Hanging Out In Palo Alto

Musings on the economics of apartment complexes.

This is almost the last bit of news on my mom’s visit: she’s leaving Tuesday morning…

Today we went to church at Peninsula Christian Center, the church Paula and I have been attending since moving here.

Afterwards, we came home, had some PBJ sandwiches, and passed the afternoon listening to the Peninsula Symphony play a free concert at our apartment complex! Evidently Oak Creek apartments are a big sponsor of the symphony, so once a year they come do a free concert for us. Pretty cool.

That made me start thinking, however. How can an apartment complex afford to sponsor a symphony? The answer: pretty easily. Oak Creek Apartments has 759 units. Renting those at Bay Area prices means they’re taking in around 1.5 million dollars each month. Even if they had 50 employees and paid them $100,000 a year they still would clear around a million each month. Pretty neat business, that.

We wrapped up the day by grilling some steaks. Fun stuff.

Visiting Monterey and Santa Cruz

A brief description of one of the most amazing aquariums in the universe.

Today we took my mother to visit Monterey Bay Aquarium and Santa Cruz Wharf.

As far as I’m concerned, Monterey Bay Aquarium is the best aquarium in the universe. It’s amazing! If you ever get a chance to visit it, you have to go. If they ever put the seven wonders of the world to vote, I’ll serously consider casting my ballot for this attraction. It is simply breathtaking.

After spending four hours in the aquarium, we were quite ready for supper at the Bubba Gump Shrimp Company (yes, like in Forrest Gump). It was pretty neat, and the food was good. We even got our picture taken with a Forrest Gump impersonator!

Finally, we visited the Santa Cruz Wharf at the north end of Monterey Bay. It was pretty neat, although the sea lions weren’t too frisky.

Overall, it was a pleasant day spent roaming Northern California.

More On The Madhouse Called San Francisco

“San Francisco is a mad city, inhabited for the most part by perfectly insane people…” Rudyard Kipling

I found out I’m not alone in my opinions about San Francisco’s sanity. No less an authority than Rudyard Kipling is squarely in my corner: “San Francisco is a mad city, inhabited for the most part by perfectly insane people…”

Kenny Worthley (a friend from Springfield) wrote in with a marvelous observation: San Francisco seems to be confused about pot and pots. I quote:

“My questions is: what if you were on pot, medically necessary of course, and need to use the pot, but were not in a spot with a pot because you were growing pot on a public lot? You would have to put down your pot, run to another pot spot, and privately poop.

So here is the scoop on poop – I think you should be able to claim medicinal pot pooping – so you could publically poop on the spot in a pot lot.”

Well said, Kenny: that would make an excellent letter to the editor!

Acting Like Tourists in San Francisco

Visiting Fisherman’s Wharf and the Exploratorium.

We took my mom to do the tourist thing in SF today: we took the Cal Train from Palo Alto into SF, and then the Muni buses (which take forever) to Fisherman’s Wharf (overrated), the Exploratorium (San Fran’s best-rated museum), and a Blue and Gold Bay Cruise (there were so many people we could barely see anything, and the noise from the engine drowned out the audio presentation for a good portion of the tour). We ate lunch at the Expo Family Restaurant (no website), and at the Rain Forest Cafe (which was quite an adventure: the food was decent, but the atmosphere was excellent)!

We also had a chance to drop by Ghirardelli Square (yes, like the chocolate company). It’s a mall area, but they do prominently feature chocolate! Very tasty.

What Rhymes With Orange?

Hilary Price, nationally syndicated cartoonist, majored in English at Stanford.

I just ran across this fact on The S-Files: the author of the nationally syndicated comic strip Rhymes With Orange is a Stanford alumnus!

That’s right: Hilary Price graduated from Stanford in 1995 with a degree in English. She sold her first cartoon to the San Francisco Chronicle for $35.

What Should Christians Think About Illegal MP3s?

It’s clear that most of today’s students view music as a fundamental right. It should be as free as oxygen: indeed, for most of our lives it has seemed that it is. Anywhere there’s oxygen, there tends to be music!

As such, when the MP3 file format, file-sharing technologies, and the CD-Burner all converged to create massive repositories of free music (and movies), it was a veritable gold mine for college students.

Should Christians participate? For a provocative answer, check out the Robin Hood complex.