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Wednesday, February 28, 2007

dear new readers

I don't know why I had 100 first-time visitors today, but I want to apologize to all of you (too late! too late!) that I had NOTHING to say. For those of you who are first-timers to this blog, you should know that I mostly complain about the weather or being tired, although occasionally I suck it up and write about stuff in The Reporter, the paper I edit. And sometimes I write about other news-related items. Occasionally I just make weird random lists of shit that no one is interested in. I was going to do one now, but I'm on the phone and should probably pay better attention to my caller.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

blogger 2

is unbelievably tedious. I can't even begin to go into the stupid glitches I keep encountering, but needless to say, they are stupid and they are glitches.
Anyway, I meant to link to this last week, but here's a Times story on Richardson co-authored by former SFR writer Dan Frosch. Gosh I hate writing "former SFR writer."

my oscar ballot

Tris, Peter, Rick and I shared an Oscar ballot. I did, as usual, not particularly well (I vote with my heart, not my head, regardless of what I'm voting for). I called it for The Departed, but, alas, my wish that Mark Wahlberg win for best supporting actor was not to be (I mostly just wanted to get to look at him a little longer, but also he rocked in the movie). Anyway, I also predicted Melissa Etheridge would win best song (that was actually my head voting, I'm not a huge Etheridge fan, although "I Need to Wake Up" also would be a good title for my own personal theme music.). And, now, the point of this boring recap two days late is that Grist has supplied Al Gore's itunes playlist, which seems worth checking out if you are, like me, happy about An Inconvenient Truth winning best documentary. For my Republican readers ( I know of at least two of you), you might want to skip this post. Oh, too late!

deadline dreams

Last night I dreamed I had gone back to high school, fully cognizant, in the dream, that I was going back to high school, but strangely lacking in the appropriate panic at the prospect. I immediately set to writing an article for the high school newspaper. When I turned it in, the editor (who I'm pretty sure was the editor from the student newspaper on Veronica Mars. I've got to stop watching television) told me that my article was the last one they'd be fitting in and that this was the only edition they'd be publishing for the year. I objected to the idea of only publishing one paper for the whole year and then began working to make the paper a weekly paper.
I awoke feeling positively welded to my bed and very concerned about my pysche.
Back here in the real world, we are on real deadline. Tonight I'm going to see Spearhead at The Lensic. That will likely be my big outing until the weekend, when some old friends are coming into town, whom I will hopefully see, assuming I'm not just passed out (my new favorite activity). Also trying to log some serious gym time, as the weather warms and I anticipate more skin showing (and would like there to be less skin showing, if you know what I mean). The latest gym encounters have included my ongoing conversation with one of the locker room ladies, who has just tracked down her father whom she hasn't seen in more than 35 years and is planning a reunion with him this weekend. Last night she showed me then and now photos. It is quite amazing the things people tell you in a locker room. Or perhaps the things they tell me.
I've got some video from the hip hop panel I attended last Friday night, but I'm lacking time/will to post it right now, so stay tuned. (Actually, I have a sneaking suspicion it didn't turn out very well, but I'm going to scope it in a little while).
Meanwhile, looks like the ban on cockfighting is headed to the House Floor…

Friday, February 23, 2007

sf on youtube

Two good youtube Santa Fe hits today: Here's one from Jim Terr on Santa Feans' inability to stop at stop signs.
And another from our friends at Chicanobuilt.
I'm heading to the forum on hip hop, race, politics etc (2nd item), tonight at CSF. And then home for some blissful weekend chilling out. Also some major working out in the hopes that winter will, someday, end.
I will leave you all with last night's gym experience.

Me, leaving gym, walking through parking lot, 18-24 year old kid behind me.

KID: Hey, are you married.
ME: Um, no. Why?
KID: You're pretty.
ME: Thanks.
KID: How old are you
ME: 37
KID: Wow, 37 and you're still fine!
ME: Um, thanks. I, um, I have a boyfriend (If you can't tell, I felt like an imbecile saying this, but it seemed like maybe the time to bring it up)
KID: Oh yeah? Can I get your number?
ME: Um, no, I can't really do that.
KID: Oh for reals?

