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Parents consider legal action over ‘egg wars’ Page 3

Local retailers face mixed forecast on holiday sales page 26

Spectrum 20

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Eating Out 36

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Dramaturgs take audience beyond the script NSports Big Game more than ‘The Axe’ NHome Sharpen your knives for Thanksgiving

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Upfront

Local news, information and analysis

Parents demand probe of ‘egg war’ investigation Parents: Student interrogations violated ‘due process,’ school policy, state and federal laws — and ‘terrorized’ students by Chris Kenrick and Jay Thorwaldson

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ngry Palo Alto High School parents are calling for a probe by the school board and district superintendent into how Paly officials conducted a two-week investigation of the Oct. 27 “egg wars” fight behind Gunn High School.

One parent, Megan Carroll, wrote in a draft letter to district officials — not yet sent due to pending substantiation of some elements — that the probe by Paly officials “amounts to nothing short of a terror campaign against the students to seek out and

punish” those involved. She cited one girl who reported she was interrogated by two assistant principals for two hours and was “hysterical” when she was sent home on a five-day suspension, which was later reduced. Other students reported school officials taking their cell phones and checking the call records, she said. She questioned the legality of evidence allegedly obtained from confiscated cell phones and Facebook pages.

“These are the kinds of things that people are saying occurred,” Carroll told the Weekly after it obtained a copy of the draft letter. “What parents would like to see is the superintendent and board respond appropriately to the allegations.” Paly Principal Jacquie McEvoy Thursday denied many of the allegations, adding that she would be happy to meet with parents and students to learn how the questioning process could have been better.

“People have been hearing information from other adults that is not true,” McEvoy said. “There was no student who was held in here for hours. People are saying somebody scrolled through cell phones looking for information — that’s not true. “And at no time were students told by the assistant principals that if they turned in their friends they’d (continued on page 17)

LAND USE

Palo Alto fights vacancies Anxious for new tenants, city allows non-retail businesses to occupy ground floors downtown by Gennady Sheyner

S Veronica Weber

Crisoforo Lopez stocks cilantro in the produce aisle of the newly opened Mi Pueblo supermarket, located at the Ravenswood 101 Shopping Center in East Palo Alto.

BUSINESS

Supermarket opens in city without one East Palo Alto residents like Mi Pueblo, hope for diversity by John Squire

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he supermarket chain Mi Pueblo opened a 35,000square-foot store in East Palo Alto last Saturday, filling a gaping shopping hole that has existed for three decades in the multicultural city. “It looks first rate. The food looks fresh,” customer Jim Olstad said Tuesday morning. He stopped in to try the coun-

ter-service Mexican eatery inside the store. “It might be a new favorite restaurant stop,” he said. The supermarket is located in the Ravenswood 101 Shopping Center off of U.S. Highway 101 and University Avenue. East Palo Alto’s last full-service supermarket closed in the 1970s. Brightly painted in primary col-

ors on the outside, the new market on the inside features vibrant murals along its walls and strings of flags overhead. Mi Pueblo’s selection mirrors that of a traditional American supermarket, but with a focus on Hispanic food products. There are fresh concha pastries and large cases of meats, including pigs’ feet, along with cereal, Coca Cola and neatly organized produce. There’s even a small assortment of Asian foods. This week, the atmosphere at the market seemed mild-mannered during the day. But Mi Pueblo came alive at dinner time, thanks to the smell of carnitas wafting out into the parking lot. Many residents stopped by after work to pick up ingredients for dinner.

Gabriel Hernandez came all the way from Sunnyvale because he said this location has a better selection than the Mi Pueblo in Mountain View. “We needed it for a long, long time,” East Palo Alto Police Officer Tracy Frey said. “Older people come here. There are a lot of young families, too. You can imagine how hard it is to have to pack up, get in the car and drive to another city.” East Palo Alto residents said that before Mi Pueblo opened, they traveled to Redwood City, Mountain View or Menlo Park for simple grocery runs. “Every time we had to go to the store, we had to go to San Antonio” Shopping Center in Moun(continued on page 16)

eeking to save downtown Palo Alto from a spreading rash of vacancy signs, city officials have tweaked the zoning rules to give property owners near University Avenue more flexibility in choosing their tenants. Under the new regulations, which the City Council approved Monday night, several downtown stretches that were previously mandated to house retail businesses on the ground floor will now be able to attract offices and other types of tenants. The idea is to drop the vacancy rate at peripheral downtown areas where retail has proven to be unsuccessful, Current Planning Manager Amy French said. Ironically, the city’s loosening of the ground-floor rules is intended to support retail on University Avenue itself. Downtown property owners and city officials agree retail is a crucial component of a vibrant, economically sound downtown. But the council acknowledged that some downtown areas, particularly certain stretches of Alma and High streets, just aren’t well-suited for retail and should be allowed to pursue other tenants. Having these properties sit vacant for years both hurts the city economically and deals a psychological blow to one of the city’s most central neighborhoods, City Councilman Larry Klein said. “From the city’s standpoint, retail is best, vacancy is worst,” Klein said. “Having it occupied by offices is the middle.” The council voted to remove (continued on page 9)

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Upfront

PUBLISHER William S. Johnson EDITORIAL Jay Thorwaldson, Editor Jocelyn Dong, Managing Editor Carol Blitzer, Associate Editor Keith Peters, Sports Editor Tyler Hanley, Express™ and Online Editor Rebecca Wallace, Arts & Entertainment Editor Rick Eymer, Assistant Sports Editor Chris Kenrick, Gennady Sheyner, Staff Writers Sue Dremann, Staff Writer, Special Sections Editor Karla Kane, Editorial Assistant Veronica Weber, Staff Photographer Jeanne Aufmuth, Dale Bentson, Colin Becht, Peter Canavese, Kit Davey, Iris Harrell, Sheila Himmel, Kevin Kirby, Jack McKinnon, Renata Polt, Jeanie Forte Smith, Susan Tavernetti, Robert Taylor, Contributors Royston Sim, John Squire, Editorial Interns Be’eri Moalem, Arts & Entertainment Intern DESIGN Shannon Corey, Design Director Raul Perez, Assistant Design Director Linda Atilano, Diane Haas, Scott Peterson, Paul Llewellyn, Senior Designers Laura Don, Gary Vennarucci, Designers PRODUCTION Jennifer Lindberg, Production Manager Dorothy Hassett, Blanca Yoc, Sales & Production Coordinators ADVERTISING Walter Kupiec, Advertising Director Cathy Norfleet, Display Advertising Sales Asst. Judie Block, Janice Hoogner, Gary Whitman, Display Advertising Sales Kathryn Brottem, Real Estate Advertising Sales Joan Merritt, Real Estate Advertising Asst. David Cirner, Irene Schwartz, Inside Advertising Sales Alicia Santillan, Classified Administrative Asst. EXPRESS, ONLINE AND VIDEO SERVICES Rachel Palmer, Online Operations Coordinator Molly Stenhouse, Online Sales Consultant BUSINESS Mona Salas, Manager of Payroll & Benefits Elena Dineva, Mary McDonald, Sana Sarfaraz, Cathy Stringari, Doris Taylor, Business Associates ADMINISTRATION Amy Renalds, Assistant to the Publisher & Promotions Director Janice Covolo, Receptionist; Ruben Espinoza, Jorge Vera, Couriers EMBARCADERO PUBLISHING CO. William S. Johnson, President Michael I. Naar, Vice President & CFO Walter Kupiec, Vice President, Sales & Marketing Frank A. Bravo, Director, Information Technology & Webmaster Connie Jo Cotton, Major Accounts Sales Manager Bob Lampkin, Director, Circulation & Mailing Services Alicia Santillan, Susie Ochoa, Circulation Assistants Chris Planessi, Chip Poedjosoedarmo, Computer System Associates Lisa Trigueiro, Assistant to the Webmaster

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The Palo Alto Weekly (ISSN 0199-1159) is published every Friday by Embarcadero Publishing Co., 450 Cambridge Ave., Palo Alto, CA 94306, (650) 326-8210. Periodicals postage paid at Palo Alto, CA and additional mailing offices. Adjudicated a newspaper of general circulation for Santa Clara County. The Palo Alto Weekly is delivered free to homes in Palo Alto, Menlo Park, Atherton, Portola Valley, East Palo Alto, to faculty and staff households on the Stanford campus and to portions of Los Altos Hills. If you are not currently receiving the paper, you may request free delivery by calling 326-8210. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Palo Alto Weekly, P.O. Box 1610, Palo Alto, CA 94302. Copyright ©2009 by Embarcadero Publishing Co. All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited. Printed by SFOP, Redwood City. The Palo Alto Weekly is available on the Internet via Palo Alto Online at: www.PaloAltoOnline.com Our e-mail addresses are: editor@paweekly.com, letters@paweekly.com, ads@paweekly.com. Missed delivery or start/stop your paper? Call 650 326-8210, or e-mail circulation@paweekly. com. You may also subscribe online at www.PaloAltoOnline.com. Subscriptions are $60/yr.

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QUOTE OF THE WEEK

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450 CAMBRIDGE AVE, PALO ALTO, CA 94306 (650) 326-8210

The only other thing we can do in this city is eat. — Donna Berryhill, objecting to the plan to replace Palo Alto Bowl with a hotel and townhouses. See story, page 3.

Around Town I AM THE ROTTEN APPLE ... Is California’s controversial highspeed rail project moving too fast for local officials to keep up with? So it seems, Palo Alto City Councilman Greg Schmid argued Monday night during a special study session on the 800-mile rail line. The council had endorsed the $45 billion project last year, but its enthusiasm cooled off considerably as more details emerged (or, as many argue, failed to emerge). Schmid said he felt the quarterly meetings aren’t frequent enough to keep up with the project, which includes a rail segment stretching through Palo Alto along the Caltrain tracks. The council discussion also touched on the rail authority’s decision earlier this month to award a $9 million contract to a communications firm, Ogilvy Public Relations. Earlier in the month, Rod Diridon, a member of the rail authority’s Board of Directors, singled out the Peninsula for promoting too much “misinformation,” which he likened to a rotten apple and a festering sore. Palo Alto Councilman Pat Burt, who sits on a council subcommittee devoted to the rail project, said Monday he’s seen many a Peninsula resident stepping forward and claiming to be the “rotten apples” in Diridon’s often-quoted simile. Burt also said he doesn’t have high expectation for the rail authority’s renewed PR effort. “If they’re under the belief that a PR campaign is going to fundamentally alter what’s going to happen and that a one-sided approach will sway people in this very informed Peninsula, they have something to learn,” he said. ALL I WANT FOR X-MAS IS A POWER SWITCH ... In Palo Alto, complaints about the laborious permit process are about as common as conversations about the weather. But on Monday, it wasn’t an architect or a developer arguing about the city’s stringent regulations, but William Rosenberg, a volunteer with a local chapter of the Sea Scouts. The Scouts have traditionally sold Christmas trees at the former Elks Lodge. But as the building was demolished last year, leaving the Scouts scrambling for a new location. The group ultimately

secured the permission of developer John McNellis to use Alma Plaza. Then, the group encountered a new problem: no electricity. Rosenberg bounced from one city department to another, to little avail. “All I really want is someone in the city, a contact, who can contact me in the next few days to help shuttle me along,” Rosenberg said. Before he finished telling his tale, a man quietly approached Rosenberg and gave him a business card. “Is he with the city?” Rosenberg asked incredulously, prompting chuckles from the audience. The civil intruder shook Rosenberg’s hand and introduced himself as Curtis Williams, the city’s planning director. On Wednesday afternoon, Williams reported the situation has been resolved. CAN YOU SEE ME NOW? ... Workers in purple T-shirts took it to the streets of downtown Palo Alto last Friday to protest soon-to-be-imposed wage cuts. Sound familiar? This time, however, it wasn’t the city workers staging a protest but rather homecare workers, whose contract with Santa Clara County expired at the end of September. A few dozen workers were picketing around noon in front of Avenidas, a senior-services facility on Bryant Street. The Service International Local 521, which represents more than half of Palo Alto’s city workers, also has 14,000 IHSS (In-Home Supportive Services) workers who provide homecare to about 16,000 clients around the county, according to the union. The county has proposed lowering the workers’ wages from $12.35 an hour to $9.50. So why Avenidas? According to the union, they wanted to get the attention of Liz Kniss, former Palo Alto mayor and the current president of the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors. SEIU’s city workers, meanwhile, held their own picketing event this week on Embarcadero Road, next to Dorsey & Whitney, LLP, a law firm that employs Palo Alto Councilman Larry Klein. About 15 city workers held up optimistic signs (“New Day, New Direction”) calling for more amiable negotiations next spring, when contract talks are scheduled to resume. N

Upfront Image courtesy Stoecker and Northway Architects, Inc.

The Palo Alto Planning and Transportation Commission voted Nov. 18 to support a proposal by owners of Ming’s Chinese Cuisine & Bar on Embarcadero Road to demolish the popular restaurant and rebuild it as part of a development that also includes a hotel with 143 guest rooms.

New hotels reserving space in Palo Alto Commission supports plans for new hotels at sites of Palo Alto Bowl and Ming’s by Gennady Sheyner f Palo Alto is slogging through a recession, hotel developers apparently didn’t get the memo. Two major hotel proposals with more than 300 rooms between them have advanced swiftly though the city’s convoluted planning process and could get green lights from the City Council within the next three months. Meanwhile, the owner of the Sheraton and Westin hotels on El Camino Real aims to build a five-story “concierge wing” just south of the Westin that would add about 40 more hotel rooms to downtown Palo Alto. On Wednesday night, the Planning and Transportation Commission unanimously endorsed a proposed tentative map for a development that would replace the Palo Alto Bowl on El Camino Real. The historic bowling alley, at 4329 El Camino Real in south Palo Alto, appears poised to make way for a 167-

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room hotel and 26 townhouses. The commission also voted to support a proposal by owners of Ming’s Chinese Cuisine & Bar on Embarcadero Road to demolish the popular restaurant and rebuild it as part of a development that also includes a hotel with 143 guest rooms. The hotel at Ming’s would be situated at Embarcadero and East Bayshore roads, near the entrance to Palo Alto’s baylands. The new hotels could spell rare financial good news for the cashstrapped city, which is facing a projected “structural budget deficit” of $10 million — meaning fundamental, long-term budget cuts are required, not one-year reductions. Taxes from hotel stays, charged at 12 percent and known as “transient occupancy taxes,” are one of the few consistent revenue streams for the city. Planning Director Curtis Williams said the city has been trying

to encourage new hotel developments by modifying zoning laws to allow greater density at certain hotel-friendly locations. In 2006, the city changed its zoning code to allow sites zoned “service commercial” to have three times more-dense development than before. Commissioner Lee Lippert cited the tax factor as one reason why the hotel at Palo Alto Bowl is an appropriate project that should be supported. But the commission’s approval of the Palo Alto Bowl project was admittedly bittersweet, with several members and residents lamenting the demolition of the alley. Donna Berryhill, one of a handful of public speakers at Wednesday’s meeting, said many of her friends were upset to learn the bowling alley would be destroyed — some (continued on page 8)

CRIME

Expert: Officer May shot in the head first Sequence of bullets could be matter of life or death to Alberto Alvarez by Sue Dremann gunshot-trajectory expert attempted to demolish assertions on Tuesday morning that Alberto Alvarez, 26, murdered East Palo Alto Police officer Richard May in January 2006 in an execution-style shooting. Prosecutors in the trial have said Alvarez, who has admitted shooting May, fired the fatal shot into the officer’s face as the defendant walked by the downed officer. Whether that assertion is convincing to the jury could mean the difference between a life sentence for Alvarez or the death penalty. Alvarez shot May four times, the first three shots disabling the officer and knocking him to the ground, prosecutors have said. Alvarez then walked by May, only to return and fire once into May’s face, killing him, according to prosecutors. But defense expert John Jacobson of Forensics Analytical Sciences Inc., a private Hayward lab, said Tuesday the first shot Alvarez fired was to May’s head. When Alvarez first fired his 9mm handgun, trajectory data indicate the bullet struck May in the face

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Richard May

Alberto Alvarez

and May’s head was bent down or the officer could have been crouching. The bullet traveled at a 45-degree angle downward, he said. “If he was standing straight it would have been at a 20-degree angle,” Jacobson said, indicating the shooter would have had to be significantly elevated or standing directly over the officer lying on the ground for the bullet to have entered at 45 degrees. Jacobson said the officer likely shot Alvarez first — in the right leg — while Alvarez was moving sideways between two vehicles outside a residence on Weeks Street in East Palo Alto. He took into account the driveway’s slope, the angle and direction of a bullet wound in Alvarez’s right upper thigh and the location of a bullet hole in the garage door, he said.

He concluded the officer was standing or slightly crouched near the sidewalk and fired between the vehicles, striking Alvarez. The bullet passed through Alvarez’s thigh, exiting and smashing through the garage door behind him, Jacobson said. Surveillance video showed Alvarez is left-handed, so having his right side facing the officer could make it implausible he fired the first shot, defense attorneys have said. The bullet cartridge from May’s gun was also found under the driver’s side of a white truck, which is consistent with the truck’s position and with a gun fired by the officer’s right hand, Jacobson said. On cross examination by San Mateo County Senior Deputy District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe, Jacobson said he thought Alvarez had been struck first because the shot to the officer’s face would have incapacitated him and he could not have fired his gun again. “Could (May’s gunfire) have been in the middle of an exchange of shots?” Wagstaffe asked. “Could it be simulta(continued on page 7)

COMMUNTIY

Dog owners want more play space for pets City holds public meeting to hear residents’ concerns, suggestions for dog recreation by Royston Sim

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alo Alto’s dog owners Tuesday called on the city to change its leash law so their pets could run off-leash in parks and schools at certain hours of the day when few people were around. The discussion at Jordan Middle School — involving about 90 people, only five of whom did not own a dog — marked the city’s first formal step in a process to address recreational opportunities for dog owners and dogs. The city’s leash law, instituted in 1955, requires every dog to be leashed at all times when outside a home or private yard. “I have no place where I can let my dog run without a leash, and I don’t understand that,” said Palo Alto resident Sarah Arnold. “It seems to me there’s a limited amount of space, and a lot of people with dogs.” Dog owners at the meeting almost unanimously agreed they would like specific times and places where dogs could run off-leash and owners could socialize. “Community is hard enough to come by in this day and age, so when we have these communities that have formed around dogs and exercising dogs, that’s something the city should see as a real positive value,” dog owner Lucinda Abbott said. Dog owners said that the city’s three dog runs in Mitchell Park, Greer Park and Hoover Park are not within walking distance for many neighborhoods and are cramped and pale in comparison to dog facilities in neighboring cities such as Mountain View. “I’m concerned that my dog is never able to run freely,” resident Jackie Raine said. “Dogs need that freedom, they really do. There’s just nowhere at all in this city.” However, Wendy Miller, who works at the Addison Kids Club, said she was against sharing her compound with dogs while children were around. She has called the police on several occasions because some dog owners refused to leash their pets and denied there was a leash law. Miller has also seen unleashed dogs running near buildings and relieving themselves near areas where children play, she said. “Sharing space is not working,” Miller said. “My concern is for my kids. There’s a huge liability if anything happens to those kids.” After listening to several questions and opinions from residents, city staff divided the crowd into small groups to discuss and share their top concerns and suggestions for improving recreational opportunities for dogs. “We want people to go out and build a strong, healthy community around walking their dogs,” said Rob De Geus, division manager of recreation and golf for the city. “But we also have to balance that so it doesn’t

affect the recreation of others.” Resident Neil Dorward said there were dogs running without leashes at night in schools such as Jordan, and that resulted in dog stool left on the ground. “One of the problems is you can’t possibly pick up everything after your dog,” Dorward said. He suggested having some parks with fenced areas for dogs and prohibiting them on school grounds. Another popular suggestion was to increase the size of existing dog runs and install a divider between areas for large dogs and smaller dogs. Dog aggression was a concern, owners said. “When so many dogs are close together, they get aggressive. Often the large dogs overpower the small dogs,” Jackie Raine said. She owns a small Italian greyhound. “I can’t take her to the dog run because basically, she’s too frightened.” Resident Keith Gilbert suggested an “informal membership” at neighborhood parks to obtain some accountability and responsibility from dog owners. This would help in monitoring dogs that are off-leash, he said. Other suggestions included opening Foothills Park to dogs on weekends — at present, the park only allows dogs weekdays. “We are not trying to get rid of a leash law,” dog owner Wendy Hopfenberg said. “I think we all agree dogs need to be on leashes out in public on the streets.” City staff will put together the residents’ comments in a staff report and present it to the Parks and Recreation Commission. “We understand that most of the people tonight are dog owners, and so we’ll be hearing from people who are not dog owners,” commissioner Sunny Dykwel said. “We want to be transparent and this is the first step.” Dog owner Theresa Carey said discussion has dragged on too long without action. “It’ll be nice if we could move forward and get something done in the next year or two,” she said. The next commission meeting is scheduled for Dec. 15. N Editorial Intern Royston Sim can be e-mailed at rsim@paweekly.com. 24th Annual Palo Alto Weekly

Read the winning stories online

December 4

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As revenues fall, Palo Alto cuts managers’ compensation New terms would freeze salaries, eliminate bonuses, require greater medical contributions by Gennady Sheyner

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alo Alto’s professional and management workers will give up their bonus payments, receive no salary increases and pay for a greater share of their medical premiums under a new compensation plan the City Council approved this week. The benefit adjustments are part of the city’s strategy to narrow the structural deficit in its general fund, which currently stands at $10 million but is expected to swell. Last month, the council unilaterally imposed new terms on more than 600 workers represented by the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 521 after more than five months of futile negotiations. The benefit cuts for the 242 members of the management group were less severe than those for the SEIU workers, who in addition to forgoing raises and chipping in for medical payments were required to increase their contributions to the Public Employees Retirement System from 2 percent to 8 percent. The management group was also given a chance to propose its own money-saving changes to the medical-premium formula. Unlike the SEIU workers, who picketed in front of City Hall and staged a one-day strike to protest the council’s actions, the management group offered no public resistance to the new terms. Only one member of the public addressed the council on the topic, Margaret Atkins — an SEIU employee in the Public Works Department. Atkins criticized the city’s com-

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pensation plan for managers as too lenient, given the terms the council recently imposed on the union. “Does the council value the SEIU employees less than management and professionals?” Atkins asked the council Monday night. According to a report by Russ Carlsen, director of human services, the city reached its new terms with the unrepresented group after discussions with a special committee composed of group representatives from each city department. The new terms for the management and professional group are expected to reduce costs by $1.5 million, which includes savings of $805,756 in the general fund. Meanwhile, the SEIU is preparing to resume its contract negotiations with the City Council next spring. On Wednesday afternoon, about 20 SEIU workers in purple shirts held up signs and chanted in front of Dorsey & Whitney LLP, a law firm on Embarcadero Road where Councilman Larry Klein works. Deborah Anthonyson, a librarian at the Main Library, said the union hopes the council, which will include four new members next year, brings a more collaborative approach to the negotiations. She characterized the city’s imposition of compensation terms as a “violation of our trust in the city.” At one point, Klein stepped out to greet the workers and introduce himself. But he also told the Weekly he doesn’t expect next year’s negotiations to be drastically different from the recent talks.

MEDIA

The Palo Alto Story Project

story?’

Heard the one about the plane that crashed into a man’s car on Embarcadero Road? Did you know developers once eyed Arastradero Preserve as a place to build shopping centers and schools? These stories and other tales about Palo Alto, as told by local residents as part of the Palo Alto Story Project, are now posted on the Internet. Watch them at www.PaloAltoOnline.com

Lalo Perez, director of administrative services, said the city’s structural deficit is expected to expand by several million dollars because of anemic sales-tax revenues. The department is expected to release the latest financial projections next month. So far, Perez said, the city has secured about $2.8 million in generalfund savings from employee compensation in the current fiscal year, just short of the $3 million it was hoping to save. This includes about $800,000 in savings from the Palo Alto Police Officers Association, which has agreed to give up negotiated raises this year. City Manager James Keene said the city is still working out the final details of its agreement with the police union. The Palo Alto Professional Firefighters Union, meanwhile, has backed off from its prior proposal to trim compensation by $700,000 because of concerns the salary cuts would result in lower pensions for the retiring members of the union. The new compensation terms for the SEIU and the management group will also mean greater savings in future years because of changes in the pension formula for new hires and the increased medical contributions by employees, Perez said. “If you look at it from the bigpicture standpoint, we’re making significant changes that will have significant cost reductions going forward,” Perez said. N Staff Writer Gennady Sheyner can be e-mailed at gsheyner@ paweekly.com.

Weekly announces new online ‘virtual edition’

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new enhanced digital version of the Palo Alto Weekly will now be available on Palo Alto Online. The new “virtual edition” enables users to flip through the paper electronically, turning pages and zooming in on specific stories or ads and to print out pages of interest. The edition is similar to a PDF (which is also available on Palo Alto Online) but doesn’t take as long to load on a computer screen and offers intuitive tools and features that closely resemble the process of reading a physical newspaper. In addition to current and past issues of the Weekly, special publications such as the Visitors Guide, Home & Garden Design, Info, Neighborhoods and Living Well will also be available in the new format. The “virtual edition” can be accessed at www.PaloAltoOnline. com by scrolling down to “Recent Issues” on the lower right or by

clicking on “Palo Alto Weekly” in the green navigation bar to the left on the site. “Introducing this new online presentation is a logical extension of our multimedia focus,” said Weekly publisher Bill Johnson. “It offers our growing online audience another attractive option for viewing the newspaper and our many special publications.” The virtual edition is powered by Issuu, Inc., a Menlo Park company offering digital-publishing platforms. Founded in 2006, it was named one of the 50 best websites in 2009 by Time.com. N — Palo Alto Weekly staff

Public Agenda CITY OF PALO ALTO ... The city has no meetings scheduled for this week.

Upfront

KITCHEN CABINETS

News Digest

Alvarez

California Avenue to start seeing new trees

neous? ... Would that be possible?� “Yes, it would,� Jacobson said. Wagstaffe questioned discrepancies between Jacobson’s assessment and both Alvarez’s own testimony or that of another witness, Virginia Rodriguez. Both of them saw May behind a white truck in the driveway, Wagstaffe said. But May was found lying behind an Oldsmobile just to the north of the truck If the first bullet incapacitated the officer, how did he move from behind the white truck to behind the Oldsmobile, Wagstaffe asked, indicating the first shot must not have been fatal. “The defendant testified Officer May had not moved. It’s inconsistent with the whole reconstruction. It calls into question the whole reconstruction, doesn’t it?� Wagstaffe said. Jacobson said he stood by the physical evidence, although he could not say precisely where either man was located or how they were holding their guns. East Palo Alto Police Chief Ronald Davis testified Tuesday afternoon about his experience as a racial profiling and use-of-force expert. His testimony was in rebuttal to that of defense expert Winthrop Taylor. Davis is under contract with the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division and reviews hundreds of use-of-force investigations nationwide, he said. As chief, Davis said he did not have an expectation that his officers should follow tiered escalation-of-force policy to the letter. The policy leaves room for interpretation, depending on the circumstances, he said. “It’s clear you can never apply one permanent or fixed standard,� he said. The goal in choosing any level of force “is not to match resistance but to overcome it,� he said. Taylor said in his opinion May should have gone to the taqueria where Alvarez and another man were said to be fighting rather than stopping Alvarez on the street. But Davis said the idea of passing a suspect by to go to a scene was “silly.� “To go to a store to see if it was robbed after a suspect is leaving in front of you� would not be something he would expect or want from his officers, he said. Taylor said May also erred by not assuming Alvarez or any Hispanic suspect would be running away out of fear because they could be undocumented. May also did not take into consideration that Alvarez might not understand English, he said. But Davis called those assumptions racial profiling. That’s like saying, “If I see an African American, he must be on parole,� he said. The defense rested its case. Both sides will present closing arguments Monday, and jurors will receive instructions from the judge. They could begin deliberations by Monday afternoon. N Staff Writer Sue Dremann can be e-mailed at sdremann@ paweekly.com.

