Boulder Weekly 9.29.2022

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Signed, sealed, delivered, your views on the Senate District 15 race, Boulder County ballot measure 1B, and the Library District by readers like you

Preparing for wildfires with evacuation plans, emergency supplies — and domestic violence awareness by Claudia Boyd-Barrett, California Health Report


Boulder educator’s new book of poetry, ‘Gash Atlas’, takes on Trump, colonialism by Bart Schaneman

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Steve Vai reflects on reaching guitar fans, earning the instrument and watching a documentary about himself by Dave Kirby


Expanded Restaurant Week celebration opens its doors to new Boulder dining experiences by John Lehndorff


departments 5 The Anderson Files: The Queen and Australia’s 1975 rightwing coup 17 Art & Culture: DCPA production of ‘The Chinese Lady’ asks audiences to sit with our problematic past 18 Events: What to do when there’s nothing to do 21 Film: ‘Blonde’ is a joyless slog through the life of Marilyn Monroe 22 Astrology: by Rob Brezsny 23 Savage Love: Fair shares 29 Cuisine: Another Roadfood Attraction: Smoking Buffalo 30 Weed: Estrogen-deficient mice dosed with CBD show healthier bone density and more BOULDER COUNTY’S INDEPENDENT VOICE


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Publisher, Fran Zankowski Circulation Manager, Cal Winn EDITORIAL Editor-in-Chief, Caitlin Rockett Arts & Culture Editor, Jezy J. Gray General Assignment Reporter, Will Matuska Food Editor, John Lehndorff Intern, Chad Robert Peterson Contributing Writers: Dave Anderson, Emma Athena, Will Brendza, Rob Brezsny, Michael J. Casey, Angela K. Evans, Mark Fearer, Dave Kirby, Adam Perry, Dan Savage, Bart Schaneman, Alan Sculley, Toni Tresca, Tom Winter SALES AND MARKETING Market Development Manager, Kellie Robinson Account Executives, Matthew Fischer, Carter Ferryman, Chris Allred Mrs. Boulder Weekly, Mari Nevar PRODUCTION Art Director, Susan France Senior Graphic Designer, Mark Goodman CIRCULATION TEAM Sue Butcher, Ken Rott, Chris Bauer BUSINESS OFFICE Bookkeeper, Emily Weinberg Founder/CEO, Stewart Sallo Editor-at-Large, Joel Dyer Sept. 29, 2022 Volume XXX, number 7

As Boulder County's only independently owned newspaper, Boulder Weekly is dedicated to illuminating truth, advancing justice and protecting the First Amendment through ethical, no-holds-barred journalism, and thought-provoking opinion writing. Free every Thursday since 1993, the Weekly also offers the county's most comprehensive arts and entertainment coverage. Read the print version, or visit Boulder Weekly does not accept unsolicited editorial submissions. If you're interested in writing for the paper, please send queries to: Any materials sent to Boulder Weekly become the property of the newspaper. 690 South Lashley Lane, Boulder, CO, 80305 p 303.494.5511 f 303.494.2585 Boulder Weekly is published every Thursday. No portion may be reproduced in any form without written permission from the publisher. © 2022 Boulder Weekly, Inc., all rights reserved.

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The Queen and Australia’s 1975 rightwing coup by Dave Anderson


he wall-to-wall coverage of Queen Elizabeth’s death was a brightly colored spectacle, but it was a bit North Korean. It is curious that the U.S. media and political elites of all kinds uncritically celebrated the royal family with fervor. A number of years ago, British historian Andrew Roberts may have provided a reason for this. He wrote, “Just as in science fiction, people are able to live on through cryogenic freezing after their bodies die, so British post-imperial greatness has been preserved and fostered through its incorporation into the American world-historical project.” When George W. Bush invaded Iraq, Roberts compared the president to Churchill and had a chummy meeting at the White House in 2007. Roberts embraces a tiny group of British-based South African and Zimbabwean



exiles called the Springbok Club, which calls for “the reestablishment of civilized European rule throughout the African continent.” The club was founded by a former member of the British neo-fascist National Front. But why the fuss about the Queen’s big show? She was a nice old lady who had tea with Paddington Bear. It’s tempting to escape into a Disney fairy tale in these harrowing times. Isn’t it harmless fun since the royal family has no real power anymore? That is true on paper, but there was an exceptional event in 1975 in a faraway land. On Nov. 11, 1975, the governor-general of Australia suddenly, and without any warning, dismissed the elected prime minister and dissolved the parliament. It sparked a constitutional crisis. The governor-general was the Queen’s representative in Australia and it was assumed he had no power. Like Mike Pence on Jan. 6. The prime minister was Gough Whitlam, who led the first Labor Party government in 23 years. Whitlam promised a “social revolution.” From 1972 to 1975, he had see THE ANDERSON FILES Page 6

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This place has a In 1975, the opposition senators There is a wood burning stove & 65-inch TV in the large family room; a balcony off the master bedroom; cherry wood cabinets in the kitchen; laundryfeel on the main a huge pantry in of the basement! Outside country with allfloor the & city. yourshelter imagination to envision how to enjoy this great estate. Jessica extensive experience as a Use Buyer’s andyour Seller’s wood cabinets in the kitchen; laundry onhas the main floor &conveniences a huge pantry in thethe basement! Outside shelter your equipment, RV & boat in the 1,500 square-foot pole barn, grow an organic garden, raise your livestock, create a pulled the same trick, but Whitlam equipment, RV & boat in the 1,500 square-foot pole barn, grow an organic garden, raise your livestock, create a Jessica understands the importance getting riding arena on this property! Agent. Easy access to 1-25, Boulder, Northern Colorado and Denver. This of place has a her riding arena on this property! Easy access to 1-25, Boulder, Northern Colorado and Denver. This place has a Olde Towne Golden Realty, LLC refused. Support for Labor surged and country feel with all the conveniences of the city. Use your imagination to envision how to enjoy this great estate. client’s together they country feel with all the conveniences of the city. Usefinancing your imagination to envisionbefore how to enjoy this buy. great estate. opposition leader Malcolm Fraser’s 908 Washington Ave Olde Towne Golden Realty, LLC Olde Towne Golden Realty, LLC popularity hit a new low. 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tests broke out in the streets. The conservative opposition would win amid economic turmoil and the hostility of the media, particularly Rupert Murdoch. Until his death in 2014, Whitlam would talk about the “coup.” When Australian historian Jenny Hocking was researching her biography of Whitlam, she consulted Kerr’s writings in the National Archives. She found out about secret meetings between Kerr and Fraser and High Court judges. But the correspondence between Kerr and the Queen was missing. It was withheld. After several years of court battles, Hocking won access. The correspondence would show that the Queen and her private secretary knew more about Kerr’s intentions than Whitlam. Whitlam challenged Great Britain and the United States. He wanted to turn Australia into a European-style social democracy. He replaced “God Save the Queen” as the national anthem and ended royal patronage. He sought links with the global NonAligned Movement. There was a plan to buy back foreign-owned mining leases and nationalize the resources sector. The leases for three secret U.S. spy bases in Australia were up in 1975. Whitlam was asking too many questions. Investigative reporters have written about Britain’s MI6 and the CIA undermining Whitlam. Kerr had ties to both intelligence agencies. This opinion column does not necessarily reflect the views of Boulder Weekly. Email:


Go Out Local and Green Reject the Cemex application

In The Natural Funeral’s Green Section of the beautiful Lyons Cemetery. Green burial means:

by Kathleen Sands


orporate profits continue to be a priority over the environment — even in an “environmentally conscious” place like Boulder County. Cemex is the No. 1 polluter in Boulder County and No. 4 in Colorado. Its 25-year mining permit expires Sept. 30. On Sept. 29, Boulder County Commissioners are on track to approve a 15-year extension in exchange for land and money. Here is a brief history of the situation: Cemex Lyons is a cement plant that mines raw materials from Dowe Flats just west of Rabbit Mountain Open Space. Cemex emits 376,000 tons of carbon dioxide per year, according to the Environmental Protection Agency; this doesn’t even include all the trucks that haul materials into the plant from other locations and distribution of product out of the plant. Cemex burns seven tons of coal per hour, 24/7, and spews crystalline silicon dust with mercury and many other deadly components. It is well documented that this kind of dust is a public health hazard that can cause cancer, chronic lung disorders and kidney failure. The public health issue is real for my family: Since moving to Lyons last December, my mother has experienced flu-like symptoms when the winds blow from the east. She states she feels worse when leaving the house and better on weekends, when the plant is closed. My 11-year-old son goes to school just west of the Cemex plant in Lyons and runs track after school, which also worries me. In addition to the public health implications and environmental contamination, Cemex is depleting the aquifers from local farms and homes and has minority water rights with no well permit. Cemex is robbing wildlife and the public of habitat and recreation in 2,500 acres of land owned by the county. Cemex’s 25year, special-use (because it’s located in an agricultural zoned area) mining permit expires on Sept. 30. Boulder County Parks & Open Space have co-signed the application/proposal, along with Cemex, to extend the plant’s mining permit 15 more years, which is a 60% increase.

