Flaming Lotus Girls Party at The Boxshop. FREE.

4 08 2009

Flaming Lotus Girls Party at The Boxshop 1

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The Flaming Lotus girls had a free party on Saturday at The Boxshop to show off their new art project, Soma. The Boxshop is an interesting artist collective in Hunter’s Point, which is San Francisco’s version of Detroit, aka Beirut By the Bay. I had to leave early to make it to the flashdance party that was happening later that night so I didn’t get that many fire pictures. Still, I’m constantly amazed how Burning Man people in this town have adapted to their environment and can make amazing art out of what other people would throw away. They’ve definitely left their mark on this city.

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Super Hero Street Fair. San Francisco. 2009.

27 07 2009

I was really surprised when I heard about this block party. San Francisco’s Death of Fun campaign has been pretty successful so far this year. Congratulations, gentlemen. You have already claimed the life of the future BYOBW block party. That was really brave of you. You almost killed the How Weird block party and don’t think we’ve forgotten about you DNA Lounge. Fuck you and the taxes you pay every year.

So when I heard that there was going to be a new block party under this hostile regime change I knew I had to check it out.

And this is what the Super Hero Block Party looked like at 2:30 PM.

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What’s funny is that if this was Sunday Streets the permit would have official expired over half an hour ago.

If this was the Haight Street Fair it would have been packed.

If it was the How Weird Street Fair it would have been in what House DJ Architects refer to as the Barn Building stage of the party.

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That’s another Burning Man thing that I had forgotten about. People drag thousands of dollars worth of steel and soundsystems out to this god-forsaken place, juice it up with enough decibels to kill a Godzilla, and there’s like 4 people dancing. Look at that, it’s right behind a MUNI graveyard. This is where old cable cars swim upstream, against traffic, to be gutted, rusted, and then die alone on the outskirts of beautiful Hunter’s Point.

And this was the crowded dancefloor. Let’s go back and check in the BrassTax camp.

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Funny thing. I’ve been living in this city for 15 years and I’ve noticed that there’s this one demographic that seems to be permanently stuck on Hawaiian Time. It’s physically impossible for them to get out of the house before 4PM. They’re like the Twilight vampires of the San Francisco scene. I always seem to be out of step with those guys and find myself going to these amazing empty parties in weird locations and then spend half my time taking pictures of the urban decay around me. I know, life of the party…

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Vanilla Ice actually lives here. He moved in 2 weeks ago when his next VH1 show fell through and his old lady kicked him to the curb. He was suppose to be performing on the Sunset stage but that fell through as well for reasons unknown to me.

And check out that boardwalk.

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I actually had a hell of time taking in my cocktail and beats as the skaters and fog flew past me. I don’t know if it was intentional or not, but I thought it was ironic that the first annual San Francisco Street Fair was on the same day as the San Diego Comic Con. I used to go to that back when I was in junior high and it’s amazing to see how what used to be a corny convention of hard-core nerds exploded into one of the major multi-media events of the year. It’s on Goggle’s front page. It’s on youtube’s front page. When I grew up, being into comic books was like being into pedophilia; it wasn’t a very cool hobby and if you wanted to survive you were very careful whom you shared that vice with. Now it’s Hollywood. That’s what’s amazing to me. Anyone can do that. Anyone can take a corny thing and turn that into the next Burning Man, turn that into the Star Trek franchise, turn that into the next major multi-media event of the year.

Seize the day.

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UPDATE # 1

Excellent video from Lux Vibes





Grand Opening of The Big Art Studios at American Steel

13 07 2009

It was raining on my way from SF to Oakland for the big Sand by the Ton Burning Man Art Carnival, which was kind of odd because I pay attention to the weather reports and I hadn’t heard anyone predict showers for the weekend. At first I thought it might just be one of those flash monsoons, but it lasted for the entire ride and by the time I was over the Bay Bridge I saw this amazing double rainbow over the American Steel building.

Sand By The Ton at American Steel 1

I haven’t Burned in over 7 years now but I remember seeing pictures and hearing stories of this amazing double rainbow at a recent Burning Man, so it felt like one of those moments where God was letting you in on in an inside joke.

Or like one of those coincidences in LOST. Take your pick.

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The American Steel building is HUGE. It’s got it’s own block. Hell, it has its own zip code.

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It also has some neat graffiti nearby.

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The Tesla Coil was back and was rocking out right behind the Gravity Point camp.

There was also some loud constant banging, like someone was dropping a cargo tank from the roof. It was loud enough to obliterate the noise made by several raves. It was like trying to dance during the firecracker scene in Boogie Nights.

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Fire and lasers and beats and Mayhem. Oh my!

This space reminded me a lot of the old Gathering parties at Home Base.

Paging Martin O’Brien – if you’re reading this you really want to talk to the Big Art Studio people. The American Steel place would be an amazing location for a Gathering. No. Wait. I take that back. Not a Gathering, not a Freedom or even a Come-Unity, but still taking something from those inspirations and putting it together to make something new.

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I see you, you see me
Watch you blowin’ the lines when you’re making a scene
Oh girl, you’ve got to know
What my head overlooks
The senses will show to my heart
When it’s watching for lies
You cant escape my

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Private eyes
They’re watching you
They see your every move
Private eyes
They’re watching you watching you watching you watching you

***

Related Posts –

Serpent Mother. FREE art opening on Treasure Island.





