King of Hearts

Odd Couples, Really?

I read with interest Brian Miller's review of Peter Jackson's King Kong ["King of Hearts," Dec. 14], and I agreed with many of his assessments. One line, however, gave me pause. While describing the relationship between Naomi Watts' character and King Kong, Miller called the two "the most unlikely couple this side of Brokeback Mountain." I assume he is referencing the gay lead characters in the latter film.

What the hell? Is Miller aware that he is living in Seattle, where a large percentage of the populace does not consider a loving relationship between two men to be on par with that of a woman and a CGI gorilla? Is Rick Santorum suddenly reviewing films for the Seattle Weekly?

I trust that the Weekly simply printed this line on the fly with no intention of propagating any form of homophobia—which, to the best of my knowledge, is not a topic King Kong tackles in any detail. Miller's words, however, strike me as quite irresponsible. If he does not have the guile or the time to monitor his printed output for such things, I suggest he step aside for someone who does.

As someone whose job it is to relate the value of a film to an understanding audience, Miller has failed.

Nick Weir


You Missed on Rumor

I have to disagree with Brian Miller [Holiday Film 2005: Holiday Attractions, Dec. 21]. From what I've seen of Rumor Has It . . . , it appears light, humorous, and fun.

Doesn't the "why I'm not blonder" line kind of fit the story? It would be a shame if Anne Bancroft would have to "suffer" through this one, as there is such a wonderful cast, full of energy.

In the article, Miller mentions that you can think of Jennifer Aniston's character as "Rachel on a crystal meth jag." I think it is hilarious.

I think Miller's review of Rumor Has It . . . is very poor, and possibly he went into the movie expecting it to be bad. I think the movie will do well.

Connie Kinjerski

Green Bay, WI

Tent City Way or No Way

About the only thing Philip Dawdy got right in his recent pro–tent city puff piece is that Tent City 4 (TC4) is "a traveling political statement" ["O Little Town of Bellevue," Dec. 14]. Tent cities are a political sham exploiting vulnerable people, distracting attention from genuine efforts to address homelessness, and hiding the fact that SHARE/WHEEL, the outfit running them, is a rogue and renegade that routinely thumbs its nose at laws it doesn't like and threatens all who question it.

Recently, SHARE/WHEEL, alone out of every agency in King County, refused to participate in the city of Seattle's federally mandated Safe Harbors program, designed to collect data on the homeless in order to more effectively and efficiently provide them services. By refusing, SHARE/WHEEL lost over $250,000 in city funding.

The Safe Harbors debacle is typical of SHARE/WHEEL's absolute refusal to cooperate with those unwilling to kowtow to its demands. Transitional efforts, better health and sanitation, moving the homeless indoors in subfreezing weather— no matter, SHARE/WHEEL disdains them all. The crappier TC4's conditions and the more miserable the people, the better SHARE/WHEEL likes it.

SHARE/WHEEL's track record for years has been "the law and the public be damned. We do as we please!" That is until it rattled its sabers in Bellevue's direction, where it found a city that put people first as it threw back SHARE/WHEEL's ripstop curtain to expose this tawdry charade as a complete humbug! Bellevue, you rock!

Scott St. Clair


Pros of Energy Initiative

Thanks to George Howland Jr. for his excellent piece on clean energy ["Clean-Energy Frenzy," Dec. 14]. We're at a critical juncture: We can make the most of abundant, affordable energy efficiency and renewables, or we can backslide into further reliance on polluting and higher-priced fossil fuels.

NW Energy Coalition (as the article notes) is among the groups supporting a clean-energy initiative for the November 2006 ballot. Strictly speaking, this will not be a "renewable standards" initiative because it will call on affected utilities to acquire cost-effective energy efficiency in addition to meeting 15 percent of their load with new renewables by 2020.

The Washington Energy Security Initiative will save consumers money. It will stabilize rates by shielding us from the wild price swings of fossil fuels and weather- and climate-related fluctuations in hydropower supply. Even though they are subsidized far less than nuclear power and fossil fuels, efficiency and renewables are cheaper over time because they have little or no fuel costs.

Marc Krasnowsky

Communications Director, NW Energy Coalition, Seattle

Here Comes the Sun

George Howland Jr.'s nice article about renewable energy in Washington ["Clean-Energy Frenzy," Dec. 14] would have been even nicer with the inclusion of the burgeoning solar energy industries. A few mentionables are:

•SB 5101 and SB 5111, passed with near unanimous support in the state Legislature this year, created favorable conditions for photovoltaic equipment manufacturing and use.

•Three solar-inverter manufacturers are located here.

•The 2006 and 2007 federal tax credits for solar hot water and electric systems will boost the market here as well as the demand for products made here.

•Every day, the sun sends us energy equivalent to 10,000 times the world annual energy demand. It's time we noticed.

Jeremy Smithson


Project on Wrong Track

I particularly appreciated Knute Berger's reference to the monorail debacle— "potentially the worst boondoggle in the city's history"—in his year-end wrap-up, "The Year of Living Stupidly" [Mossback, Dec. 14]. Having spent the better part of my professional life making things I believe in happen, my Nov. 9 morning-after reaction to the overwhelming vote of the people was an overarching sense of hollowness—hollowness that stemmed from the fact that our opposition to the Seattle Monorail Project did not directly translate to building, creating, making something happen. While taking down the Seattle Monorail Project was a necessary precondition to developing local and regional rapid-transit solutions, the effort was much less satisfying.

The bad news is the unaccountable, runaway, divisive, faith-based Seattle Monorail Project was a tax-draining barrier to any integrated, regional mass transit solutions serving Seattle and the surrounding communities. OnTrack hastened the end of something doomed by breathtakingly flawed planning and leadership, both of which led to the fatal financial crisis. Seattleites didn't avoid a monorail crash—rather, the crash we experienced was less spectacular and expensive than it would have been had it occurred a few years down the road.

The good news is we are now free to plan ahead.

Henry M. Aronson


Seattle Needs More Veils

I strongly object to the review by Roger Downey ["Veil Unveiled," Dec. 7]. I have been to Veil two times now and am ready for more. Downey is a bitter old "foodie" who could do with some fresh vocabulary repartee. He needs to move along into his second career choice and do it soon. Seattle is ready for restaurants like Veil, and his dowager tactics just hinder progress.

Kate Winklarek


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