When the ancient Polynesians invented surfing, they often used a paddle to help them navigate. Fast-forward a few millennia, and Stand-Up Paddleboarding, or SUP, finds itself trendy again. Part of its increasing popularity is that standing upright allows surfers to spot waves more easily and thus catch more of them, multiplying the fun factor. Paddling back to the wave becomes less of a strain as well. The ability to cruise along on flat inland water, surveying the sights, is another advantage. Finally, its a good core workout. If youre sold on the idea, schedule an intro SUP lesson, free with board and paddle rental, and you may find yourself riding the waves like a Polynesian king.More
In the past 30 years, light artists have reimagined an art form that has always had the ability to turn the night sky, or a simple window, into luminescence. Last fall, the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts turned its southern glass wall into a parade of sound-sensing lights, Lightswarm, that changes with the movements of nearby people and things. Future Cities Lab, the San Francisco design company behind Lightswarm, has originated another notable light sculpture. Located by the YBCA's steps at 701 Mission, Murmur Wall will light up in arresting ways as it incorporates local trending search engine results and social media postings. Onlookers can offer their own contributions, which will feed into the Murmur Wall's data stream and light up the sculpture. What's trending in San Francisco? If you're walking by the YBCA, you can see firsthand — at least through light patterns that reflect the city's volatile internet habits.
Murmur Wall debuts Thursday at 6 p.m. and continues through May 31, 2017, at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 701 Mission St., S.F. Free; 415-978-2700 or ybca.org. More
Ever since the fateful night in 1991 on which I discovered Mystery Science Theater 3000, a show in which a guy and his two robot puppets heckle bad movies, it's been my favorite television series, bar none. I taped every episode until it was canceled for good in 1999, watched them multiple times, and the show largely defined my sense of humor; it's no coincidence that this past March I ended a ten-year run of show at The Dark Room Theater called "Bad Movie Night," essentially a live version of MST3K. (Unlike MST3K, "Bad Movie Night" was unloved at the time and forgotten now, but hey, we tried our best.)
That it's the 33rd volume only refers to the order in which Shout! Factory is releasing them; otherwise, there's no real chronology, as the four episodes Daddy-O, Earth vs. the Spider, Teen-Age Crime Wave, and Agent for H.A.R.M. come from the show's third, fifth, and eighth seasons, and have no thematic connections. That's fine, because the series always resisted serialization, though every seasons has its own tone and flavor, not the least of which because host and creator Joel Hodgson (riffing on Daddy-O and Earth vs. the Spider) left halfway through the fifth season and was replaced by the show's head writer Michael J. Nelson (here hosting Teen-Age Crime Wave and Agent for H.A.R.M.). Also, the voice of Crow T. Robot Trace Beaulieu left after the end of the seventh season, and was replaced by Bill Corbett; also during that time, the show left Comedy Central and reappeared on the Sci-Fi Channel. So, there are a lot of changes between Daddy-O and Agent for H.A.R.M.
Though I discovered the show during its third season in 1991 when Joel still hosted and they were on Comedy Central, my favorite era is the latter half of Season 8 in 1997 on Sci-Fi. It's more polished-in-a-good-way, and the sketches between the movie segments got more complicated and serialized; while Agent for H.A.R.M. is not my favorite episode from that season in terms of riffing, it does have the subplot of Mike Nelson being put on trial for his newfound tendency to accidentally destroy planets. It's also Kevin Murphy's finest hour as Professor Bobo, which…would take too long to explain, actually.
But the beauty of Mystery Science Theater 3000 remains that you can jump in at any time, and it'll feel like it's always been part of your life. Join us.
Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'.
Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"