There is no application that exists for extending a permit, so it should be a new permit, which would trigger environmental and public health studies. It is a conflict of interest for Boulder County to be the applicant, the referral agency and the approver. There is zero benefit for the public; this is about corporate profits, county revenue and land acquisition. The Town of Lyons officially recommended rejection of the Cemex proposal, stating plans for a solar farm that could power the entire town. Air quality is an issue in Lyons because of the landscape and trapped pollution, which would be improved greatly by simply allowing Cemex’s permit to expire. Cemex stated in the last hearing that we need its cement, and that building a facility elsewhere doesn’t help the climate crisis and gives others the pollution problem. If Cemex builds elsewhere, it would be a new, updated plant that would be subject to contemporary environmental regulations (not grandfathered old ones). In the last County Commissioners hearing on Sept. 15, a Houston-based executive for Cemex said it makes no sense to upgrade pollution controls in this 60-year-old plant if they are leaving in 15 years. Colorado has two other newer cement plants (that have lower CO2 emissions), so Cemex’s argument about needing their cement is also wrong. Comments from the public hearings reveal clear opposition to this proposal. Boulder County commissioners need to be responsive to their constituents’ wishes and public health, and need to let this permit expire Sept. 30 by rejecting the application from Cemex and BoCo Open Space on Sept. 29. The public health cost and the cost of climate change from the carbon dioxide emissions will cost more than the county is gaining in this proposal. For more information, go to Good Neighbors of Lyons ( Kathleen Sands is the founder of Lyons Climate Action Coalition. This opinion column does not necessarily reflect the views of Boulder Weekly. Email:



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AN OPEN LETTER TO WESTERN BOULDER COUNTY AND BEYOND There are changes to be aware of this election affecting the mountains of western Boulder County. The new Colorado redistricting maps were approved in 2021 based on the 2020 Census. The biggest change in the new maps is that the mountains of western Boulder County will be moving from SD18 to SD15 (Colorado Senate District 15). Western Boulder County will no longer be included with the city of Boulder. Our biggest population center will now be Loveland. Our current representative in District 18 is Stephen Fenberg. After the election in November, western Boulder County will be represented by the winner of the SD-15 election, either the incumbent Republican, Rob Woodward, or his opponent, Democrat Janice Marchman of Loveland. We strongly endorse Janice Marchman. She has Colorado values: protecting the mountain environment, particularly from wildfires and floods, fighting for women’s reproductive rights, honest and open government for the people, and strong public education. Please look at the new maps and determine which elections you will now be able to vote in before you vote this fall. And please consider voting for Janice Marchman. Visit janiceforcoloradolcom for more information. Becky Martinek/Lefthand Canyon Kathy Frey/Gold Hill Joanne Cole/Gold Hill VOTE ‘YES’ ON BALLOT MEASURE 1B I am writing in support of Boulder County Ballot measure 1B. This region is very fortunate to have hundreds of volunteers in groups like Rocky Mountain Rescue Group (RMRG), Boulder Emergency Squad, Front Range Rescue Dogs and Boulder County Mounted Search & Rescue, which all rescue hikers, bikers, skiers, climbers and off-road vehicle accident victims. Issue 1B is a very small sales tax to help support these groups and other search, rescue, fire and ambulance services. RMRG finds and rescues hundreds of people in the foothills and mountains of Boulder County every year. They save lives. It is far more cost effective to support these volunteers than to hire staff 24/7, 365 days a year. l

I have made regular family visits to Boulder County since 1967 and am very willing to pay this small tax. Please vote Yes on ballot measure 1B. Dot Christenson/Cincinnati, Ohio LIBRARY DISTRICT UNDEMOCRATIC It is unfortunate that proponents of the Library District are categorizing those opposed to their proposal as library haters. This attitude inhibits discussion of the proposal itself, which I believe is flawed and leaves many questions. Libraries are like my second home, and I am so grateful for Boulder’s crown jewels. In North Boulder we have been eagerly awaiting the construction of our neighborhood library that has been promised and planned for years. The ballot proposal, however, while listing the creation of a new Gunbarrel library, makes no mention of the North Boulder Library. I find that very concerning. Furthermore, the Library District Proposal would take decisions about Boulder’s libraries out of the hands of its citizens and community and place them in the hands of an unelected board chosen by City Council and the Board of County Commissioners. This does not seem very democratic to me. The buildings and books of our beloved Boulder libraries will no longer be under Boulder’s jurisdiction but will be transferred to this unelected board who will make decisions that might be good for the communities outside Boulder, but not necessarily for Boulder itself. Additionally, there is the matter of cost. While some people consider the property tax increase this bill would levy a trifle, many long time Boulder residents and seniors who wish to remain in their homes are troubled that their property tax bills — which have risen exponentially in the last few years and are expected to continue to rise — would now have an estimated $230 increase. Yes, it is true our libraries have taken a hit during this pandemic, but the new City Council budget shows a healthy increase for our libraries. The citizens of Boulder have always stood by their libraries and will continue to do so. We don’t need an unelected board taking that decision-making process away from us. Ellen Stark/Boulder Email:


Preparing for wildfires with evacuation plans, emergency supplies — and domestic violence awareness by Claudia Boyd-Barrett, California Health Report


t’s been more than three years since the Camp Fire leveled the California town of Paradise. But for domestic violence counselor Marlen Hernandez and the clients she serves, the traumatic effects continue to rage. About six months after the fire in November 2018, calls for help to Catalyst Domestic Violence Services in nearby Chico, where Hernandez works, surged and remained high for the rest of 2019. The agency went from helping 122 Camp Fire survivors affected by domestic violence during the first six months, to 223 in the six-month period after that. Associate director Jackie Kent believes people in domestic violence situations initially put off asking for help as they faced the immediate emergency of the fire and its aftermath, but began calling once their basic survival needs were met. “It shook their lives completely,” said Hernandez, a Paradise native whose family was among those displaced by the fire. “A lot of them are still carrying severe trauma … It’s not just the intimate partner violence aspect, but they suffer from PTSD from the fire and that’s affected their relationships and also their mental health.” For Hernandez, helping clients from the area who’ve experienced intimate partner abuse invariably 10


requires addressing the toll the fire exerted on their lives as well. Many lost homes, people they loved and a sense of stability in the fire. Some endured domestic violence for the first time or were forced to stay in violent relationships because they had nowhere else to go. Others still have panic attacks and nightmares about fleeing the flames. The Camp Fire killed 88 people, destroyed almost 19,000 buildings and racked up $16.5 billion in damages. But some of the destruction wrought by this and other wildfires is harder to see. Reports of intimate partner abuse skyrocket in the wake of these natural disasters, according to people who work with survivors of domestic violence. Yet many communities are ill equipped to meet the increased need for social services, housing and mental health support. Some domestic violence agencies are responding by turning to other domestic violence shelters outside of their region for help when wildfires strike, or by stockpiling gift cards for gas, food and hotel stays to give to survivors in need during evacuations. But state and local governments must do more to ensure the needs of domestic violence survivors are accounted for in disaster response plans and long-term recovery efforts, experts said. As wildfires and other SEPTEMBER 29, 2022

natural disasters increase due to our warming climate, so too do risks to domestic violence survivors and others vulnerable to abuse during times of disruption. Because about 1 in 4 women and nearly 1 in 10 men will experience physical or sexual violence or stalking by an intimate partner during their lifetime, disaster planning that doesn’t listen to the needs of domestic violence survivors can leave a vulnerable population to cope on their own – in some cases endangering their lives, advocates said. In fact, intimate partner violence can end up posing an even greater threat to people and families’ long-term wellbeing than the disaster itself. “When it comes to trauma and intimate partner violence and community violence, these things are a lot trickier to recover from and they take a longer time to recover from than the physical destruction from wildfires,” said Annie Rosenthal, a Bay Area social worker and lead author of research into the health and social impacts of California wildfires. “Going forward we’re going to need to have more attention paid to some of the long-term effects, the ripple effects.”

A city scarred by fire Last year, the Caldor Fire forced the entire city of South Lake Tahoe to evacuate for more than a week. Chelcee Thomas and her team at Live Violence Free, a local domestic violence agency, found themselves grappling with an unprecedented set of challenges. As they evacuated survivors from l

the agency’s safe house, they had to figure out transportation options for clients without cars or money and make sure they didn’t end up in the same shelter as a former partner who had made their life hell. They needed to make sure the survivors had a safe place to turn to – so they didn’t return to their abusers out of fear or desperation. Thomas and her team did all of this while also evacuating themselves and their families. The chaos didn’t stop there. In the weeks after the evacuation orders were lifted, the agency’s crisis line did not stop ringing. “There was a moment where 75% or more calls were this post-evacuation need,” Thomas said. “I need emergency shelter, I need a restraining order, I need mental health support because of what happened to me and my children.” Mercedes Tune, a program analyst with the California Partnership to End Domestic Violence, said she’s seen this pattern play out at other domestic violence intervention agencies she’s worked with in Central and Northern California. After a fire, demand for services always increases. “It’s really understandable because if we consider that domestic violence is about power and control, then in these situations where there is uncertainty … that increases the prevalence and intensity of domestic violence,” she said. Disasters “involve an increase in emotional trauma and stress.” Studies and anecdotal reports from around the world show that disasters intensify the risk of gender-based violence, particularly among people who are already vulnerable because of factors such as poverty, isolation or disenfranchisement. One 2009 study of people


displaced by Hurricane Katrina found that rates of intimate partner violence tripled immediately following the disaster and remained high more than a year afterwards. Another study published in 2018 found that counties in Florida saw a sharp rise in assaults following hurricanes there. Other disasters such as floods, earthquakes and the COVID-19 health emergency have also been tied to increases in domestic violence. “When there is disarray and a disruption to the community there’s an uptick,” Rosenthal said. “People are under a lot of stress. Stress and trauma go hand in hand.” Those who are desperate for a place to stay may resort to living with someone who causes them harm, Rosenthal explained. Hernandez saw scenarios like this play out among her clients following the Camp Fire. In one case, a woman felt pressured to allow her then-boyfriend to move in with her because he’d lost his home in the fire. The relationship turned violent, Hernandez said, but it took more than three years to get him to leave. She believes the woman’s distress from experiencing the fire affected her ability to take action. “She felt stuck, she felt frozen,” Hernandez said. “Because her body was experiencing severe trauma from the fire, I don’t think she was able to really deal with, ‘OK, how do I get out of this relationship?’”

