late July evening

over Potter Creek



about the Wednesday night Planning Commission meeting

The planning commission voted, 5 to 1, to recommend that the council approve the conversion, of a relatively small portion of the back of the building that office depot will occupy, from MULI to CW.  The "net loss of MULI" is only approximately 2,700 square feet because Foothill Partners is adding ±6,000 square feet of MULI in the building on 9th.  The converted space has historically been used to support retail activity.   

One commissioner felt that the city should somehow [monetarily?] benefit from any "upzoning".  That'll be discussed later as the planning department continues to work on the rezoning project.    
Very few folks were in attendance.  Two speakers, Jena Olson, representing WEBAIC, and Doug Wiele of Foothill Partners/Pratt.
Rick is appartenly on vacation.  

The "1" no vote was Gene Poachman, who said he wasn't against this particular conversion per se, but was unhappy with how planning staff worded their recommendation. 

This report brought to you by Scoop Smithster. 



It'd be great if Clif Bar returned to Berkeley.



"Skipper of Berkeley-Berthed Boat Faces Charges in Coast Guard Row"

"The skipper of sailboat berthed in Berkeley, David McCorm'ck, was ordered today, Wednesday, to be arraigned Aug. 8 on charges of sending a false distress call, failing to 'heave to" and assaulting a Coast Guard officer who boarded his boat."





"Disability Rights Advocates One Year Fellowship-Opportunity"

"Disability Rights Advocates (DRA) has an immediate opening for an exceptional candidate who is passionate about civil rights and disability law, for a one year fellowship focused on high impact class action litigation.  Attorneys who have recently concluded judicial clerkships, other legal fellowships, or recent law school graduates are encouraged to apply.  The fellowship position is in DRA's Berkeley, California office.  Travel to Los Angeles for case related activities in connection with this fellowship is anticipated.  Candidates should be licensed to practice law in California or should be sitting for the California Bar Exam in July 2013."



"Nearly Deaf Accomplished U.C. Berkeley and Stanford Grad Shares Her Truth in Second Stimulating Book of Poetry 'Silence is Not Always Golden: A Poetic Revolution"

"Born with a hearing impairment, author Joy Elan is a vibrant and outgoing single mom who was born in Berkeley, CA to a mother who was herself single. The Stanford University M.A.Ed. graduate shares an intimate, hard-hitting, eye-opening view of her unique life's experiences in uncompromising style in her new book of poetry titled 'Silence is Not Always Golden: A Poetic Revolution.' " 











"Web's biggest patent troll is finally vanquished:Eolas' patents are dead on appeal"

"Key patents at the centre of the world wide wibble are now safe from patent troll Eolas in what would have been the largest trademark payouts in history.
The Eolas patents were so threatening to the web that Sir Tim Berners-Lee appeared in court to take on the trolls in February 2012."





















"4 in 5 in US face near-poverty, no work" Hope Yen, AP at

distributing commodities

in the Great Depression

"Four out of 5 U.S. adults struggle with joblessness, near-poverty or reliance on welfare for at least parts of their lives, a sign of deteriorating economic security and an elusive American dream.

Survey data exclusive to The Associated Press points to an increasingly globalized U.S. economy, the widening gap between rich and poor, and the loss of good-paying manufacturing jobs as reasons for the trend."


Some old fashioned-manufacturers left west-Berkeley for very good reasons-- obsolete production for instance, the foundry a good example.











readership this week

Monday 7,676 hits; Tuesday 6,642 hits; Wednesday 6,324 hits; Thursday 7,278 hits.

Scrambled Eggs and Lox, the penndorf report et al
a Morning View from Potter Creek



"The Bay Area's beer garden trend" by Jessica Yadegaran,

"At Brotzeit, a new beer garden on Oakland's Embarcadero, the scent of sizzling, fennel-flecked bratwurst wafts across the waterfront as I bite into puffy spaetzle and wipe the Doppelbock from my lips. Ahh, it's good to be civilized.

Up until now, American beer consumption was far from that: frat boys crushing cans on their foreheads, dizzy from keg stands of flavorless macrobrew. But the craft brewery movement that began in the 1990s slowly changed that. Light pilsners. Dark stouts. Sour lambics. Suddenly, beer was like food, made in small batches using fresh ingredients. Practically every town launched an Oktoberfest, and, once a year, you could clink steins with pride.

