San Francisco is losing residents because it’s too expensive for nearly everyone – USA Today

SAN FRANCISCO — Social media influencer Sarah Tripp and her husband, Robbie Tripp, moved to San Francisco in 2016 brimming with optimism.

“We thought, here’s a city full of opportunities and connections where you go to work hard and succeed,” says Tripp, 27, founder of the lifestyle blog Sassy Red Lipstick.

But after a year-long hunt for suitable housing in San Francisco only turned up “places for $1 million that looked like rundown shacks and needed a remodel,” the couple packed up and moved to Phoenix.

They went from paying San Francisco rents of $2,500 for a one-bedroom, one-bath apartment that was far from shopping and other amenities, to purchasing a newly constructed 3,000-square-foot, four-bedroom, four-bathroom home where they’ll raise their newly arrived baby boy.

“It was cool to be living near all those high-tech startups,” Tripp says of her Bay Area years. “But you quickly saw that if you weren’t part of that, you’d be pushed out. It’s just sad.”

via USA Today

Boys on the Side trailer

The very last shot in “Boys on the Side” is of an empty room. As the camera pans around it, we remember who was in it, and how much we grew to care about them. We may be a little surprised by how that happened, because the movie starts out seeming contrived and routine, and only gradually gathers power until, by the end, it is completely involving.

Ebert’s review of Boys on the Side -> https://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/boys-on-the-side-1995

Kids trailer

Larry Clark’s “Kids” is a movie about their world. It follows a group of teenage boys and girls through one day and night during which they travel Manhattan on skateboards and subway trains, have sex, drink, use drugs, talk, party, and crash in a familiar stupor, before starting all over again the next day. The movie sees this culture in such flat, unblinking detail that it feels like a documentary; it knows what it’s talking about.

Roger Ebert’s Kids review -> https://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/kids-1995

Frank Bruni Interview with Errol Morris Regarding Steve Bannon Doc

The Devil in Steve Bannon
The celebrated filmmaker Errol Morris has a new documentary — and candid remarks — about Donald Trump’s dyspeptic strategist.

Do you think, a couple of years from now, Bannon’s going to be this very curious footnote, this sort of one-off? Or do you think we’re going to be reckoning with what he’s peddling and what he represents for a good, long while?

I have to distinguish what I hope for versus what I really think will happen. I hope all of this is a very bad memory soon: Trump, Bannon, national populism, etc. In one respect, I do agree with Bannon. And I told him so. I grew up in the ’50s. My mother was an elementary-school teacher. My father died when I was 2, and my mother brought up my brother and myself. She took care of everybody, having practically no money, no insurance money from my father’s death.

And I often think, could she have done that today? And the answer is no. I don’t think she could have. There is greater and greater inequality, economic inequality, income and otherwise, in the United States. And I think it’s a very, very bad thing. And I think Bannon is right — that it will have terrible consequences in the long run.

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/25/opinion/errol-morris-steve-bannon.html

Interesting list of Horror Movies to Check Out

Tarantino, del Toro, and More Directors Pick Favorite Horror Movies | IndieWire

Looking to watch a scary movie? Why not take a suggestion from one of the best directors working today or a master of the horror genre. IndieWire has rounded up 32 of our favorite directors naming some of their favorite horror movies ever made, from Guillermo del Toro on “Eyes Without a Face” to Martin Scorsese on “The Innocents,” Jennifer Kent on “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre,” Jordan Peele on “Misery,” and more. Check out all 32 recommendations in the list below.

