October 2006

 

Always just a lttle ahead of the curve in Potter Creek

Marsha W models some urban-air wear

 

Marsha is wearing the stylish, though a bit clumsy, AO Safety R5700 Respirator. With its replacable cartridges, the R5700 filters out the really bad stuff. For just what, check out their Website. Safety aside, this can be real smart fashion statement--notice how the colorful purple and yellow of the aluminium-cased filters accent Marsha's white top and shirt. And, of course, the black straps set off her brown hair as well as dramatically accent her shirt and top. All-in-all, a real fashion accessory for the 21st Century.

And, though not of personal interest, I think it might make an arousing S&M accessory.

 

Soon, Marsha's review of "Wild at Heart."

 

 

 

10/1/06

Staple of the Buttercup night-crew under manager Kary Mullis was Patrick Treadway. Patrick now has a role in the Lifetime.com movie, "End Game." It is showing tomorrow, October 2 at 9 pm. A thriller directed by Andy Cheng and starring Cuba Gooding Jr., Angie Harmon and James Woods, Patrick plays the assassin of "our President."

"Secret Service agent Alex Thomas has spent the past eight years devoting his life to protecting the U.S. president. When he's helpless to prevent the president's assassination, he makes it his life's mission to uncover what really happened - much to the displeasure of his boss! You'll never guess what kind of mind-blowing secrets and conspiracies he uncovers in this thrilling whodunit!" This summary and more appears at lifetime.com/movies.

 

Steve Smith is going to be a Father again, Cleo and Steve's second son is due in February--and Cleo's going to be a Mother again.

 

3:12 PM--little too much urban-air, time to go.




10/2/06

 

Marsha's review of "Wild at Heart."

Last week, I borrowed Geralyn and Pete's VHS copy of "Wild at Heart." Wednesday evening Marsha and I watched it. A very long, road movie with cartoon-like characters, stilted dialogue and high-lighted with sex and violence--often gratuitous--it seemed a purposely made B-movie. Still I found I couldn't stop watching. But Marsha, founder of the Mary Poppins Institute of Behavioral Research, exclaimed at its finish. "That's the worst fucking movie I've ever seen!"

 

Also last week Jerry Landis emailed his Planet letter. I've reproduced this part.

The West Berkeley development plan (Daily Planet,
Sept. 26)
presented to the Civic Arts Commission by
Doug Herst and Darrell de Tienne is an amazing
opportunity to preserve an arts community in Berkeley
and to begin the process of revitalizing that area.
Because it proposes a small sector of more dense
residential construction as well as artist workspace,
both requiring added height, it will meet some
resistance from a few diehard obstructionists who seem
determined to keep West Berkeley the wasteland of
shanties and scrapyards that much of it now is. (A
member of the commission cited a survey that found 25
acres of West Berkeley virtually unused).

Doug is a 900 GRAYSON regular--don't stare.

 

The burger as art

Check out page 84 of the October issue of SAN FRANCISCO, the magazine. There is a full page color photo of Sophina's Grayson Burger. The accompanying story is "A Burger from the Ground Up."

 

"Berkeley Steel foundry to try filtering smelly effluent" reports Carolyn Jones of the San Francisco Chronicle. "Anyone who's been to West Berkeley knows the stench -- a conversation-stopping cross betwe'n burning pot handles and an engine fire. 'It smells like something's wrong with your car,' said Mary Ann King, who works at REI a few blocks away. "You're like, "Is my car leaking something?" But then the smell goes away and you realize it's not your car, it must be something else.' That something else is Pacific Steel Casting Co.'s Plant No. 3 at Second and Gilman streets, which has been emitting foul-smelling and possibly toxic fumes -- without any pollution controls -- for years. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency called it the 12th-worst polluter in the Bay Area, ahead of the Chevron refinery and Dow Chemical. The odor has become even worse since Pacific Steel Casting started making parts for the Bay Bridge reconstruction in 2002, spewing exhaust for 16 hours a day five or six days a week. But after numerous lawsuits, dozens of complaints and years of negotiations, the issue may finally be heading for a resolution. Or at least the beginning of one."

The same Pacific Steel Casting Company is featured in mayor candidate Zelda Bronstein's mini-film--her appreciation of west-Berkeley manufactures--"Made in Berkeley." The film also features several Potter Creek manufactures.

