Posts in Category: 2020 – Dec 5 Issue

2020 DEC 5 ISSUE: NEW FUNDRAISING EFFORTS TRIED BY HARD-HIT CORRALES NON-PROFITS

The pandemic is affecting families and local businesses, but also Corrales institutions that depend on fundraisers to support their work. For example, Friends of Corrales Library (FOCL), which normally holds two major book sales a year, has done neither. But it has created an online “giving tree,’ to which you may contribute.

Now through January 15, visit corrales library.org/donate to give online. Designate the category you would like to support: DVDs and music CDs; Spanish collection; children’s collection; general adult collection; adult programs, including author series, craft kits, ukulele lessons and similar; kids’ programs, including summer reading, craft/science kits, holiday event materials, writing contest prizes and the like.

If you’d rather, send checks to FOCL, PO Box 1586, Corrales, NM 87048. Any amount you give will make a difference. Corrales Arts Center and Corrales MainStreet similarly could not hold their annual fundraisers, Got Art! and Starry Nights. Their Holly Daze Collection 2020, now until December 12, 5 p.m., is an online auction supporting both groups. Gift certificates will be emailed to winners.  All other items must be picked up at the Corrales MainStreet Office between December 14-17. Jump into the auction at: https://tinyurl.com/y4xtnsfl

Old San Ysidro Church, supported by the Corrales Historical Society, has long been closed, with no in person events possible. It mounted a first ever online Fine Arts show in October, to benefit local artists as well as the church. Currently it is selling seasonal cards online, featuring three images, 10 cards for $10, including envelopes. Woodcut of Old Church, a Navajo Nativity, and a photo image, Snowy Day Old Church. View the cards at https://www.corraleshistory.org/chs-card-shop.html. Email chsmarketing@corrales.org with your order.

CHS marketing chief Carolyn O’Mara says right now she has a new order of the woodcut coming in soon, and a decent inventory of the Navajo Nativity and the Snowy Church cards. “Printing takes three business days, and then they ship. Then we fold, assemble and place in cellophane sleeves as soon as we can, usually the same day we get the shipment.” To avoid shipping costs —$15 per set, with two sets minimum— place an order to pick up via email above.

Also on tap in a reimagined format, is the CHS Festival of the Nativities Show, now a video montage, prepared by Lisa Sparks. Begun in 2017, the Festival of the Nativities displays over 100 nativities each year, loaned by private collectors and typically displayed for one weekend in December for public viewing. Look for the montage link via https://www.corraleshistory.org/nativities.html.

Over the years CHS has displayed nativities from around the world, the southwestern United States, and New Mexico. Some nativities are one-of-a-kind, while others are special family heirlooms. While the nativities project is seen as CHS’s gift to Corrales, in these pandemic times donations are always welcome, to help preserve and maintain the iconic 152-year-old adobe structure, Old Church.

Not surprisingly, the annual Winter Craft Show, yet another anticipated event at Old Church, will not be held this year due to pandemic restrictions. Organizers encourage collectors to visit the CHS Facebook page, to view work and order directly from the artists. https://www.facebook.com/corraleshistoricalsociety. CHS also reminds everyone to go to Amazon/Smile before shopping Amazon, and chose CHS as a recipient of a percentage of your purchases. You also can use your Smith’s Rewards Card in similar fashion.

Meanwhile, the usual seasonal Corrales Fire Department food and gift drive is as needed as ever. Thus far Corrales generosity is substantial. The day before Thanksgiving, Commander Tanya Lattin posted on social media platform NextDoor the following: “Today I finished getting food out to 23 families, thanks to all of you! It was a three-day process and the most unique Thanksgiving meal packaging and delivery in my 23 years of working on this project.”

“We changed it up, not only supplying turkeys and all of the things that go with Thanksgiving, but added some pre-made meals from local restaurants. Each of you added smiles to so many faces over the last three days. I think I have smiled more in recent days than I have in the last eight months. This is all thanks to you, the wonderful Village of Corrales citizens.”

The December project will operate differently this year. Lattin explains that if you want to get gift tags, or adopt a family in need of food, just call her at 702-4182 or email tlattin@corrales-nm.org. Donations of money to Kiwanis Club of Corrales referencing the fire department are welcome. Or, feel free to send checks to Corrales Fire Department, 4920 Corrales Road, 87048.

2020 DEC 5 ISSUE: SEWER BLOCKAGE EXPLAINED


A blockage in Corrales’ sewer line, now cleared, was caused by wastewater from the Ex Novo beer brewing operation across Corrales Road from the fire station. The business owner, Joel Gregory, said the clog was caused by waste hops particulate that apparently settled in the six-inch sewer line along the east side of Corrales Road near Perea’s Restaurant.

He said that seemed strange since the wastewater containing the residue seems to have passed through the two-inch effluent line from the brewery’s septic tank, yet clogged up when it was in the much larger diameter sewer line. The material apparently settled from the wastewater stream a quarter-mile away. Gregory said a strainer already in the effluent discharge line had not proven adequate for the waste hops, so he is now installing a more elaborate —and expensive— remedy. The brewery here is trucking cans of Ex Novo beer about once a month to his outlets in the Pacific Northwest where his business began. (See Corrales Comment Vol.XXXVII No.10 July 21, 2018 “Ex Novo Brewery: Big Leap for Commercial District?”)

Shortly after he launched his project here, he said his plan was to ship a quarter-million cans of Ex Novo beer from Corrales to outlets as far away as Los Angeles. Gregory grew up in Corrales and moved back about three years ago after starting his brewing career in Portland, Oregon.

On his Ex Novo business card, Gregory identifies himself as “beer baron.” He unveiled his plans during a July 12, 2018 ground-breaking for the brewery on the site of the burned-down Rancho de Corrales restaurant. In phase one, Ex Novo erected a 10,000 square-foot brewery and small tasting room, as well as loading docks and tanks to hold water and beer. At the time, he said a later phase would involve a restaurant and beer garden.

In an interview for Corrales Comment July 6, 2018, Gregory said the brewery will produce a wide variety of beer styles —and that he expects to continually introduce new products. One of the more popular he’s already bottling in Portland is a prickly pear variety. “We love all styles of beer if they’re done well. We really appreciate the traditional styles, and then we do a lot of fun, kind of experimental stuff. We hope to have a small orchard on site growing peaches, nectarines, plums and other fruits” that might go into the brew.

Some beers would be ready to pour in two to four weeks, while others he intended to produce would require closer to two years. “There’s really no end to the experimentation.” He said he expected to sell draft beer throughout the metro area and Santa Fe. After growing up here, Gregory earned a degree in electrical engineering from California Polytechnic in San Luis Obispo, and then worked for Honeywell in Albuquerque before being laid off in 2012. “That’s when I made the jump,” he explained.

