Hollywood Southwest--Last Monday, the Mesa del Sol development south of Albuquerque’s Sunport announced one of its first major commercial tenants, a 50-acre film and television production facility, which will be known as Albuquerque Studios. The project, expected to be up and running by next spring, is the work of Pacifica Ventures, a California-based company, which runs the historic Culver Studios in Hollywood.
Has America become a nation of liars? You might think so watching the evening news. Politicians, of late, have raised deception to a high art form (with Dick “I Have Not Suggested There is a Connection Between Iraq and 9/11” Cheney as the Picasso of Prevarication). Notorious newspaper man Jason Blair proved you don’t have to leave your apartment to be a good reporter, while infamous author James Frey showed you can deceive some of the people some of the time, but it’s not nice to fool Mother Oprah. Famed transgendered, teenage, HIV-positive author/screenwriter JT Leroy (The Heart is Deceitful Above All Things, Gus van Sant’s Elephant) was, in late 2005, revealed to be a 40-year-old woman from Brooklyn named Laura Albert. Earlier this year, much-praised Native American memoirist Nasdijj (The Blood Runs Like a River Through My Dreams, The Boy and His Dog are Sleeping, Geronimo’s Bones) was exposed as a mere fabrication of gay-erotica writer Timothy Patrick Barrus.
One of the more puzzling aspects of our current war on terrorism is how little tangible support for the troops seems to come from people who claim to support the troops. “Supporting” our troops, apparently, means sending them into a dangerous situation with inadequate numbers, outdated equipment and a near total lack of clear-cut goals and then keeping them there indefinitely. So long as you’ve attached a little yellow bumper sticker on the back of your Ford F-1000, though, they’ll be just fine. Perhaps, supporting our soldiers--regardless of whether your motivations are pro- or anti-war--might entail making some attempt to understand what it is they’re doing. The president has explained it very clearly and concisely: They’re defending our freedom abroad. But, one suspects, there’s a little more detail to it. What, on a day-to-day basis, are these men and women actually doing?
This is just a guess, but I’m pretty sure there are no instructions for use printed on the side of the homeopathic topical headache relief product HeadOn. After all, anyone who’s spent any time surfing the cheaper commercial hours of basic cable (especially daytime CNN) has run across the HeadOn commercial at least a hundred times in the last couple of months.
Shark Week (Discovery 7 p.m.) Shark Week continues over on Discover. First up tonight, we’ve got “Shark Rebellion,” in which “scientists study shark attacks in Recife, Brazil.” At 8 p.m., it’s “Shark Attack Survivors,” which is about “surviving a shark attack.” Finally, at 9 p.m., we have “Shark Roulette,” covering the topic of “shark attacks.” I sense a pattern here.