The media have duly reported the removal of the benches from U.N.
Plaza. They’re gone, every last one, just as they’re all gone from
Civic Center Plaza across the way. Once again, the theatrical gesture
isn’t working. To be sure, well-dressed office workers from the
high-rises lining the plaza may think twice about eating outside if it
means risking grass stains. But folks whose clothes have seen better
days are quite content to sit on the curb.
They’d better mind their manners all the same.
Business interests in the area are still chafing at the scruffians
near their establishments, and so the Tenderloin Task Force, in
conjunction with the Southern Station and anyone else who’s needed,
has begun a new, highly visible Mid-Market Street police enforcement
program. On May 1 officers on horseback, motorcycle, bicycle, and
plain old shoe leather stepped up patrols of the blocks surrounding
Market from Powell to Eighth. The men and women in blue are
scheduled to hit the pavement at 6:oo in the morning and leave at
midnight, confirming a longstanding rumor: this town really does
close down early.
Wired. Tired of watching
metal jungles spring up on rooftops near your home? The
proliferation of wireless phone antennas has caught the attention of
the supes. According to Doug Loranger of SNAFU (San Francisco
Neighborhood Antenna-Free Union), the Housing, Transportation, and
Land Use Committee has scheduled a hearing on the feasibility of a
one-year moratorium for Thursday, May 10, at 10:00 a.m.
What’s a poor gal to do?
The arrival of spring seems to have brought out some Neanderthalish
attitudes toward the female of the species. Did anyone notice the
odd article by Jane Kay in the Chron a couple of weeks ago,
“Socialite takes break from beautifying S.F”? The story,
ostensibly about the resignation of Francesca Vietor from the
directorship of the city’s Department of the Environment, burbled
over Vietor’s silver spoon childhood and her society page parents
and ended with faint damning praise. Kay meticulously itemized
Vietor’s accomplishments and quoted expert witnesses like Leland
Yee: “Having Francesca helps me deal with the environmental issues a
lot easier. You’re more receptive to the information when it’s
provided to you in a thoughtful and professional way.” The
Department of the Environment has always played the poor relation at
City Hall, receiving token funds and serving mainly as evidence of
good intentions. And now, the Chronicle tell us, the good little
girl that steered its course has gone off, after many kindly pats on
the head, to be with her brand-new husband. Eeeyuuu!
director Peter Finch squealed that very word into the microphone the
other morning. The poor man had gone through a horrifying experience
over the weekend, watching his unweaned two-year-old nephew ask
to be nursed. The kid even specified which side he wanted. Eeeyuuu!
When a quick poll of listeners suggested Finch was overreacting —
well, maybe a little, they thought — he agreed on a compromise: if
there was no change when the boy was six, then he’d worry about it.
The reason for his concern is a little unclear. Was he afraid his
sister’s turned into a pedophile?