copyright Bill Widener 2000


Kids are sheep and cheers to Alex DeGrand for hitting the nail on the head with the Harry Potter article [Kid$: Harry Potter and the big fat wallets of preteens, July 13]. Enough of all this bleating about how grand it is that kids are reading. As Mr. DeGrand points out, children's income has been increasing faster than their parents'for decades. [76 percent from 91 to 97] And that's being exploited by movie producers, toy manufacturers, videogame makers, and naturally publishers, who all have an interest in this giant market. What do we do now? Hand out medals?

Mr. DeGrand just called a spade a spade without getting all gooey about the idea of an adolescent with a book.

Mickey Abramson

Another Vote

yeah yeah yeah...

ace is this, ace is that, ace is everything... but in my opinion, ace is bill widener's cartoon...i think ace possesses what is undoubtedly the most interesting, unconventional cartoon this side o' jackson county....just wanted to put my two cents in and applaud my favorite part of the magazine.

brian manley

via email

One of Our Own

Dear Editor,

Paul and Paula was fine but what about one of your own? [Boys Do Cry, Cover, Jul 13]

Over the years you have had some very intersting characters on the cover of your newspaper. So I challenge you to go one more step. In March, former Lexingtonian Dawn Josephine Wilson, went to Washington DC to be honored for her work in the area of Civil Rights and Community service in the gender community. The National Award is called the Trinity and is given out every year by the International Foundation Of Gender Education . Dawn is the First African American Transsexual in the award's 15 year history to win it.

While there she taught two classes at a local Church on Tolerance using Matthew 7 & Romans 6. She accepted this award as a tribute to the 3 most important people in her life. They were the elders of her family, the people who raised her, the people who encouraged her to study, the people who made her learn to speak out, the people who inspired her to serve others, the people who imbued her with a deep faith in the power of the Almighty, and the people who didn't turn their back on her when she transitioned.

Most of all, she wanted to encourage everyone in this community to fight for the right to live free as the person they are inside, and to continue fighting for rights and acceptance for all people who face unfair prejudice. In 1999, three separate Kentucky jurisdictions-the City of Louisville, Lexington-Fayette Urban County, and Jefferson County-passed human rights laws that prohibited discrimination on the basis of gender identity. And in 2000, the Kentucky Fairness alliance and other LGBT organizations mounted a serious campaign to pass a statewide bill that would prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. Dawn Wilson is one of the many dedicated activists in Kentucky working on these efforts.

Thank you,

C. Anderson

edited for space

The Paul and Paula story was "one of our own." She lived in Lexington and worked for ACE before she accepted a new job closer to her children.

Letters Policy: Ace LOVES to publish our mail (250 words or less please); please include name and daytime phone. No photocopies. No bulk mail. First come, first served. We may edit for space and grammar; we will limit frequency; and, on popular issues, we may print one or two letters to represent a segment of public opinion. Private correspondence should be labeled “NOT FOR PUBLICATION.”

Mail: 486 West Second St , Lexington, Ky 40507


 Latte Town

Latte towns are upscale liberal communities, often in magnificent natural settings, often university based, that have become crucial gestation centers for America's new upscale culture. They tend to be the birthplaces of the upscale retailers, gourmet bread stores, handmade furniture outlets, organic grocery stores, and the rest of the uplifting enterprises that make up bourgeois bohemian consumer culture... The most striking thing about Latte Towns is that, though they are havens for everything that now goes by the name 'alternative' - alternative music, alternative media, alternative lifestyles - they are also fantastic business centers.

-David Brooks

School isn't even back in session, and yet an industrious Journalism 301 student (News Reporting) has emailed us an assignment. His mission is to find out "how is ACE doing two months after going weekly?" (May 11 was our debut issue).

So we took time out from our usual daily game of Twister, and paused briefly to answer his questions collectively.

When did Village Voice Media buy ACE? Why was it interested in ACE?

March 2000.

Not many people know this, but Village Voice Media is simply a front for Applebee's, in their attempt to inexorably take over this town... and every other one.

How has the ACE/VVM relationship affected ACE, financially and editorially?

Fridays are now Hawaiian shirt day. Also, our content has now been farmed out to cost-effective prison labor. Based on the favorable response with the focus groups, the hardened convicts seem very popular with the readers.

Were there any qualms about the new buyer?

Hell no.

As Alex De Grand puts it, "We've been looking for an opportunity to sell out since we got into this business. Their check didn't bounce."

Or as Rob Bricken responds, "I give my love absolutely, with no questions asked. Whether it be to the Village Voice, or the smelly guy with the one-stringed banjo who sleeps under the cars in our parking lot, I can't help myself. I just want someone to love me!!!"

What is the best thing about VVM?

The Swingline staplers are an especially nice touch.

The worst?

We would never have provoked all those fistfights at the launch party if we'd known the new dental plan wasn't going to kick in for awhile. Somebody should've read the fine print.

Why did ACE go weekly?

Well, it all started out as a dare...

Were there any problems with going weekly?

None that couldn't be solved by extremely strong prescription pharmaceuticals.

How did you and the ACE staff prepare for the weekly schedule?

Extremely strong prescription pharmaceuticals.

How has going weekly affected the lives of the ACE staff?

Some say the increased pressure has caused us to become distant from loved ones and spiral into a destructive cycle of drink, drugs,and loveless sex with strangers. But, in all honesty, we were headed in that direction anyway.

What is the worst thing about releasing a weekly publication?

Making up the news twice as fast as before.

ACE had such humble beginnings. Why do you think it has thrived in Lexington?

We think it's the strategically placed photos of a nekkid George Clooney that we run in every issue. It really makes the readers and the advertisers pay attention to every single page, so revenue continues to skyrocket. We used to include Ashley Judd till her lawyers told us to knock it off.

Is there any room for another alternative media source in Lexington?

Not anymore, no. The door has closed. Go away.

The book reviews and other columns have returned. Why?

The will of the people.

Why did ACE move to 2nd and Jefferson?

The landlord at the old joint finally got sick and tired of seeing staffers passed out on the lawn, furniture tossed out windows and plummeting property values. Besides, Pam Miller's secret police unit had that placed bugged.

What does Lexington really need right now?

We don't know about Lexington, but we could sure go for a fine 18-year-old Scotch.

I didn't fully understand the May 11 "Horse's Mouth," "Broadcast News," ass-kissing column. Does ACE have to pander to VVM?

What part of "ass" and "kissing" do you not understand?

Is there anything that you would like to add?

"If you see news happen," tell one of our interns. They'll get word to the convicts.n