Friday, May 31, 2013

This restaurant deal is great and you should get on it before they take it away; also, a New Bar Night

Yesterday was our anniversary!  Me and the wife.  4 years.  So we ditched the baby with my sister and did what we used to do before she came along - went out drinkin' & eatin'.

We met up at Local Edition, a vaguely newspaper-themed fancy cocktail bar in a vast subterranean basement on Market.  You can reserve a table for cocktails, which I really like, because it was already getting crowded at 5:30 when we got there.  It's a big dark room, as you can sort of see when I accidentally took a picture with the flash on:

Whoops!  Sorry about that.  Then I took another picture with the flash off.

I guess I didn't need to show you both of those. Anyway, if you've been to a bar in SF in the last year, you know what it's like, drink-wise - lots of fancy liquors and absinthe and weird bitters and whatnot.  But the drinks were great.  I got a gimlet, which was superb as gimlets go, and something called a Yellow Kid, that had gin, lemon, something called Velvet Falernum that appears to be some kind of liqueur, dill syrup, some kind of vermouth, and ginger beer.  It was fantastic.  By the time we left, it was really, really crowded and there was some Business Douche in the front room at a table of other Business Douches and Douchettes who was yelling "WOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!" like he was at Senor Frog's on Spring Break so hopefully that's not a major feature.  It was nice and quiet and grownup where we were sitting, so maybe it's locational.  Anyway, worth a shot if you're around Market and 3rd.

The main event was dinner at Cupola, the fancy pizza joint in the Westfield Centre.  Now, of course, when you hear "mall restaurant" you think crayons on the table and laminated menus, but this is like a legit restaurant.  Michael Bauer reviewed it not long ago and said "if it were in a freestanding storefront, the lines would probably be around the block."  In that review, he talked about this insane deal - a 10-course meal for $30 - so we decided we had to try it.

Holy shit, you guys.  It was fucking great.

You don't really know what you're going to get - I gather it's up to the chef, and varies from night to night.  We got started with some perfectly grilled asparagus with capers and egg, along with some marinated, sliced hen of the woods mushrooms with English peas.  And then shit just kept coming.  Lamb meatballs in a spicy sauce.  House-made hand torn handkerchief pasta in tomato basil sauce.  Butter lettuce with gorgonzola, pear, and walnuts.  A slab of fresh, gooey mozzarella with morels and toast.  Artichoke lasagna with an arugula salad.  And then an amazing pizza Margherita.  And then a chocolate ganache with some kind of ice cream and a hazelnut brittle and then some strawberry sorbet.

That wasn't even all of it.  It was a shitload of food, no lie.  All that for $30 a head.

Anyway, thanks to Big Mouth Bauer, the secret is out.  The waitress - a tiny, pixieish creature who was as nice and helpful as she could be - told us about three or four other table were currently having the same thing.  Get yourself over there and do this before it's gone.  And then you can proudly say "Yeah, I ate at a mall restaurant.  It got two and a half stars from Bauer.  And it fucking ruled."

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Reader mail, and the Bachelorette thing

Reader N. writes:

where is this weeks bachelorette blog? I love love love your recaps, as does my mom and all our friends who watch every monday.

That's very nice of you, Reader N.!  And Reader N.'s Mom.  If I knew Mom was reading, I wouldn't have made all those drug jokes.  I DON'T DO DRUGS, N'S MOM, I JUST KNOW ABOUT THEM FROM READING TIME MAGAZINE.  Anyway, actually, my plan was to take this season off, you know, and just kind of chill and regroup and not have to worry about it.  You may not know this, but it's a lot of work! First I have to pour myself a large vodka.  Then I have to watch the TV show and take notes that say things like "Did she just say life changing again? STUPID." or "Hahahaha big head" or "I'm drunk hold me".  Then the next morning I have to figure out what I wrote and then transcribe it into some kind of coherent narrative.  And then liberally sprinkle in drug jokes.  So you see it requires a not-inconsequential amount of effort.

But I'll tell you what.  I'll think about it.  I did watch the pilot and one thing I could say is that they have obviously run out of First Tier candidates because this crew makes the Monday day shift at an Abercrombie & Fitch in a mall in Des Moines look like the Manhattan Project.  I thought the guy who looks like a 1920's FBI Wanted poster come to life was bad but then there was the Rape Datist who kept trying to lure Dezzie into his Faux Fantasy Silence of the Lambs Suite and the ER doc from Berkeley who I hope they don't let operate on the Real Patients because he seemed a little challenged or maybe just drunk and also a guy who wasn't wearing a shirt and grinned maniacally and a guy who seems like he may have had a traumatic brain injury and offers high-fives to randoms in the street.  I could go on.

Point being that if this the best crop they could muster, I'm glad because that means they're almost around to me and then I'll get to be on the show.  And then around the time we get to Borneo or whatever, Chris Harrison will gravely tell Dez that he has learned of some very troubling information and will produce The Wife and Baby Beyonce and Dez will tearfully ask me if I'm still in love with her and I'll say "Who, the baby?" and she'll say "No, your wife!" and I'll say "Yeah, totally," and then I'll have to leave the show.

Oh, it's also my wedding anniversary today, speaking of The Wife.  Happy Anniversary, The Wife!  Thanks for putting up with me and also the baby and stuff.  You're aces.

OK, I'm rambling.  I guess I might do it.  Stay tuned.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Sound problems

Obviously you know how much I love Mikal Cronin's new album and so I was super excited to go see him at Rickshaw Stop this past Saturday.  As venues in this town go, Rickshaw is pretty good.  There are enough bartenders for the crowd size so you never have to wait long, there's usually enough room that it doesn't have that Tokyo subway crowded feel, and, in my experience, the sound is usually pretty good.


The less said about the two opening acts the better.  Especially the first one.  And the show started about an hour late, closer to 10 than 9, but whatever, it's Saturday night.

And then he started and there is an immediate problem: the sound was TERRIBLE.  Everything was just cranked.  It was ear-shatteringly loud, which is fine, it's rock and roll, I should have remembered my earplugs, but when everything is pushed to 11 there is no differentiation between instruments at all.  The guitars were just a loud roar.  The vocals were barely audible.  The drums were there but couldn't get their head above the water in the soupy mix.  It was majorly disappointing, for me.  I really like all these songs and I was looking forward to hearing them, but the mix - or the lack of a mix - made it basically impossible.

In the world of SF clubs, I would rate the Independent as having the consistently best sound and probably Bottom of the Hill as the worst.  (In fact, at one show at Bottom of the Hill, I stood to the left and slightly behind the stage because the only way you could hear vocals was through the singer's on-stage monitor.)  I used to think Rickshaw was somewhere in the  middle, but man, after this I can't see going back there to see anything I really care about seeing.  I left before the encore.  Drag.

(BTW, my ears still aren't completely back to normal.  EARPLUGS, people.  Stupid mistake.)

Hey, to look on the bright side, though, at least people weren't talking louder than the show! Because it wouldn't be physically possible for humans to approach that volume unaided.

Not to keep bitching about everything, but then yesterday/last night the frat boy neighbors 2 houses down had one of their patented Blast House Music Outside and Then Yell At Each Other Because You Have To Yell To Be Heard Over the Atrocious Music parties.  I shit you not, 2 houses down and it was clearly audible in our bedroom.  I was trying to figure out what we were going to do about this when it was still going on at 10 pm, but by the time we went to bed around 11:30 it had mostly died down except for a couple of drunk shitbags and woo girls yelling at each other, nothing our white noise machine (ESSENTIAL FOR CITY LIVIN, BTW) couldn't handle.

FINAL NOTE: We were up that late watching the Steven Soderbergh Liberace biopic (and how about that string of 4 words! The mind reels) and all I have to say is I wish Rob Lowe's character, played by Rob Lowe, would just appear in every movie from now on.  With or without any explanation or connection to the plot.  Just show up.  Like, in "Lincoln," he would appear, completely out of context, in 70's wardrobe, deliver a couple of lines, and then disappear.  GOLD.

Once you see this movie you'll know what I mean.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Finally, my work in the gardening field has paid off

YOU GUYS YOU GUYS I have some exciting news.  Because of my status and reach as a Thought Leader and Blogger, I have found myself in a position to choose from a selection of pretty great products.  Confused?  I'll explain.

