So two things to read- Nevius’ article in SF Gate, on North Beach planning effort hinges on a meal” and Eater SF’s rundown, Drying of North Beach. Lively comments on both- mostly Peskin baiting (when is he out again?) and bitterness over a lot of restaurant closures. Not to be flippant, but really the graffiti on the old theater across from Washington Square Park says it all: “No more plywood.” I feel like we’re cutting off our nose despite our face. Come on people, we can figure something out, and it’s not obscure planning codes regarding “what’s a meal.”
Chatting with XOX owner Jean-Marc Gorce about how all of the local shops are either closing up or feeling a serious pinch – he laid off 3 workers- because of a rash of ADA suits against them for non-compliance. Written up in June in the Chron, and covered on CBS (though not aired yet), it seems very sad. There’s a slanted step near his doorway that is in question, and he can’t provide a ramp as he can’t touch the sidewalk. North Beach Sushi across the street has the same issue. Their ramp is deemed too steep. I’ve seen the ADA racket threaten businesses in other towns, and they ended up closing. The owner has never gotten a formal complain from a wheelchair-bound person, except for this suit. Every business on the block has issues. It’s sad that we can’t get the city to help mom & pops get in compliance. Anyone from the handicapped community want to chime in on what’s going on? I welcome the viewpoint.
Interesting follow-up articles:
The Price of Access: Part 1: Visionary law’s litigious legacy in the Sacramento Bee
PBS: A Decade With the ADA
ADA Filing Mills: Drive By Lawsuits in the blog OverLawyered
Breakfast/brunch at Cafe Divine (Union & Stockton)- get seated at the sidewalk tables, and, with mimosa in hand, watch people in the park. I’d recommend the fruit bowl w/ granola or the poached eggs. Divine doesn’t have a huge menu but the ingredients are top notch. OR hit La Boulange (Columbus, Green) for a pastry and a bowl of cafe au lait. Describe how the park used to be the common for the neighborhood- the patch of ground where you could garden or keep livestock. Mention the falsehood that DiMaggio married Marilyn Monroe at the church- actually just photographed in front of it.
continue reading & map!
Thought I’d help get the word out on a great group- the Community Center at Telegraph Hill (tel-hi.org), they have the playground, the community garden, the basketball courts, and a ton of classes and workshops all on that old warehouse looking building on Chestnut & Powell. Fund-raising dinner 5/10, with donation of $175. Buy Tix here.
More info: here, includes a dinner made by chefs from Kokkari, Piperade and Gary Danko. Not too shabby! And yes, I should have also written about Frances Ford Coppola’s darling project North Beach Citizen’s fund-raising dinner last month, but didn’t, mea culpa. It was fun! Photos here.
There’s a general workshop on what to do with the “triangle”- that is the parking lot that is now Parks & Rec property, bordered by Columbus, Lombard & Mason. At the North Beach Clubhouse (we have a clubhouse?) 4/30, 7pm.
official info from SFPL
The SF SPCA issued a condemnation today of an exhibit that’s been featured this month at the SF Art Institute, claiming that it is “barbaric and depraved”. Entitled “Don’t Trust Me”, the exhibition (originally slated to run through May 31 — but now canceled after outcry) was on display at 800 Chestnut St. and was featuring six short videos that are looped footage of animals getting hammered (and nope, we don’t mean getting drunk in North Beach ).
The critters, including an ox, a sheep, a horse, a pig, a goat, and a small deer are shown being beaten with a sledgehammer by the “artist”.
The invited presenting “artist”, born in Algeria, but based out of Paris, is Adel Abdessemed, who according to his own hype:
is open and generous, sensitive albeit controversial. For materials, he relies on bodily or embodied experiences (human and animal), ordinary household objects, industrial products, and even buildings. His work consists of the stark contrasts between beauty and violence, impulsiveness and rationality, romanticism and radicality, life and death.
Whatever ya wanna say about the guy, he’s from France and his money is worth more than yours these days, so there.
I actually wanna thank SFAI’s Director of Exhibitions and Public Programs and animal hammering fan Hou Hanru for bringing this unique artistic endeavor to my attention, where I once might have had to travel to a Chino slaughterhouse to see similar art. Hou’s SFAI website bio says of his curatorial and department chairing expertise :
“Hou is one of the first curators and thinkers to examine postmodern issues of nomadic identity, hybridity, globalized mobility, what he calls “in-betweeness,”
Way to go Hou !!! You impressive idea thinker you !!! Keep it up and I bet our board of supes will be fighting over which street to name after you !!!
Yesterday, Feb 19th, was the 4 year anniversary of the battle & seizure of 701 Columbus led by General Aaron Peskin and his regiment of Telegraph Hill Dwellers…
Check out Ranger Wayne Zebzda in a prescient 1982 interview under a long gone magnolia tree at this impromptu mock National Park in North Beach…
More on the controversial history of the triangular 4,119 square feet plot adjacent to Washington Square Park, and where it stands today after the jump…