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Entries in Funny Bone (Humor) (57)

Monday
Oct112010

Spork Filled Semi-Truck Jackknifed on I-80. News at 11.


Walking down Valencia in the Mission I saw my friend, Dean. “I thought that I might run into you.” He said. ‘No shit. I live here.’ I thought. “What are you doing up here?” I then received some vague associations and cryptic responses. When Dean is in this mode he is usually about to do something drastic. This is one of my pet peeves, when my male friends act like insane women. See possible outcomes below.

1) Dean is moving to Tennessee because he got laid off from his job. He is, somehow, still hirable at his last job there at the local lumber mill. The lumber mill seemed a dangerous place to work and it consistently reached 115F degrees in violation of OSHA regulations.

2) Going to jail in Tennessee. “Want to clear up my warrant.” I can hear Dean saying. In reality running away from something in CA, weather real or imagined.

3) Moving to San Francisco. Probably the best outcome for Dean. Taking on school debt and transferring to SFSU to finish his degree. Already has a part time job in vicinity.

4) Moving to his parent’s house. This is an outlier but cannot be completely ruled out.

5) Getting back with ex-girlfriend and driving cross-country to NYC. NYC is where her dad should send her to work in the industry that closely aligns with her degree. Probably craziest thing on this list, so in Dean’s world, the most plausible.

5A) Has started drinking again. (See #5)

6) Moving to Florida to be with his grandparents. Dean said that he is starting to become sensitive to the cold and “winter” is around the corner.

7) Going to jail in the south bay. Dean’s probation has been violated and the judge threw the book at him. DUI upgraded to a felony and he goes to rape-you-in-the-ass-state-prison.

Stay Tuned!

Friday
Sep242010

Someday I'll be telling my grandkids about this.......

I’ve made the decision to cut myself off from drinking for a while.

Now, in order for you to understand how difficult of a decision this is for me, first you must understand how much I drink.

I drink every day. Every. Single. Day. In fact the only time I don’t drink, is when I’m broke, but even then I can usually still find some way of acquiring alcohol.

When I say broke, I mean broke. So broke that if I only have $2 left to my name, and I don’t get paid for three days, and the only thing left in my kitchen is ramen and peanut butter, I will spend that $2 on a tall can. I will not go into detail of how much I drink on average, but I will say that it’s pretty impressive.

So, aside from all of the obvious health reasons why I should quit drinking, I have my own personal reasons for deciding to take a temporary vacation from my job as a professional lush. One of the main reasons is that drinking makes me incredibly stupid, and bold. I don’t fight or get belligerent, but I do things like send pictures of my boobs to people who aren’t my significant other... but that’s a story for another day.

More recently, I stole a $60 bottle of vodka, that was on display in a locked case, in a bathroom (of all places), from a very nice restaurant. I did this after having dinner, and several glasses (er…… bottles) of wine with a client and his friend (who just happened to own that restaurant.) As bold as I was (and stupid) I couldn’t just hide the bottle in my purse like any smart petty thief would do. No, I had to wait until we all got into the car, and then pull the bottle out of my bag, showing everyone how fucking awesome I was because I stole this rad bottle of vodka. YAY for me!!

I woke up the next morning with one of the worst hangovers of my entire drinking career. Upon seeing the bottle on my nightstand, I thought, “Where did that come from?” (It’s funny how certain objects will cause you to remember the events of the night before little by little.) As the memories came flooding back, I couldn’t believe I had actually been drunk enough to convince myself that stealing that bottle was a good idea.

Later that morning, at work, the client who witnessed my shenanigans walked in. The following conversation took place:

Him: “Do you remember what you did last night.”
Me: “Yes. Unfortunately, I do. I still have the bottle.”
Him: “You know that I know the owner of that restaurant, right?”
Me: “Oh shit.”
Him: “You know that the owner is the guy who was with us last night, right?”
Me: (face palm) “Are you serious? Are you fucking serious?! Don’t fuck with me. Seriously? Oh my god! Seriously?!”

Wow, I had really outdone myself. Had I been sober, the idea to take that bottle wouldn’t even have entered my mind, even if the bottle had been on a shelf out in the open. But I was drunk, and when I’m drunk, not only do I not rationalize my impulses, but apparently I find it totally acceptable to break into a locked cabinet and steal something that doesn’t belong to me. On top of that, I have the unfortunate luck of stealing something from the person it just happens to belong to, and then bragging about it to them. Someone call “World’s Dumbest Criminals” and tell them that I have a great story for them.

