Thursday, January 25, 2007

Stop Messing With My Sac

Guess how much the city is paying this guy to spout mumbo-jumbo like this? About 99 grand. Guess who hired him? Ray Kerridge. He also hired a guy named Bob Chase (who at least has lived in Sac for a while)to facilitate getting the customer to success by fast-tracking building permit approvals. Bob Chase hit the jackpot with a whopping 122 thou. I'm not naive enough to think that men in powerful positions like this won't make a lot of money, I'm just annoyed that city revenue is going to pay these dudes to sit in their offices and come up with crappy acronyms that end with "you-all"

I haven't paid much attention to Joe Carnahan's career. I'm pretty sure I watched Narc but I can't remember anything about it. I won't see "Smokin' Aces" mostly on principle because of the stupid name (might as well name it "bitchin' flame tatt") and because Jeremy Piven is in it. This article bugs, though. Sample sentence:

What once was so Sacto about Carnahan was his having something to prove. Now he’s proved it.

Who says Sacto? It doesn't exactly roll of the tongue. Also, not everyone in Sac has something to prove. Here's what I'm sick of (and I feel like a broken record complaining about this, but it is in response to hearing this time and time again in every form of local print media):
hearing how Sac has an "identity problem" or "identity crisis" or "inferiority complex" or any variation on this theme

This is something that's been said so many times that people just accept it as the truth and wait for someone to tell us what to do to solve it. Will it be an arena? Will it be a big condo? Will it be an acronym that spells out something catchy?

I personally reject that point of view. I find Sacramento to be eminently livable, likeable, bikeable, trafficable, eatable, drinkable, etc. The only threat to my livability that I see are developers who smell money coming here, getting rooms at Extended Stay America, bulldozing the things I like, making some quick money, and then rolling back out of town to their wife and kids back in Houston.

36 comments:

FFT said...

"The only threat to my livability that I see are developers who smell money coming here ..."

that's the threat to livability everywhere. but, at the very least, those of us who like the city as is have the wherewithal to do something about it. not exactly the case for residents of certain countries (Iraq, Algeria, the former Yugoslavia), where developers smell money and just bomb the fuck out of the natives or hijack their governments. i guess we in sac just get hijacked.
nice finches article, btw.

Anonymous said...

"Participants complained that Sacramento still had an inferiority complex,"

these were sac citizens, not city employees or local media reporters. you say you're tired of hearing that - and you might have a solid point - but your gripe is not with the media or the city. It's with the people of sacramento. and the people who attend these meetings are locals, and they are the ones raising the city's attention. so you might want to attend a few of these gatherings and let the people have it instead of preaching to the choir on heckasac.

beckler said...

why is it that everyone who has a criticism posts anonymously, without even a pseudonym? I saw that part about the citizens saying that, and I pose the question at what point are citizens just parroting back what city officials and the media keep printing? And if I'm just preaching to the choir then why are you reading? You're obviously not in my choir. There is no context offered for that quote. We don't know from this small blurb if the citizens thought that increased development is the answer to solve an inferiority complex in Sacramento. Perhaps they were lamenting and refuting the inferiority complex. It's not clear, and therefore I didn't think it was meaningful to include that quote in my discussion.

Anonymous said...

I say sacto! and furthermore it is cool to say sacto ever since it was immortalized it that pavement song. The title escapes me. The lyric goes something like, "the last psychedelic band from sacto no. cal."

Anonymous said...

> "why is it that everyone who has a criticism posts anonymously"
> "why are you reading? You're obviously not in my choir"

this is why people remain anonymous when they "criticize" - you and your choir jump down the throats of anyone who pose an alternative viewpoint to you. it's also pretty obvious that you surround yourself with like-minded individuals, as those who consistently agree with you happen to be the people you know. but it's your blog and your free to spout off whatever enters your mind.

> "I pose the question at what point are citizens just parroting back what city officials and the media keep printing"

that is nothing less than a childish insult to the opposing view. to suggest that the peoples' views you don't share are not their own, and rather a product of government and media rhetoric is well beneath you. it would be easy to suggest the same of many of your consistent readers and commenters, but i would like to presume they have minds of their own.

> "I personally reject that point of view. I find Sacramento to be eminently livable, likeable, bikeable, trafficable, eatable, drinkable, etc. The only threat to my livability that I see are developers who smell money"

yeah, we all love sacramento - that's why we live here. But that doesn't mean that everyone should be completely satisfied and oppose change. On that subject, the UDA had a great display at the state fair. Did you happen to check it out? Have you ever attended one of their diagloues, or any community workshop, charettes, meetings, at all? If not, you should. You might find yourself a minority voice every now and then - but that sometimes happens when you stick your neck out and meet things head on.

Anonymous said...

Can't we all just get the customer to success?

-miller

Anonymous said...

