GREEN CITY One would hardly even notice there was a beehive in the garden behind the Mission District's Kaliflower Collective, except for the winged traffic shuttling industriously between the four-tiered bee box and the fruit trees flowering just overhead.
It's not easy to imagine, given the scant handful of visible bees, that as many as 50,000 bees might be contained within the modest hive which, at less than two feet square and about three feet tall, looks as innocuous and unthreatening as a stack of closet organizers. Read more »
PREVIEW The places we long to be often have the greatest hold on our imaginations. In Chekhov's The Three Sisters, Olga, Masha, and Irina dream of returning to Moscow, believing it's the only place they can be truly happy. Of course, in Chekhov's version, they never do manage to reach the Promised Land. Their dreams unfulfilled, the sisters eventually must resign themselves to their respective quiet desperations. Read more »
If there's one thing I learned while traveling in Africa, it's that you can never predict the sublime. With little to guide you except your nose and your gut, eating "out" usually means perching on the side of the road in front of an unprepossessing stall and entrusting your appetite's fate to the dish of the day. Luckily it seems there's no end to the possibilities created from a handful of humble ingredients tomatoes, onions, legumes, and yams and the deft talents of a multitude of unsung culinary geniuses. Read more »
GREEN CITY Locavorism the practice of eating only or mostly food raised with a 100-mile distance has been a hot trend the past couple of years. It's a concept that makes a lot of sense even organic food grown hundred or thousands of miles away can hardly be considered sustainable once you figure in the resources used to ship it.
But a committed breed of urban farmers is challenging even the 100-mile definition of local food. Read more »
REVIEW Certain travelogues can be likened to love letters to a destination, though rarely does actual romance play a part in their construction. But when acclaimed postmodern Argentine author Julio Cortázar took to the road with his third wife, Carol Dunlop, it was a journey precipitated by mutual fondness as much as a desire for discovery.
In Autonauts of the Cosmoroute (Archipelago Books, 354 pages, $20) an author best known for his nonsequential opus Hopscotch and collections of surreal short stories approaches the task Read more »
Since 1996 the Goethe-Institut's annual Berlin and Beyond Film Festival has been bringing German-language cinema from Germany, Austria, and Switzerland to the Europhiles of San Francisco. As 2008 marks the festival's 13th year which signals a transition toward maturity in many cultures it's perhaps appropriate that several offerings come from directors who have already brought their first or second films here. Read more »
It's such a cliché to say, "I hate to eat out alone." What's to hate? True, it's different from eating at home in your pajamas with a Scarface DVD for company, but when you're on the go, you're on the go, and there comes a point when grabbing another soggy sandwich at the corner market just won't do. Sometimes you have to sit down, regroup, and eat something hot that doesn't come out of a microwave or a cellophane packet. Peruse the latest Stop Smiling, or, god forbid, meet new people. Read more »
On May 18, 2006, Mayor Gavin Newsom issued Executive Directive 06-02 also referred to as the Biodiesel Initiative ordering the city of San Francisco to switch to a fuel blend that includes at least 20 percent biodiesel in all of its diesel vehicles. The move won environmental plaudits: the National Biodiesel Board cited the plan as being the farthest-reaching proclamation of its kind.
It was the kind of ambitious program that played up the mayor's environmental credentials. Read more »
I can kick your ass. Not euphemistically, not theoretically, but literally. If you were to attack me in a dark alley or anywhere else I could break free, knock you to the ground, and kick you into unconsciousness. I'm five-foot-five, 135 lbs., and not particularly athletic, and I've been in exactly one fistfight in my life, which I won mostly by default (I was eight). Read more »
"If I can't dance, I don't want to be in your revolution" is a club-friendly sentiment traditionally attributed to estimable anarchist Emma Goldman. But even if she didn't put it in quite those words, the message is clear: changing the world doesn't have to be a grim slog. Why struggle at all if it doesn't result in a world we can actually enjoy? That's where these benefit-hosting, rabble-rousing, community-oriented bars, clubs, cultural centers, and performance spaces come in. Read more »