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V.24 No.46 | 11/12/2015
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Flash Fiction

The House on Silver Avenue

I am going to need another tug off that bottle of Thunderbird if I am going to go down there and rescue one of those kittens said Charlie to the spare but shabby living room of the house on Silver Avenue.

Chauncy was in the room under the stairs which contained a sink, a shower and crapper. He did not hear Charlie talking nonsense about the cats because he was getting ready for his evening shift at the steakhouse. Chauncy was frantically trying to coax chicken fat stains out of his black trousers with a toothbrush and a bottle of Florida Water.

The others were in the first-floor bedroom, across from all of that. They couldn't hear Charlie either. Michael was smoking dirt weed out of a pipe he had carved from an apple, reclining like royalty on the bed while his stunned girlfriend Sherri sat in the corner picking glitter out of her hair and counting Jeffersons. They moved in last week and Charlie knew them about as well as any of the other punk rockers from across the street.

Charlie looked around and realized he was speaking to empty space, chatting with the void. He got up and dragged himself to the kitchen. Tim Lodgeson was in there cooking a chicken in the microwave. He had the whole thing in the oven for ten minutes while the two of them sat around jawing about school. Charlie couldn't make heads or tails of what Lodgeson told him. It was something about forests and capitalism.

When the meat came out it was gray. It had the appearance of plastic. Tim took the bird and skewered it with a big silver serving fork he had taken from the cafeteria last semester, around Thanksgiving. He started gnawing on the chicken as if he had not eaten for a week, like he had conquered a small but vicious dinosaur with teeth and technology.

Charlie excused himself politely, gagged and walked out onto the back porch. He could hear the kittens in the basement mewling for their mother. The hell with the Thunderbird, he thought, I sure would like a new pet cat. Further reasoning that such an outcome would be a pleasant surprise for his girlfriend, he sauntered down the stairs and into the darkness.

He felt his way around for a bit until he could reach out and pull on the chain that turned on the light bulb in the middle of basement. Sure enough, there was a litter of cats in the basement. Their mother was nowhere to be seen. Charlie crept over to snatch up a tiny calico.

An eruption of teeth and fur and hair and blood coincided with that action as the hidden mother pounced. The living fury would not come off him, though he clawed and clawed at it. He retreated and was filled up with a queasy combination of shame and horror. The damn thing finally let up when he got to the door, lunging for the knob and hitting his head on the concrete as he fell toward the yard.

Back inside of the house on Silver Avenue, Michael and Sherri had crept out their room and were watching Hee Haw in the big front room. Chauncy was in the kitchen critiquing Tim's culinary procedures as he attempted to saw a leg off of what was left of the poultry experiment. Chauncy was dressed for work now. He looked like a million bucks and was being awfully careful not to get any schmaltz on his waiter's uniform as he danced around Tim's meaty methodologies.

As the two went on and on about the wonders of microwave cooking and with the mellow sounds of George Jones drifting through the whole place, Charlie entered from the porch. He asked for a wet towel and wondered aloud where his bottle of wine might have gotten to. Saturday night had just begun.

V.24 No.45 | 11/05/2015

Letters From Downtown:

Things I See On My Way To Work

Things I see on my way to work:

(3) APD Cars, two going to the same destination, and quickly.

(1) Santa Fe Police Car, attracting disdainful looks.

(1) Back bumper of a Ford Mazda. Bumper sticker reads ‘If you can see this you’re too close’.

(1) Shattered brake light, presumably from the same car.

(1) Shattered headlight, presumably from the tailgating asshole.

(2) People dressed nicely, a man and a woman separately. Life has treated them well, they tell themselves as they scream into their cell phones.

(5) People dressed casually, half wait for the bus, the others walk. The ones with company don’t seem to mind as much the time of day and the bitter cold.

(3) People dressed in many layers of tattered clothing. One sleeps in a slouched position, one waits for the bus, and one walks seemingly aimlessly.

(3) Very large murals painted on the walls of city buildings. People from different cities would wonder how vandalists are able to create such intricate pieces without anyone stopping them.