In the latest phase of this craft beer revolution, beer gardens began popping up across the country, offering the communal tables, appropriate glassware and German eats of their Bavarian brethren. The trend is particularly hot in Northern California, where craft beer is king and San Francisco's Zeitgeist and The Tourist Club, a beer hall nestled in the woods of Mill Valley's Mount Tamalpais, have become cultural landmarks. "



"Dubai resident talks about her money experiences as a student in US: Offers tips on spending habits when you are attending university far from home" Gaurav Ghosem,

"Madhu Suresh, who is going into third year from this fall at the University of California, Berkeley, talks about her spending habits in the university town as an undergrad. Supported by her parents, she spends about $44,000 (Dh161,480) a year in tuition and living and that's only for eight months of the year. Suresh is double majoring in public policy and psychology. This summer is interning at American Red Cross and it's an unpaid internship.

How has your experience been money wise in the first two years of college, which is one of the top colleges in the United States and an expensive one?"


"Irish students on work visas gravitate to Berkeley for the summer"

Madeleine Pauker ar

"Robert Milling, who studied at Trinity College in Dublin, came to Berkeley based on the popularity among Irish students."





"Professionals Often Attribute Applicants' Success To Personal Traits, Not Circumstance"

"Attribution errors in candidates' performance seen in college, job applications.

Professionals evaluating graduate school or job applicants frequently attribute applicants' credentials to their personal qualities rather than their circumstances, according to research published July 24 in the open access journal PLOS ONE by Samuel Swift from the University of California, Berkeley and colleagues from other institutions."





"Bay Area a fencing incubator that's 'exploding' " by Jeremy Thomas,

"Credit the Olympics, or maybe pirate Capt. Jack Sparrow. Whatever the reason, there is new interest in fencing in America, especially in the Bay Area, which is fast becoming a hot spot for young talent.

Nationwide, the U.S. Fencing Association has seen a 62 percent jump in members since 2010-11. The boost is reflected locally, where a growing number of clubs are ratcheting up the competition.

Fencing coach Stephen Murray says he sees the interest growing in younger students at his club, Las Positas Fencing Center in Livermore.
On a recent evening, he was working with a dozen members -- teens to retirees -- each with their weapons drawn.

Eyeing their footwork, he runs them through drills. They lunge and attack, parry and retreat, training their muscle memory in the element of surprise.
Warmed up, they don sparring gear. The fencers salute and the buzzer sounds. There is a shuffle of feet, a flash of hands, and the air fills with the clang of metal hitting metal.

In seconds, the victors have dispatched their partners with five 'touches' of the sword.

It's a fast-moving sport for quick thinkers, says Murray, who calls it 'chess with swords at 80 miles per hour.' "


My memory is that a Potter Creek resident was a member of the Brandeis fencing team.





"Berkeley farm hosts Jewish-Hindu wedding"

"The bride emerged from a yurt, accompanied by her father. The groom and his mother came out of a greenhouse.
The four walked to a circular area delineated by a red string. In the center stood a chuppah; beneath the wedding canopy, a copper tin with a small fire.
Micha'el and Aumatma BedarShah were married June 30 at Urban Adamah, a small Jewish educational farm in Berkeley, Calif. The couple chose the farm for their interfaith wedding, believing, as Micha'el put it, that 'we understand our traditions so much more clearly when we directly experience the wonder of nature.'

Their fathers each carried a candle to the circular area 'so they could both simultaneously light our candles and we could accept both of their heritages,' Micha'el says.

Micha'el, 35, and Aumatma, 32 - whose new surname is a merger of his Jewish last name first followed by her Hindu one - worked with officiant Rabbi Gabriel Cousens, who runs the Tree of Life Rejuvenation Center in Patagonia, Ariz., to plan what the rabbi calls a modern Essene ceremony. The Essenses were a Second Temple period Jewish sect, who some scholars believe wrote what came to be known as the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Some aspects of the BedarShahs' wedding were drawn from the Temple period, with the bride and groom washing each other's feet and hands, as well as anointing one another with a few drops of oil 'to purify each other,' Micha'el said. Frankincense and myrrh incense, used in Temple rituals, burned during the ceremony.

