Wednesday, April 9, 2008

SF To Be In Next Nike Ad: "Our Protest Is Better Than Your Protest"

Follow all the Olympic torch relay shenanigans at SFGate and local CBS today.

Considering what happened in London and Paris in the last few days, SF knows that is has to step up its game. Hell, protesters in Paris forced the authorities to extinguish the flame, get on a bus, and drive the rest of the route to the finish. FRANCE did that. So SF needs to step up, and all indications are that they are up to the challenge.

Saturday, 4 days out:
Human Rights Torch Relay through SF
protest in downtown SF draws a few hundred people

Monday, 3 days out:
dudes sneak out onto the Golden Gate Bridge with all their gear concealed in baby carriages, climb up the support wires of the Golden Gate Bridge, and hand two massive banners on the bridge itself before finally being forced down and arrested.

Tuesday, 1 day out:
Olympic Flame is flown into SF at 4 a.m.

IOC considers stopping the torch relay

1,000 - 2,000 protest at UN Plaza, City Hall, shut down streets, etc.

Tuesday night:
Candlelight vigil at UN Plaza draws several thousand, Archbishop Desmond Tutu {and Richard Gere!!!} speaks

Today the relay was supposed to start at 1 p.m. PST. It didn't, rumors are swirling. SFPD has confirmed that the route will be shortened from 6 miles to 3 miles, and that runners will hold the torch in pairs. But no routes have been announced, and no one knows where the torch is or where it will be going, as thousands of fans and protesters line the now old route.

In the last 10 minutes differing local news reports have 1) the torch being put on a boat at McCovery Cove and driven via water to the final site at Justin Herman Plaza, bypassing the route altogether 2) the torch has been moved to a warehouse near Pier 48 and that some new but unknown route is going to happen.

So thousands of people are in the streets, tons of helicopters are overhead, all the local news stations are in full OJ coverage mode, we're an hour in and nothing has happened, and no one has any idea what is going on or where the torch is or may or may not go.

A classically wacky SF day, where we will turn this into an enormous clusterfuck and the world can sit back and roll their eyes and laugh at our silly wackiness.

You can keep up with the circus with live craptastic local SF news coverage here.

I'm going down to the Ferry Bldg/Embarcadero in a little bit to soak it all in a bit.

More later...


Anonymous said...

I have to say, as long as Richard Gere got to say what was on his mind, I'd say the entire clusterfuck has been worthwhile. God knows we all want Richard Gere to speak his mind.

Despite being Chinese born and bred, I do absolutely see that the Tibetans have more than a legit gripe about the whole situation. The Communist Party absolutely shit in their beds with how it handled Tibet (to be fair, for a long while, all the CCP did was shit in its bed). What annoys me, however, are people like Richard Gere and the Beastie Boys and Bjork and all those other "celebrities" who know nothing about this situation who nevertheless want to speak as some sort of authority on this matter. Ugh.

beast in 'bama said...

I'm going down to the Ferry Bldg/Embarcadero in a little bit to soak it all in a bit.

As my mother would say, "be careful."

Just who will win the Municipality Protest gold?

beast in 'bama said...

Almost forgot the riddle that came to me while reading your post:

If no one is there to see the Olympic Torch pass through your city, did it really happen?

Anonymous said...

beast in 'bama,
Or a better question, if a bunch of people showed up and nobody saw the Olympic Torch, did it really happen?

Kanu said...

The security forces/police/and members of the media saw it, and everyone watching on TV via the helicopter cameras, so it did happen, just not for the thousands of people who really wanted to see it and went out of their way to do so.

I feel bad for all the people who flew here from Dallas/Alaska/all over the US just to see the torch and got shafted.

I only know this: if you present SF with an opportunity to create a massive clusterfuck of a circus and make themselves look ridiculous to the rest of the world, they will seize that opportunity with vim and vigor and make it even more of a clusterfuck spectacle than you ever imagined they could.

I got $5 on all of today's silly off the cuff changes being down to one doofus and his massive ego: Gavin Newsom.