Watching City Hall #326
By h. brown
“The moon turned red for the Red Sox!”
(“Splits,” from the Mission)
We were on District 5 candidate Julian Davis’ roof in the upper Haight
watching a special (once in 2,500 years) lunar eclipse alignment. It was
supposed to rain, but once again the weatherman lied to us. This made us
“Once, back east, my husband ran for office. He forced a runoff
against a mob candidate and he started getting threats.
Luckily, his golf buddies were mob too and they protected him.
Just goes to show you what kind of country we live in when your golf
buddies have to protect you.”
— from Mary Ann in the Haight during canvass walk
Over the past couple of weeks I’ve slept on the couches of politicians,
reporters, the town’s chief commie publisher and one legal pot dealer. I’m
starting to have an idea of how Marilyn Monroe must have felt.
The moon can hypnotize you, you know. … Oh yeah, staring directly at
various phases of the orb can make you crazy. Or, pregnant. … (I’m feeling
like a be-bop horn player looking for a thread) … Phrases stand out.
Events too. Last night was yet another “where were you when” night for
San Francisco and the nation. The cosmic alignment promised a time of huge
change and at the exact moment the shadow of the earth completed
transitioning the moon to red, the Red Sox got the final out of their 4-0
sweep of the 2004 World Series. The team that was “cursed” by a God had
found redemption. Would the nation do the same?
Jokes, tokes, votes and hopes
I’m going to tell you the truth about something now and I never will
again, so you better pay attention.
I have no idea who is going to win any office, anywhere, come Tuesday.
What I do know is that RCV (Ranked Choice Voting) works. I know it works
because one of the main things it was supposed to do was to encourage
civility amongst the candidates and that’s been happening big time. Last
evening was just the latest example.
Julian Davis & his campaign manager, Josh, hosted. Nicole Derst, Ross
Mirkarimi’s manager, was there with Andy Blue and Richard Stone and Simon
Timony from Ross’s team. Candidate Susan King brought Green multi-tasker
Sue Vaughn. “Splits,” a youngish and perfectly proportioned lanky 6-foot
beauty not associated with any campaign, left a tour of the Haight to join
the party. Someone rolled a “split” (tobacco & pot joint) in honor of
“Splits” and we passed it around. Someone rolled another. Someone else
filled a pipe with good green bud. Someone filled another. … I was
starting to have strong feelings for “someone.” … A couple of bottles of
wine and a case of beer were divided. Others joined us. Some got high.
Others were born that way. I tossed the documentary that Rich Hillis and
Courtney Haslett made of my race in District 2 against Gavin Newsom in
2002 (“Cheap Rent”) … stuck it into the VCR. The case study of 1,000 ways
NOT to run a campaign soon had the group in stitches. Most of them had
been pounding pavement, doors, keyboards, and phone pads for months. They
needed the break and company of like zealots to unwind.
My point is that in the past, opposing candidates and their staffs
partying with the “other” side was unheard of. In this campaign, it is the
norm. Everyone shared their new literature and regaled the gathering with
tidbits from the trail. I turned out the lights and snuggled up on the big
couch in front of the TV as the youngsters went out to continue their
individual crusades to better mankind while having one hell of a good
time. I drifted off hearing soft whispers as another late reveler settled
on another couch across the room.
Another morning, another ceiling
A gray sunlight was breaking through the window behind me when I opened
my eyes and realized I’d lived through another night. I checked my watch
and it told me to kill another hour before beginning to scavenge for
coffee. Digging through the mostly empty cans and glasses on the table, I
sorted out the previous day’s Examiner, Weekly, and Bay Guardian to
“Are you actually reading?”
Turns out the lump on the other sofa was the prettiest little
Australian/Cypriot/Mongol/Turkish film maker you’d ever want to see. She
was just back from filming a documentary with Michael Franti in Iraq. …
Her name is “Senim,” I think. I’m not good with names anyway, but my
last wife was a Turk and that’s pretty close. When I told her of my last
bride, she asked me in Turkish if I could speak her language. I answered
with the one phrase my wife had taught me. … “I love you.” … It got a
laugh. Julian came in rubbing his eyes and we talked of Istanbul and
Australia and Franti and politics. Ahhh, another “only in SF” moment.
Homeless? Unemployed? Maybe, but though the bottom half of my glass might
be empty, the top truly runneth over. Julian tossed me a towel and I
showered and hit the street thinking about the D5 race.
Who is advising some of these people?
Sean Elsbernd who is running in D7 is a good guy. He’s young and smart
and committed. And then, he went and did a campaign flyer featuring a hit
on Chris Daly, whom he sits next to at the Board of Supervisors and who
not only isn’t running against him, but isn’t running at all until 2006.
This is like choosing a boa made of live rattlesnakes for your costume
this Halloween. Only bad things can happen.
I was sitting in the press box behind the supes mulling this over on
Tuesday when Elsbernd requested 3 items be removed from the “For Adoption
without committee reference” calendar. I mean, folks, this is one of those
lists full of resolutions about motherhood and “declaring Oct. 22nd to 28th
to be 1st Solar Week.” … So, what does Elsbernd want to pull
out so that he can stand solo in a 1 to 10 vote?
Well, he opposed “adopting ‘Family Economic Self Sufficiency’ as a goal
toward which the City and County will strive to achieve and will make
concerted efforts to move families out of poverty towards economic
self-sufficiency through legislation initiative, budgetary planning
decisions and executive policy directives.” … Yeah, honest, that’s exactly
what item #38, file 041406, was proposing. Every other supervisor thought
it was a good idea. Elsbernd (who, ostensibly represents Newsom’s
viewpoint exactly) … Elsbernd votes “No”?
The other things he’s alone in opposing are bringing our troops home
from Iraq and an Emergency Health Care initiative. … Who advises these
Over in District #5
Robert Haaland would take an endorsement from the devil himself if he
thought it would gain him a vote. This morning while I was enjoying my
warm shower, Julian called down the hall: “Robert Haaland is on Fox
network!” … My god!
Let me be honest. I think that people who feel persecuted and singled
out because of their color or religion or sexual orientation … people who
claim that all they want to do is to be treated equally … then, suddenly
want preferential treatment because of one of these factors … I think
they’re hypocrites. I have never asked for special consideration because
I’m a low-down drunken Irishman. Hell no, I just want to be treated like
every other low-down drunken Irishman. I hate it when people “hire their
own” no matter what the criterion. You should, too.
My only address is electronic
For Call readers. I’ve been doing my own blog the past couple of years
www.sfbulldog.com. Get yourself a good bottle of wine or a bad bottle
of bourbon and tune me in some time.
Don’t pet strays: