Penndorf's Miscellaneous Ramblings

Vintage European Posters Hosts
David Lance Goines for Exclusive Book Signing in Berkeley

Vintage European Posters proudly welcomes David Lance Goines for an exclusive signing of his new book, The Poster Art of David Lance Goines: A 40-Year Retrospective.  Poster art is meant to catch your eye.  It is meant to make you want something.  No one understands this better than Berkeley Poster Artist David Lance Goines who has made people want to visit Pacific Film Archive and eat at Chez Panisse for more than 30 years with his tantalizing posters.  Guests are invited to meet the famed Berkley poster artist in the new showroom  of Vintage European Posters and explore his work through the context of the history of advertising.


Art enthusiasts, posters connoisseurs and collectors alike will have the opportunity to purchase an autographed copy of Goines' book while perusing his works and the extensive collection offered by European Vintage Posters.  Refreshments will be served.  

Vintage European Posters New Showroom 
2201 Fourth Street (corner of Allston Way) Berkeley, CA 94710 

Sunday, January 16, from 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. free admission. 

For more information about Vintage European Posters or the David Lance Goines book signing, please call 510 843 2201, visit us at www.vepca.com or find us on Facebook .  

The VEP Collection www.vepca.com consists of over 1,000 original posters from Europe and the US which touch on every topic from bicycles to wine and food to military recruiting.  All of the posters have been preserved by a paper conservator and are available for pur



XOMA's 901 Heinz property has been under-used for some time. A 24,000 square foot lab facility it was offered for sale a few years ago when Xoma cut back their work force. It was taken off the market in 2009. Now there's a hint of fuller use as XOMA partners with "Laboratoires Servier, France's largest closely held drug company, [with] worldwide rights to develop and market Xoma- 052 for diabetes and cardiovascular disease."




some financial "tips"

"Auto loan rates in Berkeley, California" at bankrate.com.

"Are you tired of worrying about the loud noise coming from your engine? Now is a great time to finance a new and problem-free car. While it's always a better financial decision to pay cash for a car if you can afford it, auto loan rates in Berkeley, CA, and throughout the nation continue to fall. Some banks are maintaining their high rates, but a wide range of institutions are offering yields well under the national average."


"Sleep with Julia Morgan in Berkeley, for $80 a night;The Berkeley City Club, designed by Julia Morgan, includes 35 hotel rooms and suites upstairs" is a recommendation by Christopher Reynolds, Los Angeles Times.

"The Berkeley City Club isn't just a civic organization in a quirky little castle designed by renowned architect Julia Morgan. For years it has run a hotel offering 35 modest rooms and suites upstair in the Bay Area city. Now, as the club turns 80, celebrates completion of a facelift and confronts an off-season lull, it is renting rooms for just $80 per night."


"Actually, the Retirement Age is Too High" by James K. Galbraith at foreignpolicy.com.

The most dangerous conventional wisdom in the world today is the idea that with an older population, people must work longer and retire with less."


end Miscellaneous Ramblings





post fom the past


Tonight's Andrew and Kerstin's private dinner at 900 GRAYSON

Chris' choice of wine and champagne

5th Class Pauillac Grand Puy La Coste 1999

Henri Bourgeois Sancere 2005

Agrapart and Fils"Terroirs" Brut Blanc de Blanc


Tomorrow's their wedding


end post from the past







"A city looks for big solutions in little ­ very little ­ houses" writes Tracey Taylor in a lovely little story.

"On Saturday, Mayor Tom Bates will cut the ribbon on a new home on Delaware Street in Berkeley. It's not every day a city leader takes the time to welcome a new dwelling into his fold, and this home is not big, nor particularly special; in fact it's positively diminutive at just 420 sq ft, and can rightfully be described as a backyard cottage. So one might wonder why it warrants an 'opening party"'with dignitaries in attendance, sponsors - even a salsa band.

The reason is that small secondary units like this one - also known as in-law units, studios, or accessory buildings - represent a solution to a key challenge facing many cities: how to house a swelling population affordably without resorting to creating unsustainable suburban sprawl. 'Smart growth', in other words.

And Berkeley has decided to focus on these little houses. 'We favor increasing the number of secondary units. It's the only goal we have added to the housing element part of our general plan this year,' says Debra Sanderson, Planning Manager at the City of Berkeley.

The Delaware St cottage includes distinct areas for living, cooking, eating, working, bathing and sleeping.

These types of buildings often appeal to homeowners looking for more space without the need to relocate, or seeking rental income, and for home buyers looking for small, inexpensive urban homes on a permanent or semi-permanent basis."




"New life for lifelong learning at Berkeley" is a press release at berkeley.edu.

"Even for the world's premier public university, launching a world-class 'center for lifelong learning' can be a tricky proposition. It took Berkeley two tries to get it right.

A first effort never achieved liftoff. Today, by contrast, not only is the campus among the 120 Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes (OLLI, for short) worldwide, but it counts a growing constituency of nearly 1,000 Bay Area residents - most between the ages of 50 and 75 - as members. On the strength of four successful years, it could soon qualify for a $1 million endowment from the Bernard Osher Foundation, which has seeded OLLIs in every state, including 30 in California alone.

Where UC Extension focuses mainly on professional development and certificate programs, OLLI is about learning 'for the joy of it' - the title of a video on its website - without tests or grades in what OLLI terms 'an ongoing learning community.'

