Last Night: Nodzzz at EpiscoDisco, Grace Cathedral

Categories: Last Night
Chrissy Loader
Saturday, Feb. 20, 2010
Grace Cathedral

Better than: Going to church for church stuff.

San Franciscans complain about the "war on fun," but sometimes it isn't The Man, or the ABC, or even a rogue police officer that gets cool shit shut down. Sometimes all it takes is one really dumb-ass teenager, high on a combo of substances and stupidity, to threaten the short life of a really great party. Last night proved that fact--as the existence of the very classy, celestial, and surreal monthly EpiscoDisco was laid on the line when some stoned-acting chick in a white knit hat apparently had to leave her mark under the holy water. That's not gonna get her closer to God.  

Up until that point, patrons of this unique gathering--hosted, since last April, by Rev. Bertie Pearson, and mixing DJs with art installations, heathens with religious types--were piously behaved. We arrived around 8 p.m., and an eclectic mix of women dressed for the adult prom, women dressed for an avant guard catwalk, dudes dressed as normal dudes, and one guy in a giant fake mustache chatted informally throughout the historic cathedral. Once you walked through the heavy doors, there was a reverent hush to the place, which, even though this was a cathedral, you wouldn't necessarily expect for event with "disco" in the name. 

Chrissy Loader
​Sure, things were a little racier than normal--one couple decided to go for a marathon makeout  under a large crucifix near a gold painting of John Donne. And under a giant statue of the Lord, bartenders served little plastic glasses of pinot gris along with sparking water for a small donation. But the vibe was very civilized as DJs broadcast the echoing beats from Stevie Wonder's "Love Light in Flight" and "Feels Good" by Tony! Toni! Tone! 

​It seemed most folks were leaving the dancing for a later hour. They were content instead to casually walk the grand space and discover the various rooms and sculptures, light a candle for a prayer, or test the prayer cushions by the pews. It was a polite gathering--so much so that one twentysomething gentleman, donning a large caramel-checkered fur in the stairwell, waited until the steps were clear before popping the cork on his bottle of champagne. From the 1,000-flower art installation hanging from the ceiling to the pastel-hued film shorts, the vibe was set on arty class. Until that kid grabbed her marker and aimed for the holy water holder.

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