JulesOlder.com » Blog

The B-Side

Two sister museums, the de Young and the Legion of Honor, are hosting western-themed exhibits. The star attraction, Ed Ruscha and the Great American West, is at the de Young in Golden Gate Park. The B-side, Wild West: Plains to the Pacific, is at the more remote Legion.

But like “I Will Survive” and “Maggie May,” sometimes B-sides are the real hits.

That’s the case in San Francisco. Ruscha has an original eye, but much of his work is neither beautiful nor moving. Many of his subjects, like “ThirtyFour parking lots in Los Angeles”, are intentionally, yawningly banal.

Wild West, by contrast, features brilliant woodcuts by Chiura Obata, stunning photos by Edweard Muybridge, searing screenprints by Ester Hernandez, iconic posters by Michael Schwab, and much, much more.

Triumph of the B-side.

Wild West closes September 11; Ruscha, October 9.

share to:facebook

The latest Zillow report shows median rent in San Francisco has hit $4,528, now the hottest and highest in the country.

That makes our apartment, which we got using the methods in TAKE ME HOME, a mighty bargain only one year later. Looking for an apartment or house in a hot market? This $10 could be your best investment.


share to:facebook

So. I predicted Donald Trump would not pick a nationally known political figure, and he did.

Then I predicted Hillary … see below.

I thought she’d choose one of the Castro brothers or Cory Booker, thus sealing the Latino and/or Black vote.

Instead, she picked a white guy, a moderate Democrat who’s well known and highly respected in Virginia and beyond.

Still, I had my doubts about the wisdom of this safe choice, all of which evaporated when I heard his first campaign speech today.

This is exactly how it sounded to me.

So. Two predictions down, two predictions wrong.

Stay tuned.

— jules

Jules Predicts

I predict that Hillary Clinton’s choice for vice president will be male and ethnic, either Black or Hispanic. Probably Hispanic. Maybe sharing a name with a revolutionary or a former slave.


PS I’ve enjoyed and appreciated your many replies, and there’s one I just have to share. It’s from Erin Caslavka in northern California. In response to this, “I predict that Donald Trump will not pick any of [his rivals] as his running mate. I further predict that his choice will not be a nationally known political figure,” she wrote this:

Wait, wait … don’t tell me: it’ll be Cher! Because she’ll bring in the female, LGBT, 60+ and Native American vote AND can perform at the swearing-in ceremony. Plus, she’ll be instrumental in pushing Congress to enact healthcare reform that covers plastic surgery.


share to:facebook



[I wrote this in 2012. Now, examiner.com has suddenly and without any real advance notice to its “content providers,” closed up shop.]

How is it, dear friends, that so many of us don’t just say no?

We gnash and moan at the parlous, perilous, ever-worsening state of writing for pay… and then we write for free.

I’m not talking about writing for struggling startups. Nor for good causes. I’m talking Huffington Post. I’m talking examiner.com

And I know why you’re doing it. When I ask, you give me answers I understand. “I do it for the free trips. For the free theatre tickets. For the free lunch.”

I understand.What I hope you’ll understand: There is no free lunch.

Especially for writers. When you write for lunch or tickets or trips, you’re holding out a sign that says, WILL WORK FOR FOOD.

And once you do that, there is no reason on this good, green Earth that anybody should hire you for money. Ever.

When you write for Huffington Post, you’re working for AOL — they own Huffington Post. How’s AOL doing when they’re not paying you?  They’ve just “reported more than a fourfold jump in first-quarter profit as online advertising revenue increased. Net income rose to $21.2 million from $4.7 million a year earlier.”

When you write for peanuts — no, for peanut shells — for examiner.com, you’re putting cash in the pocket of a billionaire who uses what he doesn’t pay you to support right-wing causes that will make you even worse-off than you are now.

Why are AOL and examiner.com doing so well? In part, because you’re supporting them. You are a 21st century ragged-trousered philanthropist. That phrase was coined in 1910 by Irish-English author Robert Tressell to describe workers “who throw themselves into back-breaking work for poverty wages in order to generate profit for their masters.”

I urge you: Don’t be that sap.

Don’t steal from yourself. Don’t take food from your family. Don’t be a ragged-trousered philanthropist.

Stop giving away your talent, your skills, your work to the obscenely rich who grow ever richer on your back. Your voluntarily offered back.

Take back your back.

Demand pay for your services. Your plumber does. Your kid’s teacher does. Your receptionist/librarian/nurse/croupier/mailman/mechanic/publisher does. So should you. Starting here and now — Just say no. Let your sign read,


— jules

share to:facebook