Fall 2017 / issue 2
Straight from the Underground
Criticizing the Conversion Model
CCSF Has It...Why Don't We?
Tips and Tricks for Transfers
Students Share What They Have Learned
Podcasts Breathe New Life Into an Industry in Decline
55 Years of KALX
Keeping Alternative Radio Alive
Weekdays in the Bay
A Guide to Odd Nights Out
Solange's Ephemeral Rise at the Greek
Nina M Cestaro
Living & Dead Visit a Celebration
Dia de los Muertos at Berkeley City College
More Than Just the Winter Blues
Seasonal Affective Disorder and What It Can Teach Us
Keepin' It Fresh
Through the Eyes of Esther Suarez
BCC Zine Scene
Books Made With Heart
Derek Chartrand Wallace
Self-Defense on a Student Budget
Martial Arts for the Academic MAssES
Edgar J Rosales
Brewery Reviews from a College Student, for College Students
by Alexander Coates
The BCC VOICE is produced by students from English 14 and 15 at Berkeley City College, with funding from the Associated Students. A special thank you to the ASBCC, the BCC English Department, administrators, faculty, and students who make this school great! Visit us online at bccvoice.net.
On the Cover:
Abbey Kingsbury is a student at BCC who divides her time between the Bay Area and LA. “Hearst Avenue” is part of an ongoing series that mostly features urban and suburban scenes across the world that seem to exude a degree of ethereality. Kingsbury aspires to study Art History and Psychology at UC Berkeley.
Criticizing the Conversion Model
Photo: Batya Brose
Fall 2017, Issue 2 / bccvoice.net
It is a further and subsequent marginalization to imply that their experiences have scarred them in such a way as renders them fit only for a narrowly defined set of roles.
University of California, Berkeley's Underground Scholars Initiative has expanded into Berkeley City College. Ambassadors for the program can be seen tabling across from the front desk, helping to connect the formerly-incarcerated and system-impacted with resources to further their educational goals most Tuesdays throughout November and early December of the Fall 2017 semester.
"If I didn't have tattoos on my face, maybe," says Batya Brose, one of BCC's Underground Scholars Initiative ambassadors, when asked if she experienced difficulty in broadcasting her formerly-incarcerated status to fellow students, teachers and faculty. But for students whose physical remembrances are not as conspicuous such acknowledgement can be problematic, says Brose, "If you don't fit the part, if you don't fit the stigma of what a formerly incarcerated student looks like, it's very hard to want to involve yourself in something that puts that label on you." Hence, the outreach.
Even getting the word out can be difficult. "Some people think they don't qualify," explains Brose, "because they haven't been in prison or they haven't done a whole bunch of time. But regardless of how much time you do, it affects you … There are so many who have been incarcerated." And for each, a web of friends, family and loved-ones is impacted by a unique American system of incarceration.
The model, of using personal experience as a badge of authenticity to reach audiences who might otherwise be wary or closed off to the advances of such programs, has become common enough. Many resource pools directed at marginalized and deviantized populations use the street-cred of their members as a networking tool. Substance abuse rehabilitation, veterans' programs, sexual assault and abuse survivors, eating disorders recovery groups and addiction recovery services have all used or use this model to some degree and all share a common challenge of serving communities which must overcome lingering social stigmas in addition to their other trials and tribulations.
There's an intuitiveness to the approach; it smacks of common-sense and anecdotally, alumni of programs which employ such tactics report feeling more comfortable sharing their experiences with someone who can empathize, rather than merely sympathize. Sociologist Steven Spitzer, in 1975, referred to the notion of using reformed individuals to manage members of the deviant population to which they previously belonged, as "conversion," and categorized it as a systemic response to the potential political and social threat such individuals posed if allowed to re-enter unchecked into society.
However, it has largely been economic motivations which have spurred the proliferation of the conversion model. "Converts" are often volunteers or interns, or receive small stipends, or are compensated with non-monetary resources, such as room and board. Such spend-thrift and cost-suppression is often a necessity if these programs are to remain available and operating. Brose, in her role as Ambassador, is provided a $1000 stipend each semester.
Converts are some of the only individuals willing to engage with populations which have been marginalized and deviantized by the public at large. As a society, we have come to depend on the empathy of converts, and to pigeonhole the applicability of their experience to facilitate that dependence, because it seems easier than eliciting the kind of societal about-face necessary to address the issue otherwise.
The conversion model is problematic not only because it uses the formerly-incarcerated to re-socialize the formerly-incarcerated, or addicts to counsel addicts, or sexual assault and abuse survivors to console sexual assault and abuse survivors, but also and more so because it positions these well-intentioned environs as social boundaries to contain and direct the actions and attitudes of populations who are not allowed to escape the stigma of their pasts. It is a further and subsequent marginalization to imply that their experiences have scarred them in such a way as renders them fit only for a narrowly defined set of roles.
The role of convert is on primary display for individuals who utilize these programs. Brose, and presumably her employer, is acutely aware of this.
"I recruit; I serve as an icon," explains Brose, and her example does not go unnoticed. Brose, also employed as a counselor at a substance abuse clinic, often asks her clients, "'What do you want to do when you get out of here?' or 'what are your goals?' or 'what are things you want to work towards?' And most of them say," recounts Brose, "'I want to work with people who have been through the same things I have.'" Undoubtedly these aspirations stem from good intentions and from having admirable individuals lending their time and efforts to noble causes, but the feelings of guilt and indebtedness which, while worked fastidiously against by many recovery programs, are intrinsic to the conversion model and spoken to — loudly — by the image of ex helping hopefully-soon-to-be-ex.
It's difficult to criticize the well-intentioned, especially when the results are often encouraging: "I can speak for myself," says Brose, "When you've done so much bad in your life, to be able to do so much good, it feels like it weighs it out. … It's so rewarding to help people in the places where you started falling off." And to be able to offer a path less fraught with the barriers to success that stand in the way of so many recovering from trauma or addiction or the often-incredible feat of coming-of-age in America is almost irresistible. "The things that would be considered stigma are beneficial," says Brose of working within the convert model, "It's a lot easier of a career path for people who have been addicted or [formerly incarcerated]. … I've gotten turned away from being a dishwasher at San Pablo Casino because of my tattoos, where no one could see me and I still got turned away."
But we cannot, as a community, tie our heart-strings to our critical faculties. We cannot, as a community, allow ourselves the easy ignorance of assigning addicts to addicts' problems, or pinning ex-cons' problems to ex-cons because it is a failure to recognize those problems — and their solutions — as belonging to us all.
Images: Wikimedia Commons
Determine if IGETC is right for you
Complete as many lower division major requirements possible
Take classes at four year colleges and universities through the cross-enrollment program at BCC
Organize your paperwork and draft constructive questions for academic advising sessions. Meet with counselors from both BCC and your college of choice, if possible. Ask for help editing your admissions essay
Check out UC TAP
Take advantage of our neighbor, UC Berkeley's libraries, classes and other resources
Never stop asking questions and verifying information; it's a process!
How come in San Francisco they can make college tuition-free? Why don't [we] do it in our community?
Sen. Bernie Sanders asks the question on everyone's mind during a rally at CCSF earlier this year.
