We've got quite a few entrants for the Sixth Annual Cocktail Robotics Grand Challenge this Sunday! It's looking good!
Do you like ROBOTS? And DRINKING? Experience incredible robot bartenders serving you drinks, lovingly crafted with MAD SCIENCE by the finest competitors in the art of robotic mixology, Sunday, July 21 at DNA Lounge!
Some of this year's entrants not only squirt, but can also fly, scuttle, and drive on the freeway.
You probably won't get wet. Probably. Or disassembled. Probably.
Seriously, this is one of the coolest, silliest things we do all year, and if you don't show up, we can't be friends any more.
Did anyone here go to the Big Show on Friday night?
So if you didn't go, if you don't know, it was our big "State Fair" show, and it's all kinds of State Fair themed acts. We had clowns, and we had a clown marching band with tubas and trombones and drums and all of that. And we started the marching band at 11th and Folsom, and marched our way all the way down the street to DNA Lounge and into the room.
But when we started, down there at 11th and Folsom, there was a lady standing on the sidewalk, on her cell phone. And as we started up -- Pa-rum pum. Pa-rum pum. Pa da-da-da-da-da-da, da -- and we start marching down the street, she comes right up to me and says,
"This is a. Residential. Building."
At 11th and Folsom. On Friday night. At 10:15pm.
And I looked at her and I said, "And now we're past it."
Because we're a marching band!
Like, literally we were in front of her "residential building" for about eight seconds, ok? She grabbed one of the clown girls out of the band, and said to her,
"This is unacceptable."
And then, the denoument, Ladies and Gentlemen, and then she called DNA Pizza to complain, and said... "I would like to speak to a manager."
If you need any further proof that showing up, participating, coming to DNA Lounge, going out and supporting your local live entertainment, is something you need to do... well...
Marching Band Megan on her cell phone is there to let you know.
You may remember the occupants of that "residential building" from their previous greatest hits, such as: forcing the original Oasis out of business back in 1998.
I love it when we flush a camera down the toilet. Or in this case, the drain at the back of the DNA Pizza kitchen. For those of you with the intestinal fortitude, let's dig in to the bowels of DNA Lounge and check in on the growth of our Glistening Fatburg as it is being gently nurtured in the dark places below:
If that left you feeling empty inside, then push in your stool and watch these!
(Always open with a poop joke, then move on to the legal news.)
Some potential good news for Mezzanine, and for anyone in the nightlife industry who find themselves facing off against a predatory landlord:
Supervisor Matt Haney's resolution would make it harder to turn venues into tech office space:
If passed, this measure would provide interim zoning controls in Western Soma for 18 months to ensure that entertainment venues are not converted to other uses without going in front of the Planning Commission, and if needed, at the full Board of Supervisors. [...]
"This is even bigger than the Mezzanine," Haney said. "Across SoMa, we have had a long history of nightlife and entertainment that has been the lifeline of this community and has provided tremendous culture, art, and community building to all of San Francisco. And it's in danger right now."
Haney added that his resolution would allow an added layer of oversight and accountability and bring questions of public interest and social impact to the forefront. He tied the Mezzanine's current predicament to the larger patterns of displacement and erasure of important community spaces to development, exorbitant rents, and landlord and property owner profits. Losing these venues would be "bad for San Francisco, bad for SoMa, and a huge loss that would be hard to replace," Haney said.
The machinations described in the next article are a bit confusing, but I think what it says is that the "4AM last call" thing is done for, again, because Weiner decided to throw it under a bus so that he could get a different bill passed instead, using a pretty sketchy legislative trick:
Wiener's gut-and-amend tactics: Will they return with SB 50?
As of September, "Last Call" had been voted out of both Assembly Committees to the Assembly floor, but "Sex Offenders" had been held in suspense (i.e., tabled) in the Assembly Appropriations Committee (the suspense file of the Appropriations Committee in either the Assembly or the Senate is generally a graveyard where bills go to die). So "Sex Offenders" died in 2017, at least in name.
But Wiener used a dubious legislative practice called "gut and amend" to let "Last Call" -- the live bill -- die and replace it with the dead bill, "Sex Offenders". [...]
So, presto, with a sleight of hand and a little bit of fairy dust, "Sex Offenders" had a second life after "Last Call" was gutted and amended to a completely different subject. Opposition melted away and the bill sailed through.
