I Should Have Said (or Asked)...

Letter From the Editor


We’ve all had those moments of reflecting on a conversation and moaning: “I should have said _______ ….”

For reporters, it’s a case of regretting questions you should have asked.

That was the case when I got to chat with Alice Cooper and John Varvatos for just a quick half-hour between their video and photo shoots when Cooper came into town to help celebrate the opening of Varvatos’ new store on Woodward Avenue.

These two native Detroiters have achieved worldwide fame in their respective fields. See what they have to say about growing up here, what outsiders think of Detroit, and what they think about the state of the city today.

Here’s what I wish I had time to ask. Cooper grew up in East Detroit — which changed its name to Eastpointe in 1992 to distance itself from Detroit and associate more with the Grosse Pointes. I wanted to know how that struck him, and if Detroit will ever rebound enough to have voters want to change it back.

Detroit’s resurgence is what our “City Guide: Dialing in to the 3-1-3” issue is all about — neighborhoods and buildings that are coming back and ones that we wish would, people and restaurants worth noting, places to view great public art, and more. 

By the way, although I idolized Cooper in my early teens (one of the first songs I learned on guitar was their breakout hit “I’m Eighteen”), I did not say “we’re not worthy” when meeting him. I did ask if he ever had any “not worthy” moments. My favorite was finding out that meeting boyhood hero Al Kaline at an Oakland Hills golf outing left Cooper near speechless! 

The health of another hero, Red Wing great Gordie Howe, was the impetus for Joe Lapointe’s stem cell research story. Howe recently received treatment after a stroke, but had to travel to Mexico for the procedure. Find out why, and what is happening on the local research front in Lapointe's story here.

Elsewhere, the Hour editorial staff had a blast spending a day with the Lafayette Coney Island crew. 

Prior to this, my most unusual visit there was Easter Sunday 2012, when a friend and I were at a Tigers game that went into extra innings, making us both miss family events. But coney fest Easter dinner tasted just fine after the Tigers won 13-12 (a real pitchers’ duel) in the bottom of the 11th inning. 

Meanwhile, this is not intentionally a late ’60s/early ’70s rock theme issue. But James Mitchell reports on a Lincoln Park event scheduled for this month that’s honoring more of my teenage heroes — the 50th anniversary of the founding of the MC5. Since I first heard the “censored” version on good old CKLW, let me just say: “Kick out the jams, brothers and sisters!”

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