CCSF Has It ...Why Don't We?
On Sept. 22, 2017, teachers, students and members of the public packed into the Diego Rivera Theatre at Community College of San Francisco's Ocean Campus, to hear Senator Bernie Sanders speak. YouTube videos of the event show a full house, with Sen. Sanders revisiting the familiar topics of income inequality, universal health care, and corporate accountability. The occasion for the Vermont senator's visit, however, was congratulatory, as this semester marks the first since 1983 that San Francisco residents could attend classes at CCSF free of charge.
Free City — a two-year, free-tuition pilot program established by the San Francisco City Council and backed by the city's voters — is a victory for those who campaigned for the program, an asset to the district-reported 65,000 students currently enrolled at the school and a step closer to universal free education. But for Peralta Colleges, an obvious question now hangs in the air, one that Sen. Sanders posed during his rally at CCSF: "How come in San Francisco they can make college tuition-free? Why don't [we] do it in our community?"
The reasons why are complicated, and have to do with the structure of different community college systems.
"Structurally, CCSF is very different from almost any other community college," Peralta Community College District Spokesperson Jeffrey Heyman explained in an interview with the BCC Voice. As CCSF's Policies and Administrative Procedures explain, the school is run by a Board of Trustees elected by San Francisco voters. It's one board elected by one city, making it an ideal proving ground for a free tuition program.
Peralta Colleges are also controlled by a Board of Trustees, but one elected by seven different East Bay cities. This makes it far more complicated for a free college voting initiative, like the one passed in San Francisco, to be organized in the East Bay.
Another key to Free City's implementation is where the money comes from. Essentially, the program is funded by San Francisco's high-value real estate. In 2016, San Francisco residents voted "yes" on Proposition W, increasing the real estate transfer tax on the sale of residential or commercial properties worth over $5 million by a fraction of a percent. The move is expected to increase annual tax revenue in the city by an average of $45 million, according to the San Francisco Controller. It is from this pool of money that the city of San Francisco is using $5.4 million to fund Free City. While it's possible that something similar could be instituted in the East Bay, the coordination of a seven-city progressive property tax is, to say the least, a formidable undertaking.
This is not to say there aren't already similar programs available to BCC and other Peralta Colleges students. In fact, according to the Chancellor's Office of California Community Colleges, nearly half of students enrolled in the California Community College system (which Berkeley City College belongs to) already receive free tuition through a Board of Governors Fee Waiver, which is available to students who meet certain financial requirements.
In addition to the BOG waiver, there is also the Berkeley Promise, a scholarship that pays $1500 over two years to community college students, and $8000 over four years to students who transfer to a university. And it goes without saying that East Bay residents have the distinct advantage of not paying San Francisco's exorbitant rent prices, which in the end saves far more money than free tuition.
Still, this does not solve the obvious inequity in which one side of the Bay offers free education to its residents, while the other does not. With the seed planted in San Francisco, it is unlikely the issue will go away. And according to the Long Beach Post, A.B. 19, a bill signed by Governor Jerry Brown in October will, if funded by next year's state budget, take the cause a step further by providing first-year funding for all community college students in California.
Despite obvious support behind free education, any legislation involving tax dollars is sure to generate a fight. On a Reddit thread that announced the governor's signing of A.B. 19, a user named Geoffles commented, "I'd love to be corrected, but this seems like a stupid idea. The student-to-graduate conversion rate is already very low, and the existing waiver system makes prices negligible. I feel like we're about to spend 30 million dollars on a whole bunch of nothing." (The $30 million figure was taken from an article in The Mercury News).
Currently, there is no organized campaign behind free tuition for BCC or any other Peralta college. In an interview with the BCC Voice, Athena Waid, a community organizer for American Federation of Teachers 2121 who was involved in getting Free City passed, says their next step may be to go statewide and fight for free tuition for all California community colleges, though she says she's not sure they will be organized enough to get such a measure on the ballot in time for the next election cycle. Regardless, Free City has set an important precedent.
"We're long-term committed to this," Waid said. "Once you get this kind of program going, it's hard to shut it down."
story + photo by ADAM MANN
by ABBEY KINGSBURY
Transferring to a four-year college requires more than good grades and extracurricular activities. There exists a convoluted obstacle course between students and their desired college which involves endless paperwork, meetings and navigating the twisted labyrinth of the administrative bureaucracy. Berkeley City College has many resources for transfers but not all of them are necessarily advertised. Occasionally, students even claim to be misled by counselors who provide inadequate information. It seems as though there is no algorithm for success as a transfer — no clear set of steps one can ascend. However, the BCC Voice compiled a few pro tips and tricks to provide some guidance and structure for transfer students who are trying to find their way.
Some of students' biggest questions arise in the beginning of the transfer process. What is the first step towards transferring? When asked this question, Arman Safarian, who works the front desk in the academic counseling office on the second floor, said, "For my job, I would say 'schedule an appointment with an academic counselor,' but as a student, my advice would be to go to assist.org." Assist.org is exactly what academic counselors reference during an appointment. If you enter your community college information, in articulation with whichever campus you aim to transfer to, along with your area of study, the website will provide a list of classes that are required for that major as well as any classes offered at BCC that could satisfy those requirements. If meeting with a counselor is not immediate enough, the real first step is to check assist.org.
Another fundamental component of the transfer process is taking the required courses. In the academic counseling office on the second floor there is a form called the IGETC, which stands for "Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum." The form leads you through the classes you must take in order to transfer to either a University of California or California State University campus as a junior. This is a crucial piece of paperwork for transfers; however, its role in the process can be less than straight forward. There are some courses on the IGETC that are not actually required for transferring to a specific UC, or any UC for that matter, because the IGETC is meant for those who are applying to a range of UC and CSU campuses. If this sounds like your situation, then it would be a good idea to follow the IGETC verbatim and then verify your IGETC certification.
Academic counselors are available to guide students through a more in-depth explanation of the transfer process. However, when speaking with Grace Treffinger, a former BCC student who transferred to UC Berkeley in 2016, she admitted that she "got the wrong information on filling requirements, but resolved the issue because [she] met with two different advisors and asked them both the same questions — one at BCC and the other at Berkeley." She suggests verifying information from BCC counselors with UC Berkeley counselors. However, it is often difficult to get a time to meet with these counselors. "Seriously," said Treffinger, "keep a folder together with all of your forms, transfer documents, etcetera, and a running list of questions for your advisor so you don't forget them before you meet." She emphasizes asking questions, including asking about "what questions you might be missing." Academic advisors can also help you with your admissions essay. "I completely rewrote my essays the night before [the application deadline] because of [an academic advisor's] advice," said Treffinger. Long story short: do your own research in order to make meeting with academic advisors as productive as possible.
BCC students are also eligible for the school's Cross Enrollment Program. This opportunity is not only valuable to the transfer process, but can enhance your academic experience in general. Treffinger, who took classes concurrently at UC Berkeley while at BCC, strongly suggests doing so. As a member of the Peralta Community College District, you have the opportunity to enroll in classes at UC Berkeley, CSU East Bay, and Mills. You have to be enrolled at least half time at BCC in order to take these classes, but they are a great opportunity to knock out some lower division requirements before you transfer. You can find the cross-enrollment form on the second floor in the Academic Counseling office. Another handy resource is the UC TAP. TAP stands for Transfer Admissions Planner and it is just a handy tool to keep track of classes you're taking and plan to take.