What distinguishes OLLI @Berkeley from its sister institutes is that it offers something uniquely valuable: access both to Berkeley faculty (including luminaries like energy professor Dan Kammen, currently leading an online class) and to such local lights as Larry Bensky, a former literary editor best remembered as a political journalist on KPFA - returning this session with a class on Marcel Proust - and San Francisco Chronicle theater critic Robert Hurwitt."




"That's Why I Came" by Ta-Nehisi Coates at theatlantic.com.

"For the past couple of years I've been working on a novel about--my hometown, I was about to say, meaning Berkeley, California, where I've lived since the spring of 1997, where three of my four kids were born, where I wrote most of The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay and every book after that. But the new book--it's called Telegraph Avenue--is actually set as fully in Oakland as in Berkeley. Each of those cities (Watson and Mycroft respectively to the showboating Holmes of San Francisco) has its own distinct character, or set of characteristics, its unique inheritance of grace and problems. Yet the line between them, a block and a half from my house, ambles. It blurs. At times it all but vanishes--or maybe, generalizing wildly, Oakland with its history of tough-mindedness and Berkeley with its mania for insight, together conspire to expose the arbitrariness of all such hand-drawn borderlines."

The real Telegraph Avenue runs straight as a steel cable, changing its nature more or less completely every ten blocks or so, from the medical-marijuana souks of Oaksterdam, past the former Lamp Post bar where Bobby Seale used to hang out (now called Interplay Center, where you can 'unlock the wisdom of your body'), past Section 8 housing and the site of a founding settlement of the native Ohlone people at the corner of 51st Street, past the Niebyl-Proctor Marxist Library and Akwaba Braiding and a buttload of Ethiopian restaurants, ending in an august jangle at the gates of the Cal campus, and I guess that for a guy who likes hanging around the borderlands--between genres, cultures, musics, legacies, styles--the appeal of Telegraph lies in the way it reflects a local determination to find your path irrespective of boundary lines, picking up what you can, shaking off what you can, along the way. But can you claim a home in a nameless place, at the edge of a wandering border?

Or is your 'hometown' only, ever, the place where you grew up? For me that would be Columbia, MD, from shortly after the late-'60s opening of that 'planned community,' in a vast stretch of former tobacco country south of Baltimore, through its idealistic heyday of the 1970s. I haven't been back in years, and at any rate could never hope to return to the Columbia where I grew up, still exuberantly dedicated to becoming the hometown envisioned by its founder, James Rouse--multiracial, multiethnic, ecumenical, economically diverse, green and heavily playgrounded and bicycle-friendly, fulfilling the promises of the American experiment one neocolonial tract house at a time. That Columbia, to the extent that it ever existed anywhere but (at least) in the imagination of one little white boy, has long since faded away.

Maybe your hometown is always an imaginary place: the home of your imagination. If so, then mine--at its best, at its most vivid--whether the vanishing rainbow of Columbia, or the shifting restless polycultural territory manifesting in the joint between Oakland and Berkeley, is a place a lot like this place right here, a place to which people come most of all, I think, because they want to live around people who are not like them, because that is the very thing they have most in common, because they are dedicated to the self-evident truth articulated in one of the founding documents of my hometown, that it ain't where you're from, it's where you're at."




"Helen Wills and the 1923 Berkeley Fire" Douglas Perry, The Oregonian.

"The fire started at midday in the scrubland of Wildcat Canyon. Two hours later, it rolled down the dry North Berkeley hills and quietly slipped into some of the city's finest residences. Housekeepers washing up after lunch turned around in their kitchens to find flames reaching for the drapes like brazen cat burglars.

Regal, multistory houses lit up in beautiful orange puffs. The streets of the La Loma Park and Northside neighborhoods filled with spasmodic shouts and the clatter of footsteps.

Helen Wills was on campus when she noticed the acrid smell in the air. Life had only just begun to return to normal for the college freshman. At seventeen, she was the new Forest Hills champion, having crushed the longtime queen of American tennis, Molla Mallory. Three weeks earlier, a cheering throng and a band had awaited her at Oakland's 16th Street train station."




"New glass tops steel in strength and toughness" nanowerk.com.

"Glass stronger and tougher than steel? A new type of damage-tolerant metallic glass, demonstrating a strength and toughness beyond that of any known material, has been developed and tested by a collaboration of researchers with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)'s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and the California Institute of Technology. What's more, even better versions of this new glass may be on the way."






posts from the past


A community meeting was held last night at Kava Massih Architects in a much too small, stuffy room. Among those present were representatives of our Mayor and our Councilwoman. Kava presented his very elementary plan for the Berkeley Bowl site on Grayson. Judging from his presentation, for a dramatic increase in traffic, Potter Creek will get a wonderful market and restaurant, and Berkeley Bowl will get a warehouse. But more importantly, I believe this project signals an area sea change the effects of which can only be imagined -- certainly increased density is one of them. For myself, I will make the leap of faith and assume that most of them will be good.

Margret Elliott sent me a page of her neighborhood memories. They are wonderful and she has agreed to let me post them -- which I will do soon.




"'Scrambled Eggs' was the working title of Paul McCartney's 'Yesterday' when all he had was a tune with no words. (The next line was, 'Oh, my dear, you have such lovely legs.')" write Erin Barrett and Jack Mingo in their West County Times column.




