In thinking about the Confederate flag one should re-read what may have been the most basic document stating the reasoning behind the Confederate States seceding from the United States of America...This record of a speech spoken by Alexander H. Stephens March 21, 1861 in Savannah Georgia became known as the THE CORNERSTONE SPEECH.
With us, all of the white race, however high or low, rich or poor, are equal in the eye of the law. Not so with the negro. Subordination is his place. He, by nature, or by the curse against Canaan, is fitted for that condition which he occupies in our system.
Our new government is founded upon exactly the opposite idea; its foundations are laid, its corner- stone rests, upon the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery subordination to the superior race is his natural and normal condition.
I am one of forty seven persons to still have and love a dumb phone but I have come across an app (on my wife's Smartie-Pantsed phone) that would almost move me to buy a Smart-ier phone. It is called, Pulse Point.
The application has been purchased for use by many large metropolitan areas in order to 'save lives' . Recently, our City of Albuquerque, New Mexico shelled out the $25k for a first year try of the app. Pulse Point is set up to save lives in that you are notified if anyone has a heart attack or is in need of CPR in your general area. Supposedly, you would rush over to the victim located on your phone's Pulse Point integrated map, the on your phone, read the instructions given by Pulse Point to apply CPR and Presto ! You are a Hero and a life is saved. I imagine a course or too in Red Cross First Aid might also help.
In actuality, I do not know how many folks would or will be doing that for their fellow citizens and I am not sure that they even should be doing this...For me, the coolest thing about this app is that now every single call out for the Albuquerque Fire Department from Medical Emergencies, Mutual Aid, Disasters, Traffic Collisions, and Structure Fires are immediately available to anyone who has this app on their phones.
Now this app is not for everyone...This reminds me of the days when a Volunteer Fireman or a Doctor might get a page and rush to the scene, except that it is so much more wildly better. Only 'old geezers' used to sit around and listen to their police, paramedic or fire 'scanners' back in the day. Ironically, this app was 'announced' in Albuquerque media, the very day it was also announced that RADIO SHACK had gone under. Scanners Pishawww!
In truth (sorry old geezers) most 'scanners' no longer work as radio messages are all digital in big cities. There are apps/web sites available to listen in on radio calls for fire and police, the most popular one being "Broadcastify" as well as others (on your app search use the word "emergency"). In Albuquerque, you can still hear analog calls for Albuquerque Ambulance and Rio Rancho Police Department on your old geezer scanner.
Now there's an app for that. It is rather astounding how many calls the Albuquerque Fire Department responds to. After setting up our preferences on Pulse Point to receive push notices for everything, I quickly adjusted it to Structure Fires only. This relieved my wife who's phone was blinging and blanging constantly.
I am an admitted 'newsie'. I love taking 'on the scene' photographs. I have had my pictures seen on all local Albuquerque tv stations as well as local blogs. Still never gotten paid for any but I love to take pictures and burning buildings or Albuquerque Police Riots (March 2014) make for some great pictures. If you scroll down long enough you can see some of my work at this website, Jeff Hartzer dot com.
You can locate your own location on the app and when a 'call' comes in find it immediately on a map or satellite image. Just an hour ago, my wife's one got a 'push' for a structure fire and as it was close by our home, I decided to drive over and check it out. I actually arrived before the Fire Chief from Station One downtown. As fires go, luckily that one was a false alarm.
So selfishly I say, ¡Mucha Mierda!, Merde, and break a leg...to Pulse Point and to the City of Albuquerque for signing on to it.
Meanwhile, if you think you might be into it, check out Pulse Point at Pulse Point dot org . Download the app for Android and IOS (IOS 7 and above only)...And go save some lives or something. Be careful to drive safe and stay out of the way of first responders at all times.
FREE is so cool and great and just gosh darn kharmic or something. I have often perused FREE STUFF online and alongside roads and highways (I was a Litter Picker supervisor for several years in Washington State--Totally Great J-O-B, Bob for FREE STUFF).
Recently however been compiling a list of THE MOST RIDICULOUS ITEMS I have seen at Craig's List FREE STUFF listing in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
My list so far...this is all true.
free paint chips, free broken red bricks, free wood you chop down tree and haul off,
Free cassette - The Monets (downtown)
Lots of stuff crub side
FREE 52 inch big screen tv->Used it for many years, works good just needs a new lamp.
3 calls - 3 no shows WTF PEOPLE??? (abq)
What is with you people wasting other people's time? If you want something that we're graciously giving away, DON'T BE AN ASSHOLE!!! SHOW THE F**K UP WHEN YOU SAY YOU WILL!!! I pulled the damned ads, if you want the stuff now you can buy it at Goodwill!!!