(2) City buses, struggling to turn the tight corners of small downtown streets.

(4) Pieces of actual graffiti. Two are small tags with gang names and the others are aborted works of art not commissioned by the government.

(1) Puddle of indeterminable nature. It hasn’t rained in a week, and the puddle smells like a pit to hell.

The Daily Word in Republicans, bad sex, and space death

The Daily Word

Last night's GOP debate is calm and mature... Relatively.

The people at BuzzFeed share with us their lousy sex experience.

Albuquerque honors its veterans- with free stuff!

Yet another “Beauty Through the Decades” video, but this one takes the romantic filter off of the past to show what women were really doing.

A planet far far away causes scientists to rethink the way they see planetary orbit.

Ancient English tree rejects gender binary.

Space is terrifying. Death is around every corner, and these astronauts have faced it head on.

Here's a page thats full of people gushing about Fallout 4. If that interests you.


The Daily Word in Jeb! would kill baby Hitler, a slow speed car race at Albuquerque's Lantern Fest and where ice cream comes from

RIP Allen Tousaint

The Daily Word

There could be major changes to the bail system in New Mexico, from eliminating bail for non-violent crimes, to doing away with the informal parody between bail amounts and specific charges.

A transgender student in Cibola County will be allowed to use the restroom of her choosing after changes were made to the school district's code.

Caitlyn Jenner was in Albuquerque.

Here's a list of Veterans Day events around New Mexico, here is a list of holiday closures.

To get around a permit problem, Albuquerque's Lantern Fest will be holding a "slow speed race" all day at Sandia Speedway.

Yes, given the opportunity, Jeb Bush would kill baby Hitler.

You already knew Unicorns poop ice cream, but have you heard of the Squatty Potty?

Billy Idol has a long-term gig in Vegas.

Campbell's Soup has changed its chicken noodle soup recipe.

Continuing their efforts to prove Quentin Tarantino wrong, members of the Los Angeles Police Department gunned down a man in the middle of a street.

Musician Allen Tousaint has died.


The Daily Word in the Feds, football and propulsion systems that defy physics

The Daily Word

Federal investigators are interested in goings-on within Governor Susana Martinez' administration.

South by Southwest, Austin's yearly alternative music event, is the best way to see a year's worth of live music in a long weekend. Hint: it's not too late to find a Southwest flight to Austin and the hotels haven't sold out, yet.

The Lobo Football squad held off a fourth quarter field goal attempt to beat Utah State 14-13 at University Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Wapo's teevee critic Hank Stuever laments the Donald's appearance on SNL.

The NM Environment Department will begin coordinating clean up efforts of a downtown Albuquerque toxic waste spill discovered in the 1990s.

NASA's Eagleworks Laboratories continues to test the controversial EmDrive.

Deerhoof plays at Sister tonight, yo.

Alibi Writer and Circulation Manager Geoffrey Plant was way shorter than Caitlyn Jenner in Starbucks this morning


"I am Cait" and "Here we are Hanging Out at Starbucks in Albuquerque, New Mexico"

Replied Caitlyn Jenner after I told her I worked for the local alt-weekly newspaper

There were no lights, no cameras in the Starbucks on Lomas and Broadway in Albuquerque this morning, but there was more than a little action one couldn't help notice centered around a rather tall, slim and classy-looking lady who was giving her coffee order. I can't tell you who the young entourage was that surrounded Caitlyn Jenner, but they all seemed excited to be with America's most recognizable trans celebrity and, in my opinion, themselves exuded an aura of Hollywood. Perhaps the group was all involved in Caitlyn Jenner's new project "I am Cait", which has apparently been doing some filming in New Mexico.

Truth be told, quite a few cell phone cameras did start to appear as I asked for a photo with a celebrity I realized is a celebrity twice-over. Olympic Gold Medalist Bruce Jenner is now Caitlyn Jenner, a TV star and cultural icon. Having a brief face to face with Caitlyn really brought home to me how "real" her gender transition is. She's all woman. Judging from the comments she was getting in buckets—from fans she told one of her companions were starting to "come in a bit hot"—Caitlyn Jenner genuinely inspires people and, by being so public and open about her life, has helped give the trans community a degree of acceptability that mightn't exist right now. She's singlehandedly reduced some of the hate and bigotry in American culture. I could say the same about Dan Savage and "It Gets Better" but he wasn't in my local Starbucks this morning and he isn't as pretty as Caitlyn. Gush.