During the two hours in which we remembered the good things about Ed Saylan, it didn't rain over St. Luke's and was almost always sunny. That in a day of otherwise grey skies and heavy rain. "Fooled um all" quipped Lipofsky as we left. "Huh" I thought "Ed regularly did do good deeds." But he was just a man, and we did have some knock-down, drag-out arguments. As his health declined, and after one particularly heated confrontation, he said "You know sometimes I say things I don't mean." Unusual from a man who almost all his life said to me what he meant.




Over fifty citizens attended the west-Berkeley flood meeting last night at Frances Albrier Building in San Pablo Park. City staff, city manager and counsel people listened as attendees told stories of water and woe. After an hour or so there was agreement among all that our drainage infrastructure is decaying with culverts collapsing even as public work crews clean them. West-Berkeley drainage is also complicated by our many underground creeks--even the exact location of many is unknown. There was also general agreement that something new is happening-- more widespread, regular, and serious flooding. Also, owners were encouraged to properly maintain their property--clean drains, not route runoff through the sewer system, etc. (Da Boss made a brief appearance and is more svelt than I remember, Linda Maio is much more of a babe than I imagined, Councilman Anderson looked very hip and our Darryl Moore is, in west-Berkeley, the Man.) Oh yeah, it's a 35 to 50 million problem for which we only have a few mill to fix and no more planned money available in the foreseeable future. The most memorable comment of the evening? A black citizen's simple "People are suffering here." The future? As sure as flood waters rise, if nothing is done, sooner than later, west-Berkeley citizens, individually or in a group, will sue.

On hip and cool.

Cool has become what computer-Geeks call their new software. Hip is what we called John Coltrane.





From The Rejection Collection





Our Libby emails


Foggy Gulch's first CD, "Fogged In" is now available at
http://cdbaby.com/cd/foggygulch We encourage you to buy it there, but
you can also buy one (or more!) from any band member, or email
eric@foggygulch.com for information on how to get a copy.


I bought my copy from Libby, the groups' lead vocalist and the receptionist at École Bilingue--she's at the Grayson Street campus. As of this morning, I've listened to it a half-dozen or more times. I love Bluegrass and Country and this is what these folks sing and play. Simply, it is the most musical production I've heard in years--even for a first effort. Filled with melody and played and sung with feeling, this CD is AMAZING!






our Bicycle Bridge

a Bob Kubik photo


end posts from the past




Penndorf's Miscellaneous Ramblings

The Farm Bureau reports price increases in some commodities that make our breakfasts. Bacon has increased 44%, coffee 22%, sugar 19 %. The bureau attribute the increases to increase in worldwide consumption.

900 GRAYSON has negotiated a ten year extension of their lease.


A serious proposal is being crafted by Berkeley business for the new LBNL campus here in west-Berkeley.


end Miscellaneous Ramblings




TV Guide reports that the University of California will again offer the Mad Men 101 course this Spring. "AMC's Mad Men has been a fan favorite and critical darling over its four seasons, and now the show's appeal is reaching into academia. Northwestern University offered a history seminar in the fall titled 'Consumerism and Social Change in Mad Men America, 1960-65,' while University of California Berkeley will continue its Men-inspired English course this spring.

Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner tells TV Guide Magazine that he relishes the thought of using his show as a tool for higher education." Full story here.







post from the past


our Tracy emails

Hi Ron,

Christmas Day was so beautiful we took a Christmas walk from San Francisco's Hyde Street Pier to the Wave Organ near St. Francis Yacht Club.

we are . . . "rock stars" in the Fort Mason bandshell.




end post from the past




Penndorf's Miscellaneous Ramblings

Dig's Bistro, is for sale with lease, furnishings, equipment,etc. It is at 1453 Dwight just west of Sacramento, right behind Homemade Cafe and around the corner from Breads of India.


Mark Horner has opened his yoga studio in the ground floor retail area at 4th & U .


While Weatherford BMW is remodeling they've taken a 18 month lease on a storage building on 7th just off Potter.



Oakland Mayor Quan has appointed Dan Siegel to "advise her about the OPD." His position is without pay.

"You get what you pay for."



Traffic on my Almost Daily Posts page continues at two and often three times the previous rate.



end Miscellaneous Ramblings




"Experimental filmmaking that countered Hollywood:Screenings around L.A. of San Francisco-area alternative movies from 1945-2000 will honor the influential film scene" latimes.com.

Berkeley Art Museum photo

A scene from Jay Rosenblatt's movie Short of Breath

"From the late 1940s through the present day, a certain well-known California city has been the epicenter of intrepid, innovative filmmaking that has dazzled viewers and shredded the conventions of traditional narrative cinema.

It isn't Los Angeles.

To be sure, L.A. has nurtured its own highly impactful experimental film scene and spawned avant-garde giants and enfants terribles like Kenneth Anger and Pat O'Neill. But the metropolis in question is greater San Francisco.

Save Up to 90%: Sign up for our free daily e-mail to get in on exclusive deals around L.A. Powered by Groupon. Subscribe Now.

For decades, the Bay Area has supported one of the world's most prolific, stylistically free-form and influential alternative-film environments. Long overshadowed by the Hollywood industry, the Bay region's experimental-underground film and video culture has continued to thrive into the early 21st century, surviving natural disasters, demographic upheaval and even the Silicon Valley-generated cash influx that sent rents skyrocketing and drove many San Francisco artists into exile, or at least to the more affordable East Bay."



