How could we not start our love affair with Oakland without paying homage to our City’s most charming residents, the 2,300 gnome paintings affixed to the bottom of utility poles throughout Oakland. An anonymous artist and his dog go out every night putting up small paintings, bringing magic and enchantment to our sidewalks. In one of his few statements, the artist said, “I’m a resident of Oakland who simply thought this would be a nice way to make my fellow Oaklanders happy and proud. . .We see too much garbage on the streets here, too many shootings, too much violence, not enough that makes one stop and smile. … They were meant to be an ongoing gift to my community.” We thank you.