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Babble-On-By-the-Bay

Love Bytes: No more "googling" of perspective dates or mates for Marissa Mayer (head Google gal and a Board of Trustees member for both the SF Ballet and SFMOMA) and Zachary Bogue (lawyer, real estate broker and both a Harvard and Georgetown Law grad). The dashing duo announced their betrothal to 350 friends and family last weekend during a holiday-themed soiree at Marissa's Peninsula residence.

Bruce Campbell's Latest B-Movie Bouillabaisse Arrives in the Bay Area

Bruce Campbell isn’t opposed to making a fourth installment in the Evil Dead series that has helped secure his reputation as a B-movie superstar. In fact, both he and childhood friend Sam Raimi, who used the Evil Dead movies as a launching pad to the mammoth success he now enjoys as the architect of the Spider-Man franchise, have gone on record as saying that another sequel is tentatively in the works.

Just don’t expect Campbell, still boyishly handsome at 50, to leap at the prospect simply because it exists.

What's a Jew to Do? A Schtick and a Nosh, (hold the MSG and the Baby Jesus)

A very merry Upper West Side Jewish Christmas usually meant dinner at the Hunan Balcony and a not too long line at the new Woody Allen movie.

Here in San Francisco, the city pretty near closes down on December 25 as families cocoon around a dead tree and the Jews often find themselves left out in the cold.

For those who eschew all things Christmas in favor of Hebrew delights such as egg rolls and wanton soup, “An Evening of Kung Pao Kosher Comedy’’ answers the age-old question:  "What are Jews supposed to do on  Christmas?"  Jewish Comedy on Christmas in a Chinese Restaurant is a swell solution.

Dreidels, Israeli Folk-Dancing and...Charlton Heston?

Is it something in the air? This morning, we got a heads-up about an exhibit coming to the CJM called "Jews on Vinyl"—which is about pretty much what you'd think it'd be about. Then, about five minutes later, we heard that Rob Tannenbaum (music editor of Blender) and David Fagin are coming to town with their latest revue, Good for the Jews. Coincidence?

Tip the Season

Tipping Point Breakfast Honors Poverty-fighting Organizations


As the world economy continues to wobble (and the holiday spirit is deflating faster than a dying dirigible), Tipping Point Community raised spirits (and awarded major moolah) during its 2nd Awards Breakfast.

Bad Santas

If you caught sight of thousands of red-and-white-clad local folk donning Santa apparel and belting out boisterous (and sometimes naughty) Christmas carols Saturday afternoon, it wasn't because someone slipped a roofie in your drink. Santas from all walks of life--big Santas, small Santas, heavily-bearded Santas, clean-shaven Santas, Santas in shades, Santas with elf companions--joined holiday forces in the spirit of SantaCon 2008.

World Premiere of "The Entrepreneur" (aka "Malcolm & Me")

On December 10, 7x7 and the SF Arts Fund cohosted the world premiere of a documentary called The Entrepreneur, the story of Malcolm Bricklin—the man who brought both the Yugo and the Subaru to America—as seen through his four-year quest (ultimately thwarted) to introduce a stylish, low-cost Chinese car called the Chery to the US market.

Sounds a bit dry, doesn’t it? And maybe it might have been, if a) the subject hadn’t been the very model of a modern American dreamer and b) if the filmmakers hadn’t included Malcolm’s son Jonathan, from, as Bricklin said in his pre-screening remarks, “my third marriage.” (Jonathan then corrected him: “Um, second wife, Malcolm.”)

The Nutcracker Debuts

Hundreds of little girls donning party dresses, tutus and patent leather shoes descended upon the War Memorial Opera House Thursday night to see young Clara make her way through a magical world of mice and soliders, Arabians and Russians, Spaniards and Chinese, in the San Francisco Ballet's opening night of Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker.

Even five years after Artistc Director Helgi Tomasson's makeover of the production, the set and costume design are still breakthaking. The Chronicle's Rachel Howard proclaimed the production "one of the best "Nutcrackers" in the country and, by my estimation, the most visually elegant."

Ray Stevenson Channels His Inner Punisher

Until a week ago, George Raymond Stevenson – that’s Ray to you – was best known to American audiences as Titus Pullo, a full-time soldier and unapologetic hedonist in the employ of Julius Caesar in the HBO series Rome.

How things can change. Now, the hulking, Irish-born actor, as quick with a toothy grin and as he is with a self-deprecating joke, can look forward to a lifetime of Comic-Con appearances and overzealous fan interrogations thanks to his energetic turn as Marine-turned-vigilante Frank Castle in Lexi Anderson’s Punisher: War Zone.

Dame Edna: Cross-Dressed to Kill us with Kindness

Imagine that a sloshed, dotty Miami granny broke into a Vegas Showgirl’s dressing room and emerged very pleased with herself. Such is the singular élan of Dame Edna.

Returning again (like a persistent rash) to San Francisco to bring her special brand of good will to all, the star’s lacerating wit and unbridled offensiveness are heinously hilarious. Big, brash and lily-gilded, the Dame Edna experience is a sight to behold and an assault on the sensitive. And, as should be expected for a woman whose fashion sense insists that more is more, Dame Edna clearly doesn’t comprehend the notion that brevity is the soul of wit.

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