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
When the voice of Tyson Beckford penetrates your head and tells you to enter a dangerous animal's zoo cage, things have become interesting
There's a fine line between bizarre and transcendentally bizarre, and the just-concluded court trial of Kenneth Herron blazed over it. Herron is the man who, for astounding reasons the public only discovered this week, entered the San Francisco Zoo's Grizzly Bear Grotto in September.
The bar for amazing legal theater shouldn't have been difficult to clear in a case involving a homeless man with a history of mental illness entering a zoo enclosure. And yet, the Herron trial vaulted into the stratosphere on Tuesday, when the District Attorneys prosecuting the case listened, open-mouthed, as an expert witness for the defense calmly explained that Herron breached the vicious animals' lair because the voice of actor and male model Tyson Beckford penetrated his skull and ordered him to save a damsel in distress at the zoo.
"That was so incredibly strange and we were as surprised as anybody," said Brian Buckelew, an Assistant District Attorney and spokesman for the office. "We weren't privy to the psychiatric reports about how Tyson Beckford told him to go into that grotto until it came out on the stand."
But wait -- it gets better! Did you know that after your lawyer convinces a jury that you're not guilty of unlawfully disturbing a wild and dangerous animal because you've got the voice of Tyson Beckford in your head that you just walk out of the courtroom, scot-free? There's no supervised release, no mandatory mental health counseling (let alone custody) and no reason Tyson Beckford's disembodied voice can't tell you to kick the bailiff in the crotch, too.
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Herron, however, didn't skip merrily out of the building, as he was wanted for other criminal allegations elsewhere, and will be turned over to authorities in either Sacramento or Union City.
Meanwhile, one day before Herron beat the bear-baiting charge, Judge Wallace Douglass ruled that, in evading an electric fence, scaling another barricade, and leaping over a moat Pitfall Harry-style, Herron was not "trespassing." Sound crazy? You bet it does -- and when we placed a call to legal expert Profesor Bob Talbot of USF, he was shocked too. Then he perused the relevant law, and he was really shocked:
While, in the popular mindset, trespassing is akin to "kids, stay off
my lawn!" the definition of "criminal trespassing" is far stricter. As
Herron's attorney, deputy public defender James Conger, convinced the
judge, it requires not just wandering onto someone else's property but
following that breach up with occupation. Talbot cited a 1967 case,
People vs. Wilkinson, as establishing this precedent -- "It essentially
says that the purpose of the statute is to prevent squatting, and
applies to continuous possession and permanency." ... "Holy mackerel," Talbot told SF Weekly. "You can go into a bear place, spend the night, and not violate any laws."
Confused as well...
By this rationale both Talbot and Buckelew agreed that, if you wanted to get from, say, Vicente Street to Wawona but were too lazy to go around the block, and you cut through everyone's backyard, you wouldn't be "trespassing." You can tell that to all the people who shout at you -- and the cops, when they invariably show up. Good luck with that. But that's the law, and the judge tossed the charge.
"Never in my life have I seen a case like this," said Talbot. "It's a strange case."
And he said that before the whole Tyson Beckford thing. Photo of Tyson Beckford | Jesse Gross
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.'"