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Culture, The Exhibitionist The Sweet Spot: Monogamy as "Biological Imperative"? Think Again

The Sweet Spot: Monogamy as "Biological Imperative"? Think Again

"Boys fix things. Girls need things fixed." So wrote New Yorker satirist Whitney Darrow in a children's book in 1970. Many would scoff at that statement, but the idea that supports it is still alive and well in the…
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News, The Snitch Global Day of Protest in San Francisco (Slideshow)

Global Day of Protest in San Francisco (Slideshow)

For the last four weeks, Occupy Wall Street has stirred the American conscious with its we-hate-big-banks protests, which has spread to San Francisco and cities across the nation. But on Saturday, the unrest over the financial disparity went global, with…
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Film, <i>Angels & Demons</i> has a need for speed

Angels & Demons has a need for speed

At the tail end of The Da Vinci Code, having traipsed around scenic Paris and London for more than two hours to find out whether the Holy Grail was just an old cup or the womanly seed of Jesus and…
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Culture, Stagecap


If you read the newspapers with a discerning eye, you'll get the strong sense that we'll be at war with Iran in the very near future. If you are like the vast majority of our nation's populace (myself included), you…
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Film, Mel Gibson Is Responsible for All the Wars in the World

Mel Gibson Is Responsible for All the Wars in the World

Apocalypto has a faux Greek title and an opening quote from historian Will Durant that ruminates on the decline of imperial Rome. It may seem an odd way to comment on the supposed end of an imaginary, unspeakably barbaric Mayan…
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Culture, Stagecap

Nero (Another Golden Rome)

Early in the second act, when it's clear everything in Rome is going to hell, actor Andrew Hurteau (as Nero's charismatic narrator, Boccaccio) states that "even the gravest devastation ... can be turned by the leader of the nation under…
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Film, Cross-Purposes


As if thousands of half-empty collection plates and scores of sparsely inhabited seminaries were not reminder enough that the Catholic Church is in big trouble these days, the faithful must also contend with a new generation of journalists and filmmakers…
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Best of San Francisco, Food & Drink

Best Thin-Crust Pizza

Best Thin-Crust Pizza The East Coast expats among us often have a difficult time finding great pizza in San Francisco, especially the New York-style thin-and-crispy-crust variety. But since 1989, the Mission District's Arinell has filled that void admirably. Its owner,…
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Music, BeatBox


From his home base in Rome, the dashing DJ/producer Nicola Conte has bridged the world of jazz for enthusiasts of electronic music to safely cross over. But far from the aimless noodling that some might expect, Conte's jazz view is…
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Culture, Stage We Petty Men

We Petty Men

Last weekend the writer Mark Hertsgaard came to the Bruns Memorial Amphitheater for a post-show discussion on what Julius Caesar and current American politics might have in common. I didn't go, but putting Caesar on this month certainly raises the…
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Best of San Francisco, Food & Drink

Best Gnocchi

Anyone who's ever attempted to make gnocchi, the tiny Italian dumplings that have been eaten and enjoyed since the days of Imperial Rome, knows how easy it is to end up with something resembling small pellets of lumpy concrete. This…
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Best of San Francisco, Food & Drink

Best Street Food

The blithe, no-frills pleasure of scarfing a snack from a street-corner restaurateur is undeniable, but compared to what's available in Rome, Saigon, or Manhattan, our local opportunities for sidewalk noshing are severely limited. Fortunately, the Ferry Plaza Farmers' Market has…
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News, Night Crawler A Twelfth Night Tradition

A Twelfth Night Tradition

In South Philadelphia, it is a New Year's Eve tradition to shoot guns in the air at the stroke of midnight. The custom, I'm told, began with muskets that were fired 300 years ago by Swedish immigrants wearing clown suits,…
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Dining, Eat The Times They Are  A-Changin'

The Times They Are A-Changin'

A great city is by definition a great restaurant town as well: You can't have one without the other. A great restaurant town is a global crossroads packed with eclectically ravenous people passionate enough about the care and feeding of…
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Film, Good Grief

Good Grief

Victor Hugo called grief "a divine and terrible radiance which transfigures the wretched," and anyone who has ever found himself touching the sleeve of his father's favorite jacket on the day after his funeral, or gazing at the toy-strewn floor…
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Film, Vittorio Victorious

Vittorio Victorious

Over the last half-century, countless filmmakers great and obscure have stood in serious debt to The Bicycle Thief. But, for my money, no one has borrowed so cleverly or shifted the weight of Vittorio De Sica's 1948 masterpiece so gracefully…
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Dining, Social Grace

The Naked Truth

Dear Social Grace, I have a situation that I wonder if the "when in Rome" rule applies to. It was mentioned several times recently by friends, when we went to a nude beach and I preferred to leave my bathing…
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Culture, Stuff He Scores

He Scores

Ennio Morricone can tell you stories about each of his 400 children--where they were conceived, what they mean to him, why each one remains so singular and special he cannot and will not choose a favorite. He's proud even of…
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News, Dog Bites

Dog Bites

Bidding While Rome Burns Remember when your high school, desperate to raise morale on days on which the poorly ranked football team had a game, would declare Hawaiian Shirt Day? It worked really well, didn't it? So well that the…
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Dining, Social Grace

Help for As*holes

Dear Social Grace, At a bar recently, I came across a group of acquaintances. While speaking to them, I made a dumb joke about a certain group of people -- and then proceeded to make many stupid comments about said…
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