Kevin Simmonds Poet, Composer, and Filmmaker
is an iconoclastic urban nomad with Southern sensibilities
Neighborhood: The Marina
Gig: Founder and CEO of kevinsimmonds.com
What are you up to these days? Working on ORIENT: a new anthropology, a multimedia work that considers Asian-Black relations in California, which will debut at SF's CounterPULSE later this year.
Where would you have your last meal on earth? Because it's as close as I could get to the cuisine of my hometown of New Orleans, Hard Knox Cafe on Clement Street.
Where do you get your local gossip? Old habits die hard. I still read the San Francisco Bay Guardian, which, in its current form, is pitiful, but I remember when it was five times as thick and the go-to paper for arts and important journalism.
Who's your favorite quintessential local character? Can't choose just one. I have a lot of respect for Cecil Williams and Janice Mirikitani at Glide Memorial Church. They're more radical than they seem and, by example, hold us San Franciscans accountable for our professed progressiveness.
Where's your secret spot? Presidio Park. It's just a few minutes by foot from my place and phenomenally gorgeous to walk around in. And you know what, unless there's a fair or festival, it's basically empty all the time. I like that.
What's your favorite under-the-radar SF restaurant? I like simple, humble. The Cove on Castro gets a lot of my money because there are no frills, absolutely no pretense. And it's reasonably priced.
What do you get obsessive about here in SF? Neighborhood theaters like the Four Star Theatre. We still have some – far more than most places in the US – but I cringe when I see, say, Crunch Fitness in the lovely lost shells of neighborhood theaters. I say to anyone reading this, "Get thee to neighborhood theaters and away from the chains!! They are SF treasures!!"