Gus Pedrotty—Gus, as he likes to be known—stopped by Alibi Headquarters to discuss a bid for mayor that began as idealistic—and some would say unlikely—but has since been transformed into one of the more vital and remarkable candidacies that have passed through this high desert city in ages.
Stuffing your Thanksgiving turkey (and your Christmas stocking) full of cinematic goodness
Let's be honest: Summer movie season was filled with crap. Expensive crap. Expensive, unwatchable crap. Sahara, xXx 2: State of the Union, Kingdom of Heaven, The Longest Yard, Bewitched, Fantastic Four, The Island, Stealth, The Dukes of Hazzard, The Sound of Thunder. Pee-yew, what a line-up.
The city is accused of violating the same ordinance that was the focus of the Sunport Observation Deck fiasco
Old habits die hard. At least, that's what City Councilor Debbie O'Malley might say, who's at the forefront of a debate over whether or not the city has violated the same ordinance that was the focus of the Sunport Observation Deck scandal of 1997.
Two new books give an alternative to war
Two books came across my desk recently, both of which argue convincingly that waging war over religious differences is not inevitable. Apparently, we have alternatives to endlessly squabbling over which tribe of His children God really loves best. Who would have known?
It's time developers chipped in for schools
Don't get me wrong. I'm not against portable classrooms. They get you outdoors for some fresh air. They have that trailer-park charm. They're great places to hide under if you need to get away. But 57 on one campus? That's how many portables belong to Edward Gonzales Elementary on the southwest mesa.
Dateline: Philippines—The environmental organization Greenpeace announced last Tuesday that it would pay nearly $7,000 in damages after its flagship, the Rainbow Warrior II, smashed into a coral reef in the Tubbataha National Marine Park. Greenpeace officials said the incident at the United Nations world heritage site was “very regrettable,” but laid part of the blame on inaccurate maritime charts. Officials at the marine park assessed the area of damaged reef at 113 square yards and valued it at 384,000 pesos. The Rainbow Warrior II's visit to the reefs in the Sulu Sea was part of a four-month tour to Australia, China, the Philippines and Thailand to raise local awareness about global warming. The ship suffered no serious damage.
The readers write.
Hendren Night—Aaron Hendren, New Mexico's “most beloved and best-looking filmmaker” (his press release, not my words), will be saluting himself by screening a series of shorts at the Santa Fe Film Center on Tuesday, Nov. 15. Short films to be screened include “Stuck,” “How to Make Friends and Be Popular,” “Lentigo” and “Fetish.” Hendren is currently focussing on making a feature film and this one-time-only screening promises to expose audiences to his no-budget work with “guns, fish, tattoos and the occasional masking-tape bikini.” The screening gets underway at 7:45 p.m. The Santa Fe Film Center is located at the former Cinemacafe site (1616 St. Michael's Drive in Santa Fe). For more information, log on to www.santafefilmfestival.com/filmcenter or visit Hendren's home page at www.eggmurders.com.
Space-age fantasy rockets kids and adults through a picture-book world
As many people in the know (read: parents with kids) are probably aware, Zathura is a sequel to 1995's hit fantasy film Jumanji. Both are based on the awe-inspiring picture book worlds of children's author/illustrator Chris Van Allsburg (whose work also inspired the movie The Polar Express).
For nearly four decades the Nihilist Spasm Band has been either alienating or awing brave audiences with noise. From swingin' London, Ontario, they are the inventors of noise as art and claim that they are the uncles of punk rock. The members (who are actual nihilists) got together in 1966 using an amalgam of instruments and improvisation. Over the years, the band collected and fashioned relative oddities from customized intruments made from PVC pipe, kazoos (some attached to megaphones), violins, guitars and pots and pans. In appropriate nihilist form, the band regards none of the instruments as "precious." Instead, they are sources of noise and are subsequently abused as such. What results is cacophony beyond comprehension. While admitting that it is and was sometimes terrible, the NSB became an entity that did not attempt to create music for enjoyment; rather, it created noise as an affront to order and society, its members seemingly taking delight in offending people.
Arresting, eye-opening chronicle of life as a soldier finds war funny, sad, good and bad
There's a moment early on in Jarhead, Sam Mendes' blackly comic adaptation of Anthony Swofford's warts-and-all book about active duty during the first Gulf War, that sets the stage for what's to come. A group of eager young Marine recruits are suffering through the sort of exhausting, screaming, nose-to-the-mud military training we've come to expect since Full Metal Jacket. During a brief break, the soldiers take in a movie, Francis Ford Copolla's seminal Apocalypse Now. It's the scene with the helicopters. As the attack choppers swoop in, Wagner's “Ride of the Valkyries” kicks in. The Marines are going nuts. They're screaming, cheering, humming along with the soundtrack, aping every movement, every line of dialogue. This is their idea of war. And they love it. But, just as things are about to get good, the film is cut off. The lights come on. Saddam Hussein's troops have invaded Kuwait, and it's time to ship out. The fantasy is over.
