Wednesday, 17 August 2011

San Francisco part 12

Eek. Trying to write about what I got up to a month ago isn't ideal but I suppose it's now or never.

Okay so on Monday (18th July) we took a drive out to Sausilito which involved firstly driving into San Francisco over the Bay Bridge, negotiating our way through the city and then driving over the Golden Gate Bridge picking up some pizza en route. Sausilito is a quaint (ha - get some of that down you America - I used your ghastly turn of phrase against you!) seaside town which sits over the bay from San Francisco with some spectacular views. Which basically means it's hot property, full of badly dressed Europeans (even me - guilty as charged) and over priced foo foo shops and eateries.

Actually the picture above was a little way up from the madness in the less touristy harbour region which was beautiful. Below is along the busier seafront which should give you some idea of why it's so popular - it is stunning.

Look some rocks.

After eating some over-priced and not particularly good fish and chips we made our escape via Mill Valley and onto Santa Rosa to the Charles Schulz Museum which was $10 admission. Good grief etc.

I was quite underwhelmed by it all despite a great fondness for Peanuts. The highlight was probably the mock up of his studio including a turntable and selection of jazz lps. It inspired me to set up my studio accordingly with a record deck and my word it's a wonderful thing to be back in the world of vinyl away from nonsense mp3s. I digress.

We tried to find a dive bar for a beer in Santa Rosa but only managed to find the local soup kitchen and a whole host of homeless folk sprawled amongst random Snoopy figures. Bit weird.

The next day I made Annie go with me to see the Tribe Called Quest documentary 'Beats, Rhymes and Life' at the cinema. Not in some seedy art house cinema as you'd expect either - oh no - it was showing it at the grand Pleasant Hill cinema and what's more it was in the main room with a capacity in the region of 1000 people or so. Needless to say we were the only ones in there.

I could've wept with happiness pretty much from the opening credits and throughout. The film is a joyous celebration of the golden age of hip hop and features a hefty introduction to all things Native Tongues before any of the well documented beef actually starts. I've read that various members of ATCQ had issues with the film during it's production but aside from Q-Tip's occasionally sizeable ego flaring up now and again they all come out unscathed and as loveable as ever. Anyway Q-Tip can have a bit of an ego as far as I'm concerned given his contribution to hip hop. ATCQ certainly don't come out looking anywhere nearly as whiney and pathetic as Metallica in 'Some Kind of Monster'. Three thumbs fresh yo.

In the evening I inked and coloured this - a sketch left over from Big Sur.
The following day was so hot all we could manage in the afternoon was a brief stint at the dog run but even Pepperjack was feeling the heat. That evening we headed into the city to Molotov's for my leaving do/Trevor's birthday and proceeded to line up many PBR's ($2 a bottle - a price that now haunts me everytime I buy a pint in England), tequilas and a whiskey or two for good measure. Feeling suitably buzzed we got the BART home after parting on some sad farewells.

On Thursday I woke up with a bit of a head on me so we took the easy option and drove into Berkeley for some record shopping. I bought the incredible new Fucked Up lp (which uncannily I'm listening to as I write this), Vampire Weekend's 'Contra' lp, James Blackshaw's 'The Glass Bead Game' lp, Tom Rush's 'The Circle Game' lp, Phil Ochs 'Pleasures of the Harbour' lp and 'Whaling and Sailing Songs' by Paul Clayton just for the stunning cover initially but it's actually really rather good. In fact having had time to absorb that (measly) $35 haul it's all excellent with the exception of Phil Ochs which isn't doing much for me just yet - the b side is fucking nuts. But not in a good way.

Later on I had a bit of a mooch around the Berkeley university campus looking studious and deep in thought mostly trying to figure out whether I should have another slice of pizza or not whilst Annie kipped on the grass like a tramp's mate before we gave up and headed home.

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