‘One conversation can change a life’ In interviews with health and social service workers following major fires in California, Rosenthal and her research team found that the resources available were not enough to help people stabilize emotionally, financially and physically over the long term. Hernandez, the counselor in Chico, said she sees a huge need for greater mental health support in communities impacted by wildfires. Increasing the availability of mental health and other social services during and after disasters would help those who experience violence, and also reduce the risk of violence occurring by reducing stressors on families, she said. “High stress, losing employment, losing housing, all these things are risk factors that increase the chances of intimate partner violence happening,” she said. “So if there were more services available for families, for folks

that have experienced this, I feel like it would give a chance to have folks less isolated, more supported.” Back in South Lake Tahoe, Thomas and her team have been trying to reach more people experiencing domestic violence by educating the whole community on how to recognize signs of violence and where to seek help. During and after the fire, the agency’s “One Conversation” campaign urged people who may have taken in friends or family during the evacuation to be on the lookout for domestic violence red flags and point them to resources. The agency hosts a bimonthly podcast on the topic and distributes information through community events and on their website. “The whole idea is that one conversation can change a life,” Thomas said. “We really wanted to make sure everyone has the tools to know the signs of domestic violence, knows how to talk to someone that may be experiencing domestic violence, and knows how to get them connected with resources.” Education campaigns are a useful tool to raise awareness about domestic violence, especially during and after disasters when the prevalence is known to increase, said Tune, who works with the California Partnership to End Domestic Violence. Agencies that work with domestic violence survivors can also strengthen their response to the problem when wildfires occur by developing connections with other relevant organizations and people in their communities such as food distribution centers, legal aid offices, health care providers and housing agencies. But to truly address the problem, policymakers must also look at the bigger picture and take action by combating climate change, improving forest management to prevent wildfires, and working to change social norms so that domestic violence no longer occurs, Tune said. “I would love that in the future there is no need for crisis intervention,” she said. “I would love to see that the world that we are creating is different. I would love to see that every person is welcome and respected, so there is no need in the future for people to resort to violence.”

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Mapping our history of violence Boulder educator’s new book of poetry, ‘Gash Atlas,’ takes on Trump and colonialism

Five books recommended by Jessica Lawson:

by Bart Schaneman


oet Jessica Lawson started out writing what she thought would be a book of poems themed around maps. “Shortly into the writing process, Donald Trump was elected, and everything turned upside down,” says the author of the new poetry collection Gash Atlas. “The themes I was already thinking about — territories, visibility, erasure — were reintroducing themselves to me through that event and the events that followed.” Instead, Lawson, who received her MFA from the University of Colorado Boulder and teaches there, wrote about “the power that is practiced in naming a territory (and by extension, naming a feeling, naming a person), and the histories of violence and colonialism that inform that naming.” The resulting book, Lawson’s first full-length poetry collection, won first place in the 2022 Kore Press Institute Poetry Prize. Released Sept. 15, Gash Atlas is at once profane, erotic, subversive and brutally honest to the point of hilarity. “My best hope is that a poem might break something open, leaving just enough new space so that, perhaps much later, in concert with other experiences and growth, a change of mind or a motivation to act might emerge,” Lawson says. With this space for action in mind, Lawson doesn’t shy away from getting political in her work. Some poems in the collection respond to the news over the last few years, like the U.S. opposition to the United Nations resolution banning the death penalty for homosexuality in 2017, or the murders of four Black trans women within a single week that same year. Others explore topics like the Standing Rock uprising, sanctuary cities and police brutality. Like all good poetry, the individual lines are most effective read aloud — and when you attempt to parse them, the meaning becomes slippery. Take, for example, this line from “Compass: An Opening”: “When he calls me ‘sheath’ he offers to pay / for my parking ticket if I nominate him / for president.” Putting such lines under a microscope diminishes their power. But in the context of the book, line after line of these surprising, inventive poems leads to a whole greater than the sum of its parts.

‘Seen, charted, pinned’ With Lawson’s blend of terror and dark comedy, it’s easy to imagine hearing these poems read in-person would be a riot — the room alive, uncomfortable and laughing as the sense of doom sets in. Lawson says she experienced that feeling of dread in the responses of “supposed allies” during the Trump presidency. “I saw plenty of folks offering shallow comforts, saying (always from a safe distance) that Trump’s rhetoric was just rhetoric and that people of color, queer and trans folk, immigrants, and other vulnerable groups would probably be just fine,” she says. Just as frightening to Lawson were those surprised by Trump’s 2016 victory and what it represented. “As if there weren’t hundreds of years of white supremacism and other violences undergirding that moment,” she says. “In BOULDER COUNTY’S INDEPENDENT VOICE

writing about that moment, I needed to make a dual insistence that these violences: 1.) were here, and 2.) had always been.” That focus on the roots of violent white supremacy carries through Gash Atlas with Lawson’s skewering of the myth of Christopher Columbus. “Early in the writing process, I started developing the character of an antagonist, someone who brought with them an overarching connection to colonialism, sexual violence, white supremacism and more,” Lawson says. “Since I was already writing about maps, I began to think of Columbus as a figure so often misrepresented as a hero of an age of exploration.” Lawson makes the Italian explorer absurd, morphing him into proxies for other terrible men such as Trump, Richard Nixon, a horrible boss, a customs agent and a university professor. “Columbus, in this book, is an amalgamation of multiple institutions and personalities, both past and present,” Lawson says. “Giving him Trump’s words was a way of naming the cultural moment in which I was writing, but interweaving those words with others was just as important.” To that end, the poems in Gash Atlas are grouped in a way to give the reader a sense of structure — a map, if you will — that is both familiar and chaotic at the same time. “Their effect is intentionally disorienting,” Lawson says. “I wanted maps to feel inescapable, as if we can’t move through the book without being seen, charted, pinned to a location.” Lawson wrote most of the book while her second child was a baby, which meant she had limited time to put down the words before her child’s nap ended. That process forced her to not second guess what she needed to say and to trust herself to edit it later. “It made the poems go darker, faster, when writing in these incredibly compressed increments of time,” she says. As for the future, Lawson recently gave birth to her third child and will be publishing a short piece about that. “Beyond that, I’ve been writing about money, sexuality and trauma recovery, all aimed at a second book project that excites and terrifies me in equal measure,” she says. “I suppose that’s par for the course. I was scared of Gash Atlas the entire time I was writing it. The act of writing something that isn’t Gash Atlas is almost scarier.” Email: l

SEPTEMBER 29, 2022


Trimmings (1991) by Harryette Mullen: Reading this book when I was in my doctoral program is part of what drew me back to poetry after a long absence. Mullen uses tight, brilliant verbal pivots to pick apart race, womanhood and the history of the arts. Buck Studies (2016) by Douglas Kearney: I love Kearney’s visual style across so much of his work, and here it’s paired with a really particular study of voice and character that I keep returning to. Mommy Must Be A Fountain of Feathers (2008) by Kim Hyesoon: I’ve always been drawn to writing that examines the body, often in unsettling or grotesque ways. Kim provided a model of how to do this that is surprising, subversive and playful. Electric Arches (2017) by Eve L. Ewing: This book is so rich and complex and conceptually complete, I find something new every time I open it. It’s also a great model of work that incorporates a multimedia approach in unexpected ways. Mannish Tongues (2017) by jayy dodd: I love teaching this book so much, and it rewards careful attention to its references to larger literary history and form, all while told in a voice that is intimate and immediate. I have a few former students who have gone on to find dodd’s other work after encountering her first book, which is one of my favorite things to witness. 13


Tone of voice


ore than 30 years after the release of Passion and Warfare, Steve Vai’s landmark instrumental solo album and an essential component of the instrumental rock canon, the guitar legend found himself early this year with a surprise No. 1 album. Debuting in the top slot of the Hard Rock Albums chart, the 62-year-old musician’s Inviolate marks his 10th solo release, proving that some currency does not devalue over time. Although, it wasn’t quite his first chart-topping album. “I think Passion and Warfare was No. 1 in some other countries,” he said during a recent chat with Boulder Weekly. “It’s been a while. But it’s really nice at 62 to be able to release an instrumental guitar record that does well.” In an age of electronic music, dance pop, retro soul and hip-hop, it may come as a surprise that artists like Vai, Joe Satriani and Eric Johnson — even relative newcomers like Guthrie Govan — are able to thrive releasing and touring guitar music. Massive props are in order, it seems, to be able to maintain and sustain that genre.

