Tales of the City

The theme of Porchlight’s all-star fancytown gala is “Urban Legends.” The storytelling series is famous for including nobodies in its stage show, but it has not included any nobodies tonight. Instead, “Library Laureates” has an amazing lineup, featuring Wilkes Bashford (pal of Willie Brown = got the goods); Frank Portman, the unfairly talented, funny, and accomplished punk musician and author; and Greil Marcus, who is famous. Just one problem, here, Porchlight. We’re glad all the storytellers here are notable people of the city, i.e., “urban legends” themselves, and it’s cool that “urban legends” also describes stories about the metropolitan area. Nice wordplay there. However, the term “urban legends” also refers to lies, Porchlight. You know, stuff that isn’t true? “Pop Rocks and Coke make your stomach explode”? Are you telling us that the stories we so love to hear from your many excellent performers, year after year, might … not be true? No, no, no! Is this an out-of-hand Oscar Wilde reference? (See “The Decay of Lying.”) But we must have misunderstood the joke, because we’re sure Litquake cofounder Jack Boulware, also reading tonight, would never lie to us. Why, just the other night he prefaced a reading by saying, “I really wish this story were not true. But it is.” He then told a story so disgusting everyone was afraid of barfing. Someone did barf. Unless we’re lying. Did we mention it’s also a hosted bar and dinner?
Fri., April 16, 7:30 p.m., 2010

 
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