The time my cousin Jono prevented a fight by dancing his ass off, while the Strokes played ‘New York City Cops’ in the distance

We’re in a tightly packed crowd, pretty far back, for the closing set of FYF 2014 by headliners the Strokes. They’ve just finished, but we just know they’re coming back for an encore. People are starting to stream out though, and amidst the chaos, some guy shoves another guy, the other guy shoves back, the crowd parts around them. It’s gonna get real.

But then, the Strokes (off in the distance) launch into “New York City Cops” (which is poignant already for its 9/11-related history and what’s happening currently with the NYPD) and my cousin Jono (who incidentally just won an Emmy) launches into the middle of the two guys and starts *boogying down*. The tough guys that were about to fight each other look confused for a moment and then go their separate ways. The rest of the crowd swarms in around Jono and we all dance and sing and shout along to the chorus.

Anger diffused by dancing. Violence prevented by party.

Let’s rock:

[Photo by Stephano Higuera]

Does the bartender who seems to like you really actually like you?

Local veteran barfly David Enos thinks not:

Group of cool guys on the train tonight, each with khakis, thick frame glasses, desert boots, hoodies.  ”Cantina’s where its at because the bartender knows us, he knows us, we’re down.  We go in, our table’s the focal point, we can get loud and not be kicked out.  I, personally, have gotten into some awesome conversations with random people in there.  We start a fight, the bartender’s on our side, he’s fightin’ with us, know what I mean?” I guarantee that the bartender of this establishment hates these cretins to the core.

Ouch. Read on for some thoughts on whether or not these guys are good tippers.

[Photo by Honey Jets]

Do-it-yourself pothole fix

Think something like this would work on that really persistent nasty hole on 21st?

The beholder’s eye

“It’s a clue.” he said as he slammed it down on my desk. I couldn’t see what he had put down. Firstly, because my eyes were closed. Secondly, because I wasn’t sitting at my desk, I was curled up beneath it. Vic, Helen and I had closed down the Latin American the night before. Or was it this morning? In any case, we had also opened it up this afternoon. That kind of week. I had gone back to the office to get some blogging in, but I don’t think I actually did any. And now all I could see were three pint-sized margaritas floating in front of me. I swatted at them fruitlessly.

“Hey. Hey!” Allan’s low top sneaker kicked me in the arm. “I need you on this. And I need it now.”

I was lying on what felt like a burrito butt and a gum wrapper was stuck to my cheek. My maid was on vacation. “Did you bring me coffee?” I croaked from my little dusty bed. It was just about five, and I couldn’t get as far into the afternoon daylight as I used to be able to without some slow drip.

“I’ll put a pot on. Let’s get to work,” Allan’s kicky feet walked away from my desk. “Commenters want to know, is this art?” I slowly crept out and slithered into my chair. The sideways sunlight cut through the office fog of dust, slicing it to ribbons with help from broken and uneven venetians.

“Where did you get this?” I asked, finally getting a look at the photo. It was an oddly shaped paint dribble. It almost seemed accidental, but something about the curvature suggested intent. Allan was hot on the trail of a new tagger in town. Someone who approached every untouched spot in the city like a beautifully blank surface with the potential to be a new Mona Lisa. Or at least one of Reyes’ letters.

“Don’t worry about that, just suss out the meaning.” Allan plopped a full coffee mug on my desk. The sound of porcelain against oak was pleasing. As was the hot drop that splashed out and burned my hand, teasingly. I took a long sip, searing the roof of my mouth and probably also my throat. The Mission Mission office’s snack budget didn’t reach as far as the fancy neighborhood boutique cafes. This was brown bean water. But it would do.

Half an hour later, I had this.

I brought it to Allan. He was lost in thought. “Someone’s been passive aggressively hate-faving my tweets. Can I just disable all engagement?”

I didn’t know. “I don’t know,” I responded. “Here’s your image.”

“Ariel. You’re so literal. This is quirky and whimsical, but it’s not what I need. This goofy lil’ ankle biter, this isn’t what we’re after. It’s great, it’s fine. You did your best. But take a look at these. I went ahead and had Extra Pizza Toppings take her own crack, and I think she found it. I think she found both of it.”

And he was right. She found something. “Go with this,” I said, “Something about people looking like their pets.”

“Huh.” Allan frowned. “Could it really be that banal?”

“You can’t spell banal without anal.” I grabbed my whisky flask from the middle drawer of my desk.

