munikiss.jpgIn another life, I worked at a PR agency (wisely, they never allowed me to actually relate to the public) that had a major software company as a client. And I remember, every time the company wanted some media mentions, but didn’t have anything solid to promote, the folks on the account would suggest the company “release a list.”

“Pubs love to pick up a list” I heard one SVP say to his client. “Journalists are lazy, and a story on a list is easy.” That SVP was not completely wrong — though many journalists I know are hard toilers, who can turn down a story that’s sent to you, basically written already? I sure can’t, and that’s why I’m recapping two for you today, on San Francisco’s relative 1) sexiness and 2) public transportation.

According to a survey of customers of travel booking company Orbitz, “San Francisco narrowly beat Miami as the sexiest city in America, with New York coming in third,” with our city getting 18% of the sexy vote. Sadly, they do not explain themselves beyond that, though I am harboring hopes that our trouncing of New York means Ramona might consider staying.

The Ex happily points out that LA only got 2% of the sexy vote, which might mean that Orbitz users who respond to surveys find things like movie stars and LA Confidential unappealing in the sack.

US News and World Report first surprises me by continuing to exist, then presents a Daily Beastesque pageview generator of a slideshow, “The 10 Best Cities for Public Transportation.” San Fransisco comes in at #6, buoyed in part because BART can go as fast at 80 MPH.

The report’s methodology’s a bit clearer than Orbitz’s, taking “into account per capita spending on public transportation, number of safety incidents per million trips, and the number of trips taken per capita.” SF, they say “ranked very high on ridership and public investment, but ranked lower in terms of safety.”

Ranked ahead of us were Portland, OR, Salt Lake, New York, Boston, and Minneapolis-St. Paul. We beat out LA (two for two!), Honolulu, Denver, and Austin.

The report’s results, which the Ex suggests (and Twitter seems to confirm) had people at Muni “beaming proudly,” were less palatable to the Chron, which said “it’s difficult to accept that teetotaling Salt Lake City (No. 2) finished ahead of us (Guess they don’t have empty malt liquor cans rolling around the bus floors).”

Gate blogger Cameron Scott has another take on the results, saying that our #6 slot means that “(y)ou can actually get around in S.F. using mass transit, but you won’t enjoy it.”

Unless, perhaps, it’s a SEXY Muni ride? Ugh, I just creeped myself out.

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the author

Eve Batey is the editor and publisher of the San Francisco Appeal. She used to be the San Francisco Chronicle's Deputy Managing Editor for Online, and started at the Chronicle as their blogging and interactive editor. Before that, she was a co-founding writer and the lead editor of SFist. She's been in the city since 1997, presently living in the Outer Sunset with her husband, cat, and dog. You can reach Eve at

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