Posts tagged san francisco

forever. too busy livin’ it…

but had to write about this. yes, I should first write about how awesome MotoGP was this year, but that can wait. I just went to the absolute coolest, funnest book launch party ever. Adam Werbach, CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi S, hosted a party at their world HQ here in SF, and I managed to wrangle me an invite. It was to celebrate the launch of his new book, Strategies for Sustainability. The evening went as follows:

6:00 pm Party starts with a special treat: Warren Hellman plays a couple of bluegrass songs and talks about the history of financial conmen.

Awesome guy, just put together a fascinating website which chronicles the exploits of convicted conmen (and women, but he said he’s had a hard time unearthing any, that either they don’t get caught, or just don’t get involved). Although I missed the bluegrass part.

7:00 pm "Cleanfest" — David Steuer (Saatchi S) in conversation with Adam Lowry (method), Jessica Buttimer (Clorox Green Works) and Michael Green (Center for Environmental Health).

Oh, Adam…words cannot describe the beauty that is Adam Lowry. Not only is he a genius chemist, he is also out to save us from our toxic cleaning chemicals. And in doing so has dragged the rest of the industry along with him. Which actually kinda pisses me off, cuz he’s lost a ton of shelf space at Target to his competitors. Especially upsetting because Method products are FAR superior in every way to everything else on the market. Better for the planet AND works better AND looks better? What more could a girl want? Oh, and he’s drop dead gorgeous. Too bad about the wife and kid…

7:45 pm I’ll share a few words and premiere The Profitron 3,000 (a two minute infomercial tribute to Billy Mays by creatives at Saatchi NY).

Excellent ad, very funny. no idea if it’s available on the internet.

8:00 pm "Bottom Up/Top Down Change" — Greg Dalton from Commonwealth Club in conversation with Nancy McFadden (PG&E), Michael Shellenberger (Breakthrough) and Dave Douglas (Sun).

8:30 pm "Mainstreaming Sustainability" — Joel Makower of in conversation with Steve Bishop (IDEO), Jeff Mendelsohn (New Leaf Paper) and Cari Jacobs (Saatchi S).

I was busy schmoozing by this point, so I missed both of those. But I did manage to get involved in the next bit, even testing my supposedly off the charts rythm memory by doing a bit of drumming with the band. They were nice enough to change rythm with me as I am in no way consistent. 🙂

9:00 pm Obafemi Origunwa (Saatchi S) interactive drumming on the topic of cultural sustainability.

9:30 pm Fire Dancers outside on York Street.

The perfect way to end any party! Get everyone out into the street for something incredibly cool (pix & vid coming…) and then send us home content in the knowledge that we truly live in one of the greatest cities in the world. SaatchiS rocks for giving us one of those truly San Francisco experiences.

Pride in my City

Pride in my City, originally uploaded by pinkyracer.

I learned many things in business school, and today I’d like to talk about what I learned while living in Chapel Hill. Being from San Francisco, even from San Mateo, the dull suburb where I’m actually from, I grew up knowing that San Francisco was some amazing place that everyone loves and wants to live in. I took it for granted, but was also completely prejudiced against all small towns and all the blank space between California and New York City. I have since learned that there are some notable and interesting places between those two points, but I also learned that I still don’t want to live in a small town.

What I came to realize was really missing from Chapel Thrill and environs, was a gay district. I decided that having a gay district automatically rockets a city solidly into coolness. Even if I never set foot in that district, I need to have friends who do. I need to work with people who do. I need gay people in my life because they are so freakin’ awesome. I need to be in a city where it is beyond OK to be gay. Where it’s so ok, even straight guys pretend they’re gay. Which is weird, kinda like being whiggers, but whatever.

See, you won’t find such behavior in Chapel Thrill. Not even in Carrboro, really. Sure, there are LGBT folk there, but they don’t have a Place. A place that can serve as an anchor. Which makes for a rather dull and dismal town, if you ask me. And no, Open Eye café does not count as a gay district, I don’t care how small the town is. Yes, I am neglecting to discuss my lesbian friends, who are often neglected in these discussions. But what’s interesting, is that I really don’t see nearly as much discrimination against lesbians as I do against the rest of the acronym. Homosexual men get beaten to death, while women get immortalized in a million porn videos.

Growing up here, I never knew what those rainbow flags meant, I just thought they were a popular decorative object. I stopped at Castro & Market to take these pictures, as I’ve never noticed this ginormous flag before, and it means so much more to me now, between living in a small town in the south for 1.5 years, and watching Milk. There was nothing better than Castro and Market on Halloween, except maybe the West Village or West Hollywood… I wish we didn’t have so many small minded people living in this state, then my gay friends could have the same rights my straight friends enjoy.

Gay pride week is June 20-28. Regardless of your orientation or identity, be proud that you live in a country where people are (finally, after centuries of struggle and hardship) able to be true to themselves, at least in cities like San Francisco.

A moment of freedom

Beyond exhausted, after a long day of purging old junk, getting hundreds of magazines (I thought I’d never be able to live without) down from the attic into the vehicles of two very grateful recipients. I love that there’s someone who needs what I’m finally willing to let go of, when I’m ready to let it go. All this was preceded by a long night out on the town, and followed by a couple hours spent trying to fill the void left by abandoning 3 trash bags full of clothes at Goodwill (clothes I will never wear again, and which will make someone else very happy).