Burning Man in Oakland Next Week.

3 07 2009

Michael Christian’s Bone Arch at Burning Man 1997.

I remember this year. 1997 was the first, and God-willing, only time that Burning Man was moved to the Hualapai Playa. The local sheriff’s department pulled an Enron. They put armed cops in the ticket booth and collected 100% of all the ticket money as it came in. This is a shake-down, suckers! Burning Man almost went bankrupt that year.

This was a piece that Michael Christian had put together from local horse and cow skeletons. Talk about using all the parts of the buffalo. I remember all that dead grass on the playa and everyone was riding around with cow skulls that year.

I had a lot of fun in 1997, but I never want to see the Hualapai Playa ever again.

Amazing Burning Man Art Carnival in the post 9/11 / Oscar Grant / Lovelle Mixon Oakland next week.

With Michael Christian art.

And The Flaming Lotus Girls

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And The Mutaytor

How crazy is that video?

There’s like 50 people in that band, including the bassist from Oingo Boingo, and 100 people on the stage for one song.

It’s like what Lollapalooza could be if Perry Farrell still did drugs.





Skatin’ Place. Ride the SoulTrain at Burning Man 2008.

29 04 2009

Skatin’ Place is one of my all time favorite local TV shows. D Miles has been doing his Skatin’ Place parties in Golden Gate Park on Sundays since forever and a day. He also produced his own public access TV show for 7 (!) years till he was fired for basically asking some straight forward questions that needed to be asked, like why did you guys just move the studio to a Market Street location where the rent is around $12,000 a month instead of moving to a city owned building off the beaten path where the rent could have been $1 per year?

I don’t know, I live in the real world with real bills and it’s crucial if you want to survive in this city that you know how to live within your means and learn to do without things that are beyond your means.

Now Public Access channel 29 is broke and has been spare changing its viewers every chance it gets. I still like and support some of the shows on there, but no way in Hell I can get behind a bailout of that station. Time for Access Channel 29 to die-off like the dinosaur that it is.

But D is still cutting new episodes of Skatin’ Place and he still Burns!

I love it when I see OG’s that still get excited by Burning Man. It’s pretty trendy for jaded hipsters to bash on Burning Man these days, when they’re not getting American Apparel stores and American Apparel jobs kicked out of the Mission.

As long as D is still making new Burning Man Skatin’ Place videos I will give them airtime.





Burning Life Aquatic Man.

28 04 2009

DPW blue submarine and home base 1

I’ve seen this DPW Blue Submarine around the neighborhood before. It’s indigenous to The Outer Sunset but this is the first time I’ve seen it docked out in front of what looks like its homebase.

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Check out the rust on that submarine. The fog out here will eat cars and fire hydrants alive.

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The Outer Sunset Has FREE Curbside Parking Right By The Beach.

25 03 2009

free parking at the beach

How beautiful is that?

I grew up in Hawaii and San Diego so I grew up around this happy-go-lucky, tropical, party beach culture and was kind turned-off and a little frightened by Ocean Beach when I first moved here. Most of the time it’s really foggy and overcast. Like if London and Russia combined forces to bioengineer the most depressing beach possible. Anyone touching the water had bodysuits, homeless people constantly swimming MUNI upstream to die alone, and Elliot Smith haunted that walkway.

Guys walking by themselves.
Wearing sunglasses and staring at the ground.
Thinking about all the mistakes in their life.
As they walked past tagged-up dead beached whales.
Before being jacked-up from behind.

It was kind of a downer beach.

But I discovered quickly that even on foggy summer days the beach was beautiful at night. I could open any window of my house and hear it all night. I could hear any car that drove by me from at least a few blocks away, but I could hear the ocean all night.

And on sunny weekdays this place is a beautifully eerie and deserted rust bucket. I love it.

This is The Great Highway.

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I was here when the Burning Man People had a free art opening for the first of their new bonfire pits last year.

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It was WINDY AS FUCK. I remember almost Burning Man dust storm conditions with this Crazy Turrets Homeless Dude drawn to the fire that would not shut up. Unsuspecting couples would be walking up to the fires from out of the dust storms and thinking that Crazy Turrets Homeless Dude was part of the local Burning Man charm without realizing that local rangers had told Crazy Turrets Homeless Dude to shut up while other people were giving speeches at least 3 times now and it wasn’t working. There was instant blind cooperation among strangers and the local Sunset beach cops busting DPW guys for drinking on the beach. Proof that The Universe really does have a sense of humor. I thought it was a nice effort on the Burning Man People’s part, but honestly I wondered how long the fire pits would survive before being tagged-up or destroyed. But check it out now that it’s completed in 2009 –

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Nowhere near the level of trash that used to collect around the old city bonfire pits and no tagging! That’s amazing.

I like this partially bloomed flower / acorn design the best.

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That 45-degree angle is a great design and is a hell of a lot more practical in blocking the wind, which is essential to starting and maintaining your fire under windy as fuck conditions. I was cruising by at 4:20 and there was already a fire going in the acorn fire pit with girls playing music and dancing nearby.

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Good times.

Also, by Burning Man People I mean a combination of The Black Rock Arts Foundation and Burners Without Borders. I just like referring to them as Burning Man People, which has a nice ring to it. Like Children of The Corn.