Yelping Oakland’s underground past

Found this post on “Yelping Oakland’s past” via the “I raved in the San Francisco Bay Area in the ’90s” Facebook group (which is one of the only reasons I still have a Facebook account, tbh). I love this, thinking about the history of the warehouse rave scene in Oakland scattered about the internet in the form of Yelp reviews and whatnot. I immediately recall the sfraves list and other resources from back in the day… If I had any sort of motivation, I’d write more about this, but we all know I don’t!

Even before the post-Ghost Ship crackdown, sharing information online about underground party venues was generally frowned upon (don’t blow up the spot), so there’s a confounding irony in these faux pas surviving as the only bits of accessible information about these spaces. And while Yelp currently does not remove pages of “businesses” that have closed, it’s easy to imagine this policy changing. If it does, a whole slice of Oakland history would fade even further into obscurity.

Old Yelp reviews: the jaded ex-raver edition

I used to write a lot of Yelp reviews, nearly 10 years ago. Some of them are funny. Most of them make me cringe. I was either too cool, or tried too hard, or suffered from cut-and-paste copy writing syndrome.

Here are a few. They are also quite telling — each one a tiny bit of memoir.

SHINE (CLOSED)
1337 Mission St, San Francisco

Free photobooth. Crowded Dirty Bird parties on Friday nights. It’s easy to get loaded here.

Dirty Bird Party in the Park
25th and Fulton, San Francisco

Dirty tech house beats, interesting trips to the port-a-potty, liquor brown bagging, watching little dogs and their gay owners frolic on the lawn, dancing, dancing, dancing.

Oh, and dancing.

Been doing this shit for years and years and years. Never too old for it.

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