The light stuff: Getting my Westword on Wednesday night is always one of the highlights of the week. I only wish you could have devoted even more pages to your April 29 cover story, Julie Jargon's "The Importance of Being Holly." We really didn't get into Holly Kylberg's favorite color, what toothpaste she uses, or whether she prefers one- or two-ply.
Seriously...enough. It's easy to be charitable when you don't work for a living.
Black-tie black eye: Julie Jargon's piece on Holly Kylberg, Denver's "Best Socialite," left me waiting for a Westword perspective -- perhaps a lampoon? I was surprised that this was nothing more than a glimpse into the "society page" content of more traditional newspapers. Hardly the usual Westword fare.
That being said, I imagine many readers had their own spin on the piece. Acknowledging the good that such volunteerism does for Denver, I suppose I'll always be skeptical of the intentions of our "bluebloods." It seems an odd juxtaposition to think of a world of philanthropy where "image means everything" and "it takes a village" to keep her looking good. One can only imagine how many kids could be vaccinated if Holly's hair money was used at Children's Hospital. Her French-manicure funds might feed a few homeless. The list could go on. The argument that we all indulge our narcissism isn't quite appropriate, as her attention to self transcends the usual social norms and seems to have become something of an avocation.
As Julie Jargon implies, Mrs. Kylberg has had to fashion her lifestyle to befit "the importance of being Holly." I personally wonder if these black-tie fundraisers are something of a mirror used by socialites to admire themselves. Certainly there is little of the selfless humility recently uncovered by the news of Pat Tillman's death in Afghanistan. Ironic that the Westword piece would come to press at the same time.
Society's child: Okay, seriously, guys, why should I give a shit who Holly Kylberg is? If I wanted to read about socialites and other crap that applies to .0005 percent of the Colorado population, I would steal a copy of 5280.
A word to the wives: I just finished reading your enlightening "story" on Holly Kylberg. I know Holly and Rich. I have considered Holly a friend and have chaired numerous events with her. However, I find it strange that given some of the circumstances that Holly puts herself in, these were omitted from your article. After the cystic fibrosis event chaired by Valere and Tom Shane (who, by the way, did a wonderful job), Holly told Bill Husted the following morning about the "cat fight." I find it strange that a woman would tell a reporter the details if she did not want her name in print. In addition to that, I find it odd that your article would promote such despicable behavior as flirting with other women's partners. Perhaps your article should have been titled "No Boundaries Here."
By the way, kudos to VS for saying "no comment"; a true lady does not lower herself to revisit an episode that should never have happened in the first place.
Social injustice: I can't tell you how much I appreciate articles on wealthy socialites like Holly and all the hard work that goes into coaxing charity out of the greedy pricks in Cherry Creek. I really identified with the article as I looked for a job with a living wage and searched my closet for an outfit that wasn't too faded or overly repaired so that I could look presentable for my low-paying job.
I felt such empathy for Holly in hearing of her struggle to rise above her oh-so-difficult middle-class upbringing and awkward puberty as I reflected on my own childhood filled with abuse. Gosh, Holly's life of primping, Mao-ing and shopping just puts everything into perspective for me as I decide whether to get groceries or buy my medication. And it's so comforting to know that she still takes time out to get in touch with the peasants in their natural element -- the "dive" bar -- where she's just one of the masses.
I must tell you that I rest so much easier knowing that Holly is out there gala-ing her pretty little ass off for all of us caught in the fodder of her and her ilk's overpaid and excessive lifestyle.
Wow...Holly...now, that's newsworthy shit.
Queen city of the plains: What an unfortunate statement Lisa Herzlich made about the Cherry Creek Shopping Center not being ready for a "drag queen" at the Mask Project benefit fashion show, because the "mall is a family place." Holly wanted to do something cutting-edge and different -- although maybe not in Denver, where female impersonators at high-profile events are nothing new.
Did Ms. Herzlich think that lewd sex acts were going to be performed on the runway? Behind all the paint, glitz, glamour and camp, men who dress in women's clothing professionally or for fun are real people with family values -- just like everyone else. I suggest Herzlich see the movie Connie and Carla, now playing at her mall (there goes the neighborhood), for a fun flick and a lesson in compassion and understanding.