Steve Vai reflects on reaching guitar fans worldwide, the process of learning the instrument and watching a documentary about himself

by Dave Kirby

“Well, massive props to the audiences that are still interested,” he countered. “I’ve noticed that there is a collective of guitar lovers in every corner of the globe — people that just love that instrument. It’s a small slice of the industry in a sense, but it’s a powerful one. And it’s great because it adds to the diversity. “And when you’re respected in that field, or any particular field, it’s nice because as a guitar player, a known guitar player, you can tour the entire world,” he continued. 14


SEPTEMBER 29, 2022

“People will come out to see another guitar player. That’s why guys like me and Joe and Eric and others can have thriving careers.”

‘Crossroads’ and kinetics Vai’s career extends back to the late ’70s, when he dropped out of Berklee to work with Frank Zappa, first as a transcription assistant and later as a guitarist in his band. He eventually went on to play in Alcatrazz, working as David Lee Roth’s showcase guitarist in his post-Van Halen incarnation, and then briefly in the glitter-metal band Whitesnake behind David Coverdale. Vai also famously portrays Ralph Macchio’s guitar-duel opponent, Jack Butler, in the 1986 axeman-fantasy film Crossroads, bested by Macchio’s Telecaster read of Paganini’s dizzying “Caprice No. 5.” (In fact, Vai played both sides of the duel.) Those, of course, were quite different days. If pyrotechnics and ferociously kinetic lead guitar playing was the carrion that fed the beast, it was Vai’s deceptively deep musical knowledge (he also composes orchestral music) and relentlessly inventive technique — not just fast, but melodically provocative and harmonically feral — that sustained his repute and his fanbase well after the stadium lasers dimmed for good. But kinetics are always catnip for the metal-inclined guitar aficionado, which begs the question of whether the vast legion of aspiring shredders with transcriptions and YouTube tutorials at their disposal are missing something by not coming up the way Vai himself did: learning with great players, being on stage and doing things at a young age like reading Zappa charts and being able to nail them. Perfectly. Every time. Vai learned theory and how to read (and write) music early and well. In an interview some years ago, studio guitarist Larry Carlton told Boulder Weekly that he became successful in the Los l


Angeles session scene in the early- and mid-’70s primarily ON THE BILL: because he could sight-read charts. He got all the work he Steve Vai – Invicould handle, he thought, because he had that skill, and a lot olate Tour. 7 p.m. of his contemporaries, as technically accomplished as they Wednesday, Oct. may have been, couldn’t. 5, Boulder Theater, But Vai mostly shrugs off old-school dogma. 2032 14th St. “I think people navigate to the things that are interesting Tickets: $40-50, to them, that are engaging, and they pretty much avoid other things that aren’t interesting,” he said. “I see a lot of that in the guitar community when it comes to things like music theory, reading music and understanding the written note. “If a person is interested in learning that stuff, they’ll learn it, they’ll navigate themselves to it, they’ll make it their own,” Vai continued. “And for those people like Larry and many guitar players and musicians who love the idea of understanding music, they’re going to figure it out. And for those who don’t have an interest in it, I would say if you don’t have an interest because it seems intimidating to you, then experiment with learning it. Because it’s not difficult at all.” “But for others who have no interest, that’s fine, there’s nothing wrong with that. Navigate to other things. I mean, you can’t fault Jeff Beck for not being able to sight read like Larry Carlton. You’re going to get to wherever your intentions take you.”

‘The Chosen One’

































Speaking of Beck, a couple slower cuts on Inviolate, notably the poised “Greenish Blue,” recall some of Beck’s earlier solo work, like the delicate microtonal blues of “’Cause We’ve Ended As Lovers” or “The Pump” — and, by extension, Roy Buchanan’s Telecaster blues testaments. “Yeah, I would agree, because those guys are just in my blood,” Vai said. “When I was a kid, Beck and Buchanan were both heroes of mine. “And this morning, right before this interview, my guitar tech, Doug MacArthur, who’s a huge Beck fan, sent me an audio clip of Beck and Johnny Depp doing [he sings a line from Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On”] Mama, mama, there’s too many of you cryin’… You have to hear it! The man just does not cease to improve, he just goes deeper and deeper, every note is made of gold. I call him The Chosen One.” What Vai was hearing and responding to in that cover of Gaye’s most prayerful song was Beck’s gentle and achingly lithe melody line, gently recalling Gaye’s breezy and tenderly urgent vocal. Phrasing, a subtle and elusive muse, is something Vai says has emerged as a treasured virtue in his own playing. “I did so much of the other stuff, and as you get older, you look for different things. And these days, phrasing is of the utmost value for me,” he said. “When I listen to the solo on ‘Little Pretty’ (Inviolate’s showcase track), there’s not a note wasted. There’s some little shreddy bits in it, but it’s not gratuitous.” Heroes come and go, their stock rising and falling with time and changing tastes. For Vai, the arrival of a new and successful record coincides with the release of an hour-long film on the guitarist’s first 30 years, assembled from archive footage, photos and interview clips by film archivist Alan Berry. The documentary includes every bit of minutiae about Vai’s upbringing: the bands, the guitars, the tours, the home studios and more. It’s an hour’s worth of everything Vai — a love letter to the fans, from a fan. “I didn’t know he was making it,” Vai said. “But he sent it to me and… I couldn’t believe all the time and research he put into this.” Didn’t Vai himself (who’s listed in the credits) contribute all that stuff? “No. I sent him some photos and corrected some minor details and some pronunciation of some of the names. But that’s all,” he said.“I remembered it all, but I had forgotten talking about some of that stuff. He unearthed it all. As I’m watching it, all I could think was, ‘Where did he find the time, and the interest, and the information to do all this?’ “I was tickled because, if I had hired someone to do that, it wouldn’t have come out that way. They probably wouldn’t have had the same interest, so maybe they wouldn’t dig as deep,” he continued. “The other thing I liked about it is, there’s a part of my personality, and you can hear it in the music, that’s kind of quirky and silly and animated. And the way he presented it was kind of quirky, a little bit silly and a little bit animated.” Ultimately, the film and Vai’s career tell the story of a kid from Long Island who dreamed of being a rock star and actually became one. “Right? It snuck up on me.” Email: BOULDER COUNTY’S INDEPENDENT VOICE

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American sideshow

DCPA’s polished production of ‘The Chinese Lady’ asks audiences to sit with our problematic past

by Toni Tresca



ou probably didn’t learn about Afong Moy in high school; playwright Lloyd Suh wants to change that. Inspired by the true story of Moy’s life, Suh’s The Chinese Lady — currently running at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts — is a dark, poetic portrait of America told from the perspective of the country’s first known female Chinese immigrant. The play chronicles Moy’s life in the United States, where the 14-year-old girl is put on display as “The Chinese Lady.” For a fee, curious spectators watch her eat with chopsticks and gawk at her appearance. Her translator and confidant is Atung, an older Chinese American man who has been living stateside for decades. Together, they tour the U.S. as a traveling sideshow. But as the decades wear on, Moy’s celebrated ON STAGE: The act comes to define her in ways she finds Chinese Lady by difficult to escape. Lloyd Suh. Various Director Seema Sueko and set designer times, Sept. 9-Oct. Alan E. Muraoka bring dynamism to this 16, Singleton Theatre DCPA production running through Oct. (Denver Center for 16. Literally framed in a picture frame, the the Performing Arts), curtain opens to reveal a set filled with 1400 Curtis St., Den- replications of Chinese decorations. During ver. Tickets: $40-56, scene transitions, stage managers cally strip Moy’s touring act of its life — removing the set piece by piece until all that remains is her chair and the frame. Katherine Chou’s dramaturgical research deepens the play’s historical relevance. Before entering the theater, attendants walk past a lobby display that adds context to Denver's infamous anti-Chinese riot of 1880. As Moy notes in the play, a white mob burned down Denver's thriving Chinatown in what is now the LoDo District. Sueko worked with the playwright to add this local reference to the Denver production of the show in an attempt to ensure that such historical injustices aren’t covered up by the mists of time. Meghan Anderson Doyle’s costumes gorgeously express the characters’ ages and changing status. The lighting and sound design, by Charles R. MacLeod and André Pluess, are used primarily in transitions and in Moy’s moments of distress. These technical elements help isolate key moments in the dialogue-heavy piece and communicate that Moy is stuck performing for an audience in this artificially designed world. Actors Narea Kang and Sky Smith have strong chemistry together. Kang occasionally oversells the script’s jokes in her role as Moy; however, her performance strengthens as the character ages and the piece’s comedic moments fade into the rearview. Smith makes the most of his role as Moy’s translator, particularly when reenacting her visits with U.S. President Andrew Jackson and delivering gut-wrenching news that propels the play’s gripping conclusion to new heights. Consider checking out DCPA’s production of The Chinese Lady if you are interested in deconstructing America’s fraught history with the Asian American community, or simply want to support the endeavors of a talented director whose complicated vision is fully realized through the hard work of a skilled team of designers and actors.





