Archive for January, 2010

You Ought to Go See Swan Lake This Weekend at the San Francisco Ballet

Friday, January 29th, 2010

There are just four more shows left of this run of Swan Lake at our fantastic San Francisco Ballet. A lot of the sections are sold out, but you can still get a pair of ticks for the Saturday night showing for less than a hundred bones.

Becca Hirschman saw the show a few days back – she has all the deets if you’re undecided.

Act II is mesmerizing, with 30+ swans cavorting about. I mean, how many ballerinas does San Francisco have?

Myself, I loved Acts II, III, and IV – I was a little too far away to see all the details they threw into the first act.

And the sets are huge

All in all, it’s a great production.

See you there!

Death Throes of Partying Poleng Lounge – State College, PA Comes to NOPA

Friday, January 29th, 2010

Sleepy Fulton Street betwixt Masonic and Central has been looking like something like State College, PA, where college kids from the country’s number one party school hang out ’til all hours. It all has to do with the final days of the Poleng Lounge (located in the place that used to house Storyville).

Last night almost looked like SoMA:

Last night’s shindig:

“Let’s get together to celebrate the death and destruction of the things that we love, and cope in the best way possible: By getting trashed and making terrible life choices… like dancing topless, and sleeping with 18-year-old filipino chicks from Daly City.

There will be $5 Jungle Juice that is like 3 drinks shrunk down to one drink that tastes like skittles. There will be $3 drafts. There will be lots and lots of whiskey.

THIS EVENT IS 18+!!! Bring your little sister, that hair-scene kid you made out with once at Blow Up, the skater kids you see at Delirium and house parties, and ONLY at Delirium and house parties”

Party on, Poleng Lounge.

Senator Leland Yee Wants Same-Day Registration for California Voters

Friday, January 29th, 2010

Our Senator Leland Yee, Ph.D. doesn’t want you to be required to register a way ahead of election day. So, he’ll soon have a bill that would let you be able to go to the polls, register tout de suite and then vote. Easy peasy, right?

Dr. Yee plans to officially introduce the bill in the next two weeks, with the first hearing likely in March.

Senator Yee speaking this morning at San Francisco’s State Building, with San Mateo County Elections Manager David Tom, San Mateo County Supervisor Rich Gordon, and San Mateo County Chief Elections Officer / Assessor-County Clerk-Recorder Warren Slocum:

All the deets, after the jump.

Hundreds of Coptic Christians Rally in San Francisco for Religious Freedom in Egypt

Friday, January 29th, 2010

This was the scene today in Civic Center, where hundreds of Coptic Christians rallied for religious freedom and an end to the recent violence in Egypt.

Details at 40 Going  On 28.

Jerry Brown Throws Down: Dinging Gavin Newsom Over “Fire in His Belly”

Friday, January 29th, 2010

Our feisty AG Jerry Brown has been dishing it out on KGO 810 AM lately – check for yourself at CapitolALERT for the latest

Here’s San Francsico Mayor Gavin Newsom on the Ron Owens show a few days back:

“Jerry Brown understands how to navigate, but I wonder if there’s fire in his belly. I don’t get a sense that there’s fire in his belly and we need someone with fire in his belly…”

And here’s Jerry’s response from yesterday:

He’s been giving a lot of advice to the president and now me, and I’m sure there’ll be others because when you don’t have a lot to do, you can start checking out what other people have been doing.”

(KGO appears to be a hotbed of belly-fire allegations. Here’s one from 2003 that didn’t pan out.)

Is Jerry anticipating a “$150 million assault” on his character from a famous Republican in the near future? Yes.

And does Jerry have a problem with you taking your car to Midas? No, owing to 22 of their California stores being under new management.

Listen to the all of the six, punchy minutes here.

RITZ Fudge-Covered Limited Edition Crackers – DO NOT WANT

Friday, January 29th, 2010

To reiterate, DO NOT WANT.

This is right up there with Domino’s Oreo-heavy Dessert Pizza.

But go get these bland, boring, and completely forgettable snacks if you want, San Francisco. Use them with spinich or crab dip, if you’d like – the Super Bowl’s coming soon, of course. While supplies last…

For a limited time only…

What To Do When Your Toyota’s Gas Pedal Sticks and You’re Going 120 MPH?

Thursday, January 28th, 2010

Well, you’re probably too young to remember, but back in the 1980’s we had this thing where people would buy Audi 5000’s and then they’d press the go pedal when they meant to press the no-go pedal. Drivers were crashing into swimming pools, killing pedestrians – it was carnage. The funny thing was, though, that if you kept your foot on the brake your Audi 5000 wouldn’t go anywhere.

The Canadians (Transport Canada, eh?) looked into it and called these unintended acceleration crashes the result of  “driver error” but the NHSTA came up with the polotocally correct phrase “pedal misapplication.” No matter, it means the same thing. To sum it all up, here are some peoples’ takes on this issue and here’s a different perpective from the Center for Auto Safety*

The point being is that the whole theory that plaintiff’s lawyers initially came up with to explain what was going on was complete garbage. If you want to talk about how best to size and locate the gas and brake pedals for the relatively unskilled, a-driver’s-license-is-my-birthright American driver, well then have at it, but it’s sort of funny how these accidents didn’t happen as much in Honda Civics, which had an almost identical pedal layout. And the upshot is that sales did recover in the U.S., and Audi is back to being the sexy chariot of the yuppie it was back in the ’80s.

Anywho, it’s 2010 and we now have a another entry in the annals of unintended acceleration: the 2010 Toyota Vehicle Recalls. Floormats and the gas pedal setup both appear to be part of the problems.