He opened a craft brewery in Portland in 2013, “learning as I went. I fell in love with craft beer out there. That’s when everything was really taking off. “I started brewing at home, and started visiting a lot of breweries to find out what makes them work.” He started his own. It wasn’t long before Ex Novo had outgrown its maximum capacity with the equipment, pub and restaurant. “We did a good amount of beer there, but we’re full up, and looking to grow.”

He and his wife were ready to move back to the Albuquerque area “to be closer to family.” His parents live here and hers live in the Heights. “The pull to move back to Corrales was very strong now that we have a couple of small kids. So the question was: how do we get back to New Mexico.”

2020 DEC 5 ISSUE: FACE MASKS


The Village of Corrales began offering free COVID-19 face masks to village residents and businesses November 10. “We want to do everything we can to encourage mask use.  That is an enormously powerful weapon against the current surge of cases,” said Mayor Jo Anne Roake. “We want to be sure everyone who needs one has one.”

Businesses that need a supply can call Sandy Rasmussen at the Corrales MainStreet office, 350-3955.  Individuals can get masks via the fire station at 898-7501. If you need them delivered as you are staying home, this can be arranged, according to the mayor.

Coming soon, a video that covers the importance of masks, social distancing and protecting each other, first responders and other essential workers.  Look for it on the Village website website, corrales-nm.org, under “COVID -19 Resources.”  And don’t miss the COVID-19 jingle created by Arlene Thomas and Dave Cross, posted in a series of signs along CW Horse Farm on Corrales Road. The project was sponsored by the Village, Music in Corrales and MainStreet.

2020 DEC 5 ISSUE: WINNERS NAMED FOR CORRALES LIBRARY’S YOUTH POETRY CONTEST

The organizer of the Corrales Library “I Love to Write Poetry Contest” and Youth Services librarian Melisa Chandler recently announced the winners. High School. First Place: Analisa Ortiz; Second Place: Addison Fulton. Middle School. First Place: Hannah Opel; Second Place: Shane Yara. Distinguished Poets. Jayden Tode, Laurel Nash-Jarecki, Giovanna Almanzar.

According to Chandler, the last category was for those poets “recognized for their admirable work,” though they did not win the contest. Chandler also stated that “The Corrales Community Library would like to thank all of the participants in the 2020 ‘I Love to Write’ Poetry Contest. We recognize and appreciate the efforts each writer put forth. We look forward to more youth poetry contests with the Corrales Library in 2021.”

A Land of Enchantment
By Hannah Opel
Life in New Mexico is not life in Colorado
Life in New Mexico is not life in Arizona
Life in New Mexico is not life in California
Life in New Mexico is vigas sticking out of every other house
Life in New Mexico is pearly red ristras swinging in the breeze
Life in New Mexico is sipping a cold horchata under the hot summer sun
Life in New Mexico is the sound of the coyotes yipping and yowling through the star dotted night
Life in New Mexico is the spiky cacti lining the desert floor
Life in New Mexico is the comforting smell of spicy chiles being roasted nearby
Life in New Mexico is the morning sky dotted with colorful balloons
Life in New Mexico is not life in Utah
Life in New Mexico is not life in New York
Life in New Mexico is a life of Enchantment

Life in New Mexico is…
By Annalisa Ortiz
Brisk walks along the ditch.
Smelling roasting green Chile at the corner store.
The sounds of fire,
Lifting the colorful balloons off the ground.
Midnight quiet interrupted by trains.
Together as families we are so close,
Except when loteria is played and the cousins complain.
Rain on a sunny day,
Snowy mountains in April.
Today, tomorrow, and everyday
Life in New Mexico.

2020 DEC 5 ISSUE: CHRIS ALLEN’S TURKEYS CAST WATCHFUL EYES


Eager to scurry out from their coyote-proofed hut on a November morning at Chris Allen’s livestock-rich spread were an array of ducks and hens. But mostly, and appropriately, turkeys. Allen and her husband, Paul Knight, have lived on their Corrales plot since 1981, the year they bought the land and built their home.  And turkeys have long been part of the mix.

It’s a well-gardened place, with vineyards, plots of freeze-killed chiles. Plus two horses belonging to Allen, a gaggle of goats and a mix of sheep. The sheep largely provide wool for Allen’s yarn and knitting activities, rather than chops. She’s been a member of Las Arañas Spinners and Weavers Guild for years. Her mom taught her to knit way back in the day when the family lived in Holyoke, Massachusetts, where she also was on horseback from an early age.

Zeroing in primarily on Allen’s turkey selection, given the season, and in spite of one tall white goat’s focus on nibbling this visitor’s vest, there were three traditional big white birds in view, destined to be cooked, given that they are bred to be big, to not lay eggs, and to generally be pitied. Allen said one year she neglected to dispatch one Broad Breasted White when she should have, and the poor beast could barely walk. He ended up weighing close to 50 pounds at his demise.

Her heritage breed Bourbon Reds appeared happy to show off their rich red plumage as they exited the pen. Bred from a combo of Kentucky Reds and Pennsylvania Bourbon Butternuts in the late 19th century, they once ruled the meat roost, until the Whites took over as the favorite of commercial breeders. Her one black-and-white turkey is a Royal Palm, prized for its appearance, not its meat.

Allen has turkey tales to tell. “One year one of my Bourbon Red turkeys set a clutch of eggs. My husband came in to tell me the eggs had hatched, and we had five light brown turkey chicks and one black one. “A black one?” I asked. "That’s not possible. We don’t have black turkeys right now."

“I went out to check and discovered our turkey hen had hatched out a black duckling. I have no idea how the duck egg got in her nest, but it hatched along with the baby turkeys. As the chicks grew, she would take them out for walks. Every time they passed the duck pond, the little black “chick” would head for the water. This caused great consternation for the hen. I pictured her saying, ‘No! Don't go near the water! You'll drown!’

“The duck, as he grew, lived his life as a part of the turkey flock since that was what he imprinted on, although he would on occasion take a swim. His condition in life was most distressing for him during breeding season as he thought he should be mating with the turkey hens. Given the body type and height differential though, he was never quite tall enough for the task.”

Allen also recalled one year that her husband sought to involve his mother who was visiting in choosing which turkey would go to table. They returned from turkey review, he saying, “This Christmas we shall serve ham.”

Which brings up the topic of eating animals. One time a lamb “reject” was dropped off at Allen’s place. They cared for it, and it thrived, her two children naming it Bubba. The inevitable day arrived, and some of the animal was served up at table. “What is this?” asked her daughter. “Well, um..” replied Allen. “It’s Bubba, isn’t it?”

