Sunday, December 28, 2014

Resolutions.. 2015

It's the closing of the year & time to make a new list of stuff that I probably won't accomplish.. but that's the point right?? We try to do better.. sometimes we do... sometimes it's just wishful thinking.

Some previous list items that are #done or almost there:

01. READING. This year I did fantastic with the 'reading at least ..2 books a month' challenge.. I managed 53 (& counting!) I think I'll stick with that same challenge for 2015 since I also know I don't read as many books when school is in session. ;)

just a few books!
a few of the books I plan to read or re-read or currently reading for this next year..

02. "Getting Home more." We are home. We are in Berkeley. so #happycamper right?? ;) SO..
2b: getting back to SoCal to see friends now & again would be good!

03. Walking/Biking/wii fit.. I did better since 2011.. I'm walking every day! I get my 10k+ steps in almost every day.. and I joined the Y a couple months ago & am hitting the pool once in a blue moon.. the next step is to make an appt. with the trainer so I can use the equipment (the rowing machine especially!!) properly!

Yay! My bike got me here!
3b. Bike. When the weather gets better.. Back on the bike! Be brave! Hit those Berkeley streets & hills!

04. Join some of the Berkeley Path Wanderers walks.. There's a couple coming up on the 1st and the 10th.. The latter will be a Little Free Libraries walk.. so you know that's right up my alley! ;)

05. Passport.. I have a new copy of my birth certificate, so. um.. yeah. Get that thing! I wants to go on a cruise or run off to Canada & see friends one day. ;)

06. Back on Program.. I'm on, I'm off. I got down to about 172 (from 190+ lbs in Feb.) and back up to about 180 this holiday.. so I'll start tracking my food again after the new year.. My ultimate goal is 140 with a plateau of 150.. ;)


07. Each day is a new day. I am going to try & treat each day as a new opportunity to try things again.. Not let people or things get me down for too long.. If someone dissapoints me, I don't want to let it pile up.. Maybe they were having a bad day & took it out on me? Maybe it was me that did something wrong, but no one told me. Who knows? ..I got to not let that tear me down or hurt me. It's a bad habit I have, and it piles up or re-visits me at the wrong times.

08. Along that line.. I can't say I'm going to be Pollyanna.. but I do realize no one loves you when you're down & out. With that in mind.. I'm going to try & not verbalize my misery so much. Not only does no one give a rats, it makes me look like I can't handle my junk & I'm a whiner. I can totally handle it but I'm definitely one of those people that verbalize more than I should.. Honestly, I get over stuff pretty easily.. So if something bugs me one minute or day, I might be over it an hour or a day later. Maybe. ;) So yeah whining about something that I end up letting go of within minutes makes me look pathetic.

09. Clear the clutter. We downsized but didn't downsize our stuff so much. So getting organized is probably the biggest thing that's going to have to happen this next year.. I know it's not all on me.. but I need to be the instigator! ;)

10. Continue to be proactive in learning about & involved in Berkeley & California.. whether it's through my volunteer activities, attending Bancroft Roundtable events, book festivals, readings, other historical society (California, OMCA, BAHA, Berkeley) events.. Keep learning and growing.. and keep reading and looking for more opportunities to gather knowledge.

The Neverminds:

Berkeley City College

10. Creative Writing class. I've returned to school.. and at some point I'll be taking English 5: Critical Thinking in Reading & Writing course.. so.. yeah. Plus the history classes I'm taking require papers so writing is something I'm doing as part of the coursework. My thought is that I want to key in on how I'm writing & encourage my instructors to hopefully give me feedback whenever possible, (so many of these folks have heavy loads & I don't expect them to have time to really talk to me, let alone give me tips or constructive criticism.. but I can ask right??)

11. No longer looking for bio siblings. People who were looking found who they were looking for. I do want to learn about Native American orphanages of the early half of the 20th Century and how they worked and why they even exisited. Not in a rush.

I'm actually in a pretty happy place in my life. When I look through my list I don't see anything that jumps out at me as difficult or not doable. I think of other things I'd like to do.. like getting out in the parks again to continue my photo tour of Berkeley City parks, or returning to the hills to walk.. these are things I just need to allocate time for. They aren't challenges so much as things I enjoy that I've been putting on the back burner. My main focus recently has been school and the volunteering.. Finding balance between the things I need to do and what I want to do (often these are the same things!) could be proabably be a 12?

