Have any of you ever read Dave Barry's year in Review that he writes for the Miami Herald? It's hilarious! Here is the 2014 edition.

I'm going to present you with a similar year in review, but not very similar because..

1. I'm not Dave Barry

..okay, that's the only reason.

I have pictures I just sort of haphazardly threw on here to recap my 2014 experience, so I hope you like them despite the fact that they're not even in chronological order -- most of them just happened to be taken by me sometime in 2014. I could have done a slide show, but it's more fun to watch your frustration as all these pictures try to load at once.

Yes, I can see you right now through that little camera lens above your screen. I admit it. I bought software from a shady looking guy on a street corner and it really works. Who would have thought Uncle Hank would be so into Victoria's Secret.. but you sure rock that lilac negligée, sir! *cough*
Here are the pictures, in no particular order -- some words will come along too, if that's alright:
Dorian's mom, who happens to be my mother-in-law, visited in
October. Her name is Phyllis. HI PHYLLIS, HAPPY NEW YEAR!
The lady next to Phyllis is HER DAUGHTER and MY WIFE of
almost 25 years, Dorian. People often ask if Dorian likes
purple and I ask them in turn if they're Helen Keller.
Dorian even has A PURPLE BLOG! It kicks ass!

My friend DOUG helped me make a really weird selfie.

The Bank Of America Headquarters,
which is now The Microsoft Tower,
gets eaten by fog one morning.

Streetcars hurtle along through Fisherman's Wharf at
a break-neck 8 mph. It's insane!

A dear, beloved man left us in 2014. We will miss you, Don.
Dorian paid tribute to him in one of the most beautiful posts
she ever wrote. I am proud to say that he counted me as a friend.
Don, please give our love to grandma.. *SALUTE*

This is a few years earlier than 2014, since
grandma Peg left before Don,
but I wanted you to meet
them together. See those smiles?
They were ALWAYS like that!
Made us all wonder what they
were up to. Turns out..

A giant UFO tried to land on the top of the
Transamerica Pyramid one day, and I just
happened to be there to snap this pic.
"Ufologists" say it's "the sun,"
and that I should be
Haters gonna hate.

I went on a date with LADY GAGA! ..while I
was at work, down the street from the newly
opened Madam Tussaud's Wax Museum.
I'm not sure I spelled that correctly.
GAGA doesn't care.

San Francisco City Hall got all spiffed up for something.
I think this was in June for PRIDE, but it could have
just been because they saw me walking by.
They REALLY like me.

Speaking of PRIDE, this was the parade on Market Street on
the last Saturday in June. THERE WERE GAY PEOPLE
EVERYWHERE, so I tried not to look too straight.
I apparently messed it up because not one guy
hit on me. Neither did any girls.
My MOJO was a NOJO that day.

I was a tour guide through most of 2014 and
some people thought I was so good they
would give ME souvenirs after a tour.
One particular fellow happened to be a Philly Cop.

My tours included a trip over to Treasure
Island in the middle of San Francisco Bay.
I got some pretty cool sunset shots during
these, and they were so legendary they
are still talked about by twos of five people.

A bus selfie. It was really right next to me. It's a very,
very tiny bus, despite the words in yellow letters on
the side of it.

The ultimate selfie! There was no one around on this trip
to Treasure Island so I had to set my DROID CAM for
4 seconds and then toss it onto a pillow 15 feet away
with the hope that it would somehow just happen
to get a shot of me as it tumbled. This was attempt
number 23, 496. I'd been there for three days.

A unique perspective of The Transamerica Building
about a week or so before Godzilla came along in
May and didn't destroy it.

Speaking of Godzilla, he was in my neighborhood in May and I was
able to snap this pic. Good thing I'm a fast runner! Forget the damage
to the buildings, we're still shoveling lizard crap into huge craters.

I was starting to get all fancy with my shots from
Treasure Island. That's the Golden Gate Bridge
way in the distance, being all orange and tall.

Downtown in Union Square one busy day, a tour guide with
another company happened to be standing next to my
bus when I stepped off for a minute. "Soda Pop Jones"
lived only two buildings away from us in
North Beach with his girlfriend Michelle, but
both have since packed up and moved on.
We wish them well.