SEPTEMBER 29, 2022



If your organization is planning an event, please email the arts & culture editor at

n Modern Dance Classes with Mary Wohl Haan


Impressionism. R Gallery + Wine Bar, 2027 Broadway, Boulder. Through Oct. 16. Free,

n Teton Gravity Research: ‘Magic Hour’

6:45 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 6, Boulder Theater, 2032 14th St., Boulder. Tickets: $10-20, Get ready for ski season with the release of Teton Gravity Research’s film Magic Hour at Boulder Theater. Magic Hour is a feature-length ski and snowboard film — the right place with the right crew at the perfect time to experience life to the fullest.

n Open Studios/Artists of ‘Voces Vivas’ Opening Reception

5:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 30, Museum of Boulder, 2205 Broadway, Boulder. Free This dual opening at the Museum of Boulder features more than 150 works by local artists participating in this year’s Open Studios event, a self-guided tour of artist spaces across Boulder County. It also marks the debut of Artists of Voces Vivas in the museum’s Lodge Gallery, an exhibition by artists featured in the museum’s community-driven show about local Latino history. Refreshments provided by King Como Quesadillas and Eats & Sweets.



n Eco-Tober

Noon. Sunday, Oct. 2, Centaurus High School, 10300 S. Boulder Road, Lafayette. Free Eco-Tober is a sustainability event hosted by Lafayette, Superior, Centaurus High School and the Boulder Valley School District. More than 40 exhibitors and vendors will be on hand with booths and workshops, along with music and local food trucks.

Georgia O’Keeffe, Photographer. Denver Art Museum, 100 W. 14th Ave. Parkway, Denver. Through Nov. 6. Tickets: $13 (Colorado residents), Marcella Marsella: Aqueous Bodies. BMoCA at Macky, 1595 Pleasant St., Boulder. Through Nov. 13. Tickets: $2, Water is Life. Dairy Arts Center, 2590 Walnut St., Boulder. Through Nov. 19. Free Native Artist Exhibition. Creative Nations Sacred Space, Dairy Arts Center, 2590 Walnut St., Boulder. Through Nov. 2022. Free Tipi to Tiny House: Hands-on Homebuilding. Longmont Museum, 400 Quail Road, Longmont. Through Jan. 8. Tickets: $8, Kristopher Wright: Just As I Am. BMoCA East Gallery, 1595 Pleasant St., Boulder. Through Jan. 22. Tickets: $2,

ON VIEW: Denver Art Museum is currently exhibiting newly identified photographs by famed painter Georiga O’Keeffe. Nearly 100 photographs, paintings and drawings shed light on her artistry across mediums. On view through Nov. 6. The Dirty South: Contemporary Art, Material Culture, and the Sonic Impulse. Museum of Contemporary Art Denver, 1485 Delgany St., Denver. Through Feb. 5. Tickets: $10, Lasting Impressions. CU Art Museum, 1085 18th St., Boulder. Through June 2023. Free Onward and Upward: Shark’s Ink. CU Art Museum, 1085 18th St., Boulder. Through July 2023. Free

n An Evening with Poets Emily Perez & Nicky Beer

7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 6, Longmont Museum, Stewart Auditorium, 400 Quail Road, Longmont. Tickets: $8, Head to the Longmont Museum to hear Front Range poets Emily Perez and Nicky Beer read from their work. Emily Perez is the award-winning author of What Flies Want and Nicky Beer will read from her newest book, Real Phonies and Genuine Fakes.

SEPTEMBER 29, 2022

5:15 p.m. Monday, Oct. 3 Avalon Ballroom, 6185 Arapahoe Road, Boulder. Tickets: $15, Mary Wohl Haan’s dance classes “challenge your mind and body with good, clean, lush movement, weight play, musicality and fun.” Starting Oct. 3, these weekly classes for intermediate and above dancers will be ongoing through Dec. 19.


n Art & Sip

6:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 6, Longmont Museum, 400 Quail Road, Longmont. Tickets: $40, Enjoy wine or beer while learning bookbinding techniques and vocabulary. In this class, you will learn to fold, stack and sew pages together using the coptic stitch bookbinding method. Classes are designed to guide beginners as well as bring new skills to experienced crafters.



n Cal-Wood Fire-Burn Scar Hike

9 a.m. Friday, Sept. 30, location provided upon registration. Take a hike with naturalists through the burn scar left by the 2020 Cal-Wood Fire while learning about the flora and fauna of the area. This two-mile hike will take participants through the burn scar to see changes to the landscapes two years after Boulder County’s largest wildfire.

n Erie Brewfest

Noon. Saturday, Oct. 1, Historic Downtown Erie, Brigs and Wells streets. Tickets: $30, 21+ Head to downtown Erie to enjoy a fall afternoon with vendors, games and — of course — plenty of local beer. Slick and Machine will be playing music during the event, with food from local restaurants and food trucks. Leave your pets at home, please.

7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1, Fiske Planetarium and Science Center, 2412 Regent Drive, Boulder. Tickets: $12 Celebrate NASA’s International Observe the Moon Night at Fiske with the film Forward! To the Moon. Dr. Jack Burns, a CU Boulder faculty member working on NASA’s Network for Exploration and Space Science (NESS) program, will talk about making the film and answer questions about space exploration. ON STAGE: For in/Visible, Longmont’s T2 Dance Company developed choreography inspired by the research and artwork of In/Visible Labor; In/ Visible Laborer by fiber artist Sara Rockinger. The result is collaborative exploration of immigration through dance, video and sculpture. Catch the performance on Oct. 6 at the Dairy Arts Center. in/Visible. 6 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 2. Dairy Arts Center, 2590 Walnut St., Boulder. Tickets: $15-25,

Denver. Through Oct. 16. Tickets: $35,

Butterfly Effect Theater of Colorado [BETC] presents The Children. Dairy Arts Center, Grace Gamm Theater, 2590 Walnut St., Boulder. Through Oct. 8. Tickets: $15-51,

Arts in the Open Presents Frankenstein. Chautauqua Park, 900 Baseline Rd., Boulder. Through Oct. 30. Tickets: $15-20,

The Chinese Lady. Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Singleton Theatre, 1400 Curtis St.,

Theater of the Mind. York Street Yards, 3887 Steele St., Denver. Through Dec. 18. Tickets: $65,

n Paws in the Park n Birds at Greenlee Wildlife Preserve

1 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 2, Greenlee Wildlife Preserve, 1600 Caria Drive, Lafayette. Free Greenlee Wildlife Preserve attracts thousands of birds each year, and you can see some of them for yourself during this birdwatching event hosted by the City of Lafayette. The event takes place around the northwest section of Waneka Lake Park, where field guides will teach beginners how to use binoculars and recognize bird species through sound.


n International Observe the Moon Night

9 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 1, Boulder County Fairgrounds, 9595 Nelson Road, Longmont. Free Celebrate Longmont Humane Society’s 50 years of providing animal-care services in the county on Saturday at the Boulder County Fairgrounds. Bring family, friends and pets to this year’s old-fashioned family Fall Festival and Pet Walk around Rogers Grove Park.

n Afternoon of Cultural Dance

1 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 2, Steinbaugh Pavilion, 824 Front St., Louisville. Free Join the City of Louisville for an afternoon full of different dance classes and performers. One of the classes is with Ms. Jing Xu from Jasmine Flower Dance, who will teach the opening dance of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics opening ceremony. No registration is required.

n Life on Mars — Past, Present, and Future

7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 5, LASP Space Science Building, W120, 3665 Discovery Drive, Boulder. Free Join members of the CU space community to talk about the exploration of Mars and examine the possibilities of future or past life on the Red Planet. This discussion will take an in-depth look at discoveries from the past 30 years and examine whether or not Mars could be a hospitable place for the future of human life.

see EVENTS Page 20

n Poetry Night

7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 30, Firehouse Art Center, 667 Fourth Ave., Longmont. Free, donations accepted Join fellow writers at the Firehouse Art Center for a monthly poetry night on the last Friday of the month. Firehouse asks that only original work be read.


SEPTEMBER 29, 2022

For more event listings, go online at boulderweekly. com/events




ON THE BILL: Off-the-map U.K. weirdos black midi bring their bonkers brand of genre-scrambling rock fusion to the Fox Theatre on Oct. 3, with opener Quelle Chris. The band performs in support of their latest LP, Hellfire, released July 15 via Rough Trade. EVENTS from Page 19


Blue Collar Folk with Strangebyrds. 6 p.m. BOCO Cider, 1501 Lee Hill Drive, Unit 14, Boulder. Free, reservations recommended Fruition with Heavy Diamond Ring. 8 p.m. Boulder Theater, 2032 14th St., Boulder. Tickets: $25,

The Nickie and Vickie Rivers Show has invited you to be in their LIVE Studio Audience It’s the invite of a Lifetime! People are dying to be on this show ... literally! Join us for this hilarious “whodunit” where you get to play detective!

9/30, 10/1, 10/14, 10/15, 10/29 and more in November! Time: Dinner 5:30pm / Pre-Show 6:00pm Talk Show 7:00pm Tickets: $60 includes dinner and show Food Trucks: 10/14 & 10/15 - The Post. 10/29 - Georgia Boys BBQ.