Happy New Year!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Foggy Morning off Wheeler

Unseasonably lovely weather to be had Monday.. Cool, but not cold.. the sun wanting to burn through.. The fog creating a blanket obscuring the sun in South Berkeley..

Foggy morning on Wheeler #beautifulberkeley @karlthefog
Ashby near Wheeler... beautiful Berkeley.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

The Perfect Meal

This past week has had many a chilly day.. and the evening when the warmth of the sun has gone away, there's nothing I want more than the most perfect dinner.. Matzo Ball Soup from Saul's..

The plus about getting the bowl is there's two ginormous matzo balls.. and the chicken broth.. it's the perfect balance. Sure a cup would have been smarter, but look at this soup! (and as someone who is not a fan of soup, I love love love the matzo ball soup at Saul's!)

single latke from Saul's Deli
single latke.. perfect finish.. don't need dessert! ;)

I was so stuffed.. and warm on the inside.. it made the walk home to South Berkeley comforting and happy. The perfect meal.. or at least one perfect meal.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Seasons of Berkeley

Walking to the library Wednesday Morning.. the fog was misting over the hills. On some of the side streets off Shattuck, the leaves were coloring the neighborhood south of campus..

Happy Wednesday!#beautifulberkeley #leaves #fog #love
Beautiful Berkeley..

Saturday, December 06, 2014


Today was the holiday book sale at Heyday Books.. They were offering 25% off books online as well at their HQ on University. Added bonus was a table with selected titles at 75%.. Of course I had to go! I was hoping to pick up a couple books for my 'keeper' shelf..

today's book purchases..

A couple I've previously read & loved.. and a couple are newly published work I'm looking forward to reading for the first time. =)

We're rather limited on bookspace these days, so I have to be careful about what books I invest in. Heyday has so many fantastic titles though, it was difficult to narrow down my selections! I have several of their books already and I've enjoyed every one. I think I would have gladly picked up another half dozen titles if I thought the spouse wouldn't be annoyed with me for going crazy at the sale. ;) We have a pretty good California travel/history shelf but I'm always looking for titles I can adopt and keep forever.. things that will be of pleasure and a useful resource as time goes on. I think I managed to do that, and I picked up a couple titles to be inspired by perhaps. All books are fun (the pleasure & knowledge one acquires from the process of words).. even moving, inspiring and intense books. I already have a large selection of books I would like to finish reading (re-start at this point) and now I have several to add to the list..

As an aside, I'm so grateful for publishers like Heyday.. While I'm persuing lower level studies at the City College, I still have access to really great writers of California history and cultural studies whom I can read at my leisure (even while I wait to take the type of classes I really want to take.)

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

A Post about Posting Posts

With the Fall Semester winding down (or cranking up if you think about all the stuff that has to happen in the next week before the winter holidays begin) I've been very distracted from writing anything that doesn't involve school. I have so many things I'd like to post or write about and have yet to really find the time to clear my head and get it down.. Maybe after next Tuesday.. It's not as if I've not been anywhere lately..

Places I've eaten & would love to post about:

-Elevation 66 (Albany)
-Sconehenge (Berkeley)
-HandleBar (Berkeley)
-Imm Thai Street Food (Berkeley)
-Saul's Deli (Berkeley) (although I go here pretty often.. It would have to be a new angle besides food)
-Triple Rock Thanksgiving (Berkeley)

Other ideas..

- Thanksgiving in general.. although now that I think about it.. meh.
- a random piece about coffee makers and the style and need of coffee..
- something about how freaking awesome maps are & why people might love them so much.
- National Adoption Month/ Day came & went.. I was thinking about writing something semi-coherent about that. oh well.
- something about social media & its varied uses. although..
- books.. books I'm reading or have read.. or things that are of interest to me.
- Heyday is having a sale on the 6th.. that would be something fun to post about. I guess we'll see.
- Bicycling around Berkeley.. if I ever get back to it.
- My "Y" experience maybe.
- Death Indexing.. not so much the indexing but some of the fun things I've come across in the Berkeley Daily Gazette while looking for death notices & obituaries.
- Hiking up into the hills on a nice day.. or heading to a nearby park. I miss my favorite tree. (ok it's not mine but it's a pleasant place to read and feel the breeze and the earth & see the sky for a bit) There's still other Berkeley Parks I've yet to photograph.
- Take a bus up to Tilden Park to spend an afternoon walking around.. I'm usually too worn out by the time I get up to Euclid & the Rose Garden to want to walk any further than back down to Vine Street Peet's (lazy, I know!)