Encountered "Soda Pop" and Michelle one fine day in
Union Square while I was heading for a walking tour
but they were digging their day off.

Thanks for taking the photo, Douglas B. Davis!

The view in North Beach from our window on a typical weekend.

A friend named Joanne, who happened to be a bus driver
in 2014 but is now on to beggar and bitter things.

Another friend. HNY, J. *sigh*

Lawrence is one of the best tour drivers EVER,
and one of the people I will miss very much.

She's behind me, isn't she??

What would Union Square in San Francisco be without a protest?

I gave great tours! NO, REALLY!

Tour guests admire the skyline of the city from
Treasure Island. It was on a "night tour," but
smack dab in the middle of July at about 7:00pm.

Dorian Captained a ferry on San Francisco Bay for like 30
minutes one day as we took a trip over to Sausalito.

This fellow was panhandling at the Sausalito Ferry
Terminal. Hopefully he bought some soap and

The Unknown Sailor stands vigil in Marin County at the North
Vista of The Golden Gate Bridge in remembrance of all
who've been lost at sea through the ages. He is cast in
bronze and has a bronze seabag full of belongings
beside him, leaving one to ponder how painful
bronze underwear must be.

A common sight when I was working as a guide, because we'd
go across The Golden Gate Bridge several times a day.

Another common sight when I was working
as a guide, because Doug.

..which brings me to one of my favorite sights
EVER. Her. *kiss*

Hanging out one fine day with Emperor Norton, aka

I will miss the trips to Treasure Island, and I will miss giving
these tours, but I won't miss the company named on the side of the bus.
Onward and UPWARD to bigger and MUCH BETTER




Love At First Bite

Yeah, I have some pretty weird friends. Ain't it GREAT?



Cracking UP


Isn't that cool? Although I have to admit I have yet to see a police department anywhere in the world that is cracking UP on crime.

Imagine this scenario: you are hanging out with your wife/girlfriend/mother/sister and there are a couple of cops nearby. Let's say this is in a diner. The two cops are sitting in the next booth having lunch when suddenly a purse snatcher whizzes by and snatches your wife/girlfriend/mother/sister's purse right off the table!

While firmly clutching it in his sweaty little paws he dashes out the front door and for just a fleeting moment you're ever so slightly tempted to just go all vigilante on his ass and chase him down, wherein you will tackle him and then bludgeon him with that purse before wiping the blood off of it and returning it to her.

But wait, those two cops are nearby and you should really just let them deal with it, so you do. You quickly turn to the cops and say, "Officers, help! That guy who just ran out the front door snatched my wife/girlfriend/mother/sister's purse!"

But instead of jumping up and running after the fleeing felon, the two cops nonchalantly gaze at the door of the diner, then the one on the left goes back to reading his newspaper while the one on the right shrugs and takes a sip of coffee before saying, "Sorry pal, but this month we're cracking UP on crime." Then he gets up and saunters into the men's room.

This seems like a very unlikely scenario, does it not? Nonetheless, I feel that if I decide to be a lawless rebel on any given day it will probably not be during such a time as this. With my lousy sense of timing I'd surely become a felon when all the cops are cracking down on crime, not up.

This is frustrating because I have so much pent-up stress that's been building over the past few days, I feel a need to let it all out by committing heinous acts of criminal activity. I already have a few ideas on how I can take some of the laws in this city and flaunt them in the face of authority, which, by the way, could use a shave.


First of all, there's the fact that we can no longer walk around San Francisco totally naked. There was a time up until about a year ago that you could actually do that, but the powers that be in City Hall looked out the window and said "OMG!" and immediately passed an ordinance against it. Technically you can still walk around naked, but only under your clothes, which kind of takes the thrill out of it.


We can no longer build buildings here out of brick. This is earthquake country and everyone just got tired of picking up bricks everywhere, so the city made it illegal to build a house or any other kind of building out of brick.


We have thousands upon thousands of eucalyptus trees in this city, which is why on rare, humid days the entire city smells like a giant cough-drop. Well, a giant cough-drop mixed with weed. So the city has made it illegal to plant any more of these type of trees.

