We do conferences in the SF Bay area. That’s what we do.
We recently just had a conference called BlogOn – but it was a complete corporate sellout. Oh well. We’ve gone mainstream.
We do conferences in the SF Bay area. That’s what we do.
I’m up in Northern Washington for a week. It’s the first real vacation my husband and I have had since our honeymoon nearly four years ago. The San Juan Islands — Friday Harbor in particular — are amazing. They’re beautiful, clean, inspiring, and peaceful.
A bit too peaceful.
I couldn’t sleep last night because of the peace. Because of the quiet. It makes me hear things. Crackles on the lawn outside, sea lions splashing, bugs banging against the screens — they all make me sit straight up and demand from my snoozing husband, “What’s that?!”
It makes me miss San Francisco and the predictable noise outside our apartment. The cars, the occasional sirens, the drunks at closing time, loud dogs going for a midnight dump in the park — these I can sleep through. I understand these noises. I expect them. They’re my white noise.
The dark here is very dark as well. I can open the shades and not see my hand in front of my face. Outside, there is no city glow to compete with the blanket of stars above. Still, not seeing the hand in front of my face is kind of scary. What else am I not seeing in front of my face?
These boogeyman thoughts aren’t new. I had them as a kid when we came out here in the summers to visit my grandparents. I guess even then I was a city kid, and maybe that’s the problem. I’m a city kid who has turned into a city adult and even on a peaceful, restful, needed vacation, I miss my city.
As a kid, that city was Minneapolis.
Then it was Boston.
Now, my city is San Francisco.
You know what’s very typical of SF?
The sense of privilege that you encounter nearly every where you go.
You want something? Someone expects more from you.
You volunteer your time to do something? You are critiqued for not being an expert tour guide on the subject.
You’re asked to provide some sort of snapshot of life in SF? You tell people that life is busy, there’s a milion things going on, and rice a roni, the San francisco treat is a farking lie and they call it blather.
Oh wait, that’s just a sense of being on the internet.
And in SF.
My apologies for not writing here at a caliber or content expectation to meet your discriminating needs.
Would you prefer a snapshot insiders look at a lesbian neighborhood bar with the freakiest outdoor sculpture gardens available in Bernal Heights where folks regularly pass a pot piipe?
Or would you like to hear about an indulgent day of shopping in the haight after being accosted for being a *real* woman instead of a faux woman turning tricks in the tendernob?
Or how going to Coit Tower after dark pretty much sucks if you plan to stay there beyond five minutes because someone’s shooting up in the bathroom or soccer moms are making out in minivans afterdark up there?
Or how about trying to wipe white paint from your teeshirt after getting a hug from a Sister of Perpetual Indulgence?
It’s not all tourist magazine. It’s life, mother fucker.
I recently came across an interesting blog post re: the mythos of SF and how folks who visit or move here have this rosey expectation that it’s either a pantheon of progressive and enlightened emotionally well adjusted technocrats, indie music hipsters, or cheerfully gay pocket communities, or startup dreams.
I’ve been in the bay long enough to see my share of launch parties and pink slip parties, played tour guide to friends and new neighbors and seen others move from lux pads to turning tricks in the car they’ve been sleeping in on shotwell. It’s not all pretty. But it’s San Francisco.
There is something dreamy and marvelous about this area. True. But it is also a demanding environment that relies on resiliency and a perceptive eye to guage opportunity and wonder.
It is real life and it really is SF.
You are now returned to your regular program SF Glossy Golly Gee Wiz Dandy.
Riders on the N Judah headed toward Mission Bay are greated with this wonder as they emerge from the ground on the Embarcadero. This shot was taken walking down the Embarcadero toward the Ferry Building. On a sunny day, it’s a fantastic walk. Be sure to check out the concrete features along the grass. Those little metal dots are actually tiny sculptures of sea creatures: turtles, fish, crabs . . . .
Wohoo – that got your attention, didn’t it.
Relax, don’t sic the FCC on me yet – this is ART people, it’s Theater (said: theeata). She’s baaack.
The ticket was a last minute invite from a friend, so I hot footed it from work (to sit in the worst traffic yet headed south across the Golden Gate) and grabbed an excellent slice of pizza at Blondie’s on Powell (regular readers will be glad to know that I had no problem getting both a single slice and a table, thank you very much). The summer fog rolled across Union Square as ill-prepared tourist ran for the warmth of their hotel rooms in the damp, breezy dusk. I’d almost forgotten how great the Union Square energy feels – and since I’m downtown so infrequently these days, the buzz of commerce was invigorating. I know it’s probably the most commercial of SF’s neighborhood (but c’mon, the Haight is just as bad, you know it is), but it’s also one of SF’s most cosmopolitan areas – one of the few neighborhoods that doesn’t need to mask itself in pretentious non-pretentiousness. It’s shopping and tourism and crowded and brightly lit and steps from Chinatown, the Financial District and I love it.
