Front matter, pvi-viii, 1-4

San Francisco Annual Event Guide for Tourists - African American - American Indian - Arab - Asian American - Blues - Buddhist - Cable Cars, Diesel Buses, Streetcars & Trolleys (MUNI) - Catholic - Chinese - Dance - Film Festivals - German - Hispanic / Latino - Irish - Japanese - Jewish - LGBT - Muslim - Orchid - Pacific Islander - Sailing - Sea Lions - Society - Sports - Front matter - (cont) - Muni story index - samples - Event Index - (cont)

A Noah's Ark of Recurring Celebration: San Francisco Annual Event History

Front matter, pvi-viii, 1-4.

(pvi) Kubla Khan -- a Vision in a Dream
by Samuel Taylor Coleridge

In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately pleasure-dome decree:
Where Alph, the sacred river, ran
Through caverns measureless to man
Down to a sunless sea.

So twice five miles of fertile ground
With walls and towers were girdled round:
And there were gardens bright with sinuous rills,
Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree;
And here were forests ancient as the hills,
Enfolding sunny spots of greenery.

But oh! that deep romantic chasm which slanted
Down the green hill athwart a cedarn cover!
A savage place! as holy and enchanted
As e'er beneath a waning moon was haunted
By woman wailing for her demon-lover!
And from this chasm, with ceaseless turmoil seething,
As if this earth in fast thick pants were breathing,
A mighty fountain momently was forced:
Amid whose swift half-intermitted burst
Huge fragments vaulted like rebounding hail,
Or chaffy grain beneath the thresher's flail:
And 'mid these dancing rocks at once and ever
It flung up momently the sacred river.
Five miles meandering with a mazy motion
Through wood and dale the sacred river ran,
Then reached the caverns measureless to man,
And sank in tumult to a lifeless ocean:
And 'mid this tumult Kubla heard from far
Ancestral voices prophesying war!

The shadow of the dome of pleasure
Floated midway on the waves;
Where was heard the mingled measure
From the fountain and the caves.
It was a miracle of rare device,
A sunny pleasure-dome with caves of ice!

A damsel with a dulcimer
In a vision once I saw:
It was an Abyssinian maid,
And on her dulcimer she played,
Singing of Mount Abora.
Could I revive within me
Her symphony and song,
To such a deep delight 'twould win me
That with music loud and long
I would build that dome in air,
That sunny dome! those caves of ice!
And all who heard should see them there,
And all should cry, Beware! Beware!
His flashing eyes, his floating hair!
Weave a circle round him thrice,
And close your eyes with holy dread,
For he on honey-dew hath fed
And drunk the milk of Paradise.

Tripping -- the light fantastic, City of San Francisco Chief of Protocol (& Chief of Protocol for State of California) Charlotte Maillard Shultz (wife of former U.S. Secretary of State & former Bechtel president George Shultz) as Wonder Woman flying from a wire above the stage of Steve Silver’s Beach Blanket Babylon welcomes Prince Charles & Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, to Club Fugazi & to The City That Knows How, (see pages 152-155).

(pvii) San Francisco comedian Marga Gomez, lightning & thunder of our LGBT community on stage at Theatre Rhinocerous, welcomes the rest of us.  (pviii) Marga Gomez in ‘12 Days of Cochina’ at Theatre Rhinoceros, Nov-Dec 2006 (photo: David Wilson)

