City of Art and Innovation
In 1966, NASA was faced with an interesting problem. They needed a pen that would write in zero gravity. They spent millions of dollars developing a pen that would do just that. A scientific, precision instrument that didn’t need gravity to imprint a glyph on paper.
The Russian space program used a pencil.
When I started talking to people about running for Mayor, I got a lot of hard questions about my experience. I was told that I would not be taken seriously. That I would be viewed as less than qualified. That only a highly sophisticated and expensive tool could possibly get the job done. Untrue. Sometimes you only need a simple tool. People of San Francisco, I am that simple tool.
Relevant experience? I’ve successfully run a touring circus staffed entirely by rebellious youth, which requires exactly the same skill set I’ll need as Mayor when dealing with the Board of Supervisors. Same same. It’s true, I haven’t spent the last 10 years in City Hall. Instead, I’ve bought and maintained a 100-year-old live-work space in San Francisco. I’ve operated (and continue to operate) a small business in this city, going through the crushing trials of navigating city bureaucracies and the permit process in order to make interesting things happen in (what could easily be) the most interesting city in the world. Last summer, I spent a few months building a 110’ raft made of junk propelled by 2 VW engines that sent 35 happy artists down the Mississippi river.
I put on shows of all sizes in all places. I support and advocate art and the championing of the amateur artist, with my mantra of “Art for all purposes.” I helped facilitate the opening of a dozen art spaces. I converted my 1975 GMC pick up truck to run on wood gas (page 66) in a weekend. Made of junk, runs on garbage. Soon to run on coffee grinds: the Café Racer. Alternative energy is easier then it sounds.
Me and my dog have invested all our time, attention & money for a decade to make this city the interesting, whimsical, adventure-filled place I want it to be, and that I know so many people came here to participate in.
Watching it turn into a NIMBY suburb isn’t on the menu. It’s unacceptable. You may agree with me. As Mayor I will protect and promote the superior city that San Francisco can be.
People tell me this is impossible. You can never be mayor without support from the big developers or the city’s richest denizens. But throughout my life I’ve been doing impossible things, and most of them have been fabulously successful. And great fun! From running an amateur punk rock circus to getting Burning Man off the ground as a viable business to running a successful performance venue in San Francisco dedicated to all the arts that no other venue would touch. I am the man who beat City Tow out of 50 million dollars. I got a million stories. I’ll tell ‘em to ya later.
Stay with me, here….
The impossible is what I do, is what I’ve always done. But I can’t vote myself into the Mayor’s office. For that I need you. To the point: 10,000 signatures on old-school sheets of paper that all have to be done exactly right, each with ten totally legitimate names and addresses of bona fide registered voters in San Francisco, the city of Art and Innovation. If one name is wrong, the whole sheet gets thrown out. It’s complicated stuff, this politics. They don’t make it easy to do what I’m doing here. But that’s OK, getting a truck to run on garbage wasn’t easy either. Fighting for 10 years to generate more Units of Interesting in San Francisco wasn’t easy. None of it’s easy. But it all gets done. Of course it does. I’m not fuckin’ around. I’m a 100% guy. If I say I’m gonna do something, that’s exactly what happens. We only have our word. Without it, I am as bad as a politician.
I am not a politician.
But I am man with some idea about how this great city should operate. My platform is heavy on power generation and waste. And of course Innovation & Art. But these are things to roll out later. When I’m a candidate. Right now I need to pull together 10,000 signatures. And I defiantly need help. We have only collected like 2,000. It’s harder than it sounds. I am committing to run: to duel to the death!!! I’d like it if 80 of you could commit to getting 100 signatures by the 25th. Here’s what you do: print 20 copies of these forms ON 10 SHEETS OF PAPER: DOCUMENT 1 ON THE FRONT, DOCUMENT 2 ON THE BACK. Print them out, have registered voters sign them. They can only sign for one candidate per election. Drop me a line and I’ll come to your house and collect them and clean your toilet. We only have 2 weeks. 14 days. Here are the docs:
Here is a link to my mailing list
Here is a link to today’s New York Times article. I talked to this reporter for an hour and forty-five minutes. Told her all my great ideas. A dozen hilarious jokes. This is what the American people got.
Go read it, and see what I’m up against here….
Thanks for your support. There is no reason why we can’t win.
Chicken John July 11, 2007
“Success is measured by the enthusiasm with which you move from one failure to the next.” Winston Churchill
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