Alibi V.16 No.31 • Aug 2-8, 2007

New Mexico Hempfest!

Saturday, August 19, noon-9pm

It's Aug. 19, 2017. You're getting evaluated by a real medical doctor. You're making tie-dye. You're learning more about your medicine. You're supporting legalization of a useful plant. You're eating delicious food. Where are you? At the first annual New Mexico HempFest of course! Entry is totally free, and parking is a measly $1 per car at the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta Park. You are roaming around enjoying live music from local bands, a Hemposium tent with exciting speakers, a kids' activity area and dozens of regional artists, farmers, educators, plus lots of tasty food trucks. You're with all your friends and family at this all-ages, family-friendly event and having an absolute blast celebrating New Mexico's hemp industry.

Jurassic Best of Burque Restaurants World

The most ferocious of prehistoric reader polls is back

What's your favorite New Mexican food? What's your favorite dinosaur? Ok, now put them together and what do you get? An Enchiladodon? A Chileopteryx? A Tacoraptor? A Sopaipillatops? Awesome! Get ready for the T. Rex of “Best of City” contests: The original Best of Burque Restaurants will be hitting Weekly Alibi racks and website on Thursday, Oct. 12. The polls are open now. Vote on your favorite Frito pie, vegetarian food, Japanese restaurant and local brewery. Let your voice be heard! Rawr!

feature

Stars in Their Eyes

Sci-Fi authors of New Mexico

Perhaps it’s the high-desert altitude and horizon-to-horizon skyline that allow for unadulterated, year-round stargazing. Perhaps it’s the dense backdrop of scientific history that runs from Los Alamos in the north down through Sandia National Labs and off south into the Trinitite-littered ground of the first atomic bomb test at White Sands Missile Range. Maybe (just maybe) it has something to do with that infamous, oft-debated crash site outside of Roswell. Could that wayward extraterrestrial hit-and-run have left some inspirational layer of irradiated stardust buried in the hardened caliche of the New Mexico soil?

Victor Milán

Noms de Plume: Robert Baron (post-nuke action), Richard Austin (post-nuke action), Keith Jarrod (Western), J.O. Hardin (Western), Jake Logan (Western), Mark Ellis (post-nuke action), S.L. Hunter (techno-thriller)

Robert Vardeman

Noms de Plume: Victor Appleton (young adult science fiction), Cliff Garnett (action/adventure), F.J. Hale (fantasy), Edward S. Hudson (science fiction), Karl Lassiter (Westerns), Daniel Moran (fantasy)

George R.R. Martin

Nom de Plume: none

Location: Santa Fe

Key Book Titles: Fevre Dream, The Armageddon Rag, the Wild Cards series, In A Song of Ice and Fire series: A Game of Thrones, A Clash of Kings, A Storm of Swords, A Feast for Crows, A Dance with Dragons (forthcoming)

Steven Gould

Noms de Plume: None

Location: Albuquerque

Key Book Titles: Jumper, Reflex, Wildside, Helm, Blind Waves

Website: www.digitalnoir.com

Years in New Mexico: 13

What attracts writers to New Mexico?

Jane Lindskold

Noms de Plume: None

Location: Albuquerque

Key Book Titles: Brother to Dragons, Companion to Owls; Chronomaster; Smoke and Mirrors; Lord Demon (with Roger Zelazny); The Buried Pyramid, The Firekeeper Saga

Website: www.janelindskold.com

Years in New Mexico: 13

Afterword:

These and many other New Mexico writers, including Daniel Abraham (A Shadow in Summer), Doug Beason (Assemblers of Infinity), Suzy McKee Charnas (The Vampire Tapestry), Stephen R. Donaldson (Lord Foul’s Bane), Terry England (Rewind), Laura J. Mixon (Glass Houses), John Maddox Roberts (SPQR), John J. Miller (Green Lantern: Book 1) and Sage Walker (Whiteout), will be at this year’s 39th annual Bubonicon science fiction and fantasy convention. The event will take place Aug. 24-26 at the Wyndam Airport Hotel in Albuquerque. Log on to www.bubonicon.com for a complete list of authors and events.

Stellar Lights

New Mexico’s departed science fiction greats

In a field known for pioneering spirit, it is hard to find a better embodiment of that spirit than Jack Williamson (1908-2006), who arrived in New Mexico in 1915 aboard a covered wagon. This son of homesteaders first published in 1928 (in between hoboing trips around the U.S.) and his last work appeared in 2005, a career spanning eight decades. Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov and Carl Sagan all cite him as a major influence, but fame was no prerequisite to be welcome in the Portales home he helped design and build—Williamson was always ready to host visitors from around the world, many of them coming for the Williamson Lectureship Series, an annual event dedicated to scholarly discussions of science fiction. Among Williamson’s many awards was being named a Grand Master of Science Fiction by the Science Fiction Writers of America in 1975. Williamson is also credited with coining the terms “terraforming” and “genetic engineering,” as well as instigating some of the first discussions in fiction of antimatter. His short story “With Folded Hands,” later expanded into The Humanoids, introduced the idea of oppressively helpful robots with the directive “To serve and obey, and guard men from harm.” The Jack Williamson Science Fiction Library, at Eastern New Mexico University, where he taught for many years, is considered one of the finest collections on the subject in the world. A lifelong traveler, Williamson nonetheless chose Portales for his home, and the small shack he built to write in as a young man still stands today on the family ranch. The next Williamson Lectureship is planned for April 2008 to coincide with Williamson’s 100th birthday, details at enmu.edu.

news

Thin Line

The media is able to control the public’s view of its prominent figures—just look at Pete Rose. You probably think he’s a bad guy for betting on baseball, right? We call it slant, and sadly, it’s unavoidable. Recently, the world of athletics has been a media free-for-all when it comes to reporting on what’s been going wrong. Coverage has been overtly dark, blowing the negative out of proportion, and covering up the good fun of sports.

Answer Me This

The news just keeps on coming. Some days you pay attention. Some days you don't. Look here in every Alibi to refresh your memory about what's going on in your community. Don't worry if you don't know all the answers—there's a cheat sheet at the end.

Odds & Ends

Dateline: England—A prize-winning poodle from North Wales has become the latest victim of online identity theft. Owner Lynne Day posted information about her two-year-old poodle, Afonwen Welch Fusilier, on the Internet. According to the North Wales Post, that information was pilfered by an unknown identity thief. The thief claimed Afonwen Welch Fusilier, known as “Blue” for short, had given birth to puppies. Blue, who won the Midlands Counties Canine Society Show and the North West Poodle Club, is actually male. The mystery seller, who called himself Henry Daf, offered Blue’s nonexistent offspring to potential buyers for 1,000 pounds ($2,000) each. The address Daf gave turned out to be a graveyard in Glasgow. North Wales Police are investigating the scam.

film

Reel World

UNM’s Continuing Education department is offering a free InfoByte lecture on “Making Movie Magic with Maya” on Thursday, Aug. 2, from 5:15 to 6:30 p.m. Autodesk Maya has become the industry standard software for 3D graphics. If you’re into computers and special effects, this lecture will give you a chance to see Maya at work. Multimedia developer and animator Laura Gutman will be there demonstrating how to build and animate a 3D character, from conception to finished movie scene. UNM Continuing Education is located at 1634 University NE. Visit their website at dce.unm.edu for more info.

The Boss of It All

Danish satire deconstructs office humor for devilish fun

Danish director Lars von Trier is something of a prankster. Although best known for drafting the “back to basics” film ethos Dogme ’95 and for creating controversial films like Breaking the Waves and Dancer in the Dark, von Trier has always had his tongue planted firmly in his cheek. Occasionally, the joke gets too rancid (as it does in von Trier’s scabrous “USA trilogy” films Dogville and Manderlay); but make no mistake, von Trier does everything with a knowing wink. Nowhere has this been more evident than with the filmmaker’s latest effort, the seemingly light, self-mocking corporate comedy The Boss of It All.

El Cantante

The beat goes on (and on and on and on) in repetitive biopic of Latin idol

In his first above-the-title starring role in a feature film, Latin singing sensation Marc Anthony spends roughly 50 percent of his screen time on stage singing. Which is about 50 percent less than he probably should, given the musical segments of El Cantante are about the only ones that have a ring of truth to them.

Reality Bytes

“Code Monkeys” on G4

Television, as you may have surmised from the title of this column, is not the most intellectual of mediums. There’s nothing stopping it from being so; but it’s been the outlet of so much stupid crap for so long that stupid crap is pretty much its forte. When you think about it in those terms, TV does stupid amazingly well.

music

Plants

Find inner peace through Photosynthesis

Light your frangipani-scented incense. Roll another blunt. Absorb into your blood the music of Plants. The Oregon-based psychedelic-folk group founded by Josh Blanchard and Molly Griffith-Blanchard are on tour with a musical acid test. Guitarist/singer/songwriter Josh spoke with the Alibi last week to give us a taste of just how sweet and dreamlike Plants will be when they hit the Atomic Cantina on Monday, Aug. 6.

So Sweet

The Foxx releases a new album, The Rondelles reunite

The folks of The Foxx don't make outrageous demands.

Paid Dues Festival

Independent hip-hoppers find a home on the road

Who’s your favorite independent rapper? Name the last time you saw this beloved word wizard of yours in person, on stage, with other independent rappers. If you're speechless, you're not alone. Sure, you get your token emcee at Coachella or South by Southwest. You can even get whole festivals of indie hip-hop in New York, California and Cincinnati. But both take large lump sums and a trip halfway across the country. For far too long, world-class independent hip-hop has been inaccessible to most of the country.

art

Culture Shock

Not so familiar with our city's growing art scene? Maybe it's time you got up close and personal. You'll have your chance this Friday, Aug. 3, during the monthly First Friday gallery tour. From enamel art at Downtown's Sumner & Dene (517 Central NW, 842-1400) to mixed media work at Old Town's Weems Gallery (303 Romero NW, 764-0302) to handmade jewelry at Nob Hill's Mariposa Gallery (3500 Central SE (Nob Hill, 268-6828), there's a wee bit o' something for just about everybody. For a full roster of participating galleries, call 771-4006 or go to www.artscrawlabq.org.

24-Hour Art

Raymundo Sesma and his Working Classroom apprentices unveil an innovative Downtown public art project

The sad truth about public art is that it's often a lowest common denominator affair. The municipal committees that rubber-stamp these projects might have a deep appreciation for the revolutionary possibilities of contemporary art, but you rarely see it manifested in the decisions they make. Mostly, these committees just don't want to be hassled by vocal critics from the public at large, those loudmouth cretins who habitually take offense at any aesthetic flavor other than vanilla.

food

The Seedy Side of Gardening

Q: Dear Chef Boy Ari,

My garden plot is a little shady. According to the seed packet, my broccoli plants should be fine with partial sun. But they’re already starting to flower, having skipped the tasty head stage. Is there something I can do to stop them from flowering? What gives?

—Floretless

A: Dear Floretless,

Your broccoli plants want to make as many seeds as they can, and under good conditions they will grow as much as possible before flowering. A larger plant will make a larger “pre-floral organ”—aka “head,” the part you eat—which leads to a larger flower, and hence more seeds. Your broccoli went to seed early, probably in response to some kind of environmental stress.

Taco Sal

Food’s a’ight, service is tight

Moms are the greatest ladies in the world. Who else can love, feed and clothe you and still excel at the pseudo-Olympic sports of nagging, cajoling and the 300-meter guilt trip? Moms even possess the spooky power to locate a can of beer or a dirty gym sock under a bed without entering the room. Having lunch at Northeast Heights staple Taco Sal brought me back to these shinier, happier times. I met bustling servers Cynthia Abeyta and Kaye Montoya during the restaurant's lunch rush. Despite the profusion of bodies in chairs, Kaye was an expert at making everyone feel like they were at her home. I was seated with chips and salsa, and my ice tea arrived at high speed.

