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Plus: Wonderful Rubbish, Dems Don't Get It, Peeved at Parsons

Instead of agonizing over every corporate nickel Republicans outspent them by, Democrats should have been focused on the working people who used to be their base. If you want those votes, you have to work for them -- at the grassroots level, like the Green Party is trying to do.

Why should people of color mobilize and rally around candidates who don't represent them? Perhaps a better question is why does Fleck think anyone gives a damn what slimy political consultants think. He should take a week off and try developing some real contacts.

Erika McDonald

Peeved at Parsons

In dispute: Once again, I find myself having to clarify the facts and dispel the rumors and lies concerning Kid-Care. Dan Parsons wrote to the Houston Press [Letters, November 7] that Kid-Care's auditor stated they would not be providing any more financial information to the BBB. That call actually came from our ex-business manager.

And Parsons incorrectly said that I said on KPFT and in the Houston Press that the BBB is unfair. What I said was that it was filled with corruption, an overzealous CEO and president and an unholy relationship with a TV reporter also known as a "domestic terrorist."

It is obvious that the role he plays at the BBB is that of "supreme commander." Based on Parsons's September 18 letter to me, he was explicit in telling me that Kid-Care's membership was going to be terminated without any discussion. However, the BBB bylaws clearly state that the executive committee and board of directors are the only ones responsible for acting on termination requests.

Could it be that Mr. Parsons has a rubber-stamp executive committee and board of directors? It seems like he already made the decision for the board without any input from the directors.

The Houston Press put it in complete perspective in its article on Parsons ["Confidence Man," by Brad Tyer, May 10, 2001], which said a public figure who speaks his honest mind will find himself as a wise man or a fool. I contend he now finds himself in the latter position.

Brad Levy

A Navel Fleet

Belly up: I am one of the belly dancers at Agora, and I have been meaning to write and thank you for your review [Best of Houston issue, September 26]!

We perform all over Houston and invite you to any of our shows. We are at Helios every other Thursday (I was actually one of the original gothic belly dancers and I was sad to see that venue go). We are at Kolbeh and Russian Bear on the weekends, and occasionally The Sands and Cafe Europe.

The name of our troupe is Bella Donna, and we're working to get our Web site up. We appreciate your support. Being voted best belly dancers by the Houston Press is the best endorsement we can get, and we thank you!

Victoria Markey

Blowing Glass

Wages and workers: A bit bitter, aren't you, and sloppy with gossip presented as facts ["Shattering the Glass," by Kelly Klaasmeyer, November 21]? Since most of the team of workers that Dale Chihuly uses are glass artists in their own right, with different styles, none of them is paid $10 an hour.

And no matter how many people are working in the limited space he has available, the kind of pieces he turns out can't be made at the rate of a couple hundred a day -- more like a dozen or two at most. Making one of those chandeliers you like takes two or three gaffers working with eight or ten supporting people several days, yet there are only 80 to 100 fairly simple pieces in each one.

There are a lot of people who hate Chihuly's success, and I happen to think his paintings are stupid, while what he does with glass (huge glass, much bigger than anything you will find at Neiman's) is neat, yet the paintings began as a way of communicating to his workers what color effect he wanted in the glass.

Mike Firth

Film star: Here are two stories that show the kind of person Dale Chihuly is:

He was on NPR's Fresh Air, and the intro he provided said that he started the Studio Glass Movement. We all know that this is a lie and he was not even there until later.

A story told to me by another glass artist is that when he was filming at Harvey Littleton's studio, the film proposed to Harvey was roughly Dale & Harvey Blow Glass Together. When the film was done, all the Chihuly interviews about how important Harvey was were edited out. Now it's just Harvey Thinks Dale Is the Best. See the film for yourself.

A little honesty goes a long way in my book.

Tim Lewis
Weaverville, North Carolina

Boathouse beauties: One always sees a glass as half full or half empty. I personally found Chihuly's exhibit "overflowing." The ethereal beauty of the glass can bring art lovers to their knees. I not only love the glass but also find the drawings a beautiful complement.

As for the artist's demeanor, I take offense at the reviewer's slanted statements. My daughter and I recently went to Seattle to visit the Chihuly studio known as The Boathouse. We have no money, so we were not being courted for our wallet. We found the entire staff extremely happy in their positions, and everyone had a genuine admiration for their boss. I never saw any disgruntled employees, and I was given free rein to roam wherever I liked.

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