“My Name is Earl” on NBC
“My Name is Earl” may be the best new show on television this season. Which is convenient, because NBC needs a hit like New Orleans needs wet/dry vacs.
The Week in Sloth
Highlights from around the dial. Except no one has dials anymore.
Music from the Windchime—Downtown's Windchime Champagne Gallery (518 Central SW) has hosted several nights of music since they opened in March of this year, but this Friday, Nov. 11, will mark a first-time collaboration between the gallery and Neal Copperman's innovative AMP concert series. The AMP Listening Room will feature national bluegrass/Americana group The Greencards, whose recent work includes the new Dualtone release Weather and Water and an opening slot on last summer's Bob Dylan/Willie Nelson tour, will be the first national act to play the Windchime. The show starts at 7:30 p.m. Get your $12 advance tickets from email@example.com, or at the door for $15.
Skank your way to a brighter tomorrow
It seems like ages ago when Giant Steps was playing all-ages shows at Spotlights next to the Highland Theatre and even longer still since the Mighty Mighty Bosstones' "The Impression That I Get" was receiving nearly nonstop radio play. But those who long for the good old days of ska supremacy (or at least mainstream success) should take a listen to Danny Winn and the Earthlings' And the Mission Begins for a peppy reminder of why they should wear their checkered hats with pride.
with Over It, Someday and Lydia
Friday, Nov. 11, 6 p.m.; Launchpad (all-ages): One For Hope releases a new CD today. With a little help from the Alibi, they're here to tell you all about it.
Several bands. Two venues. One man to split between them all. Come Downtown and celebrate all that is Noelan on Friday, Nov. 11, at Burt's Tiki Lounge (with Romeo Goes To Hell, The Roustabouts, Summerbirds In The Cellar and The Bellmont) and Atomic Cantina (with Oktober People, The Rip Torn and Cub of Heroic Bear). 10 p.m. 21-and-over. (LM)
It's music to your eyeballs
Beginning this Thursday, the Guild Cinema will continue its popular Music on the Big Screen series with two weeks of music-related films. The program will showcase five documentaries that have never before been screened in Albuquerque. Here's the run-down.
Friday, Nov. 12, 9:30 p.m.; Puccini's Golden West Saloon (21-and-over): I imagine that if The Samples had been around in the '60s, they'd either have made it big or just gotten lost in the love. Not that they really fit into that category, or any real category, for that matter. They've described themselves as "world-beat pop rock." I think they're more happy, trans-reality, melodic soft rock (and would go great with a light, fruity drink).
Rock epic. There is no other phrase that can describe what Coheed and Cambria has accomplished in every album they've released. Good Apollo listens like a classic novel reads. It introduces you into Coheed's world and keeps you there. Intrigued, captivated, blown away by the arena-rock riffs. Yes, arena rock. Coheed and Cambria leaves nothing behind, and with a title like Good Apollo ... how could they? This album is big, it's loud and it's far from simple. It's even got cheerleaders for crying out loud! Oh, and Claudio Sanchez has the voice of a rock god.
Undue Process—In Chris Tugwell's X-Ray, an Australian man is imprisoned for three years without charge, and no one, including the man himself, has any idea what crime he might have committed. X-Ray is based on a true story. The American premiere of Tugwell's play occurs right here in Albuquerque at Gorilla Tango (519 Central NW). The show runs Fridays and Saturdays at 7 p.m. through Nov. 19. $10. Tickets can be purchased at the door or online at gorillatango.com. 245-8600.
Cheryl Dietz and Shawn Turung at the Harwood Art Center
Flying over the Midwest is like flying over some kind of exotic earth-toned board game. The roads all run north-south and east-west at precise right angles. In the spaces in between, every spare inch of soil seems to have been transformed into perfectly rectangular plots of farmland.
Prison art has been a hip commodity for decades, but it isn't always easy to gain access to the real deal. The folks at Sol Arts (712 Central SE) have put together a rare show of work by incarcerated artists Mark A. Montoya, Marro Vasquez, Aaron Martinez, Mario Perez-Barrera, LonGino Garcia, Pedro Gonzalez and Raymond E. Garduño. In conjunction with the exhibit, the gallery will host a criminal justice panel discussion on Saturday, Nov. 19, at 1 p.m. with speakers from the ACLU, PB&J Family Services, Dismas House and the Alice King Family Center. The exhibit runs through Nov. 27. Sol Arts is open Fridays from 2 to 8 p.m. and one hour before performances. 244-0049.
Yank the kiddies away from the Nintendo for a few hours and haul their little butts over to UNM's Popejoy Hall. On Sunday, Nov. 13, at 3:30 p.m., Imago Theatre will perform Frogz, a funny, mystifying show filled with illusions, giant slinkies, penguins, and lots and lots of frogs. Critics and audiences from coast to coast have showered this visually spectacular show with praise since it first debuted on Broadway in 2000. Anyone over the age of 4 should enjoy this one. Tickets are $19, $22 and $25. Order by calling 925-5858 or going to www.unmtickets.com.
