Snapshots of the Swamp: Miami Book Fair's Pop-Up Lounge Welcomes Buika (Photos)

Buika and cajon player Ramón Porrina
The voice of Buika is a melodious blend of Africa, Spain, and the Mediterranean, with an amazing quaver more powerful than the Plava Laguna from the excellent action flick The Fifth Element.

Hailing from the island of Majorca, near Ibiza, she now calls Miami Beach home. And she has a new book of poetry out called "A Los Que Amaron a Mujeres Difíciles y Acabaron Por Soltarse" (To Those Who Love Difficult Women and End Up Letting Go)."

Last night she read and performed from the book at The Swamp, a pop up performing arts venue at the Miami Book Fair International.

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The Ten Best Things About Santa's Enchanted Forest

Categories: Culture, Lists

By force of copyright, "the most magical place on Earth" can only describe Walt Disney theme parks, but the most magically-Miami place on Earth is without a doubt Santa's Enchanted Forest.

If you're really from South Florida, you've got a story. Either you grew up taking in the lights and free rides, or you grow up and wander in with some friend who can't believe you've never been there before, only to discover that the most deliciously-ratchet children's park of all time is also incredibly fun for adults.

Don't believe us? Who are you? Some kind of fun mizer? Just check out all the awesome stuff Santa's has in store.

See also: Eight Best Places to Go Stoned in Miami

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Free Events This Week in Miami: Life-Size Chess, Stitch 'n' Bitch, and Give Miami Day Party

via Freehand Miami Facebook
Forget Ultra or Art Basel -- the best week of the year is here: Miami Book Fair International! This litany of literary wonders is taking over downtown Miami for the next two weeks, and all kinds of awesome events (many of them free) are lined up.

This is your chance to spend seven days stimulating your oft-neglected intellect. But don't worry -- even if you're not a book nerd, there's plenty to keep you busy all week while keeping your budget intact. Bibliophile or not, you'll find something in this list of the best of the best.

See also: The Ten Best Things to Do at Miami Book Fair International

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Florida Passed on Medical Marijuana: Here's How to Get Stoned Without Weed

Categories: Culture, Opinion

Photo by Mark | Flickr CC
After the recent midterm elections there are now five states where marijuana is completely legal. Almost half the country has medicalized or decriminalized pot. Colorado made so much tax revenue from selling legal bud that they are giving a rebate to citizens so even non-smokers have a pocketful of green. Foolishly, Florida decided to pass instead of puff, missing its spot in the legislative rotation. You "pass the dutchie 'pon the left hand side," and Florida leans to the right (wing).

Anything we eat, drink, inhale, or gently slide into our people holes alters us. Over time, humans have kept track of some interesting ones. From the Xanax you crush into your espresso to the protein powder you dust over icing dubiously called "stuf." Drugs are suffering from identity crisis, brand confusion, and bad PR. Like fucking curse words, they didn't do shit wrong but goddamn exist.

See also: Medical Marijuana in Florida: What Amendment 2 Means to You

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Wolfsonian-FIU Marks 18 Years, Centennial of World War I With "Myth and Machine"

Categories: Art, Culture

Geister Der Maschinene Hat Der Tod Befreit on display at the Wolfsonian-FIU.
How did you celebrate Veteran's Day? Did you share a picture of the American flag on your social media network? Did you call and thank a relative or loved one who has served? Did you donate to a veteran rehabilitation charity?

These things are important, but our soldiers and veterans do not serve or relive their wartime experiences simply one day a year. We, too, should not observe their sacrifice but once every 365 days.

The Wolfsonian at FIU doesn't. The museum is dedicated to veterans of all wars and in fact celebrated it's 18-year anniversary Tuesday night by unveiling a new two-floor exhibit titled "Myth and Machine: The First World War in Visual Culture," just in time to honor the centennial of the pivotal struggle which irrevocably shaped society, our mindset, and our way of life today.

