Tenderloin Studio

For Rent: Newly painted studio with Murphy Bed, near neighborhood cafe. Lots of air, lots of natural light, and presumably quite affordable. Contact photographer and Tender friend Brandon Doran for more details. First, last, security, and pet deposit required.

How can we crap when the beds are burning?

Sure, a mattress was set on fire on Hyde between O’Farrell and Ellis. Like, whatever. That shit’s just pulled off the police blotter.

The real fun comes in the fact that according to witnesses, the mattress had been initially propped up by some homeless dude who wanted privacy while slamming a #2 down between two cars. Because you know, we have a massive shit problem in SF so that makes total sense. Naturally, once done, he left the mattress standing which then invited some asswad to light it on fire, heavily damaging the SUV it was leaning against.

Oh yeah, it always melted one of the new SF Park meters which was hurriedly picked up immediately after the fire as apparently any breach in their tight smart meter network could endanger us all!

But gosh, it’d be great if an amazing, anonymous tender fan had video of this thing burning. In case you were wondering, our readers are the best:

If you happen to have any other videos, feel free to send them for inclusion in our Vimeo account.

And… if you happen to have been born after 1990 [sigh] and/or aren’t a fan of Australia bands, the title is a reference to Midnight Oil.

Because vacuums get cold too

The Palace of Fine Junk was obviously fearing that all these wild swings in temperature that we’ve been having lately would make their vacuum cleaner come down with something other than, “the funk”. We applaud their efforts in maintaining a healthy senior vacuum fleet for the neighborhood.

A photographer’s apartment on Jones

Thanks to our Tender Flickr pool, we came across this cool Tenderloin apartment interior. When we contacted photographer Ben Soto (whose photography we’ve featured here a few times), we found out the picture is of his apartment on Jones between Ellis and O’Farrell. It seems that he just moved there recently. “I must say that it is nice to have your place come together exactly the way you always imagined it would”, reads the caption.

Ben is an artist, so obviously his apartment has a messy studio area which you can see pictured below. Lately, though, he’s been focusing on his photography (don’t forget to check out his Flickrstream). We’re of course fans of his Tenderloin photos, but he has gorgeous pictures from all over San Francisco.

Apparently, the city in general, and the Tenderloin in particular, have been quite an inspiration for him and we’re truly happy for that:

Before now I’d hit a rut in my photography, not finding much motivation to go out and make new photos and couldn’t seem to find a way to get out of it. When I came up to San Francisco in August on vacation with my girlfriend I’d instantly fell in love with the city. I’d come to the city by the bay before, but always with family and never really saw the city. I saw the things that everyone knows of the city. An island prison, cable cars from times passed, and the gateway to a better life, but I never really saw the real city.

I went home talking of moving out and going at this photography thing full force, and to live somewhere as a transgendered person, I’d feel more comfortable as I grew into the man I’ll become. So I packed my bags, boxed up my cameras, said good bye to my family and friends, grabbed my girl and hit the road.

We got a rockin little studio apartment in the colorful Tenderloin. It was certainly a culture shock moving here, cause where I lived before was Orange County… yep Orange County California. So you can imagine that seeing people smokin crack out front my apartment, yelling at 2am, and some of the scariest dreads you could ever imagine. My mind raced at the photographic possibilities that lay before me. I took more photographs consecutively that I had ever done back home.

Oh, it turns out the polka dot shower curtains in Ben’s apartments are the exact same ones we have here at The Tender HQ. Go Ikea.

Tenderbits: “Don’t leave it on the sidewalk”, pedestrian safety, historic maps & more

