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
While winless on the field of play, USF rugby has redefined the term "game face."
On August 29, 1977, Cleveland Indians second baseman Duane Kuiper swatted a home run -- his only homer in an 11-year-career comprising 3,379 at-bats. The pitcher: Steve Stone.
And, on March 7, 2009, the University of San Francisco rugby team fell, 27-12, to San Jose State. That USF lost wasn't news -- the team is now 0-5. But for SJSU, the victory snapped a Washington Generals-like sojourn of ineptitude; it was the Spartans' first win in five years.
USF rugby , Steve Stone, Steve Stone, USF rugby.
"It was a surprise. It was a big shock to us -- since I've been playing, we haven't lost to them," said Vincent Nunez, a prop on the USF squad and the rugby club's president. When asked if it was a morose bus ride back from San Jose, he replies that he reckons it was -- though he can't be certain because he hitched a ride with some pals.
(An aside: The young journalist covering this historic match for San Jose State's student newspaper actually used the term "like a finely tuned machine" to describe the Spartans' dismantling of USF. Needling a student sportswriter -- especially one relegated to covering the games of a team that last won when he was likely too young to drive a car -- is bad form, but we will say this: The terms "like a finely tuned machine" and "five-year losing streak" do not harmonize. And, in general, avoid cliches).
Nunez acknowledges that it's a "rebuilding year" for the Defenders, though "building" may be a more apt categorization. Over the past two seasons, the team has only gone 1-6 and 1-5 -- meaning SJSU represented their sole win each year. Still, hope springs eternal on the USF campus -- and with 11 freshman on this year's squad the day may yet arrive that foes like the California Maritime Academy and U.C. Santa Cruz are vanquished with regularity. If you will it, it is no dream.
Who knows? Perhaps the Defenders of the Faith may yet prove the maxim of former Mexican goalkeeper Jorge Campos -- who, in justifying his bizarre sartorial sense, noted "If you look good, you feel good. If you feel good, you play good."
Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left.
"Your humble narrator" was a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly from 2007 to 2015.
He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers.
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.'"