.Best of the East Bay 2023 – Introduction

Simply the Best

The Bay Area thrives, even in trying times

Yes, the title of this year’s introduction to the East Bay Express: Best of the East Bay issue is an homage to the incomparable Tina Turner, who passed away last month. Though not a Bay Area resident, Turner exemplified so much of the spirit, ferocity and beauty that is this place we call home.

Putting together this issue has been a reminder of how fortunate we have been, even in the face of so many challenges. From a global pandemic to a depressing inability to effectively assist the unhoused to the continuing threats of fascism and the unending attacks on reproductive rights, the people of the Bay Area have once again shown resilience, hope for the future and works in good faith all around us.

For a minute there, it seemed as if the whole country was waging war with itself; even the Bay Area was affected in unforeseeable ways. From a failed governor recall election to the ousting of a progressive district attorney in San Francisco to a rise in petty crime—often resulting in the destruction of property with no theft—and a disturbing increase in anti-LGBTQIA rhetoric and legislation, it felt as if the only news was bad news.

This issue does address some of these problems, but what this Best of shows most is that growth is still possible. Building and re-building are still possible. Miracles, large and small, happen here every day, and that’s due to our natural beauty and strength, which pull us through times of abuse and neglect, allowing us to rise above expectations again and again, just like Tina Turner.

The Bay Area is simply the best, and this issue sings its praise.

D. Scot Miller
Managing Editor of The East Bay Express, Former Associate Editor of Oakland Magazine and Alameda Magazine, Columnist-In-Residence at San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA)'s Open Space, Advisory Board Member of Nocturnes Journal of Literary Arts, and regular contributor to several newspapers, websites and magazines. Miller is the founder of The Afrosurreal Arts Movement through his publication of The Afrosurreal Manifesto in The San Francisco Bay Guardian, May 20, 2009.

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