Toyota’s tip on how to operate your floor mats:

And here’s Toyota’s advice on how to not kill yourself when your sticky throttle sticks wide open, from a time when the floor mats were considered the primary cause of trouble (but it’s still good advice):

First, if it is possible and safe to do so, pull back the floor mat and dislodge it from the accelerator pedal; then pull over and stop the vehicle. 

If the floor mat cannot be dislodged, then firmly and steadily step on the brake pedal with both feet. Do NOT pump the brake pedal repeatedly as this will increase the effort required to slow the vehicle.

Shift the transmission gear selector to the Neutral (N) position and use the brakes to make a controlled stop at the side of the road and turn off the engine.
If unable to put the vehicle in Neutral, turn the engine OFF, or to ACC. This will not cause loss of steering or braking control, but the power assist to these systems will be lost.
-If the vehicle is equipped with an Engine Start/Stop button, firmly and steadily push the button for at least three seconds to turn off the engine. Do NOT tap the Engine Start/Stop button.
-If the vehicle is equipped with a conventional key-ignition, turn the ignition key to the ACC position to turn off the engine. Do NOT remove the key from the ignition as this will lock the steering wheel.

O.K. fine. It still baffles me how a CHP officer who inspected vehicles as a major part of his job couldn’t figure this out when his Lexus loaner sedan’s throttle got stuck full-open. He didn’t know how to navigate the needlessly-complicated shifter into N? The brakes failed? He didn’t know he had to press the ignition off button for three seconds? I mean, I would have thought he could have done those four things done in about ten seconds, but the period of time where the car was out of control was much longer than that.

(Some people say to not try to turn off the engine, but I say go for it. As far as how difficult it is to turn off cars with keyless ignition switches, well, how did you intend to turn off the car at the end of your trip? That’s what you should do when you’re barreling along the highway out of control.)

Could Toyota intall a “brake-to-idle feature” so that when you’re under full throttle and you hit the brakes the car realizes that and closes the throttle no matter what? Yes, it looks like that would end this issue for the most part.  

In the meantime, Government Motors is mocking Toyota over these recent deaths, offering $1000 to Toyota owners who trade-in for a General Motors car. The problem with that, GM, is that Toyota can’t hear your mockery because they’re way up in nosebleed territory on the mountain of cash they’ve managed to accumulate over the years. Nice try tho, GM.  

Somebody could write a book about this, maybe they’ve already started.

Stay safe

*This doesn’t make sense: “…cars with full acceleration take an average of 65 feet to stop.” If you’re saying that cars at freeway speeds with throttles stuck wide open take an average of 65 feet more to stop than similar cars at idle, then you might have something there, CAS.

Tonight: Inner Sunset Town Hall Featuring Gascon, Mirkarimi, and Elsbernd

Thursday, January 28th, 2010

Via the N Judah Chronicles and the Inner Sunset Neighborhood Group comes news of tonght’s Inner Sunset Town Hall:

“The Inner Sunset will have a Town Hall Meeting with Supervisors Sean Elsbernd and Ross Mirkarimi, and SFPD Chief Gascon at 7pm in the County Fair building in Golden Gate Park, located just past the park entrance at 9th and Lincoln.”

The Inner Sunset District: King of All the Sunsets:

Overcast weather and overhead wires – the Inner Sunset has it all:

See you at the meeting tonight.

OMG – See the King Tut Show for FREE at the de Young on February 20-21!

Thursday, January 28th, 2010

It doesn’t get any more mega than this – mark your calendar now for the third weekend in February so that you’ll be sure to see Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs for free courtesy of Target. (Believe it or not, San Francisco County yearns for its very own Tar-ghey – such a store would be packed 24-7, srsly. But anyway…)

There are some rules, of course:

“Tickets will be available on site only, with a limit of four tickets per adult for that day. All tickets are first-come, first-served and timed and dated.”  

On the other hand:

“The permanent collections of the de Young will be free to the public all weekend and free programming will include children’s art making, fortune tellers, tarot card readers, belly and sword dancers and a dj spinning in Wilsey Court, as well as a festival of mummy movies screened from noon to 5 pm in the Koret Auditorium.”

Join the commotion involving the Boy King:

Here’s some king bling – the cobra adjusts your attitude and, after you stop squirming, the vulture finishes you off. This is the view I had at the de Young – it’s behind some glass but you can get super close to it:

Click to expand. Respect.

Look at all the fuss they went to so that you and yours can come to town, park for free (probably, it’s really easy to park for free if you’re willing to walk a little to get to the museum – if you’re stuck in traffic or constantly circling, you’re doing it wrong) and see the show for free.

Lots of painstaking work involved:

Check out all the gritty nitty of this special upcoming weekend after the jump.

See you there!


Fiddler at the Golden Gate is Fantastic – Harvey Fierstein IS the Fiddler on the Roof

Thursday, January 28th, 2010

Actually, Harvey is Tevye the Dairyman, but you know what I mean. Now let’s say that you have $30 – maybe you worked for it, or you just got your unemployment check, or that trust fund came through – it doesn’t matter. I’d have no qualms about directing you to use that dough to go see old-school Fiddler on the Roof  at SHN’s bustling Golden Gate Theatre before the show ships out on February 21st.

Might take you a few moments to adjust to his famous voice, so there you go. No matter, Harvey is hilarious, he raises the roof, he’s the real deal

Our Golden Gate single handedly puts the theatre into the Theatre District. The roomy seats give the big-boned and long-femured of us plenty of kneeroom compared what they have at the nearby Orpheum:

And if you see the show tonight, you’ll also get to see elements of the Westboro Baptist Church in some sort of protest out front as you’re walking in. Bonus.

See you there!

[UPDATE: And now, you can go there two hours before the show to try to get nonresellable $30 rush tickets, which I’m guessing would be for better-than-average seats. Anyway, the deets on that, after the jump.]