Catharsis Prep: "Hi, I'm Zozobra —50 feet tall, rugged good looks—and I'm looking to ruin people's lives. Any takers?"

So goes a recent tweet from Santa Fe's favorite puppet (@Old_Man_Gloom on Twitter), who has been rather chatty as the days leading up to his incineration dwindle. In addition to the aforementioned tweet (which sounds a bit like a personals' ad), Zozobra also offers specific—if strange—advice ("Today, be wary of strangers with animals"), as well as the more expected exhortation: "Oooooooooohhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!"

As Zozobra preps online for his annual sacrifice, Santa Feans can also get ready for the autumnal ritual that kicks off Fiestas. The Sept. 10 burning of Will Shuster's Zozobra symbolizes the evisceration of the town's collected gloom over the last 12 months. As such,
SFR's official Gloom Box is open for business. Stop by our office (132 E. Marcy St.) between Aug. 5 and Sept. 9 to drop off your written statements of misery, poems of pain or documents of doom. We'll collect all of the above (and more—but do not bring us your trash) and make sure it's all stuffed into Zozobra's innards pre-burn. We'll also be on the field collecting during the festivities. For more info on this year's burning, go to

Party Lines: The US Congress takes a month off beginning Aug. 7, so SFR thought it was a good time to check in with New Mexico's new all-blue delegation. One telling stat: how often a congressperson votes with his or her own party.

According to The Washington Post's handy vote database, the average representative votes the party line 90.3 percent of the time; the average senator, 86.9 percent of the time. The most party-line New Mexican was rookie Rep. Ben Ray Luján of the 3rd District, who voted with the Dems 99.3 percent of the time. But Luján joined his New Mexico colleagues in the House to vote with the GOP against the Food Safety Enhancement Act, which passed anyway on July 30.

Sens. Jeff Bingaman (92.1 percent) and newly elected Tom Udall (94.4 percent) broke with their party over funding for the F-22 fighter jet (they said yes; it failed anyway). But Bingaman and Udall differed on allowing concealed firearms permits to transfer from state-to-state (Udall yes, Bingaman no; it failed anyway).

New Mexico's two US senators also differed on a proposal by Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-VT, to reestablish the nation's usury laws by capping interest rates for consumer credit (Bingaman joined with the GOP, while Udall supported Sanders' amendment). President Barack Obama signed the credit card reform bill into law on May 22.