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Sweet Easter! Chocolate bunnies and hot cross buns in San Francisco

On your mark, get set, get ready for an Easter Celebration

A happy Easter conjures up images of colored eggs, chocolate bunnies, buffets, bountiful Easter baskets, tulips and Gin fizzes.

San Francisco has an embarrassment of riches when it comes to gourmet Easter treats.

 

 Five Classic San Francisco Sites  for Easter’s perfect preparations:

1. Varoom. Start the day with a cup of the best coffee in San Francisco: Blue Bottle Coffee.

2. Got Candy? San Francisco’s premiere candy store, aptly named, The Candy Store on Vallejo at Polk Street will dazzle you with the finest selection of yummiest candies “… one-of-a-kind boutique features walls lined with old-fashioned candy jars, shelves stocked with the finest confections from around the world, and nostalgic treats you probably haven’t seen in years.”

 

Yum

Yum



3. Fruit Heaven – Berries, melons, citrus, mangoes, 22nd and Irving Produce– best quality and bargain produce in all of San Francisco. Parking is pain – and, it’s worth it.

4. Best bakery in San Francisco? Bakery Tartin located at 600 Guerrero Street. You’ll think you time- traveled to Paris –Tartin has a perfectly sublime selection of the  highest quality pastries. Marvel over the  Chocolate Soufflé Cake, the Frangipane Tart,  the utterly divine croissant or frangipane croissant,   perhaps a double pain au chocolat or the tres yummy morning buns.  I dare you try one croissant.

5.Confused by chocolate? Do you die for  Godiva? Or really love Recchiuti? Perhaps you prefer San Francisco’s classic, plump chocolate  eggs from the all-time favorite: See’s.  Or, do you go for TCHO? Love truffles? XOX Truffles are rich, delicate, and filled with 27 flavors and totally addictive. Sweetly perched on Columbus Avenue across from the City’s stellar Graffeo Coffee.

If you are feeling a little famished after all that Saturday shopping? Get in line, there is always one, at Ella’s for the Best Brunch in San Francisco located at 500 Presidio/Arguello.

Remember, The Wise Words of the Easter Bunny:

* Don’t put all of your chocolate eggs in one basket.

* Walk softly and carry a big carrot.

* There’s no such thing as too much candy.

* Some bunny loves you: cute little tail attracts a lot of attention.

* Everyone is entitled to a bad hare day.

* Let all your happy thoughts multiply like rabbits.

* Keep your paws off other people’s jellybeans.

* The grass is always greener in someone else’s basket.

 

Page Larkin, welcomes your feedback, questions and queries at 50datesexaminer@gmail.com.

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All Page Larkin Dating@50 Examiner articles © 2012by Page Larkin;

Top Ten Dating at 50 Rules

Top Ten Dating Rules for Girls Over 50

 

The Birthday Girls, once the brazen 49-er’s

are turning 50.

The coterie subscribes to the “Life is short, kick up your heels” philosophy. On the precipice of hitting 50 – with gusto - they created their very own ‘Un-bucket list’

Through the decades, the friends have been through the highest highs and the lowest lows. Cherie B, their scribe, writes:  “At times, life was like heaven (weddings, babies, careers, white picket fences, celebrations) and like hell (teenagers, parents dying, and making ex-husbands).”

The 10 women who met as coeds at UCLA have gracefully blossomed into women. At their big 5-0 celebration, they decided to kick up their heels at their favorite restaurant, Aziza and finish the night at Zero-Zero.

Statistics: Some Suddenly Single  – Their Creed

As fate would have it, six of the women are single and blithely swimming in, or hanging around, the dating pool.  After their celebration with champagne and exquisite pink cupcakes, punctuated with storytelling and paroxysms of laughter, the women compiled their own

Top Ten Dating Rules at 50 List

 ‘Life is Short and I Won’t Settle List

1. I won’t sit by the phone or the computer waiting for a man to reach out. I will be proactive and flirt – early and often.

