Treat Street Treats

I met this guy, Tree, yesterday:

He runs and actually helped to found the Treat Commons Community Garden. And Sundays from 1-3pm, he runs a stand where he gives away free food to low income people from the community garden and donated by people whose gardens have produced in excess that week. Also available are free flowers, seedlings, and garden advice. Rumor has it that they just harvested some honey.

Link to his blog on the farm stand here.

I wonder if the cucumbers here are acceptable unlike my previous experience.

Coulrophobia aka Clown Phobia

I had never really found clowns particularly scary until I saw this charmer at Carnaval this past weekend. On the surface she seems nice, making sweet balloon animals for the kids (notice that monkey in the front row). But the demonic gleam in her eye in the photo above hints towards a darker side:

It might just be me, but the lilting incantations coupled with the oddly unrhymed phrases is more than a little bit creepy.

Even if JJ wasn’t frightened, I was.

Mish Fish

FluffyThe other day I was lamenting the lack of pet stores in the Mission. I wanted to walk by a storefront, see a puppy flopping around and falling over when it ran, or a kitten sneezing. Instead I chose a pretty good substitute, and stared in at the catfish and crabs at Fresh Meat Seafood Market for a couple minutes. Sure the catfishes’ eyes were a little glossy (although the one I named “Fluffy” seemed a little more alert than the others), and the crabs scuttling over one another and accidentally cutting off limbs with their pinchers wasn’t quite as adorable as what I had in mind, but it had to do.

Until I discovered Ocean Treasures.

Granted, it isn’t on my way to…well, anywhere, but the serene blue tanks and graceful fish drew me in like a shark to blood. Filled with exotic fish and reefs, it was more like an aquarium than a pet store. If it weren’t for the smell emitted by another wayward wanderer, I would have stayed longer. But the fish didn’t seem to mind the stench. They stared lazily out at me and glubbed a goodbye.

But I’m still going to say hi to Fluffy on my way home tomorrow. Cross your fingers that he is still there…

Where Has All the Chocolate Gone?

I find this selection of chocolate chips at the Mission Safeway unacceptable. Only seven available types of baking chips, and one was white (fake) chocolate and another was butterscotch (ew) ?!  Whatever happened to peanut butter chips or mini-chocolate chips? A few feet away is this disgusting display:

I love olive oil as much as the next person, but really? The extravagant number of olive oils takes up so much precious space that there is no room for chocolate?

Mission bakers – is there anywhere around to find mini chocolate chips?

The Recycling Bin Nazi

Dear Recycling Bin Nazi,

Let me just say, I am sorry about the other night. During the week when I carefully checked the bottom of every plastic tub searching for those three little arrows, and painstakingly cleaned out my empty peanut butter jar (which as you may know is quite difficult) before tossing the containers into the recycling, I had no idea I would be causing such controversy.

Try to put yourself into my position (much like Anne Shirley asks Diana’s Aunt Josephine to consider her position in regards to the sparest of spare bedrooms) and pretend, just for a moment, that you are me. Imagine my dismay when I walked out to my recycling bin and found it, lo and behold, completely full. Chocked to the brim with pop cans, cereal boxes, and office paper. What was I to do with my humble recyclables?

It was, as you can see, a difficult situation. And your recycling bin was right there. It was almost full, but there was just enough space for my paltry items. And then you appeared. Where did you come from? You simply began to scream obscenities at me- why? Why did you immediately assume I was out to get you? Why did you call me a thief when I was in fact gifting you items?

I would have understood if you had more recyclables to place in your bin- that would have been fine. I would have understood if you are simply overprotective of your bin (and given that it was under constant surveillance I assume you must be). I would have even understood if you had asked nicely. But you didn’t, instead you spouted crazy.

You yelled I was costing you money as that vein throbbed on your forehead. I didn’t appreciate you snapping, “It doesn’t matter!” when I calmly asked if the city charged by the quarter bin. You knew you were being irrational. And you obviously hadn’t checked with the city, because all recycling and composting is free. But my household called the city. We chatted today about recycling practices, and the city told my household we didn’t do anything wrong.

Shouldn’t we all work together to promote recycling? Shouldn’t we be neighborly? I would gladly lend you a cup of sugar should you need it to sweeten your sour disposition. Did you not want me to recycle because you don’t care about the environment?

I bet you loved watching me pick each of my items out of your bin as down the street a homeless man picked items out of my recycle bin. As I marched back down to my house head held high, the homeless man gave me the nod of a comrade. He had taken enough out of my bin that I could now fit everything in. I know the city says to report recycling theft, but sir, I salute you!

And as for you my contemptible neighbor, you are so trashy you don’t even deserve to recycle.

That Anne Girl,

Pie Art

There is a new mural up outside Mission Pie. Whenever I walk by these signs, they remind me of some sort of prospective student college brochure where current students and kindly professors try to charm me into sending in an application. These posters are convincing, “Yes, now that you suggest it, I will attend Pie University.” All freshman would enroll in either taste testing or pie baking. Exams would probe my understanding of the subtle differences between Reddi-wip, Cool Whip (which now comes in a can!) and actual whipped cream. School uniforms would be aprons; pie tins would fly whimsically through the air, tossed by the ultimate frisbee team; and although old, our teachers would be “crusty” in a good way.

The murals were created by Anne Hamersky who details her art here. Here’s to desperately hoping that her last name rhymes with “pie.”


In a, what I consider somewhat valiant, attempt to promote the local economy, buy local to help the environment, and to get fresher vegetables, I have begun to buy the fruits and vegetables category of my life at a local market. The one on the corner. I wish I had a photo but I don’t. Just imagine a store with produce. As I pranced around the store getting peppers, carrots, green beans, and eyeing some nasty looking apples, out of the corner of my eye I saw a woman squeeze a cucumber, shake her head, and examine the mushrooms approvingly. Curious, I drew closer. Another woman glanced at the cucumbers, said something in Spanish to another woman who then molested the cucumber with her hand, and drew back in disgust. All three women had now moved onto different vegetables. I quickly reached out a grabbed a cucumber, wondering what was wrong. I pressed it, nothing happened. It felt solid and delicious. Now, I am of some good British stock, land of the cucumber sandwich for goodness sake. I know cucumbers. My ancestors had cucumber juice running in their veins. I knew these cucumbers were top quality. But I was spooked. And so I walked out of the store, cucumberless and alone.

And my salad that night was less delicious than usual.