John Berendt returns with a long-awaited follow-up to Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil
Several years ago, Publisher's Weekly reported that John Berendt had single-handedly boosted tourism in Savannah, Ga., by 46 percent, all thanks to his 1994 blockbuster, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. "The figure was actually higher than that," says the 65-year-old author now. Not one for false modesty, Berendt sounds like he might want royalties on the gift-shop purchases, too.
Have You Eaten at Bumble Bee's Baja Grill Yet?—Well, you should. The award-winning Santa Fe import has been around for five weeks in Albuquerque, and Duke City converts are swarming around the new spot at San Mateo and Montgomery. Bumble Bee's food is fast-casual Californian/Mexican that uses no lard, MSG, freezers or microwaves. It's similar in concept to California's Baja Fresh chain—right down to the self-serve salsa bar—but without the corporate heebie-jeebies. It's 100-percent local and seriously good eats. Watch for a second Bumble Bee's in Albuquerque, set to open in Nob Hill at the start of 2006.
Seven degrees of beef
Burque beefaholics finally have an opportunity to unite for a good cause: consuming beef seven ways and supporting an as-yet-unknown new local restaurant, Pho Linh. For local lovers of great Vietnamese food, this place is like finding a diamond in your sandal.
A D.I.Y. primer on popcorn
Films are just fine on their own, but every movie needs a big, buttery dish of snacks to really make it pop. Warm and light, salty and crackling under the kernel-busting pressure of your teeth, popcorn is best enjoyed when not-so-delicately shoved in the general direction of your mouth. Go ahead; ram it in by the handful. The flickering darkness of the theater makes it possible to eat like a total ape, even if you are in public. Just pray you can make it through the trailers with a few crumbs to spare.
Voted Best Restaurant in Santa Fe in our 2005 Readers' Choice Restaurant Poll, Geronimo is internationally admired for the culinary mastery of Executive Chef Eric DiStefano. And thanks to the release of Geronimo: Fine Dining in Santa Fe in August 2004 (coauthored by Geronimo owner Cliff Skoglund and published by Ten Speed Press; $50), even home cooks can find themselves sitting at DiStefano's eclectic global table whenever the mood strikes.
Stop it! You're freaking me out!
No offense to Bob Marley, but if you don't worry about a thing, if you really think every little thing's going to be all right, then you're smoking something a lot stronger than plain old Mary Jane. The world's a scary place, and it's getting scarier with each passing month. Sure, we've put Halloween, Dia de los Muertos and a creepy city election behind us, but we here at the Alibi sincerely believe the worst is yet to come.
Spin your way to a worry-filled day
With so much worrisome activity in the world today, it's getting harder and harder to determine what's merely a source of concern and what's really worth worrying about. Stop waffling over your worries: Let the Alibi Worry Wheel take all the guesswork out of fretting. From the apocalypse to pinkeye, we've got 32 of your favorite neurotic obsessions in one convenient little spinner. Keep one at home, in the car and at the office—you'll never be far from something to worry about!
Arachibutyrophobia—fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of the mouth
Dishabiliophobia—fear of undressing in front of someone
Medomalacuphobia—fear of losing an erection
Papaphobia—fear of the Pope
Politicophobia—fear of politicians
Anablephobia—fear of looking up
Anuptaphobia—fear of staying single
Autodysomophobia—fear of one that has a vile odor
Coulrophobia—fear of clowns
Eremophobia—fear of being oneself
Euphobia—fear of hearing good news
Hellenologophobia—fear of Greek terms or complex scientific terminology
Metrophobia—fear of poetry
Optophobia—fear of opening your eyes
Phagophobia—fear of being eaten
Phalacrophobia—fear of becoming bald
Pteronophobia—fear of being tickled by feathers
Soceraphobia—fear of parents-in-law
Creepy, crawly, creepy, crawly, creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly, creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
No matter how many times someone reassuringly tells you, "most insects aren't poisonous," or "they're more scared of you than you are of them," their advice doesn't seem to resonate whenever a bug of some sort crawls up your leg, flies into your mouth or is located anywhere near your general vicinity. The truth is, you have good reason to be terrified of bugs.
Let's do the Hypochondriac Shuffle, shall we?
Necrotizing Fasciitis—This disease, which involves a type of flesh-eating bacteria, can affect many parts of the body but usually is found in the extremities. It's characterized by, among other things, unexplained fever, inflammation of the infected area and raised lesions filled with purple or blue fluid. Early detection is key because the disease can spread very easily to other parts of the body. Still, it's probably not a good idea to rush to the hospital every time you have an unexplained fever or a rash. But may we suggest instead gouging away any suspicious-looking flesh with a pocketknife or other sharp object?
A few of our favorite conspiracy websites
Features conspiracy topics regarding 9/11, anthrax, genetic engineering and much, much more.
Includes articles on UFOs, cloning, chemical weapons and more.
