Obama Dead at 17

As you may know, Obama alluded to Trayvon Martin as his hypothetical son. “If I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon. When I think about this boy, I think about my own kids.”

The 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was fatally gunned down by the neighborhood watch George Zimmerman as he walked from a convenience store back into a gated community. The trial culminated in an acquittal for Zimmerman.

I was shocked and upset because an unarmed teenager with all the potential in the world, the potential to become the president of the United States, was killed because of Zimmerman’s extremely poor judgment and decision-making. When people like Zimmerman lack the brains to behave appropriately in society, they should deal with the consequences of their actions and be locked away—for good.

To me, this is not about race. It is about a child dying unjustly. If Trayvon had been white or any other race, this case would not have received the media attention it had. If Zimmerman had been black, the trial would not have turned into a circus. This is not about race, people!

If you are mad, get mad at the lack of gun control. This isn’t the Newtown tragedy where a social outcast had access to weapons, where we’re shaking our heads about the psychopaths who get access to guns. This is about a neighborhood watch buying a handgun for self-defense. See how guns are evil? Even in the hands of the seemingly stable, can you see the destruction? The loss of life, the loss of a child?

My high school classmate was killed in a drive-by shooting.

A few days ago, a Black man walked into the gift center where my engagement ring and wedding band are from and shot three Asians.

Race is not the issue. Guns are.

I had a different take-away from this trial than others which is why I dismissed writing about it—as I didn’t want to offend.

I want to thank Andrea with BeQuoted for encouraging me to write this post. I would like you to read her post on this matter as well as this post by Yvonne Chase.

There are a multitude of bloggers who write about what they have for breakfast, where they vacation, all these details of their lives, but rarely do I see bloggers open up about their stance on issues, their politics. What is the point of blogging if your readers do not know the real you—especially if you write a personal blog? I want to thank both Andrea and Yvonne for always being so courageously opinionated. I am truly inspired by you and your blogs.

AltSF Conference: Travel and Explore Like a Local

altFor those of you attending from out of town, here are some tips from a local. I live a few blocks away from the conference location (Fairmont Hotel) so I’m an expert on the area.

Getting to the conference

If money is no concern, feel free to grab a cab. A ride from SFO to the Fairmont will cost less than $50.

If you want to save $40, take BART which is our commuter train. The closest stop is Powell Street station, but I would skip that and go to Embarcadero since Powell can be like Grand Central Station and maneuvering around will be more of a pain. Exit the Embarcadero station and when you are above ground, you can either take the cable car (on California Street) or grab a cab in front of the Hyatt (California/Drumm) or get out your smartphone and get yourself an Uber car.

Getting around San Francisco

I would not recommend renting a car. Finding parking is tough even for locals, let alone visitors who are unfamiliar with the deplorable parking situation in the city.

In lieu of cabs, locals use Uber or Lyft. Download their apps on your smartphone. They are super convenient and cheaper than cabs.

Quick sightseeing for those who don’t have time

You must ride a cable car! You will notice cable cars going up and down California Street right by the hotel. Stand on the corner of California and Mason (south side of the street) and take the cable car all the way down to the Financial District. You will pass by Chinatown and get a quick glimpse of the city and our rolling hills.

Even better, stand at the corner of California and Powell and take the cable car going down to Union Square. You’ll be in for a thrilling descent! Take the cable car the other way and you will pass by Lombard (the crookedest steet) and North Beach.

A one-way ride is $6 or you can buy an all-day pass from the gripman for $14. Make sure you have cash.

Eats and Drinks

Mason Pacific is my new favorite neighborhood gem, serving excellent American cuisine. Their house wine, custom-made for the restaurant, is to-die-for.

Venticello is perfect Italian, blocks away from the Fairmont.

Walk across the street to the Mark Hopkins hotel, take the elevator to the top floor, and experience stunning views of the city while having a cocktail at the Top of the Mark.

Workout

There is a Club One gym at the Fairmont. They charge $20/day for those who are not hotel guests.

Looking forward to meeting all of you at the conference. I am barely 5 feet tall and a total introvert so I’m easy to miss!

Old School Blogging: Lists of 5

lists-of-five-300x300Thank you to Dana from Kiss My List who tagged me! It’s been a blast getting to know more about my blogging friends.

