Posts Tagged ‘cost of living San Francisco’

Hipster’s Don’t Wear Glitter

October 23, 2015

I protested over some of the best sushi I have had in recent memory.

My friend looked at the waitress and asked her, “does she look like a hipster to you?”

The Japanese waitress looked at me, smiled, looked at my friend smiled, “she looks like a hipster.”

Damn it man.

My friend was joking, poking fun at me, but I do have some tell-tale signs of hipsterdom.

I work for tech.

Although I do not work in tech.

My family is a tech family, no getting around it, just none.

I work in the Mission District of San Francisco.

San Francisco is already up there on the hipster list, but the Mission?

Please.

It is über hipster.

And that’s not because there are so many Uber drivers in the bicycle lane waiting to pick up their fares from Tacolicious or Mosto or Dosa or Bar Tartine or dropping them off in front of Rhea’s Deli to get that one sandwich that goes so god damn good with that tall boy of Pabst Blue Ribbon that was drank at Mission Dolores Park that one day last week when the weather was so good.

“Come on!” My friend exclaimed, “you ride a fixie!”

Granted.

Yes.

I do.

“You worked at a bicycle company in the Mission!”

Yes.

I did that too.

I remember when I posted a photograph on Instagram, before everyone fucking knew what Instagram was (my Paris friend was shocked that I had been on Instagram so long, nearly four years, she hadn’t realized that the app has been around that long, but yeah, I got on the bandwagon awhile ago–the app just celebrated five years or publishing the selfie, remember what that used to be?  Literally, a self-portrait, I did a few of those before Instagram, in pencil) of my bicycle and one of the dad’s I used to nanny for commented:

“The hipster just got more hip, is that possible?”

The mom of the play date at work asked me on Tuesday night if I knew so and so, “you know, she’s really cool, and hip, like you.”

I don’t know the person she was referring to, but I can infer the compliment.

“Oh, we are going to be the envy of the neighborhood,” a mom who I ended up leaving after a really uncomfortable week of being overly micro managed, said as I agreed to be her nanny.

“We got our own hipster nanny!” She exclaimed and gave me a hug.

Note to self, if they hug you that much before the job is yours they might be neurotic.

I didn’t even know there was a candidate for nanny that was hipster, must be a subculture.

Speaking of.

Here’s a great definition for hipster courtesy of Wikipedia:

The hipster subculture is one of affluent or middle class young Bohemians who reside in gentrifying neighborhoods,[1][2] broadly associated with indie and alternative music, a varied non-mainstream fashion sensibility (including vintage and thrift store-bought clothes), generally progressive political views, organicand artisanal foods, and alternative lifestyles.[3][4][5] The subculture typically consists of white millennials living in urban areas.[6][7] It has been described as a “mutating, trans-Atlantic melting pot of styles, tastes and behavior”.[8]

Hmm.

Let’s see.

I like subculture.

Ok, I can see that, ok, fine, a little hipstery there.

Affluent or middle class?

Nope.

Nope.

Nope.

But then again, better off than I have ever been and were I living in the mid west I would be considered middle class.

Of course, I wouldn’t be making half of what I make here in the San Francisco as a nanny.

No way.

No how.

And in San Francisco I am not middle class and certainly not affluent.

Bohemian?

Sure.

I will go with that, although I think I am more of a sparkle pony than a Bohemian, but I have some of the trappings, I like art, I like music that doesn’t play on the top 40 radio stations.

When, in fact, was the last time I listened to the radio?

Oh.

Ha.

Yesterday, in the car with the mom on the way to the boys appointment to get their annual flu shot.

I got mine too.

I remember listening to the lyrics of the song that was playing and wondering, who the fuck writes this?

Awfulness.

But I love art and that is very Bohemian.

So ok, a couple of points on the hipster scale and I have tattoos and yes, I do have a one speed custom bicycle, but not because I am affluent, but because I worked in a bicycle shop and not because I had some rabid interest in bicycles, it sort of fell in my lap, my friend was the General Manager and really wanted me to come and work for him.

So I did.

And I built a bike.

