Bay Area Life

Life through the viewfinder

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SF Giants Chinese Heritage Night 2013

CYC members perform on the field for Chinese Heritage Night 2013.

CYC members perform on the field for Chinese Heritage Night 2013.

The San Francisco Giants played host Tuesday at AT&T Park for Chinese Heritage Night. Pre-game ceremonies started out wonderfully as the beautiful warm weather filled the park. On the field, the Community Youth Center (CYC) performed a drum routine with 20 percussionists while 15 youth were carrying a green orb followed by a 40ft long green snake in celebration of the “Year of the Snake”, this year’s Chinese New Year Zodiac year.

During the game, on the View Reserve level honoring Chinese Heritage Night guests who had purchased special tickets were allowed to receive a Collector’s Edition Giants themed “Year of the Snake” figurine. Partial ticket proceeds benefited local Chinese based charities.

In addition to the special give away for Chinese Heritage Night, in community partnership with the SF Giants were representatives of the SF Hep B Free campaign, whose purpose is to bring awareness to the community of the Hepatitis B Virus (HBV) and encourage those to get tested and vaccinated.

In support of the SF Hep B Free, local pageant title holders greeted and took pictures with fans. Some of the fans of these lovely ladies ranged from little youngsters to the elderly. It was fascinating to see the many smiles that these ladies brought to the ballpark.

Meanwhile, with all the hoopla of Chinese Heritage Night, the San Francisco Giants trailed the Colorado Rockies 6-2. The Giants scored two runs in the first two innings, while the Rockies were rocking Tim Lincecum by scoring five runs in the 2nd inning and then another in the 5th inning.

Bruce Bochy allowed Lincecum to pitch only 6 innings, giving Tim 7 strikeouts for the night. He allowed 6 total runs on 4 hits. However, the Chinese Zodiac Snake was going to bite back and benefit the SF Giants by bringing great luck and fortune as they would eventually turn things around.

The crowd came to life in the bottom of the 6th inning when the Giants picked up a base runner after Gregor Blanco was walked by Adam Ottavino. Immediately following, Hector Sanchez was walked also, moving Blanco to second base. On a wild pitch with Brandon Crawford batting, both runners then advanced to scoring position, but that wouldn’t matter because Crawford hit a three run homer to left field. A fourth run would come in as Hunter Pence singled to right allowing Nick Noonan to score. The Giants tied the Rockies 6-6 after the side was retired.

Two innings passed with no Rockies scoring. In the bottom of the 8th inning, Andres Torres doubles to right field. Angel Pagan next up at bat hits a single line drive to center field as Torres comes in to score. Marco Scutaro singles to left moving Pagan to 3rd. Next Pablo Sandoval singles scoring Pagan and moving Scutaro to 2nd. Hunter Pence lines out. Brandon Belt grounds into a force out to Sandoval at 2nd with Belt and Scutaro on the corners. Gregor Blanco with two outs on the board takes the chance with a bunt to first base, as it was going to roll foul, pitcher Wilton Lopez decides to play the ball and tries to throw out Blanco at 1st for the third out, but with no luck. Scutaro ends up scoring, while Belt moves to 2nd. Hector Sanchez strikes out swinging and the Giants take the lead 9-6.

In the top of the 9th inning, Sergio Romo with 4 saves this season entered the game for a save opportunity. Reid Brignac faced Romo first, but hits into a ground out as Romo puts him out at first base to Belt. Next two batters, Eric Young and Dexter Fowler strike out swinging. Romo picks up his 5th save of the season and leads MLB in saves so far. Final score: Giants 9 – Rockies 6. The Giants picked up their largest deficit (4-runs) come-from-behind victory since Sept 11th, 2012 vs. Colorado. The Giants win also marked the eighth-straight victory over the Rockies, which is the longest current winning streak for any major league team against a current division rival. Lincecum luckily gets by with a no-decision as Reliever Santiago Casilla picks up his 1st win of the season. Rockies Matt Belisle picks up his 1st loss of the season.

The SF Giants win on Chinese Heritage Night leaves the Giants in a 3-way tie for 1st in the NL West with a record of 5-3. They are tied with the Colorado Rockies and the Arizona Diamondbacks. Although the season is just beginning, it looks very promising for the SF Giants to get back into the playoffs and then hopefully onto the World Series for a repeat.

