after 2/9, here
after 2/13, here after 2/19, here
is a LEED "green"
certified project in west-Berkeley at 1331 Seventh St--its builder
is Adam Block. This is the first LEED private-new-building in
Berkeley. Much more sooner-than-later.
Food Critic's Favorite" is a review at diablomag.com.
900 GRAYSON: Diablo checks in with San Francisco magazine
food critic Josh Sens about the burger at Berkeley's 900 Grayson.
You included 900 Grayson's
burger as one of your 50 favorite meals in the Bay Area. What's
so special about it?
It's made with grass-fed beef, which, granted, is pretty much
standard at any self-respecting restaurant around these parts.
What makes it unusual is the range of toppings. Bacon, white cheddar,
shoestring-style fried onions, and tangy barbecue sauce are great
complements. Best of all, the bun-to-beef ratio is reasonable,
so you don't feel as if you're just eating bread.
Did any fancy-pants restaurants
that didn't make your list feel slighted that they were bested
by a burger?
If anyone had hurt feelings, they didn't tell me. If anything,
I imagine they have bigger things to worry about these days, such
as an economy that threatens every high-end restaurant with the
prospect of having to turn into a burger joint.
If you can't go to 900 Grayson,
what's your backup burger in the East Bay?
It's far from a gourmet burger, but for nostalgia's sake, I like
Oscar's, that old smoke-belching burger house in Berkeley at Hearst
and Shattuck. It's a bare-bones burger, but it's charbroiled and
full of flavor. And I like the throwback look to the place and
the fact that they serve old-school malted milk shakes. Basically,
it's hangover food for the college crowd, or hangover prevention
food for people who find themselves awake late and still hungry.
900 Grayson, 900 Grayson St., Berkeley, (510) 704-9900,
900grayson.com; Oscar's, 1890 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley, (510) 849-2164.
Taste some wine on Saturdays,
2PM to 6PM, here in Potter Creek at twomile
wines. two miles wines, 2816 San Pablo (between Grayson and
"Bay Area mourns upcoming loss of Scharffen
Janis Mara at contracostatimes.com.
" 'It's terrible,' said Marilyn Rinzler of Berkeley as she
stood outside the soon-to-be-closed Scharffen Berger manufacturing
facility here with an empty chocolate sample container in her
Hershey Co., which bought
Berkeley-based premium chocolate maker Scharffen Berger in 2005,
announced plans this week to close the West Berkeley plant. Most
of the chocolate will now be made at a Hershey plant in Robinson,
Ill., which has actually been the case for some time, according
'This is a Berkeley enterprise.
It should stay in Berkeley, just as Peet's Coffee is a Berkeley
enterprise and continues to be in Berkeley,' Rinzler said."
Our Penelope Huston emails--here
is an excerpt
Hope your new year is going
well. . . . peruse our little interview in the SF Chronicle.
"Avengers return to Bay Area for concert" is a story by George Chen at sfgate.com
"When speaking with
the singer of one of the original '77 punk bands on Inauguration
Day, one is tempted to bring up lyrics from the song 'The American
in Me.' The chorus twists the famous Kennedy mantra into 'ask
not what you can do for your country / what's your country been
doing to you.' "
"The Chronicle's Bay Area musical history
tour" is at sfgatecom.
"Jimi Hendrix, shown
as an infant, spent his boyhood in Savo Island Naval Housing in
"UC Berkeley's eucalyptus removal plan
Carolyn Jones, the Chronicle.
"Pity anyone who tries to chop down a tree in Berkeley.
UC Berkeley has been haggling
for four years with the federal government over a $5 million grant
to remove eucalyptus, pine and acacia trees from the Berkeley
and Oakland hills to reduce the threat of wildfire.
But a neighborhood group has stalled and possibly blocked the
project, fearing it will leave the East Bay hills resembling a
This week, I've noticed a
greater police presence in Potter Creek, including Special Enforcement
units. I also saw one of our city's BIG street sweepers working
on Grayson and San Pablo.
result of last week's Planning Commission meeting.
in revolutionary times."
"Obama calls recession a disaster" reports BBC NEWS.
"President Obama has called the contraction of the US economy
in the final quarter of 2008 a "continuing disaster"
for the US.
Speaking at the White House,
he also announced a new task force to help middle-class."
BBC NEWS also reports"Crisis
may 'spark social unrest.'
Europe faces the risk of more social unrest unless measures are
taken to quickly tackle the global economic crisis, France's finance
Christine Lagarde said trust
in the financial system needed to be restored.
Leaders needed to send a
clear, understandable signal to ordinary people about how governments
were intending to act, she added.
