Alibi V.17 No.8 • Feb 21-27, 2008

Odds & Ends

Dateline: China--The price of hamsters has tripled in China since the start of 2008--designated by Chinese astrology as the Year of the Rat. The tiny rodents are considered lucky in the wake of Chinese New Year. The Chinese word for rat, laoshu, covers a variety of animals that can include kangaroo rats, hamsters and moles. Pet shops have been selling out of the animals, even at comparatively high prices of 30 yuan (nearly $5) per hamster. The Xinhua news agency identified hamsters as having a better image than rats or mice, and being more companionable as pets.

feature

No Home Runs in This Strike

Tallying the results of the Writers Guild Strike

When the 80th Annual Academy Awards arrive this Sunday, they will cap off one of the most tumultuous roller-coaster years in Hollywood history. A summer bloated with record-breaking, mega-budget films (Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, Transformers) gave way to a fall filled with exceptional, challenging cinema (No Country For Old Men, There Will Be Blood). But it was the Writers Guild of America strike--beginning on Nov. 5, 2007, and concluding on Feb. 12, 2008--that threw our entertainment picture into a tizzy.

Winners and Losers

Editorializing on the Oscars

Despite the long-looming threat of the Writer’s Guild strike, the 2008 Oscars are looking like a fine affair. Had WGA members not approved their most recent contract negotiations, the Academy Awards would have been reduced to a star-free, writer-starved clip show. (Nobody out there wants a repeat of the Golden Globes. Shudder.) But the strike is over, allowing nominees to attend guilt-free and returning host Jon Stewart to rely on a full staff of writers to pen his off-the-cuff quips.

80 th Annual Academy Awards Ballot

Best Motion Picture of the Year
Atonement (BAFTA, GG) Vegas Odds: 10/1
Juno (BFCA, SA) Vegas Odds: 15/1
Michael Clayton Vegas Odds: 8/1
No Country for Old Men (BSFC, BFCA, COFCA, CFCA, DFWFCA, FFCC, LVFCS, NBR, NYFCC, OFCS, PFCS, SDFCS, SA, SEFCA, TFCA, WAFCA) Vegas Odds: 2/5

music

Music to Your Ears

Since there's no Best Band in Rio Rancho category in this year's Best of Burque poll, it's up to bands in The R to duke it out themselves for scene supremacy. (I'm starting a grassroots campaign to re-brand Rio Rancho "The R." It's just as tacky and insipid as paying a PR firm to christen Albuquerque "The Q," and if people in The Q have to suffer, everyone else should, too. While we're at it, join me in reducing New Mexico to one "colorful" and buzz-generating letter, "The X." Maybe we can trick Jessica Alba into coming back to the most mysterious state in The USA.)

The Church of Beethoven

Free coffee, intimate space and seat-of-the-pants presentation make for a charming Sunday morning communion

Don’t bother looking for a steeple. Keep your eyes peeled, instead, for a yellowish surfboard with hand-lettered, coral-colored block capitals that read “B E E T H O V E N.”

art

Culture Shock

Although glitter from our Valentine's Day Card Contest still lingers on the floor of my office, it’s time again for you creative types to submit to another Alibi-exclusive competition. Yup, our fifth annual Photo Contest is officially in swing. This year's hoop-de-do is open to all styles of photography and unbound by categories, making it a photo free-for-all. Are you submittin' yet? Good. E-mail your digital images to amy@alibi.com or snail mail a few prints to Alibi Photo Contest, 2118 Central SE PMB 151, Albuquerque, N.M. 87106. All entries must be received by Wednesday, Feb. 27, at 5 p.m. There is a maximum of five photos per person. Winning entries will be reproduced in our March 13 issue and the photographers will receive prize packs to make any shutterbug swoon. Submit!

Alone in the Dark

Madagascar at the Cell Theatre

No, this isn’t a live-action version of the computer-animated film from 2005. You remember the one, right? With the usual menagerie of cutesy but annoying animals voiced by the likes of Ben Stiller and Chris Rock?

news

Answer Me This

Hey, lunch lady, what's this on my tray? Who got deported from Roswell? What pulled the plug on red-light cameras? How much do taxpayers spend on spokespeople?

Thin Line

Nobody knew it was coming. Nobody knew Stephen Kazmierczak was going to walk into that oceanography classroom and kill five people. Just like no one suspected something so random and atrocious was going to happen all the other times it's happened in the U.S.

