If men had periods and other thoughts

KEYSTONE, Colo. – “What if men menstruated?” was the intriguing headline for a story in the Summit Daily News (July 17) about an upcoming play.

The answer, according to playwrights Kathy Najimy and Mo Gaffney, is that if men had periods, they’d be high-fiving, celebrating their cycles with brewskis, saying their bloated bellies make them feel more like a man and bragging about the size of the tampons they use.

Is Revelstroke truly a paradise?

REVELSTROKE, B.C. – More than a trickle, less than a stampede, there’s been a steady migration of people from Banff and Canmore across the Continental Divide to Revelstroke. The Canmore Leader set out to discover why.

The Canmore paper concluded that Revelstroke, a city of 7,500 people that is base to several heli-skiing operations, has wonderful skiing and rock climbing, but also lower housing costs. Starter homes can be bought for less than $100,000 ($60,000 US).

“I found paradise,” said one 33-year-old who had spent time in a number of mountain towns in Alberta and British Columbia.

Like Banff, Revelstroke is landlocked. It cannot grow out. However, with Intrawest reportedly eyeing the modest ski hill, it may grow up.

But just as everybody in Colorado says they don’t want to be like Aspen or Vail, people in Revelstroke are saying they don’t want to be like Whistler, another Intrawest-influenced town. “We want to manage development quite carefully and cautiously,” said the city’s director of commercial economic development.

Rip Van Winkle wonders who Kobe is

EAGLE, Colo. – Believe it or not, a few people have never heard of Kobe Bryant, as witnessed by a modern-day Rip Van Winkle who showed up at the Eagle County Justice Center recently to pay a fine.

Outside the building, says the Eagle Valley Enterprise (July 24), a press conference was being held at which the district attorney announced that indeed, he planned to charge Kobe Bryant with rape. Picking his way through a maze of television cables and a throng of 100 reporters, this man arrived at the clerk’s counter puzzled.

“Kobe Bryant’s trouble,” the clerk explained.

“Who’s he?” the man asked.

“You know, the basketball player,” replied the clerk.

“Oh, does he play for Battle Mountain or Eagle Valley?” asked the man.

One man’s junk is another man’s art

GUNNISON COUNTY, Colo. – A beautification committee has been formed to tidy up the roadways to Crested Butte and other tourist locales in Gunnison County. Among the goals of the group is to get rid of dead cars and other “junk.”

Reading this news on the Web site of the Crested Butte News, former resident Evan “Web” Bennet wrote to express his dismay. Now “stuck in Texas for what seems to be an eternity,” he explained that what he most dislikes about Fort Worth is that it is “way too tidy 85 all spit-shined.”

Quoting minstrel John Prine, he said that “junk is our past reminding us of who we are and who the people that came before us were.”

“Art or trash?” asked Bennett, a photographer. “Keep it a little rough,” he advised.

Dylan plays ski hill; Phish at local jam

JACKSON HOLE, Wyo. – Jackson Hole had an epic night of music recently. At Snow King, the ski area on the outskirts of Jackson, Bob Dylan regaled a crowd of 4,200 with a 90-minute set followed by a 20-minute encore. The crowd, reported the Jackson Hole News & Guide (July 16) consisted of “hippies, cowboys, old-timers, kids and every strata of Jackson Hole society.” It seems the bard left them all “wanting for nothing.”

Meanwhile, out at Wilson, near the entrance to Grand Teton National Park, people were half-way expecting Dylan to show for a post-concert small-bar jam, as he had done once in 1985, when in Jackson Hole for a wedding. Instead, the band Phish took the stage. Traveling by jet between concerts in Washington state and Salt Lake City, the members decided to kick back in the Tetons for a day.

Dylan, incidentally, also played at Ketchum before 4,000 people in July, and in previous years, he played at Park City and Vail.

Mercury hits 85 in Crested Butte

CRESTED BUTTE, Colo. – Although neither Death Valley nor Houston, Crested Butte was hot in early July for a town above 9,000 feet, reports the Crested Butte News (July 17), with temperatures steadily rising above 80, one day hitting 85.

The record is 95 degrees, set in 1949, according to the Colorado Climate Center. But at the nearby Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory in Gothic, Billy Barr reported the past five years have been the hottest during his 30 years tenure with the outdoor laboratory.

Gay marriages may boost business

WHISTLER, B.C. – Only 13 days after a court ruling that legalized same-sex marriages in British Columbia, two couples from U.S. cities – Anchorage and Seattle – were married on Whistler Mountain. Such gay marriages are expected to boost the wedding business in Whistler and across British Columbia this summer, says Whistler’s Pique newsmagazine (July 25).

On June 10, a court in Ontario ruled that federal marriage laws are discriminatory and violate Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms. On July 8, the British Columbia Court of Appeals then ruled to lift a moratorium on same-sex marriages.

Canada is just the third country to allow same-sex marriages, the others being Netherlands and Belgium. However, the former has a long residency requirement, and the latter will only allow marriages of foreign couples from countries that already allow such unions. No U.S. court has determined the legal status of gay marriages in Canada when those couples return to the United States.

Washoe Tribe gets Tahoe acreage

LAKE TAHOE, Nev. – President Bush is expected to sign legislation that will transfer 24 acres of U.S. Forest Service land along Lake Tahoe to the Washoe Tribe, the aboriginal inhabitants of the area. “This bill will assure the members of the Washoe Tribe the opportunity to engage in traditional and customary cultural practices on the shores of Lake Tahoe, including spiritual renewal, land stewardship, traditional learning and reunification of tribal and family bonds,” said Rep. Jim Gibbons, R-Nev.

Telluride talks runway expansion

TELLURIDE, Colo. – Telluride’s airport straddles a mesa just outside the town. The runway now is nearly 7,000 feet, not quite long enough to be completely safe for the planes that use the airport. More importantly it would seem, the runway is a trifle too short to accommodate a new generation of smaller regional jets that are replacing the turbo-props that shuttle passengers from Phoenix and Denver.

To that end, the board that oversees the airport wants to spend $50 million to flatten, widen and lengthen the runway. The latter is the most eye-opening. To get 130 additional feet of length, explains The Telluride Watch (July 8), would require creating artificial platforms at both ends of the mesa. That longer runway on one side would be accommodated by a 115-foot-tall retaining wall, and on the other side by a wall 130 feet high. By way of comparison, even the highest of ski town hotels are little more than 100 feet tall.

The federal government will pay 90 percent of the cost, with the state and other sources picking up the balance. Local taxpayers will have to pay nothing.

Rich Nutall, the airport manager, said this project is all about safety, and the FAA’s intent is to make this and all mountain airports safe. But coincidentally, it will allow a Canadair regional jet to land at Telluride in winter, if necessary. But the larger 737 jets still could not land there – they need 9,000 feet of runway. As such, the larger jets would continue to use the airport at Montrose, 65 miles away.

Some see this as a litmus test of what Telluride wants to be. Several people argue that this expansion will accommodate more private jets, “the SUVs of the sky,” in the words of one resident. Others, particularly real estate agents, say the expansion is necessary to fuel the existing economy.

-compiled by Allen Best





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