Alibi V.18 No.9 • Feb 26-March 4, 2009

feature

Beware His Sting

He lives in the middle of nowhere near the New Mexico-Arizona border. "Ish," he adds, just to vague things up.

Ghost Shadow Remains ... Shadowy

Green Scorpion patrols Phoenix and sometimes Albuquerque. But the Duke City has her own hero roaming the streets. Meet Ghost Shadow. Except that’s not his real superhero name. He wanted a pseudonym for his pseudonym.

news

Whips and Restraints

City spanks alternative-lifestyle event

Ken Cornell received a call on Friday, Feb. 13, informing him his fetish/bondage party was canceled.

Answer Me This

What new feature do ignition interlocks sport? What was found in two Albuquerque stores? One more hardship for food bank clients. And what's come as a result of the state's hiring freeze?

Thin Line

Muzzammil Hassan reported his wife’s death to police on Feb. 12. Police found Aasiya Zubair Hassan decapitated at the office of the Orchard Park, N.Y. television station where she and her husband worked. Aasiya had served Muzzammil with divorce papers and an order of protection the week before her death. Her husband, the founder and CEO of the station, was arrested and charged with second-degree murder.

Warehouse 508 Gets Some of Its Dough

Council doles out stack of cash (light 50 grand) to teen center

Warehouse 508 supporters clapped when the Council voted to fund the teen center, but the exuberance they'd shown at previous meetings was missing. In a 5-4 vote, councilors approved Warehouse 508's money but whacked $50,000 from a promised $200,000 contract to turn the old Ice House strip club into a performance space and arts program for Albuquerque youth. Members of Mayor Martin Chavez' administration at the Wednesday, Feb. 18 meeting agreed to cut the cash to $150,000 to get Warehouse 508 off the ground.

Talk Dirty

Since "sex" is apparently no longer dirty in these enlightened times, the last three-letter word never to be uttered in polite conversation seems to be “tax.” At least, this must be the accepted etiquette in the halls of state government in Santa Fe, where even the governor’s appointed secretary of tax and revenue goes to great lengths to avoid the term.

Odds & Ends

Dateline: New Zealand—An octopus who escaped from his tank at a New Zealand aquarium and survived five days on the run will be released back into the wild. Last month, Sid the octopus mysteriously vanished from his tank at a Dunedin aquarium. Five days later, he was spotted by a staff member making a dash for the door. Sid was hungry but otherwise fine. He is believed to have spent at least some of his fugitive time hiding in a drain that pumps fresh sea water into the aquarium. The aquarium’s senior aquarist, Matthew Crane, said Sid has done his time and will be freed. “We are realizing he is getting a little older in his life and may be searching for a mate, so that’s why we’ve gone ahead and set his release.”

food

Pickled Sun

The Jerusalem artichoke has absolutely nothing to do with the contested city home to various peoples of the book. It's actually an American original: a tuber that finds its roots from Nova Scotia to Georgia. First eaten by a European in 1605, the artichoke-tasting relative of the sunflower was sent back to the old country, where it enjoyed relative popularity until it got upstaged by the potato. The Italian word for sunflower, girasole, eventually morphed into Jerusalem, and we've all been confused ever since.

Sabroso’s

Defining Northern New Mexico

Sabroso is a lively little word with more than one use. Like many Spanish words, it’s a workhorse, a multitasker. Depending on how sabroso is used, it can mean something as simple as "tasty" or something more specific, like "salty." As a restaurant name, it’s pretty straightforward: Good food.

film

Anita O’Day: The Life of a Jazz Singer

The lady is a tramp

On the list of all-time great female jazz vocalists, you’ve got legends like Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughan. Hovering somewhere just below them, you’ll invariably encounter the name Anita O’Day. It’s not a name familiar to the garden-variety music listener. But to those in the know, it speaks volumes. Anita O’Day: pioneer, innovator, icon. O’Day is noted as much for her inimitable vocal style as for the sheer fact that she walked the walk as well as talked the talk.

Academy Rewards

Oscar night observations

Last Sunday’s broadcast of the 81st annual Academy Awards was a triumph in at least one way: The ratings didn’t completely suck. On average, they were up (33.57 million viewers) from last year’s record low (32.01 million). And at their peak (the telecast’s first half hour) they were rather impressive (37.70 million viewers). So how was the show? From where I was sitting, 2009’s much-touted “revamp” was a class act and a good foundation on which future Oscar shows can grow.

music

Music to Your Ears

Voting is open for the Alibi's 2009 Best of Burque awards, and it's accessible exclusively through alibi.com. Don't hold your breath for a paper ballot—polling is 100 percent digitized. (The results are not. We'll report the result in the April 2 issue of the Alibi.)

