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Pocket Change
Regarding Eric Dexheimer's "Growing Pains," in the January 2 issue:
You know, there are a lot of people deliberately paying less than $7,000 for lumpy, bumpy blue sex toys at adult stores. Glen has with him at all times something that most people have to keep in a drawer at home!

The whole sordid affair clearly shows that the penis is still the most important organism in the universe; it clearly shows the extreme obsession most men have relative to their pocket toy. How sad.

Dana Cole
Aurora

The Shock of the Newt
I want to congratulate Patricia Calhoun for keeping her eye on the ball with her January 2 column, "Happy Newt Year." For a supposedly "progressive" state, Colorado has a lot to answer for--everything from unrestricted growth to Amendment 2 to aiding Gingrich's ethics violations.

Jody Wheeler
Denver

Dearest Pat: Your mindless slobber against the GOP is tiresome. At least Colorado is not responsible for Slick Willie!

Get a life!
Ted Bryant
via the Internet

Happy de-Newt Year! Some more from Gingrich in his foxhole-by-the-henhouse, reported in the newspaper Roll Call:

"Nobody fully understands this, but if you think of the 'Contract With America,' it was, in fact, a training implementation document masquerading as a public relations device." It guaranteed, Gingrich continued, "that from Election Day through early April, the House Republican Party would have to behave in a deviant manner from what it would normally be expected to do. The theory is that if you could get them through the first 100 days being deviant, that the deviancy would become normal."

It has. And the "House Ethics Committee" that is now winking at him before slapping his wrist has become oxymoronic.

Evan Ravitz
Boulder

Princess and the Peabrains
Regarding Kenny Be's "Predictions for 1997," the January 2 Worst-Case Scenario:

What gives with the cartoon effigies of Patricia Calhoun? The Rocky Mountain News once had a photo that depicted Patricia sturdy as TV's Xena: Warrior Princess, albeit a bit fatigued.

How about an honest photo of our caring lady of the press? Please?
Rolf Norstog
Lakewood

A Room With a Review
While visiting my family here for the holidays, I picked up Westword, something I do whenever I am in town. Your December 26 Year in Review issue was proof that Westword remains one of the best alternative news and arts weeklies in the U.S. By providing your readers with important, non-glossy information with a dash of irony and wit thrown in, you manage to entertain while you inform.

I always despair at the changes I see in the metro area each time I return--scores of new shopping complexes and seemingly unregulated urban growth, to name but a few--but I am happy to say that Westword remains unchanged. Westword may occasionally be overly sarcastic and hypercritical, but special sections like the Year in Review and the Best of Denver are unmatched by any comparable publication I've read. Please keep up the good work, both for current residents and people like me.

Jonathan Make
Portland, Oregon

It was with considerable delight that I read the reiteration of my assessment of "columnists" Chuck Green and Vincent Carroll in your December 26 Year in Review issue. I apply the term "columnists" loosely to these two individuals, since "propagandists" would be a far more apt description. Columnists generally rely on some basis of fact upon which to anchor their opinions, but in the case of Carroll and Green, fiction substitutes in pursuit of their moronic ideologies.

And speaking of fiction, I must comment on one of Anglo Denver's most enduring myths, my alleged heist of the Denver Zoo. Twenty-seven years after the supposed event, it is somewhat picayune for Westword and the two major dailies to persist in purveying this gross distortion. So before Westword continues to parrot the dailies, journalistic ethics compel me to set the record straight.

I was never found guilty by a jury of robbing the Denver Zoo. Why did a jury fail to return a guilty verdict? To begin, the state's chief witnesses were the actual robber and his fourteen-year-old girlfriend, a drug-addicted runaway from New Mexico. In exchange for their testimony, the zealous assistant district attorney, Bill Buckley, himself convicted a few short years ago of shoplifting in Arapahoe County, saw a political opportunity to fell one of Denver's more radical black activists.

So Buckley agreed to drop charges against the positively identified robber in exchange for him implicating me, who was never at the zoo when the event occurred. The runaway claimed she overheard me suggest that Albert, the robber, knock over the zoo. It is possibly true that she overheard these remarks, as well as my suggestion that he consider the U.S. Mint, the First National Bank, the Federal Reserve Bank and other prominent targets. In a revolutionary context, any of these institutions were suitable targets--but not for me.

Some non-white members of the jury thought it ludicrous that I, who merely discussed such possibilities, would be on trial while the actual perpetrator had been granted immunity in exchange for incriminating me. Having failed to win a guilty verdict, Buckley vowed he would go to trial again and again until he had exhausted my family's financial resources.

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