Laura, have some fun
Poor indignant Laura. Sensitive, maternal Laura. Semi-retirement in the cause of grub-wrangling hasn't done much for her sense of humor. She views the arena deal ["Priced to sell out," November 6] as if all big projects involving the city should be done through Prozac-tinted lenses: calm, democratic, without competing interests, conflict, or risk. When did anything good happen in this city that was not eventually tainted by scandal? That is the fun part. We already know that law and sausage are two things you just shouldn't watch being made. Go ahead and add big-city arena deals to the list, to be sure. But either find something illegal, or join the boys and have some fun.

Look, the exhaustive details she puts forth are interesting footnotes for a done deal. Do you really think Perot's helicopter tours with the mid-city mayors were real attempts to take the arena out of Dallas? (It was, however, kind of funny watching these backwater goofs pathetically fall over themselves to attract the arena.) Nope. The deal was done. But what deal? The nearly-half deal, or the $125 million deal?

I guess what really bugs me is the "as a taxpayer" premise for bolstering any argument. As a taxpayer...what? My opinion has credibility? Since when did paying taxes ever give you integrity? Wake...up... Laura...your...kids...are...calling...you.

G. Grant Bachman

Thank goodness she's back! Finally, some gutsy, hard-hitting journalism. Our thirst has been quenched! Go get 'em, Laura. The people are behind you.

David Sparks
Via e-mail

While I was not overly "jazzed" to see Laura Miller's return in last week's edition of the Observer (I just do not care two nickels about her personal life), I will agree that the current arena deal makes me shake like a child under the care of an English au pair.

There is private money out there. It just has to be uncovered, and little ol' Lubbock, Texas is the example.

Back a few years ago, the people of Lubbock voted down a tax increase that would build an arena in the city and bring all sorts of happiness and money to all. Being that the natural political thought is to suck the money from the public, there had been very little attempt to raise this money via the private sector.

After the vote was defeated, suddenly last year it was announced that the arena would be built, with private money, and it would become the finest arena on any college campus in the United States. In fact, it will be the only campus-bound arena with those all-important "skyboxes." (What exactly goes on in those, anyway?) All those millions came from the local major grocery store chain and major banking establishment. (By the way, it will not be named after Buddy Holly, thank God.)

So, if a little West Texas town called Lubbock can uncover those big, private dollars--why can't Dallas? Look, it is the trend to stick some corporate name on these things and bring in money. Why not Southwest Airlines Arena, or NationsBank Center, or the Robert Tilton Prayer Palace? Team up two or three of the biggest Dallas corporations and build it with their bank accounts. Hell, why not get at least a portion of the bill paid this way?

How hard have our city muckety-mucks and the highbrows that own these teams tried to find the private money? And I'm still pissed about the Reunion Arena part of this...I saw Prince, U2, and a good truck-pull in that place, and I have a soft spot in my heart for it.

Peter C. Welpton
Via e-mail

Black Bart, family man
I wanted to write to the Observer to comment on your cover story on pro wrestling in Dallas ["Whupass U.," November 6]. I am a retired wrestler who now practices chiropractic in the metroplex. I was the chiropractor for the GWF and some subsequent promotions at the Sportatorium over a period of about 4 years.

First, I would like to make a correction or clarification on the author's observations about the "fake-blood" match he observed during his writing of the article. Without commenting on the objectives of wrestling being a predominantly entertainment vehicle, I will point out that in my 12 years of being around that environment, there has never been one instance of "fake" blood. The author should use his brain and think about the most abundant fluid in the body. It is very easy to get blood out of the body at any time you like. It would be most difficult to carry a "blood capsule" (assuming these things existed) into the ring and wrestle for 10 minutes, then pull it out of your trunks and spread it on your head. I had blood all over me several times in my career, some of it mine and some of it the other guys', but it was all blood, and it was not fake.

I also want to compliment you on the focal point of your article, that being the gentleman on the cover, Black Bart. I have known Bart since I started as the ring doctor at the Sportatorium in 1992. The public needs to know that this is one of the finest gentlemen I have ever had the opportunity to know. He is a good family man who puts his family above everything else in his life. When I first came to know Bart, I was going through a divorce, and I never told him that his family values and his love of his family were the template that I used to reconstruct my life after this difficult time.

He is a class individual that most people never get to know outside of his ring presence, which he would have you to believe is really the way he is. Nothing could be further from the truth. He is one of the true "good guys"--perhaps not in wrestling, but in the real world of life.

Jeff Cunningham

Wade Wilson, All-Pro
Wilonsky is an idiot. In Balls ["Passed up," October 30], he said "Wilson reminded us why he's thrown for one touchdown pass since 1993." Did you even watch the game, Robert? Wade Wilson was 11 for 16, and Herschel Walker dropped two that were right in his hands! Garrett would have fared no better. Granted, Wilson has had some bad games in the past, but this was one in which he did everything right. Bad play-calling, poor receiving, and a late defensive collapse killed this game.

I like Garrett for the future, but Wilson still has the skills and experience to back up Aikman. I'll bet Wilonsky was pulling for Hogeboom back in the old days.

Albert Madariaga
Via e-mail

Malcolm X, softie
I too am tired, tired of people choosing only to remember certain things about Malcolm X ["X marks the spot," October 16]. If one chooses to be completely accurate and fair to history, one will find that in the latter days of his life, Malcolm changed his philosophy, much the same as George Wallace did. And why should a street be named for Malcolm? Because he was a great "American" who gave his life trying to make this a better world for all men.

Colis R. Johnson

Fleetwood Mac, geniuses
Is this supposed to be journalism ["You invent the future," October 30]? What a piece of trash. This long-winded article only served to make the writer look like he has no talent and cannot be impartial when revisiting one of the greatest rock and roll bands of all times. You don't have to love or even like the music, but if you have any ability, you would be able to recognize the talent involved and be able to understand why the band achieved such success. There is much music and art that I don't personally like or sometimes understand, but I can recognize true talent and artistry.

Via e-mail

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