Archive for January, 2006

Denver is cleaner? Heck ya!

Whilst chillin’ with my friends en route to Parallel 17, the Vietnamese Pho/bar/mini-club on the corner of 17th and Franklin last week, we stumbled upon something you’re not supposed to see anymore on the corner of 17th and Franklin. A fight.

Well, not a fight exactly. More like one poor drunk man getting the bejesus kicked out of him by a bunch of–wait for it–junior high school kids. The man was on the ground, bleeding, while about six angry boys and–yes–-girls were kicking, punching, and berating him. Yes ladies and gents, welcome to the new face of Denver.

Well, not exactly. You see, Denver has gone to great pains (excuse the pun) to clean up the area along Colfax, 17th and 18th, the west-east street that take you from Downtown out to the indie music clubs, the Zoo, Colorado Blvd. and the Children’s Hospital–a mere three or four blocks from the incident. And this is what concerns me. My wife is a Children’s physician and often eats in this new trendy corridor. What’s to say she’s not next?

Mad at me yet? I would be. Although this illustrative story is actually true (we called the police, scattered the kids, took reports, etc.), it’s exactly the kind of stuff that gets printed in the free dailies, granola weeklies and even the town’s two major papers.

Is the area at the corner of 17th and Franklin dangerous? Hardly. We’ve stayed at Parallel 17 for hours, closing down the place and staggering out with not a care in the world–or somebody bothering us.

My point? Let’s start enjoying the city that wants us to enjoy it again. Namely the developments and the new retial shops along 17th and Colfax. Stay late after a show at the Filmore, have a beer and a burrito at Dulcinea’s 100th Monkey, or take a stroll. (Okay, don’t take a stroll, but you get the idea).

After all, it’s people who stop telling the story a few paragraphs back who aren’t real Denverites. Take heart, fellow citizens. The city is cleaning up. And if Colfax has new sushi bars popping up, then there’s no reason to not go out and enjoy. All of ye. ‘Cause I’ll be there, enjoying some Pho and a beer.

Things We Do Once Every Two Years

Vehicle-Emissions-Testing.jpgThe last day of January. 2006. The significance? Not only is it time to renew my license registration, but it’s also time to take the aging Saturn in for vehicle emissions testing. Because Colorado believes in Cleaner Air.

Ce n’est pas un blog gothique

I had intended by now to have written a lovingly detailed entry about where all the Goths go to show off their angst and dance it away on a Sunday night in Denver, but, alas! Broken kitty. I had to stay home. And my husband, who did go, did not remember to take pics of the location for me. And it’s a bloody shame, that, ’cause it looks so darn cool.

Thus, gothy goodness will have to wait for next week. Ta.

The Tattered Cover

In hearing about the new plans to move the Denver’s Cherry Creek Tattered Cover bookshop, I was worried that this move would cause a downward turn for my favorite reading locale. I am relieved to know, now, that this will not be the case. With moving to the Lowenstein Theater, the Tattered Covers stock size will stay the same, there will be a coffee shop – am hoping for a free wireless connection as well – and best of all, free parking.

I am anxious to check out the new location, come June, but will miss the feel and atmosphere of the Cherry Creek location. With all the easy online ordering and cheaper prices, going to an ‘actual’ bookshop seems to have turned into a special event, instead of just something you do. It’s nice to step into a book shop and be able to browse through the books, pick out a few, get a coffee then sit down and read.

On a side note, Frank McCourt will be reading, tonight, Jan 30th, from his new book “Teacher Man” the Historic LoDo location.

Dog Years

So. Happy Chinese/Lunar New Year. Today begins the Year Of The Dog. I can tell you one thing: it certainly isn’t the year of the cat. Not of this cat, anyway. My neighbor’s nine-or-ten-month-old kitten, whom we have been babysitting, managed to get his leg broken today. On our watch. Quite probably with my help. Tonight his main pass time appears to be hopping backwards while growling at his cast. Wonderful start to the new year, that’s all I’ve got to say.

Our plan was to go to Jin Chan and see what they were up to on this auspicious day. Our plans got a late start because of the newly necessary trip to to the vet, but damned if we weren’t going to stick to them. Unfortunately, all the Lion Dancing was going on elsewhere. Jin Chan was up to not much more than buffet as usual.

