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February 28, 2005

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Hill-Billies
Jennifer Senior’s “The Once and Future President Clinton” [February 21] foretells of a great political battle on the horizon. The Clinton groupies (made famous by Bill) are so excited to be relevant again, they can barely control themselves. Republicans are licking their chops waiting to dig into Hillary. This woman has so much baggage she could be nice, funny, and collegial in the Senate for the next century and it wouldn’t change a thing. Interestingly, John Kerry and John Breaux were anything but enthusiastic about Hillary’s chances.
—Salvatore J. Bommarito, Manhattan

Your headline should have read “potus Hill and Veep Bill.” A winning combo. As far as I know, there is no prohibition of a former president’s running for vice-president. This couple has broken all the rules thus far. Why not break a few more? How could this combination lose?
—Geraldine St. Onge, Manhattan

From my Chappaqua home, I often daydream that just down the street, Hillary and Bill are scheming together to regain the White House. In light of the powerful Republican rhetoric that has brainwashed most of America, it’ll take both Clintons’ brainpower, and perhaps a little Bill swagger, to give the Hill to Hill.
—Amy Berns Leibner, Chappaqua

Banners Yet Wave
Thank you for sponsoring such an incredible event on February 15. By chance, I heard on the radio that Christo and Jeanne-Claude would be signing copies of New York Magazine’s January 24–31 issue [“The Passion of the Christos,” by Adam Sternbergh]. Thus, issue in hand, I embarked on my adventure. It was truly a wonderful experience—the sky was blue, the sun was shining, and The Gates were something special to behold. I walked through, climbed on rocks, and joined New Yorkers marveling at the sheer magnificence of this colossal undertaking. I got my magazine signed and was duly impressed by the graciousness of Christo and Jeanne-Claude. This was an “only in New York” moment, and I left the park with my soul uplifted and a smile on my face.
—Bonita Claudian, Forest Hills

Frederick Law Olmsted must be turning over in his grave! If I wish to interpret hanging fabric, I’ll go to Naples and study the laundry hanging across the narrow streets—now that could be considered art.
—Susan Neuner La Regina, Brooklyn

Regarding christo’s “art” project currently overtaking our otherwise beautiful Central Park: I live directly across the street from the park and stroll through its winding paths with my young children and small dog on a daily basis. My children seemed quite astonished to learn that The Gates is considered art. My little dog feels a need to mark the orange contraptions continually (at least a dozen times during a 45-minute walk)—a habit of many other dogs as well, I’ve observed. Is the city proud to have endorsed such a large sum of money and so much energy to be spent on glorified fire hydrants?
—Gianna Biondi, Manhattan

Johnnies, Be Good
I found “St. Elsewhere,” by Mark Jacobson [February 21] refreshing. However, it will take more than two or three years for SJU basketball to come anywhere near its glory days of the sixties and seventies. The basketball program suffered from the “reap what you sow” syndrome under Coach Jarvis. Where were those basic values that players such as Kresse, Houston, Dove, Wirell, and the McIntyre brothers all had when SJU basketball was king in NYC? In the sixties and seventies, UConn and Pittsburgh were second-rate teams. Look at them now! Talk about being depressed. Who would want to see hoods play? Where did they ever find those expelled players? When the alumni stop sending their checks and the stands are nearly empty at Alumni Hall, perhaps the Athletic Department will wake up. Sorry, my check is not in the mail this year.
—Anita E. Maier-bischoff, Class of 1965, Kings Park, N.Y.

Lose-Lose
Kurt Andersen, in his column “When Good News Feels Bad” [“The Imperial City,” February 21], claims that the “binary choice of who you want to win [in Iraq] is inescapable.” At this point, arguments about winning and losing are beyond ridiculous, as the best we can hope for is the least destructive outcome. I feel no guilt about opposing this idiotic war from the beginning. Every person’s death diminishes me, but I am grateful not to have been one of the fools who cheered on the madness which led us to the current horrific situation.
—Richard W. Bray, San Dimas, Calif.

Undercover
In your february 14 “Spring Fashion” issue, Christina Ricci says, “You meet a lot of people pretending to be New Yorkers. Then you find out they’re from Vermont” [“Goth Girl Goes Glam,” by Boris Kachka]. Having lived in New Jersey since birth, I’ve never considered myself to be a New Yorker. I’m surprised that someone who grew up in Montclair, New Jersey, believes that qualifies her as one.
—Paula Musciotto, Hardyston, N.J.

The photography in the Spring Fashion issue was so understated, I could barely see what the clothing looked like. I’m certain that the Eley Kishimoto wedge is the coolest shoe of all because I couldn’t even see it. The understatement was brilliant! I’m on my way to spend $510 on a pair right now.
—Ellen Collins, Hamden, Conn.

Bang-Up Job
Thank you for “The Afterlife of a Porn Star” [by Dave Itzkoff, February 14]. Harry Reems’s acting skills in several of the classic adult films of the seventies and early eighties were remarkable—it was a time when adult film stars acted with believability and emotion, when the story line actually mattered. It’s good to know he’s doing quite well.
—Kenneth Hall, Highland Park, Mich.

I don’t know if Harry Reems has any remaining desire to act in a legitimate movie, but there’s one director who would be ideally suited to employ him, and that is John Waters. Imagine a comedy-thriller about a crusty, middle-aged Republican insider who, disgusted by corruption within his party, risks his reputation, his career, and maybe his life by supplying information to a young newspaper reporter. I can see the film poster now: “Harry Reems Is Deep Throat.”
—David English, Somerville, Mass.

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