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
Marilyn Pittman came from what she considered a normal Midwestern family. Her parents had been married 50 years. Her dad was a World War II veteran, and her mom was a poet who’d edited her college yearbook. Pittman had become an educator at UC Berkeley, an NPR talent consultant, and a stand-up comic. Then, in 1997, everything she thought she knew about her family –- and, by extension, herself -– was shattered in 1997 by the murder-suicide of her mom and dad. It’s All the Rage is the one-woman show where Pittman recounts her reaction to her parents’ death and where her questions led her. With the help of her mother’s journals and her father’s letters, she was able to understand how a once-loving relationship gradually deteriorated into patterns of hate and fear. She also discovered that her father’s time in combat had a lot to do with his violent end. Pittman found parallels in veterans returning from today’s wars in the Middle East, in the patters of domestic violence that often involve firearms. Pervasive violence was the common link between her family’s tragedy, the tragedies suffered by others, and war in general.
May 12-13; Thu., May 17; Sat., May 19; May 26-27, 2012