5-Jan-2017 (Thu) Wherein this boulder isn't going to roll itself up that hill.

Hey look, it's 2017. How you doin'?

Alright, what's been going on. Let's see...

We had four New Year's Eve parties, and both Acid Rain and Bootie did great. Acid Rain really gave me flashbacks to Thump, since it was trance instead of hardcore as most of our "rave" events have been lately. After Bootie ended on New Year's Eve we had Drums, a circuit party, from 3am to 9am. That was somewhat under-attended. It's been years since we've done a late-night party like that: back in the Thump days, sometimes the headliner wouldn't even go on until 4am, but that's very much out of fashion these days. Kids today, I don't know. That same night, we also had an 18-and-over Mini-Bootie over at Codeword, and that tanked like a big tanky thing. Sigh. Well, two out of four?

Our awesome crew have been busting their butts following up on all the great suggestions and offers for help we've gotten since the apocalypse post -- if we haven't gotten back to you yet, we will soon! There have been many 16 and 23 hour days here lately. Everyone is looking a bit shell-shocked.

To the future --  ("To the future!"  Wait, that wasn't a toast? Sorry...)

  • Lots of people have offered their help who don't necessarily have money, but do have time, hands and brains, and to facilitate that, we've created a new Facebook group, DNA Lounge Street Team. Go join! Use it for discussion and suggestions. I imagine that we will end up using it to throw out random calls for assistance, like "hey, anyone want to design some flyers?" or "who loves painting the floor?"

  • After a very helpful talk with Alan at Borderlands Books about how their sponsorship program works, we came to the conclusion that a sponsorship is not, and should not be, a product that you sell.

    I've updated our Patreon page with an explanation of this, so I'll just paste it here:

    Your sponsorship helps ensure that we can continue bringing you the kind of awesome, eclectic and weird events that you've come to expect from us! Your sponsorship keeps us independent, and lets us continue to take chances on the kind of local live entertainment that makes San Francisco great.

    "But what's in it for me?"

    Unlike most crowdfunding efforts, we are not selling you a "product" here. Your donation allows DNA Lounge to continue to exist, plain and simple. We think that's important. We think that's a pretty big deal. We hope that you do too!

    Maybe you're one of those people who finds themselves at DNA Lounge three times a week. Or maybe you only come to three shows a year, but those three shows are really important to you, and you very much want to be able to come to them in the future. We want that too, and that's why we need your help.

    "Wait, you mean I don't get free tickets?"

    We thought long and hard about this, and came to the conclusion that doing something like that would send entirely the wrong message. We want you to donate to this cause because you want DNA Lounge to continue to exist. If we offered rewards like, "if you donate X dollars, you get Y free tickets", then what we're really doing is selling you a ticket bundle. That proposal makes you a customer, not a sponsor, not a partner. It forces you to ask the question of whether you're getting your money's worth: whether those tickets are a bargain.

    But we don't want you to donate because it's a good bargain. We want you to donate because you believe in our mission, and want it to continue!

    We may choose to offer some sponsor-only perks in the future, because you are awesome and we love you, but we don't want that to be the reason you signed up.

  • We had an all-hands meeting! I think it went pretty welll, in that we were able to convey a lot of info, and we received a lot of good feedback from our staff. It's been a couple years since we did that, which was an unfortunate oversight. There really are a lot of people who work here. Thank you, DNA co-conspirators. It was good to see all of your faces. Here's Meredith's moody take on it:

  • ROT13, Jared's daily craft cocktail happy hour over at Codeword, has a DJ now! Laüs will be spinning for you every Wednesday. Come check it out.

  • At the last Peepshow (our drag/burlesque show that happens third Wednesdays at Codeword) at intermission time, Sophilya said something to the effect of, "...so go next store and get a slice", and someone in the audience yelled, "THE TOTS!!" and the whole audience cheered! They cheered our tater tots, man. I mean, yeah, they're pretty great! But I haven't heard that before.

  • What's up with the sidewalk? Beats me. After that flurry of activity just before New Year's, they have been MIA for eight days, and haven't even picked up their big plastic barrier wall. I think they're not quite done with the street paving on the other side of the curb. When do we get our bike racks back? Good question. We chained a stanchion to the streetlight as a halfassed substitute.

  • It came up in conversation today that that stupid tree in the middle of our sidewalk -- a twig of a tripping hazard on an inverse island in a sea of concrete -- probably ought to have its own Twitter account. Tree-N-A Lounge. "I've seen some shit, man. My roots are soaking in a slurry of candy cane and Fireball. I hate SantaCon."

  • This changes everything! Wait, this changes nothing! California Beauty Salons, Barbershops Will Soon Be Allowed to Serve Wine and Beer.

  • My new favorite Yelp review demonstrates the eternal healing power of cookies:

    Went here last night. Ordered a carnivore pizza and a cookie. The guy behind the counter got a call immediately afterward from some schmo who had ordered delivery pizza but failed to answer the door, which took him a minute or two to sort out. He was super chill and gave me a second cookie for free to make up for the delay.

