I wish my family would stop being so polite and finally tell me the truth. Specifically about my hair, and how it’s thinning out. Sure it looks amazing from the front (and on the sides), but when I turn around and use a hand mirror to inspect the back of my head under supercharged halogen vanity bulbs in the bathroom…that’s when I can tell it’s starting to fall out. My hairstylist Gregory reassured me that it’s typical to lose 100 strands of hair a day, but if I’m being honest… I can’t keep track. Which makes me feel even older. And what about the ones I accidentally pull out myself? Do those count towards my daily allotment? Finally, at the age of 31, I now know what it’s like to live with the germinating insecurity of getting old and going bald plaguing 25% of the population.
What sucks the most is that for the last ten years I’ve been teasing my father and two older brothers about their early onset male-patterned-baldness (MPB). Which I guess makes this karma for all those off the cuff Andre Agassi references and allusions to the Padres’ Swinging Friar mascot. I was always gonna be the sibling blessed with my maternal grandfather’s full head of hair. Didn’t matter if it was silver or a chalky-white either, because it would be there, in all its glory, and that’s all that mattered.
But now my confidence-masked naiveté is shaken. I no longer think I’m invincible to the age-old signs of old age. I mean seriously, what’s happening to my body? I now get these bad gassy cramps deep in the pit of my stomach when I pass the large tubs of sunscreen at Costco, because my gut’s telling me I’m gonna need to slather the SPF on my bald scalp like a thick wax meant to protect the hood of a Porsche Cayenne. This is a new phenomenon, and one I can no longer ignore.
So you want to hear my plan? I’m gonna say “Fuck it!” and I’m going back on the pill. Yep, I’m on the pill. The light blue hexagonal kind that magically prevents hair loss and in some cases help promote regrowth. But Propecia isn’t cheap, and Obamacare doesn’t cover it. So I take Finasteride, the generic version. The only catch… I need to cut each tiny pill into four pieces (1 mg doses) so I’m preventing hair loss and not shrinking my prostate, because having to pee every three minutes would mean I’m my father. The process works…. I just happen to look like a drug addict when I’m chopping pharmaceuticals with a switchblade on the kitchen counter.
The Best Damn Cheesburger from 4505 Meats
So in honor of the 4505 hairs I have left on my head, I need the distraction of the “best damn cheeseburger” in San Francisco. That happens to be the cheeseburger from 4505 Meats. The artisanal whole-animal butchers not only sell some of the most delicious cuts of meat at their farmers market shops around the city and at the Ferry Building, but they also serve some of the best prepared bites around. We’re talking maple bacon breakfast sausage sandwiches, lamb merguez sausages, hot dogs, bratwursts….and…well…you get the picture.
Husband and wife proprietors (Cesalee and Chef Ryan Farr) founded 4505 Meats in 2009 and have built a solid brand throughout the Bay Area synonymous with fantastic meat! They run a meat CSA for meats lovers looking for a steady stream of sustainably grown meats practically straight from the farm. They offer classes in butchering, preparing, cooking and eating all of their antibiotic-free, hormone-free, grass fed, and humanly raised meats that come to them whole and are cut in-house.
At their Grove Street farmers market stand one Sunday we noticed the pompous way they listed this burger on their menu. BEST DAMN CHEESEBURGER. I was just too cocky for my brother’s liking and he felt like it was almost a challenge. As if 4505 Meats were daring us (egging us on) to take a bit. Which is ironic, because it comes with a gooey fried egg.
“Big deal,” we said, “what doesn’t come with an egg on it these days?” Fried eggs are so 2010, right? Wrong! It might be more of a cliché now than it was a few years back, but when it’s right to add a fried egg….it’s soooooo right!
The patty of their dry aged ground chuck is served with a skin of salty gruyere and is dripping with flavorful jus and fat. The crisp bibb lettuce helps protect the toasted buttery brioche buns from the drizzling soft yolk and secret sauce, running like molten lava down your hands as you race to take another bite of this delectable burger before you’ve finished chewing the first. The red onions are lightly pickled for some acidity and…well….before I knew it, I was licking egg yolks and ketchup off my fingers, and suddenly going bald didn’t seem to be such a big deal. Thanks for the perspective 4505 Meats!