Free glass bottles (Nob hill) (current cokes and stuff)
Free dirt for the taking. Just come and get it.
Free sand. Be nice and leave the tarp!
2 well-used feather mattresses (one queen and one full). Some stains but in okay condition
Seventh Generation Multi Purpose Cleaner (ABQ)
I bought it and didn't care for the scent. Only used a few squirts of it.
FREE USED COOKING OIL
I cut down a dead pine tree;have pile of branches free
several dry wall pieces different sizes. On sidewalk. Come & get it!
FREE CLEAN DIRT AND WE DELIVER
2 NON-working lawn mowers if you want to fix them up.
I spent Memorial Day Weekend helping a college classmate 'burn stuff' at his family farm in East Texas. Burning off the old is indeed metaphorically renewing and invigorating physically as well. There were seven piles of trees/brush stored up as a result of the recent two year severe Texas drought, which has eased considerably in East Texas...Sadly, the drought remains in West Texas and even moreso in New Mexico.
This work was done in preparation for a wedding ceremony to be held at the farm in 2014. I feel like we opened the road to 'many happy returns'.
This Picasa (now Google) Gallery includes The Burn, the family 'log house', 'stone house', flora and fauna of rejuvenated and green East Texas, and shots of the family's new pup, Franklin.
Meant leaving Ms. Whitelaw's class fifteen minutes early to don my white shoulder/waist School Boy Patrol belt and badge; grabbing my shiny shellack bamboo pole with red flag attached, heading out to the bike shed in the afternoon sun behind the cafeteria, and cruising on my Schwinn 3 speed to my post on Baltic Avenue where soon girls and boys would cross streets with my best attentions.
My command post view at Corinthian and Baltic includes Braden's Pharmacy, Burlingame's grocery store, my barbershop and a lot of pretty girls with curly hair. Spanish moss hangs ghostlike from the low slung branches of ancient live oaks and pines. Mockingbirds call out and down the hot asphaltc of Baltic Avenue come girls and boys laughing in the sun.
In cicada twilight, waving red flagged poles in the air overhead loud calls from post to post eventually out to me blocks away from Ortega School yelling, "Knock---Off!". Then it was time for going home where my daily dose of Leave it to Beaver would be consumed with peanut butter cookies, cold milk and my dog, Bodger at my side tail-waggingly on the ready, for crumbs.
"We all make rules for ourselves. It's these rules that help define who we are. So, when we break those rules, we risk losing our selves and becoming something unknown."
In my own way I have created a space where there are no rules but love for art and fornication. Found artifacts and fancifully chaotic pieces stand in an area filled with the runnings of rabbits. Providing shade and suitable space for underground warrens, my backyard bunny garden called, BunnytownUSA is a monument to breaking the rules and a cheer for 'outsider artists' of all makes and models.
In truth, I began my own personal journey of Breaking the Rules began when I broke out of my mother's womb very prematurely. Shooting out a light bulb at the A&P with a slingshot, lighting matchboxes on fire in the carpool zone, shooting lizards and sparrows with bb's all went down as deeds of the miscreant who was to become a member of two Honor Councils, a teacher, an Administrator, and generally speaking a rule enforcer.
It was straight out of College, where I successfully avoided the Draft Lottery and received Honors in English at a school where smart folks wore black academic gowns to class, when I became an enforcer of rules as Dean of Students in a large North Florida preparatory school. No light-colored socks, no sideburns or long hair, no drinking alcohol or smoking evil weed on campus. I even for a time lived in that school's dormitory where my duties as enforcer of the rules got extended to 24-7 status.
I had a cat then, named Dorian. No one could smell anything other than kitty litter in that closet where I often enjoyed late night smokes, myself breaking the rules I was set out to enforce. And my most fun memory as 'Dean of Students' was that night the other Dean and I set up Cherry bombs with cigarette fuses to pop off across campus while we watched from a tall tower that used be part of the Flagler Hotel system now a school campus. The security guard, a hefty Irishman named Carney, ran from spot to spot where the Cherries bombed and from that tower no one was allowed to enter, we had a good laugh.
I voted for Nixon back in the day. Maybe that was a last toast to my parents. Even Neil Young liked Ronald Rayguns at one time. My lone vote for Tricky was the last time I knelt to the elephants in the room. I was a 'Poet for Peace' and spoke against many. Now I listen to the words of Steve Earle which sadly ring true…"I remember when we was both out on the boulevard/ Talkin' revolution and singin' the blues/ Nowadays it's letters to the editor and cheatin' on our taxes/Is the best that we can do" .
Breaking the rules got me caught once for shop lifting a 98 cent Rolling Writer pen in Tacoma, Washington where I had moved in order to never teach again but rather to become a famous second to my hero, Raymond Carver or a third to his wife, Tess. My penchant for breaking the rules led to my many writerly pursuits being flat out rejected. My rule-breaking success at publication has been let's just say, bereft.
