V.25 No.39 | 09/29/2016

The Daily Word in Syria, Stereotypes and Living Fully

The Daily Word

Just because it's not happening to your kids doesn't mean it's not happening.

Which Vice Presidential candidate has been described as a “human sweater vest?” Test your knowledge.

Hurricane Matthew swept through Cuba and has been ranked as the strongest hurricane in 52 years, hitting Haiti with powerful 145 mph winds. Floridians are on high alert, as Matthew is expected to make its way up the Southeastern coast toward the Mid-Atlantic.

Spunky 91-year-old Norma Bauerschmidt of Michigan died a full and happy woman, after deciding against cancer treatment and living a very full life instead, complete with her first hot air balloon ride, visits to National Parks and her first pedicure.

Women in Poland crowded the city's streets for “Black Monday” in protest of a proposed absolute ban on abortion that would put women and their doctors in jail for up to five years no matter the circumstance of the abortion. Miscarriages would also result in three years jail time if the woman could not prove it was not induced.

Even at eight-years-old, kids are already socially conditioned to sexism and racism. One teacher tackles stereotypes in her classroom and takes a step towards shaping socially aware adults in her third-grade classroom.

Read an interview with astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson about his perspective on science and how pop-culture references are sometimes the most helpful analogies when talking about cosmic phenomena.

V.24 No.14 | 4/2/2015
Odds and Ends

Odds & Ends

From Poland to California, it’s funny because it happened to someone else.
V.23 No.48 | 11/27/2014
Odds and Ends
From California to Germany, it’s funny because it happened to someone else.
V.23 No.17 | 4/24/2014
Odds and Ends
From Poland to New Jersey, it’s funny because it happened to someone else.
V.19 No.45 | 11/11/2010
Faun Fables

Aural Fixation


Faun Fables’ animated music

Dawn McCarthy is an adventurer. When the musician behind Faun Fables answers the phone for this interview, the rushing wind and frequent connection breaks make it clear she’s on the road, in some rural area without good reception. A baby’s constant fussing and car noises increase the ambient fuzz, but through it all, McCarthy’s voice is calm and focused. The Bay Area-based musician has done plenty of touring—solo, as a duo, with a band and now with a new kind of group. “We have our kids with us. We have a really young one—4 months old—and we have a 2-year-old,” she says. “So it’s kind of an experiment.” Since McCarthy and the other half of Faun Fables, husband Nils Frykdahl, have already been on tour for a month and a half, it appears the experiment is working.

[ more >> ] [ permalink ]

V.19 No.14 |

history lesson

DayBird - April 13th

1570 – Guy Fawkes, English Catholic conspirator was hatched.

Remember, remember, the fifth of November,
The gunpowder treason and plot,
I know of no reason
Why the gunpowder treason
Should ever be forgot.

1598 – Henry IV of France issues the Edict of Nantes, allowing freedom of religion to the Huguenots. They came to their senses and had the Edict repealed in 1685.

1796 – The first elephant ever seen in the United States arrives from India. I trust this is accurate information.

1943 - The discovery of a mass grave of Polish prisoners of war executed by Soviet forces in the Katyń Forest Massacre is announced, by Nazi Germany . The Soviet Union continued to deny any responsibility for the massacre until 1990. The number of victims is estimated at about 22,000.

On 10 April 2010, a plane carrying Polish President Lech Kaczyński with First Lady and eighty-six of Poland's highest military and civilian leaders, crashed in Smolensk, killing all aboard. They were to attend a ceremony marking the 70th anniversary of the Katyn massacre. That sucks.

1953 – CIA director Allen Dulles launches the mind-control program MKULTRA. Experiments included administering LSD to CIA employees, military personnel, doctors, other government agents, college students, prostitutes, mentally ill patients, and members of the general public in order to study their reactions. LSD and other drugs were usually administered without the subject's knowledge or informed consent.

MKULTRA records were destroyed in 1973 by order of then CIA Director Richard Helms. So information is shotty. It is known that forty-four American colleges or universities, 12 hospitals and 3 prisons are known to have participated in MKULTRA. The consensual participants had some of the most Xtreme Xperiments.In one case, volunteers were given LSD for 77 consecutive days.

I did not know that the use of LSD was legal in the United States until October 6, 1966.


V.19 No.2 |

From Krakow to Burque With Love

Nasze Miasto / Our City at Theatre X

I first fell in love with Krakow in 1998. I was living in Prague and had taken a night train with a roommate to the southern Polish city to check it out, and also to go to the town of Oświęicm, or as the Germans called it, Auschwitz. The latter was an experience that's still hard to quantify, but the city of Krakow affected me just as much. I went back in 2005 to study Polish for six weeks at Jagellonian University. I did really well and aced my beginner's course, even getting to the point where I was having conversations with natives (about things that are nice, like cake and music, but still). And then I came back to America and it all fell out of my head.

Nasze Miasto / Our City addresses some of these very themes. Wanderlust, falling in love with foreignness, the difficulty of being in a place where even simple things (how to hold a fork, which side people pass on) are different. The essential concept of this piece, a collaboration between members of Tricklock and Krakow's Teatr Figur, is that one person's foreign land is another person's home, and surely we can come together in that.

There is language in this work, in both Polish and English, but it's used sparingly. The majority of the action occurs in pantomime, both in front of and behind three white screens. Now this is important: what ever you think that means, what you'll see is something different. Music, lights, shadow puppets, choreography--they're all used to a surprising and satisfying extent. I've been trying to think of the perfect word to describe this, and I keep landing on "charming," though that doesn't quite capture the headiness of it. Perhaps there's a word in Polish.

The six actors, four from Krakow and two from Albuquerque, work together as a tight ensemble. The audience was impressed by the hour-long show. On a personal level, it filled me with longing. I can only describe it as homesickness, but in reverse. A desire not to return to the familiar, but to make familiar the foreign. I have to think we've all felt that, and though Krakow may not be the focus of your own wanderwant (I just made that up), Nasze Miasto's looping desires and searches are recognizable to all.

Catch the show during its next two performances: Sat., Jan. 16, at 8 p.m. and Sun., Jan. 17, at 2 p.m. at UNM's Theatre X. For tickets, call 925-5858 or go to unmtickets.com. Check out this week's feature in the Alibi for more more more.

V.18 No.36 | 9/3/2009
The Nazis marching into Warsaw. Contrary to current belief, they did not do this to force upon the Poles universal health care.

Seventy Years Ago Today

On Sept. 1, 1939, Germany invaded Poland under the pretense of having been attacked by the Poles (it was staged by Nazis). This is generally regarded as being the beginning of World War II. Tens of millions of people would be killed in Europe and Asia before the end of the war.

Here is the British poet W.H. Auden’s poem “September 1, 1939” about the break-out of the war.