Lifestyle

An SF ex-pat's 6 stages of grief

Dear San Francisco Person,

Hi. My name is Matt. Much like your urbane, fernet-swilling self, I once called San Francisco -- aka the greatest city in the world -- home. There, your life will change for the better: you will make amazing friends, have epic Winters in Tahoe, and likely spend your days 1) drinking way too much, and 2) eating schnitzel at Suppenküche while strangely considering yourself to be a healthy person.

Unfortunately, my time there was cut short due to a healthy stretch of funemployment and a job offer in an equally awesome and totally rad city! Hoboken. I had to take the job. So I left. And it sucked. Bad. Really bad. Caddyshack 2 bad.

So bad that I wrote this. If your sorry ass ever ends up having to leave the promised land, here's what to expect. At least now you'll know.

Stage 1 -- Denial. Especially in regards to your inebriated-napping days in Dolores Park being over.

This one's pretty self-explanatory. You refuse to accept the fact that you just left the best city ever by tricking yourself into thinking things like, "I had no choice. It was time for me to move on." Or, "It's okay. I'm ready for the next adventure in my life!" Or, "Well, it did get kind of cold at night during those Summer months." In reality though, you actually did have a choice; you owned a jacket that worked just fine. And your "next adventure in life"? It's going to involve about as much excitement as a moderately well-played game of The Oregon Trail. Snap out of it.

Stage 2 -- Anger equivalent to that one time you had to ride the 49 bus at rush hour to get to happy hour at Zeitgeist.

You will know when the Denial Stage is over when you start getting angry at everything. Why does this happen, you ask? I'm no Dr. Leo Marvin, but I'm pretty sure it has to do with you choosing to put 3,000 miles between yourself and In-N-Out Burger. Or maybe you're just angry that you never took full advantage of GGP to actually play that frisbee golf course. Or went to that butterfly thing/tea house/Buffalo pen completely stone-cold sober and not on anything at all. Either way, you're now angry and hate yourself for it.

Stage 3 -- Bargaining with yourself instead of the bacon-wrapped hot dog lady in The Mission who you're pretty sure would give you a deal if you ordered more than four.

This next stage is pretty pathetic. You start saying things to yourself like, "If only I had won the lottery or had saved more money", or, "If only I had spent more time job-searching and less time at The Buccaneer and Black Horse Tavern playing 1-4-24", or, "If only I could  have gotten a job like those 23yr-old, ass-hat, pube-less losers at Google, I could have... God DAMMIT I hate those stupid f***ing nerds with their d-bag buses and their sushi lunches". Sorry... regressed back to anger for a second there.

Stage 4 -- The-49ers-just-lost-to-the-G*damn-Seahawks-caliber depression

Deep breaths... you know that feeling you got at the end of Cool Runnings when everyone starts clapping for Jamaica? Even that East German a-hole Josef Grül? This stage is kind of like that. Except not at ALL like that, because there's nothing but pure, uncut sadness to that lump in your throat when you wake up and realize you have to ride a bus through the Lincoln Tunnel with the unwashed masses again. This whole stage is simply your mind-body balance coming to terms with the fact that you're never going to have good Mexican food again, and nobody will understand what you're talking about. Or care. This will happen a lot. Get used to it. You're all alone now.

Stage 5 -- Acceptance (that it's over, and that you will never eat El Farolito again).

Okay Hoss, you've been through a lot, but you will make it through this and get on with your life. You might even actually start to find some joy in things again. Like when people you are nuts-to-butts with on the subway don't really smell that bad -- it'll take some time, but you'll get comfortable with the reality that you actually got to live in San Francisco, which is something that very few people get to do. Your amazing time in the sun came to an end and you are eternally grateful for the time you had out there. Yeah, it's over, but hey, at least now you get your Dunkin' Donuts again.

Stage 6 -- Denying acceptance.

Wait... Dunkin' Donuts is expanding to Northern California? But... that's... what?!? F**K.