Archive for November, 2004

Achtung, Baby.

I’m writing this post not so much to recommend Walzwerk in the Mission, because, damn, their food is so good it speaks for itself, but rather to warn fellow foodies to abandon their devil-may-care, eat-it-or-leave-it attitude at the door.

I took the boyfriend there Saturday night, on accounta he spent his formative years in Germany and hearts German food very much. We ate delicious potato pancakes, pork and stuffed chicken, then found ourselves full before we could plow through the accompanying mashed potatoes and veggies. The waitress asked if we wanted to take our leftovers with us, and we said no, because a.) I hate leftovers and b.) we had to jettison our microwave before we moved up here from L.A. because it wouldn’t fit in the car. In response, the waitress shook her head and said “well, I’ll just have to throw it out, then.”

Now, Walzwerk is an East German eatery and the two of us should have known better than to cavalierly waste food under the watchful gaze of Marx, Engels and Lenin. But we didn’t. We are, quite literally, capitalist pigs.

Thank You for Being a Friend

I don’t know about you, but I like to occasionally read the other Metblogs, and the LA blog had a really fun suggestion, that, as we approach Thanksgiving, we blog about the things in San Francisco about which we are thankful (actually, the idea in LA was to blog about things in LA, but that just wouldn’t make sense for us). So, I thought it was a great idea.

You can even participate at home, too! If you have a blog, livejournal, or personal website, you can write about it and leave a comment below.

As for me, the past year has given me a lot to mourn, a lot to curse, and a lot to be bitter about, but after living in the Bay Area for almost a year and a half, here’s what I’m thankful for:

BART. Sure, most days I end up driving 35 miles each way to work, and it may seem like I wouldn’t have much use for BART. And sure, I wish it ran past midnight so I could take it to go to the clubs and late night dinners. But while I was in college I walked everywhere, including the 3 miles it took to get to a grocery store. And my first year out of college I walked a mile to and from my job because there was no bus route in my neighborhood in Virginia. And when I moved to Los Angeles, I took the buses, and the less said about that, the better. A bus system that goes on strike and only affects about 3% of the population says volumes about its quality. If you ever want to research Crazy, take an LA bus. But now, now I live in the Bay. I don’t have to wait an hour for public transit. I don’t get stuck in traffic on a bus filled to the gills, stuck behind an SUV trying to parallel park. I don’t have to pay $100 to park at the airport because no one will drive me at 4.30 AM, and it’s cheaper than a taxi. So, I for one, say Thank you! to BART.

– I would also like to say Thank you to the veritable plethora of independent restuarants that practically litter the landscape of the Bay Area. Organic, Vegetarian, Raw and Macrobiotic stand side to side with Ethiopian, Malaysian, Mexican, Vietnamese Japanese, Thai and nearly every kind of influence, fusion and culture. I could eat out for every single meal, and never visit every restaurant. I’d be broke, but I’d be well fed and happy. I miss LA tacos, I must admit, from improbable carts at 2 in the morning, and I have yet to find a good Oaxacan place. However, all you other restaurants, you make it more than worthwhile.

– Any list of things about which I’m thankful would be remiss without mentioning the people. I’m from the midwest, but I moved to LA to be in a city. In LA, I missed trees, missed people who smiled on the street, missed strangers stopping to ask if you were okay when your car broke down on the side of the road. I thought about moving back to Ohio, but then I realized I would miss concerts, and restaurants, and progressiveness. Up here, though, I seem to have found the best of both worlds. We’ve got a city big enough and progressive enough to host Folsom street fair, a Yaoicon, and a DIY/Small Press publishing convention, but still down to Earth enough that, the other day when I blew out my tire on 580 E, someone stopped to try to help me change it.

Also, in no particular order, I’d like to say thanks for Oakland, for supporting struggling artists, Berkeley, for just being…well, Berkeley, The Parkway Theatre, the Cartoon Art Museum, the only museum dedicated to sequential art in the entire country, and Bottom of the Hill (as well as many other) venues, that host such amazing and under-valued original artists.

I could go on, and on and on. But I bet you all have stuff to share, too. Now, I have to go prepare for Black Friday, the most notorious shopping day in the entire year. Cheers!

Palm Trees and Ice

Downtown San Jose will have a new breathtaking addition for it’s holiday season; the 8,1000 square foot Knight Ridder’s Downtown Ice rink. The rink will accommodate 200 skaters. A must see are the 32 lighted palm trees that circle the ice rink. Only in California!

