Column: Undercurrents: Brown Administration Never Tried to Solve Oakland’s Problems

By J. Douglas Allen-Taylor
Friday December 01, 2006

The outgoing administration of Jerry Brown-its time left in office now measured in days rather than years or months—continues to recede into the background of Oakland’s consciousness as the city and the region focuses on the excitement of the incoming new mayor. -more-

East Bay Then and Now: Hillside Club Has Left Mark on Berkeley’s Northside

By Daniella Thompson
Friday December 01, 2006

Few Berkeley landmarks are as repeatedly and unjustly maligned as the Hillside Club Street Improvements in the Daley’s Scenic Park Tract. Designated in 1983, this system of public improvements forms a continuous line that stretches over at least six blocks of Berkeley’s Northside. -more-

Garden Variety: Brooklyn Botanical Garden Book is a Good Passalong

By Ron Sullivan
Friday December 01, 2006

Joe found an interesting book over at the Mechanics’ Institute Library: a Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s “All-Region Guide,” Native Alternatives to Invasive Plants by C. Colston Burrell. The BBG puts out lots of informative short books; this one is a double-sized volume, with lots of color photographs. -more-

About the House: Choosing Among Three Contractor Bids

By Matt Cantor
Friday December 01, 2006

My friend Lisa seems to be the Maven Plus Grande de Berkeley. Everybody’s query-girl (although she’s happily married to a fella). She even gets calls about contractors, which she confesses isn’t exactly her area of greatest expertise. So we’re hanging out and she plays me a message from her friend (We’ll call her Mildred) and it goes something like this: -more-

You Write The Daily Planet

Friday December 01, 2006

It’s time to submit your essays, poems, stories and photographs for the Daily Planet’s annual holiday reader contribution issue, which will be published on Dec. 29. Send your submissions, up to 1,000 words, to The deadline is 5 p.m. on Dec. 20. -more-

Column: The Public Eye: The Bush Administration: Failed Leadership, Failed Security

By Bob Burnett
Tuesday November 28, 2006

On the heels of the GOP’s resounding defeat in the mid-term elections came news that only 31 percent of Americans approve of President Bush’s handling of Iraq. This will increase pressure on the new Congress to do something about Iraq. -more-

Column: On Tuesday, I’ll Take the Hamster

By Susan Parker
Tuesday November 28, 2006

I have received a lot of advice since Ralph passed away. It has been given with good intention and compassionate concern. -more-

Osage Orange Trees — A Transplant in Time

By Ron Sullivan, Special to the Planet
Tuesday November 28, 2006

I’m stretching the boundaries of “East Bay” because I just like this odd tree. I first encountered it a few years back, along a dirt road east of Fairfield, where we look for mountain plovers. I spotted a number of unlikely objects on the grassy shoulder: Osage oranges, hedgeballs, Indiana brains, Maclura pomifera fruit. They were strewn along the roadside for yards, under a row of little deciduous trees. -more-