Alibi V.14 No.11 • March 17-23, 2005

Ready for the Masquerade?

Local fetish event to take place Jan. 20, 2018

Weekly Alibi Fetish Events is creating a wonderland for your hedonistic delight this January. Our Carnal Carnevale party will be held at a secret location within the Duke City, and we'll all be celebrating behind a mask. Dancing, kinky demonstrations, the finest cocktails, sensual exhibitions and so much more await!

feature

Point of Crisis

According to New Mexico health care advocates, cuts in Medicaid funding not only place the poor, the young, the elderly and the disabled at enormous risk—they're also fiscally irresponsible.

If you can judge the nobility and worth of a society by the way it treats its most vulnerable citizens, then New Mexico, along with every other state in the union, is facing its greatest challenge in the looming Medicaid funding crisis.

film

Reel World

Peaceful St. Patrick's—If you're in the mood to spend your St. Patrick's Day doing something other than swilling green beer and listening to insulting radio commercials in which local DJs try to sound like leprechauns, then Albuquerque Peace and Justice Center has a proposal. On Thursday, March 17, beginning at 7 p.m., the P&J Center will host a lecture/screening featuring The Peace Movement. This documentary chronicles the modern day peace movement as it has grown and evolved over the past few years. There will be two guest speakers tonight. One is an Iraqi-American speaking on the effects of war on her family, while the other is a member of the League of Democratic Action. The Peace and Justice Center is located at 202 Harvard. Screenings are free and open to the public.

Ice Princess

Mother/daughter skating drama is surprisingly cool

When a film comes right out and says in the television commercials and in the trailers that it's the perfect film for “you and your daughter,” I can rest reasonably assured that the film is not being marketed toward me and my white male thirtysomething demographic.

VideoNasty

The Warriors (1979)

The first VCR my family bought was a shiny electronic monstrosity, a behemoth status symbol of the '80s about the size of a suitcase and weighing in at roughly 5,000 pounds. Through a special promotion at the electronics store, we were given one full year of free video rental--one rental per week for 52 weeks. You can bet your sweet ass my family drove all the way across town to get our movie-lovin' mitts on our free video. Every week we would pack into the trusty ol' blue station wagon and head out to the video store. And if my uncle Archie happened to come along with us, one thing was certain--we were coming home with a copy of The Warriors.

Fat Chance

“Fat Actress” on Showtime

I'm always a little amazed at whom the tabloids choose to make their lifelong rumor fodder. Take, for example, former “Cheers” star Kirstie Alley. For more than a decade, the C-list actress has been haunted by The Star, The National Enquirer and the like, all of whom seem to delight in speculating about the woman's weight gain. Frankly, there are few topics I could care less about, but apparently the average housewife in the checkout stand at Wal-Mart disagrees with me.

food

Gastrological Forecast

It's a texture thing. Sometimes yogurt makes me gag—not enough texture. And certain mangoes have that furry quality that makes my tongue feel rubbed the wrong way. I love the rough, graininess of jicama, but not the stringy thing about celery. The sliminess of okra chunks in gumbo: good. The slippery sticky film of meat that's been in the fridge too long: bad. Papaya and avocado are both silky smooth, but just firm enough to be sexy, not icky. The chewy crust of Sage Bakehouse's paisano loaf makes me want every sandwich to be on that bread. And I could eat a heap of deep fried chicken skins; there's something so decadent about the combination of crispy, crunchy top and soft, pale skin underneath. The lacy edges of an egg cooked in bacon grease are always divine, especially when swabbed with a little runny yolk. The crisp/creamy thing is a killer, too, like cottage fries dipped in queso, Lay's Classic chips in green chile dip, chicken-fried steak smothered in gravy. Oooh! Serve me flaccid pasta, crunchy risotto, too-fried refried beans or pasty potatoes and you're fired. Make my bacon just right—crispy but not so stiff it shatters, still tender but not soggy—and I'll love you forever. It's a texture thing.

All the News That's Fit to Eat

First you, Graze, then you, Gulp. Or is it the other way around? Chef and restaurateur Jennifer James has unveiled her newest venture, a sophisticated lounge called Gulp, in the storefront next to Graze (Central and Buena Vista, 268-4729).

Deli Mart West

Not that far, but a world apart

Let's face it, the Duke City is challenged in the sandwich department. I used to count on one hand the number of places that I'd go to for a sandwich, but now I'm going to have to use my other hand too, because that list just got longer. I finally ate my first New York deli-style sandwich at Deli Mart West. I had heard about the place from several friends over the years but, because it's "way over on the Westside," I only headed out to find it once, got lost and never went back. Truth be told, it's only 10.09 miles and 17 minutes from my house. That's about how long it takes me to get almost anywhere in the city. Barrio-centricity strikes again.