On the bright side, the guy didn't press any charges and told me that I could keep the bottle. He explained, “Considering all of the hard work you put in to get it, I think you deserve it.”

When I asked him why he was being so nice to me he told me that when he was young he used to do really stupid things too. Plus he found me incredibly entertaining and rather enjoyed my company. He said that, aside from the fact that I had a momentary lapse in judgment, I handled myself quite well considering how much I drank.

I basically consider this my one free pass. My “get out of jail free” card. So for the time being, I am abstaining from alcohol. We’ll see how long it lasts...

(Update: I was only able to go 2 days without drinking. It’s amazing the things that I can be so determined to do when I’m suffering from embarrassment and a massive hangover. Oh well, I tried.)

Monday
Sep202010

Online Dating is a Parody of Itself

I, like you — unless you are happily married or are otherwise in a nice, loving relationship, in which case you can gladly go die in a fire — have profiles on various online dating services. And these, mostly, are laughably disappointing affairs; trumping even going to seedy bars or crappy clubs to meet women, since at least in person it's generally difficult to use lighting and camera angles to make your fat ass look better.

But anyway. Zoosk is one of these online dating sites, and happens to be one of the crappier ones, too. So, check out this sleazy shit that they're doing: they've started sending out "Scientific Matching Service" emails to members, purporting to have matched you with someone using some fancy science, and that if the two of you mutually accept the match the two of you get better introduced... or something.

It's a scam. It's a bait-and-switch. Click "yes" on a match and you get forwarded to the "subscription" page, where you hand over money to unlock whatever crappy features they hold back to free users. Presumably, one of the features you get when you pay them is that they won't clutter your inbox with annoy-o-grams that are trying to drive up pageviews.

But that's not the point of this article. It's lame, kind of funny, and has a bit of schadenfreude at watching Zoosk flounder as they go out of business, and try these sleazy techniques to get users.

No. I want you to meet the woman I was just scientifically matched with. With Science!, no less. Please meet Gina, everyone:


Face blocked out to preserve anonymity, but also mostly to poke fun at her.

Oh my, yes. With a body like that, what hot-blooded hetero male wouldn't want to find out more?

Now, let's read up on the man she's looking for:

Perfect Match

He must be sophisticated, classy, athletic and outgoing; a distance/ cross country runner who enjoys trail running and crazy random outdoorsy adventures. He should have knowledge in the area of sports/physical therapy, nutrition, medicine, chemistry/microbiology; a science/health care major. He should appreciate quality European sports cars and have knowledge and passion in that area. He can't have any tattoo's...no crazy piercings either! He has to eat healthy and work out regularly; a lean and toned physique. He can't be shorter than 5 ft 11 or taller than 6 ft 2. A nice smile, white teeth with a generalized class 1 occlusion is a must. He should be well groomed and not messy/scruffy.....takes care of his appearance. He has to be outgoing, funny, and genuine. I can't stand clingy guys...he needs to have his own life and not call/text me more than 10x/day. He has to have goals in life; is always trying to achieve something new/greater...Major bonus points for being at least part ARMENIAN....

This sums up so well what is wrong with women who use online dating sites that I have a hard time believing this person isn't simply a self-parody. Sorry guys, if you aren't an athletic, tall, Armenian doctor with a sports car, you're out of luck here.

Now, if we apply the idea behind the Drake equation to dating, we could sum up this babe's chances of finding that ideal man:


  • She wants a man, so we're talking immediately about 49% of Americans, given that there are estimates that there are about 97 men for every 100 women. [source]

  • She want's someone athletic, so I assume she is not looking for someone obese. Obese people comprise about a third of the US population right now, so 70% of men, which is generous, since even if someone isn't obese doesn't mean they're fit. [source]

  • Given average male heights, and her above average preference, there are about 16.6% of men who fit a height range of 5'11" to 6'2". [source]

  • She implies that an education is a must; some reports indicate that a hearty 29% of Americans have a college degree. [source]

  • Now, I don't know what percent of people who went to college studied chemistry, biology, or health science, but I can't see it being more than 25%. There are, after all, a ton of liberal arts majors littering the landscape at any given university. And let's not forget the computer geeks.

