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The Fleishhacker Pool

The Fleishhacker Pool, formerly located in San Francisco, California, was once the United States' largest swimming pool, as well as the world' largest heated saltwater pool. The pool closed in 1971 and was eventually acquired by the adjacent SF Zoo, which filled in the giant pool to make its present parking lot. The Pool's Bath House, however, is still standing, albeit derelict.
posted by MattMangels on Aug 30, 2011 - 45 comments

Old S.F.

Old S.F. Browse the San Francisco Historical Photograph Collection by time and location.
posted by roll truck roll on Aug 27, 2011 - 13 comments

Dog Gone

The Doggie Diner was the name of a Bay Area chain of burger joints that had its heyday in the '60s and '70s. The last remaining restaurant in the Chain was located at the corner of 46th and Sloat in San Francisco, CA. Even after the place became a restaurant with a new name ("Carousel") the giant Fiberglass dachshund head remained as a piece of nostalgia until a storm toppled it on April 1st, 2001. The head was relocated in January 2005 to the median of Sloat Boulevard and became San Francisco city landmark #254. Now the restaurant itself is slated for demolition. [more inside]
posted by MattMangels on Aug 22, 2011 - 32 comments

But your fog, it really moves!

San Francisco's fog rolling in (SLVimeo).
posted by spitefulcrow on Jul 29, 2011 - 47 comments

Bay Area photo archives

Let's Go to the Morgue! features images dug up from the San Francisco Chronicle's basement photo archives. Peter Hartlaub got distracted from his parenting blog to find and caption vintage photos of Golden Gate BART and Other Failed Rapid Transit Dreams, Sexy time! Five decades of Bay Area bathing suits, Tourist season in San Francisco, Six decades of roller derby in the Bay Area, When arcades ruled the Bay Area and A journey back to your high school prom. [more inside]
posted by oneirodynia on Jul 28, 2011 - 15 comments

Oceans 1

Shortly before noon yesterday morning an art thief walked into the Weinstein Gallery near San Francisco's Union Square, grabbed Pablo Picasso's 1965 pencil drawing, "Tête de Femme (Head of a Woman)" and strolled casual out of the museum to a waiting cab. Witnesses described the man as a "well dressed" "white man about 6 feet tall, age 30 to 35, wearing a dark jacket, a white shirt, dark pants, large dark glasses and loafers with no socks." Surveillance cameras at nearby restaurant Lefty O'Doul's appear to have captured the suspect as he walked briskly down the street, Picasso under arm.Most galleries that show this caliber of artwork don’t put it on street level,” said gallery owner Rowland Weinstein. “It’s very upsetting, because my goal is to keep this kind of work accessible to the public.” Weinstein says the piece was insured and is valued at $200,000.
posted by 2bucksplus on Jul 6, 2011 - 101 comments

The essays of Kenneth Rexroth

The poet and translator Kenneth Rexroth, one of the central figures in the San Francisco Renaissance, only wrote prose for money. But he did it very well. (way previously) [more inside]
posted by Trurl on Jul 3, 2011 - 8 comments

SF To LA Using Public Transit

As a public transit geek, I really enjoyed this story. We've talked about taking public transit on unlikely routes previously, and I read the original blog post giving the directions on how to get from SF to LA using only public transit. But the article from SF Weekly's In Transit blogger, Joe Eskanazi, really brings the trip to life.
posted by agatha_magatha on Jun 27, 2011 - 28 comments

Ghost Ships of the Mothball Fleet

Inside the Ghost Ships of the Mothball Fleet : The Cleanup of Suisen Bay

For decades, dozens of forgotten Navy and merchant ships have been corroding in Suisun Bay, 30 miles northeast of San Francisco. These historic vessels—the Mothball Fleet—served their country in four wars: WWII, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, and Desert Storm. After a decade of impasse, the ghost fleet is slowly dwindling as the ships are towed out one-by-one for scrapping. About 15 retired ships are already gone; by 2017, the entire fleet will be just a memory. [more inside]
posted by HopperFan on Jun 8, 2011 - 53 comments

New Front in the Battle over Foreskin.

