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The Daily Word in Udall, the flu, the legislature and hotdog-eating catfish

The Daily Word

Yesterday, US Senator Tom Udall (D-NM) campaigned for Clinton in the Beehive state.

This year's piñon harvest is the best our state has seen since 2005.

Over at USA Today, former KUNM reporter and current Penn State journo lecturer Cindy Simmons makes fun of Gary Johnson.

NM Department of Health officials confirmed the first cases of influenza for the 2016-2017 flu season here in New Mexico. Department of Health Secretary Designate Lynn Gallagher used the announcement to reiterate an important scientific concern about this phenomenon, saying, "... I want to remind New Mexicans about the importance of getting influenza vaccine as the best way to protect yourself, loved ones, and the community from flu."

Heath Haussamen of reports on the aftermath of legislation that made it to La Tejana's desk as a consequence the recent special session of our state's glorious legislature.

Stephanie Gurule-Leyba has been named New Mexico's Teacher of the Year.

A recent survey conducted by ZiaPoll indicates that a heroic HRC is favored over misogynist monster and Putin plaything Donald Trump by 10 points in New Mexico.

There is a gender pay gap among academics at the University of New Mexico, says a report issued by the school's office of the provost.

The 550th Special Operations Squadron at Kirtland Air Force Base was deactivated earlier this month. The squadron specialized in combat search and rescue.

Dig catfish? Well, they dig hotdogs! Check out this week's NM fishing report to find out how you can make your angling dreams come true at Burque's Tingley Beach or any number of cool water holes around the state.

Courtesy of the Artist

Event Horizon

I Want to Believe

Saturday, Oct 15: Mr. Gnome • indie, rock • Leeches of Lore • stoner rock, psychedelic • Italian Rats

Mr. Gnome won't stop short of brilliant.

Daily Word

The Daily Word in Saveur, Low Riders, Abelardo's Coke, Hummingbirds and Salmon Snagging

The Daily Word

Over at a lifestyle magazine called Saveur, reporter David Tanis reports on a thing called New Mexico green chile.

Meanwile, at NM Politics, Gabe Vasquez writes about herencia.

And the mighty Lobo Football team faces off against the Air Force Falcons on Saturday ... in Tejas.

This weekend, celebrate the poetic mythos of the lowrider at the NM Museum of History.

A Texas man named Abelardo allegedly brought 10 pounds of Peruvian marching powder into New Mexico. He pleaded guilty to those charges on Wednesday.

The Capitol Bar in Socorro has been in business for 120 years.

DCF Blogger Johnny Mango takes a trailer named "Happy" to Alamogordo.

Folks in Arkansas are debating the pros and cons of medical cannabis. As part of one teevee station's examination of an upcoming ballot initiative on the issue in the Natural State, former NM top cop Darren White was consulted.

Apparently, UNM Associate Professor Christopher Witt is friends with the agents of Huitzilopochtli.

Finally, in this week's much-awaited fishing report, salmon snagging is a thing in our state during the autumn.

Courtesy of the author


At the Moonlight Guesthouse

Exactly 20 years ago I was living in Nepal. Mostly I lived Kathmandu, in a hilly neighborhood called Baluwater, but by the end of October 1996, I’d be back in Burque for good.

There are embassies in that part of the capital of Nepal and government residences too. A long and broad boulevard lined with palm trees marked the western boundary of mi vecino. The palm trees were filled with dates and big fruit bats that had faces like little brown dogs.

The Chinese Embassy and the Mexican Consulate were just a few doors up the street, and the vast estate housing the Prime Minister and his family took up most of the lower end of the area where I lived.

Across from my apartment there was a beer shop that offered ice-cold liters of San Miguel Beer and packets of Triple 5 cigarettes. A huge marijuana plant took up a quarter of my front yard, which was otherwise filled with marigolds and crab grass. I shared the place with a British friend of mine who worked for the Nepali government.

