Archive for November, 2009

Don’t You Wish You Had Your Own State-Approved Smoking Tent, Like Arnold Schwarzenegger’s?

Monday, November 30th, 2009

I bet you’d love to have your very own smoking tent. One that’s large enough to be seen from outer space, right?

Well then you should envy California Governor Arnold Schwazenegger ’cause this beige smoking tent is all his.

As seen from the second floor of Sacramento’s Capitol Building. Click to expand:


Best of all, it’s been excluded from California’s new anti-smoking laws because, well, just because.

And if there’s the occasional  flooding in our historic capitol due to all the fake plastic grass that’s been put down, well, that’s all right as well.

Here’s the bird’s eye view


Happy smoking, Arnie!

Yes, whether it be cigars…

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via aindavid

…or marijuana, like back in the day…


 Smoking some sweet aparteid weed in South Africa – Pumping Iron, 1977

happy smoking, Arnold!

Enjoy your tent.

Know Your Golden Gate Park California Valley Quail – A Portrait in Blue

Monday, November 30th, 2009

Or green, whichever. Anyway, despite the worries, California’s Official State Birds are still out there, strutting about Golden Gate Park

Of course there used to be many more

Presenting HRH Winthorpe Danforth Quail III in Strybing Arboretum:

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And here are his kids back in the day, possibly:


Now you know better your Golden Gate Park California Valley Quail (Callipepla californica).

Black Friday Forces San Francisco to Give Up on its “No Cars on Inbound Market” Experiment

Monday, November 30th, 2009

Not officially or anything, but the DPT /SFMTA / SFPD folks who normally work on keeping inbound Market Street free of cars from Eighth Street to Fifth Street took a break last Friday (yes, Black Friday). So it was like totally wide open to traffic, temporarily anyway.

This was the result: a string of slow-moving vehicles for as far as you could see, all the way to the Ferry BuildingClick to expand:


Note the new signs. The previous versions talked about how “private vehicles” were banned from continuing. The current versions allow “buses, taxis, trucks, and bikeson Market. So that makes things more clear for the tourists.

Speaking of whom, Our Visitors just ignore the signs. They understand that they need to keep out of the bus and taxi-only diamond lanes, but they don’t seem to get the idea that they’re not allowed to proceed on Market the way they used to. It seems they need a crew of MUNI Parking Control Officers to tell them what’s up.

Oh well.

(Myself, I got doored by one of these cars a couple minutes after I snapped this photo. I was on the slow lane of the beige portion of the street to the right of the vehicle when the passenger door opened – it was an against-the-rule dooring just like the Incident at the Juicy Couture.

Oh well.)

“Market-Driven New American Cuisine” – Baker & Banker Set to Open This Week in Pac Heights

Monday, November 30th, 2009

Combining our twin obsessions of food and money, it’s Baker & Banker! And they’re all set to serve up steak, cast-iron potatoes and more starting this week (probably tomorrow, December 1, 2009) at 1701 Octavia betwixt Bush and Pine.

Will our Quince replacement get along well with its NIMBY-ish neighbors in this residential hood? We Can Only Hope. 

As it looked a few weeks back:

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Eater SF has the deets:

“As you’ll recall, Jeff Banker (of Home fame) and his wife Lori Baker are opening a new American, “welcoming neighborhood restaurant” there, and lo and behold, it’s coming along quite nicely. Notable designer Michael Brennan has spruced up the cozy interior with some dark leather banquettes and a dark wood bar…”

Why don’t you drop by sometime and see the results of the efforts of this cute couple? It’s already(!) rated five stars on Yelp, so that’s a good(?) sign.

The aforementioned Baker and Banker:


More details, after the jump.

Bon courage, B&B!


San Francisco’s Hyatt Regency Embarcadero is a Winter Wonderland

Monday, November 30th, 2009

Here’s the World’s Largest Hotel Lobby as it appears during the Christmas / Hanukkah / Kwanzaa / Yule / Sol Invictus / Hogmanay / Amaterasu Omikami / Festivus seasons.

And check the slideshow of the holiday decorations at our Hyatt Regency Embarcadero hotel.

Click to expand:  


And here’s Santa Town up close. How many Starbuckses can you spot?


via kumasawa

See you there!

The 31st Annual Ceremony and March for Harvey Milk and George Moscone

Saturday, November 28th, 2009

This is how it looked last night in the Castro:


via Steve Rhodes


via Jamison

The Vanishing Car Show Babes of the San Francisco International Auto Show

Saturday, November 28th, 2009

Just as San Francisco has experienced the demise of construction workers, it’s also lost its car show model babes. Things just aren’t what they used to be at the San Francisco International Auto Show, for whatever reason.

Maybe in Europe or Asia they still have something like the Bundy Bounce, but you’re not going to find anything like that at the big family-oriented car show in San Francisco, longstanding stereotypes of car shows notwithstanding. FYI.

Here’s what’s left of that bygone era.

The continuously-improving Kaizen-ettes (改善ettes – Jordan, Marisa and Laura) sing the praises of this 2010 Toyota Prius:


Chatting about a huge Dodge pick-em-up:

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Talking to no one at all about the Chrysler 300 sedan:


That’s it.

Also, no beefcake (beefcake!). Maybe they had something like that ten years ago, but not anymore.

Christina Applegate, you gotta put me on/


Photos of the 2009 San Francisco International Auto Show at Moscone Center

Saturday, November 28th, 2009

The 52nd Annual San Francisco International Auto Show continues ’til Wednesday, December 2nd down at Moscone Center. It’s eight bucks, why not check it out?

The joint is sponsored by the San Francisco Chronicle – here are their photos from Wednesday night. And here’s an annotated gallery from Ryan W over at Yelp. And here are the babes.

A family decision – to buy the new Lexus hybrid or not. Click to expand:

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A passionate pink Smart Car Four-Two Passion:


The Scions look like Matchbox Cars, right?


A fabled four-door Porsche Panamera – the California Highway Patrol must have been high on the waiting list


Hands up – who here has a Lexus? The SEMA boys painted this IS350 using the flattest finish known to Man. That’s not primer, it’s paint:

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I think the South Koreans are arriving a little late at the boaty chromed-up car party, but anyway, here’s your giant 2010 Hyundai Equus – ask about their bullet-proof model:

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A woody Mini Clubman station wagon, of course:


Honda makes jets? Sort of, with a little help from GE. Buy your HondaJet HA420 starting in 2011:


And here’s your new Piaggio tricycle scooter – ask about their hybrid model:


And that’s your San Francisco International Car Show for 2009.

All the models, after the jump.


Is Today “Black Friday” or “Buy Nothing Day”? Well, Take Your Pick

Friday, November 27th, 2009

Of course, today is both Black Friday and Buy Nothing Day in San Francisco.

A Market Street flyer announcing a 24-hour moratorium on consumer spending, inconveniently coinciding with the height of Zhu Zhu Hamster mania:

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via Steve Rhodes

As BND looked in 2007 at Union Square:


also via Steve Rhodes

Thanksgiving Was No Holiday for the Kelly-Moore Day Laborers at Oak and Divisadero

Friday, November 27th, 2009


Thanksgiving morning on San Francisco’s Oak Street. Waiting for work:


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