Archive for March, 2007

Lust, libation and laughter!

March 27, 2007

Fear not, this blog is still kosher 😉

Turns out that Alameda just nixed plans to hold “Spring Shwing” — which would’ve been the island’s own version of San Francisco’s Exotic Erotic ball.

“The event you have proposed would involve adult entertainment, last until 3 a.m., include serving alcohol and be open to the members of the general public through ticket sales over the Internet,” wrote City Manager Debra Kurita, who also serves as executive director of the Alameda Reuse and Redevelopment Authority.

Inevitably, this has set off an exchange of words between the producer and the site license holder. At a first glance, it appears the city was well within its rights to deny the license given that information on security, parking and ticket sales were lacking. There’s also the impact on local police resources given that the organizers expect nearly 3,000 people to show up. And if all this weren’t enough, there’s the minor detail of an existing city policy that mandates quiet hours on the base between 12:30-5:00 AM. The only exception to this policy is the Hornet, which offers several options to host such large events.

Perhaps the organizers can reschedule their event to be held on the the flight deck: the view is stunning and it can accomodate 5,000!


Thinking locally

March 26, 2007

I’ve just finished reading Big Box Swindle and there are a number of examples of how some cities have gone about promoting their independent stores.

Austin has an annual event called Austin Unchained. Held on a Saturday in November, this is a call to residents to shop only at locally owned business for the day. This gave them the opportunity to talk about the value of independent business and the economic implications of spending money at locally owned businesses. In the case of Austin, the impact of shunning the chains for local stores for a day was $14m.

A free and widely available directory of local businesses, organized by category. The guide identifies alternatives to chain stores and is also loaded with facts about the economic and community contributions of locally owned businesses.

Raleigh offers a discount card that sells for $25 and provides a year’s worth of discounts at locally owned businesses.


And all that jazz

March 20, 2007

Another entry in the occasional series on Alamedans. The Chronicle had a recent article on Alameda resident and jazz guitarist, Terrence Brewer.

The term “West Coast Jazz” isn’t one you hear bandied about very often these days. It was applied in the ’50s and ’60s … Listening to some current Bay Area jazz artists — especially the guitarist Terrence Brewer — it’s tempting to revive the term. Brewer has a natural, inviting sound that instantly transports you back to the heyday of classic jazz guitar, when giants like Wes Montgomery were comping in hard bop and Hammond B-3 organ bands.