Alibi Volume 13, Number 11
March 11, 2004
Battle over same-sex marriage licenses heads toward New Mexico court
Sometime back in the late 19th century, territorial governor Lew Wallace made what for some might seem like a timeless observation. “All calculations based on our experiences elsewhere fail in New Mexico,” he wrote.
Recalling an election in the pre-”Will and Grace” era
There was a time, not so long ago, when the prospect of legally sanctioned gay marriage playing a central role in presidential and congressional elections seemed about as remote as finding water on Mars. The idea was simply too radical. But times change. Between court rulings in Massachusetts and the seemingly endless eruption of brushfire rebellions (or blatant law-breaking, depending on your perspective) at city halls and county courthouses around the country, the same sex marriage debate is positioned to share top-billing with the economy, WMD, and the War on Terror not just this election year, but for probably a few more to come.
“Would you be in favor of allowing same-sex marriages in New Mexico?”
I think that they should have same-sex marriages. I don't see what the big problem is, personally. Maybe it's just how I grew up or what I was taught, but I don't see a problem. I mean, love is love. You know, we all love our friends and I don't understand why people can't love the same people that they are. So I think it's fine.
Somewhere along the way to the protest, there was a breakdown in communication. An estimated 10 people showed up at the corner of Menaul and Louisiana on Saturday, March 6, planning to send a message to Rep. Heather Wilson that she was wrong to support the Iraq War and other Bush administration policies.
The protest was timed to coincide with Wilson's appearance on Clear Channel's 100.3-FM The Peak during a live broadcast at Coronado Mall that afternoon. The station was conducting their third annual Girl Scout cookie sale, where shoppers could buy a box and send them to the troops overseas, according to a Peak spokesman.
Indecent proposals. A fax, supposedly from radio behemoth Clear Channel, made the rounds to local media last week informing us that two local radio personalities had been suspended as part of Clear Channel's crack-down on indecency.
Not a blank check
As one of the strong supporters of the Planned Growth Strategy (PGS) on the City Council, I worked hard alongside City Councilor Michael Cadigan to make sure the public understood how the PGS would affect development patterns in the city. During the planned growth debate we attended numerous community and neighborhood association meetings and amended the PGS ordinance to take into account neighborhood concerns.
In recent weeks, the Albuquerque Journal's young Latino conservative columnist (Ruben Navarette), its young, preppy, conservative columnist (Rich Lowery), and at least two of its tired old Anglo conservative war horses (Cal Thomas and Charles Krauthammer) have all been steadily beating out page upon page of opinion to an identical rhythm.
At the March 1 meeting, councilors came in like lions, ripping through legislation with the gusto of a hungry pride ripping through a dead gazelle. The big item of the evening was Councilor Martin Heinrich's xeriscaping bill.
Dateline: Holland—A 32-year-old man says he will appeal a judge's conviction after being arrested for refusing to use a shopping basket at his local market. Carst Kijlstra, from Assen, went to the meat counter at the Eddah supermarket and tried to buy two pieces of veal. The assistant refused to help him because he wasn't carrying a basket. "I told her I didn't want one because it was nearly closing time," said Kijlstra. The assistant still refused to help him and called for the shop owner. The owner reiterated the need for a basket. Kijlstra left his money on the counter and went home. Shortly afterward, as Kijlstra was preparing the veal for his dinner, a police car arrived and took him off to the police station. "They put me in jail like a criminal, for half an hour," Kijlstra said. "Kijlstra knew he was a guest in the shop and that means he has to act according to the house rules," the prosecutor told the court. The judge agreed, ruling that Kijlstra was "trespassing" by ignoring the supermarket's compulsory basket policy, and fining him $150.
