Adventures in Baby Sitting

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San Francisco’s most valuable resource may be in danger of leaving The City if something isn’t done today. According to the Washington Post, the situation has gotten so bad, that all areas of City government are making this a top priority. I’m not talking about tourists, or even Fortune 500 companies, I’m talking about white babies. And unless the City changes the parking permit laws, white babies will flee in droves to the suburbs, taking their cuteness (apparently a huge part of our budget) with them. 

The solution to stopping Cute Flight before our adorable quotient plunges to unsustainable levels?  Parking permits for nannies. Scoff all you want, they’ve heard all your complaints before. 

“People hear ‘parking for nannies’ and assume it’s some elitist thing, but we’re working parents and this is a huge safety issue,”  said Roxanne Stachon, a civil engineer and mother of two from the city’s Russian Hill neighborhood, who is leading the charge for the special permits.

 

Roxanne, (pictured above- yes, on the left) is not an elitist- this is a safety issue. 

Stachon said her longtime nanny often has to leave the children – ages 2 and 10 months – unattended for up to 10 minutes every two hours while she searches for a new parking spot.  (I wonder how long the nannies’ kids are being left unattended?)

(NOTE: I’ve looked for parking in Russian Hill before, that is one Super Nanny, let me tell you.) So the SFMTA, the agency that oversees MUNI, is now also on the hook for the care and well-being of the City’s children? 

But transportation officials say they are eager to stop the exodus of San Francisco families to the suburbs, and increasing the flexibility of the parking permit program could help.

They obviously haven’t ridden the 22 when school gets out because nobody who has is going to cry about the loss of school-aged children. There is of course delicious irony in the fact that the SFTMA, which has a official policy of transit first, is going to do contortions to ease the burden on nannies looking for parking. I thought the only reason they installed the bus stops in Russian Hill was so the nannies could get there from the Mission. 

These non-elitist Russian Hill ladies, just want what we all want, the opportunity to raise their kids, and by gummit, the City should find a way to be more friendly to “working families (who can afford nannies and the 98$ permit)”. 

Stachon and her fellow advocates – a core group of about two dozen mostly moms – say decisive action by the SFMTA board would send a strong message that the agency cares about the needs of local parents.

“When you’re told childcare is not a valid exception to the existing policy, it creates a very unfriendly environment for families,” Stachon said. 

Meanwhile, the nannie’s son, can’t even afford to ride the bus. 

Where were you?

On this the 25th anniversary of the Challenger disaster it is clear that it was one of those seminal moments in which you Remember Where You Were When it Happened. Since I’ve been alive, there have only been a few such moments. I was too young to really know or care about Lennon’s assassination, but I would assume that would be on a lot people’s lists. I think the ones i’ll always remember are (in no particular order):

Challenger Disaster: I was at school, walking from the middle school building to the cafeteria for lunch and I saw the launch and subsequent explosion in the weird little store we had where you bought gym clothes and other random School branded items like tote bags. I remember people being very upset and some people crying. I also think it took about four minutes before I heard the first Space Shuttle Joke – remember those? How many of them there were that year? Kids are just awful. 

OJ Simpson Verdict- I was in college living on McLendon right across the street from Candler Park and just as I was pulling into my driveway the radio station interrupted its coverage of whatever it was doing and said that the jury had acquitted him. Still in my car, in shock, just a few miles away from Dr. King’s grave and memorial, I remember thinking that America had taken a huge step towards equality now that Rich Black people could now also kill their wives and get away with it. 

Michael Jackson’s First Moonwalk – We had Thriller on vinyl, it was the rare piece of contemporary music that my parents purchased, and we were all gathered around the TV watching him perform Billie Jean. In the various clips on youtube, you’ll notice that when he does the moonwalk, the crowd scream/gasps like he’d just done something anatomically impossible.  

