Tuesday, October 09, 2007

It's Tea Right Here In Berkeley

Ok kids, the Patriot is in Berkeley California, land of the unrepentant deadhead. I will admit that noodling around UC Berkeley has made me a bit nostalgic for my own college days. I have had a few interesting experiences since I’ve been in town, although nothing that quite compares to being stabbed in the gut while buying drugs during the heyday of the crack epidemic. Perhaps an unfair comparison some 20 years on. Mostly I have been wandering the streets looking for whatever it is that makes Berkeley celebrated among intellectuals and stoners alike. Can’t say that I found too much to distinguish this town from college towns back east. Ultimately, Berkeley is much like every other college town, albeit with a liberal California overlay; vegetable powered cars, the smell of calitas rising up through the air, that sort of thing. The students here look like students everywhere, except here they are more prone to driving their parent’s aging Volvos rather than the IRocs sported by my better groomed friends from Jersey. This is also a very diverse community; equal opportunity panhandlers from post dead tour refugees to people in actual need of food. Those of you who know me know that I am a very pro-California person of late but, dare I say it, I prefer the honest fakeness of the south to this contrived hippie nonsense of the north. This confuses the Patriot. Perhaps I need to spend some more time parsing what is real and what is artifice here on the left coast. I welcome comments from readers who actually live here.


martin said...

honest fakeness - band name!
i haven't been to the bay area since i was ten, but i understand that oakland might have some neighborhoods worth checking out.

Toe_Jam said...

Sounds like someone needs a cup of gogi berry tea.

Anonymous said...

Berkeley is a college town with deep bohemian roots. However the school is now made up of predominately Asian students, and a large number of idealistic left leaning kids who come here for the promise. That promise is mostly now relagated to some tie-dye vendors along telegraph avenue. The Grateful Dead have left the building, but many of the aging deadheads remain.

The kids who grew up here end up with names like birdsong and often were homeschooled by hopheads. They usually turn to Punk in an effort to shake the scent of stale patchouli which surrounded their childhood.

I like it's progressive tradition and protest culture. I can do without it's pretentious holier than thou yuppies who spend their excess income on hi-tech electric golfcarts licensed for street use. I love finding the rare barefoot tripping bearded man every once and awhile.

crackass said...

From what I could tell, all the old hippies moved to towns in Colorado, while their crack addicted cousins moved to New Orleans. I could be wrong. Wait, let me take a hit from the glass stem. . .yep, their crack addicted cousins moved to New Orleans. The patriot needs to come to the Bywater. I'll show'm honest fakeness. The kind the government commits. So, screw the Cali of yester year, come deep south & make levees, not war.

matt said...

Wait, you want fake? Spend a bit o' time with me in Vegas.