Bite

You Got to Know Your Ham

I know my ham. You got to know your ham. Especially if you're gonna order a big, fat deli sandwich stuffed with a dozen different pork products.

Country-style ham (also called old-fashioned or Southern-style) is dry cured by rubbing salt and spices onto the meat's surface and contains no added water. It is a specialty of the Southern states. Country-style ham is extremely salty and usually served in small portions, very thinly sliced.

Prosciutto is an Italian-style, salt-cured ham that is air-dried and is not smoked. It is aged between 10 months and two years before it is thinly sliced and eaten raw. Prosciutto has a sweet, delicate taste and adds flavor to salads, side dishes, entrées and appetizers.

Low-tech Garlic Bread

Don't overthink it! This stuff is easy.

So I'm riding in the car the other day, talking about Italian restaurants and how sometimes it doesn't make much sense to eat out when what you really want is a home-cooked meal. My buddy's going on and on about his garlic bread and this elaborate method for it, and I'm like, whoa! That's way, way too complicated. Here's how you make garlic bread. Take a nice, fat Italian loaf. Cut slices like an inch, an inch-and-a-half thick. Put the slices on a cookie sheet and throw 'em in the oven. Toast. Flip halfway through and you get crunchy toasts; don't flip and you get one crunchy side and one squishy side. I like the crunchy/squishy combo.

news

Under the Microscope

The rights of organized labor are going, going ...

If union leaders are feeling a little paranoid about George W. Bush's re-election, maybe it's because they really are being persecuted. Republicans have both ideological and strategic reasons for an offensive against labor. Attacking unions pleases both Bush's corporate friends and the movement's conservatives, and harasses the strongest grassroots political operation opposing the Republican right.

SimCity

A packed house greeted city councilors at the March 7 meeting. The council approved the appointment of Municipal Development Director Ed Adams to replace Diana Dorn-Jones as the city's Chief Operations Officer. Dorn-Jones resigned to run for Eric Griego's District 3 council seat. Councilor Martin Heinrich's bill requiring medicines such as Sudafed to be sold only with the assistance of store personnel passed unanimously. Druggists would also be required to keep a log of purchasers. The drugs contain ephedrine, used to manufacture methamphetamine.

An Honest Woman Hits a Nerve

Whatever else one might say about the neocons and their allies on the right, the anti-abortion forces, the "shrink-guv'mint-down-to-drownin'-size" fanatics and the "Sun Never Sets on the American Empire" gang, you have to give them credit for one thing. They are much more skillful at crafting labels and nifty monikers for what they are up to than are we plodding, earnest liberal/progressive/Democrats.

Odds & Ends

Dateline: Cuba—Cuban President Fidel Castro celebrated International Women's Day by promising household appliances to all the ladies. In a five-hour and 45-minute speech delivered last Tuesday to throngs of cheering women, Castro pledged that 100,000 Chinese-made pressure cookers and rice cookers would be made available each month at government subsidized prices. The electric rice cooker is a prized possession in Communist-run Cuba, where the staple diet consists of black beans and rice. The cookers were banned nearly a decade ago when Cuba was plunged into economic crisis and power outages due to a loss of Soviet aid and oil. The cookers can be distributed now, Castro said, because Cuba is emerging from its longtime energy crunch. The 78-year-old leader spent two hours of his International Women's Day speech extolling the virtues of pressure cookers.

music

Music to Your Ears

Bernadette Seacrest announced this week that she will be embarking on a five-city tour in May, along with Michael Grimes on the upright bass and drummer Jason Aspeslet; they'll be billed as the Bernadette Seacrest Trio. Our favorite fully-inked chanteuse recently bought a sweet conversion van in which the group will drive, eat, sleep and fart, but not smoke! Destinations include Plush in Tucson, Cinema Bar in Los Angeles, Pat's Garage and Bruno's in San Francisco, Liquid Kitty in Santa Monica and Zebulaon's Lounge in Petaluma. Wish them well. In the meantime, check out Bernadette at Gulp (the cocktail lounge next to Graze at Monte Vista and Central) every Saturday from 8 to 10 p.m., when no smoking is allowed in the bar. For complete tour info, go to www.bernadetteseacrest.com.

Cobra

with Shoulder Voices

Friday March 18; Atomic Cantina

What is cobra? Is it a terrifyingly deady snake? Or a terrifyingly arty experimental music game in which a diverse group of musicians play together, but not at the same time. Though the game is highly structured, to the audience, it should just sound like "really spastic music." That's how group member Raven Chacon describes it. Check it out. If you like it, ask to join the group.

Spotlight

Historic El Rey Theatre is quickly becoming a blistering venue for live music. Owner Kathy Zimmer has been successfully producing shows since her days in L.A. After three years back in the Albuquerque saddle, she is bringing some diverse and extraordinary talent to the stage at El Rey. Saturday, March 12, was no exception. Along with Wave Front Promotions and Wiggle Wire Productions, Zimmer brought '80s rock legends the Fixx to Albuquerque with local band simple. serving as a worthy warmup act.

Sonic Reducer

Angeles Drake is something like a modern-day Alan Parsons Project with vocals similar to Depeche Mode's Martin Gore. These songs are all a bit eerie. They're also extremely difficult to classify, sounding a bit like Pink Floyd without the drugs. You have to be in a meditative mood to enjoy this. A whole album of these similar sounding songs gets a bit tiresome, but the music is mostly enjoyable. This would be a better record if the group was a little more eclectic.

art

Culture Shock

A couple months ago, SolArts, the art and performance space located along Central between Downtown and the University, expanded its operations by opening a new theater thrift store. The organizers opened the store partly because they needed a place to store their largish collection of theatrical costumes. As a way to help generate funds, the organizers intend to place as many costumes as possible from SolArts productions in the store following the run of the show. Right now, they mainly have women's attire, much of it vintage, but they also have wigs, feather boas, gloves, books, some freaky props and other theatrical accessories. Weird and wacky stuff, and none of it is priced over $15. They've also got a rack of rentals with each costume costing only $10 per night. For details, call SolArts at 244-0049, or stop by on Friday and Saturday afternoons. SolArts is located at 712 Central SE, one block west of I-25.

All Dolled Up

The Feminist Paper Doll Show at Offcenter

Boys and girls both play with dolls, but boys rarely admit it. In the world of little boys, dolls aren't dolls anyway. They're action figures. If you squeeze G.I. Joe, he won't ask you to feed him or change his diapers, but he might very well tell you he's going to blow your head off with his machine gun.

Tangential

Tricklock Performance Space

I saw a lot of fantastic shows at this year's Revolutions International Theatre Festival, but the best of the lot, in my opinion, was Splinters, a brilliant theatrical metaphor for the conflict between religion and science created by the Tricklock Company's Kevin R. Elder and Summer Olsson. Elder is back with a new one-man show called Tangential that's directed by Olsson. I'm willing to bet the farm that this one will kick your butt. The show opens this Friday, March 18, with a special catered gala at 8 p.m. at the Tricklock Performance Space (112 Washington SE). $18. Tangential then runs Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., and Sundays at 6 p.m. through April 10. $12 general, $9 students/seniors. 254-8393.

Les Liaisons Dangeureses

Vortex Theatre

Although it's deeply unfortunate that this production won't feature a topless Uma Thurman, Les Liaisons Dangeureses should be a rollicking good show nonetheless. Directed by Jessica Osbourne, this local production of Christopher Hampton's play about the dark arts of seduction should appeal to fans of the award-winning movie. This staging boasts lavish period costumes, a suspiciously phallic set and a cast of notable local performers. Les Liaisons Dangeureses runs through April 10 at the Vortex Theatre (2004 1/2 Central SE). Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. Sundays at 6 p.m. 247-8600.

Pajama Men

Q-Staff Theatre

The first thing you should know is that our very own homegrown partners in comedy Mark Chavez and Shenoah Allen no longer call their act Sabotage. They're now called the Pajama Men. The second thing you should know is that, after years of touring to critical acclaim, Albuquerque's favorite idiot twins have been picked up by the Second City, the goofball granddaddy of American comedy institutions. The third thing you should know is that the Pajama Men will be performing a new sketch show called Stop Not Going at the Q-Staff Theatre (4819 Central NE) starting this weekend. The show will run Fridays and Saturdays at 9 p.m. through April 9. $15 general, $12 students. They'll also be doing a fully improvised show called Dirty Thursdays on, yes, Thursdays at 9 p.m. through April 14. $9. You will be amused. 255-2182.

Margaret Carlson and Christy Kay Lopez

Factory on 5th Art Space

Margaret Carlson brings a whole new meaning to the term fabric art. Her astonishing construction, Husht Reverberations, is composed of over 10,000 yards of donated fabric, created with a lot of help from her friends. In its sheer mass alone, this is an impressive piece of work, and I'm told it's even more amazing in person. Carlson will exhibit this piece starting this week at Factory on 5th Art Space along with an undulating canvas work created by Christy Kay Lopez called The Observer Effect. The show opens Friday, March 25, with a reception from 7 to 11 p.m. Runs through April 25. For details, call 259-9029 or 255-3331.

A Glass of Water

An interview with Jimmy Santiago Baca

It's hard to talk about Jimmy Santiago Baca without repeating the well-worn tale of how he became a poet. It's a familiar story, but a great one, the kind of story that never gets tiresome no matter how many times you hear it. After all, Baca's biography has several elements every fine tale should have—a troubled past, a tragic mistake and, most important of all, an intoxicating conclusion combining redemption and grace.

Alibi V.14 No.10 • March 10-16, 2005

feature

Love in the Time of Abstinence

This year, the Bush administration wants to spend more than $200 million on abstinence-until-marriage education in an effort to convince teens that the best way to enjoy sex is to avoid it. At APS, and across New Mexico, a portion of these funds are spent

No sane person would deny that adolescence is an awkward time, with the acne, braces, bad breath—the hair!—and especially those hyper hormones. It's well known that these hormones can lead teens to create the beast with two backs when unsupervised. And according to the Center for Disease Control, over 65 percent of our state's high school-aged youth are sexually active—a number about equal with the national trend. Meanwhile, when you compound the laws of puberty with socio-economic realities, New Mexico has one of the highest rates of teenage motherhood in the nation.

music

Music to Your Ears

Update on RockSquawk.com: Weekly Alibi has negotiated a deal with Dandee Fleming to take over and administer the local music scene site Fleming started four years ago and intended to shut down as of March 22. RockSquawk.com has been an invaluable resource for local musicians of almost every genre—a cyberplace where people could go to air their grievances, buy or sell gear, read about upcoming shows or replace their shitty drummer.

Gamble's Ramble

Live music reviews

I think if one more person corners me with the complaint, "Nothing is happening in the local Albuquerque music and art scene," I will have to ask them: "Where the hell were you last night?" In any venue, in any town, you will have your share of good shows or bad; either way you are likely to be more entertained than watching reality happen on television.

Sonic Reducer

Where has Carina Round been all my life? Certainly not on the airwaves. It's a shame too, because this could quite possibly be some of the best music you'll never hear. Mixtures of blues, jazz and rock can be heard on this spectacular album. This is what Tori Amos, Sarah McLachlan, Gwen Stefani and Fiona Apple would have sounded like if they hadn't sold out. Round delivers raw, immaculate, untouched goodness. Definitely not for those who like order and monotonous, catchy tunes in their music. If you are up to the challenge, fasten your seatbelt and get ready for a ride full of surprises. Fans of Amanda Ghost and Siouxsie and the Banshees will most likely fall in love with Carina.

art

Culture Shock

I've just been told that the deadline for the Alibi's second annual photo contest has been pushed back a few weeks. We're now accepting entries up 'til Wednesday, March 30, at 5 p.m. with the winning entries and a few additional worthy photos to be reproduced in our April 14 issue.

A Fine Mess

Natural Painting at [AC]2

Mike Certo, the owner of [AC]2, advised me to wear old, beaten-up shoes. "The paint might not be dry," he said ominously, "and it's pretty much impossible not to step in it." Thankfully, all my shoes are old and beaten-up, so this wouldn't be a problem.

Highway 47

South Broadway Cultural Center

Highway 47 cuts through the center of Tomé, a tiny community just south of Albuquerque that was first settled over 300 years ago. Thirty years ago, the village was torn apart by a feud over land rights, and it's this feud that serves as the foundation of K.J. Sanchez' new play. Produced by Working Classroom, the world premiere of Highway 47 occurs this Friday evening, March 11, with a gala performance at the South Broadway Cultural Center (1025 Broadway SE). The show runs Fridays at 10 a.m. and 8 p.m., Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. through March 20. $10 general, $5 students/seniors. Group rates available. 242-9267.