When my wife and I bought a wrecked house in a dark neighborhood, we broke the rules and became pioneers in our 'hood. It was many years ago, that I created our contribution to "One per cent for the Arts" in our rundown neighborhood. It became a beacon of light complete with art and rabbits.
Even now I am breaking the rules at BunnytownUSA as our creative brethren number more than fifteen. Until homes can be found for the many little lagomorphs, that's the way it goes. My freak flag still flies. Who knows, maybe I'll grow a beard. Let my thinning hair grow out a bit. For now, it's time to feed the rabbit hoards.
I was recently asked three questions about Albuquerque...
1) What do you think are some important issues in our community?
2) Why do you think these are important? Which is the most important to you and why?
3) What do you think should be done to address the issue?
1) What do you think are some important issues in our community?
A man moving from Albuquerque to the east coast this month mentioned to me that there are several reasons for the move…the poverty, the lack of medical expertise for baby boomer 'procedures', and that he and his wife had 'done' all there is to do in Albuquerque.
He touches on a major issue that many moving here may overlook for a time, the abject poverty of many in Bernalillo County. Each weekend that I volunteer at New Mexico's Level One Trauma Center, I see the place filled to capacity with impoverished folks. Since moving here in 1985, I have found that the cost of living is low and have been able to get by on very little over the years. With the coming Government 'cuts' that are in the making, the problem of poverty is only going to increase.
Since 1985 I have seen a problem that at first and compared to where I grew up (North Florida) seemed mild to nonexistent but over the years I have learned it is in fact multi-cultural in its existence that is 'racism'. There is a continuing idea in Albuquerque that the negative aspects flow south…That the NE heights are more wealthy or better somehow than the SE heights and both of those areas better than the South Valley. This belief is pervasive in all aspects of life in Albuquerque.
There is also the resentment of those who came from Mexico long ago, not liking the recent arrivals. There seems to be less negative feeling toward Black Americans than in my Native state of Floirda, but having been a homeowner in Albuquerque's historically Black neighborhood, South Broadway, I can attest to the fact that more subtle perhaps though it be, racism between Blacks, 'Anglos', Hispanics, and Mexicans is rampant here.
2) Why do you think these are important? Which is the most important to you and why?
"Can't we all just get along?" Racism and North South attitudes are pervasive to daily life and effect our quality of life. For the most part, there is a feeling in Albuquerque by outsiders that our citizens are 'open and friendly'. It is too bad that long time residents don't always feel this way about one another. Or that one neighborhood or school is better than another. Or the pervasive idea that there is less crime in the Heights than in the Valley.
As both a homeowner in SE Albuquerque and a business owner in the South Valley, I have been affected by the North South divide. As a teacher in both the 'International District' and the South Valley' I was affected by the divide, A business like ours in the South Valley which promotes the arts should not be any less desirable than say the North 4th VSA Theater. In the eighties, the arts community was pretty much UNM and whatever else was out there. Today our community is very diversified in its arts. Yet, the media's coverage of the arts and so on, still has its favorites.
As a creative writer moving here from the Pacific Northwest, I felt very alone in the arts community. Somewhat like Christ in the desert: all alone. The Pacific Northwest offered much more of a community sense when it came to the arts. Albuquerque has no Arts Commission for example. Collaboration is rare in our city…It is an odd correlation, but I feel that the cultural divide of North-South /East-West is part of the problem even in the arts.
3) What do you think should be done to address the issue?
There is a bumper sticker that reads, 'teach tolerance'. I have often thought it to be 'dumb'. How can you do that? Except by example, tolerance is impossible to teach, yet, that bumpersticker comes to mind as the answer to this question of race and North-South divide…If somehow we could teach tolerance all would be well. Albuquerque is set in its ways. As more people discover the American Girl Doll from Albuquerque with her own Hot Air Balloon; as more folks come to see the Balloons; as Green Chile goes worldwide; new folks may bring a more open mind. Problem is last survey by United Van Lines showed us to be fifth in the nation for those MOVING OUT of Albuquerque.
Here's another video on You Tube from the dusty vaults...It's A New Day Yesterday is what this band sang and that catchy lyric still rings true...
Jethro Tull - A New Day Yesterday - Live Fillmore East 1970
My favorite comic strip is ZITS!by Jerry Scott and Jim Borgman
And my very favorite seasonal take by the series, on Holiday Bliss and what to do when the bliss runs out, is when Jeremy and his Dad throw their entire Christmas tree into a huge mulcher while Mom ruminates on what great satisfying fun putting away the decorations is...And of course, Jeremy and his Dad were just dreaming that scenario. Mom wins out always.
