Eat & DrinkSatire/Humor/ComedySelf CareSF Bay Area

The City Counselor: Reset & Boost Your Vibes in The Inner Richmond

Updated: Dec 07, 2022 18:14
The Bay's best newsletter for underground events & news

This column is in the spirit of a “Dear Abby”, with a focus on solutions in the form of micro SF neighborhood deep dives and curated holistic health-centered itineraries

By Vanessa Hutchinson-Szekely

Dear BBB,

Put a fork in me!!! 

My pandemic partner broke up by texting a series of sappy reels blasting Adele, and some version of “it’s not you, it’s me” BS. Since then all I do is binge Bad Sisters, troll around their socials looking for cues of when our love parade fell apart and then drown my sorrows in cheap wine from the Grocery Discount Outlet. 

My friends have stopped group texting me because all I do is send lame gifs. Please help me catapult out of my head and shift the energy. 

What can I do so that Karl (yes, the fog) stops invading my brain and squeezing out any semblance of the fun zesty person I used to be. Swear. 

Forever grateful,

Lame Ex in The Inner Richmond

Dear LEX,

Sounds like you need to embrace the gift that is this breakup. 

Though this current situation is less than ideal, you’re going to come out of it stronger. Shake things up, get back into moving your body and have fun. 

Life is too short to drink the cheapest of cheap wines, or ones that aren’t “natural” (more below on the raw wine movement so buckle up). On that note, my current faves are ALL skin contact ones. I too have succumbed to the orange wine craze. Get on that train pronto my friend. Currently dying over this Serbian gem: Maurer Oszkar Crazy Lud Orange.

Let this goose pave your future with rich notes and tang undertones. 

Ok, back to you: Kick it up a notch, grab your headphones and head over to the Presidio for some hiking. Did we say “so many trails, so much time!”?  Climb up or dismount your bike or don’t (#savage) for that last steep stretch of Arguello, and enter the gates by foot, listening to Dehd’s “Bad Love”, then veer off into the forested adventure paths of the “Ecology” or “El Polin” trails. 

Time to break into a sweat while speed walking down the twisty dirt paths, surrounded by eucalyptus, pine and cyprus trees. Depends on your mood but you could bust out a 30-minute loop or luxuriate for an hour. In any case, your health is gleefully yodeling as you are beginning your journey to reset and refind YOU. 

The Presidio offers splendid hiking opportunities, where you are simultaneously in a cosmopolitan city while having traversed a portal into a magical gnome kingdom where you feel far far away from city vibes. 

Forest bathing (i.e. Shinrin Yoku as it’s known in Japan is definitely a thing, so look it up!) feeds the soul, and your soul needs loads of attention. Stay as long as feels good, in this unique part of THE CITY while losing yourself in the swoon punk rock n roll vibes of all of the Dehd songs (#OBSESSED). Take that mood next level with “Loner” or “Window”. 

Health pause: Stop regularly to gaze. Soak it in and become aware of the ground beneath your feet, breathing in deeply and being present. Behold the trees, maybe lie down in some grass and take slow deep breaths with your eyes closed. In for 4, hold for 7 and out for 8. The classic 4, 7, 8 method. 

Try to switch up your walking speed, dare I say “jog” and once you’re done drowning in the Presidio tree magic, walk that hunger monster down to Clement street and have your funnest pals meet you at The Chili House

Extinguish your leftover sorrows in spicy Tan Tan noodles, soup dumplings and Peking duck. Nothing helps you rediscover your festive vibes more than that burning Szechuan tongue tingle while being poured tea from a 5-foot-long spout. 

Unfortunately, their tea master left during the pandemic. Major drats, because in the past The Chili House mirrored as a tea burlesque fantasy minus the dancing and racy gear. However, the duck is still totally divine, but just remember to put your order in early as it takes a minute to prep. More Tan Tan please! 

Post Chinese food coma, roll yourself further down Clement enjoying the many cute shops to check out: Green Apple Books, The Golden Hour, Foggy Notion, 6th Ave Aquarium (meet Dr Fish), The Spanish Table, just to name a few. Treat yourself to a used book (staying on theme with Natural Wine by Isabelle Legeron, France’s first female sommelier), some cute barrettes and a bottle of something good. Love the sommelier at the Spanish Table. 

Check your step count cause heyyyy girlllll, you’ve probably hit more than 10,000. Feeling good? Keep it up!  Your friends are so pumped to hang out again. 

Snacks? Then grab a dessert crepe at Genki Crepes and Mini Mart. While you’re there, might as well buy a couple cute Japanese erasers because….. “Treat yo’self”?! 

In order to maximize the fun factor, end this day at Corks Wine bar. Yes, this means leaving Clement and going to California but you’re with your pals, and thus capable of everything and anything. Stay for awhile, work that hunger back up and then dive into their pastas. Did we say Michelin star chef?! 

Keep us posted about how you’re doing. You’ve got this. 

Life is a roller coaster, so take pleasure while climbing that ramp-up. Though the lows are unavoidable, you can constantly seed plant to grow your highs.

Take BIG care,


Inner Richmond Itinerary Recap:

** This article is only part Satire, i.e. ALL the characters and quotes are fictional BUT the recs are pure gold.**

BBB, i.e Big Belly Breathing, is Vanessa Hutchinson-Szekely’s latest project. She is born and raised in THE CITY and using her background knowledge of local landscapes, the constant search to maximize the fun factor and her holistic health and wellness expertise, she will listen to your problems and propose excursions to help you reset, recalibrate and explode back onto your scene

Join her on IG @BigBellyBreathing or visit www.bigbellybreathing .com 


Previous post

The 19th Another Hole In The Head Film Festival Is Here!

Next post

These FREE Holiday Displays Are Lighting up The Bay With Cheer

Guest Writer

Guest Writer

We write for busboys, poets, social workers, students, artists, musicians, magicians, mathematicians, maniacs, yodelers and everyone else out there who wants to enjoy life not as a rich person, but as a real person. Namely, we write for you.

We’re currently looking to expand our author pool. If you’re snarky, know what’s happening in your town, and good at making your fingers type out funny words, then you might be just the person we’re looking for. Email with some writing samples if you're interested. Cheers