Lastly, one of the biggest takeaways I've had from the transfer experience is that the UC Berkeley campus is a great resource. Doe Library, Bechtel, and the East Asian Library are open to the public, allowing immersion into the campus study culture in order to become acquainted with a possible future school. You can also sit in on most UC Berkeley lectures, which is a good way to figure out what you want to major in. For cross-enrollment students, a Cal ID is provided, which allows access to other libraries, like Moffitt, as well as gym access and student discounts around town. Although the transfer process is not easy, given the choice, I would do it again. Above all: take advantage of your resources and communicate with your fellow students. If it were not for my classmates at BCC, I would not be as well off in the transfer process.
Tips and Tricks for Transfers
story + photo by ANDI RUSK
Podcasts Breathe New Life Into an Industry in Decline
The BCC Voice asked 50 students, staff and faculty members about their podcast listening habits; this is what we found.
36% listen to podcasts at least once a week
This American Life: An NPR-syndicated show featuring fascinating, informative and often deep, moving stories on a different theme every week.
Reveal: A show dedicated to investigative reporting, produced by the Center for Investigative Reporting in Emeryville, Calif.
Reply All: A light-hearted production with two charismatic hosts who investigate internet-related topics like mysterious Craigslist postings and Pepe the Frog.
Beautiful Stories from Anonymous People: In this deeply humanistic show, comedian Chris Gethard takes calls from anonymous listeners and talks with them about their lives for a full hour.
Pod Save America: Former Obama staffers offer an insider's perspective on White House politics. Full of snark and guests like Hillary Clinton and Ta-Nehisi Coates.
The Buggles' "Video Killed the Radio Star" launched the beginning of Music Television in 1981. The implication at that time was that music videos were going to steal the success of radio stars. That isn't quite what ended up happening. Fast forward roughly 15-20 years, and one could argue that the internet killed radio, period.
In the last twenty years, the way we listen to radio, and music in general, has shifted. An entire generation of people are now coming of age who may have never even listened to live radio. People stream music on the internet and smartphone apps. When they do listen to radio, the choices have been narrowed down to commercial stations who have a pre-programmed set list that essentially plays on a loop. The DJs on such stations might as well be as automated as the playlists. They have no say in what music gets played.
Luckily, Bay Area listeners are blessed by the radio gods with an eclectic choice of non-commercial stations to listen to. KALX, University of California Berkeley's radio station, is one of them.
KALX was founded in 1962, broadcasting its first shows using a transmitter crafted from a cigar box. Over the following decades the station went from AM to FM, basement to bigger basement, and eventually settled into Barrows Hall in 1995 where it has been broadcasting to Berkeley, Oakland and the greater Bay Area ever since. KALX also has a live streaming feed and an app for smartphones, giving it international reach. Additionally, it is one of the only college radio stations that broadcasts 24/7. Fifty-five years after its humble beginnings, the station still works hard everyday to maintain diverse and quality programming.
KALX manages this largely by its staff of over 200 volunteers. Not only UC Berkeley students are welcome to join as volunteers, but community members are also invited to work there. As a free-form, alternative radio station, such diversity of members is reflected in its programming.
Justin Gorneau, a current senior at UC Berkeley, came to KALX because he grew up idolizing his local college radio station. "I dismissed commercial radio stations as always playing the same thing," Gorneau explained. "When I came to Berkeley I saw my chance to get involved with an organization that exists only for itself and its listeners. Being at KALX has given me the opportunity to receive free training in multiple fields I'd have no chance to receive anywhere else." Gorneau is referring to the many departments which volunteers can choose to explore at KALX. In addition to the wide range of music that gets played, KALX produces news, sports, arts and entertainment, and public affairs programming. Volunteers can choose to work in as many departments as they have time for. They can also learn how to become DJs with no prior experience.
KALX runs on not only dedicated volunteers, but also on a small, passionate staff that oversees the general operation of running a radio station. Lena Ghazarian, a UC Berkeley graduate, came to KALX while she was a student. Since graduating five years ago she has been KALX's Operations Manager. Ghazarian believes that the lasting success of a station like KALX is because "Our DJs are your neighbors, peers and coworkers ... the listening experience and relationship built between KALX and its audience is very personal. Algorithms and internet radio cannot localize anywhere near as well as a local, community-focused station like KALX."
A strong 55 years and a hugely successful annual pledge drive speaks to how highly listeners value a station like KALX. While other local offerings such as KPFA and KALW definitely hold an important place in Bay Area independent radio, they are not necessarily competing for the same demographic as KALX. People who want a station that will both surprise and comfort, with DJs who feel like old friends, return to KALX time and time again. This is part of the reason that nearly two decades after the arrival of internet radio, KALX continues to be successful.
Ghazarian summed up how alternative radio stays relevant in the modern age, "As more and more of our experiences throughout our day are becoming automated, people crave and appreciate the humanness that radio provides. It feels very personal and leaves the listener feeling like they are in a conversation with the DJ/programmer." Additionally, radio still remains a practical and reliable form of communication. Ghazarian explains, "In a major natural or political disaster, I'd put my money on radio over all the others when it comes to surviving the odds. ... Radio will always prevail when our technological infrastructure crumbles. Radio will survive the literal or metaphorical storm."
Whether you love music, news, or just like to have a radio on as background noise, KALX is a solid choice for local programming. It's a great way to stay connected to community issues and events while also discovering music you will not hear on any other stations. KALX has something for everyone, a reason it has managed to become and remain a Bay Area institution.
If you are interested in finding out more about how to volunteer at KALX you can visit their website at kalx.berkeley.edu. Three volunteer recruitments are held per year, one of which is open to non-students. To listen to KALX you can tune in to 90.7 on your FM dial or stream on the internet via the website. There is also an app for KALX you can use on your smartphone.
by MAYA KASHIMA
Keeping Alternative Radio Alive
The typical Berkeley City College student is a person of color, more likely a woman than a man, and almost certainly a millennial. According to the school's 2015 Self-Evaluation Report, the average student is 26 years old, with a plurality between 19 and 24. Most have received their high school diploma or GED and are working towards an associate's degree or transfer to a four-year institution. BCC does not release data on student incomes, but the U.S. Census Bureau reports that for East Bay residents, the median income for those with some college completed was $40,467 as of 2012.
The school's population shares little in common with the average NPR listener, an employed, college-educated man between the ages of 35 and 54. A whopping 87 percent of those who tune in are white and earn a mean annual salary of $85,675, per survey data collected by NPR Audience Insights in 2015. Presumably, most BCC students caught in traffic would opt for sports on KNBR, hip hop on KMEL, or top 40 pop on Star 101.3 over the droll murmur of "Fresh Air" with Terry Gross.