Palo Alto will have a greener, slightly shadier California Avenue before the end of this winter — the City Council Monday night unanimously approved a staff proposal to start planting dozens of new trees in December. The council reached its decision after months of sometimes emotional meetings between city staff, consultants, arborists and residents around the bustling California Avenue business district. Area residents and merchants joined the process in mid-September after city staff hastily approved the chainsawing of 63 holly oaks on California Avenue, enraging the neighborhood and residents citywide and prompting immediate apologies from city officials. On Monday night, the council characterized the newly approved plan as the perfect compromise reached through an inclusive, transparent process. “It’s nice to have speed, but even better to have quality,� Councilman Larry Klein said. “I think in this case we had both.� The new plan includes 47 deciduous trees and 28 evergreen trees interspersed throughout the three-block stretch of California Avenue between El Camino Real and the Caltrain Station. The native valley oaks will serve as “gateways� to the business district, while Shumard oaks, Freeman maples, Southern live oaks and silver lindens will be scattered along sidewalks and intersections. Nearly 20 residents addressed the council on the topic Monday night, with most urging the council to approve the plan without further delay. Some said they were traumatized and shocked when they saw the trees removed. The tree-replanting project is the first of two phases in the city’s plan to beautify California Avenue. In the coming weeks, staff plans to consult the public on the second phase, which includes new bike racks, newspaper racks and benches. The second phase also includes reconfiguration of lanes to make the street more amenable to bicyclists. Staff will return to the council with its plans for the next phase of improvements in the spring. Work on that portion of the plan is scheduled to begin next summer. N — Gennady Sheyner

$5.7 million schools budget gap will get bigger Palo Alto schools’ projected $5.7 million “structural� deficit for next school year is expected to rise to $8 million in 2011-12 and $10 million in 2012-13, Superintendent Kevin Skelly said Monday in an e-mail warning of hard challenges ahead. In a message to school-district families, Skelly outlined a plan to gather budget-cutting ideas, asking people to send suggestions to balancedbudget@pausd.org. The $5.7 million represents nearly 4 percent of the district’s operating budget, of which personnel costs claim about 85 percent. The school board will hold a public study session, probably in January, to consider ideas, officials said. Skelly said he already has taken “multiple small steps� to address the shortfall, including cutting food budgets and closing some swimming pools between sports seasons to reduce heating costs. An informal hiring freeze also has yielded savings, he said. In soliciting budget-cutting ideas, Skelly issued a list of nine “values� he will use to guide the process. At the top of the list is “maintain academic excellence� and “avoiding layoffs.� N — Chris Kenrick

School parcel tax renewal may hit April 6 ballot Palo Alto School Superintendent Kevin Skelly is recommending an April 6 election to seek renewal and increase of the school district’s $493 annual parcel tax. The tax, first passed by two-thirds of voters in 2001 and renewed in 2005, raises $9.3 million a year — about 6 percent of the school district’s operating budget. Skelly proposed a six-year renewal of the tax, including a $96 dollar increase — to $589 — and a cost-of-living clause not to exceed 2 percent. The school board is scheduled to discuss the staff proposal at its next meeting Dec. 8 and to vote on ballot placement Dec. 15. Once the board places a measure on the ballot, any campaign is mounted by an independent citizens’ group. Skelly’s proposal follows an October community poll that suggested two-thirds of likely voters would support a parcel tax increase of as much as $180. However, Skelly said — and school board members Tuesday generally agreed — that given the “tough economic times,� it is prudent to seek a smaller increase. Overall, the school district’s revenue this year declined by $461 per student, the district’s co-chief business officer Bob Golton said. Other “upscale� school districts are supported by ongoing parcel taxes of as much as $2,349, school officials said. N — Chris Kenrick LET’S DISCUSS: Read the latest local news headlines and talk about the issues at Town Square at www.PaloAltoOnline.com

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Upfront

Real Estate Matters ONE’S LOSS IS ANOTHER’S GAIN While falling values are not good indicators for sellers, they’re great news for buyers, lifting affordability to historically high levels. With the lowest interest rates we've seen in forty years, now is an opportune time to lock in a rate on a fixed loan. Rates are already showing signs of rising, and waiting too long could negatively affect your ability to secure such a mortgage. In addition to rising interest rates, the fees on loan applications may also start increasing. This is because lenders have reassessed their risk to reward ratios in light of all the recent loan defaults. Around the corner, we might expect higher mortgage insurance premiums and closing costs, not to mention tougher and tougher terms for qualification. With interest rates and loan fees still at very affordable levels, now is the time to make your move and secure your financial stability

through home ownership. If you buy a $1,000,000 home today and it appreciates at a very conservative 3% annually, that home would be worth nearly $1,100,000 in three years. Don't let all the negative stories about real estate blind you to the many positive factors for buyers in today's market. Jackie Schoelerman is a Realtor with Alain Pinel Realtors and a Real Estate Specialist for Seniors. Call Jackie for real estate advice.

Online This Week

(continued from page 5)

These and other news stories were posted on Palo Alto Online throughout the week. For longer versions, go to www.PaloAltoOnline.com/news or click on “News” in the green, left-hand column.

East Palo Alto man shot in knee on way to store A 51-year-old East Palo Alto resident who said he had just left his home to walk to a store was shot in his left knee Wednesday night in an apparent drive-by shooting, police said. (Posted Nov. 19 at 12:31 a.m.)

Police: Sexual assault victim ‘very uncooperative’ The victim of a Nov. 12 sexual assault by two men near the footbridge to Palo Alto at the southern end of Alma Street in Menlo Park is being “very, very uncooperative” with investigators from the Menlo Park Police Department, police said. (Posted Nov. 18 at 12:13 p.m.)

Rapist gets 25 to life for Mountain View attack San Jose resident Melchor Paredes was sentenced last week to 25 years to life in prison for the 2007 rape of a young woman on Terra Bella Avenue in Mountain View. (Posted Nov. 18 at 9:22 a.m.)

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Police in East Palo Alto are still looking for the man who apparently shot two people in front of a home Thursday evening, a detective said Tuesday. (Posted Nov. 17 at 3:12 p.m.)

Expert assails May case evidence gathering A former San Mateo County forensics expert on Monday gave scathing testimony criticizing the evidence gathering in the shooting death of East Palo Alto Police Officer Richard May. (Posted Nov. 17 at 12:12 a.m.)

Palo Alto High principal reflects on ‘egg wars’ Eleven Palo Alto High School students were suspended and about seven more received “consequences” for participating in an Oct. 27 “egg war” on the Gunn High School campus, Paly Principal Jacquie McEvoy says in an interview looking back on the incident. (Posted Nov. 16 at 4:35 p.m.)

Another home-invasion robbery reported A man forced his way into a Mountain View woman’s apartment through a closed window early Saturday morning, held her at gunpoint and forced her to drive to a bank and withdraw cash for him, police said. (Posted Nov. 16 at 8:15 a.m.)

Coroner IDs 6-year-old victim of hit-run crash The 6-year-old Menlo Park girl who was fatally injured in a hit-andrun “street racing” crash last week has been identified as Lisa Xavier. She died from injuries received when her family’s car was hit by a street racer who ran a red light, police reported. (Posted Nov. 13 at 7:26 p.m.)

‘Addictive’ culture causes teen substance abuse Teenagers often begin abusing substances not just by individual choice but as a consequence of an “out of control” American culture, a psychologist said Thursday evening at a community forum at Palo Alto High School. (Posted Nov. 13 at 3 p.m.)

HP to acquire 3Com in $2.7 billion deal In a direct challenge to networking giant Cisco Systems Inc., HP announced it will acquire 3Com in a deal worth $2.7 billion. (Posted Nov. 13 at 10:10 a.m.)

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couldn’t attend the commission meeting because it was their bowling night, she said. The alley is one of very few places in the city that allows families to spend time together, Berryhill said. “The only other thing we can do in this city is eat, and none of us like to eat that much,” she said. The commission shared her sentiments but praised the project’s design and compliance with the city’s Comprehensive Plan. The city’s Architectural Review Board voted unanimously to recommend approval of the new hotel in early November. “It’s a pretty good precedent for the kind of massing and street frontage on El Camino Real that we’d like to see,” Commissioner Eduardo Martinez said. “It’s unfortunate that it also carries with it a great price that we have to pay for its development.” The City Council is scheduled to vote on the Palo Alto Bowl project on Dec. 14. The commission was less ambivalent about the Ming’s proposal, which was seeking a zone change to “service commercial.” The fourstory, 50-foot-tall structure would include a hotel and a restaurant. The applicants, Wu-chung Hsiang and Vicky Ching, initially proposed a 162-room hotel, but scaled back to 143 rooms after earlier feedback from the planning commission and the Architectural Review Board. Commissioners Wednesday night said they were concerned about insufficient parking — 166 spaces — in the Ming’s proposal. They directed staff to work with the applicant to create a traffic-demand management program and explore off-site parking for visitors. But the commission voted 5-0, with Karen Holman abstaining and Samir Tuma absent, to support the project. The Ming’s plan is scheduled to be reviewed by the Architectural Review Board in January. The council could see it as early as February. City officials are also preparing for a dense, new five-story hotel addition to the Sheraton and Westin hotels in the 700 block of El Camino Real. The applicant, Clement Chen, indicated that his company, Pacific Hotel Development Venture Inc., would seek to rezone the property to “planned community” — a process that allows developers to exceed density limits in exchange for public benefits. The “planned community” process was utilized in some of the city’s most controversial recent developments, including the College Terrace Centre (which includes JJ&F Food Store and almost 40,000 square feet of office space) and the stalled Alma Plaza development. Chen has proposed landscape and road improvements, including new crosswalks, sidewalk paving and handicap ramps at University Circle and new trees at the El Camino offramp to University Avenue. The application has yet to be reviewed by any of the city commissions or the council. N Staff Writer Gennady Sheyner can be e-mailed at gsheyner@ paweekly.com.

Upfront

CityView A round-up of

Palo Alto government action this week

City Council (Nov. 16)

California Avenue trees: The council voted to approve a staff plan to plant new trees along California Avenue, between the Caltrain station and El Camino Real. Planting would begin in late December. Yes: Unanimous Downtown zoning: The council voted to adjust zoning rules in the downtown area to give downtown property owners on peripheral downtown blocks more flexibility in choosing ground-floor tenants. Yes: Drekmeier, Morton, Klein, Burt, Barton, Espinosa, Schmid, Yeh No: Kishimoto

Board of Education (Nov. 17)

Extended summer school: The board voted to extend the four-week summer school for some courses to six weeks, making time for offerings of full-year credit or threeweek, single semester credit. Yes: Unanimous Labor agreements: The board approved contracts with the Palo Alto Educators Association and the California School Employees Association covering the 2009-10 year. Beyond scheduled increases based on seniority and graduate units there is no pay raise. Both the school district and employees will contribute to increased healthcare costs. Yes: Unanimous

Parks and Recreation Commission (Nov. 17)

Dog facilities: The commission held a community meeting to discuss recreational opportunities for dogs, including more areas for dogs to be allowed to run off leash. The commission will continue its discussion of the issue at its meeting on Dec. 15. Action: None

Planning & Transportation Commission (Nov. 18)

Palo Alto Bowl: The commission voted to approve the tentative map for a proposed development at 4329 El Camino Real, which includes 26 houses and a 167-room hotel. The new development would replace Palo Alto Bowl. Yes: Garber, Keller, Holman, Fineberg, Lippert, Martinez Absent: Tuma Ming’s Hotel: The commission voted to recommend approval of a zone change and approved the site and design for a new four-story hotel with 143 rooms on the site of Ming’s. Yes: Garber, Keller, Lippert, Fineberg, Martinez Absent: Tuma Abstained: Holman

Architectural Review Board (Nov. 19)

385 Sherman Ave.: The board discussed a proposal by MF Sherman, LLC, to build a four-story, 55,566-square-foot building at 385 Sherman Ave., which would include three floors of office space and two residences on the fourth floor. The board asked the applicant to consider the shade impacts of the building on Sarah Wallis Park. Action: None

Vacancies

(continued from page 3)

“ground floor protection” from downtown properties along Alma and High, just south of University. Properties around University Circle, which connects University to Alma, will also now be open to groundfloor office use, as will three parcels along Kipling and Cowper streets, north of University. But while the peripheral downtown streets would get more flexibility, the heart of the district would remain dedicated to retail. In fact, property owners along University will now have less flexibility than before when it comes to switching from retail to other uses. Before Monday’s vote, property owners along and around the downtown stretch of University Avenue were required to house retail on the ground floors of their buildings. But the city’s regulations had also allowed property owners to request groundfloor office use if the downtown vacancy rate climbs above 5 percent. But as the downtown vacancy rate crept toward double digits this year, planning staff and downtown landlords have grown concerned about the prospect of offices gradually replacing retail downtown, turning the city’s vital shopping area into more of a business district. Recent departures of two major University Avenue retailers — Z Gallerie Home Furnishing and Magnolia Audio Video — and scores of smaller shops

further exacerbated these fears. The council shared staff’s concerns and voted to eliminate the 5 percent rule, essentially guaranteeing that any future ground-floor tenants in the heart of the downtown district would be retailers. The council also mandated that future downtown developments be designed in such a way as to be compatible with retail use — a proposal supported by prominent downtown property owners Charles “Chop” Keenan and Jim Baer. Keenan, Baer and fellow property owner Fred Thoits all attended the council meeting to express support for the staff-recommended changes. “We all want to enrich the retail in the (downtown) core,” said Keenan, whose many downtown properties include those that house the Aquarius Theatre, Miyake Restaurant and Borders Bookstore. “Where we have properties that aren’t good for retail, those can be offices and customers of the (downtown retail) core.” The council voted 8-1, with Yoriko Kishimoto dissenting, to adopt the new rules. Kishimoto and Councilman Greg Schmid both argued that properties on Alma, between Hamilton and University, should be required to have retail tenants on the ground floor. Schmid argued that the 500 block of Alma, which includes the clothing store Patagonia and the restaurant Pampas, is both too vibrant and too centrally located to have its retail designation revoked. “It’s so important as an entry point,”

Schmid said. “This is where you turn in (to University Avenue). Having lights and action on the ground floor makes a big difference.” But the proposal to exempt these properties, as well as a handful of others, from the retail requirement was voted down by the rest of the council. Baer and Keenan, who have developed much of downtown Palo Alto over the past three-plus decades, both said they were optimistic about the downtown’s economic recovery. Baer said he’s been encouraged by the resurgence of interest in downtown space in recent months. The video-game store GameSpot is planning to move into 370 University Ave., former site of Golden Loom rug store. Another tenant has expressed interest in leasing the large space at 340 University Ave., formerly occupied by Z Gallerie (Baer said a new tenant could be announced next month). Best Buy — which owns Magnolia and which holds the lease to 180 University Ave. — has fielded offers from several potential tenants but has not yet committed to any of them, Baer said. Meanwhile, the cyber-security company Palantir Technologies has moved into the old Facebook headquarters at 156 University Ave. The company is now attracting the same type of young, brainy, casually dressed technologists that previously flocked to Facebook. N Staff Writer Gennady Sheyner can be e-mailed at gsheyner@ paweekly.com.

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s we plan for the holiday season, we reflect upon the fine selection of local businesses that serve our community’s needs so well. Palo Alto boasts a wide variety of retail stores that offer gifts to meet the tastes and budgets of just about everyone… from shops located in neighborhood centers to California Avenue and Downtown to our regional shopping centers that provide unique one-of-a-kind art pieces to high-style designer clothing… and holiday decorations and cards to the most delectable baked goods or special ingredients for your family celebrations. It’s all here in Palo Alto. Since the holiday season is one of the busiest times of the year, it’s a great time to take advantage of Palo Alto’s many restaurants… to save time for yourself or to entertain friends and family. No matter where you shop in Palo Alto, you’ll find eateries to satisfy your hunger. And when you “shop local” you support your community in more ways than one. Not only do you support the vitality of local

shops, restaurants and their employees, you participate in building community. When you shop Downtown this holiday season, you can participate in one of the many events planned for the renovated Lytton Plaza. You can help the California Avenue merchants support the Toys for Tots drive on Sunday, December 6 at 7:30 p.m. when Santa arrives on the Cal Train. Town & Country Shopping Center businesses will match your food donations to the Second Harvest Food Bank pound for pound starting November 23 and Stanford Shopping Center will support area nonprofits Home and Hope, SV2 and the East Palo Alto Academy through gift wrapping services, gift tag sales and hot chocolate sales through the holiday shopping season. When you shop, eat and have fun in Palo Alto this holiday season you help to ensure that our businesses will continue to be an integral part of the distinctive character of our home. Thank you for shopping and dining locally!

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Volunteers are needed to support distribution programs. Monetary donations are also welcome, as are donations of food, toys and clothing. A schedule of volunteer opportunities is available online. To sign up or to get more information, visit www. csacares.org/html/hsp.html, email Alison Hopkins at ahopkins@csacares.org or call 650-964-4630. 204 Stierlin Road, Mountain View.

Cops That Care The Mountain View Police Department is now accepting new, unwrapped toys and clothing as well as gift cards and cash. This program is designed for families in Mountain View that are unable to purchase gifts for their children this holiday season. Donations can be brought directly to the police department. For more information about this program, contact 650-903-6344. 1000 Villa St., Mountain View.

InnVision Donations of new books and toys are needed for distribution through the annual “Holiday Toy Shoppe.”

Pet Food Express Raise money for a nonprofit catrescue organization and Palo Alto Animal Services on Saturday, Dec. 12, from noon to 4 p.m., by bringing pets to have their pictures taken with Santa Claus. All proceeds benefit Itty Bitty Orphan Kitty Rescue (IBOK) and its emergency medical fund. Photos are $10 for one, $15 for two, and all participants receive a free thank-you gift from Pet Food Express. Throughout the month of December, the store is also offering a “giving tree,” with proceeds benefiting Palo Alto Animal Services and IBOK. Customers can make donations of foods and toys after selecting ornaments from the store’s Christmas tree. Visit www.petfoodexpress.com or call 650-856-6666.

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Donors are also needed to “adopt” families and individual clients through donations of gifts and gift cards. Donations of canned food and coffee are also welcome. Visit www. innvision.org, e-mail donating@innvision.org or call 650-324-5357. Food donations are accepted Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. All food donations can go 425 Hamilton address at the All Saints Church. Toys and other gifts can be sent to the Opportunity Center at 33 Encina Ave, Palo Alto.

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To celebrate its 21st birthday, Wahoo’s Fish Taco at the corner of El Camino and Cambridge will open at 11am tomorrow Nov. 21 and hand out gifts to early-arriving customers. The first 21 guests will receive goodie bags featuring items from action sports brands including Tony Hawk Inc. and Liquid Force.

First Reported Santa Sighting Early Doppler Radar scans indicate a December 6th arrival of The Big Guy on California Ave. Next update will be in this special Holiday Section on Friday, Nov. 27.

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Through Dec. 24, PETCO stores are selling ornament cards in denominations of $1, $5, $10 or $20 to benefit the PETCO Foundation for orphaned animals. Donations may also be made online. Visit www.petco.com or call 650-966-1233. 1919 El Camino Real, Mountain View.

Ronald McDonald House at Stanford The house has holiday â&#x20AC;&#x153;giving ornamentsâ&#x20AC;? (with one needed item listed on each ornament) available for decorating office Christmas trees or other holiday displays. The â&#x20AC;&#x153;wishlistâ&#x20AC;? items are also displayed online. New, unwrapped gifts should be brought to the house. Monetary

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St. Anthonyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s of Padua Dining Room The St. Anthonyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Padua Dining Room needs hams, fresh produce and all the trimmings for its Christmas Meal served on Dec. 25 from noon to 2:30 p.m. to the needy. New toys are also needed to give away for children 2-14 years of age to be distributed on Christmas Eve. Open hours for donations are 8 a.m. -4 p.m. Monday-Saturday and holiday-food donations can be accepted throughout December. Monetary every story has a beadâ&#x201E;˘

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University Art Palo Alto 650-328-3500 267 Hamilton Avenue For holiday gift ideas, visit UniversityArt.com Be sure to visit our stores in San Jose, San Francisco and Sacramento too!

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and clothing donations are also accepted, as well as canned goods of all kinds. Visit paduadiningroom. com, 3500 Middlefield Road, Menlo Park or call 650-365-9665 or 650365-9664.â&#x20AC;?

Support Network for Battered Women SNBW is seeking gift cards in small denominations for families in critical need. A list of appropriate gift cards is available online. Normal office hours are Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Visit www.snbw.org/ donate/gift_cards.htm, e-mail snbwgiftsprogram@yahoo.com or call 408-541-6100 ext. 135. 1257 Tasman Drive, Sunnyvale.

Toys For Tots Through Dec. 18, new, unwrapped toys for children of all ages can be dropped off at local Coldwell Banker offices. The toys will be delivered by the United States Marine Corps Reserve to local charitable organizations, which will do the distribution to kids. Coldwell Banker locations include 245 Lytton Ave., Ste. 100, Palo Alto; 800 El Camino Real, Ste. 300, Menlo Park; 116 Portola Road, Portola Valley; 2969 Woodside Road, Woodside.

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Philharmonia Chorale director Bruce Lamott and co-concertmaster Elizabeth Blumenstock will conduct the Orchestra and the Philharmonia Chorale in a concert of instrumental and vocal Baroque holiday favorites, featuring Vivaldiâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Winterâ&#x20AC;? from â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Four Seasonsâ&#x20AC;? and â&#x20AC;&#x153;Gloria.â&#x20AC;? Fri., Dec. 4, 8-10:30 p.m. $30-$75. First United Methodist Church, 625 Hamilton Ave. Palo Alto. info@philharmonia.org

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Choir, orchestra and soloists will present Bach and Holiday Lights in concert under the direction of Shulamit Hoffmann. Dec. 19, 7:30-9:30 p.m. Carrington Hall, 1201 Brewster at Broadway, Redwood City www.vivalamusica.org

Peninsula Symphonyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;A Holiday Celebration!â&#x20AC;? Pieces include selections from Bachâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Christmas Oratorioâ&#x20AC;? and Reichaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s (a colleague of Beethoven) â&#x20AC;&#x153;Requiem.â&#x20AC;? Nov. 22, 1:30-3:30 p.m. $20 general admission. Stanford Memorial Church, Stanford 650-941-5291

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Old Chesnuts, New Fireâ&#x20AC;?

Ballet America presents the classic holiday story of â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Nutcracker.â&#x20AC;? Dec. 11 and 12, 7-9 p.m. $20 - $35. Carrington Hall, 1201 Brewster Ave., Redwood City. www.balletamerica.org/

Western Balletâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153; The Nutcrackerâ&#x20AC;? Production of the classic holiday ballet presented by one of the Bay Areaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s non-profit chamber ballet companies. Dec. 4-6, $28 adults; $26 students; $25 seniors/children. Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts, 500 Castro St., Moun-

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Gryphon Carolers Holiday Concert Innovative holiday songs from the Gryphon Carolers. Dec. 12, 7-10 p.m. Premium seating is $25 for adults and $18 for seniors and children under 12. Spangenberg Theater, 780 Arastradero Road, Palo Alto www.gryphoncarolers.com

TheatreWorks presents the West Coast premiere of â&#x20AC;&#x153;A Civil War Christmas,â&#x20AC;? a musical. Fact and fiction, old-time carols, and traditional tunes entwine in a saga of a divided nation longing for hope. Dec. 2-27, $26-$62. Lucie Stern Theatre, 1305 Middlefield Road, Palo Alto. www.theatreworks.org

Fine Crafts U Local Artists December 11, 12, 13, 2009 Friday, Saturday & Sunday 10-5 Hoover House (aka â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Girl Scout Houseâ&#x20AC;?) 1120 Hopkins, Palo Alto

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Palo Alto High Choir Alumni gather for an annual holiday sing along at Stanford Shopping Centerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Frog Pond Plaza (near Neiman Marcus). Nov. 28, 1-2 p.m. Stanford Shopping Center

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Members of the Catholic Churches of Menlo Park will join forces with the St. Francis High School Chamber Choir under the direction of Margaret Durando in a Christmas concert at St.Patrickâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Seminary. Choral music from Gabrieli and Mendelssohn will be sung. Dec. 6, 2:30-4 p.m., $20general/$15seniors-students. St. Patrickâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Seminary, 320 Middlefield Road. Menlo Park. 650-323-8328

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Holiday concert featuring: Britten, Byrd, Pärt, Biebl, Gesualdo, Tavener; the Bay Areaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s own Aprahamian, Conte, Bielawa, Nixon, Peterson; and world premieres by Composerin-Residence Brian Holmes and Christopher Marshall. Dec. 5, 8 p.m. St. Markâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Episcopal Church, 600 Colorado Ave. Palo Alto

Ballet Americaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Nutcrackerâ&#x20AC;?

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First Lutheran Church, 600 Homer Ave., Palo Alto. www.sdgloria.org

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11th annual holiday concert. The program includes festive classical and holiday music, harp solos and ensembles, studio ensemble of more than 20 harps, and a return of guest artist Meko (formerly Mike Walls). Sponsored by LAUMC. Dec. 5, 4-6 p.m. $10 & $15. Los Altos United Methodist Church, 655 Magdalena Ave., Los Altos. www.harpeggio.com

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Soli Deo Gloria: Songs of Nativity Soli Deo Gloria with Orchestra Gloria conducted by Allen Simon presents a holiday concert â&#x20AC;&#x153;Songs of Nativityâ&#x20AC;? featuring Respighiâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Laud to the Nativityâ&#x20AC;? with chorus and soloists Pamela Sebastian, Heidi Waterman, and Brian Thorsett. Plus Christmas music by Swedish composer Anders Ă&#x2013;hrwall. Dec. 5, 5-6:30 p.m. $25, $20. Students grades K-8, free.

     

        

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Upfront

Mi Pueblo

(continued from page 3)

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tain View, said Antwon Watts of East Palo Alto. But he said he dealt with racial profiling whenever he went there. Questions about race have also been brought up with respect to Mi Pueblo. At an East Palo Alto City Council meeting last month, some residents expressed fears that the market would cater only to Latino shoppers. The cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s population is approximately 59 percent Hispanic, 22 percent black, 7 percent Pacific Islander, 6 percent white, 4 percent Asian and the rest â&#x20AC;&#x153;other,â&#x20AC;? according to the U.S. Census Bureau. This week, some customers advocated for a racially mixed workforce at Mi Pueblo, saying it would be an important part of the grocery storeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s assimilation into the community. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It would be nice if there were black people working there. It feels uncomfortable,â&#x20AC;? said Grace Watts of East Palo Alto after a trip to the new

HE EARNED B.A. IN HISTORY FROM U.C. BERKELEY AND HIS MASTERS DEGREE IN EDUCATION ADMINISTRATION FROM STANFORD UNIVERSITY. HEâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S WORKED IN EDUCATION FOR MORE THAN TWENTY YEARS. Heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s one of a community of more than 16 faculty and administrators that live on campus. Heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a former U.S. Navy pilot, served three years as a Peace Corps volunteer in Paraguay, guided whitewater rafting trips, bartended, hung aluminum siding in Fairbanks, Alaska, worked at the Lair of the Golden Bear (Go Bears!) helped set up the big top for Cirque de Soleil, loves to ride motorcycles but most importantly, loves to spend time with his wife Thea and their three-year-old son Augie. He loves watching students blossom and believes that teaching is the noblest of callings, and also one of the most challenging to do well. He hopes students leave the Priory with strong personal identities as students and community members. He hopes they have discovered things that they are passionate about and that they have conďŹ dence, garnered from real experience, to take intellectual risks.

