EDITOR IN CHIEF AMELIA WILLIAMS
COPY EDITOR PATRICK TAMAYO
COPYRIGHT 2019 XPRESS MAGAZINE IS A SAN FRANCISCO STATE UNIVERSITY STUDENT-RUN PUBLICATION
ART DIRECTOR CHLOE MCDANIELS
PHOTO EDITOR HARRISON RICH
MULTIMEDIA EDITOR AMY BIGELOW
CONTRIBUTORS ANNE LIMA ANDREA WILLIAMS CLARA APPLEGARTH DAVID SJOSTEDT IZZY ALVAREZ JANAE RODRIGUEZ JEREMY JULIAN KARISHMA PATADIA
ON THE COVER
PHOTOGRAPHERS JORDI MOLINA KAMERON HALL KIMBERLY HERRERA LEILA FIGUEROA PAIGE ACOSTA SANDY SCARPA SHANDANA QAZI WILLIAM WENDELMAN
SPECIAL THANKS TO PHOTO BY HARRISON RICH UFO COURTESY OF PIXABAY. THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN ALTERED. 2
BETH RENNEISEN CARLY WIPF DON MENN EL TECOLOTE KEVIN M. COX KIM KOMENICH RACHELE KANIGEL SAN FRANCISCO MUSEUM OF CRAFT AND DESIGN x2
I N D E X
FOR THE PEOPLE, BY THE PEOPLE BY PATRICK TAMAYO
RECLAIMING SHADES OF BROWN BY KARISHMA PATADIA
DIVINITY FROM DESIGN: 100 YEARS OF BAUHAUS BY HARRISON RICH
PERIODS ARE FUN SAID NO ONE EVER BY JANAE RODRIGUEZ
BY DAVID SJOSTEDT
THE SAN FRANCISCO COFFEE RUSH BY ANNE LIMA
WE ARE STILL HERE: A HISTORY OF RESISTANCE BY IZZY ALVAREZ
FIGHTING THE OVERDOSE CRISIS WITH NARCAN AND COMPASSION BY ANDREA WILLIAMS
TOP 10 ALBUMS OF 2019
BY AMY BIGELOW & CHLOE MCDANIELS
THE RULES OF THE ROAD BY CLARA APPLEGARTH
HOW TO BE AN ONLINE EDITOR WHEN YOU CANâ€™T GO ONLINE BY JOSHUA CHAN
LETTER FROM THE EDITOR
y proverbial uterus fucking hurts. I haven’t slept in … I can’t even say. My nipples, proverbial fountains of editorial insight, guidance and technique, are chafed as shit. The news lab is a mess. I’m in bliss. When you have proverbial kids, you can’t just stop at one can you? Some people have “Irish twins,” two babies born within a year of each other, so I guess I’m having “Xpress twins.” Department requirements aside, the first proverbial kid was barely in my arms — still hot from the proverbial printing-press womb — before I scheduled myself for another. I was sleep-deprived, and post-partum (production) depression was kicking my ass but I was so, so happy. Turns out the second pregnancy goes a lot smoother. I come to you, Xpress readers, from the proverbial hospital suite (the Humanities building news lab), my newborn December (issue) suckling at my proverbial teat while October, my firstborn, sulks that I couldn’t bring her into the world with the same confidence. A confidence that only comes with doing something really fucking hard more than once. Rest assured, this was hard. As of the publication of this issue, the department still has not recovered full access to the publication websites. Advisors keep changing, and no one — to make another disparaging pun — is on the same page. Stories don’t always turn out as planned, and an act of theft literally robbed us of visual components. A select few of us on the publication staff got to attend a national journalism conference in Washington, D.C., and brush
shoulders with the big dogs. We quickly realized just how many schools have their shit (and budget) together more than us. We didn’t place in Best in Show, or receive any spectacular accolades. But as my eyes bleed from “burping” these stories of their typos and incorrect uses of AP Style, I am validated in this being a great magazine. And on that note, behind every great magazine is a woman. Well, at least behind this great magazine is a woman. Me, this time. I’m that woman, but I’ve never been the only one. It may seem a little obvious, but now more than ever it feels important to say that. Numerically, women dominate higher education, women dominate the journalism department and women have dominated Xpress Magazine for years now, this semester included. We don’t often get that kind of representation out in the world. This is not to say the boys didn’t put in the hours as well, and didn’t kick ass in their respective roles. Without them, we wouldn’t have aliens, or a makeshift website, or photos, or any number of intangible necessities for to conceive and birth this issue. Every member of my staff has produced quality work they can be proud of. And like the good mom that I am, I am proud of them too.
–Amelia Williams email@example.com
FOR THE PEOPLE, BY THE PEOPLE An El Tecolote staffer works on the front page, circa 1970s. Courtesy: El Tecolote archives
Story by Patrick Tamayo Photographs courtesy of El Tecolote
San Francisco plainclothes officer was shot and killed May 1, 1969. The officer and his partner had approached and confronted a group of men they suspected of possessing stolen items. A struggle ensued and one of the officers was shot dead. Several days later — like the start of a bad joke — four Salvadorans, a Nicaraguan and a Honduran were arrested for the death of the officer. The death, blamed on “coastal radicals,” was just one of several instances where the community came together to fight against injustices — especially against black and brown people. El Tecolote newspaper was born at a time when armed Black Panthers patrolled their neighborhoods and a police substation in the Haight District was the target of a bomb attack. Anti-war protests were familiar sights as the Vietnam War dragged on. Women’s fights for equality coalesced at around the same time activists fought for farm worker rights. The paper will celebrate 50 years in 2020. “We are the longest-running bilingual, Latino, Spanish/English newspaper in the southwest,” current Editor-in-Chief Alexis Terrazas said.
The paper was formed at San Francisco State University by founding editor Juan Gonzales — current chair of the journalism department at City
College of San Francisco — in the La Raza studies class he was teaching — as an effort to steer more Latino/as into journalism at a time when people of color were almost non-existent in most news outlets. Gonzales and members of his class held fundraisers, a talent show and sought donations to cover the cost of printing the first edition in August 1970 — a four page issue with stories printed in English and Spanish. “It’s all we could afford,” Gonzales said. “We raised $300 total. It cost $75 for four pages and we got 5,000 copies.” Since its inception, El Tecolote has attempted to give a voice to members of the community who may otherwise not have one. It strived to tell the stories of people that mainstream news organizations seldom highlight. “There was very little coverage of the Latino community. We wanted to provide people [with] an alternative,” Gonzales said. “The main newspapers weren’t covering the neighborhoods and when they did, many of the stories were negative.” San Francisco’s Mission District has changed drastically since the 1970s, and El Tecolote has been there over the years documenting the community, the lifestyles and the politics of the neighborhood that has been referred to as “the epicenter of Latino culture” in San Francisco. While the paper has always had a minimal staff, the majority of reporters, photographers, designers and editors have been volunteers. Many
“I joined the staff of Tecolote in ’83. The Chicanos there took me under their wing and they let me experiment with my writing. They helped me a lot with my writing,” Sanchez said. “A lot of those guys weren’t journalists per se, but they were writers. They were poets. They were artists. They were activists. They came from different perspectives and they encouraged me to write and gave me that support I needed.” come from both SFSU and CCSF, but they have even reached out to high schools in the area in the past to get their students involved. Alexis Terrazas explained that a lot of the volunteers left for a variety of reasons after he came on board in June 2014. “It took a long time to establish a pretty consistent flow [of volunteers],” Terrazas said. “When I got on, there were already a lot of volunteers but a lot of them left … that left me with basically having to recruit a lot more people.” Terrazas turned to his alma mater — San Francisco State University — where he had numerous contacts, including journalism professor Jon Funabiki. It was in Funabiki’s Ethnic News Service class that Terrazas was first introduced to El Tecolote. “My very first story ever in ‘Teco was through Funabiki’s class,” Terrazas said. “When he found out I was editor here, he was like ‘we need to do this class again.’” Funabiki considers El Tecolote an essential part of the community and commends them for covering stories that most other news organizations do not report on. “It’s a very important newspaper,” Funabiki said. “If they weren’t around the Mission would have been ignored.” Terrazas started recruiting heavily at San Francisco State and spoke to reporting classes and participated in Funabiki’s classes to get students’ stories published. “I really think that the main reason why we’re still around and thriving all these years later, basically five decades later, is because we’re different. We’re very different from a lot of the other news outlets,” Terrazas said. “And I think people here know that they have an area where they can work on something they feel contributes to our community.”
Mabel Jiménez, a San Francisco State graduate, started volunteering at El Tecolote in 2008 and became photo editor in 2011, a position she held through 2018. “We have an expression, ‘Teco familia’ (Tecolote family), because it’s very much like [a family],” Jiménez said. “It’s a struggle keeping a newspaper going and keeping the quality going with such a small team requires a lot of sacrifice, sometimes a lot of stress. [It] sometimes requires you to work more hours than you’re actually paid for just to get it done. So I think when you struggle together it makes you closer. It makes the team closer.” Positive community feedback added encouragement to the tight-knit staff. Jiménez said that staffers are often recognized while out on assignment and past volunteers will usually acknowledge them when they see their El Tecolote press passes. “I can say personally it’s because I love what I do. I believe in community journalism. I believe in our community [and] I believe in solidarity
between communities. And it’s not just me. It’s our staff too,” Terrazas said. “We might have differences in our passions for certain issues … at the end of the day we’re all trying to strive [to make] this world a better place. And hopefully our small, 12-page, 10,000 circulation newspaper, hopefully we do that, and we try. We try really hard.” Teamwork and togetherness is not something new at El Tecolote. Leonel Sanchez started his journalism career in 1983 at El Tecolote while studying journalism at San Francisco State and went on to have a successful 25-year career working at the LA Times and the San Diego Union-Tribune, where he spent the majority of his career. He covered Latino, border and immigration issues. “I joined the staff of Tecolote in ’83.The Chicanos there took me under their wing and they let me experiment with my writing. They helped me a lot with my writing,” Sanchez said. “A lot of those guys weren’t journalists per se, but they were writers. They were poets. They were artists. They were activists. They came from different perspectives and they encouraged me to write and gave me that support I needed.” Sanchez credits El Tecolote for giving him a head start before writing for his university publication. He believes the variety of topics he wrote about at El Tecolote helped lead the way to what he would eventually cover for the majority of his journalism career. “I remember writing about the Vietnam veterans who were coming home with PTS (Post Traumatic Stress). And I remember writing about the sanctuary movement at the time. We were getting a lot of Salvadorians who were coming and telling their stories about being tortured,” Sanchez said. “That blew my mind because I’d gone to high school with a lot of people from Central America back when they were coming from fleeing wars.” In 1999 Pedro Tuyub was hired as editor and said that at the time of his hiring there was no staff at the paper and only four or five volunteers. “The impact [of El Tecolote] is immeasurable. Its existence is embedded in the deepest fabric of the community that one cannot imagine the Mission without El Tecolote,” Tuyub said. “It’s our voice.”
Serving the Community
From the beginning, El Tecolote wanted to provide the Mission District community with news that benefited it. The early staff of the newspaper wanted to highlight an underserved, diverse community that had limited choices of where to get their news from and even then, the news they got had little to do with their own communities. Acción Latina is the publisher and host space of El Tecolote. It is a non-profit organization “that is dedicated to promoting cultural arts, community media and civic engagement as a way of building healthy and empowered Latino communities,” according to its website. They’re located in the heart of the Mission in the Latino Cultural District — an area of approximately 55 square blocks — at 2958 24th Street. “We wanted to showcase popular culture. There were artists, poets, musicians [in the community] that got very little play in the mainstream,” Gonzales said. “We wanted to give them some media attention. In many ways, we wanted to mirror the community and reflect who they [were].” This sense of engagement has carried on through the years and El Tecolote has attempted to bring the community captivating and intriguing news that pertains to the community as a whole.
DECEMBER “We’re going to cover the side of the story that most often goes untold or is buried. Because that’s who we are, we’re the voice for the voiceless. We make a conscience decision … let’s see what voices are being denied and let’s uplift those. A lot of the time it falls into the category of our Latino community,” Terrazas said. “But sometimes that falls into another community category. Sometimes it will fall into the LGBT community. Sometimes it will fall into our community in the African Diaspora. Sometimes it will involve Asian folks.” Acción Latina also houses the Juan R. Fuentes gallery — which showcases various works of local artists and hosts multiple exhibits throughout the year — and presents numerous community workshops and educational events besides being home to El Tecolote’s archives of past newspapers, photographs, illustrations and posters. “A lot of people come back to the Mission even if they no longer live [here]. It definitely still holds a place in people’s hearts even if they’ve been pushed out of the neighborhood,” said Katynka Z. Martinez, Ph.D., Acción Latina’s board president. “To be able to continue to see the newspaper there in the streets that they once called home is really important and to see themselves reflected both on the topics that are covered and in the language is something that I think helps the visitors or the residents feel more at home.”
The new Mission
The Mission District has seen a steady decline of their Latino community as rents skyrocket, gentrification creeps in and a multitude of tech companies move into the community. A 2019 Business Insider article ranks San Francisco as the No. 2 most expensive city, only behind San Jose. A Zillow search for Mission District apartments under $2,000 came up with only two listings, both were for studio apartments listed at $1,995 and $1,475 per month. The cheaper of the listings only comes with a shared bathroom, but it does have new mini-blinds. “We understand that [the Mission District] is changing. We want to be here to document what is happening because we have a living archive that traces the history of the neighborhood and how it’s changed,” Terrazas said. “It documents the changes, which can be viewed as negative, but it also documents the victories of the neighborhood and we want to still continue to do that, especially in the face of gentrification and all the changes that are happening.” With Mission area residents being forced to move or leave the neighborhood for a variety of reasons, El Tecolote has attempted to cover other areas of the Bay where residents have moved to. “We can no longer just focus on the Mission, because our newspaper was originally founded to serve the people [in the Mission] but if they’re kinda being displaced … ‘what do we do?’” Terrazas said. “That’s forced us to cover other communities that are maybe being pushed out to other regions of the Bay.”
Terrazas emphasized that El Tecolote has always encouraged the community to come in and reach out to the paper. “We have an open door policy and it basically means that our door is open to the community. If you got a story idea, if you got a complaint, you can literally walk through and let us know,” Terrazas said. “Sometimes that has been not the easiest. Sometimes we’ll be working and we’ll have people come in and you know, complain. But we feel if we are going to be serving our community, we have to be held accountable by our community.” Farm Worker activist Cesar Chavez reads the June 1986 issue of El Tecolote. Courtesy: El Tecolote archives
For El Tecolote, being a monolingual publication was never an option. From the start, the vision entailed having both an English version and a Spanish version of every story. “We were bilingual from day one,” founder Gonzales said. “If you were Spanish speaking or non-Spanish [speaking], you could understand what was in the paper. We wanted [everyone] to be able to get the information.” Terrazas feels that some newsrooms write about communities but the published product is sometimes not reachable to individuals that the stories are about. “The founders really understood that we’re doing these stories about our community for our community and it has to be bilingual,” Terrazas said. “I’m really proud as the editor, as the latest editor in the long list of editors, that I’m able to continue that legacy.”
It is hard to tell what the future holds for the Mission and for El Tecolote. As the community changes and the methods of how readers get their news evolve, El Tecolote will be tasked to keep up with the changes. Gonzales envisions a bigger facility and would like to see Acción Latina’s current building be built upward, adding an additional floor that would allow El Tecolote’s work area to be moved and opening up additional space on the first floor. He’d also like to see El Tecolote become a weekly paper and conceptualizes it turning into a magazine or going fully online. “The community is deserving of a weekly. It can have more of an impact if it comes out more frequently,” Gonzales said. “But it will be dictated by where the readership [is] and it depends on the support.” Sanchez said that he has remained in contact with Gonzales over the years and appreciates the fact that he still around. “He was a mentor to me and a friend and somebody I respected. [He was] somebody I knew everybody respected … He could have easily left the neighborhood and gone to work for a large media organization. I always respected the fact that he stayed home and he cares a lot about the Mission District,” Sanchez said. “And cares a lot about journalism and he’s lived up to those principles.” X
The green light symbolizes her pride for Pakistan and her traditional roots. Growing up, Gorsi would always be wearing salwar kameez, the traditional suit pictured above, which would make her feel her most authentic self.
Reclaiming shades of brown Story by Karishma Patadia Photograph by Shandana Qazi
he lighter you can be, the better you can be.” All around the world, but particularly in South Asia, individuals with lighter skin are praised while people with darker skin are shamed and discriminated against. For generations, darker skin has been undervalued. Nowadays, it is being reclaimed. In 1975, Fair and Lovely, a skin “fairness cream,” was introduced to the South Asian market and people raved about it because it made them look lighter. Children would be encouraged to stay inside so that they wouldn’t tan and even scolded, “it doesn’t look good when you’re that dark.” Darker-skinned girls were handed the product without preamble. In 2016, Pax Jones, a black woman, collaborated with sisters Mirush and Yanusha Yogarajah to create a campaign
called Unfair and Lovely that highlighted the issue of glorification of fairer skin while addressing how people of color with darker skin were equally as beautiful. Shandana Qazi, a photojournalism student at San Francisco State University, has decided to focus her senior photo project on South Asian American females reclaiming their identity and feeling confident in their skin to start a conversation about colorism on campus. Qazi created this project because she felt that colorism in the South Asian community was not talked about in the media. “There’s a lot of advertisements on fairness products and how you’re not beautiful if you’re not fair in certain parts of the world. That’s the reality of it and I want people to be aware of that here in San Francisco,” she said.
Qazi was born in Pakistan, but she came to the United States by the time she was in kindergarden. Every time she went back to Pakistan for vacation, there were always comments about her skin color. Due to the fact that Qazi was exposed to colorism in her own community in Pakistan, she wanted to shed light on that issue through the use of photos.
“You don’t have to erase that part of you just because you’re living here.” –Shandana Qazi
“People really look at you and they really do judge you for the way that you look, based on skin color. People in our own community look down on you for having a darker complexion and they are so open about their opinion,” Qazi said. Through her photo series, Qazi hopes for girls of color to feel comfortable in their skin regardless of if they meet the South Asian standard. Qazi contacted six South Asian females from around the Bay Area to portray their roots, morals and the balance of Western and South Asian culture and values. “I don’t want people to forget their roots and I want people to hold on to their mother tongue, remember their language or remember where they came from and be proud of that,” Qazi explains. “You don’t have to erase that part of you just because you’re living here.” Growing up in a desi — meaning of Indian, Pakistani or Bangladeshi descent — household in the United States can be a confusing double standard. Some families fully assimilate to Western ideologies, creating a dissonance to their own culture. Others continue pass on traditions and values despite cultural differences. Qazi photographed women in their traditional South Asian outfits to portray those who live in the Bay Area and are proud of their culture. One of Qazi’s chosen subjects was Mamunna Gorsi, a senior civil engineering student at SFSU. Gorsi described herself as a typical brown girl. “I wanted to be shot in desi clothes because that’s who I am. No matter where I am in the world, that’s who I am, where my roots are from,” she explained. Not many people outside the community understand the inner workings of colorism in the South Asian community due to cultural apathy. Both Gorsi and Qazi wanted to expose the discriminatory opinions by showing off Gorsi’s pride being Pakistani in a peaceful setting — a beach in Marin. Red and green lights were used to capture the mood of being Pakistani in America.
“We wanted to show that there’s a lot of girls out there doing different things in different parts of the world but we’re all the same too,” Gorsi said. When Neha Kamboj, a third-year information systems and marketing student at SFSU, would visit her family in India over the summer, her grandmother would comment on how she looked darker. She was even handed Fair and Lovely. “It’s important to discuss these problems because only when you raise your voice you raise awareness and that sparks conversation,” Kamboj said. Pooja Pallavi, a Fijian artist, has struggled with colorism at different phases of her life. As a young woman, Pallavi exhausted herself by hiding from the sun to maintain a lighter skin tone. Her family would make comments about how she was more beautiful when she was younger because Pallavi’s complexion was lighter. “I feel like black and brown people everywhere need to see the strength and beauty in our melanated tones and uplift each other to embrace who we are instead of fitting into societal standards of beauty that our own society hasn’t created,” she said. Pallavi released a song, “Identity” to the public over the summer and has received an abundance of both supportive and antagonistic opinions. The song explicitly symbolizes her Indo-Fijian identity and reclaims the issues of colonization that happened in her community. Despite the ranges of opinions Pallavi received from the song, she wrote it to empower herself.
“I wanted to be shot in desi clothes because that’s who I am. No matter where I am in the world, that’s who I am, where my roots are from,” –Mamunna Gorsi
At the end of the day, projects that call out the familial trajectories about colorism ultimately reclaims the identity of these individuals. Through Qazi’s photo series, the six women have ultimately point a middle finger to Fair and Lovely and beauty products that encourage women to lighten their skin. This project is a testament that there is comfort in melanin skin. X
Divinity from design: 100 years of Bauhaus By Harrison Rich Photographs courtesy of the San Francisco Museum of Craft and Design
he things we use the most are what we think about the least. Chairs, teapots, bottles — all mundane tools we use passively in our lives. Their construct is based on their functionality and purpose, only existing to be used. Though we could go all day without having introspective thoughts about our desk lamp, its design is deeply rooted in a cultural moment that has not only reshaped everyday objects, but the entire world. One hundred years ago, as Europe was shaking off the First World War and as product manufacturing was shifting from handmade to the assembly line, a thought was conceived in central Germany. The thought, born from architect Walter Gropius, was to build a school that would allow students to expand on the elements of design formulated for the modern, reproductive era. Designs were fit for mass production, yet birthed from well thought out and examined principles of design. It was the first time in history people thought to create beauty that could be owned by the working class. Classes at the Bauhaus in Dessau, Germany, circa 1919 were both rigid and expressive. Students were confined to the syllabus, yet encouraged to dig deeper into the spirit of color concept, form, materials, natural design, and so on. Compared to the educational and social standards of the era, the Bauhaus was one of a kind, accepting and encouraged women to not only be part of the school, but also to express themselves and their femininity within their craft. Paul Adamson, a San Francisco-based architect and scholar of Bauhaus history and design principles, stated that the “School was for makers … ” that students were “yearning to create something new … looking to find the motivations of modern architecture.” What came out of the Bauhaus was bright and clean, modern yet nuanced and surprising but reminiscent. It was not only a testament to the changing zeitgeist of post war Europe, but a new model for education and for how design would be conceived from then on. X
Periods are fun 12
Story by Janae Rodriguez Photographs by Paige acosta
said no one ever
XPRESS MAGAZINE he day you find the first drop of blood in your underwear is an unforgettable one. It marks the transition from childhood to adulthood, and the power to bring life into the world. But with this new chapter comes challenges — cramps that make you feel like someone is taking a chainsaw to your insides. Then there are the extra expenses of having to buy pads, tampons and pain medicine. Every month people with periods are suddenly strapped into a rollercoaster of emotions that was neither asked for nor fun. Menstruation is a normal part of life, yet still a taboo topic. According to UNICEF, 26% of people around the world are of reproductive age. When periods should be regarded as a beautiful thing that gives the power to populate the planet, they are often seen as a financial burden that is gross or embarrassing. Even in the U.S., periods are not a part of common conversation. While most American health classes dedicate part of their curriculum to address what puberty entails, including menstruation, in some parts of the world menstruation is still withheld from public knowledge, to the point even menstruating people themselves don’t have a clue what is happening with their bodies.
We still have the tampon tax in the us and most schools don’t provide menstrual products in their bathroom and even if they do, they do it in designated girls bathrooms which is gonna create a whole other barrier for trans men and non-binary people. It is already complicated enough being trans and in school, and we stigmatize menstruation so much so the idea of a man to get their period is crazy.
– Sophie Ascheim
The Pad Project started in a high school classroom with a group of upperclassmen learning about young girls in developing countries dropping out of school due to maintenance of their menstruation. Co-founder Sophie Ascheim and the rest of her classmates wanted to help these girls stay in school and get an education, so they partnered with a school outside of Delhi, India. “Three or four years ago when we got the team together and said ‘OK, well we have a partner school outside of Delhi,’” Ascheim said. “And we know about this machine that uses locally-sourced, biodegradable materials to make pads and then the women can sell the pads. This can not only make product for the girls to use so they can stay in school but also makes a macro economy in the community and [furthers] conversations about menstruation in general, which was one of the biggest [taboos] in India at the time and still is.” What started out as a little individual project became an Oscar-winning documentary, “Period. End Of Sentence,” which catapulted the organization into the mainstream. The documentary, directed by University of Southern California graduate student Rayka Zehtabchi, followed a group of women in India starting a pad business all while educating women on how to use pads and the biology of menstruation.
“I can’t stress this enough. We never did this to make a Netflix documentary or to win an Oscar or do any of that,” Ascheim said. “We did this because it was a project we were tackling with our partner school [outside of Delhi] and from there we saw the opportunity to spread the word in the U.S. and that is why we made the documentary.” After the Oscar win, a flood of support came for the organization but the most important thing to Ascheim is that the documentary started a conversation around what Ascheim calls “period poverty.” “I think the documentary has widened the conversation around periods,” Ascheim said. “Period poverty in specific because I think this is a problem most people don’t conceive of ... but I think when you start to have a conversation with them ‘like no, this is a problem everywhere including in developed nations, including the U.S., including wherever you live.’” Homeless people are already in a vulnerable state as is. Adding menstruation to it is another level of stress. “Low-income families, homeless people, this is always going to be an issue because we don’t talk about menstruation so no one thinks to provide [feminine hygiene products to these people] when they do toiletry donations to homeless shelters,” Ascheim said. “We still have the tampon tax in the U.S. and most schools don’t provide menstrual products in their bathroom[s]. Even if they do, they do it in designated girls’ bathrooms, which is gonna create a whole other barrier for trans men and non-binary people. It is already complicated enough being trans and in school, and we stigmatize menstruation so much so the idea of a man to get their period is crazy.” To combat the period poverty in the Bay Area, the nonprofit Blossom Project, whose mission is to support homeless women, has created the “period bag” that provides homeless people who menstruate in San Francisco with pads, tampons, hand sanitizer , rain ponchos, water and an encouraging note from a volunteer. Tine Christensen, the founder of the Blossom organization, moved from Denmark to the Bay Area and was shocked at the level of homlessness in her new city. “I moved to San Francisco with my husband because of what he [does] and then we lived in Marin. I often took the trip to San Francisco and found it very hard to see so many people in need,” Christensen said. “I think when you live in a community or area you need to take responsibility for what happens in your community and that’s kind of how it started. It was not actually my goal to make it into a big organization, how it actually is today but it was more out of this ... I did not know what to do but I felt that I had to do something.” Walking around San Francisco State University, there is an abundance of condom dispensers, yet there is still a lack of free resources for menstruation in the bathrooms. Karen Boyce, the director of Health Promotion and Wellness center, said that there are three locations on campus to get free menstruation items. The Women’s Center in Ceaser Chavez on the terrace level, the Health Promotion and Wellness office in Village A across from City Eats and at the Student Health Services Center. “Students are free to take as many supplies as they need and we encourage students to stop by any location,” Boyce said. “In an effort to increase awareness and utilization of this service, [Health Promotion and Wellness office] is working on introducing a program where students can grab free pads/tampons and ask questions to trained HPW interns, similar to what we have with our Condom Caboose (a mobile sex education station). This program will be piloted as a monthly activity and see what the interest and uptake from students.” Oct. 19 marked the first national Period Day. This is the beginning of breaking down the stigma about menstruation. X
Story by David Sjostedt Photographs by Harrison Rich 16
The less life on the ground, the more you see in the sky. 17
XPRESS MAGAZINE UAP descended toward the water at speeds inexplicably quicker than the capabilities of human technology. The craft stopped a mere 50 feet above sea level. Seth Shostak, senior astronomer for the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence Institute (SETI), has been working on uncovering extraterrestrial radio signals for years. He has yet to find anything. Although he believes other life forms exist in our universe, he doesn’t think they’ve contacted Earth. If they were to, he asserts that the government has no reason to deceive the public. “In the end, it’s sort of like discovering America,” Shostak said. “There’s just no way that people in the time of Christopher Columbus could possibly have guessed Cyril Holaday stands in front of ET Jerky on Oct. 19, 2019. what the consequences would be. The idea that we could keep this secret for decades and decades is bonkers. But beyond that, he extensive plains of Nevada desert are home to infinite curiosity, stretching for hundreds of miles without obstruction. Miners even if you think the Americans could keep it secret, do all the other counflocked to Nevada after the California Gold Rush stripped the land for all tries keep it secret too?” Shostak agrees the object is unidentifiable, and is by definition considit was worth. Beneath the sand there is gold, and where there is no longer gold, there are ghosts and hot springs. It’s in this wasteland that people ered a UFO, but he remains doubtful the small dot on the screen contained come to exercise their capacity for wonder, but only once they become alien life. “Why is it that they’re only visible to Navy pilots?” he asked. completely detached from humanity are they liberated to feel a connection “Maybe the aliens are apparently interested in letting the Navy know that they’re here, but not anybody else.” with the rest of the universe. In October, Shostak spoke on UFOs at the Flamingo Hotel in Las VePictures of flying saucers and stories of abductees weave a curious narrative in headlines around the world, yet for the majority of people aliens gas for CSICon, a conference for conspiracy skeptics. Shostak and hunremain a distant concept. With no real reason to think one way or the oth- dreds of other non-believers congregated to discuss a range of dubious er, most go about their day without a second thought of their place in the topics, from religion to UFOs. “Astronomers should be seeing these things all the time, but they never universe. Perhaps there is already plenty to wonder about, but if an unidentified flying object somehow managed to pierce the fog, would people be do,” Shostak said in his speech. “There’s almost 800 imaging satellites around the Earth that can image things the size of your desk.” mad they couldn’t get to work? Only a month prior to this meeting of skeptics in Las Vegas, a much In December 2017, the Pentagon declassified three videos of what the U.S. Navy recently deemed “unexplained aerial phenomena (UAP).” The larger multitude migrated to Nevada for a different reason — to find aliens. videos are shortened government footage approved for the public, and Over 2 million people grouped up on Facebook and concocted a plan to include the only documentation released of the Navy’s 2004 Nimitz en- raid Nevada’s clandestine government base, Area 51. Only around 150 counter, when fighter pilots encountered a UAP during routine training people made it all the way to the gate, according to CBS, but the influx of exercises. While their identities remain anonymous, many involved have tourists and media attention sparked a buzz of excitement in communities along Highway 375, a two-lane road 98 miles long and affectionately come forward to share details of their experiences. In late 2004, Navy Chief Petty Officer Kevin Day was in charge of mon- known as the Extraterrestrial Highway. itoring radar signals aboard the USS Princeton. He said he surveilled these unidentified objects for several days before sending a pilot out to intercept them. He recounted them moving in peculiar patterns, but he was not initially concerned by their presence. However, a few days later on Nov. 14, in the wake of the Iraq War, the Navy scheduled training exercises in the “The alien nation is growing,” said Cyril Holaday, a 35-year Nevageneral vicinity of these UAP over the Pacific Ocean. For precautionary measures, Day instructed two of the pilots to inves- da resident who has worked at a number of places along the Highway. “There’s a lot of people who would want to know, are they real?” For Holtigate what they were. Through the lens of some of the most advanced radar systems in ex- aday, they are. In 1955, the U.S. Air Force built Area 51 roughly 120 miles north of istence, the video of the subsequent encounter shows a Tic-Tac-shaped blip moving erratically across a hazy screen. It may seem inconsequential Las Vegas. However, the public didn’t become interested in its existence to the untrained eye, but according to the Spy-1 Bravo radar system, this until 1989, when physicist Bob Lazar publicly claimed to have worked on
“The alien nation is growing.” – Cyril Holaday
DECEMBER alien technology south of the base. What exactly goes on within the camp remains shrouded in mystery, but the desert’s clear night skies have rendered countless stories from locals and tourists alike recounting jet-fueled auroras that span boundlessly across the starry roof.
These aliens, or whatever you want to call them, they have to tweak your consciousness so you can accept their existence,” – Lorien Fenton “I’ve seen some wild lights up in the sky,” Holaday said. “They’ve got all sorts of cloaking and mirror imaging projection that they camouflage under, and out here in Nevada is where they practice that stuff.” For people living on and around the Extraterrestrial Highway, aliens are an integral part of their lives. A little town called Rachel, Nevada, is the closest sign of civilization to Area 51. In Rachel, alien tourism is the most lucrative resource for hundreds of miles. Alien tequila, burgers and merchandise pay the bills at the town’s only business, a restaurant and bar called the Little A’Le’Inn — the whimsy of alien life seemingly lost by its banality. “I like living here, because for a 100 miles either way nobody can tell me what to do,” said Cody Theising, a bartender at the Little A’Le’Inn. “I can blow up a car at the lake, and the only thing people are going to say is, ‘why didn’t you invite me?’” To this day, the state remains the largest producer of gold in the U.S. — accounting for over 70% of the nation’s supply of gold. It’s also the only state where prostitution is legal, and one of the few places with a slot machine at the gas station. This part of the country does what it must to bring in tourism and capital, but for many people the existence of extraterrestrials means much more than a way to sell T-shirts and coffee mugs. “These aliens, or whatever you want to call them, they have to tweak your consciousness so you can accept their existence,” said Lorien Fen-
ton, a member of the Marin Sonoma UFO network in California. “You’re never the same again, that’s part of the deal. You’re not human in the sense like everybody else out there, who has never been in this kind of relationship with a whole different species of being.” Fenton claims she has been having psychic experiences since she was a child. Although she has never seen an alien herself, she is passionate about the community and hosts a radio show that aims to give a platform to abductees and experiencers. “There’s thousands of us out there that have been taken and then followed throughout our lives,” said Byron Malerba, an alleged abductee from Florida. “It’s extremely hard to deal with, and there’s nobody to help with that.” Malerba said since his abduction he is plagued by anxiety, which the stigma associated with his stories intensifies. “When you meet abductees who are all about crystals, beads and Jesus, they’re f[ull] o[f] s[hit],” Malebra said. “People who actually deal with this stuff are not that well.” For Malerba, the Navy’s UAP confirmation did very little to calm his mind. “I just want this shit to go away,” he said. “These foreign entities overwhelm our senses to the point where it’s going to be extremely difficult for them to just come and knock on our door.” He is among many within the UFO community believing there is a greater reason behind the government’s slow dissemination of alien intelligence. “I got total validation, my phone didn’t stop ringing for a week,” Fenton said. “Now my father can look at me and say ‘yeah you were right.’” The Navy footage is the first video ever released by the government showing military planes engaging UFOs. Although these are reportedly shortened versions of the originals, with every piece of evidence that surfaces, contactees become more empowered to speak out about their experiences. “Maybe the government knows something that we don’t know so we have to give them that respect,” Fenton said. “I’m not mad at them for doing it, because they’re right.” X
Area 51 in Hiko, Nevada
The San Francisco coffee rush Story by Anne Lima Photographs by Harrison Rich
ome people call it a three-course meal during a busy day or week. Some call it a vice, and others say the day literally doesn’t start without it. It’s used as a way to break the ice over business or a date. A good cup of coffee really goes a long way in making our day, and the city isn’t short of them. Coffee culture has become more prevalent in San Francisco over the last few years. It’s the second-highest popular traded product in the world, as well as one of the more diverse. The San Francisco Chronicle claimed San Francisco “coffee capital of the West” in March. Although there are those who can pinpoint where the nearest Starbucks is from them, various coffee shops throughout the city are opening up that add to the appeal of mainstream coffee consumption. When walking into some of these local shops, the aroma of coffee beans can tell one about a coffee bean’s source. Zandre Azogue, co-owner of Blue House Cafe, which held its grand opening on Sept. 21, described the variety in flavor profiles of imported coffee beans. Coffee beans from Central America normally go into an earthy, chocolatey flavor, while beans from Africa and Southeast Asia are more citrusy. “As far as espresso goes I think my favorite is a cortado. A little bit more milk than a macchiato, but not as much milk as a cappuccino,” Azogue said. He emphasizes the importance of taking care of the whole supply chain from ethically sourcing his beans from overseas coffee farmers all the way to the customer. “I’ve been to Guatemala several times. I’ve had a lot of exposure to the coffee and the coffee culture there,” Azogue said. “Being in the coffee farms in Guatemala they grow some of those beans up on volcanoes. The high altitude, and the volcanic soil, I guess is kind of a bonus to growing those coffee trees.” Azogue’s passion for coffee dates back to his early college years attending Cal State Bakersfield, where his first exposure to coffee came from working at Starbucks. “Trying different types of brewing methods and roasting my own coffee. But by the time that I moved here to San Francisco, that’s when I actually really got into doing those things,” Azogue said. For Filipino-born Paolo Araneta, co-owner of Ballast Coffee shop on West Portal Avenue, incorporating his cultural upbringing into the coffee he serves is the main focus of his brand and store for over a decade. “I don’t believe that any Filipino before me has ever bothered exporting Philippine coffee,” Araneta said. Growing up in the Philippines, his favorite place in the whole world was the beach he grew up on. After spending most of his life between the Philippines and San Francisco throughout the late ‘70s and ‘80s, he finally settled down in the city three years ago. Having
flown over the Pacific so many times, he felt he needed a word that was nautical in nature. “Coffee is 99% water, right? My favorite color is blue, like a light blue reminds me of the ocean,” Araneta said. “It was important to me to have something that meant balance and at the same time reminded me of the ocean or the sea. That’s how we came up with ballast.” A ballast is a big, heavy object that is used to level out a boat that’s about to capsize. Araneta and his business partner, who handles the company’s marketing, opened the shop and started the brand two years ago. Through a small coffee kiosk business in the Philippines, Araneta met a lot of coffee farmers while working in organic farming. “It’s a very Filipino thing to drink condensed milk with coffee and that’s how I like my coffee,” Araneta said. “We’re trying to give customers a full Filipino experience.” This experience is rooted in a bean called Barako, an excelsa bean that’s native to the Philippines. Araneta said how blessed they are to have their own coffee, because it only grows on the equator. Ballast’s use of Barako beans strays away from what Araneta calls “the gold standard” of coffee beans in the U.S. “Every coffee shop you will go through in the United States, I’m going to tell you 99% sells Arabica,” Araneta said.
“It’s a very Filipino thing to drink condensed milk with coffee and that’s how I like my coffee, Araneta said. “We’re trying to give customers a full Filipino experience.”
Barako is a word that is used colloquially in the Philippines to describe anything bold and strong, literally translating to “wild boar.” “One thing that’s great about Barako is, no matter what dairy or sweetener you put up against it you’ll taste your coffee throughout the drink,” Araneta said. “There are a lot of places you order a latte, tastes like milk because the coffee is so light so you’re tasting mostly
milk. Drink a Barako you still taste the coffee which is what I think a lot of our customers really like.” He explains the reason why no Filipino before ever bothered exporting this excelsa bean is that in the Philippines, they also want Arabica because of the American influence. In the Philippines, if you open a local coffee shop that focuses on Barako and there’s a Starbucks next to it, most Filipinos will go to Starbucks. “If it’s an American brand, that’s what they’re interested in,” Araneta said. “I said, ‘I’m going to go back to the States. I’m going to start a brand. It’s going to look American, it’s gonna feel American, but it’s going to promote Filipino coffee. And then one day, I’m going to bring this thing back as a U.S. brand market promotes Filipino,’” Araneta said. Azogue believes coffee shops like Blue House and Ballast that use more traditional coffee preparation methods and techniques (think old Italian cafes in Europe), are part of the “third-wave” coffee culture. “The first wave is like what they used to have back before Starbucks. The second wave is when Starbucks came in. Big chain coffee companies and Dunkin Donuts, they’ve rebranded a lot of things,” Azogue said. These rebrandings include the cup sizes at Starbucks and the way certain drinks are prepared, like the macchiato. “We get a lot of flack at Sightglass for not having many flavors to add to our coffee, or not serving dark roast so I think one thing anyone in specialty coffee needs to know is that it’s not going to attract everyone,” said Brie Silva, a shift lead/barista at Sightglass coffee at the San Francisco MoMA. Sightglass, a major local roasting company in the city, was Silva’s first specialty coffee experience. She started working in coffee during her junior year of undergraduate studies for six months before getting the job she’s had for the last two years. “The people who like chain coffee shops will most likely stick to those because of the options they provide, but it’s really great getting to see someone have their first really good cup of something like a Guatemala drip and be shocked they don’t need to add sugar or milk to give it sweetness,” Silva said. Both cafe owners talk about the experience they want to be set for their customers when coming in. Whether you’re coming into their cafes to take a break or to spend a few hours working, Azogue wants you to have this zen experience of being in a coffee shop. “You’ve got the ambiance, you got your cup of coffee, and then you’re being productive. That kind of takes me back to when I was in college, spending days at a coffee shop like this studying,” Azogue said. “I guess that’s where that inspiration is coming from.” Similarly, Araneta describes creating a space that accommodates a wide range of demographics ranging from young students to real estate agents. The natural lighting coming in from the back all the way to the front was designed in making Ballast Coffee bright. A wide patio spacing with minimal and clean appearance helps people focus a bit more. Artwork from ninth-graders down the street and photos from local photographers hang inside. Taylor Stitch, a San Francisco-based men’s clothing line held its sample sale at Ballast a few months ago. Local coffee shops aren’t hurting for community support.
