29 March 2010


 A zeizen pesach, y'all.

Okay, I have to admit something embarrassing and shameful: I'm addicted to "The Streets of San Francisco" re-runs on KOFY.  I record it daily and probably watch one or two episodes each week.

But how can I resist?!  The great low-tech montage opening (I wish I'd had the Fisherman's Wharf segment when I ran a workshop with their business improvement district!), the Henry Mancini score, Karl Malden and Michael Douglas, old-style single-stream plotlines, police work without glitzy CSI techniques or even cellphones, the vintage cars and clothes and slang, "special guest stars" like Desi Arnaz Jr. or Ricky Nelson or Susan Dey, and all the tv character actors I remember from my youth.  You can literally see the smoke of the whole post- Summer of Love/Patty Hearst/Zebra Killer middle-America/establishment fascination and fear of San Francisco swirling around in the long shots.  And of course there are token African-American, Latino, Asian-American, and women good and bad guys, and so far I've seen one lesbian killer and two different male characters in two different episodes pretending to be gay...

I remember watching the show with my father as a kid in New York.  Now one of the great attractions is seeing familiar or lost buildings and sections of the city--a common locale is the flophouses along the Embarcadero.  And while, as a San Franciscan, I'm still not up to my New York caliber of "that's the corner of 28th & 8th," it's a joy to be able to recognize quite a bit even in the nabes, and catch those "they just turned from Market onto 19th Ave" splices.

KOFY airs the episodes in order, and the time slot right after TSOSF is a viewer-chosen half-hour; right now it's "The Flying Nun."  I kid you not, peeps voted for it ("you really like her, you really like her").  You know what that's a play on, right???

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