Monday, February 20, 2006

Music Dude

SF's subway, BART, has some underground stations in which a variety of characters gather.

One day an Asian gentleman was playing his stringed instrument: it has 2 or 3 strings, looks like someone took a gourd and stuck a stick in it, and it is played with a violin type bow.

Whenever I see one of these guys I am always tempted to give him a couple of bucks and say "buy yourself a few more strings". I mean, how can you play a decent melody with 2 or 3 strings? (But I've heard rumor that one of U2's early mega-hits was done where the guitar player had just that many).

At any rate, as I passed this guy who was playing away I realized that the song he was playing "O Suzanna", and not some ancient tune from the past....

Thursday, February 09, 2006


Back in the '70s I was working at a body shop in Berkeley. Was sent by my boss to his loan shark to pick up some cash, didn't come to a complete stop at a stop sign and was pulled over by one of Berkeley's finest. He determined that I had on old ticket ($107) that I hadn't paid, and therefore needed to go to jail.

After he cuffed me he couldn't get the back door of the cruiser open, so I had to sit up front next to him. At the station he took my shoes and belt, and asked me a bunch of personal questions to which I mostly gave incorrect information.

In the cell there were 3 other guys. One black guy, who told me he was a model and was on a Kool cigartette billboard crosstown (and sure enough, he was), and a couple of white guys. One of the white guys told me he was happy, because after 2 weeks in jail he had finally gotten his head to the place where he "didn't mind it so much". The other white guy was equally out of focus.

When dinner came, which was a little "Swiss" steak, mashed pototoes, and peas TV dinnner, I told them I was getting out in a bit so they could have my dinner. They thankfully split it into thirds.

My boss came down and paid my ticket, and I was free, but my paycheck was $107 less.

Friday, February 03, 2006


Used to have a great dog, a Golden Retriever, named Josh. He loved everyone, but since my wife and I both worked we were not home during the day and he would get out of his yard and wander. He would occassionally get get picked up by Animal Control, and each time they would charge me more to get him out of doggie jail.

This was always hard because there were so many dogs there who wanted me to take them home, but here was my Josh, always running off.

One time we took him to a beach in Marin County, which turned out to be a nude beach at one end. Since Josh liked everyone, he ran over to a couple of lesbians about 80 yards away and much to their chagrin walked on their beach blanket and disturbed their sunbathing.

Since we could never keep him home, we ended up giving him to a good home, which happened to be the parent's of Zippy's first wife. That was the last we ever saw of him, but I know he was happy, as they had a black Lab.