This holiday season, take a break from all that shopping and wrapping. Give an experience and create a cherished memory instead of more â&#x20AC;&#x153;stuff.â&#x20AC;? Experience gifts are for everyone:                     

BRIAN SCHL A AK ONE OF THE MANY REASONS TO SEND YOUR CHILD TO: Woodside Prior y School Admissions Office 302 Portola Road, Portola Valley, CA 94028 650/851-8223 â&#x2013;  www.PrioryCa.org

Enjoy the holidays knowing youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve given personal and enjoyable gifts to your friends and loved ones, and youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve also reduced waste!

(650) 496-5910 zerowaste@cityofpaloalto.org www.cityofpaloalto.org/zerowaste

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grocery store. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I think itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s nice that itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s coming in, as long as they hire minorities other than themselves,â&#x20AC;? said Darrel Matkins, an East Palo Alto resident. According to Perla Rodriguez, vice president of public affairs for Mi Pueblo, the company went â&#x20AC;&#x153;above and beyondâ&#x20AC;? what was required when it was recruiting applicants. She said the company worked in tandem with the City of East Palo Alto, putting fliers up at City Hall and hosting English-speaking information sessions. Rodriguez said that despite heavy advertising, the sessions were poorly attended. Nonetheless, more than 40 percent of the storeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 200 employees are East Palo Alto residents, 5 percent more than the city required, Rodriguez said. Mi Pueblo opened its first market in 1991 in San Jose. The East Palo Alto store, located in the former Circuit City space, is the chainâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 14th location. The store is open 365 days a year from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. N Editorial Intern John Squire can be contacted at jsquire@paweekly.com.

OPEN HOUSE

for Prospective Students and Families

Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2009 at 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5, 2009 at 10 a.m. For information and to R.S.V.P. contact Admissions at 650. 851. 8223

Upfront

Egg wars

(continued from page 3)

get a lesser consequence.â&#x20AC;? McEvoy said the public nature of the â&#x20AC;&#x153;egg warsâ&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x201D; an unauthorized tradition in which Paly juniors and seniors throw eggs at each other during Spirit Week â&#x20AC;&#x201D; has sparked opinions from many people who were not directly involved. Between

â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;I know people are saying â&#x20AC;&#x153;The whole administration should go.â&#x20AC;? They have all these opinions about what the solution is.â&#x20AC;&#x2122;

â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Jacquie McEvoy, principal, Palo Alto High School

50 and 75 Paly students are suspended in a typical year â&#x20AC;&#x201D; for violations ranging from smoking on campus to having a weapon on campus â&#x20AC;&#x201D; and the 11 egg-war suspensions should be taken in that context, she said. She added that she is bound by confidentiality restrictions from discussing specific cases. McEvoy noted the final cleanup bill for egg damage at Gunn High School, which was partly used for the egg fight, was $3,200. The cost was negotiated down by school officials from an original tally of $5,200. Carroll, an attorney and parent of a junior at Paly, said the egg-wars investigation and discipline is part of a larger context of tension at the school, much of it relating to an â&#x20AC;&#x153;adversarial posture toward the students.â&#x20AC;? McEvoy said Thursday she is working on drafting an explanation of her philosophy concerning student discipline. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I think thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s going to help clarify for a lot of people where we are,â&#x20AC;? she said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I know people are saying â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;The whole administration should go.â&#x20AC;&#x2122; They have all these opinions about what the solution is. â&#x20AC;&#x153;But the solution is more communication and looking at what our philosophy is.â&#x20AC;? Carroll cited violations of schooldistrict policy, state law and the constitutional right to due process, saying McEvoy rushed to impose harsh suspensions on student participants before knowing the facts. Paly parent Terri Valenti, a football referee and the mother of five boys, said a number of parents have expressed concerns about the administrationâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s disciplinary tactics. An original 20-person e-mail list of concerned parents has tripled in size, she estimated. When contacted by the Weekly, Valenti said parents â&#x20AC;&#x153;are trying to work within the systemâ&#x20AC;? to get their concerns addressed. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We have specific complaints and general complaints. We arenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t a united force, and we donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have one voice speaking for all of us. â&#x20AC;&#x153;But a lot of us are unhappy and grappling with the question of, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;How do we shake up the administration

and make sure they understand how serious we are about making some changes?â&#x20AC;&#x2122; â&#x20AC;&#x153;This (egg-wars investigation) has just ignited things that have been dormant. It is one more incident in the handling of things that people are not happy with. â&#x20AC;&#x153;What the administration wants to do is keep the incidents separated and not tie them together because collectively they indicate an administration that is unfair and rushes to judgment,â&#x20AC;? Valenti said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m not saying, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t punish my child if you feel it is necessary,â&#x20AC;&#x2122; but given the past egg wars and all the conditions, it seems like they want to throw the brick at these kids when they themselves have not acted properly,â&#x20AC;? she said. The â&#x20AC;&#x153;egg warsâ&#x20AC;? this year occurred at Bol Park and on the Gunn campus after students encountered police at the originally planned location, a eucalyptus grove at Stanford University. About 18 Paly students received â&#x20AC;&#x153;consequencesâ&#x20AC;? as a result of the egg wars, McEvoy said. Eleven were suspended for one or two days, and â&#x20AC;&#x153;six or sevenâ&#x20AC;? will be required to perform community service, she said. Suspended students also will be required to perform community service. McEvoy said she imposed fiveday suspensions after hearing the egg fight had involved frozen eggs, injuries and scuffles. Within 24 hours she reduced the suspensions to one or two days after finding no evi-

â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;It seems like they want to throw the brick at these kids when they themselves have not acted properly.â&#x20AC;&#x2122;

â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Terri Valenti, parent of student, Palo Alto High School

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Your Childâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Health University Lucile Packard Childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Hospital offers classes and seminars designed to foster good health and enhance the lives of parents and children. SIBLING PREPARATION CLASS This class for children two years of age and older will help prepare siblings for the emotional and physical realities of the arrival of a newborn. - Saturday, December 5: 10:30 am - 12:00 pm

GRANDPARENTS SEMINAR Designed for new and expectant grandparents, this class examines changes in labor and delivery practices, the latest recommendations for infant care and the unique role of grandparents in the life of their grandchild. - Sunday, December 6: 1:00 - 3:00 pm

ALL ABOUT PREGNANCY dence of the more serious charges. In a separate letter to McEvoy, parent Ellen Kreitzberg, a law professor at Santa Clara University, cited violations of the state Education Code guidelines for imposing suspensions. Suspensions must be used as a last, not first, resort, she wrote. And other parents, teachers and community members feel consideration of alternatives should be made prior to issuing a suspension, she added. Kreitzberg also took issue with McEvoyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;punitiveâ&#x20AC;? response to the incident rather than a â&#x20AC;&#x153;restorative justiceâ&#x20AC;? model. Restorative justice â&#x20AC;&#x153;places the victims at the center of the controversy and creates a cooperative structure directly between the persons in conflict,â&#x20AC;? Kreitzberg said. In the egg-war situation, for example, Gunn students could have been consulted to see what their needs were with respect to the incident and Paly students could have been asked to volunteer to assist with cleanup at Gunn. N Staff Writer Chris Kenrick can be e-mailed at ckenrick@paweekly.com. Editor Jay Thorwaldson can be e-mailed at jthorwaldson@ paweekly.com.

Our newest class will oďŹ&#x20AC;er an overview of pregnancy for the newly pregnant or about-to-be pregnant couple. The program will include the physical and emotional changes of pregnancy, comfort measures for pregnancy, maternal nutrition and ďŹ tness, pregnancy precautions, fetal development and growth, pregnancy testing, life changes and more. OďŹ&#x20AC;ered free of charge however seating is limited. Please call to reserve a space. - Thursday, December 10: 7:00 - 9:00 pm

INFANT AND CHILD CPR This 2-1/2 hour course provides an opportunity for new parents, grandparents and other childcare providers to learn the techniques of infant and child CPR and choking prevention. Infant and child mannequins provide hands-on training. - Monday, December 14: 4:30 - 7:00 pm

Call (650) 723-4600 or visit www.lpch.org to register or obtain more information on the times, locations and fees for these and other courses.

L U C I L E PA C K A R D

C H I L D R E Nâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S H O S P I T A L C A L L TO D AY TO S I G N U P F O R C L A S S E S ( 6 5 0 ) 72 3 - 4 6 0 0 *>Â?Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;Â?Ă&#x152;Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;7iiÂ&#x17D;Â?Ă&#x17E;Ă&#x160;UĂ&#x160; Â&#x153;Ă&#x203A;iÂ&#x201C;LiĂ&#x20AC;Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;ä]Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;ääÂ&#x2122;Ă&#x160;U Page 17

Pulse

A Guide to the Spiritual Community

A weekly compendium of vital statistics

Palo Alto

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Sunday Services â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 8:30 & 10:25 Sunday School â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 9:00 Rev. Love & Rev. McHugh OfďŹ ce Hours: 8-4 M-F

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First United Methodist Church of Palo Alto

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FIRST CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH, UCC ÂŁÂ&#x2122;nxĂ&#x160;Â&#x153;Ă&#x2022;Â&#x2C6;Ă&#x192;Ă&#x160;,Â&#x153;>`]Ă&#x160;*>Â?Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;Â?Ă&#x152;Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;UĂ&#x160;­Ă&#x2C6;xäŽĂ&#x160;nxĂ&#x2C6;Â&#x2021;Ă&#x2C6;Ă&#x2C6;Ă&#x2C6;Ă&#x201C;Ă&#x160;UĂ&#x160;Ă&#x153;Ă&#x153;Ă&#x153;°vVVÂŤ>°Â&#x153;Ă&#x20AC;}Ă&#x160; -Ă&#x2022;Â&#x2DC;`>Ă&#x17E;Ă&#x160;7Â&#x153;Ă&#x20AC;Ă&#x192;Â&#x2026;Â&#x2C6;ÂŤĂ&#x160;>Â&#x2DC;`Ă&#x160;-Ă&#x2022;Â&#x2DC;`>Ă&#x17E;Ă&#x160;-VÂ&#x2026;Â&#x153;Â&#x153;Â?Ă&#x160;>Ă&#x152;Ă&#x160;£ä\ääĂ&#x160;>°Â&#x201C;°

This Sunday: Celebrating Thanksgiving and our Pilgrim Heritage â&#x20AC;&#x153;Cautiously Gratefulâ&#x20AC;? Rev. David Howell preaching An Open and Affirming Congregation of the United Church of Christ

All are welcome. Information: 650-723-1762

2009

1001 El Camino Real, Menlo Park (650) 324-3486 %L#AMINO2EAL -ENLO0ARK  s&IRST3TREET ,OS!LTOS  

Sacred Heart Schools

Where scholarship and values matter

Stanford Memorial Church

OPEN HOUSE SCHEDULE

University Public Worship Stanford Memorial Church Sundays, 10:00 am

PRESCHOOL & K: 650.322.0176 GRADES 1-8: 650.473.4011

Sermons by the Dean, the Senior Associate Dean and the Associate Dean for Religious Life, as well as occasional guest speakers

Tours available for preschool - 5 (please call for an appointment)

Music featuring University Organist and Memorial Church Choir Director, Dr. Robert Huw Morgan http://religiouslife.stanford.edu

Los Altos Lutheran Church

Open House for Grades 6-8 Sunday, November 1 at 1 p.m. Saturday, November 14 at 10 a.m. (registration required)

GRADES 9-12: 650.473.4006 Open House Sunday, October 25 at 1 p.m. Sunday, November 22 at 1 p.m. (no registration required)

ELCA

Pastor David K. Bonde Outreach Pastor Gary Berkland 9:00 am Worship 10:30 am Education Nursery Care Provided Alpha Courses

150 Valparaiso Avenue, Atherton, CA 94027 www.shschools.org Inquiries and reservations: admission@shschools.org

650-948-3012 460 S. El Monte Ave., Los Altos

Menlo Park Nov. 11-17 Violence related Sexual assault . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Theft related Attempted burglary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Commercial burglaries . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Grand theft . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Petty theft . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Residential burglaries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4 Vehicle related Auto recovery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Driving w/ suspended license. . . . . . . . .1 Hit and run . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Theft from auto . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Vehicle tampering . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Alcohol or drug related Drug activity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Miscellaneous Coroner case . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Gang validation. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Juvenile problem. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Located missing person . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Lost property . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Missing person . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Vandalism . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Warrant arrest. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Other/misc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1

Atherton Nov. 10-16

www.losaltoslutheran.org

We Invite You to Learn and Worship with Us.

FPCMV welcomes our new Pastor Timothy R. Boyer. Biblically based Sermons and Worship Service 10:30 AM. www.fpcmv.org 1667 Miramonte (Cuesta at Miramonte) 650.968.4473

INSPIRATIONS

A resource for special events and ongoing religious services. To inquire about or make space reservations for Inspirations, please contact Blanca Yoc at 326-8210 x6596 or email byoc@paweekly.com Page 18 â&#x20AC;˘ November 20, 2009 â&#x20AC;˘ Palo Alto Weekly

Violence related Assault with a deadly weapon . . . . . . . .1 Battery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Domestic violence . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Rape . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Sexual assault. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Theft related Burglary attempt. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Credit card forgery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Grand theft . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Identity theft . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Petty theft . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8 Shoplifting. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4 Vehicle related Abandoned bicycle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Bicycle theft . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Driving with suspended license . . . . . . .1 Misc. traffic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Theft from auto . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Vehicle accident/prop. damage . . . . . . .2 Vehicle tow . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Alcohol or drug related Drunk in public . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Drunken driving. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Possession of drugs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Possession of paraphernalia. . . . . . . . . .2 Miscellaneous Found property. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Misc. penal code violation . . . . . . . . . . .2 Missing person . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Other/misc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Outside assistance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Psychiatric hold . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5 Sex crime . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Suspicious circumstances . . . . . . . . . . .2 Vandalism . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Warrant arrest. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Warrant/other agency . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6

Answers to this weekâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s puzzles, which can be found on page 64

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4 5 6 8 2 7 1 3 9

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2 8 5 3 4 1 7 9 6

3 2 8 1 5 6 9 7 4

5 4 7 2 9 8 6 1 3

6 1 9 7 3 4 8 5 2

Fresh news delivered daily Sign up today www.PaloAltoOnline.com

Vehicle related Bicycle stop . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Hit and run . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Suspicious vehicle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Vehicle accident/minor injury . . . . . . . . 1 Vehicle accident/prop. damage . . . . . . .1 Vehicle code violation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Miscellaneous Citizen assist. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Disturbance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Fire call . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Outside assistance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4 Suspicious circumstances . . . . . . . . . . .2 Suspicious person . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Town ordinance violation . . . . . . . . . . . .1

Palo Alto 500 Block Emerson Street, 11/14, 12:45 a.m.; assault with a deadly weapon. Tennyson Avenue, 11/9, 11:05 p.m.; domestic violence/battery. Middlefield Road/Layne Court, 11/11, 11:17 p.m.; sexual assault/rape.

Menlo Park Alma Street and E Creek Drive, 11/13, midnight; sexual assault and robbery. Bayfront Expressway and Willow Road, 11/12, 1:56 p.m.; hit and run w/ injury.

Transitions

31st ANNUAL 2010 TALL TREE AWARDS Call for Nominations

24th Annual

Palo Alto Weekly

Births, marriages and deaths

Deaths Robert Lee

Robert Edward Lee, 93, a resident of Palo Alto, died Nov. 9. He was born in San Francisco. He served in the U.S. Army during World War II He married Lilyan Eaddy and raised a family in Palo Alto. He worked as an attorney, specia lizing in insurance defense, inRobert Lee cluding a case in front of the California Supreme Court, which he won. He was passionate about golf, with scores in the low 80s, and played until a few years ago. He took great pride in spending time with his family. Loved ones recall the Lee family picnics he organized in Mitchell Park during the 1970s. He is survived by his son, Edward Lee of Fremont; daughter, Mary Carolyn Lee of Mission Viejo, Calif.; and four grandchildren. A memorial service will be held in the coming months.

Robert Nyden Robert C. Nyden, 87, a former resident of Palo Alto, died Nov. 12. He was born in Sellwood, Ore., and graduated from Benson Polytechnic High School. He served in the U.S. Navy until the end of World War II as a ship-board electronics officer. He received a masterâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Colorado, where he met and married his first wife, Barbara Miller. After specializing for a time in high-speed photography of explosions, he moved his small family to Palo Alto in 1952. After a short time at Stanford Research Institute, he worked for Sylvaniaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Microwave Physics Laboratory advancing the fledgling field of ferrite waveguide isolators. Until his retirement in 1993, he was an antenna-design engineer at Ford Aerospace/Space Systems Loral in Palo Alto, contributing critical pieces to many spacecraft, including the Viking Mars lander and the main antenna for the pair of Voyager space explorers. He sang as a soloist and in many choirs over the years, including at Grace Lutheran Church in Palo Alto. He was a founding member of the Schola Cantorum under Royal Stanton in 1964. He loved to travel, and with his second wife, Beverly Sutton, he trekked the highlands of PapuaNew Guinea, the Atlas Mountains in Morocco and the Himalayas in Bhutan. He and his wife also loved sailing and lived for 13 years on a sailboat in Alameda, Calif.

He is survived by his wife, Beverly Sutton of San Francisco; sister, Mary Ellen â&#x20AC;&#x153;Pollyâ&#x20AC;? Perkins of Sunriver, Ore.; sister-in-law, Jean Ann Nyden of Corvallis, Ore.; children, Robert A. Nyden of Palo Alto, William A. Nyden of Mountain View, Kristofer P. Nyden of Mercer Island, Wash., Elizabeth Messina of Citrus Heights, Calif.; ex wife, Barbara J. Nyden of Menlo Park; and five grandchildren.

The Palo Alto Chamber of Commerce and the Palo Alto Weekly are proud to announce the 31st Annual Tall Tree awards, presented in four categories, recognizing exceptional civic contributions and service to the Palo Alto community. Current elected ofďŹ cials are not eligible.

Read the winning stories online December 4 PaloAltoOnline.com

s/UTSTANDING#ITIZEN6OLUNTEER s/UTSTANDING0ROFESSIONAL s/UTSTANDING"USINESS s/UTSTANDING.ON 0ROlT

NOT the Same Olâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Holiday Music! The Gryphon Carolers ... 28th Annual Holiday Concert featuring Ed Johnson & Carol McComb The Gryphon Carolers is a 40-voice ensemble with guitar, piano, mandolin, ďŹ ddle, saxophone, bassoon, bass, percussion, and more fun than a sleigh full of toys and St. Nicholas too!

.OMINATIONFORMSAREAVAILABLEONLINEAT WWWPALOALTOCHAMBERCOM ORATTHE0ALO!LTO#HAMBER OF#OMMERCE AT(AMILTON!VENUE 0ALO!LTO

December 12, 2009 â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 8:00 p.m. Spangenberg Theatre â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Gunn High School 780 Arastradero Road, Palo Alto, CA

Nomination deadline Dec. 18, 2009 at Noon

Premium seating: $25 for adults and $18 for seniors and children under 12. General admission: $15 for adults and $ 10 for seniors and children under 12. For more information and tickets visit: www.gryphoncarolers.com Advance tickets also available at Gryphon Stringed Instruments in Palo Alto and Spangenberg Theater box ofďŹ ce the night of the performance.

aquathon Abilities United

'%.%+)$$%2 Thomas Eugene â&#x20AC;&#x153;Geneâ&#x20AC;? Kidder died Nov. 10 in Sunnyvale. He was 48. A private family service will be held at a later date; his ashes will join those of his brother and grandfather in the waters of the PaciďŹ c Ocean off the California coast. Mr. Kidder was born in Redwood City and raised in Palo Alto. He was a ďŹ ne athlete and consummate sports fan. His struggle with life is now complete. He is survived by his father, Jack (Barbara) Kidder of Grass Valley; sister Darryl Sue Kidder of Lincoln City, Ore.; daughter Ashley Elizabeth Kidder of Denver, CO; great aunt Betty Wonacott of Redwood City, great uncle Dick Kidder of Carmichael, aunt and uncle, Judy and Ed Mori and cousins Teresa, Tami and Tracy of Sonoma County. He was preceded in death by his mother Charlotte in 2001; older brother Jim in 1994; and grandparents Cedric and Eithel (Lambie) Kidder, and Joseph and Lucille Medeiros. PA I D

O B I T UA RY

'%.%6)%6%'/%"%,7()4% With great regret, we announce the passing of Genevieve (Gigi) Goebel White on Nov. 11, 2009 from a long illness. Gigi was born in Phoenix, Arizona, January 29th, 1952 to Anna G. Ethington and Richard E. Goebel. She grew up in Palo Alto, attending â&#x20AC;&#x201C; with some reluctance at times â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Garland Elementary, Jordan Jr High, Palo Alto High School and Foothill Jr. College. During the 60s, she succumbed to Beatlemania and began a lifelong love affair with England. She forged strong ties in that country, one of which turned into her ďŹ rst marriage. She married once more, later in life. Along with England, Gigi was devoted to Egyptology, Elizabethan history, rock and roll, dining out, and liquid refreshments â&#x20AC;&#x201C; though not necessarily in that order. She was passionate about quilting, costume making, and sewing and loved going in costume to Rennaisance Pleasure Faires. Halloween was her favorite holiday. She is survived by a rather amazing amount of needlework, several very dear friends, a younger sister, and a niece and nephew PA I D

O B I T UA RY

$182,000 raised in 2009 thank you for your participation!

2009 corporate teams Alza Google Android E Design C Genentech Intel Intuit Northrop Grumman NVIDIA Oracle Dolphins Paycycle Salas Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Brien SRI International UCSC Tachyons Webcor

2009 community teams Abilities United teams Alpha Amberâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Hope Big Mike Castilleja Jackâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Divers Larrabee Lightning Logan YMCA Nhanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Buds Orca Peninsula Womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Water Polo Priyaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Rhymers SJ Gomez Bullets SV3 Sharks Team Bevo/ Galvez Team Claire Team Marcus The Graduates Turbow Turtles Wet & Wild/Traceyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Tigers

corporate sponsors:

media sponsors: Webcor Builders Intuit

Borel Private Bank & Trust Milk Pail Market SRI International

Palo Alto Weekly â&#x20AC;˘ November 20, 2009 â&#x20AC;˘ Page 19

Editorial

High-powered outreach for high-speed rail? Hiring of a world-class communications firm under a five-year, $9 million contract could be a good move — or a train wreck

E

yebrows went up when the California High Speed Rail Authority this month approved a $9 million contract with Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide firm for “outreach” and communications assistance relating to the controversial high-speed-rail plan.

But a closer look may show it’s seriously overdue on the $45 billion (or more) project. For one thing, when and if the rail plan is complete it will be the single biggest construction effort in the nation’s history, the rail authority believes. The project since its inception nearly a decade ago has either been below the radar of most residents (considered a pipe dream) or its potential impact on communities and neighborhoods has hit with high impact, as it did for many after voters statewide approved a $9.95 billion down payment for the project last year. Opposition emerged quickly, chiefly from residents near the tracks. Atherton and Menlo Park led off with a lawsuit, which Palo Alto is supporting. At the same time, Councilwoman Yoriko Kishimoto and other local leaders are trying to engage in a constructive dialogue with rail-authority officials. Some residents simply want to kill the entire project. The authority board this month approved the contract with Ogilvy after a competitive process. Ogilvy’s assignment will be to bring cohesion to the statewide communication effort, to do informational “outreach” and to correct misinformation. The contract would run through June of 2014, which comes in something under $2 million a year. For a massively complex project involving scores of communities, hundreds of neighborhoods and thousands of residents, this seems like a reasonable expenditure. Few would argue that accurate and timely information is essential to good decision-making. But there are some danger signs, primarily in the language of authority board member Rod Diridon of San Jose, who referred to “rotten apples” spreading misinformation: “a sore that festers.” He asked how Ogilvy would create “flying squads of emergency response” to misinformation, and he mentioned individual briefings for board members. One bit of advice Ogilvy should provide the board (as a whole, not individually) would be to tone down the rhetoric and eliminate destructive, alienating name-calling. The authority, meanwhile, should increase its efforts on exploring how to fund a tunnel through the Midpeninsula communities at the core of the rotten-apple opposition, Mountain View to Redwood City. As the Weekly editorialized last February, there would be an “unthinkable” impact of minutes-apart surface trains on Peninsula communities — adding high-speed trains to Caltrain’s Baby Bullet and regular commuter trains, and Union Pacific freight trains. The high-speed trains need either to be tunneled or ended in San Jose, at least until funds can be obtained for tunneling.

‘Shop local’ = survival for many area businesses

F

or years, city officials have encouraged residents to “shop local” to boost sales-tax revenues to support city and school programs and services.

This year there’s an added reason: survival. Due to the international recession retailers are hurting, badly. Coupled with high rents, the drop-off in business the bottom line has hit bottom for many stores. Vacant storefronts in downtown Palo Alto alone have reached 11 percent, triggering City Council actions this week to counter growing vacancies in the “ground-floor retail” zoning along University Avenue and side streets. But the most important question for residents is, “What kind of community do you want to live in?” Do we want to live in a town of chain stores after more longtime local businesses, such as Know Knew Books on California Avenue or the independent Preuss Pharmacy in downtown Menlo Park, are forced out of business? Will our children grow up in a world where our businesses are run by revolving managers rather than long-time owners who know many customers by name and sometimes life histories? This is not a Norman Rockwell fantasy America. It exists, but in dwindling numbers in the face of increasing struggles to survive. So, yes, “shop local,” but do so for more than just local revenues. Do it for your community. Page 20ÊUÊ œÛi“LiÀÊÓä]ÊÓää™ÊUÊ*>œÊÌœÊ7iiŽÞ

Spectrum Editorials, letters and opinions

Dine for Kids Editor, We are so excited to have celebrated another wonderful Dine For Kids event! Palo Alto Community Child Care is deeply grateful to our 6th annual event supporters — 29 amazing restaurants, many generous business sponsors (including the Palo Alto Weekly), PACCC’s terrific staff and Board of Directors, its devoted families, and the hundreds of diners who ate well while supporting PACCC on Nov. 12. It was the combined efforts of all of these incredible people that made the event such a success. All proceeds from Dine for Kids support PACCC’s subsidy programs to provide quality care to families qualifying for financial assistance. Huge thanks to our amazing community! Janice Shaul and Margo Rich Ogus PACCC Palo Alto

Mideast politics Editor, Involved for more than 30 years in the politics of Iraq, Ali A. Allawi was a long-time opposition leader against the Baathist regime. The inadaptability of Islam to modern life, the author argues, stems from its deep roots in the sacred. To be modern, according to Allawi, is to be liberated from the divine as the sole source of ethics and virtues. The author argues that the West’s violent encroachment on the Muslim world in the 19th and 20th centuries shattered local institutions and economies and disrupted any natural evolution of Islamic society. The first Gulf War had other effects as well. The sanctions imposed on Iraq since that time have devastated that poor country and further inflamed Arab and Muslim opinion against the U.S. And it sounded the death knell for any aspirations the Palestinians had for their own state. Since that time the U.S. has been less and less willing to help them, the Israelis have been more and more hard-line and willing to oppress them, and the rest of the world has grown more and more appalled at the plight of these poor people, and more anti-American and anti-Israeli in their attitudes and actions. Ted Rudow III Encina Avenue Palo Alto

Vegan Thanksgiving Editor, Last week, a failed vice-presidential candidate claimed that animals belong right next to the mashed potatoes. This week, our president is pardoning two turkeys. It’s food for thought. Each of us has the presiden-

tial power to pardon a turkey this Thanksgiving. It shows our compassion for an innocent animal, as well as our concern for our family’s and our planet’s health. It’s a most fitting way to give thanks for our own life, health, and happiness. The 270 million turkeys abused and slaughtered in the U.S. each year have nothing to give thanks for. They breathe toxic fumes in crowded sheds. Their beaks and toes are severed. At the slaughter-house, workers cut their throats and dump them into boiling water, sometimes while still conscious. Consumers too pay a heavy price. Turkey flesh is laced with cholesterol and saturated fats that elevate the risk of heart disease, stroke, and cancer. Careful adherence to government warning labels is required to avoid food poisoning. Turkey excrements pollute our water supplies. This Thanksgiving, I won’t be calling the Poultry Hot Line, or staying awake wondering how that turkey lived and died. I will be joining millions of other Americans in observing this joyful family holiday with nonviolent healthful products of the earth’s bounty: vegetables, fruits and grains.

