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Outside Lands Podcast Episode 499: Kevin Brady

Did you know there was a cartoonist collective in the Sunset? Nicole talks with Kevin Brady about growing up in San Francisco and how he got started in art.
by Nicole Meldahl - Apr 8, 2023

Outside Lands Podcast Episode 499: Kevin Brady Outside Lands Podcast Episode 499: Kevin Brady

(above) Star of the Sea Church, circa 1936

Northeast corner of 8th Avenue and Geary Blvd. Building on left is parish offices and priests' residences. [45 - Star of the Sea Mission (Geary Street) Ray Oil Burner File - 15741-3 - Morton]
Morton-Waters Co.

Podcast Transcription

WNP499 – Kevin Brady

Nicole: [00:00:00] It's Outside Lands San Francisco, podcast of Western Neighborhoods Project. Your weekly dose of friendly neighborhood history.

And hello Outside Landers. I'm Nicole Meldahl, and it's great to be with you again this week for a podcast that is not actually about Blackthorn Tavern, as we advertised last week. We're terrible at this, but I've got a lot more research to do and I wanna do that research right. So, instead, we have something better for you. One of the best things about running a neighborhood history nonprofit is not the salary. It's meeting awesome people. And, in fact, that might be the best part of my job. Now, some of you already know I live in the Sunset and I gratefully somehow make a living researching West side history. So, I do have a lot in common with our members, who often [00:01:00] become our friends. And I look forward to seeing them at events. I look forward to seeing their electronic letters in my inbox as well. Which is a long way of saying I'm very excited to welcome to the podcast one of our dearest and longest members, Kevin Brady.

Kevin: Hi from Calaveras County.

Nicole: Thanks so much for being here with us, Kevin, to talk about Kevin Brady.

Kevin: Oh boy.

Nicole: Don't worry. It's gonna be easy. It's gonna be easy. It's gonna be easy.

Kevin: It'll come to me, right?

Nicole: Yes, it will. I love that you sent me an email asking what you should research.

Kevin: Well, you know, they're not all in there all at once. You know, sometimes you gotta restore the memories.

Nicole: That's true. And hopefully they'll come to you naturally.

Kevin: Oh yeah.

Nicole: Along the way here. And, you know, we, like I say, I like to start from the beginning. So, like, let's put on our time travel hats. You and I, you're [00:02:00] already wearing your hat, but metaphorically I'll put one on.

Kevin: Okay.

Nicole: And we can zoom all the way back to your origin. So, I wanna know, like how come you ended up in San Francisco, what was going on with your parents, your grandparents, your great-great grandparents to bring you here?

Kevin: Well, my mom was actually born here. She grew up at 34th and, on 34th just down from Judah. If you go down that street now, there's a house on the right. It's one of, the third residence that isn't a, an apartment house. There's two great big yew trees in front of it. It’s still there. The trees have been there since I was a little kid, which is some time now. But so, she grew up right there and went to St. Anne's School because Holy Name didn't have a school yet.

Nicole: Aah.

Kevin: And they always had trouble with sand dunes blocking, there were times they couldn't get to school [00:03:00] and cause they lived, what's that, about 20 blocks away.

Nicole: And what time period is this, Kevin?

Kevin: This mom was born in ‘22. So, and I think they moved there in ‘24. So, that, that was the early to mid-‘20s. And then, so they were all, she and her two brothers went to Saint Anne's and both brothers went to St. Ignatius and USF.

Nicole: Does that mean you're Catholic?

Kevin: You pretty much got that right. Yeah.

Nicole: I heard…

Kevin: I went to, cause I went to Holy Name.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: That's what they call Irish Catholic, which isn't quite as rabid as Boston Catholic, or Chicago Catholic, or New York Catholic. Irish Catholic, I should say. But it's, you know, it's in there.

Nicole: It seems like at one point you, it was mandatory for you to be Irish Catholic to live in this part of the Sunset District.

Kevin: You, yeah well, when you look at the names, you would think that. Yeah. There was certainly a majority, but, or maybe not even a [00:04:00] majority, but a whole lot of people. And the pastors of the parishes were all Irish. Actually, they were from the Mission, which we call the old country. But Father Ryan was from County Cork and he knew my grandmother's family. Father Ryan, who started Holy Name. And then so, my, then my dad got here, his family came down from Seattle in ‘27, and they moved onto, into Jordan Avenue.

Nicole: Oh.

Kevin: And stayed there for the rest of the time that, that anybody was around till my grandparents passed away.

Nicole: How posh. That's a very nice part of the City.

Kevin: That neighborhood hasn't changed much.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: It's still a nice place. I've knew a few people who live in the area growing up and it's always been, it never really changed much. It's a nice place.

Nicole: Yeah, we have photographs of the neighborhood and it, the homes really have retained their integrity for sure.

Kevin: Oh yeah.

Nicole: You can pick out the corner right away. So how did your parents meet?

Kevin: It was at a dance down at St. Boniface. It's [00:05:00] a church function, right. Father Bock, who's was a legend in, down on the Tenderloin, held these dances for the youths and they met in ‘46. My dad by then was out of the Jesuit Seminary, where he'd gone in in 1931. And he got within six months of being ordained. So, he was out in ‘43. And then mom had been working through the war after high school. She went to a secretarial school of some sort. I forget what. But she, she was working for the Naval Chaplain again, the church for the naval chaplain during the war. And then they met and they got married in ‘46. And the first place they lived was on Ashbury, half a block down from Haight.

Nicole: How long did they stay there?

Kevin: Not long. There was a, apparently that was a miserable place to be. [00:06:00] But housing was really short in those days, cause everybody was coming back and wanted after having seen San Francisco on their way out.

Nicole: Right.

Kevin: If they made it back, A lot of people pledged that if they ever got out of this, they were coming back to San Francisco to stay. So they, and they did. So, then the folks moved over to Seventh right off of Geary, right behind the police station.

Nicole: Oh yeah.

Kevin: And I was baptized at Star of the Sea Church where my cousins had gone to school. Well, most of my cousins in one family went to school there. They were closer to my age.

Nicole: And when did little Kevin Brady come into the picture?

Kevin: Oh, and then Kevin came along 1950, the Thanksgiving baby. The Turkey. And then, let's see, we lived there at, on Seventh. And then, the first place and the last place we moved was right down the street from you on 2626 Kirkham in ‘52.

Nicole: Yeah. In [00:07:00] fact, Kevin is the one who told me all about my house before I even knew all about my house, which is incredible.

Kevin: That's a unique house for the neighborhood too. Even, even on its own. This corner houses are always interesting.

Nicole: Yeah, a friend of mine came, admittedly we had a few drinks, but she came by my house and she was like, wait, it's that house. You look like you live in a hotel. Is that a hotel? You living in a hotel?

Kevin: Yeah. It's got those cool, those arc, what do you call 'em, those round windows? The arced windows. Arched. Arced.

Nicole: Yeah. It has a very, it has a very regal Spanish vibe for sure.

Kevin: Yep.

Nicole: And I was like, no, it's deceptive. It's just the whole of my house. It doesn't go back any farther.