Flash Fiction

The Scouts

Freeman had a good idea of what was going to go on later that night, but didn't let on until he was sure his father had passed out in the living room from a twelve pack of Lowenbrau Dark and the stress that comes from designing nuclear weapons for a living.

He crept out into the garage, yanked down the back gate of the old man's red and white FJ55 and dragged the inflatable raft out the storage bay. Duck feathers and dog hair went flying everywhere, but finally the raft was on the cement floor.

He went back in for a moment and made sure Harold was comfortable, threw a blanket over him for effect, while the old master snored and snored away. Then he got on the phone, dragging the handset—and the ten foot coiled plastic cord that followed it everywhere—into a pantry by the kitchen, for privacy.

On the other end of a connection made possible by manipulating a rotating plastic wheel with the index finger, Alexander listened intently while Freeman layed out his idea: They were going to climb up on top of the big water tank that was nestled in the foothills by the high school.

Using stealth, a pair of bolt cutters taken from shop class—while Mr. Duran was hamming it up on the table saw—and of course, Harold's prized hunting raft, they were going to float around and maybe even take a swim in the largest artificial body of water either Eagle Scout could ever imagine.

Alexander's folks were running some sort of high-gravity-atomic-laser experiment at the lab on that particular evening, so he saw absolutely nothing wrong with the plan, and in fact sort of admired its simplicity.

Alex locked Arcoiris the retriever in the back bedroom and grabbed the keys to his van. It was a forest green Dodge that comfortably sat eight. Alexander and his friends called it the Congo van, mostly because they imagined one day taking it on a road trip to Africa or somewhere thereabouts.

Before he got to Freeman's pad, he stopped at Sherri's place, which was only two doors down. It was a sprawling ranch-style with a weeping willow and heaps of lava rock in front. He convinced Sherri and her pal Barbara to join in on the action. The two gals climbed out a bedroom window.

Both of them lit up Salems as they took a seat in the very back of the Dodge. Put on KFMG Sherri said, they are playing a special on the new Pink Floyd album. Alexander grimaced and spit out the window. He already heard Animals; it sucked. So, he tuned the radio to KRST instead, and started headbanging to some song or other about a Green Manalishi. The group drove by Allsups and picked up a dozen burritos and a twelve pack of Jolt Cola for luck.

By this time, Freeman was waiting out in the drive way, had folded the inflatable raft into a lumpy bundle. He was anxious to get going and when Alexander arrived, ran up to the Congo van and started shouting about how they didn't have all night and for crissakes, why'd he bring Sherri and Barbara along?

Just in case the unexpected happens, said Alexander, plus which, both of them can drive a five speed and that ought to count for something.

It was no trouble climbing up to the top of the water tank, hell there was even a staircase. Sherri and Barbara stayed in the van with a walkie talkie, six of the Jolts, and all of the burritos. That was meant to be a reward to be bestowed when Alexander and Freeman returned, wetly triumphant.

As Freeman cut the chains that locked the door at the very top of the tank, Alexander dragged the raft into position. Once past the gate, they lugged the raft and a 50 foot rappelling rope over the top. At the center of the tank there was a simple but awfully large metal grate. They struggled to lift the grate. Finally it gave way and rolled off the tower, clanging and tolling like a church bell when it hit the asphalt below.

Alexander made a bowline knot around one of the stair-railings and threw the rope down into the dark hole. Freeman hit the inflate button and tossed the raft down there too. Both of the scouts activated their flashlights and left their hiking boots at the edge of the water tower's maw. Freeman stared at his watch.

Alexander got on the walkie talkie. Barbara and Sherri were on the other side, parked down the road a ways, by the Temple of the Nazarene. He told them if they didn't hear back in exactly two minutes, one of them ought to come up the stairs with the flare gun while the other drives over to Fire Station 16 to tell what happened.

