Dear Friends

  • Alex Pasquariello and Jodi Peterson, winter interns



Colorado native and high-tech refugee Jodi Peterson has decided to write about her passion, the beautiful but threatened American West. After 15 years of penning online help and users’ guides for Hewlett-Packard, she has taken a sabbatical to become an intern at HCN. Now, Jodi looks forward to the freedom of writing without bullet points, tables and acronyms, and hopes to explore renewable energy, public-land use and endangered species issues.

Jodi arrives in Paonia fresh from four weeks spent visiting Ecuador, the Galapagos Islands and Costa Rica. While she enjoyed the tropical beaches and abundant wildlife, she was most impressed with the region’s people. "I really fell in love with Latin America," she says. "The people were wonderful — so soulful and open and willing to share."

Jodi also enjoys skiing, mountain biking, backpacking and hiking with her Australian shepherd, Torrey. Her love for the outdoors and her environmental concerns are values that will continue to be expressed in her work and writing after her internship at HCN. "I decided to change direction over a year ago," Jodi says. "I want my work to make a difference."

New HCN intern Alex Pasquariello almost qualifies as a Colorado native — he moved to the state when he was 2 years old. But he’s spent a lot of time elsewhere, too: While earning a journalism degree at Northwestern University, he worked summers at Wrangell-St. Elias National Park in Alaska, interned at Condé Nast Traveler magazine in New York City and wrote for Rocky Mountain Sports magazine in Denver. After graduating, he returned home for another internship, this one at Boulder-based Mountain Sports Media.

Alex, who’s an avid snowboarder, was also part of the latest Warren Miller film tour, but don’t look for footage of him hucking off a cliff — he helped edit the accompanying SnoWorld magazine. Alex notes that it’s interesting to come to HCN from the skiing industry, where concern for the natural world generally consists of praying for snow.

In his off hours, Alex is a self-confessed sportsaholic and a dedicated soccer player. For nights when the Denver Nuggets are playing, he’s already staked out a spot at the local pizza joint to watch the game. Once his stint at HCN is over, Alex is hoping to turn his career as a professional intern into full-time employment. And he plans to "just keep on writing, anytime, anywhere."


The Dec. 22, 2003, issue of HCN — which featured Rosemary Winters’ story about environmentalism in Mormon country — was the first time we’ve ever put nude figures on the cover. We figured the photo of Maryann Webster’s "Mutant Garden" diptych would get a close look, but we didn’t know how close.

Reader James Nielsen, from Pacific Grove, Calif., wrote us to ask why Webster painted belly buttons on the Adam and Eve portrayed in her work: "Does she have some secret information the rest of us have been denied?"

Webster doesn’t, but the Catholic Church might. Webster says the inspiration for her diptych was a 15th century altarpiece in Florence, Italy, called "The Fall," which also depicted Adam and Eve.

They had bellybuttons? "Oh, yeah," she says — and a lot more. "The Italians put a lot of (figures of) nude men and women in churches, and a lot of them are pretty explicit. Mine have fig leaves in very convenient places. Theirs don’t have leaves or anything."

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