A visit to my local supermarket or health food store and an Internet search on vegan Thanksgiving will provide me more recipes and delicious turkey alternatives than I can possibly use. Prentice Avery San Antonio Road Palo Alto

Town Square: World Travel Blog

Posted Nov. 3 by Keith Schuman, world traveler: Mancora, Peru — mid-October, 2009. There is a secret place I would like to tell you about. A small island where MiddleEastern culture has collided with colonial Mediterranean architecture in East Africa. It is a place that goes by the name Ilha de Mocambique — Mozambique Island. The beauty of this island is not merely physical. Like many places on the coast of Eastern Africa, it has a vibrant culture. Steeped in music, food and traditions that upon arrival are not only obvious to an outsider but leap to the foreground of the landscape.

YOUR TURN The Palo Alto Weekly encourages comments on our coverage or on issues of local interest.

What do you think? Do you plan to “shop local” this holiday season? Submit letters to the editor of up to 250 words to letters@paweekly.com. Include your name, address and daytime phone number so we can reach you. We reserve the right to edit contributions for length, objectionable content, libel and factual errors known to us. Anonymous letters will generally not be accepted. You can also participate in our popular interactive online forum, Town Square, at our community website at www.PaloAltoOnline.com. Read blogs, discuss issues, ask questions or express opinions with you neighbors any time, day or night. Submitting a letter to the editor or guest opinion constitutes a granting of permission to the Palo Alto Weekly and Embarcadero Publishing Co. to also publish it online, including in our online archives and as a post on Town Square. For more information contact Editor Jay Thorwaldson or Online Editor Tyler Hanley at editor@paweekly.com or 650-326-8210.

Check out Town Square! Hundreds of local topics are being discussed by local residents on Town Square, a reader forum sponsored by the Weekly on our community website at www.PaloAltoOnline.com. Post your own comments, ask questions, read the Editor’s blog or just stay up on what people are talking about around town!

Guest Opinion Lytton Plaza: The right place, but is it the right name? by Leland Levy ext month construction fencing will come down in downtown Palo Alto and the much anticipated, renovated Lytton Plaza will open in a grand manner. The new plaza will replace its 1960s-era predecessor (noted for its donut-shaped cement seating and an ample use of brick) with a gateway fountain and a grove of Chinese pistache trees shading tables beneath. Designed by famed landscape architect Gary Laymon of the San Francisco firm of Guzzardo Associates, the plaza will have enhanced lighting and acoustics, and space for outdoor concerts and entertainment. The renovation came about through a publicprivate partnership between the City of Palo Alto and a group called the Friends of Lytton Plaza. Others playing a major role include the Downtown Business Improvement District and the Friends of the Palo Alto Parks. I have often wondered about one aspect of Lytton Plaza: How did the name “Lytton” get attached to this small, two-tenths-of-an-acre, plaza on University, a full block away from Lytton Avenue? And should the name be changed? In the early 1960s Beverly Hills-based Lytton Savings and Loan established an office at University Avenue and Emerson Street in Palo Alto. Because Bart Lytton, it’s eponymous founder-chairman, was building an art collection,

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his S&L acquired the lot across the street as a space for art displays and other activities. Though little known for its art, the plaza did become a hot spot for protest gatherings in the Viet Nam era. In recognition of its special place in the Palo Alto ethos, it was designated a special “free speech zone” by the City Council. Bart Lytton’s story is interesting. He was born Bernard Shulman in New Castle, Pennsylvania, and graduated from the University of Virginia in 1934. After working as a playwright in New York, he moved to Hollywood in 1940. In Hollywood he formally changed his name to his literary pseudonym, Bart Lytton. It’s conjectured that he took the name from the 19th century British Victorian novelist, Sir Edward Bulwer Lytton — famed for his overthe-top sentimentalism and famous first-line, “It was a dark and stormy night ...” — after whom Palo Alto’s Lytton Avenue was named in the city’s early days when literary figures gave their names to many Palo Alto streets. (The abbreviation for Sir Lytton’s title of Baronet was “Bart.”) The banker Bart Lytton was nationally known. Time magazine described him thus: “Bart Lytton, 55, mercurial multimillionaire boss of Los Angeles’ Lytton Financial Corp., has never been noted for modesty. ‘I am the most successful businessman in this decade in the U.S.,’ he once observed. ‘The only ism for me is narcissism. If I cared about my image, I’d never do the gutty things I do, or say the things I say. The day I turn mellow, I hope they melt me.’ “Lytton has made a career of living up to that flamboyant self-assessment. While competitors derisively nicknamed him ‘Black

Though little known for its art, the plaza did become a hot spot for protest gatherings in the Viet Nam era. In recognition of its special place in the Palo Alto ethos, it was designated a special “free speech zone” by the City Council. Bart,’ and grew apoplectic at his unbankerlike antics, he built his savings and loan holding company from a 1958 midget into a $685 million-asset mammoth, fifth largest in the U.S.” But, 1967 for savings and loans was much like this past year for banks. With speculation widespread, many S&Ls went under. Lytton Savings and Loan was among them. Its assets were taken over by Great Western Savings and Loan, which sold the plaza to a private individual. Utilizing eminent domain, the city acquired the site for $154,000 in 1975. Even though it is located on University, not Lytton, and residents often confuse it with Cogswell Plaza (which is on Lytton), the name of the former S&L still remains. As for Bart Lytton, he died of a heart attack at age 56 in 1969, two years after his savings & loan collapsed. The question has been raised: “Should we

Streetwise

How can stores entice you to shop there this holiday season?

think of another name for Lytton Plaza?” Flamboyant as he was, Bart Lytton was hardly local, and the plaza was named for the Beverly Hills-headquartered S&L corporation (which owned it) rather than for Lytton the man. Perhaps it is time to rename the plaza in honor of some local personage of note, someone who actually helped build our community or region into what it is today. N Former Mayor Le Levy, a financial consultant with Wells Fargo Advisors and a 40-year Palo Alto resident, served on the City Council from 1979 to 1991. Levy, who became known as an unofficial poet laureate of Palo Alto, is currently working on a Lytton Plaza-dedication song. He can be emailed at leland.levy@wellsfargoadvisors. com.

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Asked at Stanford Shopping Center. Interviews by John Squire.

Photographs by Veronica Weber.

Roxanne Chong

Ramir Aniversario

Cynthia Resendiz

Sandra Terribilini

Ben Owens

“The window displays attract your attention. Sales always help.”

“In this economy, we don’t have a lot to set aside. Maybe for the kids.”

“Advertisement definitely. If they can’t get on TV then in the newspaper.”

“Sales and new items. The economy’s down so it’s difficult.”

“Slash prices. It’s not likely when you think places like Wiles Bashford are going into bankruptcy.”

Homemaker Los Altos

Relationship Manager Fremont

Cook Mountain View

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*>œÊÌœÊ7iiŽÞÊUÊ œÛi“LiÀÊÓä]ÊÓää™ÊU Page 21

Upfront

Neighborhoods A roundup of neighborhood news edited by Sue Dremann

AROUND THE BLOCK TOY TRAIN ... Decorated with more than 40,000 lights, the Caltrain Holiday Train will pull into the California Avenue station on Sunday, Dec. 6. The family-oriented event draws thousands for holiday song and entertainment, greetings by Santa and Mrs. Claus and — most importantly — the collection of new, unwrapped toys and books for the Salvation Army and U.S. Marine Corps Reserve’s Toys for Tots Program. Entertainment and toy collection begins at 7 p.m.; the train and North Pole dignitaries arrive at 7:30 p.m. The event is the largest holiday entertainment event each year on California Avenue, according to Ronna Devincenzi, president of the California Avenue Area Development Association.

NOT THE ‘USUAL SUSPECTS’ ... Palo Alto Neighborhoods (PAN) is asking residents to take a five-minute survey about what information sources people used to decide on which candidates to vote for in the 2009 City Council election. According to early reports, several trends are emerging, such as perceptions of the local newspapers, effects of ads and different reactions to how candidate forums are rebroadcast. PAN wants input from a range of voters — i.e., not just “the usual suspects” who are politically active, according to the group. The results will be posted on the PAN website. Residents can participate in the survey by going to www.PANeighborhoods.org/ and clicking on the link under “Take the Voters’ Sources of Information for 2009 City Council Election survey.” N

Talk about your neighborhood news on Town Square at www.PaloAltoOnline.com.

Veronica Weber

POWER TO THE PEOPLE ... Last chance for residents to apply for city commissions: Planning and Transportation Commission: Application deadline is Dec.7 at 5 p.m.; Parks and Recreation Commission and Library Advisory Commission: Application deadline is Nov. 20 at 5 p.m. If one of the incumbents does not reapply for these commissions, the deadline will be extended to Wednesday, Nov. 25. Applications and appointment procedures are available at the Office of the Palo Alto City Clerk, 250 Hamilton Ave., 7th floor, 650-329-2571.

Before the small field at Mitchell Park, not far from Abilities United, can feature ‘Magical Bridge’ — a playground designed specifically for children with disabilities — about $500,000 must be raised by Friends of the Palo Alto Parks.

Park planned for children with disabilities Playground would provide access to special-needs, disabled children and wheelchair-bound parents by Sue Dremann alo Alto’s 34 parks are filled with children zooming down slides and swooping in wide arcs on swings. But 6-year-old Ava Villarreal can only sit by the sideline, watching. For Ava and thousands of children and adults in the city with disabilities the gate is open, but they still can’t go through. Wheelchairs don’t

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roll over sand and swing seats can’t adequately hold a special-needs child. But that situation could change. The nonprofit group Friends of the Palo Alto Parks wants to build a playground in Mitchell Park that all children and adults can use, whether or not they have a disability. The park would offer bucket

LAND USE

Edgewood meeting mends fences Neighbors, developer, seek to avoid acrimony of Alma Plaza in proposed shopping-center development by Sue Dremann

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eighbors of Edgewood Plaza, the historic yet dilapidated Joseph Eichler shopping center along Embarcadero Road in Palo Alto, met with developer Sand Hill Property to discuss potential plans for redeveloping the

Page 22ÊUÊ œÛi“LiÀÊÓä]ÊÓää™ÊUÊ*>œÊÌœÊ7iiŽÞ

center at a community meeting on Tuesday night. Forty residents listened peaceably as project manager and liaison James Baer, owner of Palo Alto development company Premier Properties, gave a PowerPoint presen-

swing seats, spongy padded surfaces, ramps leading to and from equipment, a castle play house and a small stage, according to preliminary plans. More than 1,400 Palo Alto children have disabilities or have parents who use wheelchairs, according to Olenka Villarreal, vice president of the Friends’ board and mother of Ava. “We have dog parks, but we don’t have a park for residents with some disability,” she said. Two years ago, Villarreal proposed the idea for Magical Bridge, the universally accessible playground, to Friends director Roger Smith. She came up with the idea after tation of conceptual plans for the nearly defunct shopping center. Edgewood Plaza is bounded by Embarcadero Road, St. Francis Drive, Channing Avenue and West Bayshore Road. Following on the heels of a lawsuit that was settled last month, residents and Baer expressed a mutual desire to avoid the kind of destructive fighting that affected plans to develop Alma Plaza in south Palo Alto. Three residents had filed suit earlier this year after Sand Hill submitted plans to the City of Palo Alto requesting environmental review for 28 single-family homes

finding the parks inaccessible to her daughter, she said. Swinging is an important therapy for Ava’s development, but Villarreal has to drive Ava to Cupertino to swing for 45-minutes each week — for $85 a session, she said. Ava also hits her head on play structures built for so-called regular kids. Age-appropriate play equipment doesn’t take into consideration the 6-year-old child with a 2-yearold’s development, Villarreal said. Liz Bell has two special-needs children, ages 6 and 19. The family has found Palo Alto parks “extremely limiting,” she said. “This new park would open an (continued on next page)

and removal of one Eichler structure. Subdivision residents claimed the commercial property and all residences within the housing tract were bound by covenants known as CC&Rs requiring any modifications receive approval from the other CC&R holders. Baer’s opening remarks were conciliatory Tuesday. “We’ve had a reality check,” he said. The new concept plans would save all three structures currently on the property, including the two buildings housing small shops but (continued on next page)

Upfront

Park

(continued from previous page)

entire world to my children that is currently out of reach for them. ... My daughter could be on the play structure ... and explore all the different areas for herself and interact with other children. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It is not just the ability to play in the park that would be great, but the incredible social avenues it would open for them to play with specialneeds and typical peers,â&#x20AC;? she said. Designing, funding and building the park would follow a similar grass-roots effort made to develop Heritage Park on Channing Avenue and downtownâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Lytton Plaza, Smith said. Magical Bridge proponents took the idea to the cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Parks and Recreation Commission July 22, 2008, asking if the playground would be an appropriate use within the cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Park Master Plan. Commissioners agreed but wanted the concept fleshed out, said Greg Betts, the City of Palo Altoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s director of community services. The Friends returned with a sketch of the size and location on April 28. In June, commissioners reviewed a draft site plan, which was developed by Ross Recreation, a park-development firm that worked on Heritage Park and the Pine Grove area in Mitchell Park, he said. Betts said an 18,000-square-foot unused area near the access bridge and tennis courts could be allocated for the playground. The area is adjacent to Abilities United and AchieveKids, two nonprofits serving persons with disabilities, and Stevenson House senior housing. The Friends must raise $500,000, or half of the nearly $1 million needed to build the park for the city to take the project seriously, Villarreal said. Betts said in similar projects, the city provided engineering services

Edgewood

(continued from previous page)

would move one building to abut the one farther north. The building would be set closer to St. Francis Drive, inhabiting a current parking area. A central parking plaza, farther from homes and residential streets, would be expanded, Baer said. The new site plan would preserve the character and historical elements of the Eichler buildings, but could include larger windows and better doors, if approved as being within the historic parameters, he said. Baer emphasized that the Eichlers would undergo rehabilitation, not preservation, since some elements would change and one building would be moved. Sand Hill developer John Tze said he has been looking for a grocery store operator to take over the 14,000-square-foot space formerly occupied by Albertsons. Fresh and Easy had planned to move in but withdrew due to the current economic climate. Tze said the centerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s development would largely be on hold until the grocery store could be secured. He has been searching several avenues for a potential vendor, with

and waived permit fees. But the Friends would pay for all equipment and installation. The project would go through all of the usual public hearings and city approval processes, he added. Heritage Park took 18 months to develop, he said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We shouldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve thought about it a long time ago,â&#x20AC;? said Sunny Dykwel, a parks and recreation commissioner. But â&#x20AC;&#x153;my only reservation is adequate parking,â&#x20AC;? noting it could be eased by possible joint use of the Stevenson House parking lot. Lynda Steele, executive director of Abilities United, said although her nonprofit has a playground behind its preschool for clients, it is appropriate only for children 2 to 5 years old. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s separate from the community. We want people side by side with people without disabilities so they are playing and running together. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Some people in this economic climate might not see this as a high priority. But everyone has to be able to recreate and play in an accessible place. For us and the people we serve, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a very high priority,â&#x20AC;? she said. A wine tasting and sale of boutique wines will be held to raise funds during the holidays, Villarreal said. A playhouse by designer Barbara Butler will be on display in mid-November at the Palo Alto Childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Library, to be raffled off Dec. 15. Tickets, $20, will be available through Palo Alto High Schoolâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s YES students or through the Friends. Information about Magical Bridge playground will be available on a new website in the coming weeks at www.magicalbridge.org and on the Friendsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; website at www.friendsofpaparks.org. N Staff Writer Sue Dremann can be e-mailed at sdremann@paweekly.com. some possibility for a smaller vendor, such as an organic market, to come in. The project would reduce the number of homes to 10 but they would be two-story, 1,700-square-foot homes, Baer said. The concession to allow two-story structures was part of the settlement agreement, lawyers have previously said. The homes might have flat roofs in the Eichler style, but architectural renderings showed some with peaked roofs. A corner of the property at Channing Avenue and St. Francis Drive is designated for public use but is not intended as a park for residents, Baer said. Benches or some other features that would help retailers could be put there, he said. Neighborhood leaders said they are pleased. â&#x20AC;&#x153;This plan addresses every concern Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve heard of. I hope the environmental review can be short and sweet,â&#x20AC;? said Karen White, president of the Duveneck/St. Francis Neighborhood Association. Sheri Furman, chair of the Midtown Residents Association who was involved in the controversy over Alma Plaza, said she is envious. â&#x20AC;&#x153;This is what Alma Plaza should have been,â&#x20AC;? she said. N

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A community health education series from Stanford Hospital & Clinics

Rewriting Immunity’s Rules:

New Strategies Against Cancer plant technique has been improved to make transplants possible between unrelated people. But the underlying challenge has remained the same: to provide a new immune system that recognizes the abnormality of cancer cells and destroys them while accepting the cells in its new body, just if they were original equipment.

Just two years ago, Yu could barely get up out of a chair. He was at the end of an exhausting eight years of battle against lymphoma. That’s a cancer that hits white blood cells and distorts their ability to protect the body from bacteria and disease. His physicians at Stanford Hospital had used the most advanced therapies available, even enrolling Yu in clinical trials of experimental treatments. The cancer would go away for a little bit, Yu said, then it would come back. It became more and more obvious, said his wife, Mary Bechmann Yu, “that the remissions were getting shorter and shorter and that we needed to rethink our strategy.”

Tricking immune cells

Replacing Yu’s exhausted immune system with a transplant was the avenue his Stanford physicians suggested, a version of a whole system do-over first accomplished in 1956 by replacing a patient’s diseased bone marrow with healthy marrow from his identical twin. The bone marrow is where the body generates cells for the immune system. Over the decades, the trans-

His Stanford physicians offered Yu a new treatment called, for short, TLI/ ATG. The letters represent a two-part approach to manipulating the behavior of the immune system. The regimen is based on a discovery made by Stanford immunologist Samuel Strober, MD.

“You get to know everybody there and after a while, they’re like family.” – Stanford Hospital patient Albert Yu The TLI/ATG strategy, initially developed through animal studies, relies on the impact of radiation on certain cells in the immune system. Strober observed that those cells could be manipulated with radiation to increase in number and to do a better job of attacking cancer cells. The other trick in the strategy is to reduce the reaction of the transplanted immune cells to their new environment. Typically, they would at-

Norbert von der Groeben

Watch 68-year-old Albert Yu’s vigorous swing of a tennis racket and it’s hard to imagine that he is the veteran of some tough years of chemotherapy and radiation, the kind often prescribed to beat back cancer. He plays with determined control and balance, keeping up even when he’s challenged by a steady stream of machine-fed balls.

Albert Yu came through months of treatment that gave him a new immune system. Now, two years after the transplant that fought his cancer, he and his wife, Mary Bechmann Yu, are living a life renewed. tack, in a behavior called graft versus host disease, but the TLI/ATG protocol suppresses that response. “It’s a wonderful example of bench to bedside research,” said Robert Lowsky, MD, who worked with Strober, Judy Shizuru, MD, PhD, and other Stanford physicians to perfect the treatment they first saw work with mice in 2001. Yu read about the technique in 2005 and was intrigued because it offered someone like him, then beyond the standard age for transplant, a chance for a more sustained remission. “It was a higher risk,” he said, “but a higher return.” Cellular transplants began at Stanford in 1986, with a bone marrow transplant for a child with leukemia. Since then, more than 3,800 adults and children have been treated. The program, with a 22-bed adult inpatient unit at the Hospital and 56-bed/chair outpatient infusion area, is recognized by the

National Cancer Institute for its excellence in care and research. Scientific advances pushed a change in the program’s name from “Bone Marrow” to “Blood and Marrow.” The staff now includes a cadre of more than 50 nurses specially certified in oncology and chemotherapy. Some have been with the program since its inception. The program also includes collaborative care rooms so patients with cardiac issues can receive that extra layer of required attention. “You get to know everybody there,” Yu said, “and after a while, they’re like family.” As it does with every patient, the BMT program creates a team of physicians who coordinated Yu’s care. His group included his original oncologist, Ron Levy, MD; his chief transplant physician, Wen-Kai Weng, MD; and radiation oncologist Rich Hoppe, MD.

Preparing at home

Norbert von der Groebe n

Albert Yu played tennis before he became ill with cancer and, and since his bone marrow transplant, he’s worked diligently to get back his game game. e. Page 24ÊUÊ œÛi“LiÀÊÓä]ÊÓää™ÊUÊ*>œÊÌœÊ7iiŽÞ

Y treatment protocol allowed him Yu’s to be physically conditioned and then transplanted almost completely without hospitalization, in comparison to the weeks of isolation behind double doors that some transplant patients must endure. But the treatment still requires jjuggling a complex set of interconnected events designed to push his immune system down to zero while keeping him from becoming infected. He was vulnerable to even one stray germ, his wife said. “It was a little bit like walking a tightrope and he was so fragile.”

special feature  To join the national registry, donors must be between 18 and 60 years old.

What to Know about Blood and Marrow Transplantation

 The closer the match between donor tissue and patient, the better. Genetics determine tissue type, so the more complex someone’s ethnic makeup, the more difficult it is to find a donor.

 Bone marrow, the liquid center of our bones, produces red blood cells that carry oxygen, platelets that control bleeding and white blood cells, the vital part of our infection-fighting immune system. Inserting donated bone marrow builds a new immune system able to eliminate various kinds of cancers, including leukemia and lymphoma.  Bone marrow can be withdrawn under regional or general anesthesia from the hip bones, but most donations of immune system-generating blood cells can be taken directly from the blood stream.

The BMT program found Yu a donor who was a perfect match. Future patients will benefit from work that continues to modulate treatment even further so those immune system cells can be even more precisely controlled, said Robert Negrin, MD, Chief of the Division of Blood and Marrow Transplantation. “There’s a lot going on now to try to understand and figure out what controls the induction of an immune response how these cell populations talk to each other.” Then comes the issue of how to use that knowledge to predict an individual’s unique interaction to chemotherapy, radiation and transplanted donor cells.

“It was very emotional for me. I felt somebody gave me life.” – Stanford Hospital patient Albert Yu The hope, Lowsky said, is to be able to manipulate the immune system to accept any donated cell or tissue, enabling any patient to have a transplant that would not trigger rejection.

For months months, Yu had to be very careful about his activities activities, especially those that exposed him to other people and possible infection. Now, his new immune system em is strong.

Regaining power Over the next nine months, as his new immune system built its ability to function at full strength, Yu took life slowly. Every day, he went to the Cancer Center where nurses would draw his blood, test it and give him additional treatments. “Then I’d receive whatever was needed that day to try to normalize my blood chemistry,” Yu said, “and keep me going while I healed and until I could make immune cells on my own.” The TLI/ATG protocol produces such a longlasting impact on the immune system that Yu does not need additional daily medication to suppress his immune system. He has also worked to regain his muscle tone and cardiovascular stamina, enrolling in an

be cured for sure. On the other hand, there’s no point in thinking about it,” Yu said. “We’re way more conscious about how we spend our time,” said his wife. “We have a very different yardstick to our calendar.”

exercise class and working out with weights. In addition to tennis, he’s also swimming and playing golf. “I feel that once you’ve had cancer, I don’t think you want to say you can

Stuart Brinin Photography

When, finally, Yu sat in a reclining chair at Stanford’s Cancer Center so the transplant cells could flow through h an IV into his arm, it was almost a non-event, Yu said. “They just bring in a bag and injected it into my vein. But it was very emotional for me. I felt somebody gave me life.”

Norbert von der Groebe

Yu said his wife made an extraordinary effort to make their home a totally clean place. They also asked to consult with someone who’d gone through the same procedure. Stanford made that introduction. Hearing g about the experience first-hand, said d Mary Bechmann Yu, “turned out to be a tremendous resource, medically and emotionally.”

 For more information about the registry, visit bethematch.org . For more information about the Stanford Hospital BMT program, visit http://bmt. stanford.edu/ or call 650.723.0822.

n

 After donation, a person’s marrow is replenished within four to six weeks.

 The non-profit National Marrow Donor Program has been registering and connecting donors with patients since 1987. It now includes 7 million donors and works with a group of almost 500 hospitals, blood centers and laboratories. It is also part of a worldwide network that works cooperatively with service organizations, student groups and corporations to build the registry.

The BMT program hosts an annual reunion for its patients; this group, photographed at this year’s gathering, represesents some of those who’ve had their transplants 10 years.

Stanford Hospital & Clinics is known worldwide for advanced treatment of complex disorders in areas such as cardiovascular care, cancer treatment, neurosciences, surgery, and organ transplants. Consistently ranked among the top institutions in the U.S. News & World Report annual list of “America’s Best Hospitals,” Stanford Hospital & Clinics is internationally recognized for translating medical breakthroughs into the care of patients. It is part of the Stanford University Medical Center, along with the Stanford University School of Medicine and Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford. For more information, visit stanfordmedicine.org. *>œÊÌœÊ7iiŽÞÊUÊ œÛi“LiÀÊÓä]ÊÓää™ÊU Page 25

Cover Story

H O HO ? HUM

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by Sue Dremann

Following $ a year of recession, $local retailers$ take action to $ stoke holiday sales$

S

Veronica Weber

porting a frothy white beard and cheerful red suspenders, Santa has been listening to children’s wishes in the faux enchanted redwood forest at Stanford Shopping Center for weeks now. By Christmas Day, more than 7,500 kids will have sat on Santa’s lap, predicted Julie Kelly, the mall’s director of marketing and business development. Unwrapped Wii sports packages — sponsors’ product placements — are strategically placed under gaily decorated evergreen trees. The goods will remain on display for several days at a time before other sponsors’ items take their place. The shopping mall, like stores throughout the area, is leaving nothing to chance this holiday season, amid shaky national shopping figures. In October, retail sales nationwide rose 1.4 percent over September’s figures but still lagged by 1.7 percent when compared with sales in October 2008, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. Unemployment in Silicon Valley remained relatively stagnant, hovering at 11.8 percent last month, according to the California Employment Development Department. Overall, the numbers could signal a poor spending season for already struggling retailers. Owners of some Palo Alto shops are reporting a 10 percent decline in sales over last year and express grave concerns for their bottom lines. But contrary to news reports that stores nationwide will reduce the amount of merchandise they’ll stock — so as not to be stuck with huge inventories if the season flops — Palo Alto retailers seem to be bucking the trend. Mom-and-pop stores are broadening inventory or at least staying even, store owners said. They’ll offer discounts, incentives and inexpensive-to-moderately priced holiday items that don’t skimp on quality, they added. Smaller retailers along Palo Alto’s University and California avenues are hoping niche marketing and cus-

Ed Hoffacker, owner of Palo Alto Sport Shop and Toy World in downtown Palo Alto, plays the ukulele, a gift he expects to sell well this year. tomer loyalty will bring them into the black, they said. Staff at chain stores and larger retailers report they’ve assiduously studied their customers’ spending habits for the past months and are lowering their prices accordingly. “You have to price as aggressively as ever. The customer will still buy, if you price aggressively enough,” said Willis Niffenegger, Sony Style store manager at Stanford Shopping Center.