Alibi V.16 No.30 • July 26-Aug 1, 2007

Tawan Thai Cuisine

That’s my golden bag, baby

I brought a friend with me to eat at Tawan Thai, a fairly new place at the corner of Zuni and Wyoming. Rebecca, my companion, had never eaten Thai food, save one box of pad Thai she bought from the deli at Wal-Mart. Shock of shocks; she didn’t like it. I was determined to turn her around on Thai cuisine, so off we drove.

feature

Alternative Space

Albuquerque's underground art scene is small and inconspicuous, but its many charms are finally attracting some attention

There are two things every artist needs: space and light. Since New Mexico has such an overwhelming abundance of both, it's no wonder it has become such a haven for artists. Of course, when people think about thriving New Mexican art centers, it's Santa Fe and Taos that come immediately to mind, not necessarily Albuquerque. As far as the arts go, New Mexico's biggest city is still trying to find its place on the map.

film

Reel World

After six weeks of intensive training, the nine filmmaking students and 10 screenwriting students taking part in the 4th annual Institute of American Indian Arts/ABC-Disney Summer Television and Film Workshop are ready to show off their skills. On Friday, July 27, at 6:30 p.m. the LTC auditorium on IAIA’s campus (83 Avan Nu Po Road in Santa Fe) will host a free public screening of five short films produced by Native American filmmakers in the program. There will also be a “table read” featuring some of the screenwriting students’ work. For directions, visit www.iaia.edu or call the school’s information line at (505) 424-2300.

Video Nasty

Hard Boiled

Back in the day, the No. 1 source in town for Psychotronic movie rentals was a little shop on Lead called Wavy Brain—which was owned and operated by none other than local filmmaker Scott Phillips (creator of The Stink of Flesh and the upcoming Gimme Skelter). Every week, I would make the trek into town from Los Lunas in order to soothe my burning desire for all things trash cinema. One fateful day, I asked Scott if he could help me find the title of the film Patricia Arquette’s character was watching on TV in True Romance. I can still remember that day like it was yesterday. It was the day everything changed for me—as if I had undergone some sort of cinematic revelation. It was, of course, the day I was introduced to John Woo films. (She was watching A Better Tomorrow II, by the way.)

Rescue Dawn

Werner Herzog puts his actors through hell, with heavenly results

As a filmmaker, Werner Herzog is noted for his attraction to epic stories of men and their single-minded (some might say obsessive) quests to conquer and/or overcome their surroundings. This isn’t all that surprising, given that Herzog himself is often categorized as a man on a single-minded (some might say obsessive) quest to conquer and/or overcome his surroundings. With classic adventure dramas films like Aguirre: the Wrath of God, Cobra Verde, Where the Green Ants Dream and Fitzcarraldo, Herzog gained as much of a reputation for the lengths to which he was willing to push himself, his cast and his crew as for the stunning, primal images he captured.

Buy Now!

“Mad Men” on AMC

Late summer isn’t traditionally the time of year for quality TV. Right about now, the networks are dragging out their fourth round of reruns and as many singing/dancing competitions as schedules will allow. But this year, a number of channels (basic cable channels, anyway) have decided not to abandon their audiences to the vagaries of beach weather and cineplex blockbusters. Last week alone, FX cranked out its fancy new legal thriller “Damages” (with Glenn Close, no less) and AMC launched one of its rare forays into weekly drama, the innovative period piece “Mad Men.”

music

Music to Your Ears

Powermoves Entertainment is a locally based record company with international intentions. Eric Martinez established the label back in 2001 and now hosts his own team of personnel and artists. Powermoves has represented the Southwest at glitzy, big-time functions like the Latin Rap Conference, the Sundance Film Festival and the MTV Music Awards. Now, Powermoves vice president of operations John Chavez says the company is preparing for what may be its most important event yet—their Empowering The Youth block party, going down Saturday, July 28, at the Balloon Fiesta Park.

On the Spot

Improv tuba master sounds off on Albuquerque's shrinking venue pool

Mark Weaver is a man of two very different hats. In one he is an architect, governed by the strict rules of design and blueprints. But when he switches to the other he becomes a tuba-playing free-improvisation master. Since he doesn’t call himself a jazz musician, it’s hard to nail a genre to the sounds he creates—much of it being on the spot. That’s why in 2000 he decided to open his own record company, Plutonium Records, as an outlet for his work. Run out of his home, the label stands as a safe haven for local improvised music. Six Plutonium releases to date feature the music of several groups he’s played with. Now the Albuquerque native, who plays with groups such as Selsun Blue, The Patti Littlefield and Mark Weaver Duo, and Brassum, has a brand-new release: Brassum: Live. Here, the Alibi talks to the composer/tuba player about his work and the current state of improvised music in Albuquerque.