  • She's 25, so we'll be generous and assume that an age between 20 and 39 would fit. 14.35% of American men fit this, ten years ago (and yes, I'm counting people who were between 10 and 29 in 2000). [source]


The above leaves us with a whopping 0.06% of American men who even have a chance with this here catch. There are estimates that there are a little less that 500,000 Americans of Armenian descent [source], meaning that there are about 300 people in the United States who are ideal for this one.

Go get 'em, Gina!

Wednesday
Sep082010

Misfortune = Optimism


I recently moved to San Francisco precisely 1 week before my 26th birthday. Why? Because it just seemed like the place that I wanted to be. For once in my life, I moved somewhere because that’s where I WANTED to be. I didn’t move because I had to move for a job, or because a relationship ended, or because I was out of options, or because (and this is my favorite) I was single and completely out of my fucking mind (because I’m a girl, and yes....I have those moments.) No, I moved because I wanted to.

As optimistic as I was about moving, and as smooth as everything was going with the initial pack/load into a truck/and go sequence, a major misfortune fell upon me in the process of relocating to beautiful San Francisco from (of all places) West Oakland (yes. That’s right. West Oakland.)

A box flew off of the back of the truck!

Now, as upsetting as this would be to most people, it was downright AWFUL for me. Not only did I lose all of my books and music, but I lost all of my writing. We’re talking everything I’d ever written in a journal since I was a teenager.

I was sad. I was angry. I wanted to murder my boyfriend for not tying the rope tight enough (and the prison sentence seemed totally worth it at the time.)

But...........I’ve had some time to think.......... about moving, why I really moved, and what I really want for myself now. And I’m at a point in my life where I feel like I need to start over. I don’t need to change everything in my life, but I do need to change most of the things in my life, and moving to San Francisco was a great way to start.

Do I miss my old journals? Yes. Am I still upset that I lost them in the move? Of course. Like photographs, they are souvenirs of memories, that I will never get back. But I’m not really sure if I want all of those memories back.

So here I am, starting over, with (almost) everything in my life, and I hope I will have a fucking awesome story to tell!

Stay tuned................

- Dawn

Sunday
Aug292010

The Good, The Bad, and The Sober


While I was recently celebrating my birthday at Sodini's in North Beach with 16 of my closest friends, I spied this quote from Frank Sinatra on a wall plaque:

"I feel sorry for people who don't drink. When they wake up in the morning, that's as good as they're going to feel all day."

It's one I'd never heard before, and I realize now, one year older and in my relatively sober state, how absolutely true it is. When I was in my 20's, I was looking for romantic compatibility. In my 30's, I sought gastronomic compatibility. Now, firmly in my 40's, I'm searching for someone who’s hepatologically compatible. In other words, I'm looking for a partner with a liver of gold.

While I can and do socialize with people that don't drink, I can't help but think of all the interesting stories they'll never have - all the embarrassing moments, the questionable decisions, the hangovers, the loss of motor control, the inside jokes, the inappropriate behavior and the compromising photos that are stock in trade among drinkers and are as much a part of the bonding experience - if not more - than the drink itself. Teetotalers thank their lucky stars that they haven't had these kind of experiences, while recovering alcoholics thank their higher power that these days are behind them. In both cases, I'm afraid, they are completely missing the point. Whatever their rationale for non-consumption is, they've severely limited their chances to be more than bit players in my reality show. To them, I feel like using the line that Campbell Scott said to Jesse Eisenberg in the woefully under-appreciated Roger Dodger: "You drink that drink! Alcohol has been a social lubricant for thousands of years. What do you think, you're going to sit here tonight and reinvent the wheel?"

Do I drink more now than I did when I was living in New York? Yes - Indubitably. But I like my job and my new roommates and have more friends and more fun here than I do in NYC. Coincidence? Bullshit. Not directly related? Prove it. My first bonding experience with my work colleagues (now friends) was at pub quiz my first week in town, when I somehow singlehandedly delivered a second-place finish (and a free pitcher of Bass) by being the only one in a group of ten who knew that Cracked Rear View was the name of the breakthrough album from Hootie and the Blowfish. Would I have been able to recall that information while sober? Hell no, since listening to Hootie under the influence was the only way that music was even remotely palatable. The same tipsy victory roar emanating from our table in support of our intellectual silver medal would have been met with disdain from sober folk.