Yes, weed is legal in this city but Eucalyptus trees are not. We're awesome that way.

The main factor is that eucalyptus trees proliferate really fast. You could take two of them to a club and they'll slip out early via the back door and go find the nearest motel. They love making little eucalyptus trees as often as they can, so the city just decided that we'd have a plentiful supply even if they did ban bringing in new ones, because the ones that are already here keep us well stocked.


There are only a couple of cemeteries in the city of San Francisco because they made it illegal to bury anyone after 1900. We were running out of room around that time and the powers-that-be looked around and said, "OMG!" and "Hey, we're running out of room!"

They also realized that cemeteries are a really bad real-estate investment because the tenants don't pay rent. They just make a one-time purchase of a small plot of land and afterward there is no flipping it, subletting it or reselling it after the value has appreciated over time (that's after the tenant has settled in). The tenants also don't pay property taxes.

The city of San Francisco sends all that type of business down to COLMA, which is a neighboring city to the south that's known as "The Mortuary City." This is because there is a mortuary on every corner in the fine city of Colma, just as there is a Starbucks on every corner in practically every other town and city in America. The upside is that there's a Starbucks in the lobby of every mortuary in Colma. You can go have a caramel frappucino after the service and pull yourself together as you remember Great-Aunt Edna, who gave you a five-dollar-bill for your eighth birthday and told you not to spend it all in one place, so you didn't. Boy, was her mustache scratchy.

The sad fact is that although it's legal to die here in San Francisco, you just can't be buried here unless someone burns you up first and then just buries your ashes. You could do it that way, we guess. So yeah, what the hell, GO FOR IT! We'll wait.


Many years ago the Ringling Bros and Barnum and Bailey Circus used to visit San Francisco and they'd have this big parade on Market Street, wherein all the clowns, acrobats, jugglers and animals would give the citizens a free sneak-peek at their circus antics. During one such parade a handler was walking an elephant down the street and it went crazy and trampled some people. It wasn't on any kind of leash or rope; the handler was just sort of nudging the lumbering beast along with something called an "elephant stick."

So the city passed an ordinance saying that if you must walk an elephant down Market Street, the elephant must be on a leash. Because we all know that if you're on the other end of that leash and the elephant gets spooked, breaks into a run and tramples people, it wouldn't stand a chance as long as you wrap the end of that leash firmly around your little wrist and give it a tug.

A 1900 photo shows a circus parading down Market Street here
in San Francisco with a handful of elephants down in the lower
left corner that are clearly not leashed.

I must admit that all these laws are simply too much for me, as I am a rebel at heart. I am a wild, free spirit who cannot be tethered by legislation. I yearn to break free and fly like the wind, stretching my wings of freedom as I sail along on the sea of mixed metaphors.

With this being the case I am bound and determined that the next time I feel the least little bit stressed-out I am going to simply shed my garments and walk buck-naked to the nearest nursery and purchase a eucalyptus tree, which I shall then plant in the city of San Francisco right in front of the brick house I will have just finished building (in the nude) before I get a shovel and bury someone in the front yard right next to that tree.

Then, to relax, I'm going to take my elephant for a stroll down Market Street with NO DAMNED LEASH WHAT-SO-EVER.

This should alleviate the bulk of my stress and help me to feel better, as long as it's during a week when the cops are cracking up on crime and not down. Because if I land in jail, my wife/girlfriend/mother/sister will miss me terribly.


Life Lessons At The Bus Stop

While waiting for a bus one time, I visited with a lady and her little CockAPoo.

I didn't know this at the time, but "CockAPoo" is an old Indian word for "happy little ball of fluff," which exactly summed up the entire being of this tiny dog.

Whenever someone would walk by, the little CockAPoo would get way more excited than should be legal, and would bounce up and down yelling, "Hey! Hey! Hey! Look at ME! Hey! Hey! Hey! Look at ME!"

The people would not only look, but they'd stop and pet and coo and tell the lady what a cute little dog she had, which she already knew, but she seemed to like hearing it again and again. Then the CockAPoo would lick their faces off.