E

ric Hager, general manager at Palo Alto Sport Shop and Toy World, has been strategizing for weeks to ensure the most profitable holiday season possible, he said. The toy store will offer a series of specials to run week after week and

Page 26 • November 20, 2009 • Palo Alto Weekly

plans three to four special shopping days for organizations and schools in December, he said. Andy Beugen, store manager, said the store has focused on key sellers such as Lego, the new Transformers and other hot items. “With kids, it’s all who has it in stock,” he said. He’s banking on the hope that when larger stores run out of toys due to lower inventory levels, people will still find what they want at the venerable Palo Alto store. Beugen said the sales so far this season look promising. “Saturday (Nov. 7) was great. We beat last year’s record,” he said. But Hager has some concerns. “Because of the number of shops that are vacant downtown, there is less foot traffic, which indirectly

affects businesses downtown,” he said. At Shady Lane, a store on University Avenue, owner Alice Deutscher is expanding her product line to lure in as many buyers as possible, she said. “If you don’t keep things fresh and different, people get bored. We’ve brought in new things and topped off with things people told us they loved,” she said. The store was launched to sell work by local artisans. That vision still remains true, but customers can also find internationally known artists and designers such as Tabra, she said. The store is also hoping to cash in on collectibles, such as popular Trollbeads of Venetian glass, which

are added to bracelets and tell a person’s life story, she said. The store plans a Dec. 3 and 4 special show of the beads with giveaways. “People get a free bracelet with upgraded clasp to start their collection of beads,” she said. Shady Lane is also working to fill the niche for area beaders, offering bead strands no longer found locally since The Bead Shop on University Avenue closed, she said. Deutscher also joined the Hometown Peninsula Independent Business Alliance, which was started in 2007 by Clark Kepler of Kepler’s Books and Magazines in Menlo Park. The group supports and networks with local businesses and promotes patronage of small, independently owned local businesses. This season “value” is a key concept for Carol Cruikshank, co-owner with husband Gordon of California Avenue’s Leaf & Petal and downtown’s Cassis clothing stores. This year’s consumer will probably opt for a little less bling for much less buck when it comes to holiday apparel, she said. “We’re trying to carry things in all price ranges so people don’t have to sell the farm to have nice holiday wear,” she said. Customers can pick up a slinky yet practical outfit for $89 or more upscale attire for $400, with a range of prices in between, she said. Sequins, rhinestones and glittery studs are in but in sophisticated styles, she said. Last year, Cruikshank and her colleagues scaled back on the store’s inventory and have spent the year assessing customers’ preferences. “We have a handle on our expenses and a better feeling for the price point people want,” she said.

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he campaign is on to increase foot traffic at Stanford Shopping Center — and well before Black Friday, historically the biggest shopping day of the year. This year, that day falls on Nov. 27. Stanford plans weeks of entertain(continued on page 28)

Cover Story

Veronica Weber

Jake and Cecilia Lancaster look through the selection of “retro” toys and other stocking stuffers at Restoration Hardware in downtown Palo Alto.

Shoppers look to celebrate holidays on a slimmer budget Some seek out discounts, others forego shopping altogether

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hen it comes to holiday cheer, more people this year are saying that money doesn’t necessarily buy happiness. “I’m shopping a lot less this year,” said Angela Grenzer, who was browsing at Stanford Shopping Center Monday evening. Family members will each pick another adult’s name and buy that person one gift, she said. But she won’t skimp on the kids — her 11 nieces and nephews. Each will get one toy and one outfit, she said. “Definitely, I will buy things on sale,” she added. The family is planning a group vacation to the Bahamas, she said, echoing a common sentiment expressed by consumers this season. Closeness to family takes precedence this year, they said. “We’re not doing gifts. We usually travel to Chicago, and we’re not going to be traveling. We’re planning a low-key, close-to-home holiday. It’s really tough this year,” said Wendy Gapastione of Redwood City. Her family stopped giving gifts to adults last year but maintains “a little tradition of three gifts” for the children. The Gapastiones are avid coupon clippers, so she’ll shop looking for discounts and bargains, she said. They’re not alone. Unemployment is changing the shopping habits of many families this season. “I’m not spending any money this year,” said Carol, a grandmother who declined to give her last name while shopping at Stanford Monday evening. Her family members have lost jobs, and one lost a home to

foreclosure, she said. She isn’t buying gifts for her grandchildren, either. “They are so young they won’t notice, but their parents will buy gifts for the little ones,” she said. At the Paper Source, a gift wrap and card store at Town and Country Village, more people are coming in for do-ityourself ideas, said Matt Dettman, store manager. “A lot of people are doing homemade gifts and want packaging for baked goods, candies and creating their own cards,” he said. The store will hold a gift-wrapping class on Dec. 3 and will host a weekend of make-and-take holiday cards, he said. Two women emerged from the store with diametrically opposed opinions. “I usually do a mix of purchases and homemade gifts, depending on what people like,” the younger woman said. “No way,” said the older woman, of the notion of homemade gifts. “Who has the time? Who doesn’t already have enough tchotchkes?” she said. But the poor economy isn’t affecting everyone’s holidays. Troy and Shannon of Menlo Park said they wouldn’t change their shopping habits. “We just bought sale things,” they said, carrying several bags and packages. The couple frequents local shops as long as the price isn’t extravagant, but if there is a significantly better deal, they’ll go to a chain store, they said. Linda Le and Set Guong don’t have a holiday budget, they

said. The couple started buying items on sale in October, browse Sunday newspaper ads and take advantage of free online shipping, they said. It’s nothing new. They said they do the same thing every year. “I do a lot of online shopping. But I’m trying to do local shopping so the tax money goes to our own roads,” Le said. Online shopping could spell trouble for retail stores, one veteran of the shipping business said. A UPS employee, who declined to give his name, said he’s seen an increase in shipping. Fewer people are going into the stores, he said. “The commercial (shipping) volume has come down, and the residential volume has gone up,” he said. He is also planning to cut back on spending. “There’s less money,” he said, adding he’ll stay around the area and travel less this holiday season. “You gotta get creative. I’ve lived here all of my life, and there are many things I’ve never done in the City. My wife and I have a mutual agreement to cut back on gifts for each other. We’re planning a trip to Hawaii after the holidays,” he said. The trend is away from commercialism and more on togetherness, he said. “How many Nintendos and Wiis do you need? You emphasize more on family, not on how much you spend. “Who really needs the material things? It’s the physical, the closeness to people, that counts,” he said. Perhaps providing the best hope for retailers are shoppers such as Carolyn Benfield. Last Friday evening, she perused merchandise at Ambassador Toys at Town and Country. A grandmother of two, Benfield said she does quite a bit of shopping at the center, which is conveniently located just across the road from her job at Palo Alto High School. The revitalized center has many “great new shops,” and she doesn’t plan to alter her pattern. “I always tend to throw caution to the wind at Christmas time,” she said. ■ — Sue Dremann Palo Alto Weekly • November 20, 2009 • Page 27

Cover Story

Low Prices on

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Shawn Fender Veronica Weber

At top, Peilly Yao prepares her son, Darren, for his picture with Santa Claus at Stanford Shopping Center last week. Above, Weboo shoes are expected to become hot products next year, but the staff at Palo Alto Sport Shop and Toy World is displaying them now to attract customers’ attention.

Retail

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CHRIS AYERS PHOTO

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ment to get shoppers in the happy spending mood, said Kelly, the marketing manager. The annual tree lighting takes place Saturday. There will be musical stage productions, strolling musicians, and giveaways of a prize every hour. Weekend entertainment takes place on Nov. 28, Dec. 5, 12 and 19. New this year, the mall will give out holiday survival goodie bags with store discounts. People come from as far away as San Francisco, San Jose and the East Bay to shop at Stanford, Kelly said. “All of this (programming) is in place to encourage shoppers to come and feel good; to get away from their troubles and stresses,” she said.

In keeping with the economic climate, the shopping center has launched a new online Shop Smarter Savings program on its website, where daily store sales and retailer promotions can be located for savings. Then, there’s Twitter (twitter. com/StanfordShop) and Facebook. “We tweet everything and anything,” Kelly said. At the Sony Style store, stacks of Sony Readers — electronic devices that can store up to 350 digital books — were being set up for the holiday display last week. Priced at $199 to $299, Sony hopes the Readers will be hot sellers this year, store manager Niffenegger said. The company hasn’t been doing any second guessing — it is just following what customers have been asking for throughout the year, he said. Big-screen televisions and

camcorders, which run from $400 to thousands of dollars, will be there too, but they won’t be the focus. Lower-cost items aren’t a guarantee of strong sales, though. “It used to be, ‘Stick a 10-percentoff sign up’ and that was enough,” he said, but even the low-cost readers have a hook. “We’re giving away a free leather cover with it. There could be 100 free books with a purchase. You just have to pile it on. You want to reach people who want it and will introduce it to others,” he said. Some products, however, just sell themselves. “PlayStation 3 — you just have to keep up with demand on that. You just sell those hand-over-fist for the holidays for the grandkids,” he said. At another national retailer, Restoration Hardware on University Avenue, this year’s marketing theme is “affordable luxury.” “You will find our prices reflect the temperature of the economy,” said Donata Maggipinto, a company spokeswoman. Restoration is focusing on categories of items that are always popular with customers and introducing new items within those categories, she said. “We are recognized for our cashmere collections and our Luxury Plush collections. And of course, we offer our stocking stuffers,” she said, referring to the retro metal toys, joke and novelty items and games. A big seller the company is banking on this year: “The Ultimate Beatles Collection,” with all of the United Kingdom-produced works remastered at Abbey Studios, and a 200-page, color book of album art. The cosmetics industry is looking to deep discounts to draw in customers. “Feel good saving. Feel good giving. Buy one get one 50 percent off” is the mantra at the Body Shop at the Stanford mall. At L’Occitane cosmetics and beauty store, popular items are bundled into boxes and “everything is put on huge discount,” according to sales associate Ashley Mendez. A collection of lotions and shower products that normally sell for $99 are priced for $49. A bath soap, candle and soap set retailing for $63 is now $49. And there is a “friends and family” sale, offering 25 percent off of products when customers provide a shopping code. The incentives seem to be working, Mendez said. “People are pre-shopping and putting things on hold for Christmas presents. ... The first week in November, sales were 20 percent up. Let’s hope it stays that way,” she said.

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few independent business owners are banking on the loyal clientele they’ve cultivated in years past to help them hold steady this season. “I’m pretty optimistic,” said Gwen Gasque, owner of Letter Perfect card and gift shop on University Avenue. “Customers seem a little more relaxed, and leather wallets and cards are selling particularly well,” she said. “My only fear is we don’t run out. On the other hand, that would be a good thing.”

Cover Story

NOTICE OF RECORD OF DECISION INSTALLATION RESTORATION SITE 25 FORMER NAVAL AIR STATION MOFFET FIELD, CA

November 2009

The Department of the Navy (Navy) announces the availability of the Record of Decision (ROD) for Installation Restoration Site 25 at former Naval Air Station (NAS) Moffett Field. The ROD was signed by the Navy, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board in November 2009. Former NAS Moffett Field is located 35 miles south of San Francisco and 10 miles north of San Jose. It was an active military base until it was closed in 1994. Former NAS Moffett Field is currently owned and occupied by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

Veronica Weber

Above, Mary Lou Manlove shops at Leaf & Petal boutique on California Avenue, where clothes are sold at various price points to meet the budgets of a range of customers. At left, the Sony Reader, with models selling for $199 and $299, is being heavily promoted at the Sony Style store at Stanford Shopping Center this holiday season.

Shawn Fender

Letter Perfect has always had the support of an upscale clientele, she said, and that group seems to be faithful. Lisa Wolff, manager of the Paper Whirl on University Avenue, said the store also relies on a base of “regulars” during the holidays. “People come here for the large ornament selection. It’s always been a big deal for us,” she said. The store also produces Christmas cards and custom holiday cards, she added. Down the street at the Play Store, owner Julie Chen said her store also

fills a niche by offering high-quality and educational toys rather than the latest hot item. Her clientele comes in with a particular ethic for quality and substance, she said. But she voiced the underlying concern expressed by most independent retailers in town. “It’s not a Fortune 100 holiday season,” she said. “I don’t know what will sell this holiday season. We have to be careful and watch our cash flow. Our expenses are higher than they ever have been before. Come January, if

Site 25 is located in the northeastern corner of former NAS Moffett Field and includes the Eastern Diked Marsh and the stormwater retention pond. Stormwater from former NAS Moffett Field flows into Site 25. Contaminants transported in stormwater have deposited in sediment and pose a risk to animals at the site. The remedy selected to address contaminated sediment is presented in the ROD and includes excavation, treatment, off-site disposal, and focused restoration of wetland excavations. The remedy was one of several alternatives evaluated and presented to the public for review and was selected as the remedy for Site 25 after comments were received from the public. When this remedy is complete, Site 25 will be available for unlimited use and unrestricted exposure. FOR MORE INFORMATION The Site 25 ROD and other site documents are available for public review on the Navy website, www.bracpmo.navy.mil, and at the following locations. For more information about the Site 25 ROD, please contact Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) Environmental Coordinator ATTN: Ms. Kathryn Stewart, 1 Avenue of the Palms, Suite 161, San Francisco, CA 94130-1807 (415) 743-4715. Information Repository Mountain View Public Library 585 Franklin Street Mountain View, CA 94041 (650) 903-6337 http://www.mountainview.gov/ city_hall/library/default.asp

Administrative Record NAVFAC, Southwest Administrative Records Coordinator ATTN: Diane Silva 937 N. Harbor Drive, Building 1, 3rd Floor San Diego, CA 92132 (619) 532-3676

City of Palo Alto ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT we don’t have the (sales numbers), the cash won’t be there in six to nine months,” she said. Deutscher of Shady Lane said it’s anybody’s guess as to what the season will hold, but she’s hoping that loyalty will play a role. “We’re going into it with a positive attitude. We’re hoping against hope that people will come out of their way to shop locally and support local businesses,” she said. N Staff Writer Sue Dremann can be e-mailed at sdremann@ paweekly.com.

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that an Initial Study and Draft Mitigated Negative Declaration have been prepared by the Palo Alto Department of Planning and Community Environment for the project listed below. In accordance with A.B. 886, this document will be available for review and comment during a minimum 30-day inspection period beginning November 20 through December 21, 2009 during the hours of 8:00 A.M. to 12:00 noon and 1:00 P.M. to 4:00 P.M. in the Planning Division, Civic Center, 250 Hamilton Avenue, fifth floor, and at the Development Center, 285 Hamilton Avenue, Palo Alto, California. 305 Grant Avenue, 2640 and 2650 Birch Street and 306 and 320 Sheridan Avenue [08PLN-00182]: A request by David Solnick, on behalf of Hohbach Realty Company Limited Partnership, for a zone change from RM40 to the California Avenue Pedestrian and Transit Oriented Development Combining District (PTOD) Combining District, to allow for a mixed use development consisting of eight residential condominiums above 10,257 square feet of ground floor office space, below grade parking garage and related site improvements. Zone District: RM-40. ###

Shawn Fender

Amanda Hua, a recent Stanford University graduate, browses through the scarab pendants offered at Shady Lane, an independent store selling artisan work in downtown Palo Alto.

Curtis Williams, Director of Planning and Community Environment About the cover: Restoration Hardware in downtown Palo Alto is decked out for the holiday season. Photograph by Veronica Weber.

In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, listening assistive devices are available in the Council Chambers and Council Conference Room. Sign language interpreters will be provided upon request with 72 hours advance notice. *>œÊÌœÊ7iiŽÞÊUÊ œÛi“LiÀÊÓä]ÊÓää™ÊU Page 29

Arts & Entertainment A weekly guide to music, theater, art, movies and more, edited by Rebecca Wallace

D r am a t u r g s b r i n g ‘r ich n e s s an d l i g h t ’ t o t h ea t e r w i t h h i s t o r ical r e s ear ch an d stor y telling skills

B E H I N D

T H E

SCRIPT by Rebecca Wallace

Shawn Fender

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Jeanie Forte Smith sits with scripts on a prop couch at the Pear Avenue Theatre in Mountain View, where she’s staff dramaturg. (She’s also a Weekly theater critic.)

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hen TheatreWorks put on the play “My Antonia,” Vickie Rozell worked with a railroad museum to make sure the 19thcentury train tickets looked right. For “Distracted,” the story of a woman struggling with her son’s ADHD diagnosis, Rozell created a chart of medications. She’s researched wars and family trees, Stephen Sondheim’s life, August Wilson’s Pittsburgh Cycle of plays. The fruits of Rozell’s labor are stacks of books, photos and carefully organized binders that live in the rehearsal room. Whenever actors need clarity or a historical touchstone — Was the U.S. at war yet during this scene? Who’s that artist the script keeps mentioning? — they know where to go. “I never know what I’m going to learn about, but I get to learn something new all the time,” says Rozell, who is TheatreWorks’ resident dramaturg. It’s a plum and not-so-common job. For audiences, the work done by many theater artists — actors, designers, directors — is as clear as a spotlight. They may not realize that there’s sometimes another person behind the scenes helping bring the world of a play or musical to vivid life: the dramaturg (also spelled “dramaturge”). One dramaturg in his time plays many parts. The New York Times once covered a 2002 symposium at Mount Holyoke College on the role of a modern dramaturg. Participants had a tough time giving a quick and fast definition of their profession. They tossed around such phrases as “a great equalizer” and “a mediator between the actor and the director.” Ultimately, reporter William H. Honan wrote, they agreed

that a dramaturg is “a kind of theatrical and literary adviser who helps the actors and the director understand the play they are presenting.” The tradition probably dates back to the 18th-century German dramatist Gotthold Lessing. Besides doing extensive research on the history and universe of a play, dramaturgs often write program articles to share that context with audiences. They may sit in on talk-back nights at the theater, so that after performances audiences can ask them questions as well as talking to the actors. Along with having a penchant for detail, dramaturgs also have a taste for good storytelling. Many work with playwrights to develop new scripts (sometimes translating from foreign languages), and go through piles of scripts to find ones suitable for their theater companies. At the Pear Avenue Theatre in Mountain View, staff dramaturg Jeanie Forte Smith plays a major role in choosing and improving new scripts. A longtime Palo Altan, Smith taught drama and now technology at Jordan Middle School. She has a Ph.D. in drama from the University of Washington and is also the Pear’s associate artistic director and a Weekly theater critic. The Pear has a strong affinity for new works, with its own Pear Playwrights Guild of writers. This is Smith’s seventh year with the annual Pear Slices festival of new short plays. She works with Pear artistic director Diane Tasca and board member Robyn Braverman to field script submissions, choose plays and find directors. This year, they chose nine scripts from the 26 sent in. As a dramaturg, Smith is mainly

Left: TheatreWorks resident dramaturg Vickie Rozell is surrounded by books and other research materials in her office.

Veronica Weber

Veronica Weber

Veronica Weber

Veronica Weber

Below, from left: Vintage Life magazines and a wealth of books are among the tools that Vickie Rozell uses in her research.

Mark Kitaoka

Carla Befera

Left: Meredith McDonough heads TheatreWorks’ New Works program, reading piles of submitted scripts and working with playwrights. Above: Actor Francis Jue, right, with Pun Bandhu in TheatreWorks’ recent production of “Yellow Face.” As a New York actor, he helped Rozell give context to this play about racial identity on the stage.

looking for “that kernel of good storytelling that’s theatrical,” rather than written like an all-talk novel. “If we find it interesting, compelling, amusing, engaging, maybe there’s something there,” she says over coffee in a Palo Alto cafe. “I also think about how much development the piece could need: editing, fleshing out, rewriting. Is it too much?” Once the scripts are chosen, Smith may work extensively with the playwrights, making sure a script has a good arc, that its scenes hang together. After initial read-throughs of the plays, Smith, Tasca and Braverman exchange feedback, which Smith coordinates and mulls over with the writer. “We might go through two to six revisions before the play even begins rehearsal,” she says. Auditions were just held for Pear Slices, with the production set to open Feb. 12. As always, the collection of plays is varied, with topics including, as Smith puts it: “an escape from persecution, a trip to the underworld, a rare appearance of God.” The annual event is popular with audiences, and it also gives many local writers a chance to see their stories on stage, often for the first time. (continued on next page)

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Arts & Entertainment CITY OF PALO ALTO REVISED NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that the City Council of the City of Palo Alto will hold a Public Hearing at the Regular Council Meeting on Monday, December 7, 2009 at 7:00 p.m., or as near thereafter as possible, in the Council Chambers, City Hall, 250 Hamilton Avenue, Palo Alto, California to Consider Approval of a Mitigated Negative Declaration (MND) and Adoption of (1) a Resolution adopting an amendment to the Comprehensive Plan Land Use Map by changing the land use designation for 2180 El Camino Real from Neighborhood Commercial to Mixed Use, and (2) an Ordinance amending Section 18.08.040 of the Palo Alto Municipal Code (The Zoning Map) to change the classification of property known as 2180 El Camino Real from Neighborhood Commercial (CN) District to PC Planned Community for a mixed use project having 57,900 square feet of floor area for a grocery store (intended for JJ&F Market), other retail space, office space, and eight affordable residential units, with two levels of below-grade parking facilities and surface parking facilities for the College Terrace Centre, and approval of Design Enhancement Exceptions to allow a sign spire and gazebo roof to exceed the 35-foot height limit, and to allow encroachment into a minimum setback on Oxford Avenue. The Planning and Transportation Commission recommends conditional approval of the Comprehensive Plan Amendment and Rezoning to Planned Community. DONNA J. GRIDER City Clerk

NOTICE OF A SPECIAL PUBLIC MEETING of the Palo Alto Planning & Transportation Commision Please be advised the Planning and Transportation Commission (P&TC) shall conduct a special meeting at 6:00 PM, Wednesday, December 2, 2009 in the Civic Center, Council Conference Room, 1st Floor, 250 Hamilton Avenue, Palo Alto, California. Any interested persons may appear and be heard on these items. Staff reports for agendized items are available via the City’s main website at www.cityofpaloalto.org. and also at the Planning Division Front Desk, 5th Floor, City Hall, after 2:00 PM on the Friday preceding the meeting date. Copies will be made available at the Development Center should City Hall be closed on the 9/80 Friday. UNFINISHED BUSINESS. Consent: 1. 2180 El Camino Real (JJ&F Market): Confirmation of the Planning and Transportation Commission’s recommended approval and conditions for the revised Planned Community zoning and project plans as conditionally recommended by the Architectural Review Board. Study Session: 2. Discussion of Comprehensive Plan Land Use and Community Design Chapter goals, policies and programs. NEXT MEETING: Special Meeting of December 9, 2009 at 6:00 PM Questions. Any questions regarding the above applications, please contact the Planning Department at (650) 329-2440. The files relating to these items are available for inspection weekdays between the hours of 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM. This public meeting is televised live on Government Access Channel 26. ADA. The City of Palo Alto does not discriminate against individuals with disabilities. To request accommodations to access City facilities, services or programs, to participate at public meetings, or to learn more about the City’s compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), please contact the City’s ADA Coordinator at 650.329.2550 (voice) or by e-mailing ada@cityofpaloalto.org. *** Curtis Williams, Director of Planning and Community Environment Page 32ÊUÊ œÛi“LiÀÊÓä]ÊÓää™ÊUÊ*>œÊÌœÊ7iiŽÞ

Behind the script (continued from previous page)

It’s unusual for a theater group as small as the Pear — which has a 45-seat house — to have a resident dramaturg. Many can’t afford it. At Dragon Productions in downtown Palo Alto, a play’s director typically does the dramaturgy work, sometimes aided by volunteers who have a particular interest, Dragon managing artistic director Meredith Hagedorn said. Dramaturgy is also a team effort at Palo Alto Players, with directors, designers and other staff doing research. As a larger company with an emphasis on new works, TheatreWorks has two staff members who do dramaturgical projects. Besides Vickie Rozell, who does production dramaturgy, working mainly with plays that are already published, Meredith McDonough of Palo Alto is the company’s director of New Works. McDonough modestly calls herself more of a “personal trainer” for playwrights. “Dramaturgy is very intellectual,” she says from her desk. Her office at TheatreWorks’ Menlo Park headquarters holds a veritable symphony of submitted scripts for her to choose from: sorted on shelves, piled on a chair, perched on her desk. McDonough has been developing new plays and musicals for the past decade, with experience at such new-works hotbeds as the Actors Theatre of Louisville in Kentucky. She’s not a writer or an aspiring one — which she says is a strength in this job — but she’s got a gregarious style and an eye for a story, which are undoubtedly also assets. She spends a lot of time having coffee with writers and agents, finding out who’s got what script cooking. “It’s an intimate relationship to share early first drafts of your play,” she says. Meanwhile, the script submissions flow in, hundreds of 10-page queries each year. That means a lot of rejection letters when you work for a theater company with an eightshow season and a six-show New Works Festival. “I might see a play that isn’t good, but the dialogue is great,” McDonough says. “So I might send a letter saying: ‘We like you. Please keep submitting.’” Other times a script is strong but too edgy for TheatreWorks, and she forwards it to a company in Chicago or New York. When a script is chosen for TheatreWorks, McDonough continues her relationship with the playwright. She helps writers articulate their goals, their characters’ goals. She’s also a director, which helps her fix problems. Once when she was directing a play at the Steppenwolf Theatre Company in Chicago, the script called for a character to enter a scene angry but didn’t make it clear why she was mad. McDonough decided that during the transition before the scene, someone would hand the character a note; she’d read it and become furious. “The note was already in the script. I just added it to the transition,” she says. When McDonough is directing, she loves having a production dra-

maturg, someone like Rozell who brings in “richness and light,” she says. That will happen next year, when she directs TheatreWorks’ “Opus,” a Michael Hollinger play about a string quartet. “Being a director is an inherently lonely profession, so it’s nice to have someone there,” she says. “You’re a team trying to figure it all out.” Nearby in the TheatreWorks headquarters, Rozell’s space is anything but lonely. Her desk is also surrounded by shelves, packed with tons of volumes, vintage Life magazines and dramaturg binders. An area of theater programs is organized neatly, with one section marked “’Cabaret’ to ‘Cherry Orchard’.” There’s a healthy selection of books on Lincoln — TheatreWorks’ musical “A Civil War Christmas” opens next month.

“If we have the wrong medal on someone’s military uniform, we’ll hear about it. When you notice something that’s out of sync, it pulls you out of the play.” —Vickie Rozell, TheatreWorks’ resident dramaturg And, of course, a comfortable reading chair. Rozell does a lot of reading. She takes about half her research from the Internet and half from the library, gathering historic context, definitions of terms and names in the script, interviews with playwrights. She has resident experts in TheatreWorks donors as well, including a military veteran she can go to with questions. “If we have the wrong medal on someone’s military uniform, we’ll hear about it,” Rozell says. The audience is right to complain, she adds. “When you notice something that’s out of sync, it pulls you out of the play.” Rozell also writes program articles and newsletters that go to TheatreWorks subscribers and provide even more context. For instance, for the recent production of David Henry Hwang’s “Yellow Face,” about racial identity in the theater and America, Rozell’s newsletter articles included a piece about the outdated practice of yellow face. Actors such as Katharine Hepburn, John Wayne and Leonard Nimoy at one time wore yellow makeup to play Asian characters, she wrote. She also included a piece about the Dong people in China, whose music was in “Yellow Face”; and an interview with actor Francis Jue from the show. Jue gave context about the controversy that erupted over casting a non-Asian actor as an Asian character in Broadway’s “Miss Saigon” in 1990; he had been in New York then. A TheatreWorks veteran, Jue has worked many times with Rozell and appreciates her expertise. He says he has learned over the years that

there’s no one perfect performance and no one “right” way to tell a story, but that it is extremely useful to have thorough research to build on. During “Yellow Face,” Jue recalls in a phone interview from New York, the cast did a lot of tabletop reading and talking with Rozell and the show’s director, TheatreWorks founder Robert Kelley. “We didn’t just discuss the play and what needed to happen on stage, but what we knew about the politics of the show, what we felt about the human relations,” Jue says. “Many of us had really distinct memories of where we were when the ‘Miss Saigon’ controversy was happening. ... For each of our characters’ points of view, we didn’t agree. We always had Kelley and Vickie to referee the discussion.” For scripts farther back in time, when actors don’t have personal memories to draw on, dramaturgs’ historical research can be especially useful, Jue adds, recalling a TheatreWorks production of “Amadeus.” “The play takes huge liberties with historical research and on what we think we know about Amadeus and Salieri and Austria,” he said. “It was Vickie’s obligation to tell us what people think happened and how the play diverted from that. ... Dramaturgy gives you a framework so you can make conscious decisions about where you deviate from the reality.” Rozell has worked as a team with Kelley for several years. She has a master’s degree in directing and often serves as associate director on shows when he takes the helm. She originally did some assistant directing with Kelley, and when he learned that she enjoyed doing background research he asked to see it. He hired her as resident dramaturg and artistic assistant in 2001. These days, dramaturgy jobs are not easy to come by. In the last year, many theater companies cut those positions, Rozell says. “That and new works are the first to go.” McDonough advises aspiring dramaturgs to “look for a strong liberal arts college with a strong theater program,” then also study history, art and other subjects for a broad viewpoint. She minored in sociology along with a major in performance studies. Internships are a possibility as well. Rozell and McDonough regularly have interns, and other companies such as American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco also offer dramaturgy internships. Palo Alto resident Ellen Cassidy is A.C.T.’s current dramaturgy intern. She’s a budding playwright who admits she “didn’t really know what a dramaturg was” before applying, but now enjoys the variety of subjects she digs into. Currently she’s researching the Greek king Theseus for a production of “Phedre.” “You get to do something new every week,” she says. “Never a dull day.” N Info: For more about upcoming shows and opportunities at TheatreWorks, the Pear Avenue Theatre and A.C.T., go to their websites: theatreworks.org, thepear.org, and act-sf.org.