"why is it that everyone who has a criticism posts anonymously"

Cowardice.

Charles Albright

beckler said...

I can think of a lot of things to say. It's hard to know what to say. I just heard of the UDA yesterday, I have nothing against it, and I'd like to know more about it. Longtime readers will know that some of us tried to get a similar group going and couldn't quite get it off the ground. In my defense, I feel that I do stick my neck out quite a bit by writing this blog, which I do to entertain myself and some others and to inform people about stuff going on that I know about. I have caught a shitstorm of shit for it, deserved and underserved. In addition, I spend some of my free time writing a column about food in my own name for midtown monthly. You have not stuck your neck out or met things head on, you are just anonymously going off on me.

beckler said...

hmm..shitstorm of shit sounds overly dramatic. more like it has bummed me out when i've offended people or pissed them off.

Anonymous said...

dear anonymous,

"this is why people remain anonymous when they "criticize" - you and your choir jump down the throats of anyone who pose an alternative viewpoint to you."

initially people were encouraged to not post anonymously because folks with opposing viewpoints would often take things to a very personal and unnecessary level when given the opportunity to withhold their name.

"You might find yourself a minority voice every now and then - but that sometimes happens when you stick your neck out and meet things head on."

if those are your views and you believe in them then why not leave something even if it's a pseudonym. whether you agree with her or not beckler puts herself out there everyday. anyone can read and anyone can and often does attack her stance on some issues.

in general folks say much harsher things and in a way more aggresive manner when they post anonymously than they would otherwise. i doubt that many of the folks that have made some of the more vicious comments on this blog would repeat what they said - and in the manner that it was posted - to the person's face if given the opportunity.

sincerely,
liv moe

Anonymous said...

I signed my name on a negative comment once & the entire Heckasac readership came to my house & beat me up. True story.

-john a smith

Anonymous said...

sorry john,

-liv

beckler said...

hey anon-were you at that UDA meeting? If so, maybe you can provide context for that quote.

Anonymous said...

And I'll post here under my name just to say that when you take the ramen out of Sacramento, all you're left with Sacto, and that kinda sux. and fuck Pavement. What does Malkmus know about Sacramento? He's from fucking Stockton. Actually, Morada, a well-heeled and woodsy rural suburb in the Lodi school district. And he fucking lives in Oregon. (At least Kannberg was cool enough to live here for a few years.)

Anonymous said...

The 'inferiority complex' is almost a chicken and the egg situation because you can look back decades and see that there was a prevailing attitude statewide of looking down on Sacramento. Nancy Reagan's term as first lady back is best remembered for her comments that you couldn't find a decent hairdresser and that there weren't any women in town for her to socialize with, other than farmer's wives (and then there was the whole business with the Governor's Mansion portrayed in Kitty Kelly's Reagans biography). Even now, some people (like for example, a B&B owner I stayed with in Palo Alto) seem to think it perfectly fine to make comments about how horrible it must be to come from Sacramento because it's so hot, flat, & uncultured. So while the inferiority complex is a horrible principle for (mis)guiding public and economic policy, it's not always that Sacramento is comparing itself to the Bay Area or LA. People honestly think that. It's just too bad that the community's traditional response has been to try and keep up with the Jones, rather than being more independent and embracing what it is about its size/geography that makes it different.

Anonymous said...

Jackson Griffith writes:

"What does Malkmus know about Sacramento? He's from fucking Stockton."
----------------------------------

Hey, watch it with the Stockton barbs. In addition to being President and Strongman for Life of the Sacramento Appreciation Society of San Francisco, I also hold a chair on the Greater Stockton-Delta Booster & Glee Club. We former Stocktonians are kinda sensitive to those barbs and you should be made aware of our Inferiority Complex over that big city to the north, Sacramento. Stockton really needs to hire one of those Sacto style consultants just to keep up with the Joneses.

The world can have Pavement and Chris Isaak (didn't he fail an audition to be the Authorities?). We'll keep Benjamin Holt and Big Nick Slurb though.

President and Strongman for Life,
Sacramento Appreciation Society of San Francisco

Anonymous said...

I'm spearheading a campaign to officially change the name of Sacramento to
SUPERCITY, CA. It has a better ring to it and will really do wonders for creating the much-needed local identity this great place deserves! I hope you all join.

RK

Anonymous said...

what about just simplifying it too #1,CA?
-liv

Anonymous said...

i'm not attacking you (beckler) here. i just take exception when you resort to name-calling and insulting people i happen to respect. i think some of the last posts about local officials were very harsh and below the belt. though it certainly beats the effortless cynicism that some of the commenters here resort to.

my point is that the insults weren't well warranted especially considering both officials in both articles called for public, community participation and got the exact opposite reaction from you. if you want those men to earn their pay, then give them your piece first-hand. it's the only possible way they would take what you say seriously.

and i know you stick your neck out writing some of the things you do. it's part of the reason i read your blog - the other part is that despite the fact that we share completely opposite views on most community and development matters, we share many cultural and artistic interests. so you're bound to catch my attention regardless.