This reminded me of a story, which I told the lady, and I'll tell you now.

Years ago I remember being in a similar situation, only it was a different town, and I wasn't waiting for a bus, I was waiting for my wife to be done with her shopping, and the dog wasn't a CockAPoo, it was a German Shepherd and the lady was a man. But other than those trivial details the situation was exactly the same.

The man's German Shepherd was young - not much more than a pup - and the man had it sit on the sidewalk as he walked away. It wasn't tied to a fence or anything - it wasn't wearing a leash at all - and it just sat there and eyed the man intently as he strolled off.

The man got about 30 feet away, then he stopped and just stood there. The dog didn't make a sound, but just kept its eyes on him the whole time. People walked by and they'd say something to it or snap their fingers at it, yet the dog didn't take its eyes off the man for a second. Suddenly, he made a gesture and said something, at which time the dog bounded happily to him and received a treat.

The man explained that this was a police dog in training, and what he was doing was working on the dog's ability to focus entirely on the handler when in a crowd and not be distracted. He said that this particular dog was one of his advanced students who'd be graduating soon and joining a police department shortly thereafter.

The lady thanked me for the story and said it was "interesting," just as a few more people walked by and the CockAPoo went nuts.

Then the bus came and I got on, so I didn't get to talk to her after that. But I did reflect on the CockAPoo versus the German Shepherd, and it occurred to me that were I to draw some kind of analogy from this, I guess I'd have to compare my attitude in life more to the CockAPoo than the German Shepherd, and to carry it a little further, I'd say that I probably have to admit that I've been trying to hang out with German Shepherds for a long time now, when I really belong with the CockAPoos.

The conclusion I'd have to come to, then, is that I don't focus very well - which is why I never wanted to be a cop or a banker or a real estate agent or an astronaut or anything like that.

Being more of a CockAPoo, I'm more interested in what's going on around me - all the time - and I want to greet it, yap at it, lick it, and maybe even pee on it if I can get it to hold still long enough.

I don't want to invest in it and wait for the long-term dividends, like the police-dog-in-training does while standing there waiting and focusing, with the hope of getting that treat when all's said and done.

I want to play with it. NOW.

I'm definitely a CockAPoo, because they seem so much happier and they live life to the fullest no matter who's walking by. They love everyone, and if the German Shepherds of the world have a hard time dealing with that, they can just go bury a bone and leave me be.



Apparently, Dorian and I only have a couple of days left to live.

This is because Friday is the day when a giant, mutant lizard will rise up out of the ocean and stomp the bejeezus out of us.


When this poster was released about a week ago, I first saw it as an ad on a website while sitting in our little apartment, and let me tell you, I sprung-up and yelled, "Honey, RUN!" Because according to the graphic, Godzilla is going to take about three more steps and then squoosh our entire block.

The tall pointy building seen in the skyline next to Godzilla is The Transamerica Pyramid. It's not only the tallest building in San Francisco but it's just a few blocks away. Here's a photo I took of it from my window..

The blonde lady shown in the picture is on a sign outside our window because we live over a strip-club here in North Beach. There are actually three of them on this corner, one across the street and two more a few blocks down. So yes, on Friday Godzilla is going to squoosh strippers too. That means you can expect Pat Robertson to hit the airwaves on Saturday to claim that God sent Godzilla. He even has "God" in his name, so it must be true!

Godzilla's direction of travel shown in the movie poster means that us and all those strippers, the doormen and the guy who runs the liquor store between the strip-clubs will be reduced to bio-matter between his toes in about ten seconds, assuming we don't get blasted first by his fire-breath. In which case I guess we'd be ashen bio-matter.

So yeah, it was nice knowing you all. If I owe anyone money, come around on Thursday and I'll settle all my old scores, but after that you might want to get the hell out of San Francisco. 

Now that I think of it, it might be a good time for us to take a vacation.


A Beginner's Guide To The Alcoholic Content Of Beer

copyright: somchaij / 123RF Stock Photo
As an experienced consumer of fine beer, I am more than abundantly qualified to educate beginners on the merits of such, with the topic of alcoholic content being a favorite of mine.