I read a quote recently from George Nathan, who wrote: "I drink to make other people interesting." I would say the converse is also true - people are more interesting if they drink. They're generally more unafraid of life, of being judged. Like me for instance. If I wasn’t more interesting under the influence, would sixteen people I hadn’t known three months ago be joining me for dinner and drinks? And from my side, the fear of being viewed askew for the trouble I might get in that night was non-existent. These people already knew my most embarrassing moment, the telling of which is kind of a rite of passage for new employees, and went a little something like this:

About 15 years ago, I was living and working in Central Asia, in a country called Uzbekistan, which is spiritually, culturally, and geographically halfway between Russia and Afghanistan. That is to say, you had the Muslim tradition of hospitality, paradoxically mixed with the Russian ideal of heavy social drinking. As I was the first white businessman to ever step foot in the city, I was constantly being invited to dinner parties, since I was viewed as a kind of cultural curiosity – literally, a party piece. On one particular evening, my head translator had invited me to his friend’s retirement party. My translator sat to my left. The host’s brother – let’s call him Akhmed - a xenophobe as well as a stickler for tradition - sat on my right. Throughout the night, there were a lot of vodka toasts made to this, that, and the other thing. Usually, at similar parties, I could get away with taking a small sip with every toast and put my shot glass down. Akhmed was having none of it, inspecting my glass with every toast and making sure I finished every drop. Nine, ten, eleven toasts and subsequent shots went by. That little bitch Akhmed wouldn’t let up, showing me a spiteful smile full of gold teeth each time he refilled my glass. After the twelfth and final shot I turned to my translator and told him that I could not, would not, possibly drink another drop. Now, instead of one enemy at the table, I had two. My translator explained that if I refused to consume, I would be insulting him, the guests, the host, and the person being toasted. No sooner had he explained this than the host rose to make the thirteenth toast of the night. My head began to swim and my stomach began to flutter, and I realized that I was in dire straits. He finished the toast, and all the glasses at the table went up, save one - mine. Akhmed protested, and the host turned a baleful eye towards me. I asked my translator to help explain my predicament, but he refused. The mood at the table grew dark, or perhaps it was my eyesight. Approximately 23 seconds later, I was on my knees in the bathroom, engaging in reverse peristalsis. As I cleaned up and returned to the table, all eyes were on me, all faces with jaws dropped, shaking their heads, following my every step from the bathroom. What I had failed to take into account was that the proximity of the bathroom and its paper-thin walls to the dining room ensured that every single man at the table had heard every syllable of my conversion with the Porcelain God. I sat down gently but the collective faces of the party were still on me. My translator asked me in a whisper “you know what happened, don’t you?”

“Of course,” I replied softly. “I had too much to drink.”

“You are mistaken, my friend. It was not the vodka. Our host was toasting the memory of his recently passed grandmother. By refusing to drink, you angered her spirit, which entered you and cursed your stomach. THAT is why you ended up in the bathroom,” he lectured.

I could call it one man’s delusion except that every man at the table felt as he did, and that’s Central Asia for you.

Now, here’s the thing: not only do I have a great story, but I have a great drinking story, and a story that I can use to bond with people - the sober ones who are merely amused, and the drinkers like myself, who have, in some shape or form, been there, done that.

And to you I say: Cheers!

Tuesday
Aug242010

SF is losing...


The SF food scene is a complete failure.

Let me explain.. (and tell you all to go fuck yourselves)...

We are in the middle of food and tech awesomeness. But we're not actually doing shit with that..

All the "consultants" who fly in to work on my projects look like high school kids.
All the "chefs" who want to establish themselves here throw a sprig of something organic onto something sustainable and somehow a bum magically gets a high paying job.

Even though we train chefs.. and do blah blah blah... people are actually moving AWAY from here right now. People do that in New Mexico.. people do that in Phoenix... but.. people are actually moving away from San Francisco.. to advance.

Austin... Portland... NYC.. MINNESOTA (did I spell that right?)..

Everyone else is actually trying to do something.

Open up a fucking food truck..

That food truck should serve organic and sustainable veggies, wrapped in bacon... deep fried in a blueberry-tempura batter... and served with a side of "FUCK YOU.. WE DID IT FIRST"...

