by Allie Pape
Now that the Opening Ceremonies are over and the real Olympic events are underway, you might be getting a little envious of those cool folks on TV, what with their awesome uniforms, the shiny medals they're winning, and all the hot sex they're having. Though some of your friends might be considering dropping a few bucks on fencing or archery classes, perhaps you're looking for an Olympics that challenges the skills you've spent years developing on the mean streets of San Francisco. In that spirit, we present our own version of the SF Olympics, with events that will challenge even the most hardened San Franciscan. Set up a scoreboard with your friends and find out who comes in first in the medal count.
The SF Olympics: Events
Racing the 22 bus. The 22 line would make a pretty good race course, thanks to its SF-spanning location and range of hilly and flat terrain. Start at 3rd and 20th Streets in the Dogpatch, and race the bus all the way to Fillmore and Bay in the Marina, winding through Potrero Hill, the Mission, the Lower Haight, and Pacific Heights along the way. Bonus points for anyone who beats the carriage to its destinationand even the worst runners may be able to pull it off. Disqualifications: Skipping the running shoes in favor of your bike; actually riding the bus at any point; tormenting the driver (well, more than a little.)
Super burrito munch-off. This one's pretty simple: first place goes to the first person to finish a super burrito in one sitting. Vegetarians can skip the carne asada, but have to add double the pinto beans as equivalent protein punishment. For an added challenge, force burrito eaters to down a PBR tallboy as well. Disqualifications: Skipping the avocado, sour cream, or (God forbid) the rice; eating any foil while trying to finish the monster.
Apartment-finding. You probably already have a home to call your own (or at least, to call your and your roommates' own), but for this event, you'll be putting on the guise of a down-on-your-luck San Franciscan forced onto the mean streets of Craigslist by a greedy landlord or intolerable housemates. The challenge: Find a room in a shared house. You'll be forced to use your powers of e-mail writing and charm to get in good with the current tenants and secure that former living room for your very own, facing dozens of rejections along the way. First person to get a firm offer takes the gold. Disqualifications: Room is in the Bayview, Outer Sunset, or Outer Richmond; room costs more than $1,000 per month; finding the room through friends (or friends-of-friends-of-friends).
Getting a bartender's attention. For this event, you and your crew will belly up to a busy bar at 10 pm on a Saturday night, and each try to order a pint of beer. The first person to get the bartender's attention, order, and get the beer in their hands takes the prize. Disqualifications: Friendship or romantic relationship with the staff; yelling, waving, or snapping your fingers at the bartender (seriously, stop it, they hate that); flashing of any kind; not tipping.
Fisherman's Wharf navigation. Yes, we know you never go down there, but this event means a trip to tourist central. Your goal is to get from one end of the Wharf to the other without running or leaving the sidewalk, dodging tortoise-like visitors to the city as you go. The first person to make it to the end wins (and gets an In-N-Out burger in honor of his/her victory). Disqualifications: Knocking down tourists; yelling at tourists to move; getting distracted by hilariously kitschy T-shirts and/or steaming clam chowder.
iPhone withdrawal. While the other events in our SF Olympics might be tests of smarts or strength, this event is a test of will. The competition is simple: the person who goes the longest without taking their phone out of their pocket to check an e-mail or text wins. It might sound simple, but when that Pavlovian text signal goes off, you may find yourself powerless to resistand for this event, we're declaring that taking the phone halfway out of your pocket before you realize your mistake does count as checking. Disqualifications: Bathroom-stall checks; repeatedly calling other contestants; sneaking glances at your laptop.
Allie Pape is a writer in San Francisco. She also writes for 7x7, DailyCandy, and The Bold Italic.