397 episodes

Weekly podcasts about places in San Francisco that make this city what it is. Photography by Michelle Kilfeather

Storied: San Francisco Storied: San Francisco

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.8 • 32 Ratings

Weekly podcasts about places in San Francisco that make this city what it is. Photography by Michelle Kilfeather

    Musée Mécanique, Part 2

    Musée Mécanique, Part 2

    Funny thing: Do a podcast like ours long enough, and the most random and randomly awesome tidbits will pop in and make the cut.

    Last episode, it was the Doc Ellis "LSD" perfect game that MLB doesn't like to talk about. In Part 2 of this episode, it's New Orleans and P.T. Barnum.

    Musée Mécanique owner Dan Zelinsky shares the story of how his dad, Ed, bought the collection of the original San Francisco owner, George Whitney, and ran the Cliff House location until around 2002. Ed Zelinsky found the spot at Pier 45 just before he passed away, in 2004.

    Whitney inherited a collection that showman P.T. Barnum brought to San Francisco from New Orleans. Much of it lived at Playland at the Beach before moving to the Cliff House, where it remained until around the turn of the century.

    Condemned building, fires, and pandemics later, Musée Mécanique thrives today at Pier 45 in Fisherman's Wharf. Part 2 concludes the history of the place and our episode all about it. Hear more from Dan as well as visitors Brian and Michael, from New Jersey and New York state, respectively.

    ​Join us next week as we kick off a series on San Francisco cemeteries!
    Photography by Michelle Kilfeather

    • 17 min
    Musée Mécanique, Part 1 (S5E2)

    Musée Mécanique, Part 1 (S5E2)

    It can get really loud inside Musée Méchanique.

    Walk in the place and you're immediately transformed, in both time and space, to another world, another era. The magic almost slaps you in the face, hitting all five senses at the same time. And you can't help but feel the nostalgia coursing through your veins.

    In Part 1 of this episode, meet the arcade's roller-skating owner, Dan Zelinsky. Dan traces the history of the place back to his dad, Ed Zelinsky. Ed started his penny-arcade machine collection in 1933, but the story is complicated, filled with twists and turns that involve New Orleans and P.T. Barnum.

    We talk with a couple of tourist visitors to Musée Méchanique who found the place thanks to some cameos in The ​Princess Diaries. Then Dan shares the story of how he acquired the infamous "Laffing Sal."
    Photography by Michelle Kilfeather

    • 16 min
    McCovey Cove, Part 2

    McCovey Cove, Part 2

    Bear with us a moment. We're gonna go stats nerd on you.

    As of the publication of this episode, the San Francisco Giants have played a total of 1,892 games at the stadium known these days as Oracle Park. Each of those games sees a minimum of 27 at-bats for Giants players. That leaves us with at least 51,057 chances for a hitter to send a home run ball into the waters of McCovey Cove. And it's happened a mere 97 times. That's something like a 0.19 percent chance that any batter will accomplish the feat.

    And on the very day this July when we boarded the Canoecycle, lo and behold, we got a splash hit.

    Hear all about it from the human in a kayak who got that Lamont Wade, Jr.'s, home run ball and more, as we present the second part of our podcast on McCovey Cove.
    Photography by Michelle Kilfeather

    • 18 min
    McCovey Cove, Part 1

    McCovey Cove, Part 1

    Here we go.

    Our first episode of Season 5 was recorded out on the water. McCovey Cove is familiar to Giants fans, whether you've been in the water or not. It's that tiny waterway nestled between the ballpark (PacBell Park, SBC Park, AT&T Park, Oracle Park ...) and the strip of human-engineered land across the way. Baseball players sometimes hit baseballs out of the ballpark and into the water. Balls can land in the cove "on the fly" (directly from the air) or on a bounce.

    When this happens, much like a group of koi racing for crumbs, humans in kayaks paddle and vie for the floating sports balls. It's a thing. A whole thing.

    In this podcast, we first meet our captain on the water that day, Jay Broemmel. Jay introduces us to McCovey Cove Dave, perhaps the most famous of those vying for souvenirs six months a year.