If I didn't have a MIC CHECK.. I wouldn't have a check at all... all that I loved about SF is being lost. Either you're all fucking dot.com losers or...

Monday
Aug092010

There's A Thin Line...Between Love And Hate

(Alright sports fans, the gloves are off. My erstwhile dogma of anonymity for people and places I write about must come to an end, at least temporarily, for this particular blog to make sense to the reader.)

I find my relationship with San Francisco to be much like a romantic one, requiring a large emotional investment in hopes of a sense of fulfillment, making the inevitable disappointments that come to pass sting deeply. Nowhere is this more true than the streets of the city, and three in particular that I have a love/hate relationship with: Valencia, Mission, and Market Streets.

Oh, Valencia, how do I love thee, let me count the ways... I revel in your shopping selections for books, herbs, knickknacks, and t-shirts. I adore you for your fresh pavement that keeps my bike happy. I worship you for your bars like Elbo Room that charge $4 for a pint of my Holy Trinity of Beers (Fat Tire, Prohibition Ale, and Death & Taxes). I indulge in your all-encompassing restaurants, like Frjtz and your scrumptious mussels and surprisingly good beer selection, Urbun Burger and your 1 million calorie Bacon Blue Burger served with yummy Sweet Potato Fries, and Udupi Palace for your Indian veggie awesomeness. But, as it is written, passionate hatred can give meaning and purpose to an empty life. And Valencia, I hate you. I despise your under-informed and disinterested store clerks whose indifference has me running back to Amazon. I detest you for your smug pockets of hipper-than-thou businesses whose storefronts whisper ‘just squint and you’ll think you’re in Berkeley!’ I cringe over your user-unfriendly, visor spouting, trauma-inducing ATMs. I shudder at your bars like Amnesia that charge a $7 cover on a Tuesday to see a band you don’t want to see, much less hear. I’m gutted by your misguided restaurants like Beretta with your snobbish cocktail system where you can order a seven-ingredient cocktail containing basil, egg white, and pineapple syrup that will take about 20 minutes to make, but you can’t get a simple gin & tonic or a beer you’re actually heard of, and Cha-Ya with your oxymoronic vegetarian sushi where the décor is literally out of a 5-year old Ikea catalogue and the uber-bland spinach rolls will keep your teeth green for a week solid.

And Mission, my love for you is like a red, red habañero pepper. I venerate your neighborhood feel, your “I will not go quietly into that gentrified night” bravado. I fall under the spell of the ghosts of your once-glorious, now abandoned behemoth movie houses. I smile wistfully at your store signage, written in Chinese on one side of the street and Spanish on the opposite. I’m delighted by your street art murals on the shutters, sides of buildings and poking out from the Clarion Street corridor. I adore your hidden gems of epicurean delights and friendly bars whose frontage seems determined to keep the tourists out – yes, I’m talking about you, Cha-Cha-Cha and your spicy shrimp to die for, and you, Doc’s Clock with your startlingly good brunch-only service and bloody marys garnished with pork rinds, you Yamo, with your $5.25 (tax included) spicy bowls of meat and noodles with grease like liquid crack, and finally you, my instant classic Sycamore, with your superfecta of good beer, smoker-friendly patio, alt-rock jukebox, and crawling distance from my pad. But as Euripides said, authority is never without hate. And Mission, I abhor you - your tired, your poor, your huddled masses south of the 16th St. BART station yearning to breathe on me. I’m repulsed by your decay, your recklessly graffitied, boarded and hollow heart. Your 3-for-$2 t-shirt stores make me feel like I’m living in a ghetto. I find insufferable your penny-pinching on interior and exterior design, yes, I’m talking about you, Cha-Cha-Cha, Doc’s Clock, Yamo, and Savanna Jazz Club, home of the same Ikea lamps found at Cha-Ya. I can’t stand your open-air bacon-wrapped hot dog carts that wouldn’t pass a sanitary inspection in a corrupt third-world country, doing peak business after last call like legitimized smack dealers.