Trained as an anthropologist, Allen notes that humans are omnivores, yet not all cultures are big meat eaters, and that much depends on latitude. “Ninety percent of the Inuit diet has been animal,” for example, “While that percentage flips when there is arable land for easily growing vegetables.”

Still, as any 4-H kid will tell you, and many farmers as well, it is not always easy to kill off a critter you have raised. Allen said recently she had decided to send one of her lambs to be butchered, and as she drove it to its fate, she kept saying to it “I am so sorry, so sorry.” She stresses that nothing is wasted when one of her animals is killed —“we use every bit—” saving turkey feathers, for example, to share.

The wool end of the Allen-Knight spread is much less fraught. Allen has her Shetlands, Teeswaters and Merino sheep professionally sheared twice a year by a fellow from Las Vegas, New Mexico, and sends wool for “roving yarn,” that thick coiled material, to a place in Mora to be processed. At the moment her wool shed is overflowing, her horse trailer holding the excess. There’s also mohair from a couple of Angora goats.

Occasionally Allen’s hobby impinges inappropriately with her husband’s hobby, grapes. “Goats eat grapes.” Still, a wine cellar is filled each year with their own vintage, up to the legal limit.

Entering and leaving the family’s place, near the front gate, nestles a remarkable sculpted image of a dog. It’s Paul’s rendering of Chewy, Allen’s empath of an animal who lived with her for 17 years, always knowing when she was about to return home. An irreplaceable creature, no matter how many turkeys, goats and sheep abound.

2020 DEC 5 ISSUE: BOSQUE ARSONIST STILL AT-LARGE

Although arson in the Corrales Bosque Preserve had stopped by mid-November, the culprit had not been apprehended. The Corrales Fire Department’s Tanya Lattin said November 22 that no additional fires in the bosque had been reported. She had reported earlier this fall that several fires had been deliberately set in the preserve.

Seven fires had been set over a two-day period. “We have had a total of seven fires in the bosque on two separate days,” Lattin told Corrales Comment October 18. No evidence was found to suggest any of the blazes was caused accidentally by campers or squatters. In Mayor Jo Anne Roake’s message to villagers days before, she flatly stated, “Corrales has an arsonist in the bosque. Numerous fires have been started in the last week. The Corrales Fire Department has successfully responded to each one, helped by neighboring first responder organizations.”

Lattin said a fire Thursday, October 8 was discovered near the bridge over the Riverside Drain at the end of Andrews Lane. She described that one as a small fire about 200 feet by 200 feet in area. Then on Friday, October 9, two fires were set more or less at the same time near the Dixon Road entrance to the preserve, near the levee, burning a total of about a half-acre.

On Wednesday, October 14, “We had a total of four fires all burning during the same time, two of them were near the Romero Road access to the bosque, and two were approximately two miles south of Romero.” About two acres were burned near the river while a lesser area was ignited closer to the levee. Two fires were started near the end of Paseo de Dulcelina between the river and the levee. “There was no evidence of any illegal camp fires in the area of any of the fires. Corrales fire and police, along with Sandoval County Sheriff’s officers, have increased patrols in the bosque.

“We are asking for anyone in the bosque to be sure to report any smoke or fires,” Lattin added. “We are asking anyone in the area of these fires that may have any information to call 898-7585 so we can contact them.” Lattin said there has been no indication that any of the fires were caused by lightning strikes “so these fires are human-caused.”

In October, the Fire Department battalion commander offered the following guidance for villagers who might be in the preserve. “Your safety while in the bosque is number one. If you decided to go out and do a patrol, take a cell phone, let someone know where you are going,  stay on trails, do not get into thick areas that can cause you to get turned around or trapped if you run into a fire.

“If you smell smoke in the bosque, please call 911. Do not call the fire station; calling the station can delay our response.  We are not always in the office to answer the phone, and when we are, we have to gather the information from you that dispatch normally would get and cannot start our response to the emergency. Dispatch can reach us no matter where we are and get important information from you while we are heading to the call.”

If a villager encounters a situation that should be reported, Lattin said it would be very helpful if the person raising the alert could state the location accurately. She pointed out that mile-marker signs are painted on standing galvanized silver-colored vents along the west side of the levee. “Try to keep in your mind how far you have traveled from your entry point.

“If you have a smart phone, your mapping application will help you determine your location in the bosque and its relationship to roads within Corrales.  Knowing where you are helps get emergency responders to you in case of an emergency.

“If you see flames or smoke, call 911. Make sure you get to a safe area and leave your phone on. Responders may call you for more information after dispatch has completed their questioning.

“The bosque is extremely dry and weather is still unusually warm.  Thanks to people reporting these fires early, we have been able to control them quickly, but someone has to report them while small for our best chance of preventing a large fire,” Lattin said.

“Just know Corrales Fire is taking this very seriously and we are doing extra patrols. The Corrales police department has issued extra patrols and has officers in the bosque, and Sandoval County sheriff's officers are also in there patrolling.”

2020 DEC 5 ISSUE: BENJAMIN RADFORD PODCAST NOW ACCESSIBLE THROUGH COMMENT WEBSITE

Squaring the Strange is a podcast co-hosted by Corrales Comment contributor, author and folklorist Ben Radford, Las Vegas-based artist Celestia Ward, and former Santa Fe musician and producer Pascual Romero.

The podcast began on April Fool’s Day 2017 and is released every two weeks, bringing evidence-based analysis and commentary to a wide variety of topics, ranging from the paranormal to the political, the mysterious to the mundane. Topics often include investigating ghosts, listening to legends, tracking chupacabras and defusing media hype. “And calling shenanigans where appropriate,” Radford said.

“If a claim seems strange, the team will try to square it with the facts. Not just another current events podcast, Squaring the Strange goes deeper. It’s a show about critical thinking and evidence-based analysis, using science and logic to examine the world around us. Listeners will learn about skepticism, psychology, myths, hoaxes, folklore, investigation, science, media literacy and all the things that add up to strange experiences —both real and unreal.”

You can listen to Squaring the Strange on iTunes and anywhere else podcasts are found. Links to each new show will be available on the Corrales Comment website. Radford has been Corrales Comment’s film reviewer for more than 20 years. He is the author or co-author of more than a dozen books, the most recent of which, Big… If True was published by Corrales’ Rhombus Publishing Company earlier this month.

2020 DEC 5 ISSUE: PAUL STOKES LOOKS AT CONFLICT WITH IRAN OVER NUKES

Might escalating armed hostilities in the Middle East lead Donald Trump to bomb nuclear facilities in Iran before he relinquishes command of the nation’s arsenal January 20? Iran vowed to retaliate after its top nuclear scientist was assassinated November 27, presumably by Israeli commandos with close coordination from Washington. Corrales’ Paul Stokes, who directed nuclear inspections in Iraq for the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) prior to the U.S. assault on that country, was asked for insights that might have bearing on the current conflict with Iran.

