Tag Archives: san francisco

It’s the Weather

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I been trying to scrape up the energy to post something, but energy seems to be thin on the ground these days.  Mostly, it’s hot.  I know my readers everywhere but here have been dealing with the atmosphere turning into something like a slow roasting oven, but this is San Francisco!   We do not do hot weather.  It is an outrage.  Records all over the place being broken, with temperatures over 100, which is something in Celsius, who knows?  It is fucking hot, how’s that?

My house has no air conditioning, which is pretty much never a problem, except when it is.  Like now.  How I hate to climb into a bed with the sheets already warm.  And only a sad fan huffing hot air around like that helps.

Last night, in the middle of sweating and being grouchy, I suddenly smelled smoke.  Wildfires are all around us and smoke has been kind of a background scent for weeks, but this was, suddenly, much stronger and getting more pungent fast.  More neighbors and I gathered in the street in this vague sort of way, asking each other “Do you smell smoke?”  I think if I had announced “No, I do not” in a firm voice, everyone would have just said “Oh, great. Thanks” and wandered back home.  Instead, I said, I was calling the Fire Department.  There was a sense of great relief.  Turns out no one wants to be the one to deal with bureaucracy, but I worked for the government my whole career.  Bureaucracy is my home turf.

So I called and the emergency operator was incredibly chill.  Speaking with her was like tuning into the Mellow Jam Hour.  Eventually the firetrucks rolled in, one on each end of the street, cause apparently someone else called and one end of the my street is one fire station and the other end is another.  Fine with me, they were as cute as the cliché.  When you apply to be a firefighter, do you have to send in a headshot?

The tromped through my house, complimented me on both my decorating and my garden (this is so San Francisco) and poked around in the brush that fills the canyon behind me.  We all agreed, yes, you could smell the smoke (which made me feel better; at least I’m not crazy in that general direction,) the short cute one said “It doesn’t smell like   a brush fire, it’s too sweet.” “Like cedar” I said and he agreed with charming enthusiasm.  If it got any more gay cozy, we were all going to have to plan brunch.

 

 

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I swear, this is what showed up when I called 911 for the fire truck.  I may have to set a fire out back myself.

We went back out front and the  truck from the alien firehouse came down to chat with their fire man buddies (probably planning brunch) and eventually toddled on off.  The smoke faded, still with no cause, and the cat and I went back to watching porn.

The hot weather finally broke around dawn, but the huge fire down in Los Angeles has already made its way up here and is making my eyes burn and my sinuses dribble down my throat.  I’m slowly drowning in my own snot.

On to more weather news, but this without humpy firemen.  My father, my remaining brother, 5 of my nephews andneices and their nigh countless children, all still live in Houston, where a no-big-deal hurricane hit late last week and then stalled and dumped an astonishing flood.  More than 50 inches in one day.  San Francisco’s annual rainfall average is less than 24 inches.

My brother and I have been texting, him airily assuring me everything’s fine, which is what everyone in my family says right up to the point when they have to scramble out of the kitchen window to escape.  When I was in high school, the morning I was supposed to leave on our senior trip, our neighborhood was so flooded, my neighbor and classmate Stephanie and I were ferried out in a National Guard truck.  We made quite an entrance at school that day.  And then Stephanie and I went off to the beach for the weekend, leaving our mothers behind to cope.  But they were tough old Texas gals, didn’t bother them.  Probably glad to be rid of us, they spent the day drinking beer and watching to see if their houses were going to flood.  The houses didn’t, but they did run out of beer and so they talked the National Guard guys into giving them a ride to the liquor store.

Now that, motherfuckers, is Texas.

Bloody Moon

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And you know what else?  Living in San Francisco means not only that we’re the center of the disaster movie universe, but also that the tattered remains of the hippie era refuse to die here.  Proof?  Sunday evening was both a Super Moon (a full moon with “the closest approach the Moon makes to the Earth on its elliptical orbit, resulting in the largest apparent size of the lunar disk as seen from Earth,” thank you Wikipedia, and a term I never remember running into until recently and now which seems to turn up as regularly as a Dame Edith Farewell Tour) and a full lunar eclipse, a so-called “Blood Moon” because of the red color it takes on.  Naturally all the hippie-wiccan-Burning Man types and others who don’t keep their pubes trimmed were wild for the prospect.

This being San Francisco, the fog blew in right at sunset and obscured the whole thing.  All the pagans were terribly disappointed, poor dears.  It’s just as well, I had planned on sacrificing a goat, but they were all sold out and Saki absolutely refused to cooperate.  I had hoped that the ceremony might help unload my house in New Orleans which STILL has not sold.