For NPR, this presents a major problem. A 2015 Nielsen report indicates a sharp decline in listeners of almost all ages, particularly Millennials and younger Gen Xers. NPR and its local affiliate stations rely heavily on listener support to stay afloat, and a shrinking audience combined with the Trump administration's plan to eliminate all funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting threatens to jeopardize the future of public radio.
NPR now has one last hope — podcasts. Though in many ways an analogue to public radio, podcasts are cheaper to produce and easier to access, the end result is a medium with more diverse content and listeners.
"Historically, entertainment has been about big corporations producing the content, you know, where you need a huge amount of money and infrastructure to create anything. Now people are open to consuming that of a lower production quality if it's more authentic," said Maeven McGovern of the Oakland nonprofit Youth Radio in an interview with the BCC Voice.
Kirsi Goldynia, a producer of CNN's online "Opinion" section, aims to bring that kind of authenticity to her podcast "Sex, Drugs, and Healthcare." In an interview with the BCC Voice, she described her show, a low-budget, one-woman production, as a "humanistic spin on the advancement of healthcare." She agrees that shows like hers fill the needs of niche audiences, creating a curated experience for a generation with a pick-and-choose mentality. Podcasts are on the rise, she believes, "for the same reason that Netflix and HBO are so popular among young people. We can consume the content we want, when we want, with virtually no interruption."
To adapt to a changing media landscape, public radio producers must adopt a mindset of, "If you can't beat 'em, join 'em." NPR and its affiliate stations have started to pour more resources into podcast production. In March, the producers of "This American Life," a popular syndicated radio show and podcast, released "S-Town." Unlike most podcasts, all episodes were available for download at once, catering to what Goldynia calls the "new-age binge culture."
Public radio has also begun to answer calls for more diversity in the industry. Last year, NPR created the podcast "Code Switch," which features discussions on race and culture in everyday life. The show asks questions like, "Why don't more black and brown people hike?" and, "Why do we still care about Tupac?" Leah Donnella, a news assistant for the show, told the BCC Voice, "The mission of public radio is to educate, inform and challenge all listeners — and our target demographic is all Americans. But we can't do those things without incorporating a diverse array of voices and perspectives into our programming."
NPR also airs "Snap Judgment," an Oakland-based production. Its format of personal stories set against a percussive beat borrows from the host Glynn Washington's slam poetry background, reflecting the vibrancy of the East Bay's literary and performance scenes. And "Snap" is only one of a few shows produced in the area, most of which feature people of color as hosts. "Radio Row," located near the intersection of Telegraph and Broadway, is coincidentally a gathering spot for the diverse, urban millennial audience NPR so desperately courts. The future of radio, then, might just look like downtown Oakland.
The KALX library holds over 100,000 records and CDs.
86% have listened to at least one podcast
A Guide to Odd Nights Out
Free: The Starry Plough, an Irish nightclub, hosts a free matinee concert from 4-7 p.m. at 3101 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley.
All Ages: Oakland Museum of California has First Sundays for only $5 all day long. Check it out at 1000 Oak St., Downtown Oakland.
Special: Club SF Circus has free Sunday night juggling classes at 755 Frederick St., San Francisco.
PROTIP: "Whether you've never held juggling balls in your life or you regularly toss around flaming knives for fun, Circus Center's juggling classes have a place for you," boasts the Circus Center's website. Visit circuscenter.org/juggling for more information about how to register and make circus friends.
The New Parish is host to unique events that bring out the best of the Bay Area's electronic and hip-hop acts. The live art, open concept venue and stage design are the usual attractions. Photos: Zita Molnar
IN THE BAY
Free: Housepitality DJ Party and Free Champagne is held at F8, a multi-room lounge, nightclub and bar in SoMa at 1192 Folsom St., San Francisco.
All Ages: Dandelion Chocolate Factory hosts their Guided Tour and Tasting at 740 Valencia St., San Francisco.
PROTIP: "We also offer educational classes, and are open to the public seven days a week," said host and chocolatier Maggie McBride.
Special: Wormhole Wednesdays Live Music and Live Art Shows at New Parish, 1743 San Pablo Ave., Oakland.
PROTIP: It's less expensive to get tickets at the door than it is online. Event coordinator Morgan McCloud stated of the last event that "(Tickets) will sell out, but we will release 200 extra tickets at the door, so be there early." This event is not to be missed by anyone who likes electronic music or the music festival atmosphere. Find tickets for this and other events at thenewparish.com
Before You Go: Free For Students — Bring your student ID for discounts at any museum event. Go see the student help desk for assistance if you do not already have your BCC student ID card.
Visit the Student Service Programs page on the BCC website to find information about acquiring a student ID to save even more at local events.
At Wormhole Wednesdays, local artists are encouraged to bring their own art equipment and paint live for attendees, while performers of all kinds come to practice light shows, hooping and even poi (fire dancing).
A giddy group of jugglers practicing near the Circus Center after the free classes offered to novices. Photo: Stephanie Miller
All Ages: When the desire strikes to wax nostalgic about old movies and meet new people at the same time, The New Parkway Theater hosts Popcorn and Poker: Movie Trivia Night at 474 24th St., Oakland.
Special: Motown on Mondays is fun, fresh and hot at the Legionnaire Saloon in Oakland. It is also free before 9 p.m., so get to 2272 Telegraph Ave., Oakland, early enough to make this event as light on your wallet as you'll want to be on your feet.
Free: Legion of Honor hosts First Tuesdays at the de Young Museum.
PROTIP: "Parking is first come first serve so it's a hike up to the museum, but the views are most spectacular in the western half of the city. If you come and picnic there, usually there are some well-to-do folks who will give up their tickets so you might get in for free," says life-long resident of San Francisco, Susan Wurden. 50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive, San Francisco.
All Ages: Poetry Tuesdays, (most Tuesdays) 6:30 p.m.. North Beach Library, 850 Columbus Ave., San Francisco.
Special: In a BCC exclusive interview, local comic and event host, Mean Dave says, "In the East Bay I recommend: Tuesdays at Layover and #HellaFunny at Starline Social Club." Anyone with interest in comedy better check it out at 2236 Martin Luther King Jr Way, Oakland.
by STEPHANIE MILLER
The San Francisco Bay Area is world-renowned for arts, culture, music and performance. Part of what makes the area surrounding Berkeley City College so wonderful for students, faculty and locals is the bustling nightlife that hosts just about any interest.
Most occupations for students require workers to be present on Friday nights, Saturdays and Sundays, which are traditionally reserved for leisure. In light of this generality, "industry nights," or special events for those who work in the field, are generally held on weekdays. This gives those who are working their way through school by mopping up at the end of the night or taking tickets at the door some reprieve. The following events are by the industry and for the industry, so that working residents have a chance to experience the best of what The Bay has to offer, while keeping a busy weekend schedule.
After speaking with organizers of various events throughout Berkeley and the surrounding area, the BCC Voice has compiled some advice, tips, secrets and special invitations to summon even the busiest Berkeley City College students for a night out. For the busy student who has that odd day off, here is a list of recurring events that take place on weekdays. All of the events have been running for over a year, in the East Bay or San Francisco (and are located within a mile of BART).