A movement to ban circumcision appears to be gaining momentum in San Francisco. [more inside]
posted by HabeasCorpus on Jun 5, 2011 - 427 comments

Smug liberal bigots

After Daily Beast columnist Andrew Sullivan lambasted The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence's Hunky Jesus Contest in San Francisco's Dolores Park with a short post flamingly titled "The Tired, Lame Bigotry Of Some Homosexuals," the Sisters responded. Sullivan reacted to the responses with an escalation, calling the Sisters "smug liberal bigots." Is the Hunky Jesus Contest "everyone's favorite blasphemous hoot" or a "profane and shockingly insensitive spectacle" that "illustrates the secular, pro-'gay' Left's hypocrisy in demanding 'respect' for homosexuals and transsexuals"? (previously)
posted by mrgrimm on Apr 29, 2011 - 148 comments

Interactive toothpick sculpture of SF

Man unveils interactive toothpick sculpture of San Francisco that took 35 years to create. Mindblowing. (single vimeo link)
posted by the_bone on Apr 23, 2011 - 56 comments

Video of the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake and rescue work

Video produced by the California Highway Patrol of the 7.1 1989 San Francisco Bay Area earthquake and the rescue attempts that followed. It focuses on the Bay Bridge and the Cypress collapse. This video has some intense footage, including much that I'd never seen of the rescue efforts. [more inside]
posted by gingerbeer on Dec 27, 2010 - 22 comments

"Look. It is like one big family ... everybody my brother, everybody my sister."

On Christmas Eve, exactly 100 years ago, Luisa Tetrazzini, the most famous opera singer of her day, sang in the streets of San Francisco as a gift to the city she loved. 250,000 people, most of them survivors of the 1906 earthquake listened in silence as she began with "The Last Rose of Summer," then sang along as she ended with "Auld Lang Syne."
posted by williampratt on Dec 24, 2010 - 9 comments

San Francisco Symphony

Keeping Score is designed to give people of all musical backgrounds an opportunity to explore signature works by composers Hector Berlioz, Charles Ives, and Dmitri Shostakovich in depth, and at their own pace. The interactive audio and video explores the composers’ scores and pertinent musical techniques as well as the personal and historical back stories. [more inside]
posted by netbros on Dec 12, 2010 - 7 comments

Giants Baseball: Torture.

The San Francisco Giants are the 2010 World Series Champions, having defeated the Texas Rangers 4 games to 1. [more inside]
posted by clearly on Nov 2, 2010 - 131 comments

Streetcar-Mounted Film Cameras (and more)

San Francisco 1906, Barcelona 1908, London 1927. [more inside]
posted by Miko on Oct 19, 2010 - 49 comments

Give me a wooden ladder is not a euphamism

The San Francisco Fire Department has a ladder making shop (SLYT)
posted by zerobyproxy on Sep 30, 2010 - 19 comments

Don't get caught lingering

Three Question Marks: the photo/story/painting blog of artist "merkley???" [ALL LINKS VERY NSFW]
posted by Potomac Avenue on Sep 29, 2010 - 15 comments

Paul Madonna draws San Francisco.

"I never know what to call myself really. I call myself a cartoonist because it's what I've wanted to do for as long as I can remember, it's what I always return to, and it's how I think. But I don't really work in that field. I think I'm an artist and a writer, or more appropriately, an artist who writes." [more inside]
posted by oulipian on Jul 31, 2010 - 5 comments

Paddle from Alcatraz

The Alcatraz Swim-o-Meter calculates the time and path of your watery escape from Alcatraz, designed and built by San Francisco Dolphin Club member Kent Myers.
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot on Jul 14, 2010 - 13 comments

The High Cost of Free Parking

"Eighty-seven percent of all trips are made by personal vehicle and 99 percent of those trips arrive at a free parking space." But that free parking comes at a high cost according to Donald Shoup's research. He advocates for charging the right price for on-street parking and for removing off-street parking requirements. Shoup's ideas are coming to the streets in San Francisco's new demand-responsive parking system. Loyal Shoupistas work to spread and implement his ideas.
posted by parudox on Jul 13, 2010 - 192 comments

You're gonna go up the street 12 pixels, hang a left, then straight 44 pixels to 77th street...

8bit Cities: Amsterdam - Austin - Berlin - Detroit - London - New York - Paris - San Francisco - Seattle - Washington, D.C.
posted by BeerFilter on Jul 9, 2010 - 17 comments

The Viewer As Voyeur

Exposed: Voyeurism, Surveillance and the Camera is an exhibition at the Tate Modern in London which examines voyeurism through the medium of photography. In addition to works from professionals such as Brassaï, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Lee Miller, Shizuka Yokomizo, Guy Bourdin, Nan Goldin and Robert Mapplethorpe, it includes amateur and CCTV "stolen" images taken both with and without the knowledge of their subjects -- all intended to "explore the uneasy relationship between making and viewing images that deliberately cross lines of privacy and propriety." [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 15, 2010 - 7 comments

The Golden Rule on the Golden Gate

Last week, this postcard appeared on the popular PostSecret[1st][etc], a blog in which people anonymously share their secrets via postcard. [more inside]
posted by dirtynumbangelboy on Jun 13, 2010 - 94 comments

Not a Joke Band

Joe Pop-O-Pie led his San Francisco punk band Pop-O-Pies through countless performances of the band's "hit", an idiosyncratic cover of the Grateful Dead's Truckin'. As the 1980's closed, Joe fell off the map while his other projects went mainstream, but last month the Pop-O-Pies reunited for one more Truckin' performance.
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot on May 10, 2010 - 15 comments

"The most intact, the largest, and the most ambitious tiki bar ever created in San Francisco."