I got an email yesterday that started like this:


My name is [REDACTED] from [REDACTED.COM]. I came across your site, and it just totally put me in the mood for spring!  Your site is not only refreshing but also makes gardening sound so fun and easy for those who aren't used to growing picture perfect plants like me. Since we have a wide range of gardening equipment, we'd love to collaborate with you.

I know, right?  When you think "gardening," you think of 40goingon28 first, right?  You know those countless thousands of posts I've written about gardening, right?  I mean, gardening is pretty much the focus of my blog!  Who can forget such posts as:

Putting Shit In The Ground and Then Later Eating What Comes Up: Gardening

Gardening: It's Not Just for Schizophrenics and the Elderly Any More!

Can I Grow Opium Poppies And Make My Own Vicodin From Them? Let's Find Out!

Gardening!: The Musical

I do make gardening sound fun and easy, don't I?

REDACTED had a pretty exciting offer for me. She sent me a JPG with some pictures of items.  I get to pick an item and write about it!  Then I get to keep the item!  What could be easier!

Sadly, there was no "gardening equipment" depicted on the flyer, so REDACTED really let me down there.  How am I supposed to keep my readers up to date on gardening without any free #GARDENING #SWAG? You suck, REDACTED.  Now I'm mad at you.

Here's the item I'm picking:

I shit you not, this is exactly how it appeared in the image REDACTED sent me.  $64.99!  That's a fucking BARGAIN.  No word on how big the Disco Ball is, but if the other stuff is to scale, my guess is that it's roughly grapefruit-sized.  A disco ball for the Little People.  They can hang it in their tiny nightclubs and dance under its tiny lights.

Here is my writing about Disco Ball:


by TK

Marian danced listlessly at Mini Ruby Skye, the best nightclub in town for Little People.  Above her, DISCO BALL turned, sprinkling the tiny nightclub with shards of reflected light.  But its gaily colored lights did not cheer Marian.  For she had been distraught since she broke up with Brad.

Oh look, here was Brad now.  What's this?  He was also dancing beneath rotating DISCO BALL, but with his new girlfriend.  No worry, thought Marian.  They will both die soon.

How was that, REDACTED?  Can I have by Disco Ball now? 

Monday, May 20, 2013

Burrito!: The Musical

Inspired originally by a tweet from Dan Jackson, with additional comments by BurritoJustice and others.

Act I

Carlos and Esmerelda are the proprietors of La Tradición, a small, independent burrito parlor that serves a loyal and grateful clientele.  Each burrito is lovingly handcrafted, and they use only the finest ingredients.  People come from far and wide for their specialty, the "Burrito Zafiro," made with a blue tortilla.

Song: "Beans and Rice and Love"

One day, Bobby, a loyal customer, warns them that a major burrito chain, Burrito Bandito, is coming to town.  Bobby worries that Burrito Bandito's massive ad campaigns and cheaper burritos will put La Tradición out of business.

Song: "Horsemeat and Spray Cheese"

Carlos and Esmerelda assure Bobby there's nothing to worry about; people will always choose higher quality over cheaper price.  Bobby is not so sure.

Song: "Old Navy Blues"

Meanwhile, Carlos and Esmerelda's daughter Gabriela has some exciting news: she has a new beau, Roger! She brings him around to meet her parents, and they are pleased.  Roger is a nice young man who is polite and respectful, not like Gabriela's ex-boyfriend Gaspar, who played in a punk band and joined an underground anti-gentrification cell.

Song: "New Love Is Like Guacamole"

One day, a stranger comes into the store.  He introduces himself as E. Conommy Ofscale and tells Carlos and Esmerelda he works for Burrito Bandito.  They greet the stranger warmly and offer to prepare him a Supreme with Carne Asada to welcome the new business to town, but he refuses, explaining that he doesn't really eat burritos. Ofscale tells Carlos and Esmerelda that they had better get ready; Burrito Bandito is coming to town and would crush them like it crushes all its competition - with ultra-cheap mass-produced burritos, an ad campaign targeted at Thought Leaders, and plenty of Tostitos brand salsa.  Carlos and Esmerelda look aghast.  "What, you don't put lettuce in your burritos?," Ofscale asks.  Esmerelda faints to the floor.

Song: "What Have You Done To My Burrito"

Gabriela and Roger arrive just as Ofscale leaves.  The old couple, distraught, explain to them what just happened.  Roger, who has a business degree, volunteers to try and help Carlos and Esmerelda fight the corporate behemoth.  They gratefully accept his offer.  Great, he says.  He'll just need to look at their books.