Making Sausage

Here are the greasy links your Legislature did—and didn’t—grind out for you

They say it isn't pretty, making laws. A bill gets introduced, vetted in a series of committees, brought to the floor of the House or Senate and voted on. For a measure to become a law, to leave the state Legislature and become part of New Mexicans' lives, it has to pass both the House and Senate. Then the governor has to sign it.

Make it Longer

Legislators couldn’t make anything happen in this 30-day session. Why not add a few days?

It's a good thing Gov. Richardson is dragging the Legislature back to work on his health care package. Too bad he couldn't demand they sit in those legislative seats until they got some other work done, too.

Selling Health Care Reform

Gov. Richardson is upset the Legislature didn’t pass his proposal for health care reform and is threatening to call it back into Special Session to do just that. I have some advice for him (not that he has ever asked for it): Don’t.

How I Became a Skeptic

I was not always a skeptic. For much of my childhood, in fact, I was a strong believer in most things paranormal and New Age.

film

Reel World

Looking for something to do on Monday, Feb. 25? Well, you could help make a Hollywood movie. The feature film Love Ranch, directed by Taylor Hackford (Ray) and starring Helen Mirren (The Queen) and Joe Pesci (Casino), will be shooting a period boxing sequence at Tingley Coliseum on the Expo New Mexico grounds. Doors open at 7 a.m. and producers are hoping to pack the venue. The film is set in the ’70s, so willing extras are asked to “look their ’70s best.” Prizes will be awarded for best ’70s hair, best ’70s wardrobe and best ’70s car. I suggest everyone arrive wearing purple glitter hot pants, rainbow suspenders and a silver afro wig. That’ll make the film look extra ’70s!

Vantage Point

In the year of the Writers Guild strike, do we really need a movie made entirely of reruns?

Akira Kurosawa’s 1950 film Rashomon features one of the most borrowed/refigured/ripped-off/homaged plot structures in the history of movies. In it, a heinous crime is committed. Four people have witnessed the crime. Each one tells their own version of events. Each person has a different perspective on things. As the story gets repeated, each witness adds more and more details. In the end, which version, if any, is “the truth”?

We’re Baaaack

WGA strike is history

Our long, national, TV-watching nightmare is finally over! The Writers Guild strike is at an end. Last Tuesday night, WGA members agreed to a new contract with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers. Writers were back on the job first thing Wednesday morning. So what does that mean for our favorite shows?

Big-Screen Jumper

An interview with author Steven Gould

Steven Gould sat typing on his white, Linux laptop—just another customer at Satellite Coffee in Nob Hill enjoying a leisurely Friday morning. His fingers flashed over the keys, preparing a post for his blog, An Unconvincing Narrative. The topic: A review published on Salon.com analyzing the political undertones within the multimillion-dollar film based on Gould's novel, Jumper. "Now I've arrived," the Albuquerque-native jokes, closing the laptop before giving the Alibi a moment of his time. His T-shirt, perhaps, best encompasses the tone of the interview to follow. "Don't judge a book by its movie," it reads. And that's exactly what Gould is banking on.

Definitely, Maybe

Cute and cuddly rom-com tells it like it sort of is

You might not think watching a guy seduce a trio of women for 90 minutes would make you feel warm and fuzzy inside, but that’s how I felt after watching Definitely, Maybe.

food

Oscar Noshing

Following on the heels of another big awards show, we present a stupefying hors d'oeuvre.

Jasmine Thai and Sushi House

No pain, no gain

A couple of weeks ago, I was sitting alone in a booth at the back of Jasmine Thai. I was enjoying a quiet meal in the dim dining room, trying to decide if I liked Asian pop music as it drifted down from above, and wondering if I should convert to Buddhism. Pondering the Eightfold Path and wishing I knew what the hell that ridiculously upbeat song was about, my evening was nearly perfect. But I couldn’t stop crying.