Five Things I Have a Passion For

  1. Writing
  2. Reading classic literature and award-winning fiction
  3. Food & wine
  4. Exploring every nook and cranny of the SF Bay Area
  5. Traveling

Five Things I Would Like to Do Before I Die

  1. Parent a child
  2. Buy a home with a backyard or deck or some kind of outside space!
  3. Travel to all 7 continents, which means I have one more to go: Antarctica
  4. My friend Marty had this super fun 80th birthday party. He kept saying he would rather do events like this now, surrounded by all his loved ones, versus when he is gone. And it made everyone at the party stop and think, yeah, why wait until we’re dead. PAR-TAY!!! I want to have a blowout, spare-no-expense raging party with the best DJs, food/wine, and entertainment.
  5. I’m determined to go to Berkshire Hathaway’s annual meeting and I need to do it while Warren Buffet is still around.

Five Things I Say A Lot

  1. “Ummm.”
  2. “Ummm.” Yes, I know it’s a bad habit!
  3. Honestly I’m an introvert so I don’t do much talking out loud. Public speaking is my biggest fear.
  4. Swear words. Yes, all the bad habits are coming out!
  5. “Grande peppermint hot chocolate no whip.” My go-to Starbucks order since I don’t drink coffee.

Five Books and/or Magazines I Have Read Lately

  1. Lean In, Sheryl Sandberg
  2. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles, Haruki Murakami
  3. The Dog Stars, Peter Heller
  4. I Will Carry You: The Sacred Dance of Grief and Joy, Angie Smith
  5. Vanity Fair

Five Favorite Movies

  1. The Sound of Music: “Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens…”
  2. Kramer vs Kramer: “How much courage does it take to walk out on your kid?”
  3. Terms of Endearment: “Raising three children, working full-time, and chasing women requires a lot more energy than you have. You know, one of the nicest qualities about you has always been that you recognized your weaknesses. Don’t lose that quality now just when you need it the most.”
  4. Braveheart: “I am William Wallace! The rest of you will be spared. Go back to England, and tell them there, that Scotland’s daughters and her sons are yours no more! Tell them Scotland is free!”
  5. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: “My master would say: there is nothing we can hold onto in this world. Only by letting go can we truly possess what is real.”

Five Places I Would Love to Travel

  1. Japan
  2. Alaska
  3. Greece
  4. Galapagos (I’ve already been, but want to go again.)
  5. Chile

Five People I Tag to Do This Meme: please don’t feel obligated!

  1. Ferly at Gifts We Use
  2. Andrea at BeQuoted
  3. Saavy Working Gal
  4. Melanie at She’s Write
  5. Lynne and Leslie at The Sweet Midlife

Money Monday: One Million Dollars

No we did not win the lottery. In fact, we will be in the red by going into debt by close to a million dollars. That’s a lot of zeros! You do not retire at the age of 55 by taking on that much debt! This is a slap in the face to my financial conscience.

But then again this is San Francisco real estate where 1 bedroom shit-holes are going for $3,000+. Hence you go against the grain of your morale budgetary fiber and say, let’s get ready to rumble!

I’m excited to report that we have fallen in love with a single family home in Bernal Heights that we are prepared to put an offer on. But wait, there’s more! Included on the property is a separate, detached studio apartment. That’s the only reason we would be able to afford the home. Half our mortgage would be paid for by the studio. The previous tenant paid $2,000/month. Rents are going for more right now on Craigslist for this neighborhood. And Airbnb rates are going for $125+/night for Bernal Heights. It’ll be our little cash cow. Moooo!

614-618 Eugenia Street, SF – listed for $975,000 – 2 bedroom, 2 bath, 1 car parking single family home including an upstairs attic area and another downstairs area with 2 additional bedrooms + separate detached studio

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Hiking the Sequoia Audubon Trail in Pescadero

a1I’m baaack! After working 12 days straight with the exception of the 4th of July, I had to step away from the blog and social media for a while. I was also pretty exhausted and cranky. But now I’m ready to get back online. But in order to have something interesting to say, you have to have a life and step away from the computer!

Yesterday Dean and I went south down Highway 1. We started out with brunch at Moss Beach Distillery. Yuck, the food was so bad and expensive, but such a historical place with lores of a haunted ghost. Then we did this beautiful marshland hike called the Sequoia Audubon Trail adjacent to the Pescadero State Beach. Short and easy, but different and beautiful.

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