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Mother and daughter at the game with their “Year of the Snake” bobblehead.

Mother and daughter at the game with their “Year of the Snake” bobblehead.

Community Youth Center (CYC) youth perform on the drums.

Community Youth Center (CYC) youth perform on the drums.

The CYC youth drum in unison.

The CYC youth drum in unison.

The CYC youth carry a 40ft. long snake while chasing a green orb.

The CYC youth carry a 40ft. long snake while chasing a green orb.

Lou Seal shows off his two World Series rings.

Lou Seal shows off his two World Series rings.

The Collector’s Edition Giants themed “Year of the Snake” figurines.

The Collector’s Edition Giants themed “Year of the Snake” figurines.

The first 20,000 fans at the game received a promotional 2012 World Series snow globe.

The first 20,000 fans at the game received a promotional 2012 World Series snow globe.

The SF Hep B Free table with brand ambassadors and local pageant title holders.

The SF Hep B Free table with brand ambassadors and local pageant title holders.

Local pageant title holders pose with SF Giants towels.

Local pageant title holders pose with SF Giants towels.

Tim Lincecum on the mound allows for 4 hits and 6 runs. Lincecum strikes out 7 for the night.

Tim Lincecum on the mound allows for 4 hits and 6 runs. Lincecum strikes out 7 for the night.

 

Marco Scutaro’s hitting groove is coming back as he hits 3 for 4.

Marco Scutaro’s hitting groove is coming back as he hits 3 for 4.

Hunter Pence with his seventh game hitting streak.

Hunter Pence with his seventh game hitting streak.

 

Brandon Crawford is welcomed home after hitting a three run homer, which marks his second career home run at AT&T Park (coming on his 363rd plate appearance at AT&T).

Brandon Crawford is welcomed home after hitting a three run homer, which marks his second career home run at AT&T Park (coming on his 363rd plate appearance at AT&T).

Santiago Casilla picks up his 1st win of the season.

Santiago Casilla picks up his 1st win of the season.

Sergio Romo picks up his 5th save of the season.

Sergio Romo picks up his 5th save of the season.

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SF Giants Sweep The LA Dodgers

Beat LA

“Beat LA, Beat LA, Beat LA,” was the chant heard around the stadium for the three game series and guess what? That is exactly what the SF Giants did to the LA Dodgers. Leading in the NL West the LA Dodgers had been in the lead of the division up three games, but that soon would all fade quickly.

The Giants hosted the Dodgers on Monday night after losing an away game at the Oakland A’s in their pursuit of possibly sweeping the A’s for the Battle of the Bay interleague baseball 3-game series. Down on their luck of sweeping the A’s, but winning 2 of 3, the Giants started off the first of a three game series against the Dodgers with Barry Zito pitching. With much run support and great pitching the Giants went to win the first game 8-0. An awesome shutout game. Only 2 games back from 1st place in the NL West.

On the second night, Giants put Ryan Vogelsong on the mound paired against Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw. A night where both pitchers duked it out, but the Giants struck first with two runs in the 4th, but that’s all the Giants would need as Vogelsong pitched 7 scoreless innings, followed up with Affedlt relieving and Casilla closing. Another awesome shutout game. Only 1 game back from 1st place in the NL West.

For the third game, the Giants hosted the Dodgers for an afternoon game at AT&T Park. Giants led the way with putting Tim Lincecum on the mound against  Chad Billingsley. Both pitchers were struggling having a poor season, but Timmy especially having a bad season after having several great seasons with the Giants. Lincecum had some type of inspiration going into the game because he pitched wonderfully. I don’t know what got into him, perhaps he had some smoke or something, but he did a great job on the mound with some great stuff and nice movement on the ball. Throughout the game talks of shutting out the Dodgers three times in a row and sweeping them were the topics of discussion as the game was played. How much of this talk could result in jinxing the team? It’s something that usually is never said allowed, but always lingering in our minds. Nevertheless, Lincecum was able to hold out above the Dodgers as he pitched 7 scoreless innings. The Giants by the 5th Inning scored 3 runs and this was all they needed to have scored as they went on to shutout the Dodgers once again.

