This Saturday (March 20) will mark the seventh anniversary of the Iraq war and local groups are mobilizing for another round of protests to oppose the occupation of Iraq and the expansion of the war into Afghanistan. But this year's program will also highlight local struggles as well, with speakers delving into the fight for more public education funding and the march passing by two hotels where union workers are in strained negotiations for a new contract.
We loved him when he was creating music under the moniker Boy In Static and I think a few tears may have been shed when Alexander Chen left the Bay and unpacked his instruments in Gothenburg, Sweden. Like anyone who has ever taken residency in that beautiful country, Chen’s creativity has flourished and his new solo project, The Consulate General, is a breath of fresh Nordic air.
Sunshine advocate Kimo Crossman is sometimes counted as a thorn in the side of city government agencies due to his tendency to pepper them with public-records requests. But in the last couple days, he earned a gold star from the San Francisco Assessor-Recorder for pointing out that when Morgan Stanley walked away from five high-profile San Francisco properties, it neglected to pay a transfer tax. Thanks to an email from the ever-inquisitive Crossman, the assessor-recorder was able to collect roughly $3.5 million and feed it to the city’s ailing General Fund. Read more »
State Sen. Leland Yee has asked the Alameda County district attorney to drop all charges against reporters who were arrested while covering the protests over education cuts. In a March 8 letter to D.A. Nancy O'Malley, Yee noted that "at least two of the individuals arrested were journalists covering a legitimate news story."
That adds to the pressure on O'Malley not to press charges against reporters. But we're still waiting to hear from the D.A.'s office.Read more »
Efforts to encourage car-sharing and ways of getting around that don’t involve owning a car would be undermined by Proposition 17, a June ballot measure that I wrote about in this week’s cover story. While I didn’t mention that impact in the story, it is of real concern to people like me who don’t own cars and encourage others to try the car-free lifestyle on for size.Read more »
The San Francisco City Planning Commission will be voting March 18th on a proposal to build luxury condos next to the Transamerica building. The developers are two out-of-town outfits that support Republican candidates. And therein lies an interesting tale.Read more »
The Professional Robert B. Parker Penguin Books, 289 pages, $26.99
I just read the last Spenser novel, ever.
That’s a hard sentence to write. Spenser’s been around a long time, and I’ve read all 37 of Robert B. Parker’s classic tough-guy detective books, and even though they all have the same characters, similar plots, similar dialogue and similar themes, they’re all good. Every last one of them. Read more »
San Francisco's Josh Alper and Glenn Donaldson lightly place these love songs within comic frameworks. The opening track describes a shy, lovelorn music fan too shy to twist and shout, peppering the scenario with observations such as, "He's worn his pants like that / For a very long time." It also mentions a Buggles record, but Television Personalities and Guided By Voices are better reference points to the Art Museums' sound. In their world, a sculpture garden is a good place to discuss cinema. Read more »
The Bay Guardian’s lawsuit against SF Weekly and its parent company took a dramatic turn this week when a banking syndicate announced that Village Voice Media has defaulted on its $77 million loan.Read more »
Just in time for the sun's critically acclaimed debut, the Internets has once again plotted to increase our digital dependence. Google Maps now has a bicycling option!
If you're a biker in San Francisco or Oakland, you don't need me to tell you that you gotta pick your routes around these cities. One false move and you're falling into the ruts of MUNI train tracks or on a freeway on-ramp (don't laugh, it happens... to me). But no longer, or at least less often, will you have to deal with these small catastrophes.
Early this month, San Francisco Police Chief George Gascon explained to the Guardian his rationale for a proposed sit / lie ordinance, which would make it illegal to sit down or lie down on San Francisco sidewalks. “We’re responding to quite frankly what is a tremendous groundswell of pressure from residents and business people about very aberrant, aggressive behavior,” he said. “We don’t have an existing tool to deal with that behavior,” in the form of other city ordinances, he said.
The proposal has been discussed officially during public hearings at the San Francisco Police Commission, the Board of Supervisors Public Safety Committee, and in a series of editorials at local media outlets. It’s shaping up to be quite controversial.
And if an upcoming event sparked by the debate surrounding sit-lie is any indication, there is a “tremendous groundswell of pressure” on the other side of the coin, too. A group of organizers who recently created a Facebook group called “San Francisco Stands Against Sit-Lie” are also the architects behind a daylong event to be staged on city sidewalks called “Sidewalks are for People!” The event will be held March 27, on “A San Francisco Sidewalk Near You,” according to the event announcement. Read more »
Legislation designed to help pot smokers instead had many of them going all like, “Dude, what the fuck?!?!” But the author is now telling everyone to chill out, no problem, he’s got it under control. Read more »
San Francisco has always had a liberal streak, but not so its business community, as a current exhibit highlights. In 1963 and ‘64, San Francisco was hit with massive demonstrations that denounced businesses’ discriminatory hiring practices and demanded equal work opportunity for African-Americans. Crowds picketed on Auto Row, in front of Mel’s Drive-In, Lucky Store, the Sheraton Palace Hotel, and Bank of America.
The Main Library exhibit “Occupation! Economic Justice as a Civil Right in San Francisco, 1963-64” retraces a struggle for economic justice that was specific to the city by the Bay, where thousands of African-Americans had moved to during World War II to work on the shipyards. When the war effort wound down, they were the first to be fired. Only direct actions—sit-ins, sleep-ins, and shop-ins—were able to shake the status quo: they led to more than 260 employment agreements for minority workers. There’s only a few days left to discover this important yet underrepresented piece of SF history: the display ends on March 27. Read more »
The perfect wardrobe is a collection of vintage beauties and trendy new things, but shopping in this form takes devotion. Thrashing through thrift stores may not be your style and consignment shops often have a tendency to overwhelm with rack after rack of fashion-flops. Alas, Collage Clothing and its queen bee Erica Skone-Rees are making your life easier. Read more »