Música Antigua de Albuquerque

St. Michael and All Angels Episcopal

The French are good with cheese. They're good with wine. They're even good with tiny chickens. They've also had a historic talent for composing music, a talent that sadly often goes unnoticed. Música Antigua de Albuquerque delivers a concert of early French music from the Middle Ages and the Renaissance this Sunday, March 13, at 4:30 p.m. at St. Michael and All Angels Episcopal (601 Montaño NW). This talented ensemble specializes in playing early music on period instruments, and this should be a fine show of rarely heard pieces. $15 general, $12 seniors, $8 students. 842-9613.

news

Water Woes

A new bill proposes to limit the state's power over surface water protection

Ben Seigling remembers getting his knees muddy and hair full of silt wading in the Rio Grande as a little kid. He remembers digging his toes into the sand as he battled the river's currents. He also remembers the many long hours he spent on the river and in the Bosque over the last year, as part of a program offered by the Indio-Hispano Academy of Agricultural Arts & Sciences, studying water and soil quality and talking to the local farming community. And he remembers last February, when he and six of his peers testified in front of the Water Quality Control Commission in hopes of raising surface water standards for a long stretch of his embattled childhood playground.

Political Correctness in the Time of Global Warming

Nuclear power isn't PC.

Talking about nuclear power, except to condemn it, can get you busted by the political correctness cops and sentenced to an enviro re-education camp. Imagine endless days of group readings of Edward Abbey and public contrition for daring to ask what's wrong with harnessing the atom in the service of humanity.

Political correctness prohibits even reading certain books. Like New Mexico Sen. Pete Domenici's hybrid autobiography and nuclear engineering text. Pete titled his book, A Brighter Tomorrow even though much of it retraces his personal history.

Bush's "Reform" Program Smells Like a Con Jobmu

To anyone who has observed professionals working a con, the high-pressure sales pitch for Social Security privatization seems suspiciously familiar. Come to think of it, so does George W. Bush's back-slapping style, which is well suited to promoting his vague, wildly expensive "reform" proposal to the nation's teeming rubes.

Odds & Ends

Dateline: England—The Queen, apparently, does not rock. Legendary guitarists Jimmy Page, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and Brian May were all attending a party at Buckingham Palace last Tuesday when they were approached by Queen Elizabeth II, who asked, “And what do you do?” Clapton later told reporters that it was great to meet her and it doesn't matter at all that she didn't know who they are or what they do. The quartet of famed rockers were at Buckingham Palace to celebrate the announcement of a new prize, the Queen's Medal For Music, which will reward musicians who have had an impact on Britain. The award will be given out on Nov. 22, the memorial day of St. Cecilia, patron saint of music.

film

Reel World

Shootout on Central Avenue—This summer, Albuquerque's Flicks on 66 Film Festival will be entering its third incarnation. Currently known as DigiFest Southwest, the festival will be renamed the Duke City Shootout and will fall under the wing of independent filmmaker Christopher Coppola (nephew of Francis Ford Coppola and director of such low-budget efforts as Deadfall and G-Men from Hell). As in previous years, the festival committee will select seven short film scripts. The writers of the winning scripts will be flown to Albuquerque where they will be given a budget, cast, camera, lighting equipment, production crew, post-production facilities and even a professional mentor to help bring their pages to life. The only catch? Would-be filmmakers have only one week in which to complete their mini-masterpieces.

Imaginary Heroes

Suburban tragedy tries too hard, but has its moments

In the wake of his “welcome to the big time” promotion writing the script for X2: X-Men United, twentysomething hipster scripter Dan Harris suddenly became Hollywood's go-to guy, penning screenplays for a string of upcoming blockbusters like Superman Returns, Ender's Game and Logan's Run. Last year, he made the ultimate shortcut to A-list status, writing and directing his own indie vanity project staffed with all the name actors money could buy.

Robots

Animated feature dazzles audience with all the gew-gaws money can buy

At this point, everyone in the animation biz (whether working in the 2-D or 3-D realm) is toiling away in the towering shadow of Pixar. With an unbroken string of box office hits (Toy Story, A Bug's Life, Toy Story 2, Monsters Inc., Finding Nemo, The Incredibles) and yet another Academy Award on the shelf (the company's second Best Animated Feature Oscar in a row for The Incredibles), Pixar is the unqualified king of cartoons.

Why, God, Why?

The Return of Baby Bob

There are moments in life that make you question how the hell people can believe in a higher power--much less one that is kind and benevolent. We've got giant tsunamis in Asia, war in the Middle East, ethnic cleansing in Africa and a Walgreen's on every street corner. Is this the work of a beneficent creator? I think not.

food

A New Palace of Delights

Local dynasty's newest location rules

The Albuquerque metropolitan area is littered with all-you-can-eat buffets not worth their weight in calories. A trip through the buffet line at India Palace (Coors and Alameda) confirms that this is not one of them.

