"Write like no one's reading" - Schatzie
Schatzie calls herself a "WordPimp". She likes to control Words and make a buck doing so.
There is a suppository... I mean repository, of Schatzie's words on SF's iconic Broke-Ass Stuart website
Me Matey lives in Golden Gate Park
"Please stand clear of the doors" My love affair with Bart
Why I want to become a Girl Scout...again
Discovering Mochi Donuts in the Bay Area
They took my money, my ID, my jewelry, the clothes off my back, and even my shoes. I found myself stark naked in a dimly lit, damp, small room. No windows. A stranger shut the one door. Something wet was put over my face. I could not see. There was an odd burning smell in the silence. Hands were all over me. After what seemed like forever, the door opened and I emerged into a brightly lit hallway. I saw others like me with ruddy cheeks, stumbling zombie-like, wrapped in thin pieces of cloth. I was given a small amount of water to drink with floating vegetable scraps, and raw fish to eat. The Claremont Spa. It was lovely.
The Jack-o-lantern that burns twice as bright often burns half as long
I’ve been having such a good time with my Pumpkin, Jack. I know our time is short…I’m really going to miss him…He inspired this Haiku.
Shine bright! Ain’t much time
Be like my Jack-o-Lantern
Compost bin awaits
Limerick conceived on my Bay Trail run, inspired by the site of a washed up…khaki-hi-tech-fabric-moisture-wicking-floppy-upf-50-sun-protection HAT. The HAT favored by the #Normcores that congregate on the Bay Trail. Normcore: a style of dressing that involves the deliberate choice of unremarkable or unfashionable casual clothes.
One Less Normcore
There Once was a Normcore from Berkeley
Crossed Paths with a Gent as Dapper could Be
There was a Mishap
Over Gucci? or Gap?
Poor Normcore, afloat out to Sea
National Donut Day June 6th 2020
I frequent Donut Shops. I only buy one Donut at a time and I only use coins, no bills allowed. That started when I needed a Donut after a long run. I had no wallet, but I was able to find just the exact amount of change hidden in the various cavities of my car. Ever since that day I’ve only bought Donuts with change. 'Donut Money'
I only buy Old Fashioned Glazed Donuts, and if one is not available I’ll get an Old Fashioned Chocolate or maybe maple and if those is not around…well then I am ‘Donutless’.
I am fascinated by the Donut Shop culture, the Donut Ladies behind the counter, the Donut Men in the back room, the Donut Decor, the fake ferns, the Donut Artwork and that very tiny ATM machine to get Donut Money from. Sometimes the Donut Lady, slips an extra Donut in my bag. You never know when that will happen…it’s a ‘Donut Surprise’.
My first job was at a Donut Shop…Wayne’s Donuts. And Wayne looked like the perfect Donut Shop Owner…short and wide. Then there was Benny, the also wide Donut Maker. He came in the middle of the night and left when I was just arriving to work. And I can’t recall if there was a midget? (pc to say back then), and a one legged man? or both working there. I sold Donuts and was also the bussing tables girl. All the customers who hung out in the shop were Old Men. They smoked cigarettes, drank coffee and ate Donuts. I cleared the dishes using a small rolling cart even though the place was really tiny. I collected Ashes and Leftovers.
That was a long time ago. Wayne’s Donuts is still there it’s called Donut Time, and not much has changed. I also go to Donut World. I love that they have the shortest possible miniature stools drilled into the floor to sit on… along the giant windows..underneath the huge DONUT WORLD sign.
One time I went to my favorite Donut Shop. I had 125 pennies worth of Donut Money. My regular Donut Lady was not there. I scattered my 125 pennies on the counter and asked for my usual (I had to tell her what my usual was though…) and I told The Unknown Donut Lady there were 125 pennies. I thought she’d just whisk them into her drawer, but she started counting them. She told me I was short some pennies. I told her there were 125, and that she must have counted wrong, but I would bring her the 3 pennies next time…and to give me my donut…please.
I go to All Star Donuts and Happy Donuts as well. There is another “Happy Donuts” that I pass by, but I’ve never been to it…I call it “Sad Donuts”, as there are always homeless people lying in front of it. It’s next to a Liquor store…But maybe they are happy…They have Liquor and… Donuts.
Driving and Donuting
A Troll Story
I developed 4 dreadlocks from not brushing my hair recently. (I know ‘pandemic hair’ is so trending). I decided to cut my dreads off. I then went to my parent’s house and grabbed two of my bald Trolls from their Rocky Fireplace home. Gonna take them back to their home today with their new doos, which are extra special. Irie.