Kevin: Yeah, this is it right here. The lots are all the same no matter what it is.

Nicole: And I've named her Casa de Lladro because of all of the porcelain knickknacks that I've inherited from my mother and my grandfather.

Kevin: Oh really? Good.

Nicole: This isn't about me. This is about you. So, you're in the [00:08:00] neighborhood and what, what was it like growing up in this neighborhood in the ‘50s and the ‘60s?

Kevin: Oh, it's, it was amazing. It was interesting. Because I always joke with the people from St. Anne's, see the border from St. Anne's and Holy Name is right at 30th.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: So, I always joke about, I could just, I lived out on the frontier and I could just see the, I could just see St. Anne's from where I live. But it was, we were kind of remote as opposed to all the kids I knew. Most of my friends lived closer to school. So, there were blocks down around Holy Name that had, like in a three-block area, there were 65 kids, all of an age to be at school. Mostly. Holy Name, but not all. There were also, there were public school kids in there too. And, but they were all, that many kids would just spill out onto the street. Up where I was, we had one family living next door to us. Three girls. And then there were some kids around the [00:09:00] corner, public school kids, and I got to be friendly with all them. And then, there was two or three around the corner on the other side, but small, small groups compared to down there. So, and I had to, the one of those stories how far I had to walk to school, I had to walk 10 blocks to school, through the rain sometimes and the fog. But, you know, there was, in those days, there were no stop signs on Sunset Boulevard.

Nicole: Terrifying.

Kevin: And so, at least on the, on Sunset, there, there were stop signs on the cross, but we would stop and say hi to the horse that the policeman, there was a policeman there morning and afternoon to, on Lawton to protect the kids and to control traffic. You know, you just don't see that, you know, anymore. Of course, now we have stop signs, stop lights.

Nicole: Yeah. But it's not as charming as having a mounted police officer.

Kevin: Oh, I know. And he knew us all. You know, it's like, “Hey, how you doing?” And they know the beauty, and [00:10:00] everybody would go up and pet the horse and some people would bring apples and stuff. So, you know, it was really, in a way, very small town despite the size of it. But from my house, just down from you, my back window, I could see the top of the Park. I could see over to like George Washington High School.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: And on over to Marin. I could see, way over on the right, I could see Golden Gate Bridge.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: You might be able, I don't know. Can you see that?

Nicole: I did, if I lean to the far right of my kitchen window, I can just make it out between the house across the street and their trees in their backyard, which I didn't know, until Jan McIntosh joined us on a podcast and spent some time with me afterwards, kind of. I moved my computer through, through the house and she was like, oh, let me tell you about this. Let me tell you about this. And well, you know, you have a view of the Golden Gate Bridge. And I was like, what?

Kevin: Yeah, it's there. For a long time there was a tree in the way and that went down. So now actually, from that back window, you can see it again. [00:11:00] But it was an amazing place to be from. And just to jump forward a little, when they were doing free concerts in the park, you know, of course the Grateful Dead is the one everybody mentions, but there are a lot of other bands.

Nicole: Right.

Kevin: But I could hear them getting started because there's a line of, basically a line of sight down to Speedway Meadows.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: Which is now something else. Hel, Hellman.

Nicole: Hellman Hollow.

Kevin: Yeah. And, but I, with that, I was the closest one, cause everybody else lived down by, closer to school or closer to the beach.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: And I could make a few phone calls, let 'em know what was going on and we would all head out to the concert and hang out with the hippies.

Nicole: That's funny because I like to joke that the only thing my house is centrally located to is Outside Lands Music Festival every year.

Kevin: Oh yeah.

Nicole: And like we all, everybody, cause I, before this, I lived on 34th and Judah for like 10 years and was right on the N-Judah line too. So, everybody would crash at my place. Or like the after party in my youth, when I [00:12:00] didn't wanna immediately fall asleep after the festival. We'd all hang out and like play music and.

Kevin: Yeah.

Nicole: Taunt the people waiting for Muni to go home. So, just many years apart, we had the same experience.

Kevin: Yeah. Yeah. 34th is a good street, cause it used to be, you know, that walkway into the Park, that used to be arched with pine trees. Somebody took the trouble, there was about 50, well maybe 30 feet of pine trees on both sides, that had actually been formed. So, there was this arc that was maybe 10 feet high in the center and it came down on both sides of that walkway.

Nicole: Oh my gosh.

Kevin: And I never got a story about who did that or why, but it was, must have been some gardener there who just probably lived in the area and thought he'd make it look cool. And it was amazing. It's gone now, of course, but…

Nicole: Yeah. And probably best, cause it, they probably would've blown down in, in the latest [00:13:00] storms and injured somebody.

Kevin: Boy. I could, yeah, I could, well, there were some big storms in ‘89. No, wait a minute. No. In the early ‘90s.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: And the storms, apparently the directional went opposite to everything that had been pushing since all those trees were installed. So, all these trees came down cause the wind was blowing the opposite direction.

Nicole: Right.

Kevin: So, I was, I was going through there with my wife and I'm going, oh my God. She's going, what? And I said, there's trees gone. And she goes, what do you mean there's a trees gone, we're in a forest. I said no, that is gone. And the one next to it too. You know, and because I know or used to know the whole silhouette and the outline of the trees.

Nicole: Right.

Kevin: And she couldn't believe. And I said, no, look, the look down here. Cause then the, you know, they hadn't removed it. It was just on the ground.

Nicole: Yeah. Well they, those trees get to be like your neighbors, right? You walk by 'em every day and you're like, Hey, how's it going?

Kevin: It was all the time that I spent there too. I, you know, me and my dog, we knew that place.

Nicole: Yeah. So we, okay, [00:14:00] we've gotten, we were already in the ‘90s, which is too fast. We skipped over a lot of stuff here, Kevin.

Kevin: Right.

Nicole: Okay, so you're growing.

Kevin: But then I went to Holy Name.

Nicole: Right. And like, what did you and the neighborhood kids do, you know, like there, you know, what was there to do out in the Sunset besides going to the Park when you weren't at school?

Kevin: Well, it was a, yeah, like I said, a lot of time at the Park. We'd go to the beach.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: And fog didn't bother us, cause we lived in fog. It wasn't like, ooh, it's too, it's too cold and wet out. We won't go to the beach today. No, we'd go anyway. We'd go when it was nice. We'd go when it was foggy. But also, there's all those playgrounds. There's Sunset Playground, West Sunset, spend a lot of time playing baseball, basketball down there. And, of course, I didn't get into it, but the, there was the skating rink down there. Was it 48th? And again, just to jump ahead a little bit, we, there were the what do they call it? The race car tracks, those little…

Nicole: Oh, the slot car.

Kevin: Slot car. Slot car tracks. Yeah. It just, there just never seemed to be a dearth of things to do. And, of course, we had each [00:15:00] other's houses and everybody spent a lot of time out and about playing. In those days you could play ball on the street. There were, the cars weren't, the streets weren't packed with cars.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: And there, there wasn't constant traffic.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: So, and, you know, you could pick your streets too. Our streets in the Sunset were wider than my cousin's streets over in the Richmond.