“We’ve been lucky to have this nice little corner of the neighborhood where there’s not much around. People came in and were like, ‘oh, thank you for opening up a coffee shop here,’” Azogue said. “I have a lot of respect for all kinds of local coffee shops here in town. However, I would say there are two levels, right? There’s one like us where we really put effort into everything, from our aesthetics to our process to our experience. Then there are the other ones that are more like convenience coffee shops, which is your cafe around the corner that just serves coffee-based drinks.” Silva says they are very particular about the coffee they serve and how it’s served. From limited flavor options (vanilla and chocolate) and (up until recently) having only two milk options, no halfand-half. She explained that there’s so much care being put into the roast and prep of their coffee methods — espresso, drip, cold and pour-overs — they shouldn’t need extra added items to them to make them delicious. Although, these particularities do make some upset at times. As a coffee lover, she appreciates the minimalist idea of these drinks. “At Sightglass we roast our coffee pretty light so it’s always pretty sweet and can sometimes be tangy. A brew method like a French press, which is more attuned to darker roasted coffees, isn’t something we really do. I think pour-overs are amazing, especially seeing the variety of methods in subcategories under that. I didn’t know much if not anything about pour overs and the proper technique of it until I started working at Sightglass and I think they’re still my favorite drinks to make,” Silva said. Passionate coffee lovers like Silva and Araneta give credit to cities up north like Seattle and Portland for the root of San Francisco’s strong coffee game. “They have their own scene up there, and they don’t really particularly care about anyone else. I think a lot of trends actually start up there, and it trickles down to San Francisco,” Araneta said. “I think it’s in San Francisco where things are perfected. The competition level is really high and the quality is really high.” Whichever way you prefer your coffee made, it’s evident that the local coffee shops are taking some diligent consideration to detail about everything that encompasses their service. “There’s something about people in San Francisco that always want to excel when it comes to these things. There’s something in the water in San Francisco, you know, a lot of cultural movements start here,” Araneta said. “From the queer movement in the Castro, the hippies back in the ‘60s, to the heavy metal scene that was awesome here back in the ‘80s. Like, there’s something about San Francisco where cultures thrive and excel.” X
I have a lot of respect for all kinds of local coffee shops here in town. However, I would say there are two levels, right? There’s one like us where we really put effort into everything, from our aesthetics to our process to our experience. Then there are the other ones that are more like convenience coffee shops, which is your cafe around the corner that just serves coffee-based drinks. – Zandre Azogue
WE ARE XPRESS MAGAZINE
STORY BY IZZY ALVAREZ PHOTOGRAPH BY JORDi MOLINA
A HISTORY OF RESISTANCE
s I write this article it is appropriate to start by recognizing that San Francisco State University rests on occupied Ohlone Ramaytush territories. With respect I acknowledge them as the original keepers of the land we stand on.
his land acknowledgment and others alike is a show of respect to indigenous people. Land acknowledgment is a new concept in the United States, but Canada, New Zealand and Australia have all systematically acknowledged Native land and enacted in policy before any ceremony that homage to the land and its original peoples be recognized. Inside Seven Hills Conference Center at San Francisco State University is an arrangement of refreshments on red cloth-covered tables. The heat from the outside couldn’t reach the air conditioned room. The American Indian Studies department held its first land acknowledgment workshop within its walls. Joanne Barker, professor and chair of the American Indian Studies department, started the workshop by recognizing invaded lands of the Ohlone people, Coastal Miwok and Southern Pomo, collectively known as the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria. “It matters that this land holds a history of Native genocide and forced disspossesion, but also of Native continuance, renewal and renaissance,” Barker said. The first step to decolonization is recognizing truth in history. A truth that’s dominated by the perspectives of the winners in history. Centuries have passed since first contact, but Native resistance is steady throughout the world. The persistence to hold onto their cultural traditions is an ongoing struggle with both government and educational institutions. “We are in charge of our education to make the steps to become familiar with the narrative that has not thoroughly been shared,” Kanyon Coyote Woman Sayers-Roods said. “And it’s important that institutions that are proclaiming that they are offering an education to the community do their due diligence, to recognize that the perspectives of history that have been taught previously have not been inclusive.” Sayers-Roods is an indigenous generalized specialist, activist, artist and educator. A member of Costanoan Ohlone and Chumash, she became apart of land acknowledgments as a child with her mother. She has been initiating
ceremonies on her own since 2013. Despite the wrongs done in history, it’s still possible to do land acknowledgments properly without it becoming a staged event for cultural sake. “If we do want to put interaction with indigenous community members and the wishes of the land, that it’s not in a layer or an effort of quick singular interaction and tokenization,” Sayers-Roods said. “We need to start to acknowledge, what does it mean to be in relation to the indigenous community people who’ve called this place home to be accountable to being present in these lands that we have settled on.” In the case of educational institutions, land acknowledgment is a small step forward to taking responsibility for unjust circumstances. This year marked the 50th anniversary of the longest student strike in U.S. history. SFSU was the forefront of the strike that spawned the occupation of Alcatraz, and the collective effort established ethnic studies curriculums in higher educational institutions.
“We’ve just been sort of sequestered to this ridiculous very small frame of reference to indicate what we are and there’s just so much more to us.” –Tommy Orange
Presently, the fight for recognition follows new generations of Native people. The Bay Area is home to the largest Native diaspora in an urban setting, due in part to the Indian Relocation Acts which forced them to assimilate in urban areas. The background has changed since the time of their ancestors. Now the earth beneath their feet is blanketed in cement and buildings that reach the skies. They’ve adapted a connection with their surroundings in cities that still ring true today. Tommy Orange harmonizes that link of urban Native views in his debut novel “There There.”
A member of the Round Valley Traditional Dancers & Round Valley Feather Dancers (Pomo) opens up the Indigenous Peoples’ Day with a traditional dance at Yerba Buena Gardens in San Francisco.
“We’ve just been sort of sequestered to this ridiculous, very small frame of reference to indicate what we are and there’s just so much more to us,” Orange said. Orange, a member of the Cheyenne and Arapaho Nations, didn’t have social change in mind when writing “There There.” He just wanted to write about what it was like to be Native while growing up in Oakland. There was no great plan for his first novel other than honesty in a censored society. “There There” allows non-Natives a glimpse of how history has reduced Native culture. “Just rethinking what the dominant culture’s taught. What they’ve absorbed from it maybe without even thinking about it and rethinking what the native world looks like,” Orange said. “And how complex and nuanced and wide ranging it is. And I think that’s a good start. It’s been dismissed or invisible.” For the pioneers of this movement systemic change is still a long way from becoming reality. Their fight began during their college years and followed into adulthood. Educational institutions have often enjoyed the gains that ethnic studies provide, which include museums, libraries and universities. “That’s the first place that should acknowledge [stolen land] and it’s not really there even though we fought for American Indian Studies,” LaNada War Jack, Ph.D., said. “That’s why it’s important to know about all our people.” War Jack, a member of the Shoshone-Bannock Nations, returned to the Bay Area to share her experiences. As the first Native American student at UC Berkeley she co-organized the Alcatraz occupation. SFSU’s American Indian Studies department held a land acknowledgement workshop. Its goal was to educate students on the meaning behind recognizing the original
inhabitants. She has released a book documenting her accounts of the occupation called “Native Resistance: An Intergenerational Fight for Survival and Life.” “It’s the responsibility of the next generation to pick up and go,” War Jack said. “We’re not gonna live forever.” Resistance is far from over. Multigenerational Natives have inherited the resilience to preserve their traditions. The struggle to be heard has evolved to a new age from the first generation that took action 50 years ago. Sam Campbell, is the vice president of SKINS, the Student Kouncil of Intertribal Natives on the SFSU campus. They are currently running for a seat in California’s House of Representatives 15th district. Campbell is also trying to start an indigenous resistance class with SFSU’s experimental college. “A lot of the resistance is happening on social media and it reaches a larger audience,” said Campbell, a descendant of the Diné (Navajo) and Yaqui tribes. “Major news outlets aren’t reporting on it. It’s the people on the ground posting about it.” Campbell got involved with SKINS in order to reach the Native community and carry on consciousness with acknowledgment. Land acknowledgment is a modest yet powerful gesture in building alliances with Native communities. Land plays a significant role in Native culture from time immemorial. Discussing the invisibility of Native people and putting action behind the words is a move toward reconciliation. “Acknowledging that people are still here. These languages are surviving, these people are still surviving, the communities are still strong,” Campbell, originally from Hayward, California, said. “By acknowledging that this is their land, which is something that we ignore, just because it happened doesn’t mean that it’s OK that it happened.” X
