Going Illegit: How to Be an Outlaw Food Cart

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Tamara Palmer
​On Thursday, SFoodie's Jonathan Kauffman will finish "Going Legit," an excellent six-part series providing valuable tips on how to navigate the tricky world of legal street food businesses. The articles should save prospective vendors lots of bureaucratic nightmares, and probably a decent chunk of change as well. But we also understand that the system is still so daunting and tricky that many people will continue to consider operating outside of it.

Well, if you're gonna do that, do it with some style and panache -- be an outlaw! Simply follow our top tips on going illegitimate:

• Don't feed them before midnight: Health inspectors like to sleep, so make sure you're out on the streets selling after they're all unconscious. Keep a small cache of Rohypnol (aka roofies) in case one happens to turn up at an odd hour; you can grind one up and slip it in his taco.

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Tamara Palmer
Open flames = good.

• Employ open flames: Nothing will attract more potential customers than a good KISS-style pyrotechnics show from your cart. Load up a big pot of oil and set that puppy on sputter.

• Change your mode of delivery as often as possible: Keep the authorities on their toes by never sticking with the same vehicle of delivery for long. Perhaps start out with your edibles in a rolling laundry basket and progress to a shopping cart, folding table, or Segway.

• Similarly, change names frequently
: Think of a catchy name, then switch that up as well; every two hours or so should suffice. Don't forget to create a new Twitter account for each.

• Court the local blogosphere:
Kiss up to all the Bay Area food bloggers -- there are approximately eleventy billion of us, as reported at the last Census -- and book as many features as you can wherein you will espouse your trailblazing disregard for authority. We'll be happy to retweet.

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