From chants of “Beat LA” circulated throughout the stadium and even around the city of SF, the chants turned into “Sweep LA”. And for the first time in Giants baseball history not only do the Giants sweep LA, but they shut out their opposing rivals, the LA Dodgers, in all three games. Never have the Giants been so vibrant since the 2010 World Series Championship. However, on this day things were to change fast. The Giants not only sweep the Dodgers and shut them out, but they come to tie with the Dodgers for 1st place in the NL West. Tonight the Giants will play the Cincinnati Reds who are currently in 1st place in the NL Central Division. Can the Giants hold onto first? Only time will tell.

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AT&T Park

Melk Maids

Melk Men and Maids

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Matt Cain Pitches A Perfect Game

Giants World Series Parade 2010 Matt Cain

Unbelievable game pitched by Matt Cain as he pitched against the Houston Astros. Matt becomes the first SF Giant to pitch a perfect game, which includes the time the Giants franchise was in New York. Matt Cain pitched 14Ks and allowed for an awesome game. He received a lot of run support with the Giants picking up 10 runs, the most runs this season at home. Cain becomes the 22nd player in major league baseball history to pitch a perfect game.

Also pivotal moments of the game was the wind, spin of the ball or something that prevented Astros catcher Chris Snyder from hitting a homerun. Also another great play was when Gregor Blanco performed a remarkable catch in center field preventing a base-runner in the top of the 7th inning. Lastly, the final batter of the game, Jason Castro, hit a bouncing ground ball to Giants third baseman Joaquin Arias to first baseman Brandon Belt.

As much as a traditional “torture” game goes in San Francisco, the last play of the game couldn’t have been more of a torture situation as it had gotten.  The play could have made it or broke it for Matt Cain, I wasn’t sure if Arias had enough on the throw fearing that his throw might have reached first base on a short hop, but the ball surely made it into the glove of Belt and just in time.

The Giants celebrated with showering Cain on the field with whatever beverages they had on hand. This is one moment that Cain will never forget.

I am proud to be a GIANT!

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101st Zazzle Bay To Breakers

Bay To Breakers 2012

The 101st Bay To Breakers hit the streets of San Francisco on May 20th starting from the San Francisco Bay to the breakers at Ocean Beach. The 12k race brought in thousands upon thousands of people either running for sport or leisure.

The Women’s competition started first with the Men’s competition starting soon thereafter. The Zazzle Bay To Breakers Men’s winner is Sammy Kitwara of Kenya (34:40.5) and the Women’s winner is Mamitu Daska of Ethiopia (39:02.4).

Although, many love to participate in this race one thing that Bay To Breakers runners/walkers dislike are the rules and regulations prohibiting alcohol. Although what the authorities and race officials have good intent behind their justifications, it was really difficult to enforce. There were checkpoints throughout the race, but how can you stop miles of people. From my estimates about 500,000 people attended the race, but that’s just my judgment considering 3 hours worth of people passed me as I was posted at one spot. Now try to enforce a rule and not expect mass chaos.

The most entertaining thing about this cross-city race is the costume aspect. Participants that run or walk the race for leisure have the opportunity to basically put on whatever their hearts desire or not wear anything at all. This is one of the few exceptions that the authorities in San Francisco look the other way and look the other way they literally do. This year I think there was a record number of nakedness. The ratio of naked men to naked women was about 15:1, something I had to estimate because I surely wasn’t counting them one by one.

While photographing this race, the biggest challenge I had was trying to find the most creative costumes/themes and the ideas behind them. I found that this year was one of the best to date. This year seemed to be more entertaining because the costumes were compared to other years more creative and ingenious. I often found myself laughing at just the pure wackiness of things. People in San Francisco are just weird. Well, I can’t blame all San Franciscan’s, a lot of runners come from out of town too. Let’s just say everybody is weird.

Next year, I might tough it out and walk with the crowd through the entire race and document my experience. This is a great race that when everybody is given the chance to let loose, they let loose. Anyhow, onto the photos of wackiness, the  descriptions are below each photo. These are just the highlights of my race experience.

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Bay To Breakers 2012 (1)

The sea of runners are not far behind the competitive Men's Heat

Bay To Breakers 2012 (3)

San Francisco Giants Tim Lincecum takes a warm up run before having to pitch against the Oakland Athletics at AT&T Park or this is his twin. You decide.

Where's Waldo? Here he is juggling while jogging

Where's Waldo? Here he is juggling while jogging

I laughed out loud as I saw this woman run by, she laughed too.

