually molested her. Schmader struggles to be even-handed in his piece, but he can't resist lashing out at Mia Farrow for supporting Roman Polanski. Claiming that Farrow is morally damaged for supporting an alleged child molester at the same time that Schmader is supporting an alleged child molester's movies is the height of—you guessed it—hypocrisy, isn't it?
5. Given the hypocrisy on display in questions 1b, 2, and 4, is the Valentine's Day–themed issue of the paper also the hypocrisy-themed issue of The Stranger? Or is that every issue of The Stranger?