Posts Tagged ‘families’

SFGov Invites YOU to a FREE DINNER at the Park Branch Library Tonight – New Panhandle Playground – Bring the Kids!

Wednesday, May 31st, 2017

Here’s the news from a few years back and here’s what’s going to happen tonight at our SFPL’s Park Branch Library at 1833 Page near Clayton at 5:30 PM:

“Panhandle Playground Project – Planning Workshop – May 31 @ 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm

A workshop to discuss future improvements to the Panhandle Playground as part of the Let’s Play SF! Initiative – a partnership with the San Francisco Parks Alliance.

Food provided! Children and youth welcome as we will have planning activities geared towards them!

For more information about the Panhandle Playground Project, please visit tinyurl.com/PanhandlePlayground or contact Project Manager Melinda Stockmann at Melinda.Stockmann@sfgov.org or at 415-581-2548.”

But oh, there are a few issues.

1 So who’s paying the millions of dollars SFGov is proposing to spend? Well, they don’t get into that. I assume it’s local tax- and fee-payers. So that’s one of the costs of this project, right?

2. I mention that because destroying the current setup, the popular Kid’s Kingdom playground what’s the current Panhandle Playground, and then putting in a replacement will take, what, months, years? I mean, delays are baked into the cake, right?

Oh, here it is. “WELCOME TO KID’S KINGDOM – DONATED BY YOUR LOCAL SATURN DEALER.” Or at least it used to say that. But area residents didn’t cotton to this kind of marketing, so chop chop:

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3. One way to take care of this lengthy shut down issue would be to build the new playground someplace else nearby. THIS IS ONE OF THE CHOICES THAT YOU MIGHT POSSIBLY HAVE INPUT ON TONIGHT. Frankly, I don’t think Rec and Park would really be into moving the site JMO. The current location has a bunch of exotic trees around it, which many find appealing, but given the half-assed way RPD conducts its bidness, there’s a heightened risk of a big old branch coming down and killing somebody someday. Anyway, our RPD seems to think nothing of shutting down playgrounds for basically no reason for like a year, so I don’t think it cares oh well.

Getting rid of the rats should be high on the agenda regardless:

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RPD’s hands are tied about getting rid of rats. They can cull the herd, but getting rid of them altogether, well that’s a gonna be hard. They have some helpers though, to swoop down and carry away the poor little rattus rattus:

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4. But here’s the thing: Once you wrap your head around building the new playground while keeping the current one open, then who’s to say that people would prefer the new one? In fact, the current Kid’s Kingdom Panhandle Playground is remarkably popular, drawing in kids from all over the city. Why? Well mostly it has to do with all the tons of sand. People love the sand. And these days it’s a rare thing in Frisco. You know who hates sand, or at least hates taking care of sand? That’s right, your RPD. Speaking of which, RPD isn’t all that popular and yet the current playground is. So why not get a new RPD and leave the current playground alone?

5. Or better yet, take the money set aside and use it to take care of the Panhandle Playground better – is that so crazy? Ask people who are there and they are shocked that RPD and associated non-profits run by millionaires consider this place a “failing” playground. What makes it a “failure?” Its popularity? The current playground is a beat up Toyota Land Cruiser with 100,000 miles, which means that if you take care of it, maybe spruce it up a bit, then it will last for decades more, right?

6. But, RPD is already set upon getting rid of Kid’s Kingdom, without asking anybody. (Our SFMTA once made the mistake of actually asking if people wanted the crazy, I mean just crazy traffic circles they randomly put on Page, among other places. And the answer was no, we want our stop signs back, by a three to one margin. So this kind of thing is on RPD’s mind when it considers asking people what they want.) And they’re already paying a project manager and they’ve selected the main contractor, so RPD would think it “sad” if they had to give back the millions of dollars set aside.

7. Oh well.

8. And let’s see, is all that sand what’s there bad because of parasites? Well that could be true but it’s not because we don’t have no cats around, at least the way the ‘burbs do.