She said that action should
be taken by the G20 summit taking place in London in April.
'We're facing two major risks: one is social unrest and the second
is protectionism,' she told the World Economic Forum in Davos."
"Bay Area economy will get worse before
it gets better"
is a story by George Avalos, CCTimes Staff Writer.
"The tumbling Bay Area economy won't hit bottom until at
least this summer or fall, economists predicted at a closely watched
The Bay Area economy is expected
to deteriorate until the third quarter of 2009, the July-September
period, and a rebound will not materialize until 2010, an economist
with the Association of Bay Area Governments said."
"Tesla's Plan For an EV Factory in San
Jose Fizzles" by
Chuck Squatrigliam is at blogwired.com
"Tesla Motors' plan of building an automobile assembly plant
in San Jose appears doomed, done in by a faltering economy and
little chance of federal funding for the project.
The Silicon Valley startup
had hoped to open a factory that would employ 500 people and build
the forthcoming Model S, an all-electric four-door sedan that
company founder Elon Musk said Tuesday will be unveiled March
5 during a 'Hollywood-style event' in Los Angeles.
But Tesla failed to secure
$100 million in venture capital for the project last fall and,
according to the San Jose Mercury News, now realizes that the
$450 million it had hoped to receive from government loans is
intended to retrofit existing buildings, not erect new ones.
Tesla hasn't pulled the plug
on San Jose, company spokeswoman Rachel Konrad told the paper,
and still could move its headquarters and other operations to
the city from nearby San Carlos. But, she said, the company also
is looking for a factory site elsewhere in the San Francisco Bay
Area and Southern California."
"How Far Will Housing Prices Fall in 2009?" asks Prashant Gopal at businessweek.com.
"A Berkeley economist
predicts that mounting job losses could push home prices down
an additional 7% this year
The year 2008 was horrible for real estate and, according to some
experts, 2009 could be worse. Speaking at the World Economic Forum
in Davos on Jan. 29, prominent housing economist Ken Rosen suggested
home prices could drop an additional 6% to 7% this year.
Rosen, a professor at the
University of California at Berkeley, told the Associated Press
that the decline in housing prices is only about three-quarters
complete, and the cumulative slump could reach 24% this year.
To offset such a plunge, Rosen is proposing a foreclosure moratorium
to help stabilize the economy. He said as many as 8 million homes
could go into foreclosure in the next three years without government
action, the AP reported. 'I worry about the cumulative decline
of all the job losses leading to a second wave of foreclosures.
So we have to stop this downward spiral,' Rosen said."
The Bates Update--News From
Mayor Tom Bates
Reduce Your Carbon Footprint and Save Money at the Same Time
New Year's Resolution: Lose 5 pounds. Lose 5000 pounds.
Start the new year on a low carbon diet. In just four weeks with
relatively little effort, you can shed 5,000 pounds from your
carbon footprint and cut your bills significantly. To help
with this process the City of Berkeley, The Berkeley Energy Commission
and the Ecology Center have organized workshops to help people
set up their personal Low Carbon Diet.
Four weekly consecutive sessions (1 - 2 hrs. each) to reduce your
personal and community carbon footprint
Option 1: Host your own group and gather 5-10 friends, family
members, coworkers, neighbors, classmates, or congregation members. The
Ecology Center will provide the materials you'll need to lead
a group, and can offer meeting space if necessary. Using the Low
Carbon Diet workbook as your guide, together you will:
· Calculate your
personal carbon footprint;
· Create a measurable
action plan to reduce your footprint;
· Discuss ways
to be a climate change leader in your household and community,
green your workplace, neighborhood, school district etc.
Option 2: Join a group hosted by the Ecology Center
New groups start on a regular basis. Next groups will start in
early January on a few weekday nights from 6-8pm. Call or write
for more information.
Participation is free. For $10 you can purchase the Low Carbon
Diet workbook. No one turned away for lack of funds.
Write to email@example.com or call 510-548-2220.
The City Budget
For those watching the headlines, the news about the economy and
the state budget is unsettling. As we all grapple with the dramatic
downturn in the nation's economy, the City of Berkeley is preparing
for the upcoming two-year budget, which will take effect in July
Over the next six months, the City Council will have a series
of workshops and Council meetings, exploring all areas of the
City's budget. For example, the January 13 meeting included an
update on how the State's budget crisis is affecting
Berkeley, as well as a special workshop on the City's Housing
and Community Services. Visit this City Clerk's page for
the budget presentation and the full Housing report, which covers
homelessness, affordable rental housing and affordable homeownership.