2. I won’t respond to a man who sends me a photo of him hiding and enshrouded in a hat and sunglasses.

3. I won’t be impressed with anyone who sends a canned greeting (Hello Angel, does God know you left heaven?)

4. I won’t meet anyone for a date in a parking lot, a bowling alley, or the Indy 500.

5. I won’t kiss and tell, but I might kiss again. And, again.

6. I won’t hesitate to delete grumps, grouches, less than honest forthright people from my life.

7. I won’t waste time with people who see the glass as chipped, broken or empty.

8. I won’t miss the opportunity for a hug or a kiss. Holding hands is a priority.

9. I won’t wear Crocs, Uggs, Sweats, fanny-packs, Lanz nighties, shoulder pads, granny glasses or acid wash jeans. And, I won’t date a guy with a proclivity for all of the above.

10. I won’t let anyone rain on my parade. Life is a cabaret. I will sing and dance like my hair is on fire.

The robust “49-ers” default to laughing, sharing, and supporting one another.  Thirty years ago they were new at the dating game- and here they go again – back in the dating saddle. Ride on, girls. Happy Birthday.

“A diplomat is a man who always remembers a woman’s birthday but never remembers her age.” Robert Frost

Merry Flirting Christmas – get with the progam

Flirting is the gentle art of making two people happy- start with sharing a smile.

Start a happy holiday season by flirting now. Here are a handful of romantic role models to emulate:

Before breakfast, Douglas buys two copies of the San Francisco Chronicle. He reads one and offers a second copy to an attractive, single woman in one of the three cafés he frequents each week. He’s famous for this.

Coffee, tea, or me? After a month, three times a week, of handing a double espresso, to her “favorite cute customer with no wedding ring and a ready smile”- Lynne wrote her phone number on the sleeve of his coffee cup. Romance is brewing.

Gene B in Santa Rosa in Medford is famous for flirting and for the  “I thought you two were sisters,” comment to the mothers of the women he dates. Believe it or not, mothers-of -an-age- love this.

Jeremy H. buys bags of Hershey kisses and says he drops one or two off on tables of interesting women at the library, Peet’s or cafes- when he is strolling through. Jeremy – the flirt-  is famous for giving away free kisses and smiles.

Valerie in Modesto writes that she looks at man, catches his eye and turns away. She looks back and smiles. She says it works every time. Oh, la, la  Remember: eye contact is an icebreaker and a romantic catalyst. Go for it.

Edward, the dapper crossing guard on Geary Boulevard, tells every woman he sees she looks “Lovely this morning, ma’am.” Women actually cross the street just to talk to Edward. Think about it. That’s so cool.

Chris, the flirting waiter at Rigolo in Laurel Village, greets and kids around with every female customer who comes to the small cafe. He is always ready with a compliment and a smile. Needless to say, he’s a very popular guy.

Jan R., the tall redhead at the checkout clerk at the Masonic Trader Joe’s, a polyglot, greets customers in their respective homeland lingo. People love this and make a bee-line to her and ‘check’ her out.  To say she is popular – only begins to describe her.

A simple “hello” – a great beginning. Try it.

Love Story at 80

Most mornings you can see Hank and Joanne, holding hands, walking up and down the streets in Presidio Heights. He wears a Cal baseball cap and she wears a red Stanford hat. The two octogenarians talk and laugh and Hank frequently picks up newspapers and tosses them up to neighbor’s front doors. The two exude an affection and attraction that most aspire. Some think it’s good luck to see this darling devoted couple.

Now is the time to throw off “shy and subdued” and get out and flirt.

Love is in the air and everywhere. Seek out bouquets of mistletoe, wear some on your lapel, and flirt frequently.

“All women are flirts, but some are restrained by shyness, and others by sense.”     Rochefoucauld

San Francisco Dating@50 Examiner, Page Larkin, welcomes your feedback, questions and queries at page.larkin@gmail.com. Don’t miss a single Page Larkin

Top 10 – where the boys are in San Francisco

guys-i-datesd

Where does a woman in San Francisco go to meet men?

Extensive research indicates that men generally are not at the yarn store, in yoga classes, in cooking classes or attending a spirituality weekend. Remember the 1960′s bikini-beach-boy-meets-girl movie, “Where the Boys Are”? Take a page from that book.

Finding your true north

Today it doesn’t require a GPS, compass or a map to locate men in San Francisco. Seek and you shall find. The first installment:


photo_6303_20080612gloveThe Top 10 Places to Meet Men

1. Giants Baseball GamesThere are more single men at one Giants game than all of Union Street on any four Friday nights combined.

