Monday, February 20, 2012

Random correlations from a weekend in San Francisco

-Since it has been established by rigorous analysis that McDonalds restaurants tend to be the most profitable places at airports, it seems vanishingly unlikely that their absence in any first world airport is due to lack of demand. Hence a leading indicator of maddening nanny-state-ism gone mad is when airport terminals lack any fast food. This is becuase some pinhead bureacrat or politician deciding that it would be too low brow, or too unhealthy, or too commercial, or [insert modish condescending reason here]. True to form, the worst examples of this are the American Airlines terminal in SFO, and the international terminal in Heathrow. I leave the reader to their own conclusions.

-A bizarrely strong indicator that you're in a tourist trap area is the presence of a Bubba Gump Shrimp store. They always manage to find the area in any city where the worst rubberneck tourists congregate, and plonk their store down there. Pier 39 at Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco, Navy Pier in Chicago, Times Square in New York, Cancun in Mexico, Mall of America in Minnesota, Santa Monica Pier in LA... I challenge you to look at their location map and find me an exception to this rule. Shylock's tip - if you see a Bubba Gump store, leave the area you're in straight away.

-Notwithstanding this grousing, San Francisco is a very fun city. Great Chinese food, very walkable, pretty architecture, and even the hordes of weirdo hippies lend a colourful charm when one is only there for the weekend.

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