I started writing in 1975 when I entered college at Sonoma State College. One of the first things I wrote was a rant in the dormitory newsletter about the blatant injustice I witnessed at the San Quentin Six trial, going on then in San Rafael. To get in to the courtroom one had to submit to fingerprinting, showing photo ID, passing through metal detectors, walking a hallway gauntlet full of heavily armed Marin County sheriffs, then passing through a second metal detector, and finally entering the courtroom. It was divided between the public seating area and the actual courtroom by a foggy plexiglass window with a tiny grate at the top through which we could sort of hear some of the proceedings. The accused were already chained and shackled to their seats in their orange jumpsuits, brought in before the spectators could enter so we could not see the spectacle of them entering in shackles. It was a farce, to say the least.

Anyway, I’ve gone on to write a great deal, and I continue writing regularly. I have my blog at nowtopians.com (a number of my favorite posts have been translated into Italian), and I have ten books in print for which I was the author or the editor. I have also written dozens of articles and a few stories that have appeared in various other publications and blogs over the years. All are listed here:

When Shells Crumble
Spuyten Duyvil, Brooklyn, NY


Hidden San Francisco: A Guide to Lost Landscapes, Unsung Heroes & Radical Histories
Pluto Press, London, England


Co-Editor, Co-Designer, Contributing Writer
SHIFT HAPPENS! Critical Mass at 20
Full Enjoyment Books


Ten Years That Shook the City cover

Editor, Designer, Contributing Writer
TEN YEARS THAT SHOOK THE CITY: San Francisco 1968-78
City Lights Foundation Books


Vanished Waters cover

Designer, Curator, Author of expanded 2nd edition
Mission Creek Conservancy, San Francisco


Nowtopia cover
Author, Designer, Indexer
AK Press (Oakland, Edinburgh, London)

Italian translation: Now Utopia, Shake Edizioni, 2009 (Milan, Italy)

Portuguese translation: Nowtopia, Tomo Editorial, 2014 (Porto Alegre, Brazil)


After the Deluge cover
Author, Designer
Full Enjoyment Books (San Francisco)


The Political Edge cover
Editor, Contributor, Designer, Indexer
City Lights Foundation (San Francisco)


Critical Mass book cover
Editor, Contributor, Designer
CRITICAL MASS: Bicycling’s Defiant Celebration
AK Press (Oakland, CA: 2002)
Critical Mass: L’uso sovversivo della bicicletta (Italian translation)
Feltrinelli Editore Milano (Milan, Italy: 2003)


Reclaiming San Francisco cover
Co-editor, Co-designer, Contributor
RECLAIMING SAN FRANCISCO: History, Politics, Culture
City Lights Books (San Francisco: 1998)


Bad Attitude cover
Co-editor, Co-designer, Contributor
BAD ATTITUDE: The Processed World Anthology Verso Books (London: 1990)





1981-1994, 2001, 2004-5
Co-founder, Co-publisher/editor/art director/etc. Collective member
Processed World magazine Within an ever-fluctuating unpaid collective environment, managed to produce 32 issues over thirteen years. Contributing writer, artist, copy editor, art director, publisher, managing editor, etc. Over a hundred graphics, fake ads, collages, etc. Frequent writer on questions of work, unions, ecology, technology, utopias, etc. See publication list below.

Contributing Writer, sf.streetsblog.org



“So You Think You’re An Anarchist?” November 2022, in The Fabulist

“Critical Mass is 30—And Still Imagining What Cities Can Be,” San Francisco Examiner, Sept. 22, 2022

“Who’s Processing Whom? Digital Commons, Digital Blinders, and a Fraught Common Future” in Perspectives on Anarchist Theory, August 2022; Issue 33 of print version, May 2023

“Chris Carlsson na Massa Crítica” pamphlet, Monstro dos Mares, Ponta Orossa–PR, Brazil, 2022

“Scorched Earth Indeed!” May 2022, in The Fabulist

“Half-Earth Socialism: Half-Baked or Half a Chance?” March 2022, in The Fabulist

The five best books to explain how the hell San Francisco turned out like it did, November 2021

“Overcoming Imposed Amnesia,” foreword to Counterpoints: A San Francisco Bay Area Atlas of Displacement & Resistance, edited by the Anti-Eviction Mapping Project, PM Press: 2021

“Gimme a Home…” in Notes From Below #8, October 2019

“A Bicycling Commons: A Saga of Autonomy, Imagination, and Enclosure” in Commoning With George Caffentzis and Sylvia Federici, edited by Camille Barbagallo, Nicholas Beuret and David Harvie, Pluto Press: London, 2019

Processed World: A Political History” in Log Out! Notes From Below #7, June 2019

“Effective Politics or Feeling Effective” in Movement of Movements Vol. 2, PM Press: 2018

“The Fight In San Francisco is Not Over” in Shelterforce, May 2018, part of the series “What Does Community Control of Land Mean?”