To see the full calendar, including the program focuses for each
meeting, visit the calendar of public meetings. You can also learn
more about the City's budget at www.CityofBerkeley.info/budget.
Berkeley retailers say "No" to teens buying tobacco
The rate at which Berkeley retailers sell cigarettes to minors
has hit a new low, down to just over 4 percent in 2009 from 37
percent in 2003.
The Youth Tobacco Purchase Survey is a sting operation that tests
how well Berkeley's tobacco vendors comply with the California
law prohibiting the sale of tobacco to minors. During the most
recent operation, only 4.2% of merchants sold tobacco to a youth
decoy- a quarter of the rate measured in June 2007.
"This is the lowest youth tobacco sales rate we've ever measured--thanks
to the participation of Berkeley's neighborhood merchants,"
said Acting Health Officer Dr. Janet Berreman. "We know that
tobacco is an important revenue stream, and we are really grateful
that so many merchants did the right thing, and said 'No' to teen
Berkeley FIRST, our new solar financing program, featured on American
Public Media's Marketplace
Listen to report here. "Financing green projects
can be expensive, so cities are rethinking the economic model
to fund renewable energy. A pilot project in Berkeley, Calif.,
will use city bonds to pay for the costs of installing solar panels,
with money being recouped later through a surcharge on property
taxes." Sam Eaton reports.
Berkeley Visitor's Guide Now Available in Online Format
The 2008-2009 Berkeley Visitor's Guide is now available in a fantastic
Join us to learn more about the California Cultural Data Project
and how it can help your organization!
We are pleased to announce that on February 25, 2009, the California
Cultural Data Project (California CDP) will offer a training session
in Berkeley. This project is the most ambitious and comprehensive
effort ever to gather and analyze information about the contributions
of the cultural sector to California's economy and quality of
life. The California CDP is also a part of many grant application
programs throughout the state and will soon be a part of the Berkeley
Civic Arts Commission's application process.
February 25, 2009
Berkeley Repertory School of Theatre
"Buying glasses online offers clear savings" is a report by Ryan Wilk, of Kiplinger Personal
Finance at dailyherald.com.
"More than a year has
passed since your last eye exam, so you drop by your local boutique
for a quick checkup. An hour later - and $500 poorer - you're
out the door, wondering how a simple prescription framed in a
piece of plastic stamped 'Made in China' could cost so much.
But thanks to some online
retailers, getting a new pair of specs doesn't have to break the
bank. The savings can be dramatic."
Ole Potter Creekers
Bob and Paul visiting from
Here, yesterday lunching
at 900 GRAYSON
with Bob and Paul yesterday, I posted "Today
just before noon, several BPD radio-cars, a BFD rescue unit and
pumper responded to an incident at the end of Grayson just before
the tacks. Later a. . . helicopter appeared."
This morning sfgate.com
killed by Union Pacific train in Berkeley" reports Matthew
B. Stannard, Chronicle Staff Writer.
"An Alameda man was
hit by a train and died Monday morning in Berkeley, according
to the Alameda County Coroner.
Mir Asadullah Bakhtary, 31, was killed at about 11:43 a.m. near
the intersection of Grayson Street and the railroad tracks that
run along Third Street, said Deputy Coroner Norman McAdams. He
had been struck by a northbound Union Pacific cargo train.
'Our crew saw somebody lying on the tracks,' said Union Pacific
spokeswoman Zoe Richmond, who said the crew followed procedure,
blowing the horn and hitting the brakes.' "
"Time for public employees to feel the
pain too" opines
Daniel Borenstein, CC Times Staff columnist.
"Whether it's Contra
Costa Community College District Chancellor Helen Benjamin's 18
percent pay raise approved Wednesday, the 8 percent increase for
Berkeley City Manager Phil Kamlarz finalized Tuesday or the two-day-a-month
furlough state public employees fought unsuccessfully in court
on Thursday, one must wonder whether public employees understand
that they need to share the pain."
Two west-Berkeley residents
email about last Tuesday's crime-workshop.
We won't know for a while whether the neighbors attendance at
the meeting was helpful. We'll find out as this year's city budget
is negotiated out.
We had several people from our "WestBerkeley" neighborhood
group show up. Toni Mester and I spoke. What was interesting is
that there were other people from our area who I don't know, who
also came and spoke.
I couldn't stay for the whole meeting and I left during the Police
Department presentation at about 6:30pm.
The message I was trying to convey was carried more by our attendance
than our words. I don't think in the overwhelming babble
that these elected officials hear, our specific words can make
that much difference. I do know that the same officials will remember
who was motivated (scared and concerned enough) to make the effort
to attend. I think the point got across that though crime in Berkeley
might overall be quite stable in frequency, that our area is facing
a big challenge.