That's right folks. Ancient, but I still got it.
Have a great weekend!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

ho hum, world's most boring post

It's been a strangely quiet Thursday with little to report, enlivened just slightly by a visitor with a baby (babies and dogs frequently are in the offices, which always makes me happy as there's nothing I like more than babies and dogs. Except possibly shoes and cigarettes.) The baby is still in the office making weird baby noises. Babies are so cool! And they smell so good! (The boy, if he were here, would correct me, as he has frequently, by pointing out that it's "the things you put on babies that smell good, not the babies themselves." Bah humbug. Bah baby!)
Was on the radio this morning, feeling extra out of it. I need a real weekend in my real home. I also need a manicure like you would not believe.
The other big thrill of the day was a big (keep in mind this is all relative) check from my insurance company. I got very excited and then realized that at no time, in my personal history or the history of the world, had anyone ever sent me money for no good reason, so I called my insurance company and, lo and behold, [insert extraordinarily confusing and boring explanation here] that money isn't mine. Even though the check is made out to me. Is it better to have received the check and learned I don't get to keep the money or to never have seen the check at all? Um, the latter. For real!
Tonight I'm hitting the gym, then dropping by the boy's house and then, based on the past few nights' example, passing out unreasonably early having accomplished nothing.
See I told you this would be boring.
I may be a bore, but I ain't a liar.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Wonder what it will mean for Santa Fe that Whole Foods is buying Wild Oats. Will they keep the WO on St. Francis open? Seems pointless, since it's a block away from WF. I assume the sale means WF will convert existing WOs into WFs. Yes? Will they get smart and open a WF on the southside? Or would that actually be dumb since WF is so expensive and the southside isn't their demographic? Or is that demographic assumption stupid? (Clearly it's stupid, I live on the southside and shop at WF; although perhaps what is stupid is how much I pay for food sometimes).
The supermarkets here are all always so crowded I sometimes think one could open several more and still not meet the demand. At least TJs, Albertsons and WF are always quite crowded. WO usually not so much. And, thus, perhaps why they are in debt and being sold. This morning, at the Starbucks in Albertson's, southside, my usual barista asked me to call the 1-800 line and tell them how good Albertson's was because they've been getting complaints.
I really should have done that.
I wonder what I should have for dinner.

spring cleaning

Yes, a five-year-old is helping me clean my office.
OK, yes, she's actually doing all the work.
And, finally, yes, she's doing a much better job than I would.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007


Perhaps I should rededicate this blog to its true calling: constant complaining about the weather and my health. Am back from my hellish weekend and straight into a hellish week, with: a substitute art director because the real one is Panama; a new writer; another writer out of the office and a head that fills like it's filled with sand. Things went perfectly well in my absence. Who knows, perhaps they went better?
Am currently toying with the idea of not having endorsements for the march 6 sfcc election. at the aan east conference, some of us discussed the exhaustion factor of endorsements for small staffs, and I told others that sometimes they had to make choices about the best uses of their time. Well, time to turn that advice inward. Given everything there is to do this week, I'm not sure stopping to interview the six folks running for the sfcc board is a great idea. We need coverage this week, but I'm not sure if we need endorsements. Am still thinking; feel free to send me your thoughts.
In other news, I was given information, at AAN, about the ownership of the Village Voice Media, post New Times merger (the membership committee received it; I guess all of AAN will get it at some point) and I've been poking around on the Internet looking to see if I see anything interesting about the people and companies that now own VVM. So far, I see nothing interesting at all. Although it is inherently interesting to think about venture capitalists investing in alternative newsweeklies. I guess it's good I work for a very small paper. A small paper with limited resources. A small paper that can't endorse in every single political race that happens! OK, I'll try to think more quietly on that.

