Daily Archives: July 31, 2012


The Berkeley Wire: 07.31.12

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Shop Talk: The ins and outs of Berkeley businesses

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POOR SALES FORCE ALKO CLOSURE  Alko Office Supplies, which has been operating in one form or another at 2225 Shattuck Avenue for 104 years, announced Tuesday that it is shutting its doors. Gary Shows, president of the Cliff Radston Company, said in a press release published in the Daily Planet that the store is closing because of declining purchases from UC Berkeley, changes in the shopping patterns in downtown Berkeley, and the perception of shoppers that chains offer better deals than small, locally owned businesses.

“We sincerely regret disappointing loyal retail customers,” Shows said in the release. “We are appreciative and grateful; there just are not enough of them to sustain us.” The retail operation will remain open and “fully stocked” until the building is sold. After that, the company will continue to supply business and Internet customers in a “less costly location.” … Continue reading »

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Tune into Berkeleyside Radio, hear artists playing locally

Screen shot 2012-07-31 at 11.04.43 AM
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The editors of Berkeleyside, truth to tell, are not regulars at local rocks gigs. It’s perhaps a question of age and taste, but it’s also a result of a common problem: how do you know whether you’ll like a band you’ve never heard?

We’ve now provided an answer (not to age and taste, but to unfamiliarity). Berkeleyside Radio, which launches today, plays songs only by artists who will be performing locally in the next two weeks. You can access it either through the link above or by clicking the button in the central column on our homepage.

Berkeleyside Radio comes courtesy of Berkeley startup DeliRadio, the brainchild of Wayne Skeen. … Continue reading »

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Hundreds of bike crashes near UC Berkeley over 5 years

A ghost bike marks the spot where Shlomo Bentin died cycling in Berkeley. Photo: Zusha Ellison/Bay Citizen
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By Zusha Elinson / Bay Citizen 

Shlomo Bentin, a world-renown neuropsychologist, bought a bicycle last summer to commute to UC Berkeley from his home two miles away. An expert on facial recognition, the 65-year-old Israeli was on a one-year research sabbatical at the university.

“He took up biking in Berkeley because people in Berkeley bike,” said Lynn Robertson, a friend and colleague. “He was very cautious. He was the kind of bicyclist who would stop at stop signs and signal.”

On July 13, Bentin was riding home from the campus gym on Bancroft Way when he was killed. Police received reports that a dump truck might have hit Bentin west of Fulton Street. Jennifer Coats, spokeswoman for the Berkeley Police Department, said investigators are trying to determine whether the truck was a factor in the collision. … Continue reading »

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Brainy B-movies at free Summer Cinema series

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Demented surgeons who know no bounds, crazed doctors keeping brains alive, abductions and decapitations — you can tell Steve Seid had an enormous amount of fun putting together the program for this year’s Summer Cinema on Center Street, a free outdoor movie series which kicks off on Saturday August 4.

“I wanted something different from common currency films. I wanted to pull out some of our more disgraceful examples,” he says, laughing.

Seid, Video Curator at Pacific Film Archive, delved into the museum’s 18,000-strong collection of films to come up with his selection of 16-mm prints for the series, which takes place over three weekends in August and is organized jointly by Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive and the Downtown Berkeley Association. The event was launched last year and proved immensely popular, drawing up to 400 people to the Bank of America parking lot for each screening.

The films, which will be shown on the wall of the future Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive, are all in the classic B-movie “mad scientist” genre. … Continue reading »

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