Nicole: Right.

Kevin: And so, you could put together a pretty good football game.

Nicole: You know, I will say I have no, Western Neighborhoods Project has no official opinion on street closures in San Francisco. But, when I first bought the house on Kirkham, the Kirkham was a slow street that had been shut down during the pandemic.

Kevin: Right.

Nicole: I would see dads out there like tossing the football or baseball around with their kids, and like, it was so cute and charming. It really did feel like we took a giant step back in time and it was more of a community space. That slow street is gone now and it's just people driving. But, but it gave it that neighborhood feel that I've heard [00:16:00] so much about from people like you.

Kevin: Yeah well, for instance, jumping back to Holy Name, what they used to, there wasn't room for all the kids. There was basically 900 kids in that school.

Nicole: Wow.

Kevin: You know, you figure nine grades, well, including kindergarten, of course, they weren't playing with us, so let's say eight grades of a hundred in each class divided by 50. And one nun managing 50 kids in the classroom. I don't know how they did it. Well, they had these little clickers. But anyway, they blocked off the street on 40th from the, basically from the perimeter of the school down to Lawton and then Lawton up to 39th, or from between 30th and 40th, 39th and 40th.

Nicole: Nice.

Kevin: And the kids especially, well, that was even before the construction began on the new church. “New church,” I'm air quotes over here. The new church opened in ‘64 just in time for us to [00:17:00] graduate. But that, of course, that construction cut our yard more than in half, so that really forced the kids out into the street.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: Which was all, you know, prearranged, but that's how many kids are running around. The only bigger school around was St. Gabriel's, the next school south of us. And there were three classes, or, yeah, three classes of 50 in each grade.

Nicole: Wow.

Kevin: So, they had 150 kids in each year. Insane.

Nicole: Yeah. There's just not that level of kids here in San Francisco anymore.

Kevin: No.

Nicole: And the, recently there's been a very creepy ice cream truck that just plays that haunting music.

Kevin: Oh.

Nicole: Circles around very slow. And I have to wonder what he thinks his demographic is here.

Kevin: Yeah. You don't have kids trailing down the street, like in the movies. Yeah. They just don't do that.

Nicole: No.

Kevin: And who's gonna, like you say, it's a little creepy.

Nicole: Yeah. I mean, that music, I think they really need to rethink the music that they [00:18:00] play, because it has a bad connotation now.

Kevin: Yes. I've seen, we've all seen too many horror movies that started with it.

Nicole: It's true. Not a way to be woken up from a nap, let me tell you from personal experience. Okay, so you graduated in 1964. Where did you go from there?

Kevin: Well, let's see. Well, at first between that and, well, let's see, no, wait a minute. Yeah. Well then, I went to SI.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: After that. And which was in the old school, which was Stanyan and Turk. So that meant a bigger commute.

Nicole: Right.

Kevin: But good old Muni, you know, and it's a great socializing thing. We got very friendly with the girls from Pres. Presentation.

Nicole: Ooh.

Kevin: Presentation High at 25th and Balboa. And I realized later it was my friends, because we had friends in the [00:19:00] class behind us. Girls that is. And so, we started hanging out. So, we started getting there earlier and earlier, hanging out to the last minute, catch the Balboa and get up to school in time. And, but it was me and Jim and Kevin and a few other guys, who actually became the core of this big social set that was very informal. But people have come to me later and said, boy, if it wasn't for you, I wouldn't even, you know, I wouldn't have met all these people you know. I was like, you know, we were just there. That's all.

Nicole: And you've kept in touch with all these people, right?

Kevin: Oh yeah. We had, just last night, we had a, a Zoom meeting with some of my classmates from 1964.

Nicole: So cool. I’m, I'm so envious of how close knit all of the high school kids from the neighborhoods have remained up here. It wasn't like that for us in L.A., even though I went to a small Catholic school. We all just kind of scattered.

Kevin: Oh yeah. [00:20:00]

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: I've had people ask me about that and I don't really know what, how that works. Whether it's San Francisco or, I thought it was maybe being, you know, from a Catholic school and that kind of a tight-knit thing and a lot of us moved on. Like out of five guys talking, six guys last night, four of 'em, we were all in the same class at SI too. So, but I don't, yeah, I don't know. I've never been able to quite understand where that unity is. And it could be just our group. We just all got along. I don't know.

Nicole: No, I've interviewed a lot of people who also kept in really close touch. So, maybe it's something about the West side that had just such a tight-knit community out here. Or maybe I was just a weird loner and everyone else still hangs out from my high school and I have no idea.

Kevin: No, you got nothing on me with being weird loner. But somehow, we all lined up together.

Nicole: I mean, we partied [00:21:00] together at the Gala Kevin. So, you know, I know you do emerge times sometimes. Sometimes.

Kevin: Oh yeah. I come out, yeah, well I'm older now.

Nicole: And so, you're hanging out with the girls at Pres and enjoying SI. What, what was it like being in high school in the ‘60s? I mean, that’s, you know…

Kevin: Well, it was interesting, because it was that transition time. Now we really didn't know it, at least not in perspective, but the guys who were there, seniors, let's say, when I started there, it seemed to me their whole mentality was beyond just that four years ahead. Because you gotta remember when I started ‘60, in ’64, the, let's say the hippie thing or the Haight-Ashbury movement. I don't know what to call it.

Nicole: Counter culture.

Kevin: During those years and pretty. Started and ended within those four years that we were in high school. So it, we actually saw this, and one of my samples is [00:22:00] SI had a dress code. And, at that time, everybody was doing peg pants when we went in, which, so everybody's wearing really tight pants. And having them tailored as close as they could around the ankle. And by the, and so, we had a minimum measurement for cuffs. And by the time I got out, they had a maximum measurement, because everybody was trying to wear bell bottoms. And that's just, you know, like in a, like three-year time.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: The Jesuits would, kept their finger on the pulse of things.

Nicole: I gotta say, they sure did. We had, our skirts, couldn't be shorter than our fingertips when our arms were down by our sides.

Kevin: Oh.

Nicole: I frequently was in violation of that rule. I got in trouble a lot for having my skirts too short.

Kevin: Well, the one I liked was the girls who they would just roll 'em up. I'm sure you did.

Nicole: Yep. Oh yeah.

Kevin: So, they have this big wad of fabric around their waist.

Nicole: Yep. We sure did. We sure did. You know, the more things change, the [00:23:00] more, yeah, the kids don't change.

Kevin: Oh yeah. Cause they're back to, they're back to skinny pants now and everything else. So…

Nicole: I can't handle, kids today are wearing stuff that I wore when I was in middle school and I'm really struggling, cause that's, this is the first precipice of aging for me. Right?

Kevin: Oh yeah.

Nicole: I'm gonna be 39.

Kevin: Welcome aboard.

Nicole: Yeah. I'm really having, I'm really experiencing time in a new way now.

Kevin: Yeah, we were just talking about that yesterday. When the doctors get younger than you. Of course, this has been some time now and the cops that pull you over are younger than you. You know, all these people that used to be authority figures and people you looked up to, who were senior, more senior than you were, suddenly and gradually, less senior. Considerably.

