Act entitled because you work in tech.
Number one on the list. Every time I take a Lyft Line, the other passenger is always from outside of California and in the tech industry, and they won’t stop talking about it! It never fails. Sit in any bar or restaurant, and you’ll hear those around you talking about their startup or cool tech job. We get it, and we don’t think it’s cool. Your job is the reason we can’t afford to live here.
Ride to work in a Google bus.
Google buses are not limited to Google; most major tech companies have them now as well, but ‘Google bus’ has become the term to describe them all.If you haven’t seen a Google bus, you are not a San Francisco local, and also I am jealous of your life. These buses are giant, ugly eyesores in the local commuting scene. They stop in random places and take forever to turn at a light, which causes traffic buildup. And they’re so elitist with their comfortable seating and wi-fi, leaving us plebians to take public transportation. These buses drive up from Silicon Valley, pick people up, and drive them back down. These people don’t even work in San Francisco! And yet, they live here because it’s hip and it doesn’t matter they work 35 miles away because a giant wi-fi enabled bus will pick them up.
Look at us funny when we say ‘Hella.’
I’m sorry, do you know where you are? Yes, we say ‘hella’ here and no, we don’t always know we are saying it. It has become second nature to San Francisco (Northern California) locals, and we are not ashamed. Just keep moving on in the conversation and don’t acknowledge the vocabulary.
Call San Francisco ‘San Fran’ or ‘Frisco’.
This is the worst. The actual worst. It immediately pinpoints a non-local, and it truly hurts to hear. To a true Bay Area local, San Francisco is ‘the city’. Nothing more, nothing less. If you are a tourist, just say San Francisco, it’s only two more syllables.
Mention LA or the Dodgers.
There is a spoken rivalry between Northern and Southern California. This rivalry is true more so in sports, namely between the Dodgers and Giants. Go to a game between the two, and you’ll understand. There are constant fights, shit-talking, and staredowns; it’s no joke. It’s best to keep the Dodgers out of your daily vocabulary, and if you move to SF, maybe just burn all your jerseys. Ok, you can keep them. Just don’t wear them ever. You’ll immediately regret the decision.
Make fun of SF terminology.
There is a particular language for San Francisco locals. For the neighborhoods, sub-neighborhoods, and local spots, and the apps we use for daily survival. While us locals are anti-techie, we do rely on their apps for getting around and delivery services. Making fun of these terms is immediate grounds for judgment. If you live here, you better know the different neighborhoods and know about Lyft, Instacart, Venmo, and ZipCar. These will come up in daily conversation and life, and if you ask what that is, everyone in the bar will turn around, the music will stop, and you’ll be asked to leave. Just kidding (depending where you are), but avoid yourself the potential embarrassment and learn the local lingo.
Complain about the weather.
We are all familiar with the Mark Twain quote; it need not bear repeating here. We cannot predict the weather, and we cannot do anything about it when you complain. Yes, it’s cold and windy a lot. But, there are rare, random days where the sun is out, and the wind dies down. Any day over 70 degrees is a ‘snow day’. You’ll find empty desks at the office and hoards of people in a mass exodus towards Dolores Park. But, it’s San Francisco, so bring a jacket everywhere. Seriously, everywhere. I cannot count the number of tourists I see wearing San Francisco sweatshirts because they only packed shorts and t-shirts. Don’t be like them.
Jokingly ask how much our rent is.
The struggle is real having an apartment in San Francisco. Just finding a place is harder than anywhere else. You have to beat out the hundreds of other people who want it, checks in hand, but most likely the landlord will end up just giving it some techie anyways. If you talk to someone who lives in San Francisco, they probably sold their soul to live there, and they don’t want to talk about it. Among San Francisco locals, rent is not discussed. It’s a way of life that sucks currently, so don’t bring it up.