San Francisco Chronicle Arts & Entertainment - Spoken Edition

San Francisco Chronicle Arts & Entertainment - Spoken Edition

www.spokenedition.com
Our nationally recognized critics and writers put their deep knowledge and critical acumen to work to help readers make informed choices about how to negotiate the area’s rich array of cultural offerings. Whether it’s a long-established arts organization or an all-but-unknown project that’s just getting off the ground, The Chronicle’s readers know about it first from us. A SpokenEdition transforms written content into human-read audio you can listen to anywhere. It’s perfect for times when you can’t read - while driving, at the gym, doing chores, etc. Find more at www.spokenedition.com
Sorry, SF, that 980 square foot apartment renting for $49,528 is off the market now
Dec 11 • 2 min
Perhaps you have noticed, in this holiday season, that the snap on your wallet is getting worn out and that your credit card rarely gets cold between usings. Whatever you’re spending, it’s small potatoes, pals. Rent.com reported a few weeks ago that the…
In San Francisco, you, too, can adopt a … drain
Dec 10 • 4 min
One night, my husband came home with an announcement: he’d adopted a drain. I paused before reacting. Well, this is something, I thought. Large businesses and wealthy people adopt schools. Suburban dwellers adopt trees. If we lived in a house in the East…
Tony Nik’s in North Beach is still cool after 85 years
Dec 7 • 5 min
The sign outside Tony Nik’s on Stockton Street has seen better days. The curves of each letter have darkened, and it’s tricky to make out the “Nik’s” at all; the word was painted in a patchy white rectangle on top of the original “Nicco’s” when longtime…
Radio Waves: Harvill at Cumulus: ‘It feels like a startup’
Dec 6 • 5 min
Doug Harvill was having a blast. As senior VP and market manager for the CBS Radio group in San Francisco, he led the cluster to the heights, with stellar ratings for KCBS, “Alice” and KMVQ (“Now”). But when CBS merged with Entercom last November, with…
On paper, it’s almost a Hallmark holiday
Dec 5 • 4 min
In South Ozone Park, Nurse Vivian and Pop took Christmas cards seriously. The day after Thanksgiving, the Paulsons drove to Great Eastern Mills out on Long Island to pick out Christmas cards: mostly nativity scenes, a few snowmen, one box of foil-lined…
She is leaving the world a better place
Dec 4 • 4 min
The sweetest woman in the world is dying. As I write this, she’s lying in her bed in a nursing home 45 miles north of Montreal. Her family, including my wife, is beside her, waiting for her to die. She’s not eating, and she can’t hear or speak. But she…
SF State president tussles with student protesters, 1968
Dec 3 • 5 min
1993 Dec. 8: The troubles of legal gunslinger Melvin Belli continued to grow when a bank announced that it would auction off the famed Belli building to cover a defaulted loan. Home Savings of America said that Belli is in default of a loan secured by the…
Mill Valley’s 2AM Club and the trope of the high-school reunion bar
Nov 30 • 7 min
The patrons are young, and they’re descending from all angles. They traipse over from the 7-Eleven on Miller Avenue in Mill Valley, stopping to finish soda bottles with questionable contents. A group of three spills out of an idling Mercedes, thanking…
The Fisher-Paulson family is famous: You could look it up
Nov 29 • 4 min
Amanda and I met when we both volunteered at the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force in the autumn of 1982. She has seen me through disastrous boyfriends, including the cowboy and the Mafia guy, and I have seen her through disastrous girlfriends,…
‘Check, Please!’ and host Leslie Sbrocco add a new ingredient: kids
Nov 28 • 4 min
Leslie Sbrocco traces the genesis of “Check, Please! Bay Area Kids” to a note she received from a fan last February. “In her handwritten letter (she wrote), ‘Dear Leslie, I am a huge fan of the show, I am 7 years old and one day I will have your job,”…
Thankful for those rare kids who are home for holidays
Nov 27 • 4 min
Thanksgiving was over. As I said to my wife as the final dishes were washed last Thursday evening, it’s no time to relax. The battle continues. We were still reeling from the beating we took at Thanksgiving. Only one of our four children came to dinner.…
In San Francisco, living on the edge of the fires and the future
Nov 26 • 4 min
Posted on Next Door in the Sunset district, a Tuesday, Nov. 13 entry noticed by Charles Moody: “Question: The air seems very smoky today.
