Letters in San Francisco

Dear Homeless Man that sits under my work awning,
I gave you a sleeping bag, some snacks, and my friendship for over a year. My co-workers do not believe in your cast and that statement alone bugs me. Ditch the cast if and when you are healed, or don't . . .but promise me you will try to lose the habit. I do not see your wheelchair, Dave, or your cane or your threadbare foot wrap, but I do see your grinding teeth. But, Dave, I also see your eyes and the light that trickles through the cracks.
Thanks for always calling me "pretty lady".

Dear Homeless Man that sits under my work awning,
I gave you a sleeping bag, some snacks, and my friendship for over a year. My co-workers do not believe in your cast and that statement alone bugs me. Ditch the cast if and when you are healed, or don't . . .but promise me you will try to lose the habit. I do not see your wheelchair, Dave, or your cane or your threadbare foot wrap, but I do see your grinding teeth. But, Dave, I also see your eyes and the light that trickles through the cracks.
Thanks for always calling me "pretty lady".

Dear Obese Woman that sits on the brick wall waiting for the 45 on Union Street,
It kills me how apologetic you are for making others wait while the bus lowers its cumbersome self down to meet your ballooned feet. You walk with two canes, and I sometimes think your ankles need their very own canes when I see them floating on top of your shoes like lopsided rafts lost at sea. We are people that smile and acknowledge one another while I read my book in the sun and while you wait in the shade, and sometimes you ask me what I am reading. The thing is, we are not close enough for me to tell you that you need to lose weight. 300 pounds overweight and about 30 pounds away from sinking. You must lose weight.

Dear Cash register Girl at La Boulange,
Thanks for always hooking me up with a free side of dressing to go with my baguette. I know you probably think taht I am sharing teh baguettes with my co-workers, but I'm not. I eat the whole loaf.

Dear Judiths of Bi-rite,
I know you do not think I am cool enough to eat your ice cream, but thanks for making the best dessert in the city.

Dear Lesbian Client of my Co-worker,
You took me to my first ever all Lesbo party at Pride last year. That was fun. And cool. Stringing me along like a first class douchebag dude with commitment issues and three dames in pocket was seriously not cool. Also, my best friend thinks you look like a female wrestler from GLOW.

Dear Old man,
We will continue to grow old together, no matter how many miles separate us. Nobody writes me like you do. Nobody cries like you do. Nobody needles me like you do. Nobody has ever made me wish for a brother before. And, well, nobody has ridiculous ears like you do. I love you.

Dear Dolores Park,
You are a bed of memories and a postcard of all that is beautiful in this city. I happened upon you before I even moved to San Francisco, and because of you, I moved here with confidence and excitement. I will look for you again.

Dear Me,
I think some people do not know that Me is my kid sister, and maybe they thought when I was writing to "Me" I was talking to myself, but that is just one of your many nicknames. Right, Prim? I am videotaping this but I do not need to. Let's get serious, I read for you. I do this for you. And tonight, for the first time, you are here in real life.

Dear Faithful Friend,
Whenever your mom talks about Barbara, I inevitably envision us 20 years from now. You are more beautiful now, to me, and to this world, than you have ever been before. And I am not just saying that because you have ginormous gazonkas.

Dear Passionate Friend,
I came to the conclusion long ago that you are the funniest. Man, sometimes I just need a good and random movie quote spouted and you sure know how to pull through. Because that's what little dudes do. Also, your facial expressions are so much louder than everyone else's, even when they are subtle enough to slip by the average layperson. I always manage to hear them loud and clear. You make me laugh.

Dear Shortstack Gremin,
Remember when we saw that girl reverse her Honda on top of the parked car behind her on California Street? Remember when Olive spotted a monster in our backyard in Pacific Heights? Remember Neighborhood Suicide Watch? Remember drunken karaoke in our tiny bedroom? We made a home here, and it has been amazing. People always talk about their dreams and their goals and their future, and you don't waste time in discussion and debate, you just make things happen. You create life. Your Mom is so proud of you right now.

Dear City,
Thank you.