You do the math. Baseball is bigger, better and more entertaining than the old stand bys: NPR, the New Yorker and Meet the Press.  At a Giants game you get a whole team (25 men on a team – 9 on the field). These athletes are all at the top of their game, literally. In addition, you get shopping: T-shirts, accessories, hats; granted, orange / black is the complete color palette. There is a Jumbo-tron for even more sensory overload- exciting music, food and drink everywhere and a totally convivial atmosphere. What’s not to like?

2. REI – Guys are into verbs.

They run, jump, jog, hike, climb, camp, spelunk, swing, hit, paddle, row, lift, toss, throw, thump, thwack, bounce and batter…you get the idea. And what better store to buy all those handy objects to do verbs with? REI is the ultimate sporting goods store. Also Sports Basement and Sports Authority.

The strategy, ladies, is to ask questions. As a rule, men who frequent sporting goods store generally know from table tennis and fly rods and avalanche transceivers. Care about a carabiner? You’ll learn ‘quick-draw’ has nothing to do with guns and that information on the Seven Simple Machines you learned in sixth grade may come in handy (pulley, lever, wedge, etc.) If you want to know the difference between tents and tense –ask a man.

3. Wine Tasting Events – See the East Bay Express, the Pacific Sun, and theChronicle’s Pink Section  for great updates on the 4-1-1- for Wine Events. We are very fortunate to live in Northern California and to have Napa and Sonoma mere miles away. Wine can be a pleasure, a hobby, a passion and a necessity. Well known fact: men flock to wine tasting events.   See  “ Top Ten Things to do in San Francisco”

photo_1839_20060807

Fall is in the air and the Wine Country is humming, “I’ve Got a Crush on You.”

It’s that time. Remember in college you asked every guy you met, “What’s your major?” Now the query of the age is, “What’s your favorite wine?”

4. Dog Walking – Crissy Field, Fort Funston, Stern Grove, I know a woman who borrowed her neighbor’s Black Lab to use as a prop when she walked through North Beach, and that’s how she met her beau. Yes, a new meaning to ‘attention getting devices.’ Dogs: not just man’s best friend, anymore.

5. Andronico’s/Mollie Stones/Trader Joe’s/Bryans – Mondays and Friday night – 6pm – 9pm. Grocery Stores  are teeming with single men. Women tend to shop on Saturdays and Wednesdays – and men tend to shop on Friday/Monday (yes, this applies to Safeway, Rainbow and Whole Foods)

For more info: See Saturday in San Francisco and tomorrow’s column:  

The Conclusion of the Top Ten Places to Meet Men in San Francisco.

Observations re: Getting Specialized with Bicycles, golf, more wine and the gym.dog2_7501_20080925Dog Walking

San Francisco Party boy quits the dating game?

Mitch, the famed Party Boy, of six parties a week,

would glide into a room to a sea of handshakes and a cyclone of air kisses.  If you looked up the word bon vivant in the dictionary, Mitch’s picture would be there: a tall, dark, handsome party boy.

Divorced for a dozen years he was on the party circuit.  He was the party circuit. Jealously, his friends dubbed him, ‘Scout.’  In jest, women called him Casanova. Yes, there’s an ounce of truth in all jest. At one time in his life, Mitch was famously flirting or hot to trot; now, the only thing haute he was after was cuisine.

Give Up the Chase?

After years of the hunt – catch and release -and after one too many first dates – Mitch decided to throw in the towel. Not only did he throw in the towel, but also he laundered, folded, and put the towel away.


He did something none of his friends had done before: he gave up the chase. He reconciled to be a bachelor – forever.

He was lucky to have a plethora of female friends. There were women he went to movies with, women he hiked with, and a couple other women he went with to shows and dinner. In the grand scheme, there wasn’t one single woman to whom he was attracted.

Along Comes Sally

And then Mitch met met Sally. They noticed one another in line at a weekday matinee. Both were going to see “Of Gods and Men”There were only a handful people in the theater – and its the kind of movie you just have to talk about afterwards. After the movie credits, they walked out together and started talking.

They walked next door to Starbucks and discussed the movie, world politics, other favorite movies, books and life – for two hours. Mitch suggested they move their discussion few blocks away to Pesce on Polk Street And that was the beginning – a chance meeting – a year ago.