Naloxone chemical compound
he streets of downtown San Francisco are filled with dichotomies. In the shadow of City Hall stands some of the nation’s most expensive real estate, right alongside tech corporations like Twitter and LinkedIn. But just around the corner are thousands of people from homeless and low-income communities struggling to survive. It is a harsh reality to see on a daily basis — people lying on the sidewalk among their possessions, sometimes unconscious, sometimes with a needle in their arm. Passersby usually turn a blind eye to these situations. Story by Andrea Williams The United States Photograph by james wyatt is in the midst of an opioid crisis. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, over 70,000 Americans died of drug overdoses in 2017 — a rate six times higher than in 1999. Supervisor Matt Haney said that San Francisco has been hit particularly hard, with overdose rates double that of the national average. Haney is the current Supervisor for San Francisco’s District 6, which comprises the Tenderloin and SoMa neighborhoods. Both are considered the city’s epicenters of overdoses and homelessness. On Oct. 28, Haney co-hosted a community Narcan training and expert panel conversation with the Drug Overdose Prevention Education (DOPE) Project, San Francisco Aids Foundation, St. Anthony’s, Drug Users’ Union and Drug Policy Alliance at
Fighting the Overdose
Crisis with Narcan and Compassion
Glide Community Church in the Tenderloin. Narcan is a medication that can reverse opioid overdoses in as little as two to three minutes. Free Narcan and proper training on how to administer it was provided to everyone in attendance. The panel fielded questions from the audience and addressed common misconceptions about the opioid crisis pertaining to overdoses, Narcan education and dropping the stigma of substance addiction. Narcan is available for free across the city at needle exchange sites and at the Community Behavioral Health Services pharmacy downtown. Community members are encouraged to carry their own supply of Narcan so they can help at a moment’s notice if they see a public overdose taking place. Kristen Marshall, manager of the DOPE Project, mediated the event. She explained that poverty and drug addiction are part of larger, structural issues in society. “People sometimes think that poverty and drug addiction are a result of individual moral failings,” Marshall said. “But we know that is not true and that it is a structural problem directly tied to lack of resources and opportunities ... rich people do drugs all the time — they just never get in trouble for it.” Marshall has been manager of the DOPE Project for over two years, but she’s volunteered with them for the last seven. Community outreach, free Narcan access and Narcan training are integral parts of how the non-profit prevents overdose deaths. The DOPE Project has been operating for 17 years and is part of the larger advocacy and capacity building organization the Harm Reduction Coalition. Although current efforts to tackle the overdose
“People sometimes think that poverty and drug addiction are a result of individual moral failings,” Marshall said. crisis are impactful, to reduce harm and public overdoses, further action needs to be taken. Many advocates and lawmakers look forward to creating supervised consumption spaces, known as safe injection sites or supervised injection facilities. According to a recent San Francisco Chronicle article, Haney, Mayor London Breed and Gov. Gavin Newsom are among the supporters for legislation allowing pilot supervised consumption spaces to open in San Francisco. Supervised consumption spaces are sanctioned and supervised by trained medical staff for safe consumption of pre-obtained drugs. These facilities engage with underserved communities by providing access to sterile equipment, counseling and basic health and social services. Supervised consumption spaces are currently operating in cities across Europe, Australia and Canada, according to the 2016 Alternatives to Public Injection report from the Harm Reduction Coalition. “Wherever they are located, programs that provide a supervised, safe place for people to come off the streets and use their drugs all showed benefits to the people who use them and to the community around them,” the report stated. Canada opened their first supervised consumption site in Vancouver in 2003. After the facility’s opening, the neighborhood around the facility saw a 35% drop in overdose deaths and a 9% drop in the rest of the city, according to the report. The report also states that the facility saved the city an estimated $14 million in health care costs. In the beginning there was “strong opposition to the facility from providers of abstinence-based drug treatment, but engagement turned them into allies over time as they recognized Insite’s (supervised injection facility) role in referring participants to their treatment programs,” Marshall is excited about the current conversations around San Francisco opening safe consumption spaces. Non-profits have been pushing for these sites for decades. She explained that current consumption spaces in the city include public bathrooms, BART stations and street corners. Marshall believes that with California’s new attitude toward the topic, San Francisco will see its first safe consumption space within the next five years, after the city figures out the legal side of things.
Haney has a positive outlook on the future of supervised consumption spaces in San Francisco and hopes they can open up as soon as possible. He plans on working closely with local nonprofits to make this a reality. It’s gonna be a partnership,” said Haney after a Board of Supervisors meeting in October. “I think the non-profits are probably in the best place to do it and we as a city are in the best place to fund it and provide legal assistance. I think there is not an unlikely chance that we or the non-profit would face legal action from the federal government, in which case we have to be prepared to step in and support.” X
“But we know that is not true and that it is a structural problem directly tied to lack of resources and opportunities ... rich people do drugs all the time — they just never get in trouble for it.”
A demo is displayed at the NARCAN training and expert panel conversation at Glide in Tenderloin on Oct. 28, 2019
Chloe’s Top 5
T OP 10 ALBU The best albums of the year picked by music Illustrations by
FKA twigs’ MAGDALENE
From start to finish it is a pure masterpiece. It’s hypnotizing. Dire, doleful, deep. Distorted vocals sound as if a vampire is being exorcised from her soul. Transparency and vulnerability are apparent throughout the album — a roller coaster of emotions that will make you feel empowered, odd, alienistic by the end of the album. The starting track, “thousand eyes” takes angelic cries with buzzing beats and haunting back-up melodies. The holy presence throughout the album is due to the history of the woman behind the album name and track “mary magdalene” — a follower of Jesus who is said to bore witness to the crucifiction, burial and resurrection of Jesus.
Devendra Banhart’s Ma
It’s been nearly three years since the genius of “Ape In Pink Marble” was released. Yet it still came as a shock when Devendra Banhart transcended to a new excellence with the release of his 10th studio album. Songs like “Now All Gone” and “My Boyfriend’s in the Band” give hints of blues, discotech beats and curling guitar chords to groove to. With this album Devendra perfects his sound. It’s versaitility and transparency of Devendra bleed through the album making it No. 3 on the list. He switches between Spanish and English, funky and tender throughout the album.
Kim Gordon’s No Home Record
The grunge queen establishes her personal sound aside from being the front woman of Sonic Youth. The marriage of electronic beats and metal birthed “No Home Record,” and I’m living for the new happy family. Decades after she was crowned an alternative icon, a more husky and aged voice howls on tracks like “Hungry Baby.” Song lyrics become pure poetry on “Paprika Pony” and “Cookie Butter,” which slow down the tempo and spew spoken words. Heavy bass and dubbed drums on linger throughout the album giving punk tracks like “Murdered Out” a new modern flare.
The Cranberries’ In the End
Dolores O’Riordan has risen! As if she was resurrected from the grave, The Cranberries released their eighth and final studio album this year with O’Riordan’s ghostly and Celtic voice lingering on every track, despite her death early last year. “In the End” delivered a slightly modern sound while still delivering the typical chilling Cranberries sound. After the sudden death of their frontwoman last year, the band’s living members Noel Hogan, Mike Hogan and Fergal Lawler maintain the band’s alternative droning melodies on iconic tracks like “Zombie,” combining them with recordings left behind from the late singer.
Flaming Lips ft Mick Jones’ King’s Mouth: Music and Songs
When an iconic name in punk music collaborates with one of the most iconic bands in psychedelic experimental rock to make an album together, it is destined for greatness. Echoing the Big Audio Dynamite style of an album with songs that all segue into the next, Mick Jones resurfaced for the first time in several years to create a cohesive storytelling album with The Flaming Lips. Jones caught up with his age and narrates as if he was the great-grandfather of London. Whether it be from a synth, an acoustic guitar, drums or quite literally samples of a baby cooing, the album has an overall ethereal theme in it.
UMS OF 2019 radicals Amy Bigelow and Chloe McDaniels Chloe McDaniels
On their latest studio creation, Tiger Army has crafted a genre-bending tracklist to incorporate different stylistic elements of sound, while keeping their psychobilly roots intact. “Retrofuture” is a testament to the LA-based trio’s many musical influences. Their opening prelude echoes the surf rock instrumentation of Dick Dale, with a futuristic twist. A handful of other songs, like “Valentina” and “The Past Will Always Be,” follow the typical rhythm structure popularized by 50s rock groups. The latin-infused “Mi Amor La Luna” accentuates the distinctively suave voice of lead singer Nick 13. Fast chord progressions and reverb from the standup bass, accompanied by tighter vocal harmonies, round out the album for a more familiar and refined listening experience.