Save The Tonga Room. The beloved Tonga Room in San Francisco, long threatened with extinction, may soon be a City historical resource, giving it a fighting chance at preservation.
posted by xowie on May 5, 2010 - 21 comments

SF Car Gallery

San Francisco Vehicles Cropped to a Square. A cool, quirky gallery of over 100 vehicles parked in San Francisco, arranged by color (be sure to page through them all and notice the color transitions). Includes a few cool shots and a few WTF cars.
posted by mathowie on Apr 8, 2010 - 11 comments

The Great West Coast Newspaper War

The alt-weekly newspaper war in San Francisco - The titanic struggle between The Bay Guardian and SF Weekly (owned by Village Voice Media), as told by Eli Sanders of Seattle alt-weekly The Stranger.
posted by Artw on Mar 20, 2010 - 23 comments

Too big to fail?

SFPD's new chief, George Gascon, is reportedly considering putting an end to Critical Mass, the group cycling event that occurs the last Friday of every month. There has been speculation, after a January ruling that New York City can force groups of 50 people or more on bicycles to get a parade permit, that similar action may be taken in San Francisco. Critical Mass appears unworried. (Previously)
posted by ActingTheGoat on Mar 4, 2010 - 140 comments

Button du Jour

Button du Jour. A charming semi-daily imaginary vignette featuring food, fashion, music, and an exotic location -- all inspired by a beautiful button.
posted by ottereroticist on Feb 1, 2010 - 6 comments

Kill Them With Kindness

God Hates Signs: Fred Phelps' Westboro Baptist Church band-of-bigots showed up in San Francisco the other day to protest at the headquarters of Twitter. (Why? "Twitter should be used to tell the punks of doomed America that God hates you!"). They were met by counter-protesters, well versed in the dark arts of snark. Hilarity ensues.
posted by fourcheesemac on Jan 31, 2010 - 123 comments

Where Did San Francisco's Pier 39 Sea Lions Go?

The California and Steller sea lions hauled out at Pier 39's K dock in San Francisco have become a famous tourist attraction. The colony has occupied the spot since 1990, seemingly abandoning their traditional grounds at Seal Rocks. A fall survey counted record numbers of over 1,500 sea lions at the Pier, but they abandoned the area in droves after Thanksgiving. "We have no idea where they moved on to or why” an expert from the Marine Mammal Center said, although the Center does not believe that the sea lions have left for good. [more inside]
posted by gemmy on Dec 29, 2009 - 34 comments

Somebody should have left their brain in San Francisco

San Francisco - the Worst-Run Big City in the U.S. Despite its spending more money per capita, period, than almost any city in the nation, San Francisco has poorly managed, budget-busting capital projects, overlapping social programs no one is certain are working, and a transportation system where the only thing running ahead of schedule is the size of its deficit. [more inside]
posted by VikingSword on Dec 21, 2009 - 130 comments

San Francisco GLBT Historical Society & B.A.R. create on-line database of HIV/AIDS obituaties

San Francisco's Bay Area Reporter, together with the GLBT Historical Society, are making available all of the gay newspaper's AIDS obituaries in an on-line searchable database. The database, to be unveiled on December 1, 2009, World AIDS Day, contains the obituaries for about 10,000 people. [more inside]
posted by ClaudiaCenter on Nov 29, 2009 - 17 comments

The Occupation of Alcatraz 1969-71

Forty Thanksgivings ago Alcatraz Island was occupied by a number of Native American activists as a protest. The occupation lasted until June of 1971 The best place to learn about it is PBS's website for Alcatraz Is Not an Island, Jim Fortier's documentary about the Alcatraz Occupation. Besides an overview of the events it has video interviews with the people involved. [RealPlayer required] Here are photographs of the occupation, mostly from newspapers. For a flavor of how the local media covered the events, here's the San Francisco Bay Area Television Archive's Occupation of Alcatraz Collection which has over 40 contemporary newsreports [MPEG4]
posted by Kattullus on Nov 26, 2009 - 10 comments

"We didn't commit suicide. We committed an act of revolutionary suicide protesting the conditions of an inhumane world."

31 years ago today, 918 people died in the Jonestown Mass Murder-Suicide. One week later, CBC Radio aired this comprehensive examination[MP3] of the events leading up the tragedy, including cult leader Jim Jones' rise to power, the founding of the Peoples Temple Agricultural Project in Guyana, and the ill-fated investigative delegation headed by Congressman Leo Ryan which precipitated the tragic event.
posted by Alvy Ampersand on Nov 17, 2009 - 51 comments

Before hippies, even.

