[from the inside virtual flap]
The 27-year-old author arrives in San Francisco, California in March of 1992, seeking fame and fortune as a wall (visual) artist. He settles in at a small Tenderloin studio apartment on lower Hyde Street and elects to go about car-less, transporting himself by foot, bicycle, bus, train and ferry.
After yet another unsuccessful day of shopping his portfolio, slides and several actual paintings to a downtown art gallery, he takes an intra-city journey by rail to the ever-foggy Outer Sunset district. At a nondescript hole-in-the-wall saloon, he stops in for an end-of-day drink.
To his surprise, there is actually some free entertainment in store. A Vietnamese American donning a purple skull mask, wearing an oversize lavender velvet suit, going under the moniker of Mysterieau of San Francisco, soon takes the small stage to perform in front of a minuscule audience.
Mysterieau’s act is a mixture of bad magic, non-comedy, trivial pursuits, odd performance art, lame illusions, rambling commentary, motivational speaking, sexual innuendo, and disjunctive storytelling. His style is über-rhetorical, yet highly conversational. The author can hardly believe some of the things he says and does, and is soon mesmerized by his curious word choices and impromptu on-stage antics.
Afterwards, the author befriends the vague-as-fog Suong, Mysterieau’s younger sister, who later gives him a shaft-shaking in a strange place. Then Mysterieau and the author trek across Golden Gate Park at night, playing a round of 100 questions.
On Fulton Street in the Outer Richmond, they meet Mysterieau’s Japanese girlfriend and confidant, the surreal maven Kasumi, at a soon-to-close restaurant. They shoot some racy, artsy videos.
A fabulous summer of art, love, and intriguing existence awaits in that fabled city of creative renown. But, when you enter off-limits places, unknown hazards may silently seep into your life’s equation.