Step Right Up: See ‘The Influencer’ and laugh your fool head off … if...

As a gumdrop of social commentary in a bright glossy wrapper, 'The Influencer' represents the hardening of the mainstream comedy of manners. Oh, those zany millennials, gleefully galloping across the deteriorating landscape in search of baubles, gimcracks and geegaws.

Shroom Boom: Moves to decriminalize some hallucinogens have spurred investment, but even those are...

The tide seems to be turning, largely, as it did with cannabis, but it’s not just “conservatism” that makes policymakers hesitant. Many are concerned about the powerful psychoactive effects of psychedelics, which can go far beyond those of cannabis. Use too much cannabis, and you might be in for an unpleasant few hours. Use psychedelics unwisely and you might end up in the psych ward.

Free Will Astrology: Week of September 22

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Aries author Steve Maraboli says, “The best way to love someone is not to change them, but instead, help them reveal the greatest version of themselves.” If that strategy appeals...

Hallouminess: Lulu serves delicious and sometimes confounding California dishes with Palestinian inspirations

Halloumi and preserves is a slightly confounding dish. It’s both sweet and savory, a grilled cheese sandwich topped with jam and arugula. Halloumi, like many similar cheeses, is a lot to take in huge doses. I wanted more acidity, a thick tomato slice, a carrot and cabbage slaw or sautéed zucchini to contend with all that hallouminess.

Brews With Benefits: Tannery Bend Beerworks provides hops with hope by investing in their...

Opened by partners Matt Cromwell, Lauren Cromwell and Tyler Rodde, friends since they met in high school in Napa—Matt and Lauren have since married—Tannery on Telegraph is meant to represent the gathering of friends and family to celebrate a pairing that appeals to most: quality beer and food.

Taking Ownership: Oakland’s first Black-owned brewery mixes barley and hops with equity and justice

Customers have asked the co-owners where Hella Coastal is from and why they are defining the company with beers tied to racial and social causes. ‘We want to be a brewery but at the same time we want people to know that we’re taking ownership,’ Benjamin said. ‘We’re black in Oakland, and there are no other black breweries in Oakland — and that’s something, especially when it comes to ownership.’

Busting Beer Myths: Jeff Alworth’s second edition of ‘The Beer Bible’ is the ultimate...

Alworth says that during the past few decades a gravitational shift has occurred in the United States. “There are now 9,000 breweries,” he begins. “We used to think of hotspots. What’s changed is that most cities of any size have brewing going on. Breweries sharing information and professional standards are causing a huge expansion. I’m sure there are amazing still-undiscovered little pockets all across the country.”

Free Will Astrology: Week of September 15

ARIES (March 21-April 19): “Books are mirrors: You only see in them what you already have inside you,” wrote author Carlos Zafòn Ruiz. Let’s take that a step further: “Other people are mirrors: You...

The Word Writer: Mary Roach’s mastery of the mother tongue in full display in...

Certainly, Roach writes about science with the fervor of other bards focused—to reference a dictionary definition—on “the intellectual and practical activity encompassing the systematic study of the structure and behavior of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment.”

Sweet, Sweet Solano: From Berkeley to Albany, sate your sugar jones

"While the event is now over for 2021, this may be just the moment for our own Solano Stroll, with stops along the way for some sweet treats. The shops listed below are stand-outs—but by no means our only options."

Step Right Up: See ‘The Influencer’ and laugh your fool head off … if...

As a gumdrop of social commentary in a bright glossy wrapper, 'The Influencer' represents the hardening of the mainstream comedy of manners. Oh, those zany millennials, gleefully galloping across the deteriorating landscape in search of baubles, gimcracks and geegaws.

Remaindered: The literary and dramatic crimes of Michael Caine and Aubrey Plaza’s ‘Best Sellers’

"The film’s publicity has the nerve to use one of the oldest taglines in existence, the one about how the characters’ lives are changed “in ways they didn’t expect.” Bullshite."

Nineteen Hand Horse: Cowboy music from the wild, wild East (Bay)

Archangel and her husband, Mark Montijo, were scratching out a living as musicians when they met, years ago, in L.A. “I saw friends approaching 40 and still not making a living,” she said. “We played music a bit, and I wrote songs—then suddenly the stars aligned. We started playing as a duo and put a band together. Why it took so many years, I’ll never know.”

Low Hold: A wounded warrior in a broke-down palace

"The professional gambler and morally disabled ex-warrior who calls himself William Tell (Oscar Isaac, doing a very slow burn) lives the life of a sort of penitent monk in beat-out motel rooms and forlorn casinos. Without spoiling too much of the story, let’s just say that Tell is on the road to some form of redemption after taking part in one of contemporary history’s most heinous war crimes."

Ah-Mer-Ah-Su: Oakland soul transported to the sunny South

“I want my art to deal in reality, so the vibe expresses a temperamental feeling,” Amerasu said. “Being inside for a year was exhausting. I want to go out and do all the things I like to do. I wrote it a while ago, but it fits perfectly with the mood of post-pandemic life. I know it’s not over. We’re still moving toward some version of a new reality.”

What’s so bad about socialism, asks ‘The Big Scary “S” Word’

In the spirit of Michael Moore’s 2009 'Capitalism: A Love Story', director Yael Bridge’s energetic new documentary 'The Big Scary “S” Word' builds its argument for socialism—perhaps our society’s most widely misunderstood political/ philosophical system—on a case-by-case, ground-level basis, with plenty of help from the history books and such public figures as Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, philosophy professor Cornel West and sociologist Adaner Usmani.
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