Life throws all sorts of obstacles at us, and somehow, we find a way to overcome them.
In the case of East Bay musician Dax Pierson, who was partially paralyzed in a car accident while on tour, overcoming obstacles meant learning to compose music on an iPad. As you’ll learn in Nastia Voynovskaya’s profile this week, the hip-hop keyboardist could have given up entirely. The fact that he remained committed to his music — and has now released his first album in over a decade — seems to me to be a distinctly Bay Area story of determination.
Other obstacles aren’t physical, but mental. For immigrants and people of color, “go back to where you came from” — echoed in the president’s racist tweets last week — sets up psychological barriers that are hard to overcome. Still, other obstacles are financial, like Oakland’s further cuts to its arts funding, even as the city enjoys a prosperous boom of development.
If you’ve ever suspected there was some secret obstacle to being able to buy concert tickets at face value, well, you were right: concert behemoth Live Nation last week admitted to placing thousands of tickets directly on the scalper’s market to increase profits. And when it comes to literal obstacles, BART’s new “inverse guillotine” turnstiles to thwart fare evaders have everyone talking about the concept of hostile design, and what it says about who is and isn’t welcome in a city.
Of course, there’s one person who taught a lot of us how to overcome obstacles at a young age. The upcoming Mr. Rogers movie stars none other than East Bay-raised Tom Hanks as Fred Rogers, and if you need some encouragement with whatever obstacle you’re facing, watch the trailer here.
Senior Editor, Arts
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By Lina Blanco
Once you see it, you can’t unsee it. San Francisco is known as a hub of hostile architecture and design. Experts say BART’s new pilot “inverted guillotine” gates are a prime example of hostile design at play.
NEWS YOU SHOULD KNOW
Mare Island Shoreline Heritage Preserve acts as an enclave for artists and naturalists alike. But new development and “bureaucratic bullying” threaten the future of arts and conservation on the island.
14 years after a serious accident that left him practically paralyzed in all four limbs, Dax Pierson has released a solo debut under his real name — his first album in 11 years.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
When Terminator 2: Judgment Day was first released in 1991, I went to see it four times: two days in a row the weekend it came out, and two weekends in a row after that.
The reason I kept coming back? Sarah Connor. Beautiful, unhinged, muscle-flexing, pull-up-doing, one-handed-shotgun-loading Sarah Connor.
WHAT WE’RE READING
The Dominance of the White Male Critic via New York Times
How “Hot Girl Summer” Became Everyone’s Favorite Meme Overnight via Buzzfeed News
Warren Kanders Resigns as Whitney Trustee After Protests Over Tear Gas via Gothamist
Oakland Homelessness Surges 47% — Per-Capita Number Now Higher Than SF and Berkeley via San Francisco Chronicle
Inside Hushed Museum Hallways, a Rumble Over Pay Grows Louder via New York Times
Jia Tolentino Explains It All via Elle
‘Go Back to Where You Came From’: Our Readers Recall Racist Taunts From Their Lives via Los Angeles Times
KQED ARTS ON SOCIAL MEDIA
In honor of Fred Rogers’ upcoming biopic starring Tom Hanks, KQED asked audiences which other PBS icons deserve their own movies, and which celebrities should play them?
Let’s just say we had a suggestion of our own.
STAY IN TOUCH
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