But my bike, despite having hipster tendencies–one speed, custom paint job, Italian drop bars, steel frame–is so not a hipster ride.

The aesthetics are totally skewed.

Hello.

I have a deep midnight blue paint job with Rock Star Sparkle top coat.

Not one coat.

But two.

No hipster in their right mind has a whip with glitter.

Or a leather seat with embossed roses from Italy.

Just me.

What else?

Oh yeah, gentrifying neighborhoods.

Yeah.

I used to live in the Mission, but no longer.

I lived at 20th and York, paid $650 for my room with its own bath in a five bedroom house with four other girls.

I bet now that rent for my room would be $3,000.

I lived at 22nd and Alabama with a woman from Northern Italy who had rent control from having lived in the top of this Victorian forever and paid $500 for a huge room with everything included.

I also lived in an enormous Victorian on 23rd and Capp before it was gentrified, thank you very much, for $450 a month plus utilities.

God.

I have people question why the hell I moved out, but if you knew who my room-mate was you probably wouldn’t have moved in.

The last place I lived in the Mission was a tiny in-law at 22nd and Folsom and I paid $750 including all utilities.

That was about two and a half, three years ago, right as it was getting crazy.

Now.

Well.

Fuck.

Whatever.

Everybody know how expensive it is to rent in San Francisco, and now I live in the Outer Sunset, where I am very happy and content to live.

Although it too is getting a little on the hipster side.

I’m definitely progressive, I definitely eat a lot of organic food, ok, sigh, I am looking more like a hipster every word I type.

Me thinks the lady doth protest too much.

I wear glasses with oversized wood frames.

I listen to alternative music.

Ever hear of jazz?

Yeah, like that.

But there’s a lot of music that I listen to that is definitely not mainstream, is underground, and is alternative.

Fuck.

I guess I am a hipster.

Wait.

Millennials.

Nope.

Fuck that.

I am so not a Millennial.

Not by a long shot.

I’m way too old.

Gen X thank you very much.

There.

See.

Not a hipster.

Well.

I guess I have some characteristics.

(Wrecking Ball coffee in my cupboard from Washington State)

Converse on my feet.

Fixie in the garage.

Yes I did own a vintage Vespa, well, I thought it was a Vespa.

But.

I protest.

I am still to glittery to be hip.

And I eschew cigarettes, tall boys, tech talk, Tinder, festival clothes, floppy hats, jean shorts (unless I’m rocking some funky tights), happy hour in the Mission, and snobbery.

See.

I’m too nice to be a hipster.

So there.

“I’m just joking!” My friend laughed at me, “you know I’m just joking.”

I do.

I do, I know.

I am willing to admit that I am often mistaken for a hipster but as soon as I wave my hand and give you a hug the truth comes out.

Oh!

Your’s so nice.

You must be from the Midwest!

Yup.

I’m not hipster.

I’m a Sconnie.

Advertisements

Teeny, Tiny Steps

July 10, 2015

But forward movement.

Always.

That was what I promised myself when I checked in with my person yesterday and we talked about my fear around the process of getting my course work and reading materials to begin the work outlined in my syllabi for the graduate program.

Holy cats kids.

It’s happening.

It’s coming up.

I have the retreat, which is a part of my first semester of school, in one month.

It is August 9th-16th in Petaluma and I will have my reading done by then.

Yes.

Yes.

Yes I will.

I haven’t purchased any readings yet, although on a complete side note I did find a fantastic shoulder holster on Etsy that I bought for Burning Man.

I have a hip holster and I use it frequently, but there are times when I want something smaller and I have been eyeing up a shoulder holster for a while now.

I found one I like.

I have the money in my spending plan.

And voila.

One more little thing taken care of.

It wasn’t too expensive and it will come out of my clothing allowance for the month, so I don’t even feel like it was a splurge, just something nice to have for myself that I will use and re-use.

I don’t believe this will be my last Burning Man.

I also had the pleasure of being reached out from of all places the Tales from The Playa blog post I submitted a while back that was published on the Burning Man website.

