Thursday, September 11, 2008

MP3 Experiment - San Francisco

Our favorite group Improv Everywhere is bringing their MP3 Experiment participatory series HERE to San Francisco on October 4th!!

The specifics haven't been posted yet, but I'll update as I find them out!!


Monday, June 16, 2008

The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Free Huggers

In preparation for the 2nd Annual SFShenanigans Free Hugs Event, we have assembled a list of learnings that we made during our previous Free Hugs events.

Enticing Hug Subject
1. Eye Contact

More than any other technique, establishing good eye contact with your passersby nets you a substantial number of hugs. When a potential hug-ee is open to the idea of hugging a stranger, they will try to gain a first impression of you by looking at your face. If you meet their gaze with a kind eye, many people will decide right there that you are safe to hug.

2. Leave one hand free
If you are holding some sort of Free Hugs sign, it is best to make it a single-hand sign. Use your unoccupied hand and body language to signal that your subject's hug is primed and ready to go. Holding a sign with two hands creates a false barrier that many people won't be inclined to breach.

3. Get down to kids' level
Sometimes families will show up and experiment with their child's openness to receiving hugs from strangers. Kids will usually react more favorably if you take the time to get down to their level. Drop down to one knee and outstretch your arms. At that point, many kids will run right into your arms.

Hug Etiquette

4. Hugging Style
Once a person accepts your invitation to hug you are now in their personal space. It is very important that you take cues as to your subjects hugging style. Some people like soft hugs, and others love bear hugs. Some people will only give strangers "a-frame" hugs. Some of them may be injured. Take the cues and match their hugging style, and they will have a great experience.

5. Heart to Heart

There is a little known custom that some people embrace, and it has to do with which side you hug on. The belief is that if you hug with the other person's head to your left, then you are conveying more intention because the physical hearts are face to face. Some people prefer this type of hugging, and others will specifically *not* hug a stranger on the left like this. Like all hugging style differences, just be aware of this and adapt to your subjects preferences.

Hugging Environment

6. Mix Genders
In the general public, and all-male group of huggers is kind of a hard sell, though not impossible. All-female or mixed-gender hugging groups seem to provide the "social proof" that you are not up to any kind of lascivious behavior. (We take this as an artifact of centuries of gender relations that we may not be able to change, but which we can surely challenge.)

7. Bring Extra Supplies

If you're going to be out in public hugging people for a couple of hours, you need to make sure to provide for yourself and your fellow huggers. Remember your water, as all that hugging can dehydrate you. If you're going to be outside, remember some sunscreen so you don't burn.
Many times people just love the idea of giving away Free Hugs, and they decide to your your rag-tag group of huggers. Having extra t-shirts, markers, and poster board with you will enable them to jump right in!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

SFShenanigans 2nd Annual Free Hugs Event -June 21st 2008

Hello Shenanigan Fans! Come one, come all! We're doing it again! Let's give away some Free Hugs!

Let's meet at Geary and Powell from about 2PM to 5PM on Saturday June 21st, on the North-East corner of the street right next to the giant heart at the corner of Union Square. Bring self-styled FREE HUGS hats, shirts, posters, buttons, or whatever!

View Larger Map

Last year we accidentally scheduled our Free Hugs during San Francisco's Gay Pride weekend. To reduce the conflict for any would-be Huggers, we're moving it to the previous Saturday.

(To read more of the Free Hugs history, check out this post from a Free Hugs event in Boulder, CO.)

Update (16 June 2008): To get you prepared for this weekend's Free Hugs event, we have posted "The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Free Huggers".

Thursday, April 17, 2008


Hello Shenanigan Fans!

I know, I know... Long time no see... Sorry, I've been a busy little Beastie!

Anywhoo... Agent O.Range brought this weekend's FLASHDANCE to my attention.

Here's the deets:
FLASHDANCE 13 THIS SATURDAY (4/19/2008): 24th Street BART
Our next FREE outdoor dance party will be: Saturday 4/19 from 7:00PM
to 9:00PM at 24th St BART PLAZA - 24th & Mission

For more info about FLASHDANCE in general:
For the specifics of this next event:

Get Out And Dance!

Saturday, April 5, 2008

DANCEOFF!! - SF Event Via Improv Everywhere Global

Hey there!

Though the SFShenanigans are still on sabbatical cooking up some more events, we did want to share with you an upcoming event from a related organization.

Via Improv Everywhere's "Improv Everywhere Global" social network on, the San Francisco contingent are planning an event called "DANCEOFF!!".

Here's a link to the most up-to-date info:

It seems the rehearsal is scheduled for Saturday April 12th at 3PM at Yerba Buena Gardens. The target location is Union Square.

Get out the dance! :-)

Thursday, February 28, 2008


Hello readers!

Sorry for the un-announced sabbatical... The SFShenanigans crew decided to take some time off of the merry-making for a couple of months...

Though, we are still in this sabbatical, we are pleased to announce the re-discovery of several incriminating photos that were long ago promised... Here they are:

We'll let you know if any other Shenanigans come up!