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Dom Quinto Swims With The Leaves

    Foreword:  According to sources, Dom Quinto invented the leaf blower in 1957. Later that year, his mutilated body was found in a leaf-filled dumpster. Not one of his neighbors came forward to say they saw anything suspicious. Most strange.

          I live in a thirty-unit apartment building on the corner of a block containing million-dollar house, after million-dollar house. The view from my room is impressive, but fills me with envy. When I first moved in here, I spent a lot of time looking at these houses trying to imagine what kind of lives the inhabitants of these homes led.

           I mean, I could have actually stopped when walking up the street and had an actual conversation with some of them, but where’s the fun in that? Besides, that is an entirely un-British thing to do. We’d rather peer through the curtains and speculate. Also, as soon as my neighbors might discover that I lived in the 30-unit turd in their Utopia, they might shuffle their kids and pets back into their houses, making sure that the security system lasers are engaged to disintegrate any approaching riffraff.

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The Gospel According To BART (Strike Edition)

Welcome to the fifth “Gospel According To BART.” Now with some late-breaking news about the BART strike, we go over to our “on the train” news team Diane Summers and Ron Dayton……

“Guys, you’re on. Ron…wake up! You’re on live! Diane, can you hear me? Cut to Gary with Sports, I think they’re dead.”

BART's definition of "OUT OF ORDER" greatly differs from my own.

BART’s definition of “OUT OF ORDER”  differs greatly from my own.

So I'm confused. Is this the button to call the Agent or to get the elevator? If only it were clearly marked.

So I’m confused. Is this the button to call the Agent or to get the elevator? If only it were more clearly marked.

Dear BART,  Shit doesn't work as an adhesive. That is all.

Dear BART,
Shit doesn’t work as an adhesive. That is all.

This is why you should feel uneasy when someone sits RIGHT BEHIND YOU. He's already taken out the lady to his left. I don't know, maybe he's just taking a photo of a mole on the back of the guy's neck to show him and tell him he should get it checked out.

This is why you should feel uneasy when someone sits RIGHT BEHIND YOU. He’s already taken out the lady to his left. I don’t know, maybe he’s just taking a photo of a mole on the back of the guy’s neck to show him and tell him he should get it checked out.

Meanwhile outside the station, in the BART parking lot, commuters discuss transport alternatives to BART. "Hey, bro, cool bike. We have so much in common. Wanna go grab a coffee sometime?"

Meanwhile outside the station, in the BART parking lot, commuters discuss transport alternatives to BART.
“Hey, bro, cool bike. We have so much in common. Wanna go grab a coffee sometime?”

Phone theft on the BART system is on the rise. Cameras are not a guarantee of safety, please keep an eye on all your valuables, including laptops, purses, and especially phones.

Public opinion as to whether BART should strike is mostly in favor of not striking, but this chap says he is with them and on his own strike against whatever it is that he might be paid to do.

Whether BART workers are justified in striking is a hotly debated issue. But this chap says he is with the workers and peacefully picketing in a show of sleepy solidarity.

The Package

Look at me. I’m like a child on the morning of his birthday, waiting for the mailman to bring him a gift. No, it’s worse than that: I’m like a spoiled lapdog running to the window every ten seconds, waiting for his owner to come home. Every faint whiff of perfume that wafts through the slightly cracked window has him running around in circles near the front door.

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Take Some Chants On Me

A few years ago, I was on the N Judah returning home after a Saturday night of drunken debauchery out in the avenues. It was a bright, Sunday June morning, not unlike any other beautiful San Francisco day. I was trying to remember the name of the woman I had woken up next to…Svetlana? No…maybe it was Caterina…something Russian. I think. I remembered that much at least.

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The Illustrated Guide On How To Dine And Dash

***This particular blog has become extremely popular. It is satire, and should not be taken seriously. We do NOT condone Dining and Dashing.***

**************************************

“HOW TO DINE AND DASH” is now a short film. Just click on the link.