Nicole: The worst. The worst is how young new professional baseball players look. Like, I really can't handle how childlike all the rookies are now, but yeah.

Kevin: That's, oh God, yeah. Yeah. That's, we're, but yeah. So, let's see, where was I at? SI. [00:24:00] Yeah. So that was a transition time. Oh, that was huge. And with them trying to basically keep the, the curriculum somewhat current.

Nicole: Great.

Kevin: And also work in classics. Rime of the Ancient Mariner, we had stuff like that. And we had to memorize, a lot of memorization in English.

Nicole: Right.

Kevin: So, the Hound of Hell, I think was one. And yeah, it was, there was all these, they were trying to move, and at the same time, other teachers were teaching that book, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test.

Nicole: Oh, right.

Kevin: Which was brand new then. I mean, that was all about Ken Kesey and his action, which was basically going on when we started high school.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: So, and nobody knew about it until that book came out. And a whole lot of other, of course, we used to see the, that stuff. We'd see the carton buses going by and, you know, the, well that bus in particular, but I think other people imitated that too.

Nicole: Well, it's interesting I got to interview, [00:25:00] for the Summer of Love commemorative, I got to interview a bunch of people who were on campus at USF at around the same time, which is just up the hill, right?

Kevin: Oh yeah.

Nicole: From like the epicenter of the counterculture movement.

Kevin: Luckily.

Nicole: And it, it was really split. Half the people I talked to were all into it, you know, they were making brown rice and they were experimenting with drugs and they were going to all the concerts. And then, the other half weren't participating at all. They like actively avoided Haight-Ashbury. They were in the ROTC and going to ‘Nam or like something like that. And it seems like the Jesuit, like faculty members, and it sounds like this for SI too, were sort of absorbing all of it and filtering some of the, some of the new wave of thoughts of the counterculture. But through, like, a Jesuit social justice lens, which was really interesting. I'm wondering if you experienced that SI,

Kevin: Yeah, that, that's a really, you said that way better than I could have. That social justice thing. And also, [00:26:00] trying to show nothing's really new. I mean,..

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: It comes in a different wrapper and it's new to us, cause we're little. We're young, not little. But the whole thing is, if it's new to you, like what I've noticed is, and even then, was each generation thinks they invented, you know, free love and et cetera, et cetera. And all the clever things that you think you're pulling over on the teachers and stuff. But they've already been there. You know, they were, they've already experienced it and the ones that didn't have been in the teaching game long enough. So, they, you know, every year or every semester, there's a new crop of these guys coming in who think they're smart and think they're really clever. And occasionally they are. But only once in a while, something they haven't seen. But yeah, it was really, it was interesting because people were being turned on to the things that were going on around them without just saying, don't pay attention to that. They weren't canceling [00:27:00] it at all.

Nicole: Right.

Kevin: You know, they weren't saying, you know, drop everything and go do that. Cause that would be kind of an antithesis to the, to the Jesuit education thing.

Nicole: It’s true. What a concept, right? Being open to new thoughts.

Kevin: Yeah.

Nicole: But we won't make this a political podcast. So, so you're at high school, you're experiencing this very, a unique moment in San Francisco and nationwide history. What year do you graduate?

Kevin: ‘68.

Nicole: ‘68. And where'd you go from there? Like where did the world take you, Kevin?

Kevin: Well, the very first summer right out of, which was a good thing to get outta San Francisco in ‘68. It was kind of a war zone that following summer. But I went up to Camp Mather. I got a job at Camp Mather, working at, that's the San Francisco Recreational Camp. You've heard of that?

Nicole: Yeah, I have. It's in Yosemite, right? Or outside Yosemite?

Kevin: Yeah, it's just outside Yosemite. Yeah. And which was a great thing for a 17-year-old kid, you know, cause you're working. We, I was on the outside crew. So, we were the ones that [00:28:00] escorted people to their cabins and, you know, it was just rambling space. That area was where the workers from O’Sahughnessy Dam lived while it was being built.

Nicole: Wow.

Kevin: So, this place has been there for some time and it really, it was just cabins. So, yeah. So, we got to do that. And then, we also were, we handled the garbage. So, we had a very physical job up there for the two and a half months or whatever it was. Then I came down to the City. Oh, that was a good one. I came down to the City to register for City College. And another friend of mine had come down, another guy from SI, who was working up there. And so, we stayed in touch by phone because we knew we had to go back up together. Well, I told my folks I was going with him and he told his folks he was going with me, and we went down to Oak Street and stuck our thumbs up to get back to Yosemite. [00:29:00] How stupid is that, but I'm here to tell the story. So, we survived. Along the way, we each broke out a bottle of, let's see, he brought scotch and I brought whiskey, and we got kind of loaded out there. Cause eventually, you know, this is before 280 and 580 or 205 and 580 and all that. They were just back roads. And all those towns were long distances apart and it was all orchards and everything. So, there wasn't really much once it got dark, there wasn't much chance of us getting a ride where we wanted to go. So, we pulled out our bottles and went to sleep after a little while and then hit the road the next morning. Got picked up by a CHP. Just, he says, well, what are you guys been doing? Well, we're hitchhiking up to Camp Mather. And he says, well, smells like you've been drinking. And my friend had a really good answer. “Oh yes. Well, we had a, our parents let us have a drink before we left.”

Nicole: Oh.

Kevin: We, you know, yesterday hitchhiking, and so, he just drove us out in the middle of nowhere, probably the [00:30:00] county line is my guess, cause it was really nowhere. And, you know, we're all dehydrated and parched and was like, okay guys, you can get out here. Like, you know, we figured out later that was, he wasn't really helping us. But yeah, so anyway, that was summertime. Then I came back, went to City College for a while. And then I went into the Coast Guard, Coast Guard Reserve. Cause my grades weren't gonna hold me.

Nicole: No, not a niche, natural born student.

Kevin: Well, I'm a pretty good student. But in ‘68, ‘69, for me it was a little hard to focus on studies and I wasn't really, I like, if I'd been the artist or interested in art like I am now.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: I would've had something to focus on and I'd have been gone on, but, you know, with that, but I didn't really know even why I was in college except to go to school. So…

Nicole: To be fair, I didn't either. They actually forced me to pick a major. They told me like, oh, I couldn't take any more classes at S.F. State until I picked a [00:31:00] major.

Kevin: Oh, really?

Nicole: Yeah. I was just like, my fifth year there, they were like, look you can't just be a permanent student. And I was like, why not?

Kevin: Oh yeah. Yeah. That's supposed to be a way to work. Like my first, my first major was criminology.

Nicole: Oh.

Kevin: Because it was all that was available. It was by the time I got in line, I didn't understand the registration process or anything, so I was like, well, what do you got, you know? Oh, criminology.

Nicole: I picked, I picked history because I was like, well, I've been taking all these history electives. This'll get me graduated the fastest, but I'm never gonna use this degree.

Kevin: Oh, yeah. See? Well, even coming from a police family, I didn't wind up in a police job.