I missed the story on KOB about it not being illegal to videotape someone in a bathroom and only learned of it from sheriff solano's blog. I'm going to go way out on a limb here and I say that I, too, think it might be good to make this an illegal activity. God New Mexico is weird sometimes. It reminds me of years ago a TV report about the fact that it was (I don't think it is anymore) illegal in NM for unmarried people to live together, including an interview with a cop who said he was aware of the law but didn't have time to enforce it. Like that's the reason it wasn't getting enforced!

Oh, something just landed on my desk. Guess I bettah read it.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

live from dfw

Well, here I am in the DFW airport (Dallas, Fortworth). I survived the three-hour flight from Dc in a middle seat and now, in about an hour, I have another two hours in a middle seat. And then I will drive an hour and then I will be home! I am remembering why I avoid the East Coast; this is ridiculous.
I am not afraid of flying in the way that so many of my friends are. I mean, sure, I am afraid of airplane crashes, but in a very "that would suck, I hope it doesn't happen, I never think about it" kind of way. Basically, I feel about it the way I feel about ebola. There but for the grace of God but, seriously, out of my control. What I don't like is the lack of personal space and breathable air. Airports, however, are a tiny bit fascinating to me (although the nonsmoking aspect of this one is a tiny bit tedious). all the bad food courts, generic bookstores, miserable-looking people. It's like the most undiluted experience of America I ever get.
On another note, US Sen. Pete Domenici, R-NM, was on my flight here (and, ostensibly, on my flight to Albuquerque... unless he's going somewhere else. Or unless the person I was trying so hard to eavesdrop on was just Domenici's doppelganger). I'm 99.9 percent sure it was him. I really did position myself in prime eavesdropping proximity while we waited to board, but either he wasn't talking to his companion (young aide looking guy) or he was talking so low that no one, not even the aide, could hear him). I have superior hearing, so I don't think it was me. Of course, he was in first class so my eavesdropping ended at that point. He smiled at me when I came on the plane, which confirmed for me that he had no idea who I was because Domenici has always been very unpleasant to SFR, and I've only interviewed him in person one time I can remember, years ago, and it lasted about a minute (by interview I mean I ambushed him at a public event, asked him a question he didn't want to answer and he walked away). Anyway, Domenici (or Domenici's body double) seemed perfectly fine, r.e. the health rumors swirling around.
The two gentlemen on either side of me kept to themselves. No one hardly ever talks to me on planes. It's one of the few times where looking like you just want every single person in the world to leave you alone comes in handy. The man to my right (window side) did strike up a conversation toward the end of the flight. And it went a little something like this:


MAN: You born and raised in New Mexico?
ME: No, I grew up outside of Philadelphia.
WEIRD MAN: I went there once.
ME: Oh
GEORGIA MAN: You been there?
ME: No, but my dad just moved to Atlanta, so maybe I'll get there

(Editor's note: This was my first mistake, revealing information that led to more questions)

GEORGIA MAN: Why'd he move to Atlanta?
ME: He's teaching at Emory.
GM: Oh! He's a doctor?
ME: No, he's an English professor.
GM: Well I bet you did good in English in high school then with a built in English tutor.

(Ed note: There are so many errors in this last statement that to even bother correcting them would have made me so tired I probably would have just died while in the middle of speaking.To correct the worst error, my father teaches literature, not high school English)

ME: Yeah.
GM: So how did he end up doing something like that?

(Ed note: At this point, began to wonder if something was wrong with this man or if I had inadvertently said that my father was a professional cat wrangler. Also, for what it's worth, I have no idea how my father became an English professor. Unlike this guy, it never seemed like an interesting question)

ME: I have no idea.
GM: Muttering, under his breath, "Wish I'd had an English tutor. Maybe I'd have done better in English. Did better? Done better? If I knew English better I guess I'd know which one was right."

For the record, the man to the left (aisle side) spent most of the trip eating South Beach diet products and reading some kind of FBI report. I read it over his shoulder for a while, but it was pretty boring. I'd like to tell you it was about security lapses, because oh my god irony! But it wasn't.

