Dog Bites

Fangxaminer rollout; Anarchy in the U.S.A.

Not everyone was quite as, uh, optimistic. "It's a disgrace," said one enraged man, who identified himself as a photojournalist. "It should be taken off the streets. It's worse than the Independent. They should pay the public -- they should give them a quarter to buy it."

Of course, we reflected, considering that Hearst gave the Fangs $66 million to buy the paper in the first place, that's really not such a far-fetched idea. Spread the money around! Heaven knows, it's not being spent on Guild-level salaries! We forked over for a copy of Martha Stewart Living and were about to break for a brioche au sucre when another patron approached the cash register. What did she think of the Fangxaminer?

Surprise, surprise: She hadn't looked at it yet. "But I'll go check it out," she volunteered helpfully. We trailed her to the newsrack. "It's kind of ... lame," she said, after a few moments of silent, aghast contemplation.

Still, there have been some kind words for the Fangxaminer: "We've long needed a good high school newspaper," said one Dog Bites confidante, "and now we have one."

Anarchy in the U.S.A.

OK, George W. Bush has announced he's putting his transition team into place, but naturally enough not everyone has quite so much confidence that the outcome of the election is truly finalized. Even after three weeks of not knowing who the next president will be, though, things seem to be rolling on about the same as ever -- the garbage is being collected with the usual undue racket; schools appear to be in session, though we're not an expert there; and we just saw the police pull someone over for running a light at Seventh and Brannan. Constitutional crisis or no constitutional crisis, the business of the nation is business as usual.

So in a bizarre kind of way, isn't this the ultimate vindication of everything anarchists have been saying all this time? "I guess I can't speak for the anarchist world in general" -- hey, isn't that the point? -- "but it sounds like you've got a perfectly clear view of it," says Craig Gilmore, of San Francisco anarchist publishing collective AK Press.

Doing without a president probably wasn't quite what Bush meant when he talked about the need for smaller government, but Gilmore is predicting full-on, well, anarchy. "I'm waiting for the crisis of legitimacy to send more people into the streets," he says. "I'm looking to the nursing homes of Miami Beach."

Meanwhile, Obsessing Some More

This week's Fangxaminer motto, "Keeping San Francisco a Two Newspaper Town" -- oh, those civic-minded Fangs! -- fairly begs the question, "Yes, but for how long?"

At the same time, we note that a number of people have been wonder- ing why the new paper insists on rendering the date as, "Wednesday: 00.11.29," and so on. "Are they trying to be European or something?" asks reader Tom Jamgochian.

"It looks goofy," commented one of our friends.

OK, the date may be goofy-looking, but it gave Dog Bites an idea. We think the Fangxaminer could use a similar format for a front-page feature most San Franciscans would find far more entertaining than anything else the F-Ex could ever print: a countdown from, say, $66 million -- all the way to zero.

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