Money talks and bullshit walks, they say, but in Sean Wilsey's memoir, Oh the Glory of It All, there's plenty of both flying around. In this story of the author's coming of age in the highest echelons of San Francisco society, names are named, embarrassments are detailed, and neither the writer nor his beloved mother, Pat Montandon, comes away smelling like a rose. But while they both seem to be hanging tough with the fallout, Sean's stepmother, Dede Wilsey, has threatened to sue the publisher. She claims Glory is libelous to her, but a lot of people seem to disagree, including legal counsel for Penguin, which released the book last week, and the Chronicle, which printed a week's worth of excerpts from the controversial work.
Amid all the huff and fluff, it's important to point out that even for a reader who doesn't give a hot damn about society dames, Glory is fascinating. The story isn't pretty, but the prose is carefully crafted, thoughtful, and honest. It's even (don't choke on your crab Louie, now) sensitive. Hear Wilsey read from Gloryat 7 p.m. at A Clean Well-Lighted Place for Books, 601 Van Ness (at Golden Gate), S.F. Admission is free; call 441-6670 or visit www.bookstore.com.
-- Hiya Swanhuyser
Seeing may be believing, but you can't underestimate the importance of sound. To illustrate this truth, artist Sirpa Jokinen traveled through Moscow, San Francisco, and her hometown of Helsinki and asked locals to take her to their favorite haunts, where she snapped photos and recorded sounds. The resulting multimedia installation, "Places, Sounds, Words," drops the viewer/listener right into these locales -- an S.F. beach or a Moscow city street.
Jokinen got the idea for this senses-awakening project from an old radio program called Taking an Evening Walk With Erkki Toivanen, in which a gentle-voiced narrator visited far-flung places and described them over the radio to an audience of homebound dreamers with perked ears. The opening reception for "Places" starts Friday at 6 p.m. (and the exhibit continues through June 18) at Mission 17, 2111 Mission (at 17th Street), S.F. Admission is free; call 336-2349 or visit www.mission17.com.
-- Karen Macklin
DJs and lesbians and magazines, oh my
It's a little surprising that a smallish corner bar on 19th Street, the Lexington Club, has become a lesbian hot spot for the entire country. But hey, who's complaining? Not glossy magazine Curve, the high-profile publication throwing one of its 15th-anniversary fiestas there. "Curve ... Almost Legal (and ready to drink to that)" may not be the most tasteful event title, but for a celebration of a mag championing the friendly neighborhood dyke for all these years, we can look past it.
Raffles, door prizes, and DJs including Page Hodel, Jen Selekt, and Mike Needles start at 8 p.m. at the Lexington Club, 3464 19th St. (at Valencia), S.F. Admission is free; call 863-2052 or visit www.curvemag.com.
-- Hiya Swanhuyser
It's not every day that a slew of lawyers parades around in tighty-whities. But that's what's expected at the AIDS Legal Referral Panel benefit "The Legal Briefs II: An Underwear Fashion Show and Extravaganza." The nearly nude event unravels at 5:30 p.m. at the San Francisco LGBT Community Center, 1800 Market (at Octavia), S.F. Admission is $25-30; call 701-1200 or visit www.alrp.org.
-- Karen Macklin
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