For those interested in what “buffet as usual” means and other dining impressions, proceed below the break. For the rest of you, well, y’all can go find something else to do in Boulder, I s’ppose.

From Fat Suits to Bat Suits

I’ve never been a big fan of plastic surgery.

For years, it has baffled me that there would be such a market for breast enlargements. And if my bulk email folder is any indication, there is now an equally large market of men desperate to enhance their reproductive organs as well. I don’t understand why people feel that they need to measure up to the physical standards of others.

An article in today’s Denver Post, however, has me rethinking my philosophy. Until today, I’ve never thought that I was dissatisfied with the way I look. I’m a textbook case of overconfidence — not in my appearance, but in my sense of humor and outgoing personality, both of which triumph over good looks any day of the week. And I’ve never thought I was ugly, just average. Not good-looking, either, but average.

The article spotlights Dr. John Millard, who specializes in creating six-pack abs — not with implants, but with fat. And not injected fat, but the fat that’s already there. It’s selective liposuction. He ultrasounds and sucks out most of the fat, but leaves behind a little bit of fat in carefully selected areas, giving the impression of a healthy, trim-looking six pack and equally fit pectorals to match.

For guys like me, with severe allergies to sit-ups and a family history of Dickiedo disease (where your belly sticks out further than your dickie do), the only six packs we’ve previously been able to purchase are Bud Lite and Coors. I’m not fat, mind you, but I do have the early stages of a small gut going on due to the fact that I like eating the occasional cheeseburger, Twinkie, or bag of Double-Stuff Oreos. And, as the article acknowledges, even with daily crunches and a change in diet, without the genetic predisposition toward Ripped-Like-Jesusness, it’s never going to be a possibility for me.

Until now. As I read the article, I was shocked at how quickly my disdain for plastic surgery turned into “I wonder what I would look like if I had that operation done?” There wouldn’t be a huge purpose, either, other than to look good for my wife and to feel more self-confident in swim trunks. But that didn’t stop the allure.

I was great until I got to the $15,000 price tag. That’s where the whole thing fell apart, because there are too many other things that I’d rather have for fifteen thousand bucks: A more dependable family vehicle. A recording studio crew. A membership to Disneyland’s Club 33.

I did note, however, towards the end of the article, the author revealed that Dr. Millard is also experimenting with arm and leg sculpting. Maybe there’s a sign-up for volunteers. Which would be a classic case of Americans’ inability to follow through: Sculpted arms, sculpted thighs, and Dickiedo.

It’s been, One week …

The Super Bowl is big, and I mean, BIG. Big like everyone talks about it, and I mean EVERYONE. The talk is about what party you’ll be at, and what commercials you hope are good, it’s talk about this event that the entire world tunes in for. But here, in this city a mile high, the talk is awkward. It’s muted and brief. I guess that’s to be expected though, seeing as this entire town was in a near euphoria just a week ago. Our Broncos were going to the Super Bowl, we knew it, they didn’t have to go into Indianapolis to beat the Colts, they got a home game and they were gonna win it.

That was fact a week ago. Now it’s just pipe dreams. But we’ll be going to the parties next Sunday. We’ll drink our drinks, and watch our commercials. Some will root for the Seahawks because they used to be an AFC West team, because they’ve never won a Super Bowl (let alone been to one), or because they aren’t the ones that voided our tickets to Detroit. Others will root for the Steelers because they are an AFC team (so represent), because Bill Cowher and Jerome Bettis have yet to hoist a Lombardy trophy, or because it’s nice to say that the team that beat you won it all (so you’re pretty much #2, right?).

The game will be played,
Champagne will be sprayed,
And we will get through,
Wearing Orange and Blue.

Although the NFL season is over for (us) this year, there’s plenty of sports action to be had in D-town. The Avs are playing hockey games in great quantities (though the quality may have to wait). The Nuggets aren’t doing so bad (oh thank heaven for Melo). If you want to learn a new sport there’s always lacrosse and the Mammoth (and their future hall of fame coach). And for those of us who ‘need‘ football there’s the Crush, who kick off their season as defending ArenaBowl Champions today against the Chicago Rush (whom they beat for said title last June).

You’ve gotta love a city that supports seven major league sports teams.

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