Nicole: That's true. Well, why did you end up in the, in the Coast Guard? Why did you pick that?

Kevin: It was a ,so I could stay local.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: I always joke about going overseas for bootcamp, but it was Alameda. Well, my cousin, who's my age, [00:32:00] who was in the Army Reserve, he wound up in Fort Polk, Louisiana.

Nicole: Bummer.

Kevin: And that's, yeah, it was. That's a legendary bad spot to go.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: And everybody knows. They're like, you don't know anything about the army, but you, everybody's heard of Fort Polk, Louisiana.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: And so, I was really sorry for my cousin that I, that I wound up all the way over in Alameda.

Nicole: And how'd you take to the Coast Guard?

Kevin: It was, it just made sense. It was a good, you know, it's a small thing. It was local. The, I had a couple, well, actually. I got the idea from a friend of mine from SI, who was, who had gone in. And he says, you know, they're gonna come looking for you. If you, we were talking about grades and stuff, and he says they're gonna come looking for you, so, you might wanna get into one of the reserve things. And I just joined the Coast Guard Reserve.

Nicole: And this is because of the draft, right? Cause of the Vietnam War?

Kevin: Yeah. Because otherwise, yeah, they were snapping people up right and left in those days.

Nicole: Right.

Kevin: So, but it, that was good except that the [00:33:00] training level, and one thing, like I tell people, you know, it's, it was interesting to be in the military again, ‘68, ‘69, ’70, when the mentality, the non-military mentality was very strong. And the people in charge really had a chip on their shoulder about any kind of, not exactly protest, but, or complaint, but, if you had anything to offer that you thought might be constructive, let me put it that way, they didn't wanna hear it. You know, they were like, yeah, yeah, yeah, hippie, I know where you're from. So, but anyway, just to know the language and know to go through bootcamp, you know, you know, they talk about it makes a man of you. Well, I don't know, but you at least you know what people are talking about by going through that. And then the, what really grinds on you is the, the meeting schedule, you know, once a month and two weeks during the summer. And [00:34:00] so, so that gets kind of old, kind of fast. But it, you know, it's, it, that's why you join up. So, and you get to stay in town, so what the hell?

Nicole: Yeah. So how long were you in the Coast Guard for?

Kevin: Well, that's another story. I actually got an early out, because I was in a car accident and the, when the policeman, who got rear-ended, when the policeman asked me, are you okay? I said, well, yeah, I guess. Well, I don't know. I don't, I dunno, maybe my, I don't know. You know, I just indicated that I didn't quite feel right and maybe my neck, which got it on a police report. And then it, I thought maybe it might be a way to get out of the Coast Guard. Cause I wasn't enjoying myself.

Kevin: Oh.

Nicole: The thing back then, they weren't training. That was, the big thing was we wanted to get, learn on boats and get familiar with San Francisco Bay. And, you know, the boats and the, the radio work and all the [00:35:00] stuff that the Coast Guard actually does. Well, we weren't getting any of that.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: There was constant talk about defunding it. And, we were, for instance, we'd be watching World War II first aid films and venereal disease films. All from World War II. It was hilarious, but it wasn't much training. And, you know, you wanted to get into it, you know, get on the boats. And just before, once, actually, once my process to get out was underway, they started actually training us on boats. And they took us over to Yerba Buena Island there, and trained us on the radios and that kind of thing. But, by then, the, I was in the pipe, the wheels were rolling and I thought, well, I'll just keep this going. And so, I was out three years later.

Nicole: So, you're a free man. What do you do with your new, newfound freedom?

Kevin: Well, I was working, doing a little artwork, but I wasn't near as focused on it. I was working in a gas [00:36:00] station and just enjoying ourselves around being in San Francisco, in the, by that time, early ‘70s. And I moved out of the house and I've moved right down there, you know, those three little alleys that abut the USF field?

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: One's Loyola, one's Hemway, that's the one I lived on. And Atalaya, I think, is the one closest to Masonic. So, I wound up living right down there, which is a great spot to live. Cause again, you're walking distance, Haight Street wasn't that much fun back then. It was a real war zone by then. It was a scary place to go. But that didn't stop us from going down there. But, you know, we're local, right? We're, nothing bothers us. But yeah, so then it was just, you know, being in your twenties in San Francisco. I was working in gas stations. Then I got into, I was doing some artwork and then I took a class with Dan O'Neill, who was a, a syndicated cartoonist, column, or cartoonist [00:37:00] in the Chronicle. And he did a strip called Odd Bodkins, which had been one of our favorites in high school. And then, so I actually got to meet him in, and that's what got me into doing art and cartooning and all that stuff. And that was a few years later. Well, not a few, but couple. That was early, not quite mid-‘70s.

Nicole: I have to say, being in your twenties in San Francisco is when you should be in San Francisco. I, that's, you know what, I spent my twenties here and San Francisco kind of raised me. And again, it feels like we had very similar experiences. I was writing, I was learning my form of artwork. I was dating musicians. You know, getting into all kinds of good trouble. And like, it really, like, it really feels like the city wants people of that age group here to feed off of and support. And it still feels like that, even though it's $4 million to rent an apartment in San Francisco now.

Kevin: Yeah. [00:38:00] And, back to the neighborhood there, it's, there's so much more going on out there now.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: You know, they like that business along, I forget what they call it, but along 37th there, right by Ortega and by Saint Ignatius and Giannini. That kind of stuff wasn't going on and that listening to, where was John Lindsey when I needed him? Right? That’s your last podcast. And it's, that's right where we used to hang out, cause all my friends lived right down there. I worked that, there used to be a grocery store. I guess it was the Surf Market, right on that block. And I worked in that butcher shop for a little while.

Nicole: Oh.

Kevin: So, I spent some time down that part of the Outer Sunset portion.

Nicole: Yeah. It's getting quite hip now. I mean, even when I moved out here, there wasn't that much going on. But, you know, now we've got fancy cocktail bars and…

Kevin: Ooh.

Nicole: And like pizza places and coffee shops and all that kind of stuff. And I kinda wanna be like, [00:39:00] shh, don't tell anybody, cause…

Kevin: Yeah.

Nicole: And the place will be overrun, but we've got a good, happy medium now. So, so, were you able to make a living at your art? Is that where you just, a practicing artist?

Kevin: Not really. I, I, but I, through a cartoonist connection, let's say, I got to meet lots of people in the business. Either in publishing or printing or the various forms. And back then, of course it wasn't digital, it was still analog. So, I worked for a guy, they used to, what do they call it? I learned how to do the camera work to set up the artwork.

Nicole: Oh, right.

Kevin: You put the little dots in there to transform a solid, into a, into the dot pattern. I learned how to, and those cameras are like five by five by four. They're huge.

Nicole: Right.

Kevin: I got to work with lots of guys on printing presses. I learned how [00:40:00] to do, at different companies. A lot of part-time jobs, cause nobody was really hiring. So, I worked on printing t-shirts. In fact, one time I had to, early on, I designed the T-shirt and then somebody said, you know, well the guy doesn't wanna paint it or to print it because he want, he doesn't wanna do it for nothing. But he says, if one of our people can come in and do it, then he'll do it. They'll just, you know, they'll just guide you along. And so that was me. So, I actually got to print my own design on the t-shirt and learn how the whole process worked. That was really cool.