Conspiracies from the past and present, including our government's current hidden agenda and Christopher Columbus' web of lies.
Conspiracies related to the Free Masons.
Articles on World War II and United Nations hoaxes as well as a section dedicated to microchips implanted in people's brains.
A site entirely dedicated to proving that we never landed on the moon.
Discusses the various theories about who really shot JFK.
Features a forum where conspiracy theorists can chat about whatever is on their mind. No topic is too out-there or farfetched.
A ranking of over 20 conspiracy sites. (Scroll down.)
For all you know, your identity has already been stolen
It happened to Sandra Bullock in 1995's classic action thriller, The Net, so why can't it happen to you? Think your boring life can't erode into a murderous web of lies, accented with spontaneous explosions, perpetrated by some conniving thief? Think again.
Alibi staff members reveal their deepest, darkest fears—online at alibi.com
Rocksquawk: More Rock, Less Walk—The Alibi and Rocksquawk.com will again team up for another blissfully unpretentious night of local music; only this time you can enjoy the onslaught of Rocksquawkin' bands from a single barstool, perfectly contoured to fit the delicate curvature of your rump. On Wednesday, Nov. 23, we'll stuff the Launchpad tighter than a Thanksgiving turkey with live, local music ripped right from the forums of Albuquerque's premier internet music community, Rocksquawk.com. The idea is to throw a Rocksquawk show every month; each will highlight talent from the Albuquerque music scene and Rocksquawk.com, and each will draw audiences to a single venue that will change from show to show. This month it's at the Launchpad. Next month, who knows? Of course, we'll continue to organize the multi-venue Rocksquawk.com Music Showcases once or twice a year; and the Fall and Spring Crawls are as sure as the seasons. This is just another opportunity for local bands to come out and strut their stuff. And admission will be free or cheap so we can get a good audience base for these guys. Unfortunately, the inaugural event will be for 21-and-over audiences only, but I'd like to see some all-ages Rocksquawk.com shows in the near future. We'll see how it goes. See you on Nov. 23!
Swedish pianist/composer Bobo Stenson first came into prominence in the late '60s, accompanying jazz greats Gary Burton, Sonny Rollins and Stan Getz. He soon collaborated with Norwegian saxophonist Jan Garbarek, whose chamber music style of jazz contributed immeasurably to the success of Officium, his chart-topping otherworldly excursion with The Hilliard Ensemble.
All the rock; none of the groin thrusts
"Having (a singer) would add another interesting element to the group, but not at the expense of having one that sucks." So says Tim Dempsey, guitarist for the all-instrumental indie band The Build, and there are quite a few bands who should listen in.
Snugfit Social Club returns to the Launchpad at 10 p.m. this Friday, Nov. 11, with a magnificent aural display of electro, new wave and disco. $4 gets you in, but only if you're 21 or older. (LM)
Sunday, Nov. 11; the Launchpad (21-and-over), $4: If helmets are the new mullets, then The Planet The is the new medium in which to spastically dance while sporting one.
Reviews of new music releases.
Chow's Asian Bistro Bellies Up to the Westside—Another sister-restaurant of Chow's Asian Bistro (Santa Fe) and Chow's Chinese Bistro (Northeast Heights) will open its doors in Cottonwood Mall this weekend. That's three locations, three companies, two names and one owner. Confused yet? "It's complicated" says General Manager Jason Zeng. "But all that's just legal stuff. They're basically all part of the same place." Zeng started his career at the restaurant when it first opened 13 years ago in Santa Fe; only then it was called Chow's Contemporary Chinese Food. "We're local, not a corporation. Our highest concentration is on food quality and taste." And Zeng is willing to put his money where his mouth is. Earlier this month, Chow's was voted one of the top 100 Asian restaurants and the No. 1 Asian fusion restaurant in the nation by the National Restaurant Association and the Chinese Restaurant News. That's a big deal.
Well, we're here to state the obvious: Vegan, vegetarian or meaty green chile stew is the answer for handling or preventing that fated winter cold, possibly more so than you might have thought.
A shiny, happy tea shop at Ta-Lin
It's shiny, happy teatime for patrons of the Ta-Lin world market. Lollicup, the bright and shopper-friendly café next door, offers a quick retro relaxation stop with a modest menu and a mile-long list of teas, hot or cold, for the most sophisticated sippers.
A New Mexico-based case over whether a religion can legally use a hallucinogenic tea has made its way to the Supreme Court
It all began in 1999, when federal narcotics agents stormed Jeffrey Bronfman's Santa Fe church, confiscating 30 gallons of a psychoactive Brazilian tea he planned to use in religious ceremonies. Now this week, after five years of litigation, the debate over the sacramental brew has reached the nation's highest court.