Election Night 2008-  I would have bet good money that a black person was never going to be elected president in my lifetime. That night was crazy in my neighborhood. I’ve never seen so many people so happy. People in marxsit-leftist ess eff were singing patriotic songs, it was odd. You know it’s a huge impromptu party when Extra Action shows up. 

Liquid Dreams

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The warm days that have settled upon us here in Ess Eff means I’m going to spend a lot of time looking a pictures of people in Dolores Park, reading their twitter updates about all the exciting happenings in Dolores Park and of course reading their Facebook updates about how hard they’re going to kick it in Dolores Park this weekend. But one thing my social graph will be missing is the daily update I used to receive on 4Loko consumption. 

Alas, all good things must come to an end. But wait! 4Loko was banned but being an asshole wasn’t, so with that I propose we start a Facebook campaign to have Coca Brynco distributed in bodegas across The City. 

The coca leaf has been used for centuries to combat altitude sickness, stave off hunger pangs, and get people naked so it has its medicinal bonafides. Right now it’s only being sold in Bolivia, but like other products made in Bolivia, I’m sure we’ll find a way to get a consistent supply (without or without the use of trebuchet).

Plus, since it’s being billed as an energy drink, it would neatly solve the problem of underage kids loitering outside of said bodegas beseeching you to buy them some alcohol and a Swisher. They won’t need the blunt because soon we’ll all be able to purchase some Canna Cola— provided you have a verifiable medical condition like anxiety, or restless leg syndrome. 

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Each 12-ounce bottle of “Canna Cola” will contain 35 to 65 milligrams of THC, which is a lot, but lest you think they are being irresponsible, it appears they’ve taken steps to ensure that their branding will not appeal to children. Of course THC-laden sugary drinks do present their own problems w/r/t our obesity epidemic. One can imagine the recursive loop once the munchies set in. In the land where only outlaws eat Happy Meals, this could be a serious problem, so invest in Canna Cola futures today. 

A Brave New World

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A regrettably large number of people in this country believe in angels. This is not news to you I’m sure, our nation’s ability to suspend disbelief and exhibit faith is head shakingly  renowned around the world. We have some strange folkways and even stranger beliefs (for instance, some unfathomably large portion of the country believes in the designated hitter) . But even more than the winged  invisible embodiment of pure good, Americans believe in football. On Sunday, more of us watch football than go to church.  

When it comes to football we are like Catholics in a Latin America Country where every city has it’s own saint. Our hagiography of Messrs, Montana, Riggins, Elway, Manning, et. al is apparent in the stands during the two minute drill. 

But before you decide that  our obeisance to Our Lady of the Forward Pass is bad, or leads to unsavory outcomes, know that recent events have proved otherwise. Namely this: Football is the greatest force for social change in America. 

Football is the most watched sport in America – by a long shot. It’s not even close. This has allowed it to swallow up any number scandals from the weekly shootings outside strip clubs, up to and including murder (both human and canine). But America isn’t really afraid of guns and violence. We’re afraid of sex. 

Or at least I thought so, until the sports themed websites started a serious discuss on foot fetish complete with video proof. The fact that the coach of NY Jets was making foot fetish videos rose and fell like a third graders paper airplane without a public apology, without moralizing from the Right, without anyone thinking of the Children. Kink. An actual perversion, thrust itself into public conversation and did absolutely no damage to the Temple Gridiron. 

Remember the kerfluffle around the repeal of DADT? One of the main arguments was that we should not be using the military as a place to run social experiments (conveniently forgetting that the military was racially integrated long before the lunch counters but whatever, facts schmacts)? Well, maybe they were right that wasn’t the right venue, that apparently is why God created football. 

It stays white out later

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So when real estate brokers try to sell you on the gritty aspect of a neighborhood, what they are really trying to say, without them really understanding it of course, is that the place actually retains a semblance of the Real. There remains a possibility for types of human interactions to occur that aren’t choreographed by late-capitalistic tropes of social exchange, but rather that anything could happen, that someone could say something that might catch you off guard and make you think twice about who you really are. (full essay here