Tag Archives: mission

16th Street, Out of Sequence

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Shot Monday afternoon on 16th Street at Harrison in the fabulous environs of MiPo (Mission-Potrero). We had a day of winterish rain Sunday and showers early Monday. But by Monday evening the sky was scoured and the setting sun was brilliant. Today was bright, clear, and cool again. A warm-up is coming the next two or three days, but I’m not buying that the rain is gone for the season.

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All Star Hotel

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On 16th Street near Folsom in the northeastern corner of the Mission. I walk by the place at least two or three times a week. The setting says “dive,” but it’s surprisingly un-divey-looking from the outside. On the strength of two reviews, TripAdvisor.com ranks it 179th out of 248 hotels in the city. Room rate quoted in one of those reviews: $150. A week. Here’s a 2004 piece on the hotel from the alternative online news site BeyondChron.com.

(When I took the picture, a guy on the sidewalk said, “You with the movies?” I didn’t I’d heard him correctly and asked him to repeat what he’d said.

“You making a movie?”

“No, I just liked how that doorway looks.”

“If you’re making a movie, I want to be in it.”

“OK–I’ll be back when I’m making one.” We both laughed. )

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Friday Night Ferry: The Walk

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On Mariposa Street, just east of Potrero Avenue. This one-block slope is at the beginning of my Friday evening walk from KQED to the Ferry Building. From that stop sign up above, I turn right, then cross U.S. 101 on the pedestrian overpass that connects to 18th Street on the east side of the freeway. One more block up from there is Kansas Street, a corner with one of the great views of downtown. From there, I walk north and east down the slope of Potrero Hill and across the South of Market flats to the Bay, sometimes walking over the low eminence of Rincon Hill. What I noticed most about the walk this week: It’s getting dark much earlier than it did just a month ago.

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Friday Night Ferry: The Walk

mariposa082109.jpg

On Mariposa Street, just east of Potrero Avenue. This one-block slope is at the beginning of my Friday evening walk from KQED to the Ferry Building. From that stop sign up above, I turn right, then cross U.S. 101 on the pedestrian overpass that connects to 18th Street on the east side of the freeway. One more block up from there is Kansas Street, a corner with one of the great views of downtown. From there, I walk north and east down the slope of Potrero Hill and across the South of Market flats to the Bay, sometimes walking over the low eminence of Rincon Hill. What I noticed most about the walk this week: It’s getting dark much earlier than it did just a month ago.

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Cars, Birds

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16th Street at Bryant, San Francisco. This sign (or signs) has been here for years, just behind The Double Play bar. I’ll dig up the story behind them — there’s at least one similar art piece on 6th Street, south of Market — at some later date.

[That later date is now: KQED friend and colleague Molly Samuel advises they’re by a San Francisco artist who goes by the handle Rigo 23 (if Wikipedia is to be believed, his full name is Ricardo Gouveia.) Thanks, Molly!]

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1951 Buick

It’s a Buick Roadmaster Deluxe. For sale for $4,000 if you’re looking for a project. It’s been parked at various spots around Mariposa and Alabama streets, a couple blocks from where I ply the radio news editor trade, for at least a month. (Those stacks in the background of the top photo–I’ve been looking at them for the last year and I haven’t yet investigated what defunct local manufacturing operation they might have been part of.)

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Whiz

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At 18th and South Van Ness. I walked by a couple months ago at midday while exploring a different route to work. I haven’t investigated, but maybe the location is part of a bygone chain (on the other hand, the sign says “since 1955”). In any case, it’s the one and only Whiz burger stand I know. I haven’t yet sampled the fare.  

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Mission Palms

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Last night, at the northeast entrance to the 16th Street BART station. Beautiful, warm afternoon and evening. Lots of people on the street, and the scene at the plaza around the station had a little bit of crazy energy to it at the moment I showed up: some of the homeless and local SRO (single-room occupancy) hotel residents arguing, parents reprimanding kids, a mom yanking her kid by the arm as she took him into Burger King for dinner, people spilling out of a Muni bus that had just pulled up at the corner.

For several blocks, I had watched the light above change and looked for an opportunity to try and catch it. Not that it’s so important; but in a way these pictures are a little like postcards to myself, reminding me of a place, a moment. This was my last look at the street scene before heading down the escalator to the train.  

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Neighborhood Art Tour

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On the side of an auto body shop, adjacent to a mostly razed building at Potrero and Mariposa. I love the boldness and scale. Looking at the picture, someone’s been at work in the cellar below the mural wall, too. (Click for larger image.)

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City Art

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On north side of 16th, near Folsom. I’m new at the genre, but the two names belong to San Francisco graffiti artists.

Not that this is a natural segue–I find the sidewalk stencils and other street art I see around the Mission and Potrero Hill pretty arresting–but if you read a little into some local blogs (here’s an example, and here’s another) shit on neighborhood streets is a recurring topic. By shit, I mean shit–what the polite but not highbrow might call Number Two. I raise the subject mostly because in the last few weeks, I’ve occasionally found myself strolling through what appears to be a well established and frequently used open-air toilet on Harrison Street between 17th and Mariposa. And today, right by the Honda motorcycle garage on 17th near Folsom, a large pile of human excrement. Notable in the latter case was the presence of a wad of toilet paper. It’s comforting to know that even those with no other facilities, or who are perhaps moved to make a social statement of some kind, are still wiping themselves.

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