Culture Shock

Not Summer Lovin’

Erin Adair-Hodges
3 min read
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July is hot; unbearably, blisteringly hot. Though I’m a New Mexico native, I’m not made to endure this kind of heat. Composed entirely of recessive genes, my body and mind are breaking under this thermal assault. And don’t even get me started about sunshine. Some people get depressed by rainy weather; I get depressed by heat and sun. In order to counter the effects of this potentially debilitating season, this week’s Culture Shock is focused on me and things I like. Once someone out there can arrange for it to be overcast and 72 degrees, I’ll think about you. For now, it’s too hot to be considerate.

Poetry. I love it so much I went to grad school for it then promptly ceased writing it. Still, though, I do love to see that over the past decade, poetry has taken its rightful place in the American consciousness. Not convinced? Ride the bus. In 2008, the
Poetry on the Bus program was begun by ABQ Ride, presumably in an effort to class up the joint, so to speak. Last year, 465 poems were submitted; the best were made into panels featured inside the city’s bus fleet. Here’s your chance to get your name on the walls of a bus (for a respectable reason, for once). Send in your best work of 50 words or less by Friday, July 24. The application and contest info are available at

In addition to being a semiretired poet and aesthetic-imposing arts editor, I’m also a teacher, and the only thing I love more than the challenge of teaching is being celebrated for doing it. This happens approximately every seven years and usually involves a sparsely attended awards ceremony at a buffet. Much better is the lovely gesture by Blackout Theatre, who on Thursday, July 16, offers teachers
free admission to Le Bourgeois Avant-Garde , beginning at 8 p.m. For all other performance dates, educators get free tickets during the "teachers rush," which means they can snap up any still available seats just before the curtain goes up. Though teachers are used to having all the answers, sometimes we have questions, too, so go to

And though I’ve made it fairly clear how I feel about summer weather, I do love the outdoors, provided it’s appropriately shaded. Luckily, the
Corrales Society of Artists’ Art in the Park is presented under the boughs of large, old trees. Taking place the third Sunday of every month through October, Art in the Park features the work of a heap of local artists, along with music, food and entertainment. And shade. It’s from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at La Entrada Park. For more information and a map, go to

This week on, Gallery Box looks at
CiRQ Art Gallery and Boutique.
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