Their Passion Was in Tents
I have just read Patricia Calhoun's August 17 column, "Fold Your Tents," in reference to the airport. Well done! It says everything that needs to be said again and again and again. The whole project from the beginning--there may never be an end--hasn't been well thought out and planned.
Your newspaper is the best--keeping information in front of the public that I'm sure some people would rather have hidden. We're fortunate to have Westword.
This is in response to Steve Garber's letter last week criticizing Patricia Calhoun because she had said to vote for the airport in 1989. Westword's editor was not the only person who supported building a new airport five years ago; I think a recent poll said that most voters would change their votes if they'd known then what they know today.
But the point is, we didn't know those things then. And if it weren't for Westword, we still might not know what a mess it is out there! I, for one, congratulate Ms. Calhoun for not letting her opinion back then affect the way she writes about the airport now. At least she does not hesitate to tell the truth about the problems at DIA. Up until a few months ago, if you only read the dailies you'd have thought things were going fine! And they still don't seem to be telling the whole story.
Rome on the Range
Great column by Calhoun about the Department of Public Works and Paula Woodward ("Chill the Messenger," August 24). While Rome (the airport) burns, Nero (Mayor Wellington Webb, Mike Musgrave, et. al.) fiddles around. This empire, too, will fall.
Ms. Calhoun is right about one (and only one) thing: Lots of us would tune in to see Paula Woodward in jail. And they can send all the so-called "journalists" in town, including Ms. Calhoun, along with her. No one would miss them.
After reading all of Westword's stories about Denver International Airport, I have a suggestion: Forget those plans for the Platte Valley and put the aquarium at DIA instead.
It already smells pretty fishy--and the folks who pushed it through reeled in Denver voters hook, line and sinker.
Denver, as a city beset with conflict and lacking any real sense of direction, could be best characterized as the "Beirut of the West."
I have for some time advocated that Denver should host a World's Telecommunications Fair during the year 2000. The fair--or EXPO 2000--could be held in the Central Platte Valley behind Union Station and would be a catalyst for change, giving the city a new sense of direction, creating a new tax base and new tax revenues and causing a regentrification of lower downtown Denver. If we don't, the Central Platte Valley will soon become "America's Largest Parking Lot."
It is said that Americans make the best dreams, and we know the idea of America is slipping away. Expo 2000 would be an engine of civic rejuvenation to reclaim the city of Denver's proud traditions. Expo 2000 is an opportunity that only comes once.
Norman L. McIntosh
A Brush With Greatness
Regarding Eric Dexheimer's "Unhealthy Competition," in the July 13 issue:
I certainly enjoyed the article on Brush and Fort Morgan. I grew up in Brush, and my father was a physician there for almost fifty years. He and "Hildy" [Paul Hildebrand] were good friends and worked together. I know nearly all the people you mentioned. Your article brought back many pleasant memories.
Your article was excellently done. I could tell you spent many hours on it, but it sounded as though you enjoyed it.
Brush has several problems that contribute to the rapid turnover of doctors. Brush's athletic achievements are well known; less known are Brush's academic achievements in all fields. While I was in medical school, there were four of us from Brush, three in the same class, and we had one man in dental school at the same time. There were only 75 in the med school class. Just think if Denver had this high a percentage!
A Bum Rap I thought Michael Roberts's "Woodstock Redux" in the August 17 issue was right on the money (literally!), and I couldn't believe those letters last week from irate baby boomers. Hey, it's the Nineties: Wake up and grow up.
Regarding Peter Tonks's August 24 letter about "Woodstock Redux":
I would like to thank Mr. Tonks for finally making me realize that one of my previously favorite forms of aural entertainment--rap--is, in reality, comprised of "atonal, infantile jingles epitomizing that boastful human ego's self-deification" that can scarcely even be called music. I now realize that if I had confined my listening experience to cheerful, humble black people, I could have achieved as great a level of socioeconomic success and respect by now as Mr. Tonks and the members of his Woodstock Generation have, instead of being the downwardly mobile, blunt-smoking cretin I am today. If Mr. Tonks would be kind enough as to lend me his collection of Stepin Fetchit CDs, I promise to begin my cultural re-education as soon as possible--before it's too late.
Off to track down reruns of Webster.
At His Peak
Regarding Michael Roberts's "Today, Boulder. Tomorrow, the World," in the August 24 issue:
So what are all these radio people supposed to learn at KBCO's convention? How to turn a great station into one that sounds like everybody else?
I have to admit that I have yet to turn my radio station since 96.5 came on-line a couple months ago. The one thing that is beginning to bug me is the fact that I rarely hear anything more aggressive than, let's say, the Pixies. I feel I have been asked to go to a raging party where my friends will be and have arrived to find the party filled with one friend's dorky office acquaintances. In the beginning, The Peak was a welcome oasis of new music. You could find the Cranberries nestled up comfortably with Soundgarden. But now 96.5 is starting to suck. Not a lot at this point, but it is starting to suck a little. As we all know, when you start to suck, you can suck worse down the road or you can do something about it and not suck at all. In one respect, the Peak has me by the balls. At this point it is the only radio station I can stomach for more than three seconds--and chances are, even if they continue down the bogus path they're on, I will continue to listen. But the minute a radio station changes its format to the format I thought 96.5 had, I'm changing.
I will pray for that station day and night. "God, give me a radio station that is not afraid to commingle Pearl Jam with Nine Inch Nails. Please, God, please give me a station that plays all new music no matter how distorted the guitar." We already have KBCO for the wimps who think the Spin Doctors' Pocketful of Kriptonite came out last year and those who thought David and David were ever good. I got your boomtown right here.
Play more Lenny Kravitz, not Suzanne Vega. Play more Alice in Chains. The stuff off the Jar of Flies isn't too hard for those boomers and David and David fans. And for God's sake, quit playing that new Pretenders song into the ground, and that beer-guzzling-on-a-Tuesday-afternoon Tramps song (something about not needing a job and making cracks about people washing their cars across from the bar). "This ain't no country club, either" gives me the idea this rebel songwriter could afford to get loaded on a Tuesday long before her career took off. I'll bet money her dad's got a country club membership somewhere.
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Diamond in the Rough
This letter is in reference to all the responses to my letter on Best of Denver, but to one in particular--Spencer Cross of Boulder. I think you're misinformed, because according to the March 18, 1994, Austin Chronicle, no Denver/Boulder band was scheduled on the SXSW lineup. If this is still not enough proof, I have the Chronicle, and you may inspect it yourself. And to the rest of y'all, next time you listen to a Dead Horse, Seed, Skrew or Butthole Surfers CD (just to name a minute number), just remember where they are from and reside to this day. Also, when you go to a Reverend Horton Heat, Skatenigs, Ugly Americans, Little Sister, Dah-veed or Panic Choir show, just remember the same.
Austin has a badass music scene that by far blows away Colorado. And not to be belligerent, but the weather's better, it's cleaner, we have more lakes, the people are nicer, and in Austin at least we have more individualists.
Coloradans could sit on coal and produce diamonds for a living.