After a lousy experience on Perfectmatch.com,  Eharmony and Craigslist, Sally had sworn off men. She had no intention of ever again playing the dating game. Then, when she least expected it, she met her date for life. It happens. 

Remember: Be open to new experiences. Talk to strangers- flirt early and flirt often.

Page Larkin, San Francisco author, dating coach and dating docent offers a 3-hour Inspired Dating Workshop

“Online Dating: Get Your Mojo Moving” in San Francisco

San Francisco Dating@50 Examiner, Page Larkin, welcomes your feedback, questions and queries at page.larkin@gmail.com.

Absolutely what not to wear at 50: playing dress up?

“Fashions fade, style is eternal.”

Yves Saint Laurent

Prolific Romance writer, Danielle Steel, complains vehemently  that  women in San Francisco don’t dress well.

In a Wall Street Journal article she commented that San Franciscans all look that they are ready ‘to go camping.’  She said that City Girls were simply too casual – tromping about in hiking boots and shorts.   Is there truth in all jest?

Take that off: it’s not Halloween and you’re not 15

Okay, so the Steve Urkel nerdy-look (fake, over-sized, glasses with plastic black frames, tight flood pants, plaid shirts and striped T-shirts, Beatle boots) is de rigueur for the teens and 20’s in San Francisco. Even GQ has a new stable of hipster wannabe teen models – wearing yellow shoes, “pegged” plaid plants and hats half-cocked.

Kids! You’ve got to love them- not dress like them.

Dress Your Own Age

Tiffany, 20-something, complains that her mother (49 and holding) dips into her closet and borrows her clothes- including her Uggs, Crocs, hoodies, and Jeggings. In an effort to stave off Father Time and Mother Nature, Mom tries to dress down a decade. Or two.

Not a Good Look-At your Age

Miniskirts, T-shirts and belly-button displays –those days are over, Binkie. Skin-tight tops, hip-hugging-for-life jeans, which don’t fit – sorry, Sally. That ship has sailed. The cold hard truth: a plus-sized body – or a mother pushing 50: back away from your daughter’s closet.  Ms. Steel would agree.

If Nobody Will Tell You

Never ask a sales clerk, “Do these $200 jeans and this $300 top make me look young?”  No salesclerk, on commission, is going to say, “Ma’am this is the Junior’s department, you should really be in the Mature or the Big Mama’s department, I’m just saying.”

Take a look at the much celebrated TV Show, “What Not to Wear” Then hit the library and peruse a copy  of How Not to Look Old.

Remember, Oprah? She still is offering advice about dressing up and dressing your age.

Say Au Revoir, Good bye, Adios, and Ciao to the Oldies – Not Goodies

  • Souvenir T-shirts
  • T-shirts with anything written on them
  • Overalls
  • Ripped jeans or acid-washed jeans
  • Shoulder pads
  • Overalls
  • Flannel shirts
  • Muumuus
  • Elastic-waist pants
  • Granny panties

Finally, let it be known: there is a moratorium on all Holiday sweaters (especially sweaters with pumpkins, Santa, reindeer, teddy bears)

“Fashions fade, style is eternal. Yves Saint Laurent

Page Larkin, San Francisco author, dating coach and dating docent offers a 3-hour Dating Workshop

“Online Dating: Get Your Mojo Moving”

in San Francisco
Saturday, October, 13 10 AM to 1 PM
Cost: $85
Limit: eight to a class
Bring your current online dating profile, photos and a Dream Date List

(more information with Enrollment)   an open-mind, a sense of humor, and a desire   to get in the dating game to play and win.

Enroll at Page.Larkin@Gmail.com

2011 – Get off the couch and Get Back in the Social Saddle

Here are Five Easy Ways

to get ‘Back in the Dating Saddle’ 