They all seem like interesting topics when I think of them in the middle of the night.

When I can't sleep I make lists of things I should have done or need to do, things I wish I'd said to people, or not; things I want to accomplish the next day. Somewhere in there, blogging ideas pop up and I think "yeah that might be intresting" but then I fall asleep and forget about. At least I fall asleep. If I can't, I start reading.. ;)

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving

It's our first Thanksgiving owning our own place, and it's Throw-back Thursday! Not so much a Berkeley post.. Then again I doubt the 2 or 3 people that show up reading this really care, and hey! It's been a month since my last post! (that's another post tho..)

I give you my first Thanksgiving:

(photo credit J. Hesselink)

Here we are in our Norman Rockwell 1973 splendor.. My brother Bob is wearing his headgear at the table.. I'm sitting next to him, then my mom.. Despite it being our original home in Indiana, it's Gramma at the head of the table taking charge of "Grace" and my dad carving the turkey from the opoosite end.. My Aunt Violet sits to her left of Gramma and there's my brother Craig.. I'm pretty sure my Uncle Earl was there (Violet's husband) but not in the shot. My dad took this with one of those neat Poloroids where you had a time dial and then could peel the photo off it's chemical backing when the buzzer went off..

Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Hallowe'en!

All decorated
*not our house..

One of the more spirited homes in South Berkeley all decked out for Halloween!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

night light

Walking Home #beautifulberkeley #localbrew #neon #holidaylights
walking home tonight passing Triple Rock.. Shattuck Avenue has lovely holiday lights (and in some cases, decorations) wrapping all the trees on either side of Shattuck Avenue..

Monday, October 13, 2014

It's too early!

Out of milk, so headed to Berkeley Bowl to get a little something to tie over til the weekend.. and what do I spot front and center with the Berkeley Farms milk???
eggnog!!?? It's not even Hallowe'en yet!! *argh!!*

Though I do love the stuff.. it's just TOO EARLY!!!

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

John Brothers Piano Company

Just when I need cheering up! #JohnBrosPianoCo #Music
John Brothers Piano Company performing in Downtown Berkeley Tues. evening of 30 Sept.

I was having a not so very good day and feeling rather down, (you ever have a day when something doesn't feel just right but you can't put your finger on it?) The fact I was feeling like this, then had a math class (which always causes me a little stress) my Tuesday afternoon wasn't looking/feeling too good.. I equated it to "general happiness with a frosted coating of crap.."

But then I got out of math class yesterday evening.. One of my favorite local bands was performing outside the entrance to the Berkeley BART station; I was just in time to catch the last performance of the last set.

I hope they cheer you up too.. even if you don't need cheering up. ;) Have a great midweek!

Friday, September 26, 2014



Townie is a small plates/ bar that recently opened on University at Grant.. I imagine it would be a great place to meetup with friends or a casual date place.. Beers are crafty locals and they have a wine and cocktail menu.. but I didn't partake..

We were looking for something naughty around the dinner hour Thursday evening & Townie was open.. perfect!

Happy Hour..

We ordered 3 small plates:

Potato Croquettes.. meh. They weren't bad.. but not really commentable.

Garlic Cheese Toast?? Yes please!!

and our absolute favorite:

Pork Belly Banh Mi.. this is like a half of a half of sandwich.. amazingly good, but after 3 bites it's gone. You'll be sad. Order two, (or better yet, eat dinner before coming here.)

with iced tea & cider our bill came to a bit under $40..
our bill.. ;)

We'll definitely be back.. I love the open, airy feel of the place and the maps decorating the walls.. There's other small plates on the menu we'd like to try and we'd definitely order the Pork Belly Banh Mi again..

Soul Happy


What makes the soul happy? What makes you happy? Beyond the superficial day to day things?? What goes so deep you feel like your whole self could fall apart into a million pieces?

What is that one constant that pulls us.. pulls you.. through your life.. or the things gets you beyond what you can't bear?

I find myself asking myself this more often the last couple years.. not because I am a miserable person that should die already and spare the world my suffering.. but because I want to be of worth and value to myself and to others. To find meaning where, honestly, there really isn't any when you scrutinize it up close.