Feb 2021 Addendum #2
And that’s the happy ending to “The Troll Incident” that I posted in 2017. So, if you’d like the back story read on…
“The Troll Incident” July 2017
Not sure why that one Troll decided to jump off the ledge after standing in the same place for 50 years. It happened while I was having dinner with my parents at my childhood home in Kensington. I had wedged my entire Troll collection into their rock fireplace about 50 years ago… and it is there that the Trolls have remained untouched, until one jumped the other night…and I was there to witness it. We were eating supper in the family room about 15 feet from the rocky fireplace. I heard a faint thud from near the fireplace. I had to investigate. And there he was…the Troll… he had landed on his feet. It was astounding. I’m sure he would have run off had I not intercepted. I felt a bit guilty putting him back up on the rocky fireplace ledge…at least I moved him to a different location.
July 2019 Addendum #1
My beloved cousin from Jamaica came to visit and stay with my parents for a spell. I went to pick up my cuz (same age as me) from my parents house to take her touristing. Lo and behold (and unbeknownst to my parents) she had removed every single Troll from their high mountain home on the Rocky Fireplace and washed them… after 50 years. She was so very happy and proud of herself for helping with ‘cleaning’. While she was telling me this…I can only imagine the look on my face. I was speechless. I knew that my precious Trolls and their 50 year old hair could not handle a wet washing. I just said, “…um thanks?, let’s go” She did put them back on their rocky ledges. I have never really examined the trolls to this day. I’m just glad to have took their portraits before this incident. (And Hey Cuz, I still love you despite the Troll washing xo)
My dreads... Irie
Trolls in their natural habitat ( a seventies fireplace)
Bruno comes through with the Grape-Nuts
And to top off the havoc being wreaked around us, Grape-Nuts cereal has become scarce. Something about the maker ‘Post Brands’ proprietary ingredients? (wait, I see a lot of gravel around, and Pine Trees...“Ever eat a Pine Tree? Many parts are edible” - remember that Euell Gibbons Grape-Nuts commercial from the seventies?)
I’ve been shopping for my parents during this Pandemic. My Dad Bruno MUST have his Grape-Nuts (and 6.25” long bananas). He’s been having Grape-Nuts everyday for 60 years, ever since he came to this country.
I arrived at my parents home Grape-nutless recently. I tried to explain to Bruno why I couldn’t get his favorite cereal. I told him there was a Grape-Nuts shortage and the cereal was being hawked on the Internet for $100 a box. I felt very bad, I did not want to disappoint him. I always get Bruno what he wants and he does the same for me.
On my run that night I received a text from my 90 year old mum… “Your Father has gone out… in search of Grape-Nuts”…. Whaaaat? Bruno is 89 and can’t hear well. I could just imagine him tearing around in his giant truck to various Bay Area markets on this rainy night. But, I was not too worried…he is ‘Bruno’ after all. He’s been in a World War (#2). But I just felt sorry that he was not going to succeed in his quest, and also that he did not believe what I had told him about the shortage. I told my mum to keep me updated, and I continued on my run, not looking forward to the next disappointing text.
The next text?
“Your father just walked in the door with the biggest box of Grape-Nuts I have ever seen”.
Ha Ha! I had to laugh… of course! I was so very happy! Bruno came through with the Grape-Nuts!
He must have found the very last box of Grape-Nuts in the Bay Area… at the first store he went to. I can just picture his tall-well-dressed-handsome-self calmly walking down the cereal aisle, seeing that very giant Grape-Nuts box…and smiling and thinking… what’s up with my daughter?
(This was a couple weeks ago… #GrapeNuts are now slowly coming back)
Bruno's 1977 Mercedes
(published in "My Ride" - San Francisco Chronicle)
My family took a trip to Germany when I was in High School in 1977 to visit relatives…and pick up a new Mercedes from the Sindelfingen Plant I still have the original. “Ausfuhrbescheinnigung fur Umsatzsteuerzwecke” (export certificate) paperwork. My Dad Bruno is from Germany and the plant was near his hometown. We drove it all over Europe (3,750 km) including on the Autobahn. What a thrill it was to fly at 90 mph as other cars were passing us! After our vacation we shipped the Mercedes back to the Bay Area, where it still lives.