So in this game of procedural Three Card Monte, "SB 384" (formerly known as "SB 58?", the Last Call bill, which was moving forward, has been bodysnatched and replaced by previously-dead-but-now-zombiefied "SB 421", a bill to reduce the length of time that people who commit misdemeanor sexcrimes stay on the registry. I don't know much about that bill, but it seems to be opposed by a bunch of shitheads, so probably it's fine. But these two bills have nothing to do with each other, and this is why people say you shouldn't watch sausages being made.
(Poop joke callback)
As someone with a lot of experience dealing with liquor licensing, the following piece of performance art seems like it was made specifically for my enjoyment. Chef kiss, A+, would watch again. This process started last year and was derailed, but is now being allowed to go forward:
Trump Hotel could have its liquor license revokes because of namesake's character:
D.C. law states that liquor license applicants must be of "good character and generally fit for the responsibilities of licensure."
"Donald Trump, the true and actual owner of the Trump International Hotel, is not a person of good character," the residents wrote in their complaint, citing in detail what they characterize as "certain lies he has told, his involvement in relevant fraudulent and other activity demonstrating his lack of integrity, and his refusal to abide by the law or to stop associating with known criminals."
Lawyers for the hotel appealed and asked the board to dismiss the case on technical grounds. But this time, the board denied the hotel's request -- and this week issued a ruling that clears the way for the complaint to move to mediation or a hearing before the board.
Thank you, emolument your bartenders.
First up: we're just about a month out from the Sixth Annual Cocktail Robotics Grand Challenge!
Do you like ROBOTS? And DRINKING? Experience incredible robot bartenders serving you drinks, lovingly crafted with MAD SCIENCE by the finest competitors in the art of robotics and bartending.
We've had a few contestants sign up, but not enough yet, so please spread the word and nag all of your friends who have a barbot gathering dust in their workshop. And spam out that Facebook invite, ok?
Also might I recommend this Sunday's show, Broadway Bares: a superhero-themed charity burlesque show starring some incredibly talented dancers who don't normally do burlesque.
"Broadway Bares" was conceived and produced by Jerry Mitchell (Tony Award-winning director and choreographer), has been an annual AIDS fundraising event in NYC for 28 years raising over one million dollars annually. Jerry, a Broadway dancer at the time and a strong supporter of Broadway Cares, began to raise funds for Broadway Cares by getting his dancer friends together to put on a strip show in a local gay bar as a fundraising event. His modest efforts have grown dramatically and now "Broadway Bares" is one of the largest annual fundraisers in NYC.
And Now The News.
Mezzanine's Landlords Renege On Promised Lease Extension
Mezzanine announced in November 2018 that they were being forced to close their doors due the Chritton's refusal to re-negotiate the lease. [...] "The Chrittons reached out to me almost immediately following the initial press and told me that they now wanted to work with me, and would at minimum, grant us the 3 1/2 month extension thorough NYE 2019," said Mezzanine's owner, Deborah Jackman. [...]
On May 1st, 2019 Mezzanine was officially notified that the 3 month lease extension was no longer on the table. "After giving me a letter of intent for the lease extension, shaking my hand, hugs exchanged and giving me their word that we were SOLID, the Chrittons drew out the lease negotiation process for 5 months and then pulled the rug out from under us," says Jackman. [...]
In addition, Mezzanine has been working closely with Allen Scott of Another Planet Entertainment, to form a partnership to keep the venue open for the long term.
So that's extremely shitty behavior from a security/surveillance company (Microbiz) that you probably shouldn't do business with.
Let me also draw your attention to that last sentence about Another Planet. I don't have any firsthand information on this, but here's how I read between the lines there: it says, "Maybe we could afford that 6× rent that the landlord initially floated if we took the Slim's Exit." In other words, turning over control of their entire calendar to one of the Big Three media conglomorates. (It's true that APE is the smallest of the three, and some people cut them slack because they're "local", so you probably have friends who work there, but they have the same business model as Live Nation and AEG: anti-competitive lock-in through vertical integration and festival radius clauses.)
And, like Slim's, if Mezzanine chose that path, I couldn't fault them for it. If that's the only way to avoid firing a bunch of people, you do what you need to do. But it's still a bummer.
