EDITORIAL The rate of violent crime in San Francisco, including murder, is climbing, and it's way past unacceptable. Progressives aren't generally known for their crime-fighting plans, but in this case the left flank of the Board of Supervisors, led by Ross Mirkarimi and Chris Daly, has offered a real, functional plan: an increase in community policing and additional funding for violence-prevention programs. However, Mayor Gavin Newsom and the cops are against that, and they helped knock it down on the June 6 ballot.
So what does the mayor want to do? Read more »
The quality, consistency, and creativity of cocktails in San Francisco (and of the bartenders who mix them) has been improving by leaps and bounds over the past couple of years, unbeknownst to people who actually go to restaurants to eat. When I sit down at a bar and ask for a menu, the last thing I expect to see on it is food. Read more »
It's Saturday morning, 10 a.m., and the sun streaming into your bedroom is driving a wedge into your brain. Someone put little socks on your teeth while you were sleeping. You smell like a distillery. You failed to follow any of the drunken rules when you stumbled home, pantsless, the night before: You didn't drink a big jug of water and take two ibuprofen, and you didn't make yourself a fried egg sandwich. (You know about that one, right? Read more »
If you were born in Algeria, of Jewish and Berber descent, and had a penchant for classical Indian raga, you might be as disinclined to align yourself with any one school of thought or music as genre-blending DJ Cheb i Sabbah is. Equally at home in Morocco, France, India, and San Francisco, he has been skillfully infusing traditional South Asian, Arabic, and North African melodies with modern electronic beats in the Lower Haight since 1990, first at Nickie's BBQ and now every Wednesday night at Underground SF. Read more »
"Half of Americans haven't tried decent beer," says William Brand, the Oakland Tribune's resident beer columnist and local brew expert. Back in the sixth grade, Nebraska native Brand was himself weaned on the likes of Budweiser, Hamm's, and Coors, wan beverages he now refers to as mere "alcohol vehicles" — brewed with rice and corn, cheaply made, and lacking any real taste. "That's not beer," he says, "that's just crap."
Brand encountered his first crap-free beer during a stint in the Navy, when he was stationed near Washington, DC. Read more »
Saudi Arabia is hilarious. Liquor is totally banned, clubbing is seriously frowned upon, and the government can kill you for even glancing at someone in a gay way. Last year more than 100 men there were tortured, publicly flogged, and imprisoned for "dancing and behaving like women" at a wedding. I love our Saudi allies!
Still, you can't stop the party. Earlier this year in Europe I ran into "Ahmed," a young Saudi gay man who works in the capital, Riyadh. I immediately asked him how he manages to hook up in such a place:
"Contrary to beliefs, Riyadh has a big social scene. Read more »
Clubs in Bangkok are always packed with a mixture of Thais and farang, which means honky or honkies, depending on the number of honkies being talked about. Dressed in perfect designer knockoffs, the local people in Thailand almost never look tacky. The tourists, however, almost always do. Read more »
Vikings party, hard. That famous take-no-prisoners vigor applies, big time, when it comes to getting down and conquering pints of good ole bjor (beer by local breweries Viking, natch, Egils, Thule, Spegils, and Litli Jon), the low-alckie malt (brown ale), and lagerol (pale ale). Ducking into Reykjavik's three-floor dance palace NASA (slogan: "EXPECT HANGOVERS!"), I didn't glimpse too many elfin Icelanders sucking down the native caraway schnapps, brennivin, also known locally as svartidauoi ("black death" — sch-weet). Read more »
"Jozi has an unlawful attitude that ignites your vice," says my friend Gennaro, a 25-year-old gay South African native and nightlife fiend. "Whatever your flavor, it can be found somewhere between the sprawling inner-city architecture and the rejuvenated urban oases. The streets are adorned with a mesmeric melting pot of cosmopolitan socialites."
Yes, he really talks like that. Read more »
TECHSPLOITATION I've been sorely disappointed by feminists' responses to genetic engineering. Like many life sciences, genetic engineering has its dark side — but that's no excuse for groups like Gene Watch to claim that the feminist position on genetic engineering should be "just say no." Why the hell shouldn't feminists seize the means of reproduction and turn them to our own best interests? Read more »