Song: "I'll Just Need to Look At Your Books"

Burrito Bandito opens nearby and immediately crowds are drawn to its huge dining room and cheap prices.  To Carlos and Esmerelda's shock, Burrito Bandito introduces a new, special menu item, the "Burrito de Blue Tortilla," made with a blue tortilla, just like La Tradición's Burrito Zafiro!  Carlos and Esmerelda don disguises and visit the new competitor.

Song: "Don't Mind Us, We're Just Know-Nothings With No Sense of Taste Here To Sample Your So-Called Burritos"

Carlos is shocked.  "It's the same tortilla as the Burrito Zafiro!," he exclaims.  "How could they have gotten our recipe?  We're finished, Esmerelda, finished!"

Act II

Burrito Bandito is booming while business at La Tradición has fallen off, largely fueled by the runaway success of Burrito Bandito's Burrito de Blue Tortilla.  Carlos and Esmerelda are sadly contemplating closing the store.

Song: "I Will Water My Cilantro With Tears"

The next day, a mysterious young man comes into the store.  He peruses the menu and asks for an al pastor with no cheese and extra jalapenos.  As Carlos prepares the burrito, he suddenly realizes: "Gaspar! Is that you?"  The man smiles and nods, removing the Google Glass and startup sweatshirt he was wearing as a disguise.  "Yes, it is I!," Gaspar says.  He tells them he is here to help them battle the evil corporate chain.

Song: "A Molotov Is the Spiciest Salsa Of All"

As they talk, Gabriela and Roger arrive.  The old lovers at first trade barbs, but it is soon apparent that beneath their frosty exterior, there are still feelings between them. After Gabriela and Roger leave, Gaspar tells Carlos and Esmerelda that he is suspicious of Roger; something just didn't seem right.

Song: "Yuppie No Bueno"

One night, Gaspar and some other members of LENGUA, the Loyal Eternal No Gentrification Underground Association, plan to break into Burrito Bandito.  Matty, a recent UC Santa Cruz graduate with a degree in Ethnic Studies, wants to burn it to the ground, but Gaspar cautions against this.

Song: "Chill Out, My College Marxist Brother"

Instead, Gaspar convinces the group that gathering information about Burrito Bandito will ultimately prove more worthwhile.  The team agrees and, under cover of darkness, they break into Burrito Bandito.  What they find shocks even these hardcore revolutionaries - stacks of cans labeled "Bean-Flavored Product," bags of raw pigeon meat, and, worst of all, the secret ingredients for La Tradición's Burrito Zafiro!  As they photograph the scene, a startled Roger emerges from a back room.

Song: "Holy Shit What the Fuck Are You Doing Here"

"I knew it!," Gaspar exclaims. LENGUA notifies the police, who soon arrive and arrest Roger for Second Degree Burrito Embezzlement.  LENGUA publishes the damning photos.  Burrito Bandito is finished and closes in shame.

Months later, we are at the wedding of Gaspar and Gabriela. La Tradición is thriving once again. Carlos and Esmerelda tearfully reflect on their good fortune, their station in the burrito world firmly fixed.

Song: "Burritos (Make the World Go Round)"

Friday, May 17, 2013

Most popular boys' baby names by state reveals cultural trends, also that Florida continues to amuse

Just when you thought the government was so mired in scandal they couldn't do anything right, the Social Security Administration went and released the list of the Most Popular Baby Names for last year. THANKS A LOT, OBAMA.

(Note that this only includes babies who obtained Social Security numbers, so those weirdos who live off the grid and stockpile Franks N Beans in their garages won't be included but they all probably have names like Apocalypto and Jehezerith anyway so who cares.)

I went ahead and made a little map of the boys names because they were more interesting.  Check out the regional variations!

I don't know if you can read the tiny little caption or not, but I'll go through it mostly.

WILLIAM is popular in the South and a couple of Western states.  It's popular in the South because it sounds old-fashioned without being weird.  Will is the kind of guy who likes college football and cigars, so it goes with the South.

Your Mountain West states (plus Nebraska and Oregon) went for LIAM.  Liam's not bad, I guess, although I will always associate it with the guy from Oasis and so I always expect Liam to be a drunk asshole.