Next up: same story different day, but I did particularly enjoy this sick burn:
Eddie Rickenbacker's Is Being Forced Out By Landlord
As is commonplace in SF these days, a decades-old small business is pushed out by a landlord (Ken Epstein in this case) who tripled their rent, and found a big money backed team to take their place. [...] They tend to cater to tech bros, Patagonia vests, and 'after office' crowds who call the neighborhood 'The East Cut', without irony. Mixology for white collars and silicon valley subsidiaries who just 'crushed it' at a meeting and are looking to pay $16 for an 'agave infused' something or other.
Fun fact! Eddie Rickenbacker was a flying ace and racecar driver, and he and SFMC member Lincoln Beechey would hold "races" where Eddie would drive and Lincoln would fly and they would take turns "winning". Here's the two of them at the 1914 Iowa State Fair:
Next, Yelp is still being Yelp! There's as new documetary out about them called Billion Dollar Bully (whose domain is not the obvious dot-com because Yelp squatted that domain for themselves!!)
Yelp compares itself to Wikipedia. But there's a major difference
Earnest and fiery throughout, the film allows the aggrieved parties ample time to vent. The film opens, for example, with Davide Cerretini, owner of a San Francisco Italian restaurant, who claims that Yelp's salespeople called him 20 times a week pressuring him to advertise on the platform. He finally acquiesced and agreed to a six-month contract, which he did not renew. Once he stopped paying for advertising, Cerretini claims his positive reviews vanished, only to be replaced with new and mysterious negative reviews. "To me, it's mafia," Cerretini says in the film. [...]
But notice how Yelp does not promise that a small business owner can speak to a Yelp representative or appeal to any sort of third-party arbitrator about taking down a fake review. [...] The documentary also highlights how Yelp is virtually invulnerable to lawsuits. [...] In sum, a local business that has been damaged from a false review has little recourse from Yelp itself, nor via the traditional legal system, and no ability to opt out of the platform. It's little wonder the small business owners interviewed in Bully appear so dejected.
That "no ability to opt out" is the part that really pisses me off. If I could arrange for my businesses to have no presence on Yelp whatsoever I would do it in a heartbeat.
And finally: Hey, you got your Surveillance Capitalism in my Regulatory Capture!
Patronscan wants cities to require bars to scan your ID with its service so it can maintain a secret, unaccountable blacklist
Patronscan is the leading provider of ID-scanning/verification services to bars and restaurants, and one of its selling points is that it allows its customers to create shared blacklists of undesirable customers who can then be denied services at every other establishment that uses its services. [...]
Bar staff can block anyone for any reason, and while Patronscan's product allows staff to list a [two word] reason, there is no need to provide evidence for these claims [...] Once you're added to Patronscan's blacklist, you are barred from any participating establishment. [...]
This opens up the door to widespread, illegal discrimination by racist, sexist, homophobic or transphobic bar staff, whose blacklistings will ripple out to many other establishments (Patronscan has captured scans from 200,000,000 people in sixty countries).
Patronscan has an aggressive lobbying arm, which has successfully lobbied cities like Pomona and Sacramento to adopt mandatory scanning laws for licensed establishments. Patronscan also deployed its lobbyists to attempt to scuttle a California privacy law that limits the retention and sharing of its data -- the law passed, and Patronscan is currently in violation of it.
Once scanning is in place in a city, it doesn't take long for the databases it creates to swell to terrifying size: in the first five months of 2018, Patronscan scanned 561,087 people in Sacramento -- the latest numbers put Sacramento's population at only 501,901 (!).
There's many reasons to worry about this kind of unaccountable private blacklisting, especially when it deputizes itself to serve as an arm of the state and law-enforcement, the sort of thing that causes real anxiety when it's tried in China. In an environment where immigration status and other basic facts of peoples' lives puts them at risk of loss of liberty, family separation and arbitrary detention, collecting, retaining and sharing data about our everyday activities represents a kind of depraved indifference to the human consequences of the pursuit of profit.
In summary, everything is terrible.
Scott Wiener's Latest 4 A.M. Last Call Bill Clears Senate, Heads To Assembly
Remember that bill to extend alcohol service hours in select California cities, once a dream of former State Senator Mark Leno, and more recently taken up multiple times by State Senator Scott Wiener? Well it's back alive, and there's a new governor in office who might not veto it.
Wiener's bill cleared the Senate with bipartisan support last year, only to get vetoed last September by Governor Jerry Brown. Not thought of as a conservative in any demonstrable ways, the elder statesman Brown sided with the CHP in the end, saying at the time, "California's laws regulating late night drinking have been on the books since 1913. I believe we have enough mischief from midnight to 2 without adding two more hours of mayhem."