A husband and wife with a two-year old daughter, artists from Paris of all places, are coming for their second burn and wanted tips and suggested for how to burn with their daughter.

It’s nice to know that I can help others with taking their kids to Burning Man and be of service by sharing my experience.

Anyway, aside from the small Burning Man prep that I did, I also investigated deferring my student loan while I am in school.

I realized that with the retreat being in a month, this would be the last month that I make a student loan payment on my undergrad loans.

Which are just slightly less than I thought they were, I just checked, they are still hefty and I have often despaired of every paying them off, but I will, I know I will, I have faith, they currently stand at $31.000 and change.

I don’t pay a whole lot on the monthly, but as my employment will drop down to part-time and I still got to figure out how to pay for my general everyday costs of living in San Francisco, I will need every single spare cent I can spare.

There’s a small part of me that actually wanted to not defer the payment and I may opt to at least continue to make small payments on the interest, but I don’t want to burden myself with extra financial worry when I can with all credibility defer due to being in school full-time.

The paperwork is a bit onerous and it looks like I am going to have to down load it, print it, fill it out by hand, then take it to a person in the financial aid office at CIIS and have them put the official stamp of approval on the request.

One tiny step.

Go to my student loan services website, log in, and look at the paperwork.

That’s all I have to do.

I don’t have to do it perfect, I don’t have to do it all today, I don’t have to figure it out.

One small action taken.

Tomorrow when I go to work I will ask if I may borrow the printer in the office, I’ll print off  the form and then I will fill it out on my lunch break.

I will then call the financial aid office and ask when I can come in and have the form signed so that I may send it out in the mails and have it all set up before August rolls around.

I have a month.

I will get the things done.

And tomorrow I can also find out about meeting with my advisor.

I can e-mail the department.

I may just do that tonight and see about killing two birds with one stone and make an appointment to meet with my advisor and go to the financial aid office and get them to fill out the paperwork.

I can also find out what’s going on with my awards package.

I have yet to receive it in the mail.

I have been watching the mail like a hawk.

I did get my postcard from Atlanta though!

That was fast.

I wasn’t expecting to already get it, postcards seem to take a while to get to me when I mail them out.  And as I had forgotten that I mailed it, I had a nice surprise when I looked in my mail box this evening.

A little reminder of what happens when I take those baby steps.

I wrote about wanting to go to Atlanta long before I took any real “actions” the writing was the first part.

Then more writing, some affirmations, some I am a world traveler writing and the destination I plugged in was Atlanta (since having done this many times before and it always seems to work out–I have written about traveling to Paris, lived there six months, going to London, to Rome, to Burning Man, travel to San Diego, I am writing now about the Grand Canyon, Bryce Canyon, Yosemite, Joshua Tree, and Paia, Maui–where my grandmother was born) and eventually I took another action.

I registered for the conference.

Then another action.

I started looking for flights.

Then for lodging.

And eventually, without having to make a huge deal out of it, I got to Atlanta and went and now I am back.

Getting ready to do the graduate school thing and get into those books and do the fully self-supporting financial actions that I have also been writing about.

One of which is: I am financially successful and self-supporting, I have paid my student loans in full.  I have paid my graduate school tuition in full (when I started writing that I had no clue I was even going to apply for a scholarship, let alone win two.).  And this last one, which cracks me up, but is true, I own a new Casper mattress.

I want a new bed.

Sleep is going to be very important to my graduate school endeavors, I know it.

So.

One little baby step today.

And the ball starts rolling and the next thing you know I’ll be putting my name plate above the door of my own private practice.

Well.

Let me not get too far ahead of myself.

I know what I need to do next.

And I know that as long as I stay focused on the small actions in front of me, the rest will follow.

It always does.

Pre-Emptive Blog

June 15, 2015

I am blogging early.

I have a dinner date.

And.

It’s freaking Sunday.

The Warriors are in the NBA finals and I have a dinner date.

Excellent.

I am a big pile of jello, however, I took the plunge, but not the cold plunge.

I went to Kabuki.

My employers surprised me with a gift card on Friday as I was leaving and I went to the spa today–I was treated to the “Radiance Spa.”

