Saturday, February 28, 2009

Santa Fe Community College Elections

The Santa Fe Community College is conducting elections for board members on March 3, 2009. All voters within the Santa Fe Public School District are eligible to vote for all positions. For more information on the election, click on the links below.

Santa Fe Community College Election! March 3, 2009

Find out where to vote!

Friday, February 27, 2009

More on the Stimulus Package

No matter what you might think about the IRS, as government agencies go, they are great at disseminating information. If you want to know how the Stimulus package, aka the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, will affect your tax bill or paycheck, the IRS website has a great page with easy-to-understand summaries and links to more information. For example, if you're expecting a check, click on the Economic Recovery Payment link and see if you qualify.

And as long as we're discussing the IRS, it's tax time! The Main Library now has NM tax forms, and you can check out the library's Tax Information page to find out where you can get federal tax forms and assistance.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

E-Waste Recycling Drop-Off Day

One Day Only
Saturday, February 28
9:00 am - 1:00 pm
1142 Siler Road

Keep Santa Fe Beautiful, the City of Santa Fe, and Albuquerque Recycling Inc.

You can bring:
  • TVs ($5 charge per TV: cash only)
  • Computers
  • Monitors
  • Laptop computers
  • LCD screens
  • Printers
  • Stereos
  • Phones
  • Cell phones
  • Computer battery back-ups
  • Computer peripherals: mice, keyboards, and computer game assemblies

Not accepted:
  • Microwave ovens
  • Bread machines
  • Appliances

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Static Age

2001: A Space OdysseyWhile I've been downloading electronic music for a decade, I only recently joined the 21st century with one of those nifty iPod thingies. I've been conservative in its use so far, in that while HAL Jr. has several hundred songs in his pocket-sized casing, I haven't yet gone in for podcasts, videos, pictures and the like.

While this handy-dandy portable electronic gadget is getting as much use in my household as the Walkman did 25 years ago (meaning: 24/7), it gives me pause to think about the future. I'm far from a luddite, but the trend towards downloading cultural and entertainment artifacts such as music, film, and yes, books may have interesting repercussions.

Rock n' Roll High SchoolFor instance, when I first became an aunt, I eagerly looked forward to the growth and maturity of the nephews and nieces so I could gift them with favorite records, um, I mean, CDs. Now that they're old enough to be blessed with my copious musical knowledge, a CD is almost as foreign and twice as useless to them as a wax cylinder was to me. I can buy them an iTunes gift card, or send them a playlist of songs to download, but the days of making mix tapes or purchasing a work of music for someone because you think they'll like it are almost over.

What about movies? As it is, I can't lend a VHS tape to most friends. Pretty soon we won't be able to trade DVDs either. Or photos? All my memories from the last five years aren't in a photo album or frame or shoebox, but in an online program called flickr, all ones and zeroes depicting those occasions and emotions. Marriages and births have transpired without any reminders on the wall or nightstand.

Irish JournalBut the one that makes me saddest, the one that is definitely coming down the pike eventually, with the Sony reader and NetLibrary and Kindle, is the loss of the book. Getting my father an Amazon gift certificate isn't the same thing as buying him a copy of the forgotten, exquisite Irish Journal, and then trading emails about it for a few months afterwards. Again, I can recommend Irish Journal or some other literary gem to him, but there's something about putting a cultural object in someone else's permanent possession. They may love it or hate it or make a quick buck off it by reselling it, but it's something personal. It's how books and music and movies have been discovered and shared for ages. Or at least the past hundred years or so.

So while I love my iPod, and wished I had jumped on the bandwagon much earlier, I'm really hoping that physical and digital objects can find a way to coexist in this world. If only so I can lend you a book that meant a lot to me, or embarrass and educate my nieces and nephews with some very, very important music.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Home Ground Release

Home Ground
Thursday, March 5, 2009
7:00-8:30 pm
Main Library
Community Room

In Home Ground: Language for an American Landscape, editor Barry Lopez calls upon contributors such as Barbara Kingsolver, Charles Frazier, Jon Krakauer, Robert Hass, William DeBuys and Arthur Sze to define over 850 evocative terms used to describe the American landscape. The entries are intriguing pieces of creative writing that not only define a word, but create images of our landscape and its diversity.

