I Already Miss ‘Quiet Fresno’

Fresno is about to “open up” because…[really I’m just too exhausted to get into it and you probably are too].

Above is a picture I took yesterday of the cantina from Casa Corona (no relation) at Bullard & West. In the times before COVID 19, it was always packed (even with its crap beer selection – OHHH sick burn).

It is a fun and lively bar, even with the lack of craft beer (burn #2), and it will be nice to see it return… I guess. You won’t see me sitting down inside a bar or restaurant any time soon, but if you need this in your life right now, have at it. Enjoy that freedom to acquire the COVID.

But yeah, anyway, I will miss it. The quiet.

I will miss sitting outside and not hearing much traffic at night. I will miss riding and walking around the neighborhood with few vehicles to contend with.

Empty parking lots. Less smog. More people walking. Enjoying their front porch. Bikers. Runners. I will miss it. I will miss the quiet.

I Have Door Dash Guilt. Help?

It’s has been talked about during this Pandemic, as we use food delivery service up the ying-yang, that Door Dash, Grub Hub and maybe Postmates too, kinda suck as employers. That and restaurants make little to nothing using them.

There was even this post about how Door Dash will deliver food from places that don’t deliver, lose an ass-load of money doing it, just to later convince a restaurant to use them as a delivery service.

My personal morals tell me to not use these delivery services, but I still do… sometimes.

I don’t feel good about it. Makes me uncomfortable every time I do. Not only because I know the restaurant isn’t making nearly as much as it should, but because having a third party handling my food slightly skeezes me out.

The thing I tell myself to make me feel slightly better is that I only use these delivery services for places I would have never ordered from anyway. I still go and pickup takeout from my normal places.

This week, we ordered some Quesadilla Gorilla using GrubHub. I only eat there when I happen to be around Fresno High, it’s slightly outside of my takeout routes.

It was freaking delicious as always. I would not have ordered it otherwise. So why do I feel guilty still?

Would it be better not to use these delivery services at all, or does it make it ok if I’m buying from a local place that I would not have otherwise?

I still don’t know.

(pic taken from here)

Fresno Bands On Bandcamp To Support, Play and Download

Bandcamp is the definitive place on the Internet for small and local acts to release their albums to. Bands are even able to make a little bit from this, at least enough to generate some operating cash, if nothing else.

Normally Bandcamp takes a fee from the band when someone buys a song or album. Lately, with everything being shutdown and bands not able to generate any revenue besides the selling of merch, Bandcamp has been choosing certain days to wave their fees so bands can get as much cash as possible.

So, I guess, watch Bandcamp to know when those days are or just buy as much as you want when you want.

Speaking of, as a way to support Fresno area bands, I have compiled SOME of the local acts with albums on Bandcamp. It’s a mix of my own suggestions and Fresno Twitter suggestions.

That’s Cloudship:

Brian Kenny Fresno (also suggested by Matt Hackney):

and of freaking course, Fashwan:

Okay, Josh, *acts like he doesn’t know* let’s check out I’ll Grow Back :

and The Strikingly Originals :

Short King aka @JohnnyAppeal from Numbskull Shows has a perfect suggestion as you can spend some time with this page because it has a bunch of classic Fresno hardcore albums, including one from Most Inspirational:

Fresno music royalty, Dale Stewart, has a new track to download:

He also has a great site for lovers of old Fresno Punk, it’s a must for music explorers.

Continue reading “Fresno Bands On Bandcamp To Support, Play and Download”

The Historic John Euless Home Is Shinny

Stole this from the Vintage Fresno Facebook page because this is rad and rad things get lost on Facebook. Presenting a super cool transformation of a OG Fresno house.

First, the before picture.

Built in 1917, this was originally the house of historic Fresnan, John Euless (more on him in a sec). Eventually, lawn parking enthusiasts took it over.

Then. Something magical happened. Here is the after:

I’m not big on watching home restoration/flipping shows because it points out the flaws of my weak home remodeling skills and laziness, but if this house would have been featured in an episode, I would have been glued.

The house is located in the Sunnyside area at 373 S. Peach. It is available to purchase at around $574,000. You can check it out here, if you’re looking out for something overpriced awesome. It’s a pretty big property and house, which I imagine is why it’s priced so high.

Yes, the house was once owned by the dude that Fresno City’s baseball park is named after. John Euless was important to the early days of organized baseball in Fresno. You can find a little bit more info at Historic Fresno.

The transformation is pretty damn stunning. There a lot of hidden gems around Huntington Blvd and Sunnyside in general, glad to see somebody is out there shinning up some.

Fresno On Lockdown

So this is life now, eh? Battling Fresnans at Save Mart (or for you crazy people, Costco) for bread.

Actually, I have been surprised by how nice everyone has been out there in Fresno. I guess when you go through a shared experience like this, people get nicer.