- anonymouse

alice said...

you are right about people's perceptions of sacramento outside of sacramento being unflattering. it gets old listening to it. i would never say that about someone's home town. or, well, about any town they were living in if they seemed to like it. people like to beat up on one another's towns in this state and i don't know why. i'm sure i do it too but i should stop.

beckler said...

Maybe I don't give a shit about that because I'm really from Lincoln and the only town we had to look down on was Sheridan. But I'm lucky that I've never heard anyone say anything bad about Sac other than that our Thai food is garbage (that is a gentle private joke, not intended to stick it to any celebrity supercouple who live in l.a.)

Anonymous said...

Having Bill Crouch around the office has been great, actually. He and Greg Taylor have done quite a bit to change they way we think about urban design in the city. Someone is actually talking about building height limits and bringing public spaces back into the design of things, so I have to say they're finally getting people to pay attention to things like that. Beckner's articles are usually much more in depth, I guess she had other fish to fry in this issue or something.

Bob Chase is the chief building official. There always has and always will be one of those, you know, the guy in charge of building permitting and inspections. If anyone out there remembers what it was like trying to get a building permit from the City like 2 or 3 years ago, it was a nightmare. Things have rapidly improved, from the homeowner doing something as simple as a minor addition to someone building a 20 story building - many agreer that it's nice that the permitting has become somewhat easier to navigate. I guess it's the "greasing of the skids" for questionable approvals and spending decisions that we're all suspicious about, and that needs to be aired out more than it has been IMHO.


-E

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said ...

Hey, watch it with the Stockton barbs. In addition to being President and Strongman for Life of the Sacramento Appreciation Society of San Francisco, I also hold a chair on the Greater Stockton-Delta Booster & Glee Club. We former Stocktonians are kinda sensitive to those barbs and you should be made aware of our Inferiority Complex over that big city to the north, Sacramento. Stockton really needs to hire one of those Sacto style consultants just to keep up with the Joneses.

The world can have Pavement and Chris Isaak (didn't he fail an audition to be the Authorities?). We'll keep Benjamin Holt and Big Nick Slurb though.

President and Strongman for Life,
Sacramento Appreciation Society of San Francisco


Um, as a native of Stockton, a Lincoln High grad and a member of the ephemeral Stockton/Lodi band Death's Ugly Head (me, plus former Authorities Brian Thalken and Tony Smith, in addition to Sam Harvey and the one and only Gary Young), I can talk about my native Palookaville all I want. Plus I hung out with Nick Slurb and his Ventures and Throbbing Gristle collections many times, plus me, Brian, Jeff and Theron took a young garage band under our drunken wings, named them the Young Pioneers and I helped them write a bunch of ridiculously pro-Commie songs, including "Teenage Piss Party," which renamed the singer Eric Engelken "The Sprinkler" (later they rebelled and changed their name to the Straw Dogs, and Malkmus was a member), and later, before I left for good in '85, I watched a bunch of my friends fall under the spell of Bruce Ford and the cake he baked in the back of his mothers house on Airport Way. Some of those friends, including Nick, are dead now as a result.

I'm curious: What's your position on Grant-Lee Phillips?

Cheers,
JBG

beckler said...

Hmm...so E knows some actual "facts". There is no place for those on this blog. Take that over to heckafacts.

Jackson Griffith said...

Oh. My. Dog. The Heyamoto goes salsa dancing. Although not as laughable as the time she got wasted and had to make tinkle in that North Sac bear bar, or her drunk on light rail escapade, it does have one unintentionally revealing quote: "'When you dance salsa, believe me, it's like your brain stops,' [Salsasacramento.com proprietor Fahad] says."

Which makes sense, but it doesn't explain that bear-bar story, unless salsa dancing works, um, retroactively.

beckler said...

I noticed that the bee has been pushing this article like crazy for days, and it was so short! She was stoked that she actually had some nightlife to report once in awhile.

Anonymous said...

JGB,

Ah, Lincoln High. I graduated from the more culturally isolated Edison Sr. High (Southside Stocktone, eh?) I went to kindergarten at Lafayette School on Church and California Streets. All those big ol' 1900s era multi-story brick schools were the coolest--too bad the city didn't preserve these landmarks.

