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HuffPo idiot: Colorado is fifth most overrated travel destination, Denver is "weirdly bland"

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The piece in question, "10 Terribly Overrated Destinations (And Where To Travel Instead)," was penned by David Landsel, a contributing editor for Airfarewatchdog.com -- a site that's more about cheap flights than prose. In his introduction, however, Landsel says he's been writing about travel for fifteen years, and he clearly relishes ripping places he claims he'd be happy never to see again.

His take on Colorado? Well, he calls Denver a "weirdly bland, Midwestern snore, with an air quality problem" -- a line that suggests he was last here in the 1980s. And aside from its ski slopes, Vail, in his view, is "suburbia in the middle of nowhere, a collection of strip malls by the side of the highway" -- and besides, the Vail Valley "is so high up in the mountains, some people are alarmed to find themselves nearly unable to breathe, let alone ski."

Pause to let the stupidity of these observations sink in.

Okay -- ready to read on? Because there's plenty more doltishness ahead.

According to Landsel, Colorado Springs is "uptight and boring;" Pueblo, Grand Junction and "too many other places to mention" are "drab and vaguely off-putting;" and Aspen and Telluride, which he lumps together under the "nicer ski towns" banner, are "buried so far in the mountains that getting there during ski season -- or any season -- costs time and money too many people don't have."

Pretty much the only good thing he has to say is that Colorado legalized marijuana last year -- so the next time you're in Denver, "you'll have something to do."

And where does he suggest people go instead? Utah, which "does as well or better" than Colorado "without the kerfuffle, the crowds or the cost," even if the beer in Colorado is "more advanced."

Thanks for tossing us one more bone, Dave.

At least Colorado's in good company. Landsel also disses international locales such as Buenos Aires, Berlin, Costa Rica, Vancouver and the entire Caribbean, plus the stateside stops Asheville, North Carolina, Chicago, San Francisco and his number one pick, Austin, which he shrugs off as a "legend in its own mind."

No shock Landsel's Twitter feed is dominated by upset Austinites. But also on hand are a couple of Colorado defenders, including one who correctly points out the irony of Landsel ripping the city for its air quality when he lives part time in (cough, cough) Los Angeles. Here's the exchange:

Our response? We offer fifty of them, courtesy of Jef Otte's 2011 opus "50 reasons why Colorado is the best state in America." Read it below in its entirety, and then decide if Landsel deserves to be on a list of most overrated travel writers.

"50 reasons why Colorado is the best state in America" By Jef Otte

Basically all of these United States are pretty crappy -- or at least that's what Gawker would have you believe with its 50 Worst States in America series this week, in which Colorado took 41st (worst) -- not a bad ranking, provided you give two sailing shits what some liberal America-hating rag like Gawker thinks. Which we don't.

And so, while we have before taken it upon ourselves to provide 50 reasons Denver is awesome, it falls upon us today to defend our entire state -- nay, this great nation (mostly our state, though) -- from some coastal city's sneering elitism. Colorado, eat your heart out.

Continue for more of the 50 reasons why Colorado is the best state in America.

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts