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May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 3


A deadline issue for homeless vets


HIS YEAR WE WILL HELP 1,000 home- for this,” he says. “I assume since the mayor has served less veterans get off the streets.” on the council he would know that there is a process When San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer to get money approved. And I assume he would know made that proclamation in his January 14 what time is needed when he’s calculating something State of the City address, a homelessness advocate like this. Just let me be clear on this—this has not sitting near me in the balcony of the Balboa Theatre been delayed because of any council action.” gasped. It struck me, too. There it was: A very public Alvarez added: “The city is not meeting the need promise with a timeline that could be tracked. of its homeless the way other cities around the counBut what did the mayor mean when he said “this try are. This is the only idea we’ve seen from the year?” mayor and all of us on the council got behind this. Media outlets, including CityBeat, took the proc- It’s incumbent on the mayor to solve this problem— lamation literally and reported that the aim was to if he wants to do so. We’re waiting for his leaderhouse 1,000 homeless vets by the end of 2016. But ship. But if you give a speech on it you need to follow the mayor’s office has backed off that date and now through on it.” says the deadline is March 2017. Why? Because the At a Feb. 3 press conference to officially anfunding for the initiative wasn’t passed by the city nounce Housing Our Heroes, councilmember Todd council until March, so that’s THEODORE W LEE / FLICKR Gloria welcomed accountability when the clock started, and “this on tracking the progress of the iniyear” ends next March. tiative to the end of the year. It’s a seemingly small time dif“This is about pinning down a ference. But it’s the latest delay measurable approach,” he said. “I in a span of political inaction and would ask that people would hold years of missed deadlines regardus accountable.” ing homelessness. Asked this week about the San Diego’s Republican mayor San Diego Housing Commisis up for re-election in the June sion’s “new” deadline and if he, as 7 primary. Democratic challenger chair of the city’s homelessnessEd Harris was quick to weigh in focused Regional Continuum of on the sliding deadline. Care Council, found the progress “Faulconer was already beHousing Our Heroes acceptable, Gloria said via a statehind the curve in addressing deadline moved. ment: “…I believe they’re trying homeless veterans and now they very hard in a tough rental market are going to be left on the streets for another three and [with] sometimes hard-to-place clients.” months,” said Harris, via an email from spokesperOn April 12, The SDHC reported that 29 veterans son Rollin Bush. “He needs to stop treating crises as had been housed under the mayor’s initiative. The excuses for press conferences and focus on actually initiative needed ramping up time, said SDHC spokesgetting things done.  Regarding the homeless, the person Maria Velasquez. Staff had been designated only tangible ‘accomplishment’ Faulconer can point and a media awareness campaign was being initiated. to is placing sharp rocks under overpasses.” As of May 15 the number of housed veterans Harris was referring to a $57,000 “rock garden” stood at 61. Velasquez said 71 landlords have now project the city authorized on Imperial Avenue to pledged 103 rental units to Housing Our Heroes, and discourage homeless individuals from sleeping there. more than $41,000 in incentives have been paid out Mayoral spokesperson Craig Gustafson wrote to those landlords. in an email that that after the mayor’s State of the With just 61 vets housed in two and a half months, City speech, “it became clear that it would take a few though, that’s an average of 24 per month, meaning weeks to get final approval on the $12.5 million fund- SDHC will need to quadruple placements to 104 ing for the ‘Housing Our Heroes’ campaign from the per month (more than three individuals per day) to San Diego Housing Commission and the city coun- achieve the mayor’s promise. cil. That final approval came on March 1 so that is That’s going to be very difficult. Unless the deadthe beginning of the yearlong campaign.” line changes, again.  —Ron Donoho Hang on, says city councilmember David Alvarez. “The council acted as soon as the mayor asked us Write to This issue of CityBeat wonders if the Texas Rangers’ suspended infielder can now play in the NHL playoffs.

Volume 14 • Issue 41 EDITOR Ron Donoho MUSIC EDITOR Jeff Terich ARTS EDITOR Seth Combs WEB EDITOR Ryan Bradford ART DIRECTOR Carolyn Ramos EDITORIAL ASSISTANT Torrey Bailey COLUMNISTS Aaryn Belfer, Edwin Decker John R. Lamb, Alex Zaragoza

CONTRIBUTORS David L. Coddon, Beth Demmon, Andrew Dyer, Tiffany Fox, Michael A. Gardiner, Glenn Heath Jr., Peter Holslin, Jessica Johnson, Scott McDonald, Jenny Montgomery, Susan Myrland, Jim Ruland, Ben Salmon, Tom Siebert, Jen Van Tieghem, Amy Wallen EDITORIAL INTERN Elizabeth Pode PRODUCTION MANAGER Tristan Whitehouse MULTIMEDIA ADVERTISING DIRECTOR Paulina Porter-Tapia

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4 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016



May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 5



“Thank you for the review of Dinner with Marlene at the Lamb’s Players Theatre in Coronado [May 4]. I have just seen it and I can’t get it out of my mind. This is an amazing production, a unique moment in world history, and I felt a guest at this dinner party. The ensemble cast is impressive and its classical theater training shows in every word, spoken and sung. The story haunts me still, each historical character playing a human role in the drama, history known and unknown, secrets kept and shared. Kudos to the playwright for telling her father’s story. By giving him a touch of magic, she gave a touch of magic to us all. Don’t miss out on this opportunity before May ends. And young actress Avery Trimm has a great future!    

Nancy Drew, Normal Heights


I can’t stand when people judge others by their poverty, like it’s some mark of weakness [“Mayor of homelessness: Ward or Bernal?,” May 11]. Only the strongest, most resourceful people can survive on the street. Does it make you uncomfortable to take shits in public? Well, most homeless people would like to do private things in private, too, but they don’t get that choice. Either give people a place to shit— public dedicated or mobile restrooms—or let them shit on the street. You can’t have it both ways. I work at Think Dignity’s transitional storage center downtown, and every day I hear stories about homeless people getting harassed, abused and discriminated against everywhere they go. I don’t think anyone who criticizes the homeless has any understanding of who these people are: -People who were middle and even upper class before the stock market crashed. -People trying to escape abusive relationships. -People who got sick and were financially devastated by medical bills. -People who are too old to work, have no family to take care of them and can’t afford a nursing home. -People who were kicked out of their homes at an early age when their parents found out they were LGBT. -People whose only crime is that they feel like they should be free to sleep outside and travel. -People who voluntarily or involuntarily sacrificed their bodies

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and minds to the horrors of war for this country, only to be tossed aside when they came home. And don’t act like alcoholism and drug problems are purely a scourge of the homeless; they’re just the ones who get punished the most for it. Homeless people are the only ones I’ve ever met who actually get ticketed for jaywalking. It’s crooked politicians and their SDPD cronies who are weak for preying on our most vulnerable citizens. Just today at work one of my clients—an incredibly sweet and knowledgeable older gentleman who SDPD pushes from street to park to trolley at all hours of every night just because those are the rules, told me, “When you’re old and poor you have no power. Get educated, get money, don’t be old and poor like me.” Geez, man, I dare some of the unbelievably insensitive commenters to tell their opinions to guys like this face-to-face. The few possessions that people are allowed to accrue, including important documents, family keepsakes, and tarps to shelter themselves from the rain, are constantly subject to theft and confiscation. The waiting list to get a storage bin at my work is like two months, and no one should even be outside that long to begin with. Not surprisingly, despite property sweeps by the cops happening more frequently in more areas, the number of people having to live in tents has not decreased. In fact it’s risen drastically in the past few years. Being forced to move from street to street and having to spend your only income on fines for sleeping in a fucking park is the stark opposite of helping people get back on their feet. It’s cutting them off at the knees.  

TABLE OF CONTENTS UP FRONT From the Editor. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Letters. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 News . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Spin Cycle. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Sordid Tales. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11

FOOD & DRINK The World Fare. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 The Beerdist . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Bottle Rocket. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16

The Elements of Summer (page23)

ARTS & CULTURE SHORT LIST: Three you have to see. . . . . . . . 17 Calendar. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17-20 Theater . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .19 FEATURE: Summer Guide . . . . . . . . . . . 23-41 There She Goz. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 The Floating Library . . . . . . . . . 43 Seen Local . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44 Films . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46-48

Keely Kiczenski, via

WE WANT FEEDBACK If something inspires you to send us your two cents we welcome all letters that respond to news stories, opinion pieces or reviews that have run in these pages. We don’t accept unsolicited op-ed letters. Email letters to editor Ron Donoho at rond@sdcitybeat. com, or mail to 3047 University Ave., Suite 202, San Diego, CA 92104. For letters to be considered for publication you must include your first and last name and the part of town where you reside. Note: All comments left on stories at will also be considered for publication.

The Cure (page 49)

MUSIC FEATURE: The Cure. . . . . . . . . . 49 Notes from the Smoking Patio. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 If I Were U . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51 Concerts & Clubs . . . . . . . . 52-56

LAST WORDS In The Weeds . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58



May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 7



Will Climate Action Plan carry social equity? Advocates call for a seat at the table for underserved communities by Sebastian Montes


lma Alcantar sees them nearly everywhere as she looks around Grant Hill and Sherman Heights—the ruptured sidewalks, the dilapidated streets, the neglected streetlights. Why have neighborhoods like Golden Hill flourished while hers languishes, the 42-year-old mother of three mused on a recent afternoon at the decades-old Sherman Heights Community Center, where she was waiting for two of her children to finish after-school programs. A few blocks away, afternoon rush hour bogged down on state Route 94, a constant reminder of the demarcation between neighborhoods flush with infrastructure spending and those that are not. “Just look at the difference between Golden Hill and here,” she said. “Walk over the bridge, how pretty it is there. And on this side, it’s horrible.”

Stories like Alcantar’s, say social justice advocates, personify a historical legacy that systematically leaves lower-income, highminority communities more vulnerable to the ravages of climate change. “You don’t have to be a planner or an engineer to know that there are places where there’s historic disinvestment,” said Monique Lopez, policy advocate for the Environmental Health Coalition. “It stems from environmental racism, but it also stems from city structures and priorities. People are victims of their built environment.” Ostensibly, San Diego will try to change that legacy through its Climate Action Plan, the ambitious and sweeping framework for transforming the city’s climate impact by cutting greenhouse gas emissions in half by 2035 and turning exclusively to renewable energy. The plan could mark a seminal

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moment for social equity in San Diego, or the moment that institutionalized discrimination is further entrenched into the way San Diego does business. “We’re at this crossroads where it could be one or the other,” Lopez said. “We’re trying our hardest that it is the social justice pathway, that what the Climate Action Plan does is lead to a just transition instead of just more of the same.” City leaders enjoyed a sixmonth honeymoon since the plan’s December release, basking in the glow of international acclaim while deferring questions about its details until an implementation plan could be set forth. That implementation plan came out earlier this month, outlining $127 million in spending for the coming fiscal year that will help the city reach its climate goals. That includes sewer renovations, new bike lanes, solar panels and sidewalk and road repair. San Diego City Councilmember David Alvarez convened a working group of business and environmental advocates to help steer the Climate Action Plan to fruition. The group’s first two meetings—in February and May— were dominated by density and how to adapt construction policies to the new climate goals. All but absent so far: discussion about

State Route 94 social justice, affordable housing and gentrification. “Equity should be at the table where everyone else is working,” Lopez said. “Communities of color are on the front lines of climate impacts, they should be on the front lines of investment—but also doing it in a way that protects housing affordability. Things from there get complicated really fast.” Alvarez—whose district includes Sherman Heights and Barrio Logan—has called for more aggressive efforts to address the city’s ailing infrastructure. He did not respond to requests for comment. Neither did Cody Hooven, the city’s sustainability manager and co-author of the implementation plan. Kyra Greene, research and policy analyst for the Center on Policy Initiatives says the Climate Action Plan hits the right buzzwords regarding investments in environmentally burdened, lowincome communities. But, so far, the implementation plan calls for the kind of spending the city was already doing—with no meaningfully new ways to spend on infrastructure. “We’ve been planting trees, so saying that we’re going to continue to invest in urban forestry, that’s great, but we’re not really increasing investment and we’re not changing where we’re planting those trees to address social equity issues,” Greene said. “That is a very clear weakness of this implementation plan.” Meanwhile, a deep rift has emerged around whether the Climate Action Plan is as legally binding as its backers have been touting. Further schism could come once planners and officials get down to brass tacks of identifying the policies that get prioritized and which communities get short shrift on spending. Space at the budget trough, after all, will be limited. “Everybody is still kumbayaing, because we haven’t gotten to a real implementation plan. What we have is just kind of a budget analysis,” Lopez said. “When we start talking about what we’re going to prioritize, what policies need to get passed in order to re-

direct the city, what things need to get institutionalized, that’s when we’ll really start to see the divisions among folks.” The Climate Action Plan boasts that an explosion of green jobs will create a “pathway out of poverty.” But Greene and Lopez aren’t heartened by the scant discussion that crucial topic has so far received. They’re calling for deliberate efforts and safeguards to keep neighborhoods affordable for lower-wage jobs that will support the green economy that the Climate Action Plan calls for. A harbinger of how that debate might pan out: the city’s record on affordable housing. “If all we do is focus on the higher-wage jobs and build sexy housing near transit, then absolutely what we’ll see is gentrification and displacement,” Lopez said. “Almost every policy that’s been passed to deal with affordable housing has been underutilized and, frankly, abused by developers. And any time there’s been an effort to look at changing that, the response is, ‘Absolutely not’—just a crushing use of money and power.” Those thorny conversations about displacement and tenant rights need to go hand in hand with discussions about infrastructure spending, density and developers’ profits, said Lopez and Greene. “In order for a just transition to take place, not only do our communities need access to those new jobs and the new economy, they also need to be able to afford to live in the city. Because what you’re going to have at the end of the day is a city built only for a few,” Lopez said. “It’ll be a green city, but for who?” It’s a bitterly familiar story for Alma Alcantar and her neighbors. She sees a glimmer of hope in politicians’ recent promises. But neither can she shake free of her neighborhood’s frustrating history. “The city talks about spending millions of dollars on roads and sidewalks. I just hope we get a piece of that,” she said. “Because this community has been abandoned for years. For years.”