Went for a bracingly cold walk this morning to the US capitol, came back via the national archives, which I wish were open today. It was nice to walk around this morning because it was early and very uncrowded. But really quite cold; I can't feel my face at the moment (but, really, who needs to feel one's face?). I blew off the white house; Tim Redmond told me last night one can't get very close. Unfortunately, most things are closed this morning, so I doubt I'll get much more sightseeing in before I take off (although I do have a few hours still...hmm.). One notable experience from my trip to DC is that I've yet to get lost, which I inevitably do wherever I go. I have a tendency to just start wandering about paying no attention to where I'm going and before I know it, voila, I have no idea where I am. Here, I did the same thing (the moronic wandering without paying attention) but somehow keep ending up back at the hotel. Almost as if I'm being controlled by the government! Like, in a good way. OK, gonna try to go keep myself occupado.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

life is better when you're not throwing up

hotel washington
The Hotel Washington is conveniently located to the White House et. al. Unfortunately, they don't have very hot water.
smithsonian natural history museum
I didn't want to leave DC without going to a museum. I consider it a sign of adulthood to voluntarily go to museums. Choosing a museum with thousands of screaming children, however, seems like a sign of insanity. As you can see, I went to the Smithsonian Natural History museum, but I didn't last long.
department of justice
A man walking by muttered to himself, "Department of Injustice is more like it." I also took a photo of the IRS building. I have no idea why.
the white house, in the distance
I got cold and wimped out on treking down to the White House or the Capitol. But if I wake up early enough I'll attempt it in the morning
the adams morgan district
Esquire writer Mike Sager told me this area, known as the Adams Morgan district, has really grown in the last 20 years since he pitched his first story on a place called "The Madame's Organ." We passed a bar by the same name. I didn't want to admit I don't really have any idea what that means.
meskerem restaurant with mike sager, patti calhoun
I ate Ethiopian food for the first time with Mike, Westword Editor Patty Calhoun, AAN Director Richard Karpel and Bay Guardian Editor Tim Redmond. The food was good... like Indian food, but not as spicy (at least what I ate).

Friday, February 16, 2007

Greetings from DC. The Hotel Washington is located right by lots of famous national monument type thingies (and has great views from the roof, although one can not step out onto the outdoor terrace, I was told, or one will be shot by snipers from across the way. This doesn't seem like the kind of information one should just pick up in casual conversation). Anyway, I've yet to see any of the exciting spots because, in my inimitable way, I landed yesterday, had dinner with some nice folks from other altweeklies, went back to my room and promptly began to throw up for the entire night, well into the morning, stopping, conveniently enough, half an hour before my talk, which I delivered shakily between sips of gingerale. I then went to a committee meeting (which the committee chairwoman was smart enough to tell me needed to be kept to myself or I'd be talking about it here), dropped by the reception, gave away my free drink tickets (a sure sign that life is sucking) and came back to my room where, based on how I'm feeling, I will be staying and passing out in. Soon. Fun! Love to fly across the country only to be sick in a tiny hotel room.
In reality, I could probably leave tomorrow, skip the rest of the conference, but I think I'd have to pay a charge on my ticket and I'm hoping, really hoping, I feel better in the morning so I can do some sightseeing. I will feel like an ass if I flew across the country to talk for an hour and throw up. Needless to say, I can talk for an hour and throw up at home.
That's all for now, folks.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

let us praise the sunport

come on, five seconds to park and get in the terminal. five minutes to get through security. free wireless. a smoking restaurant with decent coffee, right next to my terminal? this is the life! now, i just have to get through six hours of travelling and I'll be all good. six hours in a middle seat I might add. but, hey, got veronica mars on the video ipod. I know there are many people who think all the technology of our culture has had a determimental effect on things but I'm just not one of them. I like the gadgets and I like the sunport, because it's clean and easy. Hudson news, however, really needs to rethink the way it categorizes its books: Famous authors? sheesh.
ok, gonna go board.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

happy vd and see you in dc

The boy very sweetly brought lovely flowers to my work and now I am on my home, braving the elements, to cook him a homemade romantic dinner *.
Please make it stop snowing before I leave for ABQ in the morning!
Hopefully, I'll be blogging soon from DC. Until then, hearts and flowers y'all.