  • Apparently, old furniture doesn’t collect itself or pay for its own removal but it costs the city a lot of money. [The Snitch]
  • A computer sale ends in robbery at Turk & Leavenworth: A 20-year-old woman hoping to sell her computer on Craigslist agreed to meet a potential buyer in the Tenderloin district at 1:20AM Thursday and was robbed at gunpoint, police said. [SF Examiner]
  • Despite a mandate to improve pedestrian safety, SF doesn’t act. [SF Streetsblog]
  • Double rainbow spotted by City Hall [Bluoz]
  • According to a San Franciscan now living in Paris, the Tenderloin’s equivalent in the French capital is La Goutte d’Or in the 18th arrondissement. Considering that it’s also known as Little Africa and that the Tenderloin is sorely lacking in African offerings, we have beg to disagree. [Duckie in Paris]
  • The Kum Bak Klub, a magnificently divey bar at 486 Ellis that closed earlier this year, will reopen at 335 Jones, next to Ha Nam Ninh pending a new liquor license. Yay! [Grubstreet San Francisco]
  • Early Sunday morning on Hyde at Eddy [Caliber]
  • Brother Kelly Cullen, a Franciscan monk who turned the Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation (TNDC) into one of the city’s largest developers of low-cost housing during the years he directed it, got addicted to drugs and died mysteriously in Italy. [SF Chronicle]
  • It seems the Asian Art Museum is not getting a bailout from local billionaire and Asian art nut Larry Ellison anytime soon, but, no matter, it will carry on despite recent financial issues. [San Francisco Citizen]
  • New parklet at Hyde and Ellis [Sex Pigeon]
  • After adding the word Uptown to Tenderloin and getting it the designation of national historic district, now the Tenderloin Housing Clinic puts the “historic” tag on the Geary-O’Farrell Corridor and prints a walking map of it. [Tenderloin Housing Clinic/Uptown Tenderloin Historic District]

Photo of abandoned chair by Generik11 (who has a whole series of abandoned furniture in the streets), from the Tenderblog Flickr pool.

Bedbugs prevent couch adoption

I’ve seen plenty of abandoned couches on the sidewalks of San Francisco, in all shapes, forms and colors. But I hadn’t seen an abandoned futon, probably because they’re from hell (try sleeping in one for more than a weekend) and people keep them until they disintegrate in to futonic dust. Then yesterday, on Leavenworth, one appeared and it was in quite a good condition, I might add.

On my way back home a couple of hours later, I saw that somebody had probably adopted the futon frame but had left the mattress behind.

Admittedly the difference between sleeping on a futon frame with or without the mattress is negligible, especially when in a used state, but then I saw this on Post street: two mattresses thoroughly wrapped up in plastic, sealed with tape and with signs that read ‘Bedbug infested’. That explained it all in that now there is a chance you can get blood-sucking insects from a used mattress (as opposed to just sleeping on another person’s former fluids) people aren’t taking any chances.

Poor couches and beds, who’s going to want them now after this recent epidemic?

One seat to rule them all

There are times when the human drive to sit… and talk on a cellphone amaze me. I saw this girl in front of Les Nuits de Paris. She had come up with the brilliant system of taking a large vitamin water bottle and sticking a book on top for a seat. The only question I have left is if she thought of this in the spur of the moment or walks around with this setup always at the ready. Ah, the unanswered questions in life.

SFPD trash on patrol again and the garbage revenge

Now, this is just getting weird. This morning at Eddy & Leavenworth, I saw the SFPD trash truck making its rounds. Of course, I’ve seen this before and it’s weird. It must fall under some homeless cleanup thing that for some reason SFPD has to deal with instead of the Recology garbage trucks. Naturally, this shot got me yelled at by some dude living up the corner life who didn’t approve of taking photos with a phone, but c’est la vie.

It appears that in some subtle way, Recology isn’t happy about SFPD encroaching on their turf. Just a couple days ago, at Hyde & Turk, evarels saw a garbage truck smash in to a parked police cruiser. Obviously, the cops were not the least bit happy about their new, massive dent, but I think that the message was sent loud and clear.

Trash, or Statement on Modern Feminism?

I came across this installation at the corner of Sutter and Taylor. You can’t quite see it in the picture, but the chair is actually a rocking chair, the kind you’d put in a nursery. Hmm, rocking chair and ironing board, kicked to the curb. Did a woman get all Feminine Mystique and say, “Eff this shit, I’m getting a divorce and becoming a sea captain”? Or was this just a case of not being able to find a big enough trash can? I’d like to think the former. Interestingly, both the chair and ironing board are all white, just like a former ad hoc installation seen a block away a few months ago. I’m going to choose to take this as art. One woman’s junk is another’s arty statement on feminism.

Cart fought the law and the law won

I saw this when walking down Ellis this morning. At first I thought, “Shit, SFPD moves people for free now? That’s going to be some tough competition for Delancey Street.” Then I realized that it was some dude’s shopping cart (and probably his mattress) in the back. So then I thought, “Really? SFPD has a shopping cart/mattress impound yard?”

The confusion behind my multi-pronged quandry is based on the fact that SFPD really stands for Super Focused on Pension Disbursements and there was no way that they were just picking up garbage. The whole scene was just bizarre and I was high on a full night of sleep which didn’t help matters at all.