What is wrong with these fatheads?  It’s a great house and I’m throwing in all of my exquisite taste that I lavished on the dump for free.  I don’t know, I suppose it’s just bad moon ju-ju.

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Goats. Never around when you need them.

Cinematic Outrage

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My dears, I return after far too long away to report on the movie San Andreas, a film that features the destruction (again) of California (mostly San Francisco) and Dwayne Johnson’s titty muscles in about equal parts.  Mr. Johnson’s chesticles are well worth spending the time with and the earthquake/tsunami destruction is most charming, although whenever the “actors” slowed down to deliver the “dialogue,” things really hit a rough patch.  The sight of Johnson effortlessly boating about in a debris flooded financial district was worth the price of admission all by itself.

Equally amusing was the lighthearted attitude the movie makers took towards San Francisco geography.  Characters start out on one side of downtown, emerge seconds later clear on the other side of town and then announce they have to go to Chinatown to casually loot an electronics store because, I don’t know, there weren’t any downtown?  I’ll never know why because they then decide to take a walking tour of the most inaccessible hills around here, part of which included a jaunt up Russian Hill, completely off any sensible route, but coincidentally right outside of a building I used to live in.  “Hey I used to live there!  Cool, huh?”  What better review could a film ask for?

Also Dwayne Johnson and his mantitties, in order to get to Coit Tower, parachute into the ball park, which is about as far from Coit Tower as you can get without leaving town.  Why?  Who knows?  I had stopped trying to figure that out by then and they hadn’t even wiped out Golden Gate Bridge yet, an absolute requirement in any San Francisco based disaster; you just sit there waiting for it to finally happen.  I have to say, having seen the bridge go down more times than a power bottom in a gay porn festival, this was a particularly satisfying collapse.

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Also, Dwayne Johnson in a series of tight shirts.

Everybody Needs Friends

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I enjoyed a very amusing weekend with our beloved Diane von Austinburg (aka “Sqweetie” aka “Snarkina”) who blew in town to see my new house here and to support my effort to eat my weight in shrimp.  Infuriatingly, many of my favorite restaurants celebrated the Fourth of July by closing down.  Who gave them independence?  God love Diane for putting up with my dithering pretty much the whole time she was here about whether to sell my house in New Orleans or the one in San Francisco (and believe me, I understand that sentence wraps up “White People Problems” pretty neatly so there is no need to bring that point up in comments.  Shut up.)

The problem of course is that each city is irresistible.  I know how incredibly lucky I am to own a house in each, I just can’t afford them both.  San Francisco is rich, smart and beautiful, New Orleans is like the terribly charming boyfriend who drinks too much and is always on the edge of going to jail.

As I kept whining to Diane, I am unaccustomed to indecisiveness, since being simply arbitrary is part of my charm, and waffling back and forth between the two was just irritating.  The last afternoon she was here I finally landed on staying San Francisco and letting go of the place here since who in their right mind would surrender San Francisco having worked so hard to establish a toehold there?

Also aiding in the decision was the simple fact of living here for last month has vividly reminded me what a wet hell a Gulf Coast summer is.  Plus, every major street in town is ripped to shreds as the city has leapt into the only attention they’ve paid to the infrastructure since I lived here in the 80’s.  Driving is crazy-making, a series of spirals into hell.  I was foolishly trying to get just to the other side of downtown with Night is Half Gone’s Jason and at one point had to ask “Am I in a lane?”  The only possible answers were “I’m not sure” “Sort of” and “No” and each were equally correct.  I don’t want to live some place I can’t navigate.

Mostly it was a simple case of Diane asking astutely (and no doubt worn out by my whining) “Which one is home?” to which I promptly replied “San Francisco.”  And so it is.

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And I need to get back to my evil little cat. I know this looks like he’s sort of dead, but Secret Agent Fred swears he’s just rolling on the floor. I think I should go see for myself.

License to Thrill

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I’ve struggled to come up with a post about going down to the DMV office to renew my driver’s license, but there’s only so much my genius can do to turn something that mundane into anything better.  Was it hellish?  Don’t be ridiculous, it was tedious.  Were there crazy guys in line with me who had straw in their hair?  Of course there were, this is San Francisco.  It was, as our friend John pointed out , the only place were everyone has to interact with everyone else; no cuts for you just cause you’re a rich white Lady.  An hour and half, and I was in and out, not hilarious, but not as bad as trip to the dentist.

Instead, let us turn our attention to the benefits of a good facial mudpack.

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Before

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After.  Worth it, right?