How confident can the American public be that any U.S. preemptive strike on Iranian nuclear facilities would be justified, given the erroneous assertions made about Saddam Hussein’s alleged “weapons of mass destruction” in Iraq? Can current inspection methods determine conclusively whether Iran is now trying to produce nuclear weapons? What might be the health effects globally if the United States or Israel bombed a reactor or uranium enrichment plant there?

Stokes served for two years on an “action team” conducting nuclear inspections in Iraq after the First Gulf War. “We essentially shut down the Iraq nuclear weapons program, and ascertained that it continued to be shut down, despite the unwarranted policies of the Bush administration,” he explained in a November 29 interview with Corrales Comment. Given the Iraq experience, he was asked what might be the international repercussion if an Israeli-American strike occurred without defensible justification.

Corrales Comment: At some point an assessment was made that the allegations General Colin Powell made to the United Nations were in fact accurate and therefore the action that was taken was justified. Is there some protocol in place now that would avoid another “false positive?”

Stokes: “I don’t really know, but there were a lot of us who didn’t believe what Colin Powell was saying at all. But he got enough belief so there were people who, for political reasons, decided to go ahead and invade Iraq. I don’t know how many of those people really believed that. But a lot of us didn’t.”

And now, Stokes said, people who have been involved in such inspections are skeptical that Iran is developing nuclear weapons. “There just is no evidence that would say that Iran’s nuclear weapons program is imminent and therefore we have to attack. I know of nothing like that.”

Comment: If Israel or the United States did bomb an Iranian nuclear facility, what kind of international repercussions would be expected?

Stokes: “That would be an act of war. And there are international laws to deal with that. You would think that the international community, at least a good part of it, would object. “I am not up to date on the extent to which the Iranians have disclosed or not disclosed their program, but it could be that nuclear reactors would be a target because they can produce nuclear materials. The damage would depend on what they bombed and how extensively they bombed it.

“I don’t know the details, but I do know they were putting their enrichment facilities underground. Those would be pretty hard to get at. Of course, we developed weapons systems to try to address that. We have earth-penetrating bombs, that, incidentally, were developed at Sandia National Labs.

Comment: From what you know, what would be the health effects expected if an Iranian nuclear facility were to be bombed? Presumably there would be a lot of radiation released.

Stokes: “There’s probably no single answer to that, but it should be pointed out that Israel did bomb an Iraqi reactor that was producing nuclear material that could eventually become part of a weapon.

“That was not done to the level that might have been. They destroyed buildings and what-not, but not to the extent that it destroyed a reactor, for example. If you bombed a facility to completely put it out of commission, you’d be scattering a lot of nuclear material and radioactivity into the air. “I’ve seen estimates that that could result in the death of as many as 70,000 people. So it could be pretty bad if you really bombed the hell out of a place like an enrichment facility.”

As the interview got under way, Stokes set the context for his remarks. “My broadest concern about this whole topic is why, indeed, do we have to have Iran as an enemy? We could go into a variety of geopolitical reasons, but it probably has a lot to do with Israel and our knee-jerk response to Israel’s concerns. “Israel does have concerns about a nuclear weapons program in Iran, there’s no doubt about that. But I don’t see that having Iran as an enemy helps that situation very much.”

Comment: How accurate can we expect a determination to be that a country’s nuclear program is for peaceful purposes?

Stokes: “There are a lot of countries that could have nuclear weapons programs that we wouldn’t know about, or we wouldn’t be sure about. Japan would be one; Germany would be one; Switzerland could be one, and that goes on and on. I don’t happen to think any of them do, but I suspect that each one of those has a plan, or something in their files somewhere, so that they could have a nuclear weapon if they felt they needed it.

“But in the case of Iran, there’s a difference, in that they are part of a nuclear nonproliferation treaty, so they are subject to inspections. Those inspections make it hard [to have a clandestine weapons program]. The inspections regime was organized and set up by the International Atomic Energy Agency as part of the nonproliferation treaty way back in the Sixties. So, they have lots of practice.
“As a result the operation at the IAEA is really highly professional and pretty well staffed. The inspection regime that was designed for Iran under tha Obama administration could and did take advantage of all of that learning. So I have full faith in the inspection process, although there are still some uncertainties.

“Based on intelligence from many countries and from the IAEA’s own experience over many decades now, I feel there is high assurance that they’ve found all the potential places and all the places that were being used by Iran before their nuclear weapons program was exposed have been identified and are now subject to appropriate inspections.”

Comment: If Iran or some other country were found to be violating terms of the treaty, what would be the consequences?

Stokes: “Normally that would be set out in the arms control agreement, but usually they leave that kind of vague. It’s almost like an ‘everythings on the table’ argument. The other parties to the agreement would have to decide what their response would be and then move forward with it. But they never state that initially, and I assume they didn’t in this Iran agreement.”

Comment: Is it left vague because a decision to impose some penalty is more a political one rather than a technical one?

Stokes: “Very much so. But there are some technical things that you can do. You can deny them technology that they really need, and then you can apply economic sanctions that are even more severe than those already imposed. I think the political measures are the more important ones.”

Comment: Given the heightened tensions around Iran’s suspected progress toward a nuclear weapon and what Israel and or the United States might do during the last days of the Trump administration, what should a citizen do?

Stokes: “The trouble is that most citizens really don’t know what’s going on over there. Actually, I think the situation over there is pretty much under control, and we as citizens should state that. It might be helpful to get that message to Biden, that we want to avoid any over-reaction. And in the future, I think it would help if we as a nation can be less threatening to other countries.

“Can we work with Israel to tamp down activities that seem like a threat to Iran?” In the November 30 online newsletter from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, a run-down of assassinations of Iranian scientists was provided. Since 2007, four Iranian scientists and engineers working on nuclear projects were assassinated and an attempt was made on a fifth.

In one of those, physics professor Masoud Ali-Mohammadi was killed by a remote-controlled bomb in January 2010. Eleven months later, a similar bomb killed Majid Shariari, a nuclear engineer. A separate blast at that time wounded Fereydoon Abassi, now vice- president of the Islamic Republic and director of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran. In July 2011, another man connected to the country’s nuclear program, Darioush Rezaeinejad was gunned down and killed. In every case, the assassinations were credibly thought to have been carried out by agents of Israel with assistance or concurrence of the United States.

2020 DEC 5 ISSUE: CORRALES AUTHOR OF ‘COLLAPSE OF COMPLEX SOCIETIES’ ON WHERE WE ARE

The Collapse of Complex Societies, a book written in Corrales more than 30 years ago, may be the perfect tome for contemplative pandemic reading. Caught up in an all-encompassing, crushing, arguably inescapable downward spiral, our personal and even institutional relationships seem to be unravelling. It’s not a stretch to link the need to “make American great again” to a perception of societal disintegration.

