Driving back into San Francisco yesterday afternoon, I exited the freeway onto Harrison St. at 4:55pm. In another minute the corner of Harrison and 12th “greeted” me– or would have I should say– on this somewhat warm and very sunny Sunday. At this moment my own eyes caught for the first time what many people throughout San Francisco hoped never to see.
The first word on the sign taped to the door is the only one that really speaks, boldly presiding over all others, lunging out like a slap in the face to all who approach it. At just about 5:00pm on a bright and clear May Sunday, the corner of Harrison and 12th was practically lifeless; I didn’t see a soul around. What an ugly and unwelcome difference, I thought as I drove on, compared to the several hundreds of Sunday afternoons preceding this one.
Anything could happen, the future remains uncertain, and at least a few shreds of hope remain alive in the face of some largely concealed wheels of business negotiation. Whatever comes tomorrow, however, does not change the fact that today, right now, the door notice remains up. San Francisco has lost a historical and iconic gathering spot, and I along with several of my friends have lost a favorite– and most certainly unmatched– social space.
The Eagle Tavern is now closed, as of May 1. While yesterday marked the second Sunday of this current and quite possibly permanent situation, socially and emotionally speaking this was not another Sunday at 12th and Harrison. Unfortunately, however, it looks like we’ll be seeing more Sundays like this one for the foreseeable future.