Free: Dancehall Thursdays offers dancehall reggae, Afro-Caribbean cuisine, and much more. Level 13, 341 13th St., Oakland
PROTIP: It is free if you RSVP at level13oakland.com
All Ages: After Dark Adult Hours at the San Francisco Exploratorium has scientific marvels for the curious kid in all of us. They have exhibits on everything from cannabis to chemical reactions. Pier 15 The Embarcadero, San Francisco.
PROTIP: Come from 6-10 p.m. for the main events, and bring cash for science-experiment-themed treats in the cafe.
Special: Asian Art Museum has $10 Thursday Nights. 200 Larkin St., San Francisco.
PROTIP: Located two blocks from Civic Center BART, the breathtaking three stories of pan-Asian artwork is perfect for an accessible and cultured date night.
The Exploratorium is one the most aesthetically pleasing hang-outs in all of San Francisco, and it's educational too! This is an exhibit is a coyly psychedelic place to rest in between spurts of curiosity. Photo: Stephanie Miller
The Living and Dead were free to come and take treats from the altar at the Dia de los Muertos festival at Berkeley City College, Nov. 1 and 2, 2017.
Solange Knowles is powered by the sheltered core of pain, crafting pulses of song and dance in a comforting afterglow. On the final night of her "Orion's Rise" fall tour, the genre-bending artist invited her congregation of concert-goers to join in a celestial body of strength. Beyond talent and celebrity, Solange Knowles is the modern deity of fortitude, and leads her fans through a lasting meditation into the uncertain future.
The harsh October sun ascended beside me on my journey to the Greek Theater. As fellow eager fans lined up along the sidewalk, Solange began her sound check, and I felt equal parts excitement and relief. When I first listened to Solange's 2016 album, "A Seat at the Table," I didn't expect her voice to guide me through the following months of confusion and disarray in American society. A year later, when she announced a second show date to her revered fall tour, I saw this as an occasion to honor the anniversary of a life-changing healing experience.
Solange cultivated a fan base known for their shared creative energy. The people I encountered were prepared for a night of celebration. The clop of tall block heels and jingle of beaded tapestries thrown over the shoulder complemented the light conversation taking place. One woman wove flowers into her hair and another wore twisted braids that fell to the back of their knees. The person next to me peered over a copy of Angela Davis' "Women, Race and Class." One individual, with defined dancer's limbs and professional composure, performed a silent interpretive dance to the music playing from their bulky over-the-ear headphones.
The concert took place on the final night of the celestial event which shares the name of Solange's tour: Orion's Rise. In ancient Egypt, the Orion constellation had great significance. The three pyramids of Giza were built to recreate the shape of the constellation itself. Writers Robert Bauval and Adrian Gilbert co-authored "The Orion Mystery," documenting their findings about the deliberate, celestially-driven construction of the pyramids. They wrote that "the pyramids were much more than just tombs: they were nothing less than a replica of Heaven on Earth."
Solange's set featured two pyramids which flanked a large sphere balanced on a wide staircase, all in white. The large geometric set pieces echoed the pyramids and Egyptian mythology. According to writer Andrew Collins in a blog post about the constellation, "the deceased king accessed a star portal corresponding with the astronomical coordinates of the Orion constellation. Reaching here permitted the soul entry to a sky world seen as the location of the afterlife."
Solange opened with "Rise" as a salutation to the sun's departure and the night sky's entrance. From there, she performed her most powerful songs about despair, pain, and loss such as "Cranes in the Sky," "Don't You Wait," and "Weary." Though I was in a theater with hundreds of people, I felt myself receding into my own consciousness. In that moment of reflection, I felt completely alone, with only Solange's voice guiding me through a blue fog of meditation. I could barely detect the shivering bass and onset of the cold.
It wasn't until Solange began "F.U.B.U." that I began to wake, from a wobbly daze to the increasing tempo and energy of the fan-favorite track about ownership of the black experience. With lyrics such as "Don't clip my wings before I learn to fly / I didn't come back on the Earth to die" and the recitation of the phrase "This shit is for us," I sensed the theater, the majority of which was black, rising together in understanding. As a non-black person, one of the final lines, "Don't feel bad if you can't sing along / Just be glad you got the whole wide world" has helped me navigate my relationship with "A Seat at the Table."
Solange ended the performance with one last red-washed hurrah: "Don't Touch My Hair." Sophia Sanzo-Davis, who attended the concert, shared with the BCC Voice that it was a "spiritual moment" for her.
"I believe that hair plays a significant role not only in how others perceive you, but in how you perceive yourself … It's refreshing to see an artist like Solange create a positive attitude regarding black hair," said Sanzo-Davis.
Since its release, "A Seat at the Table" has been revered as a beacon, shining a light on the experience of black women in America. Throughout the album, Solange speaks directly to and for her community, sharing stories of anger, redemption, and strength. I connect to her work through its meditative energy and unique artistry, but also through her exaltation of the black female experience. Solange is an icon of diverse, intersectional feminism founded in understanding and acceptance, and though I am not her target audience, I am touched by her indestructible sense of self.
by ANASTASIA LE
The set of Solange's "Orion's Rise" fall tour at the Greek Theater on Oct. 22, 2017. Photo: Sophia Sanzo-Davis
Dia de los Muertos at Berkeley City College
Solange's Ephemeral Rise at the Greek
story + photo by NINA M CESTARO
On Nov. 1 and 2, 2017, a large crowd with a mariachi band, colorful six-by-four foot altar, card games, and fresh made tamales, juice, pan dulce (sweet bread) and horchata from Mi Tierra in West Berkeley, celebrated Dia de los Muertos in the atrium of Berkeley City College.
One reason for the the Latinx Leadership Club's participation in this week's events was to present Latinx students with opportunities to step up and experience leadership and community, said Paula Torres, President of the club.
"In El Salvador, as in Mexico, the things one does on Dia de los Muertos are visit the grave sites, bring photos and clothing, dress up, bring their favorite foods and/or flowers and celebrate the life of their loved ones on the other side," said Alexa Montalvo, political science major at Berkeley City College, soon to transfer to San Francisco State.
"The altars," according to Ricardo Mora, vice president of the Latinx Leadership Cultural Club, "are representative of the communication between the living and those who have passed on. The ancestors come and take a taste of the sweets or rum and go back to the other side and by so doing, spark the memory within the living of what's important in life. That's why we put flowers, colorful objects and candy on the altars — to bring the loved-ones in spirit closer — and offer them something like thanks, since they gave us life."
Mariella Miranda Thaning, the club advisor, was present and encouraged students to speak names of their beloved who have passed into the spirit world, and asked for a moment for the eight victims who were killed in the Manhattan terrorist attack two days ago. Thaning is a part-time Communication Studies instructor at Berkeley City College, as well as at Cuñada College in Redwood City, and also advises the Latinx Leadership Cultural Club in their activities and beyond. She sees her role as mentor to nudge students to stretch beyond their comfort level, take back the reigns of their lives and speak up in classes. She said,"I love this kind of event, which looks simple and harmless, but is really a way for me to contact students who have had invisible identities for so long to come into a more empowered sense of self and community, and be able to speak to anyone in any context. It's about building bridges."