 

"These words hit home front--book collects writings of soldiers, families" writes James Temple of the West County Times in his review of "Operation Homecoming." "During his 11-month tour of duty in Iraq, Sgt. Brian Turner regularly described his experiences, some harrowing, some sad, in poetry. But the Fresno native adhered to the war zone's unofficial code of stoicism, keeping compositions like 'The Hurt Locker' to himself. 'Nothing left here but the hurt,' writes Turner, now a part-time professor at Fresno City College. 'Believe it when you see it. Believe it when a twelve-year-old rolls a grenade into the room. Or when a sniper punches a hole deep into someone's head.' "

 

 

 

10/4/06

It's been brought to my attention that squatters are crashing in unoccupied Potter Creek buildings and lots.

 

In August, 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. 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

 

 

As the rainy season begins you can find more information about our current weather conditions than is good for you at www.wunderground.com

 

"Help may come for grasping mortgages. Federal regulators' new guidelines suggest banks explain risks of nontraditional loans" reports the AP's Martin Crutsinger in the West County Times. "Federal regulators directed banks on Friday to properly explain the risks posed to borrowers from interest-only and other nontraditional mortgages."

 

Crutsinger also reports "Gloom fills housing price report. California among areas to be hit hard by market slowdown, economic forecasting firm says."


5:12 PM--VERY SERIOUS irritant in front room, burning eyes, mouth, use mask, leave.

 

 

 

 

10/5/06

Lynch's film piqued my interest--time to buy a copy of Gifford's novel "Wild at Heart."

 

"'Garbage into gold'--8 1/2-mile-long, 2,002-acre Eastshore State Park is dedicated after more than 30 years of hard work" reports Carolyn Jones of the San Francisco Chronicle. "It took more than three decades, hundreds of people, a dozen public agencies and plenty of creative financing, but in the end they did it: They turned eight miles of garbage dumps into one of America's largest urban parks. 'We spun garbage into gold,' said Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates on Wednesday at the official dedication of the Eastshore State Park, much of which has been completed."

 

 

 

10/6/06

 

A new Potter Creek building by Regan

Actually this is a computer rendering, the structure now building on Pardee

 

Pete's Potter Creek rain gauge shows .65 inches for Wednesday afternoon through Thursday afternoon.

Want to see weather coming in, going out, beautiful sunsets, and much, much more? Check out http://sv.berkeley.edu/view/ This very hip site was in an email from reader and contributor, Tony Almeida. Read Tony's Jimi Hendrix story on the only page that routinely gets more hits the Scrambled Eggs.

 

Bob Kubik emails this story by the LA Times' automotive writer, Susan Carpenter. "Side order to go
Hop on, hop in, the laughs begin. It's conspicuous commuting with Ural's Gear-Up."
Gotta get me one a' these.

 

Kruse continues their property cleanup with the spray-cleaning of their east and south building-walls. And are painting their building.

 

How bizarre is the Middle-East? Well, the Jews have agreed to let the German Navy protect them from the Arabs.

 

 

 

 

 

10/7/06

 

From the October issue of SAN FRANCISCO, the magazine, Sophina's Grayson Burger

 

 

I believe that the burger is on an Acme bun

 

And, I believe the Kruse Guys will have painted their one-block long and half-block wide building in two days over the weekend--and without any paint stink. How'dey do dat?

 

From my Log

10/1/06--3:12 PM irritant in front room, dry mouth. 10/3/06--12:12 PM irritant in front room; 5:29 PM irritant in front room. 10/4/06--5:04 PM SERIOUS irritant in front room, burning mouth eyes, etc; 7:10 PM SERIOUS irritant in front room. 10/6/06--8:50 AM irritant in front room.

 

 

 

10/9/06

 

A police action in Potter Creek.

Sunday morning at 4:00 AM Sally was awakened by flashing lights. Looking outside she saw seven Berkeley PD units on 8th Street south of Grayson. With some commotion officers were taking men out of a car parked in front of David's. The action lasted 45 minutes.

Today in front of 900 Grayson at about 12:45 PM a bicycle was stolen-- a mom and her two children had gone in 900 for a few minutes and when they came out one of the children's bikes was gone.

 

On her trip to France Sally attended the opening of the Museum of Decorative Arts in the Louvre. Closed for ten years and opened after a 46 million Euro redo, it features decorative art from the Roman times through the 20th Century. Though a wonderful event, her favorite-of-favorites was the hot air balloon ride in the Loire Valley.

 

This morning Deutsche Welle featured a story about unitary-structures put together with old cargo containers. Eric Reynolds, an English architect and developer is building living-units by arranging and stacking together old shipping containers--a project on the Thames was featured. The developments are inexpensive, quick to build, environmental and even attractive in a busy Post-Modern sort of way. The ones shown were brightly colored with large port-holes and beautifully appointed interiors. My understanding is that cargo container units can be found in west-Berkeley though I myself have not seen them.

