San Francisco is one of the most expensive places in the world to live -- six figure incomes are considered "low" and even the tiniest homes are farcically expensive.
Housing costs are fueled by a combination of property speculation, NIMBYism that prevents high-density projects, and, of course, the world-beating wealth inequality of tech-sector jobs vs everyone else.
Restaurants are feeling the squeeze. Even with the minimum wage for tipped workers rising to $15, food service workers can't make ends meet (dishwashers can make $18-19/hour and still be housing-impoverished). To bridge the gap, restauranteurs -- led by the Greek restaurant Souvla -- are going self-serve, asking patrons to fill their own water glasses, bus their own dishes, and place their orders at a bar.
“It’s really sad,” said Jennifer Sullivan, who worked for years as a server in the area. Twenty years ago, she moved from Chicago to Oakland, where she rented a $750 studio apartment and waitressed her way through college. She fears that story would not be possible in the Bay Area now.
“I’ve even had dystopian future visions of buses full of labor that come from the outskirts of these really wealthy areas,” she said.
A few blocks from the original Souvla, at the celebrated modern French restaurant Jardinière, the chef Traci Des Jardins said her labor costs, including taxes and health care, now eat up 43 percent of her budget.
When she opened Jardinière in 1997, they were 27 percent. (Mr. Bililies said Souvla’s percentage is in the mid-20s now, even with paid vacation and retirement benefits.)
San Francisco Restaurants Can’t Afford Waiters. So They’re Putting Diners to Work. [Emily Badger/NY Times]
A quirk of British rail history left 4,555 railway arches in public ownership through National Rail, and these commercial spaces are that most rare of British commodities: publicly owned, reasonably priced commercial spaces that welcome quirky industries and small businesses that are the nation's only respite from endlessly homogenised high-streets sporting the same fast food […]
Last month, the legendary hardware hacker and entrepreneur Andrew "bunnie" Huang (who is also a talented science communicator) published a great explainer on the quirks of the Trump China tariff plan, which exempts finished goods (like TVs), but imposes stiff taxes on components that are shipped from China to US factories for final assembly, a […]
Silicon Valley’s War on Walls has declared its first casualties according to a new study in Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B. Those casualties are workplace interaction and productivity.
Summer’s here, which brings not only warmer weather but also the unsettling realization that the year is more than halfway over. So, for those who weren’t as productive as they would have liked during the first half of 2018, we’ve rounded up 5 skill course bundles you can start learning today to help you finish […]
It’s good to be proactive, but when it comes to preparing for an emergency situation, one of the most important items you can pack is a flashlight. After all, whatever else you include in your kit won’t be of much use if you can’t see what you’re doing. The Viper 1000-Lumen Tactical Flashlights not only […]
Chances are you took a handful of language classes in high school, and aside from a smattering of conjugations and vocabulary words, the only things you likely remember are the dry, rehearsed sentences that did little to make you speak like a true native. If you’re still hoping to learn a new language but want […]