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Caltrain Putting the Brakes on Service?

Caltrain has suffered from financial problems for years, but it looks like things are worse than ever. Facing a $30 million deficit at the current level of service, the Caltrain Board of Directors is set to vote on a declaration of fiscal emergency. Before taking action, however, the Board will give riders the opportunity to speak at four community meetings and a public hearing (more details). The proposed cuts include axing all non-weekday commute hour service—meaning the end of mid-day, weekend and post-Giants game service—and cutting service to "up to" 7 stations, including Bayshore, Burlingame, and Santa Clara. They would also need to eliminate some trains from the commute hours and possibly increase the base fare by 25 cents.

Parking Quiz: Understanding Confusing Curb Colors & Signs

It's no secret that parking in the city is a bitch. So we've enlisted local parking guru and author of  Finding the Sweet Spot, David LaBua, to dish out weekly tips on navigating the ins and outs of city parking.

Says David:

Signs and curbs are straightforward and easy to understand, right?  Not always. And, the 1,932,416 parking citations issued last year confirm it. Have you ever gotten a ticket and felt that it was unwarranted, but after carefully reading (then re-reading) the wording on the sign or curb, you finally realized that you were indeed in the wrong? Quiz yourself on just how many restricted curbs are out there. We'll break down the answers right after your lunch break!

How many restrictive curbs are there in SF? Put these curbs in order from most to least.

Scenes of the City: Street Portraits in the Castro District

For this week's Scenes of the City, we went to the Castro District and captured a dozen or so street portraits of the people passing by near Castro and Market streets.

 

All photos and words by Joseph Schell

Weekend Getaway: Mendocino Crab and Wine Days

Crab season is upon us, and unless you're ready to grab a net and spend a day on the pier, you'll have to enjoy the fruits of someone else's labor. The weather looks clear this weekend, so pack your overnight bag and head up to Mendocino for a weekend of crab and wine.

Rock the Vote: SF vs NYC

The war is on. Last week, Lonely Planet fueled the fire with a little friendly competition between SF and NYC. The two cities have always had a friendly rivalry, but this time you get to be the judge. So stop whatever it is you're doing—that report can wait a few minutes—and cast your votes ASAP.

Right now, it's neck and neck, and I have to admit, that as a former New Yorker, I had to choose the Big Apple on some of these (there is just something about The Strand that Green Apple can't match). But come on people—we can't let Central Park beat out the Golden Gate Bridge!

Get Out of Town: All California National Parks Free This Weekend

When it's this cold outside, all I want to do is sit in my apartment piled under blankets. To avoid that fate, it's sometimes necessary to get the heck out of town. Luckily, this Saturday, Sunday and Monday present the perfect excuse to do just that, because all national parks in California are free.

Take a road trip to the snowy, postcard-perfect landscape of Yosemite, experience the I-feel-like-I'm-on-Mars vibe down south in Joshua Tree National Park, or venture to the North Bay for a gander at the salmon-spawning streams in Muir Woods National Monument. They'll waive entrance fees, commercial tour fees, and transportation entrance fees so you can save some dough on a well-deserved adventure far away from the grind.

Transported: A Bike Ride Through Google Earth

Welcome to "Transported," our new weekly series about getting places in San Francisco, whether you take the bus or the BART, bike or drive. Come here to find the skinny on secret parking spots, the new bike lanes and how to get across town on Muni without losing your mind.

Is it a new way to exercise indoors? A better biking experience during these apocalyptically wintry days? An underground pastime for tipsy tech/bike nerds? Google Bike, invented by the folks behind instructables.com, is like a teleportation device into the virtual environs of Google Earth using the Streets view to navigate your way around town.

Scenes of the City: SF Gets Fit

For our second installment of "Scenes from the City," we documented the citywide New Year's fitness resolution craze.  Check out SF shaping up after the holidays, shedding those pounds and enjoying the outdoors. Here are photos from some of the city's favorite workout spots: Crissy Field, Golden Gate Park, Bad Joe's Body Shop, Planet Granite, and fit Bernal fit.

Enjoy.

All photos by Joseph Schell

Photos: SF No Pants BART Ride

Check out photos from Sunday's No Pants BART Ride. Everyone met at the Powell St. BART Station fully dressed, except for their pants.

photos by Joseph Schell

Photos: SF Bike Party

Check out photos from the SF Bike Party, which went down Friday night. The festivities started at Giants Stadium and made their way to the Civic Center Quad.

photos by Joseph Schell

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