For me, my constant has been books.. Specifically, the written word. Whether science or poetry, fiction or fact.. Books have been a true companion through life.. not necessarily a disappointment.. The very first thing I ever wanted to be "when I grow up" was a writer.. A writer is god-like in the ability to create words, worlds, emotions.. to educate, enlighten, empower.. Imagine other things that you have been inspired to feeling or action after reading something? Have you ever really stopped to consider the power that you or someone has by their writing?? That's pretty freaking awesome, is it not?

There are many things I've contemplated wanting to "become" from the earliest age.. a fireman (but 'girls' couldn't be firemen in the early 70s could they? according to my parents), archaeologist... (specifically an "Egyptologist") I wanted to write though since I read my first book.. to tell stories or write poetry.. intermittantly through the years, I had wanted to be a librarian.. (I fell in love with the library at 5.. all those books! For ME!) but there's always the writing.. or did I want to be an astronomer? An astronomer-archaeologist? No! A writer.. or historian, a writer.. and oceanographer.. an activist for Greenpeace and a poet or writer.. A historian, educator (specifically Military History), writer... poet, writer-poet, artist, photographer (oh but my vision is crap.. so..) back to the writing, or perhaps a Civil War Historian? Nevermind.. a Bookstore owner! and a writer.. Perhaps a poet and entrepreneur..(aka Bookstore owner.) For brief moments off & on I wanted to become a layout artist, a book editor, a travel writer.. but regardless there's that constant. The word.

And yes, I still want to study history.... but I've had serious contemplations of "what do you do with a BA in English" moments.. and after well-over 20 years it's been, I've returned to school.. mid-40s looking to learn. Who gets a degree at my age?? Who interns at my age? Why don't I have my act together better?? Why don't I settle? Why haven't I found my niche, my joy.. my center? My permanent peace? Is it possible? Maybe.

It takes time, experimentation, and patience.. which I lack in spades. Why aren't I happier?? Why can't I just be in the moment and enjoy things more? Why can't I be happy with myself? Why can't I just enjoy being happy without feeling guilty for it or that it's not mine to have or without worrying I'm stealing it from someone more deserving? I like being happy.. Being happy is fun. I like to do fun things, I like learning fun things.. I want to put fun things into practice.. What is fun? ..what is fun?? Someone I met once asked me that.. and while I don't know him or his motivations, (and honestly I can't remember what I answered back) History is fun. Perhaps I said that.. *shrug* who knows?

I know I'm new to this.. and I'm not so good at it.. but I do know Being 'soul happy' is fun when it happens.. Imagine you are happy at any given moment.. it passes. Being happy to the core never leaves.. You know what it is that brings you peace.. you know what keeps you breathing in & out every day. If you don't it's important to figure it out.. and I'm still working on it.. it doesn't have to be the one thing.. It can be many things. I find myself recalling somewhat recent days when I was so happy it hurt..

1. a beautiful random day in Berkeley.. I was feeling like crap.. but the light came out from the clouds, I was walking and I knew where I was was where I wanted to be. I was a lotus on a tranquil sea.. (yes, I was walking but I was a lotus, dang-it!) I was content in a sea of homes, people, and whatever else, the tapestry of the town.

2. I was looking at the Community College catelog and found an ART history course I wanted to take.. my heart leapt out of my chest thinking of taking this class.. Of being made to write a paper on some art-related thing.. I often think of these things as 'life cheats'..people making you do things that you're more than happy to do.. What's the catch? What's the angle?? All I could do was sing in my head.. "OMGOMGOMG.. I can get credit for this class!!!!!" I ended up not taking it as I was on waitlist.. but you get the idea.. freaking awesomehappycamper- awesomness! Whenever I think of this class or things that bring me joy I get so happy & content. Things like this stay with me as creative things do. always. Art.. poetry.. music.. words: changable but ever-constant. Memories and words that stay with you in the library of your heart.

3. California History.. You can study this?? You can make it your major and they won't beat you for it?? When can I do this??? Can I start now?? I can't tell you how many times last Spring that I walked back home from school on clouds of pure freaking joy.. Joy.. I haven't completely "shrank myself" over it.. but it's a lot of things: history, reading, books, learning.. so much learning! Topics I care about: social justice, equality, civil rights, environmental issues, exploring, the Depression, the Trans-Continental RR.. photography! (who gets to work with Calisphere?? How do you get that job?) The fact that it was my first history class in over 20 years. The fact that teacher was freaking awesome.. amazing.. intelligent.. and inspring.. yeah. whatever. This class brought all those things I used to care about back to the fore. To life. It was a good class.. greedy me would love to have more days and experiences like this in the future. How?