I laughed out loud as I saw this woman run by, she laughed too.

Who says tacos can't limbo?

Who says tacos can't limbo?

Tribute to the Golden Gate Bridge's 75th Anniversary

Tribute to the Golden Gate Bridge's 75th Anniversary

Stop ... Hammertime!

Stop ... Hammertime!

This is the best Smurfette outfit I've ever seen

This is the best Smurfette outfit I've ever seen

Green Eggs and Ham anyone?

Green Eggs and Ham anyone?

These Muppets must be hot

These Muppets must be hot

I got no answer from these guys when I asked them to pose, guess they're just mimes.

I got no answer from these guys when I asked them to pose, guess they're just mimes.

Pretty hilarious beer pong group, the whole table set soon followed after them

Pretty hilarious beer pong group, the whole table set soon followed after them

Poor Kermit, another group right after had Miss Piggy in a soup pot.

Poor Kermit, another group right after had Miss Piggy in a soup pot.

These Baywatchers ended up walking to become Breakerwatchers

These Baywatchers ended up walking to become Breakerwatchers

Who remembers the game Operation?

Who remembers the game Operation?

Patriotism

Patriotism

These muscle men lifted these weights with such ease.

These muscle men lifted these weights with such ease.

Hotdog on a stick anyone? Thanks for the snack ladies

Hotdog on a stick anyone? Thanks for the snack ladies

It's about that time for High School Prom, although this couple is reliving a moment from the 80s

It's about that time for High School Prom, although this couple is reliving a moment from the 80s

Sushi Combo anyone? This was one of my favorite groups

Sushi Combo anyone? This was one of my favorite groups

Construction crew for the Golden State Warriors Arena?

Construction crew for the Golden State Warriors Arena?

SNL's Ambiguously Gay Duo

SNL's Ambiguously Gay Duo

Michael Jacksons

Michael Jacksons

I'm glad my real pageant friends don't pose like these Grand Supreme ladies do. The pose is dead on and just so funny it's true

I'm glad my real pageant friends don't pose like these Grand Supreme ladies do. The pose is dead on and just so funny it's true

These busy bees pollinate this flower in Golden Gate Park

These busy bees pollinate this flower in Golden Gate Park

These censored women had to be escorted by two bodyguards, too bad there were a lot of uncensored things I saw that day

These censored women had to be escorted by two bodyguards, too bad there were a lot of uncensored things I saw that day

These animals can be cute, but ferocious
These animals can be cute, but ferocious
Good Credit No Problem, Bad Credit No Problem. The potential disaster coming? Big Problem

Good Credit No Problem, Bad Credit No Problem. The potential disaster coming? Big Problem

GO GIANTS!

GO GIANTS!

Anyone up for a game of Rock Paper Scissors?

Anyone up for a game of Rock Paper Scissors?

Pac-man, Ghosts, and Fruit altogether in harmony, then after the photo Pac-Man ate them all.

Pac-man, Ghosts, and Fruit altogether in harmony, then after the photo Pac-Man ate them all.

Beastie Boys

Beastie Boys

SNL's Spartan Cheerleaders or reliving their San Lorenzo Valley Cougars cheerleading days.

SNL's Spartan Cheerleaders or reliving their San Lorenzo Valley Cougars cheerleading days.

This guy came again with the same jersey as last year.

This guy came again with the same jersey as last year.

At least he reminded me that the year is 2012 as he went.

At least he reminded me that the year is 2012 as he went and we will look forward to 2013 and the 102nd Bay To Breakers

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Bay to Breakers 2010

Bay to Breakers 2010 (click here for images)

Bay to Breakers is San Francisco’s excuse to have a crazy good time. It’s an event race where practically the whole city attends with many more coming from all over the Bay Area and even throughout the world. Some come with running the race in mind, some come just to relax and have a great time partying with friends and family. Some come clothed in costumes and some don’t come clothed at all.

This year’s race was a little better in terms of the weather, but still was a little bit on the chilly side, until the early afternoon when things started to clear up. The foot race seemed to have a lot more people, but the costumes were on the decline as to previous years. I think perhaps race attenders didn’t have enough disposable income to spend on creating costumes. Many race attenders just came armed with cameras to try and catch the craziest costumes and just the weirdest of things.

