Alibi Volume 15, Number 27
July 6, 2006
The real pit bull problem
I’m staring at eight pit bulls. They’re all in a row and stacked on top of each other, tucked inside those plastic dog carriers that come in muted colors like light blue, beige and gray. The dogs come in a similar color scheme—some are light brown, others dark, some tan with white trim, and one a curious shade of grayish-blue. That’s the baby—only six months old and she still looks like she could herd a whole flock of sheep without the least bit of trouble. They call her Tempest.
Can the razing of an Albuquerque landmark lead to the redevelopment of a neighborhood?
The Blue Spruce Lounge was an Albuquerque landmark, its name synonymous with fun.
The mayor’s proposal for a new park Downtown would make Downtown greener ... but at what cost?
Mayor Martin Chavez has proposed a plan to build a new park Downtown between Third and Fourth Street and Roma and Marquette on a site that is currently used as a parking lot.
The days of free Downtown parking are over
The changes came suddenly. White notices atop the familiar one-hour parking signs gave Downtown parkers and patrons insight into what was to come. Letters were passed out to local businesses alerting them of the change: No more free parking Downtown along Central.
A call for a tougher Liquor Control Act has business owners up in arms
It's a significant figure: 1,410. That's how many dispenser liquor licenses there are in New Mexico. None have been added since 1981.
There stood John Dendahl, in front of television cameras, making his martyrdom video before he blows himself up.
Dateline: The Philippines--Six police officers may lose their jobs for pawning their pistols in the cash-strapped southern Philippines. German Doria, police chief of the central region of Mindano Island, said Wednesday the incidents of government-issue guns being pawned came to light after the National Bureau of Investigation raided shops selling stolen goods in the town of Tupi. Six police handguns were recovered in the raid. “How can police officers carry out their missions if they don’t have guns?” asked Doria. Severely underfunded and poorly paid Philippine security forces have been battling Muslim and communist insurgents for nearly 40 years. President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo has promised to release 30 percent of a proposed 1 billion peso ($18.7 million) budget increase this month to help defeat Maoist-led rebels.
Grants Goes Digital--Filmmaker Christopher Coppola’s EARS XXI Studio has joined forces with the Cibola Arts Council to create the first-annual PAH-Fest. PAH-Fest (short for Project Accessible Hollywood) will feature “alternative and grassroots storytelling through the use of today’s latest technology, celebrating the stories and voices of everyday people.” The festival will take place from Wednesday, July 5, through Sunday, July 9, in Grants, N.M.
A brief history of pirate movies
For decades, pop critics, both professional and casual, have debated the relative merits of pirates versus ninjas. Both have their strengths. But until Hollywood gets on the ball and makes a blockbuster ninja movie (no, Beverly Hills Ninja doesn’t count), I’m afraid pirates must come out on top of the “who’s coolest” quarrel.
Would you like socks with that?
There was a publishing trend a few years back whereby lowly wage slaves were paid exorbitant amounts of money to squeal on their snooty, slave-driving bosses. Hence, we were treated to a rush of tell-all books like Wannabe (written by a personal assistant in Hollywood), The Nanny Diaries (written by a private nanny to rich New Yorkers) and The Devil Wears Prada (written by an executive secretary in the fashion industry) that informed us--juicily, if a bit predictably--rich and famous people suck as employers.
“Nightmares & Dreamscapes” on TNT
Steven King is an unchallenged literary heavyweight. When it comes to translating his stories to film and television, however, his track record has been less than stellar. For every adaptation like The Shining (a film King, famously, hated) to hit theaters there are two or three adaptations like Graveyard Shift, The Mangler or Maximum Overdrive (a film King, infamously, directed) to go alongside it. TV hasn’t had a much better track record either. The miniseries version of The Stand was quite memorable, but the miniseries version of The Shining was, well, about as exciting as watching snow melt.
The Week in Sloth
Gone Phishin'--Need a miracle? This Monday (July 10), the Starport Theater at Cottonwood Mall will screen Phish: Live In Brooklyn. The film consists of concert footage shot just in front of 16,000 Phish fans at Keyspan Park baseball field, Coney Island. The beauty part is the film hasn't been seen anywhere since the night of the show, more than two years ago. If you weren't there, you might just feel like it now. And if you were there, whoa! Acid flashback! Show starts at 7 p.m. Advance tickets are already available online at www.fandango.com, or call the theater at 897-6858.
with SuperGiant, Lousy Robot, Fast Heart Mart and The Trampolines (from Denver)
Friday, July 7, Launchpad (21-and-over); $5: You win some, you lose some, Albuquerque. One of our best and brightest is on his way back East. Jason Daniello will soon be moving to Asheville, N.C., but not before he and some good friends put on one more monster musical event this Friday at the Launchpad.