Join award-winning writer William DeBuys and internationally known poet Arthur Sze for their discussion of this masterful work on language, geography, and folklore.

This program is free and open to the public.

Check our website for more upcoming programs.

Ed. note: this post was corrected on 2/24/09. The original post had Barry Lopez, instead of William DeBuys, attending this program. We apologize for the omission and any confusion.

Monday, February 23, 2009

New E-mail Notices

If you get an e-mail message from, please don't think it's Spam. We're using this e-mail address to send out Hold Pick-up notices and Overdue messages. Be sure to add this address to your e-mail program's address book so you don't miss out on any important information. If you have a question about a hold or overdue notice, simply reply to the e-mail.

If you need to update your e-mail address, other contact information, or choose whether you receive notices by phone or e-mail, login to your record, and click on the "Update Account" button. If you need to contact us by e-mail for something other than overdues and holds, please continue to use

Friday, February 20, 2009

America Saves Week

In case you hadn't heard, Saving is In! Whether you've been a big saver since the Great Depression, or it's something you've been thinking about embarking on, you might need a little help or persuasion.

America Saves Week runs from February 22 - March 1, 2009. There is a year-round site at America Saves to get lots of tips and support. You can read this post if you'd like a refresher on personal finance information. We also have hundreds of books that focus on personal savings techniques.

One quick tip to start you on the road towards your savings goal: Use the library! We have free books, DVDs, magazines, newspapers, CDs and internet access. If you'd like to see how much money you save by using library services, check out our Library Value Calculator. If you put that money in the piggy bank, you'll be well on your way to healthy savings.

Piggy Bank courtesy of

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Read Across America Day

The Cat in the HatThe Santa Fe Public Library will be celebrating “Read Across America Day” with stories and a visit by the City of Santa Fe Fire Department at each of its three branches from 3:30 pm to 5:30 pm on Monday, March 2nd.

Children are invited to wear their Dr. Seuss hats and enjoy favorite picture books while awaiting a visit by their neighborhood firefighters. Children will be able to explore the fire trucks and learn about the firefighting equipment.

The Main Library is located at 145 Washington Avenue, 955-6783; the La Farge Library is at 1730 Llano Street, 955-4863; and the Southside Library is at 6599 Jaguar Drive, 955-2828.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

New Mexico Hispanic Youth Symposium

High School Students!
Apply to Participate in the 2009 New Mexico Hispanic Youth Symposium

Would you like to:
* Compete for $14,000 in scholarships?
* Experience life on a college campus for four days and three nights?
* Meet new friends like you who are interested in going to college?
* Learn more about your culture?
* Learn about the college application process?
* Meet awesome college students and community leaders?
* Learn how to achieve a successful career?

If you answered yes to these questions, apply today to participate in the 2009 New Mexico Hispanic Youth Symposium.

Date and location:
July 15th - 18th, 2009
University of New Mexico

Deadline to apply is April 24th, 2009.

Target Audience:
* Live and attend high school in the State of New Mexico
* Identify with the Hispanic and/or Native American cultures
* Be either a sophomore or junior in high school during the fall of 2009
* Have a 2.5 GPA or above
* Complete the online application and essay
* Pay a $10 personal investment fee (which can be waived upon request)

How to apply:
* With the help of a teacher, write a 1 - 2 page personal statement about a person you admire and how he or she has had a positive impact on your life. You can chose anyone you like, from a family member, to a friend, to an historical figure.
* Save an electronic version of your personal statement on your computer, or somewhere else so that you can easily access it.
* Go to and create an account.
* Once you have supplied all of the necessary information, copy and paste yourpersonal statement into the essay box.
* Once have completed the steps outlined above, click submit. After you submit your essay, you will not be able to modify it.
* You will receive confirmation of your acceptance into the program in the Spring of 2009.

For more information, visit the Hispanic Youth Institute website.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Where's My Money?

Unless you've been living in a cave (and I don't deny that is occasionally a highly preferable state of existence, at least in the summer months), you've been following the soap opera of drama in D.C. which is the stimulus package. And if you're like me, you're saying to yourself: exactly how much of my particular tax dollars are going to bonuses for bank execs, and how much is going to, say, repaving roads in Alabama? If you are really like me, you are also wondering: so where did all that money go from that first package, and what's our guarantee that this new package won't go to line some Wall Street gent's offshore account or gas up the latest luxury jet? (I also tend to wonder if there are cameras in elevators, but I digress.)

This site won't tell you where your particular money is going, but it will hopefully tell us all, eventually, where that stimulus package money is going and who is accountable. Yay for responsibility!

Check it after the Stimulus Wars have subsided and see what the clearing dust reveals.

by AA @ Main

Monday, February 16, 2009

Applications for Arts Funding

City Accepting Applications for Arts Funding
Deadline March 4, 2009

The City of Santa Fe Arts Commission is currently accepting applications for funding through the Special & New Projects Program of the 1% Lodgers’ Tax and the Community Arts Development Program. Arts Commission funding is provided to nonprofit arts organizations presenting high-quality programming in Santa Fe from July 1, 2009 through June 30, 2010. All support is project-based. Application information and forms are available on the Arts Commission website. The deadline for receipt of applications is Wednesday, March 4, 2009.

The Arts Commission provides funding to nonprofit arts and cultural organizations, both established and emerging. Organizations considering applying for funding are strongly encouraged to contact the Arts Commission prior to submitting an application. Arts Commission staff is available to help ensure an organization and a project are eligible for funding, as well as to provide guidance regarding in which funding category to apply.

To request an application, receive more information, or discuss a potential application, please contact the City of Santa Fe Arts Commission at 505-955-6707 or via email at

Friday, February 13, 2009

Day X

No Smoking LogoYears ago, I heard about the following interview with Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Sartre. When Simone was asked what the most important thing in her life was, her reply was a gushy, "Oh, Jean-Paul!" Asked the same question, Jean-Paul replied, "Cigarettes." While I've never checked to see if this story was apocryphal – and I suspect its intent was a dig at Beauvoir – like all myths this story holds a grain of indelible truth: if you're a smoker, smoking is the most important thing in your life.

Quitting SmokingThere are tons of resources and methods to help smokers quit. People use nicotine gum, patches, sprays and lozenges, hypnosis, acupuncture, massage, yoga, Chantix, Wellbutrin, cinnamon toothpicks and Panda licorice. Smoking cessation classes are regularly held around town, or your job might have smoking cessation resources as part of its Employee Assistance Program. Online, there are sites from organizations such as MedLinePlus and Smoking with useful tips and information. I found the site to be the most useful, especially Joel's Library. What the site lacks in polish and funding, it makes up with the most thorough post-smoking FAQ I've ever seen.

If you're in the unhappy circumstance of being around a quitting smoker, please keep in mind that the person is not only withdrawing from an incredibly potent drug, but he or she is also going through the stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance. For those of you never-smokers out there, try this experiment: skip a teeth-brushing or a meal every day for several days, and observe how that gap in your routine consumes the rest of your attention.

Still Life with WoodpeckerLike the bittersweet end of long-term relationships, I can't help but sink into sentimentality when I think about cigarettes. The Commander-in-Chief may still be a smoker, and I agree that now would be a horrible time for him to quit. The late Joe Strummer proclaimed that “Nonsmokers should be banned from buying any product a smoker created,” which would encompass just about all our art, music, literature and film. But the most poignant paean to smoking I've read:

"Three of the four elements are shared by all creatures, but fire was a gift to humans alone. Smoking cigarettes is as intimate as we can become with fire without immediate excruciation. Every smoker is an embodiment of Prometheus, stealing fire from the gods and bringing it on back home. We smoke to capture the power of the sun, to pacify Hell, to identify with the primordial spark, to feed on the marrow of the volcano. It's not the tobacco we're after but the fire. When we smoke, we are performing a version of the fire dance, a ritual as ancient as lightning."

Editor's note: the Author is on Day 21 of Cold Turkey Quitting.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Rail Runner Public Meetings

Rail Runner LogoThe "It" question this winter is: "Have you taken the Rail Runner yet?" Folks are riding round-trips for the fun of it, or disembarking in Albuquerque for lunch or festivals in Belén. In just two months of the Rail Runner hitting Santa Fe, it's definitely changing the nature of transportation and leisure.

