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Experience A LEGIT PIZZA Delivery

The pizza guy is at my front door. But there's no cardboard box; there's something wrapped in butcher paper. And the pizza isn't even cooked. Yet it's one of the more exciting, original, flavorful pies you can get in the East Bay. How it works: Visit Pizza Matador's website, behold the awesome daily specials (such as the jamon serrano ham, pineapple, romesco and manchego pie, $23, and it's gentle zing and citrus bite). Pro tip: Anticipate your craving for Matador and order earlier in the day, before their pizzas sell out. Then, later, between the hours of 4-8 p.m., Matador will transport partially baked full pies. All you have to do is fire them up for a few minutes, then enjoy this high-quality, 100 percent organic delivery piping hot, as it should be. Bonus: No delivery charge (but, please, don't be a cheap ass, tip the driver). 510-394-5422, (NM)

Have Coffee That's Like Guinness For Breakfast

Highwire Coffee didn't just jump on the nitro coffee trend — the local company became a national pioneer when it started brewing the stuff in 2014. Then, it got all fancy by giving its nitro coffee a name, the Howling Wolf ($4). Titles aside, nitro coffee is already pretty fancy. Essentially, cold brew gets pumped up with nitrogen, then served on tap. The beer comparisons don't stop there. The result pours thick and creamy, with a distinct layer of foamy head. No need for cream or sugar, which would only distract from the coffee's effervescence and natural decadence. It's like Guinness for breakfast — and, OK, the beer comparisons officially stop there. 2049 San Pablo Avenue, Berkeley; 510-647-5270; 5655 College Avenue, Oakland; 510-653-0450; (JB)

If You Actually Have to Study this Summer ...

At Lindgren's Coffee & Café in Berkeley, summer schoolers can choose among a list of caffeinated classics to get through the grunt work. Or $15 mimosa pitchers to celebrate afterward! Tucked away near Shattuck Avenue, the cafe often has ample seating and, even more crucially, open charging outlets. It's even got a shaded back patio for larger groups, or for studiers trying to soak up the summer sun. Menu items such the $11 breakfast sandwich — eggs, bacon, avocado, tomato, and Swiss all loaded on house-made raisin bread — don't always align with a student's budget, but it will deliciously fuel the grind nonetheless. 2120 Dwight Way, Berkeley, 510-982-1905, (SJ)

Build a Robot

If you have a teen or pre-teen in your life who'd think that learning how to handle a welding torch is the raddest thing ever, you should check out the catalogue of weeklong day camps at The Crucible. The Oakland-based nonprofit might be the biggest advocate in the country for the preservation of such old-school industrial arts as welding, glassblowing, and blacksmithing. According to youth-program associate Ismael Plasencia, even camps that focus on more modern technologies take a scrappier, more low-tech approach than what you might expect: In the robotics camp, for instance, students build robots out of popsicle sticks and other repurposed materials instead of just using a ready-made kit. Plasencia's favorite camp? The one in which students design and build a bicycle from scratch over the course of the week. Most half-day classes run $300–$400, and kids who choose both a morning and evening session can make a full day of it. Need-based scholarships are available. 1260 Seventh Street, Oakland, 510-444-0919, (LT)

Teach your kid code

Silicon Valley tech companies have rightly taken heat for how few women occupy the highest leadership positions. At least one kids' summer camp would like to nip that trend in the bud: This summer, UC Berkeley will host Alexa Cafe, a tech camp for girls between the ages of 10 and 15. Sponsored by the Silicon Valley-based ID Tech, which runs hundreds of kids' tech camps all over the country, Alexa is a "cafe" in the loose, tech-startup coworking space sense of the word, as campers spend large chunks of the week lounging on beanbag chairs, laptop in hand. Joy Meserve, ID Tech's chief program officer, said the all-female setting helps free up girls hitting that dreaded "too cool for school" age group to be enthusiastic about, say, coding or video game design without worrying about what the boy sitting next to them is thinking. A weeklong session costs $949, plus $599 for girls who stay overnight in a Cal dorm. (LT)

Rescue an Animal

It's a fact: You're going to be lonely at some point this summer. And that's one reason why you should rescue an animal — you'll never not have someone by your side, ever again, and you'll feel pretty damn good bringing a buddy in need into your home. There are many animal-rescue options in the East Bay, including Oakland Animal Services (, East Bay SPCA (, Hopalong and Second Chance Animal Rescue ( and Berkeley Humane (, among other deserving spots. But be advised: Bringing a pet into your casa is a major responsibility (i.e., don't be some jerk who adopts a dog, but then leaves them alone all the time). That's just supplementing one lonely creature on this planet for another. Not cool. (NM)


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