4. History on Cal Day.. Filtering through the "you should be a history major at Cal" the constant theme of learning, and flexibility.. They let you read! BOOKS!! Lots of books! Lots of reading.. lots of learning! They want you to learn stuff! They want you to specialize! They freaking help you?? Seriously? Why would a prof help me? Why would they even give a flying.. rats! I want to do this!! This is how you get on the path of keeping the good stuff in your life in an ever-learning adventure.. pursue.. ..and keep working on it!

5. Volunteering at the library. "History: You're soaking in it.." This is something that's happening to me right now.. on-going.. along with what volunteering I've done with the Berkeley Historical Society.. I'm constantly stopping my thoughts and waitiing to see if security is going to throw me out and one of the librarians are going to tell me to f' off.. but so far, so good. The happiness is sometimes guilt-inducing how happy it makes me some days. This stuff I'm doing touches on so many things.. psychologically and emotionally.

The library has always been my temple.. my Church. My sanctuary.. Fade to 5 year old Meeko sitting "Indian-style" in an egg chair at the Nora Public Library.. (Indianapolis).. a small pile of books on her lap, big "anime eyes" of joy.. lost in whatever I was reading.. 4th grade at Westfield Elementary learning the Dewey Decimal system, reading & learning the 'parts' of books and the card catalog.. being frightened out of my mind by the librarian but determined to enter the fortress of books and read every one if I could.. Middle School where my most favoritest librarian ever Catherine Whitson looked at me once, knew and trusted I could be trusted with books.. and would personally hand me books to read every week before they even went on the shelf.. Days I would sneak away from classes during filmsstrip sessions or National Geographic documentaries to help shelve books or check books back in... When she transfered to the high shcool, knowing I wasn't the one she was directing her ire at for people disrespecting the space.. helping with year-end inventory..

Flashing back to today.. being asked to do stuff that maybe an intern could probably do.. Death Indexing, filing files.. whatever asked.. I am so glad and grateful! I don't know how long I will be allowed to do this but.. I am happy. There's a peace that I often think no one will get or understand that comes over me.. a joy that can't be scrubbed away.. the same can be said when being allowed to help with Historical Society things..

Both of these things involve history, elbow-deep in it: the active contemplation of history.. Berkeley history.. California history.. history and its role in the bigger picture.. the people that breath and are history.. The people that have lived it here and surround us.. Each person is an expert on their life, their moments.. Each person has value of some kind.. When I'm around these people.. I want to know their stories and the things they know. One can't necesarily. One can wish.

Whether doing all this in the end helps me in my quest for a writing career (I have no idea what I want to write about at this point, I used to think I would be a great fiction writer.. but seriously??) or another local historian.. or a "professional" volunteer.. (that is, making a 'career' out of volunteering my time to the city in some way or another) who knows? I have been and continue to be in a constant state of disbelief and joy. I need to remind myself it's real even if I'm not.. I'm a temporary ping on the radar.. easily replaced but hopefully useful while I'm still there.

So whatever it is, these are just things.. days spent.. moments passed. But the peace. The peace and contentment is there.. and will be remembered regardless if that thing or things that remind us is taken away.. one remembers the peace... that stays. That's where (I think) soul happy lives. My next task I suppose is how to gather up these things and square them with myself. Box them up, take them out & look at them in little bits, and make them function in my life on a regular basis. To not get overwrought if these too are passing phases. To try & not flatten myself because I have no one to discsuss these things with anymore or that I'm alone in my joy. I'm purging here.. because it's overwhelming some days. The cups of joy and thought are too much to carry sometimes. Personal.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Banned Books at the BPL..


Banned books reading at the Berkeley Public Library.. Central Branch. Local actors from Berkeley Repertory Theatre: Howard Swain, Lorri Holt, and Sarita Ocon read their picks from books that have been banned at one time or another..


Banned Books reading Sunday!! #CentralBranch #books
Howard Swain reads from Captain Underpants..

Howard Swain reads Alan Ginsberg's "Howl"

Lorri Holt reads from "A Wrinkle in Time.."

Along with "Always Running", Sarita Ocon read selection from one of my favorites: writer-poet Sherman Alexie! Here she reads from "The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian." yay!