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Todayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s news, sports & hot picks Fresh news delivered daily Sign up today www.PaloAltoOnline.com *>Â?Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;Â?Ă&#x152;Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;7iiÂ&#x17D;Â?Ă&#x17E;Ă&#x160;UĂ&#x160; Â&#x153;Ă&#x203A;iÂ&#x201C;LiĂ&#x20AC;Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;ä]Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;ääÂ&#x2122;Ă&#x160;U Page 33

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by Jeanie Forte Smith

W

arren Leight pays homage to a nearly forgotten world of jazz and its musicians in â&#x20AC;&#x153;Side Man,â&#x20AC;? Dragon Productionsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; latest production in downtown Palo Alto. He also chronicles one young manâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s journey to free himself from a lifetime of co-dependence on his dysfunctional family. While the play sometimes feels a little torn between these two themes, the performance never wavers from excellence, ultimately delivering a provocative, entertaining and satisfying evening of theater. Funny and touching, the piece won the 1999 Tony for Best New Play, but is seldom seen. It reminds us of a great era â&#x20AC;&#x201D; and also of some life lessons along the way. Clifford (Alex Hersler) is the young man, who narrates the play and performs as himself at several ages. Initially, he has returned to New York to make long-delayed contact with his father, who is a trumpet side man in a down-onits-heels lounge bar. Gene, or â&#x20AC;&#x153;Genieâ&#x20AC;? (Kurt Gravenhorst), continues to slog along in the convention of playing pick-up gigs whenever and wherever he can, with his few buddies who also eke out a living night after night in search of the elusive career. Theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re apparently solid players â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Ziggy (Jim Johnson), Al (George Mauro) and Jonesy (Michael Champlin) â&#x20AC;&#x201D; but none of them good enough to reach the next level of employment. The story jumps to a flashback, when Gene first met Terry (Sandy Rouge), who becomes his wife and Cliffordâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s mother, so that we see the genesis of their relationship and a context for understanding later events. Jumping again in time we also meet Patsy (Patricia Tyler), waitress at the lounge and erstwhile wife and/or mistress to nearly all the jazz musicians she knows. As immersed as she is in the lifestyle of the men, she nevertheless tries to help Clifford come to terms with the past and the reality of his parents.

THEATER REVIEW We begin witnessing the past â&#x20AC;&#x201D; the history of Terry and Gene, Cliffordâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s early childhood â&#x20AC;&#x201D; and simultaneously hear about the world of jazz at this ground level. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a world that includes unemployment lines, junkies and addicts, difficulty paying the rent, certified Bohemian trappings like Wilhelm Reichâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Orgone box, and booze, lots of booze. We hear odes to Clifford Brown and Miles Davis and other jazz greats, and get the inside track on life on the road or one-night gigs. But is the play about that world, or about Cliffordâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s dismal childhood as his mother begins to drown herself in alcohol, and his father continues to pursue a dying art? It doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t much matter, as both story threads are interesting, but at times I felt pulled between them. Just as another page of Cliffordâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s story was revealed, the play would then suddenly switch to another paean to the world of jazz in decline. This is a minor quibble with the script â&#x20AC;&#x201D; the performances are so good in this ensemble piece that itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s well worth seeing, and then you can decide for yourself where the playâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s heart lies. My money is on the GeneTerry-Clifford story, a compelling look at one familyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s inexorable slide into dysfunction. You donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have to live those circumstances to empathize with the sad reality here. And itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not all sad. Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s much humor, and hope and love â&#x20AC;&#x201D; even at the end, which is really Cliffordâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s beginning. Gravenhorst is perfect as the long-suffering and yet emotionally removed jazz-man, at once pathetic and loveable, eternally optimistic while beaten down. He conveys intellectual intelligence and willful ignorance in equal measure, and convincingly ages to a weariness born of hard knocks. The penultimate scene between Genie and Clif-

ford is heartbreakingly real. Rouge as Terry is a major find, a true stage presence, authentic to the core, naive in one moment, reeking in an alcoholic rage the next. Her deterioration from hopeful young musicianâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s wife to dotty dipsomaniac is all too believable and at times wrenching. She and Gravenhorst run a terrific counterpoint to each other, and never lose touch with the love that brought the ill-fated couple together in the first place. Hersler is fine as Clifford, with the difficult task of weaving all the threads together, and not wallowing in self-pity as Cliffordâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s harrowing upbringing is revealed. The other sidemen do a great job as the actual sidekicks of the play, giving us much amusement as well as other plights to observe. Tyler has fun with the irrepressible Patsy, and also has the requisite talent to bring off her serious scenes with Clifford. Ron Gasparinettiâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s evocative set makes economical use of the tiny Dragon stage space, giving us the seedy lounge, the cramped apartment and numerous other locales, aided by Jocelyn Squiresâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; excellent lighting design. Magenta Brooks nicely captures the various decades and types in the costumes. Someone on the production team deserves mention for a splendid sound design, giving us appropriate jazz snippets throughout and wonderful pre-show and intermission music. Director Dale Albright deserves kudos for assembling this fine cast in an interesting play, and for his lively and compelling staging. Donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t miss this first-rate offering from the Dragon. N What: â&#x20AC;&#x153;Side Man,â&#x20AC;? by Warren Leight, presented by Dragon Productions Where: Dragon Theatre, 535 Alma St., Palo Alto When: Through Dec. 6, with 8 p.m. shows Thursday through Saturday and 2 p.m. matinees on Sundays Cost: Tickets range from $16 to $20. Info: Go to www.dragonproductions.net or call 650-4932006.

Arts & Entertainment

Worth a Look

outreach and grants scholarships. The program airs on KDFC 102.1 FM every Sunday at 7 p.m.; the Stanford episode is scheduled to be heard the week of March 1. Tickets to the Dec. 5 event are $40-$46 for adults, $20-$23 for youth under 18, and $10 for Stanford students. Go to livelyarts.stanford.edu or call 650-725-ARTS.

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David Allen

Bay Choral Guild

Like many an arts group in this tough economy, the Bay Choral Guild has scaled back, holding fewer From left, Diana Torres Koss, Cyril Jamal concerts with orchestra. Cooper and Tiana Travis in TheatreWorks’ However, the Palo Alto “A Civil War Christmas.” group’s upcoming performances are bright spots, artistic director Sanford Dole says. Two gifts came in (a donation from the parents of a guild singer, and ‘A Civil War Christmas’ Abraham Lincoln, Walt Whit- a grant from Arts Council Silicon man and John Wilkes Booth will Valley), and this weekend the choshare a stage next month when The- ral guild will sing with the Jubilate atreWorks presents a musical set on Orchestra, an ensemble of period instruments. Christmas Eve in 1864. The chorus first sang Handel’s “A Civil War Christmas: An American Musical Celebration” “Dixit Dominus” 30 years ago in its was written by Pulitzer Prize- first season, and the time has come winning playwright Paula Vogel again. In his program notes, Dole and premiered in 2008 at the Long praises the work for its “intoxicatWharf Theatre in New Haven. The ing” long melismatic riffs and “exstory blends history with fiction and quisite melodies.” The program also features Scardrama with holiday spirit, weaving traditional Christmas carols such as latti’s “Messa di Santa Cecilia” and “Silent Night” and “O Christmas Monteverdi’s “Beatus vir.” The guild performs in Palo Alto Tree” with 19th-century folk songs. TheatreWorks founding artistic at 4:30 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 22, in director Robert Kelley directs the St. Mark’s Episcopal Church at production, with the cast including 600 Colorado Ave. Other concerts stage veterans C. Kelley Wright are planned in Campbell and San (who played the title role in The- Francisco. Tickets are $25 general, atreWorks’ “Caroline, or Change”) $20 for seniors and $6 for students. as Elizabeth Keckley), Robert Par- A preview lecture is scheduled 30 sons as Mr. Lincoln and Diana Tor- minutes before each concert. Go to www.baychoralguild.org res Koss as Mrs. Lincoln. The show previews Dec. 2-4 and then runs from Dec. 5 through Dec. 27 at the Lucie Stern Theatre at 1305 Middlefield Road in Palo Alto. Tickets are $24-$62. For more in- ‘Light in Motion’ formation, call 650-463-1960 or go Adele Seltzer’s “Light in Motion” to theatreworks.org. exhibition at the Bryant Street Gallery in Palo Alto is an exploration of abstract curves and colors. Some paintings glow with an intense orange-maroon warmth while others are balanced by a chilly light blue. ‘From the Top’ “From the Top” is a weekly radio The spiral motif also appears in the show hosted by pianist Christopher artist’s work. Over the past 30 years, Seltzer O’Riley that travels the country showcasing musical youth. On Dec. — a painter, printmaker and metal 5 at 8 p.m., the show will be recorded sculptor — has been featured in solo at Stanford University’s Dinkelspiel exhibitions around the Bay Area Auditorium and will feature young and in Washington, D.C. Her work has also been on display in GerBay Area classical musicians Performers will include the Palo many and New York. She recently Alto Chamber Orchestra playing published a book with selections of Corelli’s “Christmas Concerto,” her artwork, which can be ordered and 13-year-old violinist Stephen through www.adeleseltzer.com. The gallery runs through Nov. 30 Waarts of Los Altos playing Franz Waxman’s “Carmen Fantasie” with at 532 Bryant St. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10 O’Riley on piano. “From the Top” celebrates its a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Thursdays untenth anniversary year this season. til 7 p.m. Go to www.bryantstreet. Besides its national tour, the organi- com or call 650-321-8155. zation does school and community

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Eating Out RESTAURANT REVIEW

The garden of vegan Eden Giving up meat isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t a sacrifice at Mountain Viewâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Garden Fresh by Beâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;eri Moalem

Veronica Weber

â&#x20AC;&#x153;N

From left, vegetarian Mongolian â&#x20AC;&#x153;chicken,â&#x20AC;? basil moo shoo rolls, orange vegetarian â&#x20AC;&#x153;beefâ&#x20AC;? and deepfried drumsticks are served at Garden Fresh.

Pizzeria Venti

othing will benefit human health and increase the chances for survival of life on Earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet.â&#x20AC;? This quotation by Albert Einstein greets patrons of Garden Fresh, a vegan Chinese restaurant in Mountain View. It is followed by pearls of vegetarian wisdom from great thinkers as diverse as Gandhi, Pythagoras, Tolstoy and da Vinci. Above the panel of quotes sits a jovial little Buddha figure. For the less philosophical, a â&#x20AC;&#x153;Vegetarian Starter Kitâ&#x20AC;? by PETA is also available as you walk in. The pamphlet quotes celebrities such as Pamela Anderson, Natalie Portman and Paul McCartney in advocacy of a vegetarian lifestyle.

Of course, all of this might make some think twice about what goes into their bodies. But few things persuade as convincingly as a satisfying meal. I am not a strict vegetarian but I prefer high-quality vegetarian food over meat when it is available. Going vegetarian doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have to feel like a sacrifice, especially when the food is good as it is at Garden Fresh. The â&#x20AC;&#x153;Vegi Mongolian Chickenâ&#x20AC;? ($6.95 lunch, $8.95 dinner), for example, will never pass for real chicken but its lightness and ability to thoroughly absorb seasoning make it a preferable alternative, not necessarily a substitute. The dish is made of soybean gluten, a vegetable protein not to be confused with gluten found in wheat or rye. It is served with sautĂŠed onions and

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DINNER BY THE MOVIES AT SHORELINEâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S



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Eating Out other noodle-like ornaments, all in Chef Robert Liangâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s special spicy sauce that characterizes many of the dishes. Even selecting â&#x20AC;&#x153;medium spicyâ&#x20AC;? gives the lips a scintillating burn â&#x20AC;&#x201D; accidentally biting into one of the tiny red peppers that are thrown into the mix will scald the palate for days to come. Liang and his wife Alice are originally from Taiwan, where they belonged to a sect of Buddhism that discourages meat consumption as part of its non-violent school of thought. The pair runs the modest restaurant that has moved up and down the Peninsula in the past decades. Its current location is on the corner of Miramonte Avenue and El Camino Real, neighboring a Baskin-Robbins, a pool supply shop, an army surplus store and a dive bar. Far from upscale or artsy, the decor is very simple. The food, however, is excellent and appropriately priced; it doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t need extra visual pizazz or a chic location to make up for anything. Hostess Alice Liang welcomes hungry patrons to the tiny restaurant with bright hospitality. She seems to remember customers after their second visit, chats about family and business, and is quick to make recommendations. Complimentary soup is served almost instantly â&#x20AC;&#x201D; a choice of hot and sour soup or the corn and tofu chowder. The chowder is soothingly delicate â&#x20AC;&#x201D; make sure to eat it on a clear palate. An extra serving of thick brown rice ($1.50) is recommended with most dishes to soak up the sauces. The menu features a large selection of mostly east Asian food but also includes â&#x20AC;&#x153;Vegi Burger with Vegetableâ&#x20AC;? ($4.50) and Indian dishes such as â&#x20AC;&#x153;Vegetarian Curry Chickenâ&#x20AC;? ($6.45 lunch, $8.95 dinner). Moo shu rolls ($2.50) served in translucent wrapping make for fragrant and refreshing appetizers. Spring rolls ($4.50), often available as vegetarian options even in regular Chinese restaurants, are less greasy than usual at Garden Fresh. But the greatest masterpiece on the menu is the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Orange Vegetarian Steakâ&#x20AC;? ($9.95), made with homemade shiitake mushroom with orange-flavored sauce, served with steamed broccoli. The shiitake mushroom steak doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t resemble regular mushrooms in the slightest; its texture is thick and chewy, but not gamy like â&#x20AC;&#x153;realâ&#x20AC;? steak. The citrus is

balanced with an element of spiciness and almost smothering sweetness. Best of all, this â&#x20AC;&#x153;steakâ&#x20AC;? is free of those jelly-like fat deposits found in beef. Some believe that shiitake mushrooms are much healthier than beef, and research has explored their potential uses in treating disease. There is a certain machismo associated with eating red meat that vegetarian food will probably never satisfy. But men comfortable enough with their masculinity to enter a vegetarian restaurant will be rewarded by hearty, interesting selections. The clientele seated in close quarters of the rather cramped dining area is very mixed. The restaurant draws vegetarians of various per-

suasions â&#x20AC;&#x201D; be they based on health, religious, ethical or environmental concerns. But whatever their background, herbivores and carnivores alike return to Garden Fresh for the taste. The restaurant routinely wins the Mountain View Voiceâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Best of Mountain Viewâ&#x20AC;? award for vegetarian restaurants. The food arrives with amazing speed. The receipt is written in Chinese, which makes it hard to decode, but by the time the bill arrives I am always too full and satisfied to worry about that. A second Garden Fresh location is slated to open in early 2010 on the corner of Ramona Street and University Avenue in Palo Alto. N

Alcohol

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Buy 1 entree and get the 2nd one

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Garden Fresh Vegetarian Restaurant 1245 W. El Camino Real, Mountain View 650-254-1688 www.gardenfresh.us Hours: Daily 11:30 a.m.-9:30 p.m., with lunch specials weekdays from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

 Reservations  Credit cards  Lot Parking

GOT WRINKLES?

880 Santa Cruz Ave Menlo Park

790 Castro St Mountain View

(650) 329-8888

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(at University Drive)

(1 block from El Camino)

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PIZZA Pizza Chicago 424-9400 4115 El Camino Real, Palo Alto This IS the best pizza in town Spot A Pizza 324-3131 115 Hamilton Ave, Palo Alto Voted Best Pizza in Palo Alto www.spotpizza.com

AMERICAN

CHINESE

Armadillo Willy’s 941-2922

Peking Duck 856-3338

1031 N. San Antonio Rd., Los Altos

2310 El Camino Real, Palo Alto

Trader Vic’s 849-9800

Range: $5.00-13.00

We also deliver.

4269 El Camino Real, Palo Alto

Su Hong – Menlo Park

Dinner Mon-Thurs 5-10pm; Fri-Sat 5-11pm;

Hobee’s 856-6124 4224 El Camino Real, Palo Alto Also at Town & Country Village,

Dining Phone: 323–6852 To Go: 322–4631

Available for private luncheons

8 years in a row!

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INDIAN

Happy Hour Mon-Fri 4-6 pm

Burmese Green Elephant Gourmet

Darbar Indian Cuisine 321-6688

(650) 494-7391

129 Lytton, Downtown Palo Alto

Burmese & Chinese Cuisine

Lunch Buffet M-F; Open 7 days

3950 Middlefield Rd., Palo Alto

Dine-In, Take-Out, Local Delivery-Catering

Janta Indian Restaurant 462-5903

SEAFOOD Cook’s Seafood 325-0604 751 El Camino Real, Menlo Park

369 Lytton Ave., Downtown Palo Alto Lunch Buffet M-F; Organic Veggies

Seafood Dinners from

ITALIAN

$6.95 to $10.95

JING JING

THAI

443 Emerson Street Downtown Palo Alto

Thaiphoon Restaurant 323-7700

www.jingjinggourmet.com

CHINESE Chef Chu’s (650) 948-2696

Spalti Ristorante 327-9390

1067 N. San Antonio Road

417 California Ave, Palo Alto

on the corner of El Camino, Los Altos

ݵՈÈÌiÊœœ`ÊUÊ"ÕÌ`œœÀÊ ˆ˜ˆ˜}

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JAPANESE & SUSHI

Full Bar, Outdoor Seating

Fuki Sushi 494-9383

www.thaiphoonrestaurant.com

Jing Jing 328-6885 443 Emerson St., Palo Alto Authentic Szechwan, Hunan

4119 El Camino Real, Palo Alto

MEXICAN

www.jingjinggourmet.com

1700 Embarcadero East, Palo Alto www.mings.com

543 Emerson St., Palo Alto

Best Thai Restaurant in Palo Alto

Palo Alto Sol 328-8840 408 California Ave, Palo Alto Õ}iʓi˜ÕÊUÊœ“iÃÌޏiÊ,iVˆ«iÃ

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STEAKHOUSE Sundance the Steakhouse 321-6798 1921 El Camino Real, Palo Alto

The Oaxacan Kitchen 321-8003 New Tung Kee Noodle House 520 Showers Dr., MV in San Antonio Ctr. Voted MV Voice Best ‘01, ‘02, ‘03 & ‘04

Authentic Mexican Restaurant

Lunch: Mon-Fri 11:30 am-2:00pm

2323 Birch Street, Palo Alto

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Page 38ÊUÊ œÛi“LiÀÊÓä]ÊÓää™ÊUÊ*>œÊÌœÊ7iiŽÞ

650-328-6885

Open 7 days a Week

Food To Go, Delivery

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Sun 4:30 - 9:30pm

Winner, Palo Alto Weekly “Best Of”

Palo Alto 327-4111

(Charleston Shopping Center)

POLYNESIAN

of the week

Fri-Sat 5:00-10:30pm, Sun 5:00-9:00pm www.sundancethesteakhouse.com

Search a complete listing of local restaurant reviews by location or type of food on PaloAltoOnline.com

Movies

        

Movie reviews by Jeanne Aufmuth, Peter Canavese, Tyler Hanley, Renata Polt and Susan Tavernetti



      

             

OPENINGS Precious ---1/2

(Aquarius) Of all the films released in 2009, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Precious: Based on the Novel â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Pushâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; by Sapphireâ&#x20AC;? is most likely to stick in your craw, pitch a tent and refuse to leave. In adapting Sapphireâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s novel, screenwriter Geoffrey Fletcher and director Lee Daniels (â&#x20AC;&#x153;Shadowboxerâ&#x20AC;?) put front and center an everyday unsung hero, her horrifying circumstances and her dark, narrow path toward something better. The plight of the protagonist, Claireece Precious Jones, is articulated early on by her school principal: â&#x20AC;&#x153;Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re 16. Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re in junior high school. And youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re pregnant with your second child.â&#x20AC;? And thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not the worst of it: Both children were conceived by paternal rape. Plagued by suicidal thoughts and all-but-impossible dreams of fame, fortune and a light-skinned boyfriend out of a BET music video, the overweight Precious languishes in the squalor of a Harlem walkup, circa 1987, under the thumb of her cruel, fearsome mother Mary (Moâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Nique, in a demonstration of startling range). Gabourey Sidibe brilliantly embodies the understandably bitter Precious, who shares her heartbreaking despair through extensive narration. Daniels goes a step further with sometimes unnecessary or incongruous visualizations of Preciousâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; dreams of being someone else and being somewhere else (the most egregious finds Precious and her mother entering into filmmaker Vittorio De Sicaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Two Womenâ&#x20AC;?). The filmâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s visual darkness, narrative punishment and use of fantasy sequences consistently evoke Darren Aronofskyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Requiem for a Dream,â&#x20AC;? itself adapted from a novel depicting life in New Yorkâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s underbelly. Along these lines, Daniels teases class and racial tensions with televised glimpses of Oliver North and Maryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s favorite TV show: â&#x20AC;&#x153;The $100,000 Pyramid.â&#x20AC;? Precious begins her longest journey toward hope with the single step of showing up to an alternative school, where patient teacher Blu Rain (Paula Patton) makes a difference with a class of a half-dozen students. As Ms. Rain explains to Precious, â&#x20AC;&#x153;â&#x20AC;&#x2122;Alternativeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; means â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;a choice,â&#x20AC;&#x2122;â&#x20AC;? a luxury Precious has rarely enjoyed. Even as the Each One Teach One school extends hope, Precious continues to suffer psychological abuse from the unholy Mary, who avers, â&#x20AC;&#x153;School ainâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t gonna help nothing!â&#x20AC;? Still, thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a glimmer of sympathy for this devil, who, after all, is herself a victim of abuse from a monstrous mate who remains mostly off-screen. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Preciousâ&#x20AC;? is a primal experience that goes for the gut and not the brain. The catharsis for many viewers can be one only of liberal guilt, but to dismiss the film on that point ignores the real lives of teen mothers, incest survivors, the obese, the suicidal, the functionally illiterate and those in post-recession America who donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t find their ghettos fabulous. Their stories rarely find such powerful expression, much less Oscar talk. Sadly and truthfully, the film ends by holding out only the thinnest sliver of hope, but there can be no question that â&#x20AC;&#x153;Preciousâ&#x20AC;? is both a potent character study and cause for reflection on the unending need for compassionate social work serving those pushed to the margins. Rated R for for child abuse including sexual assault, and pervasive language. One hour, 49 minutes. â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Peter Canavese

Bad Lieutenant --

(Century 16) â&#x20AC;&#x153;Badâ&#x20AC;? doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t even begin to describe the behavior of New Orleans Police Lt. Terence Mc-

Donaugh (Nicholas Cage), protagonist of Werner Herzogâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans.â&#x20AC;? Snorting coke is just the beginning; stealing drugs from suspects, from the police departmentâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s property room, and from wherever else he can score it, comes next. How about soliciting bribes (money, dope, sex) from suspects? Terrorizing an old lady by pulling the oxygen leads out of her nose? The filmâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s title, but not much else, is similar to that of a 1992 cult classic by Abel Ferrara; the rest is pure Herzog â&#x20AC;&#x201D; dark (both literally and figuratively), and a bit surreal. Alligators and iguanas, either real or imaged, figure in the action.The titleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s post-Katrina New Orleans is a city where the sun never shines. Its blue-black tones (shot by Peter Zeitlinger, who also filmed Herzogâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Grizzly Manâ&#x20AC;? and â&#x20AC;&#x153;Encounters at the End of the Worldâ&#x20AC;?) donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t jibe with our stereotype of a jazzy, joyous Big Easy. McDonaugh is in charge of investigating the murder of five members of a family of illegal African immigrants connected to the drug trade. He has recently rescued a prisoner from drowning in the Katrina floodwaters, getting, for his efforts, a back injury that causes him to take Vicodin and walk with a lopsided, stoop-shouldered gait. I think weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re to assume that itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s his pain that also leads him to consume the quantities of drugs less legal than Vicodin; maybe so. McDonaughâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s girlfriend, Frankie (Eva Mendes), is a beautiful coke-head prostitute whom he occasionally has to bail out of trouble when customers beat her up or otherwise harass her. Another source of worry is from the bookie (Brad Dourif) who tries to collect on the lieutenantâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s huge gambling debts. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Bad Lieutenantâ&#x20AC;? may sound like a total downer, but itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not. Elements of black humor lighten the generally depraved tone, and the ending ... well, I wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t give anything away. However, Herzog and scriptwriter William Finkelstein canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t resist piling nastiness on top of nastiness. When, to begin with, the protagonist isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t someone youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d want to spend a Saturday night with, that can be a problem.