May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 9






The political ad blitzkrieg for the San Diego primary If you don’t advertise yourself, you will be advertised by your loving enemies.  —Elbert Hubbard  t’s down-the-stretch time for local political candidates, and you know what that means: overstuffed postal repositories with a side order of broadcast blather, please! Yes, we are less than three weeks away from the June 7 primary—the end of Round 1 in that all-but-too-familiar, perpetually noxious, mind-numbingly head-throttling Sweepstakes from Hell in which we take two minutes to pick our political leaders for the foreseeable future. The whole country’s been playing along for some time, and now it’s California’s turn. If you’ve spent any time outside your cave in the last year, that sulfur-y smell you might have noticed is actually the last remnants of our levelheaded democracy imploding upon itself. See, there’s this New York billionaire, with structurally impossible hair who says anything his sequestered brain synapses tell him to, who apparently wants to be leader of the Free World That Could Catch Fire At the Mere Mention of a Match. This guy, he’s running against an accomplished woman and former First Lady who Republicans regard as the second coming of Satan while Democrats hum tunes to themselves as they await the grating outcome of her battle with a wild-haired, feisty, 74-year-old Vermonter who has the kids all hyped on his sugary tales of Democratic Socialism. It’s still hard to know if California will play a role in the latter contest, which would be the nonsensical tradition for the most populous state in the Union. Still, there’s plenty going on in the undercard, as San Diegans who have a mailbox or a news-spewing device are likely beginning to realize. The sample ballot alone—shipped out beginning last week—clocks in at 146 pages, gargantuan enough to jam open a door or, quite possibly, stop a small-caliber bullet. (Side note: Spin Cycle has no idea if recycled paper was used in their production, but just in case not, let us share a moment of silence for the trees that made the ultimate sacrifice in the name of democracy… Thank you.) As if that weren’t enough, receiving a sample ballot also means that sweet letter from grandma probably got crushed ruthlessly at the bottom of your mailbox from the weight of the endless campaign mailers streaming in like a barrage of unsolicited love notes from that creepy neighbor with the large set of binoculars. Some claim to adore this period of the campaign season, like receiving a folded-up, placemat-sized sheet of stock paper emblazoned with promises, warnings and staged photos of smiling candidates equates to a relationship, even though most people wouldn’t invite these folks into their homes if it were burning and they held the only bucket of water in town. The communal dumpster at Spin Central is typically filled with these mailers as soon as they arrive, raising the issue of message-conveying effectiveness. This is a depressing notion, considering that someone somewhere—be it a wide-


San Diego voters may be shaken, but not stirred into action, by recent campaign advertising. eyed political dreamer or a sleep-deprived cynic operating from mom’s basement—spent at least some time creating them in the hopes of persuading voters to join their team. Sometimes the results are humorous. As noted by challenger Justin DeCesare last week, incumbent Republican District 7 City Councilmember Scott Sherman was featured smiling in one mailer in a spiffy dark-blue logo-less shirt. As of Tuesday, a hauntingly similar photo remained on Sherman’s Facebook page, with one glaring difference: This one included a San Diego Chargers lightning bolt logo. Far be it for Spin to demonize the pleasures of photoshopping, but this one seemed quite absurd—considering Sherman’s recent chiding of the Chargers over the team’s preference for a new stadium downtown versus remaining in Mission Valley, part of his district. Surely the guy owns another shirt and could have posed for another picture. (It’s also fun to remember back to last year when Sherman led an excursion up to Sorrento Valley in a poorly received effort to convince Qualcomm executives to move its headquarters to the Mission Valley stadium site.) Then there are the negative campaign mailers, those where one candidate tries to characterize their opponent in the most unflattering manner possible. On Monday, a mailer from the San Diego County Democratic Party arrived, touting the candidacy of District 3 City Council candidate Chris Ward on one side, but on the other featuring a photo of smiling opponent Anthony Bernal alongside perhaps the most hated Republican in town, mega-developer and former Union-Tribune owner Doug Manchester. “Former U-T owner, Trump delegate and anti-marriage equality Prop 8 underwriter Papa Doug Manchester and his wife are among the largest financial contributors to Anthony Bernal’s City Council campaign,” the mailer blared. “Developers, downtown special interests and far-right donors are counting on Anthony Bernal to look out for their interests at City Hall. But what about your interests?” It’s an old but often effective tactic among campaign guerillas. In the bitterly contested District 1 council race, the right-wing Lincoln Club of San Diego County has come

It’s an old but often effective tactic among campaign guerillas.

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under fire again for mailers it paid for that attempt to paint Democrat Barbara Bry—running against the club’s perennial favorite and previous loser to Sherri Lightner, Ray Ellis—as a cheerleader for a downtown stadium, which she has strongly denied. Bry’s support of the Citizens Plan, a proposed November ballot measure written by activist attorney Cory Briggs that would raise the city’s hotel tax and reform how tourism dollars are managed, was apparently all the proof the Lincoln Club needed, even though Bry and the Citizens Plan oppose public subsidizing of a stadium. “My first reaction was, ‘How can Ray Ellis and his supporters be continuing to lie about something they know is a lie,’” Bry told KPBS last week. The typical answer is: because the candidate tied to making the accusation has little else to say. This is the beauty of the negative ad—it itself can make news, it deflects from the accuser’s own shortcomings, and it pays someone’s bills. But frankly, the mailers pale to the onslaught that television viewers must endure during the final stages of election season. The back of Mayor Kevin Faulconer’s head, for example, has already appeared countless times on San Diego’s own Fox News Lite, aka KUSI. In his ad, “A Better Way,” Faulconer—from behind—is seen walking through an anonymous construction zone with the sounds of synthesized strings swelling in the background. “There’s a heartbeat, there’s a rhythm to San Diego, and you can feel it right now,” Faulconer coos in the voiceover. “A sense of energy, a sense of enthusiasm, a sense of you know we’ve been through some tough times but we’re back. “You make great things happen by bringing people together, figuring out consensus. I’m going to continue that,” he adds to a crashing cymbal as he sits in what appears to be his Point Loma kitchen. But what catches Spin’s eye in the ad is a portion of a large sign leaning against the backsplash behind the oven that appears to read “COCKTAILS.” It may be the best subliminal message to help San Diegans get through the next couple weeks. To your health! Spin Cycle appears every week. Write to






The attitude of entitlement in the service industry


t has become something of an obsession. I don’t know exactly when it started, perhaps 10 years ago, when I noticed increasingly more bartenders were not showing gratitude for the tips they were given. As a former bartender of about 25 years, I always believed that tips must be earned. I called this philosophy GIV (Gratuity Is Voluntary) or GIVE (Gratuity Is Very Elective) and I upheld it to the best of my ability. I’m not saying I acknowledged every single tip that came along—there were those times, when I was having a bad day, or pondering something heavy, or suffering from a minor case of absentmindedness—but the default policy for me, and most of my colleagues, was to say, “Thanks,” for the tips we received. But after years of watching an increase in people who subscribe to the TAKE (Tips Are Klearly Expected) worldview, I find myself obsessed. I can’t help but take note of every person in the service industry who didn’t pay due respect to an offering given by me, or others. And what makes it even more disheartening is that, as a former bartender, I tend to over-tip. I’m not bragging. It’s just how it is with people in the service industry. We tip big. And if a certain bartender isn’t acknowledging my 25- to 50-percent tip, I can only imagine how badly he or she neglects the average tipper. Of course, I always give the benefit of the doubt. Perhaps they were having an awful day or suffering from a minor bout of absentmindedness. But if it happens twice, they get placed on my “No More Tips for You, You Ungrateful Bastard” blacklist. And that blacklist has been growing so quickly in recent years, I’m beginning to think the problem is pandemic. Yes, of course, my little survey is anecdotal and un-scientific, but I remain convinced— there are more TAKErs and less GIVErs in the hospitality industry than ever before. Indeed, it happened two days ago. I encountered a TAKEr who so blatantly defied GIV philosophy, she is the reason I am writing this column today. It was a little neighborhood bar in North Park. I walked in, chose one of the few remaining stools, and waited for the bartender to approach. She was in her early twenties, olive-skinned, buxom and stylishly delinquent—with a handful of tats on her left arm, ripped jeans, matching pair of silver nose hoops, and a pulsing, pink aura emanating from her radioactive punkgina. I ordered a shot and a beer and gave her $20. She returned with a five-dollar bill and four singles. I pulled the singles out of the pile and pushed the fiver toward her, which she promptly picked up without a word. Well, that put me off but, as I said, my policy is

to give the benefit of the doubt. So after the next round, I pushed another fiver toward her and again she thanklessly scooped it up and stuffed it in the tip jar—as if I owed that money to her, as if it were part of the asking price—as if my five-dollar bill was born in her tip jar and had finally returned home to mother after years abroad. After two more beers (tips withheld), I stood up to leave. For some reason—probably ex-bartender guilt, perhaps her hotness played a factor—I couldn’t find the courage not to leave another tip. So I dropped one last Lincoln on the bar and said, “Thanks, bartender,” but she just smiled and waved goodbye. Well, wow. What the hell was that? I am no social scientist, but my theory is that these TAKEr types are from a generation that was taught everyone is a special. There are no winners, there are no losers and everyone gets a gold star! I call them Generation N and the “N” stands for “Entitlement.” I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, “Oh Ed, you’re just becoming one of those old, Get Off My Lawn cranks who gripes about how ‘selfish and lazy these kids are today,’ and that ‘things were better in my day,’ and blah, blah, blah.” Well, you’re wrong! I may be older than most of the people who read this column—my eyes and ears are semi-retired, the cartilage in my knees relocated to Florida and all my blood clots are closer to my heart and lungs than your blood clots are—but I am not a Baby Boomer supremacist! Things were most certainly not better in my day. Things are better right fucking now! We carry computers in our pockets more powerful than what the Pentagon had during the Cold War. The stranglehold that religion has on this country is loosening by the minute. And while mainstream media is owned by only half-a-dozen corporations, the Internet is a wild frontier of independent information. I mean sure, Generation N has an entitlement problem but you know what? At least they’re not subjugating women, bashing queers or hosing blacks. Blood had to be spilled in order to change people’s attitudes about such things, but changing a bartender’s sense of privilege? All it takes is a stiff. That’s all. Just stiff ‘em with the cold, empty palm of discontent until they learn to appreciate the gift of gratuity. That’s my plan anyway. I mean, c’mon, TAKErs. I’m not asking you to do a jig. I don’t need a bell rung or an air horn blown. And I’m certainly not expecting a freebie. All I want is a knock on the bar or a heartfelt, “Thank you, man.” Is that so difficult?

I always believed that tips must be earned.


Sordid Tales appears every other week. Write to

May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 11






Ride the railroad at El Ferrocarril


ts name translates as “The Railroad” though there’s no rail line in the vicinity and likely never was. Googling the place is futile, so you wonder whether it really exists. But the lamb tacos and broth served at El Ferrocarril (Calle Rio Seco 179 at the corner of Calle Once) in Ensenada make you forget such trivialities. In one sense, perhaps, the name isn’t such a misnomer. Travel and food have always been companions, if not always soulmates. First we traveled to find food to survive and feed our guts. Now we do so to thrive and feed our souls (our guts, too). San Diego’s airport has spent a pretty penny developing food options for travelers showing off the city’s culinary scene to tourists and commercial travelers. Mexicali once offered something similar outside its train station: a row of stalls offering tacos de Borrego. And that is what El Ferrocarril is about: lamb tacos like those outside Mexicali’s now shuttered train station. El Ferrocarril describes its lamb dishes as “birria.” The term more commonly denotes a dish of slowbraised meat (usually goat or beef but sometimes lamb) in a rich broth spiked with a chile slurry, cinnamon, clove and vinegar. It yields a heady stew. The lamb at El Ferrocarril is indeed slow-braised with chiles, but instead of the sweet spices I associate with birria the result is a rich broth and tender meat that is the very essence of lamb. When you finally get to the front of El Ferrocarril’s line—on three trips at various different times of day the place was always busy—the tacos you’re handed are the picture of simplicity. They are nothing more than delicious corn tortillas holding rolls of marvelously moist shredded lamb meat flecked with bits of guajillo chile. Garnishes of cilantro, shredded cabbage, salsa and onions, as well as lime, are available either on the counter

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El Ferrocarril or at each table. Simple? Minimal? Yes, but perfection. That roll of meat manages to be densely savory and, somehow, have a certain lightness at the same time. The chiles in the braise give it an ethereal quality that’s underlined by a squeeze of lime and bit of the shredded cabbage. The cilantro, salsa and the tortiMICHAEL A. GARDINER lla itself ground the dish. Perhaps the only thing that could say “lamb” more clearly than El Ferrocarril’s tacos is its caldo: the braising liquid from the birria itself. Again, it is a bit of simple perfection. Again, it is the essence of lamb. And it is addictive. I’ve had good Tacos de Borrego lamb tacos before but I don’t know that I’ve ever had a lamb broth more deeply flavored than that one (though the broth at El Borrego in City Heights comes close). There are other things to order at El Ferrocarril—beef tacos and an orden of the lamb birria (a combination of the broth and lamb)—but why? Sip the essence of the lamb in the broth and eat its essence in a taco and you will be transported to a happier place. Almost as if you were on the railroad. The World Fare appears weekly. Write to



May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 13




BEERDIST San Diego at the World Beer Cup


very two years since 1996, breweries from around the world have competed at the selfdescribed “Olympics of beer,” the World Beer Cup. It’s hosted by the Brewers Association, cited as “the most prestigious in the world,” according to the San Diego Brewers Guild. San Diego County breweries recently won 12 awards: five golds, three silvers and four bronze medals. While the competition is international, the majority of the entries hail from the U.S. Of the 6,596 beers entered, 4,858 were American, about 74 percent. The most popular categories were American-Style IPA, Imperial IPA and American-Style Pale Ale. Despite San Diego’s leadership in these styles and their proliferation here, no local brewery medaled in these categories. Here are the local winners: Gold: • Amplified Ale Works, Whammy Bar Wheat (American-Style Wheat Beer) • Breakwater Brewing, Rye Dawn (Rye Beer) • Fall Brewing, Bourbon Barrel Aged Jinx Remover (Wood and Barrel-aged Strong Beer) • Monkey Paw Brewing, Ashes from the Grave (Smoke Beer) • Mike Hess Brewing, Claritas (German-Style Koelsch) Silver: • Mother Earth Brew Co., End of Summer Beer (Extra Special Bitter) • AleSmith Brewing Co., Wee Heavy (Scotch Ale) • Thorn Street Brewery, December Nights Imperial Red (Imperial Red Ale) Bronze: • Legacy Brewing Co., That Guava Beer (Fruit Beer) • Toolbox Brewing Co., Bramble on Rose (Wood and Barrel-aged Sour Beer) • New English Brewing Co., Brewer’s Special

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Brown Ale (English-Style Brown Ale) • Novo Brazil Brewing Co., Corvo Negro (British-Style Imperial Stout) Something revealed by these results is just how competitive large competitions like the World Beer Cup have become. There is no doubt some of the best IPAs and Pale Ales are found in San Diego, yet none medaled this year. Either they have fallen off (unlikely) or other regions are catching up. Monkey Paw Brewing’s Cosimo Sorrentino, recently featured here, continues to conquer the brewing world after winning gold in the smoke beer category. Mike Hess Brewing won gold in the German-Style Koelsch, ANDREW DYER a remarkable achievement given the amount of German beers in the competition. In fact, all the medalists in the category were American. One surprise was Chula Vista’s Novo Brazil Brewing Co., which won bronze in the English-Style ImpeWorld Beer Cup rial Stout category for Corvo Negro. It is great to see a South Bay brewery on the winners list so soon after being ripped apart in a West Coaster review. Not so surprising to many in beer circles was the success of Anaheim’s Noble Ale Works. Noble was named Champion Brewery & Brewmaster in the small brewery category. Not only did it emerge atop a field of 275 to win gold for its American IPA, Love It! IPA, it also won bronze in Imperial IPA for Nobility IIPA. There was a time, just a few years ago, that the demarcation line for good beer in Southern California was San Clemente, but times have changed. Long Beach’s Beachwood BBQ & Brewing also won Champion Brewery and Brewmaster for a large brewpub. I would still put most local IPAs and Pale Ales above anything from the Midwest or East Coast. If these results prove anything it is that San Diego brewers, having long conquered those styles, have moved on. And the diversity of the styles in which they won medals proves San Diego brewers excel in more than just hoppy, bitter IPAs. 



May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 15




ROCKET Majoring in wine


art businessman, part world explorer and part educator, Maurice DiMarino represents various sectors in the wine industry. As wine-and-beverage manager for Cohn Restaurant Group, he oversees 20 beverage programs (and growing). As an instructor at San Diego State University’s College of Extended Studies, he teaches several subjects to diverse groups of wine professionals and those aspiring to join the industry. In both positions, he is able to educate people of varying interest and knowledge levels. I took a California wine class with DiMarino. In three short weeks, he taught a vast amount about our state’s wine history, regions and trends. I came away with a deeper knowledge and an increased thirst to continue learning more.

16 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016

“I want to make it challenging yet enjoyable,” DiMarino said of teaching at SDSU. Though in a much different way, DiMarino’s role with Cohn affords him the chance to educate as well. “It is different teaching staff, consumers and wine students,” DiMarino says. “When working with staff, I need to focus on what is important to know at the table.  When teaching consumers, I like to give history and a framework of whatever the subject is. I keep it a lot more general since most consumers do not work with wine on a regular basis.” The wine lists DiMarino helps curate with wine managers at CRG restaurants also work in educating diners by including a wide variety; from old to new world, from traditional standbys to exciting new finds. DiMarino notes that some locations are more wine-centric and thus can carry a more adventurous wine list that may include local wines, obscure old world selections and up-and-coming new world wines. And often the cuisine dictates the wines. “If the concept is Mexican, like Coasterra and Indigo Grill, I build a Latin list featuring Spanish, South American, Baja and

California wines to fit the concept,” DiMarino says. “I am all about broadening people’s horizons. However, I need to consider that not everyone wants their horizons broadened—so I need balance.” For those who do want to open up their view on wine, they can find DiMarino’s wine wisdom on his blog (mauricescru. com) or go to cohnrestaurants. com to learn about events. I’ve got my eyes on Cohn’s Prime Cru wine club, which features wine sales and educational events nearly once a month. 

Maurice DiMarino












Two decades is a long run for any fes- will also be live music across four stages from big tival, but the SDCCU Festival of Arts names such as Steve Poltz, The Creepy Creeps in North Park just seems to get bigger and better and headliners Mariachi El Bronx. Those with every year. And while bigger doesn’t always mean children will have a hard time prying the youngbetter, where some local fests might sacrifice sters away from the Kids Art Block area and adults quality for quantity, might have the same A7D CREATIVE GROUP INC. Executive Director problem when it Angela Landsberg comes to the selecsays the North Park tion of 30-plus beers fest organizers reat the Waypoint main committed to Craft Beer Block. the local scene and “We take a lot strive to bring an of time to curate authentic experithe vendors,” says ence to festival goLandsberg, who ers. cites a new element “It’s not just an this year where arts festival. It’s not there will be an enjust a beer festival. tire block devoted It’s not just a music to local crafts and festival,” Landsberg makers. “We don’t says. “It has qualSDCCU Festival of Arts in North Park take just anyone ity elements for all who wants to come those things.” in. We turn a lot of corporate vendors down. That It’d be hard to list all that goes on over the nine allows us to offer artists these booths, because blocks along University Avenue near 30th Street, that’s really what the fest is about.” but start with the art. In addition to the dozens It all goes down from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Satof local artists showing off their works, this year urday, May 21, and everything is free except the there’s a live art exhibition where local and nation- beer block, which is $30 for either of two sessions. al street artists will create works on things such as Check out the full lineup of events, performers vans, refrigerators and a giant cow statue. There and activities at





Mai Tais, Piña Coladas and Polynesian shirts you would never wear in public on any other occasion…Tiki culture is alive and well in San Diego. And while it may be the latest trend in the craft cocktail scene, we like to think we were way ahead of the curve considering our annual TikiBeat party has been going for seven years. On Friday, May 20, drinks dressed with umbrellas will line the bar at Bali Hai Restaurant (2230 Shelter Island Dr.) while Creepxotica plays an eerie surf soundtrack. There will also be food sampling, live tiki chainsaw art, a fire show, burlesque from the Drop Dead Dames and a summer fashion show by local pin-up shop Temptress. The rum-infused revelry runs from 6:30 to 10:30 p.m. and tickets are available at for $17.50 or at the door for $20.



The local scene is filled with fantastic poets, but it’s a rare occurrence that they’re all reading at the same place on the same night. Poetry LP, which happens from 3 to 7 p.m. Saturday, May 21, at Whistle Stop (2236 Fern St.), showcases a who’s-who of local wordsmiths. Artist Anna Zappoli and podcaster Adam Greenfield (Making Comics Gutter Talk) will both be reading and celebrating the release of their new books, From Somewhere Else and Regarding the Monkey. That’s be enough right there, but the afternoon will also include long-play readings from Ted Washington, Sunny Rey, Ola Hadi and CityBeat’s own Ed Decker. Fellow renaissance man Al Howard will have his band Dani Bell & the Tantarist playing tunes after the readings. Best of all, it’s free.


Brush and Ink at San Diego Museum of Art, 1450 El Prado, Balboa Park. The special exhibition showcases over 40 rarely exhibited Chinese treasures from SDMA’s permanent collection including hanging scrolls, hand scrolls, fans and contemporary works. From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday, May 19. Free-$12. 619232-7931, HDossier Thalamus at MCASD - Downtown, 1001 Kettner Blvd., Downtown. An exhibition of the graduating UC San Diego MFA candidates curated by Selene Preciado. Includes work from Lyndsay Bloom, Jena Cummiskey, Kara Joslyn, Collective Magpie and more. Opening from 5 to 8 p.m. Thursday, May 19. Free. 858-454-3541, events/dossier-thalamus HDowntown at Sundown at MCASD - Downtown, 1001 Kettner Blvd., Downtown. MCASD’s after-hours event offers free admission and guided tours of exhibitions at MCASD and the SDSU Downtown Gallery, as well as specials at local businesses, a book club and live music. From 5 to 8 p.m. Thursday, May 19. Free. 858-454-3541, Free Third Thursday at MCASD Downtown, 1001 Kettner Blvd., Downtown. Visitors receive free admission to the Downtown MCASD location, plus free themed guided gallery tours. The La Jolla location will be closed for this event. From 5 to 8 p.m. Thursday, May 19. Free. 858-454-3541, free-third-thursday-40 Art After Hours at San Diego Museum of Art, 1450 El Prado, Balboa Park. Enjoy evening access to SDMA galleries every Friday through Sept. 2. From 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, May 20. $5. 619-2327931, Jane Austen Alive at Pikku Gallery, 2323 Broadway, Ste. 102, Golden Hill. An Austen-themed art show featuring work from Harmony Gong, Pamela Jaeger, Florence Pacho and more. Includes music from cellist Heather Vorwerk and pianist Eve Gross. Opening from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, May 20. Free. 6194328736, From Here to There: An American Portrait at Galeria 1881 de Barrio Logan, 2159 Logan Ave., Barrio Logan. A photographic tour of America featuring San Diego artist J. Raymond Mireles’ urban streetscapes, environmental portraits and Midwestern landscapes. Opening from 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, May 21. Free. H4:2 at Quint Projects, 5171 B Santa Fe St., Bay Park. A site-conditioned artwork by San Diego artist Michael James Armstrong consisting of two light-flooded columns made of white nylon thread and framed by four black rectangles. Opening from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, May 21. Free. 858-454-3409, Artists Guild Show at Fallbrook Art Center, 103 South Main, Fallbrook. The fifth annual group show features 54 works in an exciting variety of media and disciplines including sculpture, painting, pastel, printmaking, art jewelry, ceramics, photography and more. Opening from 5 to 7 p.m. Saturday, May 21. $10. Embracing a Noble Tradition: Chinese Painting & Calligraphy as an American Expression at San Diego Chinese Historical Museum, 404 Third Ave., Downtown. Multiethnic artists capture the spirit and aesthetics of Chinese pictorial and calligraphic concepts. Opening from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday,



Ted Washington

H = CityBeat picks

May 21. Free-$5. 619-338-9888, In Bloom at R.B. Stevenson Gallery, 7661 Girard Ave., Ste. 201, La Jolla. A solo exhibition of new paintings by Michael Reafsnyder, who is known for brilliantly colored abstract paintings. Opening from 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday, May 21. Free. 858459-3917, It’s not a statement, it’s a question. at Brokers Building, 402 Market St., Downtown. The latest exhibit of mixed media works by local artist Scott Gengelbach. Opening from 7 p.m. to midnight. Saturday, May 21. Free. La Chica Solo Art Show at Iron Fist Brewing, 1985 National Ave. #1132, Barrio Logan. Independent San Diego artist Joni Nunez showcases her Chicana style art this dog-friendly show with music, food, a pop-up shop and craft beer available. Opening from 5 to 10 p.m. Saturday, May 21. Free. 619-255-5818, HSéance at Quint Projects, 5171 B Santa Fe St., Bay Park. A multi-media installation by artist Peter Halasz consisting of paintings, sound and video. Halasz inaugurates Quint’s new small Gallery A in Rose Canyon. Opening from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, May 21. Free. 858454-3409, Scribble Art: A How-to Guide and Coloring Book at Expressive Arts @ 32nd & Thorn, 3201 Thorn St., North Park. A dual art book launch party and exhibit devoted to the art of scribbling. Opening from 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday, May 21. Free. Still Bernin’ at Thumbprint Gallery, 920 Kline St., #104, La Jolla. A Bernie Sanders-themed art show with proceeds going directly to the Sanders campaign. Features work by David Wellens, Ody West, Erick Santiago and many more. Opening from 5 to 10 p.m. Saturday, May 21. Free.

BOOKS Joan Barnes at Warwick’s Bookstore, 7812 Girard Ave., La Jolla. The founder and former CEO of Gymboree will discuss and sign her new memoir, Play it Forward: From Gymboree to the Yoga Mat and Beyond. At 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 18. 858-454-0347, HMargaret Guroff at Warwick’s Bookstore, 7812 Girard Ave., La Jolla. The magazine editor and Johns Hopkins University professor will speak about and sign her book, The Mechanical Horse, about how the bicycle reshaped American life forever. At 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 19. Free. 858-454-0347, Hillary Kerr at Warwick’s Bookstore, 7812 Girard Ave., La Jolla. The co-founder of Clique Media will sign and discuss her new book, The Career Code, the third book in the Who What Wear series, at 7:30 p.m. Friday, May 20. Free. 858454-0347, Matt De La Peña and Christian Robinson at Lincoln High School, 4777 Imperial Ave., Lincoln Park. The children’s book illustrator and writer stop by in celebration of their 2016 Newbery Medal winner, Last Stop on Market Street. At 9 p.m. Friday, May 20. Free. Robert S. Levinson at Mysterious Galaxy Book Store, 5943 Balboa Ave., Ste. 100, Clairemont. The bestselling mystery author will be promoting The Stardom Affair, the sixth book in the Neil Gulliver and Stevie Marriner series. At 1 p.m. Saturday, May 21. Free. 858-268-4747,


May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 17


EVENTS CONTINUED FROM PAGE 17 HBooks and Music at Verbatim Books, 3795 30th St., North Park. A reading event by prominent local musicians/authors Ben Johnson (Blood Silver), Drew Andrews (The Shepherd’s Journals) and Matthew Binder (High in the Streets). Hosted by CityBeat’s own Seth Combs. At 6 p.m. Sunday, May 22. Free. 619-5017466, Jack Phillips at Warwick’s Bookstore, 7812 Girard Ave., La Jolla. As part of Warwick’s ongoing Weekend with Locals Program, Jack Phillips stops by to discuss Off the Deep End. At noon. Sunday, May 22. 858-454-0347, HAdam Haslett at Warwick’s Bookstore, 7812 Girard Ave., La Jolla. The Pulitzer Prize finalist will sign and discuss his new novel, Imagine Me Gone, about a family facing the ultimate question: how far will we go to save the people we love the most? At 7:30 p.m. Monday, May 23. Free. 858-454-0347, Leon Shapiro at Warwick’s Bookstore, 7812 Girard Ave., La Jolla. The author and former CEO of Vistage International will sign and discuss The Power of Peers: How the Company You Keep Drives Leadership, Growth and Success. At 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 24. Free. 858-454-0347, Clint Hill with Lisa McCubbin at Warwick’s Bookstore, 7812 Girard Ave., La Jolla. The former secret service agent and award-winning journalist will discuss and sign their book Five Presidents, about Hill’s time serving as an agent protecting five presidents. At 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 25. Free. 858-4540347,

Campfire: Live! at RAW Space Off Broadway, 931 1st St., Downtown. David Razowsky as this month’s special guest presents an improvised comedy show presented by Sidestage Improv that takes real-life stories and turns them into comedy gold. From 8 to 9:30 p.m. Saturday, May 21. $10.

DANCE HGender Bender at Mandeville Auditorium, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla. This new work from the Israeli award-winning Idan Cohen Dance Company reflects personal and social identities of masculinity, femininity and all that lies between. At 8 p.m. Friday, May 20. $28-$46. 858-534-TIXS,

FILM HSan Diego Surf Film Festival at Sherwood Auditorium, 700 Prospect St, La Jolla. This multi-venue film festival includes 40 international surf films, a VIP party, and dozens of filmmakers and producers participating in Q&As. Various times. Wednesday, May 18. through Saturday, May 28. $5-$100. 858-4543541,

FOOD & DRINK HSan Diego Taco Fest at Waterfront Park, 1600 Pacific Highway, Little Italy. The inaugural fest features 20 of the region’s best taco-centric restaurants, as well as a beer garden and musical performances from Sir Mix-A-Lot, Metalachi, El Vez and more. From 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, May 21. $20-$75. 858-694-

18 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016


3030, Seedling Soiree at Olivewood Gardens & Learning Center, 2505 N. Ave., National City. Culinary fest featuring local chefs, vintners and brewers with a menu showcasing the best of San Diego County’s organic and sustainably produced produce, fish, meats and confections. From 5:30 to 9 p.m. Saturday, May 21. $50$200. HTake Back the Alley BBQ at Tiger! Tiger!, 3025 El Cajon Blvd., North Park. The community is invited to enjoy live music, beer and house-made vegan hot dogs, beef franks and kielbasas, all while raising awareness for Take Back the Alley, which is devoted to improving alley conditions in neighborhoods across San Diego. From noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, May 22. Tap Takeover: Hopped Up at House of Blues, 1055 Fifth Ave., Downtown. This first-ever event will feature Modern Times beer specials, brewers available for questions and classic rock performed by Fish and the Sea Weeds. From 5 to 9 p.m. Tuesday, May 24. Free. 619-299BLUE,

HEALTH & WELLNESS Women’s Sexual and Reproductive Mental Health at Moores UCSD Cancer Center, 3855 Health Sciences Drive, La Jolla. Women’s reproductive mental health experts from UCSD will discuss sexual health and psychological wellbeing for all stages of life. From 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 19. Free. 619-5433456,

“Sea Study 12” by Peter Halasz will be on view at Séance, a solo show opening from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Quint Projects (5171 A Santa Fe St.) in Bay Ho.

MUSIC HUnherd Preview Party at Whistle Stop, 2236 Fern St, South Park. Catch a first glimpse at the new music show featuring CityBeat’s own Jeff Terich and Alex Zaragoza. The night includes a screen-

ing, DJ sets and live music from Blood Ponies. From 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, May 20. Free. 619-284-6784,




Troy Iwata (dancing) in The Boy Who Danced On Air

The Boy Who Danced On Air makes world premiere


iversionary Theatre is winding up its 30th season with the most impressive production the University Heights company has offered in recent memory. It’s a world premiere musical (book and lyrics by Charlie Sohne, music by Tim Rosser) called The Boy Who Danced On Air, a mingling of trenchant storytelling, often-affecting music and ethereal choreography. The premise is on its face a brutal one: In modern-day Afghanistan, the tradition of Bacha Bazi is still being practiced. Young boys are purchased by older men, trained as dancers and singers, and used in private to satisfy the sexual urges of their “mentors.” Then, when the boys are old enough to grow facial hair, they are discarded into an arranged marriage. According to the Diversionary production’s program notes, the practice, once punishable by death in Afghanistan, remains illegal but is basically ignored by the law. In The Boy Who Danced On Air, directed by Tony Speciale, two boys named Paiman (Troy Iwata) and Feda (Sittichai Chaiyahat) fall in love and revolt. Neither knows any life beyond “dancing boy” until they discover each other, the results of which bring violent consequences. While the score can be overwrought and expository at times, it is frequently touching, allowing audiences to feel not only what Paiman and Feda are feeling, but also Paiman’s purchaser, Jahandar (Jonathan Raviv), a man at odds with his own emotions and with the obligation to the exploitative tradition. Unseen in the wings is a four-piece band, with musical direction by Cris O’Bryon. The pulse of the story is Paiman, and Iwata is worthy of the responsibility. He brings earnestness and grace to the role. Chaiyahat is no match for Iwata as a singer, but the stage chemistry is credible. Meanwhile, Raviv’s Jahandar is


both a fearful and introspective figure, in either case projecting sharp intensity. The Boy Who Danced On Air is uplifted, too, by the choreography of Nejla Y. Yatkin, and Shirley Pierson’s costumes further the illusion that you are in the Afghan world. In the case of this show, you’re in a world you probably never knew existed. The Boy Who Danced On Air runs through June 12 at Diversionary Theatre in University Heights. $25-$45. diversionary. org


—David L. Coddon

Theater reviews run weekly. Write to

OPENING: Stupid Fucking Bird: Young artistic types struggle in Aaron Posner’s irreverent take on Chekov’s The Seagull. Presented by Cygnet Theatre, it opens May 18 at the Old Town Theatre. A Piece of My Heart: Based on Keith Walker’s oral history of 26 women who served in the Vietnam War, this play tells the story of six of those women. Performed by high-school-age students from The Theatre School @ North Coast Rep Presents, it opens for six performances May 19 at the North Coast Repertory Theatre in Solana Beach. Eleemosynary: A mother must build a relationship with the daughter she abandoned after a tragedy forces them to be reunited. Presented by Oceanside Theatre Company, it opens for two performances May 20 at the Brooks Theatre in Oceanside.

For full theater listings, please visit “T heater ” at under the E vents tab.

May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 19

EVENTS EVENTS CONTINUED FROM PAGE 18 HIn-Ko-Pah 3 at Desert View Tower, InKo-Pah Rd., Jacumba Hot Springs. An evening of music under the desert sky featuring an eclectic lineup of bands and artists including Three Mile Pilot, Audacity, The Blank Tapes and nearly a dozen more. From 1 p.m. to 12 a.m. Saturday, May 21. $47. MozART group at Sherwood Auditorium, 700 Prospect St, La Jolla. Since 1995, the four instrumentalists have come to be known for unique musical cabaret that provides audiences with reinterpretations of popular classics. At 8 p.m. Saturday, May 21. $30-$80. 858-454-3541, SoundDiego Summer Splash at Harrah’s Rincon Casino, 777 Harrah’s Rincon Way, Valley Center. Alt-rock group Boxer Rebellion and psych-pop band The Verigolds will kick off Harrah’s summer concert series. From 7 to 11 p.m. Saturday, May 21. Free-$30. Commotion 2016 at Music Box, 1337 India St., Little Italy. The eighth youth rock concert will feature 14 young bands to raise funds for The Youth Arts Academy Boys and Girls Clubs of San Dieguito. From noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, May 22. $35-$100. 619-736-0026, HUprising: Songs of Change at Balboa Theatre, 868 Fourth Ave., Downtown. A fundraiser that highlights the influence of music in social movements worldwide with a performance by the San Diego Women’s Chorus and songwriter Janis Ian. From 7 to 10 p.m. Sunday, May 22. $15-$250. 619-570-1100,


with raffle tickets benefitting the San Diego Humane Society. At 5:30 p.m. Thursday, May 19. Free.

HPoetry LP at Whistle Stop, 2236 Fern St, South Park. A who’s-who of local wordsmiths featuring artist Anna Zappoli and podcaster Adam Greenfield, as well as long-play readings from Ted Washington, Sunny Rey, Ola Hadi and CityBeat’s own Ed Decker. Music from Dani Bell & the Tantarist. From 3 to 7 p.m. Saturday, May 21. Free. 619-284-6784,

HTower After Hours: Philippines at San Diego Museum of Man, 1350 El Prado, Balboa Park. Experience the culture of the Philippines with traditional island cuisine, live dance performances and folk music. From 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, May 19. $15$30. 619-239-2001,

POLITICS & COMMUNITY Uptown Bikeways Open House and Public Hearing at Balboa Park Club, 2150 Pan American Road West, Balboa Park. Project team members will be available to discuss the plan that would increase bike routes throughout Uptown, Old Town, Mission Valley, Downtown, North Park and Balboa Park. From 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, May 24. Free.

SPECIAL EVENTS Bike Sexy: Undie Bike Ride 4 at Iron Pig Alehouse, 1520 Garnet Ave., Pacific Beach. The bike version of an undie run to promote positive self-body images, build a stronger bike community, and gathering donated clothes for low-income and homeless recipients. From 7 to 10 p.m. Thursday, May 19. Free. Canine Cocktails at Level 9, 509 9th Ave., Downtown. A monthly mixer for dog lovers to mingle over cocktails. Includes free dog treats and views of Petco Park

20 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016

HTikiBeat at Bali Hai, 2230 Shelter Island Drive, Point Loma. CityBeat’s annual start of summer kick-off party featuring DJs spinning tiki tunes, Polynesian dancers, a fashion show, burlesque performances from Drop Dead Dames plus music from Desi Realtor and CREEPOXOTICA. From 6:30 to 10:30 p.m. Friday, May 20. $17.50-$20. 619-222-1181, sdcitybeat. com HAmerica on Main Street at Prescott Promenade, East Main St., El Cajon. The third annual event’s theme is “Bring The Beach East” and features free carnival rides, games, a chili cook-off and entertainment on three stages. From noon to 8 p.m. Saturday, May 21. Free. 619-4018858, HD6 Night Market at Mira Mesa Community Park, 8575 New Salem St., Mira Mesa. This night market celebrating District 6 returns for its second year with food, art, and live music and dance performances on two stages. From 4 to 10 p.m. Saturday, May 21. Free. 858-5388122, HMakers Arcade Spring Fair at Port Pavilion on Broadway Pier, 1000 North Harbor Drive, Downtown. The locally curated arts and crafts market will feature over 95 vendors showcasing everything from jewelry and ceramics to clothing and

home wares. From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, May 21. $5.


HPearl Ping Pong Tournament at The Pearl Hotel, 1410 Rosecrans St., Point Loma. The eighth annual event includes the tourney, a silent auction, drinks and lunch with proceeds going to Hoover High School Athletics and Community Gives to be used towards local arts and education charities. From noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, May 21. $35-$65. facebook. com/events/1722543588017511

Lessons from Chernobyl and Fukushima at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, 8602 La Jolla Shores Drive, La Jolla. Tim Mousseau will discuss his expertise on the ecological impacts of nuclear radiation, particularly related to Chernobyl and Fukushima. From 6 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 19. Free. 858534-3624,

HSDCCU Festival of Arts in North Park at North Park. Explore eight blocks of art, live music, dance performances, interactive experiences, and artisanal vendors, plus the Live Urban Art Exhibition with art created using everyday objects like cars, refrigerators and boom boxes. From 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, May 21. Free-$30.

A Museum of Its Time and of Its Place at San Diego Museum of Art, 1450 El Prado, Balboa Park. Steven Kern, former European art curator at The San Diego Museum of Art, gives perspective on the Museum, its collections and how it has become the foremost institution for the arts in San Diego. At 10 a.m. Friday, May 20. $8-$16. 619-232-7931,

HFemme Fest at The Che Cafe, 9500 Gilman Dr, La Jolla. A celebration of non-binary femmes with music, art, workshops and more. Proceeds benefit She’s The First, which provides scholarships to girls in low-income countries. At 1 p.m. Sunday, May 22. $10. 858-534-2311,

Artificial Colors in Food: An Investigation at La Jolla Library, 7555 Draper Ave., La Jolla. Kids 12-and-up analyze the composition of colored dye mixtures extracted from candy and use data to assess the composition of unknown mixtures. From 3 to 4 p.m. Saturday, May 21. Free. 858-552-1657,



Ramona Rodeo at Ramona Outdoor Community Center, 421 Aqua Lane, Ramona. One of the country’s top pro rodeos, events include barrel racing, tie-down roping, bull riding and more. There will also be fashion shows, mixers, Kid’s Day clowns and more. From Friday, May 20 to Sunday, May 22. Various times. $12. 760-788-0811,

Dr. Sketchy’s Anti-Art School: Film Noir at The Merrow, 1271 University Ave., Hillcrest. Sketch two models who star in The Circus Collective’s latest production, Circustantial Evidence: The Crimson Canary, all while sipping cocktails and listening to music. From 3 to 6 p.m. Saturday, May 21. $12-$15. 619-299-7372,



May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 21

22 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016


The pre-scientific, ancient Greeks explained the complexity of all matter around them in terms of simple substances. They narrowed it down to four elements: earth, water, air and fire. (Nacho cheese came much later, and would’ve been in a category all its own.) We’ve decided to narrow the elements of a rad summer into those four categories. We’ve taken a few liberties. For example, for earthly fun you could visit a topiary garden; paddle the ocean on an illuminated stand-up paddleboard; catch some air doing indoor skydiving; or make your own s’mores over the tabletop fires supplied by Halcyon. You get the picture. Enjoy all these elemental summer endeavors.






May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 23



Hot Tub Cruisin’




Turista Libre Tijuana Waterpark Tour at El Vergel

When is the last time you went down a huge waterslide slightly buzzed on beers rimmed with chamoy and Tajin? The answer might be years, yesterday or never. In any case, you need to rectify that this summer and get on the Turista Libre Tijuana Waterpark Tour ( You have never experienced fun in the sun on this level. The Turista Libre bus, with its en-route drinks and ordnance of water guns, will take you to and from El Vergel water park in TJ. Tickets ($30) for the June 4, July 3, August 6 or September 4 tours are on sale.  -Alex Zaragoza

24 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016

I love a Jacuzzi. I also love drinking wine and relaxing on a calm body of water. It seemed like an impossible dream to combine all three elements, until I discovered Hot Tub Cruisin’ (, the ultimate water-based, chillness turducken, hot tub wine machine. With Hot Tub Cruisin’ you rent a barge with a Jacuzzi on board. There’s also a grill so you can cook an actual turducken while coasting on Mission Bay. This slice of heaven isn’t cheap ($215/hour or $750 four hours), but split it among the 10 people you can bring on board and it’s worth it. 


-Alex Zaragoza

R. Kelly believed he could fly. It seemed like nonsense at the time, and really, that pervert is the last person I want airborne.

Still, we believed we could fly too, and now Jetpack America ( has gone and made it all possible. Strap on one of its jetpacks and whoosh through the sky powered by the rush of air-propelled water. It’s a rush that’s mildly terrifying at first; then soon you’re making air donuts in the sky. Jetpack rides range from $152$229 depending on rental time. -Alex Zaragoza


On a sweltering night, Mission Bay’s moonlit waters can look like a sanctuary, but the water’s excessive bacteria levels should garner some hesitation. Trade that in for a stand-up paddleboard equipped with waterproof LED lights from Mission Bay Sports Center ( From the sanitary safety of the SUP, the bay’s natural inhabitants, such as stingrays and jellyfish, are viewable at night within a 40-foot circumference of each illuminated board. The guided tours start up after Memorial Day, last two hours and cost $25 per person. -Torrey Bailey


No offense to our alt audience; the people looking for, say, the best caviar, plastic sur-




May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 25

ELEMENTS CONTINUED FROM PAGE 24 gery and—yes—sailing are more likely to read other publications. That said, we live in a gorgeous place, and if you don’t surf, there are only so many opportunities to enjoy San Diego from the water. Given a choice, sailing is much less douche-y than zooming around Fiesta Island on a jet ski. There are dozens of sailing tour companies around town, but Sail San Diego (2051 Shelter Island Drive) has the best word-of-mouth. -Ryan Bradford


Summer Whale Watching Adventure (Navy Float 970 N. Harbor Drive, Four-hour tours run $65 per person on comfy yachts that take you out to encounter dolphins, sea lions and whales. For a smidge of added adventure/intrigue, last spring The Adventure Hornblower returned to dock and made national news by smashing into the Embarcadero North promenade. There were no serious injuries, and if you adhere to a World According To Garp philosophy, the chance that’ll happen again is now so much smaller. 

-Ron Donoho



The naturalist in you will look forward to the chance to sail out of the San Diego Bay for a Hornblower Cruises & Events MICHAEL SULLIVAN

The Adventure Hornblower

26 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016

Waterslides are old news. In the stickiness of a summer evening, grab an inner tube and slide through glow-in-the-dark goo instead. Blacklight Slide (blacklightslide. com) is coming to Sleep Train Amphitheatre on Saturday, June 11, with thrills to fill every bodily crevice with neon liquids. DJs Crisco Kidd and Tino Cochino will spin a soundtrack that flows with the glow and leads into an afterparty. Early bird tickets start at $20 with an option to buy extra neon paint, glow sticks, inner tubes and more. Part of the admission price is donated to a local childhood cancer cause.   -Torrey Bailey

Everyday California kayaks


Some people would love to brag that they swam—or kayaked and/or snorkled—with sharks, but the mere thought of it makes them shiver like a bucket of chum. For those people there’s Everyday California (2246 Avenida de la Playa, This La Jolla tour company’s guides take novices and intermediates out on the waters of La Jolla Ecological Re-

serve. This Marine Protected Area is home to sea lions, turtles, Garibaldi and a large aggregation of leopard sharks. Fear not, these leopards are bottom feeders—but your future claim to have shared the waters with sharks will be nothing but the truth, so help you selfies. 

–Ron Donoho




May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 27




San Diego’s jazz scene is small but closeknit, and the number of venues around town hosting live jazz reduced by one with the closing of Croce’s Park West. Local jazz lives on, however, and one unique way to catch some local players in a jam session is to find a table next to the pool at the Westgate Hotel (1055 Second Ave.) on a Thursday night. Once a week, the

Sunset Poolside Jazz series showcases a different local artist, including Gilbert Castellanos, Besos de Coco and Robert Dove, right next to the hotel pool. You can grab a craft cocktail or some tapas while the band serenades you. Or if you’re feeling like something more refreshing, there is all that water right in front of you.  -Jeff Terich




Sunset Poolside Jazz

28 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016

Harper’s Topiary Garden

Take a detour through some of the curvy residential streets in Mission Hills and you might unexpectedly find yourself in front of what looks like the work of Edward Scissorhands. Harper’s Topiary Garden (3549 Union St.) leaves an immediate impact on any visitor, simply because it’s the only residential garden in the neighborhood that features more than 50 hedges carved into geometric and anthropomorphic shapes, ranging from whales to tigers and even a human-like bunny that appears to be waving at you when the wind picks up. It is a residential space so be courteous to the owners and by all means don’t trespass, but on a summer afternoon, taking in the impressive sights makes for a fun diversion.  -Jeff Terich




San Diego Night Market



It’s hard not to feel nostalgic about paying a visit to the old video arcade—countless afternoons and quarters were spent there during my youth, and the appearance of grown-up arcades like North Park’s CoinOp have certainly stoked that nostalgia. But for a more traditional, old school arcade experience like you had when you were a kid, Nickel City (8990 Miramar Road,

#SDCityBeat is a different option for racking up high scores and skee-ball tickets (and mini-bowling!). The games really do take nickels, so it’s not just a clever name— though don’t be surprised if they require a lot of nickels per credit. Admission is $2.50, so make sure you have about 50 extra nickels on hand before you enter.   -Jeff Terich

The Convoy District was onto something when they started the San Diego Night Market a few years ago. The neighborhood has long been a best-kept-secret when it came to Asian food and the market, which returns June 25 and 26 to the Kearny Office Park (8304 Clairemont Mesa Blvd., after a brief hiatus. It has proven to be highly successful in showing off the area’s vibrant culture. The event was so successful that there’s now the D6 Night Market ( This year’s one-day event includes two stages of performers, a beer garden and food selections from all over Asia as well as Central America and

Africa. It takes place Saturday, May 21, at Mira Mesa Community Park (8575 New Salem St.) from 4 to 10 p.m. Can’t beat the price either (read: it’s free). 

-Seth Combs


Remember a few years ago when all the cool hipsters were getting all snazzy and playing croquet in the park? Judging by the crowds that pack in at The Loma Club clubhouse bar and grill (2960 Truxtun Road, on weekends, it looks as if those cool kids grew up and


May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 29


Cuatro Cuartos started playing golf. There’s a decidedly less stuffy atmosphere at the nine-hole course in Point Loma. Tee times are only $14 and it’s highly doubtful anyone will judge your weak-ass backswing. This mellowness extends to the bar where a refreshingly co-ed crowd mingles over happy hour drink specials ($4 well drinks? Yes, please!), surprisingly cool live bands and games of shuffleboard and cornhole.   -Seth Combs


If you want to summer like an assassin in a Michael Bay movie, Cuatro Cuartos (cabanascuatrocuatros. in Mexico’s Valle de Guadalupe is where to go. Imagine yourself dressed in white linen standing over a cliff overlooking the ocean, sipping crisp white wine as the breeze kisses your face. Oysters and other gourmet cuisine are served next to a bocce ball court. Bocce ball, wine and delicious food. On a cliff. Part of the adventure is the pickup truck you have to mount on the back to get to the cliff area. If you get too tipsy, there are upscale tents to reserve.

ups and campouts (including Babes Ride Out 4 in Joshua Tree this October).  -Beth Demmon


Selfies, tutus, cheap beer and live music—yes. During the National Beer Mile (nationalbeermile. com), running is practically an afterthought. Expect to be challenged on the short course—four beers consumed over one mile may dampen your speed, but likely not your enthusiasm (and with pretty light selections like High Life, you’re likely to stay surprisingly hydrated). General admission is $35 to the June 11 race at Qualcomm Stadium, as well as the after-party with local food vendors and (what else?) an open bar. Pro tip: Unless you opt for the VIP package for an extra $20, BYOKoozie. 21 and up, no pets. 