All in all, being able to document this foot race was pretty fun and seeing just the vast amount of people on the streets felt kind of surreal. The colors all over were just a photographers dream come true. I, myself, love colors all around it just makes me happy. However, when I come across old naked and even young people naked, it just throws me for a loop because this is just something you don’t see everyday, nor should you be exposed to some of them. I mean if you’re gonna expose yourself please look in the mirror and don’t punish people.

In the end, I had a great time. People that I photographed were nice and friendly. Some of the costumes were great and some not so great, but in the end I think that it’s the spirit of laughter and joy that make this foot race so fun to attend. My favorite costumes this year for the race would have to go to the groups that created team outfits, especially the group of gnomes, the Pac-Man group, the Mario Kart groups, and the Tetris group. Congratulations guys for making me laugh, you guys are great. Until next year folks! See you at the races!!!

Pictures of the Bay to Breakers can be seen by clicking on the picture link above. If this post was informative and helpful, please feel free to leave me a comment or donation below. Thank you.

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San Jose Sharks vs. Edmonton Oilers (Jan 17)

San Jose Sharks vs Edmonton Oilers (click for images)

The San Jose Sharks have been doing really well this season. Currently they are at the top in the Pacific Division and on Monday they had the most points National Hockey League with 81pts. Today, they are behind the Washington Capitals who have 82pts, resulting from their win last night. Am I proud that the Sharks are up there? Darn Right!!! It’s just a matter of how long can they do it for. I’m pretty confident that they will play hard for the rest of the season. Will this be the year that the Sharks take the Stanley Cup? Quite possibly. I think with the way the Sharks have been playing it could be the very year that they do it.

I took a trip down to San Jose a few weeks ago with a friend to watch a game at the HP Pavilion, also known as “The Tank”. The Sharks that weekend were playing the Edmonton Oilers. The game was pretty exciting for me since I haven’t been to a game in over 5 years.

The game started off pretty good with the Sharks scoring pretty early on in the game with a goal by Marleau. The Oilers picked up a goal tying the game. However, later in the first period Setoguchi snuck in a goal to give the Sharks a 2-1 lead.

Following the first period the Sharks were on fire and picked up another goal quick in the second period by Setoguchi making it a 3-1 game. Sharks then went to score one last goal later on in the period by Thorton making it 4-1, but the Oilers didn’t give up. They picked up one more goal in the third period to make the final score of the game San Jose Sharks 4 to Edmonton Oilers 2.

The MVP of the game was Setoguchi, which is a player that is starting to grow on me and for now has to be my favorite player in hockey. Something about saying his name makes watching the game more enjoyable. Setoguchi would also have to be one of my favorite players because he wears the number of one of my all time favorite players in Bay Area sports and that number has been worn by the late and great quarterback of the 80s; the good ol’ number 16 worn by Joe Montana.

In other news, since the Sharks performed well and picked up a victory of 4 points Round Table Pizza gave away free pizzas to all who attended the game. How sweet of a deal is that. Not only did the Sharks pick up a victory, but fans could pick up free personal sized pizzas, with any home victory 4pts and above.

If you haven’t been down to see a hockey game, it’s truly a great experience to see it live and in person. Televised games are just not the same when you can see players brawl in person. I hope to see more games in the future, so if you have time go check out a game and if you have extra tickets you can send them my way too, I won’t turn you down.

Pictures of the hockey game can be seen by clicking on the picture link above. If you enjoyed this post and it was informative and helpful, please feel free to leave me a comment or donation below. Thank you.

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Kiteboard Course Racing World Championship

Kiteboarding

The World’s first Kiteboard Course Racing Championship was held here in San Francisco brought to you by the St. Francis Yacht Club. The competition brought contestants from all over the world with a majority of them from the United States. Here they faced off with each other on a huge course.

The course covered an area that was supposedly one nautical mile, but the leg of the race seemed much longer than that. From Crissy Field the boundaries were assumed to be the west end of Crissy Field to the west, Alcatraz Island to the east, Sausalito to the north, and Crissy Field Beach to the south.

Race qualifications began on August 4th through August 6th. Race Finals were held on August 7th and 8th. The qualifying races seemed like it would be a lot of fun. When looking at all the competitors out on the water it reminded me a huge biker gang riding behind one another. It was a pretty amazing site.