A lengthy article in The New York Times Magazine’s November 8 issue focuses on Joe Tainter’s 1988 book published by Cambridge University Press. He was living here in the mid-1980s with his wife Bon Bagley when he began the book now regarded as “the seminal text in the study of societal collapse.”

Tainter is now a professor in Utah State University’s Department of Environment and Society. Pre-pandemic, he has returned to Corrales intermittently as opportunities arise. From 1975 to 1978, he was an assistant professor at the University of New Mexico, and then an archaeologist with the U.S. Forest Service 1978-1994.

The New York Time Magazine article by Ben Ehrenreich, titled “Why Societies Fall Apart,” starts with, “When I first spoke with Joseph Tainter in early May, he and I and nearly everyone else had reason to be worried. A few days earlier, the official tally of COVID-19 infections in the United States had climbed above one million, unemployment claims had topped 30 million and the United Nations had warned that the planet was facing ‘multiple famines of biblical proportions.’”

But the article tries to comply with Tainter’s insistence that he no longer be pigeon-holed as a collapse expertise, but instead a scholar of societal sustainability. Contacted by Corrales Comment November 11, shortly after the magazine article appeared, Tainter explained, “The Collapse book’s level of exposure has been pretty constant since publication in 1988. There soon will be six foreign language editions (five currently, another in January). I do a few interviews each year. There has been some uptick of interest since the virus hit, but usually I tell people who ask for interviews that epidemiology is outside my expertise.”

Tainter added: “The collapse research pointed clearly to shifting to work on issues in sustainability, which I’ve been doing for some time. The consistent focus throughout my career has been complexity, especially how complexity evolves in societies as a benefit/cost function. That was the core idea in the Collapse book, and I have found that it clarifies issues we have today. My new areas of research are energy and innovation.”

The professor said before the pandemic hit, he typically gave up to four guest lectures a year, mostly overseas. “My talks are mostly to academic groups, but also to some non-academic groups and to a couple of international audiences of journalists.”

The New York Times Magazine article explains that his interest in the topic began during his research and documentation for the Forest Service about proposed mining and logging in the Cibola National Forest around Mount Taylor. That cultural resource survey included links to the long-vanished civilization centered in Chaco Canyon to the north.

Tainter’s work is cited many times by Jared Diamond in his New York Times bestseller list book Collapse: How Societies Choose To Fail or Succeed, published in 2005. While Tainter’s book focuses primarily on China’s Western Chou empire, Egypt’s Old Kingdom, the Hittite Empire, the Western Roman Empire and the Lowland Classic Maya civilization, Diamond’s purview has those and adds the Vikings in Greenland and even certain “modern societies.”

Central to Tainter’s premise is that societies’ collapse occur when, for a variety of causes, they reach a point of rapidly declining marginal returns on their investments in problem-solving capacity. That continues to be key to his ongoing research these days at Utah State University, as he explained in his email to Corrales Comment.

“I worked with a petroleum engineer to produce a book on the Gulf oil spill. My part was energy in society. The crucial energy issue isn't how much oil is left. It is what we call EROI —energy return on investment. That’s not monetary investment, it is energy invested to get energy back.

“In 1940 we produced oil and gas at an EROI of 100:1. That’s how we fought World War II. That figure is now down to 15:1, and the trend is irreversible. When it reaches 8:1 we would go off what is called the energy cliff —at that point, the energy profit of producing energy declines rapidly. As EROI declines, the complexity of producing energy increases. We once got oil just by putting a pipe in the ground. It now takes complex technology like the Deepwater Horizon platform. Then of course there is the problem of climate change, but you know about that.” Even though the cost-benefit problems with fossil fuel production are shown to be dire, Tainter points out, it has been proposed that innovation will save the day. But he contends the same problem arises.

“Technological optimists assert that as long as we have unfettered markets, resources don’t matter. Scarcity will prompt technological innovation, as long as there is a profit to be made. I’ve been skeptical about this.

“The technological optimists make an assumption of which they are unaware: it is that the productivity of innovation remains constant. What are the consequences if that isn’t true? Scientific research grows complex and costly over time. Research was once done by lone wolf researchers like Charles Darwin. Now most research is done by interdisciplinary teams, who work in large institutions backed up by administrative staff, assistants, janitors, etc. The cost of research has gone up.

“So I teamed up with a couple of colleagues to try to study how the productivity (return on investment) of innovation has changed. We have a database of over three million patents in our study, starting in 1974. We found that it is taking more and more scientists to achieve an innovation that warrants a patent. This amounts to higher costs per patent. Conversely, the productivity of innovation (measured as patents per inventor) is declining. From 1974 on the productivity of our system of innovation declined by over 20 percent.

“As this trend continues, and it will, at some point later in this century our system of innovation will become very different. This raises questions about whether innovation can bail us out forever, or whether the societal value of innovation has limits.”

In the Times magazine article last month, the author points out “The current pandemic has already given many of us a taste of what happens when a society fails to meet the challenges that face it, when the factions that rule over it tend solely to their own problems.

“The climate crisis, as it continues to unfold, will give us additional opportunities to panic and to grieve. Some institutions are certainly collapsing right now.…” The author lays out Tainter’s explanation of the devolving process. “As the benefits of ever-increasing complexity —the loot shipped home by the Roman armies or the gentler agricultural symbiosis of the San Juan Basin— begin to dwindle, Tainter writes, societies ‘become vulnerable to collapse.’ Stresses that otherwise would be manageable —natural disasters, popular uprisings, epidemics— become insuperable. Around 1130, a severe half-century-long drought hit the desert Southwest, coinciding with Chaco Canyon’s decline. Other scholars blame the drought for the abandonment, but for Tainter, it was the final blow in a descent that had already become inevitable. Chacoan civilization had survived extended dry spells before. Why was this one decisive?”

Tainter’s answer: complexity. According to Ehrenreich, “Only complexity, Tainter argues, provides an explanation that applies in evey instance of collapse. We go about our lives, addressing problems as they arise. Complexity builds and builds, usually incrementally, without anyone noticing how brittle it has all become. Then some little push arrives, and the society begins to fracture.

“The result is a ‘rapid, significant loss of an established level of sociopolitical complexity.’ In human terms, that means central governments disintegrating and empires fracturing into ‘small, petty states,’ often in conflict with one another. Trade routes seize up, and cities are abandoned. Literacy falls off, technological knowledge is lost and populations decline sharply. ‘The world,’ Tainter writes, ‘perceptibly shrinks and over the horizon lies the unknown.’”

