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September 01, 2014

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Zach Hively Zach Hively

Fool’s Gold: Cracking the Health Nut

I take pretty good care of my body. I floss before every dentist appointment, and I am so flexible that I even touched my toes once. So you should absolutely take me seriously when I tell you that I have no idea what, exactly, is the normal condition of my prostate.

No one ever told me that I have a prostate, and I completed four whole levels of sex education in school, plus a college semester in Europe and several rounds of the board game “Operation.” I used to think—and I am surely not alone here—that prostates were lumps of tissue, or possibly gremlins, that developed only inside old man bodies...

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September 01, 2014

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Patricia D'Andrea Patricia D'Andrea

A day on the river. Mixed.

Early on, it was a sunstruck/river spirit day, paddling in a rhythm that doesn't exist for me anywhere else, ever. Dip, pull, feather, switch. Action in the wrist, shoulder, elbow, moving along propelled by my body, my legs braced forward, nursed by the river's current. Incredible green along the banks, healthy huge cottonwoods, silver-green olive trees hanging dead limbs over the water to catch unwary boatmen and sweep them out of their cockpits while immobilizing the boat.

At first I laughed at the sweepers/strainers every time I hit one, which was often and almost always river right. Now that I think of it, a puzzle; there were almost none on river left, and why was that? I thought of this later...

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September 01, 2014

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Morgan Smith Morgan Smith

Charles “Chuck” Bowden

It’s devastating news. Charles “Chuck” Bowden died last Saturday evening of an apparent heart problem. The author of Murder City: Ciudad Juárez and the Global Economy’s New Killing Fields; El Sicario; Down by the River: Drugs, Money, Murder and Family; A Shadow in the City and many other books and articles, he was a true hero in terms of his work in Juárez and the border. Everyone talks about immigration and border issues but Chuck was one of the few who was actually there, again and again, in the most dangerous times and the most deadly places...

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August 30, 2014

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John Hamilton Farr John Hamilton Farr

Reunion

All right, this is serious. The Upper Gorge, formerly known as Wild Rivers Area, now part of the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument. Haven’t been up here for years. This is where we came in ’98 before we moved, when I looked out at pure landscape (not this view) and started to cry. It was my birthday, too. That’s kind of what did it.

There’s such power in this place. As soon as you drive back to the nearest village, it mostly goes away. People just mess things up. I’m sorry, but it’s true. There aren’t many places on the planet where you feel this non-material sustenance. Like your spirit taking a long drink after exile in the desert of culture. I didn’t want to leave today...

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August 30, 2014

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Viki Harrison Viki Harrison

CCNM guide to independent expenditures‏

Common Cause New Mexico is often asked what “rules” exist in New Mexico for regulating campaign spending by “PACs” and other groups who operate independently of the candidates.  No short and simple answer to this question can be given because New Mexico’s law on this subject is currently in a fluid and uncertain state, owing to recent court decisions invalidating most of the current statutes and to recent legislative efforts to rewrite the law to bring it into line with these decisions and with modern campaign practices...

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August 27, 2014

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Wally Gordon Wally Gordon

Disabled but not enabled

Over the past 29 years Adaptive Sports Program of New Mexico has given thousands of disabled people the opportunity to enjoy snow and water sports supposedly reserved for the strong and healthy.

This summer more than 100 disabled people are participating in 10 river running and lake events that include kayaking, sailing, paddle boarding and sail boarding. Last winter more than 300 participated in downhill skiing and snowboarding at Ski Santa Fe, Sandia and Pajarito...

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August 26, 2014

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James Burbank James Burbank

Whoa!

Let me tell you —People here in Alburg are very jealous of the little village of Placitas where romantic herds of free-standing, starving, thirsty horses in their thousands surround your car and threaten to kick in the door unless you surrender your water and your Cheetos. Thank you for granting me this moment of wild freedom, my beloved famished and parched stallion friends...

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August 23, 2014

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Margaret Randall Margaret Randall

Mercury Poetry: Without Warning

At the bus stop and out of the corner of my eye
I see myself waiting,
awkward bundle at my feet.
I am wearing the same sky blue fleece
though it hangs looser against my body.
My hair, still long and full and brown,
frames the younger me in her oblivion...

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August 23, 2014

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Elizabeth Stebbins Elizabeth Stebbins

Emerging Voices: Elizabeth Stebbins

Curator’s note by Stevie Olson: This week, the Mercury is proud to feature two pieces from Elizabeth Stebbins. Both pieces are thoughtfully-constructed, beautiful vignettes of life. Elizabeth’s grasp of language allows her execute poetic paragraphs which draw the reader into her observations and narratives. Liz is a wildly talented artist. As you’ll find out reading her pieces, she is a piano player, a budding philosopher, and gifted wordsmith. We wish Elizabeth a wonderful coming fall semester...

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August 20, 2014

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Wally Gordon Wally Gordon

Retirement: Is it death deferred?

Is retirement an end or a beginning? We talk about retiring from, almost never retiring to. We talk about what we are leaving behind rather than where we are going.

We focus on what we no longer have to endure. We’ve spent our lives on the concerns of living: the job, the commute, the burdens, the worries, raising kids, paying the mortgage, keeping a boss or employees or colleagues happy, and supporting those who depend on us.

Then we retire. Now what?...

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