Exploring San Francisco through the lens of city blocks, Blocker is a weekly series by Charles Hodgkins. Look for it on SFist each Wednesday, around the lunching hour.

View the map of all published Blocker episodes.

Blocker, No. 21: Taylor St. in the Tenderloin

(Important note: This visit took place shortly before the recent fire at Original Joe’s. We’re innocent.)

The 100 block of Taylor, between Eddy and Turk, is not for the faint of heart. Spend some time taking in its considerable distress, and at some point you’re certain to gauge your own capacity for urban America’s torn and frayed seams.

Voices here speak in all sorts of timbres. Some holler, while others just mumble incomprehensibly. Nearly all of them sound raspy. The common thread is desperation, and it’s not a pretty sound.