Great Saturday and easing into Sunday

Saturday really lined up!  I got a jump on some work early in the day.  Later Shmoopy and I went over to Mission Yoga for Chad Stose’s late afternoon anusara class (a.k.a. Naked Yoga) at Mission and 20th.  A great workout as well as relaxing.  That got out just in time for us to change at home and head over to try the new Rosamunde Sausage Grill which opened near the 24th and Mission BART at the old Acapulco space. 

I think its going to be a big addition to the neighborhood.  Lots of premium beers available, and their same lineup of great sausages as at their little spot on Haight.  Last night’s special was a pheasant sausage.  I had the Mission St sausage – beef and bacon.  Yum!  A DJ was spinning and a good crowd was already there when we arrived.  It works the same as at the Haight location – you place your order – but this location is much larger and has tables and benches to sit, talk and eat with dozens of friends. It should become a great after-work spot.  Make sure you try the curry ketchup and the garlic pepper mayo with the fries!

Luckily Rosamunde is around the corner and barely half a block away from Mission Dance Studio where we then headed, to see the last of Keith Hennessy’s re-creations of some of his prior works.  This piece was a bit more ‘out there’ than his last one, definitely heavier on the performance art aspect than on the dance aspect.

Poster for Keith's December, January 20th anniversary events

To be totally honest – I didn’t get it.  The crisco and glitter – ? The red thread (blood?) tying him to the audience at the end may have been a bit too obvious.  I liked the opening which is both a parody and encapsulation of western (pretty much German) philosophy as it bears on art – done in a manic manner to squeeze it into ten or so minutes – all the while becoming more and more abstruse and PhD-thesis-ish.  (Keith is doing a PhD currently at UC Davis btw).  Keith maniacally wields different color markers, and yells directions at assistants in the audience.

Afterward, we happened to head past Happy Donut on 24th at Church and since I’d never been and its supposed to be good, we stopped in.  The donut chef actually filled my chocolate bar with vanilla creme while I watched, and it was good.  And then we made it home finally and watched Caprica and went to sleep.  A perfect day, really!

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Will we be the death of religion?

Just a thought, but I wonder if ” us gays” may in some small (and painful!) way be contributing to an eventual decline in religion.  The more outspoken many of the shrill and defensive Patriarchs of the Faith become over the spectre of Gays Getting Married, the more the utter silliness, dishonesty, and amoralism of their beliefs is shown to be.

If not the death of religion, perhaps its renovation into something that is actually focused on helping people, and on love?  Wasn’t that what Jesus was supposed to be about?

Meanwhile we have Fred Phelps demonizing Christianity via cruel and unintentioned self-parody in San Francisco this weekend;  we have had the rich and famous Pastor Rick Warren involved in a pending Ugandan Gay genocide.

We are not alone in making religion look bad, of course.  Let’s not forget Pat Robertson and the many, many who he speaks for when he basically calls out God Almighty as a race-baiting, slave-enabler.  After all,  according to Pat, it was Satan rather than God who performed the uplifting and moral task of freeing the Haitians 200+ years ago from a hell-on-earth sugar-cane plantation system.

Hey, its not me who’s making religion look bad here.

The rain is back, a little.  The little kale and chard plants seem to be A-OK with this weather.  Of course, it’s only been a week.  There’s still plenty of time for these guys to hit a bad spot along the road to harvest.  Up on the roof the cymbidiums are enjoying the wet cool weather.

Cymbidium - red and white miniature

The two potted citrus – a Eureka lemon and a Mexican lime – are blooming.  I harvested a large lemon last weekend and there is one left on the tree, along with tiny lemon buds.  The older and larger kumquat tree on the kitchen balcony, though, remains blossom-less and in the depths of a five-year sulk.  Although it looks as healthy as ever.

The Picasso wallet

My new possession is a wallet I found at Given, a little gift store on Castro near 19th Street.  I was in browsing a bit this morning and a series of painted wallets caught my eye.  This one instantly made me think of Picasso’s famous Guernica – which in real life is quite larger than wallet-sized – with the ghostly figures.  Although this is a pocket-sized upbeat counterpart, what with the little bird, lots of smiles on the ghosts. The one ghost on the right seems to have blood dripping from his out-stretched right hand, although he is still smiling.  Hmmm.

My other wallet is about to give up the ghost, anyway.

The rain made me do it

Golden chard

All the rain and wind put me in the mood to try some winter vegetables.  To grow.  I had just read about a new local herb and garden store on Church at 27th – Independent Nature.  So I went down this morning to check it out and, helped by Cat, found appropriate veggie starts – a mixture of types of Kale, plus some golden Chard.  So I’ve been potting and toiling away on the kitchen balcony and the roof deck for a bit.  We’ll see if the results in a few months justify the (fairly minimal!) effort.

And now there are 59

So what exactly does losing the so-called 60th Senate vote mean?  That question is already become the news-meme of the day/week/as-long-as-it-plays.  But let’s understand that a supermajority never existed in the Senate for anything other than the same old corporate/industrial/government status quo that has dominated the country since before GW Bush was president.  And Obama still has abundant opportunity and tools to show he’s on the side of the people – if he really is.  But the sad fact is he has never shown that he is on the side of the people in this divide.  And that’s why he finds himself with a MA (R) now.

Mr. President – are you for Wall Street or Main Street?  Are you for Wellpoint or people getting well?  Will you send us a sign?

How to Die

Keith Hennessy on the railroad tracks in his piece "Homeless USA"

I spent Sunday evening at the closing performance by Keith Hennessy of his two-part piece “How to Die.” A combination of spoken word, theatre and dance performance the piece is a meditation on suicidal tendencies in modern culture.

What do homelessness and the gay party scene have in common?  Hennessy has a perspective on that.  Part One of How to Die is “Homeless USA” and takes one through what might be going on inside a person who decapitates himself on the railroad tracks. The piece although general in nature is imbued with specifics of the homeless situation in San Francisco’s Mission, where the piece was performed.
The second piece, American Tweaker, was inspired by the true story of a gay man in New York City who was thought to have contracted an HIV superbug a few years ago. The real story was more mundane but just as dangerous. Hennessy comments on the gay party scene and the dual killers of crystal meth and bareback sex.

I came away feeling quite affected by both pieces.  As a person not at all familiar with modern dance, I still came away with a great appreciation for Hennessy’s vision, art, and the athleticism of the performers.  The movements were understated but powerful, often forming a background to spoken word or the quasi-abstract soundtrack in places.

What also comes through is the vision of the piece as a protest as well as a commentary.  But how well it succeeds at that I couldn’t say.  I’m a bit low on optimism right now.

Gay marriage – not a dollars and cents issue

Is it just me? I’m been following the Perry vs Schwarzenegger case which challenges the validity of Proposition 8 which removed the right for LGBT citizens of California to marry. And to bolster our argument that we deserve equal protection of the laws, we have “experts” from San Francisco testifying about how much city revenues are being lost because Gays and Lesbians aren’t throwing big weddings and receptions all over town?

Hello? Is it just me? Why are we reducing ourselves to an economic argument about whether our partying can help bail out San Francisco and California budget finances? This is degrading and irrelevant. Should we now have a ballot proposition that places a floor on income for two people to marry, and ban tax recognition of marriage unless the couple held a wedding and reception in-state?

Its a simple argument. Maybe the plaintiffs are too timid to argue it, but the right for YOUR 5000 year old mythologic tradition to abhor my same-sex relationship ends at your own front door.