In planning their rituals, the couple were surprised to realize how many elements turned out to be similar to both Judaism and Hinduism."




"Bay Area fashion designer Stella Carakasi to open new Berkeley store" Heather Somerville,

"Local women's clothing designer Stella Carakasi will open a new store at 1370 10th Street, next to the Stella Carakasi Design House.
The Stella Studio will showcase the latest Stella Carakasi collection, host trunk shows and sample sales, and serve as a gathering space for local community events. The grand opening is July 31, 4-6 p.m."





"Berkeley battles parking problem with free bus passes" Doug Oakley, Oakland Tribune.

"Hoping to tackle its notoriously difficult parking problem and cut down on greenhouse gases at the same time, the city is offering 1,000 free AC Transit passes, increasing downtown street parking rates and making more car share services available.

The program, called goBerkeley started Thursday, and Mayor Tom Bates claimed it is the most comprehensive of its kind in the United States. "


For a while, a Potter Creek cafe offered free coffee on Tuesdays. "Not much of a business plan" remarked a veteran restaurant owner.















"Inexpensive technology could bring high-end solar to the masses"

"Engineers at the University of California, Berkeley, have developed an inexpensive new way to grow thin films of a material prized in the semiconductor and photovoltaic industries, an achievement that could bring high-end solar cells within reach of consumer pocketbooks."




"Hazardous Levels of Indoor Pollutants Found in the Kitchen"

"Scientist Brett Singer is a vegetarian. So why has he been frying up hamburgers? Singer and his team of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) indoor air researchers have found hazardous levels of nitrogen dioxide and carbon monoxide in a surprisingly large portion of California home kitchens. What's more, their studies have shown that the most common device for mitigating this indoor air problem-range hoods-vary widely in performance."







"Berkeley: Man and woman robbed at gunpoint by four suspects"

Four male suspects robbed a man and a woman at gunpoint near the University of California at Berkeley campus early Saturday morning, police said.
At about 2:50 a.m., a man and a woman, both 21 years of age, were walking near the intersection of University and Shattuck avenues when four male suspects approached them. 





















the MGM lion




"Raising minimum wage is obvious choice for Bay Area:Berkeley City Council to consider increasing minimum wage" Katie Holmes at

"Four years ago this week, we saw the federal minimum wage rise to a meager $7.25 an hour. The state minimum wage has been stuck at $8.00 for five years. For a full-time worker, this amounts to just $16,640 - far below the national poverty level for a family of four ($23,550) and much less a living wage in the Bay Area.
Over the past three years, our Raise the Wage movement has talked with thousands of Bay Area voters about this issue. When asked whether they support an increase in their city's minimum wage to at least $10 an hour, people overwhelmingly say 'Yes!' " 





"City ordinance aims to limit development of private dorm-style housing" by Chase Schweitzer and Simon Greenhill at

"Berkeley City Council is looking to crack down on the development of 'mini-dorms' - privately owned houses that are converted into dorm-style housing for students - by enacting a new ordinance that would limit their development.

At its meeting on July 16, the City Council voted in favor of a zoning amendment that limits bedroom additions in Berkeley homes, limiting conversions to mini-dorms.
Mini-dorms often aim to maximize bedroom space in private homes by converting shared living areas like living rooms, attics, basements and backyards into bedrooms.

These bedrooms are rented out to individuals, reducing the cost of what would otherwise be a group lease.

But often, these additions don't include new bathrooms, kitchens and plumbing - amenities needed to provide adequate living standards for an increase in residents. Nearby residents allege that neighborhoods also have difficulties, as mini-dorm residents produce excessive waste and noise and take up limited street parking."











"UC Berkeley student, former inmate, speaks out about solitary confinement" Anthony Bongco at

"During the years most young adults spend completing college, UC Berkeley student Steven Czifra was serving a four-year sentence in solitary confinement."








"Using the Cloud in Your Business:Clearing the Skies on Common Cloud Confusion" at

"A recent study by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory found that transitioning common software used by businesses to the cloud would save enough energy to power the city of Los Angeles. The study examined the impact of moving customer relationship management, email, and productivity software (spreadsheets and word processing, for example).

