Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Yet Another Reason We Love Oakland

by Anna Pulley
Tue, Mar 3, 2015 at 6:45 AM

Oakland is for the birds. - ANNA PULLEY
  • Anna Pulley
  • Oakland is for the birds.

This guy, who takes his parrot for walks along the waterfront near Jack London Square.

See Also:
If You Love Oakland, Watch This Video
Take a Tour of Oakland's Most Impressive Murals

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Friday, February 27, 2015

The Weekender: This Weekend's Top Five Events

Feb. 27, 28 & March 1

by Sarah Burke
Fri, Feb 27, 2015 at 7:05 AM

This week was a big one. The FCC approved net neutrality. Madonna fell on stage. All kinds of good stuff. But according to the internet, the hottest topic up for debate is the color of a dress. Is it gold and white or is it black and blue? Noone can agree and it's disturbing. Do something fun this weekend to take your mind off of it. See below. 

Holly Herndon
Last year, Holly Herndon unleashed a web enigma. “Call” featured black-and-white GIFs composed of natural scenery, portions of computer keyboards, and fragments of the Bay Area artist’s face. Moving a cursor over the images initiated scorched beats and processed vocals. Much is made of the internet’s potential to deliver music, but “Call” utilized the internet as both a tool and platform for a singular media statement. Later in the year, she released a music video for “Home,” accompanied by a description of the project as a breakup letter to the NSA. Revelations about federal surveillance resulted in Herndon feeling that her laptop — her instrument — had been violated. As much as she appears poised to etherize her artistic persona into the cloud, she’s performing live and in-person at the reinvigorated Mission District arts space The Lab on Sunday. Word is that Herndon and her laptop are back on speaking terms.— Sam Lefebvre
Sun., March 1, 7:30 p.m. $15. TheLab.org

Ariel Luckey.
  • Ariel Luckey.
Activist and hip-hop theater performer Ariel Luckey grew up in Oakland, but he has Jewish and Christian roots that tie him to places across the world. As a young adult, he became fascinated with tracing his cultural origins. He found that his great grandfather emigrated from Kiev, Ukraine to Arizona to escape the merciless raids of immigration police threatening to arrest and deport Jews. In his new one-man show, Amnesia, Luckey plays both himself and his great grandfather in a story that investigates issues surrounding race, immigration, and cultural identity. Staying true to his interest and style, Luckey presents the piece through a blend of theater, dance, and spoken word, with a soundtrack that mixes hip-hop Klezmer and Mexican folk music. Luckey aims to create a connection between his family’s experience and broader political issues today, specifically the treatment of Mexican immigrants in America. “How crazy that this thing that my family came to America to get away from is now happening again 130 years later on the other side of the world?” Luckey said in a video promo for the show. “Why are we still doing this to each other?” Luckey will be performing on February 27 at The East Bay Center for Performing Arts (339 11th St., Richmond) at 8 p.m., and on February 28 at Kehilla Community Synagogue at 7 p.m. and again on March 1 at 4 p.m.— Sarah Burke
Fri., Feb. 27, 8-10 p.m. $18-36. ArielLuckey.com

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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Radical Brownies Contacted by Girls Scouts Association

The social justice girls group will be changing its name.

by Sarah Burke
Tue, Feb 24, 2015 at 5:47 PM

  • Alejandra Ramirez
In the February 11 issue of the Express, we printed a story about the Radical Brownies, an Oakland-grown girls group that lets female-identifying youth earn badges by completing lessons related to social justice and self love. (Read it HERE.) The group was founded in December by community organizers and educators Marilyn Hollinquest and Anayvette Martinez. The co-founders were confident in the program they decided to develop, but had no idea that the group would receive the attention that is has. Already, the Radical Brownies Facebook page has nearly 13,000 likes, and the group has been receiving an outpouring of gifts and community support from all over the world. Now, some of that attention is coming from the Girl Scouts of America as well. 

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Friday, February 20, 2015

The Weekender: This Weekend's Top Five Events

by Sarah Burke
Fri, Feb 20, 2015 at 9:39 AM

Kung hei fat choy! Also Mardi Gras happened! But most importantly, it's the weekend! That's a reason to celebrate. See our suggestions of how to do so below. 

