Alibi V.29 No.32 • Aug 6-12, 2020

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Weekly Alibi has been covering news, arts and entertainment for Albuquerque and the surrounding area since 1992, and we have no intention of slowing down. We are the independent media voice in Albuquerque print and we aim to stay that way.


Black Lives Matter

The message could not be more clear: Black Lives Matter. With a peaceful gathering held in downtown Albuquerque this past weekend, the statement that rang truest with the crowd was, “We just want to live.”


The Show Must Go On

“Muppets Now” on Disney+

Clearly shot in the puppeteers’ own homes and filled with a bit more improvisation than previous iterations, “Muppets Now” is mostly hit and miss. If the writers, producers and performers can find a way to break through the formulaic segments and embrace a bit more of the original show’s manic and anarchic spirit, “Muppets Now” will make for a joyful weekly treat.


How is UNM Going to Work?

A conversation with the new dean of the College of Fine Arts.

It’s going to be a very different year at the College of Fine Arts at UNM, beginning with a new dean, Harris Smith, and obviously, continuing on with new ways to teach given the global pandemic. We sat down with Smith to talk about his background, his goals for the school and how students are going to be able to learn in this very different environment.

The Death and Life of School Pictures

Ally Burke’s Phantom Phases

A relic of a different time valued only by dusty grandmothers, the era of school pictures may have already been behind us without the interference of a global, school-shuttering pandemic. But in the world of Ally Burke, school pictures are reimagined, much like Nirvana reimaged the pep rally.


The Key Lime Caipirinha

A Brazilian cocktail made for August

The Key Lime Caipirinha is a tropical drink perfect for the dog days of August in the Northern Hemisphere. Of Brazilian derivation, it gets its flavor from the key limes and the Brazilian spirit Cachaça which is similar to rum, but made directly from raw sugarcane instead of molasses.


End of Days

Evangelicals oppose drug laws

The White House’s special spiritual advisor weirdly ripped into presidential hopeful Joe Biden for his anti-cannabis history; Ultra Health recently commissioned an analysis of the COVID-19 medical cannabis boom in New Mexico; a recently passed amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act could allow those in the military to use hemp products, including CBD.


The Yellow Brick Road Back to School

Coronavirus, masks and computer screens line the path to Emerald City

APS teachers and school staff return to school on Aug. 5 to prepare for online and in-school teaching, and learning in a sanitized and safe setting that includes social distancing and wearing face masks. While safety must be the main consideration, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to school reopening.

Community Terrorism

New Mexico Civil Guard draws on unarmed protestors

After a Sunday evening gathering against violence toward BIPOC from police, unarmed people were threatened by armed individuals. As things stand now, there is absolutely no evidence that justifies a gun to have been pulled, pointed and potentially discharged. Yet New Mexico Civil Guard is still out there, uninhibited by anything or anyone.


State Auditor says the City Councilor Klarissa Peña spent too much money on a trip; Michelle Lujan Grisham told reporters that she’d be willing to accept a role in Biden’s cabinet and as governor has extended a public health order that limits public gatherings through August.

The Importance of Social Media Literacy

Spotting bad actors in social movements

People’s lives can be immensely impacted by what is shared on social media, as we’ve seen here very recently when the New Mexico Civil Guard, the local right-wing militia that has deputized themselves as armed peacekeepers, posted the home addresses of two members of The Red Nation last week on their public Facebook page. So how do you tell the difference between a genuine member of a movement and a bad actor looking to phish you?

Welcome Back, Now Get to Work!

Councilors return to tackle helping Burque businesses

City Councilors faced down a packed Zoom agenda with no end in sight to the COVID pandemic, and many questions of how to help the city’s struggling businesses and residents were hanging in the virtual air.

What's The Buzz With Charter Schools?