"Green Day still 'in talks' to make 'American Idiot' film' " is a report at nme.com.

"Green Day's American Idiot musical director Michael Mayer has said that a film version of the show is still on the cards.

The musical originally opened at the Berkeley Repertory Theatre in California in September 2009, before transferring to the St James Theatre on Broadway, where it has been showing since March 2010.

Speaking to The New York Times, Mayer said: 'We're definitely in talks [about a film version]. There are people who have the ability to make it happen, who have expressed genuine interest in it, and we want to do it, so I think it could happen.' "


"Eric Powell artwork:Berkeley library select artists for two new commissions" is a story by Tracey Taylor at berkeleyside.com.

Eric Powell's design for a steel rail-guard at the Claremont library which will look like bookshelves.

The Berkeley library has chosen two artists to create new public works for their North Berkeley and Claremont branches, both of which are to undergo major renovations, after holding a competition for the projects.

On Friday last week six local artists presented possible projects to the library's Visual Arts Selection Panel as part of the competition which, according to Berkeley Civic Arts Coordinator Mary Ann Merker, attracted 16 initial entrants. The winning entries were those submitted by Berkeley metal artist Eric Powell for the Claremont library, and Castro Valley artist Marion Coleman for the north Berkeley library.



"Mark Hummel brings annual Blues Harmonica Blowout back to Yoshi's in Oakland" by Jim Harrington, Oakland Tribune.

"Back in 1991, East Bay bluesman Mark Hummel called on some of his fellow local harmonicats to help him put on a show at Ashkenaz in Berkeley. It wasn't anything fancy -- just a killer showcase for the mouth harp.

And people loved it.

'The club owner, David Nadel, came up to me and said, "Man, this went really good. Let's do it again next year. Let's do it every year," ' remembers Hummel, a Castro Valley resident who lived in Berkeley at the time. 'And that's how the ball got rolling.'

That ball is now known as Mark Hummel's Blues Harmonica Blowout, which has become one of the most cherished annual events on the blues music calendar. What began as a one-night stand, performed in front of approximately 150 people, has grown to where Hummel expects to put on 30 to 40 Blowout shows across the nation this year, including a six-show, three-night stand at Yoshi's in Oakland -- Jan. 14-16 -- as well as one gig on Jan. 18 at Moe's Alley in Santa Cruz."




"Justice Sonia Sotomayor to visit UC Berkeley" is a report at mercurynews.com.

"U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor is due to visit UC Berkeley next month to preside over a student law competition."




"Tech for social good: School of Information students at Berkeley show the way" by Satarupa Bhattacharya at ibtimes.com.

"The trend among business schools to launch courses or programs in 'social entrepreneurship' or among their graduates to walk the 'non-profit' path has been under the spotlight for quite some time now. But now, an innovative course offered to students of technology at the School of Information at UC Berkeley has led a group among them to work on commercializing one of their class projects to bring about a positive difference to the lives of the literate poor in distant Indian villages or urban slums."







Penndorf's Miscellaneous Ramblings

Moe's truck

in for new tires Friday at our west-Berkeley Orozco's Tires, 2601 San Pablo, (510) 649-0629.



Watch video of the Blueberry Bandit striking-open mail boxes at the west-Berkeley Tomate Cafe building. Really worth checking out!


I'm betting Da Boz has "turned the corner" on LBNL locating in west-Berkeley and now "actively/fully/enthusiastically" supports it.


After the "wishy-washy'" LBNL Request for Qualifications (RFQ) comes the "moe firmer" LBNL Request for Proposal (RFP).

Stay tuned!


Our Debra Sanderson emails

Courtesy Notice of Public Workshop and Public Hearing on the West Berkeley Project. 
January 25, 2011

Public Workshop meeting time: 5:30 PM

The Public Hearing will take place during the regularly scheduled meeting of the City Council, which begins at 7PM.
Public testimony will be taken on the West Berkeley Project, as part of the Public Hearing.
The City Council may provide direction to staff after listening to public comment during the regular Council meeting, but will not take action to adopt any portion of the West Berkeley Project at either of the noted meetings.
(A separate formal notice of public hearing has been posted as required by law.)



our Merryll emails

Hey Penndorf,
I've been hiding somewhat but braved going to lunch the other day at Crema before I shopped.
Grilled cheese and tomato soup sounded just right ­ too bad it wasn't.  I was disappointed!  Soup was too temperature hot to eat for a big while and when I did, it tasted like spaghetti sauce ­ almost too rich for soup.  Worked to dunk my sandwich which was two kinds of cheese and not grilled enough.  But it tasted good in the tomato. 
The place looks good ­ they did a nice job ­ but I didn't realize that I needed to order and pay at the counter and then they bring it to me.  Morgan said he and Tracy had a bad coffee experience though the pastry was quite good.





And, our Becky O had the bippies to publish, "Time To Re-examine Proposition 13" at berkeleydailyplanet.com.

"Commenting on the $28 billion budget gap, Governor Jerry Brown stated that 'everything should be on the table.' Later Governor Brown met with county officials to discuss shifting responsibility for state-run programs to the local level. This, of course, will require providing sufficient revenue to fund these programs. This in turn may mean reexamining Proposition 13, which, among other things, consolidated revenue-gathering responsibility to the state, leaving cities and counties dependent on the state.