An Indian restaurant in London called Khan’s had so many issues with people running out without paying their bill that they only hired young, lean Indian waiters that could run the 100 meters in less than 11 seconds. There were usually 9 or 10 servers on the floor, all of them with leg muscles stretched and limbered up, ready to take off into the night to chase someone likely so full of curry they didn’t stand a chance of getting away. 

On at least three visits to Khan’s I saw someone try to Dine And Dash. It would usually start with some plates being dropped, followed by the sound of furniture being swept aside, and then frantic yelling (Probably Hindi for, “We’ve got a runner!”) then there would be a flurry of white shirts and Nikes sprinting out the front door in spicy hot pursuit of the Dine ‘n’ Dasher like they were running from the bulls in Pamplona.

They always caught the runner and dragged him back to the restaurant. The Dine ‘n’ Dasher always looked like he had been roughed up a bit in the skirmish, and the adrenaline-pumped waiters’ high-fived each other in victory as other diners applauded.

Embarrassing to say the least.

If only the Dine ’n’ Dasher had thought more carefully about his restaurant choice—unless of course he enjoyed the rush of being chased down and beaten by a swoop of young Indian men.

Here now is

“The Illustrated Guide On How To Dine-And-Dash”

1)    Location, Location, Location

The successful Dine ‘n’ Dasher chooses their restaurant carefully.

The restaurant MUST be busy, the more chaotic the better.

If the restaurant has more than one exit, this is a plus.

Often, restaurants inside hotels are prime choice because the restrooms are located in the lobby and not in the dining room, making escape easy.

The experienced Dine ‘n’ Dasher knows that choosing the right restaurant shouldn’t be based on the quality of the menu, but the likelihood of a successful escape.

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Dear God……Whassuuuuup?

Dear God

This is the first time I have ever written a suicide note…….well….not counting that one time after I strangled that homeless guy  and dumped his body in the lake after I accidentally gave him $20 thinking it was a dollar and he wouldn’t give it back. I didn’t know his name and so I just kind of scrawled a squiggle as his signature at the end of his sad “woe is me” note. I guess bringing that up right now isn’t going to help my cause to get into your Heaven Compound or whatever you’re calling it these days.

So the word is that the world is ending. Fortunately, by the time you read this I will probably be laying on a cold slab in the morgue and not suffering the ordeal of this “end of the world as we know it”  business. I mean seriously, who wants that malarkey?

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Dear Princess

       To My Dear Lovely Kate, or should I say, Duchess of Cambridge, as you are now known.

         As I sat by my mailbox waiting for my velvet cloaked invitation to your wedding (an invitation that  never came by the way.) I wondered how long it would be before your royal romance ended.

 

Read the rest of this story and more in “More Inappropriate Behavio(u)r” Coming in 2020.

Steaming Aphrodite

I recently bought a trunk at a flea market and was surprised to discover that it had a false bottom. Under the faux cover I discovered a diary written in 1909 by a man named Dr. York Van Landingham. Here is a page:

July 17th 1909

She was from Mother Russia and her name was Svetlana Minsky. She spoke perfect English in an accent that one could not detect as foreign. Svetlana had a penchant for bawdy revelry, and used the kind of language which might make an unassuming male turn burgundy from blushing. I had sought her company while we were aboard a steamboat vessel bound for the shores of North Africa. I was wary of her however, as earlier, I had witnessed her bilk three men of their life savings with a fifth, and yes even a sixth King up her lace sleeve.

In the event that her conniving was discovered, she kept a knife in her garter. Upon discovering the weapon one sultry night in Constantinople I decided to nickname her “Svetlana Switchblade.” As I recall, she only stabbed me with it once, and I remain convinced that it was somewhat accidental, but the piercing occurred after I confessed that I relinquished one of her diamond earrings to get out of a tight spot in Bombay.

