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Surfing in the heat

On this stifling Wednesday, I’m trying to beat the heat with some cool tidbits from around the Interweb.

Becks is reposting some of her favorite blogs from Living In The O while she burns the man. Though a Playa-hata myself, I particularly like her blog comparing Black Rock City to Oakland. Last year, I used examples from the Art & Soul Festival to illustrate some local controversies. I’m much less thrilled than usual about the Festival this year, what with the absence of The Lovemakers or a headliner that appeals to my youthful demographic.

Though rejected from the festival lineup, Ghost Town-based jazz-funk ensemble Daemon and the Heathens released a demo CD with a raucous concert at Cafe Van Kleef Friday night. They brought down the house with an eerily familiar cover of The Talking Head’s Life During Wartime (“the sounds of gunshots, off in the distance / I’m getting used to it now”), with a few lyrics changed to place it firmly in West O (“this ain’t no Stork Club or goddamn Uptown”). If this were my MySpace page (no, you don’t get a link), I’d play the tune, but such are the limits of polite, political blogging.

A Better Oakland swiftly rebuts an article in the San Francisco Business Times claiming that the widely-discussed “condo glut” as a result of the 10k project is dragging condo resale prices down by 12%, with 1600 units on the market and developers converting unsold inventory into rentals in hopes of gaining profit in a few years when the market recovers. V Smoothe finds that single-family homes have plunged 36% in value over the same period, and median condo prices are now more than $100k over median house prices. Commenters seem to have drunk deep from the well of condo haterade, however.

Oakland Geology is a great diversion: Oakland’s colorful bedrock is one of the defining features of our hilly landscape. Inspired by a post, I found the Rock Ridge Rock a few weeks ago: my mother remembered it from when we lived in the neighborhood a decade ago. It’s now pretty much veiled by landscaping, but its top still looms over Acacia Avenue, near Village Market.

All Things Considered thinks Oakland needs a costumed superhero, Miss Carnivorous bemoans criminal coddling in “Gotham City / Oakland,” Brooklyn Avenue sees safety in pedestrian activity, and East Bay Conservative decides to avoid Oakland restaurants while waiting for long-term demographic change. Even Oliveto’s Tomato Dinners, Boss?

Posted in blogoaksphere, california, oakland.

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3 Responses

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  1. Raymond Moody says

    Does Oliveto’s even count as Oakland? I guess if Pasta Pomodoro got knocked off, anything is fair game…

  2. dto510 says

    Oliveto is in Oakland! It’s not even close to the border!

  3. Mary says

    A couple of decades ago, at least before 1989, I chatted with a woman who was sitting waiting for her ride near Piedmont Avenue. She was a little girl in a house in Rock Ridge, on April 18, 1906, and remembers feeling an earthquake enough to shake up the family a bit, but they weren’t really worried. They were having a pre-dawn family breakfast prior to sending Dad off to SF on the ferry to work for a few days. After breakfast, they went off to wave goodbye to him on the porch, and saw smoke rising from San Francisco. They had no idea, up on their rock, how bad the quake had been.

    After I heard that story, I started paying a lot of attention to the ground under houses I chose to live in.