This is due to the numerous debates I’ve been privileged to engage in with various associates while seated at the local tavern, with the subject consistently drifting to this topic whenever some innocent newcomer would wander in and place an order for an Amstel Light.

Our small yet hardy group is, for the most part, made up of Samuel Adams drinkers with the exception of Seamus, who is a Guinness man. The poor, unsuspecting rapscallion who dares to order an Amstel is bound to be the recipient of merciless teasing for assorted reasons such as the rather bland taste of the product and the lack of creativity in the labeling, but mostly for the slight alcoholic content of 3.5 for which Amstel Light is famous.

On this day, I have decided to abstain from my usual tavern session and pick up a 12-pack of Samuel Adams Boston Lager for home consumption. No sooner had I twisted the top off my first libation of the evening and logged on, did I find this chance to write on a topic that familiarity holds out in front of my face to taunt me, as one would taunt a dog with a pork chop.

This is not a chance to be passed up, as I’m in the unique position to consume the beer as I write and, having decided to do so already, I’ve taken the liberty of finishing off the first one just after completion of the first paragraph and shall now break to complete the second of many yet to come. As a personal investigation for the sake of journalistic integrity and accuracy, I shall consume one Samuel Adams per paragraph, making this a virtual measurement of the alcoholic content of beer and the effects thereof.


That is some NICE beer, that Samuel Adams! I’ve just completed the second and can hardly notice the alcoholic content of 4.8 like the label says, but it’s a smooth beer with a great finish meaning that the after taste is lingering, yet not harsh in any way. The label also says there are 160 calories per serving and, although I didn’t see any in the bottle, I’m sure I’m still going to have to run an extra 20 minutes on the treadmill tomorrow to burn that off.

Granted, I wouldn’t have to be concerned with the caloric content of the Amstel light but you’d be hard pressed to find me buying any of that stuff to bring home. I shall examine the label further now as I consume the next one.


The label says that they only use the finest of ingredients,like two row barley and german noble aroma hops. I always thought Sam Adams was an American beer and that there weren’t any germans in it or their hops, but that’s okay because we’ve made up since the war and I’m somewhat of a German expert because I dated a pretty blond Germerman girl named Inga. She was a great cook, having studied inFrance, which seems weird but you forget that when you dig in to her Bratwurst Crepes. Inga and I dated for a few months but broke it off when I found her in bed with Ramone.

He was that fashion photographer she met at Steve’s party and couldn’t stop talking about at which point I was sure it was over because I saw the way she looked at him. Also I see by the old grammatical structure that it’s time for another beeeer yay!.. lucky me!


The alcoholic content ofbeer is something that shouldn’t be ignored, because if you have too many of the beers and drive a car or something you could get hurt or hurt someone else so that is why I always have a designed driver or I just sit at home and drink my beers like tonight. I think there is a Seinfeld rerun on and it’s my favorite episode, where jerry and his friends see how long they can go without sex, but this topic is important so I am going to stick with this until Irun out of the beer.


I have this to say about old Sam Addams, and that’s that it’ss a heavy beer that has lot of calories and so I’m feeling a little full but I enjoy the taste so much and this topic is worth persuing. I’m just glad this isn’t Amstel light you know what I mean? Because the light is lighter and won’t have the same affect as the Adams will when you’ve finished, expecially if you’re trying to make a point or something. I don’t have a dog but a pork chop would be really good right now.

Bturp loodle twik ""><<< 

Inga was a good cook and I don’t think I’ve dated a girl since then who could cook like that especially not lately. She made an omelltte one time that had eggs and stuff in it but she didn’t tell me the rest, she said just eat it and see, and so I did! It was delicious and I think it had some real crab meat and some kind of cheese maybe french cheese like bree or somthing. I’m getting hungry talking about all this. A pork chop ommelette would not bebad at all.


I took along break that time because I had to have chips and dip with a sandwich with my last beer because all that talk about Inga cooking made me so hungry and stuff. I really miss her. I was sure she loved me because I loved her but I guess she likes fashion and photogophers better then me. Irony of all that is I was going to be a photographer at first because I was on staff of my high school yearbook so every picture in there is mostly ones I took but why would she care about that this many years later?


Beer has alcoholic comment enough so that you like drinking it and if you have more then you should then you don’t care because you don’t even know how many beers you had like after a few you had. I had about 4 I think but maybe more who is counting anyway? I think now Iwill make it 5 and themn type more comments about alcohol and Inga and pork shops.

<-- poo="">

I really really really reallyreally really miss inga and Ithink I am going togo call her now if I can find her mumber. I threw it out long time ago but I think I can find it if its not in the trash. I can gooogle it if that dosnt work or call Ramone haha! I bet he has it because he got it at that party that night.

<-- -ii--="">

Don’t go telling me she didn’t give it to him because shedid and later she gave him lot more than that. I think if I see him Im going to kick his you know what. I bet mister big shot fashion photogerper never had a fight in his life. I bet if I knock his teeth out he thinks twice next time before telling pretty german grls that they make good models so let him shoot them. We will see who gets shot, RAMOOOOOOOOOOOONE

<-->>>oo<<!!! nn 

 Her number was still in myphone! I took it out but forgot I left in in there incase I wanted to call her sometime. I called it and she did not answer it was some stupid lady name janet who said she do not know inga and I had the wrong number STUPID LADY!!!! I think she was ingas roommate. Now Im really sorry I quit smoking because I really really want a cigartit. <-usandmyteddyboo>

I think Iam getting rally full of the beeers and it would help if inga were here but she is not so Ithink im going to watch tv now is jerry is still on. I will finish this later if I remember it. Ihave to find the remote but I cant member if where it is where I had it. I cant fine it so never mind I will have the last more beer and do another pargraph to talk about alclohic comtest of poke shops and inga cooking ombullets


Im going bed now byee thanks for riding my artclue

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Book Poop In North Beach

There is a rather odd art installation on the Northwest corner of Columbus Avenue in North Beach called "Language of the Birds."

Basically it consists of a large group of books that had been gathering on the corner but a dog came running through and startled them, so they took to flight and at the same time, pooped words all over the sidewalk. They were that scared.

This corner is near my apartment and I need to traverse Columbus to get anywhere, but I try to avoid the book poop as much as possible, as adjectives can be quite slippery and nouns are almost impossible to scrape off the bottom of one's shoes. I hate coming home and getting yelled at by Dorian because I've tracked poetry all over our nice new carpet.

A plaque mounted nearby gives this explanation..

"Historically "The Language Of The Birds" is considered a divine language birds use to communicate with the initiated. Here a flock of books takes off from the plaza to fly the urban gullies of the city. The fluttering pages have left a gentle imprint of words beneath them. These serendipitously configured bits of local literature reveal layers of human culture, nature and consciousness."

Also from metaphorm.org we learn a bit about the book poop words on the sidewalk..

"On closer inspection the fallen words are in English, Italian and Chinese and were selected from the neighborhood’s rich literary history, ranging from the Beats, to SF Renaissance poets and Chinese writers, over 90 authors are represented including Armistead Maupin, Gary Snyder,William T. Vollman, and Jade Snow Wong."

Despite the messy literary sidewalk, "Language of the Birds" is quite clever in that it ties in with such a literary neighborhood, that being North Beach, where beat poets used to hang-out. They were all over the place in the fifties and sixties but most frequently seen at City Lights Booksellers, which is across the street from the book-birds. City Lights even harnesses the sun via solar panels on their roof to power the birds at night. Yes, they light up after dark, and not a taxpayer dime goes into the electricity because the solar panels charge the batteries during the day and keep them lit at night.

So basically, the sun feeds the book-birds that poop words on one of our sidewalks, and they do all of that right across the street from a genuine Banksy, which is graffiti that's held in such high esteem that no one will paint over it because Banksy has become internationally renowned. (NOTE - Actually, Banksy's work has been removed in the past. We hope that doesn't happen here, as we can see this one from our window).

"If at first you don't succeed, call an airstrike"

And to top that off, on yet another corner across from all of this are three strip-clubs that sit next to each other where sexy girls stand out front and invite you in to watch them dance topless after you've admired anarchistic graffiti and slipped on literary poop.

I love this neighborhood.