Yea...sweet, sweet Mudville. As a kid I can still recall exploring the hobo camps near the old Santa Fe train station and walking around old skid row before they razed most of it to build the languishing Crosstown Freeway. I remember: old Chinatown, Tabuchi's, lowriders on Charter Way, Mariani's (the entire block was skid row neat-o), the nifty old warehouse and silos on the waterfront before they tore 'em all down, Harvard Books on Main, Woolworth's lunch counter, the big fountains at the main library and courthouse, Tong halls and gambling dens, Chinese School (where all the neighborhood kids were forced to attend after regular school and had to sing the Chinese Nationalist Anthem daily--luckily, I escaped that fate by refusing to attend), the Mummy on display at Haggin Museum and the Islander Restaurant which is now at Pollardville. My dad used to talk about the the old streetcar system and German POW camp at the Port of Stockton and the Chang Kai-Shek fundraisers to aid the Nationalists--but that was during his time.

Oh yea, I also remember going on a family drive to the Delta to check out the set for "Bound for Glory" (starring David Carradine as Woodie Guthrie). Have you ever seen "Fat City?" Great 70s era Stockton film that was shot on location in the Chinatown/skidrow area! Comcast Cable had it on On Demand not too long ago...

I still have Big Nick Slurb's obituary from the Record tucked away somewhere. And I may also have a tape of him playing acoustic Ventures tunes from the days when he lived at 19th and Eye here in Sac. This reminds me that I need to steal Dave Smif's Authorities tee shirt or ask him to put it in his will for me. The name Bruce Ford is familiar (synthesized heroin?) I remember meeting Glen from the Straw Dogs when he cut school and came down to Edison one day. As for Grant Lee-Phillips, I never got into him but I do recall the band name Shiva Burlesque.

As the water tank along I-5 used to proclaim: "Stockton: Someplace Special"

Pres,
SASSF

Anonymous said...

I just got out of a 4 hour meeting with about 25 city staff and a few of the Railyards developer reps. Intersting session. You all have to start making heckanoise about the BassProShops thing -- everyone seems to think it's a slam-dunk.

-E

KLJ said...

I would think posting your critiques anonymously would be fine, as long as you're not bein' an ass about it. I can see why an anonymous "Fuck ya all" would be pretty wimpy, but otherwise, what's the big deal? Just curious.

KLJ

Jon K. said...

Yeah, OK, I know. Hey, the movie bugs, too. And the esteem thing is something Carnahan wanted to talk about.

Thank you, though, for saying what I should have: Never mind who says Sacto. Who says Smokin' in a movie title?

beckler said...

KLJ-I think Liv put it very well in her comment. Being completely anonymous just makes people feel freer to go crazy with the irresponsible insults. Even if they have a consistent pseudonym, psychologically it seems to make a diff.

beckler said...

Smokin' Back Tatt got a chilling review in the New Yorker, and Denby liked Narc.

Anonymous said...

I left my weed in the car and I don't even give a shit.

Anonymous said...

Wow! what a trip down memory lane. Reading some of the entries on this site bring back some of the best and worst memories of my life. I recall many-o-nite hangin out at Nick's place, watching the "Hot Spit Dancers" practice, Vince, Tharon "The Knight Man" & Co. Hangin out in Chuck & Scott Vallpey's "Infamous Black bedroom". And I can't leave out best best Bro. Steve Thompson we met in elementary school at Tinity Lutheran school in downtown Stoketown, on American St. What a ride though I'll have to admit being 15 years old and being a little punk rocker in Stockton and going to see "The Authorities" at South Lincoln St. and meeting Tharon and Brian Griffith and telling those guy's that we had a Band too. after that the rest as they say is drunken history!! "The Young Pioneers" & "The Straw Dogs" practicing out in Lodi at Joey Bett's Barn W/ the prehistoric halfpipe out back drinkin slam the Hamm's beer. Fri & Sat. nignt's playing at "Club Minamal" in Sacto. Stewrt Katz Oi Vey!! what a cheap-o! we played w/ all the old punk bands, T.S.O.L., The Dead Kennedy's, The Circle Jerks, Black Flag, well like I said before those were the good times. Then came the not so great times!! Being introduced to Bruce Ford has to be the thorn in my side that I have had to put up with for more years than I would have liked to. I will have to say though that it wasn't all Bruce's fault as being 16 and in a punk rock band at the time, shootin dope sound oh so romantic! well ... I'm done. I now am Married and have a 6 year old daughter named Haley, and am living in a little mountain town named Magalia, C.A. It's about 45 min. east of Chico, C.A., anyhow I alway's wonder what ever happened to my road-dog Tharon, my old pal's Bill Cossette, and Glen Lee?? if you guy's happen to read this or if anybody else know's of their wereabouts get a hold of me. here's my e-mail address: StriderA6@sbcglobal.net
P.S. "Piss on you bitch,piss,piss,piss and have a Teenage Piss Party!!!"

The Sprinkler

Anonymous said...

I just sent Nick,s son my old Hot spit dancers shirt. Jeff ss

anonymous said...

sac-rot-ment-co is how we rotters (those from Stockton (rotten)), referred to your river city in the early eighties