I do feel pretty radiant.

Although, truth be told, I’m not sure if it’s due to the spa time or the upcoming dinner time.

I’m happy.

I had a head and neck massage and hair oil treatment–seriously, the best thing ever is having my scalp rubbed, closely followed by hair brushing.  When people ask that question, what would buy with a million dollars or if you won the lottery, scalp massage, and lots of it.

I jest.

If I won the lottery.

I would pay off my student loan, and then your student loan and if you have any friends that have student loans, theirs too.

Then I would get some scalp massage.

It’s dreamy.

And she used a key lime oil.

Dude.

I smell like pie.

Hope my date likes that.

Then again, what man doesn’t want his date to smell like pie?

I’m not getting quite as gussied up as I did yesterday, it’s Sunday, I can’t stay out late, but I made sure I look cute and my hair, well, Christ on a stick, it looks fantastic.

All that scalp rubbing and hair oil.

Plus I got a short shiatsu and deep tissue massage–just 25 minutes–but enough to bliss out for a while.

Then a soak in the hot tub and a salt scrub followed by the steam room.

I tried to get into the cold plunge, I usually do hit it a couple of times, but I wasn’t feeling it today.  I decided to just take a nice long shower, shave the legs (not that I am expecting any kind of action tonight, the one thing I will let on about dating said gentleman is that he is a gentleman, we talked quite earnestly about going slow) and slather lotion all over myself.

Then a relaxing cup of tea on a lounge chair while I flipped awhile through a magazine.

Spa’d up and I took a car home.

I decided to splurge there too.

I wasn’t going to ride my bicycle to Kabuki and back.

I definitely feel that I have achieved celebration status for being awarded the scholarship.

An afternoon at the spa and a second date with a very handsome and.

Ugh.

Not writing about that.

I have a second date with someone whom I like very much.

There.

“You can write about me, just change my name,” he told me last night when I told him I was not going to write about him.

I explained that when it means something I don’t want to share.

So that’s it.

That’s all the share you get.

He means something.

This experience means something.

And I am excited.

Not nearly as anxious as I was yesterday before seeing him for our first date and hopefully the butterflies won’t come on too strong, but excited.

Not obsessed either.

That is nice.

My brain is not going 280 miles per hour.

It’s saying.

See what happens.

Let things unfold.

Let yourself be courted.

That’s really want I want.

I want to be courted and cherished.

I suppose everyone wants that.

I also want to provide that for the person I am with and this feels like a good fit.

Onto other news.

I checked out scooters yesterday at Scooter Centre and put down a deposit on a Buddy Italia in avocado with racing stripes.

Super cute.

Best scooter in the shop, 170, it can even go out not the highway.

I dropped five hundred for a deposit.

Filled out all the paperwork and then waited for the phone call back from the financing department.

And got my deposit refunded right back to my card.

I don’t have any credit history.

My credit score is high, but because there’s no record of me using a credit card for the last ten years I have no history of being a good or bad risk.

The company that Scooter Centre works with turned me down.

I had an inkling that may happen, so I was not upset when that turned out to be the case.

I can go to my bank and ask for a loan.

I can probably get a credit card, I get offers for them all the time.

I can not worry about getting a scooter right now and save my money.

I can keep riding my bicycle and use the money I do have towards paying for the fees and registration that I will have to cover for my school.  The scholarship I was awarded is solely tuition, but at $24,500 a year for two years, that’s nothing to sniff at.

However, a close inspection of the registration fees and the fee for the required week-long retreat at the beginning of the semester with my cohort in Petaluma at the Ions Institute, is going to cost about $2,500.

That’s nothing in comparison to the tuition, but it is something.

I am still assuming that I will have to take out some loans, just to cover cost of living, but the fewer I have to take out the better and the faster I can pay down my student loan debt, the easier it will be for me in the long run.

I mean, I’m still paying off my undergraduate degree.

Anyway.

I wasn’t upset and I believe something else will happen.

Maybe I don’t get a scooter.

Maybe I do.

I’m alright no matter what happens.