Shootout at the OK Corral—Are you an aspiring filmmaker? How would you like the opportunity to shoot your very own Western at New Mexico's famed Bonanza Creek Movie Ranch (site of such famed films as Silverado, Lonesome Dove and All the Pretty Horses)? Primate Memory Factory, founder of the monthly 5-Minute Film Competition, has come up with an extremely cool promotion this month. Each month, PMF dreams up a theme and asks local digital filmmakers to shoot a short film around that particular subject. This month's theme happens to be "Westerns." To help get aspiring John Fords started, PMF is offering a chance to shoot at the Bonanza Creek Movie Ranch outside Santa Fe on Sunday, March 14. Fork over a mere $30 to help PMF cover expenses, and you've got the run of Bonanza Creek. The place is packed with western saloons, jail cells, windmills, cattle barns—all the great sets you need to shoot your very own mini-masterpiece. Word is there may even be props, costumes and horses available. All you need is a camera and an actor or two. The screening of all the entrants will take place on Friday and Saturday, March 26 (11:30 p.m.) and 27 (noon) at Madstone Theaters. That means you've got one day to shoot the film and less than a week to edit it. But it's only five minutes long—you can do it! Scheduling will be done on a first-come, first-served basis. To find out more info, log on to www.pmf5.com.
Getting to Know You, Getting to Know Myself
She's a professional Australian geologist who lives life on her own terms. He's a Japanese businessman who isn't used to loud, take-charge, aggressive women. So when Sandy Edwards (played by Toni Collette, The Sixth Sense) and Tachibana Hiromitsu (played by Gotaro Tsunashima, The Great Raid) are thrown together to work on a business deal, it's only natural that they instantly take a strong disliking and uncompromising attitude toward each other.
Teen queen hitchhikes to heck in intriguing indie
With its title liberally lifted from Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking Glass; and What Alice Found There, the sophomore outing by writer/director A. Dean Bell announces itself as a warped fairy tale about lost little girls and alternate universes. The girl in question is Alice (newcomer Emily Grace), a troubled teen from nowhere, Massachusetts, working a cruddy job, hanging out with a bunch of post-high school slackers and being indifferently raised by a poor single mother.
“Wonderfalls” on FOX
Bumped to mid-season due to a passing similarity to “Joan of Arcadia” (not to mention “Tru Calling”), FOX's “Wonderfalls” is finally seeing the light of day. It's about time, too. Among the many surprising aspects of the show is the fact that it's a delightful, quirk-filled stand-on-its-own comedy/drama.
Although they weren't officially “invited” to participate, The Foxx (formerly the Sweatband) will nonetheless be representing Albuquerque at South by Southwest in Austin next week, along with Fivehundred (formerly Mr. Spectacular) and the 12 Step Rebels (formerly the 12-Step Rebels). According to The Foxx's Zac Webb, the band will appear at The Bitter End at 7 p.m. with the Witnesses and Some Action, and at an undetermined time and venue with the Cuts and the Go. Fivehundred will do Burque proud on Wednesday night, March 17, at Pyramids at 7 p.m., while 12 Step Rebels are scheduled to tear shit up at Opal Divine's Freehouse on Friday, March 19, at 10 p.m. ... Unit 7 Drain are releasing a new record. The new full-length, titled Devices, will be released on Socyermom. The release party will be held Friday, March 26, at the Launchpad with The Mindy Set, Love Overdose, The Oktober People and Romeo Goes To Hell. The all-ages celebration will take place at the Tricklock Performance Space on Thursday, April 1, with The Mindy Set, Karen, Hit By A Bus and Scenester. ... The Todd Tijerina Band have just released the final version of their new record, Welcome Home, which is scheduled for review on these very pages in the weeks to come. For more information, visit www.toddtijerina.com.
Oliver Lake may be the most well-traveled alto saxophonist in history in terms of the countless musical lands he's visited (and continues to visit) during his 35-year career. Lake has played with everyone from Abbey Lincoln to Lou Reed, Björk and A Tribe Called Quest. In the '70s, he founded the Black Artists Group and, later, the World Saxophone Quartet. In 1998, in addition to his continuing work with various groups and solo artists, Lake created his Steel Quartet around the virtuosity of steel drummer Lyndon Achee. The group have released two visionary jazz records since their inception: 1999's Kinda Up and this year's Dat Love.
with The Handsome Family
Monday, March 15; Launchpad (21 and over, 9 p.m.): If there was a house band for the indie underground, it would be Joey Burns and John Convertino's Calexico. Few musicians are as well-versed and prolific as the highly indescribable duo. The pair have regularly served as rhythm section for the revolving door band Giant Sand for years (and 20-plus albums), as well as collaborating in and with Friends of Dean Martinez, Lisa Germano, Vic Chestnut, Victoria Williams and Richard Buckner. Under the name OP8, they backed Barbara Manning. They are the Booker T. and the MGs of the Western Hemisphere. As their own project, Calexico, named for a tiny border town straddling California and Mexico, they weave songs as soft as sand and as sharp as saguaro spines.