Alibi V.17 No.7 • Feb 14-20, 2008

Culture Shock

AMP Concerts' home shows may be no more, but Neal Copperman is making sure AMP-quality shows will be found in the Duke City. The AMP Gallery Series continues where the house concerts left off, offering a variety of music in an informal, community fashion (with a potluck to boot) at a local art gallery. This Friday, Feb. 15, AMP presents Caji and Salomé at the Windchime Champagne Gallery (518 Central SW) at 7:30 p.m. Caji and Salomé meld Brazilian guitar with songs from Portugal, Cuba, South America, Cabo Verde and France, creating sophisticated, romantic grooves. Tickets are $15 in advance at Brownpapertickets.com or Bookworks (4022 Rio Grande NW) and $20 at the door.

feature

Poly (Greek, "Multiple") Amor (Latin, "Love")

The language of love morphs when you're working outside monogamy

“Compersion.” It's a word that describes happiness at seeing a partner get joy from someone else—almost the opposite of jealousy. Monogamous lovers might hesitate to imagine feeling anything aside from anger at the sight of their other half being loved by someone else. But compersion is a kind of fulfillment gained by the polyamorous, those who maintain honest, committed romantic relationships with more than one person.

music

Music to Your Ears

Although our man Rahim Alhaj didn't pick up Grammy gold for Best Traditional World Music Album, all in all—and I never thought I'd say this—the Grammys were totally entertaining. Awkward and tedious at times, sure, but I challenge any massive award show to shake those fugly bedfellows. I really couldn't ask for more.

Liars

A case study in perpetual reinvention

Once unhappily lumped into the genre of dance punk, Los Angeles, Calif., power-trio Liars can now only be described as ever-changing.

Le Chat Lunatique’s Demonic Lovely Gives Dancers and Listeners Cause for Celebration

CD captures the verve, swing and musicality of this “filthy, mangy jazz” quartet

The appeal of Le Chat Lunatique’s live performances owes as much to its bandmates patter and seriocomic stage presence as it does to their music—and the music is damn good. They’ve managed to translate that appeal to their new studio CD, Demonic Lovely, without visual or verbal aids. The music and the commitment with which it is played, it turns out, are really what it’s all about, whether you’re on the dance floor or sinking into a sofa.

Flyer on the Wall

Experience noise in the a.m. at Speakerwaffle, possibly the most damage you can do to your ears and mouth simultaneously. Redbeard (AGL and Dameon Lee of Lowlights), William Fowler Collins, Gun Safe and Olvidese fry up together at The Stove (114 Morningside NE) on Sunday, Feb. 17, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Bring $5 or breakfast to share. (LM)

art

food

Good Sauce Trumps Bad Marinade

Q: Dear Ari,

Can you recommend a good marinade for wild game?

—Got Game

A: Ah, yes, hunting season might be over but the eating continues! On any day countless lucky hunters, plus their lucky families and friends, are thawing out chunks of wild meat. Some know what to do with it, some don’t.

In my opinion, my opinion means nothing compared to that of Angus Cameron, author of The L.L. Bean Game and Fish Cookbook. Let me just say that he is the man.

Papa Nachos

Authentically good

Restaurant criticism has a fairly straightforward formula: Do your homework, visit the restaurant a few times and sample as much of the menu as possible. Keep an eye out for ambience and service and, voila!, you have our jobs in a walnut shell. But even with a rubric, the hard part comes from sitting in front of a blank computer screen, cursor blinking impatiently for input. Analyzing the latest in a string of mom-and-pop joints weighs heavily, because it's not only reputations that are at stake—it's livelihoods. People in the business of serving families have their own mouths to feed. And usually it's those families that are back there cooking, waiting tables and washing dishes.

Tickle Your Fancy, Suckle a Truffle

The Alibi chocolate truffle taste test

It's high truffle season—not the highly prized, exorbitantly priced fungus (that's October through December), but the highly prized, less exorbitantly priced little morsels of cocoa, sugar and cream. Chocolate truffles.

Host a Chocolate-Tasting Party

1) Pick a theme. We settled on milk chocolate truffles, but you could also try comparing chocolate from different countries of origin, chocolate bars within the same cocoa percentage range, exotic spice-spiked chocolate candies or maybe a spectrum of chocolates made by a single maker. Choose between five and 10 examples--much more and you run the risk of fatiguing your palate. (Your tastebuds’ equivalent of going cross-eyed.)

Food 101

bittersweet chocolate: Dark chocolate that contains a minimum of 35 percent chocolate liquor and less than 12 percent milk solids. Bittersweet and semisweet both fall under this definition, but bittersweet is also often used for chocolate with a minimum of 50 percent chocolate liquor.

news

Still in the Pound

City misrepresents the number of animal adoptions over the holidays

Albuquerque Journal subscribers woke up Christmas Eve morning, stepped outside and scooped up their daily papers. The headline on the bottom left-hand corner of the front page stated, simply, “Animal Shelters Are Empty.” That title was, at best, misleading.