V.24 No.44 | 10/29/2015
SO Fine at Sister


King Khan & BBQ Demonstrate Stamina, Nipples

Sometimes your favorite bands just don't draw a crowd in Albuquerque, for whatever reason, leaving you feeling a bit dispirited about your home town. Thankfully, King Khan & BBQ Show fans didn't stay home last night, though they were a bit tardy, most trickling into Sister during opening band Milk Lines –who played a nice, country-tinged set of psych/rock and roll.

Khan and Mark Sultan (AKA BBQ) came out sans uniforms—to the audible dismay of the packed floor—but it turned out they were simply performing a quick sound check and announced they'd be back after a wardrobe change. And, bam! a nearly naked Khan and a nipple-exposing, body-stockinged BBQ appeared in front of an enthusiastic crowd. The Bad News Boys opened with "Piss Slide", a tune new to me but a concept Khan made Alibi readers familiar with in an interview this week. "Piss Slide, Baby" indeed.

Khan & BBQ proceeded to rock the pants of the crowd for nearly two hours, playing hits like "Waddlin' Around" and "Invisible Girl" with panache and without flaw. Though they didn't play "Animal Party", they did perform one of the sickest tunes in the history of the world, "Taste Buds". Nothing like a crowd singing along to that one. Best show I've seen since Black Lips played Sister. Mark Sultan fairly steals the show with his amazing voice and jiggling nipples, something to be admired considering his partner is one of the more infamous wild-men of contemporary rock and roll. Here's hoping these two make it back to Albuquerque in some capacity, as the King Khan & BBQ Show or with King Khan & The Shrines or BBQ, solo.

(It's A) Monster's Holiday


It's a Monster's Holiday!

We all know what Halloween in Burque's like ... and can only imagine what the holiday sounds like in Bakersfield. Hmm, I wonder if David Lowery knows about this?

The Daily Word in Halloween, Feminism, and Leonardo DiCaprio

The Daily Word

The Author of Wicked wrote about how dumb men can be in his new take on Alice in Wonderland.

Looking for your next read?

If you're not a feminist, move out the way.

I thought things may be better in Canada, but there's no borders for the patriarchy.

Albuquerque officer Daniel Webster died overnight from injuries sustained during a traffic stop last week.

Here's some Halloween party prep for you.

According to SXSW, to fight sexism, you should succumb to it.

Some last minute costume ideas for the ladies.

Leo D. may actually get an Oscar???

A grocery store in Pennsylvania isn't selling eggs to minors Oct. 24 through Nov. 1.

Finally, happy Halloween from me to you.

Creative Non-Fiction

Locochon Viente Tres

I am at my breakfast early, making a crude sort of magic which, when properly performed, causes a plate full of huevos rancheros to disappear. As I prepare to initiate the penultimate sacrifice, involving a quarter of a tortilla and the heated albumin and yolk sac of an animal that can only fly short distances, three taggers walk into the restaurant.

An acrid aerosol afterglow is trailing right behind them, molecular and ghostly. Their fingertips are stained with dark colors, greens and greys—the colors of forests and buildings. One of them has a faint golden outline painted around his nose and mouth. It is shaped like a flower or a crude drawing of a heart.

Refugio, also known as El Jefe, does most of the talking. Tilting his head in my general direction, they shuffle over to my table. Furtive glances are exchanged. The three sit, smelling of burnt rope, giving me the once over twice.

Procopio, the oldest one, has big bruised hands. They hang by his side wearily. The tagger with the huffed facial halo calls himself Locochon Viente Tres. He takes a black plastic comb from his back pocket and starts running it through his hair. He does this with flair, a fair amount of compulsion and until his friends look at him narrowly in a fashion that suggests wonder and thirst. Locochon puts the comb away. Embarrassed and slightly dazed, he covers his head with an Albuquerque Dukes baseball cap.