Perhaps Albuquerque The Magazine can be forgiven for their ridiculous October feature, “The Second Annual Hot Singles of Albuquerque Issue,” because, while laughable (the expression, ’hot singles,' itself is laughable), the local periodical is a lifestyle magazine. It serves the purpose of indulging readers in this sort of entertainment. So silly questions like, “If your ideal partner were a New Mexican dish, what would she be and why?” and likewise, non sequitur answers such as, “A combination plate, classy in public and adventurous when we're alone” are within the realm of reasonable editorial content.
A recent study shows the U.S. gender gap isn't as small as we thought
I was dancing and sipping a caipirinha—you know, that fabulous Brazilian cocktail made with lime and sugar—when Leila nudged me to say that Nilcea Freire, the minister of women for Brazil, appointed by President Lula da Silva, was standing next to us. She wanted to introduce me. “I'd love to!” I shouted over the loud drumming.
An open letter to Sen. Hillary Clinton
I've been meaning to write to you for some time. I see how you are currently the favorite among Democrats for the party's presidential nomination for 2008. You're already raising money around the country. But before you get to check what Laura Bush has changed while you've been out of the White House, if Gov. Bill Richardson gets an early Western presidential primary, you're going to have to face us lowly New Mexicans sooner rather than later.
So I thought I'd pop my big question now. Why should any Democrat support you as long as you continue to support Bush's war in Iraq?
Dateline: Canada—Mr. Floatie, a community activist who dresses in a gigantic feces-shaped costume, has withdrawn his name from the mayor's race in Victoria, British Columbia. James Skwarok, the man inside the costume, told reporters that the city has taken issue with his candidacy because only real people can run for municipal office. “Of course I'm not a real person,” Skwarok said last week. “I'm a big piece of poop.” Skwarok has been appearing in public as Mr. Floatie for some time now in an attempt to raise people's awareness about the pumping of raw sewage into the waters off British Columbia's capital. No word on what Mr. Floatie might do now that his political dreams have been dashed.
The readers write.
Post-Tromatic Success Disorder—The 2nd annual TromaDance New Mexico film festival (Oct. 21-23) seemed to bring out the crowds with an impressive lineup of five feature films and 40-plus shorts, all produced through the blood, sweat and tears of local filmmakers. When the dust settled, the Audience Choice Awards ended up going to Scott Phillips' twisted superhero parody “Scream, Science Bastard, Scream” in the short category and to Richard Griffin's hillbilly monster movie Seepage in the feature category. The Burning Paradise Independent Spirit Award went to Heidi Griffin's documentary “The Subject to Change,” while the “El Quemado” Grand Prize went to Cyndi Trissel's horror parody “Phone Friends.” Congratulations to Burning Paradise, Troma Entertainment, the Guild Cinema and to all the filmmakers for their success.
Sexy showbiz mystery fails to convince
I'm just guessing here, but I would assume that filmmaker Atom Egoyan is a bit of an anomaly in Canada. Egyptian-born, Armenian-blooded, but raised in the chilly wilds of Western Canada, Egoyan has, for decades, been one of the premier agent provocateurs of the indie film biz. From the voyeuristic edge of his early work (Family Viewing, Speaking Parts) to the kinky kick of his middle-period films (The Adjuster, Exotica) to the mathematically precise heartbreak of his masterpiece (The Sweet Hereafter), Egoyan has created a body of work that excites and intrigues as many as it it offends. Among the clean cities, polite citizenry and universal healthcare of Canada, Egoyan and his sexually explicit excoriations of modern media and popular culture must seem--I don't know--a bit out of place, eh?
generated cartoon takes acorns and turns them into enjoyable, moderately sized saplings
It's sink or swim time for Disney. After enduring years of declining profits and management shake-ups—not to mention more stock market woes than Martha Stewart—the Mouse Corporation is releasing its first fully computer-generated feature cartoon made without the able assistance of Pixar. Having provided Disney with basically all of its unqualified successes in the last 10 years or so (Toy Story, Monsters Inc., The Incredibles), Pixar is now eager to dump the ungrateful Disney in favor of greener pastures and a bigger share of profits. Which leaves Disney in the unusual position of having to prove itself as an animation studio.
“The Colbert Report” on Comedy Central
Comedy Central has finally found a perfect companion to its hit series “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” by commissioning a spin-off series for regular contributor Stephen Colbert. The show is styled after personality-driven talking-head TV commentators, pundits like Bill O'Reilly who don't report the news so much as parrot party-line opinions about the news so that like-minded individuals can feel good about themselves by agreeing wholeheartedly.
The Week in Sloth
Highlights from around the dial. Except no one has dials anymore.
What a Drag—Ooo! La! La! Look at all those pretty, pretty ladies. Sinatra-Devine Productions brings their annual Come Out drag queen spectacular to the National Hispanic Cultural Center (1701 Fourth Street SW) this Friday evening, Nov. 4. As in years past, Showgirls ... Out of Exile will pile on the glam in a show sure to entertain the pants right off you. Tickets are $15, $20 and $25. Show starts at 7 p.m. 724-4771.