          





  

     

   

        





   





  

     



       





  





  

          

 

     

   

  



   

Custom Interiors From Concept To Creation

Mountain View Showroom: Fremont Showroom: 633 W. Dana St., Mtn. View 155 Anza St., Fremont 650.938.8822 510.623.8822 www.WindowsAndBeyond.com

FROM THE WORLDWIDE BESTSELLER COMES

THE MOTION PICTURE EVENT O F THE YEAR

Rated R for language, some violence, sexuality and drug use. Two hours, one minute. â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Renata Polt

The Blind Side --

(Century 16, Century 20) â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Blind Sideâ&#x20AC;? is surefire popular entertainment, reassuringly warm and cuddly fare for the holiday season. Social blights are faced down and told their place, underdogs become winners, and a black man becomes part of a white family. Surely post-recession America will turn out in droves for this cinematic version of a hug. But should they? Adapted from Michael Lewisâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; book â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game,â&#x20AC;? this Warner Brothers picture merges the uplifting social drama with the uplifting sports drama (itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s smoothly directed by John Lee Hancock, who did â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Rookieâ&#x20AC;? for Disney). Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s also a cutesy family comedy, with a precocious, sassy kid constantly cracking wise. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Blind Sideâ&#x20AC;? mines much of its incident from Lewisâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; book, and generally sticks to the facts: Homeless African-American youth Michael Oher (newcomer Quinton Aaron) was blessed to get a break from a tony Christian school and then from the Tuohy family, whose spitfire matriarch Leigh Anne takes him into her heart. As played by Sandra Bullock, Leigh Anne is a woman you really want to believe exists (and apparently she does). Republican and Christian, Leigh (continued on next page) To view the trailers for â&#x20AC;&#x153;Precious,â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;Bad Lieutenantâ&#x20AC;? and â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Blind Sideâ&#x20AC;? go to Palo Alto Online at www.PaloAltoOnline.com

SUMMIT ENTERTAINMENT PRESENTS â&#x20AC;&#x153;THE TWILIGHT SAGA : NEW MOONâ&#x20AC;? A TEMPLE HILL PRODUCTION IN ASSOCIATION WITH MAVERICK/IMPRINT AND SUNSWEPT ENTERTAINMENT KRISTEN STEWART ROBERT PATTINSON TAYLOR LAUTNER ASHLEY GREENE RACHELLE LEFEVRE BILLY BURKE CASTING PETER FACINELLI ELIZABETH REASER NIKKI REED KELLAN LUTZ JACKSON RATHBONE ANNA KENDRICK MUSIC MUSIC WITH MICHAEL SHEEN AND DAKOTA FANNING BY JOSEPH MIDDLETON, C.S.A. BY ALEXANDRE DESPLAT SUPERVISOR ALEXANDRA PATSAVAS COSTUME EDITOR CODIRECTOR OF DESIGNER TISH MONAGHAN DESIGNER DAVID BRISBIN PHOTOGRAPHY JAVIER AGUIRRESAROBE PRODUCER BILL BANNERMAN PETER LAMBERT PRODUCTION PRODUCED EXECUTIVE BY WYCK GODFREY KAREN ROSENFELT PRODUCERS MARTY BOWEN GREG MOORADIAN MARK MORGAN GUY OSEARY BASED ON SCREENPLAY THE NOVEL â&#x20AC;&#x153;NEW MOONâ&#x20AC;? BY STEPHENIE MEYER BY MELISSA ROSENBERG DIRECTED BY CHRIS WEITZ

www.newmoonthemovie.com

TM & Š 2009 SUMMIT ENTERTAINMENT, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

MOBILE USERS: For Showtimes, Text Message NEWMOON and Your ZIP CODE to 43KIX (43549)

STARTS FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 20

CHECK LOCAL LISTINGS FOR THEATERS AND SHOWTIMES 

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Movies MOVIE TIMES 2012 (PG-13) ((

Century 16: Fri.-Tue. at 10:10 & 11:20 a.m.; noon, 1:50, 3, 3:30, 5:20, 6:30, 7:10, 8:10, 8:50, 10:10 & 10:45 p.m. Century 20: Fri.-Tue. at 12:05, 12:40, 1:20, 2, 3:35, 4:05, 4:45, 5:30, 6:10, 7, 7:35, 8:15, 9:05, 9:45 & 10:25 p.m.; Fri.-Sun. also at 10:35 a.m.; Fri. & Sat. also at 11 p.m.

A Serious Man (R) ((((

Century 20: Fri.-Tue. at 12:10, 2:40, 5:15, 7:55 & 10:30 p.m. Palo Alto Square: 2:15, 4:45 & 7:20 p.m.; Fri., Sat., Wed. & Thu. also at 9:50 p.m.

An Education (PG-13) (Not Reviewed)

Century 16: Fri.-Tue. at 11:35 a.m.; 2:05, 4:30, 7:25 & 10:15 p.m.

Astro Boy (PG) ((1/2

Century 20: Fri.-Tue. at 11:45 a.m.; 2:10, 4:30 & 6:50 p.m.

Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans (R) ((

Century 16: Fri.-Tue. at 11:05 a.m.; 1:55, 4:45, 7:35 & 10:25 p.m.

The Blind Side (PG-13)

Century 16: Fri.-Tue. at 12:10, 3:40, 7:05 & 10:05 p.m. Century 20: Fri.-Tue. at 1:25, 3, 4:20, 6, 7:20, 9 & 10:20 p.m.; Fri.-Sun. also at 10:40 a.m.

((

Disneyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s A Christmas Carol Century 16: Fri.-Tue. (In 3D) at 11:10 a.m.; 2:20, 4:55, 7:20 & 9:50 p.m. Century 20: Fri.-Tue. at (PG) ((( 12:25, 2:50, 5:20 & 8 p.m.; In 3D at 11:20 a.m.; 1:45, 4:25, 6:55 & 9:20 p.m. The Fourth Kind (PG-13) (Not Reviewed)

feels anger. In an example of laughable screenwriting B.S., the film claims Oher scored in the 98th percentile in â&#x20AC;&#x153;Protective Instinctsâ&#x20AC;? (they test for that?), and heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not able to achieve on the field until Leigh Anne tells him the other team are bad guys trying to hurt his white family. As Michael in turn teaches the Tuohys the true meaning of family, he becomes the archetype Spike Lee acidly called the â&#x20AC;&#x153;super-duper magical Negro,â&#x20AC;? who lowers his face and steps aside to let the white star have her Oscar clip.

Rated PG-13 for one scene involving violence, drugs and sexual references. Two hours, eight minutes.

Discover the FRENCH FILM CLUB OF PALO ALTO at PALO ALTO ART CENTER 1313 Newell Road

WINTER PROGRAM â&#x20AC;?Les Classiquesâ&#x20AC;?

Century 20: Fri.-Tue. at 9:10 p.m.; Fri. & Sat. also at 11:30 p.m.

Law Abiding Citizen (R) (

Century 20: Fri.-Tue. at 10:20 p.m.

The Men Who Stare At Goats (R) (Not Reviewed)

Century 16: Fri.-Tue. at 11:50 a.m.; 2:30, 5:10, 7:45 & 10:20 p.m. Century 20: Fri.-Tue. at 12:50, 3:20, 5:50, 8:10 & 10:40 p.m.; Fri.-Sun. also at 10:30 a.m.

November 20th at 7pm movie at 7:30pm

Michael Jacksonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s This Is It Century 16: Fri.-Tue. at 1:45, 4:25, 7:30 & 10:30 p.m. Century 20: Fri.-Tue. at 11:05 a.m.; 1:40, (PG) ((( 4:15 & 7:05 p.m. Paranormal Activity (R) (Not Reviewed)

â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Peter Canavese

Century 20: Fri.-Tue. at 9:40 p.m.; Fri. & Sat. also at 11:45 p.m.

Fri & Sat ONLY Pirate Radio (R) 1:45, 4:30, 7:15, 9:55 11/20-11/21 A Serious Man (R) 2:15, 4:45, 7:20, 9:50

Paris (R) (Not Reviewed)

Guild Theatre: Fri.-Tue. at 2, 5 & 8 p.m.

Pirate Radio (R) (((

Century 20: Fri.-Tue. at 11:15 a.m.; 1:55, 4:35, 7:30 & 10:15 p.m. Palo Alto Square: 1:45, 4:30 & 7:15 p.m.; Fri., Sat., Wed. & Thu. also at 9:55 p.m.

Planet 51 (PG) (Not Reviewed)

Century 16: Fri.-Tue. at 11:30 a.m.; 12:40, 2:15, 3:10, 4:50, 5:30, 7:15 & 9:40 p.m. Century 20: Fri.Tue. at 11:50 a.m.; 1, 2:15, 3:45, 5:10, 7:50 & 10:10 p.m.; Fri. & Sun. also at 10:40 a.m.

Precious: Based on the Novel â&#x20AC;&#x153;Pushâ&#x20AC;? by Sapphire (R) (((1/2

Aquarius Theatre: 3, 4, 6, 7, 8:45 & 9:45 p.m.; Fri.-Sun. also at noon & 1 p.m.; Wed. & Thu. also at 1 p.m.

The Twilight Saga: New Moon (PG-13) (Not Reviewed)

Century 16: 10, 10:40, 11 & 11:40 a.m.; 12:20, 1, 1:40, 2, 2:40, 3:20, 4, 4:40, 5, 5:40, 6:20, 7, 7:40, 8, 8:40, 9:20, 10, 10:40 & 11 p.m. Century 20: Fri.-Tue. at 11, 11:25 & 11:55 a.m.; 12:30, 1:10, 1:55, 2:25, 2:55, 3:25, 4:10, 4:50, 5:25, 5:55, 6:20, 7:10, 7:45, 8:25, 8:55, 9:15, 10:10 & 10:40 p.m.; Fri. & Sat. also at 11:25 p.m.; Sat. & Sun. also at 10:20 a.m.

Where the Wild Things Are (PG) (((1/2

Century 16: Fri.-Tue. at 11:15 a.m. Century 20: Fri.-Tue. at noon.

( Skip it (( Some redeeming qualities ((( A good bet (((( Outstanding Internet address: For show times, plot synopses, theater addresses, trailers and more information about films playing, go to Palo Alto Online at http://www.PaloAltoOnline.com/

Sun thru Tues Pirate Radio (R) 1:45, 4:30, 7:15 11/22-11/24 A Serious Man (R) 2:15, 4:45, 7:20 Wed & Thurs ONLY Pirate Radio (R) 1:45, 4:30, 7:15, 9:55 11/25-11/26 A Serious Man (R) 2:15, 4:45, 7:20, 9:50

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Moliereâ&#x20AC;? by Laurent Tirard - 2007 Established in 1977, the French Film Club is an independent non-proďŹ t Organization, open to the public. For full program and archives, go to:

frenchďŹ lmclubofpaloalto.org

â&#x20AC;&#x153;PHENOMENAL! THE MOST EXCITING MOVIE OF THE YEAR.â&#x20AC;? Shawn Edwards, FOX-TV

STANFORD THEATER The Stanford Theatre is at 221 University Ave. in Palo Alto. Go to www.stanfordtheatre.org.

Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942) James Cagney plays song-and-dance man George M. Cohan. Sun.-Mon. at 7:30 p.m. Sun. also at 3:15 p.m.

Top Hat (1935) This classic Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers musical comedy is set in London. Fri.-Sat. at 7:30 p.m. Sat. also at 3:45 p.m. The Gay Divorcee (1934) Divorce-seeking Ginger Rogers meets dancer Fred Astaire. Fri.-Sat. at 5:35 & 9:20 p.m.

(continued from previous page)

Anne sees something wrong and is compelled to set it right; when she stops on the road to see if Michael â&#x20AC;&#x201D; whom she has never met â&#x20AC;&#x201D; is all right, sheâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the Good Samaritan, straight out of the Bible. From that moment forward, Leigh Anne is a fierce lioness doing whatever is necessary to protect her cub. Naturally, Bullock brings her comic timing to bear on the characterâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s quickthinking decisiveness and snappy rejoinders. The screenplay is savvy enough to drop in a number of scenes that lightly counter a hagiographic approach: Leigh Anne wonders at first if Michael might steal from her; her friends ask her, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Is this some sort of white guilt thing?â&#x20AC;? and the filmâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s climax revolves around the question of whether or not the Tuohys intended, consciously or not, to exploit Oher or subvert NCAA policy. But the confused depiction of Oher is what undermines the filmâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s credibility and ultimately keeps â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Blind Sideâ&#x20AC;? from being palatable. The educational system has failed Oher: Heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a kid with grades in the

Swing Time (1936) A gamble (Fred Astaire) takes lessons from dance-instructor Ginger Rogers. Sun.-Mon. at 5:35 & 9:50 p.m. My Man Godfrey (1936) A ditzy socialite hires a vagrant for a butler. Tue.-Wed. at 7:30 p.m.

basement but, weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re told, learning potential. The movie consistently paints him as having a lot more heart than brains, and his only earthly desires are to have a family and a pickup truck (if not for that truck, he

might as well be a monk, or perhaps an alien). Even at his most angry â&#x20AC;&#x201D; in a football scene taken from the book â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Oher maintains his stoical placidity of expression, lest we not be able to handle a black man who

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COLUMBIA PICTURES PRESENTS A CENTROPOLIS PRODUCTION â&#x20AC;&#x153;2012â&#x20AC;? JOHN CUSACKMUSIC CHIWETEL EJIOFOR AMANDA PEET OLIVER PLAT LSON BY HARALD KLOSER AND THOMASPRODUCTION WANDER THANDIE NEWTON WITH DANNYCOSTUMEGLOVER AND WOODY HARRE COEDITED PRODUCERS VOLKER ENGEL MARC WEIGERT DESIGNER SHAY CUNLIF E BY DAVID BRENNER, A.C.E. PETER S. EL IOT DESIGNER BARRY CHUSID EXECUTIVE WRITTEN DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY DEAN SEMLER ACS ASC PRODUCERS ROLAND EMMERICH UTE EMMERICH MICHAEL WIMER BY HARALD KLOSER & ROLAND EMMERICH PRODUCED DIRECTED BY HARALD KLOSER MARK GORDON LARRY FRANCO BY ROLAND EMMERICH FEATURING â&#x20AC;&#x153;TIME FOR MIRACLESâ&#x20AC;? PERFORMED BY ADAM LAMBERT

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Sports Shorts

HELP WANTED . . . Castilleja is looking for an assistant softball coach for this spring. Those interested should contact Athletic Director Jez McIntosh at jezmcintosh@castilleja.org.

ON THE AIR Friday Saturday College football: California at Stanford, 4:30 p.m., Versus; XTRA Sports (860 AM); KZSU (90.1 FM) Women’s volleyball: Stanford at Arizona St., 6 p.m.; KZSU (90.1 FM)

SPORTS ONLINE For expanded daily coverage of college and prep sports, please see our new site at www.PASportsOnline.com

Stanford last held the Axe after winning the Big Game at home in 2007. The Cardinal plays at home again Saturday in the 112th meeting between the schools.

Big Game is more than just the Axe Stanford is still in the running for Pac-10 title, but must beat the Bears on Saturday

by Rick Eymer here have been stranger weeks leading up to the Big Game than this one, but it would be difficult to find. Stanford is favored by a touchdown and who would have thought that at the beginning of the season? California was the nationallyranked team back then, with dreams of Pac-10 titles and the BCS championship series dancing in its heads.

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Stanford? The Cardinal would have been lucky to win six games and play in a mid-December bowl game. These days itís the Cardinal that is dreaming of a New Year’s Day Bowl. No. 14 Stanford (6-2, 7-3) hopes to continue its uphill climb when the Bears (4-3, 7-3) visit for a 4:30 p.m. kickoff (Versus) with title implications.

Cal and Stanford are both already bowl eligible, as are four other Pac10 schools. The Bears can’t win the conference title because of their loss to Oregon. Stanford can win the title, but it will take more than just beating Cal. The important thing is winning the Big Game, period. Nothing else can enter the minds of either Stanford or Cal players or coaches. Once the regular season is over, let the

discussion begin. “The hubris, the overconfidence can be a killer,” Stanford coach Jim Harbaugh said. “We can’t afford that. We’re a blue-collar football team. It’s important to get back to that mentality. We know we have to prepare and practice with great intensity.” Stanford has the Pac-10’e leading (continued on page 44)

NCAA CROSS COUNTRY

CCS FOOTBALL

Stanford’s Derrick wants one more run at success

Paly, Bellarmine renew dormant rivalry in opener

by Rick Eymer

by Keith Peters

tanford sophomore Chris Derrick figures to be pretty familiar with the LaVern Gibson Championship Cross Country Course at the Wabash Valley Family Sports Center in Terre Haute, Ind., by now. He’s run the course quite a few times, including as a high school senior. He’ll be looking to establish personal bests to go with the Cardinal team goal of winning a national title when the final race commences on the dedicated cross-country course on Monday morning. Derrick is one of the favorites (with, among others, Oklahoma State’s German Fernandez) to win the individual title, but he’d be much happier if Stanford took the team title and his finish didn’t matter, except for scoring purposes. “That would define the season,” Derrick

hen asked about his team’s opponent for the opening round of the Central Coast Section football playoffs, Palo Alto coach Earl Hansen commented: “We haven’t seen much of Bellarmine, but I have some film to look at.” That film, of course, is from this season — certainly not from the last time Bellarmine and Palo Alto met, which was in 1944. The Bells won that one, 31-6, about seven years before Hansen was born. The two teams will go at it again for the first time in 65 years when No. 4 Palo Alto (7-1-2) plays host to No.5 Bellarmine (8-1-1) to open the CCS Open Division playoffs at 7 p.m. “I like our chances,” Hansen said. “We’ll show up.” Palo Alto actually holds a 4-2 lead in the series with Bellarmine, unless you include a

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W

Kyle Terada/Stanford Athletics

Women’s volleyball: Stanford at Arizona, 6 p.m., KZSU (90.1 FM)

Peter Krutzik/Stanford Athletics

TRIP TO NATIONALS . . . The Palo Alto Knights’ Cadet team scored a significant 13-12 victory against the No. 3-seeded Oakland Dynamites on Sunday, resulting in the Knights securing a berth in the American Youth Football National Championships in Florida on December 5th, representing the Northern California League. The Knights scored on their second possession of the game, going for the touchdown on a fourth-and -five from the Dynamites’ 9 yard line. Jack Devine’s pass connected with Jackson Dahl in the corner of the end zone. The Knights’ PAT kick was wide left, resulting in a 6-0 lead in the second quarter. Despite an offensive drive with pass receptions of 20 yards by Calvin Greywal and 25 yards by Wes Walters, the Knights were unable to score a second time in the first half, during which Palo Alto’s defense the Dynamites to only 13 yards of offense. Oakland tied the game at 6 in the third quarter and, after holding Palo Alto on downs on its first possession, the Dynamites produced a long drive that resulted in their second touchdown -- early in the fourth quarter. The Knights’ defense again held firm on the PAT attempt, resulting in a 12-6 game. Palo Alto’s special teams produced a big play on the ensuing kickoff, as Jack Devine returned the ball into Oakland territory. The Knights continued to drive the ball successfully, grinding out several critical first downs. With 3:38 left to play and with a fourth down the Oakland 2-yard line, the Knights scored to tie the game at 12. Needing a successful conversion to break the tie, the Knights spread the Dynamites’ defense with a pass formation, then punched in with a quarterback sneak to take the lead, 13-12. After the kickoff, Oakland drove to the palo Alto 30. With just 27 seconds left on the clock, the Knights’ defense blitzed on fourth down and sacked the Oakland quarterback. As the Palo Alto sideline erupted in celebration, the Knights’ offense took possession, took a knee, and sealed the victory along with a trip to Florida.

Stanford sophomore Chris Derrick hopes to lead the Cardinal to the NCAA title on Monday.

(continued on page 46)

Palo Alto Weekly • November 20, 2009 • Page 41

Sports

YOUTH SOCCER OPEN TRYOUTS NOV. 16 TO DEC. 15

Stanford hosts SCU in sold-out soccer

Palo Alto Soccer Club

Top-ranked and unbeaten Cardinal is just two wins from College Cup By Rick Eymer hose holding tickets are the lucky ones when the No. 1 Stanford women’s soccer team plays host to Santa Clara in the third round of the NCAA Tournament on Friday at 7 p.m. at Laird Q. Cagan Stadium. The match is sold out. Stanford (22-0), the top seed in the 16-team regional, advanced by beating visiting BYU last Saturday, 2-0. Stanford’s defense picked up its 13th shutout of the season, with junior goalkeeper Kira Maker earning the 26th of her career. “They’re definitely one of the more physical and harder teams we’ve played, but every game in the tournament is going to be a challenge,” Stanford freshman defender Alina Garciamendez said. “Paul (Ratcliffe) tells us that and reminds us of that every time out.” O’Hara was credited with both assists and now has 23 goals and 13

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assists on the season for 59 points. Press scored her 19th goal and has 13 assists, for 51 points. Collegesoccer360.com reports that O’Hara and Press have become the 24th tandem in Division I women’s soccer history to reach 50-50 in points, and only the third in the past nine years. It most recently was accomplished by Notre Dame’s Kerri Hanks and Michele Weissenhofer in 2006. “It’s great to have a teammate like Kelley,” Press said. “It’s easy to play with her.” Santa Clara (14-6-2) tied visiting Oklahoma State on Sunday, but advanced on penalty kicks, 6-5. Should Stanford advance, it will host a fourth-round match the following weekend. The next step after that is the College Cup in College Station, Texas, the first weekend in December. In last week’s win over BYU, Press and Lindsay Taylor each

scored a goal, but it was the one Rachel Quon prevented that might have saved Stanford. The match really wasn’t safe until Taylor kicked in a rebound with 1:46 remaining to play. “This was a great game to have under our belts,” Press said. “Every game is close in the playoffs. We like to play pretty soccer — 10 passes and a score — but sometimes you have to play scrappy, physical soccer. We learned from playing a great team.” The Cougars had a great scoring opportunity in the final four minutes as Maker was on the ground after stopping one shot. Quon roamed behind Maker to head off a BYU point blank shot. The Pac-10 went 6-2 in the first round, with California, Oregon State, Washington, UCLA and Washington State advancing into Sunday’s second round. Arizona State and USC were eliminated. ■

Cross country

depth. “The sixth and seventh runners matter,” Derrick said. “Our strength is our depth. At the NCAAs, crazy things happen all the time and it’s nice to have those stopgap six and seven guys. This race is going to be close, and if we can get our sixth man ahead of somebody’s fifth man that could make all the difference.” Oklahoma State, Portland, Oregon and Colorado all figure to compete for the top spot. The Ducks are the defending national champions. Second-year coach Jason Dunn, who was at Virginia the previous eight years, hopes to lead the Stanford men to their first national title since 2003. The Cardinal have won four NCAA titles overall, in 199697 and also in 2002. What Derrick likes about the course in Terre Haute, is the gradual ascent and the wide lanes. “It’s all fenced in, with one big loop and three inner loops,” he said. “It goes downhill quickly but there are no killer hills. It builds up gradually. It’s pretty fair and it’s easy to pass.” He’d prefer that it not rain but if it does he’ll be ready. “I do better than I used to,” Derrick said. “A lot of it is mental.” Derrick earned the Gatorade National Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year award after helping Neuqua Valley High School in Illinois to a national team championship with his first-place finish at the Nike Team Nationals. The Stanford women, meanwhile, have plenty of quality runners with the likes of seniors Kate Niehaus and Maddie O’Meara and junior Alexandra Gits. The problem is in their depth and experience. Niehaus and O’Meara are Stanford’s only seniors in the race, so the majority of runners Monday will be sophomores or freshmen. The goal is to finish better than its’ eighth-place showing of a year ago. Stanford finished third at the West Regional. Defending national champion Washington is again the clear favorite. ■

(continued from page 41)

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Page 42 • November 20, 2009 • Palo Alto Weekly

said. “It’s what we’ve been talking about and working toward all year.” The Cardinal women don’t carry the same expectations this year despite a storied history that includes winning four of the past six national titles. Laurynne Chetelat, one of the nation’s top distance runners, left Stanford after one year. The Athletic and Academic All-American, who attended Davis High, is reportedly headed for California. Derrick was seventh in the individual race and Stanford placed third in last year’s championship. The four-time All-American (in track and cross country combined) said there’s a difference working toward a team goal rather than an individual goal. “You help the team by scoring as low as you can,” he said. “But if I were running an individual race I would want to go out fast and stay there. I’m running for the team, though, and we’ll work through the pack together.” It was a strategy that worked at the NCAA West Regional last weekend, in which top-ranked Stanford had five runners in the lead pack for most of the race before Derrick and Elliott Heath broke free to finish first and second, respectively. Derrick was named USA Track & Field’s Athlete of the Week for his effort. The American junior recordholder (in track) in the 5,000 meters, Derrick won the 10,000-meter race in 30 minutes 38.84 seconds at the West Regional to remain undefeated on the season. Justin Marpole-Bird finished third at the regional, despite running in his first competitive 10,000 race. Brendan Gregg, Miles Unterreiner, Benjamin Johnson and J.T. Sullivan also competed for the Cardinal. Redshirt sophomore Jacob Riley likely will run in the championship, perhaps giving Stanford an edge in

Sports CCS WATER POLO

Menlo boys, M-A girls have a shot at revenge Knights and Bears are taking aim to win section titles after coming up short in championship finales last season By Keith Peters f this season’s Central Coast Section water polo championships is about anything, it would be having a second chance. At least that’s how the Menlo School boys and Menlo-Atherton girls likely see it. Both teams lost their respective section championship games last season. Menlo fell to Sacred Heart Prep., 6-3, in the Division II finale and the M-A girls dropped a 7-6 overtime decision to St. Francis in Division I. All four teams will be back in the finals on Saturday at Santa Clara University, with the Knights and Bears having strong motivations to win while being in nearly the same situations as last season. Menlo was seeded second a year ago while Sacred Heart Prep was No. 1. That’s the case again. The M-A girls spent most of the season ranked No. 1 in the CCS and were actually favored in 2008. That, too, is the situation. Saturday’s matchups are not unexpected. The only surprise is that No. 2 Castilleja will not be playing the No. 1 Sacred Heart Prep girls in the Division II finals. The Gators had their dream of a possible firstever section crown dunked in a 6-5 loss to St. Ignatius in Wednesday’s semifinals. Other than that, the finals provide some interesting matchups. For the past 12 years, either Menlo or Sacred Heart Prep (or both) have played in the CCS Division II boys’ water polo finals. That number jumps to 13 this week now that the Knights and Gators have reached the championship match once again. In perhaps the most anticipated match of the season, No. 1 Sacred Heart Prep (23-5) will seek its third straight CCS title while No. 2 Menlo (22-6) will attempt to end that streak and win its first crown since 2006 when the teams meet Saturday at Santa Clara University at 11:30 a.m. Sacred Heart Prep has not played the Knights this season — despite being in some of the same tournament. “It is weird that the last four times we have played Menlo, it has been for a CCS championship,” said SHP coach Brian Kreutzkamp. “They beat us the first two, we won last year, and now this year. We play in many of the same tournaments, so I am surprised we don’t see them more. It certainly adds to the Menlo vs. SHP mystigue as we have no idea how we will match up against them and what will work tactically.” Said Menlo coach Jack Bowen: “I would have liked to play them. It’s hard to read who has the advantage — the underdog may because they might match up well with the favored team and the favored team would not have time to prepare. Or, there’s always the adage that it’s

I

Keith Peters

Members of the Palo Alto volleyball team rush the floor following the final point in the Vikings’ five-game victory over Presentation in the CCS Division II semifinals on Wednesday night in San Jose.