(p1) San Francisco, birthplace of United Nations & 49’ers is about being real. You may find yourselves between the lines in this book in a photograph, or in history or current events of Italians, Irish, Japanese, Chinese, South Pacific Islanders, Mexicans & Latinos, African Americans, Jews,  Germans, Vietnamese, LGBT, & others of us. Or you may find one of the Muni stories is about you, or find yourself -- or have found yourself -- at or in one of our annual events. As long as you find yourself ... because many of us never do. 
   Why is this book subtitled, ‘Winners of the Human Race’. Because at least 70 of the 140 events in this book are put on by non-profit groups to support non-profit causes to help others; & most of the other 70 events help support non-profit causes. We are a city that cares about people. That’s what we’re about. 
   We’re great people in San Francisco, we’re live & let live, make love not war, drop food not bombs. People who love one another, love our City, love our country, & love our roots the people & countries of the world & want world peace, now.
   Take people from every country, put them in one place, & you’re walking thru San Francisco. Historically, we are a city of world immigrants who came here to work in -- then eventually for -- hope & freedom & justice & peace. We are a Noah’s Ark of humanity, preserving the middle class & serving the underserved in a world climate of despair. So when we throw a festival to let off steam, it’s a celebration of our survival, an act of grace. We are a covenant for world peace, of the working man & woman, & a high society that extends a helping hand to friends & neighbors, newcomers & visitors, that supports the arts, & solves family problems by making that covenant good, not by making war. You don’t solve family problems by killing one another, you solve problems with Judeo-Christian-Muslim love for one another, exercising Buddhist compassion, Hindu respect for life. Nurturing of a mother for her children has nothing to do with color of skin or your name for God, your checkbook or trust fund balance. It has to do with survival ... creating jobs, not just having, but using good will to allow everyone to participate as wage earners in dignity, sweat & self-determination as Franklin Roosevelt & his constituencies did. As Abraham Lincoln did. As John Kennedy did. As Martin Luther King, Jr. did. San Francisco & it’s blue collar, working class, everyday people down-to-earth legacy is about surviving, letting go & being yourself, because when you do, you find out we’re about the same thing ...helping others find joy in life.
  The casa de corazon of many annual events in San Francisco is non-commercial, it is our compassionate, insistent, feeling voice of reason, our voice, dedicated to keeping hope alive & ridding us of new world order international banksta, turf war gangstas high on selfishness pushing drugs & war & disease then conscripting & imprisoning us & financially denying our human family medical care & relief.
  This book, an homage to Muni drivers, people who ride Muni, & to people who put these events on & those who go to them ... captures the spirit of collective good will of thousands of caring people who make these events possible, & the good will of hundreds of thousands who attend them ... our common humanity making each event the promised land, & that process is so San Francisco. And so are we.
  With this book, I’ve felt responsibility to you & good folks such as you, to present all our events together ... because so many events are so heartfelt & full of history & without them, San Francisco would not be San Francisco, the most free, welcoming & socially-concerned city in the United States. Take it home. Yell it from rooftops, because it’s true.

(l) The annual Gay Pride Parade is always sure to draw the largest crowds along Market Street, as the City celebrates the signature event for our LGBT Community. (m-r) Back to School Backpack Giveaway in Visitacion Valley. (May) Carnaval~Carnaval photo: by Willy,; Editor’s note: Carnavel (the name of the event) is not really about car navels, as you can see; ‘carnival’ is correct spelling.

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[Editor’s note: As you go through this book, if you’re a bookstore & want trade discount ordering info ...or you’d like a list of stores in the city selling this book, please turn to page 492.] 

(p2) poetry by Gia Hansbury, from New American Underground Poetry, vol 1: The Babarians of San Francisco, Poets from Hell

by Gia Handsbury

the other night I dreamed
I was in San Francisco again
heading down Valencia
sidewalk sun shining down
when I heard music
I heard Sarah Vaughan
calling from around a corner
a giant jukebox
a Seeburg Consolette like
an old-fashioned radio
gleaming cherry wood red
dials glowing gold

a tall blonde walked up to me
and I stuffed the machine
with nickels
so we could dance
right there on the sidewalk
under the sign for Oso Negro
we danced
the way you dance
to Sarah
the rest of the street silent
except for me and the blonde
and I knew she had been a dancer
in the city
with her yellow hair twisting
up around her head
her long calves sharp
in a pair of red heels
and I knew her name must’ve been
something like Dolly
or Dolores or May
because she knew how
to dance to Sarah
and she knew how to kiss
and that dream ended long before
the music did
Sarah went right on singing
the last thing I knew
I had handfuls and handfuls
of thick yellow hair
and the taste of lipstick
on my teeth like magic