 

"Solar power shines, despite clouds" reports Rick Jurgens of the West County Times. "When Erica Grubb installed solar panels on the roof of her Berkeley house, the decision was both personal and political."

 

"Smog surge in Bay Area stirs debate" reports Denis Cuff of the Times. "A heat-driven surge in Bay Area smog has cooked up a debate about the state of the region's air quality, and whether enough is being done to clean it up.Ozone, the eye- and lung-stinging component of smog, violated a federal public health limit in the Bay Area 12 days this year, the highest total since 1998."

Damn, I hope that Potter Creek business has stopped manufacturing it.

 

"Panthers took a stand but couldn't stand long: Although the group's flaws destroyed it, the party laid the foundation for social justice and black advancement ever since" write William Brand and Cecily Bur of the Times.

 

"Sex Trafficing--San Francisco Is A Major Center For International Crime Networks That Smuggle And Enslave" writes Meredith May in the first of a four part special report in the San Francisco Chronicle."Many of San Francisco's Asian massage parlors -- long an established part of the city's sexually permissive culture -- have degenerated into something much more sinister: international sex slave shops. Once limited to infamous locales such as Bombay and Bangkok, sex trafficking is now an $8 billion international business, with San Francisco among its largest commercial centers."

The later reports plus audio-interviews by Ms May can be found here.

 

 

 

10/10/06

Yesterday mid-day, in broad-daylight a car was stolen on 8th Street next to Hustead's.

Also mid-day on 7th Street. a car parked next to the École Bilingue was broken into--a stereo and brief-case were stolen.

And Sunday night a dead body was found in the vicinity of Kitty's.

Yesterday's stolen bicycle was recovered.

 

The astonishing power of words is the subject of this engaging documentary. Beginning with the line "Youth is not a time of life, it is a state of mind," the poem "Youth" was written in 1917 by 77-year-old Samuel Ullman, a Jewish immigrant to the US. Twenty years after its author's death "Youth" came into the possession of General Douglas MacArthur, whose framed display of it deeply impressed Japanese visitors to MacArthur's Tokyo office at the close of World War II. Subsequently spread across that then-broken nation, the poem inspired a generation thirsty for hope.Check out this documentary "So Long Are You Young: Samuel Ullman's Poem and Passion" at the Mill Valley Film Festival.

 

2:05 PM--VERY SERIOUS irritant in warehouse, leave.

5:50 PM--VERY SERIOUS irritant in warehouse, leave.

 

 

 

10/11/06

Peter Hurney and Julie Bruins are hosting and producing a new program on KALX-FM. It is "Alternate Tunings" and is about lesser-known musical instruments. The pilot episode can be heard at 9:00 AM on Wednesday October 18th. It is "The Harpsichord" and includes an interview with Potter Creek's John Phillips the harpsichord-maker. KALX is 90.7 FM or streamed at www.kalx.berkeley.edu

 

"Oktoberfest grander than pretzels and ale" writes Jackie Burrell of the West County Times. "For nearly 200 years, Bavaria's capital city has hosted Oktoberfest, the beloved beer and sausage extravaganza that draws 6 million revelers a year and inspires imitations 'round the world. These days, you can hoist a bratwurst at Oktoberfests from Honolulu to Savannah. And the Bay Area's German festivities continue weeks after chilly autumn weather brings Munich's celebrations to an end."

7:12 AM--VERY SERIOUS irritant in warehouse, burning mouth, dry eyes, headache, light-headed, leave.

 

 

 

10/12/06

 

"Black Panthers' legacy at 40: Survivors cite oft-forgot ideals, accomplishments" reports Leslie Fulbright of the San Francisco Chronicle. "Former Black Panther Party members plan to reflect on the black power movement, their experiences and their work in the black community when they celebrate the 40th anniversary of the controversial organization's founding Friday through Sunday in Oakland."

 

And, "Forty years later, Black Panthers look back and remember" writes Michelle Locke of the AP in the San Francisco Chronicle. "Bobby Seale never expected to see the 40th anniversary of the Black Panther Party he co-founded with Huey Newton. 'A lot of times I thought I would be dead,' he says.The Black Panther Party officially existed for just 16 years. But its reach has endured far longer, something Seale and other party members will commemorate when they reunite in Oakland this weekend."

 

Last night, Don Yost heard David Gergen speak at the Northern California World Affairs Council--the overflowing meeting held at a large rented hall not their Sutter Street headquarters. Two things about Gergen's presentation stood out from my conversation about the meeting with Don. One, that Gergen feels the US is much safer now than before 9/11 though the world is a much more dangerous place. And the other, that the polarization of the Left and Right can changed by the creation of a National Service for our youth--this idea was given a standing ovation. Gergen believes that this mandatory program would eventually create bipartisanship through the common experience of social service. Gergen also mentioned that the most socially conscious citizens he's recently met are returning vets from Iraq and Afghanistan. Sadly, most of the meeting's attendees were Oldies.

 

Today, I saw Berkeley PD Special Enforcement units patroling Potter Creek--they're those nifty, highly polished all-black Fords.

 

8:14 PM--strong nasal irritant accompanied by heavy melting plastic-like odor in front of 2741 and 2743 8th, begins at buildings' sliding steel-doors and extends 3-5 feet outward toward street, odor and irritant not apparent on side-walk or in street.

 

 

 

10/13/06

Lipofsky has work at the Museum of Decorative Arts in Paris--bought by the Museum from a German dealer.

 

And Lipofsky watched our mayor candidates' debate on Channel 32--said Da Boz talked about the nuts and bolts of governing, Z communicated her promises very well and the others "didn't have a clue."

Aw jeez, Lipofsky's even more famous than I thought.

 

Ok Marvin, but Scrambled Eggs IS mentioned on west-Berkeley's Camelia Street Blog.

"This one eminates from south West Berkeley, in the Potter Creek area. Ron Penndorf's almost daily postings give good insights to the goings-on of his neighborhood, and greater Berkeley. Posts relate to Berkeley politics, food, crime, development, neighbors, neighbor's opinions, neighborhood business, environmental issues, and strong smells (imagine that!)."

And my article on the development of the early LP is given as a reference-link in Wikipeda's history of the gramaphone record.

Damn, but Lipofsky's got thousands and thousands of mentions on Google.

 

Mmmmmm, . . . so does Sarah.

 

Sally forwards an email from Daily Candy

900 Grayson
What: Tongue-in-chic newbie slings seasonal, eclectic breakfast and
lunch in Berkeley.
Why: Try the Ladyboy, Grayson burger, or chopped Cobb.
When: Mon.-Fri., 8 a.m.-3 p.m.; Sat., 8 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
Where: 900 Grayson St., at 7th St., Berkeley (510-704-9900)

 

A David Gergen ps.

Gergen believes the Iraq end game will follow the recommendation of the bipartisan committee now studying Iraq: which he believes will be, double the troop strength to 300,000, "a cop on every corner", secure the country, then internationalize.

 

5:25 PM--irritant in front room.

 

 

 

10/14/06

 

Andrew and Karen are moved in on Grayson.

 

Some guy named Willi Paul has a letter in The Planet about Pacific Steel's emissions, and more. Filled with fire brand and often over the top, he writes "There is a four-headed toxic spin machine spewing caustic air and ugly lies on Second Street. . . . . Shut down Pacific Steel . . . . And don't believe any of the crap coming out of Dion Aroner's mouth." (Damn I miss Zelda's column, she does class fire-brand and over-the-top.) Ironically, Zelda's film "Made in Berkeley," an appreciation of Berkeley manufactures, features Pacific Steel.

I believe Pacific Steel Casting to be Berkeley's environmental embarrassment.

 

There's a debate between Tom Bates and Zelda Bronstein on Thursday, October 19 at 7:30 PM in the Le Conte School cafeteria.

And Z's got a Birthday coming up, October 20.

 

"Sound enhancement approval gets louder" reports Richard Scheinin in the West County Times. "The pursuit of acoustically stunning concert halls has become a mania in the classical music world. Think Disney Hall in Los Angeles, all $274 million worth of it. But what's to become of arts organizations that can't afford to build from scratch? Berkeley's Cal Performances, one of the busiest arts presenters in the country, thinks it may have an answer: It has endorsed the new world of sound enhancement, at least for the coming season, by installing an "electroacoustic architecture system" in Zellerbach Hall, its main venue. It involves lots of microphones and speakers, a supersonic mixing board, computers and all sorts of digital equipment."

Yuck!

 

"Forum considers health care cures" writes Marton Dunai of the Times. "Contra Costa health care and business leaders met Friday in Concord to discuss the problems that rising health care costs present to the business community and the county's general population."

 

"Foreclosure rates up in Bay Area: Contra Costa and Solano counties in particular are seeing increases, often spurred by adjustable-rate loans" reports Eve Mitchell in the Times.

 

11/07/06 AM--SERIOUS irritant in front room, leave.

 

 

 

10/15/06

There was actually quite a bit of grumbling in Potter Creek last week. The day after the auto-theft, the breaking-in, and the murder-nearby, citizens were "joking about vigilantism"--not a healthy sign in the Body Politic. The discontent came not from activists, some of whom seem otherwise, abstractly engaged, but from some of our new citizens--the "Young Moderns." Those who paid a half-mil for a condo or three-quarters of a mil for a worker-bungalow.

And lets be perfectly clear, the Social Contract goes both ways--citizens behave because the rulers protect.

 

I'll write about my choice for Mayor later than sooner--certainly before the Election.

 

Also last week, one of Potter Creek's Contrarians really blew a stop sign--accelerating thru from a quarter a block away, car leaning around the corner. Right at an École Bilingue intersection, too.

 

 

10/16/06

Marsha sticks around during lunch hour and at 12:12 PM gets, headache, light-head, dry mouth.

 

Jill Ellis, CEID director emails

Thanks again for all the updates.

Just wanted to share with our neighbors and friends at CEID:

Bob Kubik has volunteered his time the last three years in helping us plant
and maintain our gardens. We want to thank Bob for all his time and
generosity in helping us keep our site beautiful for the children with
special needs who come to our Center every day - and their families.

Bob's is directing his time to other community events and we'll miss his
smiles and support. THANK YOU, Bob!

Jill Ellis
Center for Early Intervention on Deafness

P.S. If anyone else is interested in helping us care for the plants and
gardens, please let us know. It means a great deal to us to open our Center
to the neighborhood as needed, as well as have the talents of our friends.

"Berkeley students get write help" reports Jen Daly in the West County Times. " 'Writing is easy,' Mark Twain quipped.' All you have to do is cross out the wrong words.' While Twain's wit always seems effortless, the joke is that writing is anything but. In reality, writing is a skill that takes years -- some would say a lifetime -- to master."

 

I hear Da Boz is hosting a Shindig today.

 

 

 

10/17/06

 

Remember, Pete's new KALX series starts tomorrow. The first episode of "Alternate Tunes" is about the harpsichord and includes an interview with our John Phillips.

 

"House Beautiful" shot Sally's "dining room" recently--look for it in an upcoming issue.

 

This morning DW TV did a story on geothermal heating--drill down deep enough and pump out the warm air into your home, office biz, etc. Check out the Geothermal Heat Pump Consortium.

 

"East Bay job market rises to the top: 'Contrarian' region climbs from lowest position in state Employment Development Department study" reports George Avalos in the West County Times.

Contrarian? Avalos must read Scrambled Eggs.

 

And, "Fed says housing market sluggish: Reserve Bank official feels full-bore decline in Bay Area prices unlikely" writes Avalos.

 

 

 

10/18/06

 

the snow-job

For me, at high school the best snow-job was given by kid named Pesch. (Pesch also could belch at will and loudly and for a long time.) Now Pesch could give the best snow-job because he was a great liar--somehow anything the kid said was believable. Yet in Berkeley, an intellectual community with an almost naive respect for knowledge, the best snow-job can be entirely something different, something more refined. Simply, here there's a sense that she/he who has the most information must be right. Could be, but it also could be a snow-job. A lot of facts well presented might be just that--a lot of facts well present. Not knowledge, just a snow-job.

 

2:34 PM--irritant in the computer room. See ya later.

 

"Berkeley City Council race. Telegraph Ave cuts right to heart of debate reports Carolyn Jones of the San Francisco Chronicle. "Worthington backs mayor's plan; Beier wants new city panel."

 

 

10/19/06

 

Oops, Pete's "Alternate Tunings" will premiere in November.

 

"New Cleanup Orders Issued for UC Field Station, Campus Bay" writes Richard Brenneman in Our Planet. "State officials have ordered UC Regents and two chemical manufacturing multinationals to clean up toxic wastes at UC Berkeley's Richmond Field Station (RFS)."

 

Can anbody confirm or deny that Our Planet will stop publishing later this year after the Election?

 

"News Flash: Compromise Reached for Harrison/San Pablo Project" reports Judith Scherr of Our Planet. "It took a week of intense negotiations, with Councilmember Laurie Capitelli moving back and forth between developer Jim Hart and neighbors of his proposed five-story mixed-use project at Harrison Street and San Pablo Avenue, for the two sides to come to what appears will be a compromise agreement."

 

"Politically polite" recommends Jessica Yadegaran of the West County Times. "Today's political climate is a tad tense. These days, what starts as a healthy debate of current events at the dinner table or water cooler can easily turn into an ugly, irreversible brawl. As Election Day nears, how do you talk to friends, co-workers and loved ones about politics without ruining your relationship? The answer is somewhat bleak."

 

"Benefits of seafood outweigh risks" writes Sandy Kleffman of the West County Times. "Eating fish is good for you and will help ward off heart disease, experts tell us."

 

This morning DW-TV had a feature on growing and eating historic vegetables like Medieval cabbage, and cultivating weeds for consumption--many say they've never really tasted food until sampling these historic vegetables and weeds.

 

 

Da Boz emails his October report--here are some excerpts

 

Grand Opening For Eastshore State Park
Earlier this month, I joined over 200 people to celebrate the grand opening and dedication of the Eastshore State Park - 8.5 miles of protected shoreline stretching from Oakland to Richmond. This park has been a labor of love for hundreds of dedicated activists and leaders for more than three decades. As a Member of the Assembly, I wrote the legislation that created the Park and worked with many wonderful environmental and community leaders for years to secure the funding necessary to purchase tracts of the shoreline piece by piece. Eastshore State Park will now forever protect our shoreline, provide recreation opportunities, connect the Bay Trail, and provide habitat for birds and animals. Without question, the dedication ceremony was one of the highlights of my professional career.

World-renowned Architect Selected for New Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive in the Downtown
UC Berkeley's plans for its new museum in downtown Berkeley took an exciting step forward with the selection of Toyo Ito & Associates as the architect and designer for the new $120 million museum complex at the corner of Center and Oxford Streets. This world-class facility for the visual arts will further define Berkeley as a leading cultural center for the West Coast. As one of the largest museums in California, the new Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive will serve as a critical anchor for Berkeley's economic revitalization and greatly expand our burgeoning arts district.

Mayor Bates and Mayor of Riverside Host First-Ever Statewide Town-Gown Conference
Last week, I joined the California League of Cities and Riverside Mayor Ron Loveridge in hosting the first-ever statewide conference on housing and transportation in university communities. Over 150 elected officials, city staff, and university administrators from as far north as Arcata and as far south as San Diego spent the day discussing what cities and universities can do better to reduce traffic, improve transit, and provide appropriate housing.

City Raises Objections About UC Southeast Quadrant Project
UC Berkeley is planning a series of large projects in and around Memorial Stadium, an area they refer to as the "Southeast Quadrant." While the major retrofit and renovation of the stadium is still some time off, more immediate projects include a large new underground sports training facility for student athletes on the edge of the stadium and a 911 space garage under Maxwell Field, which is just north of the stadium. The City raised strong objections to this project in a lengthy critique sent earlier this year, including serious concerns about seismic safety, traffic, historic preservation, and other issues. Unfortunately, the City may be required to go to court if some of its key concerns are not addressed in the final project plans.

City Budget Update - Mostly Good News
After working through the budget crisis these last four years our budget continues to look stable, although there is a great deal of uncertainty. Due to careful budgeting and cost-savings efforts, the City ended the last fiscal year with about a $3 million surplus, which we have added to the City's emergency funding reserve. So far this year, our budget is coming in more or less on target, however the real estate transfer tax - which had been red hot for a number of years during the real estate boom - is coming in 17% less than last year. Fortunately, we had expected a substantial decline and unless it gets significantly worse it should not have a dramatic impact our budget or operations.

Berkeley Featured in 'Bay Area Backroads'
If you'd like to see some little known Berkeley highlights, tune in to KRON-TV, Channel 4 later this month. The television program Bay Area Backroads on will feature Berkeley and Albany on Saturday, October 28th at 6 p.m. and Sunday, October 29th at 6 p.m.

 

7:45 AM--VERY SERIOUS irritant in warehouse, over rides filters, leave

 

 

 

10/20/06

 

"Housing prices to fall slightly in '07, Realtors say" reports Eve Mitchell of the West County Times. "Housing prices are expected to drop 2 percent in California, but the market should be slightly better in pockets of the Bay Area where the housing supply is tighter, according to the state Association of Realtors. On a statewide basis, the median price next year for an existing single-family house is expected to drop 2 percent to $550,000 compared with a projected median of $561,000 for 2006. Home sales are expected to drop 7 percent to 447,500 from projected 2006 levels of 481,200, according to an outlook released Wednesday by the association at a convention in Long Beach."

 

Mitchell also reports "Rents take off after years of flat prices. Pushed along by a stronger job market and fewer people shopping for homes, average asking rents in Bay Area rose 8.2 percent from a year ago, with even bigger spikes taking place in the Peninsula and South Bay."

 

"Bay Area loan defaults climb. Statewide foreclosure activity reaches its highest level in more than 4 years"
writes Barbara E. Hernandez of the Times. East Bay home loan defaults rose sharply across Alameda, Contra Costa and Solano counties, and statewide home-loan defaults rose to their highest level in 41/2 years.

 

The Center on Institutions and Governance presents "What Are Americans Voting For?" on October 26, 7:30 p.m.in the Wheeler Auditorium on the Cal Campus. The panelists are George Lakoff, Professor UC Berkeley Founder of
Rockridge Institute; Joan Blades, Co-founder Moveon.org; Markos Moulitsas, Daily Kos; Robert Reich, Former Former Secretary of Labor. "This panel will examine where political ideas arise, how they are framed in political dialogue, and the part they play in determining what happens in November."

 

While writing this I've been listening to a CD of Pete and Julie playing with John Phillips on their first "Alternate Tunings." Good, maybe even great stuff, and they play well together.

 

 

 

10/22/06

Consolidated Printing is no longer using the east end of their across-the-street warehouse and it is now for lease. Consolidated is also building an unloading ramp.

Our snappily dressed councilman, Darryl Moore was seen last week having breakfast at 900 GRAYSON with an attractive blonde lady. And Heddy Riss, program director for the Center on Institutions and Governance can be seen regularly at 900 having coffee after her workout at our local gym. Heddy is responsible for The Center's presentation "What Are Americans Voting For?"

 

"Incumbents have economy on their side: All four sitting council members can show challengers a Berkeley budget now in the black" reports Martin Snapp of the West County Times.

 

And Snapp reports "Buddhist education center celebrates new home: Jodo Shinshu Center opens in landmark former auto dealership. A Berkeley architectural landmark that once housed car dealerships will undergo a new incarnation this weekend when it becomes the nation's largest center for Buddhist education. The art deco building at 2140 Durant Ave. was built by Charles Howard, owner of the famed racehorse Seabiscuit, for his Buick dealership in the 1930s. In the 1980s, former Oakland A's baseball great Reggie Jackson ran a Chevrolet dealership there."

My friend, architect Tak was envolved with this quietly developed project. Years ago he met with the mayor about it and came away with the feeling that the mayor supported the proposed center BUT that "anything can happen in Berkeley."

 

In Our Planet, Matt Cantor reports on "The Dangers of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning" and writes "a whole lot of people . . . end up dying each year as a result of this odorless and colorless gas."

 

 

 

10/24/06

 

"Study pinpoints diesel soot range" reports Denis Cuff of the West County Times. "Bay Area neighborhoods near freeways and ports are showered with the largest volumes of diesel soot, the region's top air pollutant for creating cancer risks, according to a study by the region's clean air agency. . . . Of the many toxic air contaminants in the region, diesel presents the biggest cancer risk, researchers concluded in preliminary findings from the first phase of the study by the Bay Area Air Quality Management District."

 

"Big corporations ready to battle global warming threat" writes Tapan Munroe in the Times. "An extraordinary and startling development in the past year or so has been corporate America's growing enthusiasm in meeting the global warming challenge. The list of corporations joining the fight against global warming includes Alcoa, Boeing, Duke Energy, DuPont, General Electric, Georgia Pacific, Hewlett Packard, IBM, Intel, Lockheed Martin, PG&E, Rohm and Haas, SC Johnson, Sunoco, Toyota, United Technologies and Weyerhaeuser among others."

 

"Andronico's focuses on remaining stores" reports George Avalos of the Times. "The first name for Andronico's Markets Inc. in 1929 was "Park and Shop." Yet the obstacles customers faced for parking and shopping may have been the biggest factors to doomed the Andronico's store in Walnut Creek. Now that Andronico's has shelved its store in Danville and announced that the Walnut Creek store will close Dec. 22, the grocery store chain will focus on face-lifts for six of the eight stores it still operates. Headed for upgrades are three of the four stores in Berkeley as well as the stores in San Francisco, San Anselmo and Los Altos."

 

Potter Creek's leading writer was seen having breakfast in the company of a beautiful woman at 900 GRAYSON this morning.

 

7:05 AM--SERIOUS irritant in warehouse, wear mask; 8:28 AM--irrtant in front room; 1:18 PM-SERIOUS irritant in front room, wear mask.

 

 

 

10/25/06

11:02 AM--SERIOUS irritant in warehouse, use mask.

 

Oops, . . fell over today in front of 900 GRAYSON during lunch rush. VERY embarrassing.

 

7:14 PM--VERY SERIOUS irritant in warehouse, headache, cough, light-headed, leave: 7:58 PM--return, SERIOUS irritant still present, "dry" odor, headache, cough, light-headed, leave.

 

 

 

10/27/06

École Bilingue 2006

 

all photos by me

 

 

HALLOWEEN PARADE

More École Bilingue 2006 Parade

 

And Ted Gartner of the West County Times reveals "A smorgasbord for the dead."

 

 

 

10/28/06

8:01 AM--VERY SERIOUS irritant in warehouse, dry mouth, headache, light-head, leave; 9:22 AM--still present, same symptoms, use mask; 1:06 PM--SERIOUS irritant in warehouse, leave; "dry" odor present off-and-on all day.

 

 

 

10/29/06

 

Jill Ellis, director of CEID emails

Ron

Just want to invite you and any neighbors to join our CEID students and
families for our annual Halloween Parade at CEID - about 10 am on Tuesday
The children have a great time and we welcome you to enjoy us.
Jill

Some of the CEID Kids in Bob and Carol's Pumpkin Patch.

 

AMC theaters at the end of Bay Street have $6.00 ticket prices before Noon on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

 

Sally's dinning area is for-sure featured in the January issue of "House Beautiful."

 

Talk about a "structure of merit," our now defunct McCauley Foundry cast all the Miller-Offenhauser engine blocks.

 

"Berkeley High is famous for its jazz program. Berkeley school district partnership allows low-income students a chance to further studies" writes Martin Snapp of the West County Times. "Berkeley High is famous for its jazz programs, especially the award-winning Jazz Ensemble and the two lab bands."

 

And, "Berkeley OKs tougher rules for dog owners.Outdoor pets must have shelter, clean food and water; violators face fines of up to $1,000, jail time" reports Snapp.

 

And Snapp and Matt Krupnick report "Construction plans deepen rift between city of Berkeley, university. Perhaps these star-crossed partners simply are doomed to a lifetime of unhappiness, unable to escape their uneasy alliance."

Heddy Riss' panel "What Are Americans Voting For?" played to a full-house at Wheeler Thursday night. What was said? The forum will be "broadcast" by the Northern California World Affairs Council.

 

"Walking program lets seniors spread their wings. BERKELEY: Safety and health are two motivating factors for the group that enjoys the outdoor scenery" reports Jessica Meyers in the West County Times. "It's October, but it feels like June, and the seven or so seniors with binoculars, multicolored straw hats and the occasional hearing aid are ready to walk and possibly catch sight of a burrowing owl. Known as the Berkeley Mariners, the group has met Wednesdays for the past two years to traverse the coastal path for up to three miles."

 

"Median new-home price falls Meanwhile, sales pick up for a second month" reports Barbara Hernandez of the Times. "The median price of a new home plunged nationally in September by the largest amount in more than 35 years, even as the pace of sales rebounded for a second month. However, parts of the East Bay -- Oakley and Pittsburg for instance -- contradicted the national trend."

 

"Real estate 'agent bubble' deflating as home sales slow" writes Sue McAllister in the Times. "During the housing boom, people flocked to become real estate agents and mortgage brokers, sending the tally of those holding California real estate licenses to more than half a million this year."

 

Quotes of the week

While talking with Sophie Gross, server at 900 GRAYSON, I exclaimed about something "You're being naive!" "I'm supposed to be naive" she snapped back "I'm 23 years old."

And our Councilman, Darryl Moore offered "Berkeley would not be Berkeley without the No. 1 public university in the world sitting on top of the hill. Without the university, Berkeley would just be El Cerrito."

 

Councilwoman, Linda Maio was seen Saturday lunching at 900 with Carol Whitman.

And Thursday, four very sharp Berkeley PD officers had lunch there.

 

Tomorrow, my pick for Mayor.

 

 

 

10/30/06

I'm going to vote for Tom Bates for mayor.

For better and for worse Tom has taken us, some kicking and screaming, from the 1960s right into the 21st Century, where as Mort Saul has said, "the future lies ahead." Tom also has lots of experience, has connections, brought the city council together, balanced the city budget, and helped get us the East Shore State Park. Besides, I like his nifty blue blazers.

 

 

 

10/31/06

11:00 AM--irritant behind 2741/43 8th Street building and behind 2740 9th Street building--attorney, Elizabeth Grossman's. Irritant fills driveway-area between buildings. (This NOT the paint odor from Inlite.) Experienced similar irrtant some weeks ago in backyard of Pete and Geralyn's on Grayson when Pete was "sick with a cold or something." (Their property is immdiately south of the 2743/41 8th warehouse.) With his cough, horse-voice and synus, Pete sensed nothing.

12:15 PM--irritant in entire warehouse with accompanying odor of "melting plastic and chlorine."



 

 

 

There's actually the first "building"

at

BUILDINGS OF POTTER CREEK

 

 

 

 

Bleep, Bleep!

Don't be meek.

Develop John Coltrane Park

in Potter Creek

 

 

 

return

ronpenndorf@earthlink.net

 

The original owner of all scanned material retains copyright. The material is used only to illustrate.