Old is New

Store from another era revamps to survive in a fluctuating today

Like a sensitive weathervane, Charley's 33s & CDs catches wind of the economy's tricks and turns with the slightest of breezes. When it dips, customers sell off their beautiful vintage goods and records. When it climbs, the huge selection of vinyl nearly walks itself out the door.

news

Burque vs. The Q

An interview with the leader of the Soy de Burque movement

They're just yellow words on a red T-shirt, plain, all caps. ¡SOY DE BURQUE!, or "I am from Burque." For the members of a cultural resistance movement that made those shirts, names are more than a collection of letters.

Answer Me This

The news just keeps on coming. Some days you pay attention. Some days you don't. Look here in every Alibi to quiz yourself about what's going on in your community.

Mayoral Makeover

How Marty Chavez is working to reinvent his image

Historically, much has been made of the fact that people under the age of 25 vote at dramatically lower rates than any other segment of the population. Apathy is partly to blame, but I believe the primary reason for a lack of youth involvement in the political process is cynicism. And much of this cynicism stems from watching politicians who manipulate the media to conceal their true policy agendas.

The War on Health Care

Why Gov. Richardson needs to switch sides

The Iraq Occupation’s casualties are coming home. And besides the physical and emotional injuries brought back by the troops from their deployment, the nation itself is beginning to realize the extent of the damage wrought by this debacle on our economy and on our citizens’ well-being.

Odds & Ends

DATELINE: NIGERIA—Thanks to a U.S. aid organization handing out free laptops, Nigerian schoolchildren have entered the computer age and are now happily surfing pornographic websites on the Internet. The official News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reported last Thursday that one of its reporters had seen pornographic images stored on several of the children’s laptops. “Efforts to promote learning with laptops in a primary school in Abuja have gone awry as the pupils freely browse adult sites with explicit sexual materials,” NAN said. A representative of the One Laptop Per Child aid group was quoted as saying that the computers, part of a pilot program, would now be fitted with filters.

art

Culture Shock

Chamber music and classical dance get the elaborate marriage they deserve in an inaugural festival that kicks off this week at the National Hispanic Cultural Center (1701 Fourth Street SW). The Ballet Pro Musica Festival's main performances will be held next week. This week, accomplished local dancers can take advantage of master dance classes beginning Tuesday, July 31, taught by Ballet Pro Musica's principal choreographer Peter Anastos and Colorado Ballet's artistic director Gil Boggs. For details, call 352-1281.

Steaming Hot

Tea at the Santa Fe Opera

Lighted bows hum across handheld chimes. On raised platforms on both sides of the stage, illuminated bowls of water hover in the darkness. Figures dressed in black dip their hands into these bowls, lifting up cupped palms and letting the liquid dribble back into the containers. The effect is stunning, both visually and aurally. Lush melodies from the orchestra rise up from the pit while the sounds of the water, slapped and jostled, mix with traditional symphonic instruments.

food

The Dish

Don't know your dosha from dashi? Pita from Pitta? Owner Yashoda Naidoo hopes to help set you straight with two substantial changes at her Annapurna Ayurvedic Cuisine and Chai House. First off, Yashoda has transplanted the Green Light Bistro, her Western-style vegetarian café, into the neighboring Annapurna Chai House. (She's also done the same in Santa Fe with Annapurna and World Vegetarian Café, which is similar to the Green Light).

Please Don’t Smell the Cork

How to behave in establishments that require shoes

Your mothers have failed you. In fact, if you weren’t aware of it before, watching you chew your food with your mouth open causes waves of nausea to wash over other patrons, effectively ruining their meal. Is it too much to expect for you to be on your best behavior when in public?

