When you’re enjoying free bus rides on AC Transit with your Class Pass you might notice that a lot of locals have a card that they tap against a reader when they board — that’s what makes all those beeping sounds. That card their using is called the Clipper Card, and it has a lot more uses than just AC Transit. Clipper Cards are read more »

We got a lot of good answers to our questions, and we appreciate the people who took time out to talk to us.

For NorCal residents, people had the impression that they were hella hip, liberal and environmentally conscious. At least in the Bay Area, these things are easy to run into, even though they’re not entirely representative. The stereotype that people from NorCal are distinctly “pot smokers” is funny (and erroneous), as people from SoCal smoke all the time – at least from what we’ve experienced. We think this is just a Californian thing. Weed solidarity, brothers and sisters! read more »

blood drivePeople be needin’ blood, y’all. And they’re not the Cullen family.

Tomorrow, in Pauley Ballroom at the Martin Luther King Jr. Student Union, there will be a blood drive held from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m., jointly sponsored by the American Red Cross and University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) Blood Center. The donated blood will be distributed to hospitals in the Bay Area. So holla to all the healthy students, faculty and staff members!

If interested, drop-ins are fine but appointments are strongly recommended, which basically is a polite way of saying “sign up and make our lives easier.” To make such appointments, read more »

Golden Gate BridgeFor bicycle enthusiasts looking for something to set themselves apart from the pack, Renovo Bikes may have just the offering. Renovo has been manufacturing bikes using wood, pioneering a new phase in bicycle design that mirrors something as seemingly bizarre as the barefoot revolution in footwear.

Aware of the environmental implications of using wood to make bikes, read more »

workin' hard

So, we’re not particularly surprised to hear this, because the Bay is awesome and brilliant and just all-around amazing, but a handful of Bay Area cities (namely SF and Oakland) have been declared to be some of the “smartest places to live.”

What does that mean, exactly? We’re not entirely sure.

According to NBC Bay Area, Portfolio magazine went a-hunting for the country’s most intellectual and successful cities — if you’re still confused as to how they figured that out, check out their list of criteria here.

Regardless of how Portfolio magazine figured it out, we’re happy with the results.

Although, considering the fact that we’ve spent the past weekend snoozing, boozing and perusing AnonCon instead of preparing for our upcoming finals like any right-minded academic should, we might have reason to doubt their accuracy. Whatever. We’ll welcome this bit of news with open arms and hope that our final grades will get a boost just by the fact that we’re taking exams in the Bay Area.

Image Source: tassie.sim under Creative Commons
No Duh? Bay Area Among Smartest Places to Live [NBC Bay Area]

2598816622_048093aecbHere’s a scary factoid: newspapers in the Bay Area have reduced their newsrooms by nearly 50 percent in the last several years. As people currently working in the field of journalism, statistics kinda lead us to question our career goals.

Not that the crash and burn of the newspaper industry is anything new. But with newspapers disappearing daily and journalists steadily losing their jobs, one has to wonder if a news-less world is on the horizon. In a recent trend, nonprofit news organizations have started to “sell their stories to multiple partners–newspapers, radio and television stations, blogs and hyper local news sites–” which had previously been “phobic about printing any article that was not produced by their own staff writers.” read more »

broadwayWhere would you go to see “Scalpel!,” a musical about murderous plastic surgery recipients or “Girlfriend,” the story of two boyfriends? Look no further than the Bay Area, which has recently established itself as the birthplace of offbeat musicals, some of which have been going on to conquer Broadway, for example.

You may remember “American Idiot,” the Green Day musical at the Berkeley Rep which transformed scoffs to shock when it made it to Broadway (it opens next Tuesday). Or “Passing Strange,” the bizarre compilation of a singer-songwriter and a rocker, which also recently made its Broadway debut.

The Bay Area has a reputation for being a supportive environment for nonconformity, and apparently the same applies to the theater world. Writers and directors come out here to test out their bizarre brain children away from the prying eyes of industry executives and New York critics.

The world of musicals has long favored “mass appeal over experimentation,” but the recent wave of quirky and successful works coming out of the Bay recently has begun to open a new niche in the musical market and draw in different kinds of viewers.

We don’t mind being musical guinea pigs, so long as we get to see Broadway musicals for cheap before they get big.

Image Source: Dom Dada under Creative Commons
Where Musicals Can Dare to Be Different [NYT Bay Area Blog]

Yay AREAAAAA: NYT Blogged.

The Clog just got some new neighbors. And by “new neighbors” we mean the Internet neighborly equivalent of Gatsby’s mansion or, like, the Taj Mahal or something.

Yep, the Gray Lady has moved in next door and has set up shop, tap tap tapping away at the Bay Area blogosphere. In addition to recently launching its Bay Area Report–a new section dedicated to covering the Bay Area that has been cause for just a touch of controversy due to its possible effects on a certain local publication–THE New York Times has started a Bay Area blog.

It will both do original reporting and highlight stuff from “regional media, bloggers, student publications and Twitter.” (Emphasis is ours.) So, um. What’s up New York Times?

Image Source: Rich Anderson under Creative Commons, edited by Evante Garza-Licudine
Bay Area Blog [NY Times]

Ok, so maybe it’s not quite that thick, disgusting or unfortunate. The level of air pollution has, however, violated the new federal smog standard in all nine counties of the San Francisco Bay Area on 11 days this year.

We BART, we bus, we even bike … what more do they want from us?! We’re going to level with you, though: With the old federal standards, we polluted our ozone – shall we say – “too much” only once last year.

Take-home message: We aren’t really dirtying our humble means of breathing any more than we were last year, but the powers that be are still recoiling from the predictions of Disney and Pixar’s Wall-E. They’re not going to stop poking at us until we’ve overcrowded both BART and Bicycle Boulevard.

Image Source: Foxtongue under Creative Commons
Bay Area struggles to meet new smog standards [Contra Costa Times]


 The Bay Area is now home to two of the top ten most dangerous cities: Oakland (fourth) and Richmond (ninth). Oakland was ranked eighth last year.CQ Press published the annual rankings based on several statistics: homicide, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary and auto theft.Oakland officials have already come out and cited several problems with the study. This all sounds like the usual commotion that arises every time someone is placed at the bottom—or top—of some ranking system (e.g. U.S. News & World Report’s “America’s Best Colleges”).The Clog cannot imagine this news affecting Berkeley students, who have long treated Oakland as a leper colony. The closest most students get to setting foot in Oakland during the semester is walking across the platform at the MacArthur BART station to transfer to the San Francisco train.As for Richmond, the Clog can’t name one thing located in the city other than Costco. As long as the gangbangers consider Costco a neutral zone, we all should be just dandy.The report also included a list of America’s safest cities. San Jose, which was perched atop these rankings last year, slipped to third behind Honolulu and El Paso. Seriously, El Paso? That must sting the pride of San Jose dwellers.Image Source: David Corby under Creative CommonsOakland 4th-most perilous U.S. city [Oakland Tribune]San Jose loses title of safest big city in America, falls to third [Oakland Tribune]

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