When the Radarange Transforms Your Sauce Into Slop

People often e-mail or call me with their cooking troubles. Many of these questions are ordinary, and not worth repeating here. But I recently got a query that piqued my interest as a kitchen scientist. An Alibi staffer wanted to know why her leftover salmon in sundried tomato cream sauce turned into salmon in half a cup of oil when she reheated it in the microwave. The simple answer is that zapping it broke the emulsion of the sauce. If you know what that means, then skip along to the film times; if you're clueless, read on.

Alibi V.14 No.9 • March 3-9, 2005

feature

Get Smarty

Dual language education gains momentum at APS

Annie Rodriguez understands the importance of language. When she came to Clovis, N.M. from Guatemala with her brother, sisters and parents at the age of 9, escaping a civil war, she learned that language determined her place in life. The fact that her family spoke Spanish, and not English, meant that she and her siblings, for the first few years of their U.S. schooling, would be placed in classes years below their grade level. It meant that her mother, who was a midwife and nurse in Guatemala, would divide her days between working around town as a hospital aid, and going to school, trying to learn English. It meant that her father, who was a minister before coming to the U.S., would earn money for his family by doing the laundry at a local rest home. And it meant that, one day, Annie would grow up and dedicate herself to language, to teaching and to early childhood development—because she understood the importance of getting a good start.

film

Reel World

Filmmaker Shoots Cop—On Thursday, March 3, the People Before Profit Film/Lecture series at the Albuquerque Peace & Justice Center will screen Every Mother's Son. This hard-hitting documentary looks at the increased use of aggressive and militarized tactics by U.S. police forces. The film recounts three cases of questionable killings by police officers, including the infamous case of Amadou Diallo in New York City. A speaker from Albuquerque Copwatch will be on hand to update viewers on a class action suit against the City of Albuquerque. The screening starts at 7 p.m. The Peace & Justice Center is located at 202 Harvard SE.

The Sea Inside

Academy Awards 2005 will likely go down in history as (for lack of anything more interesting) The Year of the Biopic. The Aviator, Finding Neverland, Ray, Hotel Rwanda, Kinsey, The Motorcycle Diaries and The Passion of the Christ (I guess) were all true-life-inspired dramas that found their way into Oscar territory. The Sea Inside was yet another biographical film that made the long haul from obscurity (in this case, Spain) to Oscar glory (nominated in two categories: Best Foreign Film and Best Makeup).

VideoNasty

2,000 Maniacs (1964)

If you have ever sat in wide-eyed wonder as images of brutal decapitations and fountains of blood spat across your television screen, you owe a special debt of gratitude to Herschell Gordon Lewis. Known as “the Guru of Gore,” Lewis created the gore film genre in 1963 with his legendary classic Blood Feast. While Lewis often downplays the significance of this film, its influence on movies for generations is undeniable.

Post-Show Post-Mortem

The 77th Annual Academy Awards

Initial reports indicated that ABC's telecast of the 77th Annual Academy Awards had managed to lure a few more viewers than the 2004 edition. When the dust finally settled and Nielsen added up its figures, however, it looked like a total of 41.5 million viewers tuned in Sunday evening. That's down about two million from the year before.

music

Music to Your Ears

Despite having the worst local band name since Tacos with Heidi, Las Cruces groove-metal quartet, New Mexican Erection, have just released their second skull-shattering full-length, titled Codependent (Nasty Cactus Music), and are gearing up to hit the road on an extended tour. For dates, where to buy the CD and other good stuff, visit NME on the web at www.newmexicanerection.com or www.nastycactusmusic.com. ... Local bandguy/music supporter and, for the past four years, webmaster of RockSquawk.com Dandee Fleming has announced that he's shutting his site down as of March 22. Fleming cites a busy schedule as the main reason behind his decision. Over the years, RockSquawk.com provided local musicians with a virtual meeting place where they could post upcoming shows, air dirty laundry, review shows, sell and buy gear, search for band members and discuss freely the ins and outs of the local scene. Fleming did a more than admirable job of attempting to keep the site positive and useful, and you should thank him and buy him lots of drinks the next time you see him. At press time, the site appears to be frozen, but it could just be my stupid computer fucking with me.