    In Part 2 next week, we'll meet some more people out in kayaks on the cove that day. And there will be a surprise ... something that doesn't happen at just every Giants home game. Thanks for listening.
    Podcast transcript here.

    We recorded this podcast in McCovey Cove in July 2022.
    Photography by Michelle Kilfeather

    • 18 min
    Welcome to Season 5! (S5E0)

    Welcome to Season 5! (S5E0)

    Folks, we made it.
    Welcome to the fifth season of Storied: San Francisco. For five years, we've highlighted humans—artists, doctors, teachers, small business owners—who make this place what it is. Now we turn our attention to places around The City that do exactly the same—help create the mystique around this complicated, beautiful, wondrous place we all call home.
    In this prequel episode of sorts, Jeff will reminds everyone why we do this crazy show in the first place. He'll talk about the pivot from people to places, the updates we've made to our website, and let everyone in on why we chose to include an acknowlegement of the first humans in this area in every episode, including this one.
    Check back next week when we present Episode 1: McCovey Cove.
    Photography by Michelle Kilfeather

    • 8 min
    Kundan Baidwan's Oral History of Aub Zam Zam Bar

    Kundan Baidwan's Oral History of Aub Zam Zam Bar

    After Anthony Bourdain passed away in June, our friends at Bitch Talk Podcast decided that the best way to honor him was to follow in his footsteps—literally. The second of three planned "Bourdain Crawls" brought them (and Jeff) to Upper Haight's Zam Zam, where we met and were treated to some amazing oral history from bartender Kundan Baidwan.
    In this episode, which is shared by our podcast and Bitch Talk, Kundan walks us through some colorful stories surrounding this neighborhood drinking hole that still doesn't have any TVs.
    We recorded this episode at Zam Zam in July 2018.
    Film photography by Michelle Kilfeather

    • 16 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
32 Ratings

32 Ratings

J.L. Braswell ,

Best San Francisco podcast chronicling life.

This is my most favorite podcast talking about San Francisco, my favorite city for almost 20 years now since 2003. I previously lived in Syracuse, New York and Houston, Texas. I came to the Bay Area in 2003 from Houston with my family and instantly fell in love with San Francisco. It was the final year of Junior High School that time. I live in the East Bay, but really love San Francisco and enjoy visiting the city. I hope to live there one day. Every day 24/7, 365 days a year, and 52 weeks a year, San Francisco remains on my mind, especially during these challenging times with the pandemic, the election, the insurrection, and much more. That is how much I love the city. This podcast does a fantastic job chronicling life in San Francisco through conversations with locals that reside in the city about how they ended up in San Francisco, what got them here in the first place, memories of their first visits to the city. Jeff does a great job interviewing these folks and asks great questions. With every episode I have listened to, it’s always fun hearing from the people that Jeff has conversations with share these experiences and memories through their stories, what they have to say about San Francisco, what they like about it, and what they currently do in the city. I really like how this season with the pandemic that Jeff came up with the theme “We’re Still Here” and asks the people he interviews what it means to still be here in San Francisco and they foresee in the future with the city coming out of the pandemic. I highly really recommend this podcast to those who are passionate about San Francisco like I am, and especially to those that don’t live in San Francisco or the Bay Area, or have never visited San Francisco, or have been meaning to visit the city.

DaddyGameBoi ,

Ed Wolf

Loved the Podcast with Ed. He really gives an intimate look at such a sensitive and heartbreaking time in our nation. Thank you for having him on your show.

Cpdb ,

So much hypocrisy and phoniness

Some of the stories are really painful to listen to. Listening to gentrifiers talk about the ills of gentrification is infuriating. For example, Listening to upper middle class valley girls from Walnut Creek talk about how THEY are bringing diversity to San Francisco is the height of self importance, arrogance and pandering. Honestly, get over yourselves.
I have a art studio in Bayview, right on 3rd st. I don’t see any of these people down there helping out the community.

You Might Also Like

San Francisco Chronicle
KQED
KQED
San Francisco Chronicle
KQED
This American Life