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Wicked Author Gregory Maguire on the Wicked Witch and Hitler

When the wickedly misunderstood Elphaba mounts her broomstick at the Orpheum theater, the audience is rooting for Wicked’s unlikely green heroine, taking flight in a topsy-turvy world order.  In a post 9/11 world, in which French fries were bad and freedom fries were good, a reconsideration of the good guy-bad-guy dynamic proved just the ticket. And tickets for “ Wicked, The Musical” continue to sell and sell.

But how will Wicked fly in the Obama years? I spoke to novelist Gregory Maguire (who wrote the book on which the play is based) about the musical’s success, its prospects in the post Bush-bashing era and the ever-green relevance of political evil.

EM: You wrote Wicked 6 years before 9/11 – how could you have foresaw all that went down?

Don't Buy Art, Buy Drinks: Friday at Alembic and Beretta

With my rapidly advancing age, marital state and experience working at Cantina on many Fridays over the last year, I have largely stopped going out on weekend nights. Bars are just too crowded, too loud. You know . . . too "too." And I don't even have kids.

But I had friend in town from LA this weekend who was interested in the SF cocktail scene, so Friday was a good chance to observe the weekend nightlife at a couple of the city's more happening cocktail outposts.

Regina Spektor's "Fidelity" in "Don't Divorce Us" Prop 8 Video

Karl Rove has said publicly that “gay marriage is the gift that keeps on giving.” The thought being that even couch potato homophobes would put down the Coors and waddle over to the voting booth to vote against gay marriage and while they’re at it, for George Bush.  And many thought why oh why couldn't Gavin have waited a few more months before “shoving America's face” in gay wedding photos.

The Tipsy Kid? The Marina Attempts to Get Parent-Friendly

So a few nights ago, I stopped by Chesnut Street's latest offering: The Tipsy Pig. The new "pub" from the boys of Mamacita, Umami and Blue Barn. (Alert! This is not a Vintage 415 project. It's the baby of restaurateurs Stryker Scales , Nate Valentine and chef Sam Josi of Sustainable Restaurants.) The scene, as you might imagine, was a mob of 20 to 30-somethings very happy with their beer, not paying too much attention to the antique books in the faux "library," and having no issue with yelling at each other over the din. I couldn't hear but I'm pretty sure they were all saying: "Yay! Our new favorite hangout!!"

Our 7 Top Picks for Best Oscar Gowns

In addition to basking in the glow of the two Oscar wins for "Milk" (Best Original Screenplay and Best Actor for Sean Penn) last night, we couldn't take our eyes off of the stunning parade of red carpet fashion. Here, our picks for who looked more dazzling than the rest:

Bay Area Bands: Three Genre-Melding Mysteries

Devil Makes 3

Pop Goes Andy: Warhol Live!

While I have no plans to officially participate in the Facebook 25 Random Things About Me survey, I will share two brief things:

1) The soundtrack to my college years was informed by The Velvet Underground.

2) Quite shamelessly, I adore (but try to avoid) finger-food that consists of highly-processed, non-organic and hyper-packaged foodstuffs such as mini-grilled cheese, pigs-in-a-blanket and Strawberry Pop-Tarts.

Local Designer Update: Sara Shepherd

Since last we featured women’s wear designer Sara Shepherd as part of 7x7’s esteemed Style Council in 2008, the local talent has been busy teaching fashion design and pattern making and sewing part-time at the Academy of Art and producing her gorgeous Spring/Summer 2009 collection. If you’re lucky, you may have already gotten a sneak peek of her latest concoctions at Global Green’s annual Gorgeous and Green benefit, where she previewed some of her impeccably tailored pieces on the SF catwalk.

Bloodhound: Hunting-Lodge Chic

San Francisco is not lacking in the themed bars category. Nevertheless, a new trendy watering hole has taken it upon itself to join the ranks. Five minutes in Bloodhound, which opened its doors in early February (replacing former neighborhood favorite Cassidy's) will make you wonder where exactly you veered off course in SoMa and wound up in your Uncle Billy's hunting room in West Virginia.

Sheep: The Next Lawnmower

Every time I drive up to my parents in Sonoma, I pass a sign, right by Sears Point, that simply says: Woolyweeders.com. I've known about Don Watson's sustainable mowing business for a while (he brings the sheep; they eat your weeds and do their own bit to fertilize) but I've never actually seen a sheep in a vineyard—until Saturday, when I saw a whole flock of them contentedly grazing amongst the vines at Jacuzzi Family Vineyards. They were so cute that I had to pull over and snap a photo, which really annoyed the sheepdog guarding them. (Whether or not these are the sheep of Don Watson—who runs his business both in Colorado and Napa—I don't know.

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