Ends !n Tragedy

A punk rock dream team

When founding drummer Chad Zollo departed from Ends !n Tragedy, he left with a message for singer/guitarist Ian Jarrell.

Flyer on the Wall

Levi (Volume Volume/Romeo Goes to Hell), Kenta (Jonnycats), April (Rockstar karaoke) and Jared (Creepshow) broke up with their bands and fused together Violenta from the pieces. What that sounds like is anyone’s guess, since the band’s debut performance is Friday, Feb. 27, at Burt’s Tiki Lounge (21+, free). Shoulder Voices and World on Fyre are there, too. (LM)

art

ArtStreet

ArtStreet is an extension of Albuquerque Health Care for the Homeless, an advocacy program that seeks to provide support to indigent and at-risk populations in our area. In an example of poetic irony, ArtStreet doesn't have a permanent home, but instead showcases the work of its participants in partner galleries. The ArtStreet show Love & Junk runs through March 2, at the Harwood Art Center's North Gallery. Like many of ArtStreet's shows, Love & Junk is weird, exciting and unexpected. Dartboards metamorph into numbered bugs along sides of images of wonder and nature. Collage, assemblage and mixed media cozy up to shadowboxes and screw sculptures. A quote on a piece by Arlene Fraley sums it up: "Chaotic civilization is a bittersweet love." ArtStreet's next show debuts on Friday, March 6, also at the Harwood Art Center (1114 Seventh Street NW) with the second half of that show coming in April to the Tamarind Center (108 Cornell SE). Albuquerque Health Care for the Homeless' website, abqhch.org, keeps you apprised of all of ArtStreet's happenings.

[ Gallery Box: The Trillion Space ]

Culture Shock

March is Women's History Month, and you'd be safe in betting that I won't shut up about it. Next week's Arts section will focus on Women and Creativity 2009, a monthlong series of events presented by the National Hispanic Cultural Center and sponsored by Mark Pardo salons. Between now and then, though, there are a few events worth your time, such as Dear Eve, Lilith, and Emily..., featuring poets Dana Levin and Valerie Martinez and prose writer Robin Romm. The three women will read from and discuss their work at the College of Santa Fe's O'Shaughnessy Performance Space on Tuesday, March 3, from 12:30 to 2 p.m. And on Sunday, March 1, the string band Carolina Chocolate Drops brings the music of the pre-WWII South to the Outpost Performance Space at 7:30 p.m. Downloadable information on these events and more is available at nhccnm.org. And check back next week for a comprehensive look at Women and Creativity 2009.

Writing From Within

Inmates reach through the bars with literary magazine

For Christmas, the inmates made Kimberlee Hanson a stocking. Construction paper took on the general shape. Maxi pad cotton provided a snow effect. Toothpaste glued it together. Hanson's students melted down Jolly Ranchers from the commissary and turned them into flowers to include with the gift.

Excerpts from MDC’s literary magazine

We call ourselves the McGalvers of MDC because like the infamous MCGuver, the TV hero who could make a bomb out of bubble gum, we are all incredibly resourceful. To all of those employers who question our skills, work ethic and problem solving capabilities, you might want to change your mind after hearing our stories.

Alibi V.18 No.8 • Feb 19-25, 2009

What’s a Little Historical Amnesia Between Neighbors?

Somos Primos campaign opens dialogue between Hispanic New Mexicans and Mexican immigrants

Maria Cristina Lopez says a myth hangs over the state that New Mexicans and immigrants from south of the border don't get along. The media, politicians and school officials spread the nasty stereotype, according to Lopez.

feature

Ballot (Stuffed)

Nominees for the 81st Academy Awards

Here is the complete ballot listing of all this year’s Academy Award nominees. For the the top seven categories, we’ve included the awards that have already been won, as well as the current betting odds (as provided by BetUS.com), in case you wanna place a little wager on the winner.