On October 1, 1996, after little preparation and training, we took a flight on Trident Airlines to Pokhara, a small city on the edge of the Himalayan Mountains. There’s a trail there that follows the Kali Ghandaki River up a steep valley to a mountain outpost named Jomsom. After spending the night at the Shamrock Hotel in Pokhara, we decided to fly to Jomsom in an old Soviet Helicopter that had metal buckets for seats.

From Jomsom there was a trail up into the mountains. At about 9400 feet in elevation, hikers could choose to bear west into the Kingdom of Mustang on the edge of the Tibet or head east, away from the river toward the Thorung La pass at about 17,000 feet.

It was cold and windy in Jomsom (elevation 9000 feet) when we arrived in the late afternoon. Somehow the environs seemed barren yet fertile at the same time. The terraced hillsides on either side of the valley were cultivated with apples, buckwheat, lentils and marijuana.

The valley was surrounded by unimaginably huge mountains; years later I have difficulty comprehending how big and looming they really were. There was an army outpost at the edge of town and down by the river was a bank and the travelers’ lodge where Jimi Hendrix supposedly stayed in the late 1960s.

Yaks as big as cars and donkeys decorated with bells roamed through the cobblestone streets, shaking their heads. They were pulling loads of beer, flour, cheese and bottled water up the trail and toward Lo Manthang or Lhasa. Twenty years ago, there was little motorized transport and no paved roads in the area; merchants and pilgrims had traversed the trail following the Kali Gandaki into Tibet on foot or by hoof for centuries though.

After wandering around the place for about an hour, my friend and I took rooms at an inn called the Moonlight Guesthouse because there was a sign out front saying they served the best burritos and apple pie on the Annapurna Circuit.

My room was spartan with whitewashed walls and a small bed, table and oil lamp in the corner. To this day, I like to keep my room at home like the one I had in Jomsom; plain with no decorations and comforting in its simple attestation to the need for rest.

That night I dined on a burrito of yak cheese and lentils that had been folded into a tortilla made from a sort of buckwheat fry bread. It was decent fare all right, but the cooks at the moonlight lodge didn’t have any chile. When I asked after some sort of piquant salsa, one of them told me there was a can of tomato sauce somewhere in the kitchen; they had given up on spaghetti night a few years back because travelers didn’t fancy the buckwheat noodles on offer.

So the slice of apple pie that followed the highlight of my meal and I could’ve eaten the whole pastry, but I didn’t want to give my American identity away. Afterwards a band of Tibetan immigrants came around and played music while we smoked hashish out of a long pipe made from a water buffalo horn.

We stayed in Jomsom two days because it was so damn inviting there; there was a small museum housing a photographic history of the region as well as ammonite fossils—believed by many Hindus to be divine objects—found along parts of the nearby river bed. An enclave of German agriculture experts living on a hillside south of town could talk for hours about the apples, buckwheat and cannabis they were studying while working to introduce methods that would enhance traditional practices and increase crop yields. Jomsom was a bright, windy place—a point of transition and intersection located at the very edge of the world.

On the third day I checked the maps, flashlights and shoes, calibrated my lensatic compass and carefully loaded my pack and sleeping bag. On the way out an older, tanned Swiss man approached and asked if we needed a porter or guide, wondering if we had the proper permits to continue. I produced two government issued cards. My friend told him we were going to go it alone. He looked over his glasses at me and shook his head. And we walked away from Jomsom headed for the mountains.

Next Time: Kagbeni and Muktinath

American Murder Song
Courtesy of the artist

Event Horizon

Murder, American Style

Monday, Oct 10: American Murder Song

A nihilistic theatrical performance based on death and suffering.


The Daily Word in the legislature, donut stealing, the Whirlaway and catching bass with half a nightcrawler

The Daily Word

Here's the latest news from the special legislative session happening at the NM Roundhouse this week, including budget cut approvals and the reinstatement of the death penalty.

Here is a preview of the coming gridiron battle between our glorious Lobo Football team and the Boise State Broncos.

Meanwhile, a New Mexican man was arrested in Nueva York for allegedly stealing a donut.