“What they hell is that?”

“I dunno. A joke? A headline? An out of context status update?” I grabbed my hoodie off the rack and flung the door open. “I’m meeting a commenter who’s ready to go legit, I’ll find you at The Alley, I’ll be there by the time the sun burns into Sutro.” I closed the door behind me, this day had posed too many questions and I was all out of answers. I stepped out onto Mission Street and stumbled East into the Capp Street wind.

What should I be?

I looked it up:

Into it! Now can we get a shirt says “Capp Street is for Flaneurs” please?

[via DJ Primo]

Budget yachting

I was hella blessed to be asked to make a guest appearance this morning on Roll Over Easy (the finest morning radio broadcast on the planet), and during the show I talked about how much I like to get on the Oakland-Alameda ferry and order some gins ‘n’ tonics and take in the gorgeous views of the Bay Bridge and the Port of Oakland and everything.

And then our pal Ben Russo figured out what to call it:

Here are scenes from my last two budget yachting trips btw:

P.S. One time in a “Drink of the Week” column, I explained why to have gins ‘n’ tonics on boats.

They might be kindergarten teachers

Local blogger anadromy experienced some deep thoughts while observing a pair of twentysomething dudes on the 47 the other day:

Both of them had their noses buried in their phones. Just as I was about to get off, they noticed each other and said what’s up. From the way they interacted, it was obvious they worked together and were both on the way to the office. Based solely on appearance, vibe, and where the bus was heading, I would be willing to place a large wager that they were both tech dudes on their way to some kind of startup South of Market. One guy said he was coming from Pacific Heights. The other said he was coming from Hayes Valley. The guy from Pac Heights asked, “Where’s that?” and I got bummed out because these two guys started to seem like a microcosm of everything that is wrong with San Francisco these days but then I got off the bus and thought about it some more and, whatever, at least they were riding MUNI and not some disgusting luxury shuttle and at least their company is based here in the city and not some fucked up suburb an hour away. Then I realized I could be totally wrong about them. Who knows? They could be kindergarten teachers or something. I was recently at a bar in Baja and there were these American bros having a bachelor party there. I assumed based on appearances and context that the women with them were probably prostitutes. But it turned out the women dancing with the bros were, in fact, kindergarten teachers just out having fun on a Saturday night.

Seems like a good rule of thumb to me: don’t hate, for They Might Be Kindergarten Teachers. (Also, who the hell cares where Hayes Valley is, anyway?)

[link] [Photo by Colleen Cummins]

Punk prank

How to party while traversing the new Bay Bridge

Just look out for those Black Hawks.

[via 2cute2puke]

Jonathan Richman only buys one kind of cheese from Rainbow Grocery

And our pal Andreas was more than happy to indulge him:

After 8 years of working at the Rainbow Grocery Co-op Cheese Department it’s finally happened: I got to sell cheese to Jonathan Richman !!! It’s maddening because I see him in the aisles every couple of weeks but he’s always gone by the time I get out there to “front.” Today I finally found out why; he buys one cheese and one cheese only: Redwood Hill Raw Goat Feta.

I was restocking our sample table earlier today when I saw him flitting down the aisle towards me. He moved like a meerkat, making a beeline (meerline?) for the aforementioned feta. I played it cool, continuing to restock and avoid direct eye contact while I used my typical icebreaker: “Finding all your cheese alright today?” Breathlessly, he replied “Oh yeah, I love this stuff! Buy it every week.” “It’s good!” I said, smiling at him for a quick moment.

It would have been and remained a totally mundane encounter if not for the very last second, when he walked away from me and said, under his breath, “One love.”

Of course, this caused everyone to reminisce about their own encounters with Mr. Richman, and by the sound of them, he sounds like quite the guy!

Andrea:  I waited on him at the Egg & I– he was everything I could have imagined and more! I sat & had a smoke with him & he gave me a bunch of comps to first ave. what a guy!!!!!

Jenny:  when I worked in Philly, I did “hospitality” for him. He had $300 for a budget, what did he want? a six pack of non-alcoholic beer and a bottle of water. then he played for me for an hour at sound check. one of my best memories.

Kelly:  I got called down from the break room to help him once. He had watched a show on tv the night before about when “baby cows get to stay with the mommy cows” and he wondered if Parmigiano came from that.

Jonathan Richman, everybody!

[Photo via Night Fog Reader]