San Francisco is changing so much that New York Magazine suspects that the city may now be New York. This week's issue explores this question in a series of eleven articles subtitled "Dispatches from a city that doesn't quite know what to do with its wealth." You may want to hear what New York has to say without taking the time to read all eleven pieces, so we've put together a Cliff's Notes version for you. The lead article explains that San Francisco is now "bizarro-world New York" and "more New York-ish than New York itself" due to townhouse pool parties, private clubs like the Battery, and, of course, $4 toast. However, San Francisco and the tech world still isn't quite like New York finance because San Franciscans are generally class-aware and liberal and "the utopian streak of the tech sector paints a thick veneer of do-gooderism over even the rawest capitalistic conquests." San Franciscans have money but still want to act like the underdog, the article concludes. The series then takes readers around town from the Mission to Fort Mason.
Bernal Heights: A Gold-Rush Eviction Tale
The premise: The writer's Bernal Hill apartment building is sold to a 20-something girl who works at Google and who files a lawsuit against the tenants to get them out.
The conclusion: Rents are unaffordable for normal people and San Francisco is turning callous.
Best quote: "Within days, we signed the papers. My husband took them upstairs to our landlord's apartment, where she was fastening LED lights onto her Burning Man jacket."
Fort Mason: Murray Hill West
The premise: Lots of frat boy types who maybe used to work in New York finance have come to San Francisco to work at start-ups. They congregate around Fort Mason.
The conclusion: Bros with money are taking over certain parts of the city, particularly Fort Mason, the Marina, and even Dolores Park.
Best quote: "In a town once known for drag-kind competitions, there's now a contest called Mr. Marina, a tongue-in-cheek male beauty pageant aimed at finding the guy who 'epitomizes the values of the neighborhood.'"
Ocean Beach: New-Money Surfers Wipe Out Old S.F.
The premise: Surfing equals status in San Francisco.
The conclusion: New surfers are taking over Ocean Beach's waves and taking pictures of themselves, which just brings even more surfers to the beach and the neighborhood.
Best quote: "Much to the annoyance of the city's longtime surfers, ten guys with a couple of Oahu lessons under their belts are floating on boards in the same takeoff spot in the water."
The Mission: Creative Destruction in Eleven Parts
The premise: Mark Zuckerberg buys a house for $10 million by knocking on doors and offering cash for the owners to move out in a few days. Green Party politician Matt Gonzalez nearly won the 2003 mayoral election representing artists and activists but now thinks that group of people has lost the city.
The conclusion: These stories are representative of how Matt Gonzalez's San Francisco is gone, replaced by Mark Zuckerberg's San Francisco.
Best quote: "[In San Francisco], how do you know where a person stands? I propose that one way might be this: What shading do they give to the word boom? Do they use it to evoke a colorful futurist dream, or do they use it to imply destruction?"
Crosstown: High-tech hitchhiking
The premise: Ridesharing service Lyft is representative of San Francisco's desire for down-to-earth luxury. We ride around in strangers' Priuses instead of fleets of black cars like they do in New York.
The conclusion: Techies with lots of money invented democratic solutions to San Francisco's taxi problem.
Best quote: "However awkward it is to sit next to a stranger you're paying to ferry you around a city remade by its nouveau-billionaire set, riding behind the driver would just be too class-blind."
The Mission: Liberal Guilt Aboard the Google Bus
The premise: Tech workers and housing rights activists came together for an open discussion at a bar in the Mission.
The conclusion: Activists and tech workers didn't find much common ground except when a tech worker read out an anti-tech poem.
Best quote: "A hipster with a bongo drum stood behind the speakers and thumped emphatically to highlight the key points."
Western Addition: Bots, Table for Two?
The premise: People line up at State Bird Provisions for hours, but an engineer made a bot that takes reservations less than a second after they become available.
The conclusion: There are now competitor bots that anyone can use.
Best quote: "He's eaten there so many times, the taste of roasted boan marrow with chanterelles has begun to blur with the memory of guinea-hen dumplings, he says sadly."
Alamo Square: Coder Crash Pad
The premise: Hacker hostels are mansions or warehouses that serve as homes and workspaces for wannabe entrepreneurs.
The conclusion: Basically the same as the premise.
Best quote: "If the Summer of Love-era commune was for anti-capitalism and political ideals, Startup Basecamp - a start-up itself, freshly incorporated - has rebranded the co-living space as a vehicle for the entrepreneur lifestyle and its big-money dreams."
SOMA: The Stubborn Uncoolness of San Francisco Style
The premise: The author met up with a friend from San Francisco in New York. The friend was wearing Gore-Tex and chinos. San Francisco is seriously unsexy.
The conclusion: Money is changing San Francisco, but style remains nonexistent. People wear free company T-shirts and Patagonia all the time.
Best quote: "S.F. style is the clothing equivalent of water: The taste is so neutral, you can't be sure it's there."
Mountain View: A Harem of "Founder Hounders"
The premise: A Google engineer says attractive women in tech have hooked up with lots of men in tech.
The conclusion: These women are primarily interested in the power of tech founders, especially those leading pre-IPO start-ups.
Best quote: "I'm probably at the lower end of what these women are trying to hook up with, but I've hooked up with almost all of them."
· Is San Francisco New York? [New York Magazine]