2020 DEC 5 ISSUE: CORRALES BUSINESSES NEED YOUR HELP TO STAY AFLOAT

H1 CORRALES BUSINESSES NEED YOUR HELP TO STAY AFLOATDespite restrictions on businesses here during the past eight months, Corrales’ gross receipts tax revenues are holding steady compared to last year. Declines in holiday shopping are expected to ravage the bottom lines for retailers here as elsewhere this month and last, but so far sales tax revenues have stayed relatively strong, according to Village Administrator Ron Curry. “Gross receipts tax revenues for us are running about the same as last year. In fact, it’s up about two percent, so we’re really happy about it.”

Gross receipts tax revenues for Corrales for the month of September were “within a couple of thousand dollars, one way or the other, of last year’s numbers,” he reported. Curry was asked why he thought this year’s gross receipts taxes are about the same as last year, given the recent months of business closures and restrictions. He didn’t know, because local governments do not have access to information from the N.M. Department of Taxation and Revenue regarding taxes paid by specific businesses. “That information is not available to us. However, as I’ve gone around the village talking to people, some of our businesses, like Frontier Mart, have told me business was good for them during the COVID.

“Apparently, some of our businesses have not suffered, because month over month, the numbers have been pretty stable.” Throughout New Mexico, a severe clamp-down on business activity has been ordered by Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham. All except businesses designated as essential were ordered to close this summer while some were told to curtail the number of patrons who could be served at any one time. When the daily infection rate declined, presumably due to those restrictions, the governor relaxed the measures. But then, late last month, infection rates skyrocketed in New Mexico, so the governor imposed the tightest restrictions yet.

In Corrales, where coronavirus cases were relatively small, infections climbed sharply at the end of November. Corrales had 63 cases as of November 10, then 72 cases November 14. That number had risen to 111 cases as of November 28. It is no great mystery that local businesses, whether selling breakfast, lunch and dinner, or arts and crafts, are being hard hit during this pandemic. To keep going, they pivoted to pick up or delivery, or online sales. And now colder weather, along with a surge in COVID-19 have added to the mix. In Corrales, the usually bustling Mercado de Maya, home to Elaine Bolz’ Claywork, both her studio and shop, is quiet indeed.

A fixture there for 32 years, Bolz says “Right now it’s just the Bosque Gallery and me!” Ambiente, the emporium at the southern end, mostly has been closed since well before the recent lockdown. Barb Clark and Susana Erling’s Corrales Fine Arts in the mercado tried opening for limited hours on weekends, then Clark recently attempted a two-day shop online/pick up curbside sale of her work which ran less smoothly than she had hoped… to put it mildly. But, crucially, she had shifted, exploring new ways to do business. A vendor unwilling to change likely will not survive. “Everything is absolutely new,” as a bookstore owner in Detroit recently put it in a PBS interview. Another seller added “We all have become better business people.”

An in-demand talent like Clark need not worry. Her work is featured on a 2021 calendar produced by New Mexico Magazine, along with that of Jim Jennings. Order it at https://tinyurl.com/ y6nc4lg6.  Bolz agreed the pandemic has pushed her finally to acknowledge she needs better marketing, even a presence on Instagram. “I never wanted to do social media, but now I have to. I will have to be much more professional online.” Her business has been largely based on commissions, and drop-in customers. She laughed when describing her 10 by 12 foot display space, room for two visitors at the most, which she could open, now that the latest tough reset per Michelle Governor Lujan Grisham is over.

Grateful for self-employment money, as well as an expected disbursal of local CARES funding —“The Village is confident the entire $255,000 will be disbursed to local businesses by the December deadline,” according to Mayor Roake— Bolz says her rent is “not that high.” And “this is the season in which we all must make sales,” so to the world of social media she will go. See it at http://claywork.com/index.php. For more information, call 898 8822.

She is part of the 38th annual Weyrich Gallery Invitational Theme show, “The Great Turning,” which just opened and runs to January 22, 2021, but what “open” means is unclear. The gallery is at 2935 Louisiana Blvd. Contact Valerie Tibbetts at 450-6516 or 883-7410. The aforementioned Corrales Bosque Gallery put up an online shop fairly recently. See corralesbosquegallery.com/ store, featuring work by Dennis Chamberlain, Indea Sanchez, Andy Goldschmidt, Dianna Shomaker and Juan Wijngaard. The gallery hopes to feature “Little Critters” made of polymer, paint, and wood, each about 9-10-inches tall and 2-inch wide, at the gallery sometime in December during a “Little Treasures Show,” if allowed to open. If not, they will be available for sale on the website.

As for breweries and eateries, they have tiptoed from normal, to limited indoor seating, to only outdoor seating, adding curbside pickup as well as delivery options, to then only doing such. Corrales Bistro Brewery recently was offering to fill up growlers with mixed drinks, selling as many gift certificates as possible, handing out free lunches to any kid who wanted one, and operating its own food truck. It debuted at the Barelas neighborhood La Esquinita Food Hall/Farm Stand/Food Truck Park at 507 4th on November 14. View its maneuvers via Facebook.

ExNovo Brewing Company is selling carry-out brews, canning a range of products on site, as well as offering Milagro wines and Candlestick Coffee beans, and hosting food trucks. Milagro Winery itself pivoted cleverly a few months back. Partnering with organic growers Silverleaf Farms on an order online, drive-thru and pickup shop, the two entities have been successfully offering customers wine, cheese, fresh veggies, even soil, to be retrieved each Thursday afternoon. See http://www.milagrofarmstand.com. Also showing innovative pandemic planning has been the much larger Corrales Growers’ Market, inventing unique ways to connect vendors and customers, navigating masks, no pre-orders, drive-thru, and then walk-through. And, to support its Market Shop Booth, selling largely baskets and T-shirts, it set up a shop at https://cgm-store. square.site/s/shop.

C3’s Bistro at 4940 Corrales Road which only opened in July offering a large menu of Cajun dishes, with enthusiastic eater reviews, launched a Go Fund Me project on November 23, for both C3’s and its other restaurant, P’tit Louis Bistro. As of November 29 the undertaking had raised $1,075 of its $134,441 goal. C3’s explained it this way: “Two friends started out with a dream to bring great food and service to each guest that graced our doors. Little did we know that a world-wide pandemic was lurking in the shadows waiting to rock that dream.

“Much like you, we have done our best to ebb and flow with the changing restrictions and mandates handed down by our leaders. While they may mean well, it has not stopped our expenses from piling up, while at the same time stifling our ability to serve our guests.  We have persevered and been creative, adding to and changing our menus in ways that will meet the needs of the current climate.  At the end of the day, our hard work and creativity have still fallen short.

“We have supplemented the revenues of our restaurants with our personal income since the beginning of this crisis to hold onto as much staff as fiscally possible and our operations running.  We knew that was an unsustainable model, but believed it was a better option than closing our doors for good.  Now what was unsustainable has become increasingly unbearable, as we both have families at home who are counting on our provision.