Also in today's news, a couple from Florida is visiting our Balloon Fiesta for the 27th time along with their lofty ride, the Whirlaway.

Excel Energy has completed work on a high-voltage electrical transmission line that will serve customers in the Eastern part of this state.

Proactively addressing climate change is a thing at UNM-Taos.

And speaking of our flagship university, NM's congressional delegation announced that UNM will receive a grant "to provide training, licensing and induction services to Native Americans interested in pursuing a career in education."

Kirtland Air Force Base is celebrating its 75th anniversary.

Los Alamos National Laboratories will soon stop disposing of low-level nuclear waste onsite, say recent reports.

Just last week, Nancy Armijo caught and released a 14-inch largemouth bass while fishing the south end of the Central Pond at Tingley Beach. She was using half a nightcrawler as bait.


The Daily Word in Special Sessions, rate increases, long snakes, an astronaut and a catfish

The Daily Word

Our governor, Susana Martinez, will convene a special session of the legislature on Friday. Action items include managing a huge state budget shortfall as well as discussion and debate regarding the death penalty in New Mexico.

PNM customers (this means you, Burqueños) will soon see a 10-13 percent rate increase under a plan modified and approved by the state Public Utility Commission.

The prosecution has rested in the murder trial of now-retired Albuquerque police Detective Keith Sandy and former APD Officer Dominique Perez.

Yesterday, New Mexico's Supreme Court heard arguments related to the "Copper Rule," a controversial law that regulates the amount of pollution big mining operations in the state can produce. At issue: the massive amount of ground water pollution such operations generate. A decision is forthcoming.

Legalizing weed in the land of enchantment could produce over $400 million in revenue for state coffers during the first year of such a program. So says a new study published by Ultra Health.

Meanwhile, long snakes caused a power outage in Rio Rancho.

A US presidential candidate from the Socialist Party visited our state's flagship university on Tuesday.

An astronaut from Albuquerque recently appeared at Kirtland Air Force Base.

Finally, in state angling news outta Storrie Lake, "Nicholas Gonzales and Marcelino Zaragosa teamed up to land a 33-inch, 13-pound catfish on the night of Sept. 17. They were using chicken liver."

Blink 182

Event Horizon

Blink and You'll Miss It

Sunday, Sep 25: Blink-182

Prove it wasn't a phase to your mom.


The Daily Word in Sandy and Perez, Space and Missile Systems, Green Chile Cheeseburgers and Johnny Mango

The Daily Word

Here, the Durango Herald provides some details regarding the murder trial of former APD policemen Keith Sandy and Dominique Perez.

Last week at Burque's National Museum of Nuclear Science and History, representatives of the Kirtland Air Force Base Space and Missile Systems Center Advanced Systems and Development Directorate "showcased their work" to local citizens and students.

Robert Trapp, at the Rio Grande Sun, writes that it's a bad idea to close highway visitor centers across the state.

As part of a series on “Transformative Events and Processes in New Mexico’s Colonial History,” UNM Taos will be screening the new animated documentary “Frontera! Revolt and Rebelión on the Río Grande," tonight in Taos from 6-8pm.

The Feds say it will take 20 years and nearly $4 billion to clean up "legacy" nuclear waste at Los Alamos National Labs. A nuke watchdog group says those figures have been vastly underestimated.

The best green chile cheese burger at this year's New Mexico State Fair was the Laguna Burger.

Earlier this morning, I-25 near the Budaghers exit was shut down because a truck was leaking liquid oxygen. The hazmat situation has since been resolved and traffic flow restored.

The New Mexico Department of Health says overdose deaths in New Mexico have mostly declined over the past year.

Debate and change continue with regard to the University of New Mexico's controversial official seal.

DCF blogger Johnny Mango visited Navajo Lake and caught three rainbow trout.


Event Horizon

Ripping it Up

Friday, Sep 23: And Tearing it Down

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    Salsa Dance Party!!!
    Salsa Dance Party!!!10.22.2016