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Columns

  • Sparring on the East board

    Recently, we printed a story in which East school board member Patrick Romero questioned whether his colleague, Ramon “Swoops” Montao, is a resident of the school district. Montao contended he was.

    Not long after, the board met in a work session, and the two sparred over the issue. Unfortunately, the Optic was short people that day, and we couldn’t cover the meeting.

    But their arguments are already pretty well known.

  • Work of Art - Is Joe Six-Pack impressed?

    One of the things that make a reporter’s job difficult is the ever-popular “no comment,” uttered by politicians to reporters who make them squirm.

    Even back in the ‘50s, the TV producers of the popular sit-com “Dobie Gillis” were aware of the face-saving remark and had Maynard G. Krebs tutoring Gillis, played by Dwayne Hickman, in saying “no comment” before running for high school student council.

  • Community perspective - Casa de Cultura

    Casa de Cultura is a tax-exempt nonprofit organization. Our goal is to create a cultural environment in Northern New Mexico with the main focus on youth development.

    When we realized that cultural erosion was a fact of life, Casa members proposed a strategy to re-establish a culturally centered community versus a consumer center community. This has become the centerpiece of the organization.

  • No one is immune

    Anyone who hasn’t been in a coma for the last few weeks knows the unpleasant truth: Our national economy is headed south in a hurry.

    In our own lives, we have received the information in different forms. For many, it’s been the 401(k) quarterly statements. Others have received memos from their employers.

  • He said, she said

    Tensions seem to be building once again at City Hall. One of the latest issues is Chuck Griego, the interim deputy city clerk.

    Griego was appointed to this position earlier in the summer after the departure of City Clerk CherylAnn Yara. Before that, he had been an archivist in the city clerk’s office for years.

  • A four-day work week?

    SANTA FE — Expect to see some minor impacts on your life as New Mexico state government implements energy-saving measures. The biggest change will come when some agencies adopt a four-day work week.

    Earlier this summer, Gov. Bill Richardson directed the state personnel office to help alleviate the strain of high gas prices on state employees and taxpayers. How can the state personnel office lower your gas prices? We’ll get to that.

  • Leave no dentist behind

    A high school play, “The Perfect Idiot,” deals with an extremely bright senior who misses all 100 items on a true-false test.

    How’d he manage that? Statistical probability dictates that anyone who simply checks off every answer as “true” or every one as “false” is bound to score around 50 percent. In order to earn a perfect zero (or perfect hundred), the student obviously needs to know all the answers.

    But does anybody have all the answers? Or, perhaps more appropriately, “Does anyone even know the questions?”

  • Trouble with truthfullness

    In June, Jerome Block Jr. won with 23 percent of the vote in the six-way Democratic primary race for northern New Mexico’s seat on the Public Regulation Commission, which oversees a host of industries, including utilities and insurance.

    He has no Republican opponent, but the Green Party is running Rick Lass. If history is any guide, the odds are that Block will be our next PRC commissioner in this heavily Democratic district.

  • Local issue, big implications

    SANTA FE — A curious situation down in Lincoln County apparently has elected officials throughout the state on edge.

    It all started when former Capitan mayor and deputy sheriff Steve Sederwall decided to run for sheriff as an independent. He checked with both the county clerk’s office and the secretary of state’s office to be sure he was doing everything an independent candidate needed to do to get on the ballot.

  • 92 kazoos

    I recently returned from the best funeral I have ever attended. There was seating for 300 and at least another 100 stood in a companionable horseshoe around the edge of the rows of chairs. No minister presided but friends and family, a whole stable of wonderfully spiritual people, took their moments at the microphone, triggering not only tears but also laughter as they remembered the man we were all there to eulogize.