Jeff Altman took some of his grandfather's 16mm Kodachrome home movies and made some really nice HD transfers out of them: San Francisco circa 1958, Disneyland in 1956 (part 2).
posted by mikesch on Oct 23, 2009 - 44 comments

Goodbye, "Leih Hou Ma," Hello "Ni Hao Ma!"

"Chinatown" communities across the United States (New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Boston, San Francisco) are undergoing a shift in linguistic identity, as recent immigrants are more likely to natively speak Mandarin (the official spoken language of China, Hong Kong and Taiwan,) instead of Cantonese. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Oct 22, 2009 - 56 comments

Woodward realized that it was only a question of being pestered forever or quietly throwing open his place

"The What Cheer House catered to men only, permitted no liquor on the premises, and housed San Francisco's first free library and first museum." Opened in 1852 by Robert B. Woodward it became immensely popular. "[S]ailors enjoyed staying there... [he] was such a well-liked man that they would often bring him trinkets from around the world when they’d come to town. For Woodward, these gifts were the beginning of what would become a life-long obsession with collecting." He moved the collection and opened Woodward's Gardens in 1866 between Mission and Valencia at 13th-15th streets. Called the Central Park of the West, it was San Francisco's most famous public resort. [more inside]
posted by jessamyn on Oct 4, 2009 - 23 comments

Delrious Time-Lapse

Ben Wiggins features stunning time-lapse photography. From the strange colorings of the Cnidarian and Montipora coral species, to summer cloud transformations in and around San Francisco. Couldn't make it to Burning Man 2009? See it... in just two minutes (2008, 2007).
posted by netbros on Sep 26, 2009 - 6 comments

The Bay Bridge is now closed

The San Francisco Bay Bridge has been shut down for the weekend to allow workers to roll a section of the old bridge away, and roll in a temporary section, while they build the new permanent bridge. Download the video here showing how they'll do it. [more inside]
posted by gingerbeer on Sep 3, 2009 - 61 comments

Scaling Gumdrop Mountain

Sweet! The Crookedest Street in the World was turned into a giant Candy Land game today, to celebrate the board game's 60th anniversary. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4 [more inside]
posted by zarq on Aug 19, 2009 - 26 comments

San Francisco's Black Exodus

San Francisco's Black Exodus. Since the last report in 1990, San Francisco’s Black population has dropped by 40 percent, faster than any other major city in the country. In an effort to reverse the loss, Mayor Gavin Newsom started the African American Out-Migration Task force in 2007. [more inside]
posted by lunit on Aug 13, 2009 - 27 comments

It's two, two bars in one.

Where do you wanna meet, Fahey's Bar or the Dragon Lounge? How an ordinary San Francisco bar adapted to shifting demographics by developing a dual personality.
posted by w0mbat on Aug 8, 2009 - 21 comments

We Built This City on Sunken Ships

Ship to Shore. Much of downtown San Francisco, including everything in this photo, is built on landfill based on sunken ships that were abandoned during the Gold Rush (see the map linked at the bottom of the page). [more inside]
posted by kirkaracha on May 18, 2009 - 26 comments

But some do not climb; and below, the earth is littered with them.

"I photograph people who skirt the edges of things; people whose connection to the broader flow is murky or obscured. Mistaken as more, less or different than they are; they aren’t really seen and don’t really belong. That’s everyone sometimes; but some more often. I try to establish a line for a moment. I hope to connect. And I see the most beautiful and the most heartbreaking things."
posted by parudox on May 10, 2009 - 34 comments

30 years of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence

Thirty years of community fundraising, flawless makeup, genderbending, and hysterically offensive names: the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence are celebrating their 30th anniversary in San Francisco this weekend with parties, library exhibits, an art show, and their usual over-the-top Easter celebration. [more inside]
posted by gingerbeer on Apr 10, 2009 - 18 comments

This cycle, which may continue until our sun--or our planet--fails us...

Wilfred Sätty; 1939 - 1982 Illustrator and Collagist extraordinaire; like many talented people of that era hung out at Vesuvio.
" There is a time in the span of civilizations when creative energy and the human spirit are wholly, if briefly focused. When this occurs culture in all its manifestations reaches its zenith. The moment passes; civilizations decline, only to be replaced by others. This process of life appears cyclic. Communities become tribes, turn into nations and become empires which, like suns, radiate their energy to the limits of their power, then decay and finally vanish, leaving behind only traces. This cycle, which may continue until our sun--or our planet--fails us..... "
When you want to know about someone's life you either ask the person yourself or you ask friends ... Sätty is Dead [more inside]
posted by adamvasco on Feb 14, 2009 - 4 comments

Howard and 3rd

The End of an Era. Apple has just announced this January will be the last Macworld.
posted by four panels on Dec 16, 2008 - 57 comments

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