This Week’s Day-by-Day Picks

WED 15

If you’re a baseball fan, no one needs to tell you that September is the most exciting time of the season, full of tense, action-packed games be-tween teams in the heat of the pennant race. The Oakland A’s, bless ’em, are still hoping for that playoff berth. The Texas Rangers, on the other hand, are staler than last week’s chimichanga. This evening at the Coliseum, the A’s take on the once-high- flying Rangers at 7:05 p.m., in the third contest of a seven-game home-and-home turnaround with Alfonso Soriano, Hank Blalock, Kenny Rogers, and crew. After tomorrow’s 12:35 p.m. game vs. Texas, the A’s will not return home until September 27 for their home stand finale. You really should show up and fly your green-and-gold colors. Let’s go Oakland!

THU 16

Once upon a time, before Gérard Depardieu’s midsection became known in France as le massif central, the actor was considered sexy. He specialized in portraying charming hoods, the type of guy who would clown around for your amusement just before he stomped on your arches and stole your backpack. Such a ’70s-’80s-era Depardieu character is Loulou, the antihero of director Maurice Pialat’s 1980 movie of the same name, a working-class corner boy who takes delight in stealing red-haired Isabelle Huppert away from her husband — and never bothers to do anything else for the rest of the film. It’s a love story. Loulou is part of the excellent Pialat retrospective now running at the Pacific Film Archive (2575 Bancroft Way, UC Berkeley). It screens tonight at 7:30, then again on September 25.

FRI 17

A husband and wife sit alone in their house on a rainy evening, discussing the affairs of the day. Neither one is really listening to the other. In fact, the wife is mentally reliving a painful incident from her past as her husband drones on, oblivious. Of course, the husband doesn’t notice that his wife’s mind has wandered. Welcome to the warm, cuddly world of Harold Pinter. The British playwright wrote the above scenario in 1967 and called it Landscape — since then the play has entered the dramatic canon along with such other Pinter examinations of scarred 20th-century psyches as The Caretaker and Betrayal. And now Pinter’s lonely interiors have found their way to the Berkeley City Club, where Naked Masks presents Landscape beginning tonight at 8 p.m., in a production starring Claudia Barr and Jay Krohnengold, directed by Jonathan Vandenberg. It runs through September 26 at 2315 Durant Ave., Berkeley.

SAT 18

Today is Coastal Cleanup Day, and Union City has a project for anyone willing to put in some time and labor to protect the bay’s environment. Volunteers are invited to help remove trash from the Eden Landing Ecological Reserve, part of the 15,100-acre South Bay Salt Pond Restoration Project — the largest wetland restoration project on the West Coast. Last year, more than forty thousand people took part in the California cleanup. Volunteers should meet at Eden Landing, at the west end of Veasy Street near Old Alameda Creek, at 9 a.m.; carpools will then take them to the work sites. To sign up, contact John Krause of the Dept. of Fish and Game at 415-454-8050.

SUN 19

What you will not see at today’s How Berkeley Can You Be? Parade and Festival: the Zell Miller for President Committee float, the Hooters Girls, the US Marine Corps Band, Jose Canseco, an exhibit of “Our Most Famous Weapons” from Lawrence Livermore Labs, anyone from CNN, cheeseburgers, a Dunk-Michael-Moore booth, a deputy sheriffs’ drill team, the “Fair Play for Pinochet” information table, Heidi Fleiss, a display by Bay Area Hummer dealers, a stand selling Crazy Horse Malt Liquor, or P.J O’Rourke. With the above exceptions, everything in the known world will either parade before your eyes, play music for you, or compete for your entertainment dollar at the annual gathering of the Berkeley tribes. Parade starts at 11 a.m. on University Avenue above Sacramento; the festival takes place in and around Civic Center Park soon afterwards. Aren’t you glad you’re in Berkeley? Don’t you wish everybody were?

MON 20

Singer Tokiko Kato‘s appearance at Yoshi’s tonight could attract as many environmentalists as music fans. Kato, a veteran folkie (she’s often labeled “the Japanese Joan Baez”) who has made a career out of her warm, sensitive vocal style, doubles as an official for the United Nations Environmental Programme, on behalf of which she travels extensively in Asia. She has also recorded traditional songs of the Ainu, the indigenous people of Japan’s northern island of Hokkaido, and her Web site offers clues (literally; most of the site is in Japanese only) about her artwork and calligraphy, as well as the gentle live-and-let-live philosophy that informs her music. Tickets are $30. Showtimes are 8 and 10 p.m. at Yoshi’s, 510 Embarcadero West, Oakland, 510-238-9200,

TUE 21

“The best thing about Jazzschool Tuesdays at Jupiter,” says the Masked Critic, “is that it bridges the gap between the Jazzschool crowd and the Jupiter crowd.” Nicely put. In the rarefied atmosphere of Berkeley, jazz is actually played by people under the age of forty — largely thanks to the influence of the Berkeley High jazz program and the nonprofit efforts of the Jazzschool. Jazz is habitual rather than occasional, even in a student bar. Tuesday nights at Jupiter, pub crawlers can hear exciting young players in a loose setting. This evening it’s the John Kalleen Ensemble. 8 p.m. 2181 Shattuck Ave., or 510-THE-ROCK.

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