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Inside San Francisco

Inside San Francisco (Aug 16th, 2019)

1. E-scooter company Scoot, one of two scooter companies to obtain a permit to do business in San Francisco, is facing criticism for primarily focusing on the city’s busiest and most lucrative neighborhoods. Scoot, which is owned by Bird, previously told SFMTA it would provide service to low-income residents, but customers say they can’t drop off scooters in the Tenderloin or in parts of Chinatown – two of the seven “communities of concern” that the company pledged to prioritize serving as a condition of joining the city’s pilot program. An April survey revealed that Scoot’s customers are predominantly white men who have a household income of $100,000 or more. SFMTA said that between December and March, 52 percent of all scooter trips started or ended in communities of concern. - LOS ANGELES TIMES

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2. A homeless man involved in a violent attack of a woman outside of her Beale Street condominium building was released from jail, causing uproar. The surveillance video of the attack, which took place early Sunday morning, has gone viral. The man, who’s lawyer said was having a mental health crisis, was arrested and charged with the attack, but a San Francisco Superior Court Judge decided to release the attacker, pending his next court hearing today. The judge, Christine Van Aken, is facing criticism from Gov. Gavin Newsom, Mayor London Breed, and the victim, and the San Francisco Police Officers Association has called for the judge to be reassigned to traffic court. “I don’t understand what more it takes for the city and the judge to understand that this man is a danger to our society, our community, other residents,” said the victim. - ABC7

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3. Follow Friday: @TomDehnel

Sometimes, it can be hard to stay positive in San Francisco, with a constant spotlight being shown on the housing crisis and homelessness and car break-ins and e-scooters bursting into flames and NIMBYs versus YIMBYS. However, it’s people like Tom Dehnel who make smiling in San Francisco a little bit easier.

Tom likes to post photos of cool cars he sees around the city on Twitter, and he enjoys asking thought-provoking questions, like why can’t we text the police? But perhaps the biggest reason to follow Tom is because he makes videos that are fun to watch, like this video from the San Francisco Japanese Anime Festival and this video from when the boozy Taco Bell opened in Pacifica.

Tom also shot the world's longest commercial, by distance, while running in a 15-kilometer race and carrying a selfie stick. In short, Tom is a friendly, entertaining presence to have in your social media feed, and I always look forward to new posts from him, especially on YouTube.

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4. A protest in support of the people of Hong Kong will be held Saturday in Embarcadero Plaza. According to the Reddit post, the event is scheduled from 2-3 p.m., and it’s being organized by the Northern California Hong Kong Club, along with various student and community groups. Stanford Professor Larry Diamond will speak about his thoughts on the pro-democracy protests, and UC Berkeley student Hayman Wong will share her recent experiences on the ground in Hong Kong. “The people of Hong Kong are fighting for basic human rights, including freedom of the press, and the right to not imprisoned for criticizing the government,” reads the post.

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5. A new Tacolicious outpost is opening downtown this October at Market and Third streets. The 425-square-foot eatery, called Tacolicious Chico, will be located at 685 Market St., and it’ll be a counter-service operation, with limited seating outside and no seating inside. Unlike the chain's other taco shops, Tacolicious Chico will focus on tacos de guisados: tacos filled with hearty braises and stews. - SFIST

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6. It’s Friday, and if you’re not yet thinking about brunch this weekend, here’s your game plan. Eater released its August edition of the “Hottest Brunch Spots In SF,” and rather than regurgitating the list of well-known old faithfuls, this roundup emphasizes new(er) eateries that are consistently busy, have good food, and are worth rolling out of bed for (read: waiting in line for an hour to get a table). - EATER SF

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7. A week after fitness chains Equinox and SoulCycle were shrouded in politically infused controversy, here’s a story about the seven people you’ll meet at a San Francisco gym ... because why not. There’s “the tech bro” (obviously), and “the self-proclaimed yogi” (obviously), but maybe one or two of these archetypes will surprise you — or at least make you smile. - THE BOLD ITALIC

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8. Here's a pair of really nice articles about the evolution of Noe Valley from a collection of dairy farms into a quiet (and wealthy) neighborhood. Whereas this first article provides more of a deep dive into the neighborhood’s past, this second story focuses on St. Paul’s Church, which was used as the main location for the musical comedy Sister Act in 1992. If you’re looking for your daily dose of local history, I’d recommend starting here. - SF WEEKLY

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9. Following last week’s Bay Curious episode on how to find new friends, this week, the podcast's hosts took a look at how to deepen shallow friendships. That’s right: get your notebooks ready and listen up, because here are four tips on how you can take your friendships to the next level. (Sidenote: I’m still trying to figure out how this friendship series fits under Bay Curious’ umbrella of regional exploration and demystifying local oddities, but I’m here for it.) - KQED

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10. Today's SF in Pictures: Reddit user tonyjayfunk

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Shane Downing is an award-winning journalist based in Oakland. As a freelance writer, he’s passionate about covering the LGBTQ+ community, at-risk youth and local news. He's a former Hoodline editor, and his work regularly appears in Oakland Magazine and The San Francisco Business Times. When he's not writing, Shane is an avid baker, gardener and tennis player.

Editor: Bobby Cherry (senior editor at Inside, who’s always on social media).

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