Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Bittersweet Memories of Joseph Schmidt Chocolates

December 27, 2009

Dear Diary

Talk about double-dipped. You’d have to be in a hole if you haven’t heard about this chocolate store in the Mission. I know because I’ve written about it, two times before this.

But don’t feel bad if you haven’t heard because me I have all the time in the world tell you about it again now.

So there’s this chocolate store, right? And it was bought out by Hershey Company a few years back.

I know what you’re thinking; “Big, bad corporate crap?”

Nope. Here’s the clincher: Hershey Company actually tried to keep the tradition alive but they failed, too. So I wrote a  column about it.

But then I thought, I had a lot of fun talking about chocolate all day and now I’m fresh out of ideas. What will I tell my editor?

It blows my mind how smart I am. I remembered I could write it in my blog, too! And it was so easy. All I had to do was re-quote the same guy I used in my column but made it look like I worked harder because it didn’t post until two days later.

And let me tell you, this guy knows his chocolate. I’ll show you his link, like I did twice before this.

But I could only say that took up one of my days.  So I shot an e-mail to some guy in London, who looks like he knows his chocolate, too. No wait, since I already did the work, allow me: Chantal Coady.

Winner, winner, chicken dinner. He knew about it, he loved it and now it’s in my blog.

Thank you Hershey, for making my job easy. I owe YOU a big kiss.


Using Facebook: Is It Better to Fast, Feast or Nibble?

December 26, 2009

Dear Diary,

A Facebook self-control support group may be started at San Francisco University High School, given the responses that Monica Reed, 16, and Halley Lamberson, 17, have received from teachers and students there after the juniors were featured in a story written by somebody else.

That article that was written by somebody else seemed like good fodder for this blog, because we would rather go on and on about our personal lives than have to do anything resembling journalism. In this post, I think I will tell everybody how often I use Facebook, both now and at different stages in the past, and then I’ll talk about something personal that happened to me in August, because I assume that our target audience of West Coast-hating East Coast residents is totally fascinated by me and the mundane details of my life. So please, read more…

S.F. to Divvy Up Extra Swine-Flu Vaccine

December 24, 2009

Dear Diary,

They came in droves, just after sunrise – and boy am I exhausted.

I called not one, but TWO sources to follow up on what my competitor billed as as the largest vaccine clinic in the city’s recent history.

See, I told the NYT they’d be glad they hired a Stanford grad! I deserve a gold star! No, TWO!

S.F. May Require Warnings About Cellphone Radiation

December 24, 2009

Dear Diary,

Can the radiation from your cellphone give you cancer? So far, cell phone company marketers have written some copy that made my some of my competitors’ reporters think that there’s no evidence that it can, so I’m going to trust the results of their laziness rather than waste any time finding or reading any of the scientific literature upon which legislation to protect consumers from cell phone-induced cancer has been based upon worldwide. But the city of San Francisco may require retailers to warn you about it anyway. Because people on the West Coast are craaaaazzzyyyy.

Check out what two of my competitors found out:

In January, San Francisco’s environment commission will discuss eight recommendations related to radiation emitted by cellphones and local, state and federal policies regarding it. Mayor Gavin Newsom is expected to propose an ordinance next month requiring retailers to post information about cellphone radiation on store shelves.

Maine may join San Francisco in the effort, according to another old-fashioned competitor who employs journalists to do reporting. A state legislator there introduced a bill requiring that phones come with a warning label advising people that the device could cause cancer from electromagnetic radiation it emits. Read more…

Angel Island Lights Blink Again, More Dimly

December 22, 2009

Dear Diary,

An island grew opposable thumbs and turned its blinking lights back on, but now they will be a bit dimmer than something.

The lights are a 50-year holiday tradition, but they were turned off after neighbors of the island had complained because the new lights this year blink and were brighter than in the past, according to my competitor.

The new, solar-powered LED lights atop the island, which use equipment donated by a company that’s flush with cash because it operates without competition so I assume it’s a big advertiser or at least a corporation that I should probably keep on my good side, blink continuously, spelling out A, then I, in Morse code (dot-dash-dot-dot). It’s meant as a statement of support for Angel Island State Park and the rest of California’s parks. That’s probably as far as the story goes, so I won’t bother researching it for you.

