That lemon-faced look of sympathy would flash across their face whenever I said it.
'I live in Oakland.'
"Oh you poor thing, what have you done to deserve that?" I was once asked.
The artistic, economic and intellectual triumphs bestow San Francisco, Marin and Berkeley residents a reflected cache, whereas we Oaklanders are seemingly tainted by our city's notorious crime statistics and Jean Quan's 100 blocks of murdering mayhem.
When real British blueblood Jessica Mitford, progeny of the 2nd Baron Redesdale, rejected her noble origins, joined the communist party, entered self-imposed exile and became an unlikely Oakland resident alongside Huey Newton's Black Panthers, her resolutely aristocratic sister Nancy Mitford, pleaded "At least you could live in Berkeley."