Which brings us to Market Street. As Roy Croft wrote, I love you, not for what you are, but for what I am when I am with you. When I take a weekend ride down your bike lanes wide enough that Lance Amstrong could be sprawled on the ground with his 10-speed by his side but there would still be ample room to pass, I am in bliss. And whether I am seeing Massive Attack, Sharon Jones, or Adam Lambert & Alison Iraheta at the Warfield, your splendid interior design and spectacular acoustics bring joy to my heart. Your BART, your trams, and your electric buses are admired by that small part of me which longs for a reduced carbon footprint. But, as you can probably guess by now, I also love to hate you, Market Street. I am nauseated by your ass-grabbing crack whores in front of your transient hotels and liquor stores. I am dismayed that possibly your best downtown dining option is Show Dogs. And I am absolutely gobsmacked, flabbergasted, and taken aback that you, San Francisco’s main street, who should be a tourist-hungry promenade, like New York’s Broadway, fall far, far short of your urban first cousin. Instead, you're more like New York’s Bowery, circa 1974, with your second-rate shops and your third-rate peep-shows. If there is a black nexus where the soul is being slowly sucked out of this city, it is in an abandoned lot on Market Street.

And on that happy note, I’m off to Sycamore for a tasty bite, some good tunes, and perhaps a cigarette and beer with my editor on the patio. God, I love this city. At least 51% of the time, anyway.

Monday
Aug092010

1st and Last Phish Concert


4:08pm? Crap! I’m late. Run to elevator. “Heading up Market.” Lie. At least the new office is close to Market. Should have met Eider at my usual Bart station. There you are. “Need to grab cash.” You too? This is taking forever. Damn tourists. Okay. “Yeah, this is the same Bart station just a different entrance.” BART is delayed! It is usually so good. Of course this is when I am leaving work early to get to a show. Those damn hippies have probably been in line since Tuesday. Richmond train? “I don’t know. BART in the Eastbay is like the fog of war.” Ok. We’ll take the original train. Sorry. “Yell at Google maps.”

I hope that there isn’t an earthquake while we are under the bay. I know that this is a statistical impossibility but… “We should get off at MacArthur?” ok…you’re the one that used to live here. “Isn’t that the train we need on the other platform?” Oh, thanks overweight, romance novel reading, lady. We will transfer here to get a seat then. Original plan is a go! “It’s less than a mile but we’ll just follow the Patchouli to the show. Downtown Berkeley is our stop.” Here we are.

“Head East.” Stay to the left at the first fork. Stay to the left. “The southern path is fun but takes longer.” Yes, Berkeley is a nice campus. They better not close down the Greek Theater because of the noise. I can’t believe that you have never been here. “How long did you live her Eider?” Oh, now it makes sense. And you lived in the sticks. Ouch. There are our hippies. Let’s go. Sure, the average age is less than a Grateful Dead show. I’ll buy that. It’s all up hill now but that will make the walk back easy.

Doesn’t look…like..there…is a line! Awesome. We are the shit. Get in and get your spot first. Concert rule. “What about here by the disabled section?” Perfect view of crowd and stage…”You want cash for the first round?” Nope? Okay. “I’ll be here.”

“Hey neighbors. What’s your names?” Chad and…Taylor…crazy that this is your anniversary. Were is the wife? You have seen Phish over one hundred times?!? Unbelievable. First one for me. No, I don’t want any “dip.” That shit is disgusting. Oh, it is Ecstasy. “Gottta work tomorrow. Thanks though.” Never done anything serious and don’t plan to start now. I’m glad his wife told him to put that shit away. It is broad daylight. Pot smoke. “What is your name neighbor?” Ah. Dave is probably gay. You have also been to 100+ Phish concerts? Jesus! So has he! Yes, this is my first time. I know you can’t believe it.

Yes, we were on BART with you. Yes, we were on BART with you. Yes, we were on BART with you. Yes, we were on BART with you. Yes, we were on BART with you.

Ha! Good one Taylor! Yes, they were on BART with us. “No, you cannot stand there. There is a great spot to the right.” Thank you. Wow, we have a great spot. I wonder if we will find out whom all that clothing belongs to next to us. Maybe they spontaneously combusted? “Hey, you can’t stand there…” “Keep going…” “Hey, you…” Thank you.

“I’ll get round two.” The black guy knows how to keep the beer line going…I’ll just sneak over to that….line…”excuse me”…done…Yes, Eider, I know that was fast. Lots of hippies dancing in the isles I know. They played two bars of the song I wanted to hear. Lame. This song is good though. Wait, there is only one riff. Oh well. Good first set. Hopefully they pick it up from here though. “Wow! Thanks for the beer Dave!!” Definitely gay. The band is good. They provide a great base line but the songs just don’t go anywhere. I’ll bet Momus will love it. Trey can really go at times but it just gets repetitive. Bassist is pretty funky. Won’t pay to see them again but if they are at a festival…

The second...set...is...dragging…ugh…starting to get concert legs…stay loose…No more booze? Dammit! That stopped early! This last row is a freaking freeway! Note for next time. Get a few rows closer at the Greek.