For tickets: Scan the QR Code or contact the box office boxoffice@the

800 S. Hover Rd. Suite 30, Longmont, CO • 303-827-3349 20


SEPTEMBER 29, 2022


Sturtz. 7 p.m. Gold Hill Inn, 401 Main St., Boulder. Tickets: $15,


black midi with Quelle Chris. 8:30 p.m. Fox Theatre, 1135 13th St., Boulder. Tickets: $25,

The Wailin’ Jennys. 7:30 p.m. Chautauqua Auditorium, 900 Baseline Road, Boulder. Tickets: $30, Joslyn and the Sweet Compression. 7 p.m. The Caribou Room, 55 Indian Peaks Drive, Nederland. Tickets: $12-$15, Bob Margolin. 7:30 p.m. Roots Music Project, 4747 Pearl St., Suite V3A, Boulder. Tickets: $15-$25,


Earth + Iceage. 8:30 p.m. Fox Theatre, 1135 13th St., Boulder. Tickets: $23, RY X with Her Mana. 8 p.m. Boulder Theater, 2032 14th St., Boulder. Tickets: $25,


Steve Vai: Inviolate Tour. 8 p.m. Boulder Theater, 2032 14th St., Boulder. Tickets: $40,



G-Space with Don Jamal, BWRZ. 9 p.m. Fox Theatre, 1135 13th St., Boulder. Tickets: $16,

Willie Tea Taylor. 7 p.m. Gold Hill Inn, 401 Main St., Boulder. Free,

An Evening with Julian Lage. 8 p.m. Boulder Theater, 2032 14th St., Boulder. Tickets: $21,

For more event listings, go online at events

Chain Station. 8 p.m. Velvet Elk Lounge, 2037 13th St., Boulder. Tickets: $15,



by Michael J. Casey Living dead girl

‘Blonde’ is a joyless slog through the life of Marilyn Monroe


he was born Norma Jean Baker in 1926, but she ON SCREEN: died Marilyn Monroe in 1962. Between those two Blonde is available dates and names lived one of the 20th century’s to stream on Netflix. most enduring icons — a not-unusual collection of complications and contradictions exacerbated all the more because of our relationship as viewers and admirers. That angle has been revised, reimagined and recast many times, yet Monroe’s legacy endures not because of the revisions but in spite of them. Marilyn Monroe is famous in 2022 for the same reasons she was famous in 1962. None of which escapes the eye of Andrew Dominik in his latest movie, Blonde — now streaming on Netflix. Working from Joyce Carol Oates’ 2000 novel, Blonde follows Monroe’s life from childhood (played by Lily Fisher) to infamy (Ana de Armas). The notable players are all present: her abusive and mentally unstable mother (Julianne Nicholson), husbands Joe DiMaggio (Bobby COURTESY NETFLIX Cannavale) and Arthur Miller (Adrian Brody), director Billy Wilder (Ravil Isyanov), President John F. Kennedy (Caspar Phillipson), etc., etc. The only one absent is Norma Jean’s father (Tygh Runyan), who haunts her and the movie via a photograph, a handful of letters, a few questionable memories and a disembodied voice. Dominik plays up the daddy angle in ways that feel simultaneously informative and exploitative. In one scene, DiMaggio bursts through Monroe’s bedroom door to confront her about the nude photos she took when she was young. The door opens, and DiMaggio finds Monroe lounging on the bed, reading a trade in nothing more than her underwear. The look on her face conveys all the casualness and comfort of a happy marriage, the kind where you walk around half-naked like it’s no big deal and feel safe all the time. Then DiMaggio strikes her, and Monroe transforms into a naked little girl cowering in the corner, asking for forgiveness from “Daddy” — her nickname for all her lovers. It’s a violent and uncomfortable scene underlining that no matter what Monroe does or how much she accomplishes, men will always remind her that she is nothing more than a sex object and that she should be ashamed for it. Frustratingly, Blonde makes this point repeatedly and never rises above it. The moments of Monroe, the actor, are almost entirely exercised while Dominik has a damn near fetishistic field day with the look of Blonde. The aspect ratio pops back and forth between boxy Academy ratio and narrow anamorphic widescreen for no discernible reason — ditto for the use of black and white in some scenes; full color in others. If there is a method at work here, it is not easily unlocked on first viewing. Blonde’s lone bright spot is de Armas. She’s game the whole way through (the film wouldn’t work if she weren’t). But like Dominik’s disinterest with Monroe the performer, his inability to capitalize on de Armas’ performance sinks Blonde. There are about a million ways you can go with the Monroe story, and Dominik settles on the one we’ve seen a million times before: A naked dead girl and questions about the father who was never there. For more, tune in to After Image Fridays at 3 p.m. on KGNU: 88.5 FM and online at Email: BOULDER COUNTY’S INDEPENDENT VOICE


Top Ten Novel of 2021 by The Bookbag United Kingdom Reviewer Jill Murphy: “Oh, I loved, loved, reading this novel. It’s wild and anarchic. Not a book for the fainthearted, Crosshairs of the Devil is violent, grisly and gruesome but also wonderfully charismatic and utterly compelling.” Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, & Boulder Book Store

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by Rob Brezsny ARIES


you are drawn to people who tell you exactly what they think, who aren’t intimidated by your high energy, and who dare to be as vigorous as you. I hope you have an array of allies like that in your sphere right now. In my astrological opinion, you especially need their kind of stimulation. It’s an excellent time to invite influences that will nudge you out of your status quo and help you glide into a new groove. Are you willing to be challenged and changed?

right shouldn’t involve getting into loud arguments or trying to manipulate people into seeing things your way. If you’re doing what you were born to do, you rely on gentler styles of persuasion. Are you doing what you were born to do? Have you become skilled at using clear, elegant language to say what you mean? Do you work in behalf of the best outcome rather than merely serving your ego? Do you try to understand why others feel the way they do, even if you disagree with their conclusions? I hope you call on these superpowers in the coming weeks. We all need you to be at the height of your potency.

MARCH 21-APRIL 19: When you Aries folks are at your best,


APRIL 20-MAY 20: Author Toni Morrison thought that beau-

ty was “an absolute necessity” and not “a privilege or an indulgence.” She said that “finding, incorporating, and then representing beauty is what humans do.” In her view, we can’t live without beauty “any more than we can do without dreams or oxygen.” All she said is even truer for Tauruses and Libras than the other signs. And you Bulls have an extra wrinkle: It’s optimal if at least some of the beauty in your life is useful. Your mandate is summed up well by author Anne Michaels: “Find a way to make beauty necessary; find a way to make necessity beautiful.” I hope you’ll do a lot of that in the coming weeks.

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MAY 21-JUNE 20: Philosopher Alfred North Whitehead said,

“It requires a very unusual mind to make an analysis of the obvious.” I nominate you to perform that service in the coming days, both for yourself and your allies. No one will be better able than you to discern the complexities of seemingly simple situations. You will also have extraordinary power to help people appreciate and even embrace paradox. So be a crafty master of candor and transparency, Gemini. Demonstrate the benefits of being loyal to the objective evidence rather than to the easy and popular delusions. Tell the interesting truths.


JUNE 21-JULY 22: Cancerian poet Lucille Clifton sent us all an invitation: “Won’t you celebrate with me what i have shaped into a kind of life? i had no model. i made it up here on this bridge between starshine and clay, my one hand holding tight my other hand.” During October, fellow Cancerian, I propose you draw inspiration from her heroic efforts to create herself. The coming weeks will be a time when you can achieve small miracles as you bolster your roots, nourish your soulful confidence, and ripen your uniqueness.

AUG. 23-SEPT. 22: How to be the best Virgo you can be

during the coming weeks: 1. You must relish, not apologize for, your precise obsessions. 2. Be as nosy as you need to be to discover the core truths hidden beneath the surface. Risk asking almost too many questions in your subtle drive to know everything. 3. Help loved ones and allies shrink and heal their insecurities. 4. Generate beauty and truth through your skill at knowing what needs to be purged and shed. 5. Always have your Bullshit Detector with you. Use it liberally. 6. Keep in close touch with the conversations between your mind and body.



SEPTEMBER 29, 2022


OCT. 23-NOV. 21: “One bad apple spoils the rest” is an idiom

in the English language. It refers to the idea that if one apple rots as it rests in a pile of apples, the rest will quickly rot, too. It’s based on a scientific fact. As an apple decays, it emanates the gas ethylene, which speeds up decay in nearby apples. A variant of this idiom has recently evolved in relation to police misconduct, however. When law enforcement officials respond to such allegations, they say that a few “bad apples” in the police force aren’t representative of all the other cops. So I’m wondering which side of the metaphor is at work for you right now, Scorpio. Should you immediately expunge the bad apple in your life? Or should you critique and tolerate it? Should you worry about the possibility of contamination, or can you successfully enforce damage control? Only you know the correct answer.


NOV. 22-DEC. 21: Of all the signs in the zodiac, you

Sagittarians know best how to have fun even when life sucks. Your daily rhythm may temporarily become a tangle of boring or annoying tasks, yet you can still summon a knack for enjoying yourself. But let me ask you this: How are your instincts for drumming up amusement when life doesn’t suck? Are you as talented at whipping up glee and inspiration when the daily rhythm is smooth and groovy? I suspect we will gather evidence to answer those questions in the coming weeks. Here’s my prediction: The good times will spur you to new heights of creating even more good times.

