At the end of the month, Sean Keane will be moving out of his apartment of four years, the Berkeley apartment known affectionately as Ward Street D. Over those four years, Ward Street D has been home to at least nine different people, but, much like the television station in the classic film UHF, Ward Street D belongs to everyone. This will conclude the Ward Street Week suite of blog entries. Feel encouraged to share your favorite memories and stories about Ward Street D in any of the comment spaces for WSW.
Thank you for supporting Zembla and Ward Street Week. The support of readers like you is what makes great stuff like weblogs, Cement Horizon, and America such runaway successes. Zembla may go on temporary hiatus until July 17th, but will return better than ever with brand-new comedy, commentary and cuteness, the "three 'C's" that made Zembla what it is today. Maybe the colors will also be different. Or even the font. It's Tahoma now, I think. Anyway, Zembla thanks you. Take it easy.
Why Don't You Come Out Here?
I am going to become a resident of San Francisco soon. I am looking forward to the move, to having bars, restaurants, and shops within walking distance. At Ward Street D, the only neighboring stores are ones that do nearly 50% of their business in sales of 40s. One of these, McGee's Market, is a hotbed of action, argument, and neighborhood tension, reportedly taking gunfire in a recent "turf" skirmish. Also, McGee's sold my friend Tyler a beanie which had depicted a beer, a woman, a marijuana leaf, and a pill labeled "Viagra" below the phrase "Eso es vida." But I digress.
With the move to San Francisco, I am clearly going to become that most hated creature, the Person Who Lives in San Francisco, or PWLISF. The PWLISF lives in San Francisco, and loves it, because it's great, and there's a ton of stuff to do there. Unfortunately, the PWLISF doesn't want to leave San Francisco to go to inferior places, and neither will I frankly.
"Let's go out to a bar," I'll say. "Sure," my drinking buddy will reply. "But where should we go?"
"Oh, I know a cool bar by my apartment," I'll say, because there will be, invariably, since I'll live in the City. "Why don't you come out here?"
"Why not come out to my place? The bars and restaurants here are better than the East Bay. So are the parks. And museums. So why not come out here?"
"It might be hard to find a parking spot near my place, though. Don't worry, getting out here is easy. Just get off BART at Powell, get a transfer, and then MUNI will drop you off three blocks away. We'll go to this Thai restaurant near my apartment. It's really authentic. Then we'll check out this Irish pub which has live music on Thursdays. The bartender is really cool - he's from Ireland."
"BART stops running at 12:30, but if you miss it, you can just crash here. Come on, just crash here. Why do you think we bought the futon? Here, I'll help you move the nookitchen table out of the way so you can fold it out. We call it that because it's a breakfast nook and a kitchen."
"Just come out here. You work in the City anyway. Well, Berkeley. You can take the Transbay bus. It's a really good deal. And if you buy a pass, it's even cheaper. Plus, it will give you an excuse to come out here more often. To San Francisco. Where I live!"
The thing is, I'm going to act like that and love it, because San Francisco really is going to be way better, and then I'm going to look back on how I used to live and scoff at myself retroactively, remembering how there was a time in my life I felt sort of proud to live in a town governed by washed-up hippies and the university. Going back to Berkeley will be like going back and visiting an old job you left for a better one, where it's somewhat nostalgic, but you're glad you left and even vaguely embarrassed for people still there. I'm going to stop flinching when I write a $700 rent check, as any true PWLISF should, and I'm going to wonder how I ever could have eaten at the Durant Food Court ("the food ghetto") at all, let alone five times a week, when San Francisco has so many great places to eat, really authentic, and it's not that far, just a quick BART ride and two busses, so why didn't I just go out there?