Nevius, ever quick to point out when NIMBYs and San Francisco politicians overstep their bounds (in his opinion) and impinge on the free market, starts by dissing Amy Poehler, et al., by saying the SNL joke was "a pretty weak one." But nonetheless, he's on board with criticizing the situation, and he delves a bit further then anyone else has into the back-and-forth that's happened between neighbor and bacon-loving business:
In January 2012, owner Jim Angelus took over an abandoned store front in the Haight and opened the restaurant the same month without the proper permits.
A neighbor filed a discretionary review appeal a year later. That triggered an automatic hearing before the Planning Commission. Discretionary reviews can be expensive, time consuming and discouraging. In this case, Angelus said he was well aware that the ventilation needed to be upgraded, and he was ready to do it.
The situation, though, is complicated by the fact that the attorney for the neighbor, with whom he spoke, now says that they're not trying to shut down the business at all, and said he thought they had an agreement in place last Friday regarding the bacon-smell-filtering ventilation it's known as a "scrubber" and most restaurants have to get one, especially if they're using a grill or wood-burning fire. Angelus is now choosing to wait until the July hearing and make sure he gets his approval before he continues operating, and Nevius finds at least one other neighbor who clearly wants Bacon Bacon to stay closed.
ANYWAY, the smells of bacon wafting through the neighborhood are legitimately offensive, as it turns out, to at least one health inspector, Richard Lee, who seems to be Nevius's main target here. Lee says that neighbors' complaints have a real basis, because "You may like [bacon smells] for a couple of minutes, but not day and night."
The national passion for bacon, though, may end up saving this place. And a petition to save it already has 2,600 signatures, and counting.
In other news, it looks like Nevius is fighting to keep his column outside the dreaded Chronicle paywall, so that people will actually see it. (Although it's also behind the paywall, too.) More on that later.