If you live in San Francisco and are in possession of a conventional vagina, you are most likely pregnant. And if you're not pregnant, you're either anxious to become so or have just pinched out a baby and are looking toward closing the deal on numbers two and three before you hit 40. If none of the above applies, I, a new mother myself, give you permission to ignore that self-righteous pregnant bitch eyeing your Muni seat and openly admit the following: SF was edgier when it was just a bunch of wayward freaks in crotchless ass pants.
Now, thanks to a surge in results-oriented fucking among the white, heterosexual ruling class, this city has become overrun with decaf-latte-sipping, thousand-dollar-stroller-pushing, CFONoe Valleyish, overly together supermoms who will tear you multiple assholes if you even think about stepping near their two-legged petri dish specimens. One might be tempted to label this phenomenon a baby boom. That assumption, however, is incorrect. What we are witnessing in San Francisco and everywhere else inhabited by Gen Xers with money is a parent boom.
In the past, parents were simply identified as people who raised children. That era, which lasted roughly 200,000 years, has ended. Parents now practice the rarified art of parenting. Parents who parent must adopt a specific parenting style one that's far more complex than a hairstyle and infinitely more expensive. Parenting requires ongoing investment in sleep and breast-feeding consultants, childproofing contractors, European-designed gear, six-week courses, endless manuals and magazines, and, depending on one's sacred style, couture bedding and nursery decor that can run well over five grand. This is quite a change of direction for Generation X, to which I belong, whose members were blacking out in Cow Hollow bars and smoking out of two-foot Mission District bongs throughout the '90s. But my generation's escapist persona equal parts political indifference, obsessive consumerism, hedonistic self-absorption, and Diff'rent Strokes references did not abate or even truly evolve when we threw the birth control in the trash. It only found new life, literally.
We, the latchkey slackers who postponed being parents until our ovaries wept, are acutely aware that whatever decisions we make regarding our children are direct reflections of ourselves. It is therefore imperative to properly accessorize one's child; only by doing so can one ensure the child is a better accessory. The right stroller, carrier, preschool waiting list, parenting philosophy, and even diaper all denote much more than any sensible person would care to know.
THE BABY GAP
Oh, wait. I forgot to mention the babies: it appears there are many of them. Commercial sidewalks in Noe Valley, Cole Valley, Hayes Valley, and beyond buzz with kitten-eyed freshies sucking the rubberized life out of pacifiers, frazzled mommies in yoga pants and camel toes pushing behemoth, double-wide prams, nannies chatting on cell phones while small barbarians stick organic Cheerios up their noses. Top preschools are waitlisted for several years. Babysitters are harder to find than a pimple on a newborn's butt. Is it good for San Francisco's soul that kiddie boutiques outnumber bondage shops and Polk Street glory holes? It's an epidemic, cry my nonparent friends, some of whom have been accosted by pompous moms and dads for accidentally bumping into strollers or smoking on the street. Ever think of denying an All-Important Holy Mother with Child your seat on the 1 California? Want to be knifed by a stay-at-home mom from precious Laurel Heights?
Funny thing is, the evidence of a baby boom is largely anecdotal. Statistics paint a very different picture.