“Beyond Bicycling: A Window to Larger Changes” in Boneshaker magazine #20, 2017

“Mission History” in The Mission by Richard Evans, Heyday Books 2017.

“Si el ciclismo es la clave, ¿qué nos revela?” reposted in TALLER POPULAR DE CICLOMECÁNICA SUIPACHA: Un espacio de encuentro entre bicicletistas, la vecindad y la magia de barrio Pueyrredón (Cordoba, Argentina)

“Future Maps” commentary on San Francisco.

Backing into a History Commons: Shaping San Francisco” in River of Fire: Commons, Crisis & The Imagination edited by Cal Winslow (Pumping Station: Arlington, MA 2016)

“Labor Issues and the Preparedness Day Bombing” in Panorama, July-Sept. 2016, Vol. 28, No. 3 Full-length version here.

“Nowtopistas” in ecologíaPolítica: Cuadernos de debate internacional, #49, Spain, Summer 2015. (Spanish translation of chapter from Degrowth)

“When Punk Mattered: At the Dawn of the Neoliberal City” on BOOM: A Journal of California online, Sept. 9, 2015.

“Welcome to the Age of Impunity” originally on my blog, and then on the Blue Mountain Center “stories & features” page. July 30, 2015

“Nowtopians,” chapter 44 in Degrowth: A Vocabulary for a New Era, edited by Giacomo D’Alisa, Federico Demaria, Giorgos Kallis, (New York: Routledge, 2014)

“Shaping the City From Below” in BOOM! Vol 4, No. 2, Summer 2014

“A Review of Adam Greenfield’s Against the Smart City” at Shareable.net, February 3, 2014

Foreword for STREET, Photography by Jason Winshell

“Ruminações de um diplomatia acidental” in Contribuições teóricas ao Terceira Forum Mundial da Bicicleta, Curitiba 2014

“Zines” in Stay Solid! A Radical Handbook for Youth edited by Matt Hern & the Purple Thistle Centre, AK Press: 2013

“Risky Business” a review of “Nuclear Roulette” in Earth Island Journal, Summer 2013

Review of “The East” in Planet Drum Pulse, Summer 2013

“My Beautiful Bike” in boneshaker magazine #11, Winter 2013

“Ruminations of an Accidental Diplomat” in Shift Happens! Critical Mass at 20, September 2012

“Ghost Streets and Disembodied Workers in San Francisco” in MAS Context, September 2012

Interviewed: David Harvey on Rebel Cities, September 2012,
reposted at On the Commons as “Cities By the People, Cities For the People”

“Critical Mass” in BikeArt: Bicycles in Art Around the World, 2011

“Technology and Utopia”, California Northern Magazine #4, Fall 2011

“King of the Road”, Boom, A Journal of California, #3, Fall 2011

“Trial & Error: Memories of Learning to Ride” in Boneshaker magazine #6, Fall 2011

“Back to a (New) Future in Milan,” preface to Roberto Peia’s “Tutta Mia La Citta: Diario di un Bike Messenger” Ediciclo Editore (March 2011)

“The Light and Dark Vision of the Future of Food” in Free Soil No. 1: Farming 2050 (2011)

“The Smell of Ten Thousand Gallons of Mayonnaise and a Hundred Tons of Coffee” in Infinite City: A San Francisco Atlas, edited by Rebecca Solnit (UC Press, 2010)

“Nowtopia: Strategic Exodus?” with Francesca Manning, in Antipode, long standing radical journal of Geography, special symposium: ‘Autonomy: The struggle for survival, self-management and the common’ (Vol 42:4) August 2010

Foreword for Lights! Camera! Cuisine! Cooking Fabulous Food from the Films You Love by Holly Erickson

“One of my favorite walks” in City of Stairways: A Poet’s Field Guide to San Francisco, Writers’ Corp, July 2010

“Radical Patience: Feeling Effective Over the Long Haul” in Uses of a Whirlwind, AK Press, June 2010

“Parallel Universes: The Tortoise and the Gangster” in San Francisco Art & Politics, June 2010

“How Much is that Black Swan in the Window?” Turbulence #5, December 2009

“The Art of COP15” from Copenhagen, December 17, 2009

Chris Carlsson and Tom Athanasiou debate Cap-and-Trade at COP15 in Copenhagen, Denmark, December 16, 2009