Oscar (Analyzed)

While this year’s Academy Award nominations seem like they’re filled with deserving honorees, apparently some honorees are more deserving than others. Just look at the Las Vegas betting odds for proof. Has there ever been a more one-sided Oscar race? Heath Ledger at 1:100? That means you could lay down $100, and if Heath wins Best Supporting Actor, you walk away with a one dollar profit!

film

Reel World

Beloved Binge, an indie-pop duo from Durham, N.C., will pass through town on Friday, Feb. 20. to play a gig at Burt’s Tiki Lounge. This is of note to film fans because the group’s drummer, Eleni Vlachos, will screen a “humorous, pro-vegan documentary” she shot titled Seeing Through the Fence earlier in the evening. The screening begins at 5:30 p.m. at UNM’s School of Law, Room 2401. A Q&A with the director will take place at 6:30 p.m. Both film and concert are part of “Porch’n Tour,” a yearlong DIY tour the band embarked on this September. Log on to porchlifeproductions.com for details.

The International

Globe-hopping thriller banks on handsome stars and pretty directing

One of the hardest tasks for Hollywood screenwriters is finding good villains. The problem is not in crafting antagonists who are realistic or even well-suited to the hero in question. It’s in capturing the direction of America’s most up-to-date hatred and exploiting it without violating the politically correct terms of the day. For the run of the Cold War, Russians were the default villains in everything from James Bond movies to Rocky flicks. Then the Berlin Wall fell and they didn’t seem so scary anymore. In the wake of the World Trade Center attack, we had a good run of Middle Eastern villains. (“24,” anyone?) But the tides have turned once again, and we’re starting to view those of Arabic persuasion as allies in the war against terror. So where does that leave us looking for villain fodder? Must we fall back on that tired old evergreen, the evil Nazi?

Virtual JFK: Vietnam If Kennedy Had Lived

History 101: The Alternate Version

Joining, if not flat-out founding, the underpopulated genre of “speculative documentary,” Koji Masutani’s Virtual JFK: Vietnam If Kennedy Had Lived takes us on a “What if?” tour of one of the mid-20th century’s greatest historical junctures. Using copious amounts of archival footage and a lot of intellectual assist from Brown University Professor James G. Blight, the film rewrites history to show us how different things might have been had John F. Kennedy not been killed on that fateful November morning in 1963.

Good to Gold?

“The 81st Annual Academy Awards” on ABC

The Academy Awards, like most awards shows, exists mostly for people to complain about afterwards. Why was it so long? What was she wearing? How could that win Best Picture? It’s an important social steam valve that allows us all to vent minor frustrations around the office water cooler while avoiding other, more controversial topics of discussion (the war in Iraq, President Obama’s economic stimulus plan, “The Hills”—real or fake?).

music

EarWin V

An interview with the Alibi's fifth Earwig playlist winner

Screen Name: autumnsg
Real Name: Autumn Garrison
Age: 29, Taurus
Winning Earwig mix: Hi ... Story
Hear it at: alibi.com/earwig

What do you do in your free time?

Thrascher

Quartet reeds the Albuquerque Jazz Festival with original music

James Brown made his mark as the Godfather of Funk, but he apparently led a second and secret life as a composer of contemporary chamber music, specializing in brief, jazz-inflected pieces for saxophone quartets. He often collaborated simultaneously with several other composers—among them, Steve Reich, Johann Sebastian Bach and Duke Ellington.

news

Answer Me This

What animal caused a traffic jam? A New Mexico woman got arrested for threatening whom? What new facility opened its doors in the South Valley? And who do detectives say is responsible for a gruesome murder?

Odds & Ends

Dateline: India—In an attempt to make India more Indian, an activist group is developing a soft drink made from cow urine. India’s Hindu nationalist movement, the Cow Protection Department of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), says the carbonated drink is in the final stages of development. The Times of India reports head of the department Om Prakash as saying the drink was undergoing laboratory tests and would be launched “very soon, maybe by the end of this year.” Prakash told The Times that the drink would be very healthy and devoid of toxins. “Don’t worry,” Prakash was quoted as saying. “It won’t smell like urine and will be tasty, too.” The drink, known as “gau jal” or “cow water,” is the RSS’ latest attempt to cleanse India of foreign influence and to promote its ideology of Hindutva, or Hindu-ness.

art

The Trillion Space

The Trillion Space is a contemporary gallery and studio that features an array of urban artwork by local up-and-coming artists, as well as others from across the nation. The gallery, located Downtown at 510 Second NW, was originally founded and operated by Rocky Norton, who has since passed the torch to current head of affairs James Black. There are two artist collectives currently working within the Trillion Space— Paper Chase Press and Saba & Endemic—who specialize in screen printing and graphic design. Black is also the visual art projection guru for his own Projecta Selektaz, providing projection visuals for music events and parties in the Albuquerque and Santa Fe areas.