* actually I'm picking up takeout sushi on the way home. Working girl here, folks.
Getting ready to leave town tomorrow and diligently doublechecking the guidelines for what's permitted on planes these days. You know, you really gotta wonder about a society where the government makes a point of letting you know it's OK to bring toy transformer robots on a plane. Also, why are toy transformer robots listed under "makeup." Are toy transformer robots some kind of makeup thing I don't know about? Like, a robot that puts on your makeup for you? (God what a fantastic idea that would be). Anyway, right now I am mind f***king about the meaning of "zip lock" as in the ziplock quart-sized bag. I actually went out to buy the quart-sized bag, but mine has the kind of top you push shut, not a zip lock per se. My colleague thinks zip lock is a brand name. Should I be safe and go buy some bags that are specifically zip-locks?
Anyway, I will say that TSA has been quite thorough in this list, mindboggingly so.

My two favorite things in TSA's FAQ are as follows:

1. The sentence that ends:
"We ask for your cooperation in the screening process by being prepared before you arrive. We also ask that you follow the guidelines above and try not to over-think these guidelines."

I just like that they instruct people not to overthink things. It's rare that the government acknowledges the neurosis of the average American.

2. the ban on snowglobes "even with documentation."

an hour and a half later

Arrived at work to find this press release, from the city, in my email:

Motorists Advised to Drive with Caution

The City of Santa Fe’s Streets Division is actively salting streets all over town. However, Santa Fe road conditions are icy, and weather-related accidents are reportedly slowing traffic on the south side of town.

The City of Santa Fe is concerned about your safety. Motorists are advised to drive with caution, as winter weather conditions are forecasted to continue throughout the day. When driving in icy conditions, be sure to slow down, particularly when approaching intersections covered with ice or snow. Driving at reduced speeds is the best precautionary measure while traveling on slippery roads. Also, be sure to keep a safe distance between your vehicle and the one in front of you, and steer with smooth and precise movements. Changing lanes too quickly and jerky steering while braking or accelerating can cause skidding.

In addition to salting the roads, City Streets Division crews continue to work on pothole repair to reduce road safety hazards.

REALLY, you don't say? The south side was an unbelievable mess, such that it took me an hour and a half to get here. And, yes, I realize the appropriate response to treacherous roads, bumper to bumper traffic and emergency vehicles is NOT to take photos and email them to oneself. But my other impulse was to pull over to the side of the road and cry, so this seemed more constructive.
I'm so moving to Maui.

Monday, February 12, 2007

listing toward thursday/pulling out my hair

I woke up Saturday morning determined to get the better of what feels like an insurmountable number of tasks. I decided that the best way to address my feelings of overwhelmedness would be to make a list. This, I figured, would show me the doability of all that lies ahead. Because, I reasoned, rather than just feeling like there were a gazillion things to do, I would make it finite and see it really wasn't that bad.
Bad idea.
The list really was so long that I began to doubt my own sanity. For example, why, exactly, did I think I needed to do my taxes this week? True, it would be nice but is it necessary? I decided that it wasn't. Getting my eyebrows waxed, however, was not negotiable.
So I came into the office Saturday and Sunday and, from what I can tell, I am close-but-no-cigar ready to leave town Thursday morning. Quart-sized baggie for my cosmetics? Check. Three pages of typed instructions for the boy to watch the dogs? Check. Several outfits washed and under consideration for trip? Done. Actual presentation ready for conference? Um, not so much.
I did, however, manage to pack a lunch for myself today, write a recommendation for a friend, edit today's cover story, next week's cover story, listen to my phone messages (what a delight that was), and find a copy of Michael Jackson's "Beat It." Other tasks: washed car, stored knitting stuff in guest room closet, worked out twice, worked on novel (don't ask), emailed freelancers about spring guide and also did all the other stuff I actually do every week, like read and edited every single thing in the paper. And it's only Monday! Still, getting up at 5:45 a.m. kind of sucks.
Maybe I should take the Times' advice and tell my boss I need a nap. I'm not sure I'm ready to see my coworkers all sleeping in a pile like puppies, though.
Dave Cargo's coments about local news coverage of Gov. Richardson's presidential candidacy reading like the obits via Joe's blog is pretty funny. Still, the Journal did call him Govzilla in a headline. Still, it remains more interesting to me to read outside commentary and comments, which are also, to be fair, overall positive. I mean, aside from the low public ratings thing.
OK, I'm going to get back to work now.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Goodbye Olivia Tsosie

