pacman inkee

The City

The City, originally uploaded by hep.

Is any other city called The City like sf is? I don't know anyone who lives in/near San Francisco that doesn't just call it "The City" most of the time.

Years and years ago, the Contra Costa Times ran an advertising campaign about one of their columnists. Their tagline was, "When he says The City, he means Walnut Creek." Even at twelve, I still thought it was hilarious.
Most of the northeast US refers to NYC as 'The City'. Although much of the time it is applied to Manhattan, it can also mean any of the other boroughs...

I think that's pretty much true for most major metropolitan areas--especially New York City. Most east-coasters I've met seem to think of NYC as "the city".
My city is so small (ca. 350,000) that people refer to going into the city centre as "going into town".
There was a shitty shopping mall in Orange, CA called "The City." Then they blew it up and put up a shitty profitable youth-oriented mall called "The Block." The end.
There's a slight difference to most 'the city' usage outside of the bay area, in my experience: people say 'I'm going to the city' in east Jersey and everybody knows you mean NYC. People might say 'something happened in the city', though, and that doesn't necessarily mean NYC; it may mean wherever in Jersey you are when it's said.

London comes close, though they have a weird thing where calling it 'The City' means a specific square mile which is the historical limits of London. You can hear the capitals in referring to it thus clearly, in how natives speak of it, too.
i've lived most of my life in berkeley and i can't recall ever referring to it as "the city". . . i normally just say "san francisco" or occasionally "sf". . . but then again i'm kinda fucked up. . .

i *do* know several people (not from around the bay area) who refer to it as "frisco". . . i dunno why but for some reason that makes me cringe. . .
one of emperor norton's decrees was that anyone referring to san francisco as "frisco" would be fined $25 paid to the city treasury. To this day most of my friends and I fine each other upon use of the term. $25 buys a lot of $1 beers at Happy Hour! (and cheap Shirley Temples for those of us who don't drink)
I don't think anyone in the entire state of Illinois would get confused if you said "The City" and know you meant Chicago. :>

Oh yeah..
Journey - Lights

When the lights go down in the city
And the sun shines on the bay
I want to be there in my city
Ooh, ooh

So you think youre lonely
Well my friend Im lonely too
I want to get back to my city by the bay
Ooh, ooh

Its sad, oh theres been mornings out on the road without you,
Without your charms,
Ooh, my, my, my