Well, I think the best part was having youth from Youth Spirit
attend. A few of them spoke to council, and if nothing else,
now they know that they are also entitled to two minutes of government
time on council nights. . . .
Hope to meet you soon! Say hi to Cindy Dickeson for me next
time you see her (I still need to stop by her office at lunch
bird watching here in west-Berkeley
Steve Smith shot this with
his phone-camera through field glasses
"Plant citrus now in the Bay Area" reports Erle Nickel, Oakland Tribune correspondent.
"Visiting our local market and picking out our favorite oranges
and grapefruits often reminds us that these fruits come to us
from the subtropical climates of Southern California or Florida.
But we can grow a surprising number of citrus fruits in our cooler
Bay Area climate.
At the Oakland Ace nursery
where I work, we probably sell more citrus trees than any other.
Seems that gardeners like harvesting their own lemons, mandarin
oranges and even, yes, kumquats.
There are many reasons to
buy a citrus tree - the fruit, its handsome evergreen form - but
certainly one bonus to this addition to your yard is the flowers,
among the sweetest smelling in all the plant kingdom. Their heady
fragrance greets you on a winter afternoon before you're even
close enough to see them. Certain citrus, like the Meyer lemon,
will bloom for nearly eight months a year. The fruit is almost
"Elephant Pharm abruptly closes its stores"
is a story by Victoria
Colliver, Chronicle Staff Writer.
"Elephant Pharm, a small
Bay Area drugstore chain known for its holistic approach to health
remedies, abruptly closed all three stores on Tuesday and announced
plans to file for bankruptcy.
Based in Berkeley with stores also in Walnut Creek and San Rafael,
Elephant Pharm employed a total of about 190 people, including
at its home office. A Los Altos location, which opened about two
years ago, closed in the fall.
The company, which offered traditional prescriptions along with
Chinese herbs, yoga supplies and other alternative products, cited
the downturn in the economy for its decision to liquidate under
Chapter 7 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code."
our susan Brook emails
Susan Brooks February Open
Hand Wrought Jewelry & Works on Paper
2547 Eighth Street, 24, Berkeley
The Sawtooth Building
2 Weekends, plus extra days!
February 7-8, Saturday & Sunday 11-5
& February 12-13-14-15-16, Thurs., Fri., Sat., Sun. &
Also open every Thursday, and the first Saturday of the month
(12-5 & by appointment)
Hope that you'll stop by
the studio for a relaxed visit and a look at my
Looking forward to seeing.
Hope this finds you doing well.
2547 Eighth Street 24a
Berkeley, California 94710
"New Deal work boosted spirits, left a
legacy in Sacramento"
is a story by Mary Lynne Vellinga at sacbee.com.
"The last time the government
came riding to the economy's rescue in a massive way, it paid
for much more than building roads, sidewalks and bridges, although
it certainly did plenty of that.
In the 1930s, an alphabet
soup of federal agencies funded an array of programs to boost
the economic well-being and psyche of the beleaguered U.S. population."
our Janine Johnson emails
Dear friends and colleagues.
I'd like to let you know
that my music is now being published, and the first set is out
and available for purchase, if you are interested. It's perhaps
a peculiar one to start with, (just a fluke, really) but I think
people will enjoy it anyway, whether they take the challenge of
playing the pieces with one hand only, or "cheat" and
use two (I highly recommend the former!) It is a set of
Études for the right hand only, written after I'd injured
my own left hand. It might be useful to anyone who has an
accident, or is simply wanting to free up their body in the lateral
motion sometimes needed for the larger leaps. Those of you
who know my style, know the pieces are basically tonal, a bit
jazzy, with a great deal of Baroque influence. One can pick
and choose, or play the entire set. They were conceived on harpsichord,
but are fine on piano or fortepiano as well. They are available
as new releases at PRB Productions: http://prbmusic.com/news.ivnu
Home page: http://prbmusic.com/
Thanks, and a belated Happy
Quartet, Hertz Hall, Berkeley, California" is a review
and more by our Allan Ulrich at ft.com.
For the eternally-on-the-cutting-edge Kronos, a programme of commissions
from international women composers might seem an almost conservative
repertory conceit, but the quartet's latest project features other
ties that bind. All four works embrace technology in arresting
ways. All four disclose autobiographical elements. And all four
extend the possibilities of the venerable quartet format.
