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Private Eye: Go Cougars!


I’m a creature of habit and manage to filter through The Salt Lake Tribune each morning while eating my blackberry-laden Total cereal. I far enjoy the cereal. Given this is the Internet age, after reading the Tribune, I go online to read the Deseret Morning News to make sure the Tribune got the story right. On nearly any topic, one can find a twin-sister version of that story in the D-News. If they promised to hit my porch, I’d switch subscriptions.

I was reading a Dawn House (full disclosure: I like Dawn House)
article in the Tribune the other day about how Utah is running out of restaurant liquor licenses. Frankly, I don’t see a problem with that. The more the merrier. Full disclosure: I have consorted with many persons who consume liquor and have been accused of doing so myself. It was just a normal story until I got to the quotes from new Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control commission member Bobbie Coray.

I clicked onto the D-News site and read a nearly identical, positively
damned-near-verbatim story on the subject. The D-News tale, however, was attributed to the Associated Press. Hmmm. I guess with mine cave-ins, fires and elections, the AP can still squeeze in some time to report on a lowly liquor-commission meeting. Or someone just tweaked the House article and called it a day. No matter, I hope they pay House for the service she provides both papers.

At her very first commission meeting, Coray cast votes against liquor licenses of a couple of local men’s clubs on the basis that what occurs inside them is “demeaning to women.” Coray describes herself as a feminist and Democrat. I thought that was bunk and recently wrote that she shouldn’t be on the commission if her biases cannot be contained. Now she’s done it again. This time, with wide recognition that licenses will be delayed for many businesses, Coray says preference should be given to fine restaurants or establishments of high standards, not “sleazy” places. She told the Tribune, “Maybe we should be more selective. If we give out licenses to strip clubs or we give them to tacky places, we’ll be using them up.”

I understand the feminist Coray’s position. But if Coray claims to be a Democrat, she should act like one. I’ll bet right now, I’ve been a Democrat (full disclosure noted) longer than she has, and I accept that feminists comprise a strong wing of that party. Coray needs to reciprocate. She is going to have to play with the rest of us in that big tent. If she wants to act like a Republican, then she should join and besmirch that party. How can she tell what is sleaze and what is not? Stick on that commission awhile, though, Bobbie, and you’ll begin to tell the difference.

For decades, a major rap on the liquor commission has been that it is made up of of people who don’t drink, lending a disconnect not only to drinkers, but to any club or restaurant in the business of serving liquor. Coray’s logic is nothing more than a throwback to decades ago when commissioners debated where the historic tradition of brown-bagging could still occur. They decided corked wines were superior wines consumed by superior people. Therefore, they allowed for them to be carried into “fine” restaurants when “screw top” wines were not. Foie gras, in; nacho platter out. It doesn’t matter if Coray is a feminist, Democrat or Republican—she’s just one more nondrinker on the liquor commission. And it shows.

And that isn’t even the start of what is stuck in my craw today. On Monday morning, I read in Paul Rolly’s (full disclosure: I like Paul Rolly) Tribune column how a 29-year season-ticket-holding BYU football fan had been hijacked out of his seats at LaVell Edwards Stadium. His tickets were sold to Cougar Club donors, and he wasn’t even notified. Rolly expressed his sympathy by inviting him to join him as a Ute fan. Hey, Paul—what about me?

I won’t be sitting in Rice-Eccles stadium this year—the same thing that happened to the BYU fan happened to me. Full disclosure: I’m a University of Utah graduate, die-hard Ute fan (going to Oregon State tomorrow—see ya!), and I’m pissed. Since this paper began, it has supported anything and everything the U asked of us from departmental and field-study cash donations to in-kind advertising for events, festivals, lectures and, yes, Ute football tickets. That’s gonna change. A few weeks ago, we discovered our Ute season tickets had been re-issued. Never mind we stood loyally by during losing seasons and construction. We were told they’re going in another direction. Excuse me? No forewarning? And, about that belated offer to move us far away from our friends and 20 rows higher? Forget it. This isn’t new at all in Ute-ville. I know other people and businesses that have been treated similarly so, sorry, Paul, BYU isn’t the laggard on this one.

I wish the Ute football team success, but I’ve chosen another direction, too. I’m dancing with a new partner, because today’s mail came, and with it, my brand-new BYU season tickets. Of course, I bought them out of spite. Of course, I’m giving them away. All you have to do is e-mail me and tell me why you want them. No guidelines. I’ll provide two seats for each BYU home game starting with the Arizona game this weekend. You don’t have to beg. You’ll score points, though if you lay some serious smack on the ticketmeisters of either program. Best entrant gets the BYU-Utah game.

StaffBox Question:
Last time you were jilted by a lover, how did you react?
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