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07/26/2011

San Francisco: How not to starve in Fisherman’s Wharf!  »

I recently spent a weekend staying at Fisherman’s Wharf with some out-of-state relatives who wanted nothing from this city of ours but to stroll the tourist-packed length of Pier 39, to watch dolphins frolicking in the waters of the bay just off Alcatraz, and to eat repeatedly at the Best Western Tuscan Inn’s Café Pescatore. They apparently do some kind of bitching Italian that my parents couldn’t get enough of, and after a few meals of rather sub-par minestrone, the server and chef took pity on the two vegans and served us up a lovely saute of summer vegetables topped with a fried polenta cake. It was freaking gooooooood.

If you find yourself starving to death on Fisherman’s Wharf, and you can’t figure out how to take the F-Line to the Ferry Building, or the Ferry Building is closed because it’s the apocalypse, or your relatives are just super-focused on getting themselves some chicken parmesan, you could do way worse than landing here. At the Café, tell them you heard through the grapevine (aka, the special vegan mafioso rumor mill) about a special meal they can make for especially pretty vegans. Then smile really nicely and say please and thank you. Then maybe, just maybe, you’ll get to eat this.

Marla Wick lives in a small town in Sonoma County with one lucky fella and two cats. When she’s not reading speculative fiction or applying for jobs, she blogs about veganism, popular culture, and politics at Vegan-Squared and Bully Pulp.

01/04/2010

Sea lions to SF: peace out  »

OK seriously you guys, What. The. Hell. The Pier 39 sea lions, after living on the docks for 20 years, just got up and left. As in, gone, moved out, didn’t even ask for the security deposit back.

The sea lions had been a fixture of Pier 39 since moving in after the Loma Prieta earthquake in 1989. Tourists loved them. Hell, I loved them. There was always something really satisfying about seeing animals take possession of human habitat for a change. But now? Gone.

No one knows why either, though there are theories, ranging from superstitious (“oh noezles another big earthquake!”) to science: thousands of new California sea lions were spotted recently off the coast of Oregon, and it’s believed that they’re chasing after cold water fish that would have migrated north. So yeah, we can probably blame that bitch climate change.

My own pet theory? Great white sharks. If more sharks are swimming into the Bay, and less food is hanging around, the sea lions may have decided enough was enough.

Left photo: Wallyg on Flickr. Right photo: @GarySoup. Composite via Wired.

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