Today I reached a day that never popped into my mind. I turned 50 today. You think about turning 18, 21, 30, 40 then it kind of stops. I never thought about what my life would be like at 50, but I can honestly say I wake up in the mornings feeling pretty good.
Living my entire life in San Francisco aside from the few vacations I realize that I’ve reached an age where you start remembering the changes have have happened to this city over your lifetime. I remember Doggie Diner, Chicken Delight, Herb’s Deli. These were all fixtures of my youth. I remember not having to walk a quarter mile when parked on Sloat to get into the Zoo. I remember when a family membership at the California Academy of Sciences was only $25 [and that wasn’t too long ago]. Sure I miss those things, but change is going to happen and there are lots of new things that pop up.
For all the Irish people living in the Sunset when I was kid there wasn’t one place that would serve an Irish breakfast, now there are several. Yes, we did have a more ethnically diverse neighborhood when I was growing up and now according to a recent article on sfgate.com, $3500 will get you more in the Sunset District than most other parts of the city that hardly anyone used to live in.
I think for me the worst part about getting older is that when I talk about TV shows, movies or people from SF history there’s too many people younger than me that have never heard about them because they weren’t born and raised here. I brought up Barbara Eden [I dream of Jeannie] the other day and mentioned that she used to live around 46th and Taraval and went to Lincoln High School and got a response of, who?
San Francisco has been home to a number of celebrities and cultural events, so I guess at my ripe old age of 50 I’m glad I have this blog to remind people of that. I’ll keep on going for many years to come and I’ll promise you that.
Welcome to the 4th of July were the U.S.A. celebrates it’s independence from the tyranny of the United Kingdom with a Chinese tradition — fireworks. It’s also the one day of the year where you can have an open beer in your hand before noon and no one looks at you funny. Many of you will be going down to Crissy Field or Fisherman’s Wharf with the thousands of others to be crowded together to watch the fun. I will not.
I did the Crissy Field thing once and while it was fun there were too many people drinking too much to get in a portapotty to give back the beer and afterwards the drive out was so slow that I have to say I have never seen so many people jumping out of their cars and running off to the side of the road to pee. Nope, I’m not going to drive through a river of hot urine just watch some fireworks. There’s plenty of other places to see them minus the urine and drunkards.
The first thing is you need to get high. No I’m not talking about smoking pot, but get as high up in the air as you can. Twin Peaks is a good place as you can see Crissy Field as well as Oakland and Union City’s shows. This place does get a little crowded though so get there early. Oddly enough on a warmish day like today when you go up there at night the heat of the day rises so be prepared to have shorts and tank top handy as San Francisco radiates back all the heat of the day.
Grandview Park is another good place in the Inner Sunset and you only have to walk partly up the steps to see it. This was our usual place, but tonight I think I’m going to try the Northwest corner of the Sunset Reservoir. I’ve heard lots of people recommend it and it’s closer to my house. The parking in all these other places is much easier to get in and out of and they’re also nice if you have kids that are scared by the loud banging.
Fisherman’s Wharf I did one year which is a good place if you want to get closer without being boxed in at Crissy Field. You can even hop on the Metro and enjoy the fireworks from the Embarcadero and if you’re quick you can hop back on to before the rest of the crowd does.
If you want an alternative fireworks festival go down to Ocean Beach. The outer Sunset and Richmond district seem to have a number of pyrophiliacs and while not as big as the Crissy field show there are still some pretty big rockets going up in the air out here. I do remember one year there was an older Chinese man with his granddaughter set up at the school yard of A. P. Gianinni Junior High that was sending up some definitely not safe and sane stuff that was pretty impressive. He was there for over an hour. Local schoolyards seem to be a hit or miss attraction for people. The police generally leave you alone there unless you’re tossing M-80’s around because there isn’t too much to burn on the asphalt play areas. The good old days of driving to Daly City to buy your own fireworks are pretty much gone. I’m not sure if Pacifica is still selling the old Red Devil fireworks of my youth, but at least I’ve given you a few ways to see something tonight while you’re eating your burgers and slugging down too many beers.
SF Weekly is holding it’s web awards party tonight at 111 Minna Street in SF. I will be there to celebrate my finishing in the top three for best local politics blog in SF even though I didn’t win.
I’d like to invite you all to come along and celebrate with me. When I started this blog over four years ago I was writing about San Francisco and apparently my take on San Francisco politics stood out and got me nominated for the change to be the winner. At the very least I’ll be there with tons of cards in hand to promote this site and hopefully get a few more people to read my posts on a regular basis.
i’ve decided I won’t cop an attitude because I lost to a blog that’s an aggregator. I was still in the top three and next year I will crush the competition. So if you have an extra $10 in your pocket come out and enjoy the open bar with me and all of the fabulously hip San Francisco people.
Oddly enough I used to work right across the street from 111 Minna, but this will be my first time actually going there. I’m looking to have a great time and I hope some of you will join me.
Welcome to the 4th of July weekend. A day where we all drink up and under the influence of alcohol light explosive devices, or in many of our cases the safe and sane fireworks of the Red Devil fireworks company.
The funny thing about this is that San Francisco ever since I can remember has outlawed the sale of even the safe and sane fireworks on top of the unsafe and insane fireworks such as the firecrackers and M80, roman candles, bottle rockets, skyrockets, you know…the fun stuff.
If you wanted to get the legal fireworks you had to go to Daly City at first and now Pacifica to get them. These were always cities with open spaces that were overgrown with weeds that dried out in the summer unlike San Francisco which had very few spaces with dry weeds that could catch fire.
As a kid I remember my parents always telling me how a bottle rocket that flew up several hundred feet in the air and fell down through the air could land on your roof and set your house on fire. Unfortunately for her no one’s house ever caught fire in this fashion and none of the sparks from the large blasts at Crissy Field ever blew down on anyone’s house to burn it down either.
This got me thinking last night. Why is it that areas with the largest amount burnable material are allowed to sell fireworks, but large cities surrounded by asphalt that doesn’t burn aren’t? Is it a deal that the fireworks companies cut with big cities to get paid off to not sell there and give a kickback to the suburbs?
I honestly don’t know, but at least have some fun this weekend and blow sh*t up.