I was very flattered when I was asked to contribute to The Sac Rag a few months back. My “beat” was supposed to be the Midtown music/arts scene, but my only post of significance so far has been about getting fined for riding the light rail when I was 5 cents short.
[Taken care of, BTW. I can walk the streets without fear of arrest. Well, for that, anyway. There's still that whole "shot a man in Reno just to watch him die" thing. But I have a good attorney who says the "Twinkie defense" definitely applies in my case. Really. I ate a Twinkie. When I was 12, but since they have no expiration date, it still applies. Really!]
But as someone who has chosen to make Midtown his home for the better part of the decade, I thought I might chime in regarding Second Saturday: what it has meant to Sacramento, and what it’s become.
I think SecSat (sorry, that’s my shorthand for it; SS is just a bit too gestapo for me) is one of the greatest things about our amazing city, like the zoo, the Crest Theatre, Art Beast, and Agent Ribbons (oops; bye, gals…postcard? Thanks.)
But like so many things in Sacramento, The Powers That Be chose to ignore it, rather than recognize it. They only acknowledged it — even after it was clearly a significant economic engine for mid- and downtown businesses — when a grassroots effort turned into a BONE-A-FY-DAY cultural event.
Yet the city has no trouble closing down blocks at a time, for “paying customers” like Gavin Newsom, which means us proles have to shell out 20 bucks just to cross the street, or walk several blocks out of our way to get to our destination. I’m guessing some who might read this site experienced as much this weekend at the “street fair” (what was fair about it?) in Midtown.
I want to give a shout out to 58 Degrees for actually talking to the folks who put last weekend’s event on, after we told our waiter(s) that we had such a hard time crossing our own neighborhood. (Oh, and the food’s great, too! Remember to tip your waitress.)
It’s so frustrating to see the city refuse to acknowledge how important SecSat and homegrown businesses are to our fair town on a cultural/artistic level, but still refuse to allocate the resources to make it an event that will — yes — bring in revenue. And by that, I mean (in part) allocating cops who won’t spend most of their time rounding up kids who are out past their bedtime, rather than keeping the public safe.
I’m a devoted fan of the Sacramento French Film Festival. Every year, they have Midnight Movies: films that are edgy, daring, or downright dirty. So they show them after dark. Literally midnight on the two Saturdays of the festival. (Oh, plus there’s croissants and orange juice afterwards. Yum!)
Awesome thing, right? Yay Sacramento! Go team!
In my six years of attending the fest, guess how many squad cars I’ve seen patrolling K Street as us film geeks stagger bleary-eyed out of the theatre…the “crown jewel” of Sacramento’s movie palaces for an event that inevitably attracts several members of the city council on opening night.
Yeah, that’d be…sorry, I always have to count on my fingers, gimme a sec…um, okay, exactly…
Wait, lemme check my fingers again. It’s hard for me to count and type at the same time.
Okay, I’m back. Yeah. None. Not even a thumb, in case you think that counts as a finger.
We live in a weird town. Proud to be the Capital of the sixth largest economy in the world, but also somewhere where Mark S. Allen doesn’t just thrive; his quotes wind up on movie ads in newspapers around the country.
I feel a therapy group coming on. Anyone want to meet for coffee and talk about their childhood?!
Second Saturday was, and is, awesome. It’s changed, and in some ways I miss what it used to be. But I think what’s happening is that Sacramento is going through some growing pains. The question is, will the “parents” be sympathetic…or are we grounded, with no supper?