Blue Note

Spring Forward

Outpost Productions Kicks Off Its Spring 2005 Season New Orleans-style

What better way to kick off another potentially physically debilitating allergy season in Albuquerque than with an evening of jazz originating in and inspired by the Crescent City? Officially opening the Outpost's 2005 Spring Season, New Orleans-based musicians Tom McDermott and Evan Christopher are happy and more than capable to oblige.

McDermott is a breathtaking pianist who emerged on the front-end of the Scott Joplin revival, and cites New Orleans pianists James Booker, Professor Longhair and Dr. John as musical influences strong enough to inspire a move from his native St. Louis in the early '80s. Since then, he's explored the Louisiana piano tradition on a handful of records that bear his name, as well as through live performance.

Sonic Reducer

Kentucky-born guitarist Adrian Belew has played with just about every progressive and avant garde rock troupe that's mattered—Zappa, middle-era Bowie, King Crimson, Projekt, Talking Heads, Tom Tom Club and so on—while releasing a steady stream of solo albums, and lending his guitar work to various projects floating just under mainstream radar. Frankly, he's made some pretty annoying music along the way. But Side One, rumored to be the first part of a trilogy, is among the least grating of his solo works. It's still pretty out there, as expected, but it's of keen interest once past the bravado.

art

Culture Shock

In a series of paintings that goes on display this week at the Yale Art Center (1001 Yale SE), Joy Davidson has created an entire petting zoo of disturbing creatures. Titled Everything's Fine, Davidson's one-woman show presents a blissfully kitschy selection of work that might make you smile but might also leave you feeling slightly unsettled. The exhibit opens this Friday with a reception from 6:30 to 9 p.m. For details, call 242-1669.

Ace is the Place

Love for the Street at Ace Barbershop

The name suggests the sort of place where you might drop in for a quick bowl cut and pick up a pound of nails on the way out, but don't be fooled. Ace Barbershop, which recently opened Downtown on Fourth Street, dodges all expectations.

Plantation Alaap

Out ch'Yonda

Soy Sauce Maharaj and Riti Sachdeva tell the stories of East Indian indentured laborers slaving away on sugar cane plantations in Trinidad in a new play called Plantation Alaap, opening this weekend at Out ch'Yonda (929 Fourth Street SW). Filled with live music and intricate costumes, this play should be as popular as the pair's highly successful Kalapani: The Crossing. The show runs Fridays and Saturdays at 7 p.m. through March 12. To order tickets, call 480-5581, e-mail kalapani_productions@yahoo.com or stop by Alphaville Video at 3408 Central SE.

Exuberance

Unseen Gallery

Edna Casman isn't the kind of artist who holds anything back. Her bright and bouncy abstract paintings are as unrestrained as they come. They seem to revel in the sheer limitless possibilities of color and shape. A new exhibit of Casman's paintings opens this Friday, March 4, at Unseen Gallery (108 Morningside NE) with a reception from 6:30 to 8 p.m. during which the artist will make a rare public appearance. Casman's show runs through March 26. For details, call 232-2161.

news

VA Troubles Continue

Agency's mental health plan still in draft form

More than any other war in U.S. history, the conflict in Iraq has provoked a surge of concern for soldiers returning home bearing the psychological burdens of battle.

Thin Line

Inventory. Which is more remarkable: The mainstream corporate media's current state of disarray or the mainstream corporate media's cluelessness of their own precipitous decline?

The Messiah's Senator

"Reverend Moon is the most remarkable person I've ever met"

On Valentine's Day, Republican state Sen. Mark Boitano, who represents part of Albuquerque's Northeast Heights, joined opponents of gay marriage in a press conference to promote "pro-family" legislation. The Albuquerque Journal photo showed a tense Boitano surrounded by gay rights activists. What the story did not mention is that for 30 years Boitano has been a follower of Rev. Sun Myung Moon, who calls gays "dung eating dogs" to be "eliminated" or "burned."

A Culture of Secrecy

What has happened to the principle that American democracy should be accessible and transparent?

"Political language ... is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind." –George Orwell, Politics and the English Language

Singin' in the Rain

The Feb. 23 Council meeting featured a packed audience but a shortage of councilors with Debbie O'Malley and Tina Cummins sick, Sally Mayer late, and Eric Griego and Miguel Gomez leaving early. Councilor Michael Cadigan postponed his bill fast-tracking Montaño restriping until O'Malley could present her opposing bill. Councilor Martin Heinrich's bill encouraging community participation in Nob Hill planning passed. And Mayer's bill restricting vehicle weight on San Pedro in her District 7 passed after Council President Brad Winter expanded the San Pedro restrictions into his District 4.