-Beth Demmon


The new Liberty Public Market (2820 Historic Decatur Road;  -Alex Zaragoza will eventually lure you into its National Beer Mile white bread, Liberty Station world. So don’t fight it and reThese aren’t your average motorsign yourself to sampling wares cyclists. Long hair whipping in the wind and glitter from one of the nearly three-dozen artisanal venhelmets sparkling under the San Diego sun, these dors. It’s nearly worth the wait to stand in line for girls can out-race you, probably out-drink you and a butter-drenched lobster roll at Wicked Maine definitely out-cool you without batting an eyelash. Lobster. Two brothers from the Northeast have Yet a noticeable absence of catty infighting and brought their perfect recipe for this smallishdrama defines the Flat Black Collective (flatblack. but-meaty delight. This popular market booth co) and The Litas San Diego ( also doles out New England Clam Chowder and rides, where everyone is welcome regardless of age, lobster bisque. Recommendation: Place your orbike or experience level. Both girl-forward motor- der and spend 15 minutes perusing the rest of the cycle groups roared to life in 2015 with the goal of crowded market before returning for pick-up. providing a safe community for female riders as  -Ron Donoho their numbers continued to rise. Follow them both on Instagram for a schedule of monthly rides, meet-



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May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 35



The greatest thing that ever came from man’s fascination with setting things on fire is, undoubtedly, barbecue. To get the best barbecue, you used to have to travel to the American South to chow on some quality grilled, charred or smoked meats. However, Grand Ole BBQ y Asado in North Park (3302 32nd St.) offers some of the finest barbecue our city has to offer. Tender, smoky cuts of brisket, tangy pulled

pork and Texas hot links are among some of the savory offerings, with four different sauces to enhance the flavor to your liking. It’s first-come, first-served in an outdoor, picnic-style setting, and the line gets long pretty quickly, so show up early and hungry. And though it doesn’t serve alcohol, Grande Ole BBQ has a BYOB policy, so brown bag your tall boy or fill up a growler before heading over.  -Jeff Terich CANDICE ELEY



S’mores at Halcyon

You know those friends who “love” camping, but when you’ve found your plot, they don’t know how to construct a tent? And then, they wonder where the bathrooms are. Or worse, they ask for the campground’s WiFi code. Crickets. Next time they suggest packing their bags for a road trip to the trees, offer up Halcyon (1429 Island Ave., as a compromise. From the comfort of an Adirondack chair on an East Village terrace, they can roast s’mores over a controlled mini flame—sans dirt. Six dollars gets full-sized Hershey bars, marshmallows and graham crackers for two, or double up for nine dollars.  -Torrey Bailey

36 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016

Grand Ole BBQ y Asado


WE DON’T NEED NO WATER, DANCES WITH FIRE LET THAT MF-ER BURN If you’re going to pay more than $20 for a drink, there needs to be some element of danger to it, and not just the “ooh, I’m gonna be feeling this tomorrow” variety—we’re talking serious bodily harm. For a beverage that offers that satisfactory risk/reward ratio, look no farther than Polite Provisions’ (4696 30th St., Flaming Skull Scorpion Bowl. To be fair, the drink is meant to be shared by more than one person, but it contains enough booze that your resulting BAC might as well be flammable. Given that the drink is lit on fire when delivered to your table, we don’t suggest you find out. 

Smoldering, seductive and just a little bit strange—does this describe your inner aura? If yes, you might be destined for fire dancing. Practitioners of this offbeat dance style relish in the outsider nature of their craft. Think carnivalesque flower children spinning staffs in Ocean Beach. They’re likely practicing unlit “hooping” and specialize

in acrobatics, burlesque, belly dancing and a whole slew of fire-accented boogieing. Aspiring fire dancers should contact Unity Hoops ( for lessons or visit The Fire Garden ( in Bonsall for inspiration. 


-Beth Demmon


Fire dancing

-Ryan Bradford


Need evidence that Obama is definitely not trying to take away anyone’s guns? Just head to El Cajon’s P2K Range and this indoor/ outdoor shooting range (2082 Willow Glen Drive, p2krange. com) and don’t worry if you can’t BYOG. There are plenty of rentable options from the controversial AR-15 rifle to an M4 Tactical shotgun that’s as big as a small man. Sure, you could just head far out into the desert to shoot at some cans, but it just doesn’t have the same appeal as getting to yell “PULL” and blast at a flying clay disc called a skeet. It might seem strange that a liberal alt-weekly would recommend anything related to guns, so just consider this a meta-alt option. 

-Seth Combs


Summertime is great for starting a new hobby. Instead of running from the heat, why not confront it head on by taking up the ageold craft of glass blowing? The Bench Glass (thebenchglass. com) is holding summertime classes in Venetian-style glass blowing. Don’t show up looking to make sick bongs, bro. Instructor Chris Moore works closely with you in his large studio to craft unique vases, cups, goblets and other beautiful glassware you can proudly show off. It’s the one time you should play with fire. Sign up for classes or rent studio time. 


-Alex Zaragoza

May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 37




California Sculpture Academy

HOT, HOT HEAT Sparks fly and torches sizzle as students of all ages hunch over their work stations, eyes hidden behind protective visors that repel molten bits of metal and shield their eyes from the flames. Fallbrook’s California Sculpture Academy ( goes beyond teaching traditional sculpture techniques (although they offer those classes as well)

38 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016

Campland on the Bay

FOR THE REST OF US and provides red-hot instruction into the world of artistic welding and fabrication, plus metal molding and bronze, glass and jewelry casting. Custom courses and private lessons are available, but check class schedules (prices vary). And if you can’t take the heat, there’s always the flame-free figure drawing class.  -Beth Demmon

The most unusual and entertaining bonfire party I ever attended occurred at Campland on the Bay (2211 Pacific Beach Drive). A friend procured a site (check for rates) and threw a beachside, flame-fueled Festivus night party. Yes, this is the Seinfeld-inspired event where participants air personal grievances while gripping an unadorned

aluminum Festivus pole (note: we skipped the “feats of strength”). Ensconced safely within the park’s gates and with San Diego Bay as picturesque backdrop we consumed cheap cans of beer, burned wooden pallets and complained about life—all to great joy.   –Ron Donoho







Kite Flight

By the time you read this, you’ll have just barely missed the Ocean Beach Kite Festival, San Diego’s premier gathering of people with serious Ben Franklin envy. Still, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy some kite-flying action this summer. On any day, you can head down to the Embarcadero by Seaport Village and catch kite aficionados of all levels anchoring their brightly colored kites. If you don’t have your own, Kite Flight (849 W Harbor Drive) is located nearby with a selection that ranges from cute single line EZ Flyers (about $30) to pro kites with up to four lines ($200-plus).   –Ryan Bradford


ALL’S FAIR Most of the time we don’t really need an excuse to drink outdoors in this city. It’s not like it gets that cold, but the option certainly becomes all the more attractive in the summer months. That being said, the rooftop bar scene can be a bit of a drag when it’s asses-to-elbows crowded and booming some deep-house Top 40 remix

Fairweather abomination over the PA. Such is not the case at East Village open-air hang Fairweather (795 J St.) cantilevered above Rare Form next to Petco Park. The specialty is flavorful and frosty tropical drinks, such as the boozy Zombie or the addictive


May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 39


San Diego Growlers Piña Colada (served in a tiki head glass, naturally). Add some Fela Kuti and classic exotica on the playlist, and you’ve got yourself a hell of an open-air oasis hidden among a busy urban center.   -Jeff Terich


We’d like to think all those guys at the Frisbee golf course at Morley Field finally grew up and started the American Ultimate Disc League. That’s not the case, however, and the Growlers ( know how to handle a disc. The rules are similar to rugby and the field (Balboa Stadium near City College) makes for a spirited atmosphere. The team’s current record is about as good as you’d expect from a local professional team (1-6 at the time we went to print) and the mascot, Growler Phil, looks like an 8-bit version of Teen Wolf, but hey, at $12 a ticket and with on-site food trucks, there are certainly worse ways to spend a Saturday night or Sunday afternoon.   -Seth Combs


The Balboa Park pipe organ ( has certainly ratcheted up its cool factor over the past year and not just because it turned a century old and was recently knighted the largest outdoor pipe organ in the world. There was also that killer Drive Like Jehu reunion and San Diego Civic Organist Carol Williams’ tear-jerking tribute to David Bowie. The latter program will be back with a full band on May 29 from 2 to 3 p.m. and, starting June 27, the Summer International Organ Festival will begin with movie nights and special concerts all summer long.  -Seth Combs COURTESY DRONES MADE EASY


Drones: The new plaything for engineering nerds and would-be voyeurs alike. Whether you want to get into the high-octane world of drone racing or simply want to perfect your evasive maneuvers to avoid your (very expensive) toy being shot down by overzealous neighbors, Drones Made Easy ( makes this fun, yet somewhat controversial new community accessible. Saturday in-store classes cater to intimate small groups, while bigger groups convene at Silent Electric Flyers Field in Mission Bay for more flying time (check with DME for the upcoming schedule). Consider them the summer school for the smart kids that are all grown up.    -Beth Demmon

40 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016

Drones Made Easy



iFLY Indoor Skydiving


Fans of American Ninja Warrior—or wannabe contestants—can hop over to Chula Vista and fly around San Diego’s largest (12,000-square-foot) trampoline park and indoor-jumping facility. Jump Around (1675 Brandywine Ave., lets you skywalk, bungee jump or work out on climbing elements. The main event though: the tramps. Do your own freestyle or get some assistance from an instructor. Grip socks required. Some may want to play dodgeball. Others will opt to take a nosedive into the foam pit. For my $18 per hour for playtime, I’m going over to the basketball hoop and pretending I can perform rim-shaking dunks like Los Angeles Clipper Blake Griffin. Kids’ party packages run from $250 to $1,000.  -Ron Donoho BOB LANG

time for training, watching others from the flight deck, free falling and seeing an aerial performance by the instructor. The actual “flight” lasts 60 seconds, which is 15 seconds longer than a traditional skydive free fall. Adrenaline junkies can return to learn how to do tricks, fly with friends or enter competitions. 

-Torrey Bailey


You don’t need to be a LARPer to appreciate handling a giant bird of prey with talons that look like they’d pop out your eyeball if you made any sudden movements. Held in the mountains near Alpine and at Torrey Pines, Sky Falconry ( lessons are pretty rad and come in a variety of options, including a basic lesson ($70) where you learn to cast and catch a giant hawk, to more in-depth raptor experiences where you and a friend get to handle both a hawk and a falcon ($595). We’re not promising you’ll come out as kick-ass as Dar from Beastmaster, but we can promise that you’ll get a lot of on Facebook.  -Seth Combs


Balboa Park pipe organ


Didja know you can skydive without a parachute? Yup—only once. But if you want to survive a total free fall, opt for indoor skydiving. iFLY Indoor Skydiving (2385 Camino Del Rio North, iflyworld. com) recently opened to bring these controlled thrills to Mission Valley. From start to finish, the experience lasts an hour and a half, which includes


If you’re willing to splurge to feel as free as a bird, Sky Combat Ace (2015 North Marshall Ave., has a couple options for your wild side. You’ll also have the freedom to sit back in an FAA-certified aerobatic plane while a pilot flies you through the sky, or take control yourself under his or her supervision. You can choose from aerobatics flight tours that loop through the sky, extreme sightseeing over the coast, or air combat, which simulates a dogfight between your plane and another. Each category offers various levels of extremity, so even the faint of heart don’t have an excuse.  

-Torrey Bailey

May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 41




Summer Cool: Wine me, dine me, Jacuzzi time me


Despite the awful heat-induced headaches and eczema-related rash flare-ups that sweating inflicts on my body, summer is my most favorite time of year. I might be itchy, sun stroked and wary of the effects the blazing sun has on my increasingly aging face (seriously though, fuck you, sunspots), but those glorious months full of picnics, pool days and night walks make it great. I’m aware that weeks in, when I’m tossing and turning at 2 a.m. in my un-air-conditioned apartment, I’ll be cursing the wretched heat and begging for cooler weather. I’m a June baby, so that might add to my summer love. Every year I go big on my birthday. This year being birthday number 32 doesn’t have much significance in terms of age milestones. It’s not 21 or 30, or 69, which if I don’t die in a tragic yet awesome drowning in the FC Barcelona team Jacuzzi among its tautest, most cheesily faux hawked players, I plan on blowing out in a ridiculously immature rager. No, 32 is usually nothing to write home about, but I’ll be celebrating bigger than ever because I’m hitting some major personal and professional milestones. For proof of this, make sure you watch Unherd, a rad new music and pop culture news show I’ll be hosting on ABC10 every Saturday at 11:45 pm starting May 21! Ya girl’s on TV, ya’ll! So how does a soon-to-be regional television personality celebrate a summer of slayage? Well, I’m not sure. All I know is that staying cool is going to be priority number one, considering how last summer felt like we were living inside Satan’s stank belly button. Last year I slept spooning a chilled metal ice bucket most nights, which is embarrassing but highly recommendable. I do have a few ideas for a fun and cool summer. First off, I’m dedicating a chunk of my summer to Hot Tub Cruisin. I wrote about this turducken of chillness a bit in the water section of this issue’s Summer Guide, but to recap, it’s awesome. A hot tub. On a pontoon boat. Floating on Mission Bay. What a world we live in. What brilliance lives in the minds of these great Jacuzzin’ men and women who sought to push the boundaries of water-based relaxation. I recently spent a Tuesday evening stewing in a hot tub with some good friends, watching the sun set and drinking canned rosé wine. My hair was wrapped up in a colorful turban, and from my earlobes dangled heavily big plastic costume earrings I inherited from my mother’s ’80s collection. Always dress the part. Magical doesn’t even begin to describe this activity. Chill as fuck gets a little bit closer. Maybe it was the canned wine, followed by the boxed wine

swishing in our bellies; maybe it was the expertly crafted Yacht Rock playlist we created, churning out Sade, Bobby Caldwell and, of course, “Brandy” by Looking Glass; maybe it was just being among some really lovely ladies and a willing fellow to captain our pleasure pontoon while we soaked like swimsuit clad lobsters. I’m thinking, though, it was the combination of it all. At various points, we all had a moment where we would look around and say “This is perfect.” And it was. We’ve already decided to invest our money in a hot tub boat for our early retirement, ’cuzzin’ off into the sun until our wrinkly bodies drift into heaven. Do these things float to Barcelona? In the past, brokeness or a crazy work schedule got in the way of making fun weekenders, which sucks considering how close San Diego is to so many awesome places. Valle de Guadalupe is a must. I wrote a bit about Cuatro Cuartos in the Summer Guide land section, but let me make it clear that the whole Baja wine country rules so hard. It’s beautifully scenic, has some of the best gourmet food in all of Southern California and Baja California, it’s only an hour and a half away and it has an endless supply of that sweet Dionysian nectar that makes life come into Technicolor. Plus, you meet interesting people living out their passions, working with their hands to craft wines from grapes they’ve sowed. Inspirational stuff! I recommend you download the Ruta del Vino app and plan a trip. Some favorites of mine include Tras Lomita, Tres Mujeres, Baron Balche; and really just go because it’s incredible. A few years ago, I shared a little guide on where to drink legally in San Diego’s parks, which is by far my all time favorite summer pastime. While my drinking days have majorly mellowed out, I can’t go any summer without picnicking with my favorite people and enjoying some homemade cocktails poured from a purse that doubles as a cooler that my mom got me from TJ Maxx. My mom just gets me. I’ll be revisiting that old list and will make sure to hit up all those field tested drankin’ parks I love so much. Sunny days, and blistering hot days as we should probably be expecting, call for cocktails. My homemade go-to is muddling cucumber and basil, adding Tito’s Vodka and Trader Joe’s Sparkling Limeade with a splash of soda water. It pairs perfectly with sitting in your underwear in front of your window praying for a breeze, another one of my favorite summer pastimes that will likely be nightly routine. Stay cool, guys!

I slept spooning a chilled metal ice bucket most nights.

