Saturday, February 1, 2014

Fear and Loathing at Haight Ashbury

“If you’re going to San Francisco be sure to wear some flowers in your hair.”  -60’s Anthem

Hippies are Dead!  Except for freshman liberal arts students and random homeless panhandlers, hippiedom has gone the way of the Do-Do.
So… I took my daughters down to the apex of this once fine and thoughtful subculture, the corner of famed Haight / Ashbury Streets,  where the Grateful Dead and Janis Joplin used to roam, to speak to them about revolutionaries and Flower Power and just how a Tie-Dye T-shirt is made.
But… instead of having a delicious time reminiscing over Woodstock and the Season of Love… 
We stepped over meth addicts and dirty squatters and cautiously past a couple of drunks… and ended up thinking…this place is disgusting.  What a pity!
I mean, the very corner itself has been turned into a Ben & Jerry’s, which isn’t so bad but… why wasn’t this road ever enshrined?  Turned into a museum?  Had more of a lasting tribute than just Head Shops and Bars?  Isn’t there an educational value to this that could have been better preserved than just weird hipsters walking around in fedoras and freaky tweaker artist types swatting at buzzing flies that aren’t even there?
So we rummaged some thrift stores and climbed a yellow dinosaur and tossed some coins into the guitar case of this kid playing a Richie Haven’s song… 
And took our Cherry Garcias away by red taxi back to Nob Hill to be with the other squares where we belong.  

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