Who Missed Me?

(I realize that with that entry title, I’m just asking for it – but what the hell.)

Hello, San Francisco. It’s been awhile.

I took off for a bit to fight the good fight in a few battleground states. But that’s over now (if you’re curious about the experience, poke around my blog). And here I am, back to explore and comment on this fair city.

Just today, I sampled what I consider to be some local highlights (list borrowed from my site): kickboxing class at Golden Gate Fitness, burrito at L’Avenida (please, let’s not start the metblog burrito wars again), coffee at Reverie, and some badly needed body work at Relax Nails (I do believe I am now the blogger with the prettiest toes).

Since the holidays are practically here, and this is the first finals-free holiday season I’ll be spending in San Francisco, I’m wondering what traditions are out there. Any decorated windows? Must-visit neighborhoods? Holiday specials at restaurants? Pretty Christmas lights? Concerts?

What about unorganized, unofficial fun? What says SF-mas to you? Or SF-anukah? Or SF-wanzaa?


A San Jose man, working for the DMV in Redwood City, has been arrested. He allegedly touched or spoke inappropriately to young women during their DMV driving test.

Taking your first driving test can be a frighting experience. Now young women have even more to fear, and I will speak with my daughter about the possible danger.

DMV officials offer: Women may request a female examiner.

A new G5 or orthopedic shoes

It’s time for a new computer! How excited I am at the thought of a new Apple G5. A few months ago the last thing in my thoughts was a computer. Then my daughter got an iBook. That is when her old iMac found itself on my desk taking up valuable space. One day last June I turned it on. After a few days I had the hang of the mouse, and I was off and typing.

Being a taxi driver, people often suggested that I write a book. There are great experiences, some interesting, some funny, and very odd happenings in my taxi. My wise brother said, “What you need is a blog.” Thus began Taxi Vignettes and MetroBlogging.

Because the old iMac sometimes shuts down and all is lost, or turns itself on in the middle of the night, I decided to look over the new ones at the Apple Store at Valley Fair Mall. For quite a long time no sales person bothered to help me. I was begining to wonder if they thought I had actually been looking for the orthopedic shoe store, and had wondered into the Apple store by mistake? All the while other potential customers were being assisted. At last a young man approached me asking, “Is there anything you need?” So I asked what the difference was in the various models and the price ranges. He then told me, “Oh the least powerful and least costly would be just fine for you.” He had no idea for what purpose I’d buy it, and had no way of knowing I was a novice. Like on WIL WHEATON dot NET it’s says don’t try to use BB code! Boy, I sure hope I didn’t. I wouldn’t know if I did or not.

Tomorrow I will visit another store at Oakridge Mall. Perhaps I will get information about the computer, or at least leave the mall with comfy shoes.

Suede: Don’t go here unless you are a D*ck

Twice in the past month, I’ve had the displeasure of being dragged here. The nightclub’s line is headed by a bouncer in a cheap black suit, doing what douchbag bouncers do: judge your jacket, the coif of your hair, the perkiness of your boobs, your skirt, your shirt, your designer threads, your foot wear, if your ass is taut enough to pick a dollar up off the floor with. Your status elite measured against the house code of dress. And he lets you in if he feels like you’ve got the right stuff.

He sent some Desi’s ahead of me packing, ignoring pleas that the foot wear in question were not really sneakers, but ken coles. Then he turned to me, checked me out my best Justin Timberlake outfit head to toe, before tilting my ID in the light. Without looking me in the eye once, he opened the velvet rope, and I was in, another unit of cattle rounded up. I crossed the thresh hold, glancing a spotlight. That

Not Scott Free

While I was driving my taxi from San Francisco Airport to San Jose, I pointed out to my customer the helicopters hovering in the air above Redwood City. Just then the verdict came over the radio. Scott Peterson guilty of the crime of murder in the first-degree!

51% is not a mandate


I saw this on the marquee above Magnet, a men’s health and community center in the Castro.

Does it work?

We’ve all learned at age five (plus or minus a few years) about apologies: something as simple as “I’m so sorry” can mend friendships and make small mistakes seem insignificant, while some apologies, when written down, are the length of the latest Harry Potter book.

Sometimes, pictures work best.

From SF to NYC, people have been apologizing to the world about this year’s election, sparking

I hope the world accepts it.

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