9. And is there arsenic in the wood at the playground now? Oh, yes there is. But it’s not all that big a deal. Typically, if there’s arsenic in your kid, then it’s going to be from something other than CCA wood. And you’re supposed to wash your hands after leaving, at least that’s what an RPD sign says what’s posted near the eastern entrance.

10. Oh, what’s that, playgrounds have changed so so much in the two decades since (Old) General Motors simply gifted us $100k to put in Kid’s Kingdom? Noooooope! You’re wrong, RPD.

11. But you have a new Theory of Playgrounds that you’re happy to share and discuss? Well, that’s fine, but the people who made Kid’s Kingdom also had theories and I’ll bet if you put them together, cut them up and then presented them to RPD employees, they wouldn’t be able to distinguish betwixt the bad old theories and the great new theories.

12. Oh well.

13. So the current playground is “failing” but the current users don’t have the foggiest idea of what that means, so why doesn’t RPD face up to this?

14. Anyway, you’ve paid for this project, so you deserve some free food at the library. They’ll ask you about your feelings about this and that, like what color should this be kind of thing. One supposes.

15. If the food’s not to your liking, Mickey D’s on Haight has 2 for 1 Happy Meals today, via their app.

16. Adieu Kid’s Kingdom. Many people will miss your ocean of sand, especially the Little Ones. Expect a playground geared more for Big Kids. For Better or Worse. Eventually.

17. OIOW:

“long-suffering playground” [IRL, it’s an extremely popular playground. Its current Yelp rating is 4.5 stars, which is the very definition of almost perfect, right? And hey look, what about the San Francisco Recreation and Parks Yelp rating – it’s much lower, it’s actually just 2.5 stars, right? Is RPD “failing?” Should we simply fire everybody and start over? Hey, why don’t we start using objective measurements, like asking the playground’s existing customers what they think? Is that too radical a notion?]

“finally” [This “framing” assumes 100% of what the millionaire-run Parks Alliance nonprofit says is accurate]

“Victim to time” [Well sure, you could replace this or that at this location, but what’s so wrong with it? What makes it a useless tear-down?]

“frequent wear and tear” [Because it’s popular? We’re going to change it because it’s popular and it gets used?]

“grown-up play” [Turns out it was sixth-graders who busted the slide, per the word on the street]

“the playground pales in comparison to other high-tech kids’ play areas in the city.” [What on Earth could  make a playground “high tech?” Like, “sure this playground is great, but I feel it doesn’t employ the most recent application of science?” Like, who says that? IRL, it’s perfectly fine.]

“failing playgrounds” [But the Panhandle Playground isn’t “failing,” right? Ask all the people who use it and try to find one person who would give it a letter grade of “F“]

“low household income” [Is this area a low household income area? WTF to that. In fact, the 94117 is an extremely high household income place, right? It’s off the charts, actually, nationally speaking. And even locally, it’s anything but a low household income area.]

“low Parks Alliance Report Card grades and rankings.” [Oh, here we go, here’s the problem. What’s the PARC and why does it matter?]

“an early holiday gift to District 5.” [London Breed is thinking “CHRISTMAS” but she says holidays – good for her. But who’s paying for this gift? Oh, we are? So it’s not really a gift, is it, London Claus?]

“high-tech play matting” [I have no fucking idea what this means. Currently, the joint is basically a giant sand box. Is this a bad thing? One supposes that some think so, but one doesn’t know.]

“What would you like to see improved upon in our small neighborhood playground?” [Keeping it the same, except for maintenance, which, if it’s lacking, then whose fault is that? Cough RPD, cough]

Wouldn’t it be ironic, dontcha think, if the Yelp ratings of the Panhandle Playground go down after we spend all those millions of dollars on this simple, functional playground?

We’ll see.

 

The Bridge Toll-Evading Mercedes Benz and BMW Owners of Frisco

Friday, September 30th, 2016

(I didn’t take most of these particular shots.)

Anywho, what do we see here – do we see the three parked cars of the occupants of one unit of housing all carousing about license plate-free on the Streets of San Francisco?

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I think so.