John Carpenter, on “The Exorcist”

John Carpenter’s “Halloween” was a pioneer in the slasher-film subgenre, and when it comes to the horror director’s own favorite scary movies he often singles out William Friedkin’s classic “The Exorcist.” As Carpenter told The Fader, “You know what’s scary about ‘The Exorcist’? Everyone knows what’s scary about that movie. It’s the devil. The first time I saw it, I thought, in order to be really effective, this movie requires a belief in a higher power. But since then I’ve come to appreciate it just for what it is. I watched it again recently and was surprised by how intense it is. The things that they did back then, with this little girl, they broke a bunch of taboos, my god. It’s pretty damn good.”

https://www.indiewire.com/gallery/directors-favorite-horror-movies/

Dazed and Confused Quotes

Slater: Behind every good man there is a woman, and that woman was Martha Washington, man, and everyday George would come home, she would have a big fat bowl waiting for him, man, when he come in the door, man, she was a hip, hip, hip lady, man.

Slater: Didja ever look at a dollar bill, man? There’s some spooky shit goin’ on there. And it’s green too.

Cynthia: I call it the “every other decade” theory. The 50’s were boring. The 60’s rocked. The 70’s, my god, they obviously suck. So maybe the 80s will be like, radical. I figure we’ll be in our 20’s and hey, it can’t get any worse.

Pink: All I’m saying is that if I ever start referring to these as the best years of my life – remind me to kill myself.

Pink: I may play ball next fall, but I will never sign that. Now me and my loser friends are gonna head out to buy Aerosmith tickets. Top priority of the summer.

IMDB

More housing is needed, will it be built?

Here’s one take:

“Stephen, you’ve been proven right on housing, and I think you’re about to be proven even more right. The most important driver of home prices is supply and demand. And right now, there is a chronic undersupply of homes in America.”

Census Bureau data shows an average of 1.5 million homes were built each year since 1959. Yet since 2009, just 900,000 homes have been built per year. In fact, fewer homes were built in the past decade than in any decade since the ‘50s!

We have a serious housing shortage in America today. It would take less than six months to sell every existing home on the market…

The Biggest Housing Boom In History Has Just Begun
Stephen McBride, Forbes

Keith Richards on Vietnam and the Sunset Strip in the 60’s

Taking “Street Fighting Man” to the extremes, or “Gimme Shelter.” But without a doubt it was a strange generation. The weird thing is that I grew up with it, but suddenly I’m an observer instead of a participant. I watched all these guys grow up; I watched a lot of them die. When I first got to the States, I met a lot of great guys, young guys, and I had their phone numbers, and then when I got back two or three years later, I’d call them up, and he’s in a body bag from Nam. A whole lot of them got feathered out, we all know. That’s when that shit hit home with me. Hey, that great little blondie, great guitar player, real fun, we had a real good time, and the next time, gone.

Sunset Strip in the ’60s, ’64, ’65—there was no traffic allowed through it. The whole strip was filled with people, and nobody’s going to move for a car. It was almost off-limits. You hung out in the street, you just joined the mob. I remember once Tommy James, from the Shondells—six gold records and blew it all. I was trying to get up to the Whisky a Go Go in a car, and Tommy James came by. “Hey, man.” “And who are you?” “Tommy James, man.” “Crimson and Clover” still hits me. He was trying to hand out things about the draft that day. Because obviously he thought he was about to be fucking drafted. This was Vietnam War time. A lot of the kids that came to see us the first time never got back. Still, they heard the Stones up the Mekong Delta.

Richards, Keith. Life (p. 238). Little, Brown and Company.

Boston’s Carbon Emissions Goals, Climate Change

1008_climate-action-plan

Democratic Mayor Marty Walsh says the updated Climate Action Plan he’s releasing Tuesday will significantly cut carbon emissions from buildings, which account for most emissions in the city.

Among the initiatives are investing in energy saving improvements to city-owned buildings, transitioning the city’s vehicle fleet to low-emission vehicles and developing new guidelines for city-backed affordable housing projects.

