October 5 - October 11, 1995


Image Problems

To the Editor,
I was dismayed to find my own words in the Tucson Weekly attached to the title "Bad Marriage Blues" (September 28). For many who didn't read past the large print, the tabloidesque title and cover art have evidently suggested that my new book is some kind of violent tell-all about divorce. I couldn't write a book like that. High Tide in Tucson is a collection of hopeful essays about family, community and the position of humans in the natural world. The reprinted essay, "Stone Soup," argues for the right of nontraditional families to define themselves not as victims or failures but as genuine families with a legitimate historical context. I have no idea why anyone would call that "Bad Marriage Blues," or illustrate it with a picture of a victimized woman.

As bizarre as it seems, I now find myself having to explain that nobody in my family recognizes that poor strangling woman with her Bad Marriage Blues. We think she ought to go be cover girl for some other writer. Possibly Roseanne.
--Barbara Kingsolver

Art Gang

To the Editor,
Regarding The Skinny's request for the "city art gang" to grant "prominent local artist" Barbara Grygutis a commission for a "large sculpture."

Unfortunately--or fortunately--there is no "city art gang" in a position to satisfy your request.

TPAC does not have any standing committee to select public art or to jury competitions. Instead it has a procedure to create juries as projects arise. The make-up of the juries is specified in an administrative directive from the City of Tucson. The guidelines call for seven members, representing a whole range of constituencies. Even more importantly, different people choose the artists for different projects.

Contrary to The Skinny's assertion, I doubt that you really want either TPAC or the Public Art Committee or any one else to tell these juries who to choose.

In addition, final selection isn't made on the basis of the artist's reputation, but on the basis of their proposal for the project in question.

As it happens, Barbara Grygutis has just won several commissions in town--not because she's prominent, nor because she's local, and not despite the fact that she's prominent or despite the fact that she's local, but because the juries favored her proposals, and that is how it ought to be.
--Chris Tanz

Stunning Impact

To the Editor,
I would like to commend Emil Franzi for his article "Exploding on Impact" (Tucson Weekly, September 14). It was the finest example of inaccurate, one-sided, uninvestigated "reporting" to the public that I have come to expect from the Tucson Weekly.

Since Emil didn't do his homework when writing the article, I'll do it for him.

1. Anyone in Pima County that had a job directly related to the building industry was encouraged (not coerced) to attend the Board of Supervisors meeting, because their jobs would be affected by the Board of Supervisors decision. The building industry wanted to have thousands of people there to show a fraction of the voters who cared about what happened at the meeting. It's the Board of Supervisors problem if after notification of projected attendance, they can't organize a public hearing. The Supervisors, who are responsible for transportation concerns, can't effectively transport 2,000 people into a room...get the idea?

2. "You could tell the environmentalists were spontaneous and genuine by their hand-lettered signs." Thank you for your opinion, Dr. Freud, but everyone there was genuinely concerned, on both sides. Oh, I forgot, you only report one side of the issue. Sorry.

3. The home building industry is like any other industry--it's supply meeting demand at a price the market will bear. Builders build homes because families need them. Tucson is growing, more homes are needed, and, yes, builders are looking into more environmentally friendly ways to provide those homes and alleviate infrastructure problems.

When you are prepared to move out of your home, tear it down, plant a saguaro farm, and live in a tent, please let me know--I'll be happy to come and write an article on you for The Weekly.
--Wendy Erica Werden

Emil Franzi Replies: I love it when you're angry. Since rampant population growth is something you consider a social and economic good, may Iask when you plan to move to Bangladesh?

Grow Job

To the Editor,
Hooray for Jeff Smith! His column "Malignant Growth" (Tucson Weekly, September 7) is right on target. It's refreshing to hear a voice of reason above the orgasmic moans emanating from the Microsoft/Tucson lovefest.

As Smith points out, there are generally two types of growth: population and business or economic growth.

The winners of the growth game are obvious. The losers are just as obvious: working people of Tucson. The average Tucsonan will pay more for housing and bring home less at the end of the week. Growth is often touted as the solution to a city's problem. However, more often than not, instead of solving problems, it further exacerbates them.
--Salvatore Nuccio

Web Head

To the Editor,
I have lived in Tucson for about ten years. The last three I have spent a great deal of time on the road (all over the country). While in Tucson I always keep in touch via the Tucson Weekly. It is by far the best way to find out what is going on in Tucson (music, food, news or whatever).

Lately I have been out of town more than in, so it has been a real pleasant surprise to find out about DesertNet on the Web. Now I can check out what's going on in town even when I'm not. Believe me, I use the service a great deal.

For some reason I have never quite gotten a grip on, Tucson seems to be way ahead of the rest of the southwest in most things: food, music, culture, interesting people, etc. DesertNet strikes me as another good example of whatever it is that sets Tucson apart.

Tucson Weekly is a super paper. Having access to it while I'm on the road is even better.
--Frank Bohac

Tom Rules

To the Editor,
I would like to express my satisfaction with the quality of Tom Danehy. Tom consistently writes great articles. My friends and I all read his articles weekly. Keep Tom on the payroll.
--Malik Smith

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October 5 - October 11, 1995

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