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Are these people pulling a Steve Jobs? Are they driving registered vehicles hither and yon with one or two DMV plates in the trunk, you know, waiting to get pulled over by the popo and then it will be, what, “Oh, I’ve been meaning to put those things on my car. The dealership says I need a special bracket, or something” or something like that?

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I’ll tell you, the reason why the owners of Italian exoticars drive about California without proper California registration and insurance is because of the crushing “use taxes” they would have to pay otherwise. So your expensive, impractical weekend car might cost you $10K or $20K just for CA registration for the first year and then many thousands per year for years after that. So you end up seeing people using Oregon plates or Nevada plates or Montana plates or whatever.

But OTOH, the reason why owners of German luxocars don’t have the plates what DMV sent them mounted front and rear, just speculating here, are:

  1. Eurocars aren’t made with tall square-ish American license plates in mind, so you might need a special bracket to mount them, and even though dealers are obligated to provide them…
  2. After they break, due to their Mickey Mouse construction, drivers don’t want to replace them due to…
  3. Car owners thinking that ugly U.S.-style plates mar the good looks of their Euro rides, and…

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4. Bridge Toll Evasion

(Hey, what if you have just the back license plate on your car – do the Golden Gate Bridge people take images of you car from the back as well? IDK.)

Anyway, the best example of this would be a German car owner who improperly asked for a handicapped placard and was improperly given one by a chiropractor and then uses that placard to park for free all day long at an SFMTA parking meter in Frisco, say someplace close to the Financh but not too close, maybe by that Safeway on Washington BUT ALSO doesn’t have license plates mounted in order to evade the $6.50 daily Golden Gate Bridge toll BUT ALSO has an insidery CHP 11-99 Foundation license plate holder so that the CHP officer who pulls you over already knows that you’ve personally given thousands of dollars to the families of CHP officers so s/he will go easy on you “this time” for speeding on the 101 without license plates BUT ALSO has been doing this for years and years.

You know, something like this:

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After all, you’re special.

So very special

It wasn’t that I didn’t try
It’s not the kind of thing, that you buy
Written in my destiny
Life is but a dream
Covered by the sky
Stop saying that you’re calling time
Look at your life before you start on mine
I’m not the kind of person that you need
I’m sick of trying
I mean that it’s over

It was always special
It was like water down the drain
I’m intoxicated
Every time I hear your name
I try to remember
But nothing is the same
It was always special
it was like water down the drain

Patiently you wait for me
You’re so blind
I thought it couldn’t be
Then changed my mind
Drowning in the endless sea
Line all those lines
The traces of your memory
Don’t belong with mine

Angry Hippies React to This Large Wooden Plaque at Our Panhandle Playground in Golden Gate Park – WHAT DID IT SAY?

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2015

I know the answer, Gentle Readers, but have at it yourselves.

See? It’s all:

WELCOME

TO

KID’S KINGDOM

DONATED BY YOUR LOCAL

________

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Your job is to fill in the blank.

CLUE: This defacement prolly occurred a long time ago

BEGIN!

Rec and Park’s 86th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting is ON, Rain or Shine – Here’s How Things Look Now

Thursday, December 3rd, 2015

It’s a bit soggy out there today, but oh well – the show must go on, but perhaps without any (artificial / trucked in) snow this year, one supposes:

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86th Annual Holiday Tree Lighting

December 3 @ 4:00 pm8:00 pm

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Join us for our 86th Annual Holiday Tree Lighting, featuring sledding, snow play area, rides and games, Cookie Factory, live entertainment, caroling and a visit from Santa!

Free!

Generously supported by Kaiser Permanente, Zynga.org, with support from Devil’s Teeth Bakery and Bi-Rite Market.

McLaren Lodge is located at 501 Stanyan Street in Golden Gate Park.

Here It Is, San Francisco’s Best Christmas Tree for 2015, in an Unexpected Place – 55 Foot Tall – Straight Outta Shasta

Friday, November 13th, 2015

Just look at this thing in front of Pier 39 – it’s huge!

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And it’s 100% real, for better or worse. I heard it’s 55 feet, but officially it’s 60, perhaps due to rounding, IDK:

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I’m calling this thing an Attraction:

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Oh, but why so soon, in early November?

