It wouldn't be a pretty Thursday afternoon in San Francisco if someone weren't bemoaning the behavior of gaggles of out-of-town tourists.
The latest iteration: Alamo Square-area denizens' concerns about large tour buses befouling the area. Your humble narrator is an Alamo Square-area denizen himself. Yet, to an extent, setting up shop in the neighborhood and berating the camera-toting hordes and their troop transports is akin to moving in above Nathan's Famous at Coney Island and complaining about the odor of frankfurters.
In short, this place is lousy with tourists. It's a rare day I don't
hear arguments in three different European or Asian languages outside my
window. Yet there's a
problem with demanding tour buses park in designated spots -- there's no
parking here. I've taken Muni home from parking spots I was thrilled
to discover after an hour of searching.
Rather than ask the city to do away with parking spots to accommodate buses -- thus incensing locals even more -- why not go the route of airports nationwide? Why not mandate buses disgorge their gawping riders, head off to a parking lot somewhere else, and then return at an agreed-upon time or when summoned via cell phone?
The other "solution" is to undertake the opposite of a beautification campaign -- uglifcation? -- thus ensuring tour buses depart Alamo Square for more verdant locales.
Or we could do both.
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