Adventures in North Beach
(Articles and stories by me.)
North Beach in the early
The Anxious Asp
A Specs Monologue
Friend of Specs
Conversation in Specs
Brenda ("Life Begins at Midnight")
The Chekhovian Smile
North Beach Links Elsewhere on the Web
When I first lived in San Francisco, in my twenties,
and used to come to City Lights frequently
(especially stopping part way down the stairway to read the
I was especially struck by the door in the basement
with the painted slogan saying,
"I am the door."
It seemed to me like an ultimate dada-esque statement.
But recently I learned that this actually predates
In the days before City Lights,
there was some kind of Christian group that used
to hold meetings in this basement,
and the slogan is some sort of biblical reference.
Check out the tour
of historical North Beach places.
Beat Generation Links
The Beat Generation. By Michael Hayward.
(by Marcus Williamson)
According to Specs (owner of
"Bohemians were more political in nature.
Beatniks were about getting stoned, getting laid
and living in some squalid place
together. Although, there were a lot of weekend, middle-class
beatniks in the day.
You'd get a lot of kids from the suburbs who would buy a
beret and dark glasses and try to act nutty. The old bohemians who
lived in the neighborhood
would make fun of these weekend beatniks."
--- Julian Guthrie, SFGate.com
Beat Generation Archives
The Dharma Beats
The Beat Generation
"How Beat Happened" (Steve Silberman)
Hary Redl's Portraits
of the Beat Generation
List of Beat Links
This is a very comprehensive list.
When I have the time, I'll steal more from it.
"The only people for me are the mad ones,
the ones who are mad to live,
mad to talk, mad to be saved,
desirous of everything at the same time,
the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing,
but burn, burn, burn, burn, like fabulous roman candles
exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see
the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes 'Awww!'"
--Jack Kerouac, On the Road
Story of My Life