Pier pressure to help shops in Fells PointRegarding your...

the Forum

June 10, 1993

Pier pressure to help shops in Fells Point

Regarding your article "Under city's new math, enlarged pier is smaller" (May 29), does anyone else appreciate the irony of architect Robert Quilter's comment about large vessels docking at the Broadway Pier in Fells Point?

Reporter Suzanne Wooten quoted Quilter as saying: "It could be a catastrophe if it had to be shut down. After all, there's 10,000 engraved bricks and 10,000 constituents."

Does Mr. Quilter realize that those who purchased bricks wanted to be part of the revitalization of the waterfront, which includes having ships visit Fells Point and helping local merchants prosper?

City officials who remain nameless in your article say that "sophisticated" engineering studies recommended new maximum tonnage, draft and length restrictions on ships that would exclude many vessels from visiting Fells Point.

Does this mean that the Inner Harbor will also be excluded? Friends who are knowledgeable about the harbor say its depth is less than that of Fells Point. The Scotia Prince visited the Inner Harbor recently and did not seem in danger of hitting bottom.

Does the city administration have a hidden agenda to ignore the many taxpaying constituents in Fells Point -- not just on this issue, but others such as cleanliness and panhandlers?

This area has the potential to bring large revenues to the city because it is so accessible from the Inner Harbor by car and water taxi.

Let's encourage prosperity and pride in all parts of the city.

Georgianna M. Jenkins

Baltimore

Flower power

In reference to Kevin Cowherd's column "Men understand flower power" (May 17), I found the author to be misinformed, insulting and downright obnoxious.

I am a retail florist in Indianapolis and I greatly resent being called a "dippy salesclerk."

All of our employees have received extensive training about our products, the care and handling of flowers, the meanings of different flowers and their practical uses.

We have all types of customers with all kinds of situations and help them select the appropriate gift for the occasion.

Since you raised the question about the price of roses, let me explain:

Roses are grown year 'round by expert horticulturists. It takes a lot of time and effort to grow roses suitable for the retail market. Not everyone has the skill to grow flowers acceptable for our industry.

Consider the costs that growers face -- greenhouse acreage, quality plants, soils, fertilizers, conditioned water and astronomical electric bills to maintain exact temperatures. Then figure in the cost of employees who cut, package and prepare the flowers for shipping.

The flowers then must be flown to their destination. Add to that the cost of the wholesaler who treats the flowers on arrival by cutting, fertilizing, watering and refrigerating them.

Finally, the florist must recut, refertilize and water the flowers to get them to the customer. All this explains the high cost of roses.

We have countless male customers who enjoy sending and receiving flowers.

Men do not send flowers only when they have done something wrong. Actually, most of our male customers send flowers "just because."

We work extremely hard to please our customers. In fact, we worked over 80 hours during Mother's Day one week to please our customers. I believe Mr. Cowherd owes every person in our industry an apology.

Marti Baker

Indianapolis

The writer is manager of Flowers by Dick Baker in Indianapolis.

Public servants

The contretemps regarding Mayor Kurt Schmoke's director of parks and recreation, her residence and commuting arrangements, prompted my reflection on the attitudes and practices of civil servants in times past, in contrast with present day postures and behaviors, which seem to be more in the mode of royalty or exalted super-beings, whether regarding homes or haircuts.

The career of the late Harold S. Callowhill provides a good example. Commencing as a volunteer in his teens, Harold

progressed to superintendent of the city recreation department. In the forty-some years he served, Callowhill literally created our city's recreation facilities, organization and programs.

He was not some itinerant, opportunistic executive, demanding perks, limos and luxuries. He lived in his own modest home in Howard Park and drove his own aging car on city business, seeking new recreation locations.

In addition, Callowhill was an avid and gifted gardener. He was one of the first in Baltimore to propagate azaleas, and his small garden at 5206 Fernpark Ave. was visited by aficionados from all over the region. It was cited by garden clubs as rivaling Sherwood Gardens.

Today, stories coming out of the City Hall, Annapolis and Washington are more suggestive of the excesses of imperial Rome than they are of a democratic nation where dedicated citizens place service to their fellow men and women ahead of personal aggrandizement and enrichment. I guess those days are gone forever.

Franklin W. Littleton

Baltimore

Terribly offended

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