New York City's The Everyothers are what Urge Overkill would have sounded like had they chosen not to jump the Touch and Go ship for (brief) major-label exposure; what Bowie would sound like today had he not killed Ziggy Stardust. Obvious contemporary comparisons include The Strokes and Yeah Yeah Yeahs, but dare I say there's more substance to The Everyothers' songs? Yes, yes I do. Lots of killer hooks, lots of swagger and lots of hyper-confident riffage. A near perfect melding of early '70s garage rock and '80s power pop.
Painters, sculptors, photographers and mixed-media artists: It's time to get your act together. Albuquerque Contemporary 2004, Magnífico's showcase of some of the best artists in the Albuquerque area, is right around the corner. If you live in Bernalillo, Sandoval, Valencia, Torrance, Socorro or Cibola counties, you may be eligible to participate. Artists who want to get in on the action should get their hands on an application by calling Magnífico at 242-8244 or logging onto www.magnifico.org to download a prospectus.
University Hospital Art Gallery
Norman Akers, a professor of art at the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, delves deep into Native American mythology and culture in creating his stunning paintings and prints. An exhibit of his work is currently on display at the University Hospital Art Gallery. Sure, it's kind of a weird venue, but sick people need love too. Stop by sometime between now and April 30. Aker's work is definitely worth a look. Call 272-9700 or 272-6326 for more information.
Capture the Moment at the Albuquerque Museum
If you really wanted to make sense of the last 60 years in the history of the world, you would face a nearly impossible task. Read 100 books on the Vietnam War alone, and you will encounter 100 more or less contradictory interpretations. History never truly reveals itself, because we never have complete, unbiased access to the past. Capturing history, it seems to me, is like wrestling with a greased pig. You do your best even if you know you will never get a really good grip on the truth.
An Interview with Matt Rix, author of Beating the Bark Beetles: Defending Your Valuable Trees Against Bark Beetles and Other Destructive Pests
I once went a whole year without ever touching a doorknob. Like many Americans, I was paranoid about the fine patina of pathogenic mutants (e.g. bacteria) that encrusts most surfaces. I even used antibacterial hand gels, figuring that if I killed off the little bastards in biblical numbers, my own odds might improve. Come cold season, though, I was still wiping sniffles away (albeit with chapped, medicinal-smelling hands.) A recent report from Columbia University reaches the same conclusion I came to that miserable winter— using products with antibacterial properties can't keep you from ever getting sick. In fact, they may actually do more harm than good. The year-long study found that households that use antibacterial cleaning products are just as prone to sickness as those who don't. Why? Viruses, not bacteria, are responsible for most common infections and antibacterial agents don't kill viruses. Plus, when you scrub down your kitchen with sanitizing products, you're really just wiping out the weakest 99 percent of bacteria. This eliminates competition among the strongest strains and pushes them into a dominant position, where they're free to have wild microscopic orgies long into the night. Before long you've got a few trillion "superbacteria" that are harder to kill than a crypt full of zombies. So play it safe and only bring out the big guns when you have to— or else Bruce Campbell will kick your ass.
A specialty food store four-generations old
Last month we ran a story about local specialty shops but several readers e-mailed to let us know we had omitted Fremont's Fine Foods (7901 Fourth, NW), a North Valley shop that is probably the Duke City's oldest specialty foods store. I spoke with Aimee Tang, great-granddaughter of Fremont's founder, about the shop and its long history of providing Albuquerque with gourmet imported foods.
Making your own cleaning products is cheaper and safer
It seems that cleaning sprays, foams, powders and gels get more high-tech every year. "New, no-scrub formula!" they scream from their labels. "Triple cleaning power!" Triple the cleaning power of what? Doing nothing? Nothing has been my method for a while now and—shockingly—my house is filthy. Finally humilated into the act, I recently geared up with rubber gloves and an arsenal of toxic chemicals, forcing my bathroom to submit to an all-out, day-long grime attack. Filth may yet win the war for control of my house but I won the bathroom battle.