Nicole: That's awesome.

Kevin: But again, I worked for a type setter. And this was back when type setting, this was just beyond the lead type set and all that. This guy actually had a, he typed it and it came out on a long, what do they call those running piece of paper. What are they? Gals, galleys. And that's what this guy did. And so, I worked [00:41:00] selling, selling that for him for a while. But I'm not much of a salesman. I didn't like that.

Nicole: Fair.

Kevin: But, you know, he was, again, it was more connections. I kept meeting people that were in various businesses. So, for a while there, I knew people all over the place that were in producing stuff, whether it was magazines, cartoons, you name it.

Nicole: And did you have any idea of where you were trying to go or where you wanted to go? Or did you just keep ping-ponging around all these cool new opportunities?

Kevin: I, well, I was, I would have to catalog them to figure out how many times I thought I was on the ground floor of something big. This is the one. And, one way or another, you know, the small businesses fold or, you know, there's so many things that can happen. But yeah, I, there's, for instance, one, I actually got one of those banners that, that runs along the top of the Muni. The, on [00:42:00] the buses a, actually produced one of those.

Nicole: Awesome.

Kevin: And you would think, whoa, that's the one, you know. From here, it is all fame and fortune on the way. Nope. But I still have the artwork.

Nicole: Really? What was the banner like? What was it of?

Kevin: Well, it was a, what was it? It was a halfway house. It was kind of a residual from the ‘60s. It was a, not so much a halfway house, but a place to crash for homeless kids. And I forget what the name of it was, but it was a, down on Fillmore. The house itself was down on Fillmore. And before Fillmore was fixed up or started to get gentrified. Even before the Toronado was there. Which has been there, one of the, they were one of the pioneers, they fixing up that neighborhood.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: But yeah. So, they were the ones who this, and then again, most of these things were, well, we don't have any money, [00:43:00] but, you know, and you know, they love to talk about exposure. You get exposure.

Nicole: Oh yeah. They still do.

Kevin: Yeah. And, but like my friend again, Dan O'Neill said, well, you know, you can die of exposure. So, that was, here's a lot of good ones. Like, oh, here's one for you historians. History doesn't just repeat itself, it stutters.

Nicole: That's so good.

Kevin: Oh, Dan O'Neill's got a million of them. He's a, he is a, he was a genius. Still is. I've been in touch with him just lately online.

Nicole: Aww.

Kevin: But yeah. So, anyway, all these various things, and I got to meet Coyote. I met Margo St. James.

Nicole: Awesome.

Kevin: I met friends who were friends, so I spent a little time with her and some of her people. And it was just, you know, that it was just this constant whirlwind. I started my own cartoonist group, because I had access to a house, that house. My dad was living elsewhere, and my mom had passed away. So, the house was basically available. [00:44:00]

Nicole: Right.

Kevin: So, a bunch of us cartoonists used to gather there. And we became known, or we named ourselves the “ground under cartoonists.” Because you've heard of the underground cartoonists. Well, we all felt that they were not letting us in. Of course, you know, economically there was nowhere to get let into. But so, we call ourselves the ground under cartoonists, and there was a group of, there's a, some of them today in that world are very famous.

Nicole: Like who?

Kevin: You ever heard of Trina Robbins? Have you ever heard of her? She's, she's been a historian, writer, about cartoonists. Women cartoonists. You should check her out.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: Because she's, she followed that stuff. She's been doing that for a long time. But, and there's a lot of interesting stuff. Some of these ladies, woman named Mesic. I saw a bunch of her stuff when I was in New York. But the stories behind the ladies that fought through the cartoonist world, you know, the syndicated world, are, they're just fascinating. [00:45:00] But, and there's another one who married a well-known comic writer. Her name was Melinda Gebe. She was one of our mates. You know, she was just part of the gang. So, we had this group of maybe 10 or 12. Everything was in flux all the time. But because we had that house…

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: We had a place to gather and to do jam sessions and just down the street from you. Where you are now.

Nicole: You never know what goes on behind closed doors. This, oh yeah, epicly cool like salon of cartoonists was happening in the Central Sunset. No one would believe me if I had mentioned that without this podcast. So, thank you Kevin.

Kevin: And we had one famous guy, I think he still works there. He used to do, his name was Steve Leialoha, and he did, worked for Marvel. Worked for DC. You know, he actually was a big time, the real thing, kind of cartoonist. But you know, the, there's so much going on, you know, like when you're in your twenties, you just, you're just moving around all the time. [00:46:00]

Nicole: Totally. So, let's get into, so you're just the coolest person ever in your twenties, doing all sorts of odd jobs and like getting into your art. And as you get into your thirties and adulthood starts to set in, where, what, how do you transition?

Kevin: I didn't, I'm still working on that. Of course, I got married along the way, but…

Nicole: Yeah, it helps.

Kevin: Well, no then actually I moved outta town for a little while down to Santa Cruz or actually to, what's that town down there? Anyway, it'll come to me. But yeah.

Nicole: Capitola?

Kevin: No. I keep thinking Ben Lomand, but it's the other place. But it's in the hills that are just out of Santa Cruz. And I thought I was gonna stay there, but there wasn't, again, there was even less money down there for more serious jobs. And, of course, you know, it's a college town by this time, right? The, UC had been in there by that time, by the time I was down there, five, six years. So, it's just flooded with students and, you know, they can get [00:47:00] bodies. There's no money around. So, then I got a call from the City telling me, the City being San Francisco. I don't have to explain that to you. There's a, we need you up here for a part-time job in auto parts.

Nicole: Oh.

Kevin: As a delivery guy. And so, I went up there and I didn't think I'd be staying, but I wound up meeting this lady and it was a, I actually, two things happened. The job became longer than was predicted. And there was this lady. And so, I stayed in the city. And then, just by reputation, because being, apparently coming to work sober regularly, on time, and being dependable, that's a way to hold onto a job apparently.

Nicole: I love when the bar is low.

Kevin: Yeah. Hey, you have a driver's license and you walked in the door under your own power, you know? So [00:48:00] yeah. And all you had to do was be yourself.

Nicole: Great.

Kevin: So, that job led to other jobs in that industries, and I became an auto parts guy.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: And doing artwork on the side because I, again, I figured out I like eating regularly. I, at that point, I was paying rent, not mortgage. But I like a roof over my head, let's put it that way.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: And I could, that I could buy art supplies. So, and again, there's this whole social world of artists and cartoonists and stuff, and there's a group called, used to be called the Loonies. And they would get together every month. And that's a whole other story. But they were much bigger than just us group getting together. They brought in famous people and they had, you know, themes and real published cartoonists and stuff. But anyway, that, that was part of it. But that was also what was going on at the same time while I was working my way up. And then I realized this is what the kind of thing that Kerouac was talking about was, you [00:49:00] know? You get a day job and then you do all this other stuff that doesn't pay quite as well. And so, I thought, well, there I am. And you know, it wasn't that conscious. It just kind of evolved like everything else. And so, I stayed in auto parts on and off and well, not on and off, constantly, through with dealerships. Down on Balboa, right near you down about 35th. Oh yeah. I think it was 35th, but that was my, oh no, and then when they closed and I went over to 25th and Lawton. Which was Irving Auto Supply and that's, it was the last time I worked. And from there I got married. But yeah, so I've covered the west in, in the auto parts business too. Cause I knew everybody, of course doing the deliveries and stuff. I knew all the, all those, all the various mechanics and people who needed auto parts.

