Smashing Punkin
Regarding Michael Kiefer's article in the May 30 issue about the Lone Fire ("Time to Burn"): As residents and business owners in Punkin Center, we think Kiefer should visit our town and see what we have here, or at least look at an Arizona map and find out where Punkin Center is located. Punkin Center is about three quarters of a mile long and half a mile wide on the old Highway 188 loop off the main highway in the Tonto Basin.

We have a boat repair, two real estate offices, store and deli, post office, auto repair, three RV parks, laundry, gift shop, two boat storages, building supply, restaurant, bar, hotel, mini storage, two beauty shops, county office, maintenance yard, town park, church, Marine Corps league headquarters, school, library, fire station with ambulance, homes and two double-wide mobiles. The Lone Fire never got within five miles of Punkin Center.

Please consider this an invitation to Kiefer to visit us, look around our community and maybe retract what he wrote about us.

Town of Punkin Center

Editor's note: Michael Kiefer did describe Punkin Center as "more a jumble of cafes, gas stations and double-wide trailers" than a town, and, on his behalf, I heartily apologize. Punkin Center is not just a jumble of cafes, gas stations and double-wide trailers. It has a bait shop, too.

Desperately Seeking Scribe
Peter Gilstrap is so awesomely entertaining! His columns are about the only thing I read in New Times. His egoless approach to journalism is such a treat. Is he married? Because I think I love his mind. Keep up the fantastic writing.

Name withheld

Editor's note: Once the Polaroids arrive, Mr. Gilstrap says, he will be glad to tell you his marital status.

Music Stand
It saddens me when a journalist goes beyond his personal opinions and ventures into the realm of irresponsible stereotyping (Coda, May 30). David Holthouse doesn't care for the Smiths, but he loves Rage Against the Machine. No problem so far. We can respect that. I love Rage and the Smiths. I love Erasure. I also love Fear Factory. What's going on?

When I was younger, I succumbed to an elitist mentality that I was so hip because my taste ranged anywhere from Dead Can Dance to Suicidal Tendencies. However, as I grew more aware of the music scene, I was quickly humbled. I discovered I was in the majority.

Wake up, Holthouse. Musical contrast is usually a basic tenet of the "alternative" mentality. The reality out here is that if it "jams," we probably like it, no matter what genre it's in. Say, since Holthouse is a Rage fan, does that mean he drives around in a Jeep without his shirt on, his cap on backward, and sportin' a Nine Inch Nails bumper sticker? Whoa, help me! I'm in Holthouse's shoes. They're too tight! They cut off my circulation and blur my vision . . .

Michael Stephens


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