Thursday, June 22, 2006


Okay, it's definitely summer. For San Francisco, it is positively boiling -- probably over 80 degrees -- and everyone is sweating and bitching in sort of a happy way. I had a lovely morning, since Lisa arrived from San Diego last night and is staying at my grandparents' house with me. We got up at 9:45, went for a nice, sunny run in Golden Gate Park, then came back and took muni downtown. We got off at 5th and Market and walked through the Tenderloin ("the Porkchop," as my cousin Megan calls it) to get to Dottie's, this cute brunch cafe on Jones. The 'Loin really is a sketcherific neighborhood. A couple of crackheads were yelling at Lisa and me and one started following us up the street, but I knew he wouldn't have the nerve to come into a brunch place, so we were fine.

The weird thing about this neighborhood is that once you walk up a few blocks, you hit Nob Hill, which is a beautiful, upscale neighborhood full of Victorian buildings and cute bistros. It reminds me of the way Detroit (aka the sometimes-murder-capital-of-the-world) borders Grosse Pointe (aka the ritziest little oasis of wealth in Michigan), so crackhouses with bullet-shattered windows are across the street from huge, Tudor-style mansions owned by auto executives. The contrast isn't that extreme in San Francisco, of course, but it is strange how extreme poverty can exist so close to opulent wealth. I noticed a lot of that in Sao Paulo, as well. Favelas would be plopped into the middle of relatively nice neighborhoods, which was always disconcerting. The difference is, in Brazil, people have crazy, high-tech security systems and panic rooms and guard towers and armed doormen and stuff.

Well, enough social commentary from me. It is crazy hot here and I am getting delirious. I am in a good mood, though, because of the following:

a) Lisa is in town
b) Brazil beat Japan
c) I have the weekend off work
d) the weather is nice
e) I am listening to Shakira

Ah. Summer!

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