I spent a while today trying to find a story I wrote in 1991, as an intern, about Agua Fria. My source, one of my first sources, was a great lady named Olivia Tsosie, who had me over and spent a long time explaining rural zoning and other details that are the backdrop for life in Santa Fe County. I guess she liked my story OK, or liked me OK, because from then on she sent me letters, and when e-mail began, emails, about her thoughts and ideas and beliefs and tips. She was a very cool lady who really cared about people, particularly people who were being oppressed or taken advantage of by corporate America or their governments, and she always tied things together in a way that was both constructive and appropriately outraged.
Olivia died this morning, at the age of 74. She'd had cancer but from what her close friend told me via email, her death was still surprising and sudden and a great loss for this community. I had an email from her at the end of January asking me to come and visit with her this month. I hadn't had a chance to write her back yet and now I regret it. I regret that I didn't have a chance to go see her again and hear her thoughts on things, because they were always interesting and worthy. She mentioned in that email that she had cancer of the spine and, while she had been approached about running for county commission, she didn't have time to mess with it now.
A few days before that she sent me an email that seemed clearly to be for someone else, and was probably sent to me by accident, but it had something at the end of it that now sticks with me:

"we are part of what will happen and we can fund our joy and our sorrow in being together and experiencing it together. the molecules may move around and the egos may come and go but we are all alive in evertying and it's all alive in us."

I'll miss her.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

when cynics mourn

So far, in my office, I've heard the following comments regarding Anna Nicole Smith's death.

1. Did her boobs explode and kill her?
2. Wasn't she made out of plastic?

In other news, the phone calls have begun from readers offended by this year's love and sex cover. One woman found it tasteless and degrading and offensive, "especially to men." (What?) I have learned, over the years, several things about phone calls of this nature.

1. People who are mad about content related to sex can not be reasoned with. Ever.
2. There is nothing I can say that will make them feel better, except, perhaps things I am not willing to say, such as:

"You are right. I am a dirty, dirty girl and should be flogged. I am going to resign immediately. And, as a bonus, you can have my job."

3. I am very bad at calming down angry people.

Years ago, our publisher, who is very good at calming down angry people, tried to counsel me that the way to do this is to not assert an opinion myself, but to ask questions instead. This just doesn't work for me. Case in point, my last phone call:

ANGRY OLD SOUNDING WOMAN FROM ELDORADO: "This cover is particularly offensive to men."
DIRTY TASTELESS EDITOR: ""Why is it particularly offensive to men?"
AOSWFE: "Oh you know why. Showing a dog humping a pillow. That's not love and sex."
DTE: "You thought the dog was humping the pillow?"