Culture Shock

Well, it's become clear—this "Internet" is here to stay. I was dubious for 11 or 12 years, but looks like this thing's got legs. The Alibi's long made the print version of our paper available online, along with our late-breaking, trend-making, controversy-stoking blogs. And now there's more. In addition to what you see in the paper, the Arts and Literature section will feature weekly online-exclusive content at alibi.com, such as:

• "I on Books" vlog: Two-minute reviews with a book snob, a giant chair, guest readers and sometimes prizes, new every Tuesday. The inaugural edition tore The Other Boleyn Girl a new hole. This week's vlog tells you what to think about Sandra Cisneros' Caramelo.

Carnival in the Desert

The celebration preceding the Catholic ritual of 40 days of prayer and self-denial leading up to Christ's rise from the grave might be the most bitchin' thing about Christianity. While Lent represents the time Jesus spent in the desert being tempted by Satan, Carnival and Mardi Gras are geared toward indulgence in sin—exactly what Lent aims to avoid.

food

Spuds From the Ground Up

Q: I want to plant potatoes this spring. I tried last fall to get some seed potatoes but found nothing local or in the more popular catalogues.

Pizza 9

Duke City or Windy? The devil's in the details.

Most places in this world are synonymous with certain foods. Maryland has crab cakes, Kansas City has barbecue, Philly has cheese steak and Chicago has pizza—a very specific type of pizza. It’s three-dimensional, and you can’t fold it in half. Hell, you can hardly hold it in your hand. There is no mistaking a true Chicago-style pizza. And those who have encountered the real deal have no trouble picking out an imitator.

Alibi V.18 No.7 • Feb 12-18, 2009

Klezmerquerque Celebrates Yiddishekeit

Festival of music and dance features performances, instruction and parties

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a mohel or just a plain mensch, a goy or a Hasid, or even if you can’t tell the difference between a tuckus and a tchochke; you’re invited to sing, play, dance or just stand around and soak up the Yiddishekeit (that is, Eastern European Jewish cultural traditions) at Klezmerquerque, the Southwest’s Celebration of Klezmer Music and Dance.

feature

Enough About Us—What Do You Think of Us?

We choose the winners of the Alibi’s sixth annual Valentine’s Card Contest

The giving of valentines is a carefully nuanced act, one we learn in kindergarten. Valentines, no matter how small or seemingly simplistic, convey a world of implication and sentiment. Matching a valentine's message to its recipient is key, lest you alienate a potential love or invite affection from an unwanted corner—best illustrated by “The Simpsons” episode wherein Lisa's valentine to Ralph, featuring a train and the words “I choo-choo-choose you,” causes poor, paste-eating Ralphie to believe that he's been, well, cho-cho-chosen.

A Valentine for the Gender Offenders

Her panties are red

her boxers are blue

my boyfriend's a drag king

my girlfriend is, too.

Male-female, in love or out—in a space where it's OK to twist your gender, it's OK to bend Valentine's Day.

Not everyone worships the hearts-and-candy holiday. Santa Fe's Gender Offenders knows this. The troupe, unwilling to chain itself to any particular definition, aptly named 2009’s V-Day show (un)Lucky in Love. "We want to appeal to everyone," says KiKi DeLovely, "those who are jaded and not so into Valentine's Day and those who are super-in-love and hopeful."

Burlesque as It Is

Author and performer reflects on the movement today

Vivienne VaVoom has received Google news alerts about burlesque for five years. She used to get pinged maybe once a week, tops. "Now I get it once a day, and there's at least five or six things in it."

Show Us Your Pits

Punish the deed, not the breed

All the barking about dangerous pit bulls got Kassie Brown hot under the collar.

music

Music to Your Ears

The "L" stands for love. And lesbians. And lyrics from hip-hop duo God-des and She—who, come to think of it, once appeared on HBO's "The L Word," cable's most prominent source of literate, lusty lesbians.

Murder by Death

Bigger is better

Murder by Death knows only one size.

"I tend to be more interested in big things," explains singer-songwriter Adam Turla. "I feel like so many people write songs about simple stuff. One of the reasons why I do write such big, theatrical songs is that there’s not as many people doing it."