At first glance, when arriving to the beach it was surreal to see a beach lined with a rainbow of colors. If one did not know that there was a competition, someone can easily mistake the kites as tents. The week had excellent conditions. It was sunny skies with a few scattered clouds and the winds were good enough for a great competition. Tourists and native Bay Area locals lined the beach front for a glimpse of this sport. To some this event was something new and cool and to others they thought that it was a little crazy to see people being pulled on a surfboard by a kite and going around inflatable buoys. Interesting enough, if you haven’t seen a competition like this before it is something to see for yourself. Like in any sport you will have your likes and dislikes. I felt that this sport was a little slow for me, but I bet if I were to pick up the sport of kiteboarding my opinion would dramatically change.

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The Lone Sport of Abalone Diving

Abalone

I had the privilege of meeting a man by name of Lenny at the SalmonAid salmon bake event. At the event we exchanged some conversation and later swapped information. He later invited me to what I would have never experienced if it were not for him. Abalone diving is not something you hear about every day. It’s something that you eat every once in awhile. Most Americans eat beef, chicken, pork, fish, and all sorts of vegetables. Shellfish is great, but I believe most people tend to stay away from it because they are either allergic to it or it can be rather expensive.

Lenny took me up the coast of Northern California in his vehicle along with two other guys, Ryan and Beldon, who I got acquainted with while on the drive to our diving location. During our trip, I learned a lot about the nature of abalone diving. I found out that it is a sport that is done solo. Divers can dive in partners or small groups, but the sole act of diving and capturing abalone is an individual task. If going in groups one person in the group is assigned to be a spotter just to make sure if one person doesn’t come up for air then the other diver has to go in and to prevent a potential drowning situation.

The whole sport of abalone diving starts out when divers swim out from the coast with their equipment.  Divers can equip themselves with tools to capture abalone, but they they are not allowed to carry any breathing apparatuses with them in their hunt. Among a diver’s list of tools that he/she can bring out onto the water can be and are not limited to the following items: wetsuit, mask, snorkel, fins, knife, weight belt and weights, depth gauges, at least a 7inch gauge (ruler), an abalone iron (spatula looking tool), flashlight, and personal abalone floats (rubber inner tube encased in a backpack styled cover which allows the diver to use as a flotation device to rest on and to enable storage of equipment and abalone caught). Other optional flotation devices are used such as inflatable surf mats, boogie boards, kayaks, canoes, and even boats.

After a hike out to the coastal waters, Lenny, Ryan, and Beldon got out into the water. The waves were a little choppy, but to me it did not look too bad. The tide was coming in and everything looks totally fine observing from the surface. However, while in the water that is a different story. The three guys told me later that the water was a little rough.

While on a dive there is so many things that a diver has to think about. Divers need to think about their oxygen in their lungs, they have to keep aware of the tide and the waves because within the water there is a lot of power which can easily take you in or out to sea, wave could also smash you into rocks or into fields of kelp. Divers sometimes fear the possible confrontations of sharks, and the fear of suffocating. When divers dive near the coast they face kelp fields. One of the worst scenarios is to be running low on oxygen, thus a diver comes up for air, but while coming up for air it is possible to get tangled in a strand of kelp which can easily attach to your belt or other equipment. Being anchored down the last thing a diver should do is struggle and panic losing any remaining oxygen left. Divers need to remain as calm as possible and either untangle themselves or cut the kelp with a knife.

After collecting three abalone each, the guys come to shore and showed me their wonderful stash. The catches seem really good and large, but no record keepers. The largest abalone caught on record in California is 12.34 inches. It was caught by  John Pepper. Catching of any abalone under 7 inches is punishable by fine and confiscation of fishing license. One article I found on illegal poaching of abalone was written by the Oakland Tribune in 2005. You can read more about it here.

Later that evening, Lenny invited me over for dinner and I partook in an abalone feast. Lenny took the abalone and sliced it thin, where he then smashed it with a tenderizer, breaded it, and then fried it on a skillet of olive oil. Accompanying the meal were rice, green beans, artichokes, and chicken wings (the chicken wings seem odd right in this meal, that’s because I brought them over along with green beans).

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49ers Family Day 2009

49ers Family Day 2009

The San Francisco 49ers hosted Family Day at Candlestick Park. Free to all fans, the 49ers offered many workshops for the kids, activities for all ages (field goal kick, 40 yard dash, obstacle course, etc), and even autograph signings.