I'll just cut-and-paste from my previous post on this from December, and update my timeline:
To be clear, this bill would not "make last call be 4AM" or even "make last call be 4AM in San Francisco". No, doing that would make San Francisco behave like world-class cities that value tourism. This bill isn't that.
This bill would allow SF the option of issuing additional permits -- expensive permits -- to a handful of venues, allowing those venues and only those venues to serve alcohol between the hours of 2AM and 4AM, as part of a 5-year-limited trial program, to begin "no earlier than Jan 1, 2022".
So it will be good for those businesses who get to be a part of that program -- and, assuming we haven't gone out of business by then, we're going to do our damnedest to be a part of that program -- but it's not really going to change the character of SF nightlife in any significant way. Almost all bars will still close at 2, and you still won't be able to get anywhere by public transit after midnight.
I mean, at this rate we might have a Central Subway or a Transit Center before you can legally have a drink at 3AM.
Here's a brief recap of this ongoing shitshow. I can't believe how long I've been blogging about this:
- Apr 2003: Senator Leno introduced SB 635; it was defeated by not getting 6 votes in the Senate.
- Feb 2004: The SF Board of Supervisors, via Peskin, passed a resolution "urging" the legislators to allow SF, LA and SD to set their own last call times.
- Apr 2004: The bill was strangled by not being allowed to move out of committee.
- Mar 2004: Leno tried again, AB 2433. Defeated by not getting 6 votes.
- May 2009: An interlude where I tell you about the Neo-prohibitionists organizations trying to stop this bill.
- Mar 2012: Weiner got an Economic Impact Study done proving that yes, nightlife is an important industry.
- Mar 2013: Leno re-introduced his bill as SB 635.
- Apr 2013: Defeated again by not getting 6 votes.
- Feb 2017: Weiner introduced his version of the bill, even more narrow in scope.
- Mar 2017: It passed the Public Safety Committee, and then was allowed to die silently.
- Jan 2018: Weiner re-introduced it as SB 905.
- Sep 2018: It passed the State Senate 28-8.
- Sep 2018: As one of his last acts in office, Governor Brown vetoed it.
- Dec 2018: Weiner is trying again with SB 58.
- May 2019: Passed Senate 29-6.
I just added a User Account system to the DNA Lounge store. So now when you buy tickets, you can enter a new password too, and it will create an account for you. The next time you log in, it will remember your card and your billing address, so next time, you just log in and hit Buy.
I've wanted this for years, but I kept putting off implementing it because it just sounded like a pain in the ass. There are a lot of moving parts: verifying email addresses, "forgotten password" emails, login throttling, etc. I would periodically search around for some PHP library I could just drop in, but no such luck. The relevant libraries out there all have a list of dependencies as long as your arm, and also mostly seem like someone's "learning experience".
I previously tried to get most of the way there by just having the store save your billing address (but not card) in the browser's localStorage, so at least you wouldn't have to re-enter that. But that wasn't terribly helpful. From what I'm seeing in the logs, it appears that iOS devices tend to erase localStorage pretty frequently: I was seeing months-old session cookies, yet purged storage.
Anyway, I finally just said "fuck it" and knocked out 2000 lines of code in a couple of days. I think it works pretty well. Shit, I think people get VC funding for less. Anyway, let me know if you find any bugs.
Wherein a winnar is us:
BEST BAR THAT CONSTANTLY INVENTS NEW CURRENT-EVENT INSPIRED COCKTAILS -- DNA Lounge
You'll only find cocktails named R. Kelly's Tears or the Papa Smurf Cocksucker at DNA Lounge, whose seven -- count 'em! -- seven bars invent original cocktails with names taken straight from the headlines or the material being performed that night on stage. The home of Bootie SF, Hubba Hubba Revue, and Mortified started naming cocktails after internet memes during the "Shut up Woman! Get on My Horse!" craze of 2009, and they've since started mixing political-themed cocktails like the Self Vaxxer or Sing This Collusion To Me. The Valar Starbuckus was recently added after a famous prop accident on a popular zombies-and-dragons TV program.
Both Tempest and Star Wars are dead. I dunno, it's almost as if 40 year old hardware that was designed for a 3 year lifespan has reliability problems! Tempest's monitor died and I thought I had fixed it but I was wrong and now It think something else is wrong too. Star Wars is having a power supply problem, I think, maybe. Investigations are ongoing.
