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
We've all had that day: the one where you accidentally hit "Reply All" on an email intended for one or get rear-ended as you're backing out of the veterinary clinic where you've just spent your life savings to find out that the results on your cat's blood work are "inconclusive."
In Carnage, Roman Polanski's adaptation of Yasmina Reza's hit play, posh pair Alan and Nancy (Christoph Waltz and Kate Winslet) come to the home of wholesaler Michael (John C. Reilly) and crunchy author Penelope (Jodie Foster) to discuss how to deal with the fact that the former couple's son hit the latter couple's son in the face with a stick. Artificial politesse gives way to passive aggression, which gives way to aggressive aggression. A real time, hell-is-other-people endurance test set, with the exception of two framing shots, entirely within the stuffy space of an upper-middle-class urban apartment, Carnage was filmed six months after Polanski's release from house arrest in 2010. The director hardly skirts the available parallels. Carnage begins with the boys' altercation, an incident that Polanski shoots from such a far remove that we cannot know what motivated it or have any sense of context. The film to follow consists of outsiders with personal motives debating blame for an incident they did not witness and, it's implied, cannot really understand. For all its apparent analogies to Polanski's life, Carnage feels like an impersonal exercise, and its study of the rotten underbelly of "polite" social interaction is completely transparent. From the early moment when Foster breaks the facade of niceties by responding to Waltz's insincere pleasantry ("At least we got a new recipe out of [the meeting]") with an unrestrained shot ("Wish our son didn't have to lose two teeth in the process"), there's no question where this is headed.
Jan. 13-19, 2012