Katy Tang In The Polarized Sunset

Katy TangDistrict Four has a new Supervisor — Katy Tang and it is my belief that she has a hard road ahead of her. As I’ve been reading the neighborhood newspapers recently I’ve noticed something about the Sunset District that while I’ve known it, I’ve never really thought much about it. It seems like this is something that needs to be talked about.

The Sunset has a very hard delineation between the Chinese populace and the non-Chinese populace [what other people call white, but in reality is just  more homogenized American in that people don’t notice skin color and everyone speaks English.] The cut off lines are 19th Avenue and Sunset Blvd. In between these two streets you will find a large section of the Sunset District that is predominantly Chinese [I would be politically correct and say Asian, but when even the Japanese restaurants are run by Chinese you have to face facts.]

Above and below this are the other people. Yes, there are Chinese that live above and below the section, but they speak Cantonese and Mandarin much less so than in the Central Sunset. There has been a lot in the papers about her being a safe choice to be in charge of the predominantly Chinese neighborhood, but that isn’t really true of the Sunset. The Sunset over all is a place where it is going to be difficult to please everyone. The Central Sunset is very densely packed and Chinese, but there is a large number of non-Chinese who live in the Inner and Outer Sunset. This is something that can’t be ignored.

You’ll notice this the most if you go down to the beach areas around Noriega and Judah. To use the often used misnomer it’s a lot more white [meaning Americanized]. There is a group of people who want to beautify the end of Judah Street to make it an even cooler place to hang out. The people running this group according to the newspaper are two caucasians and two hispanics. You don’t see a single Chinese name included which seemed odd to me. This particular part of the Sunset is beginning to look a lot like Haight Street in that everyone has tattoos and piercings and loves wearing black. When John Avalos was running for Mayor he had a get together at the foot of Noriega and the group of people who showed up were locals of many different colors, but the Chinese contingent was rather slim.

It seems strange that there is such a hard split in the Sunset District and that is something that I believe Katy Tang will have to deal with as Supervisor of District Four. I do think her first move [which is safe, but also necessary] is trying to stop the switchbacks of the N Judah and L Taraval streetcars. I’ve been kind of lucky in that I rarely have to ride them since the 48 Quintara stops near my house, but it seems like whenever I have had to hop on a streetcar out in the Sunset I always have gotten thrown off before I get to my scheduled destination. I know nothing about Katy Tang and I think that will work for her out here as there are no preconceived ideas about who she is or what she should be. I wish her the best of luck and hopefully I’ll see her on the street one day. Oh and last thing Katy, if you get a twitter account be sure to use it to get things done. Carmen Chu would always answer within a couple of days.

SF Surfriders’s Earth Day Party

Yes, I know I haven’t posted anything in a week, but I needed a little vacation. Sunday of last week [not yesterday] I dropped in at the SF Surfrider’s Earth Day celebration out at Ocean Beach at the foot of Taraval. I actually did it twice because like always I don’t tend to make a fashionably late entrance. While there weren’t too many people there in the beginning, when I went back i really got to learn a lot about the group and what they were doing.

Now I’ll admit that at first I thought the SF Surfrider’s hit me kind of like the SF Bike Coalition, but since most people don’t drive on the waves the whole hooligan attitude is missing from them. The whole Earth Day part started at 10am at Ocean Beach with a bunch of people from the group and supporters gathering to clean up the beach. This is always a good thing as there are lots of nasty bits you can find on the beach. I actually saw a picture this morning of someone’s dog who had manage to find a rather large, umm, well, sexual device let’s just say and was bringing it back to his owner like he had a bone in his mouth. While that was one of the rather least offensive things found the beach there have been syringes that people dump into drains or flush down their toilets that don’t properly get processed or someone digs a hole and toss some briquets in to have a beach barbecue and then some one like a cousin of mine sits on the beach and ends up with 3rd degree burns on her feet because old hot coals look like sand.

I have to applaud them for this because they love to surf and why would anyone want to surf in a garbage dump? They are also concerned with the erosion that’s occurring on the south end  of Ocean Beach and I have to say that my wife and i used to like to run out on the weekend and get coffee and danish and then drive out the parking lot by the zoo to have our breakfast. There’s not too much left out there now and the SF Surfrider’s are trying to find a way to fix the problem.

I got to talk to a couple of people from the group and told them that I’d be mentioning them and I really have to say that the party they organized [after I went back for the second run] was a lot of fun. SF Surfrider’s is a very eco-friendly group and they were even using blocks of eco-friendly surfboard wax to hold down their materials and giving out roll up eco-friendly grocery bags made from recycled water bottles. They also were having a raffle for a surfboard, but I decided that I’m a bit out of shape to start up my old surfing days again. Give me a few years and maybe I’ll get back in shape for it though.

While they were the focal point there were also a couple of food trucks, Seoul on Wheels and Cheese Gone Wild as well as well as a beer garden that got bigger as the day went on sponsored by Trumer Pils. I did happen to notice for the celebrity gossip column angle that the ever sexy Nikki Blakk of 107.7 The Bone was there early on, but I couldn’t find her on my second trip down there. She might have been in the RipTide that was packed to the gills while having the Mermen entertain everyone. I was a bit bummed because I was hoping to slide a copy of my CD into Nikki’s hand so that, you know, I might get a mention or something like that on her show. Oh well, things don’t always go my way, but the party at the beach was pretty fun and I salute the SF Surfrider’s for give us a chance to see what they’re all about.

Taking a break…

Hello my friends and readers. I just wanted to let you know that while writing every day doesn’t always take up too much of my time, the researching does and I feel I need to step back a bit so that I’m giving quality and not quantity. I want to make sure I get to fact check anything I put out there unlike some of the modern day journalists. So I’m going to try something…

I’ll write Monday through Friday and keep the weekends to myself. That’ll give me time to travel around San Francisco more and get more pictures of my nefarious deeds and actually have some time to work in audio interviews for the podcast I’m trying to get started. Besides, I need to get out of the house more and moreover, I need to get out of the Sunset District more. Not because I don’t like the fog. It’s one of the things I actually like about the Sunset because I appreciate the sun so much more.

So for now I’m going home early, wait, I’m already home. I guess I’ll go out and take some photos around San Francisco. For today I’ll leave you all with some of my pretty pictures taken at Ocean Beach when we had good weather. Let’s all hope for a nice spring this year! Cheers to my friends at the Ocean Beach Bulletin!