The results sometimes reach out to envelop the listener. In her
captivating ...hold me, neighbour, in this storm...,
Serbian-born Aleksandra Vrebalov
asks the players to bow ethnic Balkan instruments, beat native
drums, pound their fiddles and chant Islamic prayers while recorded
church bells add another layer of cultural significance. A mournful
cello yields to a frenetic village dance, interrupted by a series
of repeated, boldly accented dissonances. Tense silences melt
into aching string harmonies. Vrebalov might be offering an aural
portrait of her homeland. The performance traded in the exploratory
fervour that, over three decades, has made the Kronos Quartet
nonpareil in contemporary chamber music."
Shut Down Another Gaia Arts Center Party--Shots Fired in Aftermath"
reports Riya Bhattacharjee in our Planet.
"The Berkeley Police Department shut down yet another party
at the Gaia Arts Center in downtown Berkeley Friday night, after
it attracted a large unruly crowd which blocked streets at Shattuck
Avenue and Allston Way, and led to gunshots being fired in its
aftermath, authorities said Saturday.
Lt. Rico Rolleri of the Berkeley
Police Department said that the party had started out "OK"
with 150 to 200 teenagers inside the venue, but turned uncontrollable
when at least 100 others tried to crash the event by entering
through the Gaia Building garage, climbing over a back fence and
pushing their way through the front door.
Rolleri said that police
officers patrolling the neighborhood had come across the large
crowds and contacted the organizers-whose name Rolleri was not
able to confirm- who admitted that they were unable to handle
"SWAT teams deployed in 911 fraud" is an AP story at google.com.
"Doug Bates and his
wife, Stacey, were in bed around 10 p.m., their 2-year-old daughters
asleep in a nearby room. Suddenly they were shaken awake by the
wail of police sirens and the rumble of a helicopter above their
suburban Southern California home. A criminal must be on the loose,
Doug Bates got up to lock
the doors and grabbed a knife. A beam from a flashlight hit him.
He peeked into the backyard. A swarm of police, assault rifles
drawn, ordered him out of the house. Bates emerged, frightened
and with the knife in his hand, as his wife frantically dialed
911. They were handcuffed and ordered to the ground while officers
stormed the house.
The scene of mayhem and carnage
the officers expected was nowhere to be found. Neither the Bateses
nor the officers knew that they were pawns in a dangerous game
being played 1,200 miles away by a teenager bent on terrifying
a random family of strangers."
A new sidewalk is being laid
on the northwest corner of San Pablo and Dwight--looks like some
infrastructure work as well.
"Essex Announces Fourth Quarter 2008 and
Annual Earnings Results"
is a report at cnn.com.
Recurring Funds From Operations Increased 12.3% for 2008Also during
the quarter, construction continued at Fourth Street, a 171-unit
community featuring 15,500 square feet of ground-floor retail
located on University Avenue in downtown Berkeley, California.
Currently, framing is underway and the project is on-track for
construction completion in February 2010."
"Pfizer's Wyeth Deal Perverts U.S. Bailout,
Group Says" is a
story by Alex Nussbaum at bloomberg.com.
"Pfizer Inc.'s Wyeth
acquisition perverts the U.S. government's Troubled Asset Relief
Program, relying on loans from five banks aided by the bailout
for a deal that will cut 19,500 jobs, a California advocacy group
The Greenlining Institute
asked the Justice Department and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner
to block the $64.6 billion transaction unless the companies lower
consumer drug prices, said Bob Gnaizda, an attorney for the public
policy group, in a telephone interview today. The letters, sent
Jan. 29 by the Berkeley, California, group, ask whether the deal
abuses taxpayer funds."
"A road map to healthcare reform:If we
heed lessons of the past, we can achieve universal coverage" opines Jacob S. Hacker of the Christian
"The economic stimulus
package just passed by the House contains much to jump-start our
economy in the next few years. And congressional moves to expand
Medicare eligibility and healthcare for children (through SCHIP)
are commendable. But these steps still leave largely unaddressed
the most fundamental long-term threat to economic security that
President Barack Obama vowed to tackle during the campaign: our
crumbling framework of medical financing.
Now is the time to fix it.
The window of opportunity for comprehensive action is open wider
than at any time for decades. But without quick action, it will
close, and America's businesses, workers, and families will continue
to suffer at the hands of a healthcare nonsystem that costs far
too much, leaves far too many at economic risk, and does far too
little to improve our nation's health.
The task is monumental, but
it is not insurmountable. In fact, our current economic crisis
makes it not just more pressing, but also more possible. The task
is more pressing because the problems in job-based health benefits
will only grow worse as the recession deepens: Businesses will
continue to drop coverage and shift costs onto workers, and more
and more Americans will lose their homes and their life savings
because they lack insurance or their insurance doesn't shield
them against runaway health costs.
