The one on your best-of issue was so sexy. It really made you understand how Eve was able to tempt Adam in the Garden. I know if it were me and that alabaster little babe came around with a snake covering her tatas, I'd do anything she wanted! It was perfect because you know that serpent was ordering up her every move, just like back in Genesis.
Then the "Hard Body" article by Megan Irwin on Liz Cohen and her lowriders was really interesting, made more so by her cover photo complete with power tool in a pivotal location.
One thing, though . . . when I looked inside at the photos of Cohen, I almost fell dead! At first I thought you guys had put the wrong pictures of Liz inside your paper. Couldn't be the same person! Then, I realized that, for sure, that was Liz. Wow! Unbelievable! Truly a case of an ugly duckling turning into a swan (albeit a very sexy swan).
Hmmm, makes me wonder what's beneath the scruffy exteriors of a lot of chicks you see. Might be absolute gold under those sweatshirts and jeans, and we never take a second look.
Robert Trent, via the Internet
The Savage Best
Off the couch: Your Best Of Phoenix issue was outstanding this year, from the beautiful color photo of what I presume is Eve in the Garden of Eden to the pick hits. Every year this edition is essential to my wife and I getting out and about to new and interesting places in the Phoenix area, and to being reminded of who the saints and sinners are in our community.
Daniel Perez, Phoenix
"Best" can be a loaded word: Cool Best Of Phoenix issue! It's my favorite New Times of the year. I like the way you tell us what's cool to do in town and, at the same time, stick it to some of the morons that dot our landscape. If I were some of the politicians and local celebrities winning some of your "awards," I'd be pissed off. Ha! Good work!
Jessica Johnson, Tempe
Puppy hour: I look forward every year to your Best Of issue, and once again have found it very informative. However, there is one thing I think you people missed. My wife and I are dog lovers and make a point of taking our dog to the dog park at least a couple of times a week. When I saw that you mentioned the park near 63rd and Northern and not the Rose Mofford Dog Park, I was very surprised.
The 63rd and Northern dog park has no water for the dogs and the gates seldom function properly. Also, whoever designed this park placed the trash poop cans right next to the benches. The Rose Mofford Park has two different places within the park for water. Just wanted to pass this on.
Gary Mummaw, Phoenix
Pro Patria Memorial
Standing together: Squabbling over the 9/11 Memorial here is wrongheaded. The Bird says the memorial is useless because nobody from Arizona (well, one person) died in the actual terrorism five years ago ("Shrine Whine," Stephen Lemons, October 5, "9/11 Narcissism," September 21, and "Monument Valley," August 3). But that is not the point. The point is that even from our desert city we have chosen to memorialize those who died. It's not important whether we actually knew them; it's important that we stand together as Americans.
So the memorial is far from useless. We don't need to be New Yorkers or Washingtonians to feel the threat of terrorism. These are the capital cities of our country, and when they are hit, we are all hit. I, for one, am proud that we erected our memorial to those who fell. Governor Janet Napolitano should be commended, no matter what the likes of The Bird believe.
The Bird decried the late timing of the memorial, that we were behind almost every place else in America. But I say, "Better late than never!"
James Williams, Phoenix
Intelligent design: The recent attack on the Arizona 9/11 Memorial is, on the one hand, despicable, while on the other, strangely comforting.
It has been my experience over quite a few years of attempting to ensure that our communities benefit from outstanding design that, almost without exception, good work attracts an initially hostile reaction from those whose constrained cultural comfort zone feels challenged. The Vietnam War Memorial is clearly a case in point, but I could identify buildings both at ASU and in Phoenix that also received an initially hostile reaction.
The good news is that, in almost every case, those early negative responses are replaced by a larger community acceptance and a growing regard and understanding of the quality and integrity of the work. And also by a happy forgetting of the raucous voices raised in dismay at having their platitudes unrepeated.
John Munier, Former Dean, College of Architecture and Environmental Design, ASU
We Are What You Eat
Nice plates to visit: Thanks to Michele Laudig for bothering to leave downtown Phoenix for Chandler, and for finding it worth the drive. Her review of China King was on the money, but what I really enjoyed was the kudos she gave our unsung area ("Royal Feast," September 21).
Chandler may not have the same glitzy amenities as Scottsdale or Tempe or even parts of Phoenix, but it is a worthwhile destination, especially for dining (Asian dining in particular). As the review noted, China King is just one of a slew of fine restaurants in our area. When I moved to the area 10 years ago from a big East Coast city, I wondered how I would stand such a suburban location, and now I find myself in a dining mecca.
Here's to the good life in the 'burbs!
J.M. Bruce, Chandler
Just drinks? No problem: I completely agree with Michele Laudig's assessment of Ticoz ("Resto the Story," September 28). I love drinking at the place, but the food leaves much to be desired.
Why is it that so many restaurants that open downtown are an elegant dream but just can't produce the kind of quality of cuisine that the community longs for? I had high hopes for this restaurant, but I don't know if I will ever pay for the food there again.
John Hammond, via the Internet
Stuck pig: First, I would like to introduce myself. I am Holly Gibson, co-chef of Ticoz. My boyfriend and I are the chefs of the restaurant. I want Michele Laudig to know that I really don't care what she thinks of our food. She is entitled to her opinion. I'm extremely offended by her racist comments about gay people.
Instead of focusing on the food and decor, she decided to insult the patrons of our establishment. This I cannot accept. She has insulted the integrity of what I stand for as a restaurateur.
I am curious to know more about her qualifications and history in the restaurant industry. My guess is that she has a major in journalism and that is the extent of it. I doubt she has ever worked as a server and am certain she have never stepped foot in a professional kitchen.
The adjectives used prove she is a gay-hating racist, especially since she stated our place has only Caucasian clientele, and that only gay people would fit into the sexy part of our slogan. Which leads me to our "mission statement," as she put it. We are here trying to make a success out of our hard work and creativity, something she seems not to understand. We would never advertise ourselves as kinda sexy, somewhat Latin, in an urban setting, or a little chill.
Based on the review, Michele Laudig sounds exactly like the type of person I would never want to cook for or cater to. She should be proud of her article; it absolutely makes her voice clear. She proves that people exist in this world with narrow views.
Maybe she will rethink some of the criteria needed to properly review a restaurant. First and foremost, patrons of a dining establishment should not be insulted. They should not be involved in any way whatsoever. Racial comments should not be made. Other places should not be compared to the restaurant at hand. And the writer should not comment about things she does not understand.
Your reviewer should try working in a kitchen for a few years, try serving a few years. Bring some real knowledge to the table.
Holly Gibson, Scottsdale
Editor's note: The above letter is so riddled with misstatements that we can only suggest that you reread the review and make your own judgment.