ReGeneration 

Astute lint at Diesel

THU 4/3

The art and writing anthology titled ReGeneration: Telling Stories from Our Twenties opens wild and veers widely. From Shannon Peach's jaded ode to Greyhound buses and aimlessness, "The Sky Is Big and Full of Shit," it segues into Radames Ortiz's rawer, poetic urban visions. The collection -- under the headings "Navigating," "Working," "Relating," and "Dreaming" -- covers a lot of ground in its 300-plus pages, fleshing out the theories of last year's buzz-book Quarterlife Crisis with the real voices of those taking notes at the turning point. "So much of who we are depends on how we communicate with others," editors Jennifer Karlin and Amelia Borofsky write in their introduction, "and our access to collective knowledge has never been as expansive and accessible. This is even more poignant for those who remember a time without this technology, and twentysomethings today stand legs wide open, feet breaching the before and after." Appropriately, the editors also write that all their interactions with contributors occurred via e-mail, a generation-defining device if ever there was one.The contents of ReGeneration run the gamut from photographic to free verse, from Andrea Gregg's "Identity," a stark, graphic combination of thumbprint and bar code, to such distinctly voiced memoirs as Jessica Yorke's tales of being English in Oakland; Amanda DeWald's recollections of being a young, "visiting white girl" teacher in the Bronx; and David and Gabriel Montero's essay, "Misplaced Identities: Twins on the Eve of Cloning." There are high-profile contributors like To-Do List magazine founder and publisher Sasha Cagen, activist and poet Saul Williams, and For Common Things author Jedediah Purdy. And though the threads that bind the writers and artists of ReGeneration together are, at times, only chronologically based, it cannot be denied that the anthology is brimming with thoughtful and entertaining work. ReGeneration has culled the most astute lint from twentysomethings' proclivity for navel-gazing, and woven it into something of heft and value.

Some of that lint's writers will be appearing at Diesel: A Bookstore (5433 College Ave, Oakland) tonight at 7:30 p.m., including Malka Geffen, Jamie McCallum, Lee Konstantinou, and Loam Akasha-Bast, in a discussion moderated by photographer Laura Plageman. Call 510-653-9965 for more information. -- Stefanie Kalem

SAT 4/5

Vinyl Destination

Ah, the aesthetic superiority of vinyl. The glory of the gatefold, the shine of the vinyl surface, that delicious, crackling anticipation that fills the air before the needle falls into the very first groove. Sure, if you're under twenty, you probably don't know much from vinyl. And yeah, CDs (and minidiscs, and MP3s, blah-de-blah) sound cleaner, are far more portable, and give a better reflection. But can you roll a joint on a CD insert? No. Can you read the lyrics off that same insert without the use of a jeweler's loupe? No. Can your friends "accidentally" walk out of your apartment with your favorite LP in their backpack? No. Can a stack of twenty CDs be used as a deadly weapon? Hell, no! So pull up them oversize britches and get down to the latest Downtown Oakland Record Show, where DJs will spin, bands will play, and record geeks of all sorts can get their buy, sell, and trade on from 10 a.m. till 5 p.m. Shiny, black hard-to-find jewels of soul, jazz, rock, pop, funk, blues, reggae, soundtracks, and every other genre will be represented. And don't get lost! The event has moved from the Hofbrau to 21 Grand (449 23rd St.), and admission is $2. Call 510-452-2452 for table-space availability and other info.-- Stefanie Kalem

THU 4/3

A Bomber's Story

Something happened to Ted Kaczynski after he left suburban Chicago and went to Harvard -- something that turned him from a bright-but-unhappy mathematics student into a deeply bitter, thoroughly alienated man who eventually became known as the Unabomber. Alston Chase dug deep to learn the details of Kaczynski's story for his new book, Unabomber: The Making of an American Terrorist, and the book has plenty to say about the Cold War climate of fear and distrust that nurtured Kaczynski's murderous rage -- especially relevant because that fear and distrust is even more prevalent today, post-9/11. Author Chase, like Kaczynski a Harvard alum, comes to Cody's 2454 Telegraph Avenue bookstore in Berkeley Thursday evening (7:30 p.m.) to tell the awful truth. 510-845-7852 or www.codysbooks.com -- Kelly Vance

TUE 4/8

Andean Hearties

Inti-Illimani still climbing the heights

When a musical group is still touring after thirty years, you can only deduce that, at some point, it was great. Only rarely can you say it still is. But Inti-Illimani, the Chilean nueva canción ensemble set to perform at UC Berkeley's Zellerbach Auditorium on Tuesday, April 8, is rare and then some.How many world-renowned outfits -- and this one has shared stages with Peter Gabriel, Bruce Springsteen, Mercedes Sosa, Sting, Pete Seeger, Wynton Marsalis, and John Williams -- include not only guitar, violin, bongo, piccolo, and hammered dulcimer but also the lute-like charango, flutey quena, panpipey rondador, twelve-stringed tiple, and some thirty wind, string, and percussion instruments in all? And sings at least some of its South American and African-tinged songs of hope, struggle, and inspiration in Andean dialect? And was founded by a bunch of idealistic engineering students?

Three new members have joined the band, whose Zellerbach gig (8 p.m.) is part of Cal Performances' Celebración de las Culturas de Iberoamérica, and whose long and illustrious career the university honored officially with a Human Rights Award in 1997. Tickets: $20-$36. 510-642-9988.-- Anneli Rufus

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