My Favorite Corner of SF

Home to one hella tall cactus

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Photo: Joey Ukrop

This article is part of My Favorite Corner of SF, a feature series that pays homage to a special place in the city.

My neighborhood is home to what may very well be the tallest cactus in San Francisco. I have no data to back that up, but I’m pretty confident about it. Towering more than 12 feet, the green goddess grows out of a small box next to the arched entrance of a beautiful old apartment building on the corner of Anza Street and Fourth Avenue. …

What my life was like when I lived on San Francisco’s hidden island

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I was eating breakfast at an IHOP in Lawton, Oklahoma, when I seriously considered living on Yerba Buena Island for the first time. Fresh out of journalism school in Missouri, I had just packed my truck with all my earthly possessions and set my sights on San Francisco. Even though I already had a writing job lined up, I didn’t know anybody in the state of California. In my mind, that wasn’t a problem. I did, however, need a place to live — immediately.

That’s exactly what I got when a fateful phone call drew me away from my Swedish crepes. My landlady-to-be was on the other end, following up on my perfectly calm, in-no-way-frantic email with a subject line that read something like, “NEW COLLEGE GRADUATE WHO LANDED DREAM JOB VERY INTERESTED IN YOUR ROOM FOR RENT!!!” She asked a list of basic questions, quizzed me about my astrological sign (Taurus) and voiced her approval before my food got cold. …


Joey Ukrop

Fast-moving feature writer who still stops at every garage sale. Always Ultra Modern.

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