Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Editorial Favorites for Hump Day

Just a shortie, but my life's been busy lately, and here's a couple reasons why:

Slide Ranch: My band played a benefit for and at this "experiential learning facility" in Marin County a few weekends back. What it really is is a sustainable teaching farm cut out of some of the most beautiful landscape California has to offer. They invite schoolchildren to spend days at their spot between Muir and Stinson Beaches -- kids see chickens and turkeys being born, milk goats, help work the gardens, and hike all over the marvelous beach in the shadow of massive black rocks. They have open days for the public -- visit to find out when the next one is. And if you volunteer for an event, you can camp out above or on the beach, and sit in a hot tub made out of a round horse trough, set on a fire; you'll feel just like Bugs Bunny in the cauldron.

Brick: IIt's a noir! Set in a SoCal high school! It's not the deepest yarn, but as style-over-substance films go, this one rules. Bonus points for costarring Claire from Lost. "You know where I eat lunch."

Sandman: Rogue Reporter and I are both totally addicted to these comics right now. Neil Gaiman's probably not the first comics writer to realize the potential of using the world of dreams as a backdrop, but he's definitely done the best job at harnassing it. Reading these before bedtime is key.,

Old Tapes of 120 Minutes, Dancing in your Living Room to "Stigmata": Thanks, guys.

Gregoire: The affordable gourmet takeout joint in Berkeley just opened an Oakland location, on Piedmont at 40th St. The potato puffs are every bit as ggod as they say.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

KS hosts Rachel Sherman

Kitchen Sink Magazine and Open City Books Present
MAY 24 (Wednesday) 7:30pm
Pegasus Books
2349 Shattuck Ave. Berkeley

Join us for a reading with Open City Books author RACHEL SHERMAN. Sherman’s debut short story collection, The First Hurt, trails women zig-zagging through the landscape between adolescence and adulthood, exploring the morbid sexuality that pervades the time as they go.
Rachel Sherman’s short stories have also appeared in McSweeney’s, Open City, Post Road, n+1, and StoryQuarterly, among other publications, and in the book Full Frontal Fiction: The Best of Nerve.

Open City Magazine & Books are published by Open City, Inc., a nonprofit corporation based in New York City. The editors, Thomas Beller and Joanna Yas, strive to keep the literary journal vital for each new generation by publishing a dynamic array of poetry and prose with a daring, youthful, spirit. The editors aim to add a voice to the culture that values wit, depth, and ingenuity, and, in particular, the exposing and elucidating of the human predicament which is often devalued by commercial publishers. Many writers featured in Open City's pages are being published for the very first time. In this brilliantly original story collection, Rachel Sherman evokes the wonders and horrors of a young woman’s life, from girl to teenager to adult, through crushes, sex, family, and the agonies and ecstasies of finding one’s way. The First Hurt heralds the arrival of a singularly fresh and remarkably assured new voice.

Friday, May 12, 2006

ks13 is here

did anyone mention that we received our stash of ks13, and that it's starting to appear in stores? we've had a pittsburgh sighting, where staff writer jonathan loucks says barnes & noble is stocking it next to maxim. well, there is a girl on the cover.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

good, bad, and gnarly

What's up, Kitchen Sink Magazine Blog? Did you know nobody Googles you or finds you on Technorati unless we type out Kitchen Sink Magazine Blog as a phrase a lot? Is there a macro for that? P.S. If you're reading it, could you do me a favor and type the phrase Kaya Oakes into your blog? And maybe hit me up with a link: I've got a book coming out. It's all about you. The book. It's a book all about the people who read this blog and how they are all sexy.

So, blog, I've been bad to you. I've been busy and you've been sitting here being nutured and tended to by people with much more interesting, informative things to say. But I have to take care of you too, blog, Kitchen Sink Magazine Blog. Here are a few editorial favorites for the week:

