Revered garlic farmer, author Stanley Crawford dies at 86
“A farmer-writer who loves garlic as much as words” is how the New York Times described Dixon writer and farmer Stanley Crawford in a 2011 story, and one might be hard-pressed to improve upon that characterization. Crawford, whose 11 books included the seminal and award-winning memoirs Mayordormo: Chronicle of an Acequia in Northern New Mexico and A Garlic Testament: Seasons on a Small New Mexico Farm, died Jan. 25 at his home in Dixon as a result of a medically-assisted death he chose after learning earlier in January he had untreatable cancer, his daughter Katya Crawford tells SFR. “He was totally brave, totally ready, and was very, very graceful about it,” says Crawford, who was with her father when he died, along with her brother Adam and his wife.
In 2019, Crawford published The Garlic Papers: A Small Garlic Farm in the Age of Global Vampires (Leaf Storm Press), which documents the massive legal battle that pitted his small farm in New Mexico against a Chinese garlic importer and its several international law ﬁrms, also the subject of a Netﬂix documentary, “Garlic Breath,” in the six-part series Rotten, released in 2018. “The news about Stan’s passing came as a shock,” Leaf Storm Publisher Andy Dudzik (a former longtime SFR publisher) tells SFR via email. “As a writer, he was a singular talent and an absolute joy to work with. It was an honor to be entrusted with publishing two of his books. He was also one of the most gentle and humble souls I’ve ever known, and I will miss him greatly.” Leaf Storm also published Crawford’s 2017 novel Village, which Crawford described as a “love letter” to the Northern New Mexico village where he and his late wife, Rose Mary, who died three years ago, raised their children after moving there in 1969. Katya Crawford tells SFR her father spent the last weeks of life visiting in person and on the phone with friends and told her, in the end, “friendship are everything,” he said. And he had so many, Katya notes. “He had a really good life.”
State publishes 50-year water plan
Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham yesterday released a 50-year water action plan she says incorporates input from tribes, pueblos, acequias, farmers and other stakeholders, and focuses on expanding water conservation, developing new supplies and enhancing water protections. “New Mexicans throughout the state need to take actions now to ensure we can have resilient water supplies in the future,” Lujan Grisham says in a statement. “The 50-Year Water Action Plan elements are guided by science and innovation to ensure that our diverse communities and economies will continue to thrive.” The plans provisions include: a water education campaign to reduce community water consumption by 10%; expanding water conservation by incentivizing modern irrigation technology to reduce agricultural water use by 20%; using “cutting-edge technology” to complete a statewide water loss inventory; and creating “billions of gallons of new water for use for clean energy manufacturing via the Strategic Water Supply,” an initiative that has been heavily criticized by environmentalists and other activists. US Rep. Melanie Stansbury commended the 50-year plan in a statement yesterday, describing it as “a proactive plan for helping New Mexicans respond to the challenges of climate change. By working with partners at the federal level, the state will be able to protect its water resources for generations to come.”
Kids Code bill back for second round
New Mexico lawmakers are once again pushing a bill they say will help protect children from the dangers of social media. After a version of the measure died in committee during the 2023 legislative session, Sen. George K. Muñoz, D-Gallup, has re-introduced the Age Appropriate Design Code Act bill this year: Senate Bill 68. Also known as The New Mexico Kids Code, the proposed law would require tech companies that provide online products and services to operate with strict data privacy designed to prevent children’s personal data from being stored, sold or leaked. Companies violating the law would be forced to pay fines between $2,500 and $7,500 per affected child. SB68 co-sponsor Rep. Pamelya Herndon, D-Albuquerque, tells SFR she believes the bill has the potential to pass this year, but lawmakers at the Jan. 30 Senate Tax, Business and Transportation Committee tabled it on a 6-1 vote. The bill comes amid several investigations, including one by Attorney General Raúl Torrez, demonstrating the risks faced by children on social media sites. Torrez filed a lawsuit last December against Meta for failing to remove child sexual abuse material across its platforms and harming minors through the addictive design of the sites.
NM gov joins brief in federal medication abortion case
The US Supreme Court on Monday scheduled oral arguments for March 26 for the legal battle over medical abortions. As detailed on the SCOTUS blog, arguments in Food and Drug Administration v. Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine and Danco Laboratories v. Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine will be heard together, and will be the first time the court weighs in on abortion since overturning Roe v. Wade in 2022 in its Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization ruling. New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham is one of 22 governors in the Reproductive Freedom Alliance, which yesterday filed an amicus curiae brief with the court in the FDA lawsuit. The brief argues that if the court allows a recent Fifth Circuit decision to stand, it could “undermine governors’ ability to provide adequate healthcare services and would have far-reaching implications beyond reproductive healthcare,” a news release from the governor’s office says. “New Mexico has seen the impact of the Dobbs decision directly and has stepped up to provide reproductive health care for thousands of women who have lost access to services,” the governor says in a statement. “Millions more will lose access if this decision is allowed to stand. We cannot and will not allow that to happen.”