Oh, but I did put better coin mechs in all four games, so they should jam up less often. Also I put an NVRAM kit in Pac-Man so that it remembers its high score -- and someone racked up 134,000 last week, which is a pretty respectable score. We're making over a HUNDRED BUCKS A MONTH on these things!! The rains have come and the crops are saved!!
You may have noticed that we're closed tonight, and last night: both rooms dark on a Friday, and a Thursday. That's just fucking tragic. It's because we literally could not find a single event that would have been able to draw 100 people. So yeah, maybe collecting quarters is what we've been reduced to.
Incidentally, we only had three new sign-ups for our Patreon last month, so now would be a great time for you to up your contribution.
You know how we used to sell dog tags? Well if you have one, hang onto it, because they're unobtainium now. We can't find any manufacturer who can reproduce them these days. The old ones had the logo etched into the metal: it wasn't deep, but you could tell, there was some physicality to it. But what all of the dog tag manufactures these days call "etching" is more like "we painted it with enamel, and then lightly scraped off some of the paint". They're awful, so we've discontinued them rather than being awful.
Actually I use the word "sell" loosely here, because over the last two decades we've sold about a hundred of them online, but many thousands of them have left the building...
Keeping it Real:
The other day I was chatting with a guy who said something very flattering about us. He said, "I work at a club in San Jose and we sometimes do events like this but... down there it always feels like 'an EDM party in a club." But at DNA, it's a rave!"
So kudos to our staff for that! It's a very fine line to walk when allowing a party to feel "underground" while also keeping people safe, and they've been doing a great job of it.
The ongoing dismantling of San Francisco's local music scene:
Hey, you want to see something depressing? Hemlock has finally been literally demolished:
Here's a great article about those blatantly criminal enterprises that we euphemistically call "Delivery" "Services". They're just the worst. No, wait, Twitter is the worst. No, wait, I mean Facebook is the worst. Oh there's just no bottom, is there.
Custard's Last Stand: Mission Pie vs. the gig economy
Heisler's workforce is all employees. They have health insurance. She hands over payroll taxes and, additionally, with more than 20 employees, she and her co-owner Krystin Rubin are subject to any number of "employer mandates" this city has chosen to impose on its resident businesses.
Well, some of those businesses: The app-based food delivery outfits do not tend to categorize their workers as employees. They do not tend to offer workers healthcare. They do not tend to pay the requisite employment taxes. They do not deem themselves subject to employer mandates. And yet they claim their pound of flesh from brick-and-mortar establishments that pay all these taxes and do all these things.
"If this was a fair competition, I would be willing to accept it if the consumers didn't want what I had to offer," Heisler says. "But I am not willing to accept being outcompeted by virtue of another sector being given a pass when it comes to compliance with the law."
"We will not participate. We will not be extorted from."
[...] As such, Newsom's message in the wake of the Dynamex ruling hasn't been "enforce the law." It's been about collaboration and conciliation and creating a blue-ribbon panel to "expand worker opportunity."
That's fun. One could argue that the state Supreme Court's ruling already did just that.
Somehow I missed this, but a few months ago Kenny Hoff posted his video of last July's Cocktail Robotics Grand Challenge!
Here's the timeline of the interviews and demos, in case you wanna skip around to your favorites:
- 0:02:20 The Dude Imbibes
- 0:04:05 Shock Bot
- 0:05:28 Kamikaze Blaster (Second Place Winner!)
- 0:07:45 PenguinGuyCool92 (First Place Winner!)
- 0:08:46 TikiTron (Third Place Winner!)
- 0:10:50 N. E. BREE-8
- 0:14:12 Tikitron again
- 0:14:44 Booze Vaporator
- 0:15:55 The Tea Engine
- 0:18:02 Whiskeyball
- 0:21:20 Steve the Bartending Robot
- 0:23:17 Our judges: Hep Svadja, Tomas Puig, Jillian Ogle, Doug Dalton
The sixth annual Cocktail Robotics Grand Challenge is coming up on Sunday, July 21, so please get your robots ready and sign up! (I know it's early, but we've only had one robot officially sign up so far. Don't leave me hanging...)
The date for the sixth annual Cocktail Robotics Grand Challenge has been announced: Sunday, July 21!
