World Class Google Glass Hater Opens Up

“Ollie,” the local hero who takes to Craigslist to shame breastfeeding Google Glass owners about doing “bad, dumb things,” opened up to SFist in a wide-ranging interview about his thoughts on SF, tech gentrification, the San Bruno Mountains, and, of course, Google Glass:

SFist: Why have you taken to Craigslist to voice your displeasure about all this? What does that platform afford you? It's a pretty old-school approach.

Ollie: I don’t know if I’ve ever thought about any of that. It's a place you can write things. It is a medium designed for anonymity, public access, and hyper-temporality. It is low-commitment, non-self-aggrandizing, and lends itself well to writing shit while throwed. All of these things are good.

SFist: What do you think of the current tech/gentrification conversation that's going on in S.F. right now? Where are we headed with that?

Ollie: At Valencia and 15th there's a complex opening up that costs $2000/head. Two fucking thousand dollars a head. Kitty-corner away at Mission and 16th you've got the city capitol for stabcrimes. The rate of violent crime in the Mission has only increased over the past six years—I think that's how long SFPD has put crime reports online—and that's when rents have really started to take off.

I don't have an answer. I'm a smart person, kind of, but I understand I lack the context and foresight to offer an answer of any actionable value. In a certain meaning of the word, though, I am content to say “here is a tower where wealthy-ass boring motherfuckers eat $50 pizzas and here is a corner where folks get stabbed, and this optical contrast is fucked up.” We should feel bad about this. There's a certain virulent strain of Aspiring Rich Person who treats this process as acceptable, or as some kind of necessary tradeoff for “development”—which has taken on a role in the vernacular as a widely misused bullshit-word for when you need to run coverage on some real heinous shit—and that's some borderline sociopathy.

SFist: What do you love and hate about this city?

Ollie: I love the important things. Dore Alley was a couple weeks ago. I was biking through the Mission and I saw a guy walking his kid on a leash. The guy's shirt said “WHORE FUCKER.” Three blocks away I threw a thumbs-up at a guy casually stroking off in a crosswalk.

Read on.

Comments (11)

It seems to me that if you’re eating at Delfina you’re one step away from Google Glassdom anyway.

In fairness, Delfina has probably been at that location longer than most Mission residents who complain of gentrification, Google Glasses, and whatever else is on their moaning docket for the day.

Yeah, it may not quite be pot/kettle, but Ollie is at least some sort of glassware himself. He apparently eats every meal there?

Delete last sentence.. I remembered the breastfeeding one as Delfina, as well, but it was West of Pecos. In any event, Ollie does seem to like higher end Mission dining. Nothing wrong with that (maybe), I do, too, but it’s a strange vantage point from which to target the apotheoses of techrification.

Legit observation. Maybe he works there at restaurants but, yeah.

Anyway, not sure if I want to elevate his hating.

Go, Ollie! You are absolutely right.

I’m moving back to the midwest because there’s all these “new/young” intolerant people from the midwest and elsewhere.

What I witnessed when I first visited San Francisco in 1996 was a much more tolerant, articulate and loving crowd.

On a not totally unrelated note, in 2-5 years I see SF having some VERY serious traffic problems in the Mission and along Market. Don’t know what’s going to happen.

raise your hand if you know what two places Delfina was before it was Delfina….

I remember it was a some kind of antique/junk store.

U mad bro? Yes, shit got expensive. Just like it has in other size constrained high demand metropolitan areas. It sucks to get priced out of an area. Welcome to econ 101. It’s not that guy’s fault he’s making enough money to afford the rent.

“here is a tower where wealthy-ass boring motherfuckers eat $50 pizzas and here is a corner where folks get stabbed, and this optical contrast is fucked up.” This sentence actually sums up some of my confused feelings about all of this really well. If my apartment would rent tomorrow, I’m sure my landlady could charge double - and possibly inching close to triple, if she put new floors in - what I pay (and I’m paying market rate only from 2008, so not entirely insignificant), and yet people are still smoking crack and shitting on my doorstep, stabbing each other, etc. I can understand that I am unable to afford to rent in Newport Beach or Martha’s Vineyard, but it is bizarre to no longer afford my piss-soaked corner apartment above a dive bar that is getting worse (not better) all because tech workers want to and can pay more for my piss-soaked corner apartment above a dive bar. I want to hang a sign in my window that says, “I don’t think you want to pay $3600 a month for this even though you think you do.” But then again, maybe they do. I am troubled by the contrast in the neighborhood, and I have no idea what to do about it. It all feels really confusing and bizarre, more bizarre than “so just move” or “get a job in tech.”