Read me simultaneously copy the work of two journalists at the same competitor that I already copied once in this blog…

The Heart of Women’s Basketball at Cal

December 22, 2009

Dear Diary,

So this colleague of mine at the New York Times for some reason decides to spend her days “reporting” (suckaaaaa!) and recently wrote a very moving article about an athlete at Cal. Though I just linked to her story, I will spend the next four paragraphs paraphrasing the article, so my editors will see how long this entry is and tell me what good work I’m doing.

Now I will link to a TV news report about an athlete who collapsed from heart-related conditions, and an LA Times article about a new study that supports the idea of screening athletes for potential heart issues. I won’t bother to contact any athletes or find the actual study and read it myself, of course.

Here’s a broad generalization I’m guessing might be true: Sports medicine has evolved from finding ways to get players back into the game to considering long-term effects of playing with injuries and managing every aspects of an athlete’s health care. I won’t back that up by bothering to make a five-minute call to someone who actually knows something about sports medicine, but here’s a link to a story I’m ripping off from another idiot colleague who hasn’t gotten in on the diary writing gig about this football-concussion blah blah controversy that was all over the news last month.

Here is one final link to a blog about football player Jahvid Best by yet another colleague who actually used this diary to do some original reporting. That annoys me so I won’t spend too much time on it.

In conclusion, here’s several more paragraphs directly filched from that first link.

Peace out.

An Underground Farmer’s Market

December 21, 2009

Dear Diary,

White people are lame: You give them a plastic bag, they will find a farmer’s market and come back waxing poetic about muddy celery roots and bug-infested rutabagas. But could they truly forage and find uncultivated food? No, I assume that white people could not do that.

ForageSF’s Iso Rabins may have a preview of the new source of foodie cred for 2010: the underground farmer’s market, according to a story written by Berkeley kids. It’s where cooking meets crafting.

Read more

Bay Area Defense Spending: Presidio Heritage Center and Oakland’s Children Hospital

December 21, 2009

Dear Diary,

There are going to be some local impacts that I didn’t expect from a $626 billion defense appropriations bill the U.S. Senate passed Saturday, somebody else found out and wrote.

The effort to renovate the old officer’s club in a part of San Francisco that I’m going to assume you’re familiar with, which closed as a military post in 1989 and was transferred to the National Park Service five years later, is set to receive $5 million, a request from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, according to the person who wrote about it. But that’s the least of it.

The person also said the bill contains 1,720 earmarks. I’m going to assume that’s true and type it into this blog, then I’ll post the blog with my name on it.

I plan to dedicate the rest of this blog to copying the living crap out of the other person’s work.

Read more…

Should City Dwellers Learn to Make Eye Contact?

December 21, 2009

Dear Diary,

Somebody else thought about how city dwellers should make eye contact, and then she wrote about it. I’m not going to waste time finding the exact link.

Sometimes stranger chicks check me out when I ride a Muni line that shares its name with a hip San Fran nabe. When that happens, my feelings can be characterized as discomfited. But generally, I agree with the complaint.

Even though I’m a dude from the Midwest, I think it’s cool to exchange smiles with stranger dudes in San Francisco. (No commitment necessary!) It’s gratifying.

Read more…

Chihuahuas, the Sequel

December 21, 2009

Dear Diary,

Somebody I work with wrote last week about her son, so I’ll write about him this week. He wants a Chihuahua from Oakland.

Maybe he didn’t get his wish. I frankly do not know. Lots of other people wrote about something that I’m not going to spend any time re-describing and it has gotten attention at Chihuahua-poor animal shelters elsewhere in the country. That’s right. Gotten.

Somebody else found out and wrote that 20 of the little shivering things have been flown to New Hampshire and more are headed that way soon on American Airlines. Another Chihuahua shipment will go to New York via Virgin America.

Virgin America is awesome.

Me and the person who first wrote about her son both work at the New York Times.

Somebody else typed the word Chihuahuapalooza.

Read more…