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BA of the Week – Tom Temprano (aka DJ Carnita)

Every week we feature a different person from the community shedding a little light on their life of brokeitude. Who knows, maybe you’ll learn something about the human spirit — probably not.

Wanna be a Broke-Ass of the Week? Holler at us here and we’ll send you the questionnaire.

This is by far one of my favorite Broke-Ass of the Week interviews yet.  I literally laughed out loud at the end.  Here’s what Tom has to say about who he is:

Tom Temprano (aka DJ Carnita), like so many SF broke-asses, spends half his time piecing together a living getting paid to DJ and promote events like El Rio’s award-winning soul dancefest Hard French and it’s new daytime drag party Daytime Realness, working in bars and doing all kinds of random stuff as a freelance marketer and and the other half not getting paid and advocating for all sorts of things he believes in through his volunteer work with the Harvey Milk Club and John Avalos for Mayor Campaign.

Name: Tom Temprano (aka DJ Carnita)

Age: 25

Occupation: Soul DJ, co-founder of Hard French, host of Daytime Realness, producer of Sunday events at El Rio, etc. etc.

What neighborhood do you live in?: The Mission, of course. Where else would I live with such a limited budget, need for bootyshort/tanktop weather and unquenchable hunger for late-night mexican food?

What are you listening to these days?: I spend so much of my musical time searching for new records to play out that I don’t have much time to ‘listen for pleasure.’ It’s all business, really, so a whole lot of 60’s soul and r&b. For the past few months, however, I’ve been trying to get my fitness in order so I made a jogging playlist called #gaymous that has Kylie Minogue and Robyn and all that stuff on it to get my gay ass in gear.

Best money saving tip: Find the bar that you most like to drink at and get a job there.

What do you refuse to spend money on?: Cocktails (see above).

Most expensive thing you’ve ever bought: I bought a suit from Top Man in New York for last year’s Hard French Winter Ball and had to employ the services of an over the phone personal shopper.

How’d that feel?: #gaymous

Favorite cheap eat: The carnitas tacos at Taqueria San Jose on 24th and Mission. For under 5 bucks you get two huge tacos with perfectly crisp on the outside/chewy on the inside carnitas and a side of chips (they always give you extra if you ask for them). If you’re feeling fancy you should wash them down with a Bohemia – just sayin’.

Favorite dive bar: El Rio, duh! I’m also partial to ending my nights at the Phonebooth and regretting it in the morning.

Best deal you’ve ever gotten: My cat, Irma. She was free and now serves as both my therapist and alarm clock. What a steal!

Favorite free thing to do: To go on walks across the city. You see amazing places, meet interesting people, and 3 out of the 4 directions you might head inevitably lead to a waterfront view.

If you woke up a millionaire, what’s the first thing you’d buy?: I’d give the maximum contribution to John Avalos so that he could be our next mayor – thus making the world a better place and then I’d buy these mindblowing studded Stevie Nicks & Roseanne leather jackets by Matt Momchilov — thus making my wardrobe a better place.

Despite not having money, do you still love your life?: Hate it. But seriously, San Francisco is the kind of city where broke-asses can thrive. It’s a town where people will appreciate you for what you create and what you stand for not what the balance on your Amex Black Card is. It’s a city for artists, activists, workers and queers. That being said, all of us people who pay our bills with passion need to wake up and start organizing and advocating to keep this city livable and affordable because time they are a’changing.

Do you own my book?: When I first moved to the city in 2005 I remember thinking about how great it would be if I wrote a zine about all the awesome cheap stuff to do in San Francisco for newcomers like me and decided I’d write one and fame and fortune would follow. Then I saw your Guide to Living Cheaply at Dog-Eared Books and was like ‘fuck this guy.’ I proceeded to buy a copy and move onto other avenues of achieving fortune and fame.

Best hangover cure: A tattoo appointment. It will put the pain in your head into perspective.

Are you a hipster?: I just said the best cure for a Phonebooth hangover is a tattoo appointment and that I’d buy studded leather jackets and support progressive politicians with my million dollars. What do you think?


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Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

I've been called "an Underground legend": SF Chronicle , "an SF cult hero": SF Bay Guardian, and "the chief of cheap": Time Out New York, but to those familiar with my work, I'm just "that douchebag who writes books about cheap stuff and drinks a lot".