After three years of drought, a heavy storm hit the San Francisco Bay Area the other day. There was street flooding, downed trees, and traffic accidents. There was a lot of hype, and it even got hashtags including #HellaStorm. I got some video of San Francisco Chinatown, North Beach and the Financial District. Thousands were without power, and businesses closed. It’s not the most visually exciting video, but what else was I going to do on a boring rainy day than edit video.

By Eric Louie

Last night I saw people dropping bottles off roofs to stop others trying to break the building’s windows. The cab driver who got me home said in his country there’s riots every five years, when someone overthrows the government.

Born and raised in San Francisco, it has been amazing to see the Giants win their third World Series championship since 2010. They had never won one since moving from New York in 1958.

Along with that has come the sports tradition of trashing cities. I had stayed in for the deciding Game 7, watching it at my grandma’s house, which I believe gave the team the support they needed to win. Afterwards, when the celebrations led to smashed windows, fireworks and fires, Ruptly TV wanted video.

With the bus system stopped (in 2012 busses were smashed during the celebration), my dad drove me to the Mission. There had also been a couple shootings and a stabbing. Police in riot gear were moving the crowd along. Bottles were being thrown at the cops from the back of the crowd, with a lot of them landing closer to the partiers. There was graffiti including some directed towards the rich techies that have been gentrifying the neighborhood, and some shouting against police in general, but many more were just cheering for the team. Eventually the crowd dispersed, and I took a cab since the busses were just starting to get back running.

Here’s some video I took.

Flogging is demonstrated at the Folsom Street Fair on Sunday, Sept. 21, 2014. By Eric Louie

Flogging is demonstrated at the Folsom Street Fair on Sunday, Sept. 21, 2014. By Eric Louie

Each year, college started with started multiple San Francisco State University photojournalism students taking this assignment. Yesterday, nearly twice a lifetime later, I got to shoot it.

This is one of those uniquely San Francisco experiences that words can’t describe. So check out this video I did.

 

By Eric Louie

Yesterday I worked for Ruptly news getting video of Betty Chu, a Morgan Hill, California resident and retired economics professor from San Jose State University who is also a prize-winning rabbit breeder.

Known for her French and English angoras, she breeds them for their long hair. She both enters them in competitions and makes scarves, gloves and other items from their wool. She said there is no money to be made, as it will typically cost $6 to enter a rabbit competition only to win a few dollars in return, but she enjoys the friendship and camaraderie of others. She was born in Shanghai and also lived in Hong Kong and Taipei where there was little space to raise animals before coming to the United States and having the space to raise them.

Chu started with French Lops, and moved to her current breeds the following year. The American Rabbit Breeders Association has about 23,000 members. The video I got was on Sunday, July 13, 2014 when she competed in a California Rabbit and Cavy Shows Inc. competition at the Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds in nearby Watsonville.

 

Happy Chinese Lunar New Year!

I’m happy to also say I recently finished a video production certificate from the Bay Area Video Coalition, learning the basics of operating cameras, sound, lighting, editing and producing a final product. It was paid for through the California Training Benefits/Workforce Investment Act to help displaced workers from when I got laid off as a newspaper reporter at the Contra Costa Times.

In thinking about the end to the year of the snake, which happens to be my sign, I realized the value of laying low. It was a tough year for many around me, and there were higher expectations in the post-2012 apocalypse. But like the snake, you can overcome limitations by being set up for big things to happen, and striking when the opportunity arises. Besides the video program and working in journalism in ways I never imagined, including shooting for an internationally broadcast TV station, this year also brought other opportunities to look forward to in the next year. I picked up more work as a fine food catering waiter to fill the gaps of being a freelance journalist, and became a bartender. I started playing in a band again, and have a lot of other things going that I don’t want to jinx. I’m also glad to just be here, as just making it to the next day is an accomplishment for the opportunities of tomorrow.

With that we ride into 4712, the year of the horse.

Here’s link to video I took of nude activist Gypsy Taub of Berkeley and her husband Jaymz Smith getting married in San Francisco yesterday.

Taub has become known locally for her protests after the city banned public nudity. The wedding ended with the couple getting naked, a mariachi band and others joining them in dance. Then the police took them into custody and gave them citations. During the ceremony Taub said another citation had been dismissed earlier that day in court. The San Francisco Chronicle did a feature on her a few days before, which is available here. I shot the video for Ruptly RT News.

Here’s a video I did of The Secret Secretaries playing “Hashtag” on Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2013 at The Knockout in San Francisco.