Answer Me This

Who was one Albuquerque homeowner trying to scare off with his shotgun? The Senate killed the domestic partnership bill, but what would it have done? What did legislators find at the Governor's Office after passing the budget? New Mexico Democrats are fudging which rules to speed up ballot counting?

Convincing Yourself—and Others—You Talk to the Dead

On Jan. 31, I woke up to hear a man named Robert Baca on the 94 Rock Morning Show claiming to talk to the dead. He did readings for TJ Trout and the 94 Rock crew and their callers, offering what sometimes seemed to be “amazingly accurate” information from beyond the grave, such as telling subjects that they owned a deceased loved one’s ring or that the subject had a “father figure” whose name has a “B” and who died suddenly.

Convincing Yourself—and Others—You Talk to the Dead [extended web version]

On Jan. 31, 2008, I woke up bleary-eyed. My beauty sleep had already been interrupted several hours earlier by my aborted appearance on a live radio morning show in Kingston, Jamaica, which had been scheduled at the unfortunate hour of 4:30 a.m. Albuquerque time. I won’t go into the details, but the point is I was kind of fuzzy-headed when my radio alarm woke me up at 7:30 that Thursday morning and I heard 94 Rock’s TJ Trout talking about how he would soon be having a guest in the studio who could talk to the dead.

The Heinrich Maneuver

And Darren’s white horse

For most of 2007, former City Councilor Martin Heinrich had the Democratic field in replacing Heather Wilson in Congress virtually to himself. But the first poll showing him faring poorly against Sheriff Darren White, the probable Republican nominee, brought out real challengers. With them has come a word we’re hearing more in Democratic circles: electability.

Odds & Ends

Dateline: England--A British businessman is offering motorists the opportunity to get even with England’s much-hated speed cameras--by running over them in a 17-ton tank. Bill Bailey, who runs a paintball business in southwest England, said the off-road experience would allow drivers to get behind the wheel of his Abbot 433 Self-Propelling Gun and take it for a spin around an abandoned rock quarry with a driving instructor. The climax of the experience will let drivers use the caterpillar-tracked vehicle to mow down a mocked-up speed camera. “It will cost about 100 pounds ($224) for an hour in the tank, with an extra charge of 60 pounds ($134) to crush the speed camera.” Bailey is also working on an option of blowing up a copy of the ubiquitous Gatsometer brand traffic safety cameras seen on British roads. “The gun only fires blanks,” Bailey told reporters. “But we can simulate an explosion at the other end with pyrotechnics.”

film

Reel World

ABQ arts org Basement Films will sponsor a two-night screening of “under-represented motion media” this weekend. On Friday, Feb. 15, highlights from Experiments in Cinema v1.0 and v2.0 will be shown. This 81-minute program will feature representative selections from the first two years of UNM lecturer Bryan Konefsky’s experimental film festival (about to enter its third year this April). The second night, Saturday, will be “The Personality of the Personnel,” which will spotlight short works by various members and volunteers of Basement Films from the past 16 years. This highly eclectic selection will include works by Maximillian Godino, Charla Barker, Bryan Konefsky, Saul Rodgar, Tyrrell Cummings, Sarah Wentzel-Fisher and more. Saturday night will conlude with “Fellah, Can You Amass?” featuring a variety of film and video projectors tangling their images in a go-for-broke montage. Both nights will take place at VSA North Fourth Art Center (4904 Fourth Street NW) beginning at 7 p.m. Tickets are a mere $7 at the door. Log on to www.basementfilm.org for more info.

The Spiderwick Chronicles

Dark, emotional fantasy isn’t just for kids

In an era when kids’ films seem almost as creatively bankrupt as romantic comedies, it’s refreshing (dare I say exciting) to find one that swims against the tide. The Spiderwick Chronicles, based on the popular young adult book series by Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi, would seem at first glance to exist among the idea-starved crowd. A kids’ fantasy series in a day and age when all youth-seeking lit seems to cower in the shadow of Harry Potter? Though it features a trio of plucky, prepubescent heroes and a whole host of magical creatures, Spiderwick weaves its own unique spell.