The night we met, I caught up with her on the deck as she stared out across the Atlantic Ocean at the purple dusk, her winnings tucked into the folds of her undergarments. She told me she’d first noticed me playing trumpet among the troupe of musicians that kept the passengers and crew entertained. It was someone else that she had seen, but I played along not wishing to disappoint her.

She told me she had been entrusted to discover if there were truths to the legend of the goddess Aphrodite and the potions so named after her. She had journeyed through Greece and was now headed to the barely reachable corners of the darkest continent. Entrusted by whom she never confirmed, but she had alluded to a man named Rasputin.

I knew nothing of Aphrodite and she asked me to join her in her cabin to discuss matters of amour. I hadn’t been invited to a woman’s quarters since my journey began and I lustily agreed. She asked if I had absinthe, and of course I did.

We sipped our pastis and made playful conversation. She pulled a patina box from the drawer and opened it. “This is dust from a rhinoceros’s horn,” she said, offering it to me.

     “And?” I said.

     “You snort it, like so.”

     “Madame, I have ingested many a foreign object in my time but nothing from a beast of such stature.”

“It’s an aphrodisiac.

 “An aphro what?”

“It’s named after the goddess,” she said. “If you take it you will likely want to consume me with desire.”

     “I have never heard of such a thing. Won’t I become ill?”

     “No. Legend says that you will become aroused. Try it.”

      “Hm, do you have any other aphrodisiacs, say something in a chewable form?”

       “Many men have died trying to discover what it is about this and other ingredients that turn us into savages.” She passed a leather-bound book under my nose that she had been writing in. I opened it somewhere near the beginning and read her words. I suddenly felt the urge to regurgitate my lunch.

      “What in the name of Satan’s hot tub?”

       “What did you read? Is it the tiger penis thing?”

        “Yes, of course it’s that!!”

        “That’s usually the reaction.”

         “People actually eat tiger’s penises?” I blurted. She nodded slowly. “I mean I’m adventurous in the kitchen, Svetlana, but there is one ingredient that doesn’t leap to mind when cooking and that is tiger penis. I mean, how does one even discover something like that? Oh, I know, why don’t I try tiger penis in my omelet this morning? But before I can do that it’s off to hunt and castrate a tiger…hope he doesn’t mind having his masculinity severed from him before he’s had his morning cup of tea. Maybe I can find other ways to use tiger penis, since I went to the trouble, maybe as an accompaniment to a cheese plate. Oh what have we got here then? Brie, Camembert, Stilton, Tiger penis…oh, yes, perfect, just fits right in there doesn’t it? Pass the salted crackers; this tiger penis is in need of a bed of crunchiness before I can consume it. Good god!”

        “What is it then that makes man want to consume the horn from a rhinoceros and the genitals of a jungle cat?” she asked with a perfectly straight face.

        “I couldn’t tell you, Svetlana, but if this catches on, these poor things are looking to go the way of the dodo and the unicorn. Oh no, do you think that’s what happened to those doomed creatures? Unicorn testicle flambé ? Dodo Eggs Benedict?”

       She calmed me with her smile and we drank long into the night. At some point she asked if I would be interested in joining her on her mission. I laughed. “As long as you don’t try to get me to snort pelican beak, drink panda bear urine, or inhale a mongoose’s fart. I’ll think upon it.”

      Hours later I awoke under my own bed with a headache the size of the earthquake that shook San Francisco. In my view was a half-eaten plate of oysters and my ears filled with sounds of an accordion melody skipping on the phonograph caught in a three second loop. Oh, Svetlana, I thought, I really must stop drinking that absinthe.

I crawled out from beneath the bed and sought the comfort of some woolen trousers so that I might get some fresh sea air and locate my mysterious Russian adventurer. Tomorrow night we are due to dock in Casablanca. I hope that there are no tigers in Morocco, the temptation might be too great an urge to resist.