The 100+ concert dweebs aren't impressed either. Good. This is dragging! House lights please come on…Thank you. Definitely down for another beer. You know a place? Good. Berkeley is not my hood. Wrong way? Sorry. “I’ll get us there.” Whew. Triple Rock is popping! I like it. Nice to relax after a show and not have to run home. Early shows at the Greek are a good thing.

Ok. Let’s get to SF.

Sunday
Aug082010

We still don't get it

We're in the Bay Area.

The rest of the world isn't actually in tune with OUR reality.

I would love to see through the eyes of the guy from Lebanon who is actually terrified that I asked him about the music playing in the liquor store I walked into. We have the opportunity to experience food, music, culture, and just about everything that exists in the world.. without having a clue about what happens outside of our comfort zone.

We can safely ignore the hipsters.. they don't actually count.

We associate with people from all over the world and some of us consider those people friends. Look around you. Right now. One of the people in front of you considers anything south of the border to be "Mexican". You don't know the capital city of Canada.

I hate myself when I feel the need to justify my love for other cultures. I'll just look like an idiot. That being said...

San Francisco's MISSION district is, outside of rats, is actually home to a bunch of great food. The 24th street area is quite hip... and that might actually hurt it in the long run.

Realize that there is a difference between Peru and Cuba.

Realize that there is a difference between Spain and Brazil.

You cracker ass motherfuckers should walk into Mission restaurants and try to learn something. Be happy that the rest of the world doesn't depend on MBA's.. because when they do.. make something trendy, raise the price, and all of us idiots will go for it.

Until then... appreciate what you see around you. And be happy that they're not trying to sell you an iPhone.

Suck. A. Dick.

Thursday
Jul222010

Soul-less in Seattle


By the end of my recent three-day trip to Seattle, I was left with an uneasy, lingering feeling that something vital was inherently absent from that northern city. At the time I was sitting and conversing ruefully in the dining room of my good friends Mark and Lucinda’s suburban house in Kingston – a town as white as its Caribbean island namesake was black.

“I’m still looking for Seattle’s soul,” I mused.

Lucinda threw back her head and laughed. “Good luck with that!”

I asked if she was being sarcastic. She was, but being completely serious as well. “New York, San Francisco, and even Los Angeles have an energy, an electricity, something you can palpably feel. Seattle is more like a pool of stagnant water on a sunless day,” she replied.

She was right, of course. Somewhere along the line Seattle’s elders had sold their city’s soul to the devil, exchanging it for the money and fame generated by having Microsoft, Starbucks, and Boeing in their residential grasp. Wait, did I say Boeing? Oops! They moved their corporate headquarters to Chicago nine years ago, presumably out of a need to be in a city with a pulse. That left Microsoft and Starbucks, and I don’t think I’m the only one shouting a silent hurrah when one of these omnipresent vampire behemoths loses a lawsuit for a few hundred million or sees a few of its stores close down. When corporations like these are the face of your city, it is any surprise that face looks like something out of True Blood? (Note to editor: please check the integrity of the firewall, now that I’ve insulted 30% of America’s GDP).

You may think from my tone that I had a bad time in Seattle, but, sir or madam, you would be wrong. I took dozens of pictures on my trip, went kayaking (at $20/hour), had some great seafood, drank good beer, and saw two of my best friends. But there was a sense of unreality the whole time, of something unfinished and slightly out of my grasp. Sure, it’s kind of a “you had to be there” thing, but imagine being in a cross between ‘The Truman Show’ and ‘The Stepford Wives’ – all the idyllic sets get pulled down at night and all the shiny happy robots, um, I mean Seattle natives, go back in to their charging pods til morning.