and ride off into sunset 

  1. You’re not alone. There are 20+ million singles back in the dating game. Like you, many singles are bored playing Solitaire and are ready to play a rousing game of Hearts. Get out of the house and join a walking, hiking, biking, rowing, kayaking, birding, debate, tennis, ping-pong, or spelunking club. See Meetup.com for hundreds of organizations in your zip code.
  2. Adopt and embrace the C’est la vie Attitude. You know, life is short and why waste time? Refrain from perching over a phone waiting for it to ring or checking your emails 10 times a day. Your mother was right: “Go outside and play.” It’s up to you – perform the ‘due diligence’ and find out where the action is (See: Top Ten Places to Meet Men and Women in Marin and SF
  3. Be Brave So you are ready to start dating again? Want to get back in the Saddle? There will always be a Greek chorus of friends and family urging you to get back on the horse.  If you have images of a sweet pony ride dancing in your head, be prepared. The 2010 foray in dating is more like the electronic bull you remember from that John Travolta movie, Urban Cowboy. Best advice: “Better buckle up. It’s going to be a bumpy ride.”  Get in the game and enjoy the new adventures in the unique and novel Date World 2011
  4. Volunteer- check out sporting events, wines tastings, the Presidio, Litquake or theMill Valley Film Festival Festival- all are worthwhile and fun. See San Francisco’s two very popular organizations: St Anthony’ and Onebrick opportunities. Check Craigslist for volunteer listings – do a good deed and meet new people. Volunteers are love in motion.
  5. Your Mother was wrong: Do talk to strangers. Everyday. It’s okay, and heartily recommended that you look them in the eye, smile and say “hi” to five strangers – every single day.” Have fun in the New Year. Start now.

It’s a well-known fact: Dating at 50 is a lot more fun than dating at 20. Think about it: you are more interesting, smarter,  sexier and have way better life’s stories. And, you don’t have to ask your mom to borrow the car. Come on in, the water is delicious.

Women Love Men Who Dance

It’s not a secret: from the Dogpatch to Daly City, the Marina to Mission Street: women all heartily agreed: men who dance are a lot more fun and a lot more interesting.

The Take Away: Gentlemen start your lessons: Take beginner dance lessons, have fun and practice, practice, practice.

Three Local Hot Spots for dancing

Go out in the world and work like money doesn’t matter, Sing as if no one is listening, Love as if you have never been hurt, and Dance as if no one is watching”

Top Ten Fun Events in the City – laugh, hop, gaze at the stars


The Top 10 Best Fun Activities to                          Go, See, and Do in San Francisco this weekendcropped-photo_378_20051108-1.jpg

1. Best Island Hopping Tour – also known as the Heaven and Hell Tour – see both Angel Island and Alcatraz. The Alcatraz & Angel Island in a day tour showcases two most famous and historically rich islands, Alcatraz Island and Angel Island State Park. The tour is offered on weekends April through June. Tour is approximately 5 1/2 hours long and departs from Pier 33 Alcatraz Landing at 9:30am.

2. Best Place to See a Poem as Lovely as a Tree- Golden Gate Park – Check out the hotbed of activity at the lovely Rose Garden To date, there are more than 60 spectacular rose beds planted on the premises. A huge treat for all the senses.

3. Best Place to Read, Recite, Reflect – after all it is National Poetry Month, the Shakespeare Garden at Golden Gate Park (See Top Ten Romantic Poems- Chick Magnet)

4. Best Place to Laugh in the Dark Just want to laugh? Get tickets to see ACT’s hysterical Vigil at the Geary Theater. The impressive cast is comprised solely of: Bay Area actor Marco Barricelli and Academy Award-winner Olympia Dukakis. Be prepared to laugh, a lot, and be highly entertained at the quirky, clever, human condition. Don’t miss it.

5. Best Place for Stargazing: One of the Bay Area’s most spectacular sights: Mount Tamalpais

6. Best Sans Clothes Beach: Baker (don’t forget the sunscreen) Beach

7. Best-dressed beach: Stinson Beach

8. Best Place to Watch Sunrise in San Francisco: How high can you go? Twin Peaks

9. Best Place to Learn Board sports – OR never be bored again – hop aboard Boards Sports classes

10. Best Place for Kite-boarding is Crissy Field – and in San Mateo Coyote Point. Both locales are great for watching or participating. Like standup? How do they do that? Standup Paddle Board . Cruise scenic Richardson Bay in Marin County. Have a great week end.

Check out these three Spring Fling Columns by Page Larkin:

Understanding Men: What are little boys made of?

Roses are Red; Violets are Blue – Women Love Poetry, How about you? Poetry as Chick Magnet

Flirting: not just for Friday anymore- the more the merrier.

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