Jumper

Fast-paced sci-fi thriller may have a franchise in mind

Neatly vacuformed to a colorful cardboard backdrop, the sci-fi freneticism of Jumper is as slickly packaged as this year’s must-have action figure. And that isn’t meant as an insult. Honestly. The film may be geared toward providing easily accessible entertainment for the masses, but it does so in such an appealing way that plenty of people will be rushing to get their hands on it.

Disorder in the Court

“Eli Stone” on ABC

Given the length of Hollywood’s Writers Guild strike, its rare enough to see new episodes of any (non-reality) TV series these days, let alone a brand-new offering. With carefully hoarded TiVo shows long ago watched and erased, viewers are desperate for something--anything--fresh in prime time. ABC recently responded by ripping the wrapping off its quirky legal comedy/drama “Eli Stone.”

Alibi V.17 No.6 • Feb 7-13, 2008

Got a Light?

Businesses open cigar bars to allow smoking patrons indoors. But is it legal?

At least one bar is trying a new tactic to bring its smoking customers out of the cold.

feature

Slathered in Love

The Alibi's fifth annual Valentine's Day Card Contest

Artists have toiled for millennia to capture the essence of true love. Alibi readers have done it for the past five years with ease.

film

Reel World

The New Mexico Italian Film Festival enters its sophomore year with more days, more films and more events. The second annual film fest gets underway this Sunday, Feb. 10, at 1 p.m. with an opening gala concert by the Albuquerque Philharmonic featuring classic Italian music at the KiMo Theatre in downtown Albuquerque. This is followed by the New Mexico premiere of The Legend of Tony Vilar, a comic mockumentary about an Italian who becomes a pop superstar in Argentina. An opening gala dinner is next at 4 p.m. at the Embassy Suites. Opening night wraps with a screening of Martin Scorsese’s Italian filmmaking documentary My Voyage To Italy, beginning at 6 p.m. back at the KiMo.

Over Her Dead Body

Ghostly romantic comedy should have killed off more cast members

The best thing about the new supernatural rom-com Over Her Dead Body is the title, which allows for plenty of creative interpretation. For example: Under what circumstances should you see this film?

Fool’s Gold

Adventurous romance stays afloat, but just barely

Here’s a highly pertinent question regarding the new film Fool’s Gold: What kind of vacation suits you best? Are you the sort of person who goes in for an enriching vacation full of vigorous physical exercise like mountain climbing or surfing? Do you prefer a stimulating break in which you explore the culture and art of a country or region, taking in as many museums, galleries and historical sites as possible? Or do you crave nothing more than a respite from work, abdicating all physical and mental activities for a weekend on a cruise ship where you can park your ass in a lounge chair and have people stuff you full of food and drink? If you fall into the final category, then the breezy, brain-free Fool’s Gold is highly tailored to your tastes.

Commercial Grade

Super Bowl winners and losers

With six out of 10 households tuned in to watch the New York Giants squeak past the heavily favored New England Patriots, this year’s Super Bowl XLII was the most watched in history. But viewership wasn’t the only record toppled last Sunday. A mix of 37 advertisers paid the highest price ever for Super Bowl commercials--$2.7 million for 30-second spots.

Week in Sloth

The Week in Sloth

Highlights from around the dial. Except no one has dials anymore.

music

Music to Your Ears

Iraquerque oudist and composer Rahim Alhaj is up for a Grammy! Alhaj's nomination was announced toward the end of 2007, but you'll have to tune in to the 50th Grammy Awards (which aren't being picketed by the Writers Guild) to find out if our homeboy wins. It's airing on CBS (or "Channel 13" to you and me) this Sunday, Feb. 10. The album of the hour is When The Soul Is Settled: Music Of Iraq, 73 minutes of music Alhaj recorded with tabla master Souhail Kaspar (the tabla is a hand drum that's sort of shaped like an hourglass—you've seen them before). Look for it on Smithsonian Folkways Recordings label. Good luck, Rahim!

Donovan

From “Mellow Yellow” to Transcendental Meditation with David Lynch

It’s been more than 40 years since Donovan Phillips Leitch was riding the wave of “Mellow Yellow” and 11 other top 40 smashes.