School choice important during the pandemic

Have a kid with a passion for foreign languages? How about a flair for the media or digital arts? Maybe a budding flamenco dancer? Or a young Einstein or a novice Marie Curie? Here in New Mexico there are 96 public charter schools that offer unique, top-rated educational opportunities for students with all kinds of passions.

Going Maskless

School will open in-person day one, no masks required

Legacy Church Academy, a private school centered around the namesake church, has announced that it will be doing in-person classes from day one of school reopening, and that it will not be enforcing masks.

It Feels Like Facism

Words of protestor abducted in July hit home for local citizen

What does fascism feel like? Deep, deep grief.

Odds & Ends

Funny because being called fat on Facebook happens to someone else.

Alibi V.29 No.31 • July 30-Aug 5, 2020

Operation Legend in Albuquerque

Trump deploys feds against wishes of city officials

Sheriff Manual Gonzalez III was welcomed to the White House to speak with President Trump about a supposed surge of violent crime in Albuquerque and other US cities, and the possibility of deploying federal agents to those cities in response. Later, Attorney General William P. Barr confirmed this possibility when he announced the launch of Operation Legend.


Future Imperfect

“Brave New World” on Peacock

“Brave New World” feels less like a farsighted glimpse into a future world of wonder and more like an unoriginal, corporate groupthink-produced sci-fi soap that uses successful contemporaries like “Westworld” as a photocopied blueprint.



What We Wear When We Protest

Ellen Lesperance on sweaters

Ellen Lesperance is a painter interested in the sweaters worn by the protesting women during the 19 years of an all-women anti-nuclear protest outside the gates of the Royal Airforce base Greenham Common in England throughout the ’80s and ’90s. Weekly Alibi sat down with Lesperance to talk about protests, knitting and the strength of sweaters.

A Life Made While You Were Watching TV

The tinker of Tinkertown

Time was one of the crazier places you could go in New Mexico was the Tinkertown Museum. There you would find an amorphous structure and grounds that displayed a genuine fear of blank spaces and the unbounded creative output of its creator, Ross Ward. Sadly, Ward died in 2002 but the new book The Tinker of Tinkertown: The Life and Art of Ross Ward is a tribute to his work and a creative life well lived.


That’s Quite a Pickle!

Preserve your veggies for future feasts

If the monsoons have sent your garden into overdrive in the last few weeks, you're likely looking for a way to deal with the bounty once your crisper drawers fill up. One quick option is to pickle something!


Workers Are Not Expendable

The New Mexico Restaurant Association needs to know

A few weeks ago, the New Mexico Restaurant Association (NMRA) hosted a virtual protest urging restaurants across the state to post pictures of their employees outside of their establishments with signs that read “Let Us Serve.” This action came after Governor Lujan Grisham announced reimposing the ban on indoor dining at eateries and breweries.

Turning Away from the Ledge

Battling suicide in New Mexico

For the past 50 years, Arora Crisis Center has supported those in crisis to face and understand their demons rather than trying to escape them through suicide. Their certified volunteer crisis hotline specialists provide compassionate, non-judgmental help for anyone in need of emotional support. Agora volunteers won't tell you how to solve your problem, but they will help you figure out what options you might have.


PED Secretary told reporters that the department is working on a plan to reopen schools and get kids back into the classroom; the New Mexico Restaurant Association is continuing to battle health orders that ban indoor dining; the federal Bureau of Land Management has been surrendering land in New Mexico and Arizona to the US Army for use in the construction of a border wall.


Just Say No

Dems fail to support cannabis legalization

Joe Biden is turning the Democratic Party into “Republican-lite"; a CBD company is recalling dozens of hemp products after notified of lead contamination; two cannabis producers, a cannabis manufacturer, a testing laboratory and a cannabis patient filed petitions against the New Mexico Department of Health’s new set of rules.

CBD Can Help Cannabis Addiction

A study found that CBD could be an effective treatment for cannabis dependency; another study has reportedly found a correlation between regular cannabis use among women and increased sexual gratification.

