Editorial: Who’s the fairest of them all?
One of the great human desires, experienced by practically everyone who has ever tried a pose in the mirror (which is surely practically everyone), is to see ourselves as others see us. Which is impossible. Yet we persist. And we are not driven by vanity alone.
Have you ever seen a painter step back a few feet from her canvas and narrow her eyes? Or been that painter? What we are doing is trying to see our work as someone-else-not-the-maker would. As an audience would. It’s pointless to ask why that matters: We’re social beings. It’s the dangerous one who begins an utterance with, “I don’t care what anyone else thinks, I …”
That’s why the naming of Park City this week as one of Condé Nast Traveler’s “23 Best Places to Go in the U.S. in 2023” (see the article on A-1) gave us a small thrill (it will be even bigger in some quarters, and rightly so).
“After a two-year pandemic pause, the largest indie film fest in the U.S. brings live events back to Park City this January,” the Condé Nast piece begins. “But the Sundance Film Festival isn’t the only reason we want to go now, with new offerings all across the mountain town. …”
We’re ready for our latest close-up! We feel seen as Condé Nast sees us, and who knows how many others, who are checking for flights as they read it. And we can see the traffic and the crowds … Is this a virtuous circle or a vicious one?
Having a glass-half-full disposition is no crime. We owe our first allegiance to the Parkites and those outside the city who call this area home. Think of the alternative: to live in a place that hardly anyone wants to visit, the kind of place where children grow up and hightail it out at the first opportunity, seldom to return; the kind of place from which people say they escaped.
That’s no fun.
It’s up to all of us who are not visitors — that is, not our guests — to manage our growth and success. We have to do it realistically, and by civilly pressing local government to serve us with new ideas and bold thinking that goes beyond bashing corporations wholesale, along with anyone who arrived after us.
We can’t do it by ignoring accolades. So we might as well bask for a moment — we feel pretty, oh so pretty — and then get back to work.
That same snow is leaving the mule deer that share our valleys on the edge of starvation, a place that they know in their bones — and leading to people feeding them, a controversial practice even by the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources.
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