Charity begins at home: What the fuck? Your top story is a fancy-shmancy socialite? Who gave you money to put her on the cover? The story was all about her, not her issues. She doesn't look very altruistic when the story is about her "primping and cocktail parties."
Westword, try coming down to reality. It ain't as pretty, but at least it's real. You actually found a way to make your mag even suckier.
You want to write about charities and volunteerism? Then write about charities and volunteering -- what programs, how to contact them, etc.
Down and dirty: Your April 29 Off Limits on northwest Denver was interesting. However, you might have mentioned that the developer of the old Elitch site, Chuck Perry, originally had illustrations and presented an 18,000-square-foot "neighborhood market" to the community -- and now it is a 40,000-square-foot Wal-Mart. I don't think it is the neighborhood residents who are the ones "flinging manure."
Northwest-side story: I suggest that we are fighting, not bickering. And fighting T-Mobile and Wal-Mart is no easy task when you're working with spare time -- and they're paid full-time to crush you.
T-Mobile agreed to speak with Highland neighbors only after lying to obtain its permit and lying at hearings to avoid its revocation. Yet the company lost on all counts. Please -- we're not bickering. I, for one, welcome good, ethical business.
The city allowed the permit adjustment process to continue, and although it worked, it cost taxpayers $30K of their own money in legal fees. The root cause is the fact that zoning, admittedly, doesn't follow its own code. Welcome to your friendly business environment!
T-Mobile: shoving its fifty-foot pole up your alley. Put it on the roof of a building, you greedy scoundrels!
Pole faulting: Regarding the April 29 Off Limits item, my design for the T-Mobile cell tower was called "Those Pesky Poles" because it was based on the design of the Pesky Pole in Fenway Park in Boston. It was named for BoSox Johnny Pesky, who only hit a few (six, I believe) home runs in that short right field (308 feet near the pole).
Mark N. Doering
Clear as mud: I was amused by "Nip/Tuck," Michael Roberts's April 22 column about the Denver Post redesign. You can have expert redesigners from out of town, warm and fuzzy focus groups that reach a consensus. You can even have a nifty mission statement and all kinds of snazzy demographic research. But the fact remains that if you don't have good reproduction and printing -- and a commitment to such -- any redesign is going to look incomplete and dirty. Mockups and on-screen prototypes always look good and, as a result, make people feel good. Roberts's article was remarkable for what it didn't have: nary a word about reproduction, printing or new equipment and presses.
Western Slope subscribers to the Post have long tolerated photography and process color extremely out of register, pages with no image whatsoever, and inky, unreadable advertising. I would imagine in the earnestness to get the Post presses "on count" early, Western Slope folks get the "spoils" while metro Denver gets the good ones. Trouble is, the Rocky Mountain News doesn't seem to have that problem; its copies are readable, sharp. Some days the Post looks like it was printed in some Third World sweatshop using black-market Russian newsprint.
I've been in the newspaper business all my life, the last 25 years as a publisher and newspaper-group executive. I've long admired neatly packaged and well-designed metro newspapers like the News & Observer (they wrestled quite a bit over what to do with the ampersand in their redesign), the Seattle Times, the Oregonian in Portland. USA Today changed the face of newspapers on September 15, 1982; even the New York Times ("the gray lady") and the Wall Street Journal have embraced new looks, but at the same time, a dedication to quality reproduction.
Stephen Woody, publisher
Montrose Daily Press
There goes the neighborhood: What's with you guys? One week you have Amy Haimerl's great story on homelessness on the cover ("Pitching Tents," April 15), and the next you've got some society babe. Why doesn't Holly Kylberg just let the homeless build their tent city in her back yard? I'm sure the Denver Country Club residents would love their new neighbors!
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Sofa, so good: In response to Anthony Funches's April 22 letter about Boulder and how his "Vegas still lets us do those legal things we want..."
Yeah, and I'll bet that includes having a couch on his porch in "lovely" North Las Vegas!