And I have a date in twenty minutes.

Gotta go!

See you tomorrow.

With bells on.

Not My Day Today

July 10, 2014

But not altogether not, not my day.

If that makes sense.

It was a long day and I realize that it’s also been an emotional thing, going back to work, showing up, being present for the boys, and they are such lovely boys, that and the pain that accompanies me while at work.

And the fact that the little guy is teething.

Hard.

Really hard.

Worst teething reaction I have experienced with a charge, worst.

Poor baby is cutting molars that look like gigantic Lego pieces in his gum line.

He can’t sleep.

He doesn’t want to eat much.

He’s fractious because he can’t sleep, the pain of the teething wakes him up.

I can only give him so much Tylenol or risk him getting ill from that.

So, I wore the fuzzy pink sweater and he spent a lot of time nuzzled into that today.

My other little guy was awesome and sweet and a good little egg and helped by playing with his toys and not demanding a lot of extra attention.

It was loud and noisy at the house too as the construction continues and the door opens and shuts and the workers come and go and I am just out of my element with the whole thing.

So yeah, when I asked for a raise for working the Burning Man event this year and it did not go over so well, I felt like the last nail in the coffin of my week was hammered home.

I won’t get what I asked for but I will get a raise.

I have to.

My cost of living is just higher than it’s ever been before and not having asked for a raise ever needs to change.

Of course I am all invested in the outcome.

Of course I have already figured out I can do the event without getting a raise, should it come to that, I can eke it out for the month of September.  But why?  Work really hard, harder than I do now, and make less.

Yeah.

I know, I am at Burning Man, yay.

But the fact is I am tied to my job and I like working hard and so there’s that, and I know that there are a lot of privileges I receive from working the even the way I have, I am not inured to those things, nope.

But its work.

Hard work.

Long hours.

Hot days.

Dirty work.

Rewarding work.

But emotionally, physically, spiritually exhausting.

Sometimes I wonder if I go through with it all so that I get to have the classic playa meltdown and thereafter allow myself to indulge in some spiritual intoxication when it is all resolved.

If, perhaps, I am getting high off the anxiety and the stress of doing my job so that I can get an adrenalin fix through the drama of it.

What ever it is I have to trust that a. I will go to Burning Man and b. I will get paid what I need to make it by.

I love being a nanny at Burning Man.

There is something special and unique in the service that I give by going out there and taking care of a child.  I get some ego hits off that too, I am aware of it, I like being special and unique.

I do.

I love being Mary Fucking Poppins.

I love the look on people’s faces when I tell them what I do while I am there.

I love that I am good at what I do.

I take pride in it.

I hate, however, asking for what I need.

It is hard and I already have this idea that I am privileged by getting the experience that I get to have, staying where I stay, seeing the people I see, having a sort of all access pass to the back stage working of one of the greatest, if not the greatest show, on earth.

But this lady has to pay the rent too.

So.

Yeah.

It didn’t quite go as I wanted, but I know what I am worth, so I asked.

I thought I wasn’t attached to the results, and it turns out, shocker, that I am.

That’s ok too.

Burning Man is about art and creation and lest we all forget, hoping and wishing that the playa will provide, it is also about radical self-reliance.

I find that has to stretch past the event into my daily life, I have to be fully self-supporting to the best of my abilities, I have to take care of the home fires while sitting around the fires at the event.

I think I am now off into rambling land with this blog.

But I know I have some inventory to write, some patterns to change, some letting go of defects, and a whole lot of acceptance to work through.

Yippee.

Pause for a moment, must flip the bag of peas on my ankle.

Yup.

Still needing to rest, ice, compress, and elevate the ankle.

And this to shall pass.

Everything is alright.

I just had a day.

They happen.

I have made it half way through the week, two more days to go.

It’s all going to be just fine.

I know it.

Grateful for inventory and other people’s perspective and that I still get to learn something about myself and what an awesome way to learn.

I get to go to the best classroom on Earth.

Black Rock City.

I’ll be seeing you in the dust soon.

With or without a pay raise.

But definitely in with some glitter.


%d bloggers like this: