AUGUST 2006

 

Pete and Geralyn together made this, their art-bed

 

 

8/1/06

Great ball game on the playground Sunday afternoon--guys hit some good-ones, out da park.

 

Our Urban Ore was featured last night on TV Channel 5's Eye on the Bay.

 

When at Oakland Airport Sunday sitting, reading an airplane-book in front of American Airlines check-in, "Hello Ron" broke my concentration. Looking up, walking by was Andy Kruse and family-parts. We laughed as he passed. Later, when waiting for luggage from Flight 621 the--on TV--faux-humble, yet lovable hyper-nerd, Josh Kornbluth came and stood next to me, apparently also waiting. He's actually much better looking than he appears on TV and seems to be a regular human-being--intelligent and, thankfully, not manic. And, . . . not as rotund.

 

Sarah sends this link to a story on our Sawtooth Warehouse.

In reading and browsing this site be aware that one of the writers is Daniella Thompson who, about 7/21/06, wrote to the Daily Planet of her earlier story on the origin of the 2447 San Pablo building and its history "I thank David Mayeri and Laura Billings for their correction regarding the original use of the interesting building at 2747 San Pablo Ave. . . . , my error had its origin in the City of Berkeley's West Berkeley Plan. . . . Even though the building was never a Mel's Drive-in, it is a very good example of mid-century road-side architecture . . . " It seems it was not only never a Mel's but was not in the slightest involved in the Civil Rights movement as she had written.

 

"Kite festival aloft in Berkeley" reports Patrick Treadway of the West County Times. "Cesar Chavez Park at the Berkeley Marina is a great visual setting for the colorful array of kites that fill the sky at the annual Berkeley Kite Festival.

 

"Students get on point with Alvin Ailey" reports Jackie Burrell of the Times. "Alana Banks goes through her ballet routine and enters into her arabesque in ballet class during the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in Berkeley. The pulsating beat of African drums punctuates each step as a dozen young dancers of every shape and size move across the Zellerbach Hall stage. Downstairs, jazz riffs emanate from a rehearsal room."

 

"Home sales in Bay Area decline. Most sellers refuse to cut prices and buyers are scarce in the second quarter, experts say" writes the Times' Barbara E. Hernandez.

 

"Solar laundry shines as an example" by Michael Tarm of the AP.

(In Berkeley? Naaw, . . . in Berwyn, Illinois.)

"One of Tom Benson's claims to fame, proclaimed in 5-foot-high letters across his storefront, is that he owns the "World's Largest Laundromat" -- complete with 153 washers, 148 dryers and 15 flat-screen TVs."

 

 

 

 

8/3/06

 

Andrew and Kerstin and getting married September 9th in a Potter Creek garden ceremony.

 

Milo's trike was stolen from the 8th Street sidewalk this morning while Milo and Sarah were at 900 GRAYSON.

 

"Landmark ordinance goes to voters" writes Martin Snapp of the West County Times."Berkeley voters in November will decide the fate of the city's landmarks preservation ordinance, one of the strongest in the country."

 

And "complex foes lose battle for initiative" in Albany reports Justin Hill of the Times. "Waterfront development measure dropped from ballot."

 

" Bay Area foreclosure activity on rise. Analysts say region is doing better than the state and default notification increase is below record levels" writes Barbara E. Hernandez of the Times. "The East Bay saw a big jump in foreclosure activity in the second quarter compared with the previous year, but still below historical levels and lower than most of the rest of California."

 

"Californians Seek Action on Air Quality, Global Warming" writes Brian Shott of New America Media in our Daily Planet.

 

Wal-Mart is selling all 85 of its stores in Germany to a competitor, . . . OOOPS.

 

German soprano, Elisabeth Schwarzkopf has died. She was ninety.

 

 

 

8/4/06

 

Pete and Geralyn's inspiration"by" Marcel Duchamp

Read about Apolinère Enameled here.

 

 

Tracy emails

Natalie will be performing in today's Puppets and Pie show if you . . . can make it.

 

The City has planted trees on the corner of 8th and Grayson

 

"Collective's Departure Marks Another Berkeley Arts Loss" reports Richard Brenneman of our Daily Planet.

 

"Watchdogs Demand Release of Pacific Steel Report" writes the Planet's Riya Bhattacharjee. "Supporters of neighborhood watchdog group Cleanaircoalition.net will be coming together with environmental and community groups this month to demand that Pacific Steel Casting make the results of their already delayed emission inventory report and health risk assessment available to the Bay Area Air Quality Management District and the City of Berkeley immediately."

 

"City's Political Candidates Rake in the Campaign Cash" reports Judith Scherr of the Planet. "If money talked, it could turn into a noisy campaign season this year. "

 

"Cal program help teens tap inner Muse.Immersion helps American Indians boost writing skills" writes Michelle Maitre of the Oakland Tribune.

Josh Kosman of the Chronicle writes "Soprano Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, whose fine-spun vocal tone and studied elegance made her one of the most important singers of the postwar decades, died Thursday at her home in Schruns, Austria. She was 90." Her full obituary is here.

 

Have we just gone through a matrix shift? Well, . . . the Arabs are fighting the Jews to a "standstill." Arnie is "ahead" in the polls. General staff officers confess that there is a "real chance" of civil war in Iraq. We are now fighting a "World War." And, . . . "global warming" is real and it sucks.

Oh ya, . . . Fidel is "no longer in power."

 

 

 

 

8/6/06

Scrambled Eggs' Hunks and Babe(s) for 2006 are our Berkeley PD Motor Officers---don't have any photos of the officers, but here are their motors.

 

Quite a gaggle of Potter Creekers at 900 GRAYSON Friday AM--enough for a meeting actually. But more fun.

 

Rick just got back from a week in upstate New York visiting with childhood friends.

 

The Berkeley Arts and Crafts Preservation Ordnance, a codification of the West Berkeley Plan, requires replacement of arts and crafts use in kind--if in arts and crafts use before1989.

 

Morgan, Tracy, Ben, and friend played ball on the playground Saturday.

 

"FEMME MENTALE--San Francisco neuropsychiatrist says differences between women's and men's brains are very real, and the sooner we all understand it, the better" reports Joe Garofoli of the San Francisco Chronicle.

You know, I knew there was something different at 17, when Nancy Harding and I broke up the first time.

 

 

 

8/7/06

"New locomotive runs on old idea" writes Chris Treadway of the West County Times. "A new steam locomotive has joined the rolling stock of the Redwood Valley Railway in Berkeley's Tilden Regional Park, the fourth engine designed and manufactured in the miniature railway's 54-year history in the park."

 

"Church makes itself at home. Members spruce up surroundings as branch of Unity establishes itself in community" reports Martin Snapp of the West County Times.

 

"Diversity fuels East Bay job market" writes George Avalos of the Times. "The East Bay's construction boom is being powered by a lot more than a one-cylinder engine. That's a good thing, too. The remarkable rise of the East Bay to its perch as the Bay Area's most robust job market is due in no small measure to a big increase in construction jobs, especially in the last three years. Over the last 12 months alone, construction has accounted for one-third of all the new jobs created in the East Bay."

 

"Esther Snyder, matriarch of In-N-Out Burgers, dies at 86" reports AP in the West County Times. "Esther L. Snyder, who with her husband founded the iconic West Coast restaurant chain In-N-Out Burgers, has died. She was 86."

 

 

 

8/8/06

Sunday afternoon Sarah and Byron hosted a conversation wth Zelda Bronstein, candidate for mayor. Held in their garden from 2PM until 4PM, over twenty guests came and went. "Pretty much the usual suspects" commented one. "It was very informal and she listened to the concerns of the neighbors" said another. Zelda opened with a statement of her position and discussion ensued. All agreed it was a perfect day to be in the garden.

Zelda's Daily Planet editorials can be read here. And more Zelda, including her Website link, can be found here.


 

8/9/06

 

UC CO-OP are new Potter Creek neighbors.

 

Our Urban Ore was featured on Channel 7's "View from the Bay" today.

 

Yesterday, west-Berkeley's Karnak the Magnificant predicted the winner of our Mayor race. It is now in a sealed envelope, in my safe keeping, to be opened after the November election. Not only did WB Karnak the M predict a winner, but he predicted the victor's vote percentage.

 

Our Cameron Woo wrote the Planet disagreeing with Zelda Bronstein on the amount of support for the Potter Creek Bowl. Read his Letter to the Editor. (Zelda's original commentary can be found in among all of her many, many, many Planet appearances.) MY memory is that support here was considerable and--with some sort of traffic mitigation--begrudgingly overwhelming.

After stopping her column when considering her run for mayor, Zelda is again writing. Are her comments journalism or written campaign speeches? I'm a bad guy to judge, believing as I do that the New York Times is Capitalism's most sophisticated Infomercial.

 

"Clif Bar packing up, moving to Alameda. Berkeley's zoning restriction prompts company's relocation" writes Carolyn Jones in the San Francisco Chronicle.

 

"Tower faces wrath of record firms. Retailer refuses to pay its debt to four music conglomerates, prompting them to strike back by halting product shipments" reports Dale Kasle in the West County Times.

 

Network-news-wisdom has it that one of the reasons for Joe Lieberman's loss is that the Liberal blogs went after him. When asked why this morning, a 900 GRAYSON regular offered, with prodding, "He didn't have the votes."

 

 

 

8/10/06

 

Be a little careful these days. Recently, James' digital camera was stolen from his Active Space and Alan and Karen's Sawzall was stolen form their fenced-in yard in broad daylight.

This morning it looks like another stolen car has been dumped on 8th Street next to Hustead's.

 

Another Buttercuper makes good. Read about our Shanda Sawyer in today's Oakland Tribune.

Chad Jones writes "Berkeley native Shanda Sawyer took on the task of re-inventing the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus to make it hipper and more audience friendly. . . . . Ever since P.T. Barnum hooked up with James Bailey to create a circus spectacular, the big top has always been home to three rings of entertainment. [But modern] circus audiences felt that three rings of simultaneous action was too much and made it hard for kids to focus. If you've ever been to a three-ring circus you know the feeling: You always feel like you're missing something good. . . . Sawyer's primary task quickly became clear: turn three rings into one. . . . Coming of creative age in the Bay Area, Sawyer says, allowed her to work with a wide variety of people on both the creative and technical sides of the business. Those connections led her into the world of music videos, which were just coming into their own in the early'80s. As a choreographer, Sawyer worked with Greg Kihn, Sylvester, Billy Preston and Hammer. 'Pretty good for a white girl,' Sawyer says with a laugh. " Read the full story here.

The Summer that Moe, Kimar, et al, and I flew to London, Shanda flew to Israel. On her way back to the US of A we met at the boat train. That evening Shanda said good-bye to her Israeli friends, and while waiting for her in a London cab I got to deliver one of my favorite Film-noir lines. "Wait, . . . I'll make it worth your while."

 

 

 

8/11/06

Check out Shanda's Website here. And, there's much more about Shanda here.

 

"City rolls out virtual images" writes Martin Snapp of the West County Times. "On the wall above Pat DeTemple's desk at Berkeley City Hall is a map of Napoleon's retreat from Moscow, drawn 50 years after the event by an engineer named Charles Joseph Minard. The map shows a band of ever-diminishing thickness tracing Napoleon's path, the thickness representing the number of soldiers. By the end of the retreat, the band is only a fraction of its original width. 'It's one of the earliest examples of translating quantitative data into a visual image, and it's still one of the best,' said DeTemple. 'You can see the important information -- the rate at which Napoleon was losing his soldiers -- at a glance.' DeTemple is the city's Geographic Information Systems (GIS) division manager. Using state-of-the-art Global Information Systems technology, he and his colleague, Brian Quinn, are doing the same thing that Minard did: translating abstruse data into easily understandable images."

After reading Snapp's story go our GIS Site and play.

 

"Unions plan to recruit day laborers. Organizing immigrant populations who work for different employers each day proves a challenge" reports the AP's Peter Prengaman.

 

 

 

8/12/06

In all of Shanda's bios I could find no reference to her production of the Bubbles and Ronnie Show--a skit that Shanda put together for a Buttercup party. She was Bubbles, a ventriloquist and I was her dummy. Dressed in a brown suit with too-short pants, white socks, brown wingtips, a dorky hat and a nerd bow tie, I sat on her lap and "talked." Scantily glad, Shanda went through her ventriloquist routine ending by drinking a glass of water as "I" sang

 

If I'm not mistaken the big guy with the beautiful woman at 900 GRAYSON'S TABLE FOUR this morning was Mal Sharpe. If not, he was a great imposter. Whose's Mal Sharpe? Check out him and partner Jim Coyle here.

 

 

 

 

8/15/06

"RINGING SUCCESS" writes Delfin Vigil of the San Francisco Chronicle. "When Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey decided to replace its traditional'three-ring format with one giant performance area, many circus freaks and fans didn't exactly embrace it as the greatest change to 'The Greatest Show on Earth.' 'I've been asked, what's it like to go down to just a one-ring circus, but I don't look at it that way,' says Shanda Sawyer, the San Francisco native chosen to reinvent the 136th edition of Ringling Bros., which makes its way to the Oakland Arena on Thursday. 'I think of it more like we're coming up from the confines of three rings.'

 

San Francisco Chronicle photo of Shanda by Christina Koci Hernandez

 

In all Shanda's press I've read no mention of her and her family's adventures with Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters.

 

Reinactors' baseball? Well, seems just like there are Civil War reinactors there are old-baseball reinactors, guys who wear the 1800s' uniforms, play by the old rules, and with original equipment, and don't even use gloves. And Berkeley author, Darryl Brock is involved in it, in fact gives lectures about it. He also wrote a book about old-baseball AND time travel called "If I Never Get Back." Check it out.

 

Bob, from The Old West Gun Room, and his family had breakfast at 900 GRAYSON yesterday. Boy, that guy's got a big family--they filled the banquet table.

 

Sunday afternoon Sally had a party for Norma Finch, Richard's Mom. (Norma who turned ninety-one has just passed her drivers test.) Though the La Farine hazel-nut, almond, chocolate, cherry torte was unexpectedly delicious, Norma's story about meeting her husband, Dan was even more delicious. In the 1930s, Dan, an inventor, was driving around the country with his cousin testing a current invention, a multiple-fuel '36 Buick. (It'd run on whiskey, Richard chimed in.) Seems the boys stopped in Haywarden, Iowa to visit some of cousin's relatives. And, it happened at that time Norma was visiting back home from Takoma Washington, where she was working. During their stay down the street, the boys would often walk past Norma's house. But Norma says that it was her Mother who noticed them and asked Norma to invited them in. Well, she did. To be continued.

 

Front room filling with irritant. Time to leave.

 

 

 

8/16/06

 

Anthy, John and Jerry's Mom and her Husband had lunch at a crowded 900 GRAYSON yesterday.

 

Long ago, Richard Finch spoke to me about a heavy black dust that regularly accumulates on his 8th Street house window-sills. Bob and Carol, on Pardee and 10th, have also mentioned it accumulating on their sills. I recently noticed it coated a motorcycle parked all day in front the the warehouse. Richard said it was rubber (tire) dust. I swept my hand across the motorcycle tank and came away with a blackened palm that smelled like rubber. I guess a fence along the freeway would reduce the accumulation.

 

From my Log, yesterday

8/15/06--8:44 AM; irritant in front room, LEAVE. 11:20 AM; irritant in entire warehouse accompanied by foreign odor. 2:49 PM; SERIOUS irritant in entire warehouse accompanied by foreign odor--chlorine-like plus hot plastic, use filter mask. Irritant present off-and-on all day. 6:22 PM; RETURN, air-out warehouse with three high-speed fans.

Detailed "From my Log" will continue this week. I'm more than a month behind.

 

"Air board sues steel firm over odorous emissions--District says that Pacific Steel has not met deadlines set in a deal reached last year" reports Justin Hill of the West County Times. "A Berkeley steel casting company has violated a settlement it reached with air quality officials in December to reduce odorous emissions, a lawsuit filed in Alameda County Superior Court says."

Is this the same manufacture featured in mayor candidate, Zelda Bronstein's film about manufacturing in west-Berkeley?

 

NEXUS has to be out in two weeks. They're looking for space in Richmond.

 

 

 

8/18/06

 

Yesterday, the goats arrived at the Potter Creek Berkeley Bowl sight (site) on Heinz. They've been there before. Check out The Potter Creek Bill Goat Page.

 

Not only was Bob Kubik at GRAYSON yesterday but Mr. Rick and friends were there Wednesday afternoon.

 

Also Wednesday, Steve Sullivan's guy trimmed-back the over-growth on 8th and Pardee.

 

And, the Kruse redo has noticeably lessened traffic on 8th.

 

Sea Salt is expanding into the next-store space soon.

Sea Salt servers have been seen eating at GRAYSON. And so have other Berkeley restaurant staff--Home Made Cafe and T-Rex among them.

 

Check out the flowers and plants in front of the business on 10th and Heinz--those are regularly, tastefully replanted.

 

Not to worry, . . . at separate, recent informal meetings with Rick or Bob or Sarah or many others, all Potter Creek issues have been resolved. (Bob and I met yesterday, pretty much on Sally's stoop.) And, I've been reassured that other meetings too have resolved all Potter Creek issues.

 

"Circus show puts big top on the big screen"
writes Pat Craig of the West County Times. "Ladieeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeees and GENtlemen, boys and girls, if you will focus your attention on the center ring. . . . Oh, wait a second, there is no center ring at this circus. In the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus of the new millennium, which begins its Bay Area run . . . , there aren't any rings at all, as it turns out. . . . Instead, the entire arena floor is a performing area, allowing the horses to gallop longer and faster, the elephants to parade bigger, and the acts to stretch out and wow the crowds without forcing the kids in the crowd to divide their attention between a quarter-dozen rings."

 

"Circus turns weighty issue into fun time" reports Sandra Wiederkehr of the Times. "The Greatest Show on Earth has found a new act: a sideshow of performers teaching their skills to encourage youths to be more fit."

 

"Summer Outdoor Cinema Series Features Classic Film, Live Music"
reports Justin DeFreitas of our Planet. "Pyramid Alehouse kicks off its annual Outdoor Cinema series this Saturday with a screening of the 1969 Robert Redford-Paul Newman classic Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid."

 

8/19/06

Last night, the 900 GRAYSON staff catered a private wedding party for a Potter Creeker and guests

And yesterday was 900 GRAYSON'S best day ever.

 

Ruth is in down-South working on a documentary about our World War II Japanese Interment Camps and Marvin is busy preparing for a November show.

 

 

Soon FOR SALE at cycletrader.com

From my private collection, a1978, CZ125cc Motocross, "0" MILES, NEW

 

Now listed FOR SALE at cycletrader.com is my 1987 HONDA VFR 700 "Interceptor"

 

From my Log

1:17 PM-irritant in warehouse-front and front-of-warehouse accompanied by chlorine-like odor. "It's in the air--like bleach" said Wacko as she left on her bike.

 

 

 

8/20/06

 

Preservationist and writer, Daniella Thompson emails about her 2747 San Pablo article

Ron,

The article, rewritten, is here:
http://berkeleyheritage.com/eastbay_then-now/roadside.html

Really a "new" article about this property and building, it is well-researched, informative and well-written. See 7/21/06 for my reference to her "first story."

 

"Bay Area home sales fall. 16-month slide continues with big drop in July" writes Tom Abate of the San Fransico Chronicle.

 

9:50 AM--SERIOUS irritant in front room, dry eyes, dry mouth, light-headed, cough.

 

"Healthy profits lie in going green. Shaklee CEO predicts 'double-digit' growth with company's launch of toxin-free products--economists not so sure" reports George Avalos in the West County Times.

 

 

 

 

8/22/06

 

9:09 AM--irritant in front room, dry lips, eyes. 4:02 PM--odor in warehouse, chlorine-like.

 

Wareham Investment is in contract for the purchase of the Fantasy Records property--the building and lot. The asking price is 20 million dollars. Steve Smith of Norheim and Yost is representing the Saul Zaentz Company in the sale.

 

Yesterday at 3:30 PM, Sally found an intruder in her kitchen. The young man had opened her back-gate and walked into her kitchen thru the open door. Sally immdiately called 911--he immediately left. Berkeley PD responded quickly.

 

Kruse now occupies their entire building, having just expanded into the previous west-end rental-space. (The building is a full half-block--one block long and one-half block wide.) This new, beautiful and state-of-the art space is occupied by their Service Department with office-staff and appraisers and the HVAC (Heat, Ventilating and Air-Conditioning ) Department. Staff have their own offices--not cubicles--which appear efficient and comfortable. But the actual Kruse Guys, their staff, and appraisers for the Contract Department, remain in the building's east-end--comfortable still, but not state-of-the-art, brand-new. Part of the re-do includes increasd security for the entire building and increased staff-parking. Mathew Freidman of Potter Creek's Freidman Bruggemeyer, 924 Carleton, was the architect. Kruse again proves to be A CLASS ACT.

Oh, . . . hot water for the new space is provided by an instant, tankless Vaxiluna water-heater.

 

Tak, seen regularly walking his Husky in Potter Creek, introduced himself yesterday morning. (Tak likes Scrambled Eggs). A thoughful, intelligent fellow, together we also solved all Potter Creek, even west-Berkeley's, problems. His Husky though, seemed amused.

 

Met Bob, Sarah and Milo this morning at 900 GRAYSON and solved no problems what-so-ever--but laughed a lot. And during coffee, Anthy Victor, and Jerry Victor's beautiful young daughter, Mekena made a brief, welcomed appearance.

At lunch today at GRAYSON, there were so many Potter Creekers--the place was packed--I can't begin to mention there names.

 

West-Berkeley's Steam Works are celebrating their Thirtieth Anniversary.

 

"Bayer Grant Gets Students Working in Biotechnology" reports Riya Bhattacharjee of Our Planet.

 

"Law energizes solar panel plan Governor OKs ambitious bill but implementation in homes may be tricky" reports Barbara E. Hernandez of the West County Times. "The so-called 'Million Solar Roofs' bill is perhaps the nation's largest and most aggressive effort to create incentives for homeowners to buy, and builders to offer, solar-powered energy, as part of broader efforts by the Schwarzenegger administration to push green energy alternatives."

 

"Minimum wage bill agreement reached. Governor, legislators settle on election-year compromise that calls for increases to $8 per hour by January 2008" reports Steven Harmon in the Times.

 

And, "Businesses make blogs work for them" writes Marton Dunai of the Times.

 

"Consumers' taste for upscale spending dwindles. Retailers feel the pinch as gas and housing costs have many households cutting back on nonessential items" report Justin Lahart and Amy Merrick of the Wall Street Journal in the Times.

 

"Tower seeks Chapter 11 protection for second time in three years; sale expected by mid-October" reports Marie Beaudette of the Dow Jones Newswires in the Times. "Tower Records has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection from its creditors, its second such filing in less than three years. The company, which operates 89 stores in 20 states, sought bankruptcy protection Sunday to sell its assets through a court-supervised auction."

 

 

 

8/24/06

 

6:32 AM--irritant in front room, dry eyes, dry mouth, cough, use filter-mask.

 

Yesterday, Jerry Victor's son Chase, dropped off some of his Matchbox cars and some play-money for Milo. Milo took to them immediately and then Chase, Milo and Mekena had a good time.

German soprano, Lotte Lehmann described singing with the perfectionist, and authoritarian conductor, Arturo Toscanini as "A trembling delight."

 

Haven't seen as much of Claudia and Cameron around their Potter Creek home since their very succesful effort, The Bark.

 

Parking in front of someone's driveway is more than rude, it's a pain-in-the-ass. Ok, so in The Creek it's sometimes hard to tell if the driveway's dead or not, . . . still. And, if you're towed, it's expensive.

 

"Residents applaud red-light cameras. Business owners say intersections much safer after installation" reports Julia Bernstein in the West County Times. "In the year since Berkeley installed red-light violation cameras at three of its most dangerous intersections, driving has become safer and residents are, for the most part, happier, said Berkeley police spokesman Ed Galvan."

 

"Get preview of jazz future" reports Andrew Gilbert in his "Jazz Talk" column in the Times. "As clubs struggle to stay in business and CD sales steadily decline, I often worry about how jazz will maintain its small but vital niche in American culture. And then I happen to hear a player who was born after I graduated from high school (1985) soloing with such poise and sense of purpose that I know the music will continue to define the best that this country has to offer. For a quick jolt of optimism, check out the lineup for the Downtown Berkeley Jazz Festival, which runs today through Sunday at venues and outdoor spaces around Shattuck Avenue. Scattered throughout the weekend, interspersed among the many fine veteran players, are some very impressive young musicians, most of whom are products of Bay Area schools."

 

"Ici is here (it's da bombe), while Loard's keeps on expanding" writes Chrissa Harley Ventrelle in the Times. "The prestige of a Chez Panisse pedigree comes with high expectations. So it is for former pastry chef Mary Canales and her new ice cream shop, Ici, scheduled to open this weekend. Located on Berkeley's College Avenue (the same street where husband Paul works as executive chef at Oliveto), Ici is the baby of Canales and designer (and former Chez Panisse intern) Erik Anderson. The concept is to turn seasonal, local and organic ingredients into small batches of ice cream, sorbets and other treats. In the two months preceding Ici's delayed opening, the buzz grew bigger than a Harry Potter book ."

 

"Insurance in Garamendi's crosshairs. After pressuring for a change in auto premiums, candidate for lieutenant governor sets his sights on homeowners' insurers" reports George Avalos in the Times. "Homeowner's insurance rates could fall by 20 percent to 25 percent within the next several months, Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi said Wednesday."

 

A French manufactures' association is suing Ebay for "selling knock-offs."

 

 

 

8/25/06

Have we truly experienced a matrix-shift? Well, . . . now we only have eight planets, Pluto having been decaffeinated.

 

Last night, Channel 4 News did a story on bicycling in Berkeley with photo coverage of careless riding. One guy broke four laws in less than 1/4block. Though it appears to me that bicyclists here are never cited, one Berkeley PD officer said he ticketed if the rider endangered a pedestrian or motorist.

Sheeeit!

 

 

 

8/27/06

 

Today's The Pres' Birthday--the REAL Pres, Lester Young.

 

 

On 8/15/06 I posted

Sunday afternoon Sally had a party for Norma Finch, Richard's Mom. (Norma who turned ninety-one has just passed her drivers test.) Though the La Farine hazel-nut, almond, chocolate, cherry torte was unexpectedly delicious, Norma's story about meeting her husband, Dan was even more delicious. In the 1930s, Dan, an inventor, was driving around the country with his cousin testing a current invention, a multiple-fuel '36 Buick. (It'd run on whiskey, Richard chimed in.) Seems the boys stopped in Haywarden, Iowa to visit some of cousin's relatives. And, it happened at that time Norma was visiting back home from Takoma Washington, where she was working. During their stay down the street, the boys would often walk past Norma's house. But Norma says that it was her Mother who noticed them and asked Norma to invited them in. Well, she did. To be continued.

Continued from 8/15/06

So, Norma invited Dan and his cousin in. They came in through the back--the kitchen--door. Lots of good food and talk were had in kitchens. Among other things, they decided they'd meet the next day at the Sand Pit--the swimming hole. They did, and over the days in Haywarden they got to know each well enough that they wrote to each other after they left--Dan went to Harvard and Norma back to Tacoma. After some time away they met again in Haywarden and then-SCANDALOUSLY--took the train together to meet Dan's parents in Glendale. To be continued.

 

Dan and Norma

 

 

"We should have a Potter Creek men's group" I said jokingly. "Yah, we'll call it the militia" he shot back.

 

Had lunch Friday at 900 next to Jeff. Jeff's a car-guy who works at Consolidated. He's got that red, Ford -powered Healey roadster. We talked about Healeys, Corvettes Jags and more. (He admirers Doc's XK 140 MC.) Jeff had a great burger, I had the potato soup, good talk, a great time, but was late for my V & W window installation.

 

I saw Claudia and Cameron this morning, on their way--I'd bet-- to work, with the family.

 

Active Space is having their Festival this weekend--music, stuff to buy, and lots of people.

 

Merrilie Mitchell is now running against Linda Maio in Berkeley's Distrct One.

 

 "BURNING MAN GOES GREEN" reports Ms May in the Chronicle."With the Burning Man art festival in the Nevada desert starting Monday, a group of San Francisco scientists is busy calculating how much the event contributes to global warming. Encouraged by the resurgence of the green movement, the scientists are taking a hard look at all those sacred flaming temples, gas-powered scooters shaped like cupcakes, and hundreds of rumbling RVs that converge for a week on the dry Black Rock Desert lakebed. With an idea that would make Al Gore smile, the scientists have created Cooling Man, an online calculator that determines how many tons of greenhouse gases each of the 37,000 "burners" will produce with their art projects and community camps. For the first time, Burning Man participants will be able to "offset" their global warming impact much the same way large corporations do, by investing in clean energy projects."

 

"Industry can be green, profitable" writes Tapan Munroe in the West County Times. "The continued spewing out of vast amounts of carbon dioxide from human activity into the earth's atmosphere continues to create challenges in addition to climate change. These include health problems stemming from air pollution and serious energy security issues. Much of the industrial world, including the United States, is dependent on oil imports from the Persian Gulf countries, a region that is highly dangerous and politically unstable. Here is some good news. According to scientists Robert Socolow and Stephen Pacala (Scientific American, September 2006), who head the Carbon Mitigation Initiative at Princeton, if we are able to maintain carbon emissions at today's level by using environment friendly technologies and strategies for the next 50 years, we can mitigate climate change without sacrificing economic growth."

 

2:13 PM--Burning natural gas fumes and more in front of warehouse-Marsha W sneezes and coughs as we leave.

 

 

 

8/28/06

Chris Saunier of 900 GRAYSON is getting married today. "Today, I'm a boy, tomorrow I'll be a man" Chris said--must be all those pain-killers he's taking for his broken hand. Chris and Heather are getting married this afternoon in a Civil Ceremony in Oakland. Next month they'll have an Episcopalian wedding.

 

Bob Kubik is working out at Iron Works preparing for his six -day hike in the High Country--with pack.

Don Yost also joined Iron Works and he too works out regularly.

You can take classes in indoor cycling, Cardio bxing, Yoga, Pilates, and more--oh ya, climbing.

Both comment that it's a no nonsense place--easy to join, no hassle or hustle, with good equipment and instructors. Iron Works is at 800 Potter, their phone is (510) 981-9900. Their Website is www.berkeleyironworks.com

 

Kimar's youngest son, Jeffrey has just finished another Texas Instruments TV commercial--it's the one with the elephant and the little girl walking on water. It was shot in the Canadian wilds, the elephant's on a sturdy platform, and his two trainers--always present--have been REmoved digitally.

 

 

 

8/30/06

 

The elephant's name is George--see above--and he loves chocolate. Jeff and his partner bought him five pounds before he left the shoot.

There's a second Texas Instruments commercial shot in a field of wild flowers with George and the little girl that doen't seem to be getting as much air-time

 

Chris and Heather didn't get married Monday, they just waited an hour and a half for their papers. But still . . . next month they'll have an Episcopalian wedding. (They give the papers to the minster to fillout. Must be all those pain-killers he's taking for his broken hand.)

 

The Analytical Engine--the first computer.

"Seldom, if ever, in the history of technology has so long an interval separated the invention of a device and its realisation in hardware as that which elapsed between Charles Babbage's description, in 1837, of the Analytical Engine, a mechanical digital computer which, viewed with the benefit of a century and a half's hindsight, anticipated virtually every aspect of present-day computers." Check it out.

 


"Waters seduces new converts with fresh tastes at Chez Panisse" writes James Temple of the West County Times. "One summer night in the early 1980s, Alice Waters, the iconic founder of Chez Panisse, asked her head chef to prepare anchovies just trawled from Monterey Bay. Filleting and grilling nearly 1,000 tiny fish in a three-hour period struck Paul Bertolli as impossible, but Waters wanted the food served at its freshest. He scrambled to fill more than 100 orders, ultimately propping a cooling rack over the grills to expand the cooking space."

 

"Berkeley City College has a home at last. After three decades of conflict with Peralta board, new campus opens"
reports Martin Snapp of the Times.

 

"Wages in East Bay accelerate" reports George Avalos of the Times. "Wages in the East Bay have outgrown their cousins in the South Bay and San Francisco area over the last year. But the Alameda-Contra Costa region still has plenty of catching up to do with the rest of the Bay Area. The average yearly wage in the East Bay remains well below average pay in the San Francisco area and Santa Clara County, according to a Times analysis of state wage data. The average wage of roughly $49,000 in the East Bay is less than the approximately $54,000 in the San Francisco area and $59,000 in Santa Clara County."

 

"Jazz trumpeter Ferguson, 78, known for soaring notes, dies. Musician was the heart of Stan Kenton's band; his own bands launched the careers of Wayne Shorter and Chick Corea" reports Jeff Wilson of the AP in the West County Times. I heard the Ferguson band in Birdland. More than Maynard's high notes I remember that the band was REAL LOUD. And I remember the introduction of "the Mainyard Fuegesin Band."

 

Bob Kubik emails this article from the Boston Globe "With the failure of the United States and Israel to achieve decisive victories in Iraq and Lebanon, the age of Western military dominance in the Middle East appears to be ending. It's time for a new strategy."

 

 

 

8/31/06

Pennsing Isa--a reader from Mexico City.

 

The school kids are back--so drive, bike and/or walk carefully.

The French American school semester begins next week, Tuesday September 5th.

Like all of us they've experienced vandalism and would appreciate neighbors reporting such activity to the police.

 

It's said that one of Potter Creek's leading citizens will have her home featured in House Beautiful.

And 900 GRAYSON should be featured in one of the Bay Area Slicks in September.

 

The V&W Windows crackerjack crew of Jimmy and Isaac made swift work of a difficult window installation at my warehouse--fast, efficient, professional, they are.

 

From Da Boz' August Update

Berkeley City College Opens Its Doors
Berkeley City College (formerly Vista College) opened the doors on its new, state of the art campus in downtown Berkeley last week. The new campus, which is still bustling with construction workers finishing up the $70 million building, is the product of a long and difficult struggle to bring needed resources to a wonderfully innovative, but sometimes overlooked, community college. With a great new building and a new name, enrollment has already climbed by more than 10%. Next time you are downtown, be sure to check it out - 2050 Center Street.

Telegraph Revitalization Gets Underway
Earlier today, we celebrated another step forward in Berkeley's Telegraph Avenue revitalization campaign by welcoming two new sidewalk cleaning "green machines." The new green machines are part of the City's aggressive effort to reinvigorate Telegraph Avenue. Earlier this year, I worked with the City Council to initiate a $360,000 program to launch Telegraph's revitalization campaign - including an increase in police walking the beat, improved social service and mental health outreach efforts, a façade improvement grant program for local merchants, and stepped up street and sidewalk cleaning, among other elements. In addition, a new joint marketing campaign was launched last week with the University

Berkeley Energy Programs are Highlighted in National Report
Two innovative Berkeley programs are highlighted in New Energy for Cities, a national report released earlier this month by the Apollo Alliance. Berkeley was recognized for our innovative partnership with City CarShare and our Residential Energy Conservation Ordinance. "Berkeley has done a great job promoting clean energy," said Carla Din, an organizer with the Apollo Alliance. "These programs promote efficiency in residential energy use and transportation, reduce pollution, and save taxpayer dollars. The Residential Energy Conservation Ordinance has already improved over 12,000 residences - 30% of the housing stock in Berkeley."

 

Look for two more Texas Instruments commercials with George. Jeff shot them in high resolution with a state-of-the-art Viper Filmstream Camera at 1080, 24 P resolution

 

"Ship's wheel for two? Right this way" write Ann Tatko-Peterson and Nicholas Boer of the West County Times. "Awkward pauses are rare at Spenger's. Everywhere you look there are conversation pieces -- enough to qualify the restaurant, as operations manager Melissa Katz likes to say, as a "living, breathing, working museum.'"

 

"Emissions mission may be accomplished. Governor and Democratic leaders hail landmark bill, but some business groups say it will hurt state's economy" reports Mike Zapler of the West County Times.

 

"Voters back governor, poll shows. Four of five bond propositions also in favor; Angelides says it's still too early to be concerned" writes Steve Geissinger of The Times.



 

 

BUILDINGS OF POTTER CREEK

 

 

 

Bleep, Bleep,

Time for John Coltrane Park

in Potter Creek

 

 

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ronpenndorf@earthlink.net

 

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