Reform is more possible because
the hastened erosion of our system is galvanizing Americans and
their leaders, and also because we must spend aggressively now
to keep our economy afloat, reducing the roadblocks to the up-front
investments needed to get to universal insurance."
"Consume less, export more to end crisis" opines Tom Abate, Chronicle Staff Writer.
"Recession doesn't begin
to describe the crisis over which President Obama now presides.
For decades Americans have been living beyond their means, financing
consumption with credit that is no longer cheap nor easy to obtain.
We are not alone. European and Asian economies are slowing down
as a worldwide credit bubble bursts, undermining the financial
system that overheated things in the first place.
'This is not an American
problem, this is a global problem,' said economist Nariman Behravesh
with IHS Global Insight.
But it will be up to the
United States, as the global leader, to pull the planet out of
this tailspin and, to do so, experts say Americans will have to
rebuild the engines that drive our economic growth. They say we'll
have to throttle back on consumption and rev up production, borrow
less and export more. We'll also have to figure out how to supervise
global financial markets so they don't melt down again and make
sure that, when prosperity returns, it is more broadly shared."
"Clearing the air on California emissions.
The president may let the state regulate greenhouse gases - and
effectively raise gas mileage standards. Is that the smartest
way to go" asks
others say the industry is merely using scare tactics to avoid
the changes, which they say are relatively inexpensive and necessary
if the industry is to make cars people want to buy in a world
concerned with global warming.
'Detroit has been wasting
time for 20 years,' said Lee Schipper, a professor at the University
of California Berkeley's Transportation Center.
Schipper pointed to groups
like the Coalition for Vehicle Choice, an industry-funded lobby
group, that spent millions fighting higher fuel standards, when
the auto industry could have been putting that money to good use
building more efficient cars."
Schipper, working at Moe's
while in grad school, was the guy who hired me in The Day.
some moments from my Anarchist
tune "When Six Was Nine"
from Easy Rider is still a favorite
If all the hippies cut off
all their hair-I don't care!
Ain't nobody know what I'm talkin' about.
I've got my own life to live.
I'm the one that's got to die when it's time for me to die.
So let me live my life
the way I want to
me in The Day, posing, after
unpacking my Sunbeam S-7 just shipped from England
the woman in the background
is friend, Mary Francis Fry, Muffin.
Muffin's something-like Great,
Great, Grand Father is Muckraker, Frank
some revolutionary thought
in Revolutionary Times
One of the ironies of our
financial collapse is that those responsible for it are those
attempting to fix it . We have something similar in west-Berkeley.
The parallel is not exact, though it is strikingly and frighteningly
similar. Those who created the west-Berkeley Plan are, across
the board, among the core Stakeholders now trying to fix it, the
Plan now wildly out-of-sync and dysfunctional.
How dysfunctional and out-of-sync
Good law, whether parking
codes or building use, should be easy to obey. It should reflect
the needs of the citizenry. I would rest my case with the numerous
friends and neighbors here in west-Berkeley who do not now perceive
the codes derived from the Plan as functional and so do not follow
And then , . . . the west-Berkeley
Plan did not anticipate, meaningfully understand, or significantly
incorporate computerization, the major cultural change of the
Twentieth Century. Oops.
certainly to be continued
"Assemblywoman Skinner proposes sales tax
for online retailers"
is a report by Josh Richman at insidebayarea.com.
"Certain out-of-state Internet businesses making sales in
California would be subject to state sales taxes for the first
time under an East Bay lawmaker's new bill.
Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner,
D-Berkeley, said Assembly Bill 178 is about "leveling the
playing field for California's brick and mortar businesses"
and raising about $55 million per year for the embattled state
budget by requiring out-of-state companies "which maintain
a network in California to collect sales taxes on orders received
within the state.
Her bill is modeled closely
on a law enacted in New York, which defines an Internet retailer's
affiliates within the state as a 'physical presence' or 'nexus'
- the U.S. Supreme Court's standard on whether a state's sales
Whatever the merits of this
legislation, this is bad timing. And since timing is everything,
"California Heads Up Geographical Power
Switch" writes Edward
Epstein, CQ Staff.
"The Obama administration
is ushering in what might be a new golden age for California's
influence in Washington - almost a reprise of the start of the
Reagan administration almost three decades ago."
of nation's green leaders from Bay Area" reports the
Chronicle at sfgate.com.
"A Bay Area jeansmaker clothed miners in the dusty Sierra
Nevada gold fields, creating what would become a fashion staple
around the globe.
Nearly a century later, two Stanford graduates birthed the high-tech
age in a Palo Alto garage.