Flyer on the Wall

OK, the hockey mask and KFC bucket “hat” are completely annoying and gimmicky, but you can’t deny Buckethead’s prowess with an electric guitar. See No. 8 on Guitar One magazine’s "Top 10 Greatest Guitar Shredders of All Time" list at the Sunshine this Sunday, Feb. 10, at 7:30 p.m. Marsupious opens. Tickets are $20 at sunshinetheaterlive.com. (LM)

news

Answer Me This

Area men make national news after filming what? Why is it getting warmer out here? A new bill would increase domestic-violence penalties how? A Deming man collected what kind of animal?

Therapy Dogs

A heartening dose of four-legged medicine

Quince pushes his wet nose into a patient’s room at Albuquerque’s Heart Hospital. Valerie Peyton is on her back recovering from a heart attack. She looks tired, battered. Quince catches Petyon’s eye. Color returns to her cheeks. A smile breaks across her face.

Ethics Bills Flail in the Roundhouse

As time in a brief 30-day Legislative Session ticks away, will these measures fizzle out?

Charges of corruption abound in this state, and with each confirmation of an ethics breech, public trust dwindles. Accusations of cronyism, the conviction of former state treasurers, charges that politicians skimmed millions off construction funds for the Bernalillo County Metropolitan Courthouse—the parade of shamefaced officials grows ever-longer. Though the governor set health care at the top of the legislative priorities this session, a handful of ethics reform bills also made it onto the agenda. Many were introduced late in the game and haven't been receiving much of a push from the governor or state legislators.

Calling Obama

I am writing this column several days before the 22 states holding Democratic primaries (New Mexico among them) will have made their decisions on the matter of the party’s next presidential candidate on Super Tuesday.

Odds & Ends

Dateline: Croatia--Hundreds of Croatians painted themselves blue and wore silly white hats in an attempt to break the world record for dressing up as Smurfs. A total of 395 turned up dressed as the popular cartoon characters in the town of Komin. But when they contacted Guinness officials to register their record, they were told it was too late. A spokesperson for the organizers said, “We read on the Internet that the record was 290 people held by a group of Americans and decided to beat it. We had TV, radio and print media report our success.” Unfortunately, the smurfy record had already been topped last July by 451 people at Warwick University Students’ Union in England. One organizer of the wasted Croatian record attempt told reporters, “We could easily have got more Smurfs, but we thought that over a hundred more than the American record we found on the Internet would be enough.”

art

Culture Shock

Josh Jones is turning 30 and he's using it as an excuse to host an erotic art show. Jones, the brains behind Black Market Goods, plans to celebrate his coming of age with 30 But Still Durty. The one-night, 18-and-over event is at the Princess Jeanne Shopping Center (1440 Eubank NE) on Saturday, Feb. 9, at 8 p.m. and features naughty paintings, titillating sketches, searing photographs and flirtatious body painting. Jones even promised to re-enact his birth using interpretive dance and a tub of hair gel. Just let that image set in ...

In Frame

Rookies at the Richard Levy Gallery

It doesn't seem far-fetched for Oprah to rent out the Roman Colosseum to give a speech to the students of her leadership academy for girls, does it? This (and more) happens in the collages of Wain Wayne, who joins painter Jacob Goble in Rookies, on exhibit at the Richard Levy Gallery.

Psychedelic Elements in Design and Decor Aboard the M/S Oosterdam

When pondering the aesthetics of the typical lodging establishment—hotels, motels, resorts and cruise ships included-—cutting-edge design does not come to mind. Instead, there are flashes of burgundy, flower patterns, stripes and beige--mentally and spiritually apathetic exercises in blandness and safety. But every now and then someone, somewhere, on some corporate staff in the hospitality industry, has a vision that materializes on the walls and the ceilings and the floors and the stairs. On the couches and the chairs.

Blown Ashore

Geraldine Brooks, a lobster roll and the Sarajevo Haggadah

Geraldine Brooks may have hung up her press pass, but the foreign correspondent turned novelist has retained a journalist's knack for blending in.

food

Athens Eclectic Greek

The gods must be stuffed

I’m going to be honest here. I'm not crazy about Greek-American food. It's greasy. It's heavy. The components are unidentifiable as they blend together into flavor oblivion. Seriously, what’s with that hunk of spinning mystery flesh? Processed gyro meat tastes like Mediterranean Steak-Ums, spanakopita sometimes contains cottage cheese and, more often than not, Greek salads come topped with a one-inch cube of inferior feta.

Bite

Our innate drive to spend three hours cooking after eight hours working has been stunted lately. We’ve been making lots of quick-fix meals of late, and this one was at the top of the list.