42 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016

There She Goz appears every third week. Write to




LIBRARY Beach books for people who don’t like beach books


ummer is a great time to catch up on the books piling up on the bedside table. Because the summer, or at least the early months, can be gray and gloomy in San Diego, here are a few books I’ve enjoyed or am looking forward to cozying up with during the dark days ahead… Out now Ocean Beach by Clayton Truscott When I was in the Navy, Ocean Beach was where the sailors on my ship would go to score speed. The last time I went there with my family, a drug deal was going down in the parking lot. That’s the Ocean Beach you’ll find in Clayton Truscott’s e-book. These four short stories of wayward husbands, drunken taxidermists, malevolent street kids and beach people with nowhere to go capture the eccentric charm and occasional menace of San Diego’s most consistently funky neighborhood. Cold Barrel Zero by Matthew Quirk San Diego writer Matthew Quirk’s latest book pits two men against each other in a high stakes game of cat and mouse. One is a former U.S. Navy combat surgeon, the other a highly motivated rogue agent from the surgeon’s past with some serious scores to settle. Much of the action in the New York Times bestselling author’s latest thriller takes place in and around America’s Finest City. Quirk’s novel, The 500 is being developed into a movie, and we can only hope that the scenes in Cold Barrel Zero will one day make their way to the screen. The Ballad of Black Tom by Victor LaValle Set in Harlem, Flushing Meadows and Red Hook during the jazz age, The Ballad of Black Tom doesn’t have a San Diego connection—unless H.P. Lovecraft’s Elder Gods lurk in the kelp beds offshore. Hmmm… The slim little novel uses the situation from Lovecraft’s short story “The Horror at Red Hook” and expands on it to present a fuller picture with an unexpected twist. An unrepentant racist, Lovecraft has become problematic for contemporary readers and writers of horror. LaValle’s solution is to situate a black protagonist in the middle of Lovecraft’s story and violently shake things up. Mongrels by Stephen Graham Jones Leave it to Stephen Graham Jones, author of more than 20 works of fiction, to write a contem-


porary werewolf novel that is both hilarious and horrifying. Mongrels tells the story of a young boy who grew up listening to his grandfather’s adventures as a lycanthrope. As the narrator anticipates his future, Jones serves up a harrowing tale with nods to the classics, yet is impressively inventive. Like The Ballad of Black Tom, Mongrels is story rooted in class and what it means to be shunned. The Other One by Hasanthika Sirisena Sirisena’s outstanding short stories are about Sir Lankans at home and abroad in the aftermath of the brutal civil war that lasted more than a quarter of a century. “The Chief Inspector’s Daughter,” which is about a young girl coming to terms with the dark realities of her father’s occupation, feels like it could have been written by Roberto Bolaño. My favorite stories deal with characters caught between two cultures. In “Treble Seven Double Naught” a woman goes in search of a distant cousin she suspects may have been the victim of foul play by her American husband. “The Other One” describes the fate of a North Carolina cricket team when they invite a young American woman to join their squad. The Other One is easily one of my favorite short story collections of 2016. Coming soon Disappearance at Devil’s Rock by Paul Tremblay (June) The author of the acclaimed horror novel Head Full of Ghosts about a young girl who may or may not be possessed returns with a tale seemingly ripped from the headlines. A 13-year-old boy disappears after a night out with his friends. The story is situated in classic Tremblay territory: Is this the tale of a tragic yet otherwise ordinary disappearance or is something sinister afoot? Go Between by Lisa Brackmann (July) The San Diego author of an acclaimed series of novels that take place in modern-day China (Rock Paper Tiger, Year of the Rat and Dragon Day) is back with a sequel to her thriller Getaway. A woman with a dark past is blackmailed into spying on a political advocacy group that is hell-bent on pushing for tougher crime measures. A novel of political intrigue sounds like just the antidote to relentless election campaign coverage.  Write to

May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 43




hese days, Michael James Armstrong ( spends a lot of time just looking. That’s not to imply he has too much time on his hands. Quite the opposite. In addition to installing a show from Spring Valley-based graffiti artist Saratoga Sake at Ice Gallery (the Barrio Logan space that that Armstrong owns and curates), he’s been focused on his own show, 4:2, a site-conditioned installation piece that is set to debut at Quint Projects (5171 Santa Fe St.) in Bay Ho from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, May 21. The piece is the second in a series of works that use thousands of threads and natural light to create what could be described as an illusory geometric sculpture. Armstrong’s meticulous approach, however, often means that he feels the need to examine the space at all times of the day. “If someone was with me, they’d be bored,” says Armstrong, adding that it took four days of standing around and examining the space before an idea materialized. “I’ll stand in the corner for an hour and just look. I’ll open the door or just stand in a different spot just looking.” 4:2, which is named after the two light-flooded columns made of white nylon thread and the four black rectangles that frame the piece, is the first new work to be showcased in the new Bay Ho art space. He was given permission by Quint to build two new skylights and several walls. Armstrong says he hopes

Sketch of 4:2 by Michael James Armstrong people will come see it at the Saturday morning opening, but also be tempted to make an appointment to see it another day. “I think it’d be cool for people to come anytime during daylight hours, because it won’t be lit at all. No lighting tracks or anything,” Armstrong says. Once the show at Quint is done and the Sake show at Ice Gallery is complete, Armstrong hopes to be afforded an opportunity to contract a new thread piece, but says he won’t force it. “This shit is not fun and the act of building it is not particularly enjoyable,” says Armstrong, who still hopes to do one more thread piece before moving on from the project entirely. “It’s the end result that makes it completely worth it. The end result, I look at it and think, ‘I’m glad I did that.’” 

—Seth Combs

ON THE SEEN In this semi-regular column, we ask some of our favorite local arts folks what new shows or artists are worth checking out.

like artifacts heavily used by mysterious hands when they can’t be used at all, like Minako Lee’s richly hued oriental fans made of heavy clay. Julie Brooke’s crystalline lavender teapot looks how I wish drinking tea made me feel. Also, there’s a fantastical juxtaposition of textures and materials in Sasha Koozel Reibstein’s half-crystal-half-clay dollops of magic. I COURTESY OF THE ARTIST could go on and on.” 

Jason Gould VISUAL Urban Contemporary Art “Nick McPherson (aka Nicholas Danger, is known for his comical yet creepy illusNina Garin trations where he draws onto Arts Calendar Editor, KPBS discarded, vintage black-and“If you see me out and white family photos that he about, I most likely have two finds at thrift stores and swap kids in tow and we’re rushmeets. I love how he takes an ing to some kind of dance innocent and thoughtful famclass or singing lesson. So the ily photograph and then disart I’m most exposed to isn’t turbingly blends into the photo at museums or galleries, it’s via pen, ink and paint marker. at coffee houses.  My favorite They also work on a concepspot is Pannikin (7467 Girard tual level by using nostalgia Ave., La Jolla), where they and anonymity in a way that have Natalie Bessell’s work can make the viewer reflect (natalie-bessell.squarespace. on their own past and relate “Fruiting Body Number 9” by Charlotte com) on permanent display. to the people and places in the Bird from the Allied Craftsmen show at She finds old photographs and photographs.” Sparks Gallery draws things like masks and spiritual symbols over them. The world she creates Patricia B. Dwyer is mysterious, female-positive and surreal. She also Communications, Museum of Contemporary has some gorgeous paintings of girls holding papaya Art San Diego “I felt like I was finding secret treasures at the and majestic monkeys. Her work captures a unique Allied Craftsmen 2016 show at Sparks Gallery SoCal magical realism. Best of all, Bessell is often be( I have an admittedly romantic hind the counter making coffee drinks and happy to relationship with craft art, and the show touched on chat about her work.” just about every reason why. How pieces can looks  —Seth Combs

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May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 45


Word play

Love & Friendship

Whit Stillman brings Jane Austen’s prose back to life by Glenn Heath Jr.

46 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016


acts are horrid things,” snipes Lady Susan Ver- traits of each character include name, title and denon (Kate Beckinsale) during a pivotal mo- scription, introducing a beehive of players that are ment late in Love & Friendship, Whit Stillman’s all intertwined (and in some cases related). Words brisk romantic comedy about the art of long-game unload out of characters’ mouths in furious succesmanipulation. As the key communicator of casual sion, yet these people rarely speak over each other falsehoods and provocations, she quite literally can’t (those polite Brits). Proclamations of love and franhandle the truth. Being a charming, witty, flirtatious, tic matters of the heart are expressed openly. One ambitious and “brilliant creature,” one might say she would be hard-pressed to decide which was less has no need for it in the first place. productive. This is smoke and mirrors at its finest. Set in the prickly social circles of high society At the center of it all, Lady Susan acts as the ref19th century England, the film keeps pace with its eree to her own mind games. The players are often widowed lead character as she causes controlled unaware of their participation, drawn into a spichaos in the hearts and minds of family, friends der’s web of ego and doubt and left to anguish once and those lads foolish enough to their folly is revealed. It seems only fall in love with her. Susan’s medthe dense suitor Sir James Martin dling may seem like sport at first, (Tom Bennett), whose stupidity is LOVE & but it has an underlining purpose rivaled by his charm, maintains a FRIENDSHIP of securing financial stability and sincere level of happiness throughDirected by Whit Stillman social standing. When her teenout. Introduced as “a bit of a rattle,” Starring Kate Beckinsale, age daughter Frederica (Morfydd he digs himself into more than one Clark) questions these motivations, Chloë Sevigny, Xavier Samuel conversational hole only to get Susan quips, “we don’t live, we visright back up and try again. Ignoand Tom Bennett it.” Securing permanent residence rance and bliss. Rated PG is essential. Love & Friendship, which opens Love & Friendship gleefully Friday, May 20, marks Stillman’s sprints right out of the gate. Lady Susan flees scan- reunion with Beckinsale and Chloë Sevigny (playing dal at a country estate owned by Lord Manwaring Susan’s American compatriot), whom he directed in (Lochlann O’Mearáin), escaping to her family- The Last Days of Disco way back in 1998. This latest owned country abode in order to lay low. There she effort does feel like a culmination of sorts; by setting meets young Reginald DeCourcy (Xavier Samuel), the film in an age where family name and reputation the brother of her disapproving sister-in-law Cath- are paramount, the director’s long-gestating themes erine (Emma Greenwall), and finds another oppor- of restlessness nestle under the façade of formality to tunity to paw at the heartstrings of someone new. wreak necessary havoc. Meanwhile, Frederica’s identity crisis complicates Lady Susan’s effervescent ability to craft a delumatters for everyone, most notably Susan. sional narrative, one that hides her own insecurities, Stillman adapts Jane Austen’s epistolary novel reminds of Greta Gerwig’s faux-renaissance woman Lady Susan with a flair for awkward, cutting dalli- Brooke in Noah Baumbach’s Mistress America. Both ances that speak to the hypocritical correlation be- women cannot exist without deflection, but strangetween wealth and happiness, not to mention love and ly, the character from our “me-first” modern age is friendship. Witty dialogue sequences are prolonged left with a hopeful conclusion, while Stillman’s smilby long strolls through pristine countryside, giv- ing viper ends up exactly where she belongs, smiling ing the characters ample time to confess (and doth from the matrimonial gallows as her daughter finds protest) too much. Emotion is a valuable currency, true happiness. In the end, some people just want to something not to be spent on the wrong person. watch the world yearn. The film’s playful aesthetic operates at high speed from the very beginning. Direct address por- Film reviews run weekly. Write to



May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 47

CULTURE | FILM speak and he can’t sit still. The two lounge at their hillside villa, make love in the pool, and venture down to the beach where they cake themselves in mud. If only life (and cinema) were this simple. Like a bellowing god from above, Marianne’s former lover, Harry (Ralph Fiennes), arrives unannounced with his estranged daughter Penelope (Dakota Johnson) to wreak uncomfortable havoc. After a polite feeling out stage, the foursome comes to represent a delicate cross-section of competing egos, intentions and secrets, one in which the slightest of A Bigger Splash revelations could cause collapse. For much of A Bigger Splash, Ripple effect which opens Friday, May 20, here’s so much past history Guadagnino usurps traditional bubbling under the sur- narrative storytelling for jarring face of Luca Guadagnino’s stylistic decisions, like sudden A Bigger Splash that it’s hard for accusatory close-ups and ponthe characters to breathe. Which derous long takes. The agitation makes the film’s central image—a caused by Harry’s tornado-like sun-kissed swimming pool—both personality and motivations fura fitting and obvious metaphor for ther inspires a sense of collective their timeless anxiety. disruption. Set on a windy Mediterranean That theme ultimately comes island off the coast of Italy, the to fruition in an unsatisfyingly film opens with recovering rock familiar finale, but by then the star Marianne Lane (Tilda Swin- film has already achieved an inton) enjoying an idyllic vacation visible menace that has been conwith her filmmaker boyfriend Paul sistently filtered through passive(Matthias Schoenaerts). She can’t aggression and desire. Certain


48 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016

visual pleasures tonally complicate the growing unease, namely the pristine reflections cast from Marianne’s glamorous sunglasses. It’s Fiennes, though, that proverbially steals the show. Once again showing the kind of indispensible range of a master, the actor portrays Harry as a raging bull of spark, insecurity, charm and manic depression. He is both life force and energy drain in a film that can’t ultimately decide how to reconcile either.

—Glenn Heath Jr.

OPENING Dark Horse: A group of friend’s from a workingman’s club decides to breed a racehorse to take on the elite “sport of kings.” Dragon Inn: Betrayal, insurrection, and loyalty all collide in King Hu’s masterful wuxia saga that will be presented in a 4k restoration by Janus Films. Opens Friday, May 20, at the Ken Cinema. Love & Friendship: Adapted from Jane Austen’s Lady Susan, the latest Whit Stillman comedy stars Kate Beckinsale as a selfish, charming widow who will do anything to sustain her life of privilege in 19th century England. Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising: Zac Efron and Seth Rogen team up against a

raunchy and rowdy sorority in this sequel to the 2014 comedy Neighbors. Co-stars Rose Byrne. Pelé: Birth of a Legend: This biopic explores the life and career of the famous Brazilian soccer player. Screens through Thursday, May 26, at the Digital Gym Cinema in North Park. San Diego Surf Film Festival: The 5th annual event will showcase features and short film alike that span the landscape of surf culture around the world. Screens Wednesday, May 18 through Saturday, May 28, at various venues in La Jolla. For more information visit T-Rex: Desperately trying to lift her family out of a life of poverty in Flint, Michigan, Claressa “T-Rex” Shields competes to qualify for the 2012 Olympics in Women’s Boxing. Screens through Thursday, May 26, at the Digital Gym Cinema in North Park. The Angry Birds Movie: They’re angry. They’re birds. They’ve finally transcended the ghetto of your smart phone screens and ascended to the cinemas. The Nice Guys: Homage to the 1970s detective film, Shane Black’s comedy pits an enforcer (Russell Crowe) and a private investigator (Ryan Gosling) together to solve the case of missing adult movie star.