Is Governor Brown serious about reversing parts of Proposition 13 or was he just throwing out ideas? And if he is serious, why not reexamine every provision in Proposition 13?"



end Miscellaneous Ramblings




"Creative Re-Use Thrives in Weak Economy" by Lydia Gans at berkeleydailyplanet.com.

There can't be many Berkeleyans who've never been to East Bay Depot for Creative Reuse. This unique store was started in Berkeley 30 years ago. It was located on San Pablo near University until recently when it moved to 4695 Telegraph in Oakland - but according to Executive Director Linda Levitsky the staff still think of themselves as a Berkeley institution. The original mission, Levitsky explains, was "to provide low cost materials to teachers and artists". They soon expanded to serve the general public and a wide diversity of people patronize the store.









Penndorf's Miscellaneous Ramblings

A couple of days ago a Berkeley Internet news-site published an "investigative" report, Berkeley police evidence room still has problems. The problems, it seems, are that of the eighteen recommendations to change evidence room procedures made by California Commission on Peace Office Standards and Training, only six have been implemented. And our new Chief, Meehan has been only responsible for three of the six.

Well, . . Chief Meehan has been busy.

In his, almost-to-the day, year in office, Chief Meehan has completely reorganized our department, combining divisions, moving personnel, instituting COMPSTAT, appointing a new Captain, and most importantly creating a new culture.

I'm betting that he'll sooner-than later address the remaining twelve problems outlined by California Commission on Peace Office Standards and Training.



"Baltimore police idle Comstat meetings:Data-sharing lauded as tool for fighting crime, criticized for generating staff friction" by Justin Fenton, baltsun.com.

"The Baltimore Police Department has suspended a statistics-based management tool that has been a hallmark of the department for more than a decade, saying weekly information-sharing meetings had grown 'stale' and 'laborious.'

Using numbers and maps to spot problem areas, connect incidents and discuss tactics, police commanders and investigators had gathered in a room each Thursday for years as part of a process called Comstat. The concept has become a national law enforcement standard, and it was the inspiration for Gov. Martin O'Malley's acclaimed numbers-driven management programs.

But the meetings have been criticized by some officers who say they often devolve into browbeatings. Commanders often take a day or more to compile thick binders of information and are holed up for hours memorizing facts so as not to be caught off-guard. Confrontations are frequent.

'It's a beat-down session,' said Robert F. Cherry, president of the Fraternal Order of Police union. 'It's become a forum for finger-pointing and just running through a lot of numbers without giving some concrete strategies for fighting crime.'

The concept, known elsewhere as Compstat, drives policing philosophies in Los Angeles, Philadelphia, and Newark, N.J., as well as in an increasing number of smaller jurisdictions. But Baltimore's potential move away from it comes two months after a study in New York - where the statistical method was developed - showed that more than 100 retired high-ranking officers believed it created intense pressure to manipulate crime figures.*

Anthony Guglielmi, the Baltimore department's chief spokesman, confirmed that the meeting has been suspended starting this week and for the next 30 days as Police Commissioner Frederick H. Bealefeld III looks for 'creative ideas to revamp Comstat,' which Guglielmi called 'laborious' and 'stale.'

Guglielmi cautioned that the move did not mean police were ending a statistical-based approach to crime-fighting or that major changes were certain, though law enforcement sources said Bealefeld has been floating the prospect of change for months.

'It's not like we're going to stop looking at the stats,' Guglielmi said.

An intensive look at statistics has been a major part not only of police operations, but also of the career of O'Malley."


*Underlining mine.

Reminds of "The Wire," a TV Cop Drama that teaches all you need to know about "modern civics." I'd watch it in place of a year's poly-sci course on urban government.



"DHS puts weight behind USC 'mini-Internet' security testbed" by Bob Brown, Network World.

"Department of Homeland Security funds $16 million DETERlab expansion"

end Miscellaneous Ramblings





posts from the past


I talked to Gino at Moe's yesterday--I worked with Gino at the store in the early days, he's now a manager-- and asked him why they, Moe's, were successful in a time when other brick-and-mortor book-dealers were regularly going out of business. He said that one of the reasons is that as a used-dealer they can set their own resale-prices, and, perhaps more important, set what they pay for books, also that their active Internet sales were becoming a more important part of the business--then added "We know what we're doing, do a very good job at it, and people like us."

Well, Ok then!


Also yesterday, I talked to a young friend, a woman in her early 20s. She characterized herself as a post, post-feminist. When I asked what that was, she said "I sewed this flowered apron but also eat granola" and then whispered "I'm bi-sexual, too."

Very Twenty-First Century Berkeley, I'd say. Hmmm, . . . actually, she lives in Oakland.



A female reader from the South of France emails

vive la France!


end posts from the past




"Lil B Says 'Based Is Being Yourself'

'Thank you BasedGod,' is the phrase that echoed through New York's Highline Ballroom on Thursday (January 13). Lil B stopped by 1515 last year and explained his 'based' catchphrase.

'Well, based really is being yourself, being positive, not really worrying too much about what people think about you. Really saying what comes to your mind first,' Lil B told Mixtape Daily. 'It's like unconscious. Really not premeditating, saying, "Imma do this, I'mma say this, I'mma be this way,'"but really just going with the flow.'

