I think we all know that I hate sports, and that this is, in fact, a long established truth. I loathe sports with a flaming passion which only vaguely begins to approach my hatred for children, genocidal dictators, and people who eat microwave dinners. I also hate yuppies.
But now there’s further ammunition for my hatred, kids, because today I discovered that sports are actually a threat to public safety.
But let me back up and give you the full explanation.
So, as we all know, I don’t own a personal vehicle, but I am looking after one for a friend this weekend. I’m moving it now and then so that people don’t think it’s abandoned, and Puff was late to work this morning so I gave her a ride into the City, and then returned to the Island. The Island is all in an uproar because there’s a triathlon being held this weekend. Now, I’m ok with triathlons, I suppose, and this one at least had the courtesy to send out a letter warning me, unlike most events on Island.
So in the letter, they said that traffic might be rerouted a bit, but that traffic cops would be here and they would try to keep the disruption minimal. On my way off the Island, I had to go out the long way because Avenue H and California and 13th Street are all closed to traffic. But whatever. It’s not that big of an issue, I can deal.
So I get back on Island, and all the parking spots on my street are taken, and La Chiquita is home so I can’t use our space. Fine, whatever, I’ll use the parking lot in the back. Only I won’t, because I can’t get across 13th Street. I drove all over the housing area in quest of a visitor’s space, while the giant back lot remained tantalizingly empty. Not a space to be had, no way, no how, nowhere.
So I looped back to 13th and Gateview and tried to attract the attention of the cop, because I saw him letting a car through there and I figured he could let me across too. The cop made some sort of odd floppy hand gesture and turned his back on me. I did go to driver school, but I don’t know what a wierd floppy hand gesture and being ignored is supposed to mean…I didn’t learn that traffic signal.
I sat, puzzled for a moment, and then inched forward. He turned again, making the same odd gesture, and turned his back again. Cars were beginning to stack up behind me, and we were all equally puzzled by the fact that the cop was totally ignoring our existence.
“Uhm, officer,” I started to say, rolling down the window. “Officer? OFFICER?”
No response. Finally some random person in an official triathlon jacket came over, and asked what I wanted.
“Well, I, uhm, live here, and can’t park. Usually we can use this back lot, if the officer would please just let me cross 13th Street.”
“Did you look for parking in the housing area?”
“Uhm, yeah, that’s what I am trying to tell you, is that I live here and there is nowhere I can park because all the visitors spots are taken. I am fine with waiting for a break in the bicyclists to cross the street, but I really need to be able to park.”
“Well, uh, you really need to park in the housing area.”
“Believe me man,” I said, “I would love to park in the housing area, if that was an option. Unfortunately, it’s not. I realize that you think you own the Island because you are renting it for the weekend, but you don’t, and I assure you that I will remember this during the public comment period next year and I will be sure to lobby against giving you permits for this.”
“Uhm, let me ask the officer, ok?”
So, grudgingly, the cop lets me through. Seething with grumpiness, I park, lock the car, and wait to walk back across 13th Street so I can go home. While I’m sitting there, a fire truck pulls up, obviously needing to cross the street.
To my amazement, the cop did the same thing to the fire truck that he did to me. Uhm…dude…it’s a fire truck. You really, you know, ought to let it through. I realize that it’s not an emergency, but still. Fire truck. Right of way. But no, the stupid bicyclists are more important than, say, people’s lives.
I hate sports.
I also hate that the Island gets rented out like this all the time, something which totally would not happen if we were a wealthy enclave. This is the kind of shit that never happens in Mainland San Francisco, because the yuppies would get riled up. But apparently it’s totally fine to wreak havoc in a low income neighborhood. After all, what do we care? We’re just poor folks!
You know what else I hate, is the SFPD. What police officer in ou right mind decides to ignore motorists who are obviously trying to get ou attention? My taxes are paying that cop to sit there all weekend, and the least he could do is address my concerns, as a citizen. Don’t you think that if you were a cop and cars were stacking up at an intersection you are supposed to be controlling that you would do something about it, rather than sitting there eating a doughnut? Did I mention he was eating a doughnut? That another cop brought by? While I was waiting to cross the goddamn street so I could park? Because he was eating a doughnut.
Clearly, there is only one solution to this complex and multifold problem: ban policemen and triathlons.
[San Francisco Police]
[Treasure Island Triathlon]