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Love Thy Neighbor(hood): The Marina vs. The Mission

In other places, singles are willing to get in a car or a cab and travel miles to meet and mate. In economically stressed San Francisco, it’s hard to find anyone willing to date off their Muni line. Transit limits mean that each neighborhood has evolved its own dating culture and rules. Here's a cheat sheet.

THE MARINA

The Singles:
Twentysomething ex–frat boys, ex–sorority girls, and financial district types.

Where to Find ’em:
Balboa Cafe, Campus, Eastside West, the Tipsy Pig.

Typical First Date:
A glass of wine at Bin 38 or Terzo, where you spend most of your time talking about mutual friends on Facebook.

More Than Just a Hookup:
Heading north over the Golden Gate Bridge for the day, then dinner and pool with his/her friends at the Horseshoe Tavern.

Isn’t It Cheap/Romantic:
Takeout from the Sandwich Spot or Blue Barn Gourmet, and a double-date picnic on Marina Green (the two of you and your dogs).

(S)he’s Just Not That Into You:
Late drinks at Monaghan’s or KT’s, where (s)he spends the whole time checking out the other hot guys/girls on the sly.

How Far For love?
Anywhere on the 45/41 and 22 buses (Russian Hill, North Beach, Pac Heights); the 43 bus line (Haight/Panhandle) if you’re feeling adventurous.
-M.B.

 

THE MISSION

The Singles:
Geek entrepreneurs, diyers, hipsters, artsy coffee freaks with laptops.

Where to Find ‘em:
Enjoying some cheap beer–and–amateur DJ action at the Attic; sipping bean juice at Ritual Coffee Roasters or Revolution Café; getting a healthy-burrito fix at Papalote; climbing at Mission Cliffs.

Typical First Date:
Beer at the Monk’s Kettle; coffee and baked goods at Mission Pie—you go halfsies whether or not (s)he works in tech.

More Than Just a Hookup:
Delfina à deux or Mission Chinese with a group of friends, followed by a cab, not a walk, home.

Isn’t It Cheap/Romantic:
Sandwiches from Rhea’s and a hike up Bernal Hill or Twin Peaks to enjoy the views.

(S)he’s Just Not That Into You:
Drinks on a weekday instead of a weekend, then a way-too-lengthy stopover in the public restroom at 16th and Mission.

How Far For Love?
Buses go everywhere, and much of the city is a cinch by bike—but plenty of Missionites won’t even venture to the other side of South Van Ness or 24th street for a fling.

-J.J. 

 

THE MIDDLE GROUND

Ah, it's the tale of the star-crossed lovers from two different worlds. Luckily for them there's plenty of places their friends won't catch them together, but the Tendernob is probably their best bet. 

More on neighborhood romance:
Temescal vs. Palo Alto
Russian/Nob Hill vs. NoPa
SoMa vs. The Sunset

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