Wednesday, February 28, 2007

One More Cal J-School Dean Candidate

by Jonathan Kaminsky
Wed, Feb 28, 2007 at 3:28 PM

Josh Quittner, editor of Business 2.0, has thrown his hat into the ring. It seems he's likely to be the final of five candidates. After the jump, the UC Berkeley J-School release:

    To the J School Community:

    This week marks the start of the campus visits by dean candidates. The committee appreciates your active participation in the first of these visits, and we encourage you to continue meeting with the candidates and attending their public presentations over the coming weeks.

    We are delighted to report that Josh Quittner, currently the Editor of Business 2.0, has agreed to come for a campus visit just prior to spring break. We expect that he will be the final candidate to be considered by the committee.

    Please note that we have rescheduled David Talbot's campus visit for mid-March. He was not entirely responsible for this change, but nonetheless sends his apologies. Neil Henry will give his public presentation tomorrow evening, and Dianne Lynch will be on campus early next week.

    I have provided the dates and times for the public presentations for the remaining candidates below. The school will provide information on the meetings set up for specific constituencies.

    Thanks again for your contributions to this important process.

    Sincerely yours,

    AnnaLee Saxenian Dean and Professor, School of Information Chair, Journalism Dean Search Committee

    Neil Henry Wednesday, February 28th Public Presentation 5:00 - 6:00 pm North Gate Library

    Dianne Lynch Monday, March 5th Public Presentation 5:00 - 6:00 pm North Gate Library

    David Talbot Monday, March 12 Public Presentation 5:00 - 6:00 pm North Gate Library

    Josh Quittner Wednesday, March 21 Public Presentation 4:00 - 5:00 pm North Gate Library

Grease Trap: Local Food Coverage Takes Another Hit

by John Birdsall
Wed, Feb 28, 2007 at 3:28 PM

How deeply should your daily paper's food section be rooted in your local neighborhood? Since Denver-based MediaNews Group scooped up most of the Bay's dailies, it's a question that's become critical for dedicated food-page fans in the East Bay. Take Laurel Miller's "Fork in the Road" column in today's CoCo Times (it also appears in the Oakland Trib.)

Miller's a talented food writer and cooking teacher with years of column clips from ANG's publication stable. She deserves big props -- Miller was writing about local growers long before it was a food section clich�. In October, Miller packed up her Berkeley kitchen and moved to Boulder; now she's focusing on travel writing with a heavy food component -- like today's piece, an account of the free chow on a journalist junket to Australia's Kangaroo Island. An intro says "Fork in the Road" will appear every month in the Times, an announcement with a bittersweet flavor: Miller writes good copy, but giving over page three to yet another writer who's not focusing on food in the paper's readership area feels like another step toward complete homogenization of local coverage. Given Times food editor Nicholas Boer's serious budget constraints (and sure, Times food has always gone heavily to the wire to fill its pages), it's definitely bad news for aspiring food writers hoping to get a toehold at some local daily.

Chron Abalone Story Gives Half the Picture

Olivia Wu's Chron feature on Bay Area abalone aquaculture is interesting -- as far as it goes. Abalone's the delectable Pacific-coast mollusk that's been decimated through overfishing -- it was banned commercially ten years ago. Though it'd be hard to get anyone to talk, the story we'd really like to read is about the culture of abalone poaching. Believe us -- after years spent in Bay Area restaurant kitchens, we know there's a network of shady divers wiling to do business. But yeah, they're twitchy as meth dealers.

Kaiser Kidney Transplant Doc Under Investigation

by Chris Thompson
Wed, Feb 28, 2007 at 3:28 PM

According to a troubling and riveting account in the Los Angeles Times, a Kaiser Permanente transplant surgeon who worked at the hospital giant's troubled kidney transplant program is being investigated on charges that he hastened the death of a San Luis Obispo patient in order to harvest his organs. When Ruben Navarro was found nonresponsive at a long-term care facility, he was taken to a nearby hospital, where doctors told his family he would not live and secured their consent to use his organs. At that point, transplant surgeon Hootan Roozrokh was summoned to the operating room and was allegedly administering drugs to the expiring man. When Navarro didn't die promptly, Roozrokh allegedly ordered more pain medication in order to speed up his demise; he even allegedly said, "Let's just give him some more candy." Navarro died the following day. The Times also reports that the California Medical Board is investigating the conduct of Dr. Arturo Martinez, who was also present during the procedure. Martinez was the surgical director of Kaiser's entire transplant program. Martinez declined to comment, and Roozrokh's lawyer declined to go into details of the incident.

The East Bay Today: February 28, 2007

Wed, Feb 28, 2007 at 3:28 PM

Today's Top Event: Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater knocks our socks off at UC Berkeley's Zellerbach Hall.

Brainiac: Learn something new every day. Today's lecture: Artist Shahzia Sikander discusses her miniature paintings and installations, which use a variety of media to critique stereotypes of Eastern and Pakistani women.

Is It Lunch Yet? Express food critic John Birdsall recommends: The Vault in Berkeley.