As a homebody, an introverted and awkward person, that has to push and motivate themselves to even meet up with friends that I want to be around, you would think this new world of being socially distant, not meeting up with people and staying away from groups, would be kinda awesome.

Honestly, for me, it sort of is.

WAIT WAIT, don’t hate me. If everyone else’s life was the same; healthy, their business was untouched, jobs secure, THEN this would be the life I dream of.

Stay at home with my family? Play video games? Wander around my backyard, look up at the clouds, write, binge Star Wars content, develop a playlist on Spotify, trick-out my patio? Do all the things I always want to do but never make the time for? Yes, I’m here for that content.

All while feeling like I’m “doing good” (even if I don’t actually do any of those things and put them off like I always do).

Feeling good about myself instead of my normal feeling of dread and guilt that I’m not meeting friends for a thing, or going Downtown for ArtHop or an event, or going to get my tires rotated or some crap thing that I beat myself up for not doing ALL THE FUCKING TIME.

*deep breath*

Getting takeout now feels… good? As long as places stay up and running.

I hope everyone can weather this. The number of businesses that are affected are too many to count. It’s not just the food-related industry. But what the hell am I talking about here, you don’t need me to tell you this.

Most of the places I use for beer have delivery or pickup now. I used Pine & Palm’s “drive-thru” service this week and picked up some crowlers. I’ll be trying out Tioga’s delivery service this weekend. Hopefully, Zack’s Brewing will be able to do the same soon. Most of my craft beer places are at least setting up pickup options. I plan on taking full advantage.

Here are tips on how to keep it clean and still get local takeout.

This is all we can do, right? Takeout and tip higher than normal. Save up money to hella support when we are on the other side of this. No matter if it’s a food-related business or not.

I am fortunate to have a job that is not affected by this (income-wise), at least not yet. Unfortunate that I still have to go out and do it. Props to all my new brothers and sisters in the Essential Services Industry.

Staying at home sounds better than ever, but even I will be glad to be amongst groups of Fresnans again, someday… on occasion.

For now, all we can do is support the places we use (in the safest way we can) and hope they will be there when this is over. Keep your head up gaze at the clouds and stay safe, Fresno.

-Mikey

Fresno’s Most Map Worthy Feature Is…

Illustration of the intersections of Buffalo (Fresno’s would be too boring, I imagine)

What would Fresno’s defining feature be? What would look cool enough and speaks to you enough to be illustrated? What jumps out at you when you look at a map of Fresno or think about Fresno in a map inspired way?

I recently came upon a website called barelymaps.com. On it are map inspired graphics (like the one above using Buffalo intersections) of a city feature, illustrated in a creative way.

There isn’t a Fresno one, as you might expect. I would love to see one though. I have some simple ideas as to what Fresno’s could be:

The Railroad Tracks (active and abandoned). That might look cool pulled off a map and featured. The Union Pacific and Santa Fe tracks (and maybe one day High-Speed Rail tracks) are very Fresno. Also, there is a track that spurs off into Southwest Fresno that I think still may be active, but I have never seen one pass through to confirm as I am only occasionally in that part of town.

Ponding Basins. I know every town has ponding basins but Fresno’s seem to be more defining. Might look cool pulled out as well.

Canals. Some of our more featured canals have been converted over into a pipe system and covered over but many remain. Enough to make a graphic with or you could include the ones covered over as if they still remain. Canals are a big reason Fresno became a city so that is defining for sure.

Swimming Pools. That would be a lot of swimming pools to feature, for sure. I have always been curious as to Fresno’s pool ratio. I would bet we have the highest pools-per-capita rate of any city outside of Phoenix, Tuscon and Las Vegas.

Freeways. We “only” have four. A well-designed poster of them could look rad.

The San Joaquin River. Our largely overlooked NW border would look sweet with everything within range of its Fresno side, featured.

Save Marts. Really, what is consistent throughout Fresno and is local? Actually, there is no Save Mart downtown or in the Edison High area or… in Southwest… well, unless you consider Sunnyside Southwest. You know what, screw those cowards.

The Grid. Nothing says Fresno more than a map grid. In fact, we could be the poster child of grids.

This one we actually can see an example of because I found a website that will let you search for a city and it will pull up a map of it the city you search for but it only features the streets, everything else is stripped away.

In fact, the website and the newsletter Snakes & Ladders is the inspiration behind this post. Check it out:

If you use the website and your smartphone, it will let you zoom into specific areas of the map (I couldn’t get it to do it on my laptop but I could on my phone).

I’d love it if a Fresno graphic artist made something up inspired by Fresno and the Barely Maps. Please share it if you do.

While we’re here, a friend sent me this drawing of Fig Garden Village at a time when Rock Bottom Brewing was still there ALONG with the movie theater. I had recently been really wishing the movie theater was still there, so this made me pause:

Stay safe out there mapping.

-Mikey