News Flash: San Francisco Menaced By 'Fog'
When I first came to San Francisco after spending many years as editor of the Arizona Republic, the first thing that struck me - literally -- was Frank Vega's 7-iron (he insisted it was a tradition at the paper to hit new hires over the head with a golf club). The second thing was the peculiar moisture in the air here. I had never experienced anything like it in the desert. It felt cool to the skin and slightly arousing. I quickly realized, however, that this pleasant mist was also potentially deadly; my chauffeur could barely see the road while driving me to work.
"What is this stuff?" I asked my driver.
So this unfamiliar menace had a name. Intriguing.
"How long has this been going on?"
"This 'fog' of which you speak. How long has it been around here?"
"As long as anyone can remember."
I couldn't believe what I was hearing. "And you, you ... just put up with it?"
Typical San Francisco. So tolerant. I knew right then that my first endeavor as editor of the Chronicle would be a crusade against this "fog." In the paper's 144 years, it had run multi-part exposes on serious issues like wine-making, bad coffee, and nude animals, but it had never confronted the fog.
Locals like my chauffeur (who moonlights as my metro editor ... until next Friday. Ssssh!) had grown so used to the fog, they'd come to view it as natural. It took an outsider -- like me -- to point out that rich people -- like me -- deserve an unobstructed view of the Bay from our Pacific Heights mansions.
Today, in part three of out 39-part series, we illustrate how the fog limits the color palette of home designers to white, off-white, eggshell white, hella white, Conan O'Brien white, and Double Stuff Oreo.
We know we'll alienate the enabled keepers of the status-quo who've been able to do as they please under cover of fog in this imperfect city of ours. So be it. As the editor of San Francisco's paper of record, we've got to call it like we see it. That is, if we could see it.
Photo | Jitze