TO THE EDITOR: Oh for fuck's sake. Meg van Huygen, in her article extolling the virtues of Jet City Improv ["Improv Done Right (Finally)," Jan 15], does so at the expense of every improv group in town.
Now, I haven't seen a Jet City Improv show in years, and when I did see one, it was underwhelming to say the least. But I hear the group has come up in recent years, that its show has gotten tighter and more inventive. That's great.
The company Ms. van Huygen slights most, though she doesn't have the cajones to call it by name, is Unexpected Productions, Seattle's oldest, largest, and first professional improv company. UP is best known for producing TheatreSports, the longest-running improv show in Seattle at this point. TheatreSports has been very successful, which, at times, has created a wee bit of envy, and obscured UP's more adventurous work.
But upon a closer look, UP has done LOADS more than crank out TheatreSports. The company has been dedicated to exploring long-form improv, which incorporates complex narratives, honest characters and situations, and literature, film, and theater styles. And are its shows any good? Del Close, the late improv guru, called the group "some of the best improvisers in North America."
UP regularly travels to Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, Denmark, and Slovenia to perform shows and teach workshops. This global connection has allowed UP to host several international festivals. This year the company celebrated its 20th year by doing a 54-hour "improvathon." Many company alums came out for it. It was fucking amazing, and almost totally ignored by this paper.
I was a company member of UP for seven years and witnessed firsthand how The Stranger either totally ignored UP or treated it with mild derision. I always thought this to be unfair, but we resigned ourselves to it. To see The Stranger run Meg van Huygen's article, which, in a few paragraphs, belittles more than 20 years of great work by a great company--this chafes my sack. What she wrote is nothing more than a journalistic skid mark.
TO THE EDITOR: Sandeep Kaushik's article, "Among the Hippies: Seattle's Purist Left Meet Up to Ask, 'What Would Dennis Do?'" [Jan 15] is infantile and insulting to the extreme.
People such as myself support Congressman Kucinich's bid for the presidency for the bold, simple truths he offers: truths about the need for healthcare for all, free education for everyone, and above all, an end to the paradigm of war that has haunted the human race throughout history. Calling names as Kaushik does is something one resorts to out of ignorance and fear. I forgive Kaushik his obvious immaturity. May he live long enough to acquire a modicum of both wisdom and humility.
ANNOYED DELLA FAN
DEAR EDITOR: Had I known that The Stranger's article on David Della ["Della's Dance," Erica C. Barnett, Jan 8] was going to be so unbalanced, I never would have agreed to be interviewed. Although I disagree with the article's criticisms of Della, the thing I want to take issue with is the claim that the reason Della won was because he used "dirty politics."
Heavily favored and funded incumbents Wills, Nicastro, and Pageler all lost because they betrayed the trust of Seattle voters--who quite appropriately turned the rascals out. At best, Della's campaign strategy might have succeeded in getting him a slightly wider margin of victory than the other victors, but the race was Wills' to win or lose, based on her record. She lost it.
The real dirty politics occurred when Wills took a wad of strip-club money in contributions, met with [the strip club's] owner illegally before [attending] a quasi-judicial proceeding, voted his way, and then, when she was caught red-handed, had the audacity to schedule another hearing so she could change her vote.
Della decried Wills' lack of leadership during the "energy crisis" that left utility ratepayers in Seattle holding the bag. Della was right to blow the whistle on this rip-off and challenge Big Energy to justify the huge rate increases.
Finally, to claim Della lacks courage and avoids the hot seat is just ridiculous. Della has stood up against powerful interests in very dangerous times throughout his life. I am proud of the positive record of achievement Della brings to the Seattle City Council. The people of Seattle will be well served. He is off to a great start.
TO THE EDITOR: Your "Drinking Issue" [Jan 15] was unacceptably boring. But to be a fair reader, I decided to alter my perceptions and keep reading in an effort to discover any latent brilliance. The results, arrived at during an evening at Mecca (526 Queen Anne Ave N), were as follows:
Reading the paper after one Jolly Roger and one Jack Daniel's: Yawn.
Reading the paper after three more Jollys: Maaan, that chick in the Neighborhoodie's ad has great tits!
After a J...germeister shot: I mean, she has grrrrreat tits!
Three more Jollys: Ha! It's funny 'cause it's true!
Plus two Jacks and two Jollys: Whoo-hoo! Titties!
Another J...ger, plus a Miller: Izzzat a man? Fugg it. Yeeee-haw!