Dog Lover

by doodaddy on May 21, 2008

San Francisco is a dog town. San Francisco is a kid town.

Usually, that’s a fantastic pairing. Boobaby, for one, loves dogs, and dogs love her, or at least the many aromas that generally emanate from her. Sure, there are some dogs that should be avoided, but generally, we’ve got a cordial relationship with our town’s canines.

Sadly, many San Franciscans are completely nutso about their kids, or else about their dogs. At our old park, kids were relegated to a small, fenced corner; the dogs had the run of the place, and any suggestion that vicious animals should be, y’know, restrained led to a fistful of static.

At our new park, however, the kid-owners have beaten the dog-owners into submission. I wrote about it this week over at GNM Parents:

At the new playground, however, rampant community activism (I’ve met her — she really is rampant) kept the entire park an on-leash site. Moreover, if a dog escapes its handler even briefly, an unidentified resident of the hillside above (who, I suspect, is the same rampant community activist) blasts an air horn. Repeatedly. Not surprisingly, the kids more than the dogs are bothered by this frightening clamor.

I wrote up the whole scary episode over at GNM: click here for the full piece.

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tagged as , in animals,parentolitics,playground,San Francisco ·

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Xbox4NappyRash May 22, 2008 at 3:20 am

Not to detract from the intellect behind this, but I was so disappointed after reading the title.

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doodaddy May 22, 2008 at 10:37 pm

Ah, the Dutch. Dutch Irish. Irish Hollandaise. Whatever.

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Jeremy Adam Smith May 24, 2008 at 7:57 am

“San Francisco is a kid town”?

Ugh. I guess in some ways it is–we still haven’t moved and we love the city– but I often feel like I’m marching through hostile territory. The air horn incident is a not-bad example–it probably doesn’t even occur to the air-horn owner that the blast might be more terrifying than helpful to the kids, if indeed she’s thinking of the kids at all. Another example: Recently a bus driver yelled (yes, yelled) at me for reading a book to my kid. She said it was distracting. In the meantime, a group of teenagers in the back were shouting “fuck” at the top of their lungs. Talk about a crossfire. Another Muni incident: I once broke up a fist fight that started right in front of us–again, it didn’t even occur to these idiots that there was a three-year-old two feet away. I could go on. Many times I’ve seen moms come on the bus holding babies and toddlers, and not a single person gives up his or her seat.

Do these things happen in other urban places? Of course they do. But I have noted a slightly higher number of complaints coming from SF parents than parent-friends in places like NYC, Boston, and Chicago, and I do feel like there’s a social atmosphere that’s inhospitable to kids, more of a kind of obliviousness.

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