The Mercedes was our family car for many years, and Bruno let me drive it every so often. I remember taking the Mercedes cruisin' on the "Main" with my girlfriends back in 1979. We dressed up, hung out of the sunroof – just like American Graffiti. But the car was mainly Bruno’s, and he kept his car immaculate.
Bruno decided to upgrade, and he sold the Mercedes to a dealer. My brother found out, and he had a nostalgic moment and decided to buy the Mercedes back. My brother and his son (who called it the "mermer" as in heart murmur), drove it for years. It was put in storage for a while, and then I decided to buy it from my brother. It’s not as immaculate as it once was – but Bruno doesn’t seem to mind the orange and black tassels lining the windows, or the bobble-head Buddha in back (I’m a Bikram yoga enthusiast). Now my 16-year-old daughter also drives it, and soon her sister will as well.
I like the “Verbandkasten” mounted in the back – the original “First Aid Kit” unopened after 34 years. And of course my vintage bumper stickers: “Greg Kihn at the Old Waldorf 1982” and "Skylab is Falling". And who knows how long the unopened bag of "Salmiak Pastillen" (German licorice bits) has been in the car for...perhaps 34 years as well. I would pick up casual carpoolers on my commute to SF. Everyone enjoyed the ride (except for the man that complained about a spring sticking into his back) I learned various things from some Mercedes aficionados. I didn’t realize that the stuffing coming out of my seats was horsehair? Hmm
My car has taken me all over the Bay Area with only minor problems. It is a diesel and there is really no way to quietly leave any place as the click-click-clang is a distinctive sound. Perhaps one day I’ll convert it to a vegetable oil only vehicle. And I have my paint ready to turn it into an“Art” car when I have time.
My wheel bearings were worn recently. I was explaining the problem to Bruno, and he responded, "Oh, you mean "Das Kugellager." I had to laugh, as the German words are much more fun than ours. I particularly like saying "Windschutzscheibenwischer" for "windshield wipers." Recently my car was having sporadic starting problems. I took it to my mechanic, who told me that when I insert the key…I need to practice "Gedenken Minuten” - just a little minute of meditation/prayer before starting the car. He said there is a lot of “Gedenken Minuten” happening all the time in Germany. At least he did not charge me. I tried it for a while...but eventually had to get it fixed. Bruno found the original mechanic that had worked on it in the eighties, and now it starts just fine..no more praying.
Yes. I know I’ll probably need a more reliable car someday… but for now I enjoy driving my piece of history. Everyone needs a little Fahrvergnügen in their life.
BART "Being Alone Riding Together"
#BART turns 50 this week... I like taking Bart. For me B A R T stands for "Being Alone Riding Together"... Here are some of my Bart memories throughout the decades.
SEVENTIES: We played a “Bart Game” when I was around 13. My girlfriends and I would dash out of the Bart car when the doors opened at each station... run, and touch a faraway wall, and then run back into the car as fast as we could, before the doors closed... giggling all the while, (until someone gets left at a station)
EIGHTIES - I commuted to San Francisco on Bart in the Eighties everyday. All the working woman wore Suntan L’eggs Pantyhose and Giant Reebok running shoes, with slouchy scrunched sox, and Giant shoulder-padded pin-stripped Ralph Lauren power suits.Their Giant sky-high hair blocked views.They carried their Nine West pumps in their Giant Coach bags ready to change into when they arrived at the office. No cell phones, just Sony Walkmans, Cartier watches, and Danielle Steel novels.
NINETIES - I took Bart back home from SF after a #Primus New Years Eve concert in the Nineties. The Train was Jam Packed, much like the Mosh Pit I had just witnessed at the show. Riders were intrigued by a feller who was filling his nostrils with silver Quarters.…a lot of Quarters...He had a big nose. Everyone kept passing him more Quarters. We all applauded when he filled his nostrils to capacity. Cha-Ching!
2022: The Unbearable Lightness of Being... on Bart
I was sitting in a Bart car on my way to SF. Bart was pretty empty. We stopped at the 12th Street Station in Oakland. The doors opened, no one immediately entered the Bart car. I thought the doors were about to close, but they didn’t. I then sadly watched as two sneakered feet, then two dirty pant legs… attached to a torso, then, a head, came shuffling in from the platform to the floor of the Bart car. Luckily the doors closed a split second after the head made it in. This man could not walk, and he was scooting into the Bart car on his rump. His legs were atrophied. He stretched his thin body out flat and fell asleep. I hope he felt safe and sheltered in Bart... at least for a little while.