1) Gnarls Barkley. Cee-Lo Green in general.
2) Dylan is in the studio.
3) Neil Young, Living With War.
4) The upcoming Leonard Cohen tribute film.
5) Bush's approval rating at an all-time low.
6) Kitchen Sink Magazine issue 14, coming this summer. The cover is so pretty. The inside is nice too.
7) When all the cowboys rode away from Texas Ranch House en masse.
8) Danielle's gapped teeth (RIP) on America's Next Top Model.
9) That Jetta commerical where the dumb yuppies get hit by a car.
10) Daniel Zalewski's profile of Werner Herzog in The New Yorker a couple weeks back. Werner Herzog is my new choice to read my book on tape. I used to want James Earl Jones to do it until I re-watched Burden of Dreams. Now Herzog is number one.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

kqed writers' block: "a series of walks"

hello, folks. recently i recorded a poem cycle called "a series of walks" for kqed's the writers' block, and it was just posted to kqed's site. if it's not on this page by the time you check this link, go to the index and you'll find it. enjoy. there are also readings by kaya oakes and stefanie kalem in the archive index, and i recommend checking them out.

Books. Who Needs 'Em?

FAREWELL COMING FOR TELEGRAPH LANDMARK: Cody's to close book on flagship store.
Independent bookseller bows to financial pressure as sales fall and area said to be in decline.

Although the other two Cody's locations will remain open this is still very depressing news.
It could mean one of two things for us other booksellers in the area:
1. We're more fucked than we thought we were.
2. We'll skate by for just a little longer on their lost new book sales.

Times are tough right now for dreamers.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Talkin Bout Your Peak Oil Blues

When I was a little (reluctant) girl I used to love the smell of the gasoline pump. I may have been gender confused, but I had no qualms about the vaporliciousness of the gasoline pump. Yumtown.

Twenty-odd years later, my previous overwhelming fears of nuclear war, arriving to school without any pants on inside my snowpants, wetting the bed, and the discovery of my overwhelming academic idiocy have been usurped by that of climate change and peak oil. Those of you who know me slightly well will find no new news with this climate change worry business. It is a tired topic with me already. Peak oil happens to coincide with all of the climate change garbage. While the use of petroleum products for such fun stuff as taking decadent cross-country road trips or getting the kiddees to school has made our climate's greenhouse effect go all wonky (greenhouse gasses, when regulated are actually a good thing), the end of oil will, in all likelihood, make our "civilized" lives go totally nuts-o.

Some countries are choosing to grab the bull by the balls on this one, and avoid the chaos and potential voilence of no gas for cars, no heat for homes, and no power for schools or medical facilities by opting to become a nation dependent fully on renewable energy in the next 20 years.

Yeah, those Swedes totally rock.

Others, like the United States, are so slow on the go that they virtually ignore climate change and peak oil predictions and instead cut the FY07 budget for renewable energy r&d and energy efficiency measures by millions of dollars.

Yeah, this administration sucks eggs. Cage-raised, chemical-pumped ones at that.

Energy efficiency measures are the most cost-effective way to cut energy use. Art Rosenfeld, who in my mind is a fucking god of energy use (as well as the commissioner for the California Energy Commission, and just turned 80, and is perhaps one of the most energetic people I have had the pleasure of being in the same room with), told a great little anecdote at an energy conference I attended last year. During a presentation he gave on the improved energy efficiency of consumers and their appliances, he told us that due to energy efficiency improvements alone California has managed to avoid a whole squadron of nuclear power plants dotting the coast between SF and LA. Which had been proposed and close to approval before ol' Art got in on the game during the 1970s.

Thanks, Art.

In a recent flawed yet compelling study by, the preparedness for peak oil potential hoo-haw by 50 U.S. cities was compared and contrasted. Here are the 50 cities, in descending order of preparedness:

My chosen city ranks #10, while that showy overachiever across the bay ranks #3. While the study definitely underestimated heating oil importance, its consideration of walkability, local food access, wireless capabilities (for working from home), and other factors are worth serious consideration. And though SF may be a little better than Oakland in terms of peak oil preparedness my personal factors (such as being able to grow a small amount of my own food, bike to my job, and visit several farmers' markets by bike) really outweigh things personally for me.

This is all a bit dreary, I know. But, truly, I don't feel dreary. I know that the planet will eventually be destroyed, and my personal little human self will go much more quickly than that. But things seem...more navigable...somehow right now. Maybe because my artichokes are growing so dang well. Or because, when I played th open-hole silver flute my mom has sent me on long-term loan, a little bird flew over to the bougainvillea bush right next to me to listen.

Or maybe it's because I biked to work with my brother this morning.

Whatever it is, it feels all right.