For a few years in the 1990s I experienced San Francisco from a combination of wheelchair, crutches, cane, and my own legs, which occasionally cooperated. Merciful time has intruded and helped me to forget all the valuable lessons learned as I was carried up and down the stairs at the 14th St. faerie house and as I inconvenienced everyone in countless restaurants. Now, from a slipped disc, I’m back in a chair for a while, so I figure I’ll put my navigational adventures on Metroblogging SF. The landscape of a city is very different when you’re on wheels! Every bump and incline counts.
My goal last night was to hang out with friends and to get to the Make-out Room to see Writers With Drinks. My friend and I were able to park in the 21st and Bartlett Garage. Whoa! Did you know that between 21st and 22nd, there is an ever so slight incline? My wimpy triceps don’t make the cut, yet, so I needed a push.
As a creature of habit, “stodgy” even, I have routines, and one of them is to stop at Revolution Cafe for a latte before going to Writers With Drinks. And at Revolution… whoops! A significant step up, about a 4 inch leap, not completely impossible if I had a sportier chair. At a table outside on the sidewalk, I was able to lurk and chat with a stranger while my friend ordered our coffee. My new table buddy, a dude from Sacramento, had extremely beautiful long silver hair, nicely clean and brushed. It’s the rare hippie guy around here who knows how to use “product”… We struck up an acquaintance. I told him where to get pizza (that place around the corner that sells it by the slice, or Little Star on Mission, or Pauline’s on Mission). He told me all about the Piedmont Piano Company, where they have incredibly fancy 10 foot concert grand pianos and have amazing shows with famous blues and jazz musicians that are cheap and have only 15 or 20 people show up, sometimes. Meanwhile, I stared with the most basilisky, baleful glare I could muster at the wooden railroad tie that prevented my going into the cafe to use their bathroom. If baleful glares could melt wood… Hey Revolution people, build a tiny ramp – how hard could it be? Just smooth it out a little.