“Copenhagen, Deluged” from Copenhagen, December 10, 2009

“A Shared Climate, A Sharing Solution?” from Copenhagen, December 1, 2009

“The Time-Travelling Wall” in Street Art San Francisco: Mission Muralismo, edited by Annice Jacoby, Abrams: 2009

“What is a Shareable City?” September 16, 2009

Critical Mass and the Anarchist Circle-A in A-Cerchiata: Storia Veridica ed esiti imprevisti di un simbolo, Eleuthera editrice, Milan, Italy 2008

Introduction to Stencil Nation: Graffiti, Community and Art by Russell Howze, June 2008

Acting Historically: Feeling Effective Over the Long Haul in “In The Middle of a Whirlwind”, June 2008

“In Bicicletta Sull’Arcobaleno: Riprogettare Le Cittá” in Bici Batte Auto, Shake Edizioni, 2008

Effective Politics or Feeling Effective” on MetaMute.org, June 2007

“Outlaw Bicycling” in Affinities: A Journal of Radical Theory, Culture, and Action, January 2007

City LivingS.F. Bay Guardian, July 26, 2006

“Of Buried Creeks and Thwarted Plans,” SPUR newsletter, July 2006

The Nowtopian: My Blog, October 2004 to the present. (Renamed from “The Attitude Adjustor” in Dec. 2007)

Building a Future in the Here and NowJournal of Aesthetics & Protest #4, November 2005

“Beyond Organics: An interview with Traditional Medicinals’ Josef Brinckman” in LiP magazine’s online site.

“Jobs Don’t Work!” in The Political Edge (2004: City Lights Foundation, San Francisco)

Statement to NY Court on Critical Mass” October 2004

“Radical Politics: Assuming We Refuse, Let’s Refuse to Assume” in
Globalize Liberation: How to Uproot the System and Build a Better World, edited by David Solnit (2004: City Lights Books, San Francisco)

“Cycling Under the Radar: Assertive Desertion” in
Critical Mass: Bicycling’s Defiant Celebration (2002: AK Press, Oakland)
Critical Mass: L’uso sovversivo della bicicletta (2003: Feltrinelli, Italy)

“Private Wealth or the Department of Common Wealth — A Real Response to the Real Estate Crisis” (sfbg.com San Francisco Bay Guardian on-line edition, December 20, 2000.)

“Dancing in D.C.: A16 and Beyond”
Go Guerrilla magazine, Buffalo NY, Vol. 2, Winter 2000-2001

“Seeing the Elephant in Seattle”
Seattle in Perspective, Red & Black Notes pamphlet, Toronto, Canada March 2000; RealBattleinSeattle.org wiki.

“The Progress Club: 1934 and Class Memory”
Reclaiming San Francisco: History, Politics, Culture (1998: City Lights Books, SF)

“Radical Invasion of New Media” in Bad Subjects #26, May 1996

“The Shape of Truth To Come: New Media and Knowledge” Resisting the Virtual Life (1995: City Lights Books, SF)

“Warrior Girls” (poem)
Carbuncle 4 (1994: Thumbscrew Press, San Francisco)

“San Bruno Mountain; HCPs and Beyond” interview with Pete Holloran and David Schooley Terrain, October 1994

“Information Clerk”
Sabotage in the American Workplace (1992: Pressure Drop Press, SF)

“Mission Bay”
Stadtreisebuch: San Francisco (1992: VSA Verlag, Hamburg, Germany)

“Just the Facts, M’am”
Technoculture (1991: University of Minnesota Press)

“The Making of a Bad Attitude”
Writing magazine, Vancouver, Canada, August 1986, Issue 15: Work

“Steel: Can Rationalization Cure Old Age (Without Causing Depression)?”
Root and Branch 9 (1980: Cambridge, MA) (with Caitlin Manning)

Shaping San Francisco 1994-2022

WRITINGS ON SAN FRANCISCO HISTORY (over 300 different articles)
(see http://foundsf.org for a glimpse of a small selection)

Critical Mass publications

(over two dozen flyers, newspaper articles, selected titles listed below)

Two edited volumes, Critical Mass: Bicycling’s Defiant Celebration (AK Press: 2002) and Shift Happens! Critical Mass at 20 (Full Enjoyment Books: 2012)

“Critical Mass is 30—And Still Imagining What Cities Can Be,” San Francisco Examiner, Sept. 22, 2022

“Three I’s: Infrastructure, Impediments, and Imagination” (August)