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(WHY SO SOON? TWSS!)

This issue hadn’t occurred to me – I guess it is a bit early. (But feel free to add that to the lengthy list of things I care absolutely nothing about.)

Anyway, the Lighting Ceremonies are coming November 21-22, 2015.

See you there!

An Annual Tradition: “Union Square Ice Rink Opening Wednesday with Assemblemember David Chiu and SNOOP from The Peanuts Movie

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2015

The famous rink returns tomorrow:

The Safeway Holiday Ice Rink in Union Square presented by Bank of the West
celebrates opening with special ceremony this Wednesday

WHAT: The Safeway Holiday Ice Rink in Union Square presented by Bank of the West celebrates its opening this holiday season with a special “ice-breaking” ceremony featuring Assemblymember David Chiu, SNOOPY from The Peanuts Movie and a special performance by San Francisco Tremors Synchronized Skating Teams with Special Guest Georgia Achilles.

WHO: Assemblymember David Chiu; SNOOPY from The Peanuts Movie; San Francisco Tremors Synchronized Skating Teams with Special Guest Georgia Achilles; Wendy Gutshall, Safeway’s Communications Manager, Northern California Division; Dan Osipow, Executive VP & Corporate Sponsorship Manager at Bank of the West; Karin Flood, Executive Director of the Union Square Business Improvement District; open to the public;

WHEN: (UPDATED) Wednesday, November 4, 2015 at 9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.

WHERE: Union Square, San Francisco.

About the Safeway Holiday Ice Rink:

Since 2007, the Safeway Holiday Ice Rink has delighted children and adults with a holiday-themed ice park located in San Francisco’s Union Square. Ticket prices are $11 for regular admission and $7 for children eight years old and under. Ice skate and hockey skate rentals are $6. Ice rink hours are from 10 a.m. – 11:30 p.m. daily. A portion of ticket proceeds benefit the San Francisco Recreation and Parks Department. For tickets or more information, please visit www.unionsquareicerink.com or call 415-781-2688.

 

OMG, It’s the Ringling Bros Barnum & Bailey Circus – A Great Show at the Cow Palace – Eight Performances Through Labor Day

Friday, September 4th, 2015

Yesterday was media night at the circus (all the deets here). So I got tickets and you now get to see these photos and my impressions – that’s how it works.

I know some people/families who are planning on going on this long three-day weekend and I know others who aren’t interested at all. Me, I’d never been to a circus, except the deconstructed “human-only circus” known as Cirque du Soleil. So here we go.

Man, the 101 South had multiple accidents near Hospital Curve during yesterday’s Evening Drive? Sure seemed that way. The alternate route to the Cow Palace (camera right) was a hilly adventure in itself.

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An actual Showman:

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Man, this is one big road show – lots and lots of performers:

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I didn’t spot one tattoo. Amazing

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What’s this, Critical Mass? Lots and lots of BMX bikes

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If you like camels, this is the event for you – lots and…

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…and lots…

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…and lots of time with double-humped camels

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Bam, your high-wire act. This is impressive:

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Seats on the right side (I don’t know what to call it – the south side?) of our Cow Palace are particularly close to the action. They’re jumping around up there. For me, this was the highlight.

I’ve only seen this kind of thing in cartoons. Boom:

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What am I looking at here, is this real life? Some surreal scenes:

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Oh, a live orchestra in the pit? Didn’t expect that.

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And, ballerinas galore:

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And on and on.

Last night was the first show – they had $15 tickets available. The next eight shows start at $20. I paid $15 for parking, which I’d recommend paying for. If you see a free spot on Geneva right out front, you might want to go for that, but unless you show up way early, you’re not going to see that. They also have a more expensive lot close in but I wouldn’t recommend that.

Have fun!

Kodomo no Hi: Children’s Day Festival Comes to Japantown May 2, 2015 at 11:00 AM

Friday, May 1st, 2015

All the deets on KO-DO-MO-NO-HEE 2015:

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Two Views of the Refurbished AAA Building – 100 Van Ness is Now Move-In Ready – Studios Start at $3090 per Month

Monday, February 2nd, 2015

That was the windup, and here’s the pitch, for our old AAA car club building / brand-new apartment building:

100 Van Ness combines elevation with elegance offering highrise living with sweeping multi-million dollar views. Our amenity filled Rooftop Terrace elevates 374 feet above ground creating panoramic views of the Golden Gate Bridge, Bay Bridge, Twin Peaks, and everything in between! This world class building is conveniently located within walking distance to public transportation, shopping, dinning, and entertainment.”

(Remember, these aren’t just million dollar views, they’re “multi-million dollar views,” whatever the Hell that means.)

(And remember, 100 Van Ness is a “world class building” – it’s all they talk about at Versailles these days, I’m sure…)

Now, why do they charge $3090 (and up!) per month for small studios? Well, so you can subsidize the rent of all your new BMR neighbors, so that people who lived in SF longer than you auslanders can pay just $1139 a month for much larger two-bedrooms. It’s the Circle of Life, or something.

Oh, and even tho this building be old, there’s no rent control, having to do with the date on the Occupancy Permit. So maybe you’ll get a $1000 a month rent increase after you first year’s lease is up, who knows.

Anyway, the refurbishment looks pretty much done these days. The current view from the south:

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And from the north, with City Hall, with the highest classical dome in the Western Hemisphere (yes, classical, highest, Western, if those are the parameters, SF wins the contest) in the foreground:

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And where’s the closest gro sto? IDK. One supposes the “ghetto Safeway” at Church and Market, but I’m not sure.

Objecting to the Following Dozen Words and Phrases Used to Announce the Seven-Figure Renovation of the Panhandle Playground

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2014

Here it is, on the Hoodline:

“long-suffering playground” [IRL, it’s an extremely popular playground. Its current Yelp rating is 4.5 stars, which is the very definition of almost perfect, right? And hey look, what about the San Francisco Recreation and Parks Yelp rating – it’s much lower, it’s actually just 2.5 stars, right? Is RPD “failing?” Should we simply fire everybody and start over? Hey, why don’t we start using objective measurements, like asking the playground’s existing customers what they think? Is that too radical a notion?]

“finally” [This “framing” assumes 100% of what the millionaire-run Parks Alliance nonprofit says is accurate]

“Victim to time” [Well sure, you could replace this or that at this location, but what’s so wrong with it? What makes it a useless tear-down?]

“frequent wear and tear” [Because it’s popular? We’re going to change it because it’s popular and it gets used?]

“grown-up play” [Turns out it was sixth-graders who busted the slide, per the word on the street]

“the playground pales in comparison to other high-tech kids’ play areas in the city.” [What on Earth could  make a playground “high tech?” Like, “sure this playground is great, but I feel it doesn’t employ the most recent application of science?” Like, who says that? IRL, it’s perfectly fine.]

“failing playgrounds” [But the Panhandle Playground isn’t “failing,” right? Ask all the people who use it and try to find one person who would give it a letter grade of “F“]

“low household income” [Is this area a low household income area? WTF to that. In fact, the 94117 is an extremely high household income place, right? It’s off the charts, actually, nationally speaking. And even locally, it’s anything but a low household income area.]

“low Parks Alliance Report Card grades and rankings.” [Oh, here we go, here’s the problem. What’s the PARC and why does it matter?]

“an early holiday gift to District 5.” [London Breed is thinking “CHRISTMAS” but she says holidays – good for her. But who’s paying for this gift? Oh, we are? So it’s not really a gift, is it, London Claus?]

“high-tech play matting” [I have no fucking idea what this means. Currently, the joint is basically a giant sand box. Is this a bad thing? One supposes that some think so, but one doesn’t know.]

“What would you like to see improved upon in our small neighborhood playground?” [Keeping it the same, except for maintenance, which, if it’s lacking, then whose fault is that? Cough RPD, cough]

Wouldn’t it be ironic, dontcha think, if the Yelp ratings of the Panhandle Playground go down after we spend all those millions of dollars on this simple, functional playground?

We’ll see.