Here's a local sports bright spot Michael Popke overlooked that deserves mentioning: the Verona boys hockey team winning the WIAA state championship ("'Almost' Seem to Be the Hardest Word," 12/23/2014).
Jack Guzman (via email)
What about Forward Theater?
I noticed both theater reviewers failed to mention any production from Forward Theater, Madison's only professional theater company ("Isthmus Critics Rate the Performances of 2014," 12/23/2014). How can any credible reviewer fail to include at least one review from Forward Theater?
Rex Owens (via email)
Lothlorien money pit
I am writing about the future of Lothlorien co-op ("Madison's Housing Co-ops Facing Internal Crisis," 12/23/2014). I have a rather unique perspective. I am a carpenter/contractor who was brought in by a Loth partisan to give my opinion about its condition and to brainstorm lower-cost methods to satisfy the city building inspector's long list of code violations, Madison Commuity Cooperative (MCC) finances and the Lothlorien partisans. It is a cool old building with "good bones." That said, given a million and a half or so dollars, it could be repaired and improved so as not to be the genteelly collapsing, benignly neglected, long-term and (and short-term, evidently) maintenance-deferred money black hole it is at present. I was not optimistic at the time, and the fact that none of the straws that partisans grasped for -- historic restoration funds, low-income funding, a meaningful outpouring of money from Loth veterans -- panned out suggests that MCC staff could read the sad handwriting on the wall more clearly than the partisans.
Joe Weinberg (via email)