MASON was popular in your Great Lakes area, the Maine-Vermont part, whatever that's called, a couple of Midwest states, and, unaccountably, Louisiana.  I can't think of what Louisiana and Maine might have in common except tourists go there to eat shellfish?  That doesn't explain Mason.

MICHAEL was big in New York, New Jersey, and Delaware.  Obviously because of Michael Bloomberg. 

In Florida, and only Florida, the most popular boy's name was JAYDEN.  Of course.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

The mysterious changing mural

Awhile back, I wrote about the big mural at Eddy and Polk, remember?  I liked it a lot.  Still do.  Here's a picture from that post:

Turns out the guy that painted it is kind of a big deal ("Aryz sits alongside names such as Banksy, JR, ROA and Blek le Rat") and SF Weekly wrote the whole thing up with lots of details I didn't know, like that.

But wait!  Look closely at another picture of the mural from Tenderlife, one of my new fave blogs:

Notice anything different?  No?  I'll tell you then.  The little man that the lady was clutching in her fingers has been magically transformed into a much more innocuous apple.  What happened?

First they came for the macrophiliacs, and I did not speak out . . . .

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Other new Arizona laws

via Reuters:
Arizona law forces cities to resell guns from buy-back programs

By David Schwartz

PHOENIX (Reuters) - Arizona Governor Jan Brewer on Monday signed legislation forcing municipalities to resell firearms from gun buy-back programs rather than destroy them, closing a loophole in the conservative state's laws.

Brewer, a Republican and staunch gun rights advocate, signed the bill preventing local governments from melting down the weapons obtained from these popular civic events. Before the new law, the state had allowed such firearms to be destroyed. 

In light of this forward-thinking and badly needed legislation, I have proposed the additional new laws for Arizona:

- Abortion completely free and legal, but only if you don't want one.

- Stolen property must be destroyed before being returned to rightful owner.

- Limits on campaign contributions removed, but contributions must be made in cash in large cloth bags with "$$$" printed on side; must be presented by man with waxed mustache and monocle.

- You can murder one person a year, but you must use your bare hands and potential victim must be given moped and 10-minute head-start.

-  8th car wash free

- Your Significant Other can veto your restaurant choice with no ill will or resentment from you once a month.  This applies even if he/she (but c'mon, you know it's "she") initially says "I don't care, anywhere's fine."

- Gladiatorial-style combat between foster children approved; winner gets Super Slam breakfast at Denny's and one pair shoes.

- Vote for a Democrat? Automatically entered in the state's Adopt-A-Copperhead program.

- Giving businesses Spanish names now illegal.  "Tortas de Fuego" must change name to "Sandwich of Fire."

- Marrying your gun now legal.  May not marry multiple guns; that makes a mockery of marriage.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Let's all get together and protest this Recology rate increase

I know what you're saying: Oh God, not this again.  He's going to go on about recycling poachers again, like he does over and over and over.  It's true!  It's one of my Personal Obsessions.  No, seriously, it bothers me for a couple of legitimate reasons: (1) Every Monday night, there's constant noise outside my window as these little fucking shits systematically empty every single recycling bin in my neighborhood, and (2) they're not especially careful about it, so a lot of extraneous paper and shit gets taken out of the cans and scattered about, increasing the Net Dirtiness Factor of me neighborhood.  Also, some of it is Purely Irrational Hate at this point.  You can talk to my former shrink about that; he could probably explain it better than I could.

But now we have an opportunity to do something pointless and futile about it!  As you may or may not know, Recology is seeking a 21.51% rate increase, which would mean an increase of around $7 for most people.  If you're a renter, you probably don't pay for garbage and don't give a shit about this.  BUT BUT BUT even if you're a renter, you still get to protest this and at least bitch about recycling poachers in the process.  HERE'S HOW.

You can write a letter!  The Department of Public Works is having a hearing on Friday, June 13, to consider written protests.  Here's your chance to bitch about this. Send your angry-ish, but not crazy-sounding, letter to:

Refuse Collection Rate Hearing Officer
c/o Department of Public Works
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place
City Hall, Room 348
San Francisco, CA 94102

Here's what you might say: "I hear that Recology is trying to raise their rates.  Presumably they're doing this because they need more money.  I've got a great idea!  They're losing a huge potential revenue stream to recycling thieves every year.  Instead of raising rates on their customers, how about taking some simple steps to combat this problem?  One solution might be locking recycling bins.  The City of Pasadena managed to do this for only $1.34 per month.  If Pasadena can do it, certainly San Francisco can, no?  What, is Pasadena better than us?  If that's what Recology thinks, why don't they just move to Pasadena then?"

No, wait, I got a little carried away.  Delete those last two sentences.  Jazz it up however you want, but remember:  "Each protest must identify the subject premises (by street address or refuse collection account number) and include the signature of the customer submitting the protest."  So put your address on it and sign it.

Now, if we can just get you and everyone you know and everybody else in this godforsaken city to do this, we'll get somewhere.  This is never going to work.  Never mind.

Friday, May 10, 2013


It's Friday!  We have a lot to discuss, so let's just get to it.

- I know, I know, I haven't been blogging as much.  I have a 6-week-old infant at home! That's a lame excuse.  But seriously, half of this blog was about going to bars and I don't really do that much anymore.  Oh, anyway, last night we went out with the kid to a restaurant for the first time.  Well, not really a restaurant, Pasta Pomodoro, which is not so much a restaurant as a Carbohydrate Delivery System that tolerates kids.  If you've ever been to a Pasta P, you know that it's popular with the childed, and last night was no exception.  We went to the one in Laurel Village, which pretty much guarantees there'll be some spoiled rich kids, and sure enough, at the table next to us was a kid, maybe 3-4 years old, climbing barefoot up onto the windowsill.  GROSS.  The parents thought this was adorbs.  Bare feet in a restaurant is never cool, not even on a 3 year old.  All the other kids in the joint were much better behaved.  Our child was an angel, natch, and slept through the whole thing.

RELATED: Picking a Pinot Grigio at random, we stumbled across Bollini and liked it so much we stopped at BevMo and bought another bottle on the way home.  Walking around BevMo with a kid in a stroller is a hoot, BTW.

- This old couple is really getting a workout!  Here they are getting some dental implants from Clear Choice:

Then, with their dental future secured, they are moving on to their retirement future in this Heffernan ad which runs on infinite repeat during Giants games.  Same beach!  These olds are really getting shit done on that beach.  

I'm getting sort of a Senior Airline Pilot vibe from him, but maybe also banking.  Quite the jawline he's rocking, though.

- As far as the Giants go, I don't have much to add except I'm as surprised as anyone else that Barry Zito isn't just the best pitcher on the Giants roster; he's the best fucking PLAYER.  He has the highest batting average (.333), the second lowest ERA among the starters (2.75, barely behind Bumgarner's 2.31), the most beauty queen wife, and the best overall sense of calm serenity.  He is an oasis of peace in a roiling sea of chaos.  Well, it's not Angels bad, but shit is not exactly going great right now.  Whatever. It's still early.

- It's cold and foggy and generally shitty today.  Remember 8 days ago?

Have a good weekend, everybody!  Keep listening to the new Mikal Cronin album like I am and soon we will all have listened to it SEVEN BILLION TIMES! 

Monday, May 6, 2013

Today in Name Changing

Tired of being Jason? Or Amanda? Or Jules?  No problem, just change your name.  But first, in California anyway, you have to run a legal notice in the paper with your old, boring beat-up name and your new, spiffy name, I guess so you can't fool anyone who's after you for money or whatever.  I love these notices, because each one is a snapshot of a moment in someone's life when they slough off their busted old identity and look towards a bright new future.

You can find them in the back of the Examiner, probably because it's the cheapest place to run an ad.  Look for the heading ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE FOR CHANGE OF NAME.  Let's see who's changing things up today.

First, we have Aspen Brooke Branch-Moore, who is going to become Aspen Brooke Dominguez.  Both are pretty great, because "Aspen Brooke" is fantastic.  It literally sounds like money rubbing together.  I gotta say, though, I like "Branch-Moore" slightly more for its vaguely old-money British feel.  But I suppose Aspen is getting adopted? Or maybe a commitment ceremony? Or something.  Either way, you're good, Aspen.

Next, we have Marietonie Rosa Alcaraz Yumul, who wants to become Marietonie Rosa Yumul Yambad.  Lose an Alcaraz, gain a Yambad, I always say!

