The 800 Bus

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Mission Buddhist temple

via Architecturally, this is one of my favorite houses of worship in San Francisco. Not because it is the most beautiful, but because it is a Buddhist Temple occupying an old Victorian church. The brightly painted Victorians are tied to the city’s extravagant gold rush history. It also touches on the city’s long bohemianism, as the Hippies were the first to paint their Victorians in bold color schemes—the English stuck with somber monochromatic grey-white. But while the bold red paint fits in nicely on this Mission street, it is clearly chosen to mark the space for what it is… tell me more

The XX Marks the Mezzanine

Image via Wikipedia While Destructo was finishing up his set at the Mezzanine, I wandered upstairs in search of a better view. I was surprised to see a DJ setting up in the back room. Hope alighted my belly. I asked the gent assembling what his name was and he said Jaime. Hope swelled. I asked him if he had a DJ name. He seemed a little taken aback, like the answer wasn’t ready at his fingertips. “The XX.” I said, “Oh, great. Then you’re who I’m here to see.” Well that wasn’t exactly true—I’d only found out he was… tell me more

Treasure Island Music Festival: Saturday Evening

As a Floridian, most bands arouse the crowd by saying how surprised they are to see a lively crowd in the netherworld of suburban hell. All day at Treasure Island the bands were raving about how much they loved our city. While every band wants to sweet talk their audience, it’s easy to believe. Treasure Island has one of the best views of the skyline and I can only imagine, as a performer, what it must have been like to be standing on that stage with water all around you and San Francisco leaping up across the bay bridge. The… tell me more

Treasure Island Music Festival 2009: Sat morning

Perfect weather introduced the first and most promising act of the Treasure Island Music Festival: The Limousines. I’ve caught the end of their show once before and they were good enough that I got up early on a Saturday just to see them again. Unfortunately traffic around the Berkeley Bowl caused me to miss half their show again. Their songs are cute and funny and both the lyrics and the beat make me want to dance from even the first time hearing them. In my mind, The Limousines are the band of 2009 to get excited about. The next act… tell me more

“If You Consider…” An Ambient Audio Tour of Golden Gate Park

A recent blog I wrote on the lovely audio tour by Jeremy Dalmas, “If You Consider…”. This is posted on “Bay Is Better,” a blog celebrating the joy of living in the S.F. Bay area. I’m looking forward to hearing from the California Convention and Visitors Bureau any day now. tell me more

I Appreciate the Tori Amos Song More and More

At 4:47 this morning we had a 4.2 earthquake very close to my apartment. I was dreaming of Tarot Cards when it pulled me from sleep. Earthquakes are so strange. Mostly because they’re loud. It is hard to tell: is that my furniture moving, or is it the sound of the earth? Maybe we Californians are a little more in touch with the earth. It makes a fuss every now and then, gets a hankering for attention. Earthquakes are the only natural disaster I can think of that aren’t exacerbated by global warming. I take some strange comfort in that.… tell me more

Perfect Moments

I leave the dusty, dark recesses of my apartment to drop off a big box for the charity-thrift up the street. I love to go there and leave a huge donation and walk out empty-handed. It makes me feel freer, lighter. Outside my door, the neighbors are throwing a birthday party, with chips and cheese and Mexican music and a giant sponge-bob bouncy castle. One of the boys offers to open the gate for me, though my box is surprisingly light. Looking out at the mountains and feeling the ocean breeze I am suddenly caught up in a perfect moment.… tell me more

I Left My Heart in North Beach

According to my sweetie, the best hostel in San Francisco is the Green Tortoise, so that’s where my best friend Ray and I stayed for the second day of our vacation. It is in the North Beach district, which is S.F.’s version of Little Italy. The Hostel is in the most famous part of North Beach, Columbus Ave., where it borders and blends with Chinatown. From a block away you can see the majesty of the Sentinel building and the Transamerica Pyramid. You can also see the Citylights Bookstore and the Vesuvio. The Sentinel building is a green flat-iron that… tell me more

I Left My Heart In the Mission District

I ended up with an extra two days off from work so my best buddy Ray and I decided to take a much coveted vacation in my favorite city in the world, San Francisco. Never mind that S.F. is less than an hour from my doorstep. I saved the money on a plane ticket so I felt free to spend carelessly all week. My vacation started off slow, as we went to three places that were closed. Our first stop would have been the South Park Cafe. But being closed, I enjoyed watching artists work their easels in the park.… tell me more