“So, we have turned to you, our community.  We want to be around to serve you for years to come and we need your help.  The money raised will go to business expenses incurred as a result of the New Mexico health order restrictions, which will also allow for the revenues generated from our limited operations to go towards keeping our staff employed and guests served.

“We desire to be up front and transparent with you all, and any donor who leaves their information will receive notice when a debt has been paid to ensure you of the efficacy and sincerity of your money. Any amount raised above what we have asked will be used as working capital, to help cushion us against further pandemic-driven restrictions.

“We are extremely grateful for any and all support that is provided. Thank you for taking the time to hear our story and your consideration. Be well and many thanks. They added that “No salaries to ownership, nor personal reimbursements, will be taken from these reimbursements.”

C3’s website, http://www.c3sbistro.com is its menu. The GoFundMe page is reached via Facebook. Long time Corrales “pie”purveyor Village Pizza is busy doing take-out, but still asks locals to “support your favorites today. We need the encouragement!” It’s obvious. If you like Corrales businesses —and we could not visit with them all— support them with your money. If you would also like to support other New Mexico businesses, take a look at http://www.buynmlocal.com and purchase gift cards. This site features over 800 businesses from across the state.

Having endured the tough two-week lockdown, here comes a complicated “tiered county-by-county COVID-19 risk system, enabling local communities to shed burdensome restrictions as soon as public health data show the virus is retreating within their borders.”

This went into effect December 2. Governor Lujan Grisham put it like this: “The county-by-county framework enables counties, and the businesses and nonprofits within their borders, to operate with fewer restrictions when they slow the spread of the virus and drive down test positivity rates.” If you’d like to explore the tiered system, the red to green framework, see http://www.governor.state.nm.us/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/red-to-green-framework-for-safe-reopening.pdf.

2020 DEC 5 ISSUE: CORRALES ROAD TAKEOVER

Although the state highway department wants Village government to take over Corrales Road, officials here are still hesitant. A big issue is timing. The transfer of ownership and management of State Highway 448 would happen only after Corrales Road were thoroughly upgraded with paving and other maintenance of the right-of-way —but that would cause major disruptions to Corrales businesses, Village Administrator Ron Curry said.

A N.M. Department of Transportation (NMDOT) presentation to the mayor and Village Council about the proposed transfer was originally scheduled for September, but it was pushed back until November. “Now it looks like it won’t be until early next year,” Curry said in a November 25 interview. “Our last meeting with NMDOT was abruptly cancelled by the State. We don’t know exactly why.

“But one of the things we review with them when we meet on a quarterly basis is the upper Meadowlark project, and of late we’ve wanted to establish what crossings would be available to us in advance of moving ahead with the Pathway Project.

“We’ve been trying to get permission from the State to use crusher-fines or some other surfacing that would be used at those crossings,” Curry explained. “But for whatever reason, we don’t know why NMDOT didn’t want to meet with us.” As in the past eight months, the scheduled meeting was to have been virtual due to the COVID-19 pandemic. “I have to believe that the cancellation was partly due to the COVID, but they have just not been willing to make a decision on the crosswalks for the pathway which was supposed to have been the focus of the meeting last week.

“We want to move forward on the pathways and they are reluctant to give us a decision. That segues into the whole discussion of Corrales Road. The State very much advocating that Corrales take over the road.

“But when we re-open that discussion, or if we re-open that discussion, one of the first things we’re going to have is Jill Mosher from the state highway department come in front of the Village Council to give the parameters and pre-requisites that need to happen on both sides before they could give us the road.

“In the past, they have said they would give us the road which would be like new. In other words, they would go in and do whatever work was required on the road so that it was up to snuff, whatever that is, and when that was done, they would give us the road.

“What comes into play at that point is how long it would take them to do that,” Curry added. One of the most important things is the timing of all this. We would want some assurances from the State about how long it would take. I don’t think it would be fair to the residents or the businesses along Corrales Road” to have their lives and livelihoods disrupted for extended periods of time.

“It’s important to have a public discussion about this because people here have very strong opinions about taking over Corrales Road.” Among other considerations, he said, is that the Corrales Public Works Department has more capabilities to carry out road maintenance than in the past. Once NMDOT has brought Corrales Road up to like-new condition, “we feel the Village is quite capable through our Public Works Department to maintain the road.”

The bottom line for NMDOT, Curry stressed, “is that they really want us to take over Corrales Road. They’re always nudging us, or gently leveraging us, to do that.” He said ongoing frustrations among business owners, town officials and commuters regarding disruptive improvements to Highway 550 through Bernalillo are also a factor in the department’s desire to be rid of roadways like Corrales Road in its system.

2020 DEC. 5 ISSUE: CORRALES BUSINESSES NEED YOUR HELP TO STAY AFLOAT

H1 CORRALES BUSINESSES NEED YOUR HELP TO STAY AFLOAT

Despite restrictions on businesses here during the past eight months, Corrales’ gross receipts tax revenues are holding steady compared to last year. Declines in holiday shopping are expected to ravage the bottom lines for retailers here as elsewhere this month and last, but so far sales tax revenues have stayed relatively strong, according to Village Administrator Ron Curry. “Gross receipts tax revenues for us are running about the same as last year. In fact, it’s up about two percent, so we’re really happy about it.”

Gross receipts tax revenues for Corrales for the month of September were “within a couple of thousand dollars, one way or the other, of last year’s numbers,” he reported. Curry was asked why he thought this year’s gross receipts taxes are about the same as last year, given the recent months of business closures and restrictions. He didn’t know, because local governments do not have access to information from the N.M. Department of Taxation and Revenue regarding taxes paid by specific businesses. “That information is not available to us.

“However, as I’ve gone around the village talking to people, some of our businesses, like Frontier Mart, have told me business was good for them during the COVID.

“Apparently, some of our businesses have not suffered, because month over month, the numbers have been pretty stable.” Throughout New Mexico, a severe clamp-down on business activity has been ordered by Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham. All except businesses designated as essential were ordered to close this summer while some were told to curtail the number of patrons who could be served at any one time. When the daily infection rate declined, presumably due to those restrictions, the governor relaxed the measures. But then, late last month, infection rates skyrocketed in New Mexico, so the governor imposed the tightest restrictions yet.

In Corrales, where coronavirus cases were relatively small, infections climbed sharply at the end of November. Corrales had 63 cases as of November 10, then 72 cases November 14. That number had risen to 111 cases as of November 28. It is no great mystery that local businesses, whether selling breakfast, lunch and dinner, or arts and crafts, are being hard hit during this pandemic. To keep going, they pivoted to pick up or delivery, or online sales. And now colder weather, along with a surge in COVID-19 have added to the mix. In Corrales, the usually bustling Mercado de Maya, home to Elaine Bolz’ Claywork, both her studio and shop, is quiet indeed.

A fixture there for 32 years, Bolz says “Right now it’s just the Bosque Gallery and me!” Ambiente, the emporium at the southern end, mostly has been closed since well before the recent lockdown. Barb Clark and Susana Erling’s Corrales Fine Arts in the mercado tried opening for limited hours on weekends, then Clark recently attempted a two-day shop online/pick up curbside sale of her work which ran less smoothly than she had hoped… to put it mildly. But, crucially, she had shifted, exploring new ways to do business. A vendor unwilling to change likely will not survive. “Everything is absolutely new,” as a bookstore owner in Detroit recently put it in a PBS interview. Another seller added “We all have become better business people.”

An in-demand talent like Clark need not worry. Her work is featured on a 2021 calendar produced by New Mexico Magazine, along with that of Jim Jennings. Order it at https://tinyurl.com/ y6nc4lg6.
Bolz agreed the pandemic has pushed her finally to acknowledge she needs better marketing, even a presence on Instagram. “I never wanted to do social media, but now I have to. I will have to be much more professional online.” Her business has been largely based on commissions, and drop-in customers. She laughed when describing her 10 by 12 foot display space, room for two visitors at the most, which she could open, now that the latest tough reset per Michelle Governor Lujan Grisham is over.

Grateful for self-employment money, as well as an expected disbursal of local CARES funding —“The Village is confident the entire $255,000 will be disbursed to local businesses by the December deadline,” according to Mayor Roake— Bolz says her rent is “not that high.” And “this is the season in which we all must make sales,” so to the world of social media she will go. See it at http://claywork.com/index.php. For more information, call 898 8822.

She is part of the 38th annual Weyrich Gallery Invitational Theme show, “The Great Turning,” which just opened and runs to January 22, 2021, but what “open” means is unclear. The gallery is at 2935 Louisiana Blvd. Contact Valerie Tibbetts at 450-6516 or 883-7410. The aforementioned Corrales Bosque Gallery put up an online shop fairly recently. See corralesbosquegallery.com/ store, featuring work by Dennis Chamberlain, Indea Sanchez, Andy Goldschmidt, Dianna Shomaker and Juan Wijngaard. The gallery hopes to feature “Little Critters” made of polymer, paint, and wood, each about 9-10-inches tall and 2-inch wide, at the gallery sometime in December during a “Little Treasures Show,” if allowed to open. If not, they will be available for sale on the website.

As for breweries and eateries, they have tiptoed from normal, to limited indoor seating, to only outdoor seating, adding curbside pickup as well as delivery options, to then only doing such. Corrales Bistro Brewery recently was offering to fill up growlers with mixed drinks, selling as many gift certificates as possible, handing out free lunches to any kid who wanted one, and operating its own food truck. It debuted at the Barelas neighborhood La Esquinita Food Hall/Farm Stand/Food Truck Park at 507 4th on November 14. View its maneuvers via Facebook.

ExNovo Brewing Company is selling carry-out brews, canning a range of products on site, as well as offering Milagro wines and Candlestick Coffee beans, and hosting food trucks. Milagro Winery itself pivoted cleverly a few months back. Partnering with organic growers Silverleaf Farms on an order online, drive-thru and pickup shop, the two entities have been successfully offering customers wine, cheese, fresh veggies, even soil, to be retrieved each Thursday afternoon. See http://www.milagrofarmstand.com/
Also showing innovative pandemic planning has been the much larger Corrales Growers’ Market, inventing unique ways to connect vendors and customers, navigating masks, no pre-orders, drive-thru, and then walk-through. And, to support its Market Shop Booth, selling largely baskets and T-shirts, it set up a shop at https://cgm-store. square.site/s/shop.

C3’s Bistro at 4940 Corrales Road which only opened in July offering a large menu of Cajun dishes, with enthusiastic eater reviews, launched a Go Fund Me project on November 23, for both C3’s and its other restaurant, P’tit Louis Bistro. As of November 29 the undertaking had raised $1,075 of its $134,441 goal. C3’s explained it this way: “Two friends started out with a dream to bring great food and service to each guest that graced our doors. Little did we know that a world-wide pandemic was lurking in the shadows waiting to rock that dream.

“Much like you, we have done our best to ebb and flow with the changing restrictions and mandates handed down by our leaders. While they may mean well, it has not stopped our expenses from piling up, while at the same time stifling our ability to serve our guests.  We have persevered and been creative, adding to and changing our menus in ways that will meet the needs of the current climate.  At the end of the day, our hard work and creativity have still fallen short.

“We have supplemented the revenues of our restaurants with our personal income since the beginning of this crisis to hold onto as much staff as fiscally possible and our operations running.  We knew that was an unsustainable model, but believed it was a better option than closing our doors for good.  Now what was unsustainable has become increasingly unbearable, as we both have families at home who are counting on our provision.

“So, we have turned to you, our community.  We want to be around to serve you for years to come and we need your help.  The money raised will go to business expenses incurred as a result of the New Mexico health order restrictions, which will also allow for the revenues generated from our limited operations to go towards keeping our staff employed and guests served.

“We desire to be up front and transparent with you all, and any donor who leaves their information will receive notice when a debt has been paid to ensure you of the efficacy and sincerity of your money. Any amount raised above what we have asked will be used as working capital, to help cushion us against further pandemic-driven restrictions.

“We are extremely grateful for any and all support that is provided. Thank you for taking the time to hear our story and your consideration. Be well and many thanks. They added that “No salaries to ownership, nor personal reimbursements, will be taken from these reimbursements.”

C3’s website, http://www.c3sbistro.com is its menu. The GoFundMe page is reached via Facebook. Long time Corrales “pie”purveyor Village Pizza is busy doing take-out, but still asks locals to “support your favorites today. We need the encouragement!” It’s obvious. If you like Corrales businesses —and we could not visit with them all— support them with your money. If you would also like to support other New Mexico businesses, take a look at http://www.buynmlocal.com and purchase gift cards. This site features over 800 businesses from across the state.

Having endured the tough two-week lockdown, here comes a complicated “tiered county-by-county COVID-19 risk system, enabling local communities to shed burdensome restrictions as soon as public health data show the virus is retreating within their borders.”

This went into effect December 2. Governor Lujan Grisham put it like this: “The county-by-county framework enables counties, and the businesses and nonprofits within their borders, to operate with fewer restrictions when they slow the spread of the virus and drive down test positivity rates.” If you’d like to explore the tiered system, the red to green framework, see http://www.governor.state.nm.us/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/red-to-green-framework-for-safe-reopening.pdf.

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