Small businesses certainly stand to benefit from a cost perspective by switching to the cloud, yet getting started with the cloud often seems confusing. Here are some basic tips and overviews to clear the skies for you a bit . . . "




Matthew Stromberg, the architect writes

Originally the home of the Oliver Screw Company, the renovation at 1819 5th Street will soon be occupied by "5th Street Machine Arts" - a metal arts and material sciences workshop that provides engineering and manufacturing support to the science and Industry communities of the Bay Area.  The renovation pays tribute to the light industrial fabric of the neighborhood by retaining and seismically retrofitting the original brick masonry and steel truss structure and also significantly increases the building's energy efficiency.  A new sawtooth roofline will support a 30 kW solar array while providing ideal northern orientation for daylight to stream into the reinvigorated shop space below.  A sculpture gallery and two new residences will add to the mixed-use character of the neighborhood.














"'JFK' film resurrects second-shooter assassination theory" at

"The approaching 50th anniversary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy has prompted a small avalanche of documentaries and docu-dramas about the slain president.

Predictably, it will also prompt a lot of weird TV designed to appeal to thousands of conspiracy nuts who got tired of insisting Barack Obama was born in Indonesia and now get to turn their attention back to their favorite subject: Who killed John F. Kennedy. . . .

There are thoughtful TV shows planned, such as the National Geographic Channel's 'Killing Kennedy,' a two-hour film airing in November and starring Rob Lowe as JFK, Ginnifer Goodwin as Jacqueline Kennedy, Will Rothaar as Lee Harvey Oswald and Michelle Trachtenberg as Marina Oswald.  PBS has a new two-part 'American Experience' documentary, 'JFK,' airing Nov. 11 and 12, the Smithsonian Channel airs 'The Day Kennedy Died' on Nov. 17. And there will be many other films to come between now and Nov. 22."


Want to find out who killed JFK? This is America, follow the money. Who "profited" from his assassination?







And, . . . not from the City of Berkeley, California but from Berkeley County, West Vrginia, "Apple Harvest Sheetz robbed at gunpoint" at
"A man wearing a ghillie suit and carrying a shotgun held up the Sheetz on Apple Harvest Drive early Monday morning, according to police. The suspect is still at-large.
The Berkeley County Sheriff's Department said a 6-foot-2 white male with blue eyes and a green mask came in dressed in heavy-foliage camouflage robbed the store at gunpoint shortly before 5 a.m. The suspect demanded money from the cashier, then fled the area with an undisclosed amount of cash."










7/25/13-3:40 AM---serious irritant in warehouse front, dry dirty burning air, mucus membrane irritation, burning eyes, mouth, wear respirator.

7/26/13--10:10 PM--similar.

7/27/13--6:57 AM--serious irritant in warehouse front and IMMEDIATELY in front of warehouse, dry dirty burning air, hot metal/plastic odor, mucus membrane irritation, burning eyes, mouth, wear respirator. Similar, off-and-on all day. Off-and-on--24/7--similar.

7/28/13--2:53 PM==irritant in warehouse front, dry dirty air, mucus membrane irritation. 4:46 PM--similar. 4:58 PM--similar, SERIOUS. 5:27--PM--similar, SERIOUS light head. 9:13 PM--similar.

7/29/13--8:11 AM--irritant in warehouse front, dry dirty air, mucus membrane irritation, hacking cough, wear respirator. 12:31 PM--similar, Marsh headache. 2:15 PM--similar, hacking cough. Marsha headache, nausea. 3:04 PM--similar, SERIOUS hackiing cough, wear respirator, Marsha,similar. 3:21 PM--"hot metal/hot plastic odor" in warehouse front, Marsha headache, nausea. 9:07 PM--irritant in warehouse front, dry dirty air, mucus membrane irritation, hacking cough, wear respirator.Warehouse becoming uninhabitable.

7/30/13--~7:30 AM--"hot metal/hot plastic odor" in warehouse front, Marsha headache, nausea. 9:14 AM--similar.








eternally useful links


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

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.



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.



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

Kimar finds Costco routinely has the lowest price.



Bay Area home prices from

Bay Area foreclosures from


Our City Council update is here.

Our Planning Commision update is here




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



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, Berkeley PD - 981-5774.

Ryan Lau, aid to Darryl Moore - 981-7120

Darryl Moore, City Councilman

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


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