The Berkeley, California rapper Lil B took over the venue in the Big Apple's Chelsea neighborhood to a sold-out crowd."





"North Berkeley neighborhood warrants a full-day browse" by Marta Yamamoto, Oakland Tribune.

"On a typical winter weekend, the Berkeley neighborhood of Northbrae quietly buzzes.

From morning on, folks of all ages are out and about: jogging, cheering at soccer games or maybe heading to the playground at King Park. Other forms of recreation involve shopping at specialty food shops, tempting one's taste buds at cozy cafes, searching out literary favorites at the North Branch Library and buying botanical inspirations at a top-notch nursery.

Trees line residential streets of well-maintained one- and two-story California bungalows with flourishing yards. This is a small neighborhood -- Hopkins Street between The Alameda and Sacramento Street -- and that makes it a great destination to explore on foot.

So grab your recycled market bags or a red wagon, and start early to step into a day in the life of Northbrae."



"Berkeley's Pelican Building Looks for Historic Status" at sf.curbed.com.

"Over in Berkeley, an unassuming pavilion with a rich architectural pedigree (locally, at least) is looking to become a historical landmark. Commissioned by an influential Cal alum and creator of the California Pelican humor magazine that ran on campus from 1903 until the late-80s, The Pelican Building was designed by local architect Joseph Esherick and built in the 50's after Arts & Crafts mainstay Bernard Maybeck handed it off to him. Esherick, you might know, co-founded UC Berkeley's College of Environmental design (the architecture school) and as a token of his appreciation for the project, Esherick blended Maybeck's classic style with his own more modern take - resulting in "a unique overlap of First and Third Bay Area traditions." Continuing in that spirit of appreciation, the landmark application is sponsored by current Berkeley architect Gary Parsons, who names the under-appreciated Esherick as his mentor during his time at Berkeley."




"Family Leave Guide Offers Ways to Create Programs Across U.S." by Andrew Cohen at law.berkeley.edu.

"A new guide about the nation's first paid family leave program, implemented six years ago in California, provides recommendations for other states to consider as they pursue similar proposals.

Produced by the law school's Berkeley Center for Health, Economic & Family Security (Berkeley CHEFS) and the Labor Project for Working Families, the guide presents California as a model for how Americans can juggle work and family responsibilities. Since 2004, California's program has provided more than 1 million state residents paid leave from their jobs to tend to critical life events-such as spending time with a newborn or newly adopted child, or caring for a seriously ill family member."



"Bay Area schools get federal money for buildings" Jill Tucker, Chronicle Staff Writer.

"A new batch of federal stimulus money will flow into California schools, with a new $848 million in tax credits for construction projects awarded to 61 districts, state education officials announced Friday.

Several Bay Area districts were among the recipients including Berkeley, Dublin, Burlingame and Piedmont.

The $25 million awarded to Berkeley will help fund new high school classrooms and a football stadium project. Other Bay Area awards ranged from $4.6 million in Byron to $25 million in several districts."





"A Conversation With Barry Eichengreen" is at nytimes.com.

"This post starts a series on Economix called Book Chat. Each installment will be a short conversation, typically conducted by e-mail, with the author of a recent or imminent book on economics. As usual, we will define economics quite broadly.
Barry Eichengreen, an economics professor at the University of California, Berkeley. Barry Eichengreen, an economics professor at the University of California, Berkeley.

Our first chat is with Barry Eichengreen, who has become a go-to economist on the continuing global financial crisis. Mr. Eichengreen's new book is 'Exorbitant Privilege' (Oxford University Press). The subtitle summarizes it: 'The Rise and Fall of the Dollar and the Future of the International Monetary System.' Mr. Eichengreen is a professor at the University of California, Berkeley. We've previously mentioned his research comparing the early stages of this financial crisis with the early stages of the Great Depression - and finding this crisis to have been more severe initially."





"Forget Planet X! New technique could pinpoint Galaxy X" by Robert Sanders, newscenter.berkeley.edu.

"Planet X, an often-sought 10th planet, is so far a no-show, but Sukanya Chakrabarti has high hopes for finding what might be called Galaxy X ­ a dwarf galaxy that she predicts orbits our Milky Way Galaxy.

Many large galaxies, such as the Milky Way, are thought to have lots of satellite galaxies too dim to see. They are dominated by 'dark matter,' which astronomers say makes up 85 percent of all matter in the universe but so far remains undetected.

Chakrabarti, a post-doctoral fellow and theoretical astronomer at the University of California, Berkeley, has developed a way to find "dark" satellite galaxies by analyzing the ripples in the hydrogen gas distribution in spiral galaxies. Planet X was predicted ­ erroneously ­ more than 100 years ago based on perturbations in the orbit of Neptune."




"In Highlighting Radon's Risks, Context Needed" is a story with audio at npr.org.

"In case you haven't heard, it's National Radon Action Month.

Every January, the Environmental Protection Agency and other federal agencies hit the airwaves to tell us that radon gas can kill and that every home should be tested. But that message skips over many complexities surrounding the risks from radon.

Radon is a heavy, radioactive gas that can seep out of the soil into basements and other parts of a house. There's no question that inhaling a lot of radon is bad for you, but some scientists think such statements could use a little context.

Phil Price, a physicist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California, has spent a lot of time studying radon. He is willing to accept the government's rough estimate that radon causes about 21,000 deaths from lung cancer each year. But, he says, people should know something about that number."








