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From the week of April 28, 2005

Hummus Among Us

Hookah hooked: I read Jason Sheehan's "So Far, So Good," in the April 21 issue, and was befuddled. This corner is quite familiar to me, yet I'd never seen Hookah Cafe. At any rate, I stopped by that night and pigged out. Lamb kebab, kafta, shish tawouk, veggie combo (hummus, baba ghanoush, falafel), lemonade. That falafel is the best I've had in Denver.

Jesus H. Christ, it was good! Every single bit of it was great. I found out that the owner/ cook/server -- a great guy -- slaughters and butchers the lamb himself. Otherwise, he doesn't know where it's been. I love the seedy, casual air and the way he brings tea without asking. A very relaxed evening.

Thanks for the article. Jason has revealed a hidden neighborhood gem that I'll patronize a lot this summer.

Jan Nerone
Denver


Down Under Beats Over

Fancy footy work: Thanks, Westword, for Bill Gallo's coverage of James Waddell's attempts to discover the first-ever U.S. native to play professional Aussie Rules Football in Melbourne ("Getting a Footy Hold," April 14). Like Waddell and Alan Nugent (coach of the U.S. select side), I believe the U.S. is a potential hotbed of talent for the sport. Further, Nugent's vision of a U.S. side eventually defeating their Aussie counterparts is not as far-fetched as it may seem.

The experience of another sport in its U.S. infancy -- rugby league (a variant on the far more popular rugby union) -- is instructive in this regard. Last November, the U.S. rugby league select team, the USA Tomahawks -- who, like the Denver Bulldogs players, are teachers, engineers and plumbers by day -- came within minutes of defeating the mighty Australian Kangaroos. The Roos haven't lost an international series in 32 years.

Aussie Rules (and rugby) recruiters will ignore the vast U.S. talent pool at their own peril. Or until James Waddell makes them see the light.

John Simpson
Littleton


Let There Be Light

Faith, hope and charity:What a well-written, enlightening article on Reverend Benjamin Reynolds! I found new faith and hope in reading "A House Divided," Laura Bond's article in the April 14 issue. I now know that our world is not absolutely on a road to perdition. I find it interesting that preaching acceptance and unconditional love places a religious leader in a position of having to defend himself. I believe that if half the church leaders who are investing resources to fight "moral issues" in the political arena would expend those same resources on helping the needy, we would live in a much better world today.

All one needs to do is watch the news to see that we are not focusing on the issues that need focus. We still feel as a community that it is better to invest resources in fighting issues like "gay marriage" than it is to educate and protect our children from those who really mean harm. How would Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. feel about the hateful statement of Reverend Gregory Daniels of Chicago, who proclaimed, "If the KKK opposes gay marriage, I would ride with them"? How ignorant and absurd can you get? Can you hate anyone so much that you would unite with a force that abominates you?

So I have added Reverend Reynolds to my prayers, because he needs them. And for all those who have their hearts full of hate, I say a prayer, too. Because I believe in a God who is a loving God. I think that along with murder, hate is an abominable sin. When the world is over, I think there will be plenty of room in heaven. Particularly room for those who "loved their neighbors." And in hell, there will be plenty of room for those who professed to be God-lovers but used their positions, resources and time to fight "moral issues" rather than to fight hunger and injustice.

Angel Rosario
Tampa, Florida

Judge not:It warmed my heart to finally see someone trying to teach tolerance in church. When you talk to Christians, they are very black-and-white on the issue and not willing to listen, but I feel that the way Reverend Reynolds explains the situation will finally make people think, and maybe learn and change. He obviously has a great understanding of the Bible, and if he could guide me on what to read, I think I would be able to debate with the crazy Christians and make them think instead of judge me and hate me.

Eddie Romero
Denver

Highway to hell:My passion regarding homosexuality is not to direct hatred toward homosexuals, but to warn them that it is wrong for them to think that it's okay, especially to the point that they are teaching in the church. All homosexual churches are willfully living a sinful lifestyle, and all heterosexual churches accepting homosexual churches are condoning the lifestyle. Homosexuality is simply a stronghold of Satan, the Angel of Darkness, and it will lead all of them straight to the pit of Hell. I have noticed that Scripture backs up all my opinions. Please note all Bible-based churches will accept all people as they come, but to come and then decide not to allow the Holy Spirit to change your sinful behavior is not acceptable, period. Why go to church if you're going to continue to willfully sin? Just stay in the world, because both will go to the same place for eternity.

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