Because it's there
In the article "Selling danger" [11/23], semiretired trekking guide Scot Macbeth laments that adventure travelers, rather than for the love of mountains, are "going for cocktail conversation to be able to say they've been there." Last July, I climbed Mount Rainier. With an annual income that wouldn't cover half the cost of a car belonging to a typical RMI client, I scraped together the money needed to climb a mountain I've sought to know all my life. Of the other RMI clients I climbed with, all but one were male, and nearly all of them were from out of state. They were of an assortment of professions—lawyers, doctors, software engineers. This lower-income college dropout felt a bit out of place, and I sensed they didn't quite know what to make of me. I think I surprised a few when I reached the summit.
Regardless, the guides made me feel a part of the team, and I gained an experience I will cherish into oldladyhood. I just want to let Scot know that at least this adventure traveler is one who sought more than bragging rights over cocktails. However, I might mention it to someone over a beer.
Well, I tried to make it past the first paragraph but was stopped at the "now anyone with $65,000 will take anyone up Mt. Everest" ["Selling danger," 11/23]. Really? Can you name one company that would take a climber up Everest without experience? If so, then I would be happy to read on, if not can you please inform your readers as to which parts of the story are researched and which words are simply added to spice up the story.
DIRECTOR OF PROGRAMS
ALPINE ASCENTS INT'L
In response to Geov Parrish's tirade directed at the WTO [Impolitics, "One year ago," 11/23], I suggest that the anniversary of last year's World Trade Organization be designated an official Seattle holiday, to be named "Corporation Appreciation Day." I and many of the hundreds of thousands of Seattleites who did not join last year's rent-a-mob in trashing the streets and businesses of our city would like to express our admiration and appreciation to the corporations of our city and our country, who have brought fame and fortune to our city and given us a standard of living that is envied by many in the world.
We're proud of the Boeing Company, plane-maker to the world, which built the B-17 bombers that helped end the threat of Naziism. We're proud of Microsoft, which in 20 short years revolutionized computers and the world. We're proud of Nordstrom's, which set new high standards for customer service. We're proud of REI, maker of fine outdoor wear. We're proud of Starbucks and of Seattle's Best Coffee, who are spreading the gospel of fine coffee to the entire nation. We're proud of SAFECO, sponsor of the Mariners stadium.
We are proud of all our corporations and the countless benefits they provide to us, and we'll stand up for them and fight for them. And we'll keep our capitalist system, too, thanks. In case the demonstrators aren't aware of it, the Cold War is over and capitalism won. Socialism is now on the ash-heap of history, and that's where it will stay, too.
As for the anti-WTO whiners like Parrish: your right to protest ends when and where it interferes with my rights. Your right to make a political statement is not more important than my basic right of freedom to travel the streets of my own city. Your tantrum last year was tolerated by us, the majority, only so long as it did not interfere with our daily business. I fully support our police department and the actions taken to maintain public order. If Parrish and the tree bark- wearing troglodytes he croons the praises of wish to again challenge the forces of civil peace and order, he is welcome to do so. We have plenty of space available at King County Jail. Better yet, he can always be arrested here but sent to Texas to serve his sentence. The Texas Justice Machine is ready and waiting.
One year after the WTO protests in Seattle, I dare say the anti-globalization movement continues to move along much faster than does Geov Parrish. I rarely stoop to personal attacks but as a member of Eugene's Anarchist Action Collective I have ample precedent provided by Geov himself. I was almost shocked to read in his recent column "One year ago" [Impolitics, 11/23] that were it not for "the anti-WTO protests, a few broken windows [i.e. riots] would have been the only thing covered by the media." As if the millions of dollars in property destruction and street battles with police weren't an integral part of not only N30 but all of the anti-globalization protests Parrish champions!
Seattle taught me to respect the "nonviolent" tactics of my fellow protesters (lockdowns, human chains, etc.) because I saw that they really were capable of strategic and spiritual impact. It saddens me to see that so few of those on the other side of the protest fence did not learn from Seattle the strategic and spiritual worth of a good bit of rowdiness as well! Unfortunately, many (Parrish quite visibly) are more concerned with massaging their white guilt through constant references to police brutality without any mention of real, physical victories against the cops (won in Seattle through a VARIETY of tactics). And Parrish calls himself an anti-authoritarian! Unbelievably, after they give us the cold shoulder mixed in with snide insults like Parrish's—these people frequently have the gall to call anarchists divisive!
