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Shop at Kaplan’s Surplus!

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Of the bare basic resources that everyone who lives in this city should know about, I would say that Kaplan’s should always be close to the top of the list. Along with burritos, corner store sandwiches, park/festival booze, thrift stores, etc., it’s just one of those staples that you can always count on. Chock full to the gills with utility clothes, military surplus and camping supplies they are a fortress of affordable clothing and gear holding down shit on one of the worst blocks in the city.

And that is why I worry about them quite frankly. I really never thought places like Merrill’s or PEARL FOR CHRIST’S SAKE! would close, but San Francisco is getting to be dangerous a place for institutions these days no matter how long they’ve been around.

So, if you’re not above buying underwear in economy packages, t-shirts that don’t cost forty dollars, or need to stock up for burning man then drop in at this mom and pop joint. Instead of saving Market Street with crack-pipe dreams of megatronic shopping complexes, we could always patronize the businesses that are there already. Los Angeles had a similar cure to urban blight. It was called the mini-mall.

That or maybe we could just start calling the area something like the Vacant Shopfront District, or maybe VacShop would be trendier.

Kaplan’s Surplus and Sporting Goods 1055 Market Street (btw 6th and 7th) [South of Market] SF
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Stephen Torres - Threadbare-Fact Finder (Editor, San Francisco)

Stephen Torres - Threadbare-Fact Finder (Editor, San Francisco)

Stephen's early years were spent in a boxcar overlooking downtown Los Angeles. From there he moved around the state with his family before settling under the warm blanket of smog that covers suburban Southern California. Moving around led to his inability to stay in one place for very long, but San Francisco has been reeling him back in with its siren song since 1999.
By trade he pours booze, but likes to think he can write and does so occasionally for the SF Bay Guardian, Bold Italic and 7x7. He also likes to enjoy time spent in old eateries, bars and businesses that, by most standards, would have been condemned a long time ago.