Sad day.

Susan won’t be able to make art anymore but she’s still connecting people.  This is at Bob’s Machining Company at 2735 San Pablo Ave, Berkeley, CA.  I met a person who was doing the same thing that I was.  Nice to meet you, Wendy, and thank you for connecting us, Susan.  Thank you Kala for helping make this possible.

More from her project.


bike to work day 2011 and the bike away from work party

bike to work day 2011 was fun – here are some photos:



volunteers at one of the many east bay energizer stations.  This one was in berkeley, staffed by grizzly peak cyclists(?)  The woman is holding up little colorful bike pins.  They had snacks and coffee and information about the east bay bike coalition.  According to streetsblog SF, about 10,000 people biked to work in Alameda county, up 12.3% from last year.  I definitely saw a lot more cyclists out on the streets.




bike love


this photo was taken from the energizer station outside of actual cafe




people were out from Spokeland – a north oakland bike co-op.


after work, we headed to bike away from work party, where there were tons of neat bikes to check out:



a rusty paint job




leathery cowboy bike




this bamboo bike was really well done








the crucible was showing off some bikes modified by teenagers




the popcycle




actual cafe’s parklet




this bike was handcuffed to a speaker




a danish pedersen bike.  wood fenders, rims.  hammock seat.  stumey archer 3-speed internal rear hub. coaster brake.




bike, shoes, jeans, shirt, hat





and cyclecide was there with their deadly-looking-but-fun looking bikes and rides


It looked a little smaller than last year’s but was still a fun time.






Espresso at Blue Bottle, Local 123 and Farley’s East

I recently checked out Local 123 (2049 San Pablo Avenue Berkeley, CA) and Farley’s East (33 Grand Avenue Oakland, CA).  I also finally got around to visiting the blue bottle cafe near jack london square (300 Webster St Oakland, CA)

blue bottle cafe

espresso with blue bottle

the ristretto was predictably enjoyable – bright and with a bit of sweetness that lingered.  I also had a sandwich with meat from boccalone and some cookie to go with.  the space is nice – well-lit with natural light but pretty small  – there’s a cupping area and then more space in the back for bags and bags of coffee bean storage and roasting.

local 123

Local 123 is just south of University Ave on San Pablo – near Lanesplitter and Acme.

pretty rosetta
espresso in the patio

(apologies for the iphone photos)

local 123 brews flying goat coffee and they made a tasty ristretto.   I don’t remember details of the taste other than the fact that I really enjoyed it.  the two people working there who we interacted with were super friendly and the barista offered another shot if this one wasn’t to my liking.  the space is nice, with big prints of tasteful and uncheesy square-formatted naturey photos and a nice outdoor seating area.

farley’s east

they pull bottomless shots here from a la marzocco.  The espresso was not bad, but not as good as I’d enjoyed from local 123 and blue bottle.  compared to the two shots above, this one tasted a little staler and darker.  still not bad though.  they use beans roasted by sunrise coffee in san leandro.

espresso from farley's east

I liked their interior and the magazine selection and the friendly person at the counter who took my order.  I got a cold turkey sandwich – it was good.  there’s fun art on the walls and deception by blackalicious was playing as I picked up my sandwich.

it was a monday and the bakesale betty nearby was closed for the day.  I wonder how much more business area cafes receive on mondays and if there’s a correlation.  the windows of the subway next door were still broken as a result of the opportunistic rioting that took place after the mehserle verdict was announced.

subway window, broken

I saw quite a few windows being repaired in Oakland today:

window repair

brush-clearing goats along tunnel road

seeing a hillside crowded with goats was an unexpected part of yesterday’s bike ride.  I didn’t realize until it was pointed out to me later that they were being used to remove grass and weeds for fire control purposes.

goats chomping down

you can see a clear line between chomped and unchomped areas.  wow!

apparently there can be problems with the goats being too effective – they can cause soil erosion and can decimate the population of native plants if the goats are uncontrolled.

Other interesting things I found while searching the interwebs:

these people rent out goats for clearing brush: http://www.goatsrus.com/

the ups and downs of using goats to control fires: http://www.emagazine.com/view/?4663

after this, we continued up tunnel road and made a quick descent down claremont ave:

looking down claremont ave

after the rain

a photo looking west on ashby ave in elmwood, berkeley after the rain ended and the clouds started to clear.

and the sidewalk..

sidewalk on ashby ave

daylight savings


Daylight savings means more time to do stuff outside after work:

sunset during a ride through the oakland/berkeley hills

and the warmer weather means nicer rides on the weekends:

oakland and san francisco, from grizzly peak road

grizzly peak road. watch out for potholes on the way down.