Magic Bus

Wheel deal: Anthony Saper’s figure of 8,000 KCATA bus riders (Letters, June 12) means that with the Bus Rapid Transit proposal of $158,000,000 per year cost, we could buy each rider a car for $10,000 and give them $2,500 for taxes, insurance and gasoline and still have $58 MILLION to spend on picking up people with disabilities and delivering them where they need to go each day. Assuming that the cars we buy are good, we should get ten years out of them, which should save near $900 million over ten years.

Mark Esping

Kansas City, Missouri

Seat Change

Karen to go: Regarding Kendrick Blackwood’s “Party Crasher” (June 19): Please let me know how I can contribute to Phil Scaglia’s congressional campaign to unseat (the sad, beyond help, hopeless embarrassment to the Democratic Party) Karen McCarthy.

Name Withheld Upon Request

Net Games

Byte me: Regarding Joe Miller’s “This Bytes!” (June 12): If CommuniTech.Net had any potential in the dot-com industry whatsoever, inside or outside Kansas City, it had absolutely nothing to do with the company’s work ethic.

I worked for CommuniTech from early summer of 2000 until the spring of 2001, and if they thought employee morale tanked after the sale to Interland, they should have witnessed it when I was there: a newly fired employee every 30 to 45 days; department managers who routinely snubbed customer phone calls; and a frighteningly schizophrenic office mentality, alternately Hitleresque and staggeringly sophomoric, as illustrated by Ryan Elledge’s assessment of “Rat Face.”

With or without outside interference from Interland, CommuniTech.Net was ultimately doomed by its utter lack of concern for anything but its bottom line and its contingent of “original” hometown employees, which numbered fewer than ten. Everyone else, including the customer, was completely expendable.

Without knowing the criteria by which the Chamber of Commerce judges its Small Business of the Year, I’m hard-pressed to imagine why a group of money-grubbing thugs like CommuniTech.Net would receive such an award. Joe Miller’s article seemed to place the blame for CommuniTech’s downfall squarely on Interland’s shoulders; a view from the inside would tell quite a different story.

Heith Carnahan

Blue Springs

Puff Daddy

Up in smoke: I enjoyed Ben Paynter’s article on the demise of the “Camel guy/girl,” if only to remind me of the nearly four years I lived in Chicago (“Burn and Crash,” June 5). From September of ’98 to last June, I worked almost exclusively in the nightclub industry there, doing everything from street promotion for clubs, security and bar-backing to coat-check (as well as performing).

It was a love/hate relationship for sure, due to the easy and plentiful cash and colorful but fickle nature of the industry. I knew bouncers who were going to culinary school, “cock-tailers” who were going to med school, etc. I was one of the immature ones, however, and for various reasons ended up back in KC (and I have to tell you, it felt a bit like the end of Goodfellas). At one point, I had the freezer (and closet) full of Camels, as one Camel rep would slide me half or full cartons every night I worked (apparently on the basis of being fellow musicians), which was only three nights a week or so, but when that is all you have to work and you’re making anywhere from $600 to $1,200 a week (did I mention it was fickle?), life is good. Now, not so much….

William Street

Oak Grove

Swallow’s Nest

Blow-by-blow: Due to some gossip and misconstruction of facts, I have become a seeming “Deep Throat” scapegoat embroiled in the recent blow-job scandal at the Dixie Belle (Night Ranger, June 19). I only seek to clarify and rectify this situation, which has been blown out of proportion.

First and foremost, I did NOT write the column; I simply served as Research Assistant to Night Ranger. (And I had a blast, FYI.) Like any journalist, Jen Chen reported what she witnessed. Second, I did not lead Ms. Chen to the now-famous nook o’ knob slob. It was LEON (whom you may recall from the article) who led her crotchside into the dark corner’s center chanting “Fresh meat!” Not me. And to be quite honest, I rather loathe public displays of affection by anyone.

Regardless, I do apologize (I suppose) to the Dixie Belle for any/all scrutiny this has caused; and maybe more specifically, I apologize to the customers whose latter-day dark corner has become a radiant and now-vacant orb of golden light where no soul dare to swallow.

Hopefully, this will all blow over soon.

David Wayne Reed

Kansas City, Missouri

Drink Special

Tour of duty: Jen Chen was absolutely right — the mojito at the Cheesecake Factory is out of this world (Night Ranger, December 12, 2002). I felt like I was on vacation in the Caribbean while sipping it. Much to my dismay, other places in town can’t compare.

Jen inspired us to start a mojito tour of Kansas City, and so far neither the Grand Street Café nor La Bodega comes close. (Both made their drinks with too much lime.)

Jen, keep up the good drinkin’!

Todd Moran


Fire Starter

Burning bright: I love the way that Michael Tedder portrayed A Fire Inside and their fans (“Inside Out,” June 19). A lot of us are very dedicated to them as people and as fans. We don’t care what another person says, because we listen to them; we stand up for them as they would for us.

AFI is a great band and a great group of people who have helped us through our hard times by sharing theirs. We appreciate that and love them for it. It’s one big family that won’t be lost or broken. Thank you for showing that.

Sarah Quaas

Kansas City, Kansas