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Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorial Day

Well, it's a Monday holiday, which means I'm not at work. We slammed on Friday to get everything done so that our Tuesday press deadline wouldn't be too rough. All that remains is to write the endorsement in the third congressional district, one task that has overwhelmed my thoughts for the last two days as I parse through a series of arguments with others and myself.
It also is, officially, the first pool weekend, but I've yet to don a bathing suit and make it there. This is in part because I've decided to add skin cancer to the list of things I'm worrying about, but also because it's kind of windy. In about an hour, the boy and I are taking the dog on a little urban-trail walk and then it is entirely possible I will take a nap, one of my favorite things to do when I'm not working, and something I've yet to accomplish this weekend.
Friday night, SFR had its first drive-in movie event. We pulled in and thought we had a good spot, but after we walked around awhile and came back, the front row we were in had become about the sixth row and a large van was in charge of us. Fortunately, the van belonged to someone we know, who agreed to switch positions with us. My friend's two six-year-old twin boys decided they wanted to watch the movie in my tiny car, so we bought them cheese burgers and were pleasantly surprised they managed to make it through almost the entire movie without getting bored. I am readying for a short week: I've got dental surgery at the end of the week (oh joy), and then next week I fly to Philadelphia for a journalism convention. But in the meantime, I've got about 500 words to write on a race that has been alternatively fascinating and depressing to me. I am trying to keep in mind, since it is Memorial Day after all, what is really at stake in this year's election; and when I am able to do that, the choice I need to make seems clearer than when I allow all the other factors, accusations and brouhaha invade my thoughts. But I am still open for comments, so if by some sad chance you, too, are on the Internet, instead of barbecuing or swimming or planting things in the yard, feel free to e-mail me!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

primary countdown

Is it over yet? No, not until I finish transcribing endorsement interviews and writing our endorsements. Right now, I'm trapped at my desk waiting for a call from Benny Shendo regarding his attempted outing of Ben Ray Lujan last night.
Here's his official statement, which I just posted on Swing State of Mind.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

things that need to happen

Or, a "to do" list, with some things on the list seeming more appealing than others.

1. Finish interviewing candidates for June 3 primary. Last interviews are tomorrow.
2. Finish writing endorsements for nine contested races. Must be done by Friday, because Monday is Memorial Day and we are closed.
3. Attend Drive in movie event Friday night.
4. See Samia & Serena Saturday for girlie activities, plus hang out with boy and NOT HAVE TO WORK as I have every weekend for the last two months because I swore I wouldn't have to.
5. Visit D's pool, assuming it remains hot and doesn't snow.
6. Get cover story ready for June 4 edition by May 28 in order to
7. Miss work May 29-30 for dental surgery. :(
8. Edit summer guide articles in time for June 4 dummy date because I will have to
9. Pack and go to Philly June 4 for AAN convention, where I will run "speed bitching" panel; see old girlfriends from high school, collect awards (we are nominated for seven in the AAN contest. woo hoo.
10. Return home June 8 and start it all up again.

I can do all that. Piece of cake. Arsenic-laced cake, but cake nonetheless. On the bright side, I've already voted!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

bugging tom udall

I early-voted today to kill a few minutes before Tom Udall arrived to early vote. I had this fantasy that no one would show up to watch him vote and I could harangue him into telling me who he's supporting as a super delegate. I got nowhere. I think if I could have gotten his wife, Jill Cooper, alone for a few minutes I could have gotten it out of her. She always seems fond of me, although she's called me "Emily" for years and I never correct her (it kind of reminds me of Devil Wears Prada and, thus, I find amusing). Anyway, I got nowhere. And, I can't get my video of Tom voting to download on my computer at home for some reason and I can't seem to log onto to Swing State of Mind, our election blog, from home. So here's my interview with Tom, as posted on Huffington Post earlier today. Look for, hopefully, video on Swing State on Monday, perhaps with a photo or two. Here's one of Udall and Cooper, under siege by yours truly, at the county fairgrounds.