However, not everyone has found the Rail Runner to be accessible or convenient, and there are more stops and connections planned for both the train and related public transportation. In the meantime, check out the Pick-Up van that circles the city to take Rail Runner visitors around the town to access Santa Fe. Schedules are available at the Main Library, and stops are clearly marked.

To add your two cents about connections, the Regional Planning Authority staff, with support from both the City of Santa Fe and Santa Fe County, will be hosting public meetings in February and March to discuss potential areas where local transit service could be expanded. The public involvement meetings will be an “open house” format for the first hour, followed by a presentation from staff, with time allotted for public comment to follow.

Meetings are scheduled as follows:

February 16, 2009, 6:00-8:00 p.m.
Santa Fe County Commission Chambers @ 102 Grant Avenue

February 17, 2009, 6:00-8:00 p.m.
Genoveva Chavez Community Center @ 3221 Rodeo Road

March 10, 2009, 6:15-8:15 p.m.
Eldorado Community Assoc. Railroad Bdg. @ 1 Hacienda Loop

March 12, 2009, 6:00-8:00 p.m.
Santa Fe Community College @ 6401 South Richards Ave.

March 17, 2009, 6:00-8:00p.m.
Santa Fe County Satellite Office Cuyamungue @ 17839A US84/285
(west side US84/285 @ Buffalo Thunder exit)

For further information, please contact:

Mary Helen Follingstad, Executive Director, Santa Fe Regional Planning Authority, 995-6508

Jon Bulthuis, City of Santa Fe Transit Director, at 955-2006

Andrew Jandacek, Santa Fe County Planner at, 986-6214

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Writing Robots

After a recent Lannan Readings & Conversations evening, we were discussing what conditions were well-suited to a creative life. We didn't come to any hard and fast conclusions (other than that television should be kept to a minimum), but there are tools out there to facilitate creativity, especially of a literary stripe.

You can try the Almost Totally Random Writing Exercise Generator which provides style, length and vocabulary prompts that can work as writing inspiration. Cybernetic Engines has prompts that consist of "unusual thoughts". Language is a Virus has a writing prompt generator, and a number of creative writing widgets that you can bookmark or add to a site. Seventh Sanctum has a generator that you can tweak by complexity and number of prompts, and print out the results.

If you need inspiration for a younger crowd, the Imagination Prompt Generator is a good tool, as is this page of prompt generators. In fact, doing a Google search for "writing generator" or "writing prompt" or "creativity generator" will turn up dozens of sites that should spark something in your imagination, regardless of which art you practice. If you're still stuck, DMOZ's directory of writing exercises might be the place to start.

And if all else fails, you can settle for the Amazing Bad Commercial Generator. After all, who says that creativity has to be good?

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Live Birds of Prey

by the Santa Fe Raptor Center

Santa Fe Raptor Center
Monday, February 16th

Main Library: 10:00 am

La Farge Library: 12:30 pm

Southside Library: 2:00 pm
Volunteers will introduce hawks and owls and answer questions after the program. This program will be dependent on nice weather as the birds cannot be brought out on icy roads.

The Santa Fe Raptor Center is a non-profit group that provides rescue, rehabilitation,and release of injured wild birds as well as providing educational programs throughout the community.

Sponsored by the Friends of the Santa Fe Public Library.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Love Your River Day

scheduled for February 14, 2009

The Santa Fe Watershed Association, in partnership with the City of Santa Fe and Santa Fe County, will co-sponsor "Love your River Day.” The event is scheduled to take place on Saturday, Feb. 14 at Frenchy's Field Barn beginning at 10 a.m. and lasting until 1 p.m. This annual event is an opportunity for all of the Santa Fe River Stewards in the Adopt-the-River program to come together for an all-river clean-up before the Spring flows begin. The community is invited to join the Santa Fe River Stewards and learn more about the stewardship of our river. Hot beverages and snacks will be served before and after the clean-up.