Epic struggles between good and evil fill the lyric sheets, and the meaty Americana that saddles up beside it gallops through sonic peaks and valleys. It could be called alt.country-noir, or cowpoke indie rock, but either way, the scent that wafts past your nostrils is robust.

art

Culture Shock

You know what's worse than people who make too big a deal out of Valentine's Day? People who make a big deal about how they're not going make a big deal about Valentine's Day because it's a corporate-invented holiday blahblahblah. Really? It's soooo horrible to give a little attention to someone you love, regardless of the reason? I concede that, for those not in a relationship, Valentine's Day can seem like a giant scheme to make you feel lonely and inadequate, all vulnerable confusion, like one of those pink, hairless moles. But it doesn't have to, just like weddings don't have to involve the Chicken Dance; you can make it what you want.

Dead Presidents

It's not every year that Valentine's Day and Presidents Day are so deliriously close together, and it's a confluence that can't be ignored. After all, we have a new president in office who is objectively attractive, and it's only out of respect for Michelle that many women (and men) have kept discussion of President Obama's established hotness to a minimum.

news

Answer Me This

You can now take off at the Sunport and land where? What did police find at a construction site on the West Mesa? What film will be shot in New Mexico? And How is UNM dealing with the recession?

Three’s a Crowd

A couple expecting a baby gets evicted

Last summer, Nicole Michelbach and Brian Garcia learned they were going to have a baby.

The Children of la Pepa

I am from that generation of New Mexicans who came of age in the ’60s and ’70s, who spent a lot of time discovering our ethnic roots in the rich soil of our mestizaje, the part of our heritage that involved celebrating the blending of Old and New World, the Indio and the Hispano.

Odds & Ends

Dateline: South Korea—A 68-year-old woman who has taken the written exam required for a driver’s license nearly every day since 2005 has failed for the 771st time. The woman—identified only by her family name of Cha—has spent at least 4 million won ($3,000) on fees for the test, which she has taken a record 771 times. Applicants must score at least 60 on the written exam before they can get behind the wheel for a driving test. According to Choi Young-Chul, an official at the North Jeolla Province driver’s license agency in Jeonju, the woman has never scored more than 50 on a test. “I feel sorry every time I see Cha fail,” Park Jung-seok, a traffic police officer at the agency, told the Korea Times newspaper. “When she passes, I’ll make a memorial tablet myself and give it to her.” The woman is allegedly ready for her 772nd attempt.

film

Reel World

So, you wanna surprise your sweetheart this Valentine’s Day with a home-cooked meal and a romantic movie. But there are so many sappy love stories to choose from on the shelves of the local video store. Which one to pick? Allow the Alibi to give you a little assist in navigating the waters of romantic movies.

VideoNasty

Blacula (1972)

These days you can't pick up a horror magazine without reading about 2008 being the “year of the vampire.” From the moody emo kids in the blockbuster tween-fest Twilight to the hip darkness of HBO’s “True Blood”—not to mention the unmatched masterpiece of Swedish vampire goodness that is Let the Right One In—last year was lousy with bloodsucking night dwellers. So in keeping with that trend, I’ve decided to dip into one of my favorites from the golden era of Blaxploitation: Blacula.

Friday the 13 th

Horror redux is another hack job

Moviegoers scared/annoyed/offended/bored by Hollywood’s trend toward remaking every horror film ever shot (The Uninvited, My Bloody Valentine, Quarantine among the most recent) can at least take comfort in the fact that the new Friday the 13th film isn’t exactly a remake. It’s more of, well, a sequel that ignores all of the other sequels.

Infomercial Madness

The cult of Snuggie

It’s television’s most talked about new broadcast. It has inspired Internet worships sites, YouTube videos and a raging debate. What is it, you ask? Why, it’s the commercial for the Snuggie.

food

Heart Beets

Forget to make that reservation at the new bistro for Valentine’s Day? Get stuck with a 4:45 p.m. seating time? You know, there’s no shame in cooking for one another. Like Adam and Eve sharing the apple tarte tatin of knowledge, or whatever.

Blue Cactus Grill

Red and green that’s true blue

Ahh, New Mexican cuisine. It indulges our most gluttonous cravings with endless cheese-and-chile concoctions. It's our ultimate hangover cure, and we patronize our favorite New Mexican restaurants with religious zeal. But sometimes even a good thing gets old. Before full-blown boredom sets in, we've got to find a new flame to rekindle the faith.