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
Of all the pizzas made in North Beach, perhaps none are made as fondly (or with as much flair) as those of pizza maestro Tony Gemignani, owner of Tony's Pizza Napoletana and recent top dog of the World Pizza Championships in Italy.
Ben Fountain, the fiction editor of Southwest Review, has produced a debut story collection that should give lit-rag hopefuls pause. With pieces about places like Haiti, Colombia, Myanmar, and Sierra Leone, Brief Encounters With Che Guevara is a wicked example of how to do the short form right. Fountain's prose seems effortless, a mix of sincere, literary passages and sparkling reportage, peppered with drop-dead lines about the human condition. The tales revolve around the iconic figure of the well-meaning American abroad, confounding the locals, attempting to save the world and/or himself. In "Near-Extinct Birds of the Central Cordillera," an ornithologist from Duke University who thinks himself too poor to kidnap ("I owe $20,000 in student loans," he informs curious rebels) gets abducted. After the horror subsides, he first admires his captors for their dedication to the cause, then understands that the revolution has become a business unto itself. He turns his attention and ultimately offers his life to the birds, a batch of critically endangered Purpureicephalus feltisi (crimson-capped parrots). In "Asian Tiger," an American golf pro, dropped into a Myanmar war zone to design a course (the generals love golf), turns a longing but resigned eye to the life of the local monks. Filled with smuggling, kidnappings, and crooked politics, Brief Encounters brings both a clear eye and a sense of the absurd to deal-making in the Third World.
Wed., Sept. 13, 7 p.m.
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.'"