it's that time of year again...

Attn: anyone who wants to send us any gloom to have burned at Zozobra, get that stuff in the mail to us asap! The burninating is September 10!

[Edited to add: Zozobra now has a Twitter feed. Oy.]


Saturday morning walk

2.5 miles, according to Google maps. Click for larger.


A Night at the Opera

Last night, our trip up to The Santa Fe Opera to see The Letter for a little pre-anniversary outing. In our four years here, never been to the opera.

Not knowing what to expect crowd- and traffic-wise, we pulled into our parking space minutes after the lot opened … about three hours before the performance. A few tailgaters had already set up, but we wandered the area for a bit — it's really nice up there …

And then went to the Prelude Talk given by Oliver Prezant. Given the ribbing and banter from audience members who'd caught him before, figured it'd be more on the lighthearted side — and it was, lively, providing some background on the tale and glimpses of the things that, if we knew anything about opera, we'd probably know enough to appreciate.

Back to the car for tailgate. Had been thinking about this for a few days; one of Mon's co-workers brings a tub of KFC, other operagoers go all out. Turns out what we both wanted was subs from The Italian Store in Arlington. Since that wasn't gonna happen, had to put together our own facsimile; ingredients from the new Sunflower Farmers Market that just opened up the street.

Time for a drink and people-watching inside the gates, one of the most enjoyable parts. Then, up (and up and up) to our seats. They weren't exactly the cheapest ones, but we were pretty much at the top row of the mezzanine; would've been nicer to be closer, but I don't think it diminshed the experience. Performers were far away, but we had the binoculars and also got a view into the orchestra pit. Though the opera was in English, the little glowing screens in front of everyone's seat flashed the lyrics, so there was nothing lost (and it made a pretty funny visual, looking down on all the blinking lights in the darkness of the audience).

And the show was everything the creators set out to do and the reviews say — fast-paced, entertaining, accessible. Unfamiliar with opera, I'm sure we were missing out on plenty of the nuances and depth, but swept up in it (first time I looked at my watch it was 15 minutes 'til the end). We had a good time — and the reviewers who know about these things assure us we did; check the WSJ, the New Mexican, and the Reporter.

The music, Monica noted, was more movie score than what we think of as opera; the scene changes were also interesting, the stage described by Oliver as a "Murphy Bed set," sliding moving pieces that felt like cinematic transitions.

I'm not sure how well I'd do a "real" opera, but this one was great, and know we know what it's all about. All in all, a pleasant time, a nice change. Until the car died leaving the parking lot (probably the fuel pump) and we had to wait for a tow home. Sigh. It was a late night, so until James comes over for a barbecue, we're having a bit of a Greyhound day.

OK, here:


Kernel Panic!

Sigh. The long-delayed laptop OS upgrade was rushed and went horribly awry, now it won't start up. And it was the kind of day where this didn't even really register. Please tell me someone out there's got mad UNIX skillz.

Luckily, there was an awfully nice RBS review waiting when I got home.

And then this:


Friday Night on Canyon Road, and What Came After

Jamie's (or maybe this link) annual show was moved up a month from previous years'. From opposite directions, we made the trek to the opening for Mix Friday night.

Jamie was experimenting more with scale and subject; as usual, the paintings were amazing. The gallery produced a video about his process; it's interesting, after years of working with him, we'd never actually seen Jamie paint:

Danny got there under his own power and joined us for the evening. You can't take him and and Monica anywhere.

(Traditional Jamie In Front Of His Art Portrait here)

Saturday morning, as a part of preparations for the day, we got to stop by Tarts' Treats. The homemade lox was tasty, the fruit scone was delicious, dogs are welcome (and petted and given water) on the patio; we chatted with Rebecca, the owner, who seems a pretty awesome person.

And then it was time for the 7000 BC meeting/workshop at Warehouse 21. We had one enthusiastic particpant — and then waited over an hour for the rest to show up (promised at 1:30 that one of the students' mom was picking up a bunch more). I mean, we don't expect anyone in Santa Fe to show up on time … but really? And hour and twenty mintues? Anyway, it came together and teachers much more tolerant than me ran a good class; photos at the Flickr stream.

Sunday was due to be chore day, someone shops and someone cleans. While we were all putting it off, the Greyhound Scream Of Death came from outside. We ushered her back inside, looked her over, Monica thought she was squatting when it happened. Soon, we realized the horrible yelps were coming when she was trying to pee … and there went the rest of the day at "e-vet". Nothing against the great folks there; plenty of much more pressing emergencies (and she managed to find a new boyfriend in the vet tech). After several hours, turns out Cheyenne was suffering from a "raging urinary tract infection." I'm figuring, being such a tough girl, she hid her symptoms for a while. Eventually we all arrived home, awfully beat; painkillers and antibiotics solved Cheyenne's problem pretty quickly.