I'm a retired Presbyterian minister working as a volunteer chaplain, and I read Steve Jackson's article about Doug Overall ("The Quiet Man," June 14). I wrote Overall a letter commending him for his work--what a great man and a wonderful outreach. It was great reading about him, and I commend you, too, for the excellent way in which you've covered this story. Your article is superb, and I hope you continue to do this quality of work for Westword. God bless you.
Thank you for Steve Jackson's story on Doug Overall. When so much of what we read and hear could be considered "bad" news, it was wonderful to find such an uplifting a story. And on the cover of Westword, no less! My prayers are with Doug and with all the people he helps.
Regarding Kenny Be's "Romerman Returns," in the June 14 issue:
Once again, Kenny Be comes to the rescue of Coloradans who are concerned about this state's out-of-control growth. Much as I appreciate his Worst-Case series, though, I find it a sad commentary on the state of today's newspapers that the most thoughtful work being done on the topic is by Westword's cartoonist.
Editor Patricia Calhoun can take some credit, too, particularly for her coverage of issues in the Platte Valley (most recently "Win Some, Lose Some" in the June 14 issue). Given what's happening in the Rocky Mountain region, the name of her paper seems most prophetic.
Hey, what happened to Kenny Be? His cartoons used to be really funny and cool to read. There was a time when no topic was too risky and no subject too sacred. His comics were witty, intelligent, occasionally slightly raunchy, but always extremely hilarious. I enjoyed writing in and giving an average citizen's defense of his First Amendment right to be a good cartoonist, but I guess when a cartoonist loses his edge, he has to rely on weak "Romerman" story lines and hope nobody notices (and nobody does).
Garrett D. Weekley
He Auto Know Better
I'm writing regarding Kenny Be's cartoon titled "Valley of the Cars," in the May 24 issue. I wanted to provide you with some more accurate information about Colorado's Ocean Journey (COJ).
The $65 million project will be privately financed through a revenue bond and capital campaign, with the exception of a $200,000 economic-development loan from the City of Denver. The loan will be paid back during our first two years of operation.
Colorado's Ocean Journey will have about 1,000 parking spaces on site. We share our neighbor's concerns about the environment and are taking this into careful consideration as COJ is developed. Discussions have already begun with COJ's neighbors to minimize the need for additional parking spaces.
I will be happy to provide you with any additional information on COJ or to meet with a reporter to discuss COJ in greater detail.
Judy Petersen-Fleming, Founder
Colorado's Ocean Journey
It would be easy to defame Randel Metz as he does others in his June 7 letter to Westword about Kenny Be's "Valley of the Cars." He evidently moved here from Los Angeles and is now complaining about the descendants of cowboys and drivers of Chevy Suburbans and Range Rovers who provide and subsidize his RTD bus rides.
May he, Mr. Metz, straddle a hot exhaust pipe, thus furthering his self-adulation and gratification.
Harold T. Hodges
More Sage Advice
Regarding the June 7 "Wildlife on the Move!" by Robin Chotzinoff and Eric Dexheimer:
Well! To begin with, your so-called expert from Dale's Exotic Game Meats doesn't know a ruffed grouse from a sage hen. Ruffed grouse are considered by many hunters to be the king of the upland gamebirds. There are literally hundreds of volumes written expounding their virtues. For their incomparable flavor's sake, please do not just cook them "as you would a duck." What an unconscionable travesty!
Wild ducks and geese, by the way, have almost no fat. Why, one might ask. They love to fly and burn up any fat that might accumulate by migrating great distances. They are very unlike their pen-bound, couch potatoesque, domesticated cousins who fly little and poorly and grow extremely fat. In the same vein (no pun intended), and with no offense to Sam Arnold, what he serves to his customers is farm-raised "game" meat. Its flavor holds no comparison whatsoever to true wild game.
In your ignorance, you also do a great disservice to bear meat. Like any wild game, if a bear is eviscerated, skinned and allowed to cool quickly, its meat will be very succulent. Well-prepared bear rivals the finest pork. Before your staff writes another word about game-meat preparation, I suggest they research the L.L. Bean Wild Game Cookbook. (No, I am not a yuppie hunter from back East. I am a third-generation Colorado native.)
Finally, I want to make it very clear to your nonhunting readers that the majority of funds used in the studies of which you write comes from the sales of hunting and fishing licenses to people such as me. The original and still the best conservationists, we are the everyday blokes who gladly spend hard-earned monies to pursue wild fish, fowl and big game in the ever-shrinking wildlands of the Rocky Mountain West. (And you have the audacity to call yourself Westword. Would that we were still a sleepy cowtown, the "Queen City of the Plains," with her crown unsullied by the likes of you all.)
Stephen M. Anthony
Being a rabid chain-restaurant hater, I was so glad to read Kyle Wagner's May 31 column, "Mex and Match," supporting the folks at Los Volcanes and blasting Chevys. I find it heartbreaking that chains are taking over the land. Cookie-cutter-designed restaurants tragically run the mom-and-pops out of business. Part of the joy of traveling was seeing the different restaurants with their unique personalities, decor and food in each new town. Now, sadly, each town is beginning to look and taste the same. You can't tell one suburb from another. A Bennigan's is a Bennigan's is a Bennigan's.
C'mon people, let's get our originality back and support the restaurateurs who are taking the chance to give us something special: food with soul. Thanks, Kyle.
I have to salute Michael Roberts's article on Denver radio stations, "Dial `M' for Mediocre," in the May 31 issue. I can relate to his disgust with the general programming of all the choices available to us.
Why can't any one of them get bold enough to buck the weinie comforts of repetitive playlists and do something completely different? Even if the daily playlist were tossed out one day a week and listener requests were played, I'd die of surprise. Are radio listeners total morons? Do they request the drivel that sickens me each day? No imagination.
I, too, am bored to death with the garbage I'm forced to smell (hear?). Take KXPK-FM. They could at least deviate somewhat from the KBCO format. Why the duplication? I used to dig the album-side features of KAZY--the presentation of music not heard on the airwaves for a few years. To stick to a weak, prescheduled format day after day is a sick way to torture listeners. There are times I just shut the radio off, simply because of the frustrating ignorance of the Denver radio market. Boring. Predictable. Monotonous. On a treadmill. No guts! I dig music. Love it. But thank God for CDs and cassettes.
Todd Man Out
I read your critique on the Red Rocks concerts for this year (Michael Roberts's "Mix and Match," May 3), and was very disappointed to read what you wrote about Big Head Todd and the Monsters. You seem to be very negative when writing about this band, and I don't quite understand why. I am a thirty-year-old woman and have followed the band for years, and I think they are one of the best bands to come out of Colorado. You wrote that the warm-up band would be the highlight of the concert; I wonder if you saw it.
I was there on May 18. During the warm-up band's set, only about three fourths of the seats were full, and there was very little excitement from the crowd. This is not to say they were not good, because they were. When Big Head Todd came on, the stands were full and the crowd came alive; it was an energized performance.
I know many people who feel the way I do. I wonder if you have ever heard the saying: "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all."
Lisa D. Guthrie