Needless to say, I did nothing to calm her down. But here's a question. I KNOW there are lots of young, fun people who thought the cover was young and funny. And it is funny. I mean, ya know, not hysterical but it's just cute. So many people have told me they thought it was cute. Will they write letters in response to the angry "you're tasteless" letters? Also, is this what life has in store for me as I age? Getting more and more angry and offended by everything I see? And, if so, should I cancel my HBO subscription now?

digging in the dirt

Glad to hear reparation of the potholes is underway. Some of the worst ones seem to have been fixed already, only to fall into disrepair immediately.
Have not been sleeping well this week, likely owing to my two-day out-of-town trip next week, my lack of preparation thereof, and the disproportionate number of things here that have to be done before I leave (why do two days out of town require five days' worth of stuff to be done prior? Mathematically, this makes no sense. I can't even write an equation for it... o=out of town; x=here. d=days of work. 2o=5dx? What?)
Ahem. Last night, the boy and I took Dan to dinner at the Cowgirl (it starts at the Cowgirl, it ends at the Cowgirl. Whatever happens at the Cowgirl stays at the Cowgirl). I had been weirdly famished all day, like crazy hungry, the kind of hungry where you eat your little lunch and it makes no dent whatsoever in The Hunger. I cleaned my plate of veggie burger and fries. Devoured. Normally that much food would leave me on the verge of hurling but not this time. Then Dan and I attacked a Mud Pie (hence the insomnia. Hello chocolately goodness). Today I feel back to my "I eat a graham cracker and call it lunch" self. Thank Goodness. I'd never get anything done if I was that hungry every day.
Heard about this yesterday. Had an inkling the dailies would have it today so we didn't pursue it.
Anyway, I must get to work. Actually, I must drink my coffee and then get to work. In brief: bad news. Good news. I actually wrote my high school senior paper on the politicization of marijuana, with particular emphasis on its medicinal purposes. Tied in first place for the senior high school essay prize. I can't remember the other winner's topic, something about a disease, something that sounded a little more impressive when called out during the graduation assembly, versus: "The Politics of Marijuana by Julia Goldberg." Ahem. And, just to be clear: I never returned the library book I used for the essay and, finally, yes, I inhaled.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

One of the deep dark secrets of SFR is that departing employees often receive racy parting gifts. I would like to state, for the record, I usually have nothing to do with this. I say usually because I was informed and consulted about getting Dan Frosch a blow-up doll for his farewell token. I did not realize, however, that it would be anatomically correct and I am, now, somewhat traumatized. Even more so because my camera phone independently decided to name the photo: photo69.jpg. Yeah, OK. For his part, Dan also seemed traumatized and made me promise not to post this doll on my blog. But you know, he also promised to never leave me. OR AT LEAST HE SHOULD HAVE. The bright side of these embarassing gifts is that it sends a message to other employees about what they will have to endure should they leave. I have a sneaking suspicion that the doll, like the sled, may end up living in the SFR offices for evermore.

byebye dan

Today is writer Dan Frosch's last day at SFR, before he leaves to go work for some stupid paper called The New York Times. I am reacting to Dan's departure the way I do to most cases of abandonment: yelling at him to clean his desk off one minute and then grabbing him in a a sweaty embrace the next. Last night I dreamed that he kept telling me about all the important interviews he had for the Times, like with the Queen of Nairobi. Dan informed me, after hearing this, that there is no queen of Nairobi. Because he's so smart, like New York Times smart.
Anyway, aside from not wanting Dan to go, I'm excited and pleased for him. I mean, it's pretty cool for one of my writers to get hired by the stupid New York Times. And he deserves it, especially given his incredible work on uncovering the situation with the state prison health care. I got a tip that The Journal is planning to write something else about this tomorrow or the next day. I will be interested to see how they go about writing on this issue given that SFR is solely responsible for uncovering it, prompting the audit and the governor to yank Wexford's contract. But I'm sure if anyone can find a way to report this story without mentioning us (a huge disservice to the readers; actually it's LYING), the Journal will find a way. Stay tuned!
Meanwhile, Dan is pretending to clean his desk (the big question is whether he's going to take his broken sled that's been sitting against a file cabinet for the last four years) or not.
I know I'll keep seeing and talking to Dan (he'll hopefully freelance for us as more Wexford stuff unfolds), but in the meantime, might as well get sappy:

Friday, February 02, 2007

A colleague's wife baked (baked?) rice crispy treats colored and flavored to resemble footballs on astroturf in honor of, um, football, the chicago bears to be exact. This particular woman is very, very sweet, as are the football treats, and I have a vague suspicion she has a secret wish to give us all diabetes. Three glasses of water later and the sugar high induced by the three bites I took of the football have yet to diminish.
I have spent my entire life surrounded by people who are obsessed with sports. I know so little about sports it's kind of remarkable. You'd think I'd have picked up a little bit just by osmosis or by paying attention to the endless sports conversations, but it's like the part of my brain that can take in such things is completely dead. I did used to go to high school basketball games with my X, when he was in charge of a high school, and that was fun. I definitely got the hang of things, like yelling "defense" and saying things like, "that was a foul" and "travelling! travelling!" But that's about as far as it goes. I can sort of get into watching basketball, probably just because I've been to basketball games, but football not only doesn't interest me, I can't take it in at all. Last year, at the Superbowl party we attended (hosted by the rice crispy treat makers), I knit a scarf through the whole thing, and defended the virility of The Rolling Stones to the Stones haters in the room. I was only there because a. it was a group activity and b. the boy is from Pittsburgh and the Steelers were in the game. The boy, for the record, is the least sportsy boy I've ever known, although he, unlike me, at least understands what's going on.

sticks and stones

The morning news about Imus attack on Richardson is entertaining, although I'm guessing that behind closed doors Richardson is actually very miffed at the repeated "fat" attacks and not taking any of it very well (Richardson has not ever struck me as someone who can laugh at himself very well). I made a joke about Richardson's weight in 7 days one time (that's not a link to the 7 days where I made fun of his weight; I don't remember when that was) and Gilbert Gallegos, from Richardson's media office, called to say I'd hurt the governor's feelings and that the governor always treated me with respect and expected the same in return. I found the whole conversation so bizarre I decided to just pretend it hadn't happened. But you get a mixed bag in NM as far as politicians and the media. Some of them just take their licks, always act professional about it, return calls etc. Some of them never forgive. Richardson has been much more accesible to this office than Gary Johnson was (although that's not saying much). Mayor Delgado was the pits on that front. I do think Joe is right that the Imus show is probably a good little wakeup call to Richardson's campaign about the difference between running the show locally and being in the national limelight. Richardson's communnication staff is OK, not as responsive as Tom Udall's, a million times better than Pete Domenici's.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

love is in the air

so put it on your calendar too:


what a difference a comma makes

Just received this press release from Department of Public Safety:

Drunk Buys Booze Store Served Citations

Albuquerque—An alert citizen called police to report a possibly drunk driver who damaged a sign as he pulled into a pharmacy parking lot Thursday, February 1st. This citizen followed the individual into the Walgreen’s at Montgomery and San Mateo NE in Albuquerque and warned the store that the individual seemed drunk.
Officers from the Albuquerque Police Department responded to the citizen call and arrested Samuel McMaster (2/18/80) for DWI. APD then alerted the Department of Public Safety Special Investigations Division. An SID agent responded and his investigation revealed that the clerk, Suzanne Jaqua, did sell a bottle of vodka and a bottle of bourbon to the drunk driver just before 8:00 a.m. today. The sales clerk, Jaqua, was cited both criminally and administratively and the store was cited administratively for the same charge of selling alcohol to an intoxicated person.
This is not the first time that this store has been cited. The Walgreen’s at 5001 Montgomery Blvd NE in Albuquerque shows a history of citations that include sales to intoxicated patrons and sales to minors. These citations are under review by the Alcohol and Gaming Division of the Regulation and Licensing Department.
Agents of the New Mexico Department of Public Safety, Special Investigations Division did issue 2 citations to Walgreen’s at Montgomery and San Mateo N.E. after they sold alcohol to an intoxicated person, a violation of the Liquor Control Act. Citizen action and police cooperation may have prevented another alcohol and driving tragedy.

Read the headline and thought there was a store called Drunk Buys Booze Store.