Guardian Intelligence: August 13 – 19, 2014

CALLING ALL BEATLEMANIACS

As Beatles lovers and Candlestick fans gear up for Sir Paul McCartney’s show there Thu/14 — a performance that will serve as a farewell to the stadium, and a callback to the Beatles’ last-ever concert, which took place at the park Aug. 29, 1966 — a group of filmmakers led by Ron Howard is asking for help with a new documentary that charts the rise, world domination, and eventual combustion of the Fab Four. The film, which reportedly has secured McCartney, Yoko Ono, Ringo Starr, and Olivia Harrison as producers, is looking for stories from fans who attended that last Beatles show — bonus points if you’re there on Thursday as well. Drop ’em a line at BeatlesLive@whitehorsepics.com.

SQUISHY SUPERSTARS

Certain animals have spiked in popularity thanks to the magic that happens when their cuteness combines with the power of the internet, including sloths, cats that play musical instruments, and pugs. The Pugs for Mutts Summer Carnival (Sun/17 at the perfectly named Dogpatch WineWorks) offers a chance to see Minnie and Max — “YouTube famous head-tilt pugs” — in panting, grunting real life, plus a costume contest, a “Wiggliest Pug” contest, a pug kissing booth, and more. Pugs (and friendly dogs of other breeds) are welcome to join the festivities at this benefit for a very worthy cause: Muttville Senior Dog Rescue. PugsForMuttville.Eventbrite.com

LIT A-QUAKIN’

The lineup for this year’s LitQuake Festival (October 10-18) has been announced, and it’s a real potboiler. Headliners of the 15th annual free literary extravaganza include Chinelo Okparanta, Emma Donoghue, Nicholson Baker, Paolo Giordano, Marc Maron — and dozens of other local and international scribes. Of course, there’s also the raucous Litcrawl, 10/18, which turns everything from Laundromats to your favorite bars and bookstores into 99 buzzing reading spaces — the Guardian will be presenting its annual Celebrity Twitterature event (during which the city’s best known drag queens, led by D’Arcy Drollinger, hilariously break down infamous social media blunders), 7:15-8:15 at the Mission’s Beauty Bar. www.litquake.com

FAREWELL, ROBIN WILLIAMS

It seems like everyone in San Francisco had a Robin Williams sighting at some point. He was an Oscar-winning A-lister who excelled in both dramatic and (especially) comedic roles, but he was also a regular dude who happened to live in and love the Bay Area. He’d be spotted riding his bike, shopping in local stores, attending Giants games, and popping up at comedy shows — his unannounced appearances were legendary, and never failed to delight audiences who were lucky enough to catch him in the act. As we all mourn his passing, we can take comfort in the fact that the performances he left behind will never diminish. Our personal favorites follow:

Steven T. Jones: Good Morning, Vietnam (1987) — a nice early combo of his manic comedy and dramatic acting abilities. And his first comedy album, Reality … What a Concept (1979)

Rebecca Bowe: Mrs. Doubtfire: It’s so much easier to laugh about divorce when there’s a fake boob costume involved.

Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez: Hook (1991). “Bangarang!”

Cheryl Eddy: Mrs. Doubtfire (“It was a run-by fruiting!”); Aladdin (1992); Dead Poets Society (1989)

Brooke Ginnard: Dead Poets Society: A couple of months ago, my friend woke up to find me enraptured by it, and sobbing into her cat’s fur. Also Jumanji (1995), even though I’m still terrified of spiders.

Emma Silvers: Dead Poets Society (1989), The Birdcage (1996), Aladdin (1992). I knew every single word to his songs in Aladdin, including lots of jokes that went way over my head until five or six years later.

Marke B: Mrs. Doubtfire (1993), but recut via the magic of YouTube into a stunning horror movie trailer

PRINCIPAL PUMPS UP THE VOLUME

Ever been sent to the principal’s office? What if you got there and the principal started playing hip-hop? It’s happening. Academy of Arts and Sciences Assistant Principal Joe Truss joined with two friends to form a rap group, Some of All Parts. When kids who get kicked out of class are sent his way, he said, “We’ll talk for 15 or 20 minutes about rap, and then I’ll be like, ‘So. Why did you get kicked out of class? How can we get you back in?'” Truss’ creative approach to reaching kids — even producing a music video for the track “Rappers Ain’t Sayin Nothin'” — follows recent outcry over the number of students facing suspensions at SF Unified School District. “There’s too many African American students failing and getting pushed out of schools,” he said. Now that more educators are seeking to address it, “We’re much more understanding of where kids come from and where they want to go.”

MEMORIAL VANDALIZED

Alejandro Nieto was killed after a hotly debated, horrifying confrontation with the SFPD nearly five months ago. Since his death, his family and loved ones often gather at a memorial on Bernal Hill to remember him. Now, however, Nieto’s memorial has been repeatedly vandalized, and one suspect (who was seen kicking down part of the memorial) was caught on video by a bystander. For more, see the Politics blog at SFBG.com.

TECH BLOWS UP BRIDGE

It isn’t enough for the tech folks to blow up our nightlife and real estate, now they’re blowing up our damn landmarks — again! Gun-happy gamers are frothily anticipating the newest shoot-em-up, Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. But the latest iteration of the game franchise that-wouldn’t-go-away (there are almost as many COD games as there are Bond films) is exploring new territory by blowing up the Golden Gate Bridge in its newest trailer. Thanks, Foster City-based developers Sledgehammer Games, we really more symbolism for tech’s destruction of the city like a (digital) hole in the head.