Do you like ROBOTS? And DRINKING? Experience incredible robot bartenders serving you drinks, lovingly crafted with MAD SCIENCE by the finest competitors in the art of robotics and bartending.
If you're thinking about building a robot, that's closer than you think! As always, please reduce my anxiety by signing up with your robot early instead of the week before. Please?
Oh yeah, also I got Tempest working, and there was much rejoicing.
It's been a little while since I did a photo dump, so here are a few recent photo galleries.
Let me particularly draw your attention to our Fyre Festival party, which was hilarious. I hope you visited the FEMA tent, and managed to snap up one of the sandwiches before they were gone! So many influencers. So many influencers.
Also, the Little Big show from last week deserves some mention for being awesome. For not having a lot of, uh, "instrumentation", they really knew how to work a room. And the room was here for it. They even got most of the crowd doing that ridiculous dance.
You may notice that there haven't been many photos lately. That's because it's damned near impossible for us to find photographers who will actually show up. It's even a paid gig! Finding consistent photographers has never been easy, but I feel like it used to be easier. Perhaps "I blew $4k on a DSLR" is no longer the status signifier that it once was?
They got a respectable 27 points, but they lost out to a couple of kids doing a terrible Trump and Pence impression. (I'm sure their parents will look back fondly on that when those kids are in the camps.)
They did not get gonged! That's quality content, my friends.
The SF Weekly Best of SF poll is up again, so vote for us, won't you?
Relevant categories include: Best Dance Club, Best Live Music Venue, Best Late Nite Bite, Best Pizza, and Best Live Theatre (which I guess is the only category this year that fit Hubba Hubba Revue or Mortified?)
It means nothing, but we like the validation. If you're the "thoughts and prayers" type, voting for us there is the least you could do. Literally the least. Oh hey, this month we had four new people sign for our Patreon -- count 'em, four -- so please nag your friends, ok?
As the DNA Lounge apocalypse rolls ever nearer, one of the ways that I fiddle while Rome burns is by repairing obsolete electronics.
To that end, welcome to the DNA Lounge Arcade. I fixed up and nightclub-hardened some old arcade games. These had been sitting in my apartment for years, adding excellent ambience but mostly being powered off. But what good are they doing anyone if they aren't being played? That is their mission. So now they're at the club. So I re-built a few boards, put in beefier fans, moved the power switches, got the coin-mechs working, and generally made them more tolerant of the gentle embrace of customers. Please don't tag them.
Sadly, Tempest did not survive all the jostling in the truck and up the stairs. I have not had a chance to figure out which component died this time. Star Wars and Millipede are working great, though! Oh yeah, I also fixed Vectrex: the screen was all squished at the top, and I made the reset button go back to the menu, rather than just restarting the current game, which is something I often saw people being confused by. (Like Vectrex, Star Wars and Tempest use vector CRTs instead of raster CRTs, which makes them just inherently better. No emulation or LCD has ever done these games justice. Elegant games for a more civilized age.)
Oh, hey! We hired a new pizza manager! This guy beat the record for shortest duration ever: this one quit 4 hours before his first shift! He accepted the job, set a start date, and then said "I changed my mind" that very day.
Let me leave you with one final thought. The other night I was considering going to see a band that I was barely familiar with (not at my club). But I was grumpy and almost talked myself into staying home. But I didn't, I went to see this random band, and by the time they began their second song, I remembered -- no matter how depressed I am, I have never, not once, ever said, "I should have just sat on my couch instead of going to see that show." Even if the band sucked. (They didn't.)
Support your local live entertainment. Or it won't be there.
Which brings us to the fairly eclectic mix we have coming up in the next couple of weeks. If one of these doesn't float your boat, please consider the possibility that you have already died.
- Fri: Mortified: people read from their teenage diaries
- Fri: Hubba Hubba Revue: Undersea Burlesque
- Tue: Dr. Sketchy's Anti-Art School: a figure-drawing class
- Wed: Debut: SFIEC's hair and makeup show
- Wed: Dorkbot: Talks about artifical organs, flying car racing, public art
- Fri 19: So Stoked: an all-night rave
- Sun 21: Kalmah & Vreid: metal bands
- Fri 26: Mercury Soul: Jazz Mafia hard to describe, but awesome
- Sat 27: Hante & Box and the Twins: Parisian indie/gothic bands
- Tue 30: Cattle Decapitation: more metal!
Today is DNA Pizza's 8th anniversary! Hooray!