Four Wheel Drive at the KiMo Theatre
Life was a lot simpler for men 30,000 years ago. Each morning we'd don our bearskin tunics, pick up our clubs and venture out of our caves in a leisurely search for an animal to beat to death for that evening's dinner. If our womenfolk didn't do what we wanted, of course, we'd grunt and pull their hair until they behaved.
Tricklock Performance Space
It's happy fun sleepy time! The Pajama Men, Mark Chavez and Shenoah Allen, are back in town following a monster tour in which they sold out stadiums from Bangkok to Gary, Indiana. They loved them in Moscow. They loved them in St. Louis. Jump on the bandwagon and come see their latest work of deranged comic brilliance, Stop Not Going. The show, in which the boys play dozens of different characters in the span of roughly 60 minutes, runs Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. through Nov. 12 at the Tricklock Performance Space. They will make you laugh until you weep; it's their special gift from God. $15 general, $12 students/seniors. The boys will also be doing a Dirty Thursday improv show on Nov. 10 at 9 p.m. that I'm told involves free condoms and a lot of cheap jokes at the expense of yo' mama. This show is a bargain at $8. For more information, call 254-8393.
Here's a handy guide to some of the most infamous Albuquerque haunts. (Hold my hand. I'm scared!)
Church Street Café, 2111Church NW: Stuff yourself with the homemade chicharrones, then stick around—you may see the ghost of Sara Ruiz. This deceased proprietress was born way back in 1880, and she was known to be a local curandera, or healer. An unconventional woman for her time, she's reported to have spooked out the current owner, Marie Coleman, by screaming at contractors, kicking around equipment and showing up to scare the waitstaff. This is the kind of thing that you don't hear about at the golden arches.
Folksy old-time New Mexican ghost deterrants
• All doors facing west should be painted "Virgin Mary blue" to prevent unwanted spirits from entering the house.
Old Town boasts 300 years of haunted history
In the late 19th century, Lover's Lane, one of Old Town's charming alleyways, was the scene of a gruesome murder committed by the daughter of one of Albuquerque's prominent families, the Armijos. Engaged to a local Romeo, she caught her fiancé there with another lady. Because Lover's Lane was where everyone in town went to smooch, the Armijo lady was more than just heartbroken—she was humiliated. In a rage, she grabbed a hatchet (some think it was a garden hoe, but that isn't as scary) and allegedly dismembered her cheating man. They say the other lady got away.
Spend the night in a haunted motel room
It was not a dark and stormy night, though Central was shiny and wet from an afternoon shower. The moon was full. I could see its reflection as I drove past watery brown potholes in the road.
Our janitor describes phantom activities at Alibi headquarters
In the spring of 2003, the Alibi moved from a cramped, dumpy compound in Nob Hill to a sleek and spacious office Downtown. The new building's previous tenant was the law firm Will Ferguson and Associates. We inherited our current cleaning wizard, Jeremiah Mumbower, from Will Ferguson. He's been cleaning the place since 1999.
Swingin' Cinema—Gorilla Tango Theatre, downtown Albuquerque's hub for all things comic and improvisational, will be hosting a local film festival on Saturday, Nov. 19. Organizers are currently searching for films in any genre, any length. Films must, however, be submitted in one of the following formats: DVD, VHS, SVCD or VCD. Films for the festival will be chosen based on a juried selection. There is a $5 non-refundable submission fee per film. The submission deadline is Thursday, Nov. 10. Don't have a film? Hurry up and make one! There will be cash prizes for the best films as determined by Gorilla Tango's distinguished panel of judges. The cash prize amounts will be based on the number of films entered. So, the more films entered, the greater the potential cash prizes. For more information, e-mail Jason Witter at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also download entry forms at www.gorillatango.com.
Belated sequel is no Raiders of the Lost Ark, but it knows how to buckle a swash or two
This somewhat belated follow-up to 1998's fun, frivolous The Mask of Zorro finds much of the same cast and crew (stars Antonio Banderas and Catherine Zeta-Jones, director Martin Campbell) reunited for more old-fashioned derring-do in the wild, wild West.
A ghostly glimpse at some hot DVD releases for Halloween
The chilly winds and spook-filled atmosphere of Halloween are perfect excuses to curl up on the couch with a sizable pile of horror films. Here are a few recent DVD releases, which may have escaped your attention. These films run the gamut from old-school studio chillers to modern-day J-horror. Each one would make a fine addition to any horror-lover's library, and none of them features Paris Hilton.
Halloween around the dial
Halloween this year happens to fall on a Monday, the scariest day of the week for schoolkids and office workers. Given that the holiday arrives on a weekday, odds are pretty good that you'll have completed all the partying and pumpkin-carving you can handle over the course of the preceding weekend. That leaves you with nothing to do but hand out candy to bemasked beggars and watch TV come Monday.
The Week in Sloth
Highlights from around the dial. Except no one has dials anymore.
