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Burning for You

Santa Feans share their pre-Zozobra gloom

September 8, 2009, 12:00 am

A reporter from a national newspaper called SFR last week wanting to discuss gloom. Well, the gloom box, to be precise. Each year, SFR collects Santa Feans’ gloomy notes, documents and objects, and delivers them for burning at Will Shuster’s Zozobra (and we’ll be on the field with KBAC Sept. 10 collecting them, as well).

The national reporter wanted to come by our office and read some of the glooms that had already been dropped off. We, of course, said no: Glooms are private and, as nosy as we are, we never, ever peek.

Still, it did get us to wondering what sad stuff people will cast off this week. So we called (and emailed) around and asked a few local folks if they would be willing to publicly share their glooms for the year. Here’s what they said:

“I don’t have any gloom. I’m a happy-go-lucky guy…Give me a second. I wish for the economic woes and the tragic fighting in Asian countries or, I guess, the Middle East—I am wishing for those scenarios in our world today to go up in smoke.”
—Bob Clifford, funeral director at Santa Fe Funeral Options & Memorial Gardens and past president of the Downtown Kiwanis Foundation, which produces Zozobra

“I’m an optimist. The magic of Zozobra has kept any gloom away!”
—Lt. Gov. Diane Denish, via email, as read over the phone by spokeswoman Sam Thompson

“You want my gloom? It’s just not that interesting to most people, but there are roller lifters on the bottling line. That’s my gloom. There’s a piston and it has a little rubber wheel, and it’s what picks up the bottle and puts it into the machine. In the last two months, I’ve had to change three of them. It takes about an hour. And during that hour, you have five people sitting around the line, waiting for you to finish it…Everybody’s just watching you, like, ‘When are you going to get done?’”
—Ty Levis, brewmaster at the Santa Fe Brewing Company

“My gloom is paying $1,100 a month for health insurance for my family. It’s actually a little more than that, but you don’t need the exact number. So, as you can imagine, I’m hoping this whole health care thing happens. Small-business owners are really messed over when it comes to health coverage. My hope is for a single-payer.”
—Debbi Brody, co-owner of Canyon Road Contemporary Art

“I would like to burn the last two city budgets so that the city can start over with something more realistic.”
—Former City Councilor Karen Heldmeyer

“I’m giving up the idea that I can do anything more than offer quiet support to friends and family who are battling addiction problems.”
—Musician Nacha Mendez

“You know, I had a really, really good year last year. I finished a novel, which is coming out in November. What can be bad when you’ve finished a book? There is, however, the gloom of the College of Santa Fe losing so many jobs, but there’s the rebirth of the college in its new, invigorated form. But there is the painful trauma of so many people losing their jobs and having to redefine their lives—I just can’t imagine.”
 —Mark Behr, novelist and professor of creative writing at the College of Santa Fe

“At the end of the day, all we [at the animal shelter] think about, day and night, is that there are too many animals and not enough homes. We don’t have enough people to adopt every animal in our shelter. That’s one. Another is not having enough money to do all the things we want to do for these animals. Those are the whoppers.”
—Mary Martin, executive director of the Santa Fe Animal Shelter & Humane Society

“Our gloom is people who expect the catering deposit back when they cancel an event at the last minute!”
—Maxime Bouneou, co-owner of Torino’s@Home

“The mayor’s gloom to burn is the fear of layoffs and furloughs and the politically charged hysteria standing in the way of true health care reform.”
—Mayor David Coss, via his campaign manager, by text message


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