For a complete

listing of movies, please see

“F ilm Screenings” at



Robert Smith HERE’S A TIRED BIT OF CONVENTIONAL wisdom about how The Cure’s music resonates most strongly with teenagers. It’s not totally wrong, necessarily—a fair chunk of The Cure’s catalog is mired and darkness, angst and depression. They’re as much a brand as a band, the stadium-filling spokesband for goth, their logo scrawled onto countless Trapper Keepers, their lyrics written on the inside cover of every yearbook. As Bart Simpson once astutely observed, “making teenagers miserable is like shooting fish in a barrel,” and the band’s frontman and songwriter Robert Smith was happy to oblige, and in lipstick, eyeliner and Aquanetted hair no less. I had my share of teenage experiences with The Cure. I impulse-bought a CD copy of Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me in the summer of 1999, after hearing “Why Can’t I Be You?” on a 91X Fourth of July countdown, and had it on regular rotation between Pavement and Neutral Milk Hotel. Not long after that, a girl made me a mixtape of songs from their first three albums, which in hindsight sounds like it could have been a deleted scene from Pretty In Pink. I was introduced to The Cure much earlier than that, though, hearing “Close to Me” on my brother’s stereo, and my sister had a copy of Three Imaginary Boys on vinyl—the one where all the song titles are depicted as pictograms rather than with words. (The easiest one to decipher? “Meathook.”) Since I was a kid, The Cure maintained a sort of lowkey background ubiquity, so it’s a wonder I didn’t I fully appreciate them until I was much older. Throughout my twenties I was drawn to the abrasion of the band’s postpunk albums, Seventeen Seconds and Pornography, their intense and rhythmic sounds providing a cathartic release that sometimes only metal or hardcore can compete with. I liked Disintegration too, but it’d be dishonest to say that I got it. The band’s most highly acclaimed album—their “masterpiece” according to a wide swath of critics—certainly sounded impressive, even gorgeous. But more often


than not I found myself skipping to the singles “Lovesong,” “Lullaby” and “Fascination Street,” shorter and more accessible pieces that gave an immediate sense of gratification, where its longer tracks were dense and untouchable, like delicate pieces roped off with stanchions in a museum. That changed not long before I turned 30. I won’t go so far as to say I was directionless or a fuck-up or anything so dramatic. My twenties were average by middle-class American white male standards, which is to say in context they weren’t really remarkable in any meaningful way. At the time, though, it was a slog—a slow, uphill climb fraught with poor decisions and unforeseen setbacks that seem like a comedy of errors now, but at the time felt like death by 1,000 banana peels. My cat died, I lost my job, my car broke down and stranded my girlfriend and me in the middle of nowhere, that same car was stolen after $500 in repairs, three of my grandparents died and my wife and I were kicked out of our house and threatened with a lawsuit—all in the span of two years. Worst of all, my twenties were going to be over soon, and most of what I had to show for it was a comical streak of bad luck that I’d now like to dub “The Aristocrats.” Robert Smith’s twenties were far more impressive than mine. By the time he was 29 he had six great albums and one pretty good one under his belt, but was still afraid he missed his chance at writing his magnum opus. The despair and depression of his early-mid-life crisis, aided in no small part by regular use of psychedelics, led to the creation of Disintegration, a beautifully gloomy 72 minutes of existential dread and instrumental majesty. It’s a dive into some deeply personal angst from a singer/songwriter best known for covering over it with makeup and oddly-placed squawks, and as a result it’s the best thing he’s ever done.

At 29, for me, it clicked. Disintegration no longer seemed to me an untouchable piece of ephemera. It was stunning, even relatable. I wanted to lie on my back and do snow angels in the towering synthesizers of “Closedown” and “Plainsong.” I wanted to run marathons to the title track. I wanted to dial up the volume until the knob broke off and experience “Prayers for Rain” as physical sensation; I assume that’s what Smith & Co. wanted. The album sleeve reads, “This music is mixed to be played loud, so turn it up!” Ironically, lyrics about “the end of the world” and “running out of time” made me feel less panicked about getting older. Thanks in some small part to this album, I was ready to say, “Fuck it, bring on my thirties!” I haven’t kept up that well with The Cure as they’ve released new material in the past 15 years—what little of it there is. They’ve only released three albums since 2000, and the only one that I spent much time with was 2000’s Bloodflowers. The Cure is like an old friend in that sense. We can go for long periods of time apart, but when we reconnect it’s like no time has passed. Yet the band’s music—sans newer albums—has become a constant presence in my life. I don’t go a few days without listening to “A Forest” or “Disintegration” or “One Hundred Years” or “Primary.” I started a band last year, and we covered five Cure songs on Halloween. And the girl that made me that mix of early Cure songs? We’re married now. I’m now 34 and still haven’t accomplished anything as impressive as Disintegration (who has, really?). But it’s not like it’s the end of the world.  Write to or follow him on Twitter at @1000TimesJeff

May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 49



hil Sgrosso of Wovenwar and As I Lay Dying has announced the formation of a new hardcore-influenced band called Poison Headache. The band also features Andy Kutka of Internal Affairs and Kyle Rosa of Thieves and Liars. Their self-titled album is being released via Metal Blade on June 3, and it’s been a long time in the works. The trio first started talking about doing a project seven years ago. “We’ve known each other since high school, playing in different bands and playing shows together,” Sgrosso says in a phone interview. “Andy’s previous band, Internal Affairs, had broken up, and he approached Kyle and I about playing together. It had been a while since we had jammed together.” The band plays a faster, rawer style of metal than Sgrosso does in Wovenwar. A press release cites bands such as Entombed and Converge as influences, and he says it’s a project he’s wanted to do since he was in As I Lay Dying. “It’s a style of music I’ve been passionate about for a long time,” he says. “With As I Lay Dying, it was like, this is what this band is, but I also wanted to do other things. There are a number of different music styles I would have loved to do. I’m really excited to go down this road.” The band is hosting a listening party for the album on May 21 at Brick by Brick (Sgrosso is a co-owner).

Poison Headache Coronado Brewing head brewer Ryan Brooks has also brewed a special collaboration beer for the occasion, which is a triple IPA. Before announcing the release party, however, the members of Poison Headache kept their identities under wraps. The cat’s out of the bag now, but when the first song from the album was released, they wanted it to be met without any baggage. “It’s kind of just letting the music speak for itself,” he says. “We just wanted people to go in and not have any expectations. Here’s this new band, and this is what they’re about.”


—Jeff Terich

Head Wound City A New Wave of Violence (Vice)


p until last year, Head Wound City was more myth than band. The spastic hardcore supergroup—comprising The Locust’s Justin Pearson and Gabe Serbian, Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Nick Zinner and Blood Brothers’ Jordan Blilie and Cody Votolato—released one ten-minute EP in the ’00s, played one live show, and then went their separate ways without looking back. Or so it would have seemed, but the group reunited in 2014 for the sake of a small festival appearance. That one reunion show ended up turning into more shows, then a tour with Savages, and now their first official fulllength, A New Wave of Violence. At 24 minutes long, the album isn’t massive by any means, but at more than twice the length of their inaugural EP, it feels satisfyingly substantial. It’s a proper album with highs, lows, freakouts, dirges and all manner of song in between, at least as much as there can be for a band whose primary mode of operation is all-pistons-firing hardcore fury. A New Wave of Violence sounds essentially ex-

50 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016

actly like what you’d probably expect from a band featuring members of The Locust, Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Blood Brothers. Which is to say it’s loud, relentless and likely to leave a nasty welt, but not at the expense of a good melody or hook. Most songs are about two minutes long, not so short that they dissolve almost as quickly as they arrive (save for the 55-second powerviolence of “I Wanna Be Your Original Sin”) but potent in a digestible package. “Old Age Takes Too Long” and “Born to Burn” provide a one-two punch right off the bat that introduces this set of weirdo beatdowns nicely. When Head Wound City slow it down and ease into a groove, they reveal themselves to be adept at more than just sheer brutality. “I Cast A Shadow for You” provides a sinister doom groove, while “Avalanche of Heaven” is a mosh-pit-worthy sludge churn. As loud and abrasive as A New Wave of Violence is, however, it’s a lot of fun to listen to. These five punk rock vets know what they’re doing, and what they’re doing is a deafening, uncompromising blast.  —Jeff Terich




IF I WERE U A music insider’s weekly agenda WEDNESDAY, MAY 18

PLAN A: Frightened Rabbit, Caveman @ Belly Up Tavern. When Frightened Rabbit played at The Casbah in 2010, singer Scott Hutchison said he hoped they’d never stop playing there. Well, they’ve picked up several thousand more fans since then, so they’re in a bigger room, but with the same great knack for melody. PLAN B: Dreams Made Flesh, Bit Maps, Blood Ponies @ The Hideout. Dreams Made Flesh made a big impression with their submission to the Great Demo Review, and now they’re making their live debut, featuring ex-members of Ilya. My band is opening, but that’s not why I’m recommending the show. Dreams Made Flesh is a new band to keep your eye on. PLAN TV: Unherd @ Your TV set. On the note of selfpromotion, I’m going to be on a new TV show called Unherd, giving my Kaytranada live music recommendations right in your living room, and it debuts Saturday night. (KGTV, 11:45 p.m.) BACKUP PLAN: Mrs. Magician, The Sess, Keepers @ Soda Bar.

hoof, but on his own he’s carved a unique PLAN A: Yuna, Bosco @ The Casbah. Ma- path of weird, lush indie pop. His new album laysian singer/songwriter Yuna has a unique As If Apart is highly melodic, a little bit jazzy sound that combines pop with electronic and easy to love. BACKUP PLAN: Parade sounds and R&B. She recently recorded a of Horribles, Dead on duet with Usher, and though I don’t expect the Wire, Badabing, Ash him to show up, she’ll still provide some Williams @ Tower Bar. catchy gems. PLAN B: King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard, The Murlocs, DJ Mike FRIDAY, MAY 20 Turi @ Soda Bar. Yes, this band has a silly PLAN A: Titus Anname. And yes they play fun psychedelic dronicus, La Sera @ rock with a lot of energy and memorable Che Cafe. I’ve seen Titus Andronicus a few times, hooks. Either way, what’s not to love? and without fail they alTHURSDAY, MAY 19 ways provide one hell of PLAN A: Wreckless Eric, Davey Tilt- a punk rock show. Their wheel, DJ Miggs @ The Hideout. You recent album The Most Lamentable Tragedy probably know Wreckless Eric for his song is a soaring triple-album of melody and an“Whole Wide World,” but the UK pub rock- archy, and they’re gonna kick ass. PLAN B: er has his share of great songs, which you’ll The Thermals, Summer Cannibals, Colbe singing along to in no time. PLAN B: leen Green @ Soda Bar. Speaking of kickChris Cohen, Spooky Cigarette, Red Pony ing ass, The Thermals have their own fun, SUNDAY, MAY 22 Clock, Jude Shuma @ Soda Bar. Chris Co- fuzzy punk sound that’s held up for nearly PLAN A: Nada Surf, Prism Tats @ The Irenic. Nada Surf has a strong record of rehen used to perform as a member of Deer- 15 years.


leasing tuneful power pop records since first launching themselves into the buzz bin in the ’90s. They’ve matured gracefully, and with a long set of sing-along songs. PLAN B: Idlewild, Jaguar Club @ The Casbah. Scotland’s Idlewild has always sort of been like a cross between R.E.M. and Jawbreaker, and when I saw them in my college days, they were a hoot live. If they play “Little Discourage,” count me in.


PLAN A: Mega Ran, Roqy Tyraid, Kahlee, Vic Viper @ Soda Bar. Mega Ran’s music is one of the most enjoyable combinations of hip-hop and nerd culture I’ve heard. If you appreciate some deft lyrical wordplay set to 8-bit beats, then put down the NES controller and lend your ears to Mega Ran.


PLAN A: Kaytranada, River Tiber, Lou Phelps @ Observatory North Park. Montreal producer Kaytranada keeps good company, having released some excellent collaborations with the likes of Katy B, Anderson Paak and Freddie Gibbs. He’s a great producer in his own right, however, and he’s bringing a trippy, off-kilter dance party to our backyard. PLAN B: Son Little, Doe Paoro @ The Casbah. Son Little is a spiritual kin to Leon Bridges, playing a style of classic soul that nods to greats like Sam Cooke. It’s laid-back but wonderfully written R&B that sets the mood nicely. 

May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 51



Mirah (Soda Bar, 6/13), Prayers (Observatory, 6/17), Body Language (The Hideout, 7/9), Ducktails (Hideout, 7/16), Fear of Men (The Hideout, 7/19), Slayer (HOB, 7/21), Digable Planets, Camp Lo (BUT, 8/20), Flamin’ Groovies (Casbah, 9/2), Zombies (BUT, 9/8), Squeeze (BUT, 9/22), Sia (Viejas Arena, 10/5), Bad Boy Family Reunion (Viejas Arena, 10/6), Young the Giant (HOB, 10/18-19), Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Death from Above 1979 (HOB, 10/28).


Modern Baseball, Joyce Manor (HOB, 6/1), Budos Band (BUT, 6/3), ‘X-Fest’ w/ Offspring, Cheap Trick (Sleep Train Amphitheatre, 6/5), Eyehategod (Brick by Brick, 6/7), Del the Funky Homosapien (Observatory, 6/12), Lee “Scratch” Perry (BUT, 6/20), Case/Lang/Veirs (Humphreys, 6/22), Blue Oyster Cult (BUT, 6/26), Joan Jett (Del Mar Fairgrounds, 7/9), White Lung (Casbah, 7/9), M. Ward (BUT, 7/12), Deerhoof (Casbah, 7/14), Pitbull (Sleep Train Amphitheatre, 7/16), Psychedelic Furs, The Church (Humphreys, 7/19), The Joy Formidable (Irenic, 7/20), Nails (Brick by Brick, 7/20), Boris (Casbah, 7/22), Blink 182 (Viejas Arena, 7/22), Inter Arma (Soda Bar, 7/24), Dirty Dozen Brass Band (Music Box, 7/28), Savages (Observa-

52 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016

tory, 7/29), Sublime with Rome (Sleep Train Amphitheatre, 7/30), Anderson .Paak (HOB, 8/3), ‘Warped Tour’ w/ Sleeping With Sirens, Sum 41, New Found Glory (Qualcomm Stadium, 8/5), Kurt Vile and the Violators (HOB, 8/9), Guided by Voices (BUT, 8/17), The Weight: Members of the Band/Levon Helm Band (BUT, 8/18), Parquet Courts (The Irenic, 8/19), Guns ‘n’ Roses (Qualcomm Stadium, 8/22), Dave Matthews Band (Sleep Train Amphitheatre, 8/26), Snoop Dogg, Wiz Khalifa (Sleep Train Amphitheatre, 8/27), Deftones (Open Air Theatre, 8/29), Huey Lewis and the News (Humphreys, 9/1), The Kills (Observatory, 9/4), Ray Lamontagne (Open Air Theatre, 9/13), Counting Crows, Rob Thomas (Open Air Theatre, 9/14), Tegan and Sara (Observatory, 9/25), O.A.R. (Humphreys, 9/25), Glen Hansard (Observatory, 9/28), Ani DiFranco (BUT, 10/2), ZZ Top (Humphreys, 10/4), Kamasi Washington (Humphreys, 10/7), Florida Georgia Line (Sleep Train Amphitheatre, 10/9), Jethro Tull (Balboa Theatre, 10/17), Alice Cooper (Harrah’s, 10/28), M83 (SOMA, 10/29), Peter Hook and the Light (HOB, 11/8).

MAY WEDNESDAY, MAY 18 King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard at Soda Bar. Yuna at The Casbah.

THURSDAY, MAY 19 Wreckless Eric at The Hideout.

FRIDAY, MAY 20 Titus Andronicus, La Sera at Che Café.

The Thermals at Soda Bar. The Cure at Sleep Train Amphitheatre (sold out).

SATURDAY, MAY 21 Iron Butterfly at Music Box. Soulfly at Brick by Brick. Jewel at Humphreys by the Bay (sold out). Frightened Rabbit at Belly Up Tavern. Dreams Made Flesh at The Hideout. Father at Observatory North Park. ‘In-Ko-Pah 3’ w/ Three Mile Pilot, Shady Francos, Madly at Desert View Tower.

SUNDAY, MAY 22 Idlewild at The Casbah.

TUESDAY, MAY 24 Son Little at The Casbah.

WEDNESDAY, MAY 25 Pentagram at Brick by Brick.

THURSDAY, MAY 26 Anti-Nowhere League at Soda Bar.

FRIDAY, MAY 27 Moderat at Observatory North Park. Gary Wilson at Brick by Brick. Lumineers at Open Air Theatre (sold out). Insane Clown Posse at House of Blues. D.O.A. at The Casbah.

SATURDAY, MAY 28 U.S. Girls at Soda Bar. Upsilon Acrux at The Hideout. Dillinger Four at The Casbah (sold out). Barrington Levy at Observatory North Park.

SUNDAY, MAY 29 Big Black Delta at The Casbah. Brett Dennen at Belly Up Tavern.


MUSIC MONDAY, MAY 30 Refused at Belly Up Tavern. GZA/Genius at Observatory North Park.

TUESDAY, MAY 31 Leon Russell at Belly Up Tavern. The Hush Sound at The Casbah.

JUNE WEDNESDAY, JUNE 1 Voivod at Brick by Brick. Modern Baseball, Joyce Manor at House of Blues. Local H at Belly Up Tavern.

THURSDAY, JUNE 2 Yeasayer at Observatory North Park. Brian Jonestown Massacre at Belly Up Tavern.