DEC. 22-JAN. 19: More than you might realize, people look to

put extra mousse on my hair and blow-dried the hell out of it, so now it is huge and curly and impossibly irresistible. I’m wearing bright orange shoes so everyone will stare at my feet, and a blue silk blouse that is much too high-fashion to wear to work. It has princess seams and matches my eyes. I look fantastic. How could anyone of any gender resist drinking in my magnificence? I realize you’re a spiritual type and may not approve of my showmanship, but I wanted you to know that what I’m doing is a totally valid way to be a Leo. —Your Leo teacher Brooke.” Dear Brooke: Thank you for your helpful instruction! It’s true that I periodically need to loosen my tight grip on my high principles. I must be more open to appreciating life’s raw feed. I hope you will perform a similar service for everyone you encounter in the coming weeks.





JULY 23-AUG. 22: “Dear Rob the Astrologer: This morning I

SEPT. 23-OCT. 22: The Libran approach to fighting for what’s

you for leadership and regard you as a role model. This will be extra true in the coming weeks. Your statements and actions will have an even bigger impact than usual. Your influence will ripple out far beyond your sphere. In light of these developments, which may sometimes be subtle, I encourage you to upgrade your sense of responsibility. Make sure your integrity is impeccable. Another piece of advice, too: Be an inspiring example to people without making them feel like they owe you anything.


JAN. 20-FEB. 18: Rapper-songwriter Nicki Minaj says, “You

should never feel afraid to become a piece of art. It’s exhilarating.” I will go further, Aquarius. I invite you to summon ingenuity and joy in your efforts to be a work of art. The coming weeks will be an ideal time for you to tease out more of your inner beauty so that more people can benefit from it. I hope you will be dramatic and expressive about showing the world the full array of your interesting qualities. PS: Please call on the entertainment value of surprise and unpredictability.


FEB. 19-MARCH 20: Author Robertson Davies declared, “One

learns one’s mystery at the price of one’s innocence.” It sounds poetic, but it doesn’t apply to most of you Pisceans — especially now. Here’s what I’ve concluded: The more you learn your mystery, the more innocent you become. Please note I’m using the word “innocence” in the sense defined by author Clarissa Pinkola Estés. She wrote: “Ignorance is not knowing anything and being attracted to the good. Innocence is knowing everything and still being attracted to the good.”


by Dan Savage Dear Dan: 42-year-old dad here. You’ve been married for 12 years, I’ve been married for 12 years, and my you started a family sometime after that marriage has been somewhat turbulent. turbulent period, which means your kid But after some affairs—one where my or kids are still young and may be very wife screwed my best friend—and theryoung. Your wife could be interested in apy, we reconnected, righted ourselves, other sex partners but lacks the energy and started a wonderful family. We both for them right now, seeing as she’s identify as bisexual now, and we are doing… judging from your letter… way ethically non-monogamous. My quesmore than her fair share of the parenttion is this: my wife never seeks out ing. I mean, if you’re constantly running other lovers, but I often do. She thinks off on dates and hookups and having looking for sex on apps is gross and adventures and leaving her home alone won’t try it. She did recently suggest we with the kid(s), it’s possible that your become poly—that we date other couwife is annoyed with you and you’re ples together—only to shut that down reading her annoyance as slut-shamafter one date with another ing. ROMAN ROBINSON couple. She also kind of And if you proposed slut-shames me when I opening up the relationask permission to hook ship and she agreed to up or date someone else. it — after she fucked your She wants to be open in best friend — maybe she theory, but she seems to doesn’t feel free to say no be against it in practice. when you ask for perWe communicate well and mission to fuck someone she continues to give me else, which could also permission (but always leave your wife annoyed. after shaming me), and Annoyance that, again, I check in regularly only you could be reading as to have her act annoyed slut-shaming. when I inform her of each At any rate, OPEN, new adventure. I am not sure what to if I were married to someone who do. agreed to open the relationship but —Often Practicing Ethical who seemed annoyed or upset or slutNon-monogamy shamed me whenever I asked for their OK to go fuck someone else, I would Dear OPEN: Has it occurred to have a few questions for my spouse: you that maybe… just maybe… your Do they want an open relationship at wife doesn’t wanna hear about each all? Did they ever? Do they still? And if and every one of your adventures? Or they did and still do, would they prefer any of them? I mean, it seems clear a DADT (“don’t ask, don’t tell”) arrangeto me she doesn’t want to hear about ment over a TMFE (“tell me fucking them. It’s all right there in your letter: everything”) arrangement? your wife doesn’t enjoy discussing your I think a few check-in/check-up dates, your hookups, your adventures, sessions with your couples’ counselor etc., and yet you persist in asking her are in order here. Maybe your wife’s and telling her. feelings have changed, after having You mention “some affairs” earlier a kid (or kids). Or maybe your wife — in your marriage, OPEN, back before cheater though she was — would prefer you came out to each other as bisexual a monogamous relationship after all. and opened your relationship. But you Or, hey, maybe your wife is happy for only share the details of one: your wife you to fuck other people but would like fucked your best friend. That had to to see — at least while your kids are hurt. I’m glad you two got into therapy, young — you dial back your adventurmanaged to work through the fallout, ing and dial up your dadding. got to a better place, and decided to But I can only speculate. Your wife start a family together. But I feel like I knows. Ask her. don’t have all the relevant information here — like whose idea opening up was (yours?) and your wife’s state of Email mind when she agreed (guilt-racked?) Follow Dan on Twitter @FakeDanSavage. — which means I have no choice but to Find columns, podcasts, books, merch speculate… and more at BOULDER COUNTY’S INDEPENDENT VOICE


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Brasserie Ten Ten is one of more than 30 local restaurants participating in this year’s First Bite.

Fresh First Bite Expanded Restaurant Week celebration opens its doors to new Boulder dining experiences

by John Lehndorff


hen First Bite debuted 17 years ago, the Boulder dining landscape was in a different place. Diners snapped up reservations for the annual Restaurant Week event focused on multi-course dinners at a single set price. The past few years truly shook the Boulder food scene, with many eateries closing and a slew of new places debuting. The economy now seems more precarious. For 2022, First Bite is taking a fresh approach to the much-anticipated celebration with special menus at more than 30 independent local restaurants from Sept. 30 to Oct. 9. “This year we didn’t set any price point. We told the restaurants, ‘Choose whatever you want to offer at the price that works,’” says Jessica Benjamin, owner and producer of First Bite Boulder. This year’s First Bite will also offer new dining options, with 14 of the 33 restaurants participating for the first time. Menus have also been expanded to include breakfast, brunch and lunch. That means First Bite now has room for a three-course $120 menu for two from Steakhouse No. 316 and a $27 brunch at Cafe Aion featuring house-made cinnamon-yogurt doughnuts and a choice of a croque madame or shakshuka with a mimosa.



New kids on the block New to First Bite (and to many diners) are the recently opened Gemini and Boulder Social, and the recently reopened Brasserie Ten Ten and Frank’s Chophouse. Also debuting is Boulder’s Süti & Co, a Scandinavian-inspired café showcasing chef Andrea Uzarowski’s buttery shortbreads. At Marigold, almost every bite is a first. Chef Theo Adley only recently opened the restaurant in a cozy 1885 sandstone building on Main Street in Lyons. “First Bite is a wonderful way to introduce ourselves to our neighbors and show them what we’re all about,” Adley says. A veteran of kitchens at Pinyin, Frasca and Aspen’s Little Nell, Adley says he gravitates toward ingredient-focused preparations from Northern Italy to Southern France. Marigold’s First Bite offering is a dinner for two: a shared first course of panisse — French chickpea fries, followed by salad or prosciutto broth with meatballs, beans and escarole, plus an entrée choice of swordfish, rigatoni with lamb ragu, or bricked chicken with salsa verde. Topping it off are ricotta-filled sweet cannoli. This year also marks a first in the nearly 100-year history of The Sink on the Hill, Boulder’s oldest still-operating restaurant, which will make its First Bite debut. “This is a great way for [The Sink] to reintroduce themselves to Boulder diners,” Jessica Benjamin says. The historic eatery’s First Bite offerings range from pizza and beers for four to burgers, fries and drinks for two. Despite these new offerings, the upscale multi-course dining experience — with and without wine pairings — is still very much a First Bite feature at places like Farow (in Niwot), Mateo and the Boulder Cork. Basta offers diners a four-course dinner that can feature burrata with smoked eggplant, followed by gnocchi Amatriciana with guanciale, a wood-fired fish course, and panna cotta for the finish. The First Bite roster also includes 740 Front, Ash’Kara, Bohemian Biergarten, Brasserie Boulder, Busey Brews Smokehouse, The Corner Bar, Corrida, Dagabi Cucina, Greenbriar Inn, Japango, Jill’s, OAK at Fourteenth, SALT, Sforno and others. Avanti F&B boasts three food stations, including Rooted see NIBBLES Page 26

SEPTEMBER 29, 2022



NIBBLES from Page 25

Craft Kitchen dishing First Bite meals and cocktail specials.