WBUR

Over London by rail: 1872, Dore

gustave-dore-victorian-london-12

Over London by rail. Engraving. View of the London slums by Gustave Dore from ‘Londre a Pilgrimage’, first published in 1872. This illustration is a bird’s eye view of the slums of London, it shows the poor and overcrowed conditions in which the poor lived in Victorian times, where “There is a desperate, ferocious levity in the air… they (the poor) are the workless of a work-a day London – born in idleness to die in the workhouse, or upon bare boards.”

Museum of London

Acquainted With the Night – Robert Frost

I have been one acquainted with the night.
I have walked out in rain—and back in rain.
I have outwalked the furthest city light.
I have looked down the saddest city lane.
I have passed by the watchman on his beat
And dropped my eyes, unwilling to explain.
I have stood still and stopped the sound of feet
When far away an interrupted cry
Came over houses from another street,
But not to call me back or say good-bye;
And further still at an unearthly height,
One luminary clock against the sky
Proclaimed the time was neither wrong nor right.
I have been one acquainted with the night.

A. Alvarez – RIP

A. Alvarez, a British poet, critic and essayist who played a pivotal role in bringing the poetry of Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath to the public, and whose acclaimed book on the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas helped transform high-stakes professional poker from a cult to a televised sport, died on Monday at his home in London. He was 90.

Mr. Alvarez’s enormously influential anthology “The New Poetry,” published in 1962, brought the poetry of Mr. Hughes, Thom Gunn and Geoffrey Hill and the American confessional poets John Berryman and Robert Lowell to a wide audience in Britain. Ms. Plath and Anne Sexton were added to the 1966 edition.

In his polemical preface, Mr. Alvarez railed against the genteel tradition in English poetry and what he called “the cult of rigid impersonality.” The new poetry, he argued, took emotional risks. It embraced “experience sometimes on the edge of disintegration and breakdown.”

William Grimes, Sept. 23, 2019,  nytimes

 

From Alvarez’s book Night:

Apart from the ‘organised and steady system’, something else hasn’t changed since Dickens went out with the police: the ‘individual energy and keenness’. But police take on the character of their territory. In London, the energy and keenness are masked, like the city itself, by a certain reticence; in Manhattan, they come with a New Yorker pace and appetite. When I called Lieutenant Raymond O’Donnell, the head of media liaison at Police Plaza, the NYPD’s downtown redbrick fortress, to arrange a couple of nights as a ‘ride-along’ in the back of a patrol car, I asked to go to precincts where I might see some action.

A gravelly voice at the other end said, ‘Whaddya want, drugs or whores?’
‘How about both?’
‘You got it!’

 

Patience in Expectancy

Every human being is tried this way in the active service of expectancy. Now comes the fulfillment and relieves him, but soon he is again placed on reconnaissance for expectancy; then he is again relieved, but as long as there is any future for him, he has not yet finished his service. And while human life goes on this way in very diverse expectancy, expecting very different things according to different times and occasions and in different frames of mind, all life is again one nightwatch of expectancy.

Søren Kierkegaard, Eighteen Upbuilding Discourses: “Patience in Expectancy”
wikiquote

related post, William James on Expectation

… “the process of judgment itself was never conscious”

A simple experiment, so simple as to seem trivial, will bring us directly to the heart of the matter. Take any two unequal objects, such as a pen and pencil or two unequally filled glasses of water, and place them on the desk in front of you. Then, partly closing your eyes to increase your attention to the task, pick up each one with the thumb and forefinger and judge which is heavier. Now introspect on everything you are doing. You will find yourself conscious of the feel of the objects against the skin of your fingers, conscious of the slight downward pressure as you feel the weight of each, conscious of any protuberances on the sides of the objects, and so forth. And now the actual judging of which is heavier. Where is that? Lo! the very act of judgment that one object is heavier than the other is not conscious. It is somehow just given to you by your nervous system. If we call that process of judgment thinking, we are finding that such thinking is not conscious at all. A simple experiment, yes, but extremely important. It demolishes at once the entire tradition that such thought processes are the structure of the conscious mind.

