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Sunday, August 2, 2015

Travels with Beaverhausen: This'n'That About San Francisco

When San Francisco residents tell you they have a "green card" these days, it most likely has nothing to do with immigration. It's the new, government-issued card that permits the owner to smoke marijuana for medicinal purposes. There are a lot of prescriptions in this city and, hence, active cards.

One sight not on yesterday morning's tour was seen in early evening. As our sedan took us to Feinstein's, the driver went through the Tenderloin district. This part of town is just south of Nob Hill and the theater area. It is similar to what NYC's Bowery was like before gentrification set in. Lots of drunks, druggies, streetwalkers, the homeless and some obvious psychos. I do not recommend traversing the Tenderloin by foot, especially after dark.

My autographed copy of Sally Kellerman's latest cd, from last night's outstanding show at Feinstein's, is sensitively produced by Val Garay and contains a lot of the material from her cabaret shows, including the Leiber & Stoler pop classic, "Love Potion #9," Nina Simone's "Sugar in My Bowl," and the wonderful "Somebody Call the Cops." The jazz arrangements suit Sally's gravelly baritone perfectly throughout. Simply titled Sally, this is a wonderful addition to my album collection that will always remind me of my summer visit to Baghdad by the Bay.

Where NYC tends to be more 24/ 7 industrious, SF tends to be more mellow-yellow, though Levi-Strauss, The Gap, Airbnb, Pacific Gas and Electric, Yelp. Pinterest, Twitter, Mozilla, Wikipedia, Craigslist have their main offices here.

Rents and real estate in SF are even more expensive than in NYC. SF is the most densely populated city in California and the second most densely populated in the US, after NYC.

SF has a pay-what-you-can policy for its subway, which means the indigent can get aboard free. This would so not fly in NYC because people there would be in one's face, telling one about him/herself. I can just hear it inside my head: " ExCUSE me?! I have to pay $5.00 round-trip and YOU're riding free?" Frisco's fare is nearly as expensive, by the way. It just underscores the city's more docile, accepting and tolerant attitudes. Blame it on the green cards?

Tomorrow, Buddy B will be visiting Chinatown & the Castro.



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