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Photos: Bloody Beetroots @ Mezzanine

Look out for free music and show tickets follow

Required Reading: Douglas McGray

After reporting on the publishing experiments turning up around San Francisco, we asked the city’s writers what they’re reading these days, and they were happy to share. Look for Required Reading every week. 

Douglas McGray has a voracious appetite for all things media--and the unexpected. McGray brings stories to life (on stage) as editor in chief of Pop-Up Magazine. The New America Foundation fellow also contributes to The New Yorker, This American Life, and, of course, the Twitterverse

Photos: Gary Numan @ The Fillmore

Look out for free music and show tickets follow

Project Night Night: Delivering Packages Filled with Blankets, Stuffed Animals and Books to Shelters

A few weeks ago you voted Project Night Night, an organization that assembles and delivers packages filled with new blankets, stuffed animals and books to homeless and domestic violence shelters as one of your seven favorite charities in the city.  Congrats to Project Night Night! They'll be receiving a $700 gift from us for the holidays for their great work in the city.

West Side Story at the Orpheum

If you’ve never seen rival gangs bust out the jazz hands at a dance-off to prove their turf dominion, you really need to check out West Side Story. (This kind of thing definitely doesn’t go down on The Wire.) A revival of the hoodlum-rumbling, game-changing 1957 musical about a lower-class Romeo and a Puerto Rican Juliet in New York City comes to San Francisco with all the verve - if not quite the shock - of the original.

Home Movies: Adam Sandler's Regressive Foray into Adulthood, Michael Cera's Bruising Video-Game Romance

Based on an original story by Adam Sandler and former Saturday Night Live writer Fred Wolf, Grown Ups contains not a single imaginative minute. It is as lazily conceived as anything Sandler has done.
But it must have been a blast to make. Judging by the fact that Sandler and his fellow SNL alum, with King of Queens star Kevin James gamely filling in for the late Chris Farley, spend so much time laughing at their own jokes, we might reasonably suspect something funny is afoot. Just try and find it.

November's Classical Roundup: Rufus Wainwright, San Francisco Symphony, and Exotic Instruments

San Francisco Symphony: Carmina Burana and Haydn

If you’ve ever caught yourself singing “OH, FORTUNA!” when finding yet another parking ticket on your windshield (culturally superior to calling the Dept. of Parking & Traffic egg-swilling pigs), now’s your chance to hear the professionals do it. One of Western music’s most iconic works, Carmina Burana is powerful and impassioned and well-worth hearing in the symphony hall. Alfred Schnittke’s whimsical salute to the Classical period and Haydn’s beloved Symphony No. 97 are also on the program.

This Week's Hottest Events: Dia de Los Muertos, Dr. Dog, and Rock 'n' Roll Fantasy Camp

Parade: Dia de Los Muertos
Like New Year's Eve, Halloween can sometimes be a little anticlimactic. Lucky for us, the Mission still goes wild every year with their Day of the Dead parade. Check out the sacred altars in and around Garfield Park and don't miss the procession ritual, which begins promptly at 7 p.m. on the corner of 22nd and Bryant streets. Be sober, be respectful, and be creative—it's your last chance for a spooky costume this year. Free; Tuesday 11/2; 22nd and Bryant streets,

Try Your Hand at a Word Puzzle Will Shortz Made for 7x7

Bill Clinton is stuck on him. Jon Stewart can’t get enough. Even former Yankees pitcher Mike Mussina goes gaga over his work. So just who is Will Shortz? Take a look at almost any puzzle book, and chances are you’ll find The New York Times’ longstanding crossword editor’s name on the spine. In addition to his day job, he’s authored or edited more than 400 puzzle books, is founder and director of the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament, and is a regular on-air contributor to NPR’s Weekend Edition Sunday. Despite the fact that he can finish The New York Times’ Friday and Saturday puzzles in 15 minutes, Shortz is refreshingly unpretentious.

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