Durang, Durang—A pair of one-acts penned by Christopher Durang, the master of creepy comedy, is currently playing at the Desert Rose Playhouse (formerly the Glenn Rose Playhouse). "An Actor's Nightmare" and "Dentity Crisis" should help you get your freak on during this Halloween season. Expect tricks and treats. The double bill runs Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. through Nov. 5. $10 general, $8 students/seniors. 6921-E Montgomery NE. 881-0503.
The Architect's Brother at the UNM Art Museum
Fantasy isn't necessarily escapist. From Shakespeare to William S. Burroughs, artists throughout the ages have developed elaborate imagined worlds to explore aspects of our real world.
The talented weirdoes over at Q-Staff are reviving their extraordinary musical-theatrical creation Snake Oil for the Lovelorn starting this weekend. If you didn't catch it the first time around, you really should check this out. The show is running Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. $12 general, $9 students/seniors. Sunday performances are at 7 p.m. and are pay-what-you-can shows. Q-Staff is capping off the run with an intriguing open workshop on Sunday, Nov. 13, that will allow the curious to gain some insight into the groups, er, unconventional creative methods. 255-2182.
Earthly Finds Gallery
Fifteen paintings by Tom Tyler go on display starting this weekend at Earthly Finds (400 Central SE, Suite 106). Tyler's expressionistic, colorful work is inspired by his affection for the land of Cuba, dancing and musical performance. Rumba, Samba and Mambo! will mark the gallery's first major exhibit since opening its new digs last March. The show opens Thursday, Oct. 27, with a reception from 6 to 10 p.m. Runs through Dec. 15. 243-9968.
An Interview with Cody Polston
You could be forgiven for expecting the president and founder of the Southwest Ghost Hunters Association to be, um—how should I put this?—a bit of a weirdo. When I tracked down Cody Polston, I certainly expected to be crossing the border into Kooksville. Happily, this didn't turn out to be the case. During our brief telephone conversation, Polston came across as a fairly down-to-earth fellow.
From the collection of Devin D. O'Leary
It's not all that surprising that the Alibi's illustrious film editor possesses several tomes dedicated to New Mexico's dark spiritual forces. After all, O'Leary's entire wardrobe is black. Likewise, everyone thinks he's so pale because he spends the daylight hours watching movies in dark movie theaters, but there could be other explanations. I've heard rumors that he sleeps in a coffin; that he owns a 12-foot boa constrictor named Carl; that he was born and raised in a remote castle in Ireland. Makes you wonder. Anyway, Devin was kind enough to supply me with a few of the more intriguing titles from his collection. Here's a quick run-down.
The mayor plans to re-stripe Montaño to four lanes, but some say the project could do more harm than good
There may not be a single road in Albuquerque that has been more controversial than Montaño. Be it neighborhood angst over the laying down of the very road itself and the construction of Montaño Bridge, or protesters lying in the dirt to keep bulldozers at bay when a developer came to build Universe Boulevard, every time the city announces plans to change the corridor in some way, neighborhood residents and historic-preservation groups have been there to oppose it. Now, it seems as though Montaño, that road with a knack for stirring up trouble, is at it again. Only this time, it's getting folks all riled up over a brand new paint job.
The readers write.
On Oct. 17, subdued councilors met after the recent, balance-shifting municipal election. Not that party labels have meant much recently, with a Democratic mayor depending on Republicans for automatic support. Maybe more appropriate, if oversimplified, categories would be “Corporatists” versus “Populists.” The Alibi waits with great interest to see whether the city will now get more Pop grassroots or more Corp trickledown.
Bush's new Medicare bill could lead to further cutbacks for the poor
It doesn't seem possible, but the Bush Administration has just managed to mess up what was just about the only positive aspect of the new Medicare Prescription bill. Now it has absolutely no redeeming qualities.
Batter-up in the World Series of wilderness
The last time we succeeded in setting aside a few acres of our state's disappearing wilderness, we had a president who joked that trees cause pollution. So here's great news: Congress has passed the Ojito Wilderness Act, the first New Mexico wilderness legislation since 1986.
Dateline: Belgium—If you are in Belgium, whatever you do, don't take a leek. Belgian police warned thieves last Saturday not to use any of the 500 pounds worth of leeks stolen from a vegetable farm in the West Flanders town of Izegem. Leeks are the primary ingredient in Vichyssoise soup, but police say the recently purloined vegetables should have stayed in the ground another six weeks to be safe after treatment with toxic pesticides. According to the Belga news agency, consumers have been warned not to eat any leeks with a “strange smell.”
Oh, JIT—After a successful summer-long trial program (which, we'll remind you, the Alibi helped launch during this April's Spring Crawl), the Downtown Action Team has finally launched a regular late-night shuttle service for patrons of Downtown's many bars and music venues. It's called "The Downtown Shuttle" or "JIT," and it runs every Friday and Saturday night from 11 p.m. to 2 a.m. You'll be able to buy the $5 bus passes through participating venues Downtown, or directly at the shuttle location on Fourth Street and Central. Service extends to "anywhere in town." Ok, so what's a "JIT?" According to my press release, it's short for "jitney"—basically a small bus that carries passengers for a low fare. The release also suggests it's an acronym for "Just In Time." Whatever. Just stop drinking and driving, for chrissake.