Bridging Communities ~ Hands Across The Bay. Today, 1-in-4 Bay Area families can’t make ends meet. Bridging Communities spotlights our poverty. April 22 2007, 3,000 participants walk across Golden Gate Bridge from both sides & meet in the middle, to symbolize bridging communities across geographic, ethnic & socio-economic barriers. Event took place on the west sidewalk of the bridge. Proceeds benefit the United Way’s Bay Area Community Fund, which serves Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo & Solano: 10,000 preschool children improved their reading readiness; 95,000 people enrolled in health insurance over the last three years; 100,000 nights of shelter & 1.5 million meals reached families in crisis. A community festival open to the public takes place from 10:30am-3pm at Crissy Field; features live music, food, give-aways, family activities & interactive booths sponsored by nonprofit organizations from the Bay Area. Bridging Communities offers companies many ways to get involved from event sponsorship to employee volunteer steams. Tickets: $35. Participants sign waivers required by Golden Gate Bridge. Sponsors: United Way of the Bay Area & ABC-7; presenting sponsor: Chevron.

(p3) A Noah's Ark of Recurring Celebration: San Francisco Annual Event Guide Storytellin’ Muni Drivers 20th Anniversary Edition ~ Includes on-the-job true stories by Muni Drivers on Cable Cars, Diesel Buses, Streetcars & Trolleys. SAN FRANCISCO HISTORY & YEARBOOK COMMEMORATIVE ~ Preface by Studs Terkel <> Alan Allen, Editor, Vol 1-6 (Muni stories from 1987-to-2006) photo: Carl Payne, World All-Time Cable Car Bell Ringing Champ

(p4) Dedicated to Elwood Nestler ~dear friend & cable car-, streetcar-, trolley- & diesel bus driver. A good man to have at your back, an honest man with a great sense of humor, a driver with consideration of his passengers always in mind. Elwood told funny & dramatic stories. They comprised much of Storytellin’ Muni Drivers, Vol. 1 1987-1988, twenty years ago (see pages 18-43); also see ‘My Ding-A-Ling’, ‘Lucky Penny’ & ‘Piroshkis’. Elwood’s true, on-the-job stories ~ as all the stories here, are a tribute to Muni drivers & the people of San Francisco.

20th Anniversary of the San Francisco Storytellin’ Muni Drivers Contest
“There are many unsung heroes. Through rain & fog, cold & wind, they’re always on the go. They see that we get to our destinations safe & sound. Besides firemen & policemen, the following are a few of the stories of the men & women who drive the cable cars, streetcars, trolleys & diesel buses ...& take us to the events described in this book.” ~ Editor’s mother

San Francisco Annual Event Guide ~ In addition to Storytellin’ Muni Drivers, we’re provided an illustrated guide to about 140 annual events in San Francisco you can get to on Muni, from a list compiled & provided (to us & about a million other journalists) -- by San Francisco Convention & Visitors Bureau We found it overwhelming to learn about each event, because the people organizing them put their heart & soul into sharing their memories, dreams -- & hopes for a peaceful world to enjoy these events in -- with you.

Editor’s note: Preface by Studs Terkel previously appeared in Alan Allen’s book, Old Rails’ Tales, true on-the-job stories by Engineers, Fireman, Brakemen & Conductors on Southern Pacifc, Western Pacific, Santa Fe & Amtrak.

Val Lupiz's stories in literary form are on several websites, but I asked Val to tell me stories in interview, oral history style, including rice-a-roni, California Here I Come, Miniature Schnauzers, Got to Go, Maybelle, Cadillac, & VIP. Also see Market Street Railway's: And Joe Thompson ’s:

Editor’s note: As you go through this book, if you’d like to become a member of AI Forum ...or make a (tax deductible) donation to our nonprofit so we can print the book on shiny paper so the photos (& events & people) look better ...or if you’d like to help support our San Francisco World Peace Day push ...or if you’d like to order a book ...or if you’re a bookstore & want trade discount ordering info ...or you’d like a list of stores in the city selling this book, please turn to page 492.]

Publication of this book is made possible by a generous gift to AI Forum from the Buena Vista Cafe.

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