For additional information, contact Mikki Anaya, Adopt-the-River coordinator at 820-1696 or via email at

Friday, February 06, 2009

Location Change: Coffee with Coss

Focus: The Local Economy

Wednesday, Feb. 11
9:15 a.m. to 11 a.m.

LOCATION CHANGE: Due to the high interest in this event, the location of the Feb. 11 Coffee with Coss has been changed to the:

Santa Fe Community Convention Center, Ballroom A,
201 W. Marcy St.

Check our earlier post for more information.

February Coffee with Coss

Focus: The Local Economy

Wednesday, Feb. 11
9:15 a.m. to 11 a.m.

City Hall Council Chambers
200 Lincoln Ave.

LOCATION CHANGE: Due to the high interest in this event, the location of the Feb. 11 Coffee with Coss has been changed to the Santa Fe Community Convention Center, Ballroom A, 201 W. Marcy St.

Santa Fe Mayor David Coss invites business owners, employers and employees to join him for a discussion on the state of the local economy. Share your concerns, ideas and solutions on how Santa Fe can get through these times of economic challenge together.

Morning Coffee with Mayor Coss is an interactive forum established in June of 2006 to promote communication between city government and members of the community. Each Coffee focuses on a specific topic of importance to the community. Through these Coffees, the city is able to hear comments, concerns, and ideas from community members in order to address specific concerns and make informed decisions on how to best serve the public.

For more information on past or future Coffees, please contact Laura Banish, City of Santa Fe Public Information Officer, at (505) 955-6046.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Reading Rainbow Writers and Illustrators Workshop

Get ready for the 15th Annual Reading Rainbow Young Writers and Illustrators Contest!

Children in Grades K-3 can bring in an existing story or get ideas for a new one. Materials are provided. No registration required.
Saturday, February 21
Southside Library
With children's book author Lisa Stewart
of "The Little Cat, the Wonderful Witch, and the Clever Mouse"
This workshop is sponsored by KNME New Mexico.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Valentines Day Book Sale

Two HeartsFebruary 14 and 15
La Farge Library
1730 Llano St.

Saturday: 10 am - 4 pm
No Members-Only Hours

Sunday: 1 - 4 pm
Bag Day

Discount Books Only

Open to the Public

Sponsored by the Friends of the Santa Fe Public Library.

"Two Hearts" courtesy of the Peirce Clipart Collection.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Food: a topic of continual interest

Huevos Yucatecos I was trying to find out the hours for a certain restaurant here in Santa Fe, (which is hard, lots of web sites don’t list hours) and I stumbled on Gil’s Thrilling (and Filling) Blog, which reviews restaurants in New Mexico. Gil does extensive reviews of many of the restaurants here in Santa Fe, and has color photos of dishes on the menu, even of the chips and salsa served. For example take a look at the Huevos Yucatecos on the Tecolote Café review. He does a good job on the Bobcat Bite too.

The blog should come in handy for library patrons and visitors if they want to learn more about a particular place in Santa Fe. Gil also covers Albuquerque and other eateries in New Mexico. He even has a review of a Brazilian restaurant in Albuquerque, and I didn’t know there was one. In addition to reviews and photos, he has links to restaurant indexes for Albuquerque, Santa Fe, New Mexico, and the US.

Be careful though, looking at all the dishes here will get you hungry after a while.

by JP @ SS

Photo by Gil Garduño - used with permission

Monday, February 02, 2009

Whither the Groundhog?

Groundhog DayToday, February 2nd, is Groundhog Day. Somewhat roughly shoved between the festive winter holidays and the procession of niche holidays such as Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day and Easter, it's not a popular day with most people. While it is a welcome harbinger that the dark days of winter are on the wane, to most people it's a pesky reminder that the snow shovel and sweaters need to stay available for a few more (6!) weeks.

Groundhog DayI enjoy Groundhog Day a great deal. It's perhaps the last holiday that's resisted its own Hallmark section; its origin is arguably more ancient than most of the holidays on the calendar; and it's the closest we can get to Spring at the beginning of February.

If you're celebrating this day with youngsters, there are plenty of crafts and activities you can do, especially about the seasons. If you're a little older and already have a good grasp of how the earth circles the sun, you can always watch the eponymous film, which will make you very thankful that the Santa Fe winter is comparatively short.