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OFF LIMITS

Room at the top: Dateline NBC caught Colorado congressman Scott McInnis (see story, left) napping last month, when the TV news magazine checked out which representatives were calling the House Office Building home. Although McInnis, who represents the state's third congressional district, had told reporters that he was giving up bunking in his D.C. office after his first term, NBC found him still in residence. "Well, it's kind of a natural consequence. I'm sitting in my chair, and I just kinda, hmmmmmm, that's how it works," McInnis told Dateline. "I can sleep standing up on a Greyhound bus going through a city suburb with a fire truck following it, and that's just the way it is."

And McInnis isn't alone. NBC counted at least a half a dozen congressmen who officially call their offices home and literally sleep on the job (and that's not counting the number dozing off on the House floor). Although past Speakers made members of the House find real homes, Newt Gingrich relaxed the policy. Not surprisingly, another Colorado congressional rep, Pat Schroeder, takes issue with that. "If they want to sleep in their offices, fine," she told NBC. "But let's face it. What the taxpayer's then doing is providing them free lodging. Is the House restaurant going to do room service? Are we going to rename the office buildings the House office buildings and dormitories?"

Only if you agree to be housemother, Pat.

Some came running: When local Jungian psychologist and storyteller Clarissa Pinkola Estes finally published her two-decades-in-the-making book Women Who Run With the Wolves, she never dreamed that it would spend a year on the New York Times bestseller list--or that people would still be howling over it two years later. Pinkola Estes's book has inspired both adoring imitations and poodle-ridden parodies...and now there's Howlings: Wild Women of Denver. The zine is an outgrowth of a 1993 Colorado Free University class called "Writing the Wild Women," which inspired dozens of would-be writers to let loose the creative muse. "We have this energy inside us for the things we love," says Cale Kenney, who helped teach the course. That energy poured out in poems and stories that the women read to their fellow classmates. "I got hit over the head as I listened," Kenney says. "I thought, no one else is ever going to hear this."

But now she's taken care of that with her zine, which includes the work of dozens of local writers. The second issue, which is loosely dedicated to a "women working" theme, hits a few select bookstores (including Tattered Cover, naturally) any day.

To air is human: Governor Roy Romer was unexpectedly forthcoming last week while chatting with Western Slope representatives about their plane-service problems--perhaps because he exhausted his official spiel early on during the ninety-minute wait for other speakers, including Denver aviation director Jim DeLong, who were delayed at DIA. "This is a serious economic issue for all of Colorado," the guv told the group. "DIA will continue to play an important role in our future, but it does have growing pains. To be frank about it, we could have waited five or ten years to move the airport. But the noise issue made it inevitable."

Given all the noise DIA's not-so-nearby neighbors are making about the racket from planes, that means that DIA's successor must already be on the drawing board.

 
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