Alibi V.29 No.30 • July 23-29, 2020

Creating a COVID Anthem

Clark Andrew Libbey’s Small Town Famous

There is nothing like a global pandemic to keep musicians home recording albums. Those making electronic music may have it a bit easier than those requiring a full band in these times of social distancing, but Clark Andrew Libbey found a workaround for this problem on his new album Small Town Famous by playing all the instruments himself.


A Conversation with Jimmy Santiago Baca

The joy of cruising in the New Mexico sun

Weekly Alibi speaks with Jimmy Santiago Baca, who lived in one of the toughest prisons alongside men that our society deems the worst of the worst. He has partied with movie moguls, taught at Yale, rubbed elbows with literary snobs, and he still walks the dusty New Mexico streets with us looking for green chile.


Property of Netflix

Arthur Who?

“Cursed” on Netflix

Netflix’s “Cursed” is an attractive but convoluted attempt to thread the extremely wide needle eye between “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys” and “Game of Thrones.”


Arnold Palmer and Jack

A summer classic par excellence

Just as Julius Caesar is the eponym for the Cesarean section and Humphrey Bogart is known for holding a joint too long, golfer Arnold Palmer, while surely not the first person to mix ice tea with lemonade, now extends his legacy to the beverage that bears his name.


Get With the Program

NORML demands legalization

NORML told our presidential candidates what’s what last week; New Mexico Top Organics-Ultra Health Inc. is suing the New Mexico Department of Health over new regulations; the House Appropriations Committee just released directives that were attached to spending legislation and included a number of cannabis provisions.

Federal Program to Help Testing Accuracy

The National Institute of Standards and Technology recently announced a new program to make hemp testing more accurate; Hollywood legend Clint Eastwood is suing a number of CBD companies for using his name and image.


Curb for a Pillow, Street for a Bed

Pandemic exacerbates homeless problem in New Mexico

Long term shelter, at an affordable cost, is getting harder and harder to come by in Albuquerque. From 2013 to 2019, street homelessness nearly quadrupled in the city from 144 to 567 people.

Global Drug Use Rising, How Does This Impact the United States?

Preventing substance use begins with education and early intervention

Many Americans coming out of this pandemic will need assistance, along with those in recovery and anyone struggling with addiction. There could be a potential surge of people needing help, and substance use treatment providers should be prepared to adapt to the increased need.

Education Reform Struggles

State fails to dismiss Yazzie/Martinez case, plans to meet court mandate

Last Wednesday, July 15, the NM Legislative Education Study Committee met via Zoom to discuss the Public Education Department’s goals around the Yazzie/Martinez case. Ryan Stewart, New Mexico’s secretary of education, gave a presentation to the committee on the initial steps the PED is taking.

City Council Reviews Police Budget

APD receives scrutiny amid overtime investigation, public comment

Two City Council committee meetings last week brought up the subject of police department budgets, a topic receiving attention nationwide as protests against police violence continue in many cities. The Albuquerque Police Department’s budget is now under review, with a state investigation into the department’s use of overtime hours raising questions about ethics and accountability.

On Independence and Inequality

As unemployment supplement ends, many fear what's next

Our government needs to step up and ensure people have some semblance of protection right now, or we’re looking at another Great Depression. We can’t expect everything to just kick in to full again, so maybe another New Deal is in line.


A number of agencies are investigating APD of overtime fraud; New Mexico’s COVID-19 hospitalization rate is rising, but that number includes patients who have been sent here from Arizona; the New Mexico Legislative Finance Committee says state spending on a nursing expansion program has paid off.



New Work in the Open Space

The Luna Project is a group of a dozen women artists working in a variety of mediums that meet frequently to share techniques and critiques, showing once or twice a year since 2003. Lightscape is packed with recent two-and three-dimensional works from all 12 artists. It is underestimated how groups like this can push individual artists to improve and, most importantly, finish their works.