Fortunately, the anti-globalization movement that many of us in Eugene continue to contribute to (several of us Parrish has selected by name to write that he would "spit on") continues to shut down meeting after meeting of the global financial elite. That's being done with a variety of tactics, including those employed by the "stop-the-world-I-wanna-get-off" window-smashers.
EUGENE'S ANARCHIST ACTION COLLECTIVE
Taking the Nader bait
This is in response to the various smug, off-handed comments in several of your columns (11/16 issue) dismissing those of us who voted for the Green presidential candidate Ralph Nader. Regarding Krugman and Cohen's [The Culture Bunker] question "Who . . . pulled the Green party lever? Eighty-year-old women who used to own a Corvair . . . ?" No. If you'd been paying attention, you would know that Ralph Nader didn't talk very much about auto safety during this campaign. He was too busy addressing more important issues, such as corporate globalism, the corruption of our electoral process, the ever-increasing wealth gap in our society, and the untested use of genetically modified organisms. Probably the 90,000 Floridians who voted for Ralph are, like me, people who don't believe that Gore or Bush are going to do anything about the things that matter to us, and understand the need to take a step toward building an alternative political party that we actually believe in.
Appearance of rock
Hannah Levin entirely missed the mark in her preview of the Yellow Machinegun show (Music calendar, 11/16). She accuses the band of playing up their gender in promoting their US tour. With the exception of billing as a female Japanese metal band in the Breakroom ad (which may have been written by the venue or promoter), the band downplays their gender in their appearance, performance, promotional materials, and serious dedication to their music. This is certainly an exception in a genre of music in which many male and female bands' appearance can best be described as trashy drag. In an interview before the show, band members modestly downplayed their talent and reported they had not been treated differently in the Japanese music industry as a result of their gender. By contrast, complaints about gender bias in the American music business were rife at the ROCKRGRL Music Conference in Seattle in the first week of November.
The ultimate proof that the band takes music seriously, rocks in the style of the best metal/punk bands, and does not play the gender card was their seismic set Saturday night. Levin also deems Yellow Machinegun's music to be "mind-numbingly repetitive, and . . . cliche." This insightful observation should have made the front page—that a genre of music structured on three chord progressions could be repetitive is a news flash to be sure. I think the band slams together lyrics that are whimsically poetic and combinations of three chords with more verve and mastery than most bands playing speed metal.
Levin's misjudgment could be attributed to a short deadline if it didn't fit so neatly into the trend seen in both of Seattle's weekly rags in which Village Voice wanna-be critics dump all over bands of merit in their respective genres. Michaelangelo Matos' thrashing of Dark Star Orchestra and Mountain Con in the same issue are also good examples of this phenomenon.
ERWIN A. KARL
Like, I dunno!
It's pretty sad when a columnist has to use anal sex analogies to describe the feeling of being ripped off. In Dennis Globus' Vine Print "column" [11/9] he writes: "Please support the local restaurants that make you dizzy with their cuisine and not the ones that make you woozy from grabbing your ankles." And later: ". . . bring plenty of K-Y."
Now come on, not only is this poor taste, but it's an outdated slam on homosexuality and it insults our intelligence. Like, we would find this witty? It sounds like junior high kids that are upset from being assigned too much homework. I hope that this is the last time I will read something like this in your paper.
Letter o' the week
To the anonymous e-mailing jerk who dissed Dategirl in your November 23 edition [Letters]: We women don't take kindly to "the smallest of slights against female kind" (how quaintly put) because males are thugs who start out being nasty-mouthed and turn into rapists and murderers. The "female kind" has thousands of years of experience with your kind and so we're not "incapable of handling" ignorant dickwads like you. Some of us prefer to express their anger rather nicely, like Dategirl. We do not take that route. We'll tell you up front: Take your asshole remarks and stuff them where the sun never shines!
Bent? By all means, drop us a line. Write to Letters Editor, Seattle Weekly, 1008 Western, Ste 300, Seattle, WA 98104; fax to 206-467-4377; or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include name, location, and phone number. Letters may be edited.