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Letters to the Editor 

Letters published September 17, 2003

Keyword: CON
More testimony on Trans Continental: When I saw the cover of Scene and the "Runway to Nowhere" [August 20] headline in the newspaper box, I immediately thought, "That's got to be about Trans Continental." Boy, did I call that!

I first became aware of Trans Continental when they were called Options Talent. A friend had signed up with them and asked me to take some photos of her for use on their website. Of course, no job offers of any consequence came -- just a trickle of semi-modeling jobs that were often too far away to be worth the cost of getting there. She figured it was a loss and forgot about it.

Then, last year, I got an e-mail saying that I'd been scouted by Trans Continental and that I should come to an open call. A bandmate and I went. Flipping through the glossy booklet, I was impressed to find that a friend who was already a well-known model had just gotten a multi-thousand-dollar contract through TCT. But it only took me about five minutes of watching their sales video to recognize the same line of bullshit my friend had gotten from Options Talent.

After the exit meeting with the "talent agent," it was clear that our band would be of little use to any agency, let alone a sham like TCT. I've also since learned that my model friend got that contract without any help from TCT and is suing them for misusing her image and name.

That night I got another e-mail from the "scout" who had contacted me. He said he hoped that I hadn't gone to the open call, that he'd realized what a crock the company was and had quit that afternoon. I did more research online and read hundreds of Better Business Bureau complaints.

I got "the call" a few days later, from Trans Continental's pushy rep. Armed with the info I'd found online, I basically told her that she was working for a shady outfit and that I'd sooner eat my own liver than fork over my credit card. She countered with "fame talk" and continued to sell me. Then I basically told her to shove it and hung up. If Lou Pearlman's agency has any useful purpose, it's that ripping their telemarketers a new asshole is a great stress reliever!

Good to see that Scene is hanging these twits out to dry with a big cover story. That's what I call responsible journalism!

Andrew Rothman
South Euclid

Read and heed -- or at least phone home: "Runway to Nowhere" was a great article! My 23-year-old daughter moved to Chicago three months ago and was approached by these folks. Fortunately, she spoke with her mom and dad concerning this "opportunity" and thus saved $1,000. I hope many other "models" read and heed.

Mike Keenan
Strongsville

Every mother's dream: Excellent article on Trans Continental. I have been reading about this company on the Rip-Off Report (www.ripoffreport.com) for months now. Lou Pearlman is listed in the Top 10 scams. Thanks for the great article. Hopefully you will save many broken dreams -- and broken wallets, as well.

Carrie Overfield
Cuyahoga Falls

Target Practice
Get the right premise, if you're gonna diss Dennis: If you don't like Dennis Kucinich, you can easily turn his passions against him and pass him off as silly. Some of us, though, find him refreshing and inspiring, whether he has a chance at the presidency or not.

Sarcasm can be great satire sometimes. But if the premise is all wrong, at best you're not going to get a laugh. And sometimes you're just missing the point.

First Punch starts off on a bad foot, referring to "the vegan crap" in "Dennis has left the planet" [August 27]. That, and the Department of Peace proposal you speak of, as if any normal person would agree that it's goofy. The hippie drug references to bongs and mushrooms may show how the writer had meaningless ideas when he used those things himself, but it's an ignorant overgeneralization just to lump new ideas into that category.

Just admit: You can't comprehend; it's over your head. What's wrong with simply encouraging positive thinking? So many of our problems are in our minds. That's not hippie drivel; it's true.

As for the vegan remark, I certainly eat my share of junk food and occasional meat, but I can tell the difference when I eat better foods. Maybe your idea of spirituality is just what some minister or rabbi tells you. Please don't turn your failure to understand into a joke.

Scene has shown its dislike of Dennis before, and perhaps you feel a need to counter the Free Times' support of him. But you only show your own limitations with such writing. There's a lot more to life than that.

Frank Barnett
Cleveland

What he said: In reference to your article "Dennis has left the planet," I am taken aback by the cold-hearted slamming of our well-meaning, admired-by-millions, and dedicated congressman, Dennis Kucinich. Do you try to provoke by fictitiously introducing the absurd? If this be your purpose, it is wise of me to have been alerted, since I am quoted in the article.

If this is not the purpose, may I advise you to compose a truth-searching article and keep our communications open for future articles, only if you agree to pursue some content and balanced views?

Dennis Slotnick
Chairman, Natural Law Party of Ohio
Genoa

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