(Psst! Hey, Albuquerque ... Santa Fe is kicking your ass on the poster art lately.) The Cherry Tempo, Shinobu, A Moment’s Loss and Keyboard. Monday, July 10, at Warehouse 21. $5. www.warehouse21.org. (LM)
with I is for Ida, Primates and Lagoon
Friday, July 7, Atomic Cantina (21-and-over); Free: As Terry Zwigoff’s film Ghost World aptly demonstrates, there are plenty of faux blues bands out there--bands that claim to play “Delta Blues” or “Mississippi Roots Blues”--that are just plain awful. They may appeal to audiences of the suburban persuasion nationwide, but they’re hardly authentic in any real sense of the word.
Eat it, Bono
Built to Spill is one of the few major-label bands that still sounds as pure as the day they were formed in 1992. Through it all, frontman and founder Doug Martsch has held on to his humility, maintaining that “all we’ve ever wanted to do was make music that sounds all right.” Martsch talked with the Alibi about his band’s success, touring and lack of bravado.
Who says girls can’t rock?
When she arrived in Albuquerque during one of last week's crazy thunder and lightning shows, Nels and her bandmates had no idea what they were getting into. "This bus has big windows, so I just sat and watched. I filmed the whole thing. It was really kind of crazy." Then it just started pouring.
Mariposa—Starting this week, a threesome of ladies presents a range of new work at Mariposa Gallery (3500 Central SE), Nob Hill's premier showcase for contemporary craft art. Amanda Tinsley offers up an unlikely combo of whimsical fairies and abstract paintings. Jill Erickson will display her enamel jewelry composed of striking semiprecious stones. Linda Tarr's colorful ceramics exude a retro feel that suggests imaginary molecular structures. Stop by the gallery Friday evening, July 7, for a reception from 5 to 8 p.m. to mingle with the artists and ogle their creations. The show will run through the end of the month. 268-6828, www.mariposa-gallery.com.
This week, the Donkey (1415 Fourth Street SW) opens the first solo showcase of work by the late comic artist Seth Fisher. Before his untimely death at age 33, Fisher had become an established artist with several impressive claims to fame, including illustrating an arc of the Batman series, doing concept design for the computer game Myst III, and creating magazine and album covers in Finland and Japan. He was also nominated for an Eisner Award for Best Penciler/Inker. The exhibit will present original inked pages and limited edition prints from a variety of Fisher’s works. A reception will be held on Friday, July 7, from 6 to 9 p.m. during which you can munch on hot banana fritters served by Sarah, Fisher’s sister, enjoy music by Kaleb, Fisher’s brother, and talk to friends and family of the artist about his life and his work. The show runs through July 28. 242-7504.
The Santa Fe International Folk Art Market
Here in New Mexico, we're used to swimming up to our necks in folk art. From traditional punched tin and Catholic religious pieces to handmade textiles and ceramics by Native American artists, the stuff is everywhere. It's been a significant part of our thriving art economy for at least the last century.
An interview with John Updike
Four decades ago John Updike climbed all the way to #1 on the New York Times bestseller list with Couples (1968), a rather frightening portrait of how the sexual revolution crashed upon the shores of suburbia like a tsunami.
Holy Cow!—Steak lovers, take note! Great American Land and Cattle Co. (1550 Tramway at Indian School) is now serving limited quantities of Wagyu steak, the same breed of cattle that's used in Japan's famous Kobe beef. Kobe is often considered the holy grail of beef varieties, which can command an excess of $100 per pound in Japan. The prime stuff at Great American is produced by a company out of Redmond, Ore., called Kobe Beef America. Because the Wagyu cows are raised domestically, they technically can't be called Kobe. But just like their Japanese counterparts, the cows are reared on a hormone-free feeding program and are graded against both USDA and Japanese standards. (However, it's not clear whether they feed the cows beer and massage them with sake, as the Japanese producers love to insist on.)
Cool, calm and kung pao
Writing restaurant reviews doesn’t normally put my life in danger, but I’ve come to discover that parking lots are making my short list of places to avoid. I took a leisurely drive up to the Heights to have lunch at Szechwan Chinese Cuisine, where I enjoyed the picturesque scenery along Central--seedy and/or abandoned motels, pawn shops and the occasional Suntran stop filled with people looking like I did the morning after an Orgy concert back in 1998. But pulling into the parking lot of the strip mall at 1605 Juan Tabo NE proved to be my peril, as I was nearly obliterated by a jackass in an Isuzu Rodeo.
A tasty end for your leftover Fourth of July keg
When you fail to finish off a keg, you’ve clearly shirked your responsibilities, and there is only one way to redeem yourself: turn it into to a thick and smoky barbecue sauce. Contrary to popular opinion, that brown sugar, hickory ooze is not such a mysterious undertaking. Here’s an intermediate recipe that will make use of those cups of keg beer and boost your self-esteem. The only problem is that once you’re going ape shit smothering everything in your fridge with this sauce, you’ll wish you had a keg of beer to go with it.