"After The Tragedy: An American Conversation Continued
Town Hall on Tucson Tragedy on a Special 'This Week'

In a town hall event on 'This Week,' anchor Christiane Amanpour gathered together ­ for the first time since the tragic shooting ­ many of those who were in the Safeway parking lot on that fateful day when Rep. Gabriel Giffords, D-AZ, and 18 others were shot.

The colonel who wrestled the gunman to ground, the petite woman who knocked away his ammunition, the heroic intern who staunched the Congresswoman's bleeding ­ all joined Amanpour in Tucson. Other Members of Congress came to the town hall as well: Rep. Raúl Grijalva, D-Ariz., and Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., along with former Arizona Republican Rep. Jim Kolbe. All the victims of the tragedy were invited and a thoughtful, forthright and stirring conversation ensued."

Full video here

more here and here.







posts from the past


this photo is of

The Avon Lady here from Walnut Creek?

The mayor of Potter Creek"

A biker chick?

Marsha Wacko?

Part of the support staff at one of the nation's most prestigious law firms"










"Personality judged by physical appearance" is a upi.com report.

"People can accurately judge some aspects of a stranger's personality from looking at photographs, U.S. researchers suggest."

Would you vote for this man for mayor? Hold that thought.


end posts from the past





"East Bay businesses, officials worry about proposed demise of enterprise zones" by Rick Radin, Contra Costa Times.

"Local officials and businesses are concerned that Gov. Jerry Brown's proposal to eliminate an enterprise zone program will drive firms out of low-income areas such as Richmond that have benefited economically."






Penndorf's Miscellaneous Ramblings

"Personality judged by physical appearance" is a upi.com report.


our Gene Agress emails something of childhood innocence


Here is a photo taken in my studio of a little girl




"Classical Powerhouse KDFC Sold to USC" Peter Hartlaub, Chronicle Pop Culture Critic.

"The Bay Area's only classical music station announced on Tuesday that it will become a non-profit, in a move full of repercussions that change the Bay Area radio landscape."

Frankly, KDFC programing has reduced hundreds of years of classical composition to a series of short tuneful movements or pieces, and, I believe, so has become somewhat of an embarrassment to classical music. KDFC no longer play even short Baroque works in their entirety. Perhaps this will change with USC ownership.


end Miscellaneous Ramblings



"People would not be surprised by alien life" reports asiaone.com.

"Psychologist Albert Harrison believes that people have grown accustomed to the idea of aliens and, if alien life were to appear before their eyes, they would not be surprised.

'Advances in our technology have brought civilization to a point where the idea of other beings traveling through space to Earth no longer seems far-fetched or frightening,' he writes in the journal Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society.

Britain's Daily Mail reported that Ted Peters, theologian of the Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary in Berkeley, California, supports the idea that Harrison suggested following a survey of 1,300 people of different faiths worldwide."


"Supercomputer, other projects bring in major funds to UI" gazette.com.

"It may not be surprising that the University of Illinois is the nation's leader in university funding from the National Science Foundation.

But one number stands out: A single grant puts it ahead of the total amounts for other major competing universities, including Purdue and Wisconsin.

The NSF awarded the UI $185 million in fiscal year 2010, ranging from small projects to the Blue Waters supercomputer, which alone counts for $90.5 million.

University of California at Berkeley is the second-highest ranking university, with $125 million. The next-highest Big Ten school is University of Wisconsin at Madison, with $90 million."




"Credit scores have a huge effect on your financial life" by Eve Mitchell at modbee.com.

"Polishing credit score can open financial doors. Sherelle Villacorta had a good credit score, but like many people, she wanted a higher score.

Her strategy was to pay down her debt and keep current on her bills, but increase the amount of available credit. It worked. Within seven months, her credit score went from 697 to 758.

'I just recently graduated from college, so because of that I was relatively new to credit scores and having a lot of credit,' the 22-year-old University of California-Berkeley graduate said. 'If you have credit available but you don't use a lot of it, you'll have a higher credit score. I started paying down my debt and making sure I was spending only what I could afford.' "



"Modesto High program helps students excel:Baccalaureate curriculum gives high schoolers a big boost on way to college"

by Nan Austin modbee.com.

"This is about grabbing the brass ring - training and straining to sit taller, reach farther.

International Baccalaureate seniors at Modesto High are waiting to hear which of their college applications have been accepted. Helen Li is going to the University of Copenhagen. Shiloh Tune is hoping for Yale or Harvey Mudd. The toughest University of California campus to get into, Berkeley, is a fall-back choice for Veronica Dela Fuente. Jamasen

Rodriguez has his acceptance letter to Babson College in Massachusetts."



"Berkeley set to offer sex-change employee benefit" Carolyn Jones, Chronicle Staff Writer.

"While other cities are slashing employee benefits, Berkeley is slated to add one more: paying for sex-change operations.

The City Council is poised to vote tonight to set aside $20,000 annually for city workers' gender-reassignment surgery. The procedure is not covered by the city's two'health insurance providers, Kaiser and Health Net.

"We offer all kinds of benefits to our employees. This brings our benefits in line with what's just and fair for the transgender community,' said City Councilman Darryl Moore, who originally proposed the idea in 2007.