“Why We Ride” and “Do’s and Don’t’s” (February)

Critical Mass is Thirteen, The Culture War is Older (and far from over!)” in Faultlines, October 2005

“Bicycling: A Serious Pleasure, a Partial Revolt” in Bikesummer ‘99

Whither Bicycling? Tepid Reform or Utopian Revolt? in Sixrag

The Hidden Class Politics of Bicycling: trains, bikes, cars, BART (!)” in the 5th anniversary paper

Bicycling Over the Rainbow: Redesigning Cities and Beyond

Critical Massifesto

Critical Mass from the Inside Out

Processed World magazine 1981-2005


The entirety of Processed World has been scanned and is available for free as pdf, text files, or browsable electronic book at the Internet Archive! The legacy website is still running too, and you can browse many articles via the issues link there.

#2004-5, 11/04
“Burning Man: A D-I-Y Working Class World’s Fair”

#2.001, 9/01
• “Radical Politics: Assuming We Refuse, Let’s Refuse to Assume” (pdf)
• Reviews: The Critical Study of Work (2001, Temple Univ. Press, Philadelphia), Youth At Work (2001, Temple Univ. Press); Fast Food Nation (2001, Houghton Mifflin, NY)

#33 1/3, web only (1995, 2000):
• “The Faceless Face of the New Mexican Revolution

# 32, 1/94:
• “The Shape of Truth To Come: New Media and Knowledge”
• Fiction: “Virtual Hell”

# 31, 8/93:
• “Public Education: Remaking a Public”
• Reviews: Midnight Oil (Autonomedia: New York, 1992) and The London Hanged (Cambridge University Press: New York, 1992)

#30, 11/92:
• Interview: “A Shit Raiser Speaks: Interview with Judi Bari”
• “What Work Matters?”
• Review: American Dream video documentary

#29, 8/92:
• Interview: “Get the Message: Interview with Mercury Rising bike messengers”
• Review: Strange Weather (Verso: London 1991) and Questioning Technology (New Society Publishers: Philadelphia, 1991)

#28, 11/91:
• Interview: “Genetic Engineering Pioneer: Interview with Marco Schwarzstein”
• Review: The City, Not Long After (Bantam: New York, 1990)

#26/27 6/91:
• Interview: “Art and Chaos in Brazil: Interview with graffiti artist Ze Carratu”
• Fiction: “Aaah HIP Capitalists!”
• Reviews: City of Quartz (Verso: London/New York 1990), Gulf War pamphlets: When Crusaders and Assassins Unite, Let the People Beware (Boston: 1990) and All Quiet on the Eastern Front (Berkeley: 1990)

#25, 7/90:
• “The First-Hand Look and other Perceptual Problems”

#22, 7/88:
• “Dollars & Ecology: Different Shades of Green?”
• “Bicyclists! Support City of Panhandles Bike Plan”

#20, 9/87:
• “The Health Epidemic”
• “Stress: A Social Dis-ease”

#19, 4/87:
• Interview: “Kaiser Don’t Care! SEIU Neither!!: Interview w/2 rank-and-filers”

#17, 8/86:
• “Making of a Bad Attitude: An Abridged History of My Wage-Slavery”
• Interview: “Flexing Muscles at Flax: Anatomy of Service Sector Organizing”
• Review: “Pursuit of Happiness” stage production

#16, 4/86:
• “Dagwood & Blondie in Space”

#14, 7/85:
• “Future? What Future?!?”

#13, 4/85:
• Reviews: Scenes from Corporate Life (Penguin: New York 1981); International Labor Reports, Across Frontiers, Index on Censorship

#12, 11/84:
• “We’re No. 1!”

#11, 8/84:
• “Drugs: A Corrosive Social Cement”

#9, 11/83:
• “The Line You Have Reached Disconnect It!”
• “Against Fairness and Fares”

#8, 6/83:
• “Workers’ Participation: New Carrot/Old Stick”

#6, 11/82:
• “Roots of Disillusionment”

#5, 7/82:
• “Not Just Words: Disinformation!”

#4, 4/82:
• “No Paid Officials”
• “SF Supes Bolster Sagging City Worker Unions”

#3, 12/81:
• Fiction: “Jack and the Beanstalk”

#2, 7/81:
• “Rise of the 6-Month Worker”
• “Raises, Rights, Respect Alienation”
• “Post-mortem on Blue Shield Strike

#1, 4/81:
• “Office Workers on Strike—San Francisco 1981”
• Fiction: “San Francisco 1987—Would You Believe It?”