So retarded tired I drove a 5 mile loop around San Francisco before getting on the 280. I was conscious enough to know I couldn’t handle 101 traffic in my condition. Exited Black Mountain Road, as usual, and noticed stars out the corner of my eye. Yes! It’s dark enough here! I have been needing to see more stars lately. Decided to pull over just before the stop sign. Got out, turned all the car’s lights out and just stared up at that gorgeous sky. It wasn’t even 8:00 yet, but there were so many more stars than one ever sees in LA, even though there is enough light pollution nearby. I love staring out into the night sky, wondering what the hell everyone else is up to. I sense a universe teeming with life, activity, excitement. It’s like staring at city lights from a distant suburban place, knowing something incredibly cool is going on there, if only I could get there and participate. The frogs croaking nearby were upstaged by the rythmic, guttural growl of a Ducati approaching from 280. As the rider approached I smiled, feeling a sense of cameraderie with this stranger also enjoying my favorite road, in my favorite manner. Meanwhile I’m sure he felt nothing of the sort, at the sight of a disheveled woman standing by a Prius with “Sober Mom” plates. Probably figured I was taking a breather from the kids. Hardly. Had to recharge before heading out to shake my bootie at (finally!) BootieSF!

Aaahhh, Alice’s….

Being in Frisco for the weekend, with my bike along for an impending track day, I simply had to go play in the canyons, as I usually don’t make the time for that. And usually prefer sleeping in. So this time my brother Gary and I got to fire up the beasts and head up to Alice’s for a delicious brunch. But first, a pit stop for air, as I’d been running on 22/25psi for quite some time, too lazy to bother getting air. I’d been using the lack of air as an opportunity to develop a greater appreciation for how perfect my bike is. I used to have a bike that turned as heavily/poorly all the time. But of course one doesn’t go play in the canyons with anything that might diminish the joy of the experience.

I was freezing by the time we got to Alice’s, as it was ~54 on 33 under all those damn trees. OK, the trees are gorgeous and I love trees, I really wish there were more of them in the world, just not hoovering over the road I want to ride in the winter. Alice’s serves a side of minced raw garlic, (upon request, as their t-shirts say “Have anything you want at Alice’s”) which was super delicious on everything, the omelette, the hash browns, all of it. I put my nylon shopping bag that I always keep in my “trunk” under my jacket to stop the wind coming through the perf. Much better! Then we head out down 84, which was amazing. Every single car we approached, even the ones with SF city parking stickers who are notorious road hogs, pulled over shortly after we approached! It was incredible. We went left somewhere, the road to Huddart Park, and wound up in Pesdacero. We stopped and did a little shopping with all the other tourists. Bought a nice laboradorite rock from the old guy with big rocks, who was really cool.

Here’s Gary, making sure none of the guys come up and talk to me….

We continued north on Stage road, which was really fun. One of those “I can pretend this is a one-way/ racetrack until I come to a blind turn.” roads that I love so well. I had let Gary lead until Pescadero as he’s gotten much faster (unless I got much slower) and wasn’t the least bit painful to ride behind. But I led from Stage Rd and it was so much fun to pretend I was in the IOM TT or one of those Irish road races. Coming back up 84 was fun too, until we came upon a group of ‘tards (OK, one of them was on an RR, but that doesn’t say much) following dutifully behind some loser in an Avalanche. through some awesome curves, I might add. After a day of having cagers respectfully pull over to let us pass, this was too much. I didn’t want to be that asshole that picks her way through a group of riders in traffic, but I sure as hell didn’t want these losers messing up my ride. Making it worse, the last one of the group of 3 was fat. I have been known to do some pretty drastic things to get past the fat guy I was racing against. On a 2-stroke 250, less weight = more power. My big goal one season was to get past the fat guy, just as I’m sure many of my slower competitors made it their goal to get past the chick.

Finally enough space opened up ahead of the truck that I totally knew I could make it before anyone could come through the next blind curve. I was right. I felt kinda bad for Gary, as he had to stay with them until we met up at 33, but he said he sure appreciated the show. Yet another example of why liter bikes rule. If I’d been on my 450cc ‘tard, (which is for sale, BTW) I would have had to shift gears like 3 times to get enough speed to make that pass. Might have had the torque, but not the power. Power is nice. We headed back to San Mateo, and I stopped by to visit the critters. Nicholas is speaking English now, which is so exciting. He’s had this language of his own he’d been using with us, and it was kinda hard to understand him. Claire was happy to see me in my pink racing suit, and I let her play with it by kicking and hitting the padded bits. Stephen was building a new Star Wars Lego spaceship. It was nice to check in with them, even though we didn’t get much time to play on this visit. Last time I took them ice skating and to Wendy’s, so I don’t feel too bad.

Tomorrow it’s off to Buttonwillow for some more fun…

Oh, and I’m now a member of Motorcycle Bloggers International! Go here and vote on various things, it’s a fun poll, with links to some other awesome blogs about riding….