Thaning illustrated a story about how her mentorship helps people like Ricardo M., who was extremely shy upon first meeting and now picks up the microphone and leads the electric chairs games, and speaks up in his classes with no problem.
There were at least 120 people who attended both Dia de los Muertos events, and BCC Voice asked about students' motivation to attend.
Second-year engineering student Leo Chan said, "I came because when I heard the music, I had to come down and check it out." He said he really appreciates the way these activities promote unity among people from different cultures and make learning about another culture possible.
Shyhab Mughish, a business major and student originally from Yemen, said, "I was in the Muslim Student Association and heard the music and feel like it's an interesting and unique event to attend. We don't have anything like this holiday in our culture." He said overall it was an enjoyable event and that he would do it again and would tell people to come next year.
Christine Aliziga was studying in the Learning Resource Center on BCC's first floor when she "heard the Mexican music calling her name and decided to check it out. I love events that let people gather, hear music and eat." She said the number of attendees exceeded her expectations.
Christobal Marin, Latinx Leadership and Cultural Club member, was present. "It was a huge success with the piñata, the dancing, and the hundred or so people who attended."
John Williamson, media major and sophomore at Berkeley City College, said, "If I had grown up with the belief that the dead are divinely invited to come visit once a year, then death wouldn't have been such a big deal."
Maya Kashima, President of the Intercultural Union of BCC was present and came to speak at the invitation of the Latinx Leadership and Cultural Club, because it's important to see other cultures and give mutual support she said.
LIVING & DEAD VISIT A CELEBRATION
KEEPIN' IT FRESH
More Than Just the Winter Blues
Seasonal Affective Disorder and What It Can Teach Us
story + photo by HANNAH LITWIN
Photo: Alexander Coates
by DORIS KIAMBATI
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This semester is almost over and so is the heat wave. Shifting seasons can influence our moods and elicit a wide array of responses. While some barely notice, there are also those with Seasonal Affective Disorder, referred to as Seasonal Depression, or "SAD." If you belong to this latter group, with the winter comes a crushing sense of gloom and futility.
Although a specific cause hasn’t been identified, those in the field (including Dr. Richard Litwin, who spoke to The Voice) theorize that those with SAD have higher levels of melatonin produced in their bodies than the rest of us do (all of us produce more melatonin in the winter compared with the rest of the year).
A local named Tawnia who knows a thing or two about managing her SAD symptoms spoke with the The BCC Voice about how she does this. Traditional light therapy gives her migraines, so the key for her is plenty of sunshine and fresh air. From sitting by an open window in the mornings to going for walks later in the day, the prescription for SAD is one that tends to work for any of us, SAD or not.
How do you know if you are just moody, or if your brain has a chemical imbalance? This is what psychologists are for. As students, we are all too familiar with mounting pressure towards the end of the year. Some stress is part of being human. Take a break from the books to step outside, because your mental clarity may depend on it. Berkeley City College students should remember that if they are attending classes this semester, they have access to the Wellness Center, which is located on the other side of K's Coffee and provides health services (including acupuncture, massage, and counseling). These services are free to all registered students.
Free produce offered Mondays from 12-3pm in the BCC atrium.
The BCC Voice sat down with part-time faculty member Esther Suarez, who is currently assisting in facilitating the UMOJA village space, to find out more about her chosen diet. Suarez shares how her diet has greatly improved her health.
What is your diet? How would you classify it? What does it entail?
I tell people that I am a high-fruit raw vegan. That means I predominantly eat seasonal, organic, fresh and sometimes dried fruits throughout the day. In the early evening, I typically have a very large salad or other raw vegan dishes. I love my greens too! My diet includes smaller portions of seeds and nuts. I also like a lot of sprouts. During the winter months, I occasionally have a little cooked vegan foods such as yams, quinoa, etc. And I like seaweeds. For drinks, I make plenty of fresh juices and smoothies daily. Finally, I take vitamin supplements for extra nutrient support since store-bought produce is not grown in remineralized soils. Variety is important and I get plenty of it by eating the colors of the rainbow daily. Fruit is my main source of fuel and since having done this for so long now, I know it’s working for me. My blood tests prove it.
How long have you practiced raw veganism? And what were your initial reasons?
I have been experimenting with the raw vegan diet (predominantly raw, 100 percent vegan) for approximately 14 years now. (I’m not experimenting with being vegan. I’m committed to veganism for the rest of my life.) I went vegetarian in my mid-teens because my mother became one. I was really happy about making the change with her. Unfortunately, I didn’t stick with it 100 percent throughout my young adult years and wound up becoming ill in my mid-thirties as a result. My mother was vegan by then and just told me, “You’re sick because you’re toxic.” When I finally stopped taking what she told me personally, I became a raw vegan. I didn’t know I was raw at the time, I was just following my instinct for needing fresh foods. Eating this way also aligns with my personal ethics — trying to do the least harm, being kind, animal welfare, raising awareness around making changes within systems in which food insecurities and injustice still exist, ending environmental racism, and caring for the environment.
While speaking to Suarez about how being a raw vegan has affected her health as a woman, she also shed some light on her menopausal journey.
Do you think that menopausal symptoms are intensified for women due to mainstream diets or is that change just an individual one?
I’ve observed other women who eat similarly and who are in the same age group (50+). They don’t tend to experience challenging menopausal symptoms the way many women eating mainstream diets do, so it seems that there is a strong correlation there. Of course diet is not the only indicator for achieving optimal health. I believe exercise and following the principles of natural hygiene (getting fresh air, lots of sun, clean water, sleep etc.) are critical too. Also, hormonal changes happen whether we like it or not, simply because we are aging. How hormones affect each individual can vary due to a host of other factors. I see this change in life as a rites of passage into my senior years, so I welcome the change and am glad it’s largely been a breeze thus far. It would be cool to see more people experiment with adding fresh vegan foods into their diets to see how it affects their health in general. I know many young women who have tried this approach and have noted that they no longer have painful and long/heavy menstrual cycles.
Did you face any conflict in your personal relationships as a result of transitioning into a raw vegan? What are ways to alleviate this conflict?
It depends on the type of connection you’re trying to make with someone, because food is extremely personal to us. Eating is instinctively connected to survival which begins with connecting to our mothers via nursing. Even if we didn't have the opportunity to nurse (like me), that feeling, that instinct to put something in your mouth when you need/want it, is real for people. If you try and tell someone that what they are eating is bad for them when they love it, they won't want to listen to you. So, you have to be very careful about what you say, when you're speaking to them about food. And yes, I’ve learned that lesson the hard way, since I too have had conflicts in personal relationships about my food choices. My ex-husband once told me, “This raw food will be the end of us!” He was right. I’m not perfect. I've eaten meat in my lifetime too, so I can’t sit in negative judgment about that. I prefer the inclusive approach rather than the exclusive approach. I like to share fresh foods with folks to assist in turning their palates on, and helping them to think about ways to eat more fresh foods. I also like ask them questions such as: “What do you think about your diet is working for you? What do you think you need to change? How were you raised with food? How do you define what food is?” Getting folks to think critically about food isn’t easy. And people that come to making changes on their own terms usually have greater success with sticking with it. Even though I think it’s critical that everyone knows about the horrors of factory farming, and the effects it’s having on animals, the environment and our health, I believe people listen best when they don’t feel attacked and judged negatively. Engaging in a respectful dialogue that employs the principles of non-violent communication and kindness first is how I avoid conflict around the subject.