Mark Martinez, retired, and a self-described “avid Santa Fe Reporter food section reader” offers up today’s playlist for the 2024 Morning Word Playlist Project.
2. “Hallelujah” by Jeff Buckley: “The most haunting version of everybody’s favorite cover.”
3. “Wicked Game” by Chris Isaak: “Chris Isaak is a wicked songwriter.”
4. “Give Me One Reason” by Tracy Chapman: “Give me one reason why I shouldn’t listen to Tracy Chapman sing anything.”
5. “Rapture” by Blondie: “Because anything by Blondie is fun to listen to.”
City council to vote on new poet laureate
Toward the end of what looks like a very long meeting tonight, the Santa Fe City Council will vote on several appointments, including a one-year term—with the possibility of a second—as the city’s poet laureate for Tommy Archuleta, author of Susto (University Press of Colorado, 2023) and Fieldnotes (Lily Poetry Review Press, 2023). His work also has appeared in the New England Review, the Laurel Review, Lily Poetry Review, the Cortland Review, Guesthouse, and the Academy of American Poets’ Poem-a-Day series. In a memo accompanying Archuleta’s nomination, the city’s Director of Arts and Culture Chelsey Johnson says the selection committee unanimously agreed Archuleta’s application was the strongest among the 11 submitted based “on the merits of the quality and promise of his poetry, his publication record, his deep ties with and knowledge of Santa Fe, and his proposed programming.” That selection committee includes two former city poet laureates: Elizabeth Jacobson and Jon Davis, as well as poet Sherwin Bitsui (Diné), a former Institute of American Indian Arts poetry professor, and a judge for last year’s Pulitzer Prize in poetry. Archuleta tells SFR he was interested in the position (which includes $12,000 to be split between an honorarium and programming costs) in part because “I felt it was time for another Santa Fe poet that was actually born and raised in Santa Fe,” to serve in the position. He also wants to use the programming to reach “overlooked communities that haven’t been really featured with any of the other outreach projects of the other laureates.” A substance abuse counselor for the Corrections Department, Archuleta has proposed six-month poetry workshops for both men incarcerated at the Penitentiary of New Mexico and domestic violence survivors at Esperanza Shelter, each culminating in anthologies, among several other city-wide initiatives for students and the community. “As a counselor, I use creative writing and poetry with people who are ready to start healing through writing with the trauma they’ve undergone,” he says.
Nat Geo includes NM in its Best of the World issue
While New Mexico receives praise day in and out from various and sundry travel publications, few have the travel cred of National Geographic. So NatGeo’s inclusion of New Mexico in its roundup of the “20 of the coolest travel adventures for 2024″ puts the state in pretty rad company. Specifically, the magazine puts a road trip down Route 66 in New Mexico in the #7 spot, writing: “A trip along the Mother Road through New Mexico hits timeless landmarks, such as quirky motels and curio shops in and around Tucumcari and symbolic etchings in Petroglyph National Monument. In Gallup—mentioned as one of the places to ‘get your kicks’ in Nat King Cole’s 1946 hit song ‘Route 66.’” NatGeo recommends experiencing Native American culture. Albuquerque also receives a shout-out as “the longest urban interlude of the route in the United States.” In statements issued by the Tourism Department, Acting Tourism Secretary Lancing Adams and Visit Albuquerque President and CEO Tania Armenta cheered the state’s inclusion by NatGeo as one of four recommended US experiences. “We are beyond thrilled that Albuquerque has been included,” Armenta said in a statement, “And the timing is perfect as the city gears up to celebrate the centennial of the Mother Road in 2026.” The best experiences story is part of the magazine’s Best of the World 2024 issue, which also includes recommendations for hotels, spas, cultural spots and restaurants, and was released yesterday, USA Today reports, to coincide with National Vacation Day. Conservation-centric Hacienda at Armendaris, part of the Ted Turner Reserves, located in Truth or Consequences, receives mention in the 2024 hotel recommendations, with Turner telling NatGeo via email, “When we spend time in nature, we heal ourselves. When we protect nature, we heal our planet.”
Every cloud engenders not a storm
The National Weather Service forecasts a mostly cloudy day, with a high temperature near 51 degrees and northeast wind 5 to 10 mph becoming southwest in the afternoon.
Thanks for reading! The Word is perusing Grist magazine’s Imagine 2200: Climate Fiction for Future Ancestors short story contest winners.