Days of Lore
Disorder in the court?
Anyone who follows this column (you know who you are, you li’l rascals!) knows that the proposed “disorderly events” ordinance has caused quite the shit storm among concerned citizens and local media over the past couple of months.
The consensus is that the ordinance, which police hope would make it easier to break up “out-of-control” parties, should be re-examined with input from others in the community. Criminal defense attorney Patrick Donnelly even got involved, issuing a statement Sept. 14 calling it “unconstitutional and, therefore, illegal.”
Well, the whole gang—and then some—showed up at Tuesday’s (Sept. 18) City Council meeting. Aside from the usual crowd that has been following things since the ordinance was introduced to the council in July, there were a handful of people in attendance who … umm, let’s just say probably think being a councilmember is a full-time position.
The place was packed … to the point where Mayor Andy Holcombe thought the chamber was pushing its capacity of 200. And because of the turnout, the mayor didn’t hesitate in moving to put the ordinance before the Internal Affairs Committee again for further discussion. It was a good decision, since it would allow for more input from the community, without the limitations of the three-minute rule for public comment at regular council meetings.
But, a few loudmouths in the audience—people who were probably attending their first City Council meeting, and have no clue how the process works—wanted action! And they wanted it sooner than later! So that’s what they got.
Now instead of relaxed discourse from both sides on why the ordinance is or isn’t a good idea, it will go before the City Council—not Internal Affairs—on Oct. 15, in a special Monday meeting from 6 to 8 p.m. (and, if not acted upon that night, likely up for a vote the following night at the regular meeting).
I asked Mayor Holcombe if this means public comments would be limited to three minutes per person. It’s obvious that he wants to allow for proper discussion on the matter—he said there would be some flexibility, and that the council could actually vote to do away with standard rules for the special meeting.
Like I said, the few people who were being disorderly at the council meeting shouldn’t tarnish the work of the group that has been on top of this since July.
Local concert bookers like René Stephens and Brent Blacklisted (among many others) have been diligent and pretty organized. Opponents have even started a Web site called chicocivilrights.org, which includes a copy of the ordinance, as well as a version of the ordinance in Santa Barbara that it was modeled after. There are also news clips and other information provided.
The soap opera continues … where are Bo and Hope when you need them?
1990s in 2007
There’s a lot of new music going on here at Arts HQ—that’s my little pet name for the back office at the CN&R occupied by myself and Calendar Editor Jason Cassidy, which sort of resembles a teenager’s bedroom. It’s fun … come by some time. There’s one band that keeps coming up and grabbing me by the ears, called 1990s. Notice no the and no apostrophe.
The band’s MySpace page explains: “They play rock and roll like a blonde gets out of a car!”—a reference to singer-guitarist Jackie McKeown’s cheeky lyrical turn, “Get out to a bar / get out like a blonde gets out of a car” from “See You at the Lights.”
The Glasgow trio’s debut, Cookies (Rough Trade Records), is nothing tremendously groundbreaking—but they’ve managed to bottle the Stones’ best moments, sprinkle in some Big Star hooks and turn it into some fun and catchy rawk and drool.
McKeown was a member of Glasgow pop band Yummy Fur, alongside Franz Ferdinand singer-guitarist Alex Kapranos. Now, in the year 2007, it’s 1990s—three cuddly Scots who would love to be your friend. Check out their MySpace page at www.myspace.com/1990sband, and download “You’re Supposed to Be My Friend” right this minute. And if you can wait that long, 1990s will be playing at San Francisco’s Great American Music Hall Oct. 31.