The benefit would allow employees to collect the money before the operation. To receive the payout, employees would have to have lived as the opposite sex for at least one year and undergone hormone therapy. They also would have to have worked for the city at least a year."



"Higher education leaders try to curb impact of Brown's budget cuts" Maneeza Iqbal, news10.net.

"The assembly committee on higher education met Tuesday to talk about ways to preserve the quality of California colleges in the wake of sharp budget cuts."







Penndorf's Miscellaneous Ramblings


Charlie Rose half-hour conversation with cartoonist Gary Trudeau is here. Trudeau's Doonesbury Retrospective book is the conversation starting point.


end Miscellaneous Ramblings




"Berkeley Crossings bought by investors for $15 million" by George Avalos, Oakland Tribune.

"A group of investors has snapped up Berkeley Crossings, a big research and office complex in the East Bay, and the group plans to offer the property to tech or other cutting-edge firms.

An affiliate of Strada Investment Group paid $15 million for the 132,000-square-foot project a few weeks ago, agents for Grubb & Ellis Co., a commercial realty firm, said Tuesday.

'It's the type of building that would be right for a tech company,' said Steve Golubchik, a vice president with Grubb & Ellis. 'It's tough to find a building of that size in Berkeley.'

Grubb & Ellis agents Golubchik and Nicholas Bicardo arranged the deal.

The building previously had been valued at about $28 million, based on public records. The property is located at 1608 Fourth St., near Cedar Street."



"HUD approves Berkeley's public housing disposition scheme" is a report by Lynda Carson at indybay.org.

"Berkeley's poor are about to lose their public housing units to privatization and to one or more greedy non profit developers, as public housing tenants across the nation are fighting back against the latest schemes to privatize our nations 1.2 million public housing units.

Like many cities across the nation that have decided to make a profit by privatizing and selling off their public housing units, Berkeley is seeking one or more non profit housing developers that are willing to buy Berkeley's 75 public housing units, in a scheme that allows the developers to kick-back money to the City of Berkeley. Berkeley is desperately trying to cut back on it's spending budgets, and to bring in more additional revenues to the city.

On Tuesday January 4, 2011, Berkeley's public housing residents received the latest Berkeley Housing Authority (BHA) news letter, that among other things mentions that the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has approved the BHA's proposed scheme to dispose of Berkeley's 75 "three and four bedroom" town home public housing units, to one or more local non profit housing developers."





"The so-called 'Amazon bill' is back" is a report at sacbee.com.

"Assembly Bill 153, introduced yesterday by Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley, would require online-only out-of-state retailers to collect state sales taxes for purchases sold in California.

The Berkeley Democrat's office estimates the change could generate $300 million in state and local revenues as the state looks for ways to fill a projected 18-month deficit of $26.4 billion.

This isn't the first time legislators have considered mandating sales tax for the online shopping hubs -- the concept has been pushed both in legislation introduced by Skinner in 2009 and during past budget negotiations. Previous efforts faced major opposition from online retailers, including Amazon.com, Overstock.com and eBay. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed it out of a 2009 budget bill."




"Berkeley City Council Postpones Vote On Sex-Change Surgery Funding" reports ktvu.com.

"The Berkeley City Council Tuesday night postponed a vote on a staff proposal to appropriate $20,000 a year to pay for sex-change operations for city employees.

Council members on Tuesday decided to delay a final decision on the issue until Feb. 15."



after 1/19/11 here




from my log

1/19/11--7:01 AM--burning natural gas odor in front room. 9:34 AM--irritant in warehouse front and IMMEDIATELY in front of warehouse, watery eyes, light head. leave.



Eternally useful links


Bay Area home prices from sfgate.com


Bay Area foreclosures from sfgate.com

Our City Council update is here.


Our Planning Commision update is here



You can find more information about our current weather conditions than is good for you at www.wunderground.com

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 than Scrambled Eggs.


Best gas prices in 94710, as well as all of US and Canada, are here at gasbuddy.com

Kimar finds Costco routinely has the lowest price.


Richmond Ramblers' motorcycle club member, Cliff Miller emails a very

useful link

If you ever need to get a human being on the phone at a credit card company or bank, etc., this site tells you how to defeat their automated system and get you to a human being within a few seconds.



Markets is not just a reference for Berkeley-Hills radicals with 1.5 mil homes and considerable portfolios.


Our City of Berkeley Boards and Commissions page is here--redone and friendly.



Berkeley Police reports at insidebay area.com are here.


Our Berkeley PD Site with crime statistics and more is here.

Crime Log for 94710 is here

This site is NOT affiliated with Berkeley PD.
Take time to report crime!


All reports of crime-in-progress should first go to Berkeley PD dispatch--911 or non-emergency, 981-5900. THEN make sure you notify EACH of these City people.

The contacts are below:

Our Area Coordinator is Officer Karen Buckheit, Berkeley PD - 981-5774 kbuckheit@ci.berkeley.ca.us

AND check out BPD feature "Who are these Crooks."


Angela Gallegos-Castillo, City Mgr Off - 981-2491 agallegos-castillo@ci.berkeley.ca.us

Ryan Lau, aid to Darryl Moore - 981-7120 rlau@ci.berkeley.ca.us

Darryl Moore, City Councilman dmoore@ci.berkeley.ca.us


More Scrambled Eggs & Lox, here


Stories about Berkeley and stories about recorded-music

are at

Journal of Recorded Music 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11



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