Dreading the yearly barrage of weenie Hallmark sentiments? Concerned about the pit of romantic loathing welling up in your intestines? Feeling like your skin is covered in a mucous-like layer of treacle? Have no fear, dear Alibi readers. Innovative romantics around Albuquerque have devised several clever alternatives to the clichéd red roses and chocolate Valentine tradition of yesteryear.
The Downtown Contemporary Arts Center (105 Fourth Street SW) gets a jump on the Valentine action with its special Valentine exhibit, opening on Friday, Feb. 11, from 5 to 9 p.m. The show features love-themed art by a range of local artists, including Philip Orozco, Stephanie Lerma, Caroline Fischer Siegfried and many others. Godiva will provide chocolate delectables at the opening. The show runs through March 18. 242-1983.
On Valentine's Day proper, bring your sweetie over to Bookworks (4022 Rio Grande NW) or come by your lonesome to listen to a series of local authors read some filthy smut masquerading as erotic literature. The event is appropriately titled Juicy Bits and will feature sexy passages read by the likes of Demetria Martinez, Kate Horsley, V.B. Price, David Stuart and others. This popular yearly reading will take place on Monday, Feb. 14, at 7 p.m. 344-8139.
Finally, one of the more inventive Albuquerque Valentine's Day events will be Love Soldier 2 over at SolArts (712 Central SE). The original event occurred over at the Guild Cinema a couple years ago. Basically, it was a variety show centering on the theme of love.
This second edition will occur at SolArts' comfortable new theater located just west of I-25 on Central. Kristen Loree will play some original love songs on her guitar. Janette Isaacson will play some love song covers on her ukulele. Annie Giannini will read a few of Shakespeare's immortal sonnets.
One of the highlights of the evening will undoubtedly be the screening of several vintage sex education films that the organizers of Love Soldier somehow managed to procure from the Albuquerque Public School system. They probably won't be very erotic, but if you pay attention at least you might learn something. Another highlight will be a safe-sex kissing booth. One of the organizers explained this to me, but I still don't really get it. (All you really need to know is that you won't be getting herpes.)
"Love Soldiers," says Loree, "has grown out of our need for love to be the reason that things happen in this world instead of greed and all those other horrible things."
Sounds good to me. The event takes place on Monday, Feb. 14, at 8 p.m. $7 singles, $10 couples. 244-0049.