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Thursday, December 22, 2011

Weekender: Top Events in the East Bay Over the Next Three Days

Thu, Dec 22, 2011 at 7:30 AM

Happy day-early Weekender, in honor of the long weekend! Happy solstice, one day late! Happy Thing You Celebrate! Cookies! Latkes! Umoja! PEACE ON EARTH! Here's what you're doing, unless you're doing other things!

DIY Animation Workshop
There's still time to make a truly unique holiday gift — come to Rock Paper Scissors (2278 Telegraph Ave., Oakland) on Thursday, Dec. 22, for a workshop facilitated by Price Cobbs that includes a brief history of animation, an overview of various precursors to film animation, a short screening of selected shorts, and a hands-on workshop in planning and shooting stop-motion or cut-out animation in video or film. No experience required! 6-8 p.m., $1-$10 suggested donation. 510-238-9171 or RPSCollective.org. — Stefanie Kalem

Good Vibrations Customer Appreciation Nights
While sex is (technically) free, throw some vibrators, handcuffs, and other gadgets into the mix and fornication can be an expensive undertaking. That's why Good Vibrations (2504 San Pablo Ave., Berkeley) is throwing a series of year-end customer appreciation nights at each of its stores, where patrons can indulge in complimentary chocolates and sparkling apple cider and take advantage of sales on select toys. If you're looking to cross some items off your kinky Christmas list, check out the store's sexy holiday kits. On Thursday, Dec. 22, 6-9 p.m. and Friday, Dec. 23, 6-8 p.m.; free. 510-841-8987 or GoodVibes.com. — Cassie Harwood

Origen: mmmmmm
Origen
With “Farm to Fork Restaurant” chalked across the wall in large type, abundant bowls of squash spilling over throughout the space, and annotated produce diagrams lining the walls, Origen (2826 Telegraph Ave., Berkeley, OrigenBerkeley.com) isn’t shy about its intentions. You’ll learn the exact pedigree of every ingredient in your meal, sometimes to the point of silliness. Luckily the ambitious, globally influenced menu is well-matched with the kitchen talents of Tracy Leighton and Daniel Clayton (owners of The Fig Tree in Pleasant Hill). Attempting a range of ethnic cuisines doesn’t muddy the quality fare, including a highly successful wood-fired pizza program. Origen is a little off Telegraph’s well-worn strip, but worth the trip. Open Tue.-Fri. 11 a.m.-11 p.m., and Sat.-Sun. 5:30-11 p.m.— Jesse Hirsch

The Adventures of Tintin
Steven Spielberg and Hergé’s crime-fighting juvenile comic-book character Tintin were made for each other. From the inventive title sequence to actor Andy Serkis’ ravings as eccentric/lovable windbag Captain Haddock to Tintin’s spectacular Spielbergian aerial exploits in the Arab town to the wonderful “dueling cranes” sequence, this smashing motion-capture-animated tribute to the youthful Belgian detective (voice of Jamie Bell) and his dog Snowy not only captures the essence of Tintin’s appeal but also the essence of what we know as the Spielberg artistic mandate. Tintin is a good-natured, fair-minded, inquisitive, resourceful, gadget-crazy young man — without a single sexual thought, or any relatives, or much of a job — who dedicates his time to solving mysteries and setting things right all over the globe. That’s Spielberg, in a nutshell. If he’s smart, the director will never, ever attempt a sequel to this yarn about the search for a sunken treasure. Leave it alone, it’s as close to perfection as Spielberg will ever again achieve. Screenplay adaptation by Steven Moffat, Edgar Wright, and Joe Cornish. Also with the voices of Daniel Craig, Simon Pegg, Cary Elwes, Toby Jones, Nick Frost, and Gad Elmaleh. Playing in Alameda, Emeryville, Berkeley, Oakland and elsewhere; see here for a full listing of times. — Kelly Vance

Brothers and Sisters
Right as househeads were starting to bemoan the loss of one the East Bay's best local DJ nights, founders Dedan and Emancipacion announced a triumphant return. A couple weeks ago they brought the long-running "Brothers and Sisters" party to The Rocksteady, a new club adjacent to Hibiscus Restaurant on the west end of Oakland's entertainment district. In the years since its inception, "Brothers and Sisters" has generated a near-religious following, partly because it was one of the first events to emphasize groove-driven, soulful house, and partly because it appealed to a genuinely diverse demographic. To top it all off, Dedan and Emancipacion take it as an article of faith that if you move your ass, your mind will follow — especially if you move your ass in a graceful way. They present the next installment of "Brothers and Sisters" on Friday, Dec. 23, at The Rocksteady (1745 San Pablo Ave., Oakland). 9 p.m., free. Facebook.com/DJEmancipacion — Rachel Swan

Christmas Buffet at FIVE
Give yourself the best present of all: a Christmas lunch that someone else cooked and of which you can eat as much as you like. On Sunday, Dec. 25, FIVE (2086 Allston Way, Berkeley) offers a buffet prepared by its award-winning executive chef, Chez Panisse veteran Banks White. His dozens of dishes include smoked beef brisket, ricotta-cheese blintzes, and FIVE's signature butterscotch pudding, based on a recipe handed down by White's grandmother. The buffet's beverage choices include coffee, tea, juice, and bottomless mimosas. 10 a.m.-2 p.m.; $55, children $25. Five-Berkeley.com or 510-225-6056. — Anneli Rufus


Plus...

Get your cheapskate on: This is how much we love you guys: Here are our searchable listings of every single free event happening in the East Bay this weekend.

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Feed Us: Got any East Bay news, events, video, or miscellany we should know about? Holler at us at Ellen.Cushing@EastBayExpress.com.

P.S. Here is a video of a DANISH ORPHAN POLAR BEAR. Happy holidays, East Bay.

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