See also: To Cuba and Back: Glexis Novoa Dwells on the Contradictions of the Communist Country

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FusionMIA Photography Workshop Gives Students Art Basel Opportunity

Carl Juste
Wynwood acted as the artistic subject for 25 high school students from the Miami-Dade Public School System as they told their stories through photography last weekend's Play To Win Foundation's Through My Lens: Art is Life photography workshop. The teenagers, who came from Allapattah and Overtown, worked with photography mentors to hone their talents with technology courtesy of Microsoft and further support from Nike.

The special student photography show was a preview to the FUSION MIA African American Masters exhibit featuring the BET Art Lounge during Art Basel Miami Beach from December 3-7, which will showcase and exhibit works by African American artists, including Al Loving, Rashid Jones, Ed Clark, among others.

The workshop over the weekend included seminars and talks by Jumaane N'Namdi of N'Namdi Gallery, Nike brand director Stanley Lumax, Miami Herald's Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist Carl Juste and Miami Herald staff photographer and former Military Photographer of the Year C.W. Griffin. The teens' photography, taken on Nokia Lumia 1020 cameras gifted by Microsoft executive Thom Gruhler, will also be shown during the Through My Lens exhibit.

See also: Emerge Miami's 100th Bike Ride to Celebrate Liberty City, Little Haiti, and Overtown

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Miami's Gifted Section of Berlin Wall Unveiled (Photos)

Photos by Monica Torres
Sunday, November 9, was a rainy day, much like the day the Berlin Wall fell 25 years ago. On that historical day, people gathered in the streets in protest. Some rushed to the wall, climbed over it, and broke it down, moved by a desire for freedom and years of restriction.

See also: Miami Gifted Piece of Berlin Wall for Permanent Display

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Miami Native Jillian Mayer Photoshops Herself Into 400 Nude Selfies in Exhibition (NSFW)

Categories: Art, Culture

"Miami is hyper-sexualized and sensationalized, it leaves intense aesthetic and psychological scars on any reasonable person who grows up here," Jillian Mayer told New Times back in 2012. "To me, the only thing that ends up seeming reasonable among the madness is realizing that it's all entertainment."

Exploring those scars and human transformation in a technology-ruled world have been present in much of Mayer's work over the years, from viral videos to local gallery showings. The Miami native's latest exhibition, "400 Nudes," hits especially close to home -- we are undeniably obsessed with taking selfies, after all. But the lack of identity in nude selfies is what inspired Mayer's massive NSFW collection, in which Mayer Photoshopped her face onto hundreds of faceless naked photos floating around the Internet.

See also: Watch Jillian Mayer's "MegaMega Upload," From Borscht's Sundance Selection #PostModem

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Free Events This Week in Miami: Bike Rides, Fan Zines, and Little Havana Art Walk

This is the season we've been waiting patiently impatiently for since the boiling heat sapped the last of our summertime good cheer. Now the trade winds are blowing, the humidity has plummeted, and life is pretty perfect.

Sadly, winter weekends fly by in a breeze, but luckily the in-season awesomeness isn't limited to Saturday and Sunday. There are all kinds of fun, free events to get you through the workweek too.

See also: Coral Gables Museum's New Exhibit Offers Answers to Miami's Rising Sea Level Woes

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Robert Mazur on Working Undercover: "Miami Is the Crossroads for the International Drug Trade"

via Robert Mazur on Facebook
Posing in front of his private jet.
Robert Mazur was an undercover federal agent famous for staging a fake wedding, inviting the biggest coke lords and drug bankers in the world to his bachelor party, and arresting them when they showed up.

As mafia leader Bob Musella, he infiltrated the cocaine banking underworld, where black market blood money is laundered fresh and delivered internationally.

Now, his story is going to AMC, where Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) is pretending to be him, pretending to be his undercover persona. You can also read the whole story in his book, The Infiltrator -- also the name of the movie, which is going to be shot in Tampa. Here's what Mazur had to say about torching bodies, evils in banking, and cocaine money.

See also: Billy Corben on Cocaine Cowboys Based TV Show: "More Tony Soprano Than Tony Montana"

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