Noise Pop
Every year, the booking logisticians behind Noise Pop bring a menagerie of talent to San Francisco, and then scatter those dozens of bands throughout the city’s cozier venues under one festival banner. Yeah, it’s a model akin to CMJ, but self-respecting denizens of the Bay Area are rightly through with enduring comparisons to New York. Its own beast, the first week of this year’s Noise Pop features highlights such as New Jersey’s Screaming Females, who are set to slay at the Hemlock Tavern on Saturday; upstart tuneful doom outfit King Woman, opening for the Black Ryder at the Rickshaw Stop on Tuesday; local folkie turned Angeleno defector Jessica Pratt, playing at The Chapel on Wednesday; and many more purveyors of slop pop, indie rock, and throwback thump.— Sam Lefebvre
Feb. 20-March 1. See website. Noisepop.com

Latte Art Throwdown
Calling all ace baristas: On Friday, the Berkeley coffee shop Local 123 is hosting a latte art “throwdown.” According to owner Frieda Hoffman, latte art masters who sign up will be judged on the aesthetics, difficulty, symmetry, and originality of their steamed-milk creations, as they vie for an array of prizes — cash money, as well as coffee-related swag. To add another wrinkle to the contest, competitors are also welcome to bring their own unconventional “cups.” (Hoffman said she has seen baristas pour lattes into everything from beer boots to seashells.) While there’s a $10 buy-in for competitors (signups start at 6:30 p.m.), the event is free to the general public, and the gorgeous coffee drinks that each competitor pours will be up for grabs for audience members to taste. The event also promises a DJ on hand, and beer, wine, and bar snacks available for purchase.— Luke Tsai
Fri., Feb. 20, 7-9 p.m. Free. Local123Cafe.com

The Garden 
One of the less likely benefactors of California indie rock in recent years has been Hedi Slimane, jet-setting creative director of the venerable Yves Saint Laurent fashion house. He has been known to show up at, say, Burger Records showcases around Los Angeles, taking pictures like so many other anonymous photographers on assignment. Shortly afterwards, a young six-string dreamer will be summoned to lunch, whereby Slimane offers a runway modeling gig at Paris Fashion week. That’s sort of what happened to The Garden, a duo composed of twin brothers from Fullerton whose stage presence and disjointed rock endeared Slimane. Supporting The Garden at Leo’s Music Club on Friday are Baus and Beekeepers, excellent local outfits with impeccable fashion sense. — S.L.
Fri., Feb. 20, 9 p.m. $10.00 - $12.00. ClubLeos.com

Turkish Flavors for Tapas and Tea
Last summer, Camila Loew launched Sobremesa — a multi-pronged food business that included, among other things, a series of intimate, seasonal pop-up dinners rooted in the veteran cooking instructor’s love of Spanish food culture — at Berkeley’s Far Leaves Tea (2626 San Pablo Ave.). For the winter edition of the pop-up, Loew is going in a slightly different direction: Inspired by a recent trip to Istanbul, she plans to serve Turkish-inspired mezes instead of her usual Spanish fare — “tapas,” basically, but with the flavors of the Eastern Mediterranean region. Loew is still finalizing her menu, but possibilities include “daughter-in-law” red lentil soup, Circassian chicken with walnuts, and labneh (strained yogurt) rolled in za’atar, sumac, and pistachios. As with the previous Sobremesa pop-ups, beverages — Spanish wines and hot and cold teas — are included in the $60 cost of admission.— L.T.
Fri., March 20, 7-9 p.m. $60. Sobremesa.us

Zoovie Night: Over the Hedge
Looking to get into some fun that’s suitable for the whole family? Then head over to the Oakland Zoo this Friday for Zoovie Night. Throw on your pajamas, grab a few pillows, blankets, and chairs, and snuggle up in the zoo’s auditorium (which holds up to fifty participants). Movies chosen for Zoovie Night are animal in nature (pun intended) and this week’s is no different: Dreamwork’s Over the Hedge is an animated film with an appropriately East Bay theme — a raccoon teams up with some other forest animals who are unhappy with the suburban sprawl that popped up while they were hibernating — and stars Bruce Willis, Garry Shandling, and Steve Carell. Other highlights of the event include a visit from the zoo’s costumed alligator mascot, hot chocolate with marshmallows, and all the popcorn you can eat. If popcorn’s not your cup of tea, moviegoers can also bring their own snacks for extra munchies during the film. Pre-registration is required.— Kris Stewart
Fri., Feb. 20, 6:30-9:30 p.m. 510-632-9525 ext. 220. EducationReservations@oaklandzoo.org
$7 per adult and $7 per child. For groups of 4 or more people, $6 per adult and $6 per child. Oaklandzoo.org

If your pockets are feelin' light and you're still yearning for more suggestions, we've got a ton, and these ones are all FREE!

We're Hungry: Got any East Bay news, events, video, or miscellany we should know about? Feed us at Sarah.Burke@EastBayExpress.com.

