Today's adventure was a day-trip into the City. First thing was an interview on Union Square to join a singles' social dinner club, where I was very charming; more on what this gets me into in days and weeks to come. On the way back to the parking garage I came across a store called "Globe Trotter USA" which traffics mainly in Tin Tin material (plus a bit of Asterix, Little Prince, and Wallace & Gromit gear). Now I know where to go to should I ever want my own Bianca Castafiore action figure. Next door was an amazing gem of art deco, at 450 Sutter Street - the lobby was dazzling (very intricate ceiling and light fixtures), and the golden façade was nice too. Then I drove around to locate a couple of record stores I've been meaning to inspect.
First came "Cosmic Disc", essentially just a hole in the wall at Polk & Washington, which didn't send me. But curiously, it turned out to be right next to a place called the Rendezvous Cafe which I'd noticed while driving around during my 1995 San Francisco trip, and its design had so intrigued me I took a picture. Naturally, since it was lunchtime, I had to check it out. Inside there were 15 TV monitors (twelve in a 3 x 4 grid) all tuned to some tennis match - therefore I took a table outside, digging on this little neighborhood's street scene while I read my book (A Fez Of The Heart by Jeremy Seal <1>) and enjoyed my coffee & club sandwich). Afterwards I walked across the street to the "Tibet Store", which sold curios and clothing from Tibet & Nepal. A cartoon on the wall depicted a wild-eyed fanatic carrying a sign which read "Jesus Is Coming". Behind him, a smaller, smiling figure with slanted eyes carrying his own sign which stated "Buddha Already Here". I bought one of those "Free Tibet" bumper stickers - never saw one for sale before.
Then off to Haight-Asbury to visit the new "Amoeba". Also in 1995, I popped in to their huge Berkeley operation; this new in-city branch is just as tasty - will definitely be back. Unlike everywhere else I've been, they had the William Orbit CD I want ("Best Of Strange Cargo"), which still hasn't shown up from my on-line order - so much for Internet Commerce. The old hippy district was grubby & interesting, as ever - spotted another place I'll return to, to photograph sometime, called "Positively Haight Street" (at Masonic) - wild design with lots of that cobalt-blue tile I like.
Now I'm writing this instead of doing my taxes.
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<1>"Inspired by a dusty fez in his parents' attic, Jeremy Seal set off in 1993 to trace the astonishing history of this cone-shaped hat. Soon, the quintessentially Turkish headgear became the key to understanding a country beset by contradictions." - from its back cover. Back