K. Flay is a definite powerhouse on her latest album, “Solutions.” With relatable lyrics that resonate, she serves up a good dose of self-empowerment as she navigates through societal pressures, fear, and self-loathing. From the opening track “I Like Myself (Most Of The Time)” to her outro “DNA,” Flay isn’t afraid to speak her mind about such heavy and personal topics. In juxtaposition to the lyrical content, the accompanied music arrangement throughout the album maintains an uplifting feel, only dipping into melancholy tones when needed. Overall, her approach feels real and unabashed.
Amy’s Top 5
The Growlers’ Natural Affair
Tiger Army’s Retrofuture
K. Flay’s Solutions
Brooks Nielsen warbles about the shortcomings and pleasures of young adulthood on “Natural Affair,” the charming follow-up to The Growlers’ 2018 album, “Casual Acquaintances.” Catalyzed by melodic rhythms and poignant lyrics, their newest record effectively melds the band’s established garage rock instrumentation with their more recent synth-pop beats. The result — a groovier compilation of songs that flows nicely from start to finish. On a lyrical note, Nielsen tackles self introspection in connection to past experiences, through vividly expressive wording. “Social Man” is an exemplary song for both the lyrics and musical arrangement. Overall, this album leaves a lasting impression long after the affair is over.
The Black Keys’ Let’s Rock
Having recently resurfaced with “Let’s Rock” in June, it seems like little time has passed since Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney last recorded an album together. But after a five-year hiatus to pursue other musical ventures — Carney spent time producing music while Auerbach maintained a solo career — The Black Keys frontmen return to the basics on their new album. Gritty guitar riffs and booming drum beats found on “Eagle Birds” or “Get Yourself Together” are reminiscent of their earlier work. Though “Let’s Rock” is a fun listen, the blues-rock dynamic duo falls short of delivering a memorable eargasm.
Bad Religion’s Age of Unreason
Bad Religion has been one of the few Southern California punk bands to maintain underground exposure without overwhelming commercial success. With a career spanning across nearly four decades, these punks are currently on their 17th album — “Age of Unreason.” Known for being politically vocal, especially among the hardcore punk scene, Bad Religion’s newest addition offers commentary on modern society and the present political climate. “Lose Your Head” and “Big Black Dog” are definite standouts, especially with Greg Graffin’s captivating voice. While Bad Religion has strayed from hardcore to become more melodic and poppy, the essence of the band itself remains veracious. 29
The Rules of the road Katya Velichansky poses on her Harley Sportster at the Litas SF x Litas Sacramento bike wash for Harley-Davidson Sacramento on June 8, 2019.
ne, make a staggered formation. Two, watch for the pacemaker’s hand signal. And three: ride your own ride. These are the rules of the road. “I think it’s not so much about doing it because only men do it,” said Katya Velichansky, founding member of the Bay Area chapter of The Litas motorcycle club. “But we want to encourage women, or anyone nonbinary, to try it out if they have ever thought about riding.” For Velichansky, riding with a group means that every rider is allowed any detour or other path that they wish. Take whatever turn, go whatever speed. Simply, “ride your own ride.” Velichasky has been riding her own ride since she purchased her first motorcycle, a Suzuki GZ 250, five years ago. But Velichansky never anticipated throwing a leg over her own motorcycle. In a 2018 study by the Motorcycle Industry Council (MIC), 19% of motorcycle riders are women — a huge leap from decades of male dominated motorcycle culture that often saw female riders as a rare spectacle. Katya and fellow female motorcycle riders Judea Contreras, Tish Yotadee and Kayla Childress began the first Bay Area chapter of an all-female motorcycle club that has disrupted the world of a male-dominated culture. Jessica Haggett started The Litas in November 2014 and lit the flame of female motorcycle enthusiasts around the world. With a global effort of more than 1,800 members, Velichansky was determined to spread the movement to the Bay Area. Velichansky, the Bay Area Litas chapter and chapters from around the world participated in The Litas’ annual “Babe’s Ride Out” event on Oct. 7 in Santa Margarita, California, touring the scenic Central Coast
Story by Clara Applegarth Photograph courtsey of Kimberly Herrera during the three-day camping meetup. “I was one of the main original people backing it up. There were three girls that did the initial filing — and I was there from the first day on,” Velichansky said. “Right now, the group is run by me and my friend Tish.” The Litas main idea is to break the historic stereotype that perpetuates an exclusive culture of all-male motorcycle groups that don’t include people like themselves. Katya and Tish both nurture the community of nonbinary and female riders in the chapter by organizing rides approximately once a month and working to encourage future riders to swing their leg over a motorcycle. “It’s pretty much open to anyone who wants to come and hang out,” Velichansky said. “Very open door policy; we try to keep it just women, but people who are nonbinary are welcomed. But no cis-men.” “It feels like a sisterhood,” Velichansky said, “which may sound a little bit cheesy. That’s really what it is. You can count on people to stick by your side, and that goes for on and off the bike.” “She’s a badass,” said former Litas member Childress. “She’s really out there trying to carve out a space to do her own thing, and still hustling to make ends meet.” Velichansky now works as a graphic designer in San Francisco, and commutes daily on her Harley-Davidson Sportster while remaining an active leader for the Bay Area Litas. “It takes a strong sense of self to be able to pull so many women together to ride, which makes her the epitome of a road dog,” said fellow Litas rider Kimberly Herrera. “And as the Litas mantra goes, ‘she always raises hell.’” X
How to be an online editor when you can’t go online An editorial by Joshua Chan
t’s hard not to be ever-so-slightly demoralized when you’re starting the semester as the online editor of a site that’s deemed “unsafe” by most browsers. But that was an easy fix, since we just had to update the SSL certificate — a little designation that your site is safe. But when any sort of technical fix has to go through the university’s Academic Technology, the real problems arise. Oh boy, did they arise this semester. The problems started on Oct. 2, when “xpressmagazine.org” went down with an HTTP 500 error, meaning that the error couldn’t even be identified, but the site wouldn’t work anyway. The problem was big enough to warrant intervention from BlueHost, our former server provider, and thus, the site went down until Oct. 7. Of course, I only found out the site went up because I checked it incessantly over that week with no notification, but that would only be the start.The absence of a working website was further exacerbated by a lack of updates on the site’s status. The problems then started up again on Oct. 8, when the site would load but administrator access was blocked. It took two days worth of emails for Xpress Magazine to learn that this would be a more significant problem than any previous issues. It took until Oct. 14 to even get any information on the problems affecting both our site and the website for Golden Gate Xpress, and that was only after pestering our advisor for any updates about possible solutions. While I’m grateful for Academic Technology’s involvement in our site and its process of fixing the site, more transparency about the department’s potential solutions to the problems would have been appreciated. On Nov. 1, xpressmagazine.org finally came back up, but again, it took someone else noticing for any sort of indication that the site was up. Even then, the site was online with an Oct. 6 backup, and again, the caveat that we couldn’t update the site at all. It took until Nov. 6 to even bring students into a meeting to consider a new server host, all while both Xpress Magazine and Golden Gate Xpress were still down (both sites are up as of publishing). If you’re wondering what it’s like to be the online editor of a site that isn’t even online, this is what it’s like. It’s
a lot of emailing, pestering people for any information on any status update possible and a lot of wondering how stories will go up for writers on Xpress Magazine, who often reach far beyond San Francisco. For that, we have medium.com/xpress-magazine, which is where our writers’ stories will go temporarily due to our sparse print schedule (that’s a topic for another day). Our classmates deserve to have their stories somewhere on the Internet, and this was the next best thing to do. On it, you’ll see previous stories from the previous print issue and this print issue, along with great multimedia accompaniments from our writers. All this is to say that it’s weird being an online editor when you can’t go online. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t stories to be read, or that you can’t do something new. A ship made of old content might be a ship of Theseus, but it’s still a ship. It’s better than not having any stories accessible for a previous staffer who wished to share them. A thanks goes out to Don Menn, who always updated the Xpress staff about the site’s status, and Tomáš Furmánek, who always answered emails about the site’s problems promptly. Thanks for reading. X