I am a big fan of posting as soon as the experience happens, but this week I have been a complete bag of lazy. So here it goes, direct from my journal; My first week in SF:
"Hopefully the next entry will be on my badass PDA and won't actually have to write with my hand. Seriously, we had a fun day yesterday. Met with Dan and Amanda, ate waffles, then MARTA'd to decatur. Had a great time, did the Beer fest on the square. Finally volunteered and luckily got the ABITA table, AWESOME. Saw a bunch of friends that I haven't seen in awhile ***OMIT***** Dan got wasted, I went back to the house and crashed landed Dan while the girls got cat food. J, A and I went to Village Pizza in Cabbagetown. ***OMIT****
Last I heard we were flying over Wichita, KS. We watched Evan Almighty and then an episode of The Office.
Salt lake City, Utah. I can't imagine I got too much time here. I should look at my ticket. Ok, Skymiles registration, I got to do that.
Ok, San Jose looks really far from Livermore, why they don't fly me into Oakland. Hmmm.
Plane is rocking and rolling, I saw the wings move a good bit. Salt Lake has got crazy white hill/mountain things. I was watching some star TV guide type show while we were bouncing around. I put the iPod back on despite the ban of electronic devices since we were landing. I am not dying listening to some crap show, where celeb groupies compliment Vanessa Williams on her "ageless beauty".
Fuck that. Gimme Harborcoat, gimme 'You Got Me', gimme Radiohead.
the only green in Salt Lake is the golf course.
Now I am at Dick Clark's American Bandstand restaurant. I was with joslin at one of these in Chicago on the flight back. Getting the Cajun burger although my gaze is arrested for a quick second at the Chocolate Brownie Orgy. Hell yeah.
I sa a guy with a tatto kind of like mine and I thought what I'd look like in 20 years. I can't be fat. Americans won't be fat in 20 years. If you are fat, you will be out of date, dead. We are going to have to slim down. Not only physically, but consumerism, debt-wise, etc"
Of course, I stop documenting right here, all I got left is the most recent object of infatuation:San Jose airport is cool but a hike from where I am supposed to be for the next two weeks. So, I get a shuttle for $100 and this guy named Singh drives me out. Not too conversational, oh well.
I am stoked to be in Cali and take all the cool hills in. Finally get to my place and get checked in. I ask where the nearest food joint is and, I knew their was going ot be a problem when she responds: "well there is a COSTCO an exit up on the highway". NO JOKE. There is nothing out here. A gas station about a mile away, but that is it.
I grab a taxi and head into 'town' 15 minutes away. I go Ancestros, a Mexican joint and then to my what I find is going to be my new Cali home away from home: 1st Street Alehouse. I have made it a point to try beers I have never heard of: Alaskan Amber, Snowshoe Porter, Pliny the Elder, El Toro Stout, Grizzly Brown Ale, Black Butte. Not all on this one night, I have gone a few more times, whew!
So I end up getting a rental car the next morning, which was a fiasco, but whatevz. Work goes well, some issues -but that is a whole 'nother blog-. Finish work at 3:30, yeah, I said 3:30, fucking californians. So I head out to San Francisco and am just blown away by the beauty of the drive there. Oakland's hills, the bay bridge, the shock of pacific cold air right when you get off the 580. And there it is, looking like a real-deal treasure island, SF.
Parked the car after negotiating the terrifying hills and parking in a space that was too good to be true. Then a lady came out and said, "HEY that's my garage!"OOps.
I seemed to be perpetually stuck in Chinatown, but was able to find San Francisco Brewing Co. Had an amazing garlic burger and a slamming pint of...shit...forgot. But then had an Albatross Lager. Not impressed. Went back home.
Tuesday, I just went to dinner in Livermore and went back to my bar and BS'd with Miguel the coolest barback and the only mexican in the house. Kicked it with a guy named Paul and compared boxing to MMA. Then Brett Favre vs. Dan Marino. I am such a bullshitter sometimes.
Wednesday, went back to my bar. Watched my Rockies lose and just cried into my beer, which was delicious by the way. Snowshoe Pale, I think.
Thursday was the last day of class, so I headed to SF after class to go catch my girls TEAM GINA! Got to the city early so I went to check out one of its landmarks: CASTRO. I finally found a space on Guerrero about 8 blocks away. Walked up there and it was a mellow street, walked around, bought some stickers at the HRC and went to the oldest bar in Castro: The Twin Peaks.
Cool bar, not a great selection of beers, but the environment was cool. Old decrepit queens drinking gin and tonics and looking haggard as shit. Sat at the bar watching the Rockies once again do not so well. Got into a quick convo about operating systems and when I mentioned Vista you'd thought I yelled "ALL FAGS SHOULD DIE!!! Gays really like their Macs. They were all cool, except for my one mention of the 'V' word.
Actual signs in the Castro...the bottom of the second one says: tweaker.org WTF?
Headed out, got the 17th street and went to the Parkside bar where Team Gina was to play. Had a Prohibition Speakeasy Dark beer. AMAZING. This street by the way, is one kick ass street. it is very urban and young, it's like having Lenny's, Azul and the Righteous Room all on the same street(ATL folks you know what I am talking about). The bartender told me the girls weren't going on for another few hours so I finished up and went a few blocks down to Bottom of the Hill and had a Fat Tire Amber(not Flying Dog, but a local). Talked to a girl about her boyfriend's band that was setting up. Got into an argument about Tarantino's legitimacy with one of the bartenders. Had to double up efforts to not be wrong. I think I used the word 'diegesis'. Oh boy.
Left there and on the walk back was mesmerized by a gorgeous Ferrari 355. I was standing there in love when the owner walks out. We kind of had this awkward moment where he didn't know if I was a bad guy and I didn't know what he was going to do. We ended up just talking about the car. The place was actually a garage and I watched him drive it in. His buddy came out and he was impressed when I pointed out that the 308 on the lift was Magnum PI's old ride. The three of us ended up hanging out for five talking about the Citroen. Once again, I am such a bullshitter.
Went to the next bar and don't remember the name. it was very average 20/30 somethings with Red Sox jerseys. Shit. Had two beers, Liberty Ale and Poppy Jasper to distract myself from the cheers of the "wicked" fans.
Back to Parkside, paid my $6 and went to the smoking room with my new pack of Camels. Chatted it up with a bunch of people and even had Gina herself say "your the guy from Atlanta". GRANTED, I did post on their MySpace beforehand, but it still felt great.
Opening act was solid, smooth, sexy lyrics from, shit, I don't remember. It was ill though. Next band was Ice Cream Socialites. Fun, loud, out of control. And then, of course, TG kicked it rad.
I was downing water by this time, so much the bartender, Cassie, just left the pitcher on the bar for me. Hydration is good, but all the beer must have churned me up. So I would stand in the corner by the stage and rip ass and then walk briskly across the floor to get more water at the bar. Then I'd watch all the lesbian hipsters look at eachother with a accusatory query. RIOT.
I hung out for a minute after the set and chatted people up but just felt old. Not enough tattoos, piercings or tight jeans to be relevant. Whatever.
Friday morning, got up at noon, went to a movie and lunch. Wandered the endless shopping center, went home, ordered in. Basically, lame night.
OK, that is all I hope you enjoyed, and I promise to get some better pics up that I take with a real camera, not a cell phone.