Archive for November, 2006

Commuting Economics

10 Townsend Took the BART to the East Bay yesterday, a route I usually drive, and talked with a neighbor, and fellow commuter. He gets commuter checks – 60$/month- but that doesn’t cover the entire SF/Oakland commute. SF Muni Monthly pass costs $45. BART costs 7$/day roundtrip. So he’d need roughly $120 for BART, plus the MUNI pass- $165 to pay for the entire lot. So commuter checks helps him about 30% of the way there. He drives once in a while to offset cost. Bridge toll is $3 one way, and gas, and insurance/car fixes, registration, random tickets. The cost of owning a car- is it $165 month? My bad math follows:

SF stocking stuffer: prepaid parking meter card

meter.jpgThe parking meter cards that debuted last winter are proving popular with drivers, the Examiner reported today.

The cards can be purchased at several locations throughout the city in values of $20 or $50. main problem with the cards now is that they cannot be refilled and a new one must be purchased when the first card runs out of value. In the future, TransLink will begin accepting the cards, so they’ll be good for fares on Bay Area transit agencies.

Sounds like a great stocking stuffer for your San Francisco friends.

Photo by HarvardAvenue

Campaign catchphrase takes on a life of its own

oreilly.jpgCourtesy Salon’s Daou Report, I found this Media Matters for America (MMA) posting on the running skirmish over “San Francisco values” and what they represent.

Evidently MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann — who raised his profile this year by swinging his show to the left, especially through his occasional anti-Bush “Special Comment” segments, and who has a running battle with Fox News’s Bill O’Reilly (whom he calls “Bill-O”) over which of them rules the playground — used his “Worst Person in the World” segment on Monday to tweak O’Reilly over the latter presenter latching on to the Republican election-losing catchphrase “San Francisco values.”

Thurs. Haight Hearing to Determine Parking Future

A proposed plan to move part of the City College Campus to Haight street may have an impact on parking and traffic in the Haight, Panhandle, and Cole Valley neighborhoods.
The shuttered William De Avila Elementary School at 1351 Haight St. may soon be the site of a temporary 2000-student City College annex, as the college renovates its John Adams campus, with unknown consequences for an already dense corridor.

There will be a neighborhood hearing held at the De Avila school at 7PM on Thursday Nov 30 so that residents can comment and find out more.

(more opinion after the jump)


Free laughs on the radio

radnich.jpgUnless you happen to catch a David Sedaris segment on “This American Life”, the most reliably funny show on the radio is the Gary Radnich sports talk show on KNBR (AM 680) from 9:00 a.m. to noon.

I only listen during the first hour while I’m on my way in to work, and then only if I’m late or the traffic sucks. And you may have to be at least a little bit of a sports fan to get the jokes and the general tone, but actually, most of the laughs have more to do with timing and quick comebacks. I have laughed out loud several times while listening to this show, and I’m a tough audience.

Radnich also appears on KRON TV channel 4 in the evening — and he’s actually more associated with channel 4, where he’s worked much longer — but I think he shines much brighter on the radio. His co-anchors on KRON always seem a little scared of him.

A Runner’s High – And Low

San Francisco is heaven for an urban runner like me. There is always a new road or alley to explore.

You can have flats, heights, or stairs for your thigh-buring morning. And no matter where you are, there is always a breathtaking view around the next turn.

Then again, all these hills are a real pain. Pain in my knees, my shins, my ankles. If only I were still twenty-nine for the third time.

And if only, as I tried to slow going downhill on California Street, I didn’t clip that sidewalk crack and go ass over teakettle. I would still have a working camera, I would still have a great manicure, and I would still have my ego all intact.

Close Enough to Swim To…

Really, could you? Looking across the tranquil bay, I see Alcatraz and it seems close enough to touch.

Close enough to swim, too.

I’ve heard there are Bay swimmers, those who forgo kayaking the Bay for a total immersion cold-water workout.

While I’ve had my own frigid frolics, going walrus in Russia, it wasn’t in open water.

Would you be one of these long distance cold water swimmers? One who would swim to Alcatraz? Better yet, be a Alcatraz Centurion?

And if so, what do your friends and family think of your efforts? Crazy or cool?

SF Cars According to Tow Guy

Had a short conversation with a tow truck driver on cars in the city. He said they tend to be newer cars, with no big problems. Dents from parking, batteries run out, sitting in a driveway, that kind of thing. I had asked him what make and model gets towed the most, and he said he does get a lot of calls from Ford Focus’s as they have a recall on the key ignition lock. Something like, you take your key out and you can’t put it back in again.

We were talking about the merits of having a new car with payments vs. an old car fully paid off- I have an ancient car- and he thought that the new cars were unwise, as everyone just plows into your car drunk all the time while parking. He saw a big truck ride on top of a new Mercedes’ hood, and the driver just got out and walked away.

Just in case you’re wondering, no, I don’t drain my battery just to meet these guys- my car has serious problems!

San Francisco’s 2nd Gift to the World: Working steetcars

1007.jpgIn the last twenty years or so, so-called light-rail systems have become common in American cities. From Tacoma to Tampa, cities are realizing that streetcars are a clean, efficient and attractive way to get people around.

San Francisco has had streetcars of some kind since 1860 — horse-drawn, steam-driven, cable-driven, and finally the electric cars of the type seen today. And though the number of lines was drastically reduced in mid-century, the city always had at least five lines: the J-Church, N-Judah, and the three Sutro Tunnel lines K, L, and M. But in 1982 these lines disappeared from Market Street as the surface cars were replaced by space-age “LRV” (for Light Rail Vehicle) cars.

More after the jump.
(Photo of double-ended PPC car no. 1007 by Telstar.)

Harvey Milk, George Moscone, Nov. 27, 1978

milk.jpgTwenty-eight years ago today, an unbalanced San Francisco former cop and firefighter turned politician, Dan White, entered San Francisco’s City Hall through an unguarded basement window. Going upstairs to the second floor, he shot liberal Mayor George Moscone at his desk, then walked across City Hall, reloading his pistol, and assasinated Supervisor Harvey Milk (pictured).

This event led, among other things, to Board of Supervisors President Dianne Feinstein becoming mayor, leading to her eventual career as a US senator. The assassination also led to a greater politicization of queer people in San Francisco and across the nation; Feinstein appointed Harry Britt to fill Milk’s seat and San Francisco has had at least one gay member of the Board of Supervisors ever since.

A nice tribute piece by Paul Hogarth, Harvey Milk’s legacy, 28 years later, appears on Beyond Chron today.

Terms of use | Privacy Policy | Content: Creative Commons | Site and Design © 2009 | Metroblogging ® and Metblogs ® are registered trademarks of Bode Media, Inc.