Puzzling out birthdays on the lunar calendar
Nov 23 • 4 min
Long ago, when I asked my mother the date of her birthday, she replied, “I was born in a year with two Augusts.” How odd her answer seemed to me at the time. Why couldn’t she tell me the date listed on her driver’s license? I would come to learn that the…
When Thanksgivings are somehow different
Nov 22 • 5 min
Holidays were rotated between Aunt Mildred, Aunt Rita and my mother in a way that I never understood, but in 1968, Nurse Vivian drew Thanksgiving. This was the autumn a year after the Summer of Love. The times they were a-changing, and she got it into her…
It’s just a game — for winners and especially losers
Nov 21 • 4 min
I love to compete in sports. I grew up playing basketball, moved on to doubles tennis and golf when the body started breaking down, and look forward to competing in my sport of the future — bocce ball. I love to experience the thrill of victory, and can…
Discord greets Tilson Thomas, Dec. 1, 1993
Nov 20 • 6 min
Items have been culled from The Chronicle’s archives of 25, 50, 75 and 100 years ago. 1993 Dec. 1: The San Francisco Symphony, locked in intense contract negotiations with its musicians all day, last night canceled the Davies Hall concert scheduled for…
A house divided on a Big Game day
Nov 19 • 4 min
Earlier this month, my sons, Didi and Gege, raced around on their scooters at Stanford University, shouting with glee as they careened on the smooth walkways around the Quad. It was a couple of weeks before the choking haze of the Camp Fire would descend.…
Being kind to others makes S.F. the ‘City That Cares’
Nov 16 • 4 min
Last weekend, Brian, Aidan and I visited the SASBs in San Anselmo, all of us there to visit with Betty, her mom, who had flown in from Kansas. One of the other guests, on her third glass of wine, asked, “What happened to San Francisco? It’s not what it…
To a man on SF’s rough streets, a little chocolate ice cream helps
Nov 15 • 4 min
Last weekend, Brian, Aidan and I visited the SASBs in San Anselmo, all of us there to visit with Betty, her mom, who had flown in from Kansas. One of the other guests, on her third glass of wine, asked, “What happened to San Francisco? It’s not what it…
Checking your inbox is not always fun
Nov 14 • 4 min
I was checking email on my iPhone at the breakfast table a couple of weeks ago and was delighted to announce to my wife that she had finally joined an exclusive club. “Congratulations,” I said as I finished reading an email from an irate reader. “You just…
Political, poetic justice after 2 difficult years
Nov 13 • 4 min
There was no way I was going to let election night 2018 happen the same way election night 2016 did. OK, so maybe I didn’t have any more control over Tuesday night’s results than I had two years ago. But if I couldn’t influence the results, at least I…
One and all and all welcomed to John’s Grill for election revels
Nov 12 • 4 min
One and all and all welcomed to John’s Grill for… Mayor London Breed was resplendent in gold pumps (for the media, “because I’ve got to be on point,” she said, or maybe “en pointe”) and Willie Brown was resplendent in red shoes (“because I’ve always got…
Admiring Bergman, Swedish film master, and staring back
Nov 9 • 4 min
In this centenary of Ingmar Bergman, the great Swedish director’s admirers — both professional and personal — have been traveling the world, bringing him to life by telling tales etched in their memories. He wasn’t exactly an easygoing man, said Katinka…
Why Will Clark went to Texas, 1993
Nov 8 • 5 min
Items have been culled from The Chronicle’s archives of 25, 50, 75 and 100 years ago. 1993 Nov. 12: The stare, the chin, the jaw, the look, the bubble gum, the two-day beard, the swing, the follow through. More chin, more jaw … oh, now is the time to pay…
You can still be nice to the guy whose vote canceled out yours
Nov 7 • 4 min
Buffy posted on Facebook that she had voted, and I hit the “like” button. Buffy and I have known each other since Oct. 3, 1994, when we swore to uphold the Constitution of California. Buffy does not know how I vote, because we still have a secret ballot…
A son’s proposal stands the test of time
Nov 6 • 4 min
If you’re reading this, it means my 29-year-old son proposed to his longtime girlfriend last weekend. If you’re not reading this, it means he chickened out. My deadline for a Tuesday column is Friday at noon, so I’m writing this without knowing if he…
A night at Dimples, Japantown’s sometimes gross, often funny, always welcoming oasis
Nov 5 • 9 min
It’s a Friday around 11 p.m., and Dimples is in full swing. The karaoke rooms of this subterranean Japantown bar are occupied by one party of mild middle-aged men singing Korean songs, and one group of decidedly not-mild 30-somethings singing the…
Radio Waves: Hall of Fame’s 13th inductions prove unlucky
Nov 2 • 5 min
A wise Buddhist (is there any other kind?) once told me, “If you have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” If I believed that nonsense, I wouldn’t be able to report on the 13th Bay Area Radio Hall of Fame induction luncheon at all. Actually,…
Inspiring an ageless dance community
Nov 1 • 5 min
Anna Halprin, the 98-year-old dance pioneer who lives in Marin County, fractured her back recently. I didn’t learn this in the news — Halprin isn’t interested in anyone’s pity. Instead, I was lucky enough to be part of a group of 30 students who took a…
A visit to a son partway on a long, long trail
Oct 31 • 5 min
“A season is a lifetime.” Let me catch the infrequent reader up. In July, my husband, Brian, and I made the hardest decision our marriage has faced: To keep our son Zane safe, we sent him to a “boarding school” over the mountain and across the desert.…