Nicole: And you're still, you still make art all the time now. Like you send [00:50:00] us the coolest things. And I'm always like, oh my gosh, Kevin, this is so rad. It's so fun to see all the things that you get into, and a lot of it draws inspiration from your time on the West side.

Kevin: Oh yeah. Oh yeah. Yeah, I'm, well, I'm constantly doing stuff. I'm looking at one here. I'm, my wife is in a singing, a women's singing group, and they asked me to do the art for their, some light on this, for their upcoming season and poster. They've never, they’ve never brought me in on this before. There it is.

Nicole: Oh my gosh! He's showing this incredibly beautiful and colorful poster of, can you describe what I'm looking at, Kevin?

Kevin: Well, what it is is, the, some of the songs that they're gonna be performing. So up here we have Frank Sinatra doing, “You Make Me Feel So Young,” which all you kids can remember. This is the “Three Little Maids,” from Mikado. This is “Chicago.”

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: Down here is “Pick a Little, Talk a Little,” [00:51:00] the Hens. And then, this is this a, amazingly beautiful French opera. And I, even, my wife can't remember the name of it, but it's amazing to, this, this, the lady who I'm dealing with sent me a one-hour opera. And fortunately, she told me where to look for what I was looking for. And part of the story is these two here. But anyway, that’s, that's that going on. And then I'm working on ongoing mural, mural project for our town. I wish I had more time to do more Western Neighborhoods Project cartoons. For instance. I told you on that one, you know, my email, it said stop talking because you gave me so many ideas. The small crustacean. That's a good one. The, oh yeah, Nelly and, and Pete's Day Off, was it? Or, McGee and Gulliver, the Ranger. I mean, this is [00:52:00] great stuff.

Nicole: We could, in fact, I could literally talk to you for three more hours, Kevin. I’m, we're already at an hour, which is way longer than our podcast is supposed to go.

Kevin: Wow.

Nicole: But maybe you can come back on for another podcast, cause this was the most, one of the most fun podcasts I've ever been on. So, thank you for being here. And we're not totally done with you yet, Kevin.

Kevin: Oh, okay.

Nicole: So we, we do this really silly section that I call the Barbara Walters section. May she rest in sweet peace. Where I throw some very hard-hitting questions at you. So, are you ready for some deep diving into your first question?

Kevin: If they're the ones I've heard, I'm, I'll be at a loss, but I can stumble through. Fire away.

Nicole: Alright. Number one, what is the best meal you've ever eaten in San Francisco?

Kevin: Ooh, tough one. Yeah. I lately, let's see, that's like the last 10 years or so. Pacific Catch.

Nicole: Ooh.

Kevin: I really like the [00:53:00] food, the flavors. If I come into town and it's lunchtime, I'll just pull over and go there first.

Nicole: Well, you better text me the next time you're doing that because I live, as you know, I live very close. Yeah, I like that place too. All right. Number two. What is your favorite place in San Francisco? What's the one place you return to again and again and again?

Kevin: Boy, that's a tough one. Outdoor venue. I mean, music venue. Oh, well, it depends. SF Jazz is a wonderful place. I'm a big jazz fan.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: That's like a, it's like a cathedral for music and like-minded people. Always Golden Gate Park anytime. The beach. Usually, we stay down at the Ocean Park.

Nicole: Oh yeah.

Kevin: And we always try to work in at least one walk on the beach when we're in town. It's good to get the fog in my face again.

Nicole: I hear you.

Kevin: If it's foggy, it's, that doesn't happen as much anymore.

Nicole: I know. I, it's, thanks [00:54:00] global warming? I, yeah, it's a lot sunnier out here these days. Okay. Number three. What is the one thing out of towners shouldn't miss, which is a long way of saying, where do you take people when they visit?

Kevin: The beach,  The park.

Nicole: Yes.

Kevin: Twin Peaks for the view.

Nicole: Ooh, that's a good one.

Kevin: I mean, that's just, I'm trying to think. There's so many places. I don't go to Pier 39. Yeah.

Nicole: No.

Kevin: I have been there and I'll probably go again sometime. Yeah, there's so many interesting spots. The Aquatic Park Museum. It's such an amazing building. The building itself and then all the stuff that's in it. And it, the references to all the action that used to be on the Bay going up the Delta and up the Sacramento River and all that. It's hard to say. I think Golden Gate Park, at least a drive through.

Nicole: Yes, definitely. In fact, we're gonna have [00:55:00] to have you back on for a whole maritime podcast, because we didn't even get into like how knowledgeable you are about all of that. So, all right, let's do, okay, number four. What's one San Francisco thing you would bring back if you could?

Kevin: Ooh. Well, economically, this is ridiculous, but free access to museums and zoo.

Nicole: Yes. Totally.

Kevin: But I know that's, yeah, the question, but you know, I can't think of you know, I could say Playland, but you know, again, the economics aren't there. I don't know. I'm too practical now.

Nicole: No, I like that idea. And we just led a walk through the Music Concourse John Martini and I did. And people kept being like, I remember when all these things were free. And well, it is possible, right? Like, the fine arts…

Kevin: You want me to talk like that?

Nicole: What's that?

Kevin: I said, you want me to talk like that?

Nicole: The fine arts museums just got a million dollar grant from Google to, I think it might be more than a [00:56:00] million dollars, but to have free admission on like various weekends connected to one exhibition there. So, it's possible when we're properly supported financially.

Kevin: Yeah. Yeah.

Nicole: I wanna get off my soapbox now. Okay. Number five. The last hard-hitting Barbara Wa, Baba Wawa question. Why do you think history is important?

Kevin: Because history doesn't just repeat itself, it stutters. No, I, you need to know where you came from or where other people are coming from or where they've been.

Nicole: Yeah.

Kevin: I've lived long enough now. You know, my father would say, you know, somebody would start talking, he'd say, oh, shh, listen, this is your heritage. And we all go, ah, Jesus. But it was only because we heard that phrase so often. But the reality. But we heard it, we did hear and we did listen. To know where people come from, why something is the way it is. And it's not all glory and light as you know. There's a lot of [00:57:00] graft and corruption. You know, you look at all those street names and you find out some of these guys were horrible people, or they were, you know, a supervisor who paid off somebody and, you know, their name doesn't belong on that street, but it's been there over a hundred years, I guess it does. Yeah. It's, you just need to know where you came from or where everybody else came from.

Nicole: Totally.