‘Sometimes it’s a thankless job.’ In addition to the shake-ups within the industry over the last few years, the local dining audience has also expanded and changed. “A lot of new people have moved to Boulder County and don’t really know about local restaurants,” Benjamin says. After talking with numerous local chefs and restaurateurs, she reports that while this year feels more “normal” with the return to indoor dining, it is anything but normal at local bistros. “This moment, for the restaurant industry, may actually be worse than last year,” she says. “Diners are ready to dine, but restaurants are still dealing with the staffing crisis, supply chain problems and rising prices for food … and everything else.” First Bite has also launched a new award spotlighting front-of-house workers like waiters, bartenders and hosts, along with back-of-house employees like chefs, cooks and dishwashers. “We want to remind everyone there are these wonderful people doing this work,” Benjamin says. “Sometimes it’s a thankless job.” According to Benjamin, Boulder’s restaurant folks collectively have only one simple request for diners: Please be kind. Don’t be rude. Be understanding when it takes a little longer to clear tables and deliver food. Give your own dining award by tipping generously — that’s a 20% minimum, folks. Complete First Bite listings and menus at:

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The Nibbles Index: Orange Chicken Rules 33. That’s the percentage of total sales at Panda Express represented by one dish: Orange Chicken, created 35 years ago by chef Andy Kao. Panda Express just introduced Beyond the Original Orange Chicken using a plant-based chicken alternative.

Local Food News: Voodoo in Boulder


Oregon-based Voodoo Donuts — known for over-the-top flavors and icings — will open soon at 3210

Arapahoe Ave., site of a former KFC now painted bright pink. … Doug’s Diner has reopened in the Basemar Shopping Center … Coming soon: Lucca Coffee, 300 E. South Boulder, Road, Louisville.

Words to Chew On “The banquet is in the first bite.” — Michael Pollan Boulder Weekly Food Editor John Lehndorff hosts Radio Nibbles — a weekly show about local food — at 8:20 a.m. Thursdays on KGNU (88.5 FM, streaming at Email:

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740 Front Ash’Kara Avanti F&B Basta Bohemian Biergarten Boulder Cork Boulder Social Brasserie Boulder Brasserie Ten Ten

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Busey Brews Smokehouse & Brewery Café Aion The Corner Bar Corrida Dagabi Cucina Dry Storage Farow Frank’s Chophouse

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by John Lehndorff

Another Roadfood Attraction: Smoking Buffalo


arbecue fanatics — you know who you are — have been known to travel long distances for that smoke, salt, fat, spice and fire. While passing through Golden recently, I made a U-turn to find Roaming Buffalo Bar B-Que, a joint I’d enjoyed at its original Denver location. The smell of smoking meats offers a mouth-watering welcome. I ordered a menu rarity: tender, fall-off-the-bone

Boulder Recipe Flashback: Hosea’s Rellenos

This has been a great season for various fresh green chile varieties. One of the best ways to enjoy the roasted peppers is in chile rellenos. Here is a recipe Santo’s owner/chef Hosea Rosenberg shared with the Boulder Farmers Market. (More recipes at Hosea’s Green Chile Rellenos 8 fresh Hatch green chile peppers 12 ounces medium cheddar cheese, cut into eight logs 2 eggs, beaten 1 cup all-purpose flour 1 cup cornmeal 2 cups canola oil (for frying) Preheat grill, or if using a gas range, turn one burner on to full heat. Place peppers over the hottest spot and allow skins to char or blacken. Turn the peppers often to blacken all sides. Place the blackened peppers into a bowl, and tightly


LONGMONT RESTAURANT WEEK returns for its fifth year this October with a 10-day celebration of local food, drink, and culinary professionals. More than 30 food and beverage establishments will offer exclusive menus for $25, $35, or $45.

bison back ribs, plus juicy pulled pork, bison green chile and cheddar sausage. It came with a cornbread mini-muffin and well-made barbecue sauces, plus my choice of creamy mac and cheese and coffee-spiked beans on the

side. The menu also features pecan- and oak-smoked chopped brisket, pork ribs, pulled lamb and turkey breast. Like all good ’cue destinations, Roaming Buffalo closes early when they run out of meat. It’s well worth the side trip.

Culinary Calendar: Dining with Barbarians


ongmont Restaurant Week, Oct. 7-16, features menus for $25, $35, or $45 at 30 Longmont eateries. Details: … Mexican Hot Chocolate and Pecan Balls (Chocolate Caliente Mexicano y Bolitas de Nuez) are on the menu for a cooking class at the Table Mesa Boulder Public Library. The hands-on experience includes the science, art and mystery behind the cocoa bean. This workshop will be conducted in English and Spanish for ages 6 and up. Register: … The Grain Revival Celebration Oct. 9 at Boulder’s MASA Seed Foundation farm features bread, pasta and cocktails made from locally-grown grains. Reservations can be found at Eventbrite … The Barbarian Fest, Oct. 15 at Loveland’s Grimm Brothers Brewhouse, features ax-throwing, German beers, crusty bread and fire-roasted meats and vegetables. No plates are provided and you need to bring your own knife. Reservations:

seal with plastic wrap. Allow the peppers to steam as they cool, about 15 minutes. Carefully peel off the blackened skins, but leave the stem intact (gloves are highly recommended). Cut a one-inch slit along the long side of each pepper. Remove as much of the membrane and as many of the seeds as possible without tearing the sides open. Carefully slide one log of cheese into each pepper and close the slit as best you can. Dredge the entire pepper into flour, then coat in the beaten egg. Lastly, dredge in cornmeal. Set peppers on a plate until ready to fry. Heat the canola oil in a high-sided skillet over medium heat until about 350 degrees. Gently dip each pepper into the hot oil and fry until golden brown and crispy on each side, turning once. Remove from heat and place on a cooling rack or paper-towel-lined plate to drain. Sprinkle peppers with salt and eat immediately.


SEPTEMBER 29, 2022

Send information about food events and classes to:



Soothing the change

plant phytochemicals and people to determine the causes behind health benefits, and then translating that into human interventions — which made this particular topic, concerning CBD and the symptoms of menopause, particularly suited to her research skills. She and her team of researchers gave one half of a group of 14-week-old mice CBD-laced peanut butter balls, while the other half (the control group) received regular peanut butter balls. That regiment continued for 18 weeks, at which point the mice were euthanized and dissected: their liver and uterus were weighed, their ilium and colon segments were removed and flushed with sterile solution, and their carcasses were stored for bone sampling.

Estrogen-deficient mice dosed with CBD show healthier bone density and gut biomes, better circulation and higher energy

by Will Brendza


iana Roopchand wanted part of her research program at Rutgers University to be focused on a topic specific to women’s health, so she chose menopause, a drop in estrogen that causes women in their late-40s to early-50s to experience symptoms like hot-flashes, night sweats, anxiety, brain fog, weight gain and bone loss. “If symptoms [of menopause] are not well-managed, productivity and quality of life can be severely affected,” which can affect long-term disease risk, Roopchand says. With life expectancy growing, almost all women will experience estrogen deficiency and menopause, Roopchand reasoned. That meant half of the world’s population (roughly 3.875 billion people) stood to benefit if she could ease that midlife metamorphosis. Roopchand found that CBD was being marketed to women as a treatment substance for menopause and post-menopause symptoms. But (as is so often the case with CBD and cannabis at-large) there was no peer-reviewed research to back up those claims. “The field was wide open, and as an assistant professor I had start-up funds from the university to equip my laboratory and pursue new lines of research,” she says. It was the “perfect opportunity” for Roopchand’s team to evaluate CBD’s effectiveness at treating menopausal symptoms. Roopchand is a biochemist, immunologist and microbiologist. Her research focuses on interactions between



On average, women in the U.S. enter menopause at age 51, according to Rutgers — meaning most women spend over a third of their lives in an estrogen-deficient state. According to Roopchand, a lot of emerging evidence indicates there’s a significant amount of “cross

SEPTEMBER 29, 2022


talk” between endocannabinoid systems and estrogen-regulated systems. “CBD can interact with many receptors throughout the body, and there is data reporting its anti-inflammatory effects and protective effects on bone, gut and cognitive health,” she says. “Our working hypothesis was that CBD would alter the gut microbiota and microbial metabolites, leading to reduced inflammation and improved metabolic health outcomes. We thought CBD would alter the community of bacteria in the intestines.” The scientists took x-rays and measured bone density in the mice. They also measured RNA from their iliums and colons, analyzed serum taken from blood samples, and closely examined gut microbiota. They found the estrogen-deficient animals treated with CBD could digest glucose better, improving circulation and burning more energy. CBD-treated mice also had increased mineral density and content in their bones, improved bone ultrastructural properties throughout their bodies, decreased intestinal and bone inflammation, and higher levels of bacteria associated with better bone health. “I was somewhat skeptical and not entirely expecting to see all the effects we observed,” Roopchand admits. As a preclinical trial, Roopchand’s study, published in Frontiers of Pharmacology, doesn’t prove anything — not yet, at least. It will take peer-reivewed full clinical studies on menopausal/postmenopausal women to show that CBD can ease symptoms of estrogen deficiency. “We need more research on the efficacy and safety of hemp-derived products. CBD is just one of many other phytocannabinoids that have yet to be studied with respect to their usefulness for management of menopause-related issues,” Roopchand says. “In the meantime, women will likely continue to experiment on their own.” Email:


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