Mom of the year makes Muni birthday cake dreams come true

This is gonna make you want to be a kid all over again: train-obsessed kid (and pro Muni rider) Calvin just celebrated his birthday with possibly the most best cake ever. Mom Sonia presented him with this adorable mini Muni bus cake, complete with the 23-Monterey line sign and his name on the side. How awesome is this? The look on his face says it all.

Let’s take a close look at the edible version of the 23:

Once more, from the side.

Sonia tells us that the cake is by My Favorite Bite, and it was wholly approved by the birthday boy.

We’re just suckers for Muni-themed stuff, like this birthday party (with BART temporary tattoos!) and even this racing car from a couple of pretty cool Bernal dads.

If you’ve spotted some more Muni or BART-themed goodies in the wild, you know who to call! Email us at muni.diaries.sf@gmail.com.

Muni Diaries Live is back on Saturday, Nov. 3 at the Elbo Room. Help us give the Elbo Room a proper send-off! Tickets are on sale now.

From the literal mailbox: Quantum physics meets Pulp Fiction on Muni

Dana Grae Kane, 72, is a self-described scarred veteran of the L-Taraval, having spent 29 years on that Metro line commuting between the Sunset and FiDi. Now retired and recovering on the Oregon coast, (pass the Pinot Noir!) she graciously took the time to send us a story, via snail mail y’all, from her Muni-riding past. 

One morning in the 1990s, a young heterosexual couple sat across from me, each engrossed in reading a book.

He was about 6’4″ and 250 lbs. of muscle, dressed in a T-shit and Gorilla work jeans, arms showing serious tough-guy tattoos, wearing a hard hat and massive steel-toed boots.

Diametrically opposed, she appeared to be an archetypically fluffy delicate flower—frail, pale, and fragile—probably often suffering categorization among “dumb blondes.”

I could hardly contain my surprise and delight when I realized what each was reading. She was engrossed in something that resembled Annals of Physics published by the Max Planck Society, while he was riveted in a romance novel of lurid cover, something that could easily be called Passion Under the Plum Trees by an author named Euphorbia Spindrift.

Thus, we may, after all, be able to judge books by their covers, but not so Muni riders.

As true today as it was 20 years ago, San Franciscans rarely fit into Column A or Column B—more often than not, you’ll find that we sample a little bit of both, and then some.

Extra thanks to Matt from the Elbo Room, where we hold our live storytelling shows twice a year. Ms. Kane addressed her typed and printed story, with impeccable cursive on the envelope, to Muni Diaries Live, and Matt was kind enough to forward it on:

Is your own so-San Francisco story burning a hole in your pocket? Share your tale with the world by tagging us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Or, our email inbox, muni.diaries.sf@gmail.com, is always open! And, for the record, so is our P.O. Box:

Muni Diaries
P.O. Box 640084
San Francisco, CA 94164

Top photo: juicyrai on Flickr

Muni-themed birthday party activates the transit nerds in all of us

For one Muni-obsessed kid, this is the best birthday party you can ever imagine. Helpful friend Addie posted on Twitter about this amazing birthday party by mom Tania, who should be getting an award for Mom-of-the-Year. Here’s why.

First you’ve got the LRV lines on cupcakes (with rainbow sprinkles!), see above.

Then, there’s the Clipper card temporary tattoos:

(Grownups who are not commitment phobic: check out these three real Muni tattoos).

And mom made tote bags of birthday kid’s name using the Muni worm as inspiration. How cool is that?

We know a couple of other moms with Muni-obsessed kids (paging Heather Knight of #totalMuni2018!). You guys should totally talk.

And for future reference, here’s the best Muni-themed wedding we’ve ever seen, complete with Fast Pass place cards and bus-shaped chocolates. In case you need to throw another Muni-theme party, in, say, 20 years.

Thanks Tania and Addie for bringing this Muni-themed birthday party into our lives.

Got other important news for your fellow riders? Tag us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Our email inbox muni.diaries.sf@gmail.com is always open!

Prying eyes find family ties on Muni


It’s hard not to peek at someone else’s phone on Muni, even though we know should keep our eyes in our lane. When storyteller Senait Hailemariam glanced over at her commute neighbor, she found a touching departure from the normal social scrolling. Here’s her story:

I was reading my book when I heard the woman sitting next to me on the bus make a loving sound, half a chuckle and half an ‘aww’. I glanced out the corner of my eye to see her kiss the tip of her finger and lightly touch her phone screen.

Stealing glances at her phone I realized she was watching security footage from a camera perched above a liquor store or bodega of some kind and the object of her affection was a young boy in a striped shirt who made an appearance in the frame.
Continuing my prying, I noticed the time stamp was set for an hour ahead. I assumed she was watching her family, who lived somewhere other than California, as they worked into the night.
I couldn’t help but cry watching this woman quietly warming her heart on the commute home.
Maybe I’m just emotional, but I thank the universe for this beautiful example of love.

Senait was also a recent storyteller at Muni Diaries Live, and you can hear her story on the Muni Diaries podcast.

You too can add an entry to our collective journal. San Francisco Diaries is looking for your personal stories about what it means to live here, and what makes our city “so San Francisco.” Tag us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Our email inbox is always open!

Photo by @yellow_line_art

Who is the Polk Street Pizza Lady?

Andrea Carla Michaels says that she had never done anything two days in a row, until a light-bulb moment and sense of commitment to her neighborhood changed her mind. Two years ago, she found her calling as “Pizza Lady,” which takes her, daily, through the alleys off Lower Polk Street. In today’s podcast, she shares the story of how that came to be.

Listen to her story by clicking on your favorite option below—all come with a special discount code for our upcoming Muni Diaries Live 10th Anniversary show!

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Andrea just celebrated her 25th anniversary in San Francisco. Originally a standup comic, game show writer, and, for a brief stint, a writer for Designing Women, she now spends her time naming companies, constructing crossword puzzles for The New York Times and, as you’ll learn in this podcast, feeding folks.

Know another San Franciscan with a story to tell? We are always looking for tales of what makes living in San Francisco meaningful to you. Submit your own story or nominate a San Franciscan you know by emailing us at muni.diaries.sf@gmail.com. And please share this story with your podcast-listening friends!

Photo by Kathleen Corey

Dog on Muni just getting his TV fix

This moment of complete and utter cuteness was brought to you by @missnorasf, who asks, reasonably: “Can everyone on my commute be replaced with dogs and also can I be a dog?”

Hmm…I might skip the sniffing-butts part, but having at least half of my commute be replaced by puppies watching Animal Planet sounds like a pretty great idea to me.

Got other important new (canine or human) for your fellow riders? Tag us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Our email inbox muni.diaries.sf@gmail.com is always open!

We’re celebrating 10 years of storytelling on and off the bus with our anniversary show on April 21, 2018, at the Elbo Room. Listen to the latest Muni Diaries podcast episode for a listener-only discount code and get your tickets today!

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