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April 7, 2006

San Francisco graffiti tour - Part 1

I found a little present in my snail-mail box yesterday - an article from Tina from San Francisco magazine about the graffiti scene out in San Francisco. It got me to pining about all of the cool videos I had created, but then lost when my hard drive crashed a couple of years ago. So, I decided to try to pull some stills together and share some my thousands of images of San Francisco graffiti.

These photos were all shot in a photographic orgy from March 18-23 of 2003. The same week we went to war with Iraq. The same week that a massive blizzard hit the foothills of Colorado. The same week that I cut and ran to SF like a battered housewife fleeing in the night. I got out just a few hours before the hammer fell.

I shot these photos on a 4.1 megapixel Sony DSC-S85 digital camera, which I don't recommend and I sold on eBay shortly after I got it. However, the resolution is much better than the previous photos I had taken of San Francisco, which were just 640x480 stills from my Sony DCR-TRV330 HandyCam. So, these were the best images I'd ever taken in the city, at that point in time. Mostly, I was mostly just re-shooting graffiti I'd discovered between March and August of 2002, when I was commuting to Redwood City.

This 6 minute 24 second slideshow is a 42 Meg self-playing executable named baker_street.exe created using Imagematics StillMotion PE. Soundtrack is Baker Street off of the City to City album by Gerry Rafferty.

Click here to download the presentation. If you have an Apple, or you're running Unix, or if you're nervous about running a .exe file from my site, then click here to download the Macromedia Flash version. The resolution is not quite as good on the Macromedia Flash version, and you can't pause and go backward and forward, but it loads faster, and it's a fairly decent presention. Click here if you need help.

More on San Francisco graffiti scene: Quality of Life, Piece by Piece, Graffiti Archaeology, Startmobile.net, Obey Giant, Street Art: The Spray Files

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Lyrics in the extended entry.

Baker Street by Gerry Rafferty
Album: City To City
Date: 1978

Winding your way down on Baker Street
Light in your head, and dead on your feet
Well another crazy day
You drink the night away
And forget about everything
This city desert makes you feel so cold,
Its got so many people but its got no soul
And it's taken you so long to find out you were wrong
When you thought it held everything

You used to think that it was so easy
You used to say that it was so easy
But you're tryin', you're tryin' now
Another year and then you'd be happy
Just one more year and then you'd be happy
But you're cryin', you're cryin' now

Way down the street there's a light in his place
He opens the door
He's got that look on his face
And he asks you where you've been
You tell him who you've seen
And you talk about anything

He's got this dream about buyin' some land
He's gonna give up the booze and the one night stands
And then he'll settle down
It's a quiet little town
And forget about everything
But you know he'll always keep movin'
You know he's never gonna stop movin'
'Cause he's rollin'
He's the rolling stone

And when you wake up it's a new mornin'
The sun is shining it's a new mornin'
And you're going, you're going home

Song Facts The song Baker Street is named after a real street of the same name in London, where Rafferty used to visit a friend. The song is about a man who dreams of owning a house and living away from his neighborhood, but he is a drunk, and can't achieve that goal. He drinks to forget what he doesn't have, and never realizes he's a rolling stone with no direction. Rafferty was a member of Stealers Wheel, famous for the 1973 hit "Stuck In The Middle With You."

Posted by Peenie Wallie on April 7, 2006 at 11:49 AM