Today, Bay Area entrepreneurs,
scientists and policymakers hope to join the vanguard of another
revolution - one that aims to reinvent the way people use water,
power their cars, build their houses and live their lives."
I'm told Cafe Clem, in the
ActivSpace building, is closing at the end of the month.
from the Craft Chocolate Makers of America on the Closing of Scharffen
Berger's Neighborhood Plant in Berkeley, California"
is at emediawire.com.
"The Craft Chocolate Makers of America announced today that
they are saddened to hear of Hershey Co's recent decision to shutter
Scharffen Berger's neighborhood plant in Berkeley, California.
An American chocolate revolution began in that small-scale production
facility in West Berkeley.
Scharffen Berger was founded
in 1996 by Robert Steinberg, a family-practice physician, and
his former patient, winemaker John Scharffenberger. Together,
the two created a strong legacy and helped increased the popularity
of high-end American chocolate. Ultimately, Scharffen Berger fundamentally
changed the way American consumers looked at chocolate."
"Mayor of Claycord won't reveal his identity" reports Tanya Rose at contracostatimes.com.
"In the family room, Ollie the dog is chewing on a child's
toy. Then his whim shifts, and he starts chomping on the corner
of a turquoise couch - a big no-no.
His caretaker, a 32-year-old
man who calls himself the 'Mayor of Claycord,' decides that putting
a couple of end tables upside down on the cushions will keep the
dog off the couch."
I think the guy on the right
in the photo is my long-lost, half-brother, Zoot Klavich.
"High hopes accompany reopening of Nevin
Park" is a story
by Chris Treadway CC Times staff writer.
"Other than a balky microphone during the speeches, the official
reopening of Nevin Park on Saturday was everything the Iron Triangle
neighborhood and city officials wanted to see now and, they hope,
in the future.
Play areas were used right
away as children clambered over the extensive play structure standing
over a surface of recycled tires, slid down the tall slide and
waited for a turn on one of the four swings. Older youths quickly
formed pickup basketball games, while on one of the lawn areas,
children were hitting golf balls and kicking soccer balls."
"Changing how we live and eat, one fig
at a time" writes
Emma Brown, Special to The Chronicle.
"At 2 o'clock in the morning, most people in this college
town are holed up studying, headed home from a bar or curled up
Asiya Wadud, however, is reaching for the weeping branches of
a tree on the south side of the UC Berkeley campus, picking olives.
A handful of her friends are helping. There is a little beer,
a little wine; it's part merrymaking, part urban harvest.
'Don't worry about sorting
them,' she says, dropping a handful into a paper bag. An alarming
fraction of the fruits are mottled and a little wormy-looking.
'We'll do that tomorrow.'
Wadud, a bartender at Alice
Waters' Chez Panisse, has become obsessed with saving city-grown
fruit from being wasted, which is why she heads out in the darkness,
stripping smallish green orbs from the branches of this unassuming
tree rooted in a patch of grass between the street and a concrete
She's also part of a growing
movement of super-local eaters and activists interested in food
not from the nearest farm, but from down the block. When she moved
to south Berkeley four years ago from Ohio, she was struck by
California's ubiquitous fruit and by the way people let it rot,
as if backyard apples and figs were something unremarkable."
"Energy Secretary: Climate change could
wipe out Calif. farming"
by Eoin O'Carroll is in the Christian Science Monitor.
"Steven Chu testifies
at his January 13 Senate confirmation hearing to become US Energy
Energy Secretary Steven Chu warned that, if climate change continues
unabated, California's agriculture could vanish by the end of
Speaking with the Los Angeles
Times, Mr. Chu, a Nobel Prize-winning physicist who ran the Lawrence
Berkeley National Laboratory before joining the Obama administration,
said that warming temperatures could eliminate up to 90 percent
of the Sierra snowpack, which provides water to many of the state's
'I don't think the American
public has gripped in its gut what could happen,' he told the
newspaper. 'We're looking at a scenario where there's no more
agriculture in California.' "
"The 10 Healthiest Foods You've Never Tried:If
these nutrition powerhouses are not on your plate, it's time to
taste them" is a
story by Cari Nierenberg at abcnews.go.com.
"Many Americans have an adventurous spirit, but perhaps not
always when it comes to food.
People tend to eat what they know how to prepare, and they may
be reluctant to invest in a new food if they're not sure if it
tastes good, said Joanne Ikeda, a nutritionist emeritus at the
University of California at Berkeley."
"Oakland port truck pollution burdens public
health, study says"
reports Denis Cuff, Contra Costa Times.
"Air pollution from diesel trucks visiting the Port of Oakland
places an economic burden on the Bay Area by increasing the risk
of people getting sick; missing work, school and other activities;
and even dying prematurely, according to a report commissioned
by a coalition of labor and environmental groups."
