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 Apr 1 - 7, 2004 

Culture Shock

By Steven Robert Allen

Remember that nifty deck of cards that the Bush administration distributed just after we invaded Iraq? The cards were designed to be distributed among members of our armed services to aid in capturing the nastiest members of the Baath regime. They were also designed to popularize an invasion that with each passing day seems to have less and less to do with the war on terrorism.

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Performance Review

Swimming with the Fishes

Methods to Madness at the Vortex Theatre

By Steven Robert Allen

The Russian anarchist Mikhail Bakunin once wrote that "the passion for destruction is also a creative passion." This sentiment fuels much of the murderous, hallucinogenic action in the Vortex Theatre's production of Methods to Madness, a darkly funny play by Joel Murray about the art and thrill of acting.

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Poetry Review

Flying Off the Curb

Three new poetry releases from Curbstone Press

By Don McIver

Sometimes editors publish writers before they are ready. Confirming that are three recent books from Curbstone Press: E. Ethelbert Miller's How We Sleep on the Nights We Don't Make Love (paper, $12.95); George Evans and Nguyen Qui Duc's translation of Huu Thunh's The Time Tree (paper, $15.95); and Margaret Sayers Peden's translation of Claribel Alegria's Casting Off (paper, $13.95). Too often I found these books stuffed with short poems that read as toss-offs and really merited further thought before inclusion.

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Book News

April Book Events

By Steven Robert Allen

Over the last few years, Eric Schlosser has built up a well-deserved reputation for being one of the most innovative journalists in the country. His first book, Fast Food Nation, a huge bestseller, was Schlosser's ambitious exposé of our country's fast food industry. Among other frightening facts, the book revealed an almost complete lack of governmental oversight of the meat-packing industry. He also discussed some of the truly disgusting pathogens and other nasty bits found in much of our fast food.

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Art Magnified

James and the Giant Peach

Albuquerque Little Theatre

By Steven Robert Allen

The peachiest children's story of all time will be transplanted from the page to the stage starting this week when the Albuquerque Little Theatre presents a production of Roahl Dahl's James and the Giant Peach. Bring the kids. Bring your grandmammy. The classic story of James Henry Trotter and his long and dangerous journey inside the vehicle of a giant fuzzy fruit is truly fun for the whole family. If that isn't enough, there will, I'm told, be an honest-to-god giant peach ensconced right on stage. The play opens on April Fool's Day and runs through August 10. $6. Call for times. 242-4750.

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Art Magnified

Spring Fever

Richard Levy Gallery

By Steven Robert Allen

The Richard Levy Gallery brings together work from 10 emerging artists in a show opening this week. From Todd Anderson's comedic red prints from his "First Aid for Beautiful People" series to Vincent Burke's latex, paint and steel landscapes to Saya Woolfalk's colorful brain-smashing paintings and sculptures, this exhibit presents pieces on the razor-sharp cutting-edge of contemporary art. Spring Fever opens on April 4 and runs through May 7. For details, call 766-9888.

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Speed Reader

Review by Steven Robert Allen

The Fires of Pride

Concluding the Civil War saga he began in The Sands of Pride, Trotter creates a complex, nuanced story set mostly in North Carolina in 1863. Advance readers have said that ambitious research and a sharp cast of characters make this a pleasure for history aficionados.

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John Leech

EVENT HORIZON (Thursday, Dec 8)

Best in Snow

Jacob Marley’s Christmas Carol

By Maggie Grimason
A retelling of the classic tale from the messenger's perspective.
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EVENT HORIZON (Friday, Dec 9)

“The bigger the crime, the greater forgiveness.”

Simon Gronowski

By Megan Reneau
Hear the harrowing expierence of the Belgian holocaust survivor and jazz pianist followed by a performance and a question and answer session.
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EVENT HORIZON (Saturday, Dec 10)

Twirling Skirts of Tradition

Mariachi Christmas

By Nina Ferrell
Ring in the holiday season with exuberant music and dances from Mariachi Juvenil Aztlán and Ballet Folklórico University of Texas Rio Grande Valley.
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Hanukkah Menorah
Gil Dekel via Wikimedia / Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International

EVENT HORIZON (Saturday, Dec 10)

Chag Urim Sameach! • חג אורים שמח

Hanukat Shalom

By August March
A Hanukah party with food, silent auction, activities for kids, live klezmer music with dancing and a sing-along with The Neo-Weavers.
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Courtesy of the JCC

EVENT HORIZON (Saturday, Dec 10)

Oy Vey

OY! A Comedy with Chutzpah

By Megan Reneau
A collection of short comedies which are a comic tribute to all things Jewish and all things human.
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EVENT HORIZON (Saturday, Dec 10)

No Good At Goodbyes

Kicking the Bucket List: 100 Downsizing and Organizing Things to Do Before You Die

By Joshua Lee
Death educator Gail Rubin discusses her newest book on organizing your life, death and legacy.
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