On the Town: Going out tonight? Make a special trip to the island for this true, no-frills dive bar, Alameda's Lost Weekend Lounge.

Hardly Working: You've got time. We know how to waste it. Check out Spirograph.

Feed Us: Got an East Bay news tip, photo, video, or link we need to know about? E-mail us.

Die, Kaiser Flu Patients! Die, Die!

by Chris Thompson
Wed, Feb 28, 2007 at 3:28 PM

If you catch yourself a bad case of pneumonia and you're a Kaiser member, get ready for a rough ride. According to a story in the Los Angeles Times, a new state report has listed the 28 hospitals with the highest pneumonia mortality rates - and five Kaiser hospitals make the loser's list. Times reporter Francisco Vara-Orta writes that the average mortality at the worst-performing hospitals is a dismaying 17.2 percent. (Hey, that's almost one in five!) But before you go all rheumey and panicky, consider this: the five Kaiser charnel houses are all in the Central Valley and the Inland Empire. Tough break for them, but at least the air quality is nice. Oh, wait - never mind.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Why Are Things So Empty Around Here?

Tue, Feb 27, 2007 at 3:28 PM

If you've noticed a slowdown in posts this week, it's because we're in the process of moving the blog over to a new software system. Look for a re-vamped blog starting sometime on Thursday, March 1.

The East Bay Today: February 27, 2007

Tue, Feb 27, 2007 at 3:28 PM

Today's Top Event: Jazz pianist Myra Melford brings her quintet to Yoshi's in Oakland.

Brainiac: Learn something new every day. Today's lecture: The Past, Present and Future of Food, featuring Whole Foods Market CEO and cofounder John Mackey, in conversation with Michael Pollan at UC Berkeley's Zellerbach Auditorium.

Is It Lunch Yet? Express food critic John Birdsall recommends: Shanghai Gourmet in Richmond.

On the Town: Going out tonight? Check out the open mic night by candlelight at the Linen Life Gallery.

Hardly Working: You've got time. We know how to waste it. Check out Old Computer Ads.

Feed Us: Got an East Bay news tip, photo, video, or link we need to know about? E-mail us.

End of the Line for the MySpace Car Chase Case

by Kara Platoni
Tue, Feb 27, 2007 at 3:28 PM

23-year-old Laura Medina was sentenced to eleven years in prison today for her role in the death of eighteen-year-old Michelle Dickerson, the new girlfriend of Medina's ex-boyfriend, the Chron reports. Medina had spotted the two of them in the same car and chased them in her Buick Park Avenue, ramming their vehicle several times before it eventually spun into some parked cars. Dickerson died of head trauma. Medina pled no contest to voluntary manslaughter, but her mother Laura Rangel, took the unusual tack of turning her daughter's MySpace page into a rallying site for supporters arguing that Medina was innocent and that Amilcar Ford, the district attorney assigned to the case, was in it to "make a name for himself" and that he is "not interested in Justice, he just wants to win." Rangel also used it to post police reports, transcripts, and other legal documents. Despite protests from Ford that the postings could influence witnesses, the site was allowed to stand. As of this morning, there's been no update reacting to Medina's sentencing.

Monday, February 26, 2007

The East Bay Today: February 26, 2007

Mon, Feb 26, 2007 at 3:28 PM

Today's Top Event: Linda Kramer and James Chan's Random Portraits series of photos is on display at Julie's Coffee & Tea Garden in Alameda.

Brainiac: Learn something new every day. Today's lecture: Julianne Balmain, aka Nadia Gordon, discusses the ins and outs of mystery writing at Pinole Library.

Is It Lunch Yet? Express food critic John Birdsall recommends: Venezia in Berkeley.

On the Town: Going out tonight? Not just for late-night espresso anymore, Le Bateau Ivre now features live music. Check out a free performance by bluegrass musician Ed Neff.

Hardly Working: You've got time. We know how to waste it. Check out Find My Twin.

Feed Us: Got an East Bay news tip, photo, video, or link we need to know about? E-mail us.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Berkeley Cookbook Event a Fresh Look at Filipino Cuisine

by John Birdsall
Sat, Feb 24, 2007 at 3:28 PM

Filipino cooking has been pretty much ignored by American foodies, even in the Filipino-rich Bay Area. An event tonight at Black Oak Books in the Gourmet Ghetto may help change that, thanks to an amazing new book by Amy Besa and Romy Dorotan. Memories of Philippine Kitchens may do for Filipino cooking what Andrea Nguyen's Into the Vietnamese Kitchen is doing for another Southeast Asian cuisine: brushing off its immigrant, ethnic-dining associations and revealing it to be an ancient thing of striking beauty. By the way, Besa and Dorotan own the restaurant Cendrillon in Soho -- the Filipino Slanted Door, basically. Next time you're in Manhattan, leave off the lardo and risotto for an evening and check out Dorotan's signature black rice paella. Shame nobody's doing anything that good here in the Bay. Tonight's event is at 7:30 at Black Oak, 1491 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley; (510) 486-0698.

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