We still haven't found a restaurant manager! Boo!
Everything old is new again: it will be the 20th anniversary of the release of The Matrix in a couple of weeks -- yes, there is no way that this news does not make you feel old -- and we're doing a screening of the movie here, followed by a Matrix-themed rave! Next Friday, March 22. It should be pretty great, in a Cyberdelia sort of way. No skate ramps this time, though. Oh, speaking of, if you go hit "like" on the Cyberdelia facebook page, you may find yourself a discount code.
And since we're partying like it's 1999, here's a bleak, dystopian future from noted science fiction magazine The New York Times:
Thousands of New Millionaires Are About to Eat San Francisco Alive:
Big wealth doesn't come in monthly paychecks. It comes when a start-up goes public, transforming hypothetical money into extremely real money. This year -- with Uber, Lyft, Slack, Postmates, Pinterest and Airbnb all hoping to enter the public markets -- there's going to be a lot of it in the Bay Area. [...] Welcomed finally into the elite caste who can afford to live comfortably in the Bay Area, the fleet of new millionaires are already itching to claim what has been promised all these years. [...]
"Are we going to see a one-bedroom condo that's worth less than $1 million in five years?" he asked the crowd. "Are we going to see single family homes selling for one to three million?" [...]
When Google in Mountain View and Facebook in Menlo Park went public, their workers were spread across the Bay Area, and so the impact on housing was diffuse. Now, many of the biggest start-ups are based in San Francisco, in part thanks to the city's tax breaks. Brokers say San Francisco is where the workers want to stay. [...]
"We see multiple parties per I.P.O. for the company that is I.P.O.ing, as well as firms that are associated to them," Mr. Siegan said. Budgets for start-up parties, he said, can easily go above $10 million. "They're wanting to bring in A-list celebrities to perform at the dinner tables for the executives. They want ballet performers."
A popular new feature he's noticing is clients hoping to curate their own theme concerts featuring fleets of bands. Mr. Siegan says he put on one for a 1980s loving tech executive, featuring the B-52s, Devo, The Bangles, Tears for Fears and Flock of Seagulls.
In a warehouse in Concord, Calif., the I.P.O. ice sculptor is getting ready to staff up for what he says will be a long year.
If any of you reading this work for a company planning to throw one of these massive IPO shindigs, let me emphasize that we are ready and willing to (gunshot, gunshot, click, cash register) take your money. Operators are standing by.
It's the least you could do. Like, it is literally, literally the least. No least-er.
As always, The Onion was there first:
Report: Nation's Gentrified Neighborhoods Threatened By Aristocratization:
WASHINGTON -- According to a report released Tuesday by the Brookings Institution, a Washington-based think tank, the recent influx of exceedingly affluent powder-wigged aristocrats into the nation's gentrified urban areas is pushing out young white professionals, some of whom have lived in these neighborhoods for as many as seven years.
Maureen Kennedy, a housing policy expert and lead author of the report, said that the enormous treasure-based wealth of the aristocracy makes it impossible for those living on modest trust funds to hold onto their co-ops and converted factory loft spaces. [...]
"These accusations are pure, slanderous rubbish," said Lord Nathan Dunkirk III, the owner of a prodigious manor house that, along with its steeplechase course and topiary garden, sits on what was once the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco. "If anything, the layabouts and wastrels have been afforded a veritable glut of new and felicitous opportunities as bootblacks and scullery maids."
Well, our restaurant manager rage-quit again. This one only lasted two weeks. The last one lasted five!
Both of these guys had extensive experience actually running restaurants, and sounded like they knew what they were doing. And then both of them basically said: "The restaurant has this list of problems (that you explicitly told me about before you hired me). You should probably fix those, bye!"
I mean, no joke, in the interviews we would say, repeatedly, "We're not looking to hire someone who's going to say to us, 'You should have more checklists!' We're looking to hire someone who, as the manager, is going to make those checklists, and make sure they are followed." Both of them said, "Absolutely, I'm your guy!" Then a couple weeks later, "You should get some checklists, good luck with that!"
Double-you tee fuck.
This is so frustrating, because we know there are problems -- money-losing problems -- with our restaurant, and the solution to literally every one of those problems begins with, "Step 1: Hire a competent manager". Right now restaurant management is being spread between three or four people who all have other full time jobs here, jobs which are also critical.
Anyway, here's here's our Craigslist ad. Help, help.