On to the show.
Here’s where it gets thorny.
You know it’s a schmooze fest when Blogging.la’s own Sean Bonner makes the scene.
It’s BlogON time and all the A-listers are hanging out at Berkely, CA.
A summer Sunday in San Francisco
out of the morning fog of the Richmond to the morning fog of the Sunset
lunch at 11th and Irving at Sun Tung, the best potstickers in The City
back to a clearing sky at home
read a comic in the comfort of my own living room
off again through Geary St traffic
through the constant bustle that swarms around the Castro Theater
left from Church onto 18th
to sun-filled wind wisped Mission
catching people playing tennis and selling their surplus on the grass at Dolores Park
to soft side of Potrero Hill
Caught a Pablo Neruda documentary
fell in love with a poet and a hero
came home to catch a bit of the grind again
hustle a resume to hustle a job
take a break for fried chicken and gravy at Brett’s mom’s greasy spoon
conversations about Tule Lake and life
California Agriculture usually gets shortshrift around here. Besides trying to pass long hours on the 5 attempting to identify mystery produce, how much time do you really spend appreciating the bounty of this fine land.
Well – here’s your chance to pay homage to CA’s great bulb – the garlic.
That’s right – it’s time for the 2004 Gilroy Garlic Festival.
Gilroy is, after all, the Garlic Capital of the World. We have lots of capitals here, actually. Watsonville for strawberries, Castroville for artichokes, Stockton for asparagus, etc.
Tickets are $10 (there are coupons out there, according to the site), and Gilroy is just a short – okay long-ish- trip down the 101. I’m sorry, down 101, for you NorCal types who are easily confused by the use of definite articles in freeway titles. The fair runs Fri – Sun from 10am to 7pm (though gates close at 6).
I’ve been told it’s a crazy, crazy, madhouse of people, so go early. Check their website for FAQ, more info, etc.
Oh – and if you are somehow anti-garlic (sort of unamerican of you), and are more a fan of fruit – would you believe there’s another ag-fest this weekend?
If you really want to take a drive, head east for the Courtland Pear Fair. I’ve yet to hit Gilroy (though this looks to be my year), but I did do the Pear Fair circuit when I was living in Sacramento. Courtland is iddy-biddy, but hey, who knew you could do so much with pears? And how can you resist and effot promo-ing itself: “Join us for a fun-filled day in ‘Pear’adise as we celebrate the Bartlett pear harvest!”
I’ll be fun-running for 5 miles through pear orchards, then drowning the muscle fatigue in pear cider.
Three cheers for ag and Bay Area weekend road trips.
My social calendar looks like it may as well have been sprayed with a machine gun.
But in a good way, no seriously, I mean that.
This city has something always going on and I’m looking like I’m double and tripple booked over the next few weeks.
There are two weekly meetings being hosted in my livingroom. One with regards to arts curatorship for a show later in the fall, the other with regards to a local political campaign. Goodness I love finally living in the city. Blackouts and all.
Tonight I have dinner plans, drinks plans, afterwork plans, and still need to do some unpacking.
Jayzus. Does it ever end?
No rest for the wicked.
Things still left on my list to do: Unpacking, writing, drop offs at Good Will, Shopping, More unpacking, more settling in, blah blah blah I bore you.
Would you rather hear about my first experience with SF’s Rice A Roni – the San Francisco Treat?
That’s rather gruesome so I’ll spare you. Trust me on this one.
In weekend Plans: Housewarming Party, BBQ, Hanging at my favorite Bernal Heights Bar – The Wild Side, and this.
Reminder: This friday there’s a Kickoff at Punch Gallery:
From: Jane Kim for School Board
Location: Punch Gallery
155 10th St., San Francisco, CA View Map
When: Saturday, July 24, 7:00pm to 9:00pm
SambAsia will start things off with their unique mix of Brazilian Samba and Japanese Taiko percussion. There will be food & drink, music, more performers, Jane’s friends and supporters. It’s free, so please invite as many of your friends as you like, we want to get the word out.
Matt Gonzalez, President, Board of Supervisor
Mark Sanchez, School Board Member
Nicole Derse, Youth Empowerment Coordinator, Youth Commission
Reverend Norman Fong, community leader
Jane Kim – Candidate for SF School Board
I don’t know much about Burlesque, or dancing – hell, I don’t know a thing about women, either. But I really, really understand Fun. And to quote the Suicidegirls website, the Suicidegirls Burlesque show is “THE ABSOLUTE BEST TIME YOU CAN HAVE WITH EIGHT GIRLS, SIX FIREARMS AND FIVE BOTTLES OF CHOCOLATE SAUCE.”
Sounds like a Benny Hill episode…I’m in.
Va Va Voom this Friday and Saturday night at the Great American Music Hall, for only 17 dollars.