So tonight, after work, I went to my favorite cafe to work on the novel. I'm behind on my schedule, so I really needed to kick some butt. But it wasn't to be -- tonight was open mic poetry.
Confession: Though I can't write it, I love good poetry. No, not the traditional stuff -- the controlled imagery and rhythmic turn of phase -- but Slam and avante garde poetry, which, when does right, is as elegant with the language as the rest of them. Except, it has an edge, and a sense of immediacy, and packs an emotional wallop all its own. Of course, like all poetry, when slam is bad, it's very, very bad...
Which brings us back to It's a Grind! (My current favorite cafe -- on Polk Street). So I got my soy latte (one out of every four or five are milk lattes, this one wasn't
So how was it? In a word: awful! Oh sure, there were flashes of goodnness throughout the evening, but they were pummeled into submission by layers of cliches and lots of hubris on the part of some of the poets. Go ahead, call me a sour puss, but as much as I LOVE the energy and creative spirit of the participants, bad poetry is like bad comedy: unredeemable. Which doesn't mean the next one they hold won't be freaking special -- that's how these things go, creative feast or famine. So I won't write them off. Not yet, anyway.
After it was all over, there was still an hour before the cafe closed, so I tried to get some work done. But no such luck. They had effectively stomped my muse into submission, spit in her face, and called her out for the freak that she is. Sigh. She may never be the same.
So now for the point of this meander. After leaving the cafe I stopped at Bill's Donuts to drown my sorrows in a greasy (though freshly baked -- it's a 24-hour joint) donut and a half-assed cup of coffee (like I needed more). While there, I picked up a copy of The Examiner and read the cover story on our long overdue Citywide Wi-Fi!
When Mayor Newson won the mayoral race, one of his earliest proclamation was that he wanted to implement a democratizing wi-fi network across the city. In fairly short order (well, as politics go), a deal was hashed out with Google (free for all, advertising support, but slow) and Earthlink ($20, no ads, and fast). Trouble was, 2 years later, they're still trying to make it happen. It's been mired in politics because, you know, it's San Francisco. Anyway, there's a new vote coming up that may clear a hurdle or two...but there's a group that still wants a further study to be done before we make the plunge: SNAFU.
Okay, despite the military sounding connection, this is more like a group of flat-earthers, trying their damndest to keep that monkey out of space. See, this SNAFU stands for "San Francisco Neighborhood Antenna-Free Union".
I am so not making that up!
It turns out that they want a study done on the ecological impact of adding over 2,000 antennas to San Franciso. Okay, I'm with 'em on that. It probably 'should' be done. But how can you take them seriously when they've chosen such a silly name?
Ah well, what can I say, there's no place like home...