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
The hottest current thing in the world of tapioca drinks, a.k.a. boba tea (or, as Hillary Clinton recently called them when she tried one in New York, "chewy tea") isn't a crazy new flavor or new way to marinate the root starch balls — it's cotton candy!
Sen. Mark Leno, the sole San Francisco legislator to vote in favor of installing Republican Abel Maldonado as the state's next Lieutenant Governor, said he has good reasons for casting his vote the way he did. But he said Maldonado has great reasons for wanting an appointment to statewide office -- namely, that Republican voters would not support a Latino.
"The combination of votes he has passed and how they are received in a Republican primary along with his ethnicity would significantly reduce his viability," says Leno. "I've seen the polls. And Abel has the polls himself -- which is why he so strongly advocated for the open primary."
Maldonado was the one Republican to cross party lines last year and work with Democrats to craft a budget; in return, joked Assemblyman Tom Ammiano, Maldonado demanded "a date with Brad Pitt." One of the conditions of Maldonado's "date" was ballot measure this year to establish open primaries in statewide offices -- which would be politically advantageous for the central coast Republican. "If you describe to a Republican primary voter someone with Abel's profile -- farmer, successful small business person, self-made -- with an Anglo name, he polls very well," continued Leno. "The same profile with Abel's name falls flat."
While the state senate approved Maldonado's appointment, the Assembly yesterday voted 37-35 in his favor -- falling short of the 41-vote majority. While Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said that's good enough for him, Leno and other state Democrats said that's a matter for the courts to decide.
Sen. Leland Yee, Assemblywoman Fiona Ma, and Assemblyman Tom Ammiano voted against Maldonado. Ammiano explained his decision by pointing out that Maldonado's record was "really, really terrible.
"His so-called crossing over the aisle was just a maneuver for self-gain," continued Ammiano. The Assemblyman noted that he did consider approving Maldonado if only to potentially free up his senate seat for a Democratic challenger -- but he thought it was too much of a longshot for the Republicans to lose the seat. In short, "I'm not that partial to Republicans."
Meanwhile, other Democratic sources told SF Weekly that Democratic Party chair John Burton was adamantly against the Maldonado confirmation -- which certainly isn't inconsequential.
Leno, intutively, differed with his colleagues. He thought Maldonado has been sent "a very discouraging message" regarding his ability to cross party lines -- and noted that, if the senate had spurned Maldonado, he'd have been back sitting among them for three more years, with very little impetus to work with Democrats again.
While Ammiano felt placing Maldonado into the Lieutenant Governor position would make him the front-runner come election time, Leno disagreed: "I don't believe there's any threat of Democrats not prevailing this November, even with Abel running as the Republican -- I doubt he could win a Republican primary as the incumbent."
Leno also felt there was a realistic shot to elect a Democratic senator in Maldonado's wake: "It would be a fight, but it would be doable."
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.'"