Sunday, August 21, 2005

Sheehan Envy and the Lone Star Beer Bust

On Van Ness Avenue, just to the left of the Veteran's Building, the radical leftist group A.N.S.W.E.R. was advertising an upcoming protest march.

It was to be held on September 24th, going from Dolores Park in the Mission and winding its way to the Civic Center.

They do good work but their speeches at the rallies at the end of the protest marches are awful, with people screeching into microphones about war and oppression to the already converted.

It also looked like they were having a serious case of Cindy Sheehan envy.

"Is anybody actually staying in those tents?" I asked an organizer, and the answer was no, they were just for show.

I did run into Kali, an old Jewish feminist/leftist/firebrand/theatre artist who I had met 12 years earlier at San Francisco State's downtown Multimedia school back when it was new and interesting. She was actually looking better and less haggard than the last time I ran into her 12 years ago when we'd taken the fabulous Barbara Mehlman's visionary class about the marriage of art and journalism she envisioned called "The Artitorial."

This blog is actually one of the fabulous byproducts of Barbara's vision many years later.

I jumped on a 47 Van Ness bus and ran into Avis, the Tarot reader. Usually, she looks more colorful but the unending fog had dampened her mood also.

She set up her Tarot reading station/mystical corner at the Lone Star Saloon.

There wasn't much business for her today.

Part of the reason for that was because there was such a din from the loud rock music the DJ was playing in the backyard...

...with which he was trying to drown out the horrible disco music coming from a tent next door in a motel parking lot sponsoring a "Bear Weekend" event.

Most of the Saturday afternoon regulars showed up, including Richard and Jesse. Richard is a freelance graphics designer for print and web projects, and he was in a bit of a state of shock because his bread-and-butter client, a hetero web pornographer, had just died of a heart attack earlier in the week and Richard had been dealing with the distraught family while wondering if he was going to be able to keep the gig which was paying most of his bills.

In another corner, some local shirtless dudes...

...were manhandling a cute tourist who seemed to be enjoying the attention.

The 80-year-old Harry Harkness was shocked/amused by the glimpses of flesh he was seeing.

Though the place can be a little intimidating if you don't know anyone, the Lone Star backyard is pretty friendly.

Pictured above is Jim the Sculptor, David Carnes and Harry looking too serious.

One of my favorite people showed up, Rob the Canadian, who works as a researcher for NASA's evil Ames Research Center in Palo Alto. I was his mentor when he showed up back in the 1980s to join the Gay Tennis Federation, where he was soon a star (he's a very good player).

After saying goodbye to Roy and Jesse and everyone else, thoroughly buzzed, I called it an afternoon.


Anonymous said...

Small world, I got to know "Callie" working on Angry Arts against the Vietnam war in NYC in the mid-60s, when her name was Carol. Now, I think she spells it Kali - Kali being the Hindu goddess - I was going to say "of chaos," but I looked it up and see that Kali's "a destructive and creative aspect of God as the Divine Mother."

Civic Center said...

Dear Markley: Jesus H. Christ and Buddha too, it is a small world. I'm going to go back and change the spelling, because I'm sure you're right.

Sam said...

i tried to make two different soups for you last night and they both ended in the trash. Fred said "perhaps you shouldn't cook and blog at the same time"


Civic Center said...

That's funny, Sam. And don't worry about the soup. I'm so totally recovered, health-wise, it's fairly miraculous. See you Saturday at your fabulous potluck.