Letters to the Editor

From the week of January 23, 2003

As for the synagogue, they have donated it back to us, and many local businesspeople and lay leaders are on a committee with our Scientific president and me to restore the synagogue and build a museum that will house all of our archives and history.

Diane Jarbawi

No crying over spilled ilk: Once again, Michael Paglia has managed to reaffirm my total lack of respect for critics of his ilk. His snide comments about the abilities of RMCAD to maintain, restore and upgrade the AMC campus now that it has acquired the site smacked of sour grapes. A little professional research on his part could have opened his eyes as to the tremendous efforts being put into motion to not only retain the historical status of the architectural elements that comprise this beautiful campus, but also the efforts to work with the city of Lakewood and Jefferson County to elevate the profile and stature of this significant location to the benefit of not just the college, but the cultural community at large.

As a seventeen-year veteran faculty member, I would recommend he read the RMCAD mission statement and regard the significance of this school's history and its contributions to the Denver arts community. He might also acknowledge the fact that RMCAD is NCA- and FIDER-accredited, and note that that alone gives us the professional stature required to become the best stewards of this property.

Remember this: "Those who can, do. Those who teach do more. Those who can do neither become critics."

Michael Littrell

The Skylark's the Limit

Heron today, gone tomorrow? Thank you for Laura Bond's articulate and thoughtful January 9 Backwash on the Skylark Lounge and the unfortunate situation in which the owner and staff find themselves.

Scott Heron is a "standup guy" and a "fine gentleman," as Bond's column mentions. He is also an honorable and ethical businessman who is an asset to the South Broadway community. It borders on tragedy when someone of his caliber is at risk of losing his business due to unfounded concerns.

The Skylark is a musical refuge, an oasis of American roots music in a desert of pop, dance and techno. I can find no other establishment in Denver that weekly features the local and national artists who keep the sounds of Eddie Cochran, Buddy Holly, Johnny Cash and Hank Williams alive. In my year and a half in Denver, I have enjoyed many wonderful bands at the Skylark, from Cave Cat Sammy (Austin) to the Dalhart Imperials, and for much of that year and a half, I could (and often did) walk to the Skylark from my residence on South Grant Street.

In all that time, I can say that I have never seen patrons from the Skylark running amok in the streets "peeing on cars," as Charlotte Wizenburg fears. To be honest, I have not seen "people peeing on cars" since my last frat party in college, which leads me to wonder about the bars Ms. Wizenburg frequents.

Bond's closing paragraph said it all: Dealing with the Skylark is dealing with the best. On behalf of the people who enjoy the Skylark and its contribution to Denver's music scene, thank you for so beautifully expressing as much.

Karen Wibrew

Rec and Ruin

Gym dandy: Regarding Robin Chotzinoff's "Worth the Weight," in the January 2 issue:

Thanks, Robin, for making 20th Street sound so attractive and gentrified that I will probably soon have to stand in line to work out, just like at Washington Park. Where was the mention of the colonies of bacteria that inhabit the locker-room floor, the old socks and underwear that missed the trash can, or the homeless people who have been allowed to shower there and whose toenail parings would slide crunchily beneath my feet on the way to the shower? Maybe they're getting rid of the homeless, too. The signs prohibiting the laundering of clothing in the showers have disappeared, and so have many of my favorite bums. I could rely on my guys to shoo away the pain-in-the-ass men in suits, who have free rein during the lunch hour. (The "Gold Card Fitness Plan," which costs a couple hundred, is accepted from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., and everybody else is sent packing.) Missing as well was the inept management of a former regime, which would issue the lifeguards a can of Ajax and a Brillo pad and tell them to scrub the sides of the pool during lap swim.

There are a few reporters and business guys who load up on Lysol and burn their clothing after their workouts, but the gym has been a haven for neighborhood downtown guys for the twenty years I have been going there. Find yourself a diner or something to profile, where you can actually do some good for somebody who's trying to make a buck, instead of opening up a new world of crummy bars and dark downtown gyms to the new crowd of kids who are just learning how to drink and how to piss off their elders.

Leave 20th Street alone, missy.

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