Sunday, Oct. 30, at Warehouse 21 in Santa Fe (1614 Paseo de Peralta). Galapagos 4 presents the Dark Day Tour featuring Qwel of Typical Cats and the Stick Figures (Robust and Prolyphic). Local hip-hop act Fantazma de los Zorros opens. All-ages! $8! Proceeds will help build a new home for Warehouse 21, Santa Fe's only all-ages nonprofit show space. (LM)
Ollabelle didn't get born out of a tiny rural church in the South. It's not a family band that's carried on through generations. This might not seem particularly unusual, except Ollabelle is a gospel group.
with Against Me!, The Epoxies and Smoke or Fire
Wednesday, Nov. 2, doors open at 7 p.m., $12; Launchpad (All-ages!): Boo-ya! We've recently seen Against Me! and The Epoxies here in Albuquerque, but have we seen The Soviettes? No! Will we be able to see them on Wednesday as part of Fat Wreck Chords' Fat Tour 2005? Yes! Can I get an “up yours?” Huh ... ? Anyway, those who want to feel pop-punk and new-wave (punk-wave) in all of its unmitigated grandeur should show up to the Launchpad early tonight to catch the multi-gender four-piece (as they advise, "avoid being a douche;" there are three members sans male sex organ, one avec). But moving on to more important information, The Soviettes are pretty much from Minneapolis, are not commies and have released three bodacioutastic albums entitled LP I, LP II and LP III. On those albums they concoct a delectable combo of tough sentimentality, pogo songs and party anthems. I predict that the live Soviettes will rattle your bones and stir the blood, providing the warmth needed to survive in the coming months.
with Feels Like Sunday and Unit 7 Drain
Friday, Oct. 28, 10 p.m.; Atomic Cantina (21-and-over): As if a free performance from the Portland band wasn't enough, that's only half of it; video projections come standard with Invisible. And if you've seen any musical performance with projections you might know that can improve the sound and subsequent enjoyment immensely. The music may even be terrible; a small problem easily overlooked when you are mesmerized by light and moving pictures. Fortunately, without that assistance, Invisible is a pretty solid operation. Manipulating a variety of musical tools--strings, synthesizers, piano, xylophone and a variety of percussion, not to mention guitars which go from lazy to wail—the three-piece creates a living, breathing, moving soundscape. The projections incorporate the new and old: black and white video taken from cars, planes and elsewhere combined with CGI cities and rockets, some turned upside down with different images divided into symmetrical events on different panels. Both the sound and image give the distinct feel of movement, impermanence and complete modernism.
Pleasing crowds and pissing off jerk-neighbors
The Potty Mouth Sherry's take pride in being one of the very few all-female bands in Albuquerque. Their songs contain references to serious political issues and they are not shy about lambasting our nation's leader. Above all, however, they remain resolute and determined to be one of the silliest punk foursomes in existence.
Reviews of new music releases.
Haunted Hob Nobbing in Nob Hill—Unless you're the kind of person who enjoys sticking razor blades in apples, you'll be happy know that the businesses in Nob Hill have some awesome treats planned for us this Halloween. This Monday evening, Nob Hill will transform itself into "Haunted Hill"—a music-and-candy-crawl for adults, stretched between every bar and restaurant in the area (between Carlisle and Girard, along Central). Starting at 9 p.m., costumed Nob crawlers will be able to drift into each place free of charge, gobbling candy, downing drink and food specials and soaking up a nice variety of live music. Peter Martin, entertainment director at Sig's on Central, helped whip up the whole mysterious and spooky idea.
Brewing up boba tea and caldrons of curry
Contrary to popular belief, California Witches is not a coven of suntanned, avocado-lovin' ladies of the darkness, but a trendy new Asian-fusion café in a busy strip mall on Menaul. And despite what the name and logo implies, there were no warty noses or pointy hats to be seen, only a serene ambiance with bonfire-hot curry.
An ofrenda feast for Dia de los Muertos
The first thing that hits you is the aroma, then the warmth of the ovens. The air inside the Golden Crown Panaderia is soft and heavy with the scents of whole, fresh anise, cinnamon, sugar, yeast and fresh bread. Behind the counter, father and son bakers Pratt and Chris Morales are busy filling orders for Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead. The celebration of departed friends and family spans the first two days of November; and, as the Morales men will tell you, it takes a lot of bread to feed all those hungry souls. "Bread is the stuff of life—it's universal, and something you share," says Pratt. "For Dia de los Muertos, we welcome back the departed souls we knew, and we honor them with altars decorated with things like flowers, candy, cut paper and their favorite foods." The breads for this ofrenda (offering) were baked by the Golden Crown Panaderia (1103 Mountain NW, 243-2424). Masks Y Mas in Nob Hill (3106 Central SE, 256-4183) provided the beautiful decorations, candleholders and service ware.