Paly girls will play for a title Vikings put their 33-match win streak on the line against Mitty in finals by Keith Peters he Mitty girls’ volleyball team is ranked No. 1 in the nation, with a 35-0 record. The Monarchs have won six straight Central Coast Section titles, failing to do so only once this decade. During that same time, Mitty has played in seven state championship matches and won four of them — including last year. Clearly, there has been no other team in Northern California that has been so dominant. On Saturday, the Monarchs will match their 35-game winning streak against Palo Alto’s 33-game string in the championship match of the Central Coast Section Division II playoffs at Independence High at 7 p.m. Something has to give. “They make those Disney movies for a reason,” said Paly coach Dave Winn. “The underdog does win every once in a while.” Winn is hoping that time arrives Saturday, at least that’s how he’s approaching it. “We know what the odds are,” Winn said. “But we’re not going to treat them like gods. We have to treat the experience like any other match. We’re going to try and win. We have to play to win, when you have a chance to win a CCS title.” The smart money says top-seeded Mitty will win. Yet, Palo Alto already has won. The second-seeded Vikings accomplished quite a bit with its dramatic 25-22, 15-25, 2522, 23-25, 15-13 victory over No. 3 Presentation on Wednesday in a Division II semifinal at Valley Christian in San Jose. Palo Alto will be playing in its first section finale since 2000. By reaching this point, the Vikings also have qualified for the Northern California playoffs that begin next week. The CCS champ will open at home while the loser will hit the road. The victory over Presentation

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(32-8) also avenged one of only three losses the Vikings have suffered this season. Moreover, it improved Paly’s remarkable winning streak to 33 straight in addition to setting a school record for most single-season victories (35) in school history. Palo Alto has not lost since the opening tournament of the season, where the Vikings went 2-3. “I’ve never beaten Presentation in my coaching career,” said Winn, who earlier in the season beat Menlo School for the first time, too. “There’s a lot of satisfaction in this win . . . This is sort of a signature of our season. It’s not a flukey thing, like I was surprised to win.” Palo Alto has been in too many make-or-break situations this season and responded each time. “This team doesn’t care what the score is,” explained Winn. “We’ve got some girls who have been through some battles . . . this was the 10th time we’ve gone to the deciding game and won. I’ve never done that before.” Palo Alto overcame a 16-12 deficit to win Game 1, fell behind 15-4 while losing Game 2, pulled away from leads of just 14-13 and 21-20 to win Game 3, let an 8-6 lead get away while losing Game 4 and overcame a 10-8 deficit to win Game 5. Junior Trina Ohms led Paly with 13 kills and 13 digs while senior Marissa Florant added 11 kills and 21 digs despite playing on a sore ankle. “She (Florant), as a senior, decided we’re not going down tonight,” Winn said. “She was the MVP of our league for that reason.” Paly sophomore Maddie Kuppe added 11 kills while sophomore setter Kim Whitson and junior libero Megan Coleman also stood out, as did 6-foot-5 sophomore middle hitter Melanie Wade and sophomore outside hitter Caroline Martin. Cassie Prioleau, one of only two seniors on

the team, contributed as well along with freshman Shelby Knowles. Wade provided the winning kill after a block by Martin and Prioleau set the stage. Winn, who used to keep a speech in his head just in case his team lost, can’t even remember it. “I’ve forgotten the speech,” he said. “I’ve blown it off.” Now he just wants his team to make the most of its next opportunity. “I told the girls that Paly doesn’t get these chances very often,” Winn said. CCS Division IV The seniors at Sacred Heart Prep are venturing into unknown territory, which includes playing for a CCS title and qualifying for the NorCal playoffs for the first time following impressive semifinal victory on Wednesday. The SHP got their team into its first CCS finale since 2005 following a 27-25, 25-22, 26-24 upset of top-seeded Mercy-Burlingame in a Division IV semifinal at Harker School in Campbell. Third-seeded Sacred Heart Prep (22-10) will face No. 1 Notre DameSalinas (24-5) in the Division IV finale on Saturday, also at Independence High, at 4:30 p.m. Both are headed to the NorCal playoffs, as well. Sacred Heart Prep got nine kills from Kira Whitehouse, eight kills from Sarah Dashbach and Christine Renschler, 31 assists from Margot Roux, 13 digs from DeAnna Kneis and seven kills plus five block assists from Jesse Ebner to beat Mercy-Burlingame. The Gators had lost to Mercy twice during the West Bay Athletic League (Foothill Division) season, but won the match that counted most. Dashbach provided the winning point. ■

hard to beat a team three times because you have to show that team what you’ve got and they keep getting to try things until they work. “I’m really excited to be in the game this year. This young team really came a long way.” Both took different routes to the finale during Tuesday’s semifinals at Monta Vista High. The Gators substituted liberally while dunking No. 4 St. Ignatius, 16-9, while the Knights had to hold on for a closerthan-expected 7-6 victory over No. 3 Soquel. Division I boys While Menlo and SHP will reprise last season’s finale, Menlo-Atherton will not. The No. 3-seeded Bears (15-12) fell behind by four goals entering the final quarter and couldn’t make up the deficit while dropping a 9-5 decision to St. Francis in the semifinals of the CCS Division I playoffs on Tuesday at Lynbrook High in San Jose. Division I girls Despite missing leading scorer Becca Dorst, who was sidelined by injury, top-seeded Menlo-Atherton still advanced to the Division I finals with a 7-3 victory over No. 5 Los Altos on Wednesday night in a Division I semifinal at Lynbrook High in San Jose. The Bears (27-1), who stretched their winning streak to 25 games, will play No. 2 St. Francis (26-2) on Saturday. The Lancers advanced with a 12-7 win over No. 3 Leland. Senior Vanessa Lane led the Bears with three goals while junior MJ O’Neill and senior Sarah Winters each had two assists for the Bears. Junior goalie Emily Dorst was solid with 17 big saves. Senior Anna Geiduschek also did not play due to injury. Geiduschek and Becca Dorst are both expected to be back for the championship match as the Bears seek to avenge last season’s disappointing loss in the finals. Division II girls Getting two third-quarter goals from senior Heather Smith within a span of 43 seconds, top-seeded Sacred Heart Prep advanced to its fourth straight section title match with a 7-5 triumph over No. 4 Mitty in a semifinal match Wednesday at Monta Vista High in Cupertino. Senior goalie Catherine Donahoe had 10 saves with Sarah Westcott adding a pair of goals. The Gators (21-8) will play No. 3 St. Ignatius (14-11) for the section title on Saturday at Santa Clara University at 10 a.m. Castilleja was hoping to return to the CCS finals, but leading scorer Natasha von Kaeppler was held scoreless until the final 24 seconds of the match and the Gators were upset by SI, despite beating the Wildcats three times this season. ■

Palo Alto Weekly • November 20, 2009 • Page 43

Sports

by Keith Peters aul Summers and Kat Gregory still have some cross-country running left to do. Both will race at the CIF State Championships at Woodward Park in Fresno on November 28 and then at the Foot Locker West Regional. It’s doubtful, however, that either runner will have quite the same motivation they had while winning individual titles at the Central Coast Section finals last Saturday at Crystal Springs in Belmont. For Summers, a senior, it was his final CCS race. His highest previous finish was sixth last year. He also never had beaten Palo Alto’s Philip MacQuitty or Mountain View’s Garrett Rowe in such a big race. Thus, the motivation was there for a great race and he produced by winning the Division II title. Gregory, a sophomore, didn’t have that same sense of urgency that

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Summers had. Her situation was a bit more dire as it involved a dying grandparent. Gregory, who also won the WBAL title this season, had extra motivation to run well as her grandfather, “Pops”, was dying of Alzheimer’s Disease in Texas. Gregory won on Saturday and her grandfather, who had gone into a coma two days earlier, passed away on Sunday. Gregory drew strength from her grandparents, who always encouraged her to continue her running. All in all, it was a special day for local runners as six teams and one individual qualified for the state championships. It was certainly special for the Gunn cross-country program, which qualified both its teams. Summers ran away with the Division II individual title with a personal best and school record of 14:41 over the rolling 2.95-mile course. He helped

the Titans finish second in the team race and qualify for the state meet for the seventh time in the past nine years. For the girls, the Titans put four runners the top 11, scored 39 points and ran off with the Division I title for the first time since 2003 — also sending the entire team to the state finals for a fourth straight season and sixth in the past nine years. For Gunn coach Ernie Lee, it was a day filled with positive efforts as both his teams ran school team-time records. Moreover, the Titans have qualified at least one athlete to the state finals every year of the event’s existence. The only other schools to have accomplished that are Los Gatos and the York School. “Paul had one of those days when everything clicked,” said Lee, who watched his senior beat Rowe, the (continued on page 48)

Forrest Carmichael

CCS cross-country champs find some extra motivation for their wins

Gunn’s Paul Summers (221) makes his move against Mountain View’s Garrett Rowe on the way to winning the CCS Division II title.

Big Game

Stanford’s bowl game choices look good

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Page 44ÊUÊ œÛi“LiÀÊÓä]ÊÓää™ÊUÊ*>œÊÌœÊ7iiŽÞ

rusher and scoring leader in Toby Gerhart and the Pac-10’s leader in pass efficiency in redshirt freshman quarterback Andrew Luck. California counters with the second-best rushing defense and leads the conference in turnover margin. Even without the injured Jahvid Best, California has the ability to run the ball. Shane Veeren is 10th in the Pac-10 with his 54.5 average but he gained 159 yards in the Bears’ win over Arizona. Cal’s Jeff Tedford will be coaching in his 100th game on Saturday. He’s 66-33 entering play, including 6-1 in Big Games. In a rivalry that dates to 1892, Stanford leads the all-time series with California, 55-45-11. The Big Game is tied for the 10th longest rivalry in NCAA Division 1-A college football history. “The ills of hubris can sneak up on you without you even knowing,” Harbaugh said. “But this is the Big Game; it’s Cal, there’s so much motivation. All those things make me feel comfortable that this team will handle it. You can’t let hubris sneak up on you and we will attack it.” Gerhart missed the last Stanford victory in the Big Game because of injury, and he’d like nothing better than to end his senior year with a big win. “Cal is our rival, first and foremost,” Gerhart said. “A loss to Cal wouldn’t feel right; it would feel like something is missing. They have the axe and that thing is above and beyond just one game. It’s the school, and the community. We want the axe back and we want to beat Cal.” At the beginning of the season Gerhart set personal goals of 2,000 yards and being in the discussion for the Heisman Trophy. He’s probably not going to get the yardage but he has been thrust into the Heisman talk. “That’s like every kid’s dream to be considered for that,” Gerhart said. “That’s a testament to our fi-

by Rick Eymer ood afternoon and welcome to the college football show we like to call “What Happens If.” It’s really rather simple. We predict an outcome, say Stanford beating California this Saturday in the Big Game and try to decipher the possible bowl opportunities. You’ll have to excuse the rust. We haven’t needed to do this for eight years and I’m afraid we’ve lost some of our skillful analysis in that time. OK, so we’re betting Stanford beats the Bears to finish Pac-10 play at 7-2, clinching at least a tie for second-place tie. More importantly, the conference title and a berth in the Rose Bowl would also remain very much alive. “Our mindset has been like this is an NFL playoff matchup with this being our championship game,” Stanford coach Jim Harbaugh said. “If we win we stay in the hunt for a Pac-10 championship. If we lose, well, we haven’t left ourselves any plans for an exit strategy.” Every other Pac-10 team will have at least one remaining game, and in Arizona’s case, two left after this weekend. The key matchup is, obviously, Oregon at Arizona. That game is set to kickoff a half-hour after the Big Game starts. It does matter who wins that game too, even if Cardinal gains an advantage over the loser either way. Stanford should be rooting for the Wildcats to win at home since Arizona will have games against USC and Arizona State remain-

ing. The Ducks still have the Civil War Game with Oregon State and Stanford needs Oregon to beat the Beavers after losing to the Wildcats. Then Arizona can go ahead and lose to USC. Pretty simple, yes? Strange as it may seem, the Cardinal holds a tiebreaker only against the Pac-10 leader. There is no chance of anything more than a three-way for the lead and Stanford would be the odd man out in that scenario. Here’s another scenario to consider: Oregon wins out and goes to the Rose Bowl. That would give Stanford sole possession of second place and a berth in the Holiday Bowl in San Diego. Any ties for second place and Stanford likely would wind up in the Emerald Bowl in San Francisco. In the event of a tie for any position in the standings other than the championship, the bowl selection committee may choose its participant from among the tied teams, with the higher bowl getting first pick. In order, the Pac-10 has agreements with: Rose Bowl (Jan. 1 on ABC) Pacific Life Holiday Bowl (Dec. 30 on ESPN) Brut Sun Bowl (Dec. 31 on CBS) Emerald Bowl (Dec. 26 on ESPN) MAACO Bowl Las Vegas (Dec. 22 on ESPN) San Diego CCU Poinsettia Bowl (Dec. 23 on ESPN) Make travel arrangements at your own risk. N

nally getting national attention.” Scoring a combined 106 points against teams ranked seventh and 11th in the nation certainly helped the cause. That Gerhart ran for 223

and 178 yards in those games, both of which were televised, is also an attention grabber. He heads into the

G

(continued on page 47)

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Last Year’s Grant Recipients Adolescent Counseling Services .... $10,000 Art in Action .......................................... $5,000 Baby Basics of the Peninsula, Inc. ... $1,200 Bread of Life.......................................... $5,000 Breast Cancer Connections ............... $5,000 California Family Foundation .............. $2,500 Cleo Eulau Center................................. $5,000 Collective Roots.................................. $10,000 Community Legal Services in EPA .... $7,500 Community Working Group, Inc......... $7,500 Downtown Streets, Inc. .................... $10,000 East Palo Alto Children’s Day Committee ..................................... $5,000 East Palo Alto Kids Foundation ........ $10,000 East Palo Alto Youth Court .................. $7,500 Environmental Volunteers .................. $3,000 EPA.net................................................... $5,000 Foothill-De Anza Foundation .............. $7,500 Foundation for a College Education .. $5,000

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CITY OF PALO ALTO NOTICE OF CITY MANAGER’S PUBLIC HEARING CERTIFICATE OF PUBLIC CONVENIENCE AND NECESSITY NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the Palo Alto City Manager or his designee will consider the application of Stanford Yellow Cab, for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity to operate a taxicab service in the City of Palo Alto under the business name of Stanford Yellow Cab, and the Amendment to the current Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity for Yellow Checker Cab Company, Inc to increase the number of taxicabs to operate in the City of Palo Alto under the business name of Silicon Valley Checker Cab Company and Yellow Cab Company of Palo Alto, at a special meeting on Wednesday, December 2, 2009 at 9:00 a.m. in the First Floor Human Resources Conference Room, located at 250 Hamilton Avenue, Palo Alto.

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Sports

CCS football (continued from page 41)

6-6 tie the Vikings had with Santa Clara Prep in 1922 — four years before Santa Clara Prep became Bellarmine Prep. Paly beat Bellarmine in 1932 (24-12), wrung the Bells in 1933 (31-0), lost in 1934 (14-6) before winning again in 1935 (12-0) and 1936 (19-0). Palo Alto and Bellarmine have one common opponent, Mitty. The Bells and Monarchs tied, 14-14, on Oct. 23 and wound up sharing the West Catholic Athletic League title at 6-0-1. Palo Alto lost to Mitty, 3513, on Sept. 18 but hasn’t lost since. The only other slipups by Paly this season were a 20-20 tie at Homestead and last week’s 14-14 tie at Wilcox. Against Homestead, the Vikings had the ball late in the game and fumbled, giving it away and allowing the Mustangs to score. Against Wilcox, the Chargers scored a disputed TD in the final minute of the game when it was quite evident to everyone but the officials that the Wilcox runner had not crossed the goal line. Hansen is eager to get another shot at Mitty (9-0-1), which is seeded No. 2 and in the bracket opposite Paly. The only way the teams would meet would be in the Open Division finals, which would be fine with Hansen. Paly won the Open Division in 2006. Palo Alto earned its berth in the Open Division despite being tied by Wilcox on Friday night, 14-14. The Vikings still won the SCVAL De Anza Division title and earned a first-round home game. Bellarmine will bring an offense that it run-oriented, led by junior Kyle Olugbode and his 116.8 yards per game. Quarterback Mike McGovern is averaging just 66.8 yards per outing. The Bells are averaging 34.4 points a game while allowing 18.7per game. Hansen believes the Bells will be easier to defend than Mitty. Palo Alto, which had a hard time running the ball against Wilcox, will need junior quarterback T.J. Braff to be at his best with the passing game. Braff has thrown for 922 yards on 56-of-82 with eight touchdowns and only four interceptions since taking over for the injured Christoph Bono. Maurice Williams is one of three dangerous receivers with 22 catches for 587 yards and an average of 26.8 yards per catch. Joc Pederson has 26 receptions for 586 yards while Davante Adams has 26 catches for 454 yards. Division II Gunn received the No. 6 seed and will open postseason play at Leland (7-3) on Saturday at 7 p.m. This is only the third time in school history that Gunn has reached the playoffs. The last time was in 2002 when they defeated Aragon, 28-21, before falling to St. Francis, 33-14. The Titans (7-3) won a coin toss with Sobrato for the sixth seed. “This is great for the guys.” said Gunn coach Bob Sykes. “They’re excited about being in the playoffs.” The only common opponent for the two teams is Leigh. Gunn lost to Leigh, 20-10, and Leland beat

ATHLETES OF THE WEEK

Kat Gregory Woodside Priory The sophomore ran 19:07 to win her first-ever Central Coast Section individual title while helping the Panthers win their first Division V championship in cross country and qualify for a trip to the CIF State Meet.

Paul Summers Gunn High The senior ran a lifetime best of 14:41, fastest in school history, to win the Central Coast Section Division II individual title in cross country and help the Titans take second and reach the CIF State Meet.

Honorable mention Skylar Dorosin Palo Alto water polo

Marissa Florant* Palo Alto volleyball

Natasha von Kaeppler Castilleja water polo

Erin Robinson Gunn cross country

Rachel Skokowski Castilleja cross country

Heather Smith Sacred Heart Prep water polo

T.J. Braff Palo Alto football

Danny Diekroeger* Menlo football

Josh Jackson Gunn football

Philip MacQuitty Palo Alto cross country

Clay Robbins* Menlo football

Darryl Sepulveda Eastside Prep cross country * previous winner

To see video interviews of the Athletes of the Week, go to www.PASportsOnline.com

Leigh, 30-15. “I know the coach at Leland,” said Sykes. “They’re well-coached and I know I will need to get our guys ready for a battle.” The Gunn-Leland winner will advance to the semifinals on either Nov. 27 or 28 and face the winner of No. 7 Sobrato (8-2) or No. 2 Wilcox (6-3-1). The top-seeded team in the bracket is Los Gatos (7-3). The division title will be played on either Dec. 4 or 5. Gunn will have to make the most of this opportunity because the Titans on Monday night were moved up to the SCVAL De Anza Division for next season. Gunn humbled visiting Cupertino last week, 45-0, to end the regular season. The victory earned Sykes the Charlie Wedemeyer West Bay Coach of the Week honors from the San Francisco 49ers. Division IV Menlo School will ride a fourgame winning streak into the playoffs, where the Knights (7-3) will put their No. 2 seeding on the line Saturday against visiting No. 7 Greenfield in Atherton at 1 p.m. The first-round winner will face either No. 3 Sacred Heart Prep (7-3) or No. 6 San Lorenzo Valley in the semifi-

nals on Nov. 27 or 28. The section championship game will be played either on Dec. 4 or 5. Menlo heads into the playoffs following a 27-21 victory over visiting Sacred Heart Prep last week and with one of the most prolific passing attacks in the Bay Area. Senior quarterback Danny Diekroeger has completed 189 passes for 3,120 yards and 26 touchdowns this season. His favorite target is senior Clay Robbins, who has 69 receptions for 1,423 yards and 12 scores. Tim Benton has 49 catches for 784 yards and six TDs while Beau Nichols has caught another 31 passes for 419 yards and six TDs, giving him 19 touchdowns this season. Despite dropping its regular-season finale to host Menlo last Friday, Sacred Heart Prep still earned a high seed and will open Saturday at home against No. 6 San Lorenzo Valley at 1 p.m. The Gators, who reached the CCS Small School Division finals last season in only their first-ever appearance in the section playoffs, are averaging 411.5 yards per game with a prolific rushing attack led by senior Matt Walter’s 1,459 yards. He has scored 19 rushing TDs this season. Senior Chris Gaertner has rushed for 1,001 yards with 10 TDs. ■

Sports

The Girlsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Middle School

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(continued from page 44)

#SZBOU4USFFU 1BMP"MUP

In association with:

2 0 0 9 /10 P R E M I E R E S E A S O N

at the Oshman Family JCC

Arts CafĂŠ Jake Oken-Berg & Jason Barlow: Jazz & Pop Duo 12/ 3, 7:30PM Join us for our new series that showcases contemporary music in a casual atmosphere.

DECEMBER HIGHLIGHTS

Big Game as the two-time reigning Pac-10 Offensive Player of the Week. â&#x20AC;&#x153;This is kind of a complete turnaround from where the seniors and the fifth-year guys started,â&#x20AC;? Gerhart said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I started in the pits, 1-11. To finally have some success, qualify for a bowl game, it is exciting.â&#x20AC;? Gerhart, who was recruited by Walt Harris, wanted to go to a program where he would make a difference. The year before he arrived at Stanford, the team finished 5-6. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I thought Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d get here and help win the sixth game,â&#x20AC;? he said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It started out rough but its come full circle.â&#x20AC;? As for all the Heisman talk, Gerhart declined any kind of promotion. Instead he was the star of one of the better in-house promotions. Gerhart, who is also a pro baseball prospect, was filmed, humorously, as a multi-sport star: tennis, field hockey, golf, swimming, even synchronized swimming, and as an added bonus, he takes on the Stanford barbershop quartet. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Toby represents everything the Heisman Trophy represents,â&#x20AC;? Harbaugh said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;He has literally taken our football team on his back. Not only should he be in the discussion, based on his accomplishments to this point he should win it. I think heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s very deserving of that award.â&#x20AC;? Stanford leads the Pac-10 in total offense after exploding in the past two weeks. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s led to a higher level of confidence among players. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Andrew Luck has done some good things in the passing game and this offense takes pride in being physical,â&#x20AC;? Gerhart said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re going to run right at people. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s sort of our M.O. and weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re confident. The offensive line should be confident; they move people.â&#x20AC;? The offensive line has also done an outstanding job in protecting Luck. Stanford has allowed just 0.60 sacks per game this season, which is the second fewest in the country behind Boise State. Cal recorded three QB sacks against an Arizona offensive unit that had given up only four all season. But itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a rivalry game, so who knows? â&#x2013; 

Through the Filmmakerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Lens A Film About Anna Akhmatova 12/2, 7:00PM This documentary explores the life of the late Russian poet Anna Akhmatova. In Russian with English subtitles.

JOIN IN THE HOLIDAY FUN Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony Saturday, November 21 3:00pm â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 7:00pm Clock Tower Plaza

Voiceover Workshop for Kids & Adults 12 /6 Learn about the voiceover business from Kevin Delaney, a Hollywood pro!

Art Travels San Francisco Printmaking & Fine Art 12 /12 Take a day-long tour in San Francisco of Aurobora Press, San Francisco Electric Works and the John Berggruen Gallery. Lunch and wine included.

Deck the Halls with Holly Berry, the Holiday Fairy! Stanford Shopping Center will light up the holidays with a musical treat for the entire family featuring Holly Berry, the Holiday Fairy and her singing and dancing holiday trees. Bop to the beat of everyoneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s favorite holiday tunes as Holly Berry and Santa lead the countdown to our Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony and the illumination of the entire Center. After the performance, follow the characters to the Center Pavilion for photos with Santa and refreshments.

Locally sponsored by:

*Santaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Enchanted Woods will be closed during the Tree Lighting Ceremony and will reopen after the parade. Visit Simon Guest Services or simon.com/kidgits for details.

For our full schedule and ticket information, please visit www.paloaltojcc.org/arts

Oshman Family JCC 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto, Ca 94303 (650) 223-8700 | paloaltojcc.org

Š2009 Nintendo

El Camino Real & Sand Hill Road, Palo Alto Shopping Line 650.617.8200 ÂŽ

Palo Alto Weekly â&#x20AC;˘ November 20, 2009 â&#x20AC;˘ Page 47

Sports

CCS X-country (continued from page 44)

defending champ, by 11 seconds, even though the Spartans still won the team title with just 29 points. “He was healthy, fit, and mentally prepared. Couple that with perfect weather and competition and it was an optimal recipe for an outstanding performance.” Summers’ time also was quite historic, as it tied him for eighthfastest in history on the legendary course while also tying him with Andy DiConti (La Canada in 1979) as the No. 7 runners of all-time. His time also was the fastest since 1985

when twins Mark and Eric Mastalir of Jesuit (Sacramento) ran one-two in 14:38 and 14:39, respectively, at the Crystal Springs Invitational. The all-time record on the course is 14:28 by Mitch Kingery of San Carlos in 1973. For Summers, his time was a personal best by 20 seconds. “In my wildest dreams I didn’t think I could run that fast,” he said. “It’s hard to describe the feeling.” Summers stayed with Rowe until reaching the bottom of Heartbreak Hill with less than a mile to go. “I knew if he was next to me with just a flat race to go, that he would beat me,” said Summers, who pulled away on that final uphill. “Going

up Heartbreak Hill I didn’t think I could make a move but, you realize this is your last time on this course and you might as well give it a try.” Lee, meanwhile, had no trouble talking up the rest of his team, as well. “The rest if the boys put together a very impressive team performance,” said Lee, whose team finished with 89 points. “All seven boys ran personal bests.” Alex Johann was 13th in 15:51, Robert Chen was 15th in 15:52. Ethan Glassman was 28th in 16:30 and Peter Chen was 32nd in 16:36. “We took two gambles on the boys’ side, moving up Peter Chen from the frosh-soph and running

Ethan Glassman (who was coming off a poor performance at the league meet),” Lee explained. “Ethan responded by being our No. 4, running probably the best race of his life, and Peter PR’d by 25 seconds to finish as our No. 5.” The Palo Alto boys also qualified for the state meet by finishing third with 116 points. MacQuitty had his best race of the season as he took fourth in 15:03, just missing the alltime list at Crystal. Josh Newby was 17th (15:57), Peter Wilson was 20th (16:03), Henry Jordan 33rd (16:36) and Ben Sklaroff was 43rd (16:49). Paly coach Joe Ginanni went into the meet with the Gunn boys as a target goal.

Personal care will get even better More capacity. More access. More service. Menlo Medical Clinic will open a second Menlo Park location at 321 Middlefield Road to provide exceptional primary and specialty care for its community. Personal. Knowledgeable. Integrated. Soon our family of physicians and practitioners will grow to 50+, our specialties will increase to 20, and our clinic will expand to two — all in affiliation with Stanford Hospital & Clinics to better serve you. Our second Menlo Park clinic at 321 Middlefield Road will open December of 2009. Menlo Medical Clinic 1300 Crane St. Menlo Park, CA 94025 650-498-6500 menloclinic.com

Page 48 • November 20, 2009 • Palo Alto Weekly

“In regards to beating Gunn, I thought we had a chance . . . as far as qualifying for states we were confident, it would have taken a really bad day or an injury to keep us out,” he said. “To beat Gunn it would have taken our best day possible, which we put up -- Gunn just responded with the same and had an awesome race, too.” Palo Alto’s combined team time (80:28) was eight seconds faster than last year, which means that this team surpassed last year’s team as the fastest Paly team to race at Crystal Springs. The Gunn girls were pretty fast, too, while ending Carlmont’s streak of four straight CCS titles. “As for the girls, it was quite the bounce back from last week,” said Lee, alluding to a second-place finish at the SCVAL El Camino Division finals. “We did get a bit lucky, as one of Carlmont’s top runners had been ill (she finished as their No. 5, over a minute behind her PR). The huge race for us was from senior Rachel Wittenauer. She ran a personal best by 41 seconds.” Junior Erin Robinson led the Titans with a second-place finish of 18:19, a 36-second improvement over her previous best that continued Gunn’s streak of having a girl among the top five in every year since 1996. Sophomore Kieran Gallagher followed in sixth in 18:45, senior Claire O’Connell was seventh in 18:49, Wittenauer was 11th in 19:04 and junior Emma Dohner came in 13th in 19:06. Joining the Gunn girls as CCS team champs was The Priory. The Panthers scored 32 points to win Division V ahead of Crystal Springs (46) and Castilleja (69). All three teams advanced to the state meet out of the small five-team division. For Priory, it was its first-ever section championship. The Panthers are ranked eighth heading into the state meet. Gregory won c om fo r t a bly in 19:07, well ahead of runnerup Rachel Skokowsk i of Castilleja (19:35). Priory also had Lauren Allen in fourth (19:46), Jennie Chris- Kat Gregory tensen in sixth (20:11), Devon Errington in 10th (21:19) and Liz Draeger 11th in 21:23. Gregory’s victory was all the more special considering she missed a month of training earlier in the season after undergoing jaw surgery. She credited her teammates with helping her get back into competitive shape quickly and help her team qualify for the state meet for a second straight season. Castilleja, which routinely makes trips to the state finals, was helped by Laura Swenson’s 12th place in 21:31, Katherine Taylor’s 14th place (22:06), Crystal Ghosh’s 18th (22:29) and Julia McGee’s 27th in 25:23. Qualifying for the state meet as an individual was Eastside Prep senior Darryl Sepulveda, who finished second in the boys’ Division V race in 16:36. ■


Palo Alto Weekly 11.20.2009-Section1