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
Mozzeria, newcomers to the Outside Lands lineup, will bring their 25-foot trolley, a restored mobile San Francisco cable car with a wood-fired oven, to Bluxome Street Winery for a Pinot, Pizza and Funk party. Local funk favorite Tortoise and the Pimps will perform while guests enjoy a special menu of Neapolitan pizzas and wine pairings! A ticket includes entry, one personal pizza and two glasses of wine; tickets are $40 per person. Limited tickets will be available at the door for $45.More
When day drinkers just could not stop pissing along the train tracks at Dolores Park, where every weekend tons of revelers gather to partake in booze and other inebriants, the city came up with a great idea to make public urination acceptable: install an outdoor urinal.
Jon Sims Center for the Arts, 1519
Mission (between 11th Street and
South Van Ness), S.F.
Through Dec. 15
Admission is $8-15
At the time of this eloquent one-act play, in 1956, Dr. Thomas Dooley was a rising public figure in the United States -- a young, well-decorated Navy lieutenant who had written a book on Vietnam and convinced his country that fighting the rise of Communism there was a worthy and liberal-minded thing to do. (Dooley was "the salesman of what the Communists could do in French Indochina," according to the narrator.) He was also gay. Playwright Harry Cronin imagines what might have happened on the night Dooley was entrapped in a hotel room by his own paranoid Navy superiors. The young lieutenant meets a mysterious, handsome kid in a New York bar, and their conversation in the hotel has all the romance and tension of a 1950s espionage film. Their discussion covers everything -- Dooley's career, his Catholicism, his subterranean homosexual desire -- so that by the end of the show we have a complete picture of the man's life. Cronin's dialogue is dramatic and smart, performed with a refreshing lack of pretension by Nick Sholley (as Dooley) and Jayson Matthews (as Carroll, the mysterious kid), and the direction by Alan Quismorio is sharp. Cronin is both an accomplished playwright and a Catholic professor-in-residence at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, and his political intelligence turns out to be just as refreshing as the performances. You won't find so much unselfconscious honesty about the era before Stonewall and Vietnam in the work of any now-trendy gay playwright, from Kushner on down, or so much frankness about gays in the military in that of any Catholic writer (barring Andrew Sullivan, who doesn't write plays). Go see it.