Monday, January 15, 2007

San Bruno is no place for one with delicate sensibilities

Pathetically enough, I don't go beyond the city limits of San Francisco all that often. In my youth, I was a bit of a world traveller, but these days I have two small children and a hefty mortgage, so flying about is usually out of the question, plus my children absolutely suck in the car ("Are we there yet? How 'bout now? I'm bored! I DROPPED MY SIPPYCUP! I want different music! Lola spilled her drink all over the floor! Are we there yet? LOLA TOUCHED ME! NO TOUCHING!! I'M TELLING!") so road trips are really out of the question.

Anyhow, I've become so spoiled in my multicultural, leftist, little foggy paradise here in oh so many ways. My children, who are native San Franciscans, are even more spoiled, having never faced the adversities of a hard Maine winter or a brutal Filipino typhoon or the poverty of a penniless grad student or sitting through long sermons or any other significant hardship.

Lately we've just started weekly swimming lessons for Lola down the peninsula in San Bruno, and just a trip to San Bruno is testing our fragile San Franciscan nerves. "It's so far," frets Lola. "It is too far from our house! It will take FOREVER to get home to our house."

After the swimming lesson, the children refused to get into the car without having first been taken to a restaurant or cafe. "We're huuuuungry," they whined. We all walked down to Never Too Latte, choosing an independent cafe over the giant new Starbucks across the street. First, the two twentysomething suburban rock chicks working there completely ignored us (one was a Goth waif, the other a beefier heavy metal chick). They got really excited when a male friend of theirs walked in behind us, one of them pressuring him to tell who he was talking to on his celphone and the other one begging him to place his order. At this point, I decided I was going to go to Starbucks, but the friend displayed some gallantry and pointed at us, indicating we were before him (as would be obvious to even the most stupid). At this point, the heavy metal chick agreed to take our order (the Goth one never acknowledged our existence). I ordered a double, low fat latte. This taxed the intellect of the heavy metal enthusiast, who had numerous questions. Then I ordered a bagel for the children (the metal girl was unable to handle taking a multi-part order at once).

While the children were eating their bagel and I was sipping my latte, I saw the Goth one blow her nose by blocking one nostril with a finger and blowing hard. Snot flew out towards a distant trashcan. She then went back to making a sandwich, without washing her hands or putting on little food prep gloves. I pushed my latte away, having lost all appetite.

On our way out of town, we were almost creamed by a car which blew through a stop sign. My nerves, positively shattered, were calmed by returning to my nice, safe, cosy San Francisco neighborhood (okay, to be honest, we have stop sign runners here as well, but snot flinging and failing to wash the hands? One would be run out of the Castro for such behavior). It's just not safe out there for the fragile, people.


Anonymous said...

EWWWWW!!! goth??!? HELLO! 1995 called and wants it's look back! (also the snot thing)

i used to travel a lot for work. now, never. airports are certainly satan's way of sucking your soul into evilness. if, like us, you live in a place people PAY to come visit why would you want to go somewhere else?

also i missed your posts.

Anonymous said...

San Bruno is no place for anyone.

Anonymous said...

There is a reason to drink chain restaurant coffee. I keep trying to exercise my anti-corporate empire principles by drinking coffee at the independent hippy establishments in town, but their hygiene is so lacking.

With starbucks, I know I'm not going to end up with a skinny carmel macchiato with a side helping of snot.

So, I'm supporting an evil corporate empire every time I drink a cup of coffee. I am also getting a clean cup of coffee and preventing the spread of scary diseases to me and my children.

Anonymous said...

For the record: Apparently, a hard Maine winter now means 3 months of 40 degrees and rain.

Didja hear? We broke the planet!