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Urgent message to Department of Public Works civil servants offended by Director Vanessa Burns’ angry outburst, as reported by Loose Lips (12/17/99): Oh, grow up!

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It’s not surprising that to these slackers, Burns’ communication style would be “demoraliz[ing],” to use their own word. I’d be demoralized, too, if after years of Barry-style indolence, my new boss told me I’d have to show up on time for work, do the job I was being paid for, and actually respond to my superiors’ requests.

OK, so Burns has a mouth. But let’s get beyond the expletives and focus on what’s important: Finally, taxpayers have a DPW director who considers getting an honest day’s work out of her department more important than kissing her employees’…well, you know which hindmost part of the anatomy I mean.

And by the way, LL: Burns has been in D.C. only half a year, so it’s a real cheap shot to go back two years into the previous administration for evidence that the DPW hasn’t acted against shabby utility street cuts (12/10/99). For heaven’s sake, give the woman a chance! At least she’s announced a new policy and proposed new regulations. With an office full of whiners who spend the taxpayers’ time writing memos and calling LL to bellyache that the boss actually wants them to work, she’s got a helluva culture to change over there.

Adams Morgan