I Love The French

I love the French. I suppose that’s not a particularly popular thing to say, especially if you’re either English or American…but there it is. A friend just returned from a trip to Paris; she fell in love with it. It happens to the best of us.

Photo by Sheila Star 2011

When the French opposed George W’s 2003 invasion of Iraq they were targeted by a considerable portion of the American public. I wonder what the French word for sheep is? Never mind. At the time, I was working in a bar in San Francisco, and a customer asked me which was the best vodka we had? I was of the opinion that Grey Goose was the smoothest vodka available at that time. So I reached for the bottle.

“Whoa, whoa!!! Hold it right there, buddy!” the man chirped.“ Is that a French flag on that bottle?”

“Yes. Why?”

“I don’t want that shit.”

“Why not? I just told you it’s the best one.”

“It’s French.”

“You don’t want it because it’s French?” I asked disbelievingly.

“That’s right. Fucking French.”

“So I suppose you’re one of these guys that calls ‘French fries’ ‘freedom fries’ then?”

“I am.”  He pointed to a vodka bottle in the well (the contents of which tasted like lighter fluid) and I made him his “French-free” vodka drink.

“You know in France they’re called ‘pommes frites’ and in England they’re called ‘chips.’ Americans are the only people that call them ‘French fries’ anyhow,” I said.

He took a sip of his cheap American vodka and shuddered. He stared at me quizzically and said, “Saaay, where are you from anyway?”

“I’m from England. It’s near France.”

“Well, I suppose you’re okay then.”

“Gee thanks.”

“So you’re English and you’re not mad at the French?”

“No. I love the French, and when this idiotic war is all said and done, the French will likely turn out to be the smart ones. I love French Toast, and I love French kisses. My favorite Gene Hackman film is “Young Franc-en-stein,” closely followed by “The French Connection.” My favorite celebratory beverage is Champagne…a region in France. I like songs about the Champs Elysées. I make my coffee in a French press. My favorite comedy is Napoleon Dynamite, and I don’t say ‘fil-lit’ of fish I say ‘fhil-llaay.’ That will be sixteen dollars, s’il vous plait.”

“Sixteen dollars for cheap vodka?”

“Taxes. Your president’s got to pay for those bombs somehow. What, you think he’s going to use his own money? Now pay up and leave, and don’t let the door hit your derriere on the way out.”

The English notoriously have a love/hate relationship with the French, as demonstrated in this tongue-in-cheek satirical music video below.

Me? I love the French.

C’est la vie!!!!!

The Gospel According To BART

For those not familiar with BART, it is the train system that links San Francisco to Oakland and to other more forgettable places in the Bay Area. This is what it’s like:

Whatever you do with your graffiti, don’t smoke, drink, or eat it while on BART

Also known as Commandment #6 as told in “The Gospel According To BART.”

However, federal law does NOT require that the seats actually be clean enough to sit on.

“Hey, hippy, why does no one want to sit anywhere near you? Are you the reason that the seats on BART are dirty?”

Sometimes while I’m on BART I play, “Hey, Pal, Are You Dead Or Just Sleeping?”

BART isn’t just for homeless people trying to stay out of the rain. Celebrity impersonator sightings are frequent. Depending on which side of the train this John Goodman wannabe sits, there’s a good chance that the train will be leaning to that side.

Clearly this couple thought that they were on The Orient Express. I love this guy’s cane.

This from the BART website: We are asking you to help keep BART safe for everyone by reporting unattended packages or suspicious behavior. What do we mean by suspicious behavior? Here are some examples: 1) Acting nervous, sweating inappropriately. 2) Taking pictures or videotaping in areas of no interest to the general public. 3) Attempting to get into an area that is off limits. 4) Leaving a package, backpack or briefcase and hurrying away from the area………………..The Bay Area Brit: guilty as charged…………Now if you don’t mind, I’m going to eat and drink and maybe smoke some graffiti.