Friday, May 16, 2008

I really screwed up this week's video

Like, spaced on adding the music track. Oh well. Such as it is:

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


AAN and Medill Announce AltWeekly Awards Finalists

The finalists this year, selected from more than 1,400 entries and over 90 participating papers, run the gamut from investigations of errant public officials to stories about green living. L.A. Weekly leads the pack with eight winners. Washington City Paper and Santa Fe Reporter follow closely with six nominees each. The order of finish for the 13th annual AltWeekly Awards contest will be announced on June 7 in Philadelphia.

Yahoo. Read the rest here.

The Paramount: RIP

It was sad enough when The Paramount closed its doors. But this? This is hard to take.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

The answer is blowing in the wind

Oh wait, no, that's not answers blowing in the wind, just dust.
I think I am on my way to becoming one of those folks who walk around with a face mask on. Particularly after my Friday night ride on the train to Lamy (the KBAC's soul train), where I ate so much dust on the outdoor car that I immediately got a horrible sinus headache, then became motion sick and spent most of the evening trying not to hurl on everyone who spoke to me. Good times. I have got to learn to not leave my house. If you met me that night, and I seemed unfriendly, I apologize. I really was working hard not to be sick everywhere.
I am staring at two solid week of candidate interviews (and attending, tomorrow night, the Third CD forum at Temple Beth Shalom, it's at 7 pm). Meanwhile, here's my newest post on Huffington Post, also found in a slightly different version on our Swing State of Mind blog.
Meanwhile, I'm kind of sad that today's West Virginia election is predicted to be a blow-out for Clinton. Not because I begrudge her her win, but because I can't sit glued to the news all night biting my nails. What fun is a predicted blow-out?

Thursday, May 08, 2008

this week's radio show

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

A dozen interviews to go

Just back from DC, I did the last thing I felt like doing, which was book my tickets to Philly for the AAN annual convention. I am leading an event called "speed bitching," which is not, unfortunately, just me complaining while on crack. Actually, I don't really know exactly what it is or how it's going to work, but I swear to you, if you're planning to attend, it's going to be AWESOME and if I do score some crack I will share it. Pretty sure we'll be in the right city for it.
Speaking of which, yes, home again, home again, skippity skip. I haven't been back to Philly in, I'm pretty sure, a decade, possibly 15 years. It's hard to keep track of time when you spend so much time denying its passage. At any rate, it's been a long-ass time, long enough that I have, in fact, no family or friends there, so as far as homecomings go, it will be a little low-key. Also, I pretty much hated every minute I lived there and have lived in SF longer than I lived there, so I guess you could describe my attitude about the whole thing as ambivalent. At best.
Speaking of attitudes, our copyeditor has taken on the daunting task of scheduling all the politicos in for their endorsement interviews. The ones who have gone through this before are behaving pretty well about the whole thing. We interview all the candidates in a group since a. we are a tiny staff and that's the only way to do it and b. if they are going to talk shit about one another, I'd just as soon they do it in front of each other so that the shit-talkers and shit-talkees can respond to one another. Also, it keeps things fair, as in everyone answers the same questions and gets about the same amount of time. It's not a complex thing, but you'd think we were asking them all to come in naked and recite Shakespeare (now there's an idea). Listening to Karen answer their questions (Wiviott's campaign person just asked her if the candidates would be required to sit in a circle. Um, yeah, and hold hands...WTF?). The silly part of it is, the ones that get it get that, hey, do you want our endorsement? (Answer: Yes, you do). Then do what we say, come in, answer our questions and appear to be thoughtful and accessible. Do you NOT want our endorsement (No, you don't not want it). Then argue and ask annoying questions and be a pain in the ass about it. (And, no, it wasn't just Wiviott's campaign person being annoying, that was just the most recent example). Fortunately, Karen is talking to these people and not me, because she is very patient whereas I, as you may have noticed, am not.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

weighted down by hair

So here I am in Washington, DC, my need for coffee having overwhelmed my legendarily poor sense of direction such that I was actually able to map out a route from N street to K street. Look, Ma, I know the alphabet! I realize for most people being able to negotiate a four-block walk wouldn't seem like a big deal, but I am someone capable of getting lost just walking around a block, so I am feeling pretty snazzy right now, aside from the fact that thanks to the humidity my hair has, overnight, expanded fivefold and I can barely lift my head.
I am staying in the world's cutest bed and breakfast. I say this objectively because, unfortunately, I am not a fan of B & Bs. Not being able to turn on the news (because there is no TV) makes me feel as though anything might have happened since I got here, as if I have been completely cut off from the rest of the world. Because I haven't watched CNN in 12 hours. Uh huh, I know what you're thinking: Get help.
I didn't sleep very well. I kept having nightmares that I was living in a thrift store and the owner kept making me try on old sweaters she had for sale. This is what sleeping in a B & B apparently wreaks on my sub-conscious. Still, objectively speaking, it's a very cute B & B, the restaurant downstairs where I ate last night with the AAN membership committee was really good, the neighborhood is awesome, all brick buildings, blooming flowers, ivy creeping up walls, that kind of thing. A great architectural and aesthetic vaca from the dry, windy environs of SF. If it weren't for my hair, which I swear just expanded more while I was writing this, all would be grand. I fly home tomorrow morning, super early. This is a quick, quick trip, so I don't know that I'll get to do much besides eat and meet, although there is some talk of going to a News Museum later and, if that happens, I will definitely tag along. After all, maybe they will have CNN, yes?

Friday, May 02, 2008

Overheard in dallas airport

Counter girl in yogurt shop: "are you from austrailia?"
Me: "No."
Girl: "Your accent sounds like you're from Australia."
Me: Stony silence.

Note to self: I'm not unconsciously speaking in an australian accent
while in airports, am I? Or has that girl never left this airport before
and thinks anyone without a texan accent is from australia?

the latest from the sunport

Here I am again at the ABQ Sunport Airport, or whatever it's called. I don't know if I actually spend a lot of time here, or if it just feels that way, but I am beginning to feel like a regular. In fact, earlier, the wireless didn't seem to be working, so I picked up the courtesy phone and told someone and the guy said, "OK, let me reboot it and then try." Now that's service.
My flight, of course, is late, because I'm flying to DC through Dallas where, apparently, huge thunder storms are causing everything to run late. After my Phoenix fiasco, I booked a pretty longish layover, so hopefully I will be fine. As it is, I won't be at my hotel until 9 pm at the earliest, and at a meeting at 9 am tomorrow, so, basically my 48 hours are looking like this: flight, delay, wait, airport, flight, delay, meeting, meeting, meeting, flight, delay, flight delay. Or something like that. It's sort of more crowded and chaotic than usual here at the airport—usually Albuquerque is weirdly quiet, as if it's just a movie-set airport and not an actual airport. Airports are so freaky. I feel like a different person when I'm in airport. For example, in real life I never think too much about what people are wearing or what they weigh. In airports, I find myself obsessed, thinking: Why is everyone so fat and badly dressed? I guess I'm a bitch in the airport. A superficial bitch. But I don't think like that any other time, so maybe it evens out and I'm just like everyone else. Or maybe airports attracts such a preponderance of overweight badly dressed people, that I'd have to be blind to not notice. Or maybe...
I suppose there's no point in wearing down my battery blathering on about the 7,000 pounds of human flesh in polyster that surrounds me. Instead, I bid you good travels. Or, rather, I bid that to myself.
Also—did not get enough sleep last night.
Until DC—

Thursday, May 01, 2008

I should be packing. I should be packing. I should be packing. I HATE packing.
So...I know all this self-promotion is revolting and I am self-revolted, but if you have a chance, check out my Huffington Post post and buzz me up or fan me or whatever. I will do the same for you! I swear! (Or the equivalent: come to your show, buy your book (and read it), whatever.
Yeah...definitely should be packing.

ready, set, d.c.

So, tomorrow morning I go to DC for the AAN membership committee meeting. I'm slightly bitter that I'm flying all day Friday, sitting in a meeting most of Saturday and then flying back Sunday morning. Bye-bye weekend. Oh well.
If you haven't yet, please check our SFR's new election blog, Swing State of Mind. I've just posted on the David Iglesias scandal as it may or may not impact the Pearce/Wilson Senate race. The post is also on Huffington post, so feel free to read it there too!
And, finally, before I leave you for my cross-country journey, this week's radio cast—sorry the editing was a little rough. I'm in a hurry...and I'm not that good at it yet.