A SELECTION FROM THE STORY COMMENTS ONLINE:
Re: "Ugly Houses: A Seattle Field Guide" by Brian Miller (April 2) The guide is so right on. Seattle is REALLY lax when it comes to enforcing community standards on housing. A lot of it comes back to the "It's my property, I'll do what I want with it" and the "It's your property, I can't complain" attitude prevalent out here.—Joe M. I'm a real estate professional in Bainbridge Island so I'm not familiar with the Seattle market. If Mr. Miller's descriptions are even close to the truth (they are in any case delightful to read), I'm even happier where I am than I was this morning. Bainbridge Island's building codes are exactly what Seattle needs. I'm pleased to report that houses like those described are in the tiny, tiny minority.—Paul Pival Re: "Will Consult for Food" by Aimee Curl (April 2) Shame on you, Peter. You know very well what is ethical and proper professional behavior. Get out there and get a job or clients like the rest of us consultants who want to design cities. Don't try to use your insider connections to circumvent the open government we all want and desire. If you want to help design the city, you should not have resigned from your safe seat on the Council. Not good planning on your part. So keep away from Seattle government for the requisite one year and see if anyone will pay for your services if they know you cannot influence the city. Don't let this issue hang out there in the public if you shoot for the mayor's office. You will self-destruct! I'm watching!—Art Skolnik Peter, I guess you cannot collect unemployment—maybe you should have put more thought into your post-elected-official plans. Are you smokin' some serious crack to think that the city would hire you to guide it? Get a job, you bum!—Seemore Butts Re: "Light on the Snobbery" by Jonathan Kauffman (April 2) Screw Cheesecake Factory. Where's our review of Chili's Grill and Bar and its "culinary riches"? Wait a minute...April Fool's Day was yesterday? Good one Jonathan. You had me there for a second.—Bill H. "...every bite left a fleeting hint of sugar on my tongue." I'm sure that was because, being a national chain restaurant, they're buying their ingredients from a national distributor who's supplying them with industrially processed ingredients—i.e., you're tasting all the corn syrup added to keep shelf life—versus some of the locally owned restaurants that are going to the local markets and buying their ingredients fresh each day. That may be why many of the servers in the bistros here in Seattle have a hard time keeping up with what's on the menu and in each item: It changes every day and isn't a set standard that never deviates.—zeebleoop Re: "Letters" (April 2) I'm hard put to understand the vile attacks on Steve Scher, especially when I compare him with other local broadcast personalities. The content of his programs is, all in all, about the least trivial stuff I hear in Seattle. One intelligent gardening segment a week, in a gardening town such as ours, and a short weekly survey of events in Canada, merely round out what is fairly substantial content for any local program. Scher's matter-of-fact questioning of U.S. and international figures stacks up well with that of National Public Radio interviewers. It is probing and direct—polite without that exaggerated deference we get too much of. Catch his excellent program and hear for yourselves.—J B Pearce Sr. Re: "Meat Cute" by Mark Fefer (April 2) I'm unclear as to the specific controversy that Mr. Fefer has identified here: The Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center does not have a problem with the Mr. Nude Seattle event (which has evidently been going on for 10 years), so why does he? I also don't believe that Mr. Fefer is "sex-positive," a feminist, or very well qualified to determine what defines community for Seattleites. The argument seems to be that "salacious" events should not be held on sacred "public" grounds. Maybe Mr. Fefer is confusing the concept of public property with an event being held in public: I don't think that the event will be held in full view of anyone passing by. Does he think that there should be a board to review how private citizens use public spaces that they rent? Does everything that occupies publicly-owned space need to be morally approved? My suggestion to Mr. Fefer is that if he does not want to see porn, strippers, or any "Girls Gone Wild," he simply does not have to.—Bob Kittle Perhaps Mr. Fefer's delicate sensibilities may be best salved by knocking back a few at a Hooters on April 7th.—Laurence Ballard CORRECTION In his field guide to ugly Seattle houses [April 2], Brian Miller said of the Encroacher: "It's the architectural Othello, a conniver, a malign whisperer whose voice keeps getting closer, closer, closer..." Of course, he meant the architectural Iago. We apologize to any descendants of the Moor who may live in the Puget Sound area, and doubly so to any who might have also married into the family of Capt. Peabody.