Memory Map: Shaw & Blackstone

Badly drawn map of Shaw & Blackstone

A new blog series where, in a crudely drawn map format, I write down memories and random thoughts about a Fresno intersection.

I am trying to keep a record for myself and maybe jog a memory or two for you.

Good luck trying to read my sloppy and quickly drawn map of the intersection of Shaw & Blackstone (Or do you say Blackstone & Shaw?).

Anyway, with the exception of the current Heroes Comics, Rocket Dog, Electronic Billboard and Vineyard Farmers Market, the map is all old references.

  • The old convenience store at the Vineyard was a great place to get baseball cards that weren’t Topps.
  • Nothing compares to the old conversation pit in the Peppermill bar.
  • I can’t remember the name of the sporting goods store my old step-grandad worked at.
  • I miss both locations of Plaza Ventana.
  • I miss all the Wavelengths too.
  • When that Electronic Billboard went in it was like “Oh we’re big-time now?”
  • Bring back Circuit City please.
  • That video store is gone now, right? It’s the only store in town I ever noticed having a “red door” for the adult section.
  • How and why is there still an empty lot right next to a freeway and on a major street!? One of those kind of property owners that just sits on it forever, hoping to make some huge payday, I assume.

There you have it. My first Memory Map post. I would like to think I’ll get better at the map part, just wanted to get this up before I talked myself out of it.

Feel free to share your memories or home made maps in the comments or on Twitter.

🗺📍🧭

COVID Is Not The First Thing That Scares Me About Thanksgiving Eve At Livingstone’s

Classic Livingstone’s

For the sake of this post, I will put aside the debate about if it is safe enough to go to a packed bar in the final (we hope) throws of a pandemic.

That said…

Tonight is Thanksgiving Eve. Traditionally a big night in the Tower District, where Fresno Natives (now living out-of-town) come back and mix with current Fresnans.

Those current ones have to listen to old friends pump up their post-Fresno lives, like they’re trying to sell us on bitcoin.

Livingstone’s traditionally has been the epicenter for these meetups. At this point, I am afraid to go.

Not because I am worried I’ll run into some weird person from my past. It’s because I likely would not run into anybody.

Like, not one person I know.

Been away from the Tower scene too long. And any old friends I might see hardly go out anymore either.

I might be too old for Livingstone’s. (ouch that stings)

Enjoy yourselves, younger Tower people. Enjoy Livingstone’s and Strummers and Goldstein’s and Vini’s and Fresbrew and Spokeasy’s and whatever.

Enjoy it while it lasts, kids.

Northeast Fresno Doesn’t Deserve The New Benaddiction

“Who Made Who” is my go-to dish at Benaddiction

Hey, I’m happy for the owners of Benaddiction, getting a new place. A nice big fresh spot. I am sure it will do well. They totally 100% deserve it! They are good folks and worked hard for this.

BUT! (you know there is a ‘but’ coming)

But, it’s kinda fucked up for those of us that live by the NW location. That have been supporting the Bullard & Marks spot all these freaking years.

Braving the long waits and postage stamp sized suite wedged next to a pool supply shop and a Supercuts training center, in hopes of one day raising the stature of the place to a full-sized NW Fresno location.

Finally it happed. Only North EAST Fresno, (the Taint District no less) got the new bigness. It feels like NW Fresno put in the work and NE got the reward.

This is how OG hardcore Green Day and Jawbreaker fans must have felt when the bands signed their first label deal.

No, I won’t be turning my back to them as they play onstage. So, I will still go to the Bullard & Marks location. And love the food.

But I might carry a chip on my shoulder when I do. Maybe mutter under-my-breath “sellouts” as I am getting seated, just to make myself feel better, I guess.

The “Who Made Who” will still taste good, just not as satisfying.

Hey Look! It’s Our Beautiful Fresno Aquarium In The New York Times!

Let your eyes focus on the NW corner of this NY Times picture. See that dead brown space? Yep, that’s right, it’s our little Fresno Aquarium in the New York Times!! Woo hoooooo! 🎉

Sorry. There is always room for a Fresno Aquarium joke.

One wonders how many generations of Fresnans will live to see the day that it never gets built.

The Sunday Times article is actually about infrastructure funds across the country and if the High Speed Rail will get some support (among a lot of other projects).