Illustration of Derek Powazek by Adam Ellis

The Secrets of Cole Valley

1. Never step out in front of a city bus. They’re exempt from stop signs.

2. Dryer number 39 at Doug’s Suds will give you 10 minutes per quarter, instead of the standard 7. Washer 12 used to count tapping on the coin slot as quarters, but Doug fixed it.

3. When your laundry is in the dryer at Doug’s Suds, don’t take your eyes off it unless you consider it a donation.

4. Only half of the people who look homeless actually are. The rest are merely eccentric.

5. Don’t ever lie in the grass at the park where the N-Judah comes out of the Sunset Tunnel. As a dog walker, trust me on this one.

6. The big hill with the stunning view is called both Tank Hill and Acid Hill, depending on your state of mind in the sixties.

7. The local guy who always wears the beret and skirt isn’t gay. The failed city councilman is.

8. Never ask the bearded man in the cheese shop for an egg salad sandwich.

9. There’s someone in the neighborhood who puts up “Lost Mind” flyers. I’ve never called the number.

10. The flyer that was up in mid-June about a dog found on the roof of a garage? That was Buddy. He’s fine now.

11. The Muni trains are able to rattle wine glasses, no matter where you put them.

12. Johnny is only dangerous when he’s half-drunk. You can tell because when he’s only slightly drunk he tells jokes, and when he’s fully-drunk he’s asleep.

13. Actually, Johnny only tells one joke when he’s half-drunk, and the punch line is: “That wasn’t a parachute – that was my backpack!”

14. If it’s after 10pm and you’re hungry, the only place to eat is the crepe place called The Crepe Place. Fortunately, it’s not half bad. Just don’t take anyone from France there.

15. The French bakery that opened recently is actually neither French nor a bakery. The croissants are cooked by Mexicans across town and delivered every morning.

16. Almost everyone here is actually from somewhere else, so you know there’s something special about this place. I think you’ll fit right in.

See also: Cole Valley Home Page


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Hi, I’m Derek. I make awesome community-centric web stuff. I sometimes post things to Flickr and Twitter. I’m mostly harmless. More.





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