    The pizza was delicious btw.

That's all I got. Carry on.

20 Responses:

  1. is there any way to pay on the 5th of the month instead of the 1st?

  2. Andrew says:

    Psst - there is an article on Slate about how public radio gets people to participate in pledge drives that's worth reading if you haven't seen it already.

    I think I agree that giving discounted ticketing or drinks is counter productive. Totes probably don't work for your customer base, but assuming there is some equivalent item that does, and using your earlier argument re tickets, why bundle it with a patronage pledge when you could just sell it. A few more items for the store (such as shot glasses, water bottles, caps, knit hats, scarves) might help.

  3. NikBorton says:

    Keeping DNA, and by extension entertaining and interesting reads here and at jwz.org, going is precisely why I'm in - I've no expectation of ever actually attending or anything.

    Though now I'm doing regular 2 week visits to the east coast for work (from the uk) I guess there's a chance I'll work up the enthusiasm to fly across one weekend instead of bar-squatting the same town (lovely as it is).

  4. o.o says:

    I'm not sure this would exactly equate since you're not a non-profit, but re: the pledge drive comment above, I know of a few non-profits that give you the option of getting something in exchange for a donation of a significantly higher amount than the value of the item. You can get an EFF sweatshirt, for example, if you donate $250 (and it's just one of their regular ones, nothing special). I know I appreciate having the option, but I don't know if you'd find enough people willing to pay $100 for a DNA Lounge T-shirt and koozie when they're not also getting a break on their taxes with it.

    • Internal Revenant Service says:

      When you donate $250 to the EFF, the IRS says that you are actually buying a hoodie for $66 (the retail price) and donating the remaining $184. Only the latter is tax deductible. So it's not that you get a free gift, you just get a bundle of donation & purchase. But it feels like a free gift, which is probably what counts to everyone but the IRS.

      So it's not ridiculous to give a sticker to a $100 sponsor, because it's obviously not transactional at that point and no one will think they're getting a bad price for a sticker and the resulting good will from the sticker-as-thank-you-note could be worth it, but it's also a lot simpler and less work just to take their money via all the existing systems and let people buy stuff from the store if they want it.

  5. Paul N says:

    I like the website facelift.

    I both love and don't love the Patreon goals. It is amazing to see just how much it costs to run a nightclub. But I am not sure it is motivating to your patr(e)ons. Sadly, there really does seem to be a "what's in it for me" attitude when it comes to these things.

    It occurs to me that the Snark-o-tron could be used for perks. I do not know how programmable it is, but for $100+/month you could get your name in lights and for $500+/month maybe you could get that personalized jwz insult the unwashed masses are clamouring for. (Maybe people still get Snark-o-tron access for free now? The website suggests otherwise.)

    It is more hassle, but giving out the merch you already have (even the cheap stuff like stickers and posters) seems to work on these crowdfunding sites. I do not know why.

    • jwz says:

      I didn't really know what to put in the "Goals" section, so I just put in a few random examples of our costs. I dunno.

      The Snarkatron is pretty slow and has few lines, but it would be easy to put a cable-new-style crawl at the bottom of the flyer display TV in DNA Pizza with patron names...

      • Paul N says:

        "pretty slow and has few lines" == "higher donation levels". Something something supply and demand something. But the flyer TV crawl sounds good, too.

  6. Elusis says:


    Should DNA become a 501(c)3 arts organization? Discuss.

  7. Binky the Tormented says:

    OK so like that tree? That tree symbolizes, like, the COURAGE OF THE HUMAN SPIRIT, and nature, and stuff, amid the vast, uncaring, lifeless cement of modern existence. Protect and care for this tree. Water this tree regularly.

  8. DNAsince1985 says:

    Just stopping by to say I had a great time at My Melody last night. Everytime I step in the DNA I have a flood of memories - I can attach a memories to almost every location in the club. Once I get past that, I take a look around... everyone's here, younger and older, the spectrum of skin colors and ethnicities and orientations... and that up vibe! I'll will always be a supporter, with my cash and my attendance. Thank you so much for keeping it going jwz & crew.

  9. gippgig says:

    Did you realize that you put the DNA Lounge Street Team on a members-only web page?

    • jwz says:

      Because of spammers. All you have to do is hit Join.

      • Bobby says:

        (I tried to enter this before but it apparently didn't work so I'm resubmitting it.)
        Do you want to exclude those who don't want a Facebook account?

  10. No says:

    Not all of us are Zuck'd in 2017......

  11. Saxton Hale says:

    Cyberdelia returns!

  12. Binky the Tormented says:

    You could rename the club, "Thunderbolt", and have a huge eye-catching blue neon lightning bolt rippling down the facade to the door. You know the kind of neon where it displays progressively, like they have in Vegas. Maybe that would help?

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