El Jefe addresses me in an ornate vernacular filled with slang and profanity—suggesting formality and deference. He is almost whispering, but not quite. He nods warily and with his palms turned out toward the sky and heaven, tells me about last night. After drinking a grip of forties they realized I wasn't la jura after all—porque Five-O don't wear gaffas like I do, except on the teevee shows their abuelitas watched twenty thousand years ago. Procopio thought those Ray-Bans were some old school mierda and besides his mom looked me up on Facebook. It's all good.

El Jefe nods at Locochon Viente Tres who retrieves an iPhone 6s from under his waistband. He laughs waxenly at my surprised expression. I did not see the phone before, I say, before telling how my phone isn't all that. It is like a relic from the astronaut days—something Gene Roddenberry dreamed up one night after a cocktail party at Trader Vic's.

The three taggers look at me as if I am from another world. I am from another world, I begin to think as they start thumbing through images of their work. The waitress comes by to refill my cup of coffee—a dark elixir with stimulating extra-solar properties I briefly imagine while glancing at their bright and brazen oeuvre.

There are pictures of rusted boxcars transformed by raw color and the acute geometry of experience. The railroad company usually paints the stuff over in a few days El Jefe says. In one of the photos Locochon Viente Tres is standing on top of a newly painted locomotive, frajo dangling from his mouth. He is giving everyone the finger and his eyes are glassy but triumphantly aware.

There is a second set of photos, taken throughout the labyrinthine network of concrete-lined flood control channels criss-crossing the city. The paintings left behind in this forbidden zone of abandoned shopping carts, dead dogs and crumbling tumble-weeds are like cartoons. A bravado of optimism pours out of the tangled letters. It's just like Saturday morning in 1972 but without the Tang, I remark, . El Jefe nods blankly. He continues to flip through that collection with trembling hands, big brown eyes darting around and around the room.

I ask have they heard of Banksy. They think I am putting them on. What kind of fucking artist is that, the one with hands like wooden mallets hisses. No one would have a name like that and if they did, they'd better change it, like soon bro. El Jefe tells me he took a couple of drawing classes at West Mesa High School. Locochon Viente Tres looks out the window of the diner while untranslatable combinations of sans-serif letters tumble out of his mouth as tiny flecks of paint.

When I am done with my fifth cup of coffee, having thereby completed the ritual I previously told you about, I tell the three I gotta go but ask can I write about them this week. That is ATM, that is chido, El Jefe gravely intones. Can I come out and watch them work, one day when the autumn sun is fading into winter, when the hot air balloons are at their height of popularity, I wonder aloud.

Locochon Viente Tres smirks. Using a filthy napkin and a Sharpie, he draws a detailed map, complete with snake-like roads, forlorn rose gardens and remodeled freeway overpasses.

We all get up to leave. El Jefe says to make sure and come by during the day; they think I'm cool, but who knows what their homies will think if I show up after the sun's gone down. Those dudes are hardcore chingones, he reminds me as he lays a Washington on the table and slinks toward the door.


The Daily Word in The Shining, Twitter and Sesame Street

The Daily Word

The Stanley Hotel makes The Shining experience come to life.

I bet you wish you worked at Twitter right about now.

Is exploding things with machine guns a hobby of yours? Well Kentucky is the place for you. Check it out!

Nervous to fly? The Sunport has introduced nine therapy dogs to calm your anxiety.

From coffee to condoms, is pumpkin spice taking over the world? Check out everything that’s turned pumpkin spice this fall!

New Mexico residents are gonna need another form of ID come January.

You’ve found cool things hiking, but have you ever found anything as cool as a viking sword?

Sesame Street introduces a new character with autism. How can this show not run forever?

V.24 No.43 | 10/22/2015

Flash Fiction

The Preparations

Youngish, red-haired, but on the surface grizzled, as was common among his folk, Luther scraped up enough feria every month to pay his rent by working odd jobs around the student ghetto. Luther mastered projects like fixing swamp coolers and painting porches. Once in a while he scored a big job, like the time he took care of Royal Eddie, the punk rock pig while the swine's owners were following FIDLAR around on their tour of the Southwest. He got two Benjamins for that gig.