Alibi V.16 No.29 • July 19-25, 2007

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Fifth time’s the same old charm for our young wizard

There isn't much point, at this stage of the game, to reviewing anything Harry Potter-related. The books have a more avid fanbase than just about any in the history of literature. The movies have proved to be incredibly popular and as loyal as possible to J.K. Rowling’s source material. Both incarnations, literate and cinematic, have been amazingly consistent over the years. So what, exactly, would be the point of lobbing either deep criticism or lavish praise in their direction?

feature

Sonny Rollins and Dianne Reeves Light Up the New Mexico Jazz Festival

Richard Bona, Michel Camilo, Eddie Daniels, Toumani Diabaté, Mighty Clouds of Joy, John Pizzarelli, Bobby Shew—and more!—round out a constellation of jazz stars

Last year, the producers of the New Mexico Jazz FestivalOutpost Productions, The Lensic; and the Santa Fe Jazz Foundation—told us it was the first annual event and, hallelujah, it turns out they were right. The second annual event, held in Santa Fe and Albuquerque from July 19 to 29, features a breathtaking collection of award-winning international artists, as well as popular local groups.

music

Music to Your Ears

Local newbies Chokecherry Ranch will play this week at Ralli's Fourth Street Pub and Grill (see "Flyer on the Wall" for the poster). The band's lead man, Jason Darensburg, is a mellow fellow with an easy, open sort of voice. He's notable for some good, if smalltime, productions around town over the years. But what makes this project especially interesting, for me anyhow, is that he says our former Alibi news editor Tim McGivern is playing drums in the project. Tim always swore up and down that he played drums with Archers of Loaf ... and truth be told, I still don't totally believe him. But at least he's proving he can actually play, which certainly helps his story. Get an earful of Jason's homegrown Albuquerque jam (to say nothing of Tim's fabulous storytelling) this Thursday, July 19. There's no mention of cover, but bring a few bills just to be safe.

Blissful Destruction Tour Kick Off

More fun than a mouthful of mono

Blissful Destruction is a mixture of piss, vinegar, scotch and soul—and a whole lot of enthusiasm for their local music scene. With that much going on, they figured it was time to spread some of the love and plan their first tour out of the state.

Diverje

Longtime electro-industrial act unleashes its sixth disc, Stitched

It's No. 1085, the 85th release for Tommy T's DSBP Records. That's a huge number—even without the 10 prefix—for what is essentially a locally run label. Tommy's proud to say that No. 85 is the sixth release for his own band, Diverje, an electro-industrial project that's been around for more than 10 years.

food

The Dish

Remember that episode of "I Love Lucy" where Lucy stomps grapes ("Her feet—like two enormous pizzas!" observes the vintner) with a bunch of swarthy, unibrowed Italian women? It looked like fun, didn't it? If, like me, you've found yourself wondering what it'd be like to recreate some of that same purple-stained magic, your time has come. The St. Clair Winery and Bistro (near Old Town at 901 Rio Grande NW) is throwing a grand grape-stomping competition—and in the true bacchanalian spirit of a Roman orgy, it's raging for three days.

Lupe’s Antojitos and Mexican Food

Hot carne love

I pride myself on learning new things when I eat. Whether it’s a tricky pronunciation (I had a thing with gewürztraminer) or understanding the subtle nuances of a different culture (I’ve made a faux pas or two involving Buddha shrines), I try to walk away from the table armed with knowledge for posterity.

The Basics: The Foundations of Modern Cooking

A bible of prissy non-functionality and crystal-clear photography

Let me tell you about my ideal cookbook. It's big, maybe 12”x12”—so while you're stirring (or frying) you can quickly glance at its 14-point font to make sure you added the right number of eggs. It's spiral bound and lays flat on its back when you set it on the counter. Its pages are laminated, so when you inevitably spill something nasty on it, you can sponge it off. You could drop my dream cookbook from the roof of a 60-story building and still find yourself making almond soup with it at the bottom. Also, it would do your dishes and speak to you in calming tones when all those nasty measurement details began to run away from you, like so many cats from inside a bass drum.

news

Food Fight

Trinity House tangles with the police over weekly free lunches in Robinson Park

For almost 120 Sundays, about two years, Catholic organization Trinity House has served up hot lunches to the homeless. On July 1, after a handful of warnings, police officers told volunteers not to get out of their cars when they pulled up to their usual spot, according to a Trinity House news release.