Tonight: the new moon breaks through a very dark night over Albuquerque.
Another great shot at catching one of the Geminid meteors falling through space.
More stormy weather approaches from the west with rain and snow expected by dawn.
New York gathered to warm the shredded dwellers left in ruins by Hurricane Sandy.
My favorites: another brick in the wall with Roger Waters and dancing kiddos. You got me rolling and Jumping Jack Flash's crossfired hurricane with elderly Rolling Stones akimbo. Gots to get better in a little while sang Eric Clapton. Pinball Wizard with The Who not to mention See me Feel me one more time and all the world's just a Teenage Wasteland where Rain On Me spoke to the stormy crowd with a great light show, too. Master musician Bruce Springsteen mastered a number of songs masterfully. Jon Bon Jovi as well and yes, Billy Joel.
And lest we forget, the night ended with Sir Paul McCartney singing quite a few tunes. Helter Skelter was superb; Live and let die over the top with fireworks popping Sir P's eardrums.
A superb night of rock on 12/12/12...and then, retiring Senator JEFF Bingaman was interviewed by Stephen Colbert.
Donate Now or not-check link out for further concert info.
It is a gorgeously globally warmed Saturday today in Albuquerque. But as Jim Morrison used to yell, "WAKE UP!" because supposedly, SNOW-mageddon commences in Albuquerque tomorrow. Have you filled up your gas tanks? Finally covered up ye olde swamp cooler? Fixed those outdoor leaky faucets? Made a few last trips to the store for supplies?
Tonight the winds come, then the cold, then the snow. When the local weather guys get all fired up about a forecast for the high desert, usually it is greatly hyped and nada moisture arrives. Hopefully, there'll be a happy medium this weekend with some actual snow-rain-fog-hail-anything-with-moisture.
The REAL ARMAGEDDON is less than two weeks away some (still) say…At least for sure, that is when officially the darkest/longest night of the year strikes and WINTER sets in. Ironically, from 12/22 through Spring, each day gets a little brighter and night time a little shorter. That is, if we are still alive after 12/21/12. I think we will all do just fine on the Big Day. Surving that, we can fall off the fiscal cliff next. There's always PLENTY to worry about. Anxiety is THE way of life in America these days.Always there's a WINNER and a LOSER. Every moment seems to be one big contest.
So....GO GATORS!, IRISH! LOBOS! and, whomever. You fill in your own blanks, cross your T's, and dot those eyes...'cuz we are all WINNING ! Even in a time of major fresh chaos...
The City of Albuquerque has big plans for the Rail Yards located right on the tracks between Barelas and South Broadway. A once in a blue moon event allowed the public behind the tall barbed wire fences into the cavernous historic rooms where for many years (until the late 1940's) steam locomotives were worked on from the bottom up.
I have often seen these windows from the outside lit up with bright movie lights; so cool to finally go inside the monstrously huge and historic place.
Looking toward the Sandia Mountains with the New Mexico Rail Runner passing by.
These loose 'bricks' are made of solid wood which helped soak up oils and helped workers who had to stand on them "while working on the railroad all the livelong day..."
Work (mostly planning) is underway to improve this site; in truth though, it may be decades before big results are seen. Meanwhile, it was a fun afternoon spent walking through history and snapping a ba-zillion photographs.
In honor of Breaking Bad's FINAL SEASON airing this coming Sunday...I am re-posting this blog entry I made during the filming of an earlier season...Our home is located near downtown Albuquerque and one evening they were filming a big shoot out with Jessie Pinkman and Walter White against some bad guys...The filming was at an historic and abandoned Santa Fe Rail Yard a stone's throw or three from our backyard...
Looking like the full moon nesting in the bare trees of South Broadway, an eerie light shown.The light was in a huge box of lights set on a gantry crane over the downtown railroad yards.
Albuquerque residents are growing used to the occasional odd bright light in the city at night. We have come to know that they indicate a 'movie/tv shoot' is in progress. In this case, the shoot was for the AMC hit series, Breaking Bad.
Who is that guy high in the sky?
Ready for his closeup and no one really knows he's there behind the bright light.
The whole 'bright light' picture ['that guy' is up in the gantry].
A gang of folk enjoying the warm airs of early spring? They might be enjoying the weather but this crew is hard at work on filming the AMC hit, Breaking Bad.
A light monsoon rain came pre-show and 'behaved perfectly' for the show providing a 'cool' night at the New Mexico Bio Park outdoor venue in Albuquerque for Ziggy Marley... No opener; straight Ziggy and crew for almost three hours.
Kudos to the City of Albuquerque for bringing Ziggy Marley to the Land of Enchantment.
From our lawn spot.
Sweet and simple lighting; great sound; great venue.