What are additional benefits that you have experienced since going vegan?
Outside of the health benefits, I’ve found numerous other perks. I’ve met amazing people (fruitarians are a hoot!) and traveled to places I never expected I would see, once I opened the doors to this health journey. It’s also helped to transform my work life completely. Everything for me just got better after going raw vegan.
According to Suarez, Berkeley has a lot to offer in terms of finding great produce. Visit Berkeley Bowl, Monterey Market, and the Berkeley Farmer’s Market (her three favorite spots) to take advantage of Berkeley’s amazing produce. She is also big proponent of growing your own food using veganic compost and rock dust to remineralize the soil.
If fresh produce is tough on your budget, our campus offers free produce every Monday from 12-3 p.m. in the atrium. Make sure to bring your own bag. Together, we can influence Berkeley City College to be a healthier place. Feel free to ask her for more resources in the Umoja Village office Monday-Thursday in the afternoon.
Through the Eyes of Esther Suarez
Self-Defense on a Student Budget
In addition to eating healthy, working out regularly, optimizing cardio levels, and maintaining flexibility, a certain amount of self-defense knowledge is becoming increasingly necessary in society's urban jungles. As highlighted in The BCC Voice writer Hannah Litwin's article "BART: Violence on the Rise," 2017 saw a marked increase in assaults over 2016. And as fellow Voice writer Maya Kashima illustrated in her piece on Berkeley's co-opted Free Speech Movement, "From Mario to Milo", violence at political rallies can turn our small town into a combat zone. Considering that Berkeley City College is a commuter campus near the nexus of the battle for Berkeley's soul, the increasing chances of students finding themselves targeted for attack because of their demographic warrants attention. You don't need to have skills comparable to those of legendary martial artist Bruce Lee, but a look at the street-level techniques of his famous philosophy of Jeet Kune Do (JKD) could make all the difference between students making it to statistics class ... or becoming a statistic.
Pop culture icon and action mega-star of 1970s Kung fu films like "Enter the Dragon," Bruce Lee imported the more formal and traditional Wing Chun practices of his Hong Kong childhood to the mean streets of the East Bay. The synthesis Lee invented aimed to improve practicality in often-chaotic street fights and together with well-known instructor James Yimm Lee (no relation), Bruce Lee soon opened a "Jun Fan Gung Fu" martial arts studio in Oakland. Over time, this system was honed and then renamed "Jeet Kune Do," also known as "way of the intercepting fist".
While his Hollywood legacy stands strong, his vision of multiple unified dojos never manifested. In an email interview with The BCC Voice, Richard Grewar, the Bruce Lee Foundation's Executive Director, lamented that since Bruce's passing, the Jeet Kune Do world "has become quite fragmented, so we don't get involved with who's doing what, or what schools exist where, unfortunately." Grewar recommends that those interested in learning JKD "approach a local school who is dealing with this sort of instruction on a daily basis for specific advice on what to do" in situations such as muggings or other assaults. Grewar also suggests curious readers follow Chris Kent's "Finding A JKD Instructor" primer on what to look for in potential teachers.
One such studio keeping the torch alive is Original Oakland JKD in Hayward, run by Sifu Felix Macias Jr. (whose father was the school's founder and personally studied under Bruce and James Lee). In addition to affordable classes ($50 a month), Original Oakland JKD offers seminars on what to look for in a crowd or when you're out on your own.
In the time-honored spirit of resilience and self-sufficiency, The BCC Voice has worked with Sifu Macias to compile the following tips in case you find yourself on the receiving end of an attempted assault:
☯ Chinese general and military strategist Sun Tzu once philosophized, "Attack is the secret of defense; defense is the planning of an attack." Translation: the best defense is a good offense. For BART riders, Macias offers that, "What you have on, what you're advertising in the form of your phone or jewelry, that can label you as an easy target. I suggest you put everything away until you get to where you want to be."
☯ Not having your head constantly buried in your smartphone is a great way to avoid landing on the radar of would-be attackers. "If you don't pay attention, things happen," Macias emphasizes. Staying aware of your surroundings and knowing your exit(s) is always a smart move, plus it's a mental exercise that can help prepare you to react during crisis scenarios such as earthquakes, fires or active shooters.
☯ When awareness isn't enough and you still find yourself being targeted, remember you are part of a community and calling for help verbally, via whistle, or a small keychain air horn is always an option. "Make a big scene, draw attention," Macias recommends.
Training in conflict resolution could help de-escalate a dangerous scenario — but what are some nitty-gritty moves one should know when you can't talk down your assailant or mugger? Many assaults are perpetrated by those who sneak up from behind, and if you find yourself grabbed in this manner use your foot to stomp on theirs and your elbow to pound their ribs. A good old-fashioned Judo hip-throw might be possible at this point, but honestly your best bet is to run for safety. Choke-holds can happen, often occurring in instances of domestic abuse. To counter, start by spreading your legs to take a large step to one side and then bring your arm up over theirs so as to wrap up their wrists in your armpit like a headlock. Now that you literally have the upper hand, you can again elbow. Do not allow yourself to be afraid to fight dirty! Macias stresses that if your life depends on it you should absolutely, "Defend yourself! Kick the knee, kick them in the groin, or poke the eyes. Do whatever you gotta do ... Be like a little, feral cat — if they try to pick you up, scratch the hell out of them!"
Readers interested in more info can contact Sifu Macias directly at (510) 432-7724 or visit his Hayward studio for lessons Mondays and Wednesdays 11 a.m.-1 p.m. and 6-8 p.m.
images by FELIX MACIAS JR.
story + photo by JAKOB LONGCOB
"CopWatch," "San Francisco Public Libraries" and Leo Puppytime's "Adult Contemporary" are all available in the Berkeley City College Library.
Martial Arts for the Academic Masses
BCC Zine Scene
Books Made With Heart
Martial artists James Yim Lee and Bruce Lee, founders of Oakland's first Jeet Kune Do school.
by DEREK CHARTRAND WALLACE
If you're at all like me, the only time you spend in the Berkeley City College Library is 10 minutes or less, frantically trying to print out an assignment right before class. I urge you to slow down for a few minutes and take a look at the zine collection our library has to offer. Sitting neatly on the right side of the library, a humble rack about 10 stacks deep houses over 60 colorful, small zines. If you're unfamiliar with exactly what a zine is, zines are self-published books that are usually about a specific topic. They are made by hand at minimal cost and are intended to be distributed as far as possible.
Zines are important to modern culture because they give everyday people the ability to publish their work in high quantity at a low cost. They are usually produced with photocopiers and cheap printers at Kinko's, then stapled and folded by hand. In a time when everything is hurriedly consumed through an iPhone screen, it is a breath of fresh air to sit down and flip through a zine that has been made and put together with sincerity and love. You could use websites like Twitter and Tumblr to do that same task while reaching more people, free of cost, yet those platforms lack the authenticity that zines carry in their pages.