To give you an example from earlier that day, upon stepping in to one of the city’s best breakfast joints by reputation, the Nickel Duke, everything seemed normal - the place seemed to possess a kind of cool vibe – there were pulleys and strings attached to mobiles of giant oysters hanging from the ceiling; every time someone would open the door, the oysters would open their “shells.” There were even a few minorities among the customer base. The flapjacks more than hit the spot. So far, so good. Problem was, went I to the bathroom, I nearly tossed my food. It wasn’t the surroundings – nearly all of Seattle’s interiors, including the restrooms, feel slightly antiseptic. It was what I was hearing. Instead of piped in music, I heard the Nickel Duke Players (read: student actors) on tape reciting scenes from the old TV show Frasier, which, you guessed it, took place in Seattle. If I wasn’t convinced before that Seattle was somehow in the grip of Hell, hearing talentless amateurs reciting the lines of two-dimensional characters from a long-dead sitcom, ostensibly for the customers’ amusement, certainly did the trick.

After breakfast it was on to a walk with my good friend Aaron in one of Seattle’s many parks, which I was not surprised to find out were designed by the Olmsted Brothers. Even one hundred years ago, Seattle had to import its landscaping ‘joie de vivre’ from thousands of miles away in New York. They knew, even back then, that no park designer with his finger on nature’s pulse could be found locally. In the middle of this particular park the locals built a Museum of Asian Art. Having gained a true appreciation for the stuff from my wife, an art historian, I gladly paid the “suggested” donation. But wait. How can you call yourself an Asian Art Museum if you have no Japanese art? Epic, epic fail. Shaking my head, we moved on to another park several miles away that was NOT designed by the Olmsteds, but is nonetheless one of the city’s most popular. The picture at the top of the article shows this recreational area, built around the decrepit, rusting hulks of the former Seattle Gas Works machinery. Instead of painting them, or God forbid tearing them down and replacing them with something more aesthetic, (which would not be a challenge I assure you) these eyesores remain the centerpiece of what appears to be a grand stroke of whimsical genius at first, but quickly reveals itself to be cynical and corporate - somebody got out of paying a massive clean-up bill by turning a refinery into a park. (Thanks to Paul T. from San Francisco on yelp for taking the words out of my mouth).

Much later that day, I waved goodbye to Aaron, Mark, and Lucinda and flew back to San Francisco. As I exited BART, I was greeted by a busker who looked suspiciously like my editor, fedora and all, playing a flamenco variation of the opening riff from Yes’ ‘Roundabout.’ The first woman I passed walking home on 16th was a shambling stick of a woman with neon pink pajamas and a Foxy Brown afro. Turning the corner, I ducked into Moules, a Belgian fast-food joint on Valencia, to order a pound of mussels to refuel after my journey. The Carpenters ‘Rainy Days and Mondays’ played in the background, but yet it didn’t sound lame. As the half-Filipino, half-Mexican girl came out the kitchen smiling with my steaming bowl of cheap seafood, I knew why. The streets, the people, the music, even the food before me had soul.

I was home.

Sunday
Jul182010

Arizona sucks

I feel most comfortable when I walk into a room full of people who know who I
am. I'm pretty sure all of us can make that exact same statement. The hard part
is actually knowing who you are.

I'm pretty sure I'm not gay. Even though I live in San Francisco and put all
my gay friends into some magical circle of awesome -- I'm not gay.

A little over 10 years ago, at the peak of the dot-com boom, I thought it would
be really cool to actually PROVE it. How?

2 guys
Unlimited supply of booze
Unlimited supply of drugs
Unlimited supply of porn

After 12 hours, the 2 naked guys were insanely fucked up and... were still
hairy, ugly, and had no interest in each other's penises.

So last weekend, I reconnected with my friend and realized just how much things
change. He lives in Arizona.. I don't. If any part of you thinks that Arizona
actually exists, visit in July. Arizona is an extension of hell created by all
the evil that exists in our world. As soon as you enter, your skin melts, your
children burn on the heated pavement, Charles Barkley doesn't get his ring, and
all that is good in this world.. bleh. Old people like Scottsdale.

Anyhow...

There's an exchange rate when you leave California. SF dollars go a long way
in Arizona. Anything wrapped in a tortilla or pita.. is gonna cost you around
3 dollars. How the hell do ANY of the restaurants, cafes, taco trucks, food
carts, back-alley abortion clinics.. actually get away with charging us a
fortune for whatever they feel like giving us?

Why?

Because we're all snobs, idiots, assholes, and have no respect for what our
stomping ground was before we got here.

Oh, and 10 years later.. I still don't like dicks.