When the ancient Polynesians invented surfing, they often used a paddle to help them navigate. Fast-forward a few millennia, and Stand-Up Paddleboarding, or SUP, finds itself trendy again. Part of its increasing popularity is that standing upright allows surfers to spot waves more easily and thus catch more of them, multiplying the fun factor. Paddling back to the wave becomes less of a strain as well. The ability to cruise along on flat inland water, surveying the sights, is another advantage. Finally, its a good core workout. If youre sold on the idea, schedule an intro SUP lesson, free with board and paddle rental, and you may find yourself riding the waves like a Polynesian king.More
In the past 30 years, light artists have reimagined an art form that has always had the ability to turn the night sky, or a simple window, into luminescence. Last fall, the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts turned its southern glass wall into a parade of sound-sensing lights, Lightswarm, that changes with the movements of nearby people and things. Future Cities Lab, the San Francisco design company behind Lightswarm, has originated another notable light sculpture. Located by the YBCA's steps at 701 Mission, Murmur Wall will light up in arresting ways as it incorporates local trending search engine results and social media postings. Onlookers can offer their own contributions, which will feed into the Murmur Wall's data stream and light up the sculpture. What's trending in San Francisco? If you're walking by the YBCA, you can see firsthand — at least through light patterns that reflect the city's volatile internet habits.
Murmur Wall debuts Thursday at 6 p.m. and continues through May 31, 2017, at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 701 Mission St., S.F. Free; 415-978-2700 or ybca.org. More
Calling all Warren Oates fans: A tough-minded tribute to the late, great character actor unspools tonight as part of Not Necessarily Noir 3, Elliot Lavine’s latest compilation of grittily shot, morally ambiguous and unapologetically brutal films from the last half century. Oates, who died of a heart attack three months shy of his 53rd birthday, reeks of whiskey-breath authenticity as the greedy, sorry bastard who takes on the titular errand of Sam Peckinpah’s blood-spattered Mexican standoff, Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia (1974). That same year, Oates delivered a more interior and equally revelatory performance as a relentless Georgia competitor in Cockfighter, outlaw director Monte Hellman’s lived-in portrait of the illegal sport-and-betting circuit. Oates, Peckinpah, and Hellman weren’t afraid to show us that the world is not a pretty place, and people aren’t always smart, or loyal, or honest. Not Necessarily Noir runs through the end of the month, because sometimes it takes more than a single double feature to see the picture clearly.
Tue., Oct. 23, 6:15 p.m., 2012