"UC Berkeley rehires retired police chief
again" is a story
by Matt Krupnick at mercurynews.com.
"UC Berkeley has rehired its retired police chief for six
more months, less than a year after state lawmakers criticized
the school for bypassing guidelines to retain her."
"Look West, Obama" writes Jeff Goodell in The Rolling Stone.
"If the president wants
an energy policy that creates jobs while protecting the environment,
one state holds the answer: California."
friend Nick Despotopoulos
MarshallPhoto.com goes live!
Jim Marshall is pleased to
introduce his new state-of-the-art website, www.marshallphoto.com.
Working extensively over the past seven months with the team at
Groovy Collectibles LLC, Jim's goal was to build a high quality
online home for the sale of his prints-both well known and not-as
well as memorabilia and other related items.
At MarshallPhoto.com, you'll find 160 fine art images for sale.
The collection includes a superb array of Jim's beautifully printed
Silver Gelatin black & white images (think Jimi at Monterey
Pop, or Cash flipping the bird); a stunning selection of black
and white limited-edition Platinum prints (like Monk at his kitchen
piano), and highly prized limited-edition Dye Transfer color prints
(such as The Who rocking SF Civic Auditorium).
MarshallPhoto.com also offers
a range of collectibles, ranging from one-of-a-kind signed magazines
from Jim's personal collection (how about Rolling Stone issues
68 & 69!) to a variety of other music-related ephemera. In
addition, signed copies of Jim's in-print books are for sale.
And be sure to check out
the information on Jim's life and career, and details on the prints
and printmaking process in the About Jim section.
"News Corp. loses $6.4 billion in 2Q"
is a story by Ryan Nakashima
"News Corp., the global media giant controlled by Rupert
Murdoch, said Thursday it lost $6.4 billion in its most recent
quarter because of a massive write-down in the value of its assets.
The New York-based company, which owns The Wall Street Journal
and the Fox broadcast network, also forecast a 30 percent drop
in operating profits for the fiscal year to June from a year ago,
when it earned $5.13 billion.
News Corp. shares rose 5 cents to $7.50 in after-hours trading."
"Announcing a New Journal: California Journal
of Politics and Policy"
is a press release at newsblaze.com.
"California has long
been a bellwether and testing ground for emerging trends in policy
and political developments, and its politics reverberate around
the world. The Berkeley Electronic Press and the Institute of
Governmental Studies at the University of California, Berkeley,
are pleased to announce the launch of California Journal of Politics
and Policy, the first academic journal devoted to this unique
"More Bad News for East Bay, Los Angeles
Richard Brenneman in our Planet.
"The downward spiral
of West Coast newspapers continues, with most East Bay reporters
now scrambling to figure out just when to take an unpaid week
Workers at all the newspapers
in Dean Singleton's Bay Area News Group-East Bay (BANG-EB) will
be taking the unpaid leave over the next two months."
"Resale shops are latest casualty of bad
Anne d'Innocencio, AP Retail Writer.
"The dust collecting on gently worn Prada shoes and designer
overcoats is a sign of the times at the nation's secondhand shops."
And yet "Bugatti
found in Britain gets big bucks at auction" is a story
"A car abandoned in a garage in Britain for half a century
sold at an auction in Paris for euro3.4 million (about $4.4 million)
from my log
SERIOUS irritant in front of warehouse and warehouse front, dry
eyes, dry mouth, cough, slight "chlorine" like odor,
guest for afternoon has headache, goes outside for a walk for
2/9/09--off-and-on all day
beginning at 6:00AM, VERY SERIOUS irritant in warehouse front,
burning eyes, burning mouth, hacking cough, short breath, slight
"chlorine" like odor, over-rides four HEPA filters,
Bay Area home prices from sfgate.com
Bay Area foreclosures from sfgate.com
Our City Council update is
Our Planning Commision update
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
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
Kimar finds Costco routinely
has the lowest price.
Ramblers' motorcycle club member, Cliff Miller emails a very
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.
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
Police reports at insidebay area.com are here.
PD Site with crime statistics and more is here.
Crime Log for 94710 is
This site is NOT affiliated
with Berkeley PD.
Take time to report
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.
Our new Area
Coordinator is Officer Karen Buckheit, Berkeley PD - 981-5774
City Mgr Off - 981-2491 firstname.lastname@example.org
aid to Darryl Moore - 981-7120 email@example.com
City Councilman firstname.lastname@example.org
Scrambled Eggs & Lox, here
Stories about Berkeley and stories about recorded-music
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