FRIDAY, JUNE 3 Broncho at The Casbah. Anvil at Brick by Brick. Budos Band at Belly Up Tavern.

SATURDAY, JUNE 4 The Obsessed at Brick by Brick. Thrice at House of Blues (sold out). So So Glos at Soda Bar. Jello Biafra (DJ set) at The Hideout. Three Mile Pilot at The Casbah.

SUNDAY, JUNE 5 Eric Bachmann at Soda Bar. ‘X-Fest’ w/ Offspring, Cheap Trick at Sleep Train Amphitheatre. Armored Saint, Metal Church at Brick by Brick. Junior Brown at Belly Up Tavern.

FRIDAY, JUNE 10 Michael McDonald at Del Mar Fair-


grounds. Arbor Labor Union at The Hideout. B-Side Players at Belly Up Tavern. American Head Charge at Soda Bar. Islands at The Casbah.

SATURDAY, JUNE 11 The Sadies, Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet at The Hideout. Greys at The Merrow. Too $hort at Observatory North Park. The Mentors at Brick by Brick. PUP at Soda Bar. Mutual Benefit at The Casbah.

SUNDAY, JUNE 12 Del the Funky Homosapien at Observatory North Park. Holy Fuck at The Casbah.

MONDAY, JUNE 13 Creepoid at The Hideout. Bob Dylan at Humphreys (sold out). Mirah at Soda Bar.

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 15 Al DiMeola at Music Box. Toots and the Maytals at Observatory North Park. X Ambassadors at Del Mar Fairgrounds.

THURSDAY, JUNE 16 Lee Bains III and the Glory Fires at The Hideout. Curren$y at Observatory North Park.

FRIDAY, JUNE 17 Metalachi at Music Box. The Muffs at The Casbah. Prayers at Observatory North Park.

SATURDAY, JUNE 18 Sarah Jarosz at The Irenic. Day Wave

at The Casbah. Rogue Wave at Belly Up Tavern.

SUNDAY, JUNE 19 Total Chaos at Brick by Brick.

MONDAY, JUNE 20 Federico Aubele at The Casbah. Lee “Scratch” Perry at Belly Up Tavern.

TUESDAY, JUNE 21 Ozomatli at Del Mar Fairgrounds. Ceu at Belly Up Tavern. Buckethead at Music Box.

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 22 David Bromberg at Belly Up Tavern. Case/Lang/Veirs at Humphreys by the Bay. Kenny Rogers at Del Mar Fairgrounds. Ne-hi at The Hideout. Nothing at Soda Bar.

THURSDAY, JUNE 23 Cherry Glazerr at The Irenic. George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic at Belly Up Tavern (sold out).

FRIDAY, JUNE 24 Sonny and the Sunsets at Soda Bar. Jacquees at Observatory North Park. Cee-Lo at Belly Up Tavern (sold out).

SATURDAY, JUNE 25 Venom Inc. at Brick by Brick. Pierce the Veil at Observatory North Park. Good Old War at The Casbah.


May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 53

MUSIC MUSIC CONTINUED FROM PAGE 53 SUNDAY, JUNE 26 Pity Sex at The Irenic. Blue Oyster Cult at Belly Up Tavern.

THURSDAY, JUNE 30 Brian Wilson at Del Mar Fairgrounds.


710 Beach Club, 710 Garnet Ave., San Diego. Pacific Beach. Fri: Black Salt Tone, Maka Roots, Mellow Grounds. Sat: ‘Bird Rock Elementary fundraiser’. 98 Bottles, 2400 Kettner Blvd. Ste. 110, San Diego. Little Italy. Fri: That’s Amore. Sat: ‘Tribute to Lee Morgan’ w/ Gilbert Castellanos. Sun: The Matt Smith Neu Jazz Trio. Air Conditioned Lounge, 4673 30th St., San Diego. Normal Heights. Wed: ‘Wild & Free’ w/ DJs Dink, Memo + Rex. Thu: ‘Libertine’ w/ DJs Jon Wesley, 1979. Sat: ‘Juicy’ w/ Mike Czech. Sun: ‘Chvrch’ w/ DJ Karma. American Comedy Co., 818 B Sixth Ave., San Diego. Downtown. Thu: Barry Rothbart. Fri: Jeff Dye. Sat: Jeff Dye. Bang Bang, 526 Market St., San Diego. Downtown. Fri: Rainer + Grimm. Sat: Worthy. Bar Pink, 3829 30th St., San Diego. North Park. Wed: ‘Tribute to Ladies of Hip-Hop and R&B’. Thu: DJ Ikah Love. Sat: ‘Neon Beat’. Sun: ‘Rat Sabbath’. Mon: Tori Roze and the Hot Mess. Tue: DJ Marshall Islands. Beaumont’s, 5662 La Jolla Blvd., La

54 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016

Jolla. Thu: Cougar Canyon Band. Fri: Aquile. Sat: Emotional Rescue. Sun: Kayla Hope. Belly Up Tavern, 143 S. Cedros Ave., Solana Beach. Solana Beach. Wed: Turkuaz, The Nth Power. Thu: Fortunate Youth, Peni Dean, SensaMotion. Fri: Hot Buttered Rum, The Moves Collective, Second Cousins. Sat: Frightened Rabbit, Caveman. Sun: ‘Revival of the Singer Songwriter’. Mon: Katchafire, Mystic Roots Band, Nattali Rize, Stay Positive Sound. Tue: Katchafire, Mystic Roots Band, Nattali Rize, Stay Positive Sound. Boar Cross’n, 390 Grand Ave., Carlsbad. Thu: Fellow Travelers. Fri: ‘Club Musae’. Brass Rail, 3796 Fifth Ave., San Diego. Hillcrest. Sat: ‘Sabado en Fuego’ w/ DJs XP, KA, K-Swift. Mon: ‘Manic Monday’ w/ DJ Junior the Disco Punk. Brick by Brick, 1130 Buenos Ave., San Diego. Bay Park. Sat: Soulfly, Warbringer, Lody Kong, Santa Claus, Contortion. Cafe Sevilla, 353 Fifth Ave., San Diego. Downtown. Sat: Flamenco Dinner Show. Sun: Buena Vista Sundays. Cat Eye Club, 370 7th Ave, San Diego. 4S Ranch. Thu: Cool Cat Karaoke. Dirk’s Nightclub, 7662 Broadway, Lemon Grove. Fri: TNT. Sat: DJ Hurricane Andrew. Dizzy’s, 4275 Mission Bay Drive, San Diego. Mission Bay. Thu: Feliciano Arango y Amistad Cubana. Fri: Nathan Collins Sextet. Sat: Joshua White. Tue: ‘Tribute to Joe Marillo’. El Dorado Bar, 1030 Broadway, San Diego. Downtown. Thu: LCD Soundsystem VS. Soulwax Tribute Night.

F6ix, 526 F St., San Diego. Downtown. Fri: DJ Shadowman. Sat: DJ Dynamiq. Fluxx, 500 Fourth Ave., San Diego. Downtown. Fri: E-Man. Sat: Wellman. House of Blues, 1055 Fifth Ave., San Diego. Downtown. Thu: Filter, Orgy, Vampires Everywhere, Death Valley High. Fri: Purple Rain. Sat: FMLYBND, Olivver the Kid, Dark Waves, Paper Days. Sun: PVRIS, Lydia, CRUISR, Beach Weather. Kava Lounge, 2812 Kettner Blvd., San Diego. Midtown. Thu: ‘Acid Varsity’ w/ David Scott. Fri: SUBSpatial, Mesck. Sat: ‘Moloko Sound’. Tue: ‘High Tech Tuesday’. Mc P’s Irish Pub, 1107 Orange Ave., Coronado. Wed: JG Duo. Thu: Northstar. Fri: Ron’s Garage. Sat: In Midlife Crisis. Tue: Steve Brewer. Music Box, 1337 India St., San Diego. Little Italy. Thu: O-Town, Super Groupie, Ricky Rebel. Fri: Ooklah the Moc, Josh Heinrichs, For Peace Band. Sat: Thriftworks, Galangsta, Iron Butterfly, Thriftworks, Galangsta. Sun: Commotion 2016. Tue: Gondwana, Fayuca, Piracy Conspiracy, DJ Carlos Culture. Patricks Gaslamp, 428 F St., San Diego. Downtown. Wed: The Upshots. Thu: Len Rainey’s Midnight Players. Fri: The Counterfeits. Sat: RedWave. Sun: The Fuzzy Rankins Band. Tue: Paddy’s Chicken Jam. Riviera Supper Club, 7777 University Ave., La Mesa. Wed: ‘Boss Jazz’ w/ Jason Hanna. Thu: Chloe Lou. Fri: Black Market III. Sat: Alvino & the Dwells. Soda Bar, 3615 El Cajon Blvd., San Diego. City Heights. Wed: King Gizzard




May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 55

MUSIC MUSIC CONTINUED FROM PAGE 54 and the Lizzard Wizzard, The Murlocs. Thu: Chris Cohen, Spooky Cigarette, Red Pony Clock, Jude Shuma. Fri: The Thermals, Summer Cannibals, Colleen Green. Sat: Mrs. Magician, The Sess, Keepers. Sun: Royce Rizzy, Andre Power. Mon: Mega Ran, Roqy Tyraid, Kahlee, Vic Viper. Tue: Oddissee, Jimmy Javier. SOMA, 3350 Sports Arena Blvd., San Diego. Midway. Sat: Short Stories, Alive & Well, ACIDIC, Air Go, The Montell Jordans, Effe Emme. Sycamore Den, 3391 Adams Ave., San Diego. Normal Heights. Thu: Crooked. Sun: Tim Mudd, Podunk Nowhere. The Bancroft, 9143 Campo Rd., Spring Valley. Thu: ‘Darkwave Garden’. Fri: Alex Kirk Amen, A New Ending. Sat: Ant Dakini, Ultima Circo. Sun: Hierophant, Bonebreaker. The Casbah, 2501 Kettner Blvd., San Diego. Midtown. Wed: Yuna, Bosco. Thu: Idlehands, Amigo, Dime by Dime. Fri: Damien Jurado and the Heavy Light, Ben Abraham. Sat: Fruit Bats, Kyle Craft. Sun: Idlewild, Jaguar Club. Mon: The Little Richards, The Bassics. Tue: Son Little, Doe Paoro. The Che Cafe, 9500 Gilman Dr, La Jolla. Fri: Titus Andronicus, La Sera. Sat: Jeff Rosenstock, Upset, Diners, Sledding With Tigers. The Field, 544 Fifth Ave., San Diego. Downtown. Fri: Lucky Tongues. Sat: The Fooks. The Hideout, 3519 El Cajon Blvd., San Diego. City Heights. Thu: Wreckless Eric, Davey Tiltwheel, DJ Miggs. Sat: Dreams Made Flesh, Bit Maps, Blood Ponies.

56 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016

Three Mile Pilot headlines In-Ko-Pah festival on Saturday, May 21. The Irenic, 3090 Polk Ave., San Diego. North Park. Thu: Andy Hull and Kevin Devine. Sun: Nada Surf, Prism Tats. The Loft @ UCSD, Price Center East, La Jolla. Wed: Geographer. Thu: Mino, Kamau Kenyatta . Tue: Jones Jones, The UCSD Advanced Undergrad Ensemble. The Merrow, 1271 University Ave., San Diego. Hillcrest. Wed: Boychick, Low Hums, The Gift Machine. Fri: Los Hollywood, Viri y Los Bandidos, Sin Color, DJ El Profe. Sat: Dr. Sketchy’s Anti-Art School - Film Noir, Township Rebellion, Class of 99, The Grind. Mon: The Dangerfield, Wanted Noise, Stick Bitz. Tue: Color Til Monday, Jovias, Nothing Sacred. The Office, 3936 30th St., San Diego. North Park. Wed: ‘Ceremony’ w/ Minor Gems. Thu: ‘No Limits’ w/ DJ Myson King. Fri: ‘After Hours’ w/ DJs EdRoc, Ramsey. Sat: ‘Strictly Business’ w/ DJs EdRoc, Kanye Asada. Sun: ‘Uptown Top Ranking’ w/ Tribe of Kings. Mon: ‘Wire tribute’ w/ Cher’s Missing, DJs Handsome

Skeleton, Jon Greene, Aaron Amnesia. Tue: ‘Trapped’. Til-Two Club, 4746 El Cajon Blvd., San Diego. City Heights. Fri: The Garden, Some Kind of Lizard, Shady Francos, The Monsoon. Sat: Revivers, Mochilero All Stars. Tower Bar, 4757 University Ave., San Diego. City Heights. Thu: Parade of Horribles, Dead on the Wire, Badabing, Ash Williams. Sat: Hierophant, Bonebreaker. Whistle Stop, 2236 Fern St, San Diego. South Park. Wed: ‘Open Oscillator’. Thu: ‘Astrojump’ w/ Kill Quanti DJs. Fri: ‘F-ing in the Bushes’ w/ DJs Daniel Sant, Rob Moran. Sat: ‘80s vs 90s’ w/ DJs Gabe, Saul. Sun: ‘2000s Dance Party’. Winstons, 1921 Bacon St., San Diego. Ocean Beach. Wed: Translator, DJ Carlos Culture. Thu: Zolopht. Fri: The Routine, Sister Speak, Bomb Squad. Sat: AJ Froman, Shellshock, Destructo Bunny. Mon: Electric Waste Band. Tue: 77 Jefferson.



May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 57




WEEDS Cause and effect of legitimizing pot


uddenly, four dispensaries were up and running on the same block of his home near Bankers Hill. Noah (not his real name) was a dealer who had been raking in more than $3,000 per month in 2012 selling pot to a circle of friends and acquaintances but saw those clients flock to the dispensaries that flooded San Diego that year, with their vast array of strains and products. “Business was going really well, and then I started to lose clients left and right,” Noah said. “It was an ‘Oh fuck’ situation for quite a few months.” Then, almost as suddenly, city officials started shutting down the hastily opened shops, and Noah’s fortunes reversed yet again. “Once the dispensaries were being shut down, I started making a lot more money,” he said. “Nobody could figure out where to get weed anymore, and they

58 · San Diego CityBeat · May 18, 2016

had grown to be dependent on the dispensaries. So I was seeing more demand than ever.” Noah’s illegal pot business blossomed into a full-time, $10,000-amonth career thanks to the lessons learned after the onset of medical marijuana, namely, just how mercurial the new cannabis marketplace is, and just how tireless he had to be to compete with the city’s eight licensed dispensaries and the untold more that operate in the legal shadows. Weed, he realized, doesn’t sell itself. Noah stands as something of an anomaly in San Diego’s alwaysshifting marijuana marketplace, a relic of a bygone era as cannabis edges toward legitimacy. “We never pretended that Prop 215 would do anything about changing the black market,” said Dale Gieringer, coordinator of California NORML, a nonprofit

dedicated to reforming cannabis laws. “If you look at the arrest statistics over the long run since 1996, there’s really not been any dramatic impact. It’s been a slow and steady decline in arrests just because of the realignment of law enforcement priorities.” Crime data show that the occasional pot bust still happens in San Diego. But busts for smaller amounts Last week, city officials announced a are now handled as a crackdown on unlicensed dispensaries. citation. knows the windfall will pale in For the most part, police focomparison to the tumult he’ll cus has turned to producers of face if California voters approve butane-based marijuana concenrecreational marijuana this fall. trates and dispensaries that flout While medical legalization city ordinances by skirting notdidn’t do much to dissolve the black zoned-for-marijuana distribution. market, full legalization should Nearly 300 such operations deal a massive blow, Gieringer said. in the city have been shut down “Does the new legalization via civil injunction. After years of scare me? Fuck yeah,” Noah said. cat-and-mouse tactics, San Diego “But I know there’s nothing I can police and the city attorney ando other than keep it going as long nounced last week that they have as I can. To be able to sustain this begun filing criminal charges over the last seven years—I’m truagainst “hardcore” dispensaries ly blessed. No one else I know has that operate without a permit. been doing it this long, so I know Noah and his ilk stand to gain it’s coming to an end.” from such a crackdown, but he



May 18, 2016 · San Diego CityBeat · 59

San Diego CityBeat • May 18, 2016  
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