Kevin: That's where I am here in my town. This little town of Mokelumne Hill. I used to be on the history board, but just knowing where all these families came from. Some of 'em have been up here five generations. Since the very beginning of white people up here. And it's, it's good to know. And you can drop names too. It's like, hey, isn't that one of the guys. Works into the cocktail conversation.

Nicole: I love doing that. I love, well, I, it always gives me joy when I know something, but then I'm that person at a cocktail party where I'm like, oh, actually.

Kevin: Yeah.

Nicole: No, that’s not how, actually, I'm gonna correct you a little bit on this. [00:58:00] Then I'm just a jerk and no wants to talk to me. But, well…

Kevin: You hate to have people wallowing in ignorance too. I mean,

Nicole: I do my best to prevent that, but sometimes people don't appreciate being pulled out of the, you know, puddle that they're in.

Kevin: That is La Brea tar pits.

Nicole: Exactly. Well, Kevin, that concludes the Kevin Brady portion of the podcast. You are welcome to stick around for all of the nonsense I now have to meddle my way through. The listener mail, that kind of stuff.

Kevin: Oh sure. Well, then I'll know, I heard it.

Nicole: Excellent. All right, then here it comes. We've got listener mail. So, first of all, Outside Landers, I think you already know this, but if you want to send us listener mail, we would love to read your listener mail. Just send it to podcast@outsidelands.org. Or, you know, we're on all the social medias, because we're young and hip like that. Actually, we're not on all of them. We are not on TikTok, cause who has [00:59:00] the time for that. But we're on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. So, you can leave a podcast comment there. And one of us will find it and hopefully read it on the air.

And we also received an incredibly nice email from Gideon. He said, and I quote, “first I wanted to say how much I love your podcast. I not only find it interesting and informative, but it's also rather charming. There's a wonderful camaraderie between the podcasters who all have a wonderful sense of humor. And, in short, the podcast is a hoot. Please keep up the good work. I'm hoping you'll never run out of content and more episodes.” End quote. So, thank you Gideon for the those odes of breathless praise. And he, Gideon wasn't done yet. He continued with a request. He said, “can you please do an episode on the history of the horrific condos that are now situated on the former site of Playland?” He wants to know how they came into [01:00:00] existence. What the story behind them is. He said, “I walk my dog around the area and often find myself looking down on the park from the hills north of it. And I cannot tell you how much of an eyesore those condos are.” End quote. And yeah, actually it's interesting how there's some scandal there, because there always is. And upsettingly, when I was doing some research, Gideon, which I'd like to do more of, and now you've given me an excuse, they were talking about putting a history museum there, instead of a bunch of condos. So, I mean, that would've been really convenient for me, but, oh, well. Oh, well, we'll, we're putting in our list and we're gonna hopefully get to that soon.

So now we have the benefits of membership and donating. I think you also already know this devoted podcast listeners, but if you clickety, clickety, clack the big orange button at the top of any of our pages on either website, outsidelands.org [01:01:00] or OpenSFHistory.org, you can give us money and become a member of Western Neighborhoods Project. That will get you the quarterly membership magazine and discounts on events and other exclusive perks. And boy, those events are really coming in hot right now. Your membership also supports all the fantastic we, work we do and we make available for free. We don't like putting stuff behind a paywall, cause that doesn't feel nice. We've got the OpenSFHistory archive, which is over 53,000 photos that are mapped and crowdsourced and identified and available for you to download and do whatever you want with them. We don't ask any questions. We've got the Cliff House collection, it's care and exhibition, which is every day getting more complicated. I, you've been listening as we are explaining the saga, having to move an entire totem pole from National Park Service land. Quite, quite the collections conundrum we didn't [01:02:00] anticipate. And, of course, this podcast, right? Every week we're bringing you history and we do it from the goodness of our hearts, but it also takes money. We pay Ian Hadley, our wonderful sound engineer, far too little to do the work that he does for us. So, please think about supporting us if, as low is $5 a month or $50 a year.

And with that plug for the org, I am now going to bring you more announcements! Our dear board member, Lindsay Hanson and I, with a little help from our dear friend John Lindsey, we're hard at work on exhibitions at the WNP Clubhouse. So, I hope in the meantime, you've been enjoying our history walks with John Martini. So far, we've toured through the Presidio Main Post, the Music Concourse in Golden Gate Park, and most recently, by the time this podcast airs, hopefully if the weather allows, we've been through Mountain Lake as well. But never fear if you've missed those, [01:03:00] because John is not done yet. On Saturday, April 29th, at 2:30 PM, John and myself are leading the Clement Street Pub Crawl. Our friends at Plough and Stars are letting us kick things off in their fine establishment. And then, we'll take you on a three-ish hour tour sharing a history of the neighborhood and the bars we stop into with some special guest appearances along the way. So, this is a classy crawl. This is not like a Girl's Gone Wild situation. But we will be hitting three bars. So, we hope you come thirsty and drink responsibly. Tickets are $20 for WNP members, and we cover your registration fees. And $30 for non-members and include in your ticket price is a complimentary brand new WNP beer koozie designed by our dear friend Jamie O'Keefe. We're really, really excited to get these rolling again. It's our first pub crawl since the pandemic, so we hope to see you there. These tickets [01:04:00] sell out really, really fast, so I recommend that you reserve yours today. And I hope the Eventbrite listing is up now.

And hey, if you're into drinking beer and testing your neighborhood history knowledge, then you won't wanna miss our Sunset District Trivia Night at the Little Shamrock on Monday, April 10th. So, this is the first of hopefully more to come in collaboration with our friends at Fort Point Beer. You'll be on teams of two to six and the trivia will start at 7:00 PM. But we do recommend that you get there a little bit beforehand, so you can save a seat and get yourself a frosty pint before things get going. Now this event is free, but Fort Point is asking that you RSVP in advance, so we kind of know how crazy it's gonna get that night. And you can register through their website, I'm sorry, through their Eventbrite. So, we hope to see you there. Myself and Chelsea will be MCs for the night, and we have a very special guest who will be in the crowd as well.

And, as always, you can [01:05:00] find most of these events on our website outsidelands.org. We are literally adding events all the time. So be sure to join over 300 followers of WNP's Eventbrite and join our monthly email list through our website, that you can be the first in the know when these events hit the internet.

Okay. Oh my gosh. That's it for today. The preview for next week is, we are celebrating our 500th podcast episode, if you can believe that. With the very special guest who will share the California Academy of Science's wild history. So, until next time, I'm Nicole Meldahl and this has been another episode of Outside Lands San Francisco. Thanks for being with us, Kevin.

Kevin: Thank you. Oh, and that was Bonny Doon, by the way.

Nicole: Ah.

Ian: Outside Lands San Francisco is recorded by Ian Hadley. Content creation and media production at ihadley.com.

Nicole: To learn more about the Western Neighborhoods Project and more on San Francisco history, go to Outsidelands.org. You can also find us on social media at Facebook, which is outsidelands with an S, at Twitter, which is outsidelandz with a Z, and on Instagram, which is outsidelandz, also with a Z. And check out our historic San Francisco images website at OpenSFHistory.org.

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