According to CBS, a few tree-sit supporters gathered on Chancellor Birgeneau’s lawn on Sunday and … planted an oak tree. Our first reaction was “Hahaha … WHAT?” What sort of protest tactics are the tree people trying to use this time? The only “rational” explanation we can think of is an attempt to appeal to the chancellor’s emotions—but somehow we don’t think a tiny tree will inspire the same feelings as, say, a puppy in an ad for animal shelters.

Of course arrests were made—six, according to a UC police spokesman. But getting arrested might have been the point all along. It’s hard to think of anything more absurd than planting a tree on the chancellor’s lawn to feed a martyr complex.

Image Source: William Hook under Creative Commons, modified by Evante Garza-Licudine
Earlier: Tree-Sit Almost Over! Then Again, That’s What We Said Last Time

Remember last week, when UCPD said it was looking for the people who have vandalized a couple of trees. Looks like we’ve found them.

The Oakland Tribune is reporting that yes, the tree-sitters outside of Memorial Stadium have done the damage to the same trees that said tree-sitters are trying to protect.

That sounds kind of counterintuitive or maybe even like a bit of hypocrisy.

Who said this? Why good ol’ Zachary RunningWolf. He evidently sent a letter to the Trib.

“Yes, we have topped one tree (redwood) which was dead, and have pruned other dead branches in the grove that happened to be dead,” RunningWolf wrote in an e-mail to the Oakland Tribune.

”We have a professional arborist with us along with my (Native American knowledge) of how to help the tree regenerate after pruning the degenerative material off the tree. Also, as far as safety of our tree-sitters are concerned, trimming off dangerous material will help in the safety of both our people in the trees and on the ground,” according to the e-mail.

Woah, where did the Treewoks find a professional arborist?

But of course, the campus doesn’t think that chopping off pieces of the tree was such a good idea. At least, that’s not what Jim Horner, the campus’s landscape architect said.

“The trees won’t die from being topped but they are disfigured and as the tree responds to the topping it sends off a cluster of branches that try and resume growth. What you get is a candle opera effect,” he said in a recent interview.

Even with the email sent to the Trib, UCPD said its still looking for the culprits. If UC police find that it is the Treewoks, then it’ll just be a nice big pot of irony, now won’t it?

Image Source: George Derk, Daily Cal
Earlier: Tree People May Be Vandalizing Oak Grove, Police Say

Berkeley tree sitters admit to pruning evergreens [Oakland Trib]

The treewoks are interesting people, and we think they are seeking contact with the outside world. This morning, two eyewitnesses spotted a man urinating outside Sherman Hall’s doorstep. With guitar in tow, the man nonchalantly returned to the controversial oak grove to resume oakly duties.

There was no confrontation and nobody was hurt. No one reported property damage, though a garden hose was certainly defiled in the process.

Upon seeing the man whizzing away, one of the eyewitnesses remarked, “What is he doing? What is going on?”

The other replied, “That would be a man peeing on our hose.”

One nearby resident mentioned seeing excrement in the embankment next to Memorial Stadium. “It was human poop,” she said. “I know because I saw toilet paper.” It is unclear whether this discovery is also related to the tree people.

Though, we must admit, we’ve always wondered that age-old question of childish curiosity: how do they go to the bathroom? We may have just found our answer.