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Letters to the Editor
I truly enjoyed your story about the person who puts signs in the dog droppings along Church Street ["Poop Protester Leaves His Mark," Voice February 1999]. However, "Yum Yum" leaves much to be desired. "This is good" also fell short of good poop poetry.
So I am submitting some hot-off-the-sidewalk poetry for your consideration. My thought is that these words might cathect an even cleaner walking space.
Here I lie
a pile of poo,
waiting for a
Walk your dog
without the plastic,
leave your trail of
Please, dear owner,
pick me up.
I just was dropped
by your pooping pup.
This is just
a big brown blob,
reminders of an
Here I sit
a sidewalk mire,
waiting for a
A Tourist's Testimonial
I recently spent a weekend in Noe Valley. I had a great time, and it truly would be a fantastic place to live.
My friends were able to book me into the Hidden Cottage bed and breakfast on Noe Street. What a wonderful place to be based out of! The garden was in full bloom and was beautiful, peaceful, and restful. The interior was delightful. It felt so comfortable, just like a cottage should feel. It was so nice to be just a short jaunt from the shopping area on 24th Street.
I enjoyed the culinary delights of Herb's Fine Foods and spent much time browsing in Cover to Cover and Phoenix bookstores. I tried a shot of Papaya Hawaiian (hold the grass) at Juice-It. I enjoyed the great selection of cards and gifts at Just for Fun (Vicki the salesperson was most accommodating). I smoked a fine Macanudo I'd bought at Graystone Liquor Store.
I think I gained 10 pounds just smelling the aromas emanating from the Noe Valley Bakery. I almost wished my shoes needed repairing so I could have left them at the Wooden Heel.
The residents of Noe Valley are truly blessed. That was even more apparent during Sunday mass at St. Philip's. Father Michael Healy was a warm and engaging pastor. The choir sang beautifully.
I left Noe Valley feeling so wonderful. My next time back I'm going to check in with that real estate office with the beautiful gated entrance on 24th Street above Castro (I knew I should have written down the name). It would be wonderful to call Noe Valley home.
Falls Church, Virginia
Dear Bud: The phone number for B.J. Droubi Real Estate is (415) 550-1300.
I was dismayed to read Kathryn Guta's essay on "Looking for Parking Nirvana" in your March issue.
If Ms. Guta is a Noe Valley resident, why is she driving to places like Martha's on Church Street? The J-Church is an excellent way to get up and down Church Street, and the #24, #35, and #48 Muni buses also run through the Valley. Or if Muni is not her style, then walking is a great way to get there.
If Ms. Guta is a nurse, she must surely realize that her practice of double-parking with the flashers on, while being blatantly illegal, is also dangerous, as it blocks a travel lane and forces other drivers to maneuver around her by driving on the wrong side of the street. Double-parkers also pose a threat to pedestrians and bicyclists by limiting the vision of the drivers who may be coming up behind the double-parked vehicle and attempting to pass in an unsafe manner.
Parking on the sidewalk, regardless of the reason, is illegal in California. If Ms. Guta sees cars parked on the sidewalk, she should be concerned for the elderly, the handicapped, or folks pushing stroll-ers who have to squeeze by cars illegally parked in pedestrian space in order to pass. Not only does sidewalk parking remove this precious pedestrian space, but it also endangers pedestrians after the car is gone, by leaving oil, and other slippery fluids, on the sidewalk. Lastly, the sheer weight of an automobile can crack and damage the thin concrete surface of the sidewalk.
As a final point, Ms. Guta states that street parking is free. This is a misstatement. "Free" parking is subsidized by everyone who pays taxes in the city, including me and the other roughly 30 percent of San Francisco residents who do not own vehicles.
In a city choked with automobiles, the problem is not that there is too little parking; the problem is that there are too many cars. Instead of printing articles about the woes of parking in San Francisco, perhaps your paper could focus on encouraging folks to look at more environmentally friendly ways of getting around, like public transit, bicycling, and walking.
Editor's Response: We appreciate your thoughtful comments on what was intended as a lighthearted piece on the neighborhood's parking squeeze. To clarify, Kathryn Guta never parks on the sidewalk. Nor does she use her car to drive to and from Martha's. Still, an older or disabled person might.