All of that meant he could keep his pantry stocked with Spam and canned beans plus Alpo brand dog food, which his hound dog, Han Solo, craved. The dog would howl hellishly when the stuff was being laid out for din din.

Luther spent his days off sitting in the Frontier Restaurant, looking at the art work, imagining what it might be like to live in the old west. He figured he'd be doing sort of the same thing, except he'd have a horse and would have to heat up his tinned goods with the heat from a campfire. Han Solo would subsist entirely on wild rabbits.

One day, Luther got to looking through the Daily Lobo. That was the name of the college paper in those parts, and man did it have some fancy writing. He really liked the column written by the eccentric classical history professor from back east; that fellow sure knew how to give it to the kooks that ran the place. But what really caught his eye was an advertisement on the back page.

The ad had been placed by a local construction-tool rental company. They were looking for someone to be in charge of maintaining the equipment folks borrowed. Luther knew a hell of a lot about tools. He clipped out the announcement with the scissors in his Swiss Army knife, stuffed the scrap of paper in his front jeans pocket and took the back exit where his old Ford F-100 was waiting. Han Solo was sprawled out, asleep on the wide bench seat.

Luther got the job, did damn fine at it. His boss Ernie was impressed with his attention to detail and seemingly endless knowledge of construction materials. But he did not care for Luther's man bun, skinny jeans or the way he sometimes smelled of burnt rope.

About a year later, Luther took over for Ernie, who moved on to Sausalito to look after a boat. Luther had saved up enough money to rent a house by then, too. He was plumb tired of living between Central and Garfield, so he went driving north of there and stumbled on a big old run down ranch style by Hidden Park. Sure enough there was a for rent sign in front and an oaken swing on the shabby porch, to boot.

The dude that answered the phone was named Mel. He said he wanted 1500 dollars a month, plus a deposit of 1000 Washingtons. He told Luther he liked dogs alright, as long as they didn't shit the house. After a quick meeting the two struck a deal. Luther started hauling his worldly possessions over to his new home.

It was a dark, musty place with a big back bedroom that had a walk-in closet. Smack in the middle of that room within a room was a cellar door that went down to a shallow crawl space. Luther thought it would make a perfect location to start building a secret hideout.

For that mission, Luther got some of his friends to help out. They could pretend they were in an episode of "Doomsday Preppers" or something like that. They'd drink Thunderbird wine, light up and get that burnt rope smell going while listening to this or that version of "Me and My Uncle", or "Sugar Magnolia". They would dig and dig, dragging four by fours and sheets of three quarter inch plywood into and through the house before the summer sun came back early and the authorities caught on.

Soon enough, there was a cavern under the master bedroom. Luther even trained Han Solo to crawl around down there. The walls were lined with cans of Ranch Style beans, rectangular tins of Spam and about a thousand units of Alpo brand dog food. It was wired with electricity too; if you went down there, you could read or jam out or just wait for the coming apocalypse—making sure all the while tools and weapons were properly prepared and organized.

Luther was proud of his creation, so it was a goddamn shame when he got evicted after drunkenly hinting about his secret mission to a neighbor. It turned out the guy next door was a magistrate judge who did not cotton to hearing first hand that a gaggle of hipsters was digging holes and getting ready for the end times right next door. Who the fuck knew what else was going on at that decrepit old house, the judge thought to himself as he dialed up Mel to complain.

Mel sent Luther a letter to let him know the jig was up. Luther waited a couple of days and pulled up stakes. He nailed the door to the hideout shut and drove off toward the setting sun with a truckload of canned goods, bottled water and a hound named after a character from a galaxy far, far away.

Luther thought about being a cowboy again, how the wilderness could be his for the taking. He hoped he could find another place where he could prepare, where he could dig. "Fuck the tool shop" he yelled out the window of the Ford. Maybe Eugene or Arcata, he imagined as the old truck crested a western hill and kept on rolling like the sea; towards its edge.

V.24 No.42 | 10/15/2015
Goddess Ink

Event Horizon

Books are Sexy

Friday, Oct 23: Burlesque, Yoga, Sex and Love Book Launch

Join local award-winning author Dr. Anne Key for the launch of her second memoir with a book signing and live burlesque.
Did he almost tell her he dated her sister? We'll never know.

505 Circles of Hell

Dating in Burque

If you live in Albuquerque, I assume you understand the struggle of trying to date here. Everyone knows each other (at least by extension), so it's difficult to meet new people unless you do something out of the ordinary. Let's be honest though; we're all relatively busy people and doing anything like that takes effort. Being New Mexican, we're all about that minimal effort (it is the Land of Mañana). So we want novelty but without actually doing anything. For me, that resulted in angst and disappointment.

When I was freshly single around a year ago after a serious relationship, I went on a lot of dates. Before that relationship, I hadn't dated very much, so I was basically brand new to the scene. Prior to the serious relationship, I dated people that I had met through my friends. I got over that pretty quickly because none of them could keep a single fuckin' thing private (I'm talking mainly about myself here, no judgement).

This time, I turned to online dating. While I can rant about that ad nauseam, my summary is that it was weird and kinda fun but was usually disappointing. The only true advantage I can think of is that it's useful to find other queer people. Alas, I only used it for fuck boys (wtf, past Megan, get your shit together). Fuck Boy culture is alive and well in Burque. A guy I was casually dating on and off for awhile would get mad at me whenever I would hint that I had been with other people, so one day I asked him if he had seen anyone else since we started dating. He avoided answering the question for a few minutes, but since I was so tired of his bullshit, I was persistent. Eventually he “answered” my question; he said he couldn't remember. We had been seeing each other for nine months at that point and he couldn't remember. This experience echoes through several other relationships I've had. One guy said “All other men are jealous of me because I steal their women.” Another wouldn't leave my home after I told him to leave for almost five hours. Someone else ordered me the strongest alcoholic drink after I said I wasn't going to have anymore drinks at the end of our date. And another told me that my sexuality was a trendy phase, I'd be over it soon and be back exclusively to real men like him. Asinine fuck boys are just after fulfilling their personal interests.

Dating in Albuquerque is bordering incestuousness. It's hard to find a new circle of people that are truly compatible for us, not only regarding romantic relationships but friendships too. That's why more often than not, we date our friends' friends, until we date everyone in the same social circle and then move on to the new group of people that you were introduced to by your former S/O.

For example, once I ran into one guy I was dating—let's call him Tom—when I was on a date with another guy. Other guy had literally just walked away to use the bathroom at Sister. This instigated one of my worst fears: being around all the people I'm dating or ever have dated, at the same time. I'd like to think it would go over well but my anxiety tells me that it will be disastrous. Will they talk about my weird laugh? What about how I don't understand computers therefore I'm stupid? Will they talk about how my boobs are lopsided? Will they discuss how I was a shitty partner? I have no idea and I never want to find out.

Tom went back to his friends shortly after he said hello, and again, the other guy literally came back as soon as Tom left. I grabbed him and ran away to Burt's. Later I found out that Tom and that guy had dated another lady before dating me around the same time. I have yet to meet/date her, but I'm sure I'll make my way eventually.

After all this, I feel it's important to share some (logical) dating tips for people to not completely suck at dating.

1. Be honest 100% of the time. Do you hate the way they pronounce theater? Tell your person. Do you think they could really benefit from researching cultural appropriation? Tell your person. Do they ever make you uncomfortable? Tell your person.

2. If someones expectations don't match yours, leave. It hurts more to be with someone who doesn't value you and respect what you need than it hurts to be alone. 3. Don't go to the same bars all the time or you'll run into people you are trying to avoid and forget.

3. Don't be a fuck boy. Ladies talk. We warn each other of creepy guys. Also, don't you want your reputation to be more than “Stay away from that guy who always wears weed socks, he only grinds when he dances and he will buy you drink after drink. As Liz Lemon would say: shut it down.”?

4. Use protection. Duh.

My final note: For those of you who don't even want to touch the dating scene, Self Serve is a wonderful store where you'll find many goodies for yourself. #treatyoself.

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