Category Archives: My SF

Scenes from the Fort Mason Community Garden

After Off the Grid this past Friday, we found ourselves in the Fort Mason Community Garden. I had never been there before, and I could have stayed for hours wandering between each of the lovingly-tended gardens. I couldn’t help taking pictures of the many beautiful flowers there (especially dahlias, which are a favorite of mine); I also loved the various items people placed in their plots as garden ornaments. The whole place is gorgeous and peaceful; definitely stop by for a visit next time you’re in the area. Continue reading

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Imperfect Pitch: Men, Women, and the Art of Selling Ourselves

Because right now I am both looking for a job and spending time on Match.com, I’ve been thinking a lot about the differences between how people “sell themselves.” And, in fact, one of the things that has made the Match.com experience so frustrating for me is the frequency with which men “pitch” themselves in the same manner in which Sicha describes in his blog post. Continue reading

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‘The Poetry of Nobody Home’: Craigslist’s Missed Connections

I think most everyone has checked “Missed Connections” at least once or twice–if for no other reason than to see what it’s about. I’m a more frequent visitor to that section than most; though I don’t check it every day, I read it regularly–not to see if anyone’s posted a message for me, but because I like the messages on their own for the kind of artifacts they are: snapshots of a fantasy in progress, a printed record of an encounter so striking that the writer has imbued it with a cosmic significance. Continue reading

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And…now I am on tumblr, too.

I’m trying to be more short form, so if you’re hungry for shorter posts inspired by the free time I have during this, the summer of my unemployment, visit my tumblr, “Lesser Pursuits.”

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Like George Costanza, I’m Trying to End on a High Note

As rewarding as it can be to have one of the “difficult” students turn around and start taking herself, the material, and you seriously, the journey to that point is mostly just exhausting. Whereas in my first few years of teaching I couldn’t wait to go to work everyday, I now just feel drained most of the time. Oddly, though, my students don’t seem to have noticed: My most recent rating on Rate My Professor notes that I am (apparently) “always perky and nice.” My friend explained why this might be the case in an email to me the other day. She wrote, “You are a teacher at heart, my dear. Which is not to say that you are fated to live the life of a teacher, but you do love your students and what you do.” Continue reading

Posted in Getting Schooled, My SF | 3 Comments

San Francisco Spring: The Raw & the Cultivated

Spring has arrived in San Francisco, an explosion of color interrupted at times by rainstorms and gray skies. This slideshow is a celebration of both sides of spring: pre-storm clouds along the rugged, expansive coastline and the bright, sunlit flowers of the Strybing Arboretum and the Japanese Tea Garden. The Tea Garden may, to most San Franciscans, be a place for tourists, but I love it there; even when crowded with visitors, it manages to offer a sense of seclusion, a communion with blossoms and beauty–a welcome respite from days filled with buses and busy streets. Continue reading

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Asterisk San Francisco contributor Mark Holland and I agree on one thing: The importance of a good editor

The argument that so many chefs are just elitist, talentless hacks is tiresome and old, yet Holland makes it anyway, stating early in his piece that, “Chefs love taking food off the dining tables of the poor, stuffing it with truffles, frying it in duck fat and serving it in the lofty dining rooms of some of the city’s finest restaurants.” The phrasing is a bit over-the-top, calling to mind an image of a white-coated, toque-bedecked culinary school grad ripping a chicken leg out of the hands of a starving child, only to then stud the meat with expensive ingredients that will make this once humble fare no longer affordable to the masses. Granted, in recent years we’ve all seen examples of this trend in which a chef takes what Holland terms, “blue collar staples” and reworks them into a ridiculous (and cost-prohibitive) reincarnation. (Remember the $175 Richard Nouveau burger, featuring an ingredient list that read like a menu and a jewlery catalog? Foie gras, truffles, and even “flakes of gold leaf” topped the burger’s half-pound-plus Kobe beef patty.) Continue reading

Posted in Foodstuffs, My SF | 10 Comments