This type of experiment came to be studied extensively back at the beginning of this century in what came to be known as the Wurzburg School. It all began with a study by Karl Marbe in 1901, which was very similar to the above, except that small weights were used. The subject was asked to lift two weights in front of him, and place the one that was heavier in front of the experimenter, who was facing him. And it came as a startling discovery both to the experimenter himself and to his highly trained subjects, all of them introspective psychologists, that the process of judgment itself was never conscious.

Jaynes, Julian. The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind 

Scientists Identify Neurons That Help the Brain Forget – The New York Times

But S.’s ability to remember was also a hindrance in everyday life. He had a hard time understanding abstract concepts or figurative language, and he was terrible at recognizing faces because he had memorized them at an exact point in time, with specific facial expressions and features. The ability to forget, scientists eventually came to realize, was just as vital as the ability to remember.

“We’re inundated with so much information every day, and much of that information is turned into memories in the brain,” said Ronald Davis, a neurobiologist at the Scripps Research Institute in Jupiter, Fla. “We simply cannot deal with all of it.”

Researchers like Dr. Davis argue that forgetting is an active mechanism that the brain employs to clear out unnecessary pieces of information so we can retain new ones. Others have gone a step further, suggesting that forgetting is required for the mental flexibility inherent in creative thinking and imagination.

A new paper, published Thursday in the journal Science, points to a group of neurons in the brain that may be responsible for helping the brain to forget. Akihiro Yamanaka, a neuroscientist at Nagoya University in Japan, and his team stumbled across the cells, known as melanin-concentrating hormone, or M.C.H., neurons, while studying sleep regulation in mice.

 
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/19/science/brain-memory-forgetting-mind.html

The Brain-Gut Connection

The ENS is two thin layers of more than 100 million nerve cells lining your gastrointestinal tract from esophagus to rectum.

What Does Your Gut’s Brain Control?
Unlike the big brain in your skull, the ENS can’t balance your checkbook or compose a love note. “Its main role is controlling digestion, from swallowing to the release of enzymes that break down food to the control of blood flow that helps with nutrient absorption to elimination,” explains Jay Pasricha, M.D., director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Neurogastroenterology, whose research on the enteric nervous system has garnered international attention. “The enteric nervous system doesn’t seem capable of thought as we know it, but it communicates back and forth with our big brain—with profound results.”

The ENS may trigger big emotional shifts experienced by people coping with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and functional bowel problems such as constipation, diarrhea, bloating, pain and stomach upset. “For decades, researchers and doctors thought that anxiety and depression contributed to these problems. But our studies and others show that it may also be the other way around,” Pasricha says. Researchers are finding evidence that irritation in the gastrointestinal system may send signals to the central nervous system (CNS) that trigger mood changes.

“These new findings may explain why a higher-than-normal percentage of people with IBS and functional bowel problems develop depression and anxiety,” Pasricha says. “That’s important, because up to 30 to 40 percent of the population has functional bowel problems at some point.”

via Johns Hopkins

How a Tuxedoed Sommelier Wound Up Homeless in California – The New York Times

California, the country’s wealthiest and most populous state, also has the most homeless, an unremitting crisis that has confounded the state’s political leaders for decades and exposed one of the most extreme manifestations of economic inequality gripping the country.

Tent encampments — Oakland city officials count 90 of them — are now as much a part of the landscape as the bars and restaurants that cater to the city’s rising affluence. Many Americans are one medical emergency, one layoff, one family disaster away from bankruptcy or losing the roofs over their heads.

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/28/us/homeless-san-francisco.html

I was driving around Downtown Denver earlier today and drove past three people sleeping on the street, a few blocks from the ballpark. They didn’t have much baggage – no tents or sleeping bags, and one of them was in a large electric wheelchair. You see a lot of homeless people in Denver so I might not have registered these three, but that I had read this article earlier in the day, and I can’t see how someone survives being homeless in an electric wheelchair.