This was my first year at Family Day ever. As a native San Franciscan, I’ve never had the opportunity to come to one Family Day. Having the opportunity with two friends, I decided to tag along for the journey. It was quite a crazy experience. I’ve never seen so many kids running around wearing 49ers memorabilia. Lines were long for free autographs. There were even lines for food and free giveaways. The kids had probably one of the best giveaways ever. They got a free ticket if they completed several workshops at the stadium. The tickets were for upper reserve seats. Their face value was $81.

My favorite moment at Family Day was being able to see the five Super Bowl Vince Lombardi trophies. I can’t believe that San Francisco was home to so many awesome players. It’s kind of sad to see the end of an era. I just hope with the new pick up of Michael Crabtree that the team will pick up a little pace on the many years of drought. I remember the days of Joe Montana and Jerry Rice. That was when I had a deep appreciation for the game. I played in high school and I followed the team, but ever since the team started going down hill it was hard for me to want to stay home and watch the game.

One sad thing to note is that there was this one booth that showed fans the new stadium plans for Santa Clara in 2014. I was so sad seeing this because Candlestick Park will be only a memory. The Giants have left the building to AT&T Park and now the 49ers are soon to leave for a different city altogether. If there was something I could change about the move, I would have the 49ers play in Oakland for a few years as Candlestick Park is rebuilt, but that is only a dream. I hope that I will have the same passion for football as I once did when I was younger.

Overall, Family Day was a great time to see how much fans still appreciate the team. I’m glad I went because that’s what sports is all about, it’s about family coming together to take part and watch the game together.

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A Day In Pacifica

Pacifica Pier

Today I decided to spend a day out in Pacifica. I first started out the day at Camelot Fish & Chips, a local pub that serves great food. The restaurant does wonders on fish and other seafood. I haven’t found one in San Francisco that was consistent and I’m glad I came to this spot because they know how to prepare a mean meal.

After my delicious meal, I drove around the small town of Pacifica and checked out a few local shops and found myself at a sea cliff. I spent some time here just smelling the fresh air and checking out the view for as long as the eye could see. While there I saw a man fly over head with paragliding and in the distance Pacifica Pier. Finished checking out the greenery, I decided to take a drive and find that pier.

When I got to Pacifica Pier I took a stroll along the concrete seawall and proceeded to the concrete pier. While on the pier I noticed that there was a high volume of men, women, and children fishing and crabbing off the side. Some had poles and some had nets. I came across a nice couple of folks while there. I conversed first with an elderly gentleman who brought out his kids to go fishing because he wanted to get the kids away from the television. We began to talk about the whole fishing season and what’s legal and illegal to catch. He then on informed me that fishing is totally free as long as you are on a public pier. I had no idea of that and I hope to bring back my old school fishing skill one day.

Later, I walked further and met up with Craig and Deborah. Craig was scaling his striped sea bass that he had caught off the pier at Crissy Field. He gutted up and filleted his fish. After taking all the pieces that he wanted, he had no need for the rest of the body and so instead of letting it go to waste, he gave the head to this elderly lady that so happened to have a plastic bag in her pocket and she was so happy. She went on to tell us that this was better than going to a casino because here she actually got something. Craig decided to give me the center body and I plan to use it to make some sort of porridge or soup with that in a few days.

Continuing on my journey to the end of the pier, I came in contact with two gentlemen who have been striking it rich with crab. Frankie and Russ told me that they got there at about 2:30pm and about every four minutes they had some crab action. Frankie went on to tell me that he made his own snares to capture crab and went into detail about how he used deer fencing to do so. As I was talking with him they kept reeling the lines in and each time they did they caught crab after crab. Some of them of were not of legal size so those had to be tossed back, but it was remarkable at how many there were able to catch. They caught a total of about 24 crabs which were a combination of red crab and dungeness crab. Russ while counting the crab towards the end of their evening decided to give two crabs and for that I am grateful. I had no idea he would be so generous, but I’m glad he did because once I got home I cooked those bad boys up. I couldn’t wait for myself to get any ingredients so I just decided to steam those suckers. And to end the whole day of my excursion after having fish and chips, I ended the night with some delicious crab to top off the day.