By Tim Redmond

It is, of course, illegal to drink an open alcoholic beverage on the streets of San Francisco. It’s also illegal to sit on the streets.

Unless, that is, you are in a chair that was placed on the public streets, or in a public parklet, by a local restaurant that is charging you money to be there. In that case, you can drink all you want, sit as long as the private owner will tolerate you, maybe even lie down if there’s a longish bench.

I know: Why is anyone complaining about that? We’re all in favor of restaurants having chairs on the street, and I love parklets, and it’s all good. Really good.

But that’s how creeping privatization of the public commons happens – with things that are, on the surface, all good. (more after the jump)