It's an ugly underbelly to a wonderful city amenity, which, I suppose, is in keeping with a local Baghdad/Bay tradition, in which evil and good are never far apart. Our great city was built by rail barons, placer miners, and other assorted thieves. Our economy is still fueled by their moral progeny: money launderers, usurious financial-service peddlers, and their corporate peers. Our water flows from a once-breathtaking mountain valley, our electricity, from a destructive monopoly. An ill-begotten toxic bay-fill called Treasure Island offers the best view of downtown; and the city's most pleasant walks are through groves of the rapacious weed known as eucalyptus, imported for a failed logging scheme, then allowed to kill much of the coastal Bay Area's wildlife.
I love the city the robber barons created; I'm glad to have a job in our still-breathing economy; I savor our water, read by electric light, stop off at Treasure Island now and again, and enjoy walks through the Mount Sutro eucalyptus as much as the next guy. But, given the chance, isn't it better to build civic monuments not tainted by unnecessary destruction?
I read this today in the Weekly and wanted to share with you all. Because this sums up San Francisco so well.
Now back to work on project. One hundred sixty five hours and counting.
I *really* need an SF icon.