Not a huge crowd but really cool hour spent.. Saturday the 27th (when I'm actually posting this) is a community bike ride "Banned Books Bike Tour".. riding about 7 miles, stopping at each library for readings from "Of Mice & Men.."

Monday, September 15, 2014

Solano Stroll: History through Community

Sunday was the 2014 Solano Stroll.. An acquaintance had suggested "It's been done.. hasn't it??" and then remarked on how his family had attended in the past and even the kids had been in the parade. Sure, I said.. but this year would be different.


Different for me, at any rate: I would be supporting it as a member and volunteer with the Berkeley Historical Society. I've been volunteering a bit in various ways here and there with the group since earlier this Spring.. and although I wasn't sure I was ready to be thrown into a wolves' den of people (crowds of strangers and unfamiliar situations tend to make me a little anxious unless I know someone..) I was more than willing to give it a go. For as much as new experiences can make me anxious, I still love to try new things, and learn new things.

While I knew what to expect as an attendee of the Stroll, I wasn't sure I was knowledgable enough to support the Society the two hours I was there. It turns out I had nothing to worry about.. I was surrounded by knowledgable associates that were there at the ready whenever a question was too much for me.. Mostly I just chatted people up, sold postcards of various views of Berkeley, some neat B&W pix, as well made change, shared out membership pamphlets when requested, and just had Fun!

Being at the Stroll in this capacity put into play one of the aspects of history that I love.. the tactile aspect. Yes, it's "going to places" where historical things happened.. One can visit Philadelphia or Baltimore as I have, or Charleston or St Augustine, (as I also have many years ago) and see where things happened and be told what and who did what where.. but the bit I'm talking about is more subtle than that.


Walking Solano, you see the theatre, the shops, you talk to people who live there and are part of the community. You take in their experience. You take home your own memories and photos of things you saw or experienced. Whether it's the neat hat I purchased at a local shop or a Solano Stroll poster I took home a few years ago.. the ephemera and memories.. You look around and know people have shopped here before, lived here before.. memory ghosts ..that walk the sidewalks and commune with neighbors and shopkeepers.

Listening to the people yesterday that were fascinated with the panoramic image of Berkeley that the Society had on display (and for sale) was a pleasure. Discussion, sometimes heated about which building was missing or where someone's home was or which street they were looking at.. Learning by listening, learning by viewing.. Learning by holding the things that came before and being part of it myself. It's more than just visiting a park or a city. It's experiencing and opening yourself to those around you and the stories they share.. Being part of the community engagement. Yes, there's a lot of nostalgia mixed throughout these stories.. but so is some truth.

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Back to School!

I was going to title this post "What's goin' on".. but figured people would collectively throw stuff at me.. and I wouldn't blame them..

I haven't been posting partly because I haven't been up to much.. but I've been up to a lot at the same time..

1. School started up the week of the 18th of August.. I'm taking 3 classes at Berkeley City College this semester.. giving things a chance to ramp up and see where the curriculum takes me..


2. Volunteering: been involved on a basic level with the Berkeley Historical Society since the end of March.. mostly helping with aspects of event hosting: set up, seating people, and clearing things up afterwards, helping with any random mailings, and attend monthly program committee meetings regularly.. I'm expanding my knowledge to hopefully include Docent-ing at the History Center once a month, (especially now that school is in session.)

Recently I was approached about a couple volunteer projects at the BPL.. so I've jumped into that the last couple weeks.. I don't know how official I am yet, but suffice to say I'm happy to be of use, and if I am of any help it makes me very glad and grateful. Some days that's all I want: to feel I have a purpose and I'm not wasting oxygen being here.. And if I have the opportunity to meet folks (and make friends Dangit!) and learn new things.. that's the real lagniappe.. that something extra I shouldn't expect but feel good if it comes my way.

3. Settling into the new home.. We've not finished unpacking our stuff by a long shot.. and it's unlikely we'd be "company" ready any time soon either.. but we're in our new home and enjoying the neighborhood and proximity to all the conveniences that living in Berkeley have to offer.

