Last week at DNA Lounge I witnessed the most amazing thing! A guy was chewing gum. And he took it out of his mouth, with his hand. And he put it in a trash can. I'm not sure I've ever seen that happen before.
Truly, a gentleman and a scholar.
Be like him.
So, what's new. Well, Live Nation / TicketMaster are up to their usual shit: "Live Nation admits putting tickets straight on the resale market". "Resale market" means that TicketMaster pretended that a bunch of tickets had already been "sold" by moving them directly to their in-house scalping service, making it even less likely that you could get your ticket at face value. And local boys Metallica were fully complicit in this.
Oh yeah, and also: "Ticketmaster fined $4.5 million for deceptive ticketing practices: Canada's Competition Bureau found Ticketmaster inflated their prices by almost 65% using mandatory fees". $4.5 million is nothing to them, of course. Remember, a fine is a price. Business practices like this don't change until a rich white guy goes to prison.
Live Nation, you may recall, sell 80% of all tickets in the US, own 117 venues and exclusively books 33 others, including The Fillmore, The Masonic, Cobb's, Punch Line, and most recently, August Hall (formerly Ruby Skye).
But back down here on Eleventh Street:
You may have noticed that the Crepes a Go-Go truck across the street is gone. Their eviction had been pending "any day now" for about six years, but I guess it finally happened. Back in 2013 the purple warehouse building next door burned down, and the replacement project appears to be getting under way. Here's a rendering of the ridiculous flashbulb that they're planning to build there:
It's going to be office space, not overpriced condos, which is good news. If there's one thing Eleventh Street does not need it's another batch of glass-fronted apartments staring directly at a row of nightclubs and bars across the street.
The development appears to be "ground floor commercial", which almost certainly means that we can expect that storefront space to remain empty in perpetuity, as they do in all such new developments. Just look at all the empty storefronts on Folsom, Mission, King...
You'd think that if you had empty property, the thing to do would be to lower your asking price until someone said yes, thus finding what the market would bear. But the landlords think they'll make more money by playing a long game, and leaving the place empty for years until they find one deep-pockets client -- which is almost always a soulless, characterless franchise of a national chain, not a local business.
Peskin is pushing for a punitive vacancy tax to change this dynamic, and make it be cheaper to have tenants than not, and that sounds like a reasonable idea to me. The penalty would have to be pretty high to be effective, though.
Let's just hope that whatever company moves in there doesn't build their own cafeteria: another hermetically sealed burbclave that doesn't require their employees to ever engage with or patronize their neighborhood.
I recently had lunch with a friend at their office, elsewhere in SOMA, and we ate in the company cafeteria. The whole time all I could think of was that we were in a neighborhood with maybe 30 restaurants within 3 blocks, and this massive cafeteria was single-handedly cutting all of those other businesses' profits in half. There's another proposed ordinance trying to fix that, but it will accomplish nothing: "Watered-Down Version Of SF's Tech Cafeteria Ban Returns To Supes' Agenda".
What kills me is when the workers try to frame these cafeterias as "saving them money", as if they had never heard the phrase "there's no such thing as a free lunch". It's not even a metaphor in this case. You know that "perk" is coming out of your salary, right? It sure isn't coming out of the CEO's, I promise you that. It's like when people get a tax refund and get excited because they think the government just gave them free money. That is not how this works!