While our very own library has a diverse collection for you to browse, there are zines available throughout the Bay Area. The BCC Voice sat down with writer and San Francisco resident, Clare Kinkaid to talk about her self published writing. "I like zines because I can staple and fold a few essays together and just leave them places around town," Kinkaid said, "I don't know where they'll end up, but it's fun to know that they're actually somewhere in the world, not just on a screen."
This act of leaving forms of communication out in public is like the real world version of the internet. It will reach fewer people, cost slightly more money, and take more time, but the entire process is the reward. Part of the joy that comes from making zines isn't just the final product, it's the whole journey of creating the content, cutting and photocopying pages, maybe stapling your finger, and distributing it out into the world, knowing that some person out there will come across your labor of love and hopefully feel or learn something from it.
One of the great things about zines is that they can be about anything and look like anything they want. I chose at random three zines from the collection in the library, and each are unique in content and in form. The first one on the list is "Adult Contemporary" by Leo Puppytime. It features a short story about why the author feels so stressed out, with "comic book" like illustrations to go along with it. The story seamlessly goes from getting bed bugs to having a boyfriend to his roommate's attempted suicide, and ends with meeting his father for the first time. All of this fits into 14 tiny pages. The book itself has a deep red cover and is bound by two staples; the writing is handwritten and honest.
The next zine I looked at is called "San Francisco Libraries." There is no official author, but an email address, email@example.com is on the back cover. This zine features over 20 line drawings of, you guessed it, San Francisco public libraries. They all look like they were done by an architect, but also look like they just came out of a personal sketchbook. The zine folds out like a map would, and even features a map showing all the public libraries in the city.
The last zine I checked out is titled "Copwatch." It's small in size, measuring about 4 inches by three inches making it true to its subtitle "Pocket Guide." Despite its size, its yellow card stock and cover photo of Lady Liberty being choked out by police caught my eye. It folds out like a three face pamphlet and lists the proper steps to be taken when dealing with police. It clearly states your rights and the cop's rights. The back cover reads, "REMEMBER You have legal rights, but many police will not respect your rights. BE CAREFUL — BE STREET SMART." It also has a list of phone numbers to call to help with legalities. This zine is great because it is practical. It serves a purpose and is meant to be carried in someone's pocket. It goes to show how diverse in content and aesthetic zines can be.
The next time you're in the Berkeley City College library, take a moment to flip through some self-published pages and learn and see some new things. On Nov. 29 during college hour, the library will be dedicating the zine collection to Ara Jo, a prominent member of the Berkeley art scene, and creative force who helped create the collection. She passed away last year in the tragic Ghost Ship fire. Her legacy, generosity and creativity will be remembered.
Armistice Brewing Co., Feral Melon Beer
Photo: Daniel Tinajero
Brewery Reviews From a College Student, for College Students
Like many students and professors, after a long week I want to go to a local place to de-stress, have a couple of beers, mingle with friends and get ready for the next set of challenges the semester has to offer. The BCC Voice offers a rundown of the best breweries at which to have a beer within a 5-mile radius of Berkeley City College.
by EDGAR J ROSALES
Fieldwork Brewing Company
1160 Sixth St., Berkeley
Looking for a place to drink with friends — or strangers? Fieldwork is the tavern for you. Show up any day of the week for a Friday night vibe. This hotspot opened in 2014 and quickly catapulted itself to popularity due to its lively atmosphere, then expanded to Napa, San Mateo, Sacramento and Monterey. Their environment might not be the ideal place to read a book like Plato's "The Republic," but more of place where stories are made and told. Prices range from $6 to $7. For its size, beer selection at Fieldwork is better than other breweries. With 15 beers on tap, you will never get bored.
912 Gilman St., Berkeley
Just off of the 580 Freeway (2.5 miles from BCC), it's easily spotted by its enormous white-letter sign or its old-school black Chevy on Gilman Street. This recently expanded brewery is the competition for Fieldwork Brewery, which is just down the street. Specializing in saison, which is a highly carbonated, non-hoppy, middle-to-light-body beer. If you are a college student on a budget, but want to drink a cold one, have no fear, Gilman is here! Students get $1 off pints and $3 off flights when they provide their student ID, which is sweet given that their brews are priced on average from $7 to $9. However, if you are a person who likes to try new beer every other week, Gilman might not be the place for you. "Over the last six months we have probably added around five beers," beertender Lalo Gonzalez told The BCC Voice. He says the reason is because their customers should be able to enjoy the beer, instead of a constantly changing menu. "Gilman is my first choice because it's close to home and peaceful enough so I can get work done," explained customer Jeff Moore in an interview with The BCC Voice. This brewery is a great place to come sit back, relax, and escape for a while.
The Rare Barrel
940 Parker St., Berkeley
The all-sour beers of The Rare Barrel have the elegance of a wine in the body of a sour beer, and have won the brewery several awards, including two gold medals in 2014, a silver and bronze medal in 2015, and the silver medal for "Ensorcelled," an American-style sour ale, in 2016, at the Brewers Association's Great American Beer Festival. One of the many beauties of this brewery is their commitment to delivering the best service and beer to their customers. The Rare Barrel provides guests a variety of taps for the occasional non-sour enthusiast. Their selection is constantly changing to provide some of the best quality beer. The environment is versatile — you can mingle with friends or sit in a comfy chair next to the bar, making it an ideal place to get a beer on any day of the week. Beers ranges from $5 to $7, making it a great place for sour beer!
Triple Rock Brewery and Alehouse
1920 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley
One of the oldest brewpubs in the East Bay, Triple Rock still uses the same structure and brewing regimen as when co-founders and brothers John and Reid Martin first opened the pub in 1986. "We are known for our uses of hops," Triple Rock shift leader Mateen Habib said to The BCC Voice. Triple Rock is also in the habit of experimenting with different flavors and ingredients. Taste new-on-tap "Black Rock," a whiskey barrel-aged imperial beer, or try their "Cold Brew," a Peet's Coffee- blended beer. Triple Rock changes their beer constantly, around three times a week. With their recent expansion and kitchen remodel you can now get "elevated pub food." Come and try the chow special of the day with a side and a 20 ounce beer for only $10. Yum. From affordable deals on food, and beer averaging around $6, you won't spend much.
Armistice Brewery Company
845 Marina Bay Pkwy. #1, Richmond
For our wildcard, my personal favorite: new to the Bay Area is Armistice Brewing Company, which is located in Richmond, the city of Pride and Purpose. A little over eight miles from BCC, this sibling-owned brewery first opened their doors on Aug. 4, 2017. Of course, there's some bias here, given that I'm a Richmond resident, but seriously, you need to try my usual, the Belgian-yeast-based "Saison de Table," or their new "Feral Melon" (pictured above). Both will satisfy your thirst until the second pint. The place has a mellow family vibe; you can go upstairs and play cards in the family room, catch a game at the front bar or enjoy the beautiful California sun on the outside patio.
All of these breweries are great, and they all specialize in different types of beers, so I recommend trying them all! The most convenient brewery for BCC students is the Triple Rock Brewery, for its location, deals and selection. Hope you folks enjoyed reading. Cheers!