Archive for May, 2008

I ♥ cunnilingus

Photo from Sunday’s Bay to Breakers by Steve Rhodes — someone put a banner reading “I ♥ cunnilingus” in the hand of one of the statues on the Music Concourse. Anyone have photos of the people who carried it in the race?

I heart cunnilingus, photo by Steve Rhodes

Breaking: Fires in Santa Cruz

Today’s high winds are contributing to the out of control fires in the Santa Cruz Mountains, which were reported early this morning at 5:30am. It is reported to be about 10 miles west of Gilroy, and the 35 northwesterly winds are pushing it along.

Area schools are closed, and homes have been evacuated.

Our thoughts are with the homes and families affected by the fires, and hope for the fires to be extinguished with as little loss as possible. There is currently no estimate when the fire will be under control.

Update 5:00pm: Still no containment. Over 3,000 acres have burned, but luckily no injuries reported.

Update 11:00pm: 15% containment, weaker winds tomorrow show hope for keeping the fire under control. For the most recent updates, see the update page on the CAL FIRE website.

Hardly Strictly Bluegrass 8

Who says you can’t get anything for free?

Okay, so it’s not free for Warren Hellman. But thanks to his pile of money and musical obsession, “Hardly Strictly Bluegrass” is FREE to everyone else in San Francisco and beyond.

On October 27th, 2001, the free “Hardly Strictly Bluegrass” started it’s first year in Golden Gate Park.
The dates for it’s 8th year will be October 3rd-5th, 2008. It’s anticipated to have nearly 70 acts and approximately 100,000 spectators… all for free.

When I arrived in San Francisco 8 years ago, I sought out a variety of events to get to know my new home. Normally, I wouldn’t imagine myself going to something “Bluegrass”-related. (Let’s just say “Slayer” is one of my favorite bands.) But, I was in the park, it was a nice day, and there was some free music. A few hours later, I was surprised to say it was a great day and I found I actually liked Bluegrass!

The same time in 2002 , I received a call from a former co-worker from Boston, then living in LA. He was coming up to this brand-new festival to see Gillian Welch. So, I headed out to the festival intentionally this time.

As the new line-up for number 8 was announced recently, I realized I had gone every year since it’s birth. In that time, a lot has changed, my first ‘Bluegrass’ companion went back to Boston. In the past 8 years, my family has grown and now my husband and chihuahua come to the festival with me. And I actually have a few Gillian Welch albums in my iPod now!

A sunny day in the park broadened my musical horizons forever. And this year, the sunny day in the park is meeting me half-way, featuring one of my long-time favorites.

After a collaborative album with Alison Krauss came out late last year, I’d been crossing my fingers… and my wish has come true!

Robert Plant is playing at Hardly Strictly Bluegrass 8!

Below is a partial list of performers.

It’s going to be a great year!

Robert Plant & Alison Krauss feat. T-Bone Burnett
Loudon Wainwright III
Gogol Bordello
Hazel Dickens
Bonnie Prince Billie
Asleep at the Wheel
Mike Farris & The Roseland Rythm Revue
The Del McCoury Band
Bad Livers
Robert Earl Keen
Iris Dement
Jerry Jeff Walker
The Desert Rose Band
Earl Scruggs
Greg Brown

Breaking: Golden Gate Bridge shut by crash

The Golden Gate Bridge was closed in both directions following a head-on crash that happened around 3:15 pm.

Update 5:05 pm: Lanes have just reopened. Nevertheless: Check traffic conditions before heading that way.

Following the jump, the gory details.

Read more…

Not that kind of crystal

indy_crystal.gifThe historic Castro Theater, which for decades has shown a mix of film festival fare, rep-house classics and prestigious European and Asian works, will step out of the past and show a summer blockbuster.

Judging from the widely-disseminated publicity photo (left), the film “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” has something to do with a rugged older man initiating a pretty young boy in a leather jacket into the mysteries of a deep, dark hole, making it perfect for the Castro.

The film opens tomorrow, Thursday, May 22.

Brisbane approves new biotech site

Map of location of Brisbane biotech campusThe city council of Brisbane, the small town just south of San Francisco along U.S. 101, last night approved a new biotech campus in the Sierra Point buisness center east of the freeway.

The site is coincidentally right across the freeway from yesterday’s wildfire and is located on landfill. Click the map thumbnail for a full-size map.

Is SF a “Sparkling City”?

Sparkling Cities
[yellow tail] wines conducted a survey to find out what cities in America are the most “Sparkling”. Survey respondents were asked to think of a place that is Sparkling – a place that is vibrant and makes them feel alive the moment they arrive – and then rank how top U.S. cities might make them feel on a scale of 1-10. San Francisco was chosen by 62 percent of Americans… which puts our fine city in the top ten!

The top 10 nominees were ranked by the highest percentage of respondents as being “sparkling” cities, according to a survey of 900 adults ages 21 and older. Most of the survey respondents said that what makes a city sparkle is “breathtaking scenery” and “great night life” and unique food.

Now it’s up to online voters to determine the winner! You can vote for the top Sparkling City on the [yellow tail] website. Voting is open until June 15th.

“The inaugural Search for America’s Most Sparkling City is designed to uncover the most animated, brilliant, lively and vivacious city in the United States,” said Mark Lyle, vice president of marketing for [yellow tail] wines. “We thought honoring the cities across the United States that make Americans feel the most ‘switched on’ would be a fun way to remind them to ‘always sparkle.’”

The winner will be revealed during an event in the winning city the week of July 4.

Michael Chabon Readings in Town

Yiddish Policemen's Cover

Tonight and tomorrow, local genius Michael Chabon will read from his new book The Yiddish Policemen’s Union at two of my favorite small bookstores. The first appearance, tonight at 7:00 PM, will be at the charming Bookshop West Portal; the second, tomorrow at 12:30, will be at Stacey’s. I’ll be heading to this latter event; maybe once others have satisfied their curiosity about the novel, I’ll lob a couple questions at him about his other new book, Maps and Legends. It’s the one I’ve (partly) read, what can I say?

Fire on Mt. San Bruno

A helicopter dumps water on a brush fire on Mount San Bruno, just south of Brisbane, Calif., as traffic continues passing on Hwy. U.S. 101 today, 20 May 2008

A brush file driven by gusty winds burned several acres on the eastern shoulder of Mt. San Bruno, between Brisbane and South San Francisco. When I came down the freeway from San Francisco about 11:30 a.m. I could see thick brown smoke boiling from the mountainside, which is covered in dry grass and brush with small oak trees. The flames were about a hundred yards away from the southern-most house in Brisbane, a two-story house that overlooks US 101.

3:15 pm — From what I can see of the southern part of the burned area, the fire has been contained. About 30 firefighters are on the mountainside mopping up. The afternoon fog is coming in over the ridge and the winds are blowing harder than ever. Good thing they finished those water drops before the fog came in.

1:30 pm — Firefighters have extinguished the flames on the southern edge of the fire and the crew that did the job got into a helicopter and flew off. Meanwhile firefighters have dragged hose up the side of the mountain from Old Bayshore Rd. and are working on the edge of the fire closest to the road.

More, and a map, after the jump

Rapid Restaurant Review: Cyrus

The second installment of Rapid Restaurant Reviews takes us to the North Country, all the way up in Healdsburg in the Russian River Valley.

Cyrus sits mere steps from Healdsburg Square which itself is mere minutes from dozens of wineries and tasting rooms. And what better way to end a long afternoon of tasting (and spitting, of course) wine than to sit down with an eight-course tasting menu with accompanying wine flight?

To the questions, then…


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