Also with September here, I'm living the reality of all the various organizations, school groups, and historical associations coming together to create this great atmosphere of history and remembrance for the anniversary of the FSM. So many opportunities to see that great karmic quilt flow and grow: every fiber touching another, crossing through and moving on through another thread.. I already knew the world was small place when I lived in New Orleans.. but seeing it in action between the various history groups, academia, and community activists is something! I could never tire of seeing the world work together.. Berkeley is not the only place where this action is happening.. Like I mentioned, New Orleans was a big example of that for me in the past.. but you can see it happen in your own community if you look around you. Pay attention to all those folks in your area.. what they're doing and the people who flow in and out of your life.. The patterns are there if we look.. No need to be surprised by any of it, just enjoy the coincidences when they happen! =)

As for the posts, I'm trying not to sweat it. Stuff is going on, I just need to let things happen and write when I feel the muse.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Radical Acts Pop-Up Talk

Friday August 15th the Oakland Museum of California held a pop-up talk by Lincoln Cushing, curator of Radical Acts..


The installation includes 15 counter-culture / activist posters within a smaller time frame of the original "All of Us or None" archive that appeared at OMCA in a previous year. Some of the posters were chosen based on comments from museum patrons, (which were included with the displayed poster art.)

Democratize Yellow Cab
This linotype poster print attributed to Franke Rowe is my favorite of the posters included in this installation. If I recall the story correctly, (I didn't take notes) Rowe was an instructor at SF State who was fired for refusing to sign the loyalty oath during the 50s... banned from teaching til the late 60s, when he was hired at Laney.

There was a pretty nice crowd for the talk which was to last about 15 min.. I wished it could have been longer.. Pop-Up talks as part of OMCA's Friday nights feature different speakers each week.. as well discounted admission, and the food trucks of course.. although honestly this was the first Friday Night event I've made as I specifically came for the talk.



I took the pix with my iphone.. no flash.. so a lot of blurriness & jazz hands.. ;) However, if you want to see the other pix I took of the framed posters or more blurry image 'jazz hands' you can view them in my OMCA flickr set HERE..

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Poetry at Mrs Dalloway's

Thursday night we headed over to Mrs Dalloway's for a poetry reading with Matthew Zapruder & Dean Young:
Matthew Zapruder reading

Dean Young

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

On Track to Excelsior

Tonight was a talk on SF streetcars with Rick Laubscher, author of On Track: A Field Guide to San Francisco's Historic Streetcars and Cable Cars.

The spouse was interested so we BART-ed in together to the Glen Park station and walked the 15 or so minutes to the Excelsior Branch of the SF Public Library.

Rick Laubscher about to give a talk on SF streetcars
Rick Laubscher about to give his talk.

The event was filmed so it should be posted to the SF Public Library's "You Tube" account some point in the next couple weeks.

**edit** here's a link to the video posted back in September..

Friday, July 25, 2014

Ohlone Greenway Walk!

One of the walks I've been wanting to do is the entire length of the Ohlone Greenway which runs along the BART tracks from north of El Cerrito/ Richmond south to Berkeley.. a few pocket and city parks lie along the way..

Along with the 'challenge' of doing it.. (it's entire length is less than 6miles despite traveling through 4 cities.. it's northern most point located in Richmond) I wanted to see what was to be seen along the way. I started my adventure Thursday morning by BART-ing to El Cerrito Del Norte, where the Safeway provided a clean pitstop & supply pick up (since moving I've not located my Brita water bottle.)
Ohlone Greenway from El Cerrito
For some of the path the North & South-bound trails are seperate.. but eventually it all becomes one big paved pathway with a small side trail for dogs to run along:

Opened in 2010, Bruce King Memorial Dog Park is named after an El Cerrito maintenance/engineer Manager who passed the year before the park opened.
Dog Park Along the Greenway (El Cerrito)

El Cerrito Community Garden is just one of the gardens I passed on my walk:
El Cerrito Community Garden

Codornices Creek "overpass" near the Albany border:
Codornices Creek is here!


Nice to know you can get "free air" in Berkeley:

I *heart* the West Berkeley cows that cross along the Greenway near the North Berkeley BART:

Something to be aware of before deciding to do a walk like this:
my timing was very good!

The Ohlone Greenway stops and starts on the opposite side of the North Berkeley BART:

near Delaware Street:

The walk brings you to Ohlone Park on Haste:

Here you'll find places to throw a frisbee, have a picnic, sit in a big sun patch, or have some fun with your dog:

I ended my walk after taking several pix of the Ohlone Park Mural.. which are in this set well as my Mural set..

My route & stats:
Ohlone Greenway Walk
about 5.5 miles..