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
San Francisco Film Society held their Film Society Awards Night at Bimbo's on Tuesday, May 7th. Harrison Ford was in attendance accepting the 2013 Peter J. Owens Award. Photographs by Josh Edelson for SF Weekly.
Author Lyman Frank Baum claimed The Wonderful Wizard of Oz was simply a modernized fairy tale for children but, even in 1900, the story resonated deeply with American adults. In Oz, the heroes traits were self-reliance, ingenuity, optimism, and gumption; pseudo-intellectualism and greed withered in the face of good friends and homespun know-how. This American dream translated into a wildly popular stage production and at least nine silent movies before MGM stunned the world with a Technicolor Emerald City. The Wizard of Oz later became the most watched film in history (32 years of annual network broadcasts will do that). Yet surprisingly little has been written about Oz or the real man behind the curtain, and the little that did should be largely dismissed: Dorothys red slippers did not represent her first steps into sexual maturity MGM just wanted to be flashy. In fact, the slippers in Baums story were silver, which led to another theory, posited in 1964 by an academic who saw Oz as a populist allegory in which the gold standard was fraught with menace. In his new book Finding Oz: How L. Frank Baum Discovered the Great American Story, journalist Evan I. Schwartz lovingly debunks these notions while unearthing the true origins of Oz in Baums life, and he does it without leaching the magic out of flying monkeys. At a reading and screening of Finding Oz and The Wizard of Oz, Schwartz introduces his book and some of his ideas, such as how the witches were based on his mother-in-law and then segues into the 1939 classic.
Thu., April 9, 7:15 p.m.; Sat., April 11, 2:15 p.m., 2009