The Death of Fiscal Conservatism

Republicans can cut taxes. They just can't stop spending.

During any given election you can count on Republican candidates to campaign against government spending, bureaucratic waste and increased taxes. Consider some direct quotes from the state legislative campaign of one of my GOP colleagues we'll call "Justin" in order to keep my life within the Republican caucus realtively hassle-free.

All Ages Shows

A single organism of optimistic energy

Have you seen an adolescent smile lately?

When the Launchpad's lights are dim and the crowd is thick with sweaty kids from all ages, I see the teens smile. Their eyes light up. They grin, all teeth, an endless throng of pearly incisors and cuspids. On stage, the band pacifies this restless mass with music imitating the raw passion of youth. Discontented misfits transform into human beings devoid of teenage angst, purified by noise.

Odds & Ends

Dateline: New York—A disco-era icon is about to go up for sale on eBay. The multicolored dance floor where John Travolta struck his famous Saturday Night Fever pose will be auctioned off on the website the first week of April. The 24-foot by 16-foot dance floor was rescued from a soon-to-be-demolished nightclub. Bar owner Jay Rizzo, who saved the floor, told the New York Post, “It has literally been the heartbeat of this club.” The club, where the floor had been a fixture since the 1977 film was made, closed last month after being sold to a real estate investment company. The plastic floor, covered in more than 300 multicolored lights, is expected to sell for some $80,000.

A Bullet to the End

Hunter S. Thompson Remembered

I blame this sentimental blathering on the swift and concise suicide of Dr. Hunter S Thompson. He once told me he thought he'd die quickly from something akin to an unexpected breeze wafting in through a back door ... “Poof” gone; something fast, almost clean, but not quite. Suicide by gun to head is never that clean, but it wasn't a shotgun.

food

Gastrological Forecast

Alibi chef Tom Nayder has discovered the secret of eternal life. Actually, it's really only a method for sprouting green onions, and his sister told him how to do it. But we like to make him feel special, so we call him a genius anyway. What Tom does is simple. He buys green onions and keeps them in a plastic bag in the fridge until he needs them. Then, he chops them down to within a couple inches of the root end. He uses the dark and light green parts to top his low-carb tacos, and saves the white bulbs. When kept in a glass with water just up to their tips, the root ends of green onions will sprout again. Tom says he sees growth from the onions within hours, and it only takes about a week for them to grow enough green tops to cut and use again. He cautions not to put the whole green onions in a glass of water; it causes the outer leaves to shrivel prematurely. He says the re-sprouted onions taste just as good as their parents. By the way, the term scallion is often used interchangeably with green onion, but the true scallion is a distinct variety. Milder in flavor than immature (or green) onions, the white part of a scallion has straight sides, whereas the green onion's base is more bulbous.

All the News That's Fit to Eat

King Kona is the name of a new coffee shop in the First Plaza Galería (Third and Copper). The walls of the tiny shop are adorned with various ape-themed decorations (get it, King Kona?) and a glorious Hawaiian sunset. But the first thing you'll notice when you walk in the door is the aroma that creeps within your nostrils, hinting at a deep, rich brew. Kona coffee beans, from Hawaii, are the only beans grown in the U.S., didja know? We tried a sweet and mild Gorillacino, but were more impressed by the not bitter, not awful, actually good decaf. King Kona also sells cigars, so stroll on by if you're in the mood for a cup and a puff.

Just the Cheese™ Snacks Taste Like Crap

No, really, they're bad

Like a kitten bringing a dead rodent to the back door, our kind and thoughtful receptionist Martin brought me a small bag of cheese snacks last Friday. I should have known to decline them as I once declined a decapitated squirrel from Tiny Princess. But the bag was open and I'm always up for something new, so I said, “Don't tell me what it is. I want to be surprised.” Boy, was I surprised—when I found my self spitting every last half-masticated curd into the trash can under my desk. “Good God,” I said to Martin, “What was that thing?” He showed me the package and explained how he had spit one out of his car window on the way to work, much to the horror of the woman driving next to him. Thanks, Martin.

Nothing Elementary about ABC Chinese

Smart kids order from the Chinese-language menu for a homestyle treat

Walking into ABC Chinese restaurant is like walking into pretty much any family owned and operated Chinese restaurant. The color scheme is red and gold (a symbol of good fortune in Chinese culture), with lighted beer signs and posters on the walls. A fish tank teems with life and giant, round banquet tables topped with lazy Susans are scattered among the booths. But that's where the similarities end.