Thin Line

Want to know if the mainstream media has a conservative or a liberal bias? Look no further than the widespread coverage of the recent “Live Earth” concert. The 24-hour music event, running July 9 and 10, was intended to raise awareness of global warming and other environmental issues. Shortly after the broadcast ended, conservative news sites like the Drudge Report were straining at their leashes to declare the concert a failure of epic proportions.

Answer Me This

The news just keeps on coming. Some days you pay attention. Some days you don't. Look here in every Alibi to refresh your memory about what's going on in your community. Don't worry if you don't know all the answers—there's a cheat sheet at the end.

Heavy Lifting

An interview with Clarence Bass, local bodybuilder extraordinaire

Clarence Bass has the lungs of a cheetah, pecks that could snap a leather belt and abs that give his fitted T-shirts rug burns. Not bad for a 69-year-old.

How Many Divisions has the Veep?

Impeach Cheney now

Where are the teeth-grinding, strict-constructionist Republicans when their nation needs them? For that matter, where’s the Democratic Party? We’re living through America’s first coup d’etat, and so far, just 14 Democratic Congressmen are doing anything about it.

Odds & Ends

Dateline: Iraq—Agence France-Presse is reporting that the Iraqi port city of Basra, already embroiled by a nasty turf war between rival militia factions, is now gripped by rumors of giant badgers stalking the streets at night and eating humans. Local farmers who have caught and killed several of the beasts claim the animals were released into the area by hostile British forces. Mushtaq Abdul-Mahdi, director of Basra’s veterinary hospital, has inspected the corpses of several badgers and has tried to assure locals that the animals are not postwar arrivals to the region. “The animals appeared before the fall of the regime. They are known as Al-Ghirayri and locally as Al-Girta.” he told AFP. “Talk that this animal was brought by the British forces is incorrect and unscientific.” British army spokesperson Maj. David Gell said the animals—believed to be a kind of honey badger—“are native but rare in Iraq. They’re nocturnal carnivores with a fearsome reputation, but they don’t stalk humans and carry them back to their lair.”

film

Hairspray

We’ve heard this song before, but it’s got a good beat and you can definitely dance to it

Why? It’s a valid question. Or questions, actually. Why is Hollywood so obsessed with remakes? Mostly because it requires very little thought on the part of creatively bankrupt studio executives. So why is Broadway remaking so many movies as musical stage shows? (Xanadu, Young Frankenstein and Legally Blonde are just a few of the choice offerings on the Great White Way this season.) Probably because they appeal easily to the busloads of uncultured tourists who show up in Manhattan every day looking for tickets to Cats. Then why, in the name of all that is holy, is Hollywood now remaking the remakes Broadway already remade? ... That, my friends, is a mystery.

art

Culture Shock

A middle-aged American woman with a fear of heights stands on the high dive by a hotel pool in Greece. Her son encourages her to jump. She's made it this far. Why not just do it? As she considers whether it would be best to take a step forward or a step back, her life literally flashes before her eyes. She begins telling stories about previous vacations and other moments in her life when she held back from making the big plunge.

Sweeping Up

How would you like to have your very own Nimbus 2000?

Harry McAfee was never an avid reader. The North Valley artist didn't get bitten by the book bug as a kid, and he didn't pick up the habit later in life, either. Several years ago, though, his daughter talked him into seeing the first Harry Potter movie. He liked it quite a bit, and when he got laid up sick for a couple weeks, he decided to give the book a try.

The Death of Harry Potter

Well, the end of the series, at least

The countdown to the end of Harry Potter is ticking away—second by second—until that fateful moment when Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, book seven of the seven part series, is finally released to the masses. Countless hordes of giddy children and adults alike will be staying up until 12:01 a.m., the first minute of its release on Saturday, July 21, at bookstores around the nation. Here in Albuquerque, there'll be a lot of Potter-style partying going on, so dust off your wizard hats and get ready for the beginning of the end. Or maybe not ...

Jonson and Johnson

Like it or not, the Jonson Gallery is moving

Pueblo Revival architect John Gaw Meem built UNM's Jonson Gallery in 1950 to serve as both an exhibit space and residence for Raymond Jonson, the famed painter who had just become the university's first (and only) permanent artist-in-residence. Few artists have played such a prominent role in the creative history of our state, and Jonson finally had an ideal space to continue his audacious experiments in color and geometry.