Long-Distance Skype Breakups — Tacky or Necessary?

Is there ever really a "classy" way to break up with someone?

by Anna Pulley
Fri, Feb 20, 2015 at 6:00 AM

Got a digital dilemma of your own? If you have a question involving technology, the internet, or online etiquette, shoot it to Anna.Pulley@EastBayExpress.com with the subject “Dear Anna.” 

I’m a mid-twenties female, and my boyfriend and I have been together for just under a year. But for the last four months, we’ve lived in different cities several hours away, as I got a work internship. We’ve seen each other twice, and my move won’t be permanent, but frankly, I just don’t see us working out. Rather than wait until one of us travels to see each other again, can I end it via Skype? Or is that unbearably tacky? Any help is appreciated.
— Video Is Decidedly Easiest Option

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Revenge Porn: What to Do? 
A Person I Know in Real Life Found Me on OkCupid

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Thursday, February 19, 2015

Rock Paper Scissors Collective Fears Closure

by Sascha Bos
Thu, Feb 19, 2015 at 2:15 PM

  • Courtesy of Rock Paper Scissors Collective
Rock Paper Scissors Collective is an art gallery and community space that defies categorization – they're home to free and low cost art classes, support groups, art shows, and a library of over 2,500 zines. RPS Collective is a place where you can hang out all day reading zines, then take a class on collaging and show up the next day ready to sell your art in their retail space. 

The volunteer-run nonprofit has been a fixture of the Oakland art scene since 2004, and is the only remaining founder of Oakland Art Murmur and First Friday. But they've announced via an Indiegogo campaign that they can no longer afford to keep RPS Collective open. They hope to raise $25,000 – "the bare bones minimum to operate in 2015," according to the campaign page. At this writing, they are at 20% of their funding goal and have 18 days to go.    

This comes on the heels of Omni Commons' successfully funded campaign to raise $40,000 to open their community resource space to the public. Creative shared spaces are on the rise in the East Bay, and it would send a big shock through the local art scene if one of the movement's founders had to close. Swag ranges from commissioning a giant mural on the back of RPSC's building ($15,000) to a goodie bag with buttons, patches, and stickers ($10). 

Monday, February 16, 2015

Dead Kennedys' East Bay Ray Slams Google in Op-Ed

Storied local punk guitarist wades into the debate on Google's advertising practices.

by Sam Lefebvre
Mon, Feb 16, 2015 at 11:44 AM

On Friday, an article by East Bay Ray appeared on policy-oriented website TheHill.com. In it, The Dead Kennedys' guitarist and frequent commentator on artists' rights issues brings attention to Google's unsavory advertising practices, lack of transparency, and apparent efforts to silence critics.

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Friday, February 13, 2015

The Weekender: This Weekend's Top Five Events

February 13, 14, and 15.

by Anna Pulley
Fri, Feb 13, 2015 at 10:14 AM

Who needs candy hearts when you've got one of these? - BERT JOHNSON
  • Bert Johnson
  • Who needs candy hearts when you've got one of these?

Valentine's Day
is tomorrow, and whether that means a hot night out on the town or a hot night drinking wine out of a measuring cup while Netflixing Glee episodes, there's still plenty of amazing events going on in the East Bay that involve only the love of culture. Read on to learn what the weekend has in store.

See Also:
All of our upcoming event picks  
The grand opening of Good Mother gallery caused a splash in Oakland's art pool

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Thursday, February 12, 2015

Fantastic Negrito Wins NPR's Tiny Desk Concert Contest

The Oakland-based singer's "Lost in a Crowd" woos NPR's esteemed jurors.

by Sam Lefebvre
Thu, Feb 12, 2015 at 10:44 AM

Fantastic Negrito, the Oakland-based blues singer and songwriter with a dusty and endearingly ragged sensibility, has won NPR's Tiny Desk Concert Contest. His video was chosen by a team of jurors from over 7,000 submissions and announced as the winner this morning. 

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Satisfaction, Long-Distance Love, and Introducing Consent

An advice column with Lyric Seal.

by Lyric Seal
Thu, Feb 12, 2015 at 6:00 AM


Reprinted with permission from Crash Pad Series.

Lyric Explains it All! We’ve launched an ongoing Sex and Relationship Advice column by the one and only Lyric Seal. Email your questions to listentolyric@gmail.com. 

See Also:
How Do I Rebuild My Sexuality as a Disabled Transgender Person?

Dear Lyric,

Do you think it's possible to be in love with a partner who cannot fully satisfy your sexual desires or needs? — Lover

More …

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