Our clear, absolute winner today is Nancy Ellen Bevers.  She is discarding that admittedly somewhat pedestrian moniker and is going big.  I mean, REALLY BIG.  Ready?  Nancy will now be rocking:


That's it.  Just ALAYA.  In a word, FABULOUS.  She's joining Cher and Liberace and Siegfried and Roy in the solo name club.  Congratulations, Nancy!  You win Name Changing for today.

(So I guess you can legally go by one name?  Huh.  I did now know that.  But I sort of want to show up at Nancy/Alaya's name change hearing just to congratulate her.)

Friday, May 3, 2013

What's going on with the Top 3 songs in the country right now?

From time to time, we here at 40goingon28 like to take a sample of our national zeitgeist by checking out what the 3 most popular songs in the country are, according to Billboard.  We don't listen to the radio or watch the MTV or download things on BitTorrent or buy ringtones or hang out with teens or however it is that songs get propelled onto the Billboard Top 100.  We also don't refer to ourselves in the first person plural, so we'll stop doing that now.

ANYWAY, it's Friday, and it's nice out, and that means it's the weekend and it's time to put the top down on the convertible and drive around listening to Hot Summer Hits so let's see what we'll be listening to.

Coming in at #3 is a song called "Stay" by Rihanna (and "ft. Mikky Ekko" because you can't really have a hit song with "ft-ing" someone anymore).  It has a very sexy video involving Rihanna and a bathtub.

Mikky Ekko perches on the side of a different bathtub, not the bathtub Rihanna is lounging about in, and sings a verse.  His voice is about as high as Rihanna's.  A little Googling reveals that the oddly-spelled Ekko is an "American singer-songwriter and record producer from Louisiana."  It appears that he co-wrote "Stay," so I guess that earns you a ft.  Anyway, I got to 3:28 out of 4:08 of this song before I got bored and quit so I don't know how it ends up.  Maybe they end up in the same bathtub.  If so, LOOK OUT, MIKKY EKKO! CHRIS BROWN IS COMING FOR YOU!

At #2 we have white rapper Macklemore (who is always "Macklemore & Ryan Lewis," I guess Ryan Lewis is part of the act) feat. Ray Dalton in a song called "Can't Hold Us" with a punishing over-7-minute-long video.  I thought kids had short attention spans?  What's up with these endless fucking videos?

The video involves Macklemore wearing a wolf suit and then flying a plane and there's a team of wolves and then he's rapping on a square-rigger tall ship and then there's some camels and desert and shit.  Ray Dalton must be the guy who sings the chorus, I guess.  I quit at 3:32.  It's fine, I guess.  It's certainly better than a lot of the other songs I've listened to for this project.

THE NUMBER ONE SONG IN AMERICA is P!nk "Just Give Me a Reason" ft. Nate Ruess, that creepy little guy from fun. who has been relentlessly earworming America for a while now.  P!nk has apparently replaced the "i" in her name with an exclamation point.  Way to go, P!nk!

First of all, hats off to P!nk for writing her own stuff, including this song, and for the teddy bear with the glowing eyes in this video.  The song isn't very good, but at least it's not violently objectionable, like a lot of other #1 songs have been.  

IN SUMMARY, meh.  Nothing that I loathed, but nothing I would ever listen to again.  Now go stream the new Mikal Cronin for free on NPR.  Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Cool new mural at Eddy & Polk

You know, where the combination KFC/Taco Bell is.  I would describe the crowd at that place as "vibrant."

Here's a big shot:

Wait, what is she holding?  Is that a little man?  What's going on here?

It's cool-looking, whatever's going on.  Here's a closeup of the face, looming up behind Brenda's.

Nice, huh?

Oh wow.  There's a Tenderloin blog called "Tenderlife" that I've never heard of before that is also featuring this mural.  Look here.

UPDATE!!!!!: I got a very nice email from Alaina at WallSpaceSF, the organization that, along with Fifty24SF Gallery and Upper Playground, made this whole thing happen.  She wanted you guys to know that artist's name is ARYZ.  I guess it's all-caps; that's how she wrote it.  ARYZ.  Anyway, great job, WallSpaceSF and ARYZ.

In a related story, I have owned several Upper Playground hoodies and can report without bias or influence that they are a superior product.