Written on the Dock of the Bay: Friday, November 11

People's Library Occupy Wall Street

BAY AREA BOOK WORLD BREAKING NEWS



As we close out the local election season, I approve the following rumor: librarians can get political.

You might think that, as far as Occupy Oakland goes, librarians are the dainty, saintly members of the “quiet police” who roam downtown Oakland, telling protesters, “Shhhhhh. Be quiet. The world is a library.” This, however, is not what’s happening. Each day, Oakland’s librarians are inside Occupy Oakland, passing out their books. That’s a People’s Library at the northeast corner of Frank Ogawa Plaza. The books are even organized into sections – at least at the start of the day. There’s even a resident librarian, who considers the library his permanent address and says he’s there to keep the place safe. There’s no check-out process. The rule is, basically, “Bring the book back, if you think it should be brought back.”

According to Amy Martin, children’s librarian at the Oakland Main Branch, many books were taken from the People’s Library into the abandoned house protesters attempted to take over on San Pablo and 17th Street last Wednesday. Either someone wanted to take the time for an intense early morning breakfast read, or set up a “People’s Library: Number 2, For People Who Are People and Also Anarchists.”Needless to say, those at the People’s Library would like their books back. Martin says, right now, it seems like no one knows exactly who took the books or where the books went to.

But back to happy things: the role librarians are playing in Occupy Oakland. Martin says Oakland librarians are working on collecting an archive of Occupy Oakland. So gather your “I love education, and when teachers are paid money and given health insurance!” and “I am the 99%, and you are, too, maybe!” and “Boo!” signs and get them to an Oakland public library for the sake of posterity.

Friday, November 11

Reading series // In this world of lying liars (bless them all!), sometimes it’s nice to hear sentences that are true. Just every once in awhile. Maybe every other month. At the bi-monthly reading series, Lip Service West, writers will be reading stories so based on reality you might even call them nonfiction.

There will also be “refreshments” – a mysterious yet alluring term designed to get us to come down. // DETAILS: Friday, November 11, 7:30pm. Pegasus Books Downtown. 2349 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley

Tuesday, November 15

Author event // Some call it the “Black Diamond.” Some call it “My edible friend.” Fancy scientists call it "Tuber melanosporum." Others call it, simply, “Truffle.” Patricia Wells has written a book about it, called Simply Truffles: Recipes and Stories That Capture the Essence of the Black Diamond, where she explores, in depth, the history of the truffle and, a more pressing question, what to do with the truffle. She poses the question, “What delicacy is more revered or less understood than the black truffle?” If the book isn’t enough, come to Omnivore Books to talk about the truffle as a complicated hero. // DETAILS: Tuesday, November 15, 6pm. Omnivore Books on Food (Q: ON FOOD? I DON’T GET IT). 3885a Chavez Street, San Francisco

Wednesday, November 16

Book club // If you define yourself as a “thinking parent”, maybe it’s time you join the “Thinking Parent Book Group.” The next book they're discussing is serious. It’s called Nurture Shock: New Thinking about Children. In this book, Po Bronson discusses “The Inverse Power of Praise,” saying, "Sure, he's special. But new research suggests if you tell him that, you'll ruin him." And in “Why Kids Lie,” he says talking about truthfulness with your kid might make them better liars. My favorite chapter discusses why arguing with adults is a sign of respect and not disrespect, which I will go back in time and inform various adults of now. Of course, the guy may not be right, which is why you should come to the book group and discuss these parenting strategies with other parents – instead of asking your kid about it. // Wednesday, November 16, 12pm. Books Inc. 3515 California Street, San Francisco