12/31/14

RHODESTER'S YEAR IN REVIEW AND PICTURES

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..
THEY WERE JUST
HAPPY.

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
"locked-up."
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.
HAPPY 2015, GUY WHO GOT ARRESTED IN 2014!

A friend named Joanne, who happened to be a bus driver
in 2014 but is now on to beggar and bitter things.
HAPPY 2015, JOANNE!


Another friend. HNY, J. *sigh*


Lawrence is one of the best tour drivers EVER,
and one of the people I will miss very much.
HAPPY NEW YEAR, LAWRENCE AND LAURA!

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
shampoo.

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
Joseph Amster. HAPPY NEW YEAR, JOSEPH!


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
THINGS IN 2015. YIPPEEEE!!!

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HAPPY NEW YEAR, INTERNET FAMILY! HAVE A WONDERFUL CELEBRATION AND I WILL SEE YOU ALL AGAIN IN 2015 :-)

12/30/14

Love At First Bite

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


Eat my KIDNEYS on FACEBOOK/TWITTER

12/28/14

Cracking UP

The headline in today's paper said, "SAN FRANCISCO POLICE DEPARTMENT CRACKING DOWN ON CRIME."

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.

NUDITY

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.

BRICKS

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.

EUCALYPTUS TREES

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.

BURYING PEOPLE

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.

ELEPHANTS ON LEASHES

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.