Looking for some fun on a Saturday afternoon but low on cash? Then go to your local neighborhood Town Hall meeting with your Supervisor and Mayor Newsom. Never have I been more informed and more entertained all at once.
There was an interesting presentation about the first steps to study a Geary BRT and the Mayor and Supervisor Jake McGoldrick had Nate Ford of Muni and, well, just about every department head to answer questions on Geary BRT, and well, just about anything else (such as the coyotes that are apparently living and getting it on in Golden Gate Park – who knew?)
Say what you will about our Mayor and Supervisors, but Gavin Newsom and McGoldrick handled the crowd like a couple of pros. Both handled some serious questions (as well as some really weird ones) adeptly and Newsom was not afraid to put department heads on the spot when asked about timelines to fix things.
And both kept their cool when this one lady was upset about drug dealing and “sex acts” in Golden Gate Park (and who kept yelling “don’t forget about the sex acts!” – yikes!) while the Mayor directed her to talk with an SFPD captain at the meeting so they could clear out the weirdoes from the park.
Overall they did their best to accommodate everyone in the 2 hour time period, and the Mayor and Supervisor McGoldrick’s staffers were all very thorough and organized. And, oh yeah, they had a ton of free stuff, donated by local businesses – good coffee, water, snacks of all sorts, and whatnot. Community groups also had tables for all sorts of local initiatives. Very cool.
Mason Powell and I both were surprised at just how organized the whole thing was. We stopped at Trad’r Sam for a drink, then went home. All in all a pleasant way to spend the day with our City leaders and citizens.
PS: While our Mayor and Mr. McGoldrick were celebrating the neighborhoods of “the Avenues,” our allegedly local paper, the Guardian, was doing its best to dis our brothers and sisters in the Sunset and the Richmond with this weird post in their new blog. I didn’t realize if I didn’t live in the Haight or SOMA or the Mission I was a nerd “way out there” in the boonies.
I have no problem with the .02% of SF who goes to Burning Man – hey, everyone has their interests, and that’s totally cool. But it is telling that it is Mayor Newsom who is the one supporting the neighborhoods, and the Guardian is playing the role of adolescent, hipster choose-up-siders.
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San Francisco News & Politics
The mayor and the sup are excellent politicians, I must admit, but I didn’t feel that anything was really solved other than “hey, we’re listening to your little complaints”. The turn out was pretty good (“best we’ve had” ), but I was pretty disappointed by the entire event beyond the crazy questions the residents asked.
90% of the questions submitted on paper were about the BRT — obviously the hot topic of the meeting. It was hardly addressed though. I would figure a bunch of construction and rail..er… I mean bus lanes being installed would be more important than say, sex and coyotes in GGP.
Excellent points, to be sure. Now, to be fair, the questions submitted on paper were to be guaranteed an answer from Mr. Mayor and Mr. Supervisor.
That said, I agree. A Bus Rapid Transit is not a perfect solution – it is at best a happy compromise.
But, the Geary BRT is in only the earliest of study stages. Nothing is going to happen without a lot o’ people’s support. And the hope is that a BRT NOW will mean a rail transit on the B-Geary in the future.
Unfortunately, Rail means FEDERAL dollars and lets face it the morons in the feds want money for crack whores or something….hehe
Because I’m so sure I wept at the loss of my hipster status when I moved from Haight to the Avenues. Pft. (10th is considered the Avenues? I always thought 19 and out were.)
I’d rather be a nerd paying a decent rent for more space than being cool and sharing